Rantizo has announced it is now approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for operation of multiple drone swarms nationwide.
The waiver allows for the safe operation of three autonomous drone sprayers by a single pilot and one visual observer.
The firm’s CEO, Michael Ott, said: “Our vision is to Fly & Apply on large areas with autonomous drone sprayers, so swarming is a critical component. Labor shortages in agriculture are a known and widely discussed topic.
“With our ability to now fly three drones at once, we are moving closer and closer to full autonomy of operation. That autonomy will help solve for the labor requirements needed to feed a rapidly growing world population.”
With this waiver, Rantizo is able to Fly & Apply in rural areas up to the field border and will not be limited to a specific geographic area.
The company also says that its drone application productivity will increase to 40 acres per hour, nearly tripling the current rate of 14 acres per hour.
In tandem with a soon-to-be-released Mix & Fill auto-tendering station, Rantizo productivity is slotted to reach 60 acres per hour before the end of the summer.
In the case of Rantizo, Ott says there are a few distinctions that make their swarming waiver unique and highly advantageous.
He explained: “Waivers are typically limited by geographical area. To our knowledge, we are the first drone company to receive a waiver for nationwide rural swarm spraying.”
Adding: “Now that Rantizo can fly drone swarms in all 48 contiguous United States it will truly empower our network of Application Service Contractors to provide cost effective and efficient drone spraying services nationwide.”