How the Mobile Phone Works: Detailed description of the physics behind the functioning of a mobile phone.

Essay by sdixitHigh School, 11th gradeA+, July 2007

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Student Name: Sahil Dixit

Class: 11.06

YEAR 11 Physics

SEMESTER 1, 2007

Assessment Task No:1

Research Task

Date Due:


Weighting: 20%


Completed assignment to be submitted via CENet by the due date.


Mark: ____ / ____


Marker(s): _________________ Signature: _________________

Date: _________________


This is all my own work. I have referenced any work used from other sources and have not plagiarised the work of others.

Student Signature _____Sahil Dixit_______________________________

I have kept a copy of my task Y/N


Student Name: ________Sahil Dixit__________________ Class: __11.06__Subject: ___Physics_____

Task Number: ______1____ Date Due: __21/05/17_______ Date Submitted: ___21/05/07______

Student Signature: _Sahil Dixit_________ Teacher Signature: __________________________




The discovery of electricity and then the electromagnetic spectrum has led to the rapid increase in the number of communication devices throughout the twentieth century. This module increases students' understanding of the nature, practice, application and uses of physics and current issues, research and developments in physics.


The task involves writing a 750-1000 word explanation of the underlying physical principles involved in one particular technology and describing the impact that the technology has had on society.

Choose a topic area from one of the following

Global Positioning System

CD technology

DVD technology

The internet (digital process)


Any other technology of interest to you. (You must consult with your teacher before choosing a different technology) Mobile Phones

For your chosen topic area, identify relevant sources of data. Record references to this data in a bibliography.

Extract relevant information from multiple sources.

Keep copies of original sources of data

Highlight relevant information

Justify the importance of each piece of information

Present your explanation of the underlying physical principles that the technology depends on.

Describe some of the impacts that the technology has had on society.


You will be assessed on your ability to:

use relevant physics information and concepts

communicate effectively in writing utilizing headings and diagrams

present a logical, well structured answer to the question



Gather data from at least three different sources, one of which must be a print resource


P4. describes applications of physics which affect society or the environment

P7. describes the effects of energy transfers and energy transformations

P8. explains wave motions in terms of energy sources and the oscillations produced

P12. discusses the validity and reliability of data gathered from first-hand investigations and secondary sources

P13. identifies appropriate terminology and reporting styles to communicate information and understanding in physics

P14. draws valid conclusions from gathered data and information



Uses headings and diagrams to present a logical explanation of the physical principles and description of the impact of the technology on society.

Links the technology to the underlying physical principles

Articulates some of the key features of the impact of the technology on society

Uses appropriate physics terms and concepts

Uses a minimum of 3 resources, one of which being a print based resource.

Extracts relevant information from sources and references this information in accepted manner.



To be completed and submitted with the task


This is my best work

1 2 3 4 5

I was organized

1 2 3 4 5

I understood the task

1 2 3 4 5

I took notice of the rubric and /or marking guidelines

1 2 3 4 5

I checked the meaning of the key words in the Glossary of terms (You will find them in the Green Terra Sancta Diary)

1 2 3 4 5

Next time I will:

Start earlier.


Please complete the following section following return of the task:

I could improve the following skills in future by:


Method of Improvement


Start earlier

I would like to see further clarification or assistance with:

Student Name: Sahil Dixit

Student Signature: Sahil Dixit

Parent Signature:

Parent comment (optional):

Assessment Task No: 1

Research Task: Mobile Phones


The following report will give the reader information about mobile phones.

It will inform the reader about how a mobile phone works, the history and development of mobile phones, the impact on health and society, and the future predictions about mobile phones.

History and Development:

A mobile phone is a radio- a really sophisticated radio- but a radio nonetheless.

The basis of a mobile phone had started off by a radio. This is because a phone uses a set line to send and receive a message or a call. But by using the concept of radios, the average radio has made the typical telephone into a cellular phone. The radio used to be, and still is, used as communication device in taxis and police cars, where one vehicle could communicate with another with no set line. With this concept, the mobile phone was developed.

With the creation of the mobile phone, there was a whole new world to develop and update on. Since the invention of the mobile phone, there have been a vast amount of developments and additions made to the mobile phone. The old mobile used to have a battery life of about three hours, but now the new generation phones can run for three days continually.

The old generation phones could only make and receive calls but these days phones can send messages, take photos, find the nearest restaurant, receive the latest stock market results, read the latest movie reviews, internet connection, listen to music, watch a video clip and a substantial amount of other things as well.

Fig 1: Development of the

The mobile phone is one of the most worked on Mobile Phone.

technical device throughout modern history.

Fig 2: Basic route of a mobile phone call.

Phone calls are made all the time, but not many people know how the execution of a Fig 3: Mobile Cells phone call is carried out. The procedure of phone communication is accomplished at a rapid rate.

The process of a phone call is as follows:

The digits of the desired destination phone are dialled on the call originating mobile phone.

The dialled digits are received by the nearest cellular tower (repeater) and then transferred to the (NOC) network operation centre.

The computers in the network operation centre locate the desired destination.

After confirming the access rights of the originating mobile phone and the status of the destination phone, the NOC sends a digitally coded message to the destination phone.

The destination phone alerts the user to the incoming call.

If the user at the destination phone accepts the call, the NOC sends a digitally coded message to the mobile phone.

In final step to setup the call, the originating mobile phone disconnects the ring back tone and enters the voice transmission mode. The two users then start to have a conversation.

Fig 4: Cellular Towers

The digitally coded messages are transmitted in a carrier wave known as a microwave. This is transmitted with a frequency of around 900 MHz.

The digitally coded messages aren't just pulled out of the air, they are created. The following flowchart will show the process of the energy that creates the digitally coded messages:

Impacts of Mobile Phones on Society and Health:

History has shown that once a new invention or an upgrade is produced, there always a positive view and a negative view. This part of the report with discuss this matter.


Positive View:

With the invention of the mobile phone, it is much easier to contact people. This helps the general community in many ways. For example in case of an emergency, a mobile phone has helped a significant amount of times. Also the mobile phone has become a necessity these days. This because of its compactness and all the features that come with a mobile phone. These days you can read the news, listen to music and do many more things. This has a great impact on society because it lessens the work and makes the work easier. These factors are very important not only in society but in life as well.

The compactness of a mobile has many attractions. For example, it is a digital camera that lets you make and receive calls. The freedom that is given to the camera phone is stimulating a revolution to be. A sign of this revolution is showing due to the fact nearly everyone has a mobile phone.

Negative View:

Some people are attached to the "good old days". They say that it used to be simpler back then. A person didn't have to buy a device to look for a restaurant or pay to contact someone.

Another factor is that the type of mobile phone you have can sometimes give you a social status. The especially occurs in teenagers. These days the type of mobile phone you own determines how "cool" you are.

With an invention there is always some advertising that is bound to come. With this advertising there is some misleading advertising. Some of these advertisements are too good to be true. This leads to people being sucked in which can create problems.


Positive View:

The future of mobile phones hopefully will show some health beneficial aspects of the mobile phone.

Negative View:

A great amount of debates are going on that if a mobile phone can be harmful to a person. Because a mobile phone uses radiation waves to transmit the signals to its destination, people are saying that these waves could be harmful to the human body. Some case studies have shown this theory to be true in some sense. The future will give the answer to this debate.

Future Trends:

As mentioned in the positive health views of mobile phones, hopefully the future will present the human race with a phone that can be helpful to humans. Brain-storming has come up with some ideas.

They are:

Health monitoring mobile phones.

Immediate emergency contact to emergency services if something is wrong with a person

Some other ideas are:

Your mobile phone could become your identity. Just swipe your phone and you get your personal information.

Movies could be on demand

Parents could benefit with a monitor of kids actions.


Written Source:

Camera Phone Obsession

By Pete G Aitken

Published by Paraglyph Press in USA 2004

Pgs 2-5

In Touch Telephone and Fax

By Angela Royston

Published by Heinman Library in Great Britain 2001

Pgs 10-11, 16-19, 24-25

New Technology Communications

By Nigel Hawks

Published by Aladdin Books in Great Britain 1994

Pgs 10-11

20th Centaury Inventions: Telecommunications

By Chris Oxlade

Published by Wayland Publishers Ltd in England 1996

Pgs 16-17, 24-25

How Does it Work: Communications Technology

By J Hilvert and L Bruce

Published by McMillan Education Australia in 2005

Pgs 8-11

Internet Source:

Sound energy from the mouth goes to the microphone.

Microphone converts the sound energy into electrical energy.

�Electrical Energy is sent to the destination phone through the NOC

Destination phone receives the electrical energy in microphone

Microphone converts electrical energy into sound energy

Sound energy is then heard by the ear.

Terra Sancta College - Assessment Task Notification � PAGE �8�