Federal Aviation Administration provides C-band 5G update

22 Jun 2022

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has issued an update relating to its dispute regarding the use of 3700MHz-3800MHz C-band 5G spectrum in the vicinity of US airports. During initial negotiations in January this year, Verizon Wireless and AT&T Communications offered to keep mitigations in place until 5 July 2022, while they worked with the FAA to better understand the effects of C-band signals on sensitive aviation instruments. Now, the two mobile giants have agreed to keep the mitigations in place until July 2023, by which time regional aircraft with radio altimeters most susceptible to interference will be retrofitted with radio frequency filters.

Acting FAA Administrator Billy Nolen commented: ‘We believe we have identified a path that will continue to enable aviation and 5G C-band wireless to safely co-exist. We appreciate the willingness of Verizon and AT&T to continue this important and productive collaboration with the aviation industry.’

As previously reported by CommsUpdate, the issues relate to perceived interference concerns between 5G signals in the 3.7GHz-3.98GHz band and aircraft radio altimeters which use 4.2GHz-4.4GHz spectrum. In January AT&T and Verizon agreed to create six-month ‘buffer zones’ in selected areas around 50 airports.

United States, AT&T Communications, Verizon Wireless