Tom Furey introduced the world’s first certified micro IFF transponder at UAS West, the MX12B. Flip through the presentation for a quick overview of this exciting, fully certified, new product.
Here is a summary of the talk:
Drones offer enormous potential on the front lines of the world’s military forces, with missions from surveillance and reconnaissance to combat. However, this potential has yet to be realized because of the inability to distinguish friendly drones from enemy drones, which increases the risk of troop harm and accidental fratricide of drones between blue forces.
“Imagine you’re a soldier on forward deployment and you see a drone coming your way. Is this your own drone coming home? Is it an enemy drone coming in?” illustrates Tom Furey, CEO of Sagetech Avionics. “It is difficult to tell based on visuals because today many enemy drones can mimic friendly drones. The decision you make in that split second can either preserve lives or put them at risk. You need to know – is that drone coming at us a friend or foe?”
To solve this problem, Sagetech Avionics has introduced the world’s first micro “Identify Friend or Foe” (IFF) Mode 5 transponder, the MX12B, which is now certified and available for use on military unmanned systems. This product provides the world’s first micro-sized certified situational awareness system that protects the warfighter while enabling NATO forces to realize the full potential of unmanned aircraft. IFF is NATO-required technology for all coalition aircraft, enabling the positive identification of friendly airborne assets through unique and secure encrypted communications. Sagetech has taken this technology, typically deployed on manned aircraft and weighing anywhere from 6 to 50 pounds, and miniaturized it while maintaining all the required IFF functionality.
Sagetech’s MX12B will save lives by improving knowledge of drone intent. Additionally, Sagetech’s technology will greatly expand how drones are used in military forces now and in the future, enabling a greater breadth of frontline missions and more drone sales. The industry has already adopted this technology, and Sagetech has shipped the MX12B to multiple military customers (including international) against a backlog of POs that were awaiting this year’s official product certification and release.