SEOUL, South Korea - On April 16th, Doosan Mobility Innovation distributed protective masks to residents on Gapa, Mara, and Biyang Islands with its hydrogen fuel cell drone. The event was executed in collaboration with Jeju Special Self-Governing Province. A total of 15,000 masks were sent to these local islands, a three-month supply for 490 residents, presuming two masks per week.
The drone flew 8.8 kilometers from Jeju to reach ports on Mara Island. It also distributed protective masks in two consecutive trips to Gapa and Biyang Island. TruWeather Solutions provided accurate maritime weather and wind data using their micro-model.
As pharmacy or post office, the official channel for mask supply, is unavailable in remote islands, drone delivery will prove to be an innovative solution in COVID-19 period. Won Hee-ryong, governor of Jeju Providence stated, “As there are no pharmacy or post office in Gapa Island, there were concerns about public mask supply. Now I can be rest assured with drone delivery.”
It was the first BVLOS (Beyond Visual Line of Sight) flight conducted for COVID-19 relief, attained through special waiver of Korea’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport (MOLIT). In the event, DMI drone DS30 encompassed approximate 30km of flight distance, but the distance has no limits as the flight control is LTE-based.
DMI maintained a stable performance by autonomous mission flight despite heavy winds, demonstrating DMI’s strong capabilities in both hardware and software. In the condition of 10m/s wind, DS30 could pull off the speed of 5m/s, but this speed more than doubles in the better weather condition. DMI R&D team is further developing its model to reinforce its wind resistance and speed.
In the light of long endurance feature of hydrogen fuel cell drone that can fly 2 hours, contactless delivery can open a new frontier with drones. DMI drone can cover 40km of distance based on round trip, implying 13 times more area than conventional battery drones.
The Jeju government is working with DMI to expand a drone delivery service to much needed medical supplies. Earlier this month, DMI conducted test flights on the providence.
Drone delivery can minimize human interaction and drastically reduce the possibility of COVID-19 infection. At an era when facial masks are becoming the essential part of our lives, this long endurance hydrogen fuel-cell drone can make contactless delivery a reality.
About Doosan Mobility Innovation
Doosan’s fuel cell business is future growth engine and focuses on the mobile applications of fuel cell technology. Doosan Mobility Innovation (DMI) is a 100% invested company by Doosan Corporation, a global company with 18.5 billion dollars revenue. With build-safe system, DMI is heavily investing in UAV application, accelerating the growth of long-endurance flight and drone industry. DMI launched its product DP30 and DS30 in CES 2020 to US market.