Kenneth R. Foster

Kenneth R. Foster
University of Pennsylvania | UP · Department of Bioengineering

Ph.D. P.E.

About

260
Publications
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Introduction
Kenneth Foster currently works at the Department of Bioengineering, University of Pennsylvania. Kenneth does research in Biomedical Engineering. Their most recent publication is 'Response to Pall, “Wi-Fi is an important threat to human health”'.

Publications

Publications (260)
Article
Full-text available
We address inaccuracies and misstatements in Lin’s recent “Health Matters” column concerning IEEE standard C95.1-2019 for electromagnetic field exposure and the International Commission on Nonionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) RF exposure guideline.
Article
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This commentary, by three authors with an aggregate experience of more than a century in technology and health and safety studies concerning radiofrequency (RF) energy, asks what has been learned over the past 75 years of research on radiofrequency and health, focusing on technologies for exposure assessment and dosimetry. Research programs on heal...
Article
Full-text available
Brief but intense pulses of radiofrequency (RF) energy can elicit auditory sensations when absorbed in the head of an individual, an effect known as the microwave auditory or “Frey effect” after the first investigator to examine the phenomenon (1). The effect is known to arise from thermoacoustically (TA)-induced acoustic waves in the head (2). Lin...
Article
Full-text available
The development and establishment of mobile communication technologies has necessitated assessments of possible risks to human health from exposures to radio-frequency electromagnetic fields (RF EMF). A number of expert committees have concluded that there is no evidence for such risks as long as exposures are at or below levels that do not allow t...
Article
Full-text available
One major source of controversy related to possible health effects of radiofrequency radiation (RFR) is the large number of reported statistically significant effects of exposure, over the entire RF part of the spectrum and over a wide range of exposure levels, even as health agencies do not find clear evidence for health hazards of exposure at lev...
Article
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This commentary considers research needs for radiofrequency (RF) energy above 6 GHz, including in the "high band" of 5G New Radio (NR) communications systems that exists just beneath the mm-wave band (30-300 GHz). As of late 2020, approximately 100 RF bioeffects studies have been published involving exposures above 6 GHz, encompassing a wide range...
Article
Full-text available
Two major sets of exposure limits for radiofrequency (RF) radiation, those of the International Commission on Nonionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP 2020) and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE C95.1-2019), have recently been revised and updated with significant changes in limits above 6 GHz through the millimeter wave (m...
Article
Full-text available
from Science Based Medicine https://sciencebasedmedicine.org/did-microwaves-harm-us-employees-at-its-embassy-in-havana/
Article
International guidelines/standards for human protection from electromagnetic fields have been revised recently, especially for frequencies above 6 GHz where new wireless communication systems have been deployed. Above this frequency a new physical quantity "absorbed/epithelial power density" has been adopted as a dose metric. Then, the permissible...
Chapter
Full-text available
The radiofrequency (RF) part of the electromagnetic spectrum is conventionally defined as extending from 3 kilohertz (kHz) to 300 gigahertz (GHz) and includes a great many applications ranging in power level from very low (e.g. wireless key fobs, Wi‐Fi) to very high (e.g. some broadcast and radar facilities, industrial heaters). While RF energy is...
Article
This study examines the nonuniform exposure to the cornea from incident millimeter waves at 94-100 GHz. Two previous studies measured temperature increases in the rhesus cornea exposed to brief (1-6 s) pulses of high-fluence millimeter waves (94 GHz), one of which also estimated thresholds for corneal damage (reported as ED50, the dose resulting in...
Preprint
International guidelines/standards for human protection from electromagnetic fields have been revised recently, especially for frequencies above 6 GHz where new wireless communication systems have been deployed. Above this frequency a new physical quantity "absorbed/epithelia power density" has been adopted as a dose metric. Then, the permissible l...
Article
Full-text available
This study examines thermal responses of skin to pulsed millimeter wave (mm-wave) and radiofrequency (RF) radiation. We review limits for pulse uence in the IEEE Std. C95.1-2019 and the 2020 guideline of the International Commission on Nonionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP), as well as the recently reaffirmed guidelines of the U.S. Federal Commu...
Article
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This COMAR Technical Information Statement (TIS) addresses health and safety issues concerning exposure of the general public to radiofrequency (RF) fields from 5G wireless communications networks, the expansion of which started on a large scale in 2018 to 2019. 5G technology can transmit much greater amounts of data at much higher speeds for a vas...
Preprint
Full-text available
Betzalel et al. (2018) ask “does 5G pose a danger to it or not?”... The calculated microwave absorption in sweat ducts (the SARs) from realistic exposure levels would result in extremely tiny temperature increases, and the authors do not present a biophysical argument for why the effects that they model are biologically significant, much less relev...
Article
Full-text available
The newly released IEEE Std C95.1™-2019 defines exposure criteria and associated limits for the protection of persons against established adverse health effects from exposures to electric, magnetic, and electromagnetic fields, in the frequency range 0 Hz to 300 GHz. The exposure limits apply to persons permitted in restricted environments and to th...
Article
In September 2017, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) made a striking announcement. Transforming its current regulatory practice for approving and certifying medical devices—the FDA announced a bold new plan, the Digital Health Software Precertification (Precert) Program, to offer an entirely new regulatory model to assess smartphone apps,...
Chapter
There is no doubt that radiofrequency (RF) energy is hazardous to humans at some level of exposure and that limits to exposure are needed for workers and ordinary citizens. Harm from exposure to RF energy may occur directly, through direct action on the body, or indirectly by interaction of RF energy with other objects or systems in the environment...
Article
Full-text available
This article is a review of the book “Master machine learning algorithms, discover how they work and implement them from scratch” (ISBN: not available, 37 USD, 163 pages) edited by Jason Brownlee published by the Author, edition, v1.10 http://MachineLearningMastery.com. An accompanying commentary discusses some of the issues that are involved with...
Article
In the international guidelines/standards for human protection, the specific absorption rate (SAR) is used as a metric to prevent excessive surface temperature elevation at frequencies up to 3 or 10 GHz. Above that transition frequency, including the frequency region assigned to 5th generation wireless communication systems, an area-averaged incide...
Article
Full-text available
This study considers the problem of choosing an appropriate “averaging time” in radiofrequency (RF) exposure limits to protect against thermal hazards, focusing on the RF frequency range above 3-10 GHz. Analysis is based on examination of the dynamic properties of thermal models for tissue using Pennes’ bioheat equation. Three models are considered...
Article
Note that this letter is from 2018 Science 362: 758-759n (2018) Halt speculation on U.S. embassy in Cuba Since 2016, the U.S. State Department has reported that 25 staff at the U.S. embassy in Havana have complained of symptoms such as hearing loss and vertigo (1). Embassy staff have reported hearing unusual and unsettling sounds at home or at h...
Article
The emerging 5 G wireless devices working at frequencies above 6 GHz are expected to have antenna arrays formed by dipoles, slots, patches or their combination. At lower frequencies, the accepted criteria for exposure compliance is stated in terms of specific absorption rate. IEEE and ICNIRP are adopting epithelial or transmitted power density (PD...
Article
This review/commentary addresses recent thermal and electromagnetic modeling studies that use image-based anthropomorphic human models to establish the local absorption of radiofrequency energy and the resulting increase in temperature in the body. The frequency range of present interest is from 100 MHz through the transition frequency (where the b...
Article
Exposures to radiofrequency (RF) energy above 6 GHz are characterized by shallow energy penetration, typically limited to the skin, but the subsequent increase in skin temperature is largely determined by heat transport in subcutaneous layers. A detailed analysis of the energy reflection, absorption, and power density distribution requires a knowle...
Chapter
Three dimensional printing or additive manufacturing is a group of technologies that allow creation of three dimensional objects by adding layers of material using a “printer” under computer control. These technologies have long been used to create prototypes of devices for manufacturing, but now many proposed applications are emerging to use the t...
Article
"The future of medicine is in your smartphone," proclaimed an eminent medical researcher in a 2015 Wall Street Journal essay. In a sense, that future has already arrived, judging from the proliferation of apps and medical devices now connected to smartphones. One 2015 industry study identified more than 165,000 health-related smartphone apps availa...
Article
This book explains the multiple directions in which RF/microwave technologies are heading toward healthcare and biosensing applications, the achievements that have been made so far, and the challenges for researchers to solve in the near future. It consists of seven chapters by 15 authors, many of whom are active on the IEEE Microwave Theory and Te...
Article
This commentary evaluates two sets of guidelines for human exposure to radiofrequency (RF) energy, focusing on the frequency range above the "transition" frequency at 3-10 GHz where the guidelines change their basic restrictions from specific absorption rate to incident power density, through the end of the RF band at 300 GHz. The analysis is based...
Chapter
This chapter first reviews the various meanings of the precautionary principle (PP) in the different contexts in which it is invoked and then reviews its suggested uses in regulating human exposures to radiofrequency (RF) energy. The PP relates to risk management and ultimately involves value decisions, the political process, and the legal context...
Chapter
This chapter focuses on thermal effects of radiofrequency (RF) energy in three sections: thermal effects that are potentially related to hazards, mechanisms for thermal effects in biological systems, and models for heating of tissue by RF energy. There is a considerable literature, and many lawsuits, connected with RF-induced burns to patients from...
Article
This study computes the time constants of the temperature elevations in human head and body models exposed to simulated radiation from dipole antennas, electromagnetic beams, and plane waves. The frequency range considered is from 1 to 30 GHz. The specific absorption rate distributions in the human models are first computed using the finite-differe...
Article
Incident power density is used as the dosimetric quantity to specify the restrictions on human exposure to electromagnetic fields at frequencies above 3 or 10 GHz in order to prevent excessive temperature elevation at the body surface. However, international standards and guidelines have different definitions for the size of the area over which the...
Article
The level of protection against thermal hazard of the current RF EM field (EMF) exposure limits is estimated at the transition frequency where the basic restrictions change from specific absorption rate to power density. It is shown that the calculated steady-state temperature increase in the skin generated by a nearby dipole transmitting at maximu...
Article
Questions about possible genotoxic effects from magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) go back for many years, beginning with a (negative) study performed in 1980 by Wolff et al. (1). This issue has recently reemerged, with an inconsistent set of reports of DNA damage in human lymphocytes subsequent to cardiac MRI (Table 1). While evidence for DNA damage...
Article
This is a review/modeling study of heating of tissue by microwave energy in the frequency range from 3 GHz through the millimeter frequency range (30-300 GHz). The literature was reviewed to identify studies that reported RF-induced increases in skin temperature. A simple thermal model, based on a simplified form of Pennes' bioheat equation (BHTE),...
Article
Is there a Cheshire Cat in science? One might believe so, given the many published scientific discoveries that cannot be independently reproduced. The ?replication crisis? in science has become a widely discussed issue among scientists and the lay media and even has its own entry in Wikipedia.
Article
Reports on the features of the Pebble Smart Watch and examines it safety features.
Article
Full-text available
This is a response to two critical comments on our 2014 paper in the IEEE Access. That paper reviewed numerical dosimetry/modeling studies on the exposure [in terms of specific absorption rate (SAR)] to the user of a mobile phone to radiofrequency energy, and possible differences in exposure to children versus adults. The main focus was on the peak...
Chapter
This article examines biological effects of radiofrequency fields (3?kHz to 300?GHz) with emphasis on potential hazards, specifically effects that a person would perceive as adverse to health and safety. Its approach is tutorial rather than comprehensive, and its perspective follows that of major international exposure limits that were established...
Article
This Technical Information Statement describes Smart Meter technology as used with modern electric power metering systems and focuses on the radio frequency (RF) emissions associated with their operation relative to human RF exposure limits. Smart Meters typically employ low power (-1 W or less) transmitters that wirelessly send electric energy usa...
Article
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A large number of papers are appearing in the biomedical engineering literature that describe the use of machine learning techniques to develop classifiers for detection or diagnosis of disease. However, the usefulness of this approach in developing clinically validated diagnostic techniques so far has been limited and the methods are prone to over...
Article
There has been long-standing controversy, both among scientists and in the public, about whether children absorb more radio frequency (RF) energy in their heads than adults when using a mobile telephone. This review summarizes the current understanding of this issue, and some of the complexities in comparing the absorption of RF energy in different...
Article
This review summarizes the current state of research on possible health effects of Wi-Fi (a commercial name for IEEE 802.11-compliant wireless networking). In response to public concerns about health effects of Wi-Fi and wireless networks and calls by government agencies for research on possible health and safety issues with the technology, a consi...
Article
This paper reviews radiofrequency (RF) field levels produced by electric utility meters equipped with RF transceivers (so-called Smart Meters), focusing on meters from one manufacturer (Trilliant, Redwood City, CA, USA, and Granby, QC, Canada). The RF transmission levels are summarized based on publicly available data submitted to the U.S. Federal...
Article
Full-text available
Contributing reviewers The Editor of BioMedical Engineering Online would like to thank all the Reviewers who have contributed to the journal in Volume 11 (2012).
Conference Paper
The problem of scientific misconduct is both worldwide and becoming increasingly visible. While U.S. and European universities have offered courses in Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) for graduate students and faculty for several years, the situation in other regions of the world is less clear. This study was carried out to assess the status o...
Article
Within the past decade, a quiet revolution has occurred in consumer electronics, with a massive shift toward wireless connectivity in household devices. While these open up new possibilities for consumers, the possible harms associated with wireless and Internet technologies-for example, privacy and security issues-have prompted widespread concern...
Article
Early in January 2012, Suneet Singh Tuli, CEO of DataWind, a small computer company based in Montreal, told The Economic Times of India that advance orders for its 2500 rupee (about US $50) tablet computer had reached 1.4 million units in just two weeks-besting the record of Apple and its iPad. The tablet, dubbed the Aakash (Hindi for "sky"), had b...
Article
A new smartphone and tablet app runs 300 math functions and your own scripts as well.
Article
Two venerable math programs keep up with the times - Born in the 1980s, Maple and Mathematica antedate many readers of IEEE Spectrum. Over time, both programs have evolved into do-it-all math platforms, with thousands of numerical and symbolic math functions, extensive capabilities for graphics and documents, and much more. With their latest update...
Article
This special issue contains papers presented at an international workshop entitled 'Thermal Aspects of Radio Frequency Exposure' convened in Gaithersburg, Maryland, USA on 11-12 January 2010, and co-sponsored by the Mobile Manufacturers Forum, the GSM Association, and the US Food and Drug Administration. The goals of the workshop were to (1) identi...
Article
This Note discusses the implications of a simple model for the thermal response of tissue subject to irradiation with millimeter waves (30-300 GHz) for setting limits for safe exposure to this energy. The estimated thresholds for thermal pain and thermal injury from long-term (minutes) and short-term (seconds) exposures are compared with two major...
Article
Full-text available
Detection of deception and confirmation of truth telling with conventional polygraphy raised a host of technical and ethical issues. Recently, newer methods of recording electromagnetic signals from the brain show promise in permitting the detection of deception or truth telling. Some are even being promoted as more accurate than conventional polyg...
Article
This paper discussed the sudden influx of modern communications has opened up exciting opportunities for humanitarian engineering a field that many engineers associate with installation of water and sanitation facilities in rural areas to adapt mobile communications technologies to address the urgent health needs of this impoverished region. In rev...
Article
The Committee on Man and Radiation (COMAR) is a technical committee of the Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBS) of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). Its primary area of interest is biological effects of non-ionizing electromagnetic radiation, including radiofrequency (RF) energy. The public interest in poss...
Article
Dread How Fear and Fantasy Have Fueled Epidemics from the Black Death to Avian Flu by Philip Alcabes PublicAffairs, New York, 2009. 322 pp. $26.95, C$31. ISBN 9781586486181. Exploring biological, social, and narrative aspects of epidemics, Alcabes concludes that the common gap between the hype and the actual levels of damages reflects the crucial...
Article
This article reviews the use of implantable radiofrequency identification (RFID) tags in humans, focusing on the VeriChip (VeriChip Corporation, Delray Beach, FL) and the associated VeriMed patient identification system. In addition, various nonmedical applications for implanted RFID tags in humans have been proposed. The technology offers importan...
Article
This review looks at recently developed technology that allows engineers to record signals from the brain, identify the subject’s intent, and allow the subject to control prosthetic devices or communicate with others. It explores the current status of the technology, focusing on studies aimed at developing assistive devices for human subjects. Last...
Chapter
IntroductionConceptual Framework for Risk AssessmentEHC on EMFs ELF FieldsStatic FieldsComparison Between the WHO ELF-EHC and the California ReportCommunicating about Risks of EMFsDiscussion ELF FieldsStatic Fields
Article
Full-text available
This paper considers the specific absorption rate (SAR) in tissue of radiofrequency (RF) energy and temperature increases produced by RF currents on short conductors (0.03–0.1λ). We consider a cylindrical model in which a center-feeds, insulated antenna is embedded in tissue. We introduce a new method for the analytic evaluation of the fields in...
Chapter
This article will focus on biological effects of electromagnetic fields with emphasis on potential hazards (i.e, effects that a person would perceive as adverse to health and safety). The frequency range to be covered is from DC through microwaves (0–300 GHz). Excluded from this review are hazards resulting from contact of the body with external co...
Article
Semcad X Jungfrau is an updated and very attractive program for simulating attractive program for simulating electromagnetic fields around the source of radio-frequency (RF) energy. It uses the finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) method, a standard approach for simulating electromagnetic fields at radio frequencies and is employed in several other...
Article
This article reviews thermal mechanisms of interaction between radiofrequency (RF) fields and biological systems, focusing on theoretical frameworks that are of potential use in setting guidelines for human exposure to RF energy. Several classes of thermal mechanisms are reviewed that depend on the temperature increase or rate of temperature increa...
Article
The benefits of an implantable RFID chip, which is durable and about the size of a grain of rice, can hold or link to information about the identity, physiological characteristics, health, nationality, and security clearances of the person it's embedded in. However, the erosion of our privacy and our right to bodily integrity might be a problem. Th...
Article
This survey measured radiofrequency (RF) fields from wireless local area networks (WLANs) using Wi-Fi technology against a background of RF fields in the environment over the frequency range 75 MHz-3 GHz. A total of 356 measurements were conducted at 55 sites (including private residences, commercial spaces, health care and educational institutions...
Chapter
This chapter reviews the interaction of radiofrequency (RF) energy with tissue, including mechanisms of interaction, principles of exposure assessment, and known or reported biological effects. Major therapeutic effects and potential hazards of RF energy are described, together with the basis for major exposure limits. Major areas of controversy ab...
Article
First Page of the Article
Chapter
This paper reviews the “mechanisms paradox„, i.e. the absence of established mechanisms by which ELF fields at levels found in ordinary environments could produce observable changes in biological systems, coupled with many reported effects of such fields. A number of interaction mechanisms have been well established, but the field strengths that wo...
Chapter
The landfall of Katrina against the coast of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama on August 29,2005 resulted in an unprecedented human catastrophe. Hurricane Katrina itself was not unprecedented, either in magnitude or trajectory. However, the catastrophe was immense because that stretch of the coastline of the Gulf of Mexico, including the city of...
Chapter
This paper reviews the “mechanisms paradox„, i.e. the absence of established mechanisms by which ELF fields at levels found in ordinary environments could produce observable changes in biological systems, coupled with many reported effects of such fields. A number of interaction mechanisms have been well established, but the field strengths that wo...
Article
The review of some of the statements made by expert groups and health agencies related to the use of mobile phones by children and their scientific basis for such advice are discussed. It is suggested that the pubic should be provided with information concerning ways in which individuals could reduce exposure to cell phone emissions if they are con...
Article
Open magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) systems enable performing image-guided medical procedures for long periods of time very close to, or inside, the patient imaging area. Medical personnel can be exposed to relatively high static, gradient, and radiofrequency fields compared to most other MRI systems. The Committee on Man and Radiation of the Ins...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract Swamy Narasimha Laxminarayan, known to his many friends and colleagues as Swamy, passed away on September 29, 2005. He was one of the most prominent biomedical engineers on the international scene, and contributed immensely to the globalization of this new field.
Chapter
This article reviews biological effects of radiofrequency energy with emphasis on effects with clear implications for to human health and safety. The rationale for two major exposure limits is described. Major areas of controversy about health effects of low-level radiofrequency energy are described, both as related to uncertainities in the scienti...