Don’t be surprised the next time you look up at the sky and see a flying object: it could be a delivery drone! More and more projects related to drone delivery are coming to life all over the world, but this great innovation still has some obstacles to overcome!
The commercial drones used for deliveries are remote-controlled flying machines that weigh roughly 20 kilos and are equipped with a GPS. They are also powered by electric engines, less harmful to the environment.
In most cases, these devices will be able to transport packages weighing less than 4 kg within a radius of about 20 kilometers. Thanks to drones you will be delivered in under an hour!
Remember though, if you wish to be delivered by a drone you’ll need to have a garden!
Drone delivery… we’re not ready yet!
Even though drone delivery projects are flourishing, there are still some obstacles to overcome …
- Regulations. Although Japan is pushing for drone deliveries (good news for Rakuten!), flying commercial drones, in the U.S. or France, remains very limited in urban areas. For example, it’s forbidden to fly a drone outside the pilot’s field of vision. Nevertheless, the European Parliament is seeking to relax the rules on the use of UAVs…
- Technology. For the moment, drones can fly up to an hour. However, increasing their autonomy requires more batteries, meaning that parcels cannot be too heavy… So it’s a choice between delivering far or delivering heavy!
- Physical. Avoiding collisions with other objects? Thanks to top-of-the-range sensors, UAVs can detect stationary obstacles but not flying objects… at least not yet! That’s why for the moment deliveries are only made between fixed points outside urban areas.
Even if difficulties with legislation will not yet allow deliveries in urban areas, hopefully UAV deliveries will be made easier in areas where access by road is very difficult: for example, very remote, mountainous, or flooded areas.
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