Fast, Anatomy and Physiology Based Computational Tool for RF-Induced Thermal Response

Period of Performance: 04/03/2014 - 07/15/2016


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

CFD Research Corp.
701 McMillian Way NW Suite D
Huntsville, AL 35806
Principal Investigator


ABSTRACT: Military and industrial personnel are often exposed to RF electromagnetic energy which can cause thermal and electrokinetic biological effects. To understand these effects, AFRL is using computational electromagnetic tools to predict RF energy deposition and thermal effects in humans. Unfortunately, high resolution thermal simulations are computationally very expensive. The goal of this project is to develop fast anatomy- and physiology-based computational tools for predicting whole-body and localized thermal response of tissue to RF exposure. In phase I we have developed novel adaptive Octree mesh model of a human body and a 3D high accuracy thermal solver coupled to multicompartmental model of cardiovascular blood flow, tissue perfusion and heat transport. The model was used to demonstrate fast, whole body thermal simulations for two EM SAR exposures. In phase II we will develop additional anatomical human body models, improve computational speed on parallel CPU and GPU computers and improve the accuracy and robustness of the model. The model of human cardiovascular physiology will include central and peripheral thermo-autoregulation of vascular, cardiac, respiratory responses, skin cooling as well as fatigue effects and potential impact on human performance. A professional software framework will be established with GUI for model setup, visualization and data analysis. The software will be demonstrated on fast modeling of human body thermal and physiological responses to various RF exposures encountered in military and civilian environments. BENEFIT: The integrated CEM-Thermal-Physiology modeling tools will be used by engineers and health physicists to study risks of accidental and job duty RF exposure, to design active denial systems, non lethal weapons and novel directed energy systems. The same tools will have immense civilian applications such as more powerful medical imaging and diagnostics, better hyperthermia cancer treatment, laser and cryosurgery, therapeutic hypothermia in cardiac and stroke conditions, thermal comfort analysis, transcranial EM stimulation, and others.