Currently, UAVs are anticipated to have the most impact in the logistics industry where urgent express shipments are required in crowded megacities, and in rural areas that lack adequate infrastructure.
Urban First and Last-Mile: “Linking Up with!”
Rapid urbanization is a key feature of recent years and the near future, resulting in congested roads, pollution, and decreased efficiency caused by delays in the flow of people and goods.
A major part of the problem is urban first and last mile delivery, and demand for this is likely to increase as online shopping increases.
The deployment of delivery drones will provide a major relief for inner cities, taking traffic off the roads and into the skies
In the first scenario, long-haul deliveries arrive from outside the city to be sorted at existing warehouses where they are separated automatically based on certain criteria and then collected by UAVs from the conveyer belts for delivery. Customer smart phones, enabled by an app and GPS allows online placing of orders and tracking of mobile customers for flexible collection, or delivery.
In another scenario, the UAV would be positioned on top of a delivery truck, waiting for a parcel from the driver when it will scan the barcode on the parcel, and using GPS and take off to the destination. Afterwards the UAV will hook up with the truck for its next delivery run, recharging while it is there.
Some benefits from deploying UAVs in last mile deliveries, and collection, include reducing waiting times from 2 to 3 days to 2 to 3 minutes, while UAV-based delivery is targeting 30min deliveries at $1.00 for 5lb within 10miles, compared to same day deliveries for $4.99 to $8.99 and next day deliveries for $5.25 to $12.92.
Rural Delivery, “Hard to Reach!”
The potential of UAV-based logistics is also evident in rural locations with poor infrastructure or challenging geographic conditions, not only in emergency applications, but because low-volume remote locations represent a costly part of standard networks. Furthermore, they typically require a non-standard infrastructure tailored to regional specifics (e.g., mountainous settings or island delivery). UAVs therefor replace existing (and complex) processes involving cars, boats, and postal workers.
Pass me that wrench?
UAVs could support INTRA-PLANT transport as well as the SUPPLIER-TO-PLANT emergency deliveries, including on-site express delivery of items that are crucial to maintaining operations (e.g., delivery of tools, machine parts, and lubricants).
UAVs INSIDE THE WAREHOUSE environment for more flexible and accessible high-bay storage. This is based on the self-organization of machines and interaction among systems (IOT). The sensors allow the system to independently observe and analyse the surrounding environment so that the UAV is able to navigate through a warehouse, find logistical objects and carry out an inventory check.
Manage for a fleet, not a flight. Much of the experimentation to date has been hands-on and high-touch involving a small number of UAVs. However, enterprises should expect that the actual number of UAVs needed will vary by situation. As such, they should work to acquire and manage a fleet of UAVs, some of which will likely be of different types, based on the business application in a highly automated manner.
Plan global, think local. Many organizations have intentions to leverage UAVs in multiple geographies. Although we encourage enterprises to prepare for such global deployments, these plans will have to be adjusted to accommodate local guidelines and regulations, which vary dramatically based on jurisdiction.
Design for data collection and analysis. Enterprises will use sensor data collected by UAVs to guide work processes and generate insight. The sensor data that is collected can be used for preventive maintenance, operational intelligence and/or predictive maintenance.
For this reason, companies will need a data management platform to capture, process and analyze the incoming data to identify notable events and create reports.
Change how work is done. To take full advantage of UAVs, it is recommended that enterprises see them as an active part of the business process. This approach changes the role of existing employees (e.g., field operators, analysts, IT operations), as well as the data, IT infrastructure and operations.
In the oil and gas pipeline maintenance example, UAVs would function as new “digital workers,” taking on tasks that were previously undertaken by humans, such as leak detection, perimeter surveillance and right-of-way monitoring. Ultimately, this approach could improve asset integrity, mitigate risks, facilitate faster decision-making and increase executive oversight.
AIRBORNE UAV Platforms:
A DRONES EYE VIEW.
AIRBORNE DRONES provide the logistics manager with a complete airborne UAV platform, that enables remote sensing and record geo-referenced data types that, if required, can include:
Airborne Drones focuses on the design, manufacturing and marketing of long range sUAVs (10 and 20kms), with payloads of up to 8kgs, for industrial strength commercial use. Long range drone products have the potential to have huge benefits for commerce and business. Solutions can be developed and/or customised to meet specific client requirements. Services can include support and training during implementation, as well as post implementation.
Airborne Drones services an international base of clients ranging from South Africa to the UAE. Clients include representatives from the following industries: Marketing, Real Estate, Security, Agriculture, Game farms, Wildlife management, Electrical installations, Telecommunications, Travel and tourism, Sheet metal manufacturing, Satellite electronics, Wind farms, Industrial Rope Access, Restaurant and Food, Environmental Affairs, Military Applications.