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Digital Battlespace

DoD approves miniature IFF transponder

29th March 2021 - 11:19 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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The ZPX-B is the smallest certified micro-IFF transponder in the world, according to manufacturer uAvionix. (Photo: uAvionix)

​ZPX-B micro-transponder cuts size, weight and power requirements by more than 90%, says manufacturer uAvionix.

The US DoD Air Traffic Control Radar Beacon System Identification Friend or Foe Program Office (AIMS PO) has certified the RT-2087/ZPX-B IFF transponder from uAvionix.

The company claims that ZPX-B is the smallest certified micro-IFF transponder in the world, cutting size, weight and power (SWaP) characteristics by ‘more than 90%’ compared to typical transponders.

The newly certified transponder weighs 53g and consumes 3.5W of power. It enables Mode 5 IFF for small and tactical UAS platforms.

‘This is a big step forward in reducing battlefield fratricide for all those small drones the DoD – and their Allies – are producing,’ said USAF Maj Gen (ret) James Poss, founder of the Alliance for System Safety of UAS through Research Excellence.

ZPX-B is interoperable with US and NATO military equipment, reducing the risk of friendly fire incidents by enhancing collaboration and situational awareness, uAvionix added.

As well as the ZPX-B, uAvionix introduced the ZPX-R passive ADS-B and Mode 5 Level 2 receiver. This is designed for ground-based, shipborne, or airborne reception to enhance situational awareness and detect-and-avoid capabilities.  

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