Human electromagnetic radiation exposure

Paech, Simon (2008) Human electromagnetic radiation exposure. [USQ Project]

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The high levels of electromagnetic radiation are a concern today with such large growth in the industries of telecommunications and media broadcasting. The concerns lead to an investigation into the theory of electromagnetic radiation and an application of the
theory into a practical outcome around the University of Southern Queensland. Scans were conducted around the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) campus, Toowoomba, measuring the levels of non-ionising radiation from 30MHz to 1GHz. These scans were made using a broadband antenna and a spectrum analyser.

The measurements conducted around the USQ campus underwent analysis of how each site, and signal frequency, affected the exposure within that area as well as many other
characteristics of the measured signals. This was to investigate the possible methods of minimising exposure if long-term radiation risks were a concern. The conclusions of this study showed lower amplitudes of measured exposure indoors, when compared with outdoors and determining a number of sites of higher and lower exposures located
around the USQ campus.

The peak values of the scans were compared to the Australian Standards, of 0.08W/kg, for general public exposure to signals from distant sources. The largest recorded experimental result was in the magnitude of 106 times smaller than the standard restriction. This eliminated concern for any short-term heating effects which have been discovered for levels above the Australian Standards.

The long-term effects of non-ionising electromagnetic radiation within the range of testing has not been conclusively found to have any known health risks, but also has not been able to be concluded as safe. The many studies which have been conducted discovered both positive and negative results from a number of possible effects such as cancer, behavioural changes, pregnancy difficulties, epidemiological concerns and cognitive ability to name a few.

Difficulties in research are attributed to the difficulties of finding long-term exposure incidences, or recreating these situations in controlled environments. One study which was able to determine no increased risk of cancer, or increase in the rate of rare cancers
was a study of the Denmark cancer registry and mobile phone registry which was a nationwide study of over 420,000 observed cases. This study covered the largest sample size seen for a study in this field and had cancer statistics of up to 25 years mobile phone exposure.

The conclusions to this study provided people located on campus were at no risk of any short-term effects from the electromagnetic radiation exposure levels measured at USQ.
The long term risks also could not be determined due to a current lack of knowledge within the scientific community but from a number of studies it appeared there was no
risk of cancer developing from these signals also.

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Item Type: USQ Project
Refereed: No
Item Status: Live Archive
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Engineering and Surveying - Department of Electrical, Electronic and Computer Engineering (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Date Deposited: 18 Nov 2009 01:23
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2013 23:30
Uncontrolled Keywords: electromagnetic radiation; telecommunications; media broadcasting
Fields of Research (2008): 09 Engineering > 0906 Electrical and Electronic Engineering > 090699 Electrical and Electronic Engineering not elsewhere classified
Fields of Research (2020): 40 ENGINEERING > 4008 Electrical engineering > 400899 Electrical engineering not elsewhere classified

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