FedEx Corp subsidiary FedEx Express has begun testing last-mile drone delivery of goods between Shannon Airport and Foynes Port in Ireland.
In collaboration with Future Mobility Campus Ireland (FMCI) Air, FedEx Express has undertaken its first scheduled drone last-mile delivery flight in Ireland. The delivery marked the launch of a trial service delivering goods from FMCI, based at Shannon Airport, County Clare, to Foynes Port, County Limerick, Ireland’s second-largest port operator and largest bulk port company.
The drone deliveries were conducted by cargo drone delivery specialist Skyports on behalf of the FMCI Air consortium, which also includes Avtrain, Shannon Group and FMCI.
The delivery of the first FedEx Express package in Ireland via drone demonstrates the benefits of drone delivery for last-mile service and the commitment by FedEx to exploring the latest innovations in last-mile delivery, according to the company.
A month-long trial will see a number of beyond-visual-line-of-sight (BVLOS) test flights conducted, with deliveries anticipated to take less than 13 minutes.
“Testing the incorporation of BVLOS drone freight deliveries into global supply chain logistics is the future happening now. The location of this trial from the FMCI base adjacent to Shannon Airport, in controlled airspace with full air traffic control services, demonstrates the integration of manned aircraft operations with simultaneous vertiport drone operations becoming the norm and paving the way for advanced air mobility,” said Julie Garland of the FMCI Air Consortium.