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Medical and Biological Applications of Electromagnetic Techniques – a Relevant Experience to the Microwave Processing of Materials Research

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  21 February 2011

Magdy F. Iskander
Affiliation:
University of Utah, Electrical Engineering Department, Salt Lake City, UT 84112
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Abstract

The feasibility of using electromagnetic (EM) energy in industrial, medical, or in biological applications relies heavily on accurate knowledge of the dielectric properties of materials and on detailed understanding of the underlying interaction mechanisms. This chapter deals with the medical and biological applications of EM radiation. It therefore starts with a brief review of the dielectric properties of various tissues and a description of some of the basic interaction mechanisms. The techniques used to measure these properties are of particular interest to the microwave processing of materials research. Therefore, some of the time- and frequency-domain measurements methods of the dielectric properties of materials are discussed.

Available techniques for calculating and measuring the absorption of EM radiation by humans and other biological models are also described. The impact of the obtained EM dosimetry results on modifying the ANSI Safety Standard is outlined. It will be noted that many of the dosimetric measurements procedures are highly relevant to experiences in the microwave processing of materials research.

In addition, some of the medical applications in both the diagnostics and therapeutic areas are described. These applications basically exploit some of the unique dielectric characteristics of biological tissues. Specifically, noninvasive and interstitial EM hyperthermia techniques for cancer treatment are discussed, and other potential microwave methods for medical diagnostics are briefly reviewed. Future research needs to further the understanding of the various interaction mechanisms of EM radiation with materials are outlined. Every effort is made to relate experiences in the medical and biological research areas to research in the microwave processing of materials.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Materials Research Society 1988

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