ModalAI Expands Drone Tech Offerings with New NDAA-Compliant Components for U.S. Industry

ModalAI, a manufacturer within the Blue UAS Framework known for its lightweight 16g autonomous UAS autopilot VOXL 2, has broadened its product lineup with the launch of new NDAA-compliant drone components. This expansion includes three Electronic Speed Controllers (ESCs) and a computer vision image sensor, enhancing ModalAI’s range of products that meet the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) ‘20 Section 848 requirements, showcasing a commitment to advancing the U.S. drone industry with compliant and interoperable hardware solutions.

These newly introduced components are designed to complement the computing prowess of VOXL 2, a cornerstone of ModalAI’s offerings and a key element in over 300 UAS designs. VOXL 2 has been instrumental in pushing the boundaries of UAS technology, offering a blend of autonomy and communication capabilities, especially in environments where GPS is unreliable.

Chad Sweet, CEO and co-founder of ModalAI, expressed enthusiasm for the contribution these NDAA-compliant parts will make to the drone industry, emphasizing their role in enhancing the capabilities of VOXL 2-powered drones. The new ESCs and image sensor are integral for drones, controlling motor speed and enabling computer vision tasks, respectively. These components are engineered with Size, Weight, Power, and Cost (SWAP) considerations, aiming to improve reliability and thermal performance.

The ESCs introduced are:

  • Mini M0129: Tailored for VOXL 2 and VOXL 2 Mini with specifications that include a 40A burst and 15A continuous output, supporting 2-4S Lipo batteries.
  • 4-in-1 M0134: Suitable for up to 6S batteries with a 50A burst and 20A continuous output, designed for compact integration.
  • FPV M0138: A high-current design capable of handling up to 100A per channel in bursts, aimed at demanding UAS applications.

The computer vision image sensor, M0149, features an OnSemi AR0144 ¼ inch fisheye lens sensor, enhancing computer vision capabilities with its flexible PCB cabling.

ModalAI’s contributions to the Blue UAS Framework program and its development of NDAA-compliant autopilot systems underscore the company’s role in fostering a secure and innovative U.S. drone industry. By offering components that are not only compliant with U.S. regulations but also optimized for efficiency and performance, ModalAI supports a wide range of industries in deploying autonomous navigation systems that leverage cellular networks for communication.