- NASA has addressed plans on pushing through with 5G wireless networks as soon as possible, urging the industry to reconsider.
- The scientific agency, along with NOAA, have warned that the new technology could interfere with weather forecasting.
- It was stated that 5G could lessen the amount of time needed to evacuate certain areas during a hurricane.
There is little doubt that 5G wireless networks is a great idea that could speed up the way information travels in the future. However, it isn’t without possible consequences. NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) are warning about how 5G could affect the world’s weather forecasting abilities and actually prevent hurricane predictions.
The heads of NASA and NOAA have addressed the issue about 5G wireless technology, stating that it could reduce the ability to predict the path of deadly hurricanes. This means that there will be less time available to evacuate affected areas. It was concluded that 5G could actually set back the weather forecasting abilities by 40 years.
But how could 5G intervene with hurricane predictions? It was revealed that the 24 GHz band, which is one of the key wireless frequencies earmarked for speedy millimeter wave networks, is very close to frequencies used by microwave satellites. These satellites are used to observe water vapor and detect any changes in the weather. Unfortunately, there is a huge possibility that the band could interfere to the point of delaying preparation for extreme weather events.
NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine had previously spoken about the issue to the House Science Committee, commenting about how important it is to keep the frequency clear.
“That part of the electromagnetic spectrum is necessary to make predictions as to where a hurricane is going to make landfall,” Bridenstine told the committee. “If you can’t make that prediction accurately, then you end up not evacuating the right people and/or you evacuate people that don’t need to evacuate, which is a problem.”
Acting NOAA head Dr. Neil Jacobs echoed the sentiment as he spoke to the House Subcommittee on the Environment.
“If you looked back in time to see when our forecast skill was 30 percent less than today, it’s somewhere around 1980. This would result in the reduction of hurricane track forecast lead time by roughly 2 to 3 days,” Jacobs said.
For now, 5G wireless networks are still just an idea that several groups are pushing for. Nevertheless, it is best to pay attention to what the respected scientific agencies have to say about it first.
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