Tokyo, Japan - Japan Airlines (JAL) will begin a drone delivery testing together with the city of Yabu located in a mountainous area in southern Japan.
The test aims to confirm the feasibility of drone operations to transport critical goods in unpopulated areas. The national airline of the country has been working with the Terra Drone Corporation since last summer on the project.
The test flights will be carried out with the fixed-wing drones that are capable to match flight plans and flight data with various communication methods.
JAL and Terra Drone will aim to solve regional issues by providing logistics services using UAVs, such as the delivery of pharmaceuticals and other emergency supplies,
JAL said in a statement.
The first tests will be conducted between Yoka Municipal Hospital and the Day Clinic. Terra's drones will deliver relief supplies such as bandages and over-the-counter medicine following a route of 25 km (13.4 nautical miles) over the Yagi river.
JAL says that it intends to create a new type of service in the air transportation industry, delivering emergency goods and tools such as medical supplies in remote areas. The airline thinks the new business model will help both JAL and Terra Drone to achieve their sustainable development goals” while leading a revolution in the Air Cargo Industry.
The city of Yabu has already used drones in agriculture and is now looking to benefit from drone technology in other fields, such as disaster relief, logistics, and medical care.