Federal safety regulators advise some Boeing jets pilots to take extra precautions while landing on runways near the upcoming 5G service. They claim that wireless network interference could cause the planes to require more space for landing.
According to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), interference might prevent systems like thrust reversers on Boeing 787s from kicking in, leaving just the brakes to halt the plane. This may prohibit an aircraft from stopping on the runway.
FAA could soon announce similar warnings for other model planes from various aircraft manufacturers. The FAA has requested information about several aircraft models from Boeing and Airbus. Boeing said it is collaborating with suppliers, airlines, telecom firms, and regulators to ensure that every commercial aircraft type can safely and confidently operate when 5G is adopted in the United States.
The Boeing order comes a day after the FAA started announcing restrictions that airlines and other aircraft operators would encounter at numerous airports when AT&T and Verizon begin new 5G wireless service on Wednesday.
FAA conducts study to determine the 5G impact on airlines
The FAA is still scrutinizing whether those 5G wireless networks will interfere with altimeters, which measure the height of an aircraft above the ground. When visibility is poor, altimeter data assist pilots in landing. The aircraft devices operate on a portion of the radio spectrum close to the range used by the new 5G service, called C-Band.
The FAA's moves are part of a bigger battle between the aviation authority and the telecommunications industry. 5G networks, according to telecom providers and the Federal Communications Commission, do not pose a threat to aviation. According to FAA, further research has to be done in this aspect.
The Federal Aviation Administration is undertaking testing to determine how many commercial flights have altimeters that could have an impact by spectrum interference. This week, FAA stated that it expects to estimate the percentage of those aircraft soon, but gave no timeframe.
"Where 5G is deployed, aircraft with untested altimeters or requiring retrofitting or replacement will be unable to make low-visibility landings," FAA stated.