Drone Delivery becomes more efficient
Sally French, 28 April The Drone Girl
Most drone deliveries depart from a warehouse, fly to someone’s home or business, drop off a single item, and then return to their original starting place. From there, it gets a new payload (and perhaps a battery swap) and goes off on its next flight, repeating the process over and over again. But a new triple-drop delivery drone design from Wingcopter could make that process a lot more efficient.
German delivery drone maker Wingcopter this week announced its newest model called the Wingcopter 198, and it has a triple-drop delivery drone mechanism, enabling operations to become much more efficient as it makes up to three stops in one trip.
Wingcopter’s delivery drones are all an electric-power, vertical-take-off-and-landing (eVTOL), fixed-wing drone, meaning it takes off straight upwards like a helicopter, but then morphs into an airplane-style design for more efficient flight once it’s in the air.
What’s new about this latest Wingcopter drone is its triple-drop delivery drone mechanism. The drone can carry three separate payloads that carry up to a combined 6 kilograms (13 pounds) on one battery charge — and it can take them as far as 75 kilometers (47 miles).
Of course, it could also deliver two more medium-sized packages, or one large one, given the combined weight is 6 kilos or less. The new triple delivery process is possible because the Wingcopter 198 has a separate winch through which the extra payloads are lowered. The old model, the Wingcopter 178, only had one winch. By making three deliveries in one area, operations become way more efficient.
“When we did the vaccine delivery trial in Vanuatu, we always had to return to a central hub before flying to the next remote health facility with new children’s vaccines,” Wingcopter CEO Tom Plümmer told The Drone Girl. “It would have been super-helpful if we had had the triple drop mechanism already back then to deliver the vaccines to three villages on the same flight.”
Plümmer said the Wingcopter 198 is the first delivery drone which can deliver and lower several parcels at different locations via separate winches.