Danish Experiment: Plants Die When Placed Next To Wi-Fi Routers

Danish Experiment: Plants Die When Placed Next To Wi-Fi Routers

Dec 18



By James R. Hood
December 16, 2013

Original Link

Does radiation from wi-fi routers and cell phones have health consequences? That’s the question five high school girls in Denmark set out to answer in an experiment that has scientists buzzing.

There have, of course, been numerous studies trying to determine whether cell phone radiation is dangerous, but wi-fi hasn’t received much attention so far. That may change given the results of the biology class experiment by the students at Hjallerup School in North Jutland, Denmark.

The students were having trouble concentrating as they tried to come up with a topic for their experiment. The more they thought about it, the more it seemed a topic that warranted further investigation.

“We all thought we experienced concentration problems in school if we slept with our mobile phones at the bedside, and sometimes we also found it difficult sleeping,” explained Lea Nielsen, one of the five budding researchers, according to the Danish news agency DR.

Testing the effects of cell phone radiation on humans was, wisely, seen as beyond the capabilities of a high school class, so the girls came up with the idea of using simple cress seeds and a wi-fi router.

They took 400 cress seeds and divided them into 12 trays. Six of the trays were placed in one room, six in another. They all got the same amount of water and sunlight over 12 days. The only variable was that six of the trays were placed next to two wi-fi routers.

They waited 12 days, preparing to measure and weigh the different sets of seeds to see if they could find any significant differences. It didn’t take much measuring — the seeds in the trays next to the routers failed to grow. Some mutated. Many died.

The other seeds, the ones that weren’t next to the routers? They were fine, thanks.

“It’s really frightening that there was such a big effect, and we were really struck by the results,” said Nielsen.

The experiment, though simple, has attracted a lot of attention from prominent European researchers.

“Within the limitations of their understanding and ability, the girls have carried out and documented a very elegant piece of work. The wealth of detail and precision is exemplary, the choice of the right cress is very intelligent, and I could go on,” said Professor Olle Johanson of the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, DR reported.

Johanson and others are urging the girls to pursue a career in science. Whether that happens or not remains to be seen, but the girls agree one thing’s certain: they’ve stopped sleeping with their cell phones next to their beds.


By Sarah Weber
The Daily
December 18, 2013

Original Link

Are you slowly killing your houseplants? Probably. But there might be a reason other than neglect that they’re all yellow and wilting: your Wi-Fi router.

An experiment by a handful of high school students in Denmark has sparked some serious international interest in the scientific community.

Five ninth-grade girls at Hjallerup School in North Jutland, Denmark, noticed they had trouble concentrating after sleeping with their mobile phones at their bedsides. They tried to figure out why. The school obviously doesn’t have the equipment to test human brain waves, so the girls decided to do a more rudimentary experiment.

They placed six trays of garden cress seeds next to Wi-Fi routers that emitted roughly the same microwave radiation as a mobile phone. Then they placed six more trays of seeds in a separate room without routers. The girls controlled both environments for room temperature, sunlight and water.

After 12 days, they found the garden cress seeds in the router-less room had exploded into bushy greenery, while the seeds next to the Wi-Fi routers were brown, shriveled and even mutated. See for yourself:


Teacher Kim Horsevad told the Daily Dot that her students did the test twice with the same results. She was quick to point out that while the students did the experiment to test only one variable to the best of their ability, it is a high school experiment and this isn’t a professional study.

“Some of the local debate has been whether the effects were due the cress seeds drying up because of heat from the computers or Access Points used in the experiment, which is a suggestion I can thoroughly refute,” Horsevad said. “The pupils were painstakingly careful in keeping the conditions for both groups similar. The cress seeds in both groups were kept sufficiently moist during the whole experiment, and the temperature were controlled thermostatically. The computers were placed so that the heat would not affect the seeds, which was verified by temperature measurements. Still, there may be confounders which neither the pupils or I have been aware of, but I cannot imagine what they would be.”

She said the results are clearly dramatic and could trigger additional research. Two scientists, neuroscience professor Olle Johanssen at the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden and Dr. Andrew Goldsworthy at the Imperial College in London, have both expressed an interest in the experiment and may repeat it in a professional lab environment.

Perhaps coolest of all, the students were awarded for their work at the Danish national science fair.



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