electromagnetic spectrum


Definition of electromagnetic spectrum

: the entire range of wavelengths or frequencies of electromagnetic radiation extending from gamma rays to the longest radio waves and including visible light

Examples of electromagnetic spectrum in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web There have been a number of additional gravitational wave detections since then, most notably 2017's binary neutron star merger, supported by a simultaneous gamma-ray burst and signals in the rest of the electromagnetic spectrum. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Physicists identify unique signature to confirm quark-gluon plasma in Universe," 1 May 2020 There’s a lot to choose from; visible light makes up just a tiny part of the electromagnetic spectrum, with wavelengths in the 400-nm (violet) to 700-nm (red) range. Wired, "How the Mandalorian Might See Through Walls," 10 Dec. 2019 Light is weird stuff, both particle and wave, pure energy, but just a small slice of the electromagnetic spectrum that travels faster than any other known thing in the universe. Ron Spomer, Outdoor Life, "The Truth About Riflescope Brightness (And How to Pick the Best Hunting Scope for Low Light)," 7 Apr. 2020 Like previous cellular networks, 5G relies on signals carried out by radio waves, which are part of the electromagnetic spectrum. NBC News, "5G cell towers torched in U.K. amid bogus coronavirus theories," 6 Apr. 2020 Its filter allows infrared wavelengths between 3.2 and 3.4 micrometers on the electromagnetic spectrum to pass through to the sensor. New York Times, "How We Made Images of Methane, an Invisible Gas," 13 Dec. 2019 Telecommunications technologies like 5G internet need space on the electromagnetic spectrum, the range of all types of electromagnetic radiation that includes microwaves, infrared and ultraviolet light, gamma and X-rays. Alejandra Borunda, National Geographic, "Could your next cell phone wreck our weather forecasts?," 26 Nov. 2019 The scope was designed to study stars, exoplanets, and galaxies in the infrared, a region of the electromagnetic spectrum just on the other side of visible light. Daniel Oberhaus, Wired, "RIP Spitzer, the Coolest Heat Telescope in the Solar System," 29 Jan. 2020 Radio waves, visible light, and ultraviolet light are all part of the electromagnetic spectrum. Klint Finley, Wired, "Worried About 5G’s Health Effects? Don’t Be," 18 Dec. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'electromagnetic spectrum.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of electromagnetic spectrum

1924, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about electromagnetic spectrum

Time Traveler for electromagnetic spectrum

Time Traveler

The first known use of electromagnetic spectrum was in 1924

See more words from the same year

Statistics for electromagnetic spectrum

Last Updated

23 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Electromagnetic spectrum.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/electromagnetic%20spectrum. Accessed 8 Jul. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for electromagnetic spectrum

electromagnetic spectrum


Medical Definition of electromagnetic spectrum

: the entire range of wavelengths or frequencies of electromagnetic radiation extending from gamma rays to the longest radio waves and including visible light

More from Merriam-Webster on electromagnetic spectrum

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about electromagnetic spectrum

Comments on electromagnetic spectrum

What made you want to look up electromagnetic spectrum? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A More Exception(al) Quiz

  • hot dog  hot dog  hot dog  hot dog cat
  • Which of the following words is not a synonym for ‘a young person’?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!