NATS has commenced work to protect its radar against interference from the 4G mobile network.
The 4G mobile network was recently auctioned by telecommunications regulator Ofcom ahead of a full roll-out in 2014. Its upper band covers the frequencies from 2.5Ghz to 2.69Ghz, while the ‘S-band’ radars used by NATS for air traffic control operate at 2.7Ghz. As a result, there was the potential for 4G masts to cause interference on radar screens.
Initial trials were carried out on NATS’s NASR-19 Kincardine radar and completed and approved by the CAA during December 2012. Since then radar stations at Glasgow and Edinburgh have also been upgraded.
The Department for Transport has requested that all radar operators potentially impacted by 4G networks put modifications in place by September 2013.