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Electromagnetic Sensing and Treatment of Living Things

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RMIT University - Swanston Academic Building

445 Swanston Street

Bld 80, Level 2, Room 3

Melbourne, VIC 3000

Australia

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Using Microwaves to Detect and Treat Disease in Humans and Trees

Because of their ability to penetrate and heat, electromagnetic waves have found use in several unusual applications, specifically in interaction with biological tissue. Microwave radar has been used as an anatomic imaging modality for detecting breast cancer, and THz radiation is being proposed for vulnerable plaque identification. Using a simple conformal antenna, microwave sensing of trees can alert arborists if there is an otherwise undetectable infestation of Asian Long-Horned beetle. By depositing microwave power at depth, cancerous or otherwise diseased tissue can be non-invasively heated and inactivated or ablated while sparing healthy surrounding tissue. This survey presentation will touch on a variety of life science electromagnetic applications, discussing feasibility, advantages, efficacy, and limitations of the proposed approaches.

Prof. Carey M. Rappaport is a Fellow of the IEEE, and he received five degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT): the S.B. degree in mathematics and the S.B., S.M., and E.E. degrees in electrical engineering in 1982, and the Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering in 1987. Prof. Rappaport has worked as a teaching and research assistant at MIT from 1981 to 1987 and during the summers at Communications Satellite Corporation Laboratories in Clarksburg, Maryland, and The Aerospace Corporation in El Segundo, California. He joined the faculty at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1987 and has been a professor of electrical and computer engineering since July 2000. In 2011, he was appointed College of Engineering Distinguished Professor. During the fall in 1995, he was a visiting professor of electrical engineering at the Electromagnetics Institute of the Technical University of Denmark, Lyngby, as part of the W. Fulbright International Scholar Program. During the second half of 2005, he was a visiting research scientist at the Commonwealth Scientific Industrial and Research Organization in Epping, Australia.

He has consulted for CACI; Alion Science and Technology, Inc.; GeoCenters, Inc.; PPG, Inc.; and several municipalities on wave propagation and modeling, and microwave heating and safety. He was a principal investigator for the Army Research Office-sponsored Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative on Humanitarian Demining, a coprincipal investigator for the National Science Foundation-sponsored Engineering Research Center for Subsurface Sensing and Imaging Systems, and a coprincipal investigator and deputy director for the Department of Homeland Security-sponsored Awareness and Localization of Explosive Related Threats Center of Excellence.

Prof. Rappaport has authored more than 400 technical journal articles and conference papers in the areas of microwave antenna design, electromagnetic wave propagation and scattering computation, and bioelectromagnetics, and he has received two reflector antenna patents, two biomedical device patents, and four subsurface sensing device patents. As a student, he was awarded the AP-S’s H.A. Wheeler Award for best applications paper in 1986. He is a member of the Sigma Xi and Eta Kappa Nu professional honorary societies.

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Date and Time

Location

RMIT University - Swanston Academic Building

445 Swanston Street

Bld 80, Level 2, Room 3

Melbourne, VIC 3000

Australia

View Map

Refund Policy

No Refunds

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