Assessment of Radio Frequency Electromagnetic Field Exposure Induced by Base Stations in Several Micro-Environments in France

Wassim Ben Chikha*, Yarui Zhang, Jiang Liu, Shanshan Wang, Srikumar Sandeep, Mònica Guxens, Adriana Fernandes Veludo, Martin Röösli, Wout Joseph, Joe Wiart

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
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Recently, the monitoring of the radiofrequency electromagnetic field (RF-EMF) exposure induced by cellular networks has received a great deal of attention. In this work, a set of 70 microenvironments (MEs) located in urban and rural areas are selected in France under, on the one hand, the French Beyond5G project, and on the other hand, the 5G expOsure, causaL effects and rIsk perception through citizen engagement (GOLIAT) EU project. The purpose of this study is to assess the RF-EMF DL exposure in residential areas, downtowns, business areas, train stations, and public transport rides. For that, we employ the personal ExpoM-RF4 dosimeter placed inside a backpack to perform the measurements in different MEs. To take into consideration the effect of the presence of the human body near the dosimeter, we propose a correction approach that is mainly based on comparing the measurements given by ExpoM-RF4 to the ones provided by a reference system using the Tektronix real-time spectrum analyzer (RTSA) far from the body. Then, we use metrics, such as the quadratic mean, standard deviation, and median of the electric (E) field to carry out a comparative study between different MEs with different RF bands. It was found that the RF-EMF exposure levels for all MEs are well below the maximum allowable exposure limit prescribed by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP). In addition, we perform clustering analyses using the K-Means technique to group the MEs with comparable exposure levels. The results show that the exposure level is low, but generally higher in MEs located in Paris than in the other considered areas (i.e., Massy and three villages, namely Igny, Bures-sur-Yvette and Gif-Sur-Yvette). For example, we observe that outdoor MEs can be grouped into three clusters, where the average total E fields (ATEFs) are 0.77 V/m, 0.35 V/m, and 0.08 V/m for the MEs belonging to the first, second and third clusters, respectively. Note that the first cluster here mainly contains the MEs located in Paris. This can be explained by the important number of antennas deployed in that area to serve the huge amount of users. We also observe few locations with exceptions confirming the presence of heterogeneous environments in the vicinity of some areas.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21610-21620
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Access
Publication statusPublished - 7 Feb 2024

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