Google is Developing a Drone to Deliver Packages to Customers

Posted 2 years ago

Self PortraitCody Helscel
Blog writer & Web developer

You may have heard of the Amazon Prime Air, a drone that can deliver packages to customers’ door steps. But you might not have heard about Google’s project named Project Wing. Yes, that’s right. Google is entering into the drone business.

 

Google said it had been exploring autonomous vehicles over the past two or so years. Recently they hired a team leader. His name is Dave Vos and is an expert in automating systems for aviation. Dave is now leading Project Wing into the future.

Earlier this year the company announced that its advanced-research facility (Google X) is developing an array of drones to deliver products, similar to Amazon’s Prim Air project.

Recently, the company took a research trip to Australia and delivered packages to two farms in Queensland. The goods delivered includes: chocolate bars, dog treats and cattle vaccines.

The drone that delivered the goods had a single wing and was 5ft wide. It has four propellers, and they move in different stages of flight. In the middle of wing was a gap the packages fit into.

Different methods were considered for how the packages were delivered, whether the drone landed or dropped packages by parachute or lowing packages using a fishing line. Landing the drone seems problematic because people might get too close to the drone’s propellers and get injured.

Google said, “Self-flying vehicles could open up entirely new approaches to moving goods – including options that are cheaper, faster, less wasteful and more environmentally sensitive than what’s possible today.” And that’s true, but I wonder what the other side to the coin is.

 

Google also said, “Throughout history, major shifts in how we move goods from place to place have led to new opportunities for economic growth and generally made consumers’ lives easier. From steam ships to the railroads, from the postal service to delivery services like FedEx and DHL, speed has reshaped society not only with greater convenience but also by making more goods accessible to more people.”

The FAA still has many regulations against the use of autonomous drones, especially relating to Amazon Prime Air and Google Project Wing. Furthermore, commercial drone use remains all but banned in the United States.



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