SF Express wins first drone operator licence in China

SF Express

Ambitious Chinese express operator SF Express has pipped Alibaba and JD in the race to gain China’s first domestic drone operator licence – and it is set to collaborate with African drone specialist Astral in Kenya.

Announcing the news, China’s largest courier hailed the civil aviation authority (CAAC) decision to grant subsidiary Jiangxi Fengyu Shuntu a licence, calling it a “milestone”.

SF Express said: “This means that China’s drone logistics distribution is entering the legal operation phase. It is a milestone in the development of China’s logistics drones and it is also a recognition of SF’s logistics distribution and operation capabilities.”

Company shares reportedly jumped 5%, with the State Post Bureau forecasting an extra 9bn parcels will be delivered in China this year. Continue reading “SF Express wins first drone operator licence in China”

Largest drone ever flown in Ireland carries first European test flight in Co Clare (video)

drone

The company that designed the CGT45 SLT unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) wants to establish Clare as a European test centre for its drones.

A-techSYN, which designs and builds unmanned aerial systems (UAS), launched its UAV business in the Shannon Free Zone near Shannon Airport in 2017. The company forms part of the Shannon Avionics Cluster.

Yesterdays demonstration was held at Spanish Point airfield in front of Clare Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection Mr Pat Breen; representatives from the Turkish Embassy in Dublin; Shannon Group as well as members of the Irish Coast Guard, Civil Defence and other interested groups.

A-techSYN’s CGT45 SLT is one of the first UAV’s to use electric engines for take-off and landing and a combustion engine during fixed wing flight. The event was the first demonstration flight in Europe for the CGT45-SLT. Continue reading “Largest drone ever flown in Ireland carries first European test flight in Co Clare (video)”

Large unmanned aircraft systems will begin populating the skies in not-too-distant future

unmanned aircraft systems

In the not-too-distant future, large unmanned aircraft systems (UAS)—those flying above 400 feet and weighing more than 55 pounds—will begin populating the skies: transporting cargo, fighting fires, delivering WiFi and even flying people around the world. Think Bigger: Large Unmanned Systems and the Next Major Shift in Aviation is the first look at the large UAS market in the United States, and highlights a potential $30 billion annual market and more than 60,000 jobs in support of the industry.

The impact of large UAS on Americans and our economy will impact us in many ways they see, and many other ways they don’t. Sooner than many people think, a significant portion of American commercial travel will be via autonomous aircraft. Long-haul cargo will drastically change, with new economic centers rising in places in our country where they don’t exist today. Airports and other intermodal transportation centers will need to be designed and redesigned to meet vastly different needs and experiences. Continue reading “Large unmanned aircraft systems will begin populating the skies in not-too-distant future”

Boeing is accelerating breakthrough advancements in autonomous air travel (Video)

Boeing

Boeing is accelerating breakthrough advancements in autonomous air travel

It recently completed initial flight tests of an electric vertical-takeoff-and-landing (eVTOL) unmanned cargo aerial vehicle (CAV) prototype. The innovative platform is designed to test and evolve Boeing’s autonomy technology for future aerospace vehicles.

In less than three months, Boeing engineers designed and built the CAV prototype, which stands four feet off the ground, measures 15 by 18 feet and weighs more than 700 pounds. It is outfitted with eight counter-rotating propeller blades and custom Boeing batteries that allow for vertical flight. Continue reading “Boeing is accelerating breakthrough advancements in autonomous air travel (Video)”

Done Delivery Canada is expanding its commercial testing program to United States

Done Delivery Canada

Drone Delivery Canada ‘DDC or the Company, is pleased to announce that its expanding its commercial testing program to the United States of America at the New York Griffiss International Airport UAS Test Site, located in Rome, New York in Q1, 2018.

The Company anticipates that the US Pilot Program will then run through the balance of the year. This new initiative expands DDC’s testing program to include geographies within the United States utilizing its Sparrow X1000 drone which just recently achieved Compliant UAV Status with Transport Canada (December 2017). For testing, DDC will utilize its own proprietary FLYTE management software that is designed to support semi-autonomous flight as well as BVLOS (beyond visual line of site) flights designed for commercial drone deliveries.

“We have very strong interest from multiple commercial customers in the USA that not only want to test our drone delivery platform in Canada, but also in their own Country as well. This pilot program will act as an extension of our primary Canadian initiatives and will expand our data collection ability. The FAA approved Rome, N.Y. site was made available to us by the progressive initiatives of the FAA and provides an ideal testing environment to achieve our customers requests.” commented Tony Di Benedetto, CEO. “While collectively working with our key Canadian stakeholders and the invaluable support of Transport Canada and the Canadian Federal Government which has allowed us to progress to this point, we now look to put Canada on the forefront of commercial drone delivery technology on a global stage with our first expansion occurring south of the border.”, added Di Benedetto. Continue reading “Done Delivery Canada is expanding its commercial testing program to United States”

Unmanned Cargo Aircraft Conference welcomes Air Cargo World as Media Partner

Air Cargo World

Unmanned Cargo Aircraft Conference welcomes Air Cargo World as Media Partner. The Unmanned Cargo Aircraft Conference 2018 takes place on 20 March 2018 at the North Carolina Global TransPark, USA.

About Air Cargo World
Air Cargo World, published in the United States, is an air logistics magazine and is edited for shippers and others involved with the worldwide transport and delivery of perishables and manufactured goods. Its readership consists of logistics professionals, airline and airport executives, freight forwarders, importers, exporters, and others who manage or purchase transportation products and services within the airfreight supply chain.

The monthly magazine’s editorial purpose is to provide the reader with insightful information by way of data analysis, feature articles, and in-depth coverage of events and trends affecting their business and the airfreight logistics industry. With more than 20,000 subscribers located in 184 countries, Air Cargo World maintains the largest circulation of any magazine in the air cargo category.

Air Cargo World publishes some of the highest-quality writing in the logistics industry. In December 2015, Editor Randy Woods won the Seahorse Club Air Cargo Journalist of the Year award for his February 2015 article on the rise of cargo operations at Ethiopian Airlines.

The magazine also presents the annual Air Cargo Excellence (ACE) Awards, as well as the Air Cargo Executive of the Year award.

Air Cargo World maintains this website with daily news items about developments in the air cargo industry. It publishes The Alert, which recounts major news and is emailed to more than 20,000 subscribers throughout the world. Continue reading “Unmanned Cargo Aircraft Conference welcomes Air Cargo World as Media Partner”

HERE and Unifly are teaming up to jointly enable airspace maps for drones

airspace maps

HERE and Unifly are teaming up to jointly enable airspace maps for drones

  • Rich and accurate data sources will be vital for safe drone transportation
  • In the Autonomous World, ground and airborne vehicle traffic will need coordination

Soon it may not only be our roads that are congested. The growing popularity of drones, whether for recreational or commercial use, has highlighted the challenge of managing traffic in low-altitude airspace. Moreover, in the future Autonomous World, the traffic of both airborne and ground vehicles will need to be well orchestrated to ensure safety and efficiency.

To help meet these needs, HERE Technologies, a global leader in digital mapping and location services, and Unifly, the leading provider of Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) software, are teaming up to jointly enable airspace maps for drones. Continue reading “HERE and Unifly are teaming up to jointly enable airspace maps for drones”

Cargo drone startup Natilus closes second round of seed funding

Natilus

Cargo drone startup Natilus announced that it has closed a second round of seed funding with investment from Starburst Ventures, Seraph Group, Gelt VC, Outpost Capital and Draper Associates. The funds will go towards “aggressively scaling,” in anticipation of the startup’s first Federal Aviation Administration-approved flight for its 30-foot prototype. The test flight is scheduled for late 2017, and a commercial market launch is set for2020.

Pitching the startup’s propeller-driven drones as a cheaper alternative to conventional airfreight, and a faster alternative to maritime transport, Aleksey Matyushev, CEO of Natilus, called the second round of investment “an important milestone.” Matyushev added that the latest round of financing would allow Natilus to bring on additional staff to finish design of the company’s 12,000-pound e-commerce drone, while at the same time growing their flight-testing operation for their 2,200-pound, 30-foot prototype. Continue reading “Cargo drone startup Natilus closes second round of seed funding”

Turkish post prepares to begin drone deliveries next year

Turkish post

Turkish post prepares to begin drone deliveries next year

Turkey’s national post and telegraph corporation is preparing to begin deliveries by unmanned aerial vehicles, dubbed as drones, within next year.

Speaking at the International e-Commerce Conference in the southern Antalya province, Kenan Bozgeyik, board chairman of the Post and Telegraph Organization (PTT), said Wednesday that they are currently working with Turkish engineers and universities to begin drone deliveries in 2018.

Noting that Turkey already has domestically-developed drone technology, Bozgeyik said while it is not realistic to expect all posts will immediately switch to drone delivery, there are plans to carry out deliveries with PTT’s own drones, with implementation differing from region to region. Continue reading “Turkish post prepares to begin drone deliveries next year”