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Freeflight’s recent on-demand webinar featuring Radar Altimetry, hosted by FreeFlight’s Director of Customer Support Brad Brunson captured some great questions from listeners. There are many considerations operators must take with the all-new Terrain Series radar altimeters.

In this webinar, we reviewed the new Terrain Series radar altimeters, the current radar altimeters in the industry, and the potential effects of 5G on legacy radar altimeters. 

Here are a few topics that came from our listeners during the Discussion & Question period of the webinar:  

Are other radar altimeters on the market designed to mitigate 5G?

Behlul Poonawalla: They all have certain limitations with 5G. They all will have an operational impact – if base stations are installed within the 3.7 MHz and 3.98 MHz band. Some may have better protection with better filters upfront – but no one can completely say that they have protection right now.

Brad Brunson: There is a certain bandwidth within the 5G that is open by the FCC, and once someone integrates with that technology, it may impact it.

Is there a plan for an STC AML (Approved Model List) for these radar altimeters? 

Ashley Ring: Yes, there is. We have several partners already that are scheduled to do AML STCs. We value our network partnerships to do the STCs for us and support the install base. We have a very long list of aircraft that we are looking at doing first. If you have ideas or are looking for a certain aircraft, send me an email (aring@freeflightsystems.com). We are always looking for STC partners to do that sort of partnership with us. 

What is currently being done before the new units come out?

Brad Brunson: As far as being able to do anything to the existing radar altimeters on the market, there is nothing you can do. The technology’s interior filters do not allow them to tighten them up to where they would not be affected currently. There are no real changes that can be done, as far as antennas, etc. The FCC has opened up that pocket of the band for 5G. We don’t know if anyone is utilizing it yet – but if they do, they may start experiencing performance degradation.  

Behlul Poonawalla: If someone has experienced anything on that band, please let us know. There is no cellular operation on that bandwidth right now because it is still on hold with the FCC.

Does FreeFlight work with the RTCA (Radio Technical Commission for Aeronautics)?

Brad Brunson: Yes, we do. We are actively part of the RTCA Advisory Team, and we do work with them very closely to provide guidance on our feedback and be able to help those drive changes.

Behlul Poonawalla: We do try to participate in the committees as I am thankful for them and all the work they do to help identify these issues upfront and try to mitigate them as soon as possible.

View the full recording or this webinar: https://register.gotowebinar.com/recording/6902285811667941377

For more information on the RTCA report, go to: https://www.rtca.org/news/rtca-announces-new-white-paper-on-5g-interference-impact-on-radar-altimeter-operations/

Interested in learning more? Contact our team: https://www.freeflightsystems.com/contact-us/