China’s largest mail company is set to deliver more than 1,000 packages a day by drone. S.F. Express has revealed it already has a fleet of aircraft flying 500 parcels a day to remote areas, and it is now looking to double the capacity. The all-weather drones deliver parcels between couriers before automatically return to base, according to People’s Daily Online.
The mail company, together with the firm XAircraft, began experimenting with drone deliveries in Dongguan, southern China in 2013.
Peng Bing, the founder of XAircraft, said: ‘At present there are 500 drones carrying out courier work in Shenzhen and Huizhou.
‘The entire drone operation will reach several thousand units very soon.’
Goods are loaded onto the drone by a courier, the delivery address is scanned and the aircraft then flies to the destination. The courier at the location prepares a good landing area and when the drone arrives, the parcel is scanned once again and the aircraft returns to its base automatically.
S.F. Express is currently delivering parcels with drones in southern and eastern China, including areas like Huizhou, Zhongshan, Hangzhou and Jiaxing where demands for same-day couriers are high. The Shenzhen-based company is hoping to expand the service to remote villages, farms and mountain ranges.
There is very little human interaction with the drones and the work is carried out in cooperation with the Civil Aviation Regulatory Authority.
The use of the drones will result in quicker delivery times and will expand the reach of logistical companies.
S.F. Express has been experimenting for the past two years and the third generation drones will operate in seven areas of China in 2015.
The aircraft can fly for up to 16 minutes carrying a parcel weighing 1kg.
Source: Daily Mail