Amazon has established a partnership with the UK government to explore drone delivery.
A cross-government team supported by the Civil Aviation Authority has given Amazon permission to explore three key areas: beyond line-of-sight operations in rural and suburban areas; testing sensor performance to make sure drones can identify and avoid obstacles; and flights where one person operates multiple highly automated drones.
The partnership aims to allow Amazon and the government to understand how drones could be used safely and reliably in the logistics industry. It will also seek to identify what rules and safety regulations are required.
Amazon eventually wants to use drones to deliver parcels in 30 minutes to customers in the UK and elsewhere around the world.
“We want to enable the innovation that arises from the development of drone technology by safely integrating drones into the overall aviation system,” said Tim Johnson, Civil Aviation Authority policy director. “These tests by Amazon will help inform our policy and future approach.”
“The UK is a leader in enabling drone innovation – we’ve been investing in Prime Air research and development here for quite some time,” added Paul Misener, Amazon’s vice-president of global innovation policy and communications.