On November 28, 2018, ACEBR held its annual Science and Wireless event in Wollongong, and despite the terrible storms, the event was well attended!
It was started with an official opening of the ‘new’ ACEBR, which began operations in April 2018 after the team was awarded a 5-year Centre of Research Excellence grant from the NHMRC. This was followed by an introduction to ACEBR’s 5-year research plan, which includes a comprehensive list of studies across the human, animal, cellular, dosimetry, and social sciences domains that address the WHO and ARPANSA EMF Research Agendas.

ACEBR Research
The ACEBR research focus for the event was the work of PhD student Adam Verrender on Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity (EHS). He presented a summary of the condition and previous research, and also presented his latest results showing the impact of belief of exposure on the presentation of symptoms by EHS sufferers, as well as the influence of other contributing factors, such as the media.

The New 5G Network
A summary of the latest developments regarding the new 5G telecommunications network was presented by Mike Wood from Telstra. This included a brief overview of how the technology works and how it differs from previous generations of mobile telecommunications technologies, as well as the latest results from live network testing of 5G.

RF EMF Exposure Assessment in Europe
The keynote presentation at this years event was given by Prof Peter Gajsek of the Insititute of Non-Ionizing Radiation in Slovenia. He gave a detailed overview of assessment techniques used, as well as studies that have been conducted in Europe and how exposure assessments compare between countries. This was followed by the presentation of the GERoNiMO Study, which was a study conducted over 5 years and aimed at better characterising EMF exposure assessment across 5 different countries in Europe and with a specific focus on exposure of children. Results showed that overall, children received the highest exposures from mobile phone downlink, followed by broadcast sources (mainly FM radio), with Wi-Fi and cordless phones shown to contribute very little to overall exposure. The presentation was concluded with a demonstration of an App developed by the Slovenian team (and currently only available in Slovenia) which can be used to monitor personal exposure from a mobile phone.

Panel Discussion
The presentations were followed by a panel discussion in which all of the speakers, as well as Prof Rodney Croft and Prof Andrew Wood also from ACEBR, were on hand to answer questions. The questions were many and varied, and centred around the new 5G technology, as well as specific questions regarding personal exposure assessments and EHS research.

We thank all attendees once again for their contribution to this event, and we welcome suggestions from the public for topics of interest for future Science and Wireless events.

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