Mode-S ADS-B Transponders for Drones, UAVs

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Sagetech Avionics, Inc. designs and manufactures robust, innovative miniature transponders for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and drones.

Miniature Mode S Drone TranspondersOur lightweight, low-footprint ADS-B and transponder solutions provide safe and efficient operations for UAVs flying with other manned and unmanned aircraft in any environment, in both civilian and military airspace worldwide. With over 1.5 million flight hours to date, our miniature ADS-B, Mode S transponders equip drones with sense and avoid capabilities.

Drone Transponders

XP Ultra-Miniature Drone Transponders

Mode C, Mode S and ADS-B transponder solutions for size- and power-conscious UAVs

XP Transponder family

The XP family, featuring the world’s smallest certified transponder, delivers Mode C, Mode S and ADS-B functionality for SWaP-critical UAVs and drones. Designed for Federal Aviation Administration Technical Standard Order (FAA TSO) compliance, XP transponders feature an integrated pressure sensor and altitude encoder and are calibrated up to 85,000 feet.

Integration with the host UAV is made simple due to the transponders’ form factor, and plug-and-play compatibility is supported with a wide variety of leading UAV autopilots. XP transponders support direct software control from a Multi-Function Display (MFD) or Flight Control System (FCS), further reducing the system footprint.

The XP family of drone transponders features four variants:

XPC-TR Mode C Transponder

The XPC-TR Mode C Transponder is a highly reliable, compact broadcasting solution for Mode A and Mode C requirements. Designed to meet FAA requirements, the XPC-TR is a low-power solution for a wide range of UAVs.

XPC-TR Certified Mode C Transponder

The XPC-TR Certified is a military version of the Mode C Transponder, which is US Department of Defense (DoD) AIMS Mark XA IFF certified and designed for guaranteed NATO interoperability.

Ultra-Miniature Drone UAV TransponderXPS-TR Mode S Transponder with ADS-B Out

The XPS-TR is a lightweight Mode S drone transponder that incorporates ADS-B Out broadcast technology. This compact transponder will enhance UAV flight safety by adding a continuous means for air traffic control and aircraft equipped with ACAS to determine the UAV’s location.

XPG-TR Mode S Transponder with ADS-B Out and GPS

The XPG-TR features the same transponder as the XPS-TR and also includes an accurate, integrated GPS position receiver, enabling a standalone unit to broadcast the aircraft’s GPS location in Mode S and ADS-B communications.

XP Transponder Specifications:

Dimensions89 x 46 x 18 mm
(3.5 x 1.8 x 0.7 in)
102 x 47 x 26 mm
(4.0 x 1.8 x 1.0 in)
Mass100 g (3.53 oz)147 g (5.19 oz)
Power Supply10 – 32V
Power Consumption
(On & Alt.)
4W (typical)
11W (max)
8W (typical
14W (max)
Power Consumption
< 1W
Transmit Power250W nominal
Receive Sensitivity-73 dBm ± 4 dB74 dBm ± 3 dB

More information: XP Drone Transponders

MX Micro-SWaP Drone ADS-B Transponders

Fully certified Mode A/C/S, military Mode 5, and ADS-B transponders

ADS-B UAV Transponders

The MX family delivers full-featured FAA- and DoD-certified transponder solutions for safe UAV operations in national and military airspace worldwide. MX transponders feature an integrated pressure sensor and altitude encoder, saving space and weight.

The transponders’ ultra-compact form factor makes integration with the host UAV easy, and plug-and-play compatibility is supported with a wide variety of leading UAV autopilots.

Each unit utilises top and bottom diversity antennas for full pattern coverage, which is especially critical in Canada and other areas where satellite ADS-B systems are in use. Each antenna connects to its own ADS-B receiver to provide fully reliable traffic sensing.

Certified ADS-B drone UAV transponders
Certified ADS-B drone UAV transponder

The MX family of drone transponders features three models:

MXS Mode S Transponder with ADS-B In/Out

The MXS Mode S Transponder is a full output power solution for worldwide ADS-B compliance. [FAA TSO certification planned for early 2021].

MX12B DoD-Certified Mode 5 Transponder with ADS-B In/Out

The MX12B is a DoD-Certified Mode 5 Transponder featuring Mark XIIB military IFF (Identification friend or foe) functionality for UAS weighing 10 lbs. and up, with full compliance to DoD AIMS 17-1000. Crypto interface compatible with AIMS 04-900(A) Option B (KIV-77). [DoD AIMS certification planned for Spring 2020].

MXR Mode A/C/S Rangefinder with ADS-B In/Out

The MXR provides omnidirectional Mode A/C/S interrogation, reporting distance-to-target for active surveillance. All-call Mode A, C and S interrogations as well as selective Mode S interrogations are available. Whisper-shout mode provides a 26 dB dynamic range, with transmissions from 9 dBm to 56 dBm (0.08 to 398 W).

Mode S Transponder with ADS-B In/Out
DoD-Certified Mode 5 Transponder

MX Transponder Specifications:

Dimensions84 x 60 x 23 mm
(3.3 x 2.4 x 0.9 in)
Mass150 g (5.3 oz)
Power Supply14 – 28V
Power Consumption
(Operating, Nominal, Max)
8W, 10W, 15W11W, 13W, 18W
Power Consumption
Transmit Power (at SMA)55 dBm, 316 WAIMS 17-1000B Standard
1030 Receive Sensitivity-74 ± 3 dBmAIMS 17-1000B Standard