Electric and magnetic fields

All of us, across the globe, are constantly exposed to countless sources of electric and magnetic fields—cell phones, Wi‑Fi routers, radios, TV signals, antennas, satellites and so forth. Our environment is also full of electromagnetic radiation from natural sources, including light from the sun and the ionizing radiation that comes from the Earth and the cosmos.

Electric and magnetic fields – In daily life

Natural or produced by our electric appliances, these fields are an integral part of our everyday lives. Every one of us. We’re all in it together!

Duration: 4 minutes 8 seconds

Find answers to your questions

  • Understanding how they work

    Electric and magnetic fields are all around us. We come in contact with them daily. But what exactly are they, and what do they do? Find out more about these invisible phenomena.

    How do they work?
    Transmission towers in a wheat field located near a grain silo.
  • Their health impacts

    What about workers who are in contact with electricity on a daily basis? And what about the general population, people with pacemakers or implantable automatic defibrillators, or pregnant women? After more than 40 years of research and investigations, the conclusions are reassuring.

    Are they dangerous?
    Hydro‑Québec line worker in a transmission tower.
  • Their sources and exposure limits

    Where are we exposed to electric and magnetic fields? Is there a maximum recommended exposure time for the general population? A distance we need to respect? Let’s look at the recommendations suggested by international organizations.

    To what am I getting exposed?
    People riding bicycles on a bicycles lane located under a power line and in a residential area.
  • Their environmental impacts

    On a smaller scale, do electric and magnetic fields have an impact on plants and animals? Studies have been conducted to determine how they affect vegetation, bees and livestock.

    Do they affect plants and animals?
    Close-up of a butterfly on a purple flower in a field.

Plan a trip to the Électrium

The Électrium is the place to learn all about electricity and electric phenomena, with its many amusing interactive models, its well-informed and dynamic guides and its fascinating videos. Located in Sainte‑Julie, on Montréal’s south shore, the Électrium is the interpretation center par excellence for the whole family to find out all about electric and magnetic fields! And for those who love unusual wildlife, you don’t want to miss out on the electric eel!

A girl touching a Van de Graaff generator and looking at herself in a miror to see her hair  raised by static electricity.