Sustainable drone delivery company Aerit plans to pilot its services on a Swedish archipelago, in collaboration with the cleantech company ICAx, the Research Institutes of Sweden (RISE) and the Norrtälje municipality in Sweden.
The one-year project will study the benefits of drones in last-mile transport, in the hope of accelerating the implementation of climate-neutral logistics. The Norrtälje municipality was chosen for its many islands and large rural areas, as these are expected to provide an ideal area to pilot drone delivery. The project has been selected for funding by the Swedish innovation agency Vinnova via the Drones in Service of the Climate for Autumn of 2021 program. The project builds on Aerit’s drone delivery platform, which aims to provide on-demand access to a network of autonomous sky couriers soon. Looking to the future, Aerit plans to launch continuous delivery services in select areas around Sweden in 2022.
Lei Chen, the project’s lead researcher at RISE, said, “Drone delivery has the potential to reduce emissions from last-mile logistics. With reduced delivery time, it also helps to improve the service quality and accessibility in rural areas, which could support behavioral changes toward a climate-neutral society. We will, through the project, conduct research to generate insights on the solution’s potential to create societal benefits.”
Emma Lindahl, co-lead at ICAx, the innovation hub of ICA Gruppen, said, “We have a high level of enthusiasm for participation in this pilot study together with Peter Horwitz, the store owner of ICA Nära Gräddö Skärgårdshandel and all pilot partners. Of course, drone delivery is a quickly developing field and we believe that the time is right to start exploring. The study aligns very well with some of our strategic ambitions and our wishes to make every day a little easier for our customers with sustainable transport solutions.”
Daniel Klemserud, the business development manager of the Norrtälje municipality, said, “Norrtälje municipality looks forward to working with this innovative project. We see multiple opportunities for all companies and residents in the archipelago, countryside and in our city centers. We believe this project has great potential for positive impact both environmentally and economically.”
Alexander Perrien, CEO of Aerit, added, “We are very excited about this project in collaboration with some of Sweden’s leading institutions. We hope to show that Aerit can improve the lives of those in areas covered by our services, offset the climate impact of last-mile delivery overall and, of course, make things more convenient for everyone involved.”