RF Exposure Levels from Mobile Phones and Base Stations

The dramatic increase in man-made electromagnetic fields in the environment has led to public health concerns in many parts of the world. Specifically, questions have been raised on the safety of exposure to power lines, RF energy emitted from radar, television and radio broadcasting systems, microwave ovens, video display terminals, and most recently, mobile telephones and base stations, such as Wi-Fi, and 2 to 5 G. Wearable RF gadgets are prevailing. Wireless power transmission is a newer subject, which can involve high intensity exposures. The IEEE EMF database now has more than 8500 original, peer-reviewed papers useful for public health risk assessment of electromagnetic exposure. Even there has been 70 years of research, and WHO indicated that scientific knowledge in this area is now more extensive than for most chemicals and current evidence does not confirm the existence of any health consequences from exposure to low level electromagnetic fields, controversy on electromagnetic safety continues. Two international groups, IEEE and ICNIRP have been addressing this issue for decades and provided exposure limits to protect against established or substantiated adverse health effects. There are also international measurement and computational standards from IEEE and IEC to address product compliance. In this presentation, we will discuss how does mobile wireless communication work, what are the internal and external intensities defined in the standards, and how to measure them, and finally what are the real life exposure levels of general public from mobile phones and basestations, and how these levels compared with the international exposure limits.