Federally Approved Ping200S Transponder Ready for UAV Market

uAvionix Corp. says its Ping200S Mode S transponder with automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B) has received approval from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

Weighing just 50 grams, the transponder’s power consumption is low enough to be powered by battery pack for hours while still providing visibility to other aircraft up to 200 miles away, according to the company, which adds that the combination of the small size, low power and high visibility makes the Ping200S ideal for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), as well as high-altitude balloons and non-powered gliders.

uAvionix says the FCC testing process ensures devices transmitting radio frequencies do so safely and effectively without interference to the operation of other equipment and systems. The FCC approval of the Ping200S means the device meets the agency’s rigorous standards to transmit safely on 1090 MHz with a nominal output of 250 W, the company explains.

“We are excited to offer Ping200S to the market,” says Paul Beard, CEO of uAvionix. “Until now, operators requiring a transponder have had to choose between unlicensed devices or heavier, power-hungry legacy solutions. The Ping200S will extend flight time and increase available payload for high-altitude balloon and beyond-line-of-sight UAV operators with no compromise to safe operation or performance.”

In addition to providing replies to Mode C and Mode S interrogations, Ping200S also reports the unmanned aircraft identification, type, position, velocity and course at one-second intervals using ADS-B. Manned aircraft equipped with either TCAS or ADS-B receivers can identify and display a Ping200S-equipped UAV miles in advance of visual contact – in turn, greatly increasing awareness and reducing the chance of a collision or a near-miss scenario, the company says.


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