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  1. #21  
    Quote Originally Posted by rsdmems View Post
    Of course, if you put a Blackberry literally right next to another electronic device (i.e., just inches away), you can get some noise, but that wouldn't be the case on an airplane.
    Which still proves my point that cell phones CAN cause interference. What's to say a different device won't have more interference with a greater distance?

    But I basically figured it out because I forgot to turn my own phone off, and I would hear it. Then once I figured that out, if it wasn't my phone, I would usually ask my First Officer if his phone was on. And then the flight attendant. Sure enough, every single time, it was a cell phone. Once I knew for sure, and all the crew's cells were off, if I heard the static again, I would make a P.A. to the passengers to turn their phones off. Every single time, it would do the trick. So, yeah, I'm pretty sure it's the cell phones causing the interference.
  2. #22  
    I am a pilot based out of Ohare. I can testify to what foehammer is saying. I hear the same static in my headphone, mostly from ATT,Cingular (I'm guessing GSM) style of phones. I can always tell when someone in back has left their phone on, intentionally or not, because there is a clicking/static in the headset. Obviously this is a problem.
    This rule was not designed to annoy 95% of the flying public; it was designed for a reason. Please exercise some self control, abide by it, and stop looking for ways to fault it's existence.
    Last edited by EMB Driver; 03/17/2007 at 01:01 PM.
  3. SMEGGIE's Avatar
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    #23  
    Perhaps some analogies will help to explain the importance of exercising restraint when at 30,000 feet...

    1. If you were a high-wire walker, working without a net, would you do anything to that might even slightly cause you to fall?

    2. If you were sky-diving, would you do anything while plummeting towards the earth that might cause your chute not to open??

    3. If you were in an airplane at 30,000 feet, would you do anything to jeopardize a safe landing at your desired location??

    The answer to all of these scenarios, particularly for some of you, is of course, no. However, there will always be the ***** who feels they need to have some self-importance or power and will avoid following the safety rules.

    Some of the people in this thread are pilots and they are saying cell phones cause interference. That is enough for me...and it should be enough for anyone who travels. For my sake, please leave your idiocy and foolishness with the TSA at security.

    Thanks,


    SMEGGIE
    Yer pal,

    SMEGGIE


    A bigger Treo fan than I'll admit.
  4. #24  
    These comments from the pilots are interesting; I'd never heard that before. Perhaps the FAA should test this and publish the results, because quite frankly, I don't think most passengers who consciously leave their phones on believe there's any real problem, as that's what's indicated by the studies done (but only regarding nav systems) so far. People will obey rules that make sense to them, and they'll ignore the ones that don't. (Remember the 55 mph speed limit?)
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    #25  
    Quote Originally Posted by rsdmems View Post
    People will obey rules that make sense to them, and they'll ignore the ones that don't. (Remember the 55 mph speed limit?)
    The point is, until proven otherwise, many people in the aviation industry (including a couple of pilots on our site here) believe that cell phones can interfere with instrumentation. It is not up to you or I to decide if the rule "makes sense", or not. And, since neither you or I have the knowledge or information to come to a legitimate conclusion, it would be highly arrogant/ignorant to disavow what our better qualified cohorts are telling us about what they hear in their headsets. TURN OFF THE FRIGGIN PHONE!!!
  6. #26  
    Quote Originally Posted by EMB Driver View Post
    I am a pilot based out of Ohare. I can testify to what foehammer is saying. I hear the same static in my headphone, mostly from ATT,Cingular (I'm guessing GSM) style of phones. I can always tell when someone in back has left their phone on, intentionally or not, because there is a clicking/static in the headset. Obviously this is a problem.
    This rule was not designed to annoy 95% of the flying public; it was designed for a reason. Please exercise some self control, abide by it, and stop looking for ways to fault it's existence.

    Thanks for the info, I had no idea they would cause a problem. I have left my Treo on before by accident; never on purpose. I do have a friend who is a Captain on Singapore Airlines who felt they were not a problem. But of course not too many people would have their cell phones turned on over the waters of the Pacific. You have shared some valid and valuable information. Thank you for posting! If ever approved and the signal was available it would nice to text message someone but not the consistent chatter we have in most places. When I receive a phone call in a restaurant I step out to the lobby.
  7. #27  
    This thread goes from funny to educational. Thanks, to the sarcastic comments that made me laugh so hard that I spit water out I had just drank.

    Thanks also to the pilots who posted their very valuable information.

    This board rocks.
    ONE can be spelled as NEO.
    There is no spoon.
  8. #28  
    I find the comments from the pilots very troubling. If their com gear is so poorly shielded that a few milliwatt transmission in a completely different part of the frequency spectrum could cause static in their headphones then a 5 watt HT would be able to completely take out their transceiver.

    The good news is that a 5 watt HT would cause no more interference than a 200 milliwatt cellphone could which is about zero. Luckily for the flying public it is just plain physically impossible for such a low power device (cellphone) to cause any interference to a commercial grade transceiver that operates in a completely different part of the frequency spectrum.

    I'm sure the pilots believe what they are saying but its just not possible and they should look elsewhere for the source of their static.
    Pilot 1000 -> Pilot 5000 ->Palm Pilot Professional -> HP 620LX -> TRG Pro -> Palm V -> Palm Vx -> Palm M505 -> Palm i705 -> Palm Tungsten|T -> Samsung i500 -> Treo 600->Treo 650 -> Treo 600-> Treo 700p ->Centro ->Treo 800w + Redfly C8n -> Palm Pre -> HP Touchpad
    R.I.P Palm 1996-2011
  9. #29  
    Its not the comms system that's getting interfered with, persay, its just the actual speaker in the headset. Try this experiment - put any GSM phone/blackberry, whatever next to any speaker with some sort of powered amplifier (ie, powered sub, conference room speakerphone) - you will definitely hear the clicking when that phone transmits. Not sure what it is about GSM that does this, but I've never seen this occur with any CDMA device.

    As for interference with the various navigation systems, its probably just a matter of how many devices are on, and how close in frequency the nav system is. If everyone in the plane turned on their phone, and the plane went to 30kft, the cell phones would all be transmitting at full power, and searching for available channels. If a nav system was operating at a frequency close by, this could cause issues due to the out of band noise power increasing so much.

    FYI - my background is in radar and comms, so I know a few things about this stuff.
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    #30  
    Quote Originally Posted by rc46 View Post
    I find the comments from the pilots very troubling. If their com gear is so poorly shielded that a few milliwatt transmission in a completely different part of the frequency spectrum could cause static in their headphones then a 5 watt HT would be able to completely take out their transceiver.

    The good news is that a 5 watt HT would cause no more interference than a 200 milliwatt cellphone could which is about zero. Luckily for the flying public it is just plain physically impossible for such a low power device (cellphone) to cause any interference to a commercial grade transceiver that operates in a completely different part of the frequency spectrum.

    I'm sure the pilots believe what they are saying but its just not possible and they should look elsewhere for the source of their static.
    I believe we've found the source of static...



    SMEGGIE
    Yer pal,

    SMEGGIE


    A bigger Treo fan than I'll admit.
  11. #31  
    "put any GSM phone/blackberry, whatever next to any speaker with some sort of powered amplifier (ie, powered sub, conference room speakerphone) - you will definitely hear the clicking when that phone transmits."

    Agreed, but how close do you define "next to"?
  12. #32  
    In our office (bearing in mind I'm in a basement with metal walls AKA 1960s government issue building) it only needs to be in the same double wide office bay (30 ft by 20 ft).
  13. #33  
    I did just find this evidence and thought to share it with this thread if anyone is still interested. I always thought it was ridiculous that we needed to turn everything off... I do understand it is more of a precautionary rule than anything... but in the end, there is no interference.

    QUOTE:
    "Its test results showed no avionics or ground test anomalies."

    http://www.southwestvacations.com/co...cellrules&OAC=

    Now our phones shall never be blamed for crashing the plane!

  14. #34  
    "Its test results showed no avionics or ground test anomalies."

    Yes, but in fairness to the pilots in this thread, they weren't talking about interference with the avionics but, rather, interference with the radio. On the other hand, I doubt the airlines would be allowing this if that happened, as the radio is pretty damn important when one is taxi-ing around the runways.
  15. #35  
    Interesting discussion, I am a private pilot and have flown many aircrafts over the years ranging from simple avionics/radio panels to the modern "glass cockpit" variety.

    My observations are as follows:

    1. Have never experience any interference from my cell phone on the radio or navigation equipment on board (Sprint). Having said that, I really do not feel like experimenting with cellular radio signal interference while flying instruments on poor visibility - my life and that of my passengers are at stake.

    2. The GPS signal used by most modern aircrafts for navigation is a pretty weak one and some radio frequencies DO interfere with this signal. Some interference seems external, other come from on-board radio equipment. I have learned the degree of interference on the equipment is a function of installation and shielding affecting more the handheld or temporary installations. I have never experienced any radio interference on properly (FAA sanctioned) installed and approved avionics equipment.

    3. Cell phone signals at altitude tend to fade the higher you climb; after 15,000 feet I hardly can get any signal and the phone usually drains the battery looking for a signal during the entire flight. For that reason I usually turn-off my cell phone before leaving the ground.

    4. The ban on cell phone usage on US commercial flights is a rule, not a suggestion. As most FAA rules, this one is intended to improve YOUR safety during normal flight operations. Until the rule is ammended or retired, the use of cell phones during flight is, shall we say, illegal.

    5. If you absolutely have to use the cell phone while in flight (assuming you can get an adequate signal at 30,000 plus feet), you should ask the Captain for permission to do so, he is the one responsible for all flight operations, that is why the FAA defines him as the Pilot In Command; his word is the final law on that particular flight.

    When I fly commercially I see the cell phone ban as blessing; it allows me to disconnect from the world, seat back and relax, listen to some music, catch a move and of course, eat lots of peanuts.

    And that is my take on this debate.
    Have a great one...Doc D.

    Phillips VELO > Palm III > Palm V > Palm 505m > Treo 180 > Treo 300 > Samsung i500 > Treo 700p > HTC 6800 > Treo 800w > Treo Pro > Palm Pre > HTC Evo
  16. #36  
    "When I fly commercially I see the cell phone ban as blessing; it allows me to... eat lots of peanuts."

    You must mean cashews... The food allergy police won't let us (even the NON-allergic ones of us) eat peanuts any more!
  17. #37  
    Quote Originally Posted by morningstar1844 View Post
    ... When I receive a phone call in a restaurant I step out to the lobby.
    Thanks for being that one person that doesn't annoy the rest of us with their dinner conversation.
    Treo 700P (& GoodLink Administrator)
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  18. #38  
    Just to point out that the quoted article is limited to ground operations and does not discuss any flight operations other than taxiing between the terminal and the runway.

    GSM phones tend to cause interference with speakers a little more than their CDMA cousins.
  19. #39  
    geez, if you don't want to take the years of practical experience from these pilots (thanks for sharing/educating) then how about just erring on the side of caution - and keep the damn things off!
  20. #40  
    Cell phones have no place in the cramped quarters of an airplane. Even if it does not cause any problems with the airplane no one wants to sit next to some self important moron jabbering into a cell phone for three hours.

    With respect to the OP and the topic of surfing, your Treo must be in "flight mode" while in use on most airlines, which means no internet. However, at least one regional airline (Mesa/US Airways Express) bans the use of Treo's, blackberries etc. all together, most likely because they can't tell if the thing is in flight mode or not. Their announcement says "no smartphones, even in safe mode".
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