Unmanned aviation industry services provider uAvionix’s first identification friend or foe (IFF) transponder has received Mk XIIB certification from the US Department of Defense (DoD) AIMS Programme Office.

Known as the RT-2087/ZPX-B, the low size, weight, and power (SWaP) micro-IFF transponder is designed to suit the requirements of tactical unmanned aerial systems (UAS) as small as Group 1 to 4.

The certification confirms its IFF capability and interoperability with Nato and allied nations deployed military systems.

It also allows the platforms to take part in cross-troop or service branch or nation partnership and situational awareness to avert fratricide.

It enables secure platform identification with Mode 1,2,3/A,C,S and 5 interoperability, according to the company.

uAvionix noted that the ZPX-B micro IFF transponder can equip aircraft as small as 6kg at a full 54dBm/250W transmit power in an ultra-light 53g package.

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The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Drone Research Center of Excellence ASSURE founder major general James Poss said: “It is one thing to produce a 53g Mode 5 micro transponder; it is quite another to actually get it certified.

“This is a big step forward in reducing battlefield fratricide for all those small drones the DoD, and their allies, are producing.”

The company said that the system set a ‘record-breaking SWaP at 3.3 in 3.60g, and power consumption of only 3.5W’.