Daimler leaves the usual route – the street – and discovers air travel for itself: Mercedes-Benz Vans participate in the development of drone as a transportation tool with the project “Vans & Drones”.
Vans & Drones – Help from Above & the Future of Delivery
Since early in the summer of 2015 the company’s Future Transportation Systems (FTS) unit has been working together with Matternet, a transport drone startup from Silicon Valley, on the concept’s actual implementation. The Vito is the first ever production vehicle to be designed as a mobile receiving station and landing site for drones.
Safe, autonomous landing of the drone is confirmed using an app.
This involves using an application to link up an independent system, in which drones are deployed as a means of transport, with the van. The drone locates the van via GPS. The van scans the airspace and transmits a light signal to ensure safe delivery. Only then does the drone land on the van’s roof fully autonomously with the help of an infrared landing guidance beam. The idea of using the van as a landing site is as unusual as it is ingenious. After all, drones are never held up by tailbacks or busy urban traffic. They are fast and efficient and do not produce any emissions. The direct air route is usually shorter than the land route – an unbeatable advantage, especially when something is needed fast.
3 Drone Delivery Application Use Cases
E-commerce – On-demand delivery. Integrated with Matternet Stations, Mercedes-Benz vans and customer distribution facilities.
Humanitarian – Reliable transportation of diagnostics and medicine, regardless of road conditions.
Healthcare – Fast, predictable and reliable transportation of diagnostic samples and medical items between healthcare facilities.