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Common digital transponders for IFF (Identification friend or foe, an electronic radio-based identification system) are widely used on military aircraft, ships, and vehicles. These small devices utilize a non-rechargeable battery pack replacement which is expensive, requires training, and causes unnecessary battery-related damage. This time-consuming process often interferes with mission capability.
The Navy currently uses the RT-1912C/APX transponder which includes a battery pack that is an assembly of two lithium bromide AA cells sealed in shrink wrap. A pair of wires emanate from the pack and form a harness that terminates at a miniature 2-pin connection. To replace the battery pack, a user must loosen several small screws, lift the battery cover, disconnect the battery pack from the internal cable harness and then connect the new battery pack to the internal cable harness via the 2-pin connection. During this procedure, there is a risk of improper connection and/or damaging the pair of wires. Also during the course of changing the battery pack there is significant battery-related loss of quadrant key encryption.
Navy scientists and engineers have developed a battery compartment insert to eliminate the need to use expensive battery packs, allowing for easy insertion of individual batteries and quick replacement of the batteries.
- System saves up to $125 every time transponder batteries need to be changed
- Eliminates the need to replace a full battery assembly
- Allows for the use of standard-sized batteries
- US patent 9,373,827 available for license
- Potential for collaboration with Navy researchers