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Old 23rd March 2023, 19:04   #1
s10
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Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars

Electric cars are slowly becoming mainline and there are lot of environmental benefits everyone cites for switching to EVs. Here I would like to touch upon a totally different aspect about EMF in EVs

EMF has hazardous impact on humans and there are lot of studies that it can cause cancer and other health problems like anxiety, headaches etc... (link)

I can find some data on internet but from our community, has anyone felt uncomfortable, headaches or nauseated while driving/ sitting in an EV?
I could not find even a single reference of EMF in any thread in electric cars section in T-BHP.

one of my friend recently got hold of an EMF meter, so curiously I checked it in my Nexon Prime EV. Thankfully I did not get any +ve reading inside the cabin.
But today someone called BYD atto3 for test drive and we were shocked at the readings in the EMF meter Mostly it was in the permissible range but occasionally while accelerating it was going out in hazard range.
He was sold on BYD atto3 but looking at the readings he is now skeptical about his decision.
So I would like to hear out your opinions about how much should he be worried about this?
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Old 23rd March 2023, 22:13   #2
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re: Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars

Today, we are living in a sea of electromagnetic radiation of different frequencies. The low frequency radiations (non-ionizing) are thought to be harmless. However, lots of studies are being carried out to understand its effect on human health and behavior. Some of the common sources such as microwave ovens, computers,wireless (Wi-Fi) routers, cellphones, and Bluetooth devices are integral part of our life. These sources come under the Group 2B (possible human carcinogen) classification by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). The guideline limit of electromagnetic radiation for the general public of 100 ĶT. It would be interesting to see what is the contribution of EVs to this.
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Originally Posted by s10 View Post
I can find some data on internet but from our community, has anyone felt uncomfortable, headaches or nauseated while driving/ sitting in an EV?
The EMF that EVs produce are also falls in the non-ionizing category and hence I guess it can not cause the above mentioned symptoms. Also, if anyone is having these symptoms, it has to be checked scientifically before drawing any conclusion to eliminate the biases. I appreciate, if any one can throw light on it.
Quote:
one of my friend recently got hold of an EMF meter, so curiously I checked it in my Nexon Prime EV. Thankfully I did not get any +ve reading inside the cabin.
But today someone called BYD atto3 for test drive and we were shocked at the readings in the EMF meter
Would you please share the measurements that you have on these cars? Also, I would like to know whether you checked the background data before doing these measurements.
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Old 23rd March 2023, 23:16   #3
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re: Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars

There have been plenty of studies on EMF from electric drivetrains including trams, trains & more recently EV's. Even in case of EV's the magnetic flux / EMF values were found to be pretty close to ICE cars.
An example:
Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars-emf.jpg
Source:
https://www.emf-portal.org/en/emf-source/672

Could you elaborate on the settings & the measurement device please, unable to figure how it can cross 27ĶT.
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Old 23rd March 2023, 23:37   #4
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re: Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars

Quote:
Originally Posted by s10 View Post
Electric cars are slowly becoming mainline and there are lot of environmental benefits everyone cites for switching to EVs. Here I would like to touch upon a totally different aspect about EMF in EVs?
Well, one thing is for sure:

Any ICE powered car definitely emits heaps of potential carcinogenic stuff! And a lot of stuff that pollutes the air in various different way.

Secondly, you forgot to mention how much EMF a modern car admits. Just about any sensor emits EMF. Whether it is your ABS sensor, airbagsensors, steering angle sensor, wheel speed sensors, tire pressure sensors, parking sensors, adaptive cruise control sensors etc etc.

That is before we consider the EMF from your mobile phone that most people keep on them 24/7 and also keep it close to their head/brain during the many calls they make during the day. And of course the EMF from the various Telecommunication networks, power cables and many house hold and office appliances.

EMF is all around us. So when you start measuring it, you really need to understand what you are doing and what EMF you are actually measuring.

Whether EMF has medical and or safety implications has been a matter of much debate. The problem is that it is very complex. It really depends on what kind of EMF, frequency and amount and also exposure time. These sort of EMF radiations tend to be cumulative in their effects. Similar to letís say X-rays.

There is also a large personal component here. Some people claim to be more susceptible than others. I have never seen scientific evidence of those claims though. But I havenít really kept up with developments lately.

Although not very scientific it is probably fair to assume you are more likely to get hurt participating in Indian traffic regardless, then to suffer any EMF effects.

Could you please share details about your EMF reader, how it is calibrated and what you are actually measuring for how long

Jeroen
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Old 24th March 2023, 13:16   #5
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Re: Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars

Quote:
Originally Posted by On4Wheels View Post

The EMF that EVs produce are also falls in the non-ionizing category and hence I guess it can not cause the above mentioned symptoms. Also, if anyone is having these symptoms, it has to be checked scientifically before drawing any conclusion to eliminate the biases. I appreciate, if any one can throw light on it.
See, in principle I agree with you and it shouldn't be life threatening any way otherwise would have been banned. But heard from a close friend about someone in US feeling nauseated while sitting in an EV. He actually switched between cars to find out what was making them feel fatigued, the only factor was EV and non EV. Hence I asked this if someone actually felt anything personally while sitting in an ICE car vs an EV.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
Any ICE powered car definitely emits heaps of potential carcinogenic stuff! And a lot of stuff that pollutes the air in various different way.

Secondly, you forgot to mention how much EMF a modern car admits. Just about any sensor emits EMF. Whether it is your ABS sensor, airbagsensors, steering angle sensor, wheel speed sensors, tire pressure sensors, parking sensors, adaptive cruise control sensors etc etc.

That is before we consider the EMF from your mobile phone that most people keep on them 24/7 and also keep it close to their head/brain during the many calls they make during the day. And of course the EMF from the various Telecommunication networks, power cables and many house hold and office appliances.

EMF is all around us. So when you start measuring it, you really need to understand what you are doing and what EMF you are actually measuring.

Whether EMF has medical and or safety implications has been a matter of much debate. The problem is that it is very complex. It really depends on what kind of EMF, frequency and amount and also exposure time. These sort of EMF radiations tend to be cumulative in their effects. Similar to letís say X-rays.

There is also a large personal component here. Some people claim to be more susceptible than others. I have never seen scientific evidence of those claims though. But I havenít really kept up with developments lately.

Although not very scientific it is probably fair to assume you are more likely to get hurt participating in Indian traffic regardless, then to suffer any EMF effects.

Could you please share details about your EMF reader, how it is calibrated and what you are actually measuring for how long
I absolutely agree with all your thoughts, in fact I myself own an EV. We surely have lot of gadgets around with loads of EMF emission, worst of them being our Laptops and Wifi routers .
But being aware of it definitely helps in taking precautions like I always use additional monitor and keyboard which reduces the exposure drastically because these signals attenuates very fast.
But a car acts like Faraday cage so any EMF inside would be amplified. That is why it is recommended to switch off your mobile while driving the car. Again not possible in this damn world so precaution can be to put it near the glaas area and use bluetooth.
I used this one for measuring EMF - Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars-whatsapp-image-20230324-11.23.17.jpeg

Quote:
Originally Posted by EV Fan View Post
Could you elaborate on the settings & the measurement device please, unable to figure how it can cross 27ĶT.
We measured it for about 10 mins during our test drive. Reading varied from
0.6-1.0 uT. Though not a real hazard but any help/ information would be better.

Another thing is it might be prominent in BYD Atto3 and not in Nexon EV because of battery size. It's 60kW vs 30kW. Again my guess, expert opinions are most welcome.
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Old 24th March 2023, 22:57   #6
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Re: Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars

Quote:
Originally Posted by s10 View Post
But heard from a close friend about someone in US feeling nauseated while sitting in an EV. He actually switched between cars to find out what was making them feel fatigued, the only factor was EV and non EV. Hence I asked this if someone actually felt anything personally while sitting in an ICE car vs an EV.
Sounds closer to the regular motion sickness but possibly due to the other reasons like the aggressive acceleration / regeneration, the change in momentum without any accompanying noise/sound etc. Basically no head's up in form of noise or the gradual/lagging acceleration of ICE's(compared to EV's).
Quite a well researched topic, and a well known anomaly for certain susceptible individuals in EV's - example this Tesla help forum:
https://tesla-info.com/tips/car-sickness.php#:~:text=Electric%20cars%20including%2 0Tesla's%2C%20by,more%20car%20sickness%20than%20no rmal.

Quote:
Originally Posted by s10 View Post
But a car acts like Faraday cage so any EMF inside would be amplified. That is why it is recommended to switch off your mobile while driving the car.
I think this is quite debatable as:
1.) Car is technically not a Faraday cage, a Faraday cage is designed as a continuous conductive surface. The cars doors, windows, edges all of them are which prevent it from being a Faraday cage.
2.) the effectiveness of faraday cage depends on the wavelength of EM waves. Mobile uses microwaves, the holes in the car's frame is just too large, the EM waves will pass through, whatever the mobile emits should radiate out and similarly whatever towers emit will pass through.
Also the Faraday cage does not amplify EMF inside, it just reflects it quite well and does not allow it to escape but again based on wavelength. Even a well designed microwave cavity does not actively increase intensity of EM waves, it only allows EM waves to resonate within.
A car seems a far cry from a Faraday cage let alone being a good microwave cavity.
Quote:
Originally Posted by s10 View Post
We measured it for about 10 mins during our test drive. Reading varied from
0.6-1.0 uT. Though not a real hazard but any help/ information would be better.

Another thing is it might be prominent in BYD Atto3 and not in Nexon EV because of battery size. It's 60kW vs 30kW. Again my guess, expert opinions are most welcome.
These values seem perfectly normal, definitely not enough to cause anyone to feel sick in an EV but not in an ICE. These values are similar to what you might see in an electronically well equipped ICE.
Though more than acceleration/driving i would be bothered with fast/super charging or wireless charging(if it comes), i think that's when it would be high EMF scenario that too for quite a sustained duration.
If you are game, then can you check EMF during DC fast charging vs at home and share with us please?
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Old 25th March 2023, 09:45   #7
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Re: Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars

Quote:
Originally Posted by EV Fan View Post
Sounds closer to the regular motion sickness but possibly due to the other reasons like the aggressive acceleration / regeneration, the change in momentum without any accompanying noise/sound etc. Basically no head's up in form of noise or the gradual/lagging acceleration of ICE's(compared to EV's).
Quite possible, again friend of a friend kind of information flow That is why I am looking for first hand experience in our esteemed community.

Quote:
Originally Posted by EV Fan View Post
I think this is quite debatable as:
1.) Car is technically not a Faraday cage, a Faraday cage is designed as a continuous conductive surface. The cars doors, windows, edges all of them are which prevent it from being a Faraday cage.
2.) the effectiveness of faraday cage depends on the wavelength of EM waves. Mobile uses microwaves, the holes in the car's frame is just too large, the EM waves will pass through, whatever the mobile emits should radiate out and similarly whatever towers emit will pass through.
Also the Faraday cage does not amplify EMF inside, it just reflects it quite well and does not allow it to escape but again based on wavelength. Even a well designed microwave cavity does not actively increase intensity of EM waves, it only allows EM waves to resonate within.
A car seems a far cry from a Faraday cage let alone being a good microwave cavity.
All very valid points, and I said it might act like one since this is an enclosed metallic cage. Also you are right, Amplification is the wrong word, you can’t amplify just by deflections. Just wanted to highlight that the EMF inside might stay longer because of deflections inside the cabin. And as you mentioned there are lot of openings so is one my precautions, keeping the phone near windows while driving.

Quote:
Originally Posted by EV Fan View Post

These values seem perfectly normal, definitely not enough to cause anyone to feel sick in an EV but not in an ICE. These values are similar to what you might see in an electronically well equipped ICE.
I also thought so but Nexon had no reading whereas BYD had these. So either our beloved Tata had done better shielding than the Chinese counterpart or those hanging cables outside the shell are doing the trick
Quote:
Originally Posted by EV Fan View Post
If you are game, then can you check EMF during DC fast charging vs at home and share with us please?
I will try this whenever I get a chance since I mostly do slow charging at home and use my EV for city driving only. But again thanks for all your valuable inputs.

Last edited by s10 : 25th March 2023 at 09:46.
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Old 25th March 2023, 10:51   #8
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Re: Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars

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Originally Posted by s10 View Post
EMF has hazardous impact on humans and there are lot of studies that it can cause cancer and other health problems like anxiety, headaches etc...
I think there is some abbreviation related issue here.

EMF : Electromotive Force - is force generated due to a current carrying conductor in a magnetic field. To generate such a force you need a Magnetic Field (EMF that you are referring to).

EMR : Electromagnetic Radiation - Radio frequency waves produced by an oscillator circuit.

Without the first EMF, your EV won't move an inch. Without the second, you won't be able to use a mobile phone. EU has some strict guidelines on the EMR values that a device can emit. Yes they are harmful but hey so's CT scan, MRI and other devices which also use similar such techniques for medical diagnosis.
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Old 26th March 2023, 10:44   #9
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Re: Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars

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Originally Posted by s10 View Post
I can find some data on internet but from our community, has anyone felt uncomfortable, headaches or nauseated while driving/ sitting in an EV?
No. I have driven over 40k kms in my MG ZS EV in the past two years without feeling anything of the sort. I have also driven various other EVs like Tesla, Jaguar and VW on long trips without feeling any discomfort. No one in my friend or family circle or among the thousands of EV owners I interact with on various forums has ever mentioned anything of the sort.

Quote:
Originally Posted by s10 View Post
See, in principle I agree with you and it shouldn't be life threatening any way otherwise would have been banned. But heard from a close friend about someone in US feeling nauseated while sitting in an EV. He actually switched between cars to find out what was making them feel fatigued, the only factor was EV and non EV..
I can guarantee that you will feel exactly the same way. You will take out your EMF meter and psyche yourself up. It is simply placebo effect. This is exactly how people work themselves up near a mobile tower and even WiFi routers. The internet is full of stories about how someone got affected by the neighbour's wireless router and so on.
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Old 26th March 2023, 10:54   #10
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Re: Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars

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Originally Posted by s10 View Post
I also thought so but Nexon had no reading whereas BYD had these. So either our beloved Tata had done better shielding than the Chinese counterpart or those hanging cables outside the shell are doing the trick
Usually all the electrical/electronics manufacturers inherently utilize some form of shielding (basically to avoid EMI issues induced by the EMF). With BYD's experience in EV's, it is expected that they might have put together a better product. But if the regulations are non-existent or have higher limits then the manufacturer will only build as per those constraints.
Will be quite curious to know if Tata has done better shielding or as you said hanging cables "safely" outside...

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Originally Posted by s10 View Post
I will try this whenever I get a chance since I mostly do slow charging at home and use my EV for city driving only.
Thank You... Looking forward to your findings.
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Old 26th March 2023, 17:46   #11
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Re: Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars

We are surrounded by EMF all the time. The power circuits in homes, offices, transmission lines, microwave/radio communication, ADAS Radar, existing ICE cars too have electricals.
The incremental value of such EMF and its harmful affect, due to Motros and assicociated circuits; possibility of perceiving that without instruments in terms of physical discomfort/feel, though it can't be ruled out/dismissed , appears to be remote.
However the issue shouldn't be dismissed in absence of data.

Last edited by spgv : 26th March 2023 at 17:49.
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Old 26th March 2023, 23:54   #12
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Re: Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars

This may vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, but at least one I know has EMI/EMC/EMF testing rigorously done for every electronic component that goes into the car. This includes testing internal systems for any misbehaviour due to interference, testing exposure to driver, passengers as well as external pedestrians and cross interference between different components in the car. So in general this aspect is definitely considered, but the stringency might vary between manufacturers and also the quality of tests itself. But it's definitely not overlooked at.
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Old 27th March 2023, 17:23   #13
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Re: Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars

Quote:
Originally Posted by spgv View Post
We are surrounded by EMF all the time. The power circuits in homes, offices, transmission lines, microwave/radio communication, ADAS Radar, existing ICE cars too have electricals.
The incremental value of such EMF and its harmful affect, due to Motros and assicociated circuits; possibility of perceiving that without instruments in terms of physical discomfort/feel, though it can't be ruled out/dismissed , appears to be remote.
However the issue shouldn't be dismissed in absence of data.
This was one reason for starting this thread that if anyone has first hand experience/ information for everyones benefit. Most on the stories at least in this regard are hearsay.


Quote:
Originally Posted by audioholic View Post
This may vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, but at least one I know has EMI/EMC/EMF testing rigorously done for every electronic component that goes into the car. This includes testing internal systems for any misbehaviour due to interference, testing exposure to driver, passengers as well as external pedestrians and cross interference between different components in the car. So in general this aspect is definitely considered, but the stringency might vary between manufacturers and also the quality of tests itself. But it's definitely not overlooked at.
I also thought so otherwise any big glaring miss would have already been highlighted by someone.


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Originally Posted by Lobogris View Post
No. I have driven over 40k kms in my MG ZS EV in the past two years without feeling anything of the sort. I have also driven various other EVs like Tesla, Jaguar and VW on long trips without feeling any discomfort. No one in my friend or family circle or among the thousands of EV owners I interact with on various forums has ever mentioned anything of the sort.

I can guarantee that you will feel exactly the same way. You will take out your EMF meter and psyche yourself up. It is simply placebo effect. This is exactly how people work themselves up near a mobile tower and even WiFi routers. The internet is full of stories about how someone got affected by the neighbour's wireless router and so on.
you summed this up well. One seed of doubt and you start doubting everything. Microwave causes cancer type of myth/fact kind of confusion.

Hope this thread can help put all these to rest and somehow ensure that EV is as good or as bad as any other car in terms of EMF.
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Old 27th March 2023, 19:00   #14
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Re: Electromagnetic Field (EMF) in electric cars

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Originally Posted by s10 View Post
Hope this thread can help put all these to rest and somehow ensure that EV is as good or as bad as any other car in terms of EMF.
Definitely more discussion is good, but we should also be mindful of FUD created against EVs, just like the 5G towers causes cancer.

From what I searched on Google, the EMF from EVs are not harmful. Compared to a known carcinogenic NOx emissions from ICE vehicles, EVs are a better choice. Your friend should absolutely prefer Atto 3 instead of buying an ICE car (if at all) for this reason.
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