New technologies always lead to new opportunities. The new DelivAir delivery drone – with its ability to deliver directly to individuals, no matter where they are located – is a case in point. It also gives us a window into the world we’ll probably all be living in in the not-too-distant future. And the possibilities are endless!

Picture the scene. You’re bombing down a gnarly trail on your bike, having the time of your life – then the puncture happens. Digging through your backpack, you realise you’ve left your spare inner tube at home. No problem. You just fire up the DelivAir delivery drone’s app on your smartphone, order what you need and, in no time, your new inner tube is delivered to your exact location.

Other applications for this ground-breaking, ultra-precision delivery technology are even more practical. It could be used to deliver first aid to hikers in distress, get a defibrillator to a heart attack victim on a busy street, or bring essential components into remote regions during times of disaster. And, on a more frivolous note, I suppose ordering a nice cold beer while still out on the trail, and having it delivered to you just as you get to your car, is quite possible too. That the DelivAir drone’s ability to quickly get items to the exact spot, just when they’re needed, could completely redefine how we play in outdoor spaces has to be the understatement of the century!

How the technology works
The whole idea behind DelivAir’s revolutionary tech is that drones aren’t confined by terrain or traffic, so why should they be limited to delivering only to street addresses? UK R&D firm Cambridge Consultants achieved this by implementing a patient-pending, two-stage routing process.

After placing your order via the app on your phone, warehouse personnel then put your order together and dispatch the autonomous DelivAir drone to your exact location. Using GPS to navigate, it periodically requests secure location updates from you during the flight until it arrives within visual range. The drone then switches to onboard precision optical tracking, 3D imaging and ranging systems to both locate and authenticate you as the recipient.

When the drone finally reaches the intended person, they simply point their smartphone’s LED flash skywards, which blinks a coded pattern – allowing the drone to verify that it’s delivering to the correct person. It then moves directly above you, remaining at a safe height above ground. The package is then lowered into the recipient’s hands, using a stabilising winch to keep the package steady. To complete the transaction, you just unhitch your package from the tether, which rewinds automatically, and the drone returns to its base.

“Drone delivery is fast and ideal for something that is needed immediately. In that case, a consumer wants a delivery directly to them as a person – not to a location,” said Nathan Wrench, head of the industrial and energy business at Cambridge Consultants. “Our DelivAir concept has the potential to revolutionise the delivery process, by removing the address restriction that other drone technologies are limited by. We are taking cloud retail to the next level, delivering out of the clouds and into your hand.” – (c) 2017 NavWorld

Source: Cambridge Consultants

You can check out how the DelviAir delivery drones works in this fun video demonstration below:

About The Author

Sean Woods

Originally a photographer for the Star newspaper in the bad old days, Sean Woods turned to writing after the first democratic elections in '94. The career shift paid serious dividends, culminating in him becoming associate editor for Popular Mechanics magazine with a number of technology writing awards under his belt. His interests include anything to do with boats, motorcycles and all those fancy tech gadgets that help the modern world go around.

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