Ukraine’s national postal operator Nova Poshta has conducted the country’s first parcel delivery using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV).
The company carried out a test dispatch of the parcel from Kiev to Kharkiv and back, with the parcel leaving the airfield at 07:00am and arriving in Kharkiv at 12:00pm. The return flight was also completed in five hours.
Oleksandr Bulba, CEO of Nova Poshta, said, “For the first time in the world, a UAV with a parcel has flown a distance of 480km. No other logistics company has yet dared to do this other than Nova Poshta. We plan to reduce the flight time to three hours and scale the drone delivery service, making it available to most customers.”
Developed and supervised by Ukrainian technology firm Aerodron, the package was delivered directly to the airfield from the sorting office, where it was loaded into a special compartment on the drone.
The UAV was monitored by an operator who could take control of the device in case of an emergency. For additional safety, the drone had been fitted with a parachute and was accompanied by an additional aircraft during testing.
The next test flight to Lviv is scheduled to take place later this month with plans to launch commercial operations as early as 2022.