What are radio waves? What are radio waves used for? All you need to know

What are radio waves? What are radio waves used for? All you need to know

The major reason why we can communicate wirelessly is through the adventure of radio waves.

What are radio waves?

Radio waves are part of the electromagnetic spectrum family with frequencies in the range of 3Khz to 300Ghz which consist of radio frequency RF waves and microwaves.

It can also be defined as an electromagnetic wave with an electric field (E) and magnetic field (H) components.


Radio waves are called wireless wave because the word “radio” is used to signify “wireless communication”.

Electromagnetic Spectrum is a spectrum or range that defines all the possible type of electromagnetic wave frequencies and wavlength that exist.

Why are radio waves used for communication?

Radio waves are used for communication because of the follwing reasons;

  1. Radio waves can be generated and transmitted easily through air.
  2. Radio waves are used for multicast communication


Multicast means the transmitting of information from one source to multiple destination e.g. radio and television

  1. They are transmitted in all direction of free space (omnidirectional).
  2. They travel at the speed of light in vacuum
  3. Radio waves can travel for a long distance due to their large wavelength

How does Radio wave move?

Radio wave is propagated and moves in air in form of how water disperse when stone is being thrown into it.

How are radio waves produced or generated?

Radio waves are generated by allowing flow of alternating current through two pair of conductors which are spaced apart to form a dipole antenna.

This dipole antenna radiates energy in form of electromagnetic field that is caused by the changing electric current into the space.


The antenna is a device that serves as an interface for the transmitting and receiving of information that is in form of electromagnetic wave.


The dipole antenna is just the simplest form of an antenna but there are different types of antenna and are used based on the specification or requirement.

The wave after generated is send through a transmitting antenna and is later received and converted into an electric signal or current by the receiving antenna.

How do radio waves travel?

As it is being discussed above on the generation of radio waves, it is noted that radio waves don’t travel but are transmitted and received using an antenna. That’s why radio waves are used for long distance communication

Examples of radio waves use case

  1. Radio and TV broadcasting
  2. Cellular networks
  3. Radar
  4. Satellite communication
  5. Drone or remote controlled toys

In conclusion, radio waves form the basic block for wireless communication and it is widely used as it can be generated easily, it has low frequency, lower energy and does not ionizes material when allowed to propagate which makes it a save choice.