Wed, 19 Jan 2022 11:40 AM IST
Washington | Jagran Technology Desk: Airlines across the world, including India, are adjusting their scheduled flights to the U.S. due to the rollout of 5G by telecom companies, AT&T and Verizon near American airports.
Although the two companies have agreed to temporarily pause 5G rollout near key airports to avert significant disruption to the U.S. flights after airlines asked President Joe Biden to intervene, the key question that remains is why is it a problem?
Here's all you need to know:
The United States auctioned mid-range 5G bandwidth to mobile phone companies in early 2021 in the 3.7-3.98 GHz range on the spectrum known as C band, for about $80 billion.
Why is that a problem?
The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has warned that the new 5G technology could interfere with sensitive navigation equipment such as altimeters, which could lead to "catastrophic disruptions." Altimeters operate in the 4.2-4.4 GHz range and the concern is that the auctioned frequencies are too close to this range. This could cause disruption in tacking altitude and allow landings in bad weather. The interference in aircraft radar altimeters could also disturb multiple critical safety systems.
What are the telecom companies saying?
Verizon and AT&T have argued that C band 5G has been deployed in about 40 other countries without aviation interference issues. They have agreed to buffer zones around 50 airports in the United States, similar to those used in France, for six months to reduce interference risks.
Currently, 5G mobile communication wireless stations are in operation near airports, but there have been no reports of problems.
"Wireless carriers in nearly 40 countries throughout Europe and Asia now use the C band for 5G, with no reported effects on radio altimeters that operate in the same internationally designated 4.2-4.4 GHz band," CTIA, a US wireless trade group, said in a filing with the Federal Communications Commission.
(With inputs from Reuters)