Delivery By Drone Is Underway!

For the first time in history an autonomous drone has delivered a package containing several items to a house. The drone has 6 motors and is fully auto-piloting. It flew by itself about a half-mile and lowered the payload package to the ground in front of the designated delivery house, located in Hawthorne, Nevada. The company that announced this feat is Flirtey, a company based in Reno, Nevada, that has partnered with the University of Nevada’s Unmanned Autonomous Systems (UAS) Innovation Center. Hawthorne is 140 miles outside of Reno.

A standby remote control pilot was ready to take over the flight, in case of any failure, but the craft needed no assistance as it flew on a pre-programmed route perfectly. The package contained food, bottled water, and first-aid supplies. According to the CEO of Flirtey, Matt Sweeney, this was the start of a new delivery industry. Of the flight he is quoted as saying, “Conducting the first drone delivery in an urban setting is a major achievement, taking us closer to the day that drones make regular deliveries to your front doorstep.”

Brian Sandoval, Governor of Nevada, was quite pleased with this new technology development, quoted as saying: “on successfully completing the nation’s first fully autonomous urban package delivery… I am thrilled that Flirtey is not only testing its cutting-edge technology in Nevada, but also creating jobs through its headquarters relocation to Reno.”

Nevada is one of six states that have been designated by the FAA as official drone test certified. The FAA’s Director of Operations for the Nevada site, Chris Walach was quoted as saying, “This was by far one of the most successful operations we ran and represents an advanced level of test and development by Flirtey.” This was first reported on NBC Fort Worth news.

The drone industry is being assisted by NASA and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in the development of a air traffic control system for low-altitude craft, including drone flights. Flirtey’s drone flight was approved by the FAA. The flight proved that low-altitude drones can successfully navigate around obstacles, such as power lines and buildings, to make an autonomous delivery of a payload in a populated area.