Flirtey is at it again, making United States history on the drone delivery front. The Nevada-based startup will conduct the first ship-to-shore drone delivery in the US on June 23 in Cape May, New Jersey. The purpose of the demonstration is to prove how drones can provide life-saving aid to victims of a disaster when roads are damaged.
Flirtey’s drones will carry medical samples between an on-shore medical relief camp at Cape May and a test facility on a vessel stationed off the coast. In a round trip, Flirtey drones will also deliver medical supplies from the vessel to the on-shore medical camp.
Flirtey has partnered with Dr. Timothy Amukele, an assistant professor of pathology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, for these test flights. Dr. Amukele has previously led successful research on the viability of using medical drones to transport blood samples and blood products.
“Imagine a future where in the event of a natural disaster like Hurricane Sandy, Flirtey drones rapidly deliver emergency medical supplies, food and water,” said Flirtey CEO Matt Sweeny. “This demonstration is helping to make that future a reality, and taking us one step closer to Flirtey’s mission to save lives and change lifestyles.”
Maersk, the maritime shipping giant, used drones earlier in 2016 to deliver a small box of cookies (watch the video below) to one of its tanker ships in a seaport town in Denmark. It took about one-and-a-half minutes for the drone to deliver the cookies across a distance of one kilometer. Maersk is looking to use drones to cut down on the costs it takes to use barges for deliveries.
Flirtey completed both the first FAA-approved drone delivery and first FAA-approved urban drone delivery in US history. To honor those events, Flirtey’s six-rotor delivery drone was recently accepted into the collection of the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum.