The Silicon Valley-based Zipline, which has acquired a new bird to join its fleet of world’s first and only national scale drone delivery service. The new drone is said to be the fastest commercial drone on earth.
The new drone is capable of flying at a top speed of 128 kmh while cruising at speeds of 101 kmh faster than the previous generation of Zipline drones. It can also make a round trip to a distance ranging 160 km carrying a payload weighing a maximum of 1.75 Kgs. This new drone is said to be capable of flying four times faster than the average quadcopter drone and can cover a distance 200 times larger.
Zipline acquired the new drone to boost its air-borne drone delivery service supplying critical medical supplies to the remotest regions on the planet, and it does so in the fastest way possible. The company has been making thousands of such deliveries per year, and the acquisition of a new generation of the autonomous aircraft will enable them to fly farther, fasters, and hold more cargo per trip. The new drone is said to be capable of flying in high altitude, through heavy rain and strong winds.
“Billions of people on earth lack access to critical medicine. In East Africa, Zipline’s drones bring people the medicine they need, when they need it in a way that reduces waste, cost, and inventory while increasing access and saving lives,” said Keller Rinaudo, CEO of Zipline. “We’ve been hard at work to improve our technology and are ready to help save lives in America and around the world.”
The new drone is in line with Zipline’s recent complete redesign of their operations geared at improving system’s launch, autonomous flight, and landing capabilities. The new faster drone will reduce the time between Zipline’s receipt of orders and launch of flight to deliver from the previous 10 minutes to 1. The company is also targeting to increase its number of daily deliveries from the current 50 to 500, while also expanding the radius of their flight from each distribution center so that they can serve a bigger population.
“Our first generation aircraft and logistics system allowed us to create the first and only drone delivery service in the world, which is helping to save lives in Rwanda every day. We’ve taken everything Zipline has learned making thousands of life-critical deliveries and flying hundreds of thousands of kilometers and redesigned our entire system and operation from top to bottom. The new aircraft and distribution center system we’re unveiling today will help Zipline scale to meet the needs of countries around the world; including the United States.” – added Rinaudo.