Amazon has unveiled its latest and next-gen Prime Air drone at its “Re: Mars” event. Amazon says it can fly up to 24 km and deliver packages under 2.5 kg to customers in less than 30 minutes. According to Amazon, its safety feature makes it “robust and stable as commercial aircraft”
The drone has a hybrid design, It can easily transitions between these two modes – from vertical-mode to airplane mode, and back to vertical mode. Amazon said that they have used a combination of thermal cameras, depth cameras, and sonar to detect hazards. Then advance algorithm and machine learning will help to detect a static and moving object in its path and navigate through them.
The drone will use a small area around the delivery location that is clear of people, animals, or obstacles. “We determine this using explainable stereo vision in parallel with sophisticated AI algorithms trained to detect people and animals from above,” said Amazon’s consumer worldwide CEO Jeff Wilke.
The drone is also part of Amazon’s plan to make half of its shipments net zero carbon by 2030, and eventually expand that commitment across all of its shipments, Amazon said in a blog post. Amazon says that they will start using the drones in the coming months. But they have not mentioned where and how. Amazon doesn’t have good track record though. In 2013 they first introduced drone for delivery but they eventually shut the service for legal reason. Amazon is still waiting for approval from the FAA for this design.