5G is the latest generation of network speed that we have achieved as of the year 2022. The word 5G stands for “Fifth Generation”. As per the data, the frequency of a 5G wave is 24-100 GHz.
This is typically the highest frequency spectrum available currently for transferring data at an unimaginable speed. 5G aims to achieve data transmission using sophisticated technology directly to the users.
As it is an upgrade from the 4G version, the 5G cell towers use millimeter waves to generate a speed of 70 Gbps which is quite an impressive improvement from the 4G speed.
Also, along with the drastic increase in speed, the 5G network has focused on decreasing the amount of lag or delay in the loading of the network connection.
What is a Safe Distance From a 5G Cell Tower?
One of the significant drawbacks of the 5G network service is that the high-speed frequency waves cannot travel further than 500 meters. This simply means that the towers should be built within the range.
The 5G cell towers will have to be installed within 500 meters which is the only way to make the service accessible to the mobile users.
As per data and testing, the 5G millimeter waves cannot penetrate obstacles such as buildings and other surfaces. This is the core problem of the 5G cell towers.
So say a safe distance from a 5G tower would be approximately 500 meters. If you have a 5G tower in close proximity, you are safe until you are out of this range or if you reside in a building with thicker walls.
How Far Do You Have to be From a 5G Tower?
As per research and data, the 5G cell tower can reach 500 meters. Given that there are no significant obstructions within this range.
Since the network emits high-frequency waves, it is difficult for the millimeter waves to penetrate through the barriers and obstacles such as a building.
Hence, it would be safer to be at a distance of 500 meters from a 5G cell tower to be safe from radiation caused by the high-frequency waves.
How Do I Know if There is a 5G Tower Near Me?
Finding out the locations of 5G towers near you is not as difficult as it sounds. And, it is better to be safe from the high-frequency radiation in the long term.
Here are a few apps that can help you figure out the exact locations of 5G cell towers installed near you:
- OpenSignal: This is a pretty accurate app for all Android users. They use crowd-sourced information for locating cell towers near your area. The accuracy of this app is based on data and analysis of the operators and the crowd information; hence, its reliability is only 70%.
- CellMapper.net: Next up, we have a website locating 5G cell towers near you. The functionality of this website is pretty simple. You have to check out the green marks or points on the website. This marks the confirmed cell towers in your area. Similarly, there are red marks over the map, which denote the currently unconfirmed location of a 5G cell tower.
- Network Cell Info Lite: This is again an app developed for android users. You can get up to 70% accuracy with the Network Cell Info Lite app. This app indicates your connection to the nearest cell tower with a blue static line. You can further locate the other cell towers near you over the app.
The reason that we state that these apps only have 70% accuracy is that the positioning of the cell towers and their exact locations are crowd-sourced info collected by these apps. Their accuracy cannot be a complete 100% unless the information is directly provided by the installer of the cell tower.
Can 5G Go Through Walls?
No. The network coverage of a 5G cell tower is weaker than the network coverage of 4G and other services. The basic reason for this is the range. The 4G cell towers provide a range of 10 miles, whereas a 5G cell tower only covers a range of 1000 feet.
This is not enough frequency coverage to penetrate obstructions such as walls. Hence, due to its limited range, the 5G network cannot go through walls.
Can 5G Penetrate Glass?
No. Similar to the problem of penetrating through walls, the 5G network cannot penetrate through the glass as well.
It would require a much larger range than 1000 feet to penetrate through glass and other barriers for the 5G network to be functional for a greater audience.
The tech giants and the software developers have recognized this issue, and they are constantly working towards making the 5G network accessible to households and office spaces.
5G cell towers are based on the usage of MIMO (multiple input, multiple outputs) antenna structures which can deliver a frequency spectrum of 24-100 GHz.
Hence, one of the solutions for making the 5G network accessible to the customer base would be installing the MIMO antenna structures at every 500 meters range.
This is currently a long shot for the tech giants and the cell tower installers. Also, the government would not permit such high-scale installation projects for safety measures.
Why Cannot 5G Penetrate Walls?
The 5G network’s lower range of penetration is its high frequency as we have already discussed that the frequency spectrum has been magnified drastically as compared to the 4G network.
This high frequency is the ultimate reason for the lower reach. While 4G operates at a frequency of 1.8-2.5 GHz, as per the tested data, the 5G network operates at a frequency of 27 GHz-100 GHz.
This would imply a speed of 1GB per second within 2000 feet. Hence, the nature of this high frequency is the reason for the inability of the 5G network to penetrate through walls.
Currently, the 5G network is incapable of penetrating through walls and glass, which restricts its usage within the same building or office structure. This is one of the major problems with this high-speed internet technology.
Can 5G Towers be in Buildings?
Yes. The solution to this problem would be extensively using smaller cell towers within the building itself. That way, the whole building would enjoy the high-speed internet.
Since the high-frequency waves cannot travel through the walls of the buildings, installing a tower in the building itself in a small capacity can solve the issue.
Does 5G need a line of sight?
Yes. 5G does require a line of sight, but the engineers have found a way across the scalability of the 5G network. This can be done by installing a fixed wireless tower over the building.
This fixed wireless tower can pair up and connect with the nearby cell towers to provide the 5G cellular connectivity within the building and office spaces.
It is safe to say that after a distance of 500 meters the penetration of the 5G network goes down to a minimum. Also, currently the 5G cell towers cannot penetrate any major obstructions such as walls and glass.
The mobile service providers are presently looking out for various methods to make the 5G network more accessible to the customers.
Within the course of a few years they might be able to increase the scalability by installing wireless-fibers across buildings and office spaces.
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