Norweb has denied Reuters reports that its Digital Powerline project to provide high speed Internet access through electricity lines transforms Manchester street lights into rogue radio transmitters.
Reuters' report said the Manchester trials of the new system showed that "Norweb's Digital Powerline technology was fast but Internet users discovered that the data they were downloading was being broadcast as high frequency radio waves through the street lamps. Street lights, which are the right vertical length of a conductor, caused them to act as radio aerials."
Norweb spokeswoman, Kate Thompson, said: "There is absolutely no truth at all in the allegation. We have worked with the Radiocommunications Agency for several years and seen no disturbance during product testing, and the Department of Trade and Industry confirms that."
Norweb's chief executive Steve Pusey added: "Throughout the last three years of development, Norweb has been in a process of continuous consultation with the RA, seeking their advice and guidance as we proceeded. So far, Digital Powerline has not interfered in any way with any radio spectrum users. We have investigated all of the potentially applicable standards to confirm that we are in compliance."
An RA spokesperson commented: "The Radiocommunications Agency has played an integral part in the testing of Digital Powerline products and is happy with the progress of the project. There has been no evidence of any interference with other users to date."
The article claimed: "If the current technology were to be widely used, experts fear that sections of the radio spectrum could be swamped, disrupting emergency communications, annoying amateur radio buffs, and interfering with the BBC World Service."
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