Table of Use of Frequencies

Frequency Band Applications of the Electromagnetic Spectrum

Source: ITU-International telecommunication Union: Recommendation ITU-R V.431-7 

Nomenclature of the Frequency and Wavelength Bands used in Telecommunications

(ITU Legal Affairs Unit - Table 1 reproduction permission, Hebrew translation, July 25, 2014)

 

The table is based on the ITU frequency band subdivisions in the field of radio communication (RF), and has been extended to include the whole electromagnetic spectrum

 

Non-ionizing radiation (RF radiation)
Frequency Band Band group
ITU
Frequency
range
Wave length
range
Bands subdivided by ranges
​Examples of uses and designations according to ITU
Illustration of
applications

ELF
Extremely (Super) Low frequency

  30 - 300 Hz 1,000-10,000 km

Sources of exposure to electric and magnetic fields (ELF)

  • 50-60Hזz

(1) High tension cables – above ground, underground, under water.

(2) Relay and transformer stations and transformers – peripheral and local

(3) Electric grids – domestic and in complexes of industrial and commercial buildings

(4) Household electrical equipment

(5) Electrical equipment in industrial factories and large, medium or small production lines

  • 50-300Hz (or higher frequencies).

(6) Electrically powered transport – Hybrid vehicle, magnetic levitation trains, electric trains/trams/underground railways

  • 30 Hz or lower

(7) Submarine communications

Power lines – urban electricity supply
Power lines – urban electricity supply

ULF
Ultra low frequency 

  300Hz - 3 kHz 100-1,000 Km
 
  • Submarine or mining communications
  • As in (6) above: Electrically powered transport - Hybrid vehicle, magnetic levitation trains, electric trains/ trams/ underground railways.

Hybrid carHybrid car 

VLF
Very Low frequency

4 3 - 30 kHz 10-100 Km
  • Navigation, time signals, submarine communication, wireless heart monitoring, geophysics
Marine periscope antenna
Marine periscope antenna

LF
Low
frequency

5 30 - 300 KHz 1-10 Km
  • Navigation, time signals, long wave AM broadcasting (Europe and part of Asia), RFID, amateur radio
Antenna for broadcasting weather monitoring data
Antenna for broadcasting weather monitoring data

MF
Medium frequency

6
 
300 KHz- 3 MHz 100-1000 m
 
  • AM medium wave broadcasting, amateur radio, tremors, snow avalanches, marine patrol, coast-to-sea communications
Marine control tower
Marine control tower

IF
Intermediate frequency

  300 Hz- 10 MHz

30-1000 m

  • Tactical military communications, industrial and military RF generators, heating units in industrial radio solders
  • Electronic identification and tracking systems, Near Field Communication- NFC
  • Diagnostic and therapeutic tools in medicine, cochlear implant (helical implant in auditory canal), cardiac pacers
Automatic soldering apparatus
Automatic soldering apparatus
HF
 High frequency
7 3  - 30 MHz

10  - 100 m
(short wave)

  • Short wave broadcasting, amateur and civic radio, flight communications beyond the horizon, RFID, radar communication beyond the horizon, sky waves, mobile marine communications
Communication beyond the horizon
Communication beyond the horizon
VHF
Very high frequency
8 30 - 300 MHz 1  - 10 m
  • FM radio, television broadcasting, line of vision communication - ground to aircraft or between aircrafts, mobile land and marine communication, amateur radio, weather radio
Deployment of radio broadcast antennas

Deployment of radio broadcast antennas

UHF
Ultra high frequency
9
 
300 MHz - 3 GHz 100 mm to 1 m

 Divided according to main technological generations - 300MHz -3GHz

    Networks and communications devices:

          (1) G2
          (2) G3
          (3) G3+
          (4) G4, LTE, etc.

    Various additional applications:

          (5) TV broadcasts, microwave ovens, microwave instruments and communication, radio astronomy, cellular devices, wireless LAN, Bluetooth, GPS, two-way FRS and GMRS radio, and amateur radio.

Cellular site
Cellular site
SHF
Super high frequency
10 3 - 30 GHz 10 - 100 mm
  • Radio astronomy, modern radars, broadcasting satellites, TV broadcasting satellites,  DBS, amateur radio 
  • Wireless LAN, Wi-Fi, Wi-Max at high frequency (3GHz+), microwave devices and communication, modern communications technologies.
Communication and TV satellite
Communication and TV satellite
EHF
Extremely high frequency
11 30 - 300 GHz 1 - 10 mm
  • Radio astronomy, high frequency microwave relays, remote sensing at microwave frequency, amateur radio, guided energy weapons, millimeter wave scanner.
Modern navigation satellite
Modern navigation satellite
 
Non-ionizing radiation – Infra-red light
Band frequency Frequency range Wave length range Bands subdivided by ranges
​Examples of uses and designations 
Illustration of types of uses
Terahertz (THz) or Tremendously high frequency (THF)
(Far Infrared -FIR)
300GHz - 3THz 100 micron (µ) – 1 mm
  • Terahertz frequency imaging – potential alternative to X-ray, ultra-rapid molecular dynamics, solid state physics, terahertz space-time spectroscopy, terahertz computability and communication, sub-millimetric sensing FIR
The sun – source of IR light
The sun – source of IR light
IR
Long infrared light
3  - 30 THz  100 micron (µ) –10 µ
  • Thermal infra-red, infra-red laser, LWIR
Hand-held IR laser
Hand-held IR laser
IR
 Medium, and Short High infrared light
30  - 300 THz 

1 - 10 µ

  • MWIR (or IIR): guided missiles, guidance of objects at temperatures higher than the environment.
  • SWIR – area of increased absorption of IR - the 1.53-1.56µ band is used for long-range communication.
  • NIR – the 0.75-1.4µ range is greatly affected by absorption in water. Used in optic fiber telecommunication due to small signal loss in silica (SiO2) material. Signal amplifiers have higher frequency sensitivity in this range. Used for night vision instruments and eyeglasses.
IR guided anti-aircraft missile
IR guided anti-aircraft missile
Non-ionizing radiation – visible light
Band frequency Frequency range Wavelength range Division into sub-ranges
​           Examples of uses and designations 
Illustration of types of uses

Very short – infra-red

Visible light

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Long ultraviolet 
(UVA)

 

 

 

 

 

 

300 THz - 3 PHz

 

Visible light is the 390-700nm wave length range, corresponding to the 430-790 THz frequency range.  The infra-red ranges of NIR, MWIR, LWIR are outside the range of visible light to humans, while some animals are able to perceive objects in the infra-red range.  The human eye has a maximal sensitivity around 555nm (540 THz).

 

 

 

 

 

 

At the higher range, which is also outside the range of human visibility (UVA) – 315-400nm, birds and other animals are able to see, but they are unable to see in the red range.

  • Hygiene – bacterial purification of drinking water, sewage, sterilization in medicine and the laboratory
  • Esthetic treatments – sun beds, devices for drying nail polish.
  • Tools for treatment – teeth, skin, pain relief
  • UV-based solar cells
  • Ultraviolet lasers in industry and research – spectrophotometry, astronomy, chemical compound analysis, examination of internal composition of objects (non-destructive)

Solar cellSolar cell

 

 

 

Device for drying nail polish

Device for drying nail polish

 
Ionizing radiation – range of transition from non-ionizing radiation
Band frequency Frequency range Wave length  range Division into sub-ranges
​Examples of uses and designations
Illustration of types of uses

UV

Ultra violet light

Short wave or extremely short wave

3  - 30 PHz  
  • Generally divided into 9 energy bands, including UVB ,UVC, medium ultraviolet, distant ultraviolet and extreme ultraviolet (10-315nm)
Pool water purification
Pool water purification
Ionizing radiation  
Band frequency Frequency range Wavelength range Division into sub-ranges
​Examples of uses and designations 
Illustration of types of uses

X-rays

30 PHz - 30 EHz  
  • X rays (also called Roentgen rays, after their discoverer) are used for medical diagnosis, such as bone fractures or internal organ, using contrast media such as barium and iodine. They are also used in engineering, to discover cracks in materials, for instance in aircraft, and in scientific research as in crystallography, solid state research, etc..  Ionizing radiation is considered dangerous to humans, and its utilization in medicine is performed using minimal doses, as required.
X-ray equipment
X-ray equipment
Gamma rays 30 EHz - 300 EHz  
  • Gamma (Ɣ) radiation is electromagnetic radiation emitted by disintegration of radioactive atoms (nuclear fission).  In radioactive fission, alpha radiation is also emitted (ionized Helium atoms) as well as beta radiation (electrons).  Gamma radiation consists of photon energy in the shortest range of wavelengths of the electromagnetic spectrum.  In interactive processes between elementary particles (e.g. the electron-positron annihilation process), photons of the gamma type are released.  The wavelength of this radiation is 5 picometers to 10 nanometers.
  • Gamma radiation is in the range of ionizing radiation, of extremely high energy, and consequently very dangerous to humans.  The strength of penetration and ionization of gamma photons is of the strongest type (apart from cosmic radiation), and they can penetrate living tissues 10 cm or more in thickness, and even a few centimeters of solid lead.  Exposure to a small quantity may cause cancer through DNA damage, or mutations and biological deformations (e.g. in neonates), and sustained exposure is definitely fatal.  It is used in medicine for sterilization, for causing intentional experimental mutations, in radiotherapy for treatment of tumors, and in industry as radioactive tracers, smoke detectors, measuring sensors, etc.
Nuclear power station
Nuclear power station