What is the Difference Between Similar But Different Things, Terms, and Objects

What is the Difference between Visible Light, Infrared, Radio Wave, Gamma Rays, X-Rays

Electromagnetic radiations are very important for the existence of life on planet earth. They are the source of energy for living organisms. Plants use them for making their food, on which all animals and humans depend. These radiations are of many types and a common man cannot differentiate them. Visible light, infrared, Radio wave, gamma rays and x – rays are few types of electromagnetic radiations. Here, we are describing difference between them.

Visible Light

Visible light is that part of electromagnetic spectrum, which is visible to the human eye. It is commonly called as light. This light is consist of seven colors, namely, violet, indigo, blue, green, yellow, orange and red. The wave length of these colors start from 380nm and lasts at 750nm.


Light which has longer wavelength as compared to visible light is called as infrared. Infrared light is emitted or absorbed by molecules, when they change their movements. Infrared light has wide applications in industrial, scientific and medical fields.

Radio Wave

Light having wavelength longer than the infrared, is called as radio wave. Natural radio waves are made by lightning or emitted by astronomical objects. Radio waves are also generated artificially and used for communication purposes.

Gamma rays

These electromagnetic radiations have high frequency and thus lot of energy as well. These are ionizing radiations so, can cause biological hazards. They are produced by the decay of atomic nuclei. Nuclear reactors also produce these rays, artificially.

X- Rays

X rays are also electromagnetic radiations, with 0.01 to 10 nm wavelength. They are shorter in wavelength than Ultra violet rays, while longer than Gamma rays. Depending on their penetrating abilities they are classified as soft x-rays and hard x-rays.

Visible Light vs Infrared vs Radio Wave vs Gamma Rays vs X-Rays

All these are different types of electromagnetic radiations, which travel with the speed of light. All these are invisible for human eye, except visible light. These have different wave lengths and frequencies, hence different energies also. Light is important for the existence of life, on the other hand gamma rays are harmful for living organisms. X-rays, radio waves and Infrared are used in different scientific and medical applications. All these are naturally created by some are produced artificially for above stated purposes.

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