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 threat to airplane safety systems, Verizon and AT&T have offered to call back the power originating from 5G cell towers for a duration of 6 months to ease any market concerns. Both carriers are preparing to introduce crucial upgrades to their particular 5G networks using spectrum acquired in the C-band auction. This will result in more robust 5G connectivity and faster speeds compared to the base-level 5G experience that Verizon and AT&T presently use today.
In early November, both business accepted press back the rollout by an additional month to January 2022. In a letter sent to the FCC today, they made clear that theyll be moving forward with the prepared mid-band 5G launch at that time. “This spectrum will be the backbone of our 5G networks for several years to come,” the companies said 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 created chaos for flights in other nations where mid-band 5G is already in place. “While we stay positive that 5G presents no danger to air safety, we are also conscious the Federal Aviation Administrations desire for additional analysis of this concern.”
To help avoid a dragged out conflict with the FAA, the 2 providers state theyll voluntarily take extra safety measures through July 2022 “to reduce energy coming from 5G base stations– both nationwide and to an even greater degree around public airports and heliports.” That must be enough to “ease issues about radio altimeter performance,” the companies stated, while likewise maintaining strong performance for wireless clients. Altimeters can assist airplane operators during landings, specifically when handling bad visibility conditions.
Its not yet clear whether the proposal will be accepted by the FAA, which has warned pilots of the possibility that “disturbance from 5G transmitters and other technology could trigger certain safety equipment to malfunction, requiring them to take mitigating action that might impact flight operations.” After July 6th, both carriers state theyll set everything back to normal “unless reliable evidence exists that real-world interference would occur if the mitigations were relaxed.”
“Our use of this spectrum will dramatically expand the reach and capabilities of the countrys next-generation 5G networks, advancing US management, and bringing huge benefits to customers 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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