Skyports is one of a number of companies who this week is involved in giving consumers in Finland the chance to receive e-commerce orders by drones.
As part of the three day trials, the deliveries will take place in Vantaa, in an urban environment and in the immediate vicinity of a major international airport.
The trials, which started yesterday, will involve around 100 drone deliveries in total and will include parcels weighing up to 1.5kg.
Selected customers will be able to pick up their parcel as soon as it has landed on the dedicated Skyports landing platform, known as a vertiport, positioned in the parking lot of the supermarket.
The parcels being transported will take off from a Skyports vertiport located at the Matkahuolto distribution terminal adjacent to Helsinki airport and will travel five kilometres to the supermarket where they will land autonomously on another vertiport.
Each of the drone flights will be fully automated with the flight control center located 14 kilometres away in the centre of Helsinki, overseen by a fully qualified commercial drone operator.
As part of the project, dedicated Skyports staff will be present at both the Matkahuolto terminal and the supermarkets to supervise drone operations and ensure safety.
The customer will receive a text message from Matkahuolto detailing when the drone delivery will arrive at K-Market Kartanonkoski or K-Market Ylästö.
As soon as the drone has landed on the Skyports vertiport, the customer can collect their parcel straight away instead of waiting for it to be processed in store.
If the recipient cannot collect their package at the time the drone lands, staff at the pick-up point will accept the delivery for collection by the customer at a convenient time.
Skyports’ managing director Duncan Walker commented on the trials.
He said: “Skyports is excited to be part of the ground breaking Aviapolis project. This project will pave the way for future cargo drone applications within urban environments and highlights how the Finnish Government is leading the way globally in mobility innovation.”
He added: “Physical landing infrastructure for cargo carrying drones in an urban environment will provide a managed interface between drone operators and end customers, helping to achieve faster delivery times, lowers emissions and more affordable distribution costs than existing forms of freight transportation. Skyports looks forward to working and investing in Finland to develop its commercial drone eco-system.”
Last year, CDP caught up with Walker as he was putting the wheels in motion on the start-up.
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