Brief Exposure to a 50 Hz, 100 μT Magnetic Field: Effects on Reaction Time, Accuracy, and Recognition Memory

John Podd, Jeana Abbott, Nlkolaos Kazantzis, Al Rowland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)


The present study investigated both the direct and delayed effects of a 50 Hz, 100 μT magnetic field on human performance. Eighty subjects completed a visual duration discrimination task, half being exposed to the field and the other half sham exposed. The delayed effects of this field were also examined in a recognition memory task that followed immediately upon completion of the discrimination task, Unlike our earlier studies, we were unable to find any effects of the field on reaction time and accuracy in the visual discrimination task. However, the field had a delayed effect on memory, producing a decrement in recognition accuracy. We conclude that after many years of experimentation, finding a set of magnetic field parameters and human performance measures that reliably yield magnetic field effects is proving elusive. Yet the large number of significant findings suggests that further research is warranted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)189-195
Number of pages7
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Duration discrimination
  • Extremely low frequency
  • Human performance
  • Statistical power
  • Visual discrimination

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