The FAA has granted technical standard order (TSO) certification of the 5G-tolerant FreeFlight Systems RA-5500 and RA-6500 Terrain-series radar altimeters. The RA-5500 is a single-unit system, while the RA-6500 is for dual installations.
“We have a considerable backlog of orders from operators and OEMs, particularly the advanced air mobility segment,” said FreeFlight president Anthony Rios. “Now having the TSO certification, we are ready to begin product shipments. This is good timing considering the accelerating deployment of 5G networks across the country, which continues to challenge flight safety.”
Under development since 2019, the Terrain-series radar altimeters were designed to prevent interference from C-band 5G cellular telecommunications systems. The new radar altimeters are available for airline, business and general aviation, military, and uncrewed aircraft, as well as rotorcraft. The radar altimeters measure altitude to 2,500 feet and have a service ceiling of 55,000 feet.
According to FreeFlight, “The Terrain series demonstrated that 5G interference rejection enables users to operate aircraft safely, even in close proximity to 5G cellular towers.”
Available to replace existing radar altimeters, the Terrain series includes Ethernet connectivity, as well as an analog Arinc 552 interface, which allows for integration with existing flight deck indicators and components. The RA-5500 and RA-6500 can be installed using an aircraft's existing antenna, control heads, and cabling, but FreeFlight also offers the RAD45 standalone indicator.