UPS is developing its own fleet of high-speed delivery drones that can travel as fast as 150mph and remain stable in 45mph winds
- UPS will partner with German firm Wingcopter to develop a new fleet of drones
- The drones will be both fast and durable, intended for time sensitive deliveries
- Perviously Wingcopter’s drones have been used to bring supplies to remote island locations in Ireland, Vanuatu and elsewhere
UPS has partnered with the German tech company Wingcopter to build a fleet of rugged, high speed delivery drones.
The drones will be based on a model designed by Wingcopter, which can travel at speeds of up to 150mph and has a range of 75 miles.
The drones can also endure a variety of difficult weather conditions, including wind speeds of up to 45mph.
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UPS will develop a new fleet of fast and flexible delivery drones with the German tech firm Wingcopter
The agreements marks the first external partnership for UPS’s Flight Forward program, which is focused on developing a range of drone delivery options, according to a report in TechCrunch.
‘Drone delivery is not a one-size-fits-all operation,’ UPS’s Bala Ganesh said. ‘Our collaboration with Wingcopter helps pave the way for us to start drone delivery service in new use-cases.’
‘UPS Flight Forward is building a network of technology partners to broaden our unique capability to serve customers and extend our leadership in drone delivery.’
One of the main goals of the program is to create different types of delivery drones to meet different delivery needs.
The Wingcopter drones are specifically designed to be maximally maneuverable, with fast vertical takeoffs and landings.
They also have the capacity to quickly accelerate for time-sensitive cargo that more conventional drone designs might not be suited to.
In the past, Wingcopter has focused on making deliveries in difficult geographic conditions.
The new UPS drones will be able to quickly land and takeoff, reach top speeds of 150mph and will be able to endure winds of up to 45mph
Its drones are used to make insulin deliveries to remote islands off the coast of Ireland, which aren’t on regular service routes.
It’s also worked with UNICEF and the Ministry of Health to deliver vaccines in Vanuatu, a small country in the Pacific Ocean made up of some 80 different islands.
In 2019, UPS’s Flight Forward program became the first drone delivery service to win approval from the Feberal Aviation Authority, beating both Amazon and Alphabet.
The company currently operates drone delivery programs in select markets in partnership with CVS.