that isn't from the idiot fringe?
Thanks for asking. I think the biggest problem with this that there has been no forensic investigation of the facts, evidence and conclusions drawn from them. In any case how this happened is irrelevant compared to the laws put in place to justify the surveillance state we have now. It's our reality, I accept that, but it doesn't mean I don't like to playfully tease out the dogmatic skeptics who are too mentally anemic to challenge their own assumptions for a few lolz.
My phone worked fine on Japanese bullet trains, do we have any information on tower hand off at high speeds
First, in the air a cell phone is relatively equidistant from *all* cell towers in range. This is substantially different from a cell phone call placed on the ground where the signal strength to your closest tower may be 10's of dB higher the the very next one. From the air, your cell phone signal would present as the same fractions of a dB at *all* cell phone towers in range.
Second, you need cell hand off data of 2/3G network that was in use in 2001. Even on the ground, at 500 knots (roughly 800kph) a handover from one tower would be occurring as it was handing over to another. It is difficult to expect such a connection to be maintained with the network technology available in 2001.
Third, tests of those networks revealed all cell connections to be dropped above 3000 metres thus difficult to expect such a connection to be maintained without the assistance of the aircraft and that technology was only introduced in 2004.
Fourth, the range of the 3watt of transceiver power a cell phone has to transmit to connect to a tower is no more than the distance to the horizon on the ground, which is about 5km's, which is similar to a 3watt CB radio. With aircraft cruising altitude of 11km there is simply not enough energy in the transmitter to get to the ground even if you ignore the fact that an aircraft is a faraday cage AND their are two layers of aluminium between the transmitter and the ground.
Fifth, US patent US 7965684 B2: Method and system of handoff for cellular networks only allows 2 channels and a handset would not be able to calculate the round trip delay to the next cell tower if they are all, or even mostly, equidistant. Therefore no hard or soft handover would occur, resulting in a dropped connection.
The commission implies those calls were made from air phones which is in conflict with the witnesses who say they received cell phone calls.
If you accept the official version then we aren't talking about cell phones at all. If you accept the witness statements, then you have to ask why the official report implies otherwise and if the characteristics of the network would allow cell phone calls at the time, speed and altitude the air traffic controllers reported these aircraft to be when the calls were made. I don't think that is unreasonable to ask those questions.
It's the implications of the answer that skeptics don't want to deal with so it is understandable why they cannot accept the facts.