Amazon proposes dedicated airspace for delivery drones

By Dan Wilson July 29, 2015 - 3:59 pm

Amazon Prime Air HomeAmazon has proposed that a specific area of airspace be dedicated to unmanned remote controlled aircraft (drones). At a NASA conference in California, they suggested drones should be allowed to fly at 200 to 400ft (61 to 122m).

Air traffic control for drones would be an automated computer system. A no flyzone would operate between 400ft and 500ft to act as a buffer zone so manned aircraft would never come into contact with drones. No fly zones would also operate around airports.

Gur Kimch of Prime Air says: “The way we guarantee the greatest safety is by requiring that as the level of complexity of the airspace increases, so does the level of sophistication of the vehicle. Under our proposal everybody has to be collaborative – vehicles must be able to talk to each other and avoid each other as the airspace gets denser at low altitudes.”

So are we really going to see the drones thing happen? It does seem so.

And whilst initially the idea of delivery drones did feel like a bit of a gimmick, it’s becoming increasingly clear that some companies are serious about the possibilities. Google has already tested the tech in the Australian outback. Alibaba in China is already trialling a drone delivery service and DHL has used drones to deliver vital medical supplies to an island in the North Sea.

  • Richard
    6 years ago

    The whole thing is a dumb idea. For heavens sake if it was life saving medicine to an emergency it might be a different matter. but junk from Amazon, CDs DVD’s, etc. just shear stupidity.

    • 6 years ago

      I think it’s a great idea. It’s revolutionary. It has it’s risk sure, but most new new crazy ideas are all dangerous at the start. Who would of thought a man could sky dive from space? Or even trips to space? They both sound pretty dangerous to me. How about a 10 ton piece of metal flying through the sky at 700mph?. Who ever thought that cars would be self driven in the next 10 years? That sounds pretty dangerous to me. Who ever thought that you could use your phone as a way to pay for stuff at checkouts. Onwards and upwards. I’m all for it. I think it’s great. You go Amazon. !!

  • 6 years ago

    When I first read this I thought about all the other aircraft that operate close to the ground. Police Helicopters and Air Ambulances were top of my list. A Police Helicopter operating close to the ground could be monitoring traffic jams or escaped criminals or indeed trying to catch a criminal. Air Ambulances could be involved in trying to save a life etc. Yet Amazon wants to ban them to lower heights where such things as power cables and indeed buildings could be a hazard or higher where they might not be able to carry out their function as well or even at all. And what about the Military who have to train at low altitudes?

    It sounds as if Amazon only cares about Amazon and the rest can go to hell.

  • James
    6 years ago

    You’d have to have MI5 and CIA monitoring every single one of these drones to make sure an unregistered drone isn’t flying in the air space. Whilst terrorism is still a major issue in Western society this is a silly fantasy that Amazon needs to drop.

    Great idea if world peace was ever accomplished.

    • 6 years ago

      Imagine a commercially available drone(and I have seen numerous adverts for them). Packed with high explosive heading with pin point accuracy to MI5’s HQ in London or GCHQ in Cheltenham or indeed any one of thousands of potential targets, even possible Buckingham Palace obeying all the rules but one(the high explosive) but controlled by a spotty faced fanatic of one or other Terrorist Group.

      No the thought is far to horrible. There has to be an overall monitoring control trying to ensure that it can identify any and all rough drones. This is likely to be very expensive so may I suggest that as Amazon is the driving force behind the idea that they pay for such control.

  • Paul
    6 years ago

    Will these drones lower a barcode scanner and stylus on a rope in order to collect the signature?

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