What are Microwaves? What are they used for?

Science & TechnologyPhysicsEducationGeneral Topics

Electromagnetic Spectrum has all the ranges of electromagnetic radiation. Radiation is the energy that travels and spreads out, as it propagates. Of all the waves, Microwaves are a special type of electromagnetic radiation that is used in many ways from cooking simple popcorn to study the nearby galaxies !!!


There are a wide variety of applications for Microwaves, which are not possible for other radiations. They are:

Wireless Communications

  • For long distance telephone calls

  • Bluetooth

  • WiMAX operations

  • In Outdoor broadcasting transmissions

  • In broadcast auxiliary services

  • Remote pickup unit

  • Studio/transmitter link

  • Direct broadcast satellite (DBS)

  • Personal communication systems (PCSs)

  • Wireless local area networks (WLANs)

  • Cellular video systems (CV)

  • Automobile collision avoidance system


  • Fast jitter-free switches

  • Phase shifters

  • HF Generation

  • Tuning elements

  • ECM/ECCM (Electronic countermeasure) systems

  • Spread spectrum systems

Commercial Uses

  • Burglar alarms

  • Garage door openers

  • Police speed detectors

  • Identification by non-contact methods

  • Cell phones, Pagers, Wireless LANs

  • Satellite television, XM Radio

  • Motion detectors

  • Remote sensing


  • Global Navigation Satellite systems use microwaves.

  • Global positioning system GPS

Military and Radar

  • Radar uses microwaves for detection of range and speed of the target.

  • SONAR applications

  • Air traffic control

  • Weather forecasting

  • Navigation of ships

  • For Minesweeping applications

  • Speed limit enforcement

  • Military uses microwave frequencies for communications and for the above-mentioned applications.

Research Applications

  • Atomic resonances

  • Nuclear resonances

Radio Astronomy

  • Cosmic microwave background radiation can be marked.

  • Powerful waves in the universe can be detected.

  • Many radiations in the universe and earth’s atmosphere are detected.

Food Industry

  • Microwave ovens used for reheating and cooking

  • Food processing applications

  • Pre-heating applications

  • Pre-cooking

  • Roasting food grains/beans

  • Drying potato chips

  • Moisture levelling

  • Absorbs water molecules

Industrial Uses

  • Vulcanizing Rubber

  • Analytical chemistry applications

  • Drying and reactions processes made short

  • Processing ceramics

  • Polymer matrix

  • Surface modification

  • Chemical vapor processing

  • Powder processing

  • Sterilizing pharmaceuticals

  • Chemical synthesis

  • Waste remediation

  • Power transmission

  • Tunnel boring

  • Breaking rock/concrete

  • Breaking up coal seams

  • Curing of cement

  • RF Lighting

  • Infusion reactors

  • Inactive denial systems

Semiconductor Processing Techniques

  • Reactive ion etching

  • Chemical vapor deposition


  • Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR or ESR) spectroscopy

  • To know about unpaired electrons in chemicals

  • To know the free radicals in materials

  • Used in electron chemistry

Medical Applications

  • Monitoring heartbeat

  • Lung water detection

  • Tumor detection

  • Regional hyperthermia

  • Therapeutic applications

  • Local heating

  • Angioplasty

  • Microwave tomography

  • Microwave Acoustic imaging

The Microwaves are extensively used nowadays.

Published on 29-Jan-2019 08:28:44