Mile High Spark – August 2019 – Volume 10, Issue 2

View this newsletter on the web.

AGL eDigest Newsletter Applied Wireless Technology Magazine


White PaperWireless Communications and Applications Above 100 GHz: Opportunities and Challenges for 6G and Beyond. By Prof.Theodore Rappaport, David Lee/Ernst Weber Professor, Founding Director NYU WIRELESS, Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Tandon School of Engineering, Courant School of Computer Science, Langone Medical Center /Radiology, New York University.
Guest Column – How Dynamic Spectrum Access Can Accelerate 5G Deployment Case Study –The Impact on the U.S. Economy of Excluding Huawei from Participation in theU.S. Market for Wireless Network Equipment
On the Edge – 5G and the fourth  Industrial Revolution – By Vicki Livingston, 5G Americas A Moment With… 451 Research – Smart Cities
August 2019
Volume 10 Issue 2
Excom Meetings
3rd Tuesdays of the Month*
  • 6:00 pm: Supper and Networking
  • 6:30 pm: Excom meeting
Original Brooklyn’s
2644 West Colfax Ave.
Denver, CO 80204 
*Except July & December

Recent Excom Actions
  • 2019 Budget approved
  • 2018 Elections completed
  • 2018 New Officers Training Seminar

Open Positions

Some of the Standing Committees where we could use some great volunteers include:

  • Awards and Recognition
  • Finance & Audit
  • Government Relations
  • Industry Relations
  • Professional Activities (PACE)
  • Programs & Events
  • Public Relations and Publicity
  • Strategic Planning
  • Consultants Network
  • Young Professionals
Actually just about anything you can think of, we’re interested in talking to you!

If you are interested in volunteering, please send email to Positions will be open until filled.

 Try Something New!
Whether you are active in IEEE ExCom, are a chair of a technical society, or just a paying member, we thank you for being a part of something that we think is pretty great. If you want to get more involved, you know where to find us! And if you just want to enjoy the hard (and not-so-hard) work of our volunteers by attending our events we would love that even more! Take advantage of the monthly volunteering efforts we have put together for you. Try something new, meet some new people, and learn something new by listening to a distinguished lecturer. Oh, and thank you for being a reader of our newsletter!

Ernest Worthman
Message from IEEE Denver Section Chair, Jason Rupe

Happy new year! It is my honor to take over as chair for the IEEE Denver Section. Back in January’s ExCom meeting, we discussed our goals for the year. I hope some of these are exciting to you!

Our previous chair, Ian MacMillan, did a far outstanding job of running the organization, along with a fabulous team. Fortunately for us all, many of our volunteers are continuing to serve. I’m thankful for having Ian remain to coach me and assure a smoother than otherwise transition.

That same core of outstanding volunteers met to discuss progress, actions for the group, and to set goals for the year that benefit our Denver membership. Several topics were covered.

  • Strengthening our Student Branches – the Denver student branches will be within the scope of the Denver section, and we would like to support them fully. This may include special projects and helping student members transition to full members upon graduation.
  • Get more volunteers to engage – We need help to sustain our high level of service to the community and membership. Right now, we need leads in several areas, most critically Newsletter EditorYoung Professionals, Membership Development, and our special PACE projects. But we have other openings too, so please consider joining our ExCom to help make a difference.
  • Help us make 2019 the year of the Young Professional!  We’d like to help young professionals get engaged with and value from the IEEE – young professionals have perhaps the most to gain from IEEE membership.  To make this happen, we need a lead for this area. A current young professional would be an ideal lead, and we will do everything we can to help them along.  We launched Women in Engineering in 2018 and Life Members in 2017 with great success.
  • Raise our public profile – because we have much to offer the community, we want to get the word out. We can definitely use help here,
  • to make our work known in social media, and to the Denver community.
  • Hold networking meetings – we hold very effective dine and learn technical events, and our ExCom meetings keep our operations running smoothly. But members have suggested we have networking events, and we need someone to lead the efforts to make that happen.
  • Hold meetings in other locations – some members suggested we try holding meetings in other locations to be more convenient for other members. If we had someone interested in organizing events in the southern half of the Denver metro area, then we can see if members from that part of the metro area would attend. But we need someone to organize it and try it, with the help of the ExCom of course.

Which of these areas interests you?  Where would you benefit personally, or where do you think you can make the most difference? If you are even lightly interested in getting more from your IEEE membership, please join us and try something in your interest area. We will definitely help you get started and going. Share your ideas with us, but also share your energy and time to help your IEEE Denver section and membership community.

From the Editor, Ernest Worthman

Hello everyone. My name is Ernest Worthman. I would like to take a moment and introduce myself as the new Editor for the Mile High Spark.

As I take the helm of this publication, I would like to tip my hat to Ian MacMillian, our last Section Chair and previous editor for all his time, effort and hard work. It takes a lot of commitment to be a section chair AND publish a newsletter, AND run GreenTech and all the other behind-the-scenes work he has been responsible for. Thanks, Ian, I hope I can do half the job you did!

Next I would like to welcome Our new Section Chair, Jason Rupe. I have had the chance to get to know him a bit over the last couple of months and I know he will make an excellent Section Chair.

And, I would also like to thank the rest of the Denver section volunteers, from chairs to students, that make countless committees, activities, programs, events, and more, successful. They work tirelessly behind the scenes and rarely get the recognition they deserve. Hats off to all of you, as well.

That being said, on to business. One of the items on my agenda is to bring technical content to this newsletter. I would like to start adding technical papers, articles, case studies, white papers, even opinions and a blog. If you have something you would like to see in print, please contact me: I will be happy to find a home for it.

Next, notice there are some new tabs near the top of the page. The ones with the blue background will take you to a wireless publication site.

I am the Executive Editor of Applied Wireless Technology and AGL’s eDigest newsletter. AWT covers the cutting edge of wireless – from DC to light and all of the segments wireless touches. Topics of coverage include 5G, autonomous vehicles, millimeter wave, edge networks, licensed and unlicensed spectrum, the Internet of Everything/Everyone (IoX), software, cybersecurity, smart “X”, virtual “X”, emerging technologies, wireless ecosystems (government/aerospace/defense, enterprises, healthcare, telemedicine), SDN, NFV, fiber optics, embedded systems – anything that has a wireless interface.

The eDigest is a bit of a different animal. Rather than scrap news and regurgitate it, as so many newsletters do, ours takes a deeper dive into what is happening – the whats and whys and what it means to the wireless industry. I would invite everyone to check these resource out.


Workshop on Blockchain in Telecommunications: Emerging Technologies for the Next Decade and Beyond – IEEE Global Communications Conference 9-13 December 2019, Waikoloa, HI, USA

Scope and Topics

Blockchain is a decentralized, transparent and trusted database, defined as part of the Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) framework, and considered as an enabling technology of new IT enterprise systems and applications.  Blockchain in Telecommunications is a new powerful concept that can tremendously improve telecom networking operations and customer-facing processes experience, adding a new layer of authentication, validation and security for all telecom assets and transactions.  Telecom companies will benefit most from enterprise, permissioned Blockchain solutions to enhance existing IT (Information Technology) and OT (Operations Technology) solutions to address fraud prevention, customer identity management, mobile transactions settlement and mobile payment, among others, Blockchain is still a nascent technology and as such there are challenges for the wide adoption of Blockchain/DLT as a new enterprise and operational layer.  These challenges are around scalability, interoperability, standards, privacy, security, governance and consensus mechanisms that need to be defined and validated for telecom-specific applications.

This IEEE Globecom Telecom Blockchain Workshop will introduce the basic concepts of Blockchain applied to Telecommunications, and will discuss emerging trends and the challenges ahead.  It will also provide a forward-looking perspective on the emerging technologies and key applications in this new field.

TOPICS TO BE COVERED (Call for Papers)

This workshop will be aligned with IEEE Blockchain Initiative strategic directions and promoted as a joint initiative with Globecom

Paper submission link:

The IEEE Globecom Telecommunications Blockchain Workshop invites prospective authors to submit their original technical work on any aspect of engineering, science, and technology of current interest to the workshop. Topic areas include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Blockchain in 5G Technologies
  • Blockchain in IoT
  • Blockchain in Networking and Cloud Technologies
  • Blockchain in Telecommunications Process, Operation and Customer Management
  • Blockchain Telecom Enterprise Applications
  • Blockchain Telecom in Home Automation and Communications
  • Blockchain Telecom Cybersecurity
  • Blockchain Telecom Scalability, Performance and Privacy
  • Blockchain Telecom Interoperability
  • Blockchain Telecom Pilots and Applications
  • Blockchain Telecom Regulatory Challenges and Requirements
  • Blockchain Telecom Emerging Technologies

Contact Tim Weil for details –

IEEE Women in Engineering

International Leadership Conference in Austin, Texas

By Sarah Beckman

IEEE WIE 5280, with funds raised for our Sipping ‘N Painting event in December and additional support from the Region’s Executive Committee, was able to send a University woman to the IEEE Women in Engineering International Leadership Conference in Austin, Texas in May. 

Our group’s Vision is to grow a group that promotes women in STEM for the benefit of the Colorado Front Range. Being able to support a local University woman helps us achieve that Vision. Madison Le, who won the conference scholarship, is an Electrical Engineering student at Colorado School of Mines with a minor in Computer Engineering.

Madison Le said, “I just wanted to say thank you to you and your [organization] for giving me the opportunity to attend such an enlightening conference last month. I learned a lot about strategies to tackle the professional world as a woman in engineering and met some very inspiring women. I hope this program continues to motivate other women just as it has motivated me to take charge and work make a difference for women everywhere. Keep up the good work with these outreach programs, I appreciated all your support to make this possible!”

Upcoming Events – 

  • September: Breakfast Social at 7:30 a.m. in North Denver; location and details to follow
  • October: (tentative) Technical Talk in partnership with DU
  • November: SWE – We National in Anaheim; Happy Hour in Denver South are; details and location to follow.
  • December: Fundraising event

Thanks, and we’re looking forward to a fun and successful 2019!

Sarah Beckman, Keaton Looney, Kate Landow and Tom Schafer

IEEE WIE 5280 Officers

5th Anniversary, 2019 IEEE WIE Forum USA East
21- 23 November 2019 | Ritz Carlton Pentagon City, Arlington, VA

Dear IEEE Members,
We are excited to bring you updates on the 2019 IEEE Women In Engineering (WIE) Forum USA East on November 21- November 23, 2019 in Arlington, VA (DC area), which will focus on developing and improving leadership skills and driving innovation for individuals at all stages of their careers. Attendees will have the opportunity to be educated, inspired, and empowered by presentations given by successful leaders from the IEEE-USA North-East region. Attendees will also experience the sights and sounds of Washington DC by participating in our tours and activities.


  • Innovation: Cybersecurity, Big Data, Robotics, IoT, Drones & Emerging Technologies
  • Development: Communication skills in written and spoken word, effective dialog
  • Empowerment: Entrepreneurship, Financial Health, Emotional Health, Boundaries
  • Work-Life balance: Family systems traditions and changes
  • Strategic Leadership Development: Self-motivation, Teamwork, Problem-Solving, Decisiveness, and Time Management
  • Support, Promote & Mentor Women Leaders
  • Inclusion and Cultural Awareness: Women in STEM with a focus on Diversity, Inclusion, and Retention
  • Panels, Workshops, and Hands-on Demonstrations

Presenter Limits – To provide a diverse exposure to speakers, a speaker will only be selected for one session but may submit multiple proposals (panel members may be exceptions). Speakers are responsible for their own travel expenses and registration.

Deadline for all submissions 08/16/2019 (Extended and Final!)
Decision notification date 09/08/2019
Final Announcement 09/20/2019
Speaker Registration Deadline 10/04/2019

We hope that you will join us and share the attached CFP flyer with your colleagues. Please visit our website for more info:

We welcome sponsorship and participation in our program. For more information on the sponsorship levels and career fair, please visit:

Neeta Basantkumar & Felicia Harlow, General Co-Chairs
2019 IEEE WIE Forum USA East

Dr. Charlotte Blair & Maryam Rahmani, CISSP, Program Co-Chairs
2019 IEEE WIE Forum USA East


Looking for sharp engineers

Colorado Electronic Product Design
CEPD is hiring! We’re a consulting engineering company looking for
Embedded hardware/firmware Engineers. We have offices in both Broomfield and Loveland Colorado.

Job Description:

The engineer will be responsible for hardware design, analysis, schematic capture, documentation, software for micro-controllers, and direct customer interfacing.

Desired Skills & Experience:

The position requires a minimum of a BSEE or similar degree. US citizenship is required. Local candidates only. Strong verbal and written communications skills are
required. Experience in analog and digital hardware, DSP, and embedded
software/firmware design is desirable. Must know C language. Familiarity with HDL is a plus. Contact us if you are interested at

Engineering Students Alive and Well and Living in Colorado Doing Great Things

By Jim Harrier, Sr. Member IEEE, K – 12 Facilitator and EMBS Officer

Colorado Students in Engineering are turning out in record numbers at Colorado Universities with an astounding variety of innovative ideas, if this cross-section of Senior Design Projects is any indication.

This last graduation on May 17 at CU Denver saw 50 + separate undergraduate teams in the engineering sciences (Bioengineering, Civil Engineering, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Multidisciplinary (CU Denver and Metro State) ) competing in the Spring 2019 Capstone Design Expo all under one roof, on the CU Denver campus. The Denver IEEE has been instrumental in supporting student design projects at many of the area universities (above) over the years.

At the end of this story are some great pictures of what is going on at CSU – a far cry from my own final (but still memorable) design project umpteen years ago!

What is it?

“In their final year of engineering curriculum, students in the College of Engineering, Design and Computing complete a senior design class that provides an important design experience and serves as the culmination of the knowledge and skills they have learned. Each semester the college holds a capstone expo where alumni and industry judges select top projects and teams for recognition.

Everyone is invited to attend and to see the students’ amazing work.” –

One of the Denver IEEE supported project is the HyperLynx, the CU Denver Team to answer the Tesla Hyperloop Challenge.

SpaceX announced the Hyperloop Pod Student Competition in 2015 to promote high-speed ground transportation, in a vacuum through a mile-long tunnel!

Team member Andrew Gras has spoken a couple times to the Denver IEEE about the UCD/Metro partnership in this exciting, long-term project. After three years of development, testing and competing with undergraduate university teams from all over the world, SpaceX is sponsoring a fourth competition for July 21, 2019.

“As with previous competitions, the competition will be judged solely on one criteria: maximum speed with successful deceleration (i.e. without crashing), and all pods must be self-propelled.” 

      HyperLynx Team Members HyperLynx Team Member Andrew Gras explains the car pod propelled up to 270 mph in the vacuum tunnel for the 2019 SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition, one of 21 student team finalists worldwide on July 21, 2019.

Poster Board showing HyperLynx Design Concept Autonomous Vehicles were big at the Design Expo. Tess Cope, Mark Allen Alex Mroz and Netza Ojeda explain their mobility scooter, AMSS, to better assist disabled shoppers

Another clever concept design is the MixoWatch,   a special wrist monitor to help a bartender more accurately dispense and track mixed drinks. Team Members Travis Vance, John Kincaid, Faisal El Jaidi, and Ali Al EId.

Above: Team Members Michaela Pott, Kathleen Nguyen, and Patrick Williams present their “Design to Spec” project to use automation technology (upper left) to save labor time taken to perfuse multiple liquids through lungs used in lung research (upper right).

IEEE Happenings

IEEE 2nd 5G World Forum (5GWF’19); 30 September – 2 October 2019 Dresden, Germany

The 2019 IEEE 2nd 5G World Forum (5GWF’19), jointly organized by IEEE and 5G Lab Germany in conjunction with the IEEE 4th 5G Summit Dresden, will be held in Dresden, Germany, from 30 September through 2 October, 2019. The IEEE 5G World Forum and 5G Summit will take a holistic approach to 5G system design, ranging from silicon hardware, wireless interfaces, networks, and edge clouds all the way up to Tactile Internet applications. This three-day event offers a unique platform for industry leaders, innovators, and researchers from industry and academia to collaborate and exchange ideas that will help drive standards and rapid deployment forward.

Featured Speakers: 

  • Dr. Michael Bolle, CDO, Bosch GmbH
  • Lip-Bu Tan, CEO, Cadence
  • Peter Riedel, COO, Rohde & Schwarz
  • Carsten Ahrens, CEO, G+D Mobile Security
  • Dr. John Cioffi, CEO, Assia Inc
  • Dr. Peter Stuckmann, Head of Future Connectivity Systems, European Commision
  • Eric Starkloff, President & COO, National Instruments
  • Prof. Muriel Médard, Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Dr. Wolfgang Hackenberg, Chairman and Speaker of the Board of Management, Nokia
  • Kerstin Grosse, Chairman of the Supervisory Board, KOMSA
  • Dr. Diego Schierle, CEO, FLÜGELaeronautics
  • Dr. Gary Patton, CTO, GlobalFoundries
  • Dr. Guido Beckmann, Senior Manager, Beckhoff Automation
  • Dr. Hans-Peter Petry, President, German Center for Satellite Communication
  • Dr. Magnus Frodigh, VP & Head of Research, Ericsson
  • Dr. Thyaga Nandagopal, Deputy Division Director, CCF
  • Dr. Wen Tong, CTO Huawei Wireless, Huawei
  • Dr. Yuichi Nakamura, Vice President, NEC
  • Philipp von Schierstädt, Vice President, Infineon
  • Prof. Henning Schulzrinne, Professor of Computer Science, Columbia University
  • Bernhard Niemann, Head of Department, Fraunhofer IIS
  • Dr. Amitava Ghosh, Head Radio Interface Group, Nokia Bell Labs
  • Dr. Chih-Lin I, Chief Scientist, China Mobile
  • Dr. Michael Peeters, Porgram Director, imec
  • Paul Wheelhouse, Minister, Scottish Government
  • Thomas Schmidt, State Minister, SMU

Visit for more information



94th ARFTG Microwave Measurement Conference
RF to Millimeter-Wave Measurement Techniques for 5G and Beyond – Grand Hyatt, San Antonio, TX, USA; January 26-29, 2020

Call for Papers

The theme for the 94th ARFTG Conference (which will be co-located with Radio and Wireless Week) is “RF to Millimeter-Wave Measurement Techniques for 5G and Beyond”. We encourage the submission of original papers demonstrating innovative approaches in state-of-the-art high-frequency test and measurement. Contributions exploring all areas of RF, microwave, and mm-wave measurements are welcome. Suggested topics include but are not limited to:

• 5G, internet of things (IoT), and over the air (OTA) measurement & calibration
• RF-to-Digital, Mixed Signal, Dig-RF
• Non-Linear, Large-Signal, Waveforms Measurement and Modelling
• RF, Microwave, mm-wave Measurement for Circuits, Devices and Systems
• Advances in On-Wafer or In-Fixture measurements, Calibration and De-embedding
• Metrology, Calibration and Material Measurements

For details visit

Abstracts are due September 27, 2019

ARFTG Student Sponsorship Program

Are you an M.S. or Ph.D. student who would like to attend the fall/winter ARFTG Conference?

We can help!
– Free conference registration
– Free hotel (up to 3 nights at the conference hotel)

For details on the Student Sponsorship Program visit:
Or email:

The deadline for applying is September 27, 2019

ARFTG Roger Pollard Memorial Student Fellowship in Microwave Measurements

The purpose of the fellowship is to recognize and provide financial assistance to graduate students who show promise and interest in pursuing research related to improvement of radio frequency and microwave measurement techniques. The fellowship is named in memorial of Roger Pollard, in honor of his leadership in Microwave Measurement and Microwave Measurement education.

One or more $7500 gold awards and/or $5000 silver awards may be granted each year. The number to be presented will be determined by the ARFTG Executive Committee yearly based on available funding and on the number and quality of applications received. The application deadline will be listed on the web site.

For details on the Student Fellowship visit:
Or email:

The deadline for applying is October 1, 2019,



The IEEE 10th Annual Ubiquitous Computing, Electronics & Mobile Communication Conference (IEEE UEMCON 2019), Columbia University, New York, USA; 10 – 12 October 2019

This conference aims to bring together scholars from different backgrounds to emphasize dissemination of ongoing research in the fields of Computing, Electronics and Mobile Communication. Contributed papers are solicited describing original works in above mentioned fields and related technologies. The conference will include a peer-reviewed program of technical sessions, special sessions, business application sessions, tutorials, and demonstration sessions.

Accepted and presented papers will be submitted for publication to: IEEE Xplore Digital Library. Click HERE for the conference flyer (

Extended Version of accepted and presented papers from IEEE UEMCON 2019 will welcome to be submitted for publication at the Special Issue of SENSORS (MDPI);


  • Full Paper Submission: 7th August 2019
  • Acceptance Notification: 5th September 2019
  • Camera Ready Paper Submission: 30th September 2019
  • Registration: 30th September 2019
  • Presentation: 1st October 2019
  • Conference Date: 10-12 October 2019


COMPSAC 2019 Conference Report

by Tim Weil –  Chair, IEEE Denver Communications Society

There is a tremendous wealth of knowledge in this conference as was highlighted by this panel of 9 past IEEE Presidents – L-R; Kathy Land (2009), Dejan Milojicic (2014), Cecilia Metra (2019), Hironori Kasahara (2018), Jean-Luc Gaudiot (2017), John Walz (2012), Sorel Reisman (2011), Carl Chang (2004) and Stephen Yau (1974-75).

The 43rd COMPAC conference, hosted by the IEEE Computer Society, is a flagship conference for researchers, academics, government and industry.  COMPSAC is the signature conference on Computers, Software, and Applications and this year’s program in Milwaukee, WI. highlighted the theme of ‘Data Driven Intelligence for a Smarter World’ with an emphasis on the convergence of Data Sciences disciplines in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), Big Data (BD) and analytics.  The conference was hosted by the new Data Sciences Institute at Marquette University.  I was fortunate to have a paper selected in the area of ‘Risk Assessment Methods for Cloud Computing Platforms’[1] and to be able to present this in a symposium called Journal First/Conference Second.  With researchers and computer scientists from around the world, I was suitably impressed by the body of knowledge that COMPSAC presents.

Conference tracks include the following symposia –

  • SETA: Software Engineering Technologies and Applications
  • CELT: Computer Education and Learning Technologies
  • NCIW: Networks, Communications, Internet and Web Technologies
  • EATA: Emerging Advances in Technology and Applications
  • DSAT: Data Sciences, Analytics and Technologies
  • ASYS: Autonomous Systems
  • ITiP: IT in Practice
  • CAP: Computer Architecture and Platforms
  • HCSC: Human Computing and Social Computing
  • MOWU: Mobile, Wearable & Ubiquitous Computing
  • SCH: Smart and Connected Health
  • SEPT: Security, Privacy and Trust in Computing
  • SISA: Smart IoT Systems and Applications

The good news is that this year’s proceedings publicly available at –!/toc/0 and past year programs dating back to 1978 are available from the Computer Society Digital Library (keyword COMPSAC) –

Seriously speaking there were more doctors (PhDs) in this program than I’ve seen in a hospital.  For my 25 years as a Computer Society member, COMPSAC was a highlight of my membership years.  I hope to give a talk at Dine and Learn this September to give more scope to this excellent conference program.


MTT-S Cubesat Challenge

IEEE Microwave Theory and Techniques Society

Ready for Launch?!

MTT-S recently announced the MTT-Sat Challenge for groups of students developing RF hardware for cubesat applications.  The deadline for proposals is October 2019. Further details can be found at

The MTT-Sat Challenge is a worldwide competition for teams of undergraduate and graduate students to design and build radio frequency (RF) and microwave hardware for small satellites. The most promising designs will undergo space environmental qualification testing and will be incorporated in a cubesat, which will be launched into orbit (in case MTT-Sat Challenge secures enough funding and a participation in cubesat projects).

The main goal of the MTT-Sat Challenge is to advance space RF and microwave education, inspire students to pursue science and engineering education and careers, and prepare tomorrow’s leaders with the interdisciplinary teamwork skills, which are necessary for success. The MTT-Sat Challenge is managed by the IEEE Microwave Theory & Techniques Society (IEEE MTT-S), a federally-incorporated not-for-profit organization, with additional experts and advisors in the field.

The MTT-Sat Challenge is intended to run over four academic years, starting in June 2019, and is divided into several phases spanning over all technology readiness levels. Proposals can be submitted for every single phase. 

At this time, IEEE MTT-Sat Challenge is calling for ideas, which might come from one of the following fields: transceiver based on commercial of the shelf (COTS) components, antenna systems and arrays for cubesats, ground terminals for low earth orbit (LEO) satellites, radiation-hardened electronics based on COTS components, inter-satellite communications, electromagnetic (EM) sensors for cubesats, novel RF technologies for space applications. Please find more detailed information at

The deadline for submission is October, 1, 2019, 11 pm (Hawaii Standard Time). If you plan to submit a proposal, please submit a short Letter of Interest by end of August 2019 to


GreenTech 2021 & R5 Annual Meeting

Denver Section will be again hosting the GreenTech & R5 Annual Meeting in 2021.  The Students Robotics Competition is an exciting part of the the R5 Annual Meeting. The Conference Organizing Committee is forming up if you’d like to be involved in making this great fun conference happen, please contact

by Ian MacMillan

Follow IEEE-Denver on Social Media!

Follow along with the local events and happenings of your IEEE Denver section by subscribing on social media. And don’t forget to “like” and share your favorite posts!

by Jackie Adams 

Upcoming Events

You can see all of our upcoming events on the IEEE Denver Events Calendar  

2019 IEEE-USA Co-Sponsored Conferences

6-9 Oct Charlotte, N.C.International Conference on Smart Cities: Improving Quality of Life Using ICT & IoT and AI (HONET-ICT), Call for Papers | Papers Due: 25 August 2019

10-12 Oct New York, N.Y. IEEE Ubiquitous Computing, Electronics & Mobile Communication Conference (UEMCON)

Call for Papers | Papers Due 7 August 2019

16-18 Oct Ottawa, ON, Canada 2019 IEEE International Conference on Wireless for Space and Extreme Environments (WiSEE)

17-20 Oct Seattle, WA  2019 IEEE Global Humanitarian Conference (GHTC)

5-6 Nov Woburn, Massachusetts 2019 IEEE International Symposium on Technologies for Homeland Security (HST)

15-16 Nov Boston, MA IEEE International Symposium on Technologies on Technology and Society (ISTAS)

Papers Due: 16 August 2019

6-8 Jan 2020 Las Vegas, NV 10th Annual Computing and Communication Workshop and Conference (CCWC)

Call for Papers | Papers Due: 31 October 2019


Guest Column

Should we be concerned about concentrated RF?

Discussions pertaining to the damage that may be caused by ambient or incidental RF have been around for years, even prior to the cellular era. However, in the early cellular days, once RF radiation got really close to the body, ears piqued and there have been endless debates about whether or not having a mobile phone near one’s head is dangerous.

I started writing about this over 20 years ago. I revisit it from time to time, over the years, as the topic refreshes with new data. Overall, evidence has been sparse that RF from mobile phones is damaging to the body. However, it took a long time for the tobacco companies to admit smoking was detrimental to your health. The evidence, finally once proven to be true, created a sea of change.

My point is that just because something is poo-pooed, does not mean it is not true. Conversely, just because alarms are raised about something does not mean there is a concern. Things take time to prove out.

The effects of RF on living tissue is well documented and beyond reproach. However, there is copious ambiguity around how much, where and for how long, exposure to low-level, RF affects the body. For this discussion, I am going to funnel down to 5G, eventually – stay with me.

As I noted earlier, little evidence exists that substantiates using mobile phones is hazardous to one’s health. On the other hand, it has been only 20 years since we started putting them next to our brain. The kind of damage that comes from such low-level energy radiation is highly subject to exposure time, exposure energy and length of use. With this many variables it takes many, many years to develop a pattern. There is also the issue that, if such damage is occurring, are we identifying it correctly or attributing it to something else.

To be fair, smartphone technology has advanced to the point where their signals are high-tech – meaning the way power is managed, the way they send and receive data their power cycles, modulation schemes, antenna design and such. The industry has heard the concerns of the early days and, unlike the tobacco industry, stepped up to address RF issues early on. For some time now, phones are no longer a radiation concern except in the most extreme situations.

However 5G, particularly mmWave has not had the same evolutionary track. Millimeter wave applications have been in use for decades, however, most installations are not near dense concentrations of populous. That will not be the case with 5G, from about 3 GHz and up. Of course, metrics change with frequency so 28 Ghz has different issues than 6 GHz.

Recently, the issue of ambient RF was brought up by some members of Congress. In response, Chairman Pai responded with a “not to worry” reply. He said that the FCC always has the health and safety of the users as a top priority. That is a pretty canned response, but then, what could, or should, he say?

There are many watchdogs in the RF arena. There needs to be. RF is dangerous. But, it is not like tobacco, which has no good use. RF, if properly managed (and it has been quite successfully), is safe and a fundamental technology in more than just communications. It has become part of our lives in, virtually, every segment. It will only become more prolific.

OK, fast forward to 5G. As the years wane on, if smartphones are culprits in causing bodily harm it will start, at some point, to become evident. However, we have also lessened the threat by moving away from holding these devices to our heads and replaced them with other RF emitting devices such as wireless headphone and earbuds. These are much newer than phones so the history will take a lot longer to prove, or disprove, any RF issues around them. And that will change the early metric of having them at our heads. The multitude, variety and changing landscape of this segment makes obtaining conclusive evidence long in coming.

However, leaving the personal space for a moment, hovering over the 5G landscape does appear to present some concerns. One is the sheer density of transceivers needed to provide ubiquitous coverage. While the platforms at lower frequencies, such as T-Mobile’s 600 MHz, will not be subject to congested densification, 5G mmWave platforms will.

Some say there will be a transceiver, of one sort or another, every 50 to 100 meters at mmWave frequencies. Perhaps even closer in contain areas such as the enterprise. That translates into nearly a million of such cells to be deployed, by 2026, according to a study commissioned by the CTIA.

What makes this a topic of concern are several factors. One, little research has been conducted around the safety issues of 5G. Also, FCC rules pertaining to RF safety are over 20 years old and have not been updated. Next, these rules are not applicable to much of the mmWave spectrum. Even the FCC agrees that the rules need updating.

As well, the RF environment, once such densification occurs, will be much more complex than what exists today. While we know much about individual RF frequencies and their effects, as just about as much with coexistence, once all of this mixes in a complex environment, things will change.

The 5G landscape will differ radically from what exists today in terms of ambient RF. It will be integrated to a degree we have never seen previously. Perhaps we have been lucky thus far – that man-made RF has not been so concentrated, or so ubiquitously prolific, that we are constantly being bathed in some form of it. And where it is, we know how to manage it.

In the end, it is all about the period of the exposure, power of the signal and how long it goes on. It gets much more complicated with periodic events such as coronal mass ejections (CMEs), stray natural RF fields, other natural and man-made sources of radiation, and the like. Perhaps singularly, they are manageable. But in areas where mmWaves are going to become as prolific as street furniture, perhaps taking both the narrow view of just RF and the broader view of multiple types and sources of radiation is warranted.

Is RF exposure a subject of concern? I believe so. While it, generally, is not be an issue today. I would keep my ear to the rail going into tomorrow.

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