For this programme, a first project with Medical Delivery as theme, has been chosen. Research by DroneHub GAE has shown that the support for the use of (delivery) drones is many times greater when the flight is socially relevant, for example when it concerns a medical application.
Drones can be used to transport high value or high impact medical products quickly, on demand and without displacement of people. For example, imagine how drones could have contributed during the corona crisis. Regardless of the corona crisis, drones offer a great added value, for example for transport to more remote locations in the earthquake zone or the islands. One could think of the transport of blood bags, different types of medication, AEDs, test kits, etc. The coronavirus makes the awareness of rolling out this type of application even more interesting and relevant.
Working towards autonomous flying
The road to fully autonomous flying for goods and people will face the necessary challenges, such as acceptance by residents and employees, the laws and regulations regarding autonomous flying, not to mention the robustness, reliability and intelligence of such systems.
Carrying out the plan responsibly and in small, safe steps and always securing these steps, is essential for this project. This allows for step-by-step upscaling to larger drones, longer distances and heavier packages
The first step is to organize a series of live demonstrations in the summer of 2020. In collaboration with hive.mobility, these will take place on the Zernike Campus Groningen. These demonstrations are used as a first introduction and to promote awareness of future stakeholders and society as a whole.