Study type: Medical/biological study (experimental study)

Operant control of convective cooling and microwave irradiation by the squirrel monkey. med./bio.

Published in: Bioelectromagnetics 1985; 6 (4): 365-380

Aim of study (acc. to author)

To investigate the effects of irradiation on thermoregulatory behavior of monkeys.

Background/further details

Monkeys were trained to regulate body temperature by selecting airstreams of 10 and 50°C. Then, to study the ability of the monkeys to utilize microwaves as a source of thermalizing energy, 2450 MHz continuous wave microwaves accompanied by thermoneutral (30°C) air were substituted for the 50°C air.



Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 2.45 GHz
Modulation type: CW
Exposure duration: intermittent, 3 sessions of 2 h each
  • power density: 200 W/m² unspecified (25 mW/cm² and 30 mW/cm²)

Exposure 1

Main characteristics
Frequency 2.45 GHz
Exposure duration intermittent, 3 sessions of 2 h each
Modulation type CW
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Chamber Shielded anechoic chamber/ 1.8 m x 1.8 m x 2.5 m
Setup A monkey was chair restrained inside a 51cm x 33 cm x 30 cm ventilated Styrofoam box that was located inside the exposure chamber.
Additional info Exposure duration: Three or more 2 hour sessions; EMF was activated/deactivated when the monkey pulled the cord for warm air/ cold air respectively
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
power density 200 W/m² unspecified measured - 25 mW/cm² and 30 mW/cm²

Reference articles

  • Adair ER et al. (1983): Behavioral thermoregulation in the squirrel monkey: adaptation processes during prolonged microwave exposure.

Exposed system:

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

Investigated system:
Time of investigation:
  • during exposure

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

The percentage of time that the animals selected microwave irradiation paired with thermoneutral air averaged 90% at 20 and at 25 mW/cm². The mean percentage declined reliably to 81% at 30 mW/cm², confirming the monkey's ability to utilize microwaves as a source of thermal energy during the course of behavioral thermoregulation. All monkeys readily made the warm-air to microwave-field transition, regulating rectal temperature with precision by sequentially selecting 10°C air, then microwave irradiation accompanied by 30°C air. Although the selection of cooler air resulted in a slight decrease of skin temperatures, normal rectal temperature was maintained. The data indicate that the monkeys can utilize a microwave source in conjunction with convective cooling to regulate body temperature behaviorally.

Study character:

Study funded by

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