The aerospace firm said ‘harmful interference’ could render its Starlink network inoperable.
SpaceX has warned that certain 5G cell phone networks could render its Starlink internet services useless, issuing a lengthy analysis of potential problems as TV provider Dish pushes to harness new spectrum for its 5G products.
Released this week, SpaceX’s review concluded that 5G mobile services using the 12GHz spectrum could pose serious problems for its users, saying that satellites floating in orbit use the 12GHz band for “provide critical downlink services to Americans in every corner of the nation.”
“The SpaceX study, even with very favorable assumptions that would reduce interference from mobile operations, shows harmful interference from the land mobile service to SpaceX’s Starlink broadband terminals.” the company said, referring to Dish’s 5G plans.
If the TV provider uses the spectrum in question, SpaceX said the interference could result in complete outages for its US users. “74 percent of the time.”
The company currently has about 2,700 Starlink satellites in low-Earth orbit, providing web services to hundreds of thousands of people, though CEO Elon Musk has said he hopes to increase the total number of satellites to 42,000 in the coming decades.
Dish, for its part, has insisted that its 5G project would be a “win win” for all parties involved, with a company executive stating last year that the company has no problem with SpaceX and believes “Coexistence is possible.” In response to the new analysis, Dish said its “expert engineers” they are evaluating the latest SpaceX claims.
The two companies have traded blows before the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), with Dish previously accusing SpaceX of failing to respond to its “expert studies” on the 5G issue, while the aerospace firm has alleged Dish “intentionally filed misleading reports” to the agency
The dispute with SpaceX is not the first major public dispute over the use of 5G, as the technology is further developed and used around the world. A number of US airlines have been outspoken in opposing the deployment of 5G networks at airports, arguing that they could interfere with key aircraft safety systems. Cell phone providers Verizon and AT&T spearheaded rollout plans after winning around $80 billion in contracts to install the technology in the US in 2021, though they have since agreed to create temporary ‘buffer zones’ around airports to allow time to resolve interference risks.
Rachel Maga is a technology journalist currently working at Globe Live Media agency. She has been in the Technology Journalism field for over 5 years now. Her life’s biggest milestone is the inside tour of Tesla Industries, which was gifted to her by the legend Elon Musk himself.