Japanese drone manufacturer ACSL, Inc has officially announced the pricing, availability, and authorized dealers for its NDAA-compliant SOTEN drone in the US. The company, which entered the US drone market in May 2023, introduced the SOTEN drone after incorporating feedback gathered from various industries during its showcase events.

The SOTEN drone has undergone significant upgrades, addressing concerns raised during the demonstration phase. These improvements include reduced video latency, enhanced gimbal and camera controls, an improved user interface, and compliance with FAA remote ID requirements. The company has prioritized additional features in its 2024 roadmap, such as an improved optical/thermal camera, smart controller upgrades, longer flight time, long-range communications, cellular network connectivity, and an SDK for third-party software development.

The initial batch of 50 drones arrived in the US in late 2023, with plans for hundreds more to meet the increasing demand for secure, versatile, and high-performance small UAS. ACSL has set the standard package price for the SOTEN at under $10,000 USD, and these are available through authorized retailers.

The standard package includes essential components such as the drone, a standard camera (20MP 1” sensor with mechanical shutter), remote controller, a smart battery, and all necessary cables. In addition to the standard package, ACSL will offer various kits, including an Inspections Kit, tailored for critical infrastructure inspections and disaster relief efforts.

One notable feature of the SOTEN is its swappable camera system, offering flexibility and adaptability for different mission requirements. The drone, manufactured in Japan, adheres to stringent security standards, ensuring that collected photo and video data can be optionally encrypted before being recorded to the on-board memory card, with encrypted communication between the drone and the controller.

“We’ve been out in the field with dozens of customers and partners, demoing and testing SOTEN extensively with the goal of truly understanding the needs of the market. The response to SOTEN’s flight dynamics, security features, and overall capabilities has been excellent,” said Dr. Christopher Raabe, Global CTO of ACSL. “We have been very grateful for the enthusiastic welcome from the market and we will remain customer and partner focused as we continuously improve our technology.”

As part of its expansion strategy, ACSL has unveiled a list of authorized dealers to support the SOTEN’s market entry. These dealers, including Advexure, Blue Skies Drones, DronesMadeEasy, Frontier Precision Unmanned, General Pacific (GenPac Drones), Gresco UAS, UVT, and Volatus Drones, will not only serve as distributors but also certified repair and service experts, ensuring seamless customer support in the region.

“There is a rising dronee cosystem in Japan and we are excited to bridge that growth with the in the US market by working in partnership with some of the best UAS dealers and experts in the industry. They recognize that our SOTEN system showcases some of the best that Japan is uniquelypositioned to both improve and offer more of, from flight and image quality, manufacturing precision and secure supply chains, to approachable price points,” said Cynthia Huang, CEO of ACSL, Inc. “Japan has been a renowned technology leader for decades and we are committed to carrying that legacy into the small UAS as well as the greater robotics industry as we ramp up operations globally.”