Summary List Placement
- The Federal Aviation Administration granted permission for Amazon to begin delivery drone operations.
- Amazon Prime Air has existed since 2013 and began testing deliveries in June 2019.
- The goal of the program is to deliver certain items by drone in under 30 minutes.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) granted Amazon permission to fly its fleet of Prime Air drones. An FAA spokesperson confirmed the ruling to Business Insider, stating that the retail giant got an air carrier certificate allowing “unmanned aircraft systems,” on August 29.
The Prime Air drone project began in 2013, and last June the FAA granted permission for Amazon to test drones in the US. “We will continue to develop and refine our technology to fully integrate delivery drones into the airspace, and work closely with the FAA and other regulators around the world to realize our vision of 30-minute delivery,” Amazon Prime Air Vice President David Carbon said in a statement.
Take a look at the new drones that could soon be delivering packages across the US.
Amazon's fleet of drones has already put in thousands of flight hours.
They have a sense-and-avoid system that helps avoid obstacles like wires or chimneys using machine learning and artificial intelligence.
Amazon has not said when drones will roll out for regular deliveries, but in tests they have been used to deliver packages in under 30 minutes
Amazon has a few different drone models, optimized for different types of deliveries .
The newest model, seen here, can fly up to 15 miles, and deliver packages up to five pounds.
Source: Business Insider
Amazon first publicly tested drone delivery in Cambridge, England in 2016.
Now, the company says it is testing drones in five different countries using different designs and delivery mechanisms. "The look and characteristics of the vehicles will continue to evolve over time" Amazon Prime Air's website says.
While Amazon hasn't specified what drones will actually be used to deliver packages, the newest model is likely to be closest to the final product.
Videos shared by Amazon show how the different drone designs compare. This video is from the early days of Prime Air, back in 2013.
Another 2015 video shows a different type of drone.
This delivery was in England in 2016, and took only 13 minutes.