The safety of metal detectors is a concern that most people raise. If you are traveling to another country, you may have to go through numerous metal detectors as a security protocol.
Apart from security screening, excursionists also use metal detectors to look for buried treasure. The police also use these devices to search for mines and bombs on cars.
Other than airports and shopping malls, metal detectors are also common in public institutions such as schools and courthouses.
People are concerned about the safety of metal detectors due to the radiation that they emit. For you to understand the safety of metal detectors, you have to learn more about how they work. Find out more!
How metal detectors work
A metal detector refers to the electronic instrument that people use to detect metal objects. This device makes use of electromagnetism in two ways, namely passive and active.
In the active function, the coil contained in a metal detector creates a magnetic field. When a magnetic field gets close to a metallic object, it leads to an eddy current in the coil.
This signal is what makes the metal detector detect metal. While the active function illuminates the detection space, the passive function does not.
This can only detect ferromagnetic objects such as nickel cobalt and iron. A handheld metal detector contains a battery that supplies electricity to a transmitter coil.
If the metal detector is used over a metallic object, it creates an additional magnetic field. If the sensor picks any metals at a close range, it triggers the detector leading to an alarm tone.
The alarm is louder if the metal is close. Metal detectors can be categorized into different groups, such as a walkthrough, handheld, gradiometer, and magnetic imaging portals. Each type has a different mechanism and is used in a particular scenario.
How safe is a metal detector?
People worry about the safety of these devices, especially on young ones and pregnant ladies. The purpose of this device is to detect metal that a person could be hiding.
There is an assumption that metal detectors make use of intense x-rays to detect metal. Such x-rays are considered harmful to humans since they mutate genes in the body leading to abnormal births.
Some pregnant ladies think that metal detection can lead to miscarriage. Though metal detectors use radiation in their functioning, no cases have been reported regarding anyone who suffered from this detection.
The devices may emit some form of energy, but it is not harmful to the body. They make use of low-level x-rays which are harmless.
The radiation that these objects release on the human body does not cause any adverse reaction. Since the technology used to make metal detectors is safe, you should not fear going through one.
Related: Can Metal Detectors Detect Aluminium.
On the contrary, metal detectors enhance security and safety. They can help the police detect any harmful objects that are used in terror attacks. They also reduce the smuggling of illegal drugs in a country.