Amazon Delivery Drone could cut Greenhouse Gas emmisions

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A scientific study published this week in the journal Nature Communications shows that using small electrically-charged drone to deliver commercial packages generally consumes less energy per package than delivery trucks.

A delivery drone is an unmanned aerial vehicle utilized to transport packages, food or other goods. UAVs can transport goods for example medicines and vaccines, and retrieve medical samples, into and out of remote or otherwise inaccessible regions. Different postal companies from Australia, Switzerland, Germany, Singapore and Ukraine have undertaken various drone trials as they test the feasibility and profitability of unmanned delivery drone services.

A scientific study published this week in the journal Nature Communications shows that using small electrically-charged drones to deliver commercial packages generally consumes less energy per package than delivery trucks. The researchers developed scenarios to compare diesel truck and electric drone delivery. They compared estimated emissions from trips in California to deliveries in Missouri since the two states have such different profiles for electric power production.

“Although drone-based package delivery faces many technological challenges, safety issues, regulatory concerns and system uncertainties, in this initial estimate we find significant promise in the use of drones to reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions in the freight sector compared with traditional pathways,” the researchers said.

They’re still more a dream than reality, but aerial delivery drones could release less of the gases that lead to climate change, like carbon dioxide. Under the right circumstances, Amazon’s dream of drone delivery packages may cut greenhouse gas emissions.