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Melbourne Seminar on 5G and EMF

Chris Althaus, AMTA CEO

The road to 5G will necessarily require informed planning and research to ensure that implementation delivers value and meets expectations. As we know, 5G capabilities will extend far beyond previous generations.

As part of the process the Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (AMTA) and the Mobile Wireless Forum (MWF) delivered a seminar in Melbourne last week to discuss the latest on the international EMF (Electromagnetic fields) exposure and compliance testing standards for 5G. Inherent in the discussion was an overview on how the Australian industry is preparing; the latest research perspectives; and the general importance of 5G to Australia.

This is an ongoing process of meetings, seminars and workshops which seeks to ensure that good science and accurate data informs the pre-planning and ultimate introduction of Australia’s 5G network. The Melbourne seminar which took place at Telstra, featured leading research experts from Ericsson Sweden, AMTA, MWF and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC).

Events such as these are ongoing and contribute to research and the scientific database that will form the basis for EMF/EME compliance assessment methodology for 5G equipment.  The aim is to make sure that the compliance testing standards are available for the early 5G trials and commercial deployment.

Much of the discussion also provides a logical framework for developing a global approach that can harmonise standards for communities, governments, industry and stakeholders. Most importantly, a key IEC meeting in October this year will take place in Australia where the global industry will gather to finalise standards for testing 5G devices. The IEC focus is to ensure that EMF compliance standards are ready to meet the deployment of 5G technology. Mike Wood, an EMF specialist from Telstra is Chair of the IEC committee TC106, which has responsibility to develop the global compliance assessment standards for wireless devices and networks including 5G.

Ericsson’s Senior Scientific Researcher from Sweden, Davide Colombi also contributed to the forum and shared various insights on Ericsson’s active participation in international standardisation activities to define EMF/EME compliance assessment methodology. Colombi is an M.Sc. graduate in telecommunication engineering from Politecnico di Milano, Italy.

Other speakers provided excellent presentations on the range of issues concerning 5G, EMF research and the role of standards in helping harmonise global activity.

  • Chris Althaus - AMTA CEO provided an informative overview of 5G and the current transition from 4G that will likely bring transformative change across all sectors and industries in society.
  • Mike Wood - Chair of the AMTA RF Safety Program, and Chairman of IEC TC106 talked about human exposure compliance assessment procedures related to 5G and how Australia is making a signifiant contribution to the process.
  • Dr Ken Joyner - MWF Chair talked about 5G related research including compliance testing research initiatives.
  • Prof Rodney Croft - from the University of Wollongong provided an update on 5G research being conducted by the Australian Centre for Electromagnetic Bioeffects Research (ACEBR).
  • Prof Andrew Wood and Alireza Lajevardipour - from the Swinburne University node of ACEBR covered research on the importance of characterising absorption patterns of electromagnetic energy in human tissue.

The mobile  telecommunications industry in Australia remains committed to participating in relevant research conducted by independent organisations that informs the design of 5G devices that comply with established radio wave exposure limits.

The seminar took place at Telstra on 21 April 2017 in Melbourne.

Photo credit: L to R - Dr Ken Joyner, Davide Colombi, Chris Althaus, Mike Wood.

26 April 2017



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