Aviation Industry yet to show 5G can affect aircraft navigation
The aviation industry has not yet provided sufficient evidence in support of its claims that 5G services will interfere with radio altimeters in aircraft
Despite this, the aviation industry continues using emotive language to claim that 5G services, which may use the 3.4-4.0 GHz bands, pose a threat to aircraft safety. This tactic is ineffective in resolving the matter and serves only to increase pub
The Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association, the highest national body representing Australia’s mobile telecommunications sector, has noted recent media claims from Australia’s aviation industry claiming that 5G services could adversely affect radio altimeters used for landing aircraft.
The frequency range for aircraft radio altimeters runs from 4.2 to 4.4Ghz. 5G transmissions that are subject of interference debate fall within the adjacent spectrum of between 3.7 and 4.2GHz. CASA reports that the peak frequency for Australian 5G transmissions is 3.7GHz. This frequency is far below radio altimeter frequencies.
Chris Coughlan, AMTA Head of Spectrum and Network Infrastructure, stated that “The Australian aviation industry has also refused to provide detailed specifications for radio altimeters currently in service in Australia to ACMA TLG.”
AMTA is disappointed by the decision of the aviation industry to address issues concerning altimeters, potential interference with 5G in the public domain. This comes after the failure to engage in the ACMA Technical Liaison Groups (TLG) regarding this matter.
CASA stated that no radio altimeter incidents relating to 5G have been reported by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau since the introduction of telecommunications technology two years ago.
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In an October 2020 study, the US aviation industry group RTCA raised this issue for the first time. The US FCC had previously found that technical rules and the guard bands between radio altimeters and 5G were “sufficient to protect (aviation services) in the 4.2-4.4GHz spectrum.”
Aircraft that fly in controlled airspace so far would seem protected against the effects of 5G signal on their safety systems. There is also no indication of problems in the US. Yet.