One of the big trends at Commercial UAV Expo 2022 in Las Vegas was certainly the continuing growth of the drone delivery space, with plenty of companies showing off their solutions to help increase the size of the sector. Among the major players in that field in attendance for this year's show was A2Z Drone Delivery, who was showing off their newest delivery winch in their booth, as well as their own drone that can be used to carry that winch. One of the company's co-founders, Evan Hertafeld, was kind enough to take a few minutes to speak with Commercial UAV News about the company's newest developments and how they are moving the drone delivery space forward.
It's fair to say that A2Z Drone Delivery has come a long way, starting as an idea formed by students at Brown University, turning into the industry's first consumer-grade delivery winch for drones, and now just recently having released their newest universal drone delivery winch - the RDS2 - as well as an accompanying drone - the RDST - which, as Hertafeld explains, is an "off-the-shelf" drone that is simple to use and can be utilized by anyone with a basic understanding of drone piloting.
That universality is one of the major keys to what A2Z Drone Delivery brings to the table in the drone delivery space. While most drone delivery services require specialty packaging to ensure it will work with the winch and drone, A2Z Drone Delivery has developed a winch that is universal and able to carry any cardboard box, tool bag, or anything else that may need to be delivered. As Hertafeld put it, "Essentially, if you can slap a piece of tape on top, then we can deliver it."
One of the major barriers holding back the development of the drone delivery space is around safety. The fact is, it is not always possible for these drones to be able to safely land and deliver the product on the ground, whether it be due to people in the area being at risk with the drone flying that low or if a package is being delivered in any sort of terrain that presents landing problems for the drone.
A2Z Drone Delivery solves this issue by allowing for a delivery to take place without the drone needing to land, which they accomplish with a tethering mechanism. The drone has the package on a string, and once the package hits the ground it is automatically released from the drone, which then knows to fly away.
The drone delivery market is growing at a rapid pace already, but work is still needed for it to grow into the full force many believe it will ultimately reach. Things like the safe delivery processes and universality of packaging developed by A2Z Drone Delivery is exactly the kind of innovation that will be needed for this space to continue taking huge strides forward.