NIR:   non-ionizing radiation

The project objective is to develop an information system, mapping and risk analysis tools for the domain of the ubiquitous NIR (non-ionizing radition), or electromagnetic smog.

While the possible health and environmental impacts of non-ionizing electromagnetic radiation are still controversial, a first step to put the often heated discussion on a more rational basis is to compile all available data on the physical side, that is the actual radiation fields due to a variety of sources such a high-tension power lines and various antenna, from TV to mobile phones.

Maintaining a data base of sources is the first step to model their behaviour, and map the results vis a vis primarily the population distribution. This can also be compared with actual field measurements to calibrate the models. Measured and computed radiation fields can then be used to estimate levels of population exposure.

The system features a number of fullt integrated elements, data bases, and analytical tools:
  • basic environmental information system and GIS for the regional background information including topography, landuse, building structures, and population distribution;
  • a comprehensive data base or inventory of all major soucres, including:
    • high-voltage power transmission lines;
    • radio and TV antenna;
    • cellular telephony antenna.
  • a set of models to estimate the electromagnetic field from each of these sources, based on their characteristics from the inventory;
  • tools for the analysis, display, and mapping of these fields, including interactive 3D visualisation;
  • tools for exposure and risk analysis.


A case study of the Regione Liguria, Italy

The case study is being developed in collaboration with, and under contract to, ARPAL,
the Environmental Protection Agency of the Regione Liguria, with its main office in Genova.     Operational Prototype Interface Examples

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