The Electromagnetic Spectrum Ultraviolet Rays

PhysicsElectromagnetic waves


“Ultraviolet rays” (UV rays) are the portion of the Electromagnetic Spectrum varying from the ending of the visual light coverage to the X-ray area. These rays are harmful to the human skin and eyesight. Continued consumption of “ultraviolet rays” can cause several disorders. Additionally, the “ozone layers” consumed a large number of “UV rays” that come from the sunlight. Moreover, “mercury lamps, black lights, and tanning lights” are several sources of the UV rays present in the atmosphere.

About the Electromagnetic Spectrum

The “Electromagnetic (EM) Spectrum” is the field of all classified radiations. “EM radiation” comes from different sources and is the reason behind building the “electromagnetic spectrum” (Earthsky, 2022). Moreover, radiation can travel and spread different types of “visible lights”. The sources of these lights are primarily the followings −


The emitted radio waves from the radio station are a source of the EM spectrums, these waves come into the atmosphere while tuning different radio stations by the listeners


The night vision glasses and modern “CCTV cameras” use infrared sensing light and this is emitting the “infrared waves”. It helps the users to get a clear vision at night.


The “microwave radiation” extracts while cooking different items in the household or the restaurant while cooking different items. The “microwave radiation” is also one source of the “EM spectrum” that is operated by the astronomers to get information regarding the nearby galaxies’ structures (Kupriyanov & Shafigullin, 2018).


The “ultraviolet radiations” are another type of EM spectrums released by the Sun that causes “skin burning and diseases”.


“X-ray radiations” are the EM spectrums that are useful to scan body image and for security reason, it is utilised to scan different portable items at stations and airports.

Figure 1: Different types of the EM spectrum

Discovery of Ultraviolet Rays

The “UV ray” is the part of the “EM radiation” family where the ending part of the light is violet and visible with tiny “wavelengths”. Usually, UV lights are the greater sources of energy emitted from the sunlight and cannot be visible by the human eyes. “Johann Ritter” invented the UV rays in the 19th century, with the desire of checking the existence of the waves that can go beyond the visible spectrum. For the first time, it remained as an unknown photograph which was turning black at a faster speed with the effects of blue light (Ismlandmarks.wordpress, 2022). Later, it was expressed that the film can go violet and hence, the existence of the UV lights gets established

Figure 2: The UV rays

“Wavelength and Frequency of Ultraviolet Ray”

Since all the Em waves can travel at distinctive speeds via the vacuum, the wavelength has different frequency levels. The number of periods it repeats every second, the frequency of a wave can be defined. Moreover, Hertz is the common SI unit for measuring the frequency level of a wave. The nanometres are used as the unit of the frequency levels to measure the UV waves. Additionally, compared to the visible light sources, the UV rays have a more succinct wavelength and cannot be visible with the naked eyes (Sciencecompany, 2022). Further, the UV rays were attending in the wavelength capacity from around 10 nm to approximately 400 nm. It maintains a frequency varying between $\mathrm{800\:THz\:to\:30\:PHz}$.

Figure 3“Ultraviolet radiation components”

According to the types of wavelengths, UV radiation can be classified into three different types. All the different types’ lengths of UV lights can be harmful to the human skin (Sciencelearn, 2022). Moreover, the shorter length of the UV lights is more harmful to human skin. The classification is the followings −

  • UVA − “it contains the wavelength of $\mathrm{315-400\:nm}$”

  • UVB − “it contains the wavelength of $\mathrm{280-315\:nm}$”

  • UVC − “it contains the wavelength of $\mathrm{100-280\:nm}$”

Application of Ultraviolet Rays

Different modern world applications of UV lights are presented in the present time accordingly. It is attending in both industrial and commercial intentions. Generally, the use case of the UV lights is available in managing the water temperature, purifying air, treatment of skin, indoor gardening, and others. The followings are the vital operations of the UV light in the present time −

Water treatment

Purifying the water by eliminating the “microbial entities” with the use of the wavelength between the ranges of 200 nm to 310 nm is effective as the energy spectrum (Wang et al. 2018). The process of emitting the UV irradiation by passing the “electrical arc” in the form of pressurising vapour or gas can disinfect the water.

Biological use case

The UV lights can kill the human cells by applying a particular wavelength to damage the targeted DNA instead. There is a risk incorporated in this treatment, that the over-application of this process can harm the human body organs (Chen et al. 2020). Application of the radiation can help cure different diseases by killing the DNA to stop spreading the diseases in the human body. This process is completely depending on the location of the targeted cells.

Indoor gardening

The production of “polyphenols” is one of the effective parts of UV light’s applications. The application of UV radiation can increase the indoor planning and the possessions of cannabis to increase different medical treatments.


In this tutorial, the effectiveness and the harmfulness of the EM spectrum UV lights have been highlighted with different use cases. This tutorial also helps in accounting for the usefulness of the application of UV lights from different perspectives. As UV rays are one type of the “EM spectrum”, it has a valid source of the natural resource which is the sunlight. Additionally, many beneficial applications have been formed that take benefit of these amazing properties initiated by UV rays. In contrast to the early morning and evening, the period of noon is the utmost time of having direct UV rays from the sunlight.

Updated on 13-Oct-2022 11:19:47