4 October 2023

Digital Technology Guru

Digital Technology Guru Reviews

UPS Receives FAA Clearance for Beyond Line of Sight Drone Flights

2 min read
UPS Receives FAA Clearance for Beyond Line of Sight Drone Flights

UPS has received clearance from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to fly its drones beyond the line of sight, a significant development for the company’s drone delivery ambitions. Previously, UPS drones required visual tracking an individual on the ground to ensure safe travel. With the FAA approval, UPS will install a ground-based radar system to scan the skies for potential air traffic issues, with a remote pilot available to address any concerns.

Andreas Raptopoulos, CEO of Matternet, the provider of UPS’s M2 quadcopters, expressed that the FAA’s approval for beyond line of sight flights will greatly contribute to the expansion of drone delivery services across the United States. UPS has been actively pursuing its drone delivery goals since 2019 when it launched UPS Flight Forward, a drone subsidiary focused on developing air-based delivery services.

This recent clearance from the FAA represents a breakthrough for UPS and paves the way for further advancements in its drone delivery service. UPS partnered with Matternet in 2019 to transport medical supplies in Florida and expanded their collaboration in 2021 to deliver COVID-19 vaccines to a medical center in North Carolina. The company has also conducted trials for prescription medicine deliveries from CVS Health to residents of a retirement community in Florida.

This news comes shortly after Wing, a drone delivery specialist, announced a partnership with Walmart to provide drone deliveries in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. As part of this service, the drones can travel up to six miles from the store, aiming to deliver quick meals, groceries, household essentials, and over-the-counter medicines within 30 minutes of an order being placed.

These recent developments in the drone delivery industry indicate the increasing potential and demand for efficient and time-sensitive delivery solutions. With UPS’s FAA clearance, the company can expand its drone operations and move closer to making drone delivery a commonplace occurrence in everyday life.

– FAA (Federal Aviation Administration)
– Matternet
– UPS Flight Forward
– Wing
– Walmart