Verizon and AT&T offer to temporarily lower 5G’s power to avoid aircraft interference

As the Federal Aviation Administration continues taking a look at whether mid-band 5G spectrum might pose a risk to airplane safety systems, Verizon and AT&T have offered to dial back the power originating from 5G cell towers for a duration of 6 months to alleviate any industry concerns. Both carriers are preparing to launch vital upgrades to their particular 5G networks utilizing spectrum obtained in the C-band auction. This will lead to more robust 5G connection and faster speeds compared to the base-level 5G experience that Verizon and AT&T presently provide today.
In early November, both business consented to press back the rollout by an extra month to January 2022. In a letter sent to the FCC today, they made clear that theyll be progressing with the prepared mid-band 5G launch at that time. “This spectrum will be the foundation of our 5G networks for several years to come,” the business stated in the letter, as reported by The Wall Street Journal.
In support of the technology, Verizon and AT&T indicate years of research about potential disturbance and note that mid-band 5G hasnt wreaked havoc for flights in other countries where mid-band 5G is currently in place. “While we remain confident that 5G poses no risk to air safety, we are also conscious the Federal Aviation Administrations desire for extra analysis of this problem.”
To assist prevent a dragged out dispute with the FAA, the two providers say theyll willingly take extra preventative measures through July 2022 “to decrease energy originating from 5G base stations– both nationwide and to an even higher degree around public airports and heliports.” That must be enough to “ease concerns about radio altimeter efficiency,” the companies said, while likewise maintaining strong efficiency for wireless customers. Altimeters can assist aircraft operators during landings, specifically when handling bad exposure conditions.
Its not yet clear whether the proposal will be accepted by the FAA, which has warned pilots of the possibility that “interference from 5G transmitters and other innovation might trigger certain safety devices to breakdown, needing them to take mitigating action that might affect flight operations.” After July 6th, both providers state theyll set whatever back to normal “unless trustworthy evidence exists that real-world interference would happen if the mitigations were relaxed.”
“Our usage of this spectrum will significantly broaden the reach and abilities of the nations next-generation 5G networks, advancing United States leadership, and bringing massive benefits to consumers and the United States economy,” Verizon and AT&T claimed in their joint letter sent out to FCC Chair Jessica Rosenworcel.

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