5G towers are the key components in getting ultra-fast versatile internet networks into the hands of enthusiastic users the world over. However, the vast majority aren’t acquainted with the innovation that actually allows such high-speed data transfers.
As indicated by one review, 95% of the people surveyed were aware of 5G to some degree. This is unprecedented since the last time there was this much hype about a technological advancement was perhaps when the iPhone got introduced.
However, such broad awareness of 5G can also be attributed to the larger discussion of Huawei and its role in distributing 5G connectivity.
Of the people surveyed, 55% claimed to have a fair understanding of 5G while another 44% claimed they understood the technical aspect of this innovation. However, almost all of the participants seemed oblivious to the real MVP that makes it all happen – the towers that surround them and actually enable cellular connections.
In this article, we will take a look at 5G towers and aim to demystify these fascinating structures.
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5G towers and what they do
These towers (or masts) play a pivotal role in the radio layer of the 5G network. In other words, these masts help in transmitting data to and from local devices and connect them to the wider network.
They are specially designed to be discreet so as to assimilate with their immediate environment and not draw too much attention. However, that is not always possible and aesthetics have to be sacrificed for quality of service.
In the year 2019, the recently installed 5G towers in Beverly Hills were a huge hit when it was found out they made the masts look like the surrounding palm trees.
The sites where the masts are hosted are either wholly owned by the mobile networks or licensed through a third-party infrastructure company.
Either way, each site connects to the wider mobile network (which is also called Metropolitan Area Network, abbreviated MAN) through wired connections known as backhaul links. This forms their localized radio network.
The biggest problem with 5G is its short wavelengths. Most people switching to 5G are doing so because of its high speeds and promise of constant connectivity.
This is enabled by mmWave frequencies that offer tremendous speeds and data capacity but have a very short travel time. To offset that, operators have to install more and more masts, essentially densifying neighborhoods to ensure proper connection.
This has led to serious research and innovation in microstructures. Today, mobile operators have the ability to install 5G masts that are no more than 2 feet tall and 1 foot wide.
This has really opened up endless possibilities for these operators since they can now easily install these structures without any special permissions or dedicated resources.
The quest for new tech
5G promises to bring blazing fast speeds paired with ultra-low latency, a combination that will allow groundbreaking IoT applications to be supported and rolled out to the general public for the first time.
But to enable this, the network operators had to completely rethink the building of the network in all three key layers – radio, transport, and core. This has also meant upgrading of existing cell phone towers to enable them to deliver 5G.
5G networks are designed to be powered cloud-based cores that completely shift the paradigms of cloud computing. Now, each of the physical functions will need to be virtualized and moved around the network.
This also enabled the network to be updated by software updates and allow for the addition of more exhaustive features without too much alteration of the hardware. To that end, operators have been hard at work upgrading the towers with new tech to deliver data on the 5G spectrum.
Hardware manufacturers have been quite diligent in making sure that their new product iterations support as many 5G spectrum functions as they possibly can without compromising on weight or compactness.
This is important because lightweight hardware equipment is easier to install than its heavier counterparts. This makes the job go faster and ultimately reduces labor costs thus saving the company money.
The other important reason we need to consider is that just because they’re launching 5G now, it doesn’t mean the rest of the spectrum will no longer need to be supported.
People will still connect to the tower having 2G, 3G, or 4G connections and thus the tower has to service those connections too. There is a
physical limit to how much hardware spectrum kit a tower can host. Thus, having a lightweight kit that supports multiple spectrums can be a lifesaver.
Another key consideration is the availability of fiber connections. It is useless to have superfast radio transmission speeds if the fiber backhaul is not there to support it.
Thus, mobile network operators have been pretty vocal about increasing fiber coverage so that they can deliver 5G more efficiently. But perhaps even more polarizing than fiber connectivity is the mast height issue that the operators and government are at a stalemate on.
Europe allows mast heights up to 50 meters in length whereas it is restricted to only 20 meters in the United States. The operators have actively lobbied against this restriction and fought to increase the height threshold to a minimum of 40 meters for efficient operation.
Their argument is that the taller the masts are, the more area it can cover, and thus the lower the operational costs.
This becomes of key importance when operators start introducing low-rage spectrum 5G that is expected to deliver wide coverage.
That is because taller masts will make the expensive fiber backhauls a more practical option and thus more and more areas can be covered by 5G which historically hadn’t had a good internet connection.
Health risks and 5G towers
5G Wireless towers raise health, property fears.
If you’ve been a reader of this website, you know how passionately I oppose radiation and how strongly I feel about the lack of regulation in this industry. Scientists have shown 5G to be a more powerful radiation wave that has even more energy and can potentially be very dangerous to our health and wellbeing.
Mobile operators have come out in vehement disagreement, vocally declaring that 5G is completely safe and there is no real danger of 5g radiation exposure.
However, the limited studies were done on the subject show otherwise. Here you will find detailed articles where I have delved deep into the nitty gritties of 5G and tried to explain how exactly it affects our health.
There are also several research papers out there that echo my sentiment and several more that link these deadly radiations with diseases like early-onset Alzheimer’s and even cancer.
Now the telecom giants can disagree all they want but they have a monetary motivation for doing so. I, on the other hand, am just an advocate for truth and am solely interested in educating you on the potential health hazards that these things can pose.
Then how would you safeguard yourself? The answer to that is not as simple. The best way obviously would be to avoid 5G radiation altogether by not going near its source.
But as we will see in the coming days, it will get harder to get away from these 5G towers because of the densifying projects. Thus, we must take proactive steps in protecting ourselves and our loved ones from this terrible menace.
The easiest way to protect yourself is to invest in good quality anti-radiation products. These are amazing in blocking radiation and can provide complete protection against these deadly rays.
But be careful of the ones you buy since there are a number of products on the market that claim to be anti-radiation but in reality, do very little to protect you.
If you need a quick guide on the best anti-radiation products to buy or want to read detailed reviews of the ones that I recommend, I have a bunch of articles for your perusal.
The link between 5G and coronavirus
There are some reports doing the rounds that link 5G to the coronavirus outbreak. Initially reported by a Belgian news media organization, the theory really gained traction when Info Wars, the media house led by conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, published an article about it.
People were rightfully panicked and it was such a frenzy that people in the UK burned down several 5G masts in fear of the disease.
Let me clearly state here that there is no correlation between 5G radiation and the novel coronavirus.
The Covid-19 outbreak is a completely isolated incident from 5G and any attempts at correlating the two are misinformed and wrong. 5G is still very scary and poses significant health risks but it does not infect you with Covid-19.
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- Is it safe to stay near a 5G mast?
It depends on the amount of time you are staying next to the tower. If it’s a matter of a few minutes then you should be okay and there shouldn’t be anything to worry about.
However, if you’re living next to a tower, that might be a problem. You are in the path of very high energy radiation and getting exposed all day long so over time it is bound to take a toll.
Thus it is advised that if you are living next to a 5g tower, you either move or petition to get the tower removed. The health risks are just not worth the high-speed internet it promises.