December 14, 2016
Amazon drone delivery has come to England.
The eCommerce king has launched a drone delivery trial in Cambridge and successfully delivered its first package to a home on Dec. 7.
Currently two customers are participating in the trail, which Amazon said would be expanded in time.
“We will use the data gathered during this beta test to and the feedback provided by customers to expand the private trial to more customers over time,” Amazon said. “In the coming months, we’ll offer participation to dozens of customers living within several miles of our U.K. facility — and then growing to hundreds more.”
The orders are organized and packaged at a Prime Air fulfillment center, also located in Cambridge — “jut over the horizon” from the test subjects’ homes. Within moments of receiving an order, an electrically-powered Amazon drone makes its way outside on an automated track from which it launches. Flying under 400 feet and weighing less than 55 pounds, Prime Air drones use GPS as well as a sophisticated ‘sense and avoid’ technology, to autonomously fly to the home of the person who placed the order. The drones are only used to deliver packages that weigh five pounds or less.
Amazon received approval from the British government this summer to test its drone delivery systems within the country. A cross-Government team supported by the U.K. Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) gave Amazon the green light to test three forms of drone technology: Beyond line of sight operations in rural and suburban areas; Sensor performance to make sure the drones can identify and avoid obstacles and; Flights during which one person operates multiple highly-automated drones. The tests, Amazon said at the time, would reveal how to safely use drones in the logistics industry as well as identify what operating rules and safety regulations would need to be put in place to help the drone industry grow.
To watch the a drone delivery test, check out the video below:
Jennifer Cowan is the Managing Editor for SiteProNews.