# Can I produce radio waves by waving my hand?

I learned that EM waves are caused by the movement of charges (e.g. electrons), because they have an electric field and the change in the particle's position doesn't update the field instantly all over space but propagates in the speed of light.

With the same reasoning I also learned that thermal radiation is caused by the random movement of particles in any object with temperature > 0K.

So if I wave my hand at 3hz (with all the charged particles in it) am I producing an ELF radio wave? Is it that the energy of this wave (low frequency, low amplitude) is just to low to produce any effect? Or is there something wrong in what I've learned?

• Essentially, yes. You're also producing even weaker gravitational waves. – Javier Aug 13 '15 at 18:23
• @Javier really? – TanMath Aug 13 '15 at 19:18
• Not the movement, the acceleration of charges induces a magnetic field and this induces a electric field and so on. So your hand is a radio wave source as long as the hand is accelerated (including negativ acceleration). So rotating your hand around induce a EM radiation too. – HolgerFiedler Aug 13 '15 at 20:46

This cancellation does not occur in the case of gravitational waves. By the way, I think that for this reason, the gravitational waves produced by your hands are stronger than the EM radiation in natural units, that is, if the physical units of measurement are set such that the gravitational and electromagnetic coupling constants are $G=\alpha=1$.