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Former FCC officials worried over air security fears over delay in 5G rollout

Former FCC officials worried over air security fears over delay in 5G rollout

US mobile carriers are delaying their 5G rollouts due to an ongoing dispute between two government agencies, and it doesn't look like the situation will be resolved anytime soon. As reported by Bloomberg News, a group of six former FCC chiefs sent a letter this Monday asking them to "reconsider the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) decision to reconsider the FCC's 2020 decision." recent efforts" to open up the C-band. 5G application.

At heart, the argument lies between the federal agencies regulating airplanes and airwaves: the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Agencies disagree about whether it is safe to allow 5G equipment to operate within a part of the electromagnetic spectrum known as the C-band. The FAA says doing so poses a risk to aircraft safety, as 5G signals can interfere with the operation of some altimeters (used to measure altitude from the ground). The FCC is complying with the FAA's requests, but some third-party experts say these air safety fears are overblown.

The authors of the recent paper, former FCC chief Ajit Pai, Tom Wheeler, Mignon Clyburn, Julius Genachowski, Michael Copps, and the authors of the recent paper, stated, "The FAA's position on the reasoned conclusions reached by the FCC after years of technical analysis and study." Threatens to derail him." Michael Powell.

Bloomberg reports that the letter was sent to current FCC chair Jessica Rosenworcel and Evelyn Remali, acting assistant secretary of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (another agency involved in telecommunications regulation). The letter reportedly encourages the FCC and the FAA to work together to find a solution to the problem.

As a result of the FAA's objections, Verizon and AT&T have delayed the expansion of their 5G networks until at least January 5. That extension was set to use C-band spectrum, which the FAA says threatens aircraft safety. And just last week, the FAA ruled that some aircraft would not be able to land using guided and automated systems because of concerns that these programs could be affected by 5G equipment. It could also result in flight delays, thought it impossible to say how widespread these problems might be.

But for some industry watchers, the delay in 5G rollout isn't just disappointing — it's pointless. They argue that a major FAA study showing alleged 5G interference with altimeters doesn't actually support the agency's claims, and notes that 40 other countries have already put 5G equipment in the worrying C-band without any Has trouble approved or operated.

"Either physics works differently in the US, or the report at the center of this controversy needs to explain why [the intervention] has not been shown in another country where deployment is either authorized or has already taken place." is," writes Harold Feld, a senior vice president at the consumer advocacy group Public Knowledge, in an excellent lecturer on the spot.

How, exactly, the two agencies will find a resolution and stop fighting over the airwaves is not clear. Responding to the FCC letter, the FAA told Bloomberg: "[W]e continue to work with federal agencies and wireless companies."

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