Amazon has been toying with the idea of drone package delivery and it’s a subject that is still very much up in the air (no pun intended). While drones are generally low flying vehicles the FAA will still have something to say about the matter before we actually see widespread delivery by drone. The Workhorse Group also wants to do drone package delivery but in a slightly different way. By taking an electric truck with wireless charging and a drone that can carry up to 10 pounds they want to help the delivery driver deliver packages to locations that are difficult to get to. Check out their proof of concept video below.
The idea, explains Martin Rucidlo, company president, is for the operator of the delivery truck to make the normal rounds, but send the drone off to handle the less convenient deliveries. The drone gets most of the way to the delivery site by navigating autonomously after scanning a barcode for GPS coordinates, but when it gets ready to descend, it turns on cameras and alerts the operator, who monitors the descent, watching out for dogs, children, or other potential hazards, and stands ready to take control. The drone then returns itself to the truck, which has continued to travel along its delivery route. The drone lands itself automatically and precisely on the charging pad. That’s not easy to do, Rucidlo said. But he believes that the company has found a solution that will work even in windy conditions.
The delivery itself was a bit shaky but it’s a start and the idea to use these drones only for hard to reach delivery areas might just work.
What do you think of this drone package delivery system? Let us know in the comments below or on Google+, Facebook and Twitter.Source: Spectrum IEEE
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