This month, discussions have been ongoing between US carriers Verizon and AT&T, US Airlines, and the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) about deploying C-band 5G towers near crucial airports. The issue is the potential for interference between the C-band 5G towers deployed by US carriers Verizon and AT&T and the Airport’s low-visibility equipment, specifically with altimeter devices.
The FAA stated: “The FAA appreciates the strong communication and collaborative approach with wireless companies, which have provided more precise data about the exact location of wireless transmitters and supported more thorough analysis of how 5G C-band signals interact with sensitive aircraft instruments. The FAA used this data to determine that it is possible to safely and more precisely map the size and shape of the areas around airports where 5G signals are mitigated, shrinking the areas where wireless operators are deferring their antenna activations. This will enable the wireless providers to safely turn on more towers as they deploy new 5G service in major markets across the United States.“
Earlier in January, US Airlines warned both wireless carriers and the FAA that interference was likely if carriers placed C-band 5G towers near busy airports. The airports should be cleared to fly by the FAA, or flights could be grounded.
Soon after, airlines requested that the DOT (US Department of Transportation) establish a temporary buffer zone of two miles radius around runways free of C-band towers.
Verizon’s C-band 5G uses the 3.7GHz spectrum, while AT&T uses the 3.7GHz range.