What Airplane Mode Really Means

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Most passengers think that using a phone will affect the aircraft’s ability to operate, but this is not the case.

Airline passengers are used to being asked to turn off all electronic devices or switch to airplane mode (Airplane Mode). This familiar message is told by flight attendants to passengers on flights around the world.

However, not all passengers understood why the cabin crew asked them to put their phones in that mode. Most people think cell phones directly affect aircraft.

Does not affect the aircraft
The takeoff and landing phases are the most critical moments in every flight, requiring intense concentration and constant communication with ground controllers.

Many passengers believe that the requirement to turn on the flight mode is due to the fact that electronic devices such as mobile phones, tablets, and laptops emit radio waves when operating, which interferes with the aircraft’s navigation system. .

However, the plane did not actually crash. Most aircraft today are equipped with modern technology and avionics do not use the same frequencies as the aircraft. Therefore, the radio waves emitted by these devices will not be affected much.

In 1992, the FAA and Boeing found that the electronics did not interfere with the aircraft, nor with ground control stations.

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has also created dedicated frequency bands for different purposes. Cell phones, navigation and in-flight communications will not interfere with each other.

In fact, the FCC says the rule requires passengers to turn on airplane mode to avoid radio interference with terrestrial cellphone networks.

When the plane is at a certain altitude, the mobile phone still receives signals from many base stations. This disrupts terrestrial telecommunications services and affects control stations. According to CNN, more than 2.2 billion passengers will fly in 2021, up from 4.4 billion in 2019.

Additionally, the shift to wireless networks in the current 5G bands has raised concerns for many in the aviation industry.

Industry experts also pointed out that the bandwidth spectrum of the 5G network is very close to that of the aviation industry. This could interfere with navigation systems that assist with landing near airports.

Airport operators in Australia and the US have expressed air safety concerns over the rollout of 5G bands, however, the technology appears to be deploying without issue What’s happening in Europe?

However, CNN argues that airports should limit the use of cellphones on planes until issues surrounding 5G are resolved.

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