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Electromagnetic communication and olfaction in insects.

The importance of infrared radiation as a vehicle for the conveyance of information by "invisible rays" was recognized by the military early in World War II. The versatile Bell Laboratories physicist, Herbert E. Ives, developed the Sniperscope, which uses infrared light, and also developed infrared signaling between ships. Every object above a temperature of absolute zero (-273[degrees]C) radiates infrared wavelengths. Everything at the temperature of life radiates infrared. That is why I call it the radiation of life.

Callahan (1)


From 1965 to 1975, Phillip S. Callahan and colleagues published 36 seminal research papers on the mechanism of primary olfaction in insects (see Appendix I). This article commemorates Callahan's discovery that insects "smell" pheromones electronically by tuning into their infrared emissions. Callahan's discoveries relate to the ongoing debate over the mechanism of primary olfaction, which has two opposed theories: according to some researchers, the olfactory epithelium reads the shape of odorant molecules; others assert that the electronic or vibratory aspect of the scent molecule is crucial. Callahan's research also paved the way for the concept of bioelectromagnetic communications in which molecules interact without touching.


Why is a moth attracted to a candle flame? The question has baffled many entomologists. A clue comes from the fact that a moth is attracted to a candle flame or to certain lights, but not to the light of a campfire (unless green wood is being burned). The English poet, Thomas Carlyle, (2) attributed the moth's self-destructive behavior to passionate love. We shall see that, in a way, Carlyle was correct.

After many years of fascination with the moth and the flame, Callahan decided that there must be something besides visible light coming from the candle. A candle is made of wax, and the insect is coated with wax. Perhaps, Callahan thought, heated waxes emit some unknown frequency that the moth can sense. Perhaps this frequency is in the infrared region. We shall see that careful research confirmed these ideas. Once sensitive spectroscopic technology became available, Callahan was able to confirm that the candle produces a wide range of infrared emissions corresponding to the emissions of pheromone molecules. Some of these infrared emissions in the 6-30 [micro]m region are shown in the Fast Fourier Transform (FFT) spectrum below the candle drawing in Figure 1.


Insect Communication

Insects have a fantastic ability to find specific mates, hosts, and crops among the myriads of nature's species and the diverse attractant molecules they emit. These insect sex attractants are called pheromones, a word from the Greek words, pherein to carry and hormain to excite.

A problem with the pheromone attraction hypothesis is that a male moth can find a female who is downwind. The breezes are carrying the so-called attractant molecules away from the male moth, and not toward him. This dilemma with chemical attraction in insects has similarities to the problem in homeopathy. There is a point in the dilution of a molecule, beyond Avogrado's number, where there are essentially no molecules remaining in a given volume, yet a biological effect is still present. Entomologists and naturalists dating back to the early 18th Century had suggested the possibility that insects communicate by radiations emitted from oscillating molecules.

In 1894, a famous American entomologist, C. V. Riley, (3) attributed the insect's remarkable sense of direction to some unknown communication system, which goes beyond scent and hearing. Riley referred to certain subtle vibrations that could be detected by a sense organ that does not respond to light of the same frequencies that our eyes can see, but that responds to other frequencies to which we are blind. An equally famous French entomologist, J. H. Fabre, speculated in 1913 that the (then) recent invention of wireless telegraphy might have been anticipated by the Peacock moth, which can attract males from miles away, possibly by "electric or magnetic waves." (4)

Other entomologists concluded that neither sight nor smell is sufficient to explain the attraction of the male moth from long distances. Many of these scientists concluded that insects must emit some sort of "special waves or rays" for long-distance communication.

In the more recent literature, a British electrical engineer, E. R. Laithwaite, had noticed that the moth antenna has a remarkable resemblance to a radar antenna. In 1960, Laithwaite wrote "A radiation theory of the assembling of moths." He also noted that a male moth can fly with the wind to find a female. Laithwaite concluded that there must be an electromagnetic attractant signal that travels independent of the wind. (5)

Callahan agreed, pointing out that the chances of a chemical molecule landing on the male antenna are far less than the chances of the antenna passing through the electromagnetic field emitted by the pheromone. Callahan took Laithwaite's antenna analogy a step further, by recognizing that the shape of the moth antenna resembles that of a direction finder (Figure 2). Perhaps the insects are homing in on signals they detect by moving from side to side off the main beam, like pilots follow a directional beacon to an airport. Perhaps the zigzag flights of moths and butterflies are simply a scanning process, using direction-finding antenna arrays. Callahan found a variety of correspondences between the structures of various insect antennas and radio and microwave antennas.



Charles H. Townes (who received the Nobel Prize with Arthur L. Schawlow for the invention of the laser) observed that Microwave Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation (MASER) is common in nature. Oscillations from molecules can be coherent. (6) Townes had noted that some gases oscillate very readily in the infrared region. It is easier to obtain fluorescence in the infrared region (particularly the far-infrared) because the energies (in terms of electron volts) are lower than for the shorter and more energetic wavelengths in the visible and ultraviolet region.

Visible light from the sun can "pump" or energize the vibrations of scent molecules so that they fluoresce. Callahan pointed out that the night sky is illuminated by light from the moon and from the 3,500 or so bright stars that emit in the infrared region only. This light is invisible to us. The infrared light at night is energetic enough to "pump" scent molecules to fluoresce in the far-infrared region of the spectrum. Callahan suggested that these molecules need not be contained in sealed tube and be pumped by high voltages, as in a laser. Instead, they can fluoresce naturally as they float through the air, pumped by the natural light sources mentioned above. These emissions are then collected by sense organs such as insect antennas, which are tuned directional resonating systems.

After reviewing all of the literature, and years of research, Callahan concluded that the insect sensory mechanism is both infrared and olfactory; that insects "smell" odors electronically by tuning into the narrowband infrared radiation emitted by sex, prey, and host-plant scent molecules. Molecules do not need to interact physically with receptors; the interaction can be via the electromagnetic field.

This phenomenon is now recognized by a number of entomologists as being involved in the ability of insects to locate mates, host plants, host mammals (e.g., ticks and mosquitoes), birds, and prey (e.g., spiders). Callahan's papers have appeared in a number of respected journals; he has presented his findings at conferences in many countries, he has published dozens of books, and he has been awarded several United States Patents. And he has been an ardent supporter of the Center for Frontier Sciences since its inception (see Appendix II).

The Experiments

The most telling evidence that insects use infrared communication systems comes from studies done in Tifton, Georgia. Callahan enclosed a six-watt blacklight bulb inside an infrared filter that completely removed visible and ultraviolet, while passing infrared light with wavelengths from 1 to 30 [micro]m. This "trap" was placed in a 15' x 15' walkin cold room set at 65[degrees]F. Each night, for five successive nights, he released 100 male armyworms into the totally dark room with the trap. At the end of a week, only 7% of the moths had entered the trap. The infrared radiation by itself was not the attractant.

In another week of experiments, two virgin female moths were placed in the trap each night and the armyworm moths were released into the room as before. During this second week, 98% of the male moths were in the trap.

During a final week of experimentation, the females were placed in the trap, but the light was not turned on. No male moths entered the trap. Clearly neither the pheromone nor the infrared light alone is the attractant. It is the combination of infrared radiation and pheromone molecules released by the female moths that powerfully attracts the male moths.

Another aspect of insect behavior that has fascinated entomologists is the constant rubbing and cleaning of the antenna by all species of insects and by spiders. Callahan suspected that such rubbing by a female moth might amplify the outgoing infrared pheromone signals and thereby facilitate the detection of the message by the male moth. The mechanism he proposed was that the rubbing spread the scent molecules uniformly over the sensilla surface, which is an electret, and the more uniform spacing then enabled the female to emit the signals coherently, analogous to the mirrors at either end of a gas laser. When he placed a thin layer of pheromone on a beeswax plate, spread it out by rubbing with a silk cloth, and modulated it at 55 cycles per second, he detected the narrowband MASER-like line shown in Figure 3.


Callahan's research has shown that almost all scents operate by stimulation of the C=H double bond. Both light and low frequency sounds (such as the buzzing of a mosquito) can vibrate or "stretch" these C=H bonds in such a manner that the scent molecules emit in the infrared region. For example, ants emit sound around 5 Hz (this is caused by the rapid tapping of their antennas on the ground or on the antennas of other ants). This tapping stimulates emissions by scent molecules the ants lay down to create trails so they can follow each other. When they greet each other, ants can distinguish animals from the same colony by the stimulated emissions from the Dufours gland, which contains a recognition substance. (7) Bees, mosquitoes, flies, crickets, and locusts each emit specific frequencies by the beating of their wings. The stories of the ways these insects use these sounds to stimulate scent molecules in their environment is one of the most fascinating tales of natural history, and is thoroughly documented in Callahan's writings. His research is an example of how much can be learned by combining the keen eye of a naturalist with sensitive biophysical measurement techniques.

Orienting Behavior

Callahan discovered how the male moth orients as he approaches the female. An insect warms its body by beating its wings. The metabolism of the thoracic muscles warms the body surface and the thermal energy is radiated in the infrared region. A moth beating its wings has a surface temperature as much as 8[degrees]F above its resting temperature.

A female moth receptive to mating sits in one spot and vibrates her wings. Night-flying male moths seek their mates at night when the ambient temperature is around 65[degrees] F. The surface of the vibrating moth is not at 65[degrees], but is at about 73[degrees]. Using Wien's formula, Callahan determined that the background infrared radiation of the earth and leaf surfaces at 65[degrees]F peaks around 10.34 [micro]m, whereas the moth stands out against this background because it is radiating at 9.88 [micro]m. To another organism able to "see" in the infrared region, the female moth stands out like a beacon against the background.

Moreover, the beating of the wings up and down across the warm thoracic region of the female moth's body modulates or "chops" the infrared signal, so the male, sensitive to the infrared, sees a flashing or flickering beacon. The extent of the flickering depends on the male's orientation with respect to the female. Head and abdomen put out little radiation, whereas the thorax emits strongly.

Callahan confirmed the flickering effect. He used a pyroelectric infrared detector made of a crystal of triglycinesulfate. The signal emitted by a moth beating its wings varied in intensity, depending on the angle between the insect and the detector. Figure 4 shows the different oscilloscope traces obtained with the pyroelectric detector at different angles from the female moth. Note the two peaks in the tracings in the upper right and lower left. Also, note the notches present in the tracings shown in the boxes, which were obtained by lifting the detector about 20[degrees] above the plane of the emitting moth. Callahan was able to determine that these double and notched peaks arise because the female moth has two wings on each side, and these wings can twist or change their pitch independently of each other. The relation between the peaks gives the approaching male moth information on his azimuth in relation to the female, and on his angle of approach. Callahan compared this insect navigational system with the instrument landing systems (ILS) developed by the Air Force to enable planes to land under conditions of poor visibility.


Waiting for Technology

In some cases, Callahan had to postpone obvious experiments until the appropriate instrumentation became available. He patiently watched the evolution of laser technologies, and thought deeply about how laser and MASER-like systems might function in nature. He obtained one of the first fast Fourier transform (FFT) spectrophotometers from Digilab when they first became available in 1970, and used the instrument to demonstrate that the infrared output from pheromone samples is greatly increased when the samples are vibrated with sounds similar to those made by insects. In the early years of his research, it was difficult to generate pure infrared signals. But Callahan was ready to test the effects of pure IR on insect behavior when good sources became available.

Candle Flames, Green Wood, and an Irish Singer

Using the FFT spectrophotometer, Callahan was able to demonstrate that paraffin and beeswax candles emit many narrowband infrared frequencies between 2 and 30 [micro]m. He observed the cabbage looper male protrude his claspers toward the flame-something the moth normally does only in the presence of a pheromone from a female of his own species. The candle flame emits almost the exact same narrow 17-[micro]m frequencies as the pheromone. The flickering of the flame also modulates the candle radiation to produce a chopped ILS-type signal as described above. The male moth is convinced he is approaching the love of his life, as Carlyle suggested.

The moth is attracted to the campfire when green wood is being burned. Callahan learned that this attraction is due to the thousands of infrared frequencies emitted from the heated hydrocarbon gases extracted from the green wood by the intense heat. Emissions of chlorophyll are particularly attractive. Seasoned wood lacks chlorophyll and is of much less interest to the moth.

While Callahan has retired from his successful research program, he continues to observe nature and report his findings in his books. For example, in Nature's Silent Music8 he describes a moth in an Irish pub spiraling in front of a singing Irishman. The moth is attracted to the singer's breath. The alcohol in his breath is "doped" with ammonia, and the combination, when "pumped" with low frequency sound, emits strong infrared emissions that resemble those of certain plant scent molecules.

Different Species, Different Codes

Callahan estimated that the narrowband frequencies that would fit into the atmospheric windows between 2 and 30 [micro]m would provide more than 930 different infrared "radio" channels available to code information on different species of insects, prey animals, and food crops. When one considers the millions of insect species in nature, Callahan's infrared-coded scent system provides a logical mechanism for recognition and communication. The infrared frequency band is the largest part of the electromagnetic spectrum, occupying some 17 octaves, in contrast to the single octave in the visible spectrum.

A familiar example of infrared technology is the remote control we use every day to operate our televisions. Each channel and each function has a code that is communicated as a low power pulsing infrared beam. Callahan shows us that nature invented this trick long ago.


A consequence of ancient thinking, dating to Democritus, Epicurus, and Lucretius, is that all matter is composed of "imperishable" atoms, tiny indivisible particles that can neither be created nor destroyed. 'Billiard-ball' units, atoms or molecules, move in straight lines in all directions, in accordance with the iron laws of "necessity" that were eventually replaced with Newton's Laws of Motion. Interactions cannot take place between atoms or molecules unless they touch one another.

These ideas were pivotal for the development of Western science. A legacy of this natural philosophy is the modern molecular view of regulatory interactions in which signal molecules such as hormones or neurotransmitters or pheromones diffuse, wiggle, and bump about randomly until they chance to approach an appropriate receptor site, at which point electrostatic and other shortrange forces draw the signal molecule into the receptor, much like a key fits into a lock. The "key" obviously has to have a structure or shape that matches the "lock." For this model, shape is crucial.

We now know that atoms are not solid and indivisible, and we also know that the "lock and key" model is an incomplete picture of regulations. The random meeting between hormone and receptor, or enzyme and substrate, taking place in a sea of other randomly moving molecules, has a statistical probability approaching zero. (9) Under these conditions, the simplest biological event or regulatory process should require some thousands of years to take place. Albert Szent-Gyorgyi recognized years ago that life is simply too fast and too subtle to wait for molecules to wander around aimlessly until they happen to bump into the right targets. Electromagnetic signaling is not only physically possible; it is the ideal mechanism for communication in living systems. (10) For this model, electromagnetic resonance, not shape, is crucial.

The lock and key model is so easy to visualize and so deeply ingrained in our scientific culture that many have had difficulty comprehending energetic interactions in which molecules interact by coresonance, like radio transmitters and receivers. In living systems, as in radio and television, long-range electromagnetic fields exchange messages across distances because of matching emission and absorption spectra. Non-resonating, unwanted random signals are excluded simply because they do not resonate. All of this is fully consonant with the laws of physics. Resonance is a truly remarkable phenomenon, but it is not magic. Those dismissing homeopathy and other vibrational therapies as physically impossible need to take note of this fact.

Callahan recognized that infrared signaling has many applications beyond insect communication. The concept of bioelectromagnetic communications is receiving increasing attention in the scientific community. For example, see Bioelectrodynamics and Biocommunication by Ho, Popp and Warnke (11) and a series of studies on cellular infrared cellular "vision" by Albrecht-Buehler. (12) Over the years scientists who have published in Frontier Perspectives have written a number of key papers on this topic. As examples, see the work of Benveniste, (13) Smith, (14) and Popp. (15)

Callahan's careful research with insects has obvious and fundamental implications for regulatory biology, energetic therapies, and environmental electromagnetic effects. His findings also have deep significance for the current debate over the mechanism of primary olfaction, which has split into two camps-those who assume that the olfactory epithelium reads the shape of odorant molecules, 16 and those who suggest that the electronic or vibratory aspect of the scent molecule is crucial. (17-19) An engrossing popular book on this topic, The Emperor of Scent, (20) documents the pervasive influence of the lock and key or "shapist" model in primary olfaction, in spite of many inconsistencies in structure-odor relationships. We believe thoughtful consideration of Callahan's research will help resolve the centuries-old mystery of how smell works and continue to provide clues about the fundamentals of biological communications.


We thank Phillip Callahan for many warm, enthusiastic, inspiring, and insightful discussions, for his comments on this manuscript, and for permission to reproduce some illustrations from his published work. We also appreciate his contributions to the Center for Frontier Sciences and Frontier Perspectives over the years. Finally, we thank K. Leigh for valuable comments on the manuscript.

Appendix I.

Publications of Phillip S. Callahan and colleagues specifically related to infrared-enhanced olfaction

Callahan, P.S. (1965). Intermediate and far infrared sensing of nocturnal insects. Part I. Evidences for a far infrared (FIR) electromagnetic theory of communication and sensing in moths and its relationship to the limiting biosphere of the corn earworm, Heliothis zea. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 58, 727-45.

Callahan, P.S. (1965). Intermediate and far infrared sensing of nocturnal insects. Part II. The compound eye of the corn earworm, Heliothis zea, and other moths as a mosaic opticelectro-magnetic thermal radiometer. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 58, 746-56.

Callahan, P.S. (1965). An infrared electromagnetic theory of diapause inducement and control in insects. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 58, 561-64.

Callahan, P.S. (1965). A photographic analysis of moth flight behavior with special reference to the theory for electromagnetic radiation as an attractive force between the sexes and to host plants. Proceedings of the XII International Congress of Entomology, p. 302. London, England.

Callahan, P.S. (1965). Far infrared emission and detection by night-flying moths. Nature, 207, 1172-73.

Callahan, P.S. (1965). Electromagnetic communication in insects ... determination of infrared radiance, emissivity, and temperature of arthropods. Proceedings of the. 6th International Conference on Medical Electronics and Biological Engineering, pp. 583-84. Tokyo, Japan.

Callahan, P.S. (1965). Are arthropods infrared and microwave detectors? Proceedings of the North Central Branch of the Entomological Society of America 20, 20-31.

Callahan, P. S. (1966). Do insects communicate by radio? Animals 8, 197-201.

Callahan, P.S. (1966). Electromagnetic communication in insects ... elements the terrestrial infrared environment, including generation, transmission, and detection by moths. Agricultural Research Service 33-110, 156-76.

Callahan, P.S. (1966). Infrared stimulation of nocturnal moths. Journal of the Georgia Entomological Society 1, 6-14.

Callahan, P.S. (1966). Electronic instrumentation for infrared and microwave studies of insect communication systems. Proceedings of the 19th Annual Conference in Biomedicine and Biology, 157.

Chauthani, A.R., and Callahan, P.S. 1967). The nervous system of the corn earworm moth, Heliothis zea Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). Annals of the Entomological Society of America 60, 248-55.

Callahan, P.S. (1967). Insect molecular bioelectronics: A theoretical and experimental study of insect sensillae as tubular waveguides, with particular emphasis on their dielectric and thermoelectret properties. Miscellaneous Publications the Entomological Society of America 313-347.

Callahan, P.S. (1967). Electronic instrumentation for studying the insect communication system. Proceedings of the North Central Branch of the Entomological Society of America 22, 28-36.

Manghum, C.L., and Callahan, P.S. 1968. Attraction of near-infrared radiation to Aedes aegypti. Journal of Economic Entomology 61, 36-37.

Callahan, P.S., Taschenberg, E.F., and Carlysle, T. (1968). The scape and pedicel dome sensors-a dielectric aerial waveguide on the antennae of the night-flying moths. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 61, 934-37.

Valli, V.J., and Callahan, P.S. (1968). The effect of bioclimate on the communication system of night-flying moths. International Journal of biometeorology 12, 99-118.

Callahan, P.S. (1968). A high frequency dielectric waveguide on the antennae of night-flying moths (Saturnidae). Journal of Applied Optics 7, 1425-1430.

Callahan, P.S. (1968). Nondestructive temperature and radiance measurements on night-flying moths. Journal of Applied Optics 7, 1811-1817.

Callahan, P.S. (1969). Section, infrared research, in chapter "Physical and mechanical control" in Principles of Insect Pest Management, Ed. John V. Osmun. Washington, DC: National Academy of Sciences, p. 508.

Callahan, P.S. (1969). The exoskeleton of the corn earworm moth Heliothis zea, Lepidoptera: Noctuidae, with special reference to the sensilla as poly-tubular dielectric arrays. University of Georgia College of Agriculture Experiment Station Research Bulletin 54, Jan. 1967, 105 p.

Callahan, P.S. (1969). The radiation environment and its relationship to possible methods of environmental control of insects. Proceedings of the Tall Timbers Conference 1, 85-108.

Callahan, P.S. (1969). Insect communication: The antenna as an electromagnetic sensory organ. Proceedings: Symposium on Potentials in Crop Protection, New York Agricultural Experiment Station, Geneva, N.Y., 39-45.

Callahan, P.S. (1970). Insects and the radiation environment. Proceedings of the Tall Timbers Conference 2: 247-58.

Callahan, P.S. (1970). Insect bioelectronics: a theoretical and experimental study of the dielectric properties of insect sensors. Proceedings Federation of Automatic Control, Symposium on Biological Aspects of Control Cybernetics. Yenevan, USSR, Vol. 1, 1971, pp. 48-63.

Callahan, P.S. (1970). Sensory reception in insects. Proceedings of the 5th Forest Insect and Disease Control Conference, Southern University Forest Service, Atlanta, GA., 57-77.

Callahan, P.S. (1971). Insects and the unsensed environment. Proceedings of the Tall Timbers Conference 3: 85-96.

Callahan, P.S. (1971). Far infrared stimulation of insects with the Glagolewa-Arkadiewa "Mass Radiator." Florida Entomologist 54, 201-204.

Callahan, P.S., and Denmark H.A. (1973). Attraction of the "lovebug" Plecia nearctica (Diptera: Bibionidae), to UV irradiated automobile exhaust fumes. Florida Entomologist 56, 113-119.

Callahan, P.S. (1973). The "lovebug" phenomenon. Proc. Tall Timbers Conference on Ecological Animal Control by Habitat Management 5, 93-101.

Callahan, P.S. (1973). Studies on the shootborer Hypsipyla grandella (Zeller) (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae). XIX. The antenna of insects as an electromagnetic sensory organ. Proceedings of the Symposium on Control of Hypsipyla. Turrialba, Costa Rica 23, 263-74.

Callahan, P.S., and Lee, F. (1974). A vector analysis of the infrared emission of night-flying moths, with a discussion of the system as a directional (ILS) homing device. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 67, 341-355.

Callahan, P.S. (1975). The insect antenna as a dielectric array for the detection of infrared radiation from molecules. 1st International Conference on Biomedical Transducers, Paris, France, pp. 133-138.

Callahan, P.S. (1975). Insect antennae with special reference to the mechanism of scent detection and the evolution of the sensilla. International Journal of Morphology and Embryology 4(5), 381-430.

Callahan, P.S. (1975). Tuning into Nature. Greenwich, CT: The Devin-Adair Co.,

Callahan, P.S. (197). Insect antennae vibrating frequency modulator and resonating maserlike IR emitter. United States Patent No. 3,997,785.

Callahan, P.S. (1981). Nonlinear IR resonance in a biological system. Applied Optics 20, 3827.

Callahan, P.S. (1984). Nonlinear maser-like radiation in biological systems. From: Insect Neurochemistry and Neurophysiology, Ed. by Borkovec, A.B. and Kelly, T.J. New York: Plenum Press.

Appendix II

Biography of Philip S. Callahan Philip S. Callahan was born on August 29, 1923 at Fort Benning, Georgia. He entered the US Army Air Force, San Antonio, Texas in 1942 and served two years in the European Theater of Operations during World War II. Hiking around the world after the war, he worked as a freelance photographer and writer. On his return to the United States, he matriculated at Fordham University, New York, New York. He received his BA and MS degrees from the University of Arkansas and his Ph.D. from Kansas State University. He jointed the staff of the Entomology Department at Louisiana State University in March of 1956 as Assistant Professor. He was promoted to Associate Professor in 1959. Callahan joined the US Department of Agriculture, Southern Grain Insects Research Laboratory, Tifton, Georgia in July 1962 as Project Leader for Insect Biophysics. He was also Professor of Entomology on the Graduate Faculty of the University of Georgia. In 1966, he received the Superior Service Award of the US Department of Agriculture from the Secretary of Agriculture. He also received the annual award for distinguished research from the University of Georgia, Chapter of Sigma Xi and also the Sears Roebuck Foundation Award for contributions to agriculture. In 1969, he transferred to the USDA Insect Attractant Laboratory at Gainesville, Florida. His research has involved the utilization of nonlinear far infrared radiation by biological systems and its applications to insect control and medicine. He is the author of over 100 scientific papers and some 20 books on science. He holds several United States Patents. Callahan became a full professor on the graduate faculty of the University of Florida. He is one of 5% of US scientists in the 'Who's Who of Technology Today', and is a Fellow in the Explorer's Club. He has been on the Center for Frontier Sciences Executive Board of Directors since its inception, and has also served on the Center for Frontier Sciences Editorial Board.


(1.) Callahan, P. S. (1994). Exploring the spectrum. Kansas City, MO: Acres USA.

(2.) Carlyle, T. (1831). Tragedy of the night-moth. London: Fraser's Magazine, 4 August 1831.

(3.) Riley, C. V. (1894). Social insects from psychical and evolutional points of view. Annual address of the President of the Society, Washington, D. C. cover title Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington, 9,74.

(4.) Teale, E. W. (1949). The Insect World of J. Henri Fabre. San Francisco: Harper and Row.

(5.) Laithwaite, E. R. (1960). A radiation theory of the assembling of moths. The Entomologist, 93(1165), 113-117, and (1166), 133-137.

(6.) Townes, C. H. (1964). Nobel lecture: production of coherent radiation by atoms and molecules. From Nobel Lectures, Physics 1963-1970, Amsterdam: Elsevier Publishing Company.

(7.) Shimron, O., Hefetz, A., and Tengo, K. (1985). Structural and communicative functions of Dufours gland secretion in Eucera palestinae (Hymenoptera: Anthophoridae). Insect Biochemistry, 15(5), 635-638.

(8.) Callahan, P. S. (1992). Nature's silent music. Kansas City, MO: Acres USA.

(9.) Albrecht-Buehler, G. (1990). In defence of 'nonmolecular' cell biology. International Review of Cytology, 120, 191-241.

(10.) Szent-Gyorgyi, A. (1957). Bioenergetics. New York: Academic Press.

(11.) Ho, M. W., Popp, F.-A., and Warnke, U. (1994). Bioelectrodynamics and Biocommunication. Singapore: World Scientific.

(12.) Albrecht-Buehler, G. (1994). Cellular infrared detector appears to be contained in the centrosome. Cell motility and the cytoskeleton, 27(3), 262-271.

(13.) Benveniste, J. (1993). Transfer of biological activity by electromagnetic fields. Frontier Perspectives, 3(2), 13-15.

(14.) Smith, C. W. (1998). Is a living system a macroscopic quantum system? Frontier Perspectives, 7(1), 9-15.

(15.) Popp, F. -A. (2002). Biophotonsbackground, experimental results, theoretical approach and applications. Frontier Perspectives, 11(1), 16-28.

(16.) Axel, R. (1995). The molecular logic of smell. Scientific American, 273(4), 154-9.

(17.) Dyson, G. M. (1938). The scientific basis of odor. Chemistry and Industry 57, 647-651.

(18.) Wright, R. H. (1977). Odor and molecular vibration: neural coding of olfactory information. Journal of Theoretical Biology, 64(3), 473-502.

(19.) Turin, L. (1996). A spectroscopic mechanism for primary olfactory reception. Chemical Senses, 21(6), 773-791.

(20.) Burr, C. (2002). The emperor of scent. New York: Random House.

Commemorating the research of Phillip S. Callahan, Ph.D.

James L. Oschman, Ph.D., Nora H. Oschman

Nature's Own Research Association (NORA)

PMB 170, 827 Central Avenue Dover, NH 03820
COPYRIGHT 2004 Temple University - of the Commonwealth System of Higher Education, through its Center for Frontier Sciences
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2004 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Date:Sep 22, 2004
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