The weird waves of wi-fi

05.09.2022 - By Discovery

Download our free app to listen on your phone

We use wi-fi every day, but do you know how it works? “Is it waves and science or just some mystical magical force?” wonders listener Abby.

Well, our science sleuths are on the case. To help them navigate the strange realm of electromagnetic waves they are joined by Andrew Nix, Professor of Wireless Communication Systems from the University of Bristol. He explains why your wi-fi router won’t heat up your baked beans, but your microwave will.

Andrea Goldsmith, Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Princeton University, also joins to reveal how these waves are crammed full of 0s and 1s- whether that's a pic of your pets or a video chat with pals.

And finally, how do you get the best wi-fi at home? Dr Rutherford, it turns out, has made some rookie errors. Listen out for our top tips so you don't make them too!

More episodes from Discovery