Finite Element Numerical Experiments on the Absorption of the EMF

Radiation in 3D Human Head Models
D. Cazacu'", I. Papa
2
), and M.Iardache
3
)
1) Department of Electrical engineering,University of Pitesti, Pitesti, Romania
2) Department of Electronics and Computers, University of Pitesti, Pitesti, Romania
3) Faculty for electrical engineering, Politehnica University, Bucharest,Romania
cazacu_dumitru@yahoo.com
Abstract:lntesive usage of cellular phones has increased the public concern about their possible
health hazards. Experimental as well as numerical approaches has been used in order to evaluate the
biological effects. Most of the papers used the finite diference time domain(FDTD) and the MoM
(method of moments) numerical methods .This paper deals with the computation of the local peak
SAR and absorbed power values using the finite element method. Three spherical models have been
taken into account: homogenous and layered. They were exposed to a dipole antenna operating at
different frequenciesand different distances .The results were compared with those from the literature
and a good agreement was obtained.
1. INTRODUCTION
The number of cellular phones users has increased
dramatically in the last ten years. Meanwhile many
questions about the possible health hazards of using
the PDCs (personal digital cellulars) have appeared
[1]. The problem has been studied for a long time and
certain norms and standards have been introduced by
the international organizations such ICNIRP and IEEE
in order to protect the human body from the RF
exposure. Many 2D and 3D models used by different
authors in order to estimate the SAR distribution in
human head models exposed to the electromagnetic
field radiated by a mobile phone are described in
literature. The solutions can be obtained either by
analytical [4],[13] or by numerical methods. The most
used numerical methods are the finite- difference time
domain method (FDTD), the method of
moments(MoM) [5], [6], [7],[12] and the finite
element method [2], [3],[8],[9].The FEM is more
suitable to complex and non homogenous. This paper
is focused on the 3D application of the finite element
method to analysis of the EM energy absorption in the
human head of the near field radiation of the cellular
phones. Two types of spherical models have been
taken into account: homogenous and layered. They
were exposed to a dipole antenna operating at
different frequencies. The modeling and simulations
were performed using Comsol package, ver.3.4., from
Comsol AB Sweden. The RF module, electromagnetic
waves, harmonic propagation sub mode has been used
[10],[11].Mesh was composed of tetrahedral vector
quadratic elements. In electromagnetics vector
elements (or Nedelec's edge elements) are widely
used [9],[11]. We consider a vector u in a 2D space
and u
1
and u
2
its components. This vector belongs to
the finite element space for the vector element if the
following conditions are fulfilled:
- on each mesh triangle uland U2 are linear functions
of the local coordinates
- on each mesh edge the tangential component of u is
constant.
This means that only three degrees of freedom are
needed to characterize u on each mesh element.
Comsol Multiphysics implements vector elements
in triangular and tetrahedral meshes. The EMF
analysis is performed by solving the electromagnetic
wave equations in time harmonic regime (Helmholtz
PDE equation):
where k
o
is the free space wave number, E is the
complex strength of electric field, £ r is the relative
3. HEAD AND ANTENNA MODELS
electric permittivity and J1r relative magnetic
permeability.
Fig.l 3D spherical model
In order to obtain the finite element solution the
computation domain was bounded with a sphere, large
enough so it doesn't influence the solution.
The geometric and electrical parameters of the
layers for a homogenous and a three layer models are
presented in Table 1 [2]. The homogenous model is a
sphere of brain tissue only.
Local peak SAR Absorbed
values [WIKg] power [mW]
3D MoM FDTD MoM FDTD 3D
FEM [7] [7] [7] [7] FEM
Homo 11.758 11.8 11.31 100 101.9 101.63
genous
mode
3 layer 8.169 8.19 8.54 107.5 106.1 99.85
model
Tabel 2. Local peak SAR and absorbed power values
Simulations were performed using a mesh of about
25000 tetrahedral vector elements. The Spooles direct
solver was used. It works on general systems of the
form Ax == b using the multifrontal method and
direct LV factorization on the sparse matrix A. When
the matrix A is symmetric or Hermitian the solver
uses an LDLT version of the algorithm, which saves
half of the memory. It uses several preordering
algorithms to permute the columns such as it
minimize the fill in [ll].In table 2 values of the local
peak SAR and absorbed power are compared with
those from [7].
4. NUMERICAL RESULTS
Tabell. Parameters of the tissue layers at 1710 MHz
In Fig.2 the SAR distribution for a dipole antenna
is depicted, at 5 mm distance from the head, at 1710
MHz, through a longitudinal plane that passes through
the antenna. Also the electric field norm distribution
in a plane transversal to the midpoint of the antenna is
presented in Fig.3.
In Fig. 4 the variation of the peak SAR values
versus the distance from the dipole antenna to the
head are represented for three operating frequencies,
900 MHz, 1710 MHz and 1800 MHz, starting from 5
mm to 20 mm.
Tissue r[m] p [kg/m
3
] (J [S/m]
£r
Skin 0.1 1100 0.941 38.2
Bone 0.095 1200 0.285 12
Brain 0.090 1050 1.521 51.8
.2
Human head
spherical model
0.2
.........'. . . . . . . . . .. . ~ o ? z 0.2
Spherical ..
Boundary: :
2.1. Homogenous and three layered human head
model
The dependence of the peak SAR values and of the
absorbed power on the human head models,
frequency, and distances between the antennas and the
human head models will be described. Spherical 3D
models of the human head will be considered:
homogenous and three layer. A half wavelength
dipole antenna was used.
While performing the simulations a continuously
operating regime of the PDC was presumed. The
protocol for the GSM transmission system is called
Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA).
It allows that each transmission channel to be used
by 8 phones that operates simultaneously. Therefore
the time averaged power of a mobile phone in this
system, operating in real conditions, to be the eight
part of its nominal power. So for a nominal power of
1W the time averaged output power is 0.125 mW. So
the radiated power considered was 125 mWand the
distance between the human head and the antenna is 5
mm. The frequency considered is 1710 MHz.
In Fig.1 the geometry of the model is presented.
-0.2
0.2
Bone
Fat tissue
Brain
y
Dura
csf
Fig.5 Six layered human head model
22. Six-layers spherical 3D model
The tissues considered for this model are: skin, fat,
bone, dura, cerebra-spinal fluid (csf) and brain.
The model is represented by two eccentric 3-layers
spheres (Fig.5) [2].
In Table 3 includes the geometry, the electric
parameters (the relative permittivity er and the
electric conductivity (J ) and the mass densities for the
tissue layers at 900MHz and 1800 MHz (from the
literature).
200
50
100
150
Max: 225.364
o
Min:-9.745e-17
Mar. 11.758 SARIWIKgJ
Min: 5.696e-3
Fig.2 The SAR distribution
Fig.3 The electric field norm distribution
Tissue Density Conductivity Permittivity
layers [m] [Kg/m
3
] (J [S/m]
£r
900 800 900 1800
[MHz] MHz] [MHz
skin 0.09 1100 0.87 1.18 41.4 38.9
fat 0.0893 920 0.11 0.19 11.3 11
bone 0.0877 1850 0.14 0.28 12.5 11.8
dura 0.0672 1050 0.96 1.32 44.4 42.9
csf 0.0667 1060 2.41 2.92 68.7 67.2
brain 0.0647 1030 0.86 1.27 46.5 43.9
Tabel 3. Parameters of the tissue layers
20 15 10
OL..--------L...---------I...----------J
5
14.---------r----------r---------,
SARversus distance d
'im

,-----------------------r----------- ---------f--- -----------------
fI.2 I I
4 --- -----
MHz
2 --------------------- ----------------------t----------------------
d[mm]
Fig.4 Local peak SAR versus distance d
It can be seen that the SAR decreases faster for the
higher frequencies because the penetration depth is
smaller.
In table 4 the absorbed power in each tissue, for
two frequencies, 900 MHz and 1800 MHz, as a
percentage of the total absorbed power is presented.
The dipole is located at 10 cm from the head.
Tissue 900 [MHz] 1800 [MHz]
absorbed
[13] 3DFEM [13] 3DFEM
power
[%]
skin 9 9.22 9 9.1
fat 3 3.1 3 3.25
bone 30 30.8 48 49.3
dura 2 1.95 2 2.3
csf 12 12.3 10 10.4
brain 43 43.15 28 28.9
Table 4 Tissue absorbed power
The reference data are from [2], [13]. It can be
noticed that, as for three layers head models, the skin
concentrates a great amount of the absorbed electric
power together with the csf layer. The SAR
distribution validates this observation. Also the
shielding effect of the bone layer is emphasized.
5. CONCLUSIONS
In this paper some aspects concerning the finite
element modeling of the interaction between the EMF
radiated by a dipole antenna and certain 3D human
head models are described. Finite element simulations
for three spherical human models were performed:
homogenous, three layers and six layers.
The local SAR peak values and the absorbed
power values were in good agreement, at 1710 MHz,
with results from literature that used other numerical
methods, FDTD and MoM. The absorption qualities
of certain layers were evaluated and compared with
those from the literature. The variation of the SAR
values with the distance from the head was evaluated
and compared for three frequencies.
Future experiments on phantoms will be performed
and the results will be compared with FEM
simulations.
The paper represents only the beginning of a more
complex research using 3D models and more realistic
models such as real 3D geometries imported from
MRI techniques. Future researches will involve also
computation of the heat distribution in the head
models and EMF - heat fields coupled problems.
REFERENCES
[1] Zamfirescu M., Sajin G., Rusu I., Sajin M., Kovacs E.:
"Efecte biologice ale radiatiilor electromagnetice de
radiofrecventa si microunde", Editura Medicala ,
Bucuresti , 2000.
[2] Morega M.,Machedon A."EMF Penetration in
Biological Tissue when Exposed in the Near Field of a
Mobile Phone Antenna", 4th International Symposium
on Advanced Topics in Electrical Engineering, ATEE-
2004, Bucharest, Romania, Nov. 2004, Proc. CD-ROM
ISBN 973-7728-31-9.
[3] Morega M., CNCSIS Research Grant no.469/2003-
2004
[4] Tanzer I. 0., "Numerical Modeling In electro and
magneto encephalography", Ph.D. thesis, Helsinki
University of Technology, Lab. of Biomedical
Engineering 2006.
[5] Ming-Xin Q., Li-Cheng J., Hai Bing Hua W., L.
"Simulation study of detecting conductivity of brain
tissues with magnetic induction based on FDTD".
www.eit.org.uk/.
[6] Koulourikidis S., Nikita K., "Study of the coupling
between human head and cellular phone helical
antennas ",IEEE Trans. on electromagnetic
compatibility,voI.46, No.1 February 2004, pp-62-70.
[7] Koulourikidis S., Nikita K., "Characteristics of power
absorption in human head models exposed to normal
mode helical antennas", the 2
nd
IntI. Workshop on
biological effects of electromagnetic fields, Rhodes,
Greece, 2002.
[8] Cazacu D., Stanescu C., Petrisor A., "On the Comsol
finite element modeling of the absorption in the human
head of the EMF radiated by a mobile phone antenna",
the 2
nd
IntI. Conference on Electronics, Computers and
Artificial Intelligence ECAI 2007, 29
th
- 30
th
June,
ROMANIA.
[9] Hassan, O.A."Near field computation using finite
element method". PhD .Thesis Ottawa-Carlton Institute
for electrical engineering, Dep. of electrical
engineering, Faculty for electrical engineering,
University of Ottawa, Janury 1997.
[10] Collin R.,"Foundations for microwave engineering",
McGraw-Hill, 1992.
[11] Comsol RF User's Guide, ver.3.3, 1994-2006,
© COPYRIGHT 1996-2004by Comsol AB
[12] Khalat S.,Sardari D.,Mirzaee A.,Sadafi H.,"Calculating
SAR in two models of the human head exposed to
mobile phones radiations at 900 and 1800 MHz",
Progress in Electromagnetics Research Symposium
2006, Cambridge, USA,March 26-29., pp.l04-109.
[13] Moneda,A.P.,Ioannidou,M.P.,Chrissoulidis
D.P.,"Radio wave exposure of the human head:
Analytical study based on a versatile exccentric spheres
model including a brain core and a pair of
eyeballs",IEEETrans.Biomed.Eng.,voI.BME- 5Opp.667-
676,2003.

The frequency considered is 1710 MHz.2 the SAR distribution for a dipole antenna is depicted. operating in real conditions. Therefore the time averaged power of a mobile phone in this system. through a longitudinal plane that passes through the antenna. 900 MHz.1 99.. .3. It works on general systems of the form Ax == b using the multifrontal method and direct LV factorization on the sparse matrix A..1 the geometry of the model is presented.2 . . at 1710 MHz. In Fig. The protocol for the GSM transmission system is called Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA). It uses several preordering algorithms to permute the columns such as it minimize the fill in [ll].. and J1 r relative magnetic Tissue r[m] Skin Bone Brain 0. A half wavelength dipole antenna was used. When the matrix A is symmetric or Hermitian the solver uses an LDL T version of the algorithm. which saves half of the memory.85 mode 3 layer 8. . . So the radiated power considered was 125 mWand the distance between the human head and the antenna is 5 mm.285 1. It allows that each transmission channel to be used by 8 phones that operates simultaneously.. .9 101. HEAD AND ANTENNA MODELS 2.electric permittivity permeability.. Boundary: : Tabel 2. Spherical 3D models of the human head will be considered: homogenous and three layer. ~o?z 0. 0. and distances between the antennas and the human head models will be described. While performing the simulations a continuously operating regime of the PDC was presumed. .095 0. . . Parameters of the tissue layers at 1710 MHz 4.. 1710 MHz and 1800 MHz. large enough so it doesn't influence the solution.1. So for a nominal power of 1W the time averaged output power is 0.1 0. 4 the variation of the peak SAR values versus the distance from the dipole antenna to the head are represented for three operating frequencies.8 3.090 p [kg/m 3 ] 1100 1200 1050 (J [S/m] £r 0. In Fig. The homogenous model is a sphere of brain tissue only.758 11. NUMERICAL RESULTS Simulations were performed using a mesh of about 25000 tetrahedral vector elements. In Fig.8 11.19 8.2 Tabell.In table 2 values of the local peak SAR and absorbed power are compared with those from [7]... . The Spooles direct solver was used.54 107. Local peak SAR and absorbed power values . The geometric and electrical parameters of the layers for a homogenous and a three layer models are presented in Table 1 [2].'. .63 8.l 3D spherical model In order to obtain the finite element solution the computation domain was bounded with a sphere.31 100 101. starting from 5 mm to 20 mm.2 12 51. Also the electric field norm distribution in a plane transversal to the midpoint of the antenna is presented in Fig.941 0.125 mW. at 5 mm distance from the head. Homogenous and three layered human head model The dependence of the peak SAR values and of the absorbed power on the human head models.5 106. Local peak SAR Absorbed values [WIKg] power [mW] 3D MoM FDTD MoM FDTD 3D FEM [7] [7] [7] [7] FEM Homo 11.521 38.. . to be the eight part of its nominal power.2 Fig. frequency.169 model Human head spherical model genous Spherical ..

bone.9 0.41 0.19 11. for two frequencies.5) [2].4 2.92 68.364 Fat tissue Bone y 200 Dura csf 150 Brain 100 Fig.-----------------------r----------I 0..0647 1030 ---------f--. The dipole is located at 10 cm from the head.32 44. cerebra-spinal fluid (csf) and brain.---------r----------r---------.28 12.----------J 10 15 20 5 d[mm] Tabel 3. In table 4 the absorbed power in each tissue. Tissue layers ~adius SAR versus distance d 14.86 0.3 0.2 4 --- ------------------~-----------------------t------------- ----- ~OO MHz ~ 2 --------------------.SARIWIKgJ Mar.--------L. as a percentage of the total absorbed power is presented.9 skin 'im 0.96 2. Min:-9.8 42.2 -0..7 1.27 46. .0893 920 0.2 43.~ ----------------------t---------------------- OL.09 1100 ~ ~ fat .696e-3 Fig. Six-layers spherical 3D model The tissues considered for this model are: skin.----------------I bone dura csf brain fI..5 1. The model is represented by two eccentric 3-layers spheres (Fig.5 Six layered human head model 50 0. fat.0667 1060 0.18 41.4 Local peak SAR versus distance d It can be seen that the SAR decreases faster for the higher frequencies because the penetration depth is smaller. the electric parameters (the relative permittivity e r and the electric conductivity (J ) and the mass densities for the tissue layers at 900MHz and 1800 MHz (from the literature ).4 38.5 11 11. 11.758 22.9 67.3 The electric field norm distribution In Table 3 includes the geometry.11 0.2 Min: 5.. 900 MHz and 1800 MHz. [m] Density Conductivity Permittivity (J [S/m] [Kg/m 3 ] £r 900 800 900 1800 [MHz] MHz] [MHz 0. dura.87 1.0877 1850 0.14 0.---------I.2 The SAR distribution Max: 225. Parameters of the tissue layers Fig.745e-17 o Fig..0672 1050 0.

Ph. The paper represents only the beginning of a more complex research using 3D models and more realistic models such as real 3D geometries imported from MRI techniques.P.Machedon A.667676..469/20032004 [4] Tanzer I. pp-62-70."EMF Penetration in Biological Tissue when Exposed in the Near Field of a Mobile Phone Antenna". The local SAR peak values and the absorbed power values were in good agreement.. 4th International Symposium on Advanced Topics in Electrical Engineering.. FDTD and MoM..eit. Stanescu C. [9] Hassan. "Study of the coupling between human head and cellular phone helical antennas ".3.l04-109. O.org. © COPYRIGHT 1996-2004by Comsol AB [12] Khalat S. Bucharest.. Nikita K.D."Radio wave exposure of the human head: Analytical study based on a versatile exccentric spheres model including a brain core and a pair of eyeballs". [8] Cazacu D. [10] Collin R.95 12. Romania..uk/.3.Sadafi H. McGraw-Hill. [7] Koulourikidis S. the 2nd IntI. Nikita K. thesis. Li-Cheng J. www.5Opp. CNCSIS Research Grant no.A. Helsinki University of Technology.. 29 th . three layers and six layers.. Table 4 Tissue absorbed power The reference data are from [2]. ver... Workshop on biological effects of electromagnetic fields..Tissue absorbed power [%] skin fat bone dura csf brain 900 [MHz] [13] 9 3 30 2 12 43 1800 [MHz] 3DFEM 9. "On the Comsol finite element modeling of the absorption in the human head of the EMF radiated by a mobile phone antenna". as for three layers head models.1 3.March 26-29. Kovacs E. Hai Bing Hua W. with results from literature that used other numerical methods. 2007.2003. 1992. L. Faculty for electrical engineering.15 9 3 48 2 10 28 [1] Zamfirescu M.M. of electrical engineering. Greece.IEEETrans. Computers and Artificial Intelligence ECAI 2007. Future researches will involve also computation of the heat distribution in the head models and EMF .4 28.A.3 10. CD-ROM ISBN 973-7728-31-9..3 43. Rhodes. "Simulation study of detecting conductivity of brain tissues with magnetic induction based on FDTD".. University of Ottawa. No.heat fields coupled problems.. [11] Comsol RF User's Guide.1 30."Near field computation using finite element method". ROMANIA. Progress in Electromagnetics Research Symposium 2006..30 th June. "Numerical Modeling In electro and magneto encephalography". [2] Morega M.1 February 2004.P.Ioannidou.46.22 3.IEEE Trans. It can be noticed that.. Future experiments on phantoms will be performed and the results will be compared with FEM simulations. [6] Koulourikidis S. The absorption qualities of certain layers were evaluated and compared with those from the literature. ATEE2004.. "Characteristics of power absorption in human head models exposed to normal mode helical antennas". 5.voI..Mirzaee A. pp. [3] Morega M. Bucuresti . Lab. Rusu I.25 49. [13] Moneda.9 REFERENCES 3DFEM [13] 9. Petrisor A."Calculating SAR in two models of the human head exposed to mobile phones radiations at 900 and 1800 MHz".. The variation of the SAR values with the distance from the head was evaluated and compared for three frequencies. 2002. Sajin M. Dep. CONCLUSIONS In this paper some aspects concerning the finite element modeling of the interaction between the EMF radiated by a dipole antenna and certain 3D human head models are described. .8 1. [13]. Also the shielding effect of the bone layer is emphasized.. Conference on Electronics. Janury 1997. the 2nd IntI. 1994-2006. the skin concentrates a great amount of the absorbed electric power together with the csf layer..P.Pite~ti.Chrissoulidis D. Proc. of Biomedical Engineering 2006. Finite element simulations for three spherical human models were performed: homogenous.voI. 0.Eng. Sajin G..Sardari D.Biomed. 2004. [5] Ming-Xin Q.: "Efecte biologice ale radiatiilor electromagnetice de radiofrecventa si micro unde".. at 1710 MHz."Foundations for microwave engineering".. Editura Medicala . PhD . USA...Thesis Ottawa-Carlton Institute for electrical engineering. 2000.3 2.. The SAR distribution validates this observation. Cambridge.BME. Nov. on electromagnetic compatibility.

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