Assessment of the computational uncertainty of temperature rise and SAR in the eyes and brain under far-field exposure from 1 to 10 GHz

Phys Med Biol. 2009 Jun 7;54(11):3393-404. doi: 10.1088/0031-9155/54/11/008. Epub 2009 May 13.


This paper presents finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) calculations of specific absorption rate (SAR) values in the head under plane-wave exposure from 1 to 10 GHz using a resolution of 0.5 mm in adult male and female voxel models. Temperature rise due to the power absorption is calculated by the bioheat equation using a multigrid method solver. The computational accuracy is investigated by repeating the calculations with resolutions of 1 mm and 2 mm and comparing the results. Cubically averaged 10 g SAR in the eyes and brain and eye-averaged SAR are calculated and compared to the corresponding temperature rise as well as the recommended limits for exposure. The results suggest that 2 mm resolution should only be used for frequencies smaller than 2.5 GHz, and 1 mm resolution only under 5 GHz. Morphological differences in models seemed to be an important cause of variation: differences in results between the two different models were usually larger than the computational error due to the grid resolution, and larger than the difference between the results for open and closed eyes. Limiting the incident plane-wave power density to smaller than 100 W m(-2) was sufficient for ensuring that the temperature rise in the eyes and brain were less than 1 degrees C in the whole frequency range.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Brain / physiology*
  • Computer Simulation
  • Electromagnetic Fields*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Models, Anatomic
  • Ocular Physiological Phenomena*
  • Temperature*