Multicopter Based Delivery Systems: Any existing projects?

Over at Pigeon Post Systems were are in the process of setting up an open standards platform for a fully automated package delivery system.

Check out www.pigeonpost.co for more details but the question I'm asking here is:

Any existing UAV projects or systems used to deliver physical packages?

(I know about the uav tower building project but as that was a closed internal system it's not really what I'm looking for.)

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is this legal?  I thought commercial UAS uses were illegal

http://www.suasnews.com/2012/07/17701/faa-has-authorized-106-govern...

This is a link to a story that can be found on the right side of the main page on this site. Looks like at least on a very small scale things are changing.

everything on the "approved" list is either a government entity/agency or major university.  Still not a lot of help for UAV entrepreneurs  

Sure, this is what I would expect.

Money is what is driving UAVs into being legal, public and politics are afraid of it. Government and university's are on a short list of groups with big money and influence. The UAV market is a sure fire win for whoever can get to it. The general public has no comprehension as to the level of automated transportation we are looking at. This new market will be to any scheduled transportation as what robots and other automation are to the manufacturing industry. Anything with a planned route airborne or surface, will be a "drone" sooner than we expect. School bus, parking lot security, police patrol, UPS, cross town, cross country, news, mapping, trash, construction planning, census (traffic, geo, etc).... Expect that even the guy that comes by and reads your meter will be replaced. 

And the last thing anyone in authority want to see is you take a slice of the pie that their supporters are trying to buy from them. 

Wish it was different, I'd love to taste the pie myself, just a bite!

Hey, I'm working on getting mine to deliver burritos! Check out my winch:

http://youtu.be/wGwa2DG2Cs0

Hi Aaron

Nice set up you have there!  I don't think winches are the future though it's a good stepping stone!

I think i'll use this on the pigeon post blog!

Nathan

Hi Nathan,

The reason for the winch is that customers cannot be trusted. The delivery system is designed so that the copter will always be out of reach, and if you pull on the string very little force is transferred to the quadcopter. What is the pigeon post blog?

Aaron

What is the pigeon post blog?

look at the top of this page

have a look at our OpenRelief project based out of UK and Japan. We are building a number of payload carrying Drones.

Ed

The general public has no comprehension as to the level of automated transportation we are looking at.

I predict that in ten to twenty-years, UPS and FedEx will be flying pilotless 747's.  Heck, a CAT-1 airplane can autoland today, and often do.  The pilot doesn't touch the controls until he needs to taxi to the gate.  Not much of a reach to replace the pilot altogether.

Expect that even the guy that comes by and reads your meter will be replaced. 

Already happened.  The water company put a wifi box on my water meter and we don't have meter readers any more.  A van drives by once a month and reads every meter in the neighborhood in five minutes.

Hi Edward,

I've taken a look at OpenRelief and signed up for the email list.  Where are you based in the UK?  I'd love to meet up to discuss how we can develop our ideas.

Nathan

Hi there,

I've been working through an algorithm for accurate ultrasonic autolanding. I've published it here:

Download PDF

The next step would be a PCB which interfaces to the Pixhawk through a SPI or similiar, some firmware, and some additional code in the Pixhawk system.

The cost of the landing pad would be very low as most of the electronics is in the quadcopter, so I hope it would be suitable for Pigeon Post, Matternet, Flying Donkey, etc.

Regards, Stuart

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