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5G launch threatens to disrupt aircraft altimeters: Some flights to the US canceled |  Multimedia

5G launch threatens to disrupt aircraft altimeters: Some flights to the US canceled | Multimedia

Airlines around the world are canceling flights to the United States or deploying other aircraft due to concerns about the deployment of 5G networks near some US airports. Brussels Airlines is not among them and can continue to fly to New York.

Several US airlines had already warned authorities on Monday of potential “chaos” as a result of the planned introduction of high-speed mobile internet technology around airports. The fear is that the frequencies used by 5G could disrupt aircraft radio altimeters. These are necessary for landing in case of poor visibility.


Emirates and British Airways have already announced the cancellation of their flights to a number of US destinations. Other airlines have chosen to fly to the United States with other aircraft. In particular, the instruments on board the Boeing 777 and 747-8 are likely to malfunction.

German airline group Lufthansa, the parent group of Brussels Airlines, also intervened. For example, a flight from Frankfurt to Miami has been cancelled. On other flights, the planned 747-8 was replaced by 747-400s.

Airbus A330

In Brussels Airlines itself, the discussion of 5G has no consequences. Spokeswoman Mike Andres confirmed that the airline can continue to fly to New York. I did it with the Airbus A330. Another Belgian airline, TUI fly, does not currently fly to the United States.

The debate between US carriers and carriers Verizon and AT&T has been going on for a long time. One side is afraid of chaos, and according to the other, there is nothing wrong with it. To be on the safe side, the rollout of 5G near 74 airports has already been delayed.

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The buffer is large enough

The United States is not the first country to introduce 5G, but the fast mobile network has not caused any security problems in other countries. No problems in Europe and the UK because there is a large enough buffer between the 5G frequency and the frequency used by the radio altimeters. American cell towers will also send out stronger signals.

In the coming period, the FAA, aircraft manufacturers and makers of altimeters will be looking at whether malfunctions can actually lead to problems. If there is no solution, the altimeters on many aircraft may need to be replaced.