Date of Award

2011

Degree Type

Dissertation

Department

Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Simon, Dan

Subject Headings

Wireless communication systems -- Health aspects, Cell phones -- Health aspects, Radio frequency -- Health aspects, Fertility, Human, Infertility, Male, Wireless signals effects, cellular phones, mobile phones, RF signals and male infertility, brain tumors, electromegnitic fields, Dosimetry, FDTD, specific absorption rate (SAR), RF radiation, cell phones and ROS, wireless signals and human health

Abstract

Rapid advances in wireless technology have increased the number of users of mobile devices. As of 2011, the number of cell phone subscribers have reached 5.3 billion worldwide. Mobile devices have saturated our environment with radio frequency (RF) signals. This situation has created public concern over the effect of such signals on human health. This dissertation focuses on the correlation of RF signals emitted by cell phones with male infertility. A thorough discussion is provided on the effects of RF signals on the development of central nervous system (CNS) neoplasm, the design of these mobile devices, the range of the RF frequencies they emit, the power with which they operate, their specific absorption rate (SAR), the distance between the user and the device while in use, how and where the devices are used, the duration of usage, and the accumulated exposure associated with the use of multiple RF devices. The results of our reviews and experimental in vitro studies show a significant correlation between the usage of mobile phones and human semen parameters, with a decrease in motility and viability, and an increase in the reactive oxygen species (ROS) score. However, in daily usage, a cell phone kept in proximity to the groin is separated from the testes by multiple layers of tissue. To explore this effect, a computational model of scrotal tissues was designed. Our results show that during in vitro experimentation, an effect equivalent to real-life conditions can be obtained by placing the cell phone a few centimeters farther away from the semen sample. The results of our study can be used to calculate the equivalent distance between a radiation source and a semen sample, and to set up in vitro experiments that mimic real-life conditions

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