French Civil Aviation Authority has warned that the latest generation of smartphones with 5G can interfere with aircraft altitude instruments.
A spokesman for the French Civil Aviation Authority gave the warning on Tuesday, stressing that the interference has to do with aircraft’s altimeters.
This interference can cause errors “in instruments that are extremely critical during landing,” according to the agency, known by its French acronym DGAC.
“The utilisation of 5G devices onboard aircraft could lead to risks of interference that could potentially result in errors in altitude readings,” the spokesman for the agency told AFP.
The agency sent a bulletin on the issue to airlines last week, recommending that 5G phones should either be turned off completely or put in “airplane mode” during flights.
The DGAC also recommended that in cases of disruption to an aircraft’s equipment that the flight crew immediately notify air traffic controllers who can then alert authorities at the airport.
DGAC also noted that it had laid out conditions for the positioning of 5G base stations in order to limit the risks of interference during landing at French airports.
The strength of signals from 5G base stations placed near France’s main airports has been restricted, said the DGAC, which has been conducting additional testing since November when French telecommunications operators were given the green light to begin rolling out 5G services.
It is continuing to monitor 5G base stations around all French airports in cooperation with the agency responsible for radio frequencies.
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