As a new tradition since we’re on a new site, in addition to giving you a post about fun stuff on the weekend, I’m going to try exposing you to some new music, either by an uncommon artist or a song that really caught my fancy. This week’s artist is Chicago-based bluegrass musician Colby Maddox, singing the old classic Shady Grove. Feel free to listen while you read on:
Now, the whole idea is that you can shield yourself from electromagnetic radiation by protecting your head with tinfoil. And this is true. Kind of. If you cover something in tinfoil completely, the tinfoil will act like a Faraday Cage, and can block electric fields and signals from getting in.
However, it needs to be covered from all angles in order to make it effective. In other words, a hat simply won’t do. You need something closer to this:
But what happens if you actually wear the hat? Can it shield your head from electromagnetic radiation? Or, alternatively, does it act like an antenna, and actually magnify the signal that you’re going to receive?
Well, this group of MIT grad students hooked up an oscilloscope and measured whether radio signals were blocked or attenuated.
They found that, pretty much across the board, the change in signal amplitude was less than 10 deciBels, either in the positive or negative direction, for a very small overall change.
However, there was an interesting thing that happened at just a few frequencies. In particular, at radio frequencies reserved for government use. Care to hazard a guess? Let’s quote from the article:
Using a $250,000 network analyser, we find that although on average all helmets attenuate invasive radio frequencies in either directions (either emanating from an outside source, or emanating from the cranium of the subject), certain frequencies are in fact greatly amplified. These amplified frequencies coincide with radio bands reserved for government use according to the Federal Communication Commission (FCC). Statistical evidence suggests the use of helmets may in fact enhance the government’s invasive abilities. We speculate that the government may in fact have started the helmet craze for this reason.
And they have graphs to back up their claims, too. Check out the reading from the oscilloscope:
I think the conclusion is pretty clear here. Listen to the music without your tinfoil hat, otherwise the government could influence what you’re hearing!