The manufacturer and service company of automated mid-range cargo drones, Dronamics, has announced that it has chosen the island of Malta as the initial European operational base for its automated delivery business. unmanned.
Dronamika, which has already struck partnerships with global freight companies DHL and Helmann Worldwide Logistics, has chosen Malta to operate its same-day medium-haul drone freight delivery service flown by its aircraft. fixed wings Black Swan. The company selected the island of the Mediterranean after long consultation with various national civil aviation authorities across Europe, as well as with its key customers. Dronamics says it plans to launch its automated missions, beyond the line of sight (BVLOS) next year.
At face value, Malta may seem a curious option to centralize the company’s first core base. That position in the Mediterranean adds 166 miles to any flight from the Maltese capital Valletta to Palermo in Sicily, and 341 miles to Naples. Roughly the same distances will increase with each drone flight to northern Europe there.
But the island was also a historic step for the air transportation of cargo, mail, and other cargo between Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. The Maltese authorities are now hoping to extend that 20th century activity to the emerging drone businesses of this era. Just last week, the SwissDrones long-distance unmanned helicopter company carried out an extended series of BVLOS test flights over and around Malta, with a view to developing the use of its aircraft in the United States. region.
Dronamics says it is convinced that Malta’s history as a hub for aviation transport connecting the surrounding regions and continents – and the country’s drive to adapt airspace and – its control systems for UAVs – will make it an ideal environment to base and build its drone cargo delivery service to Europe and beyond.
“Malta has developed into a strong hub with a strong aviation cluster that can support our expansion as the world’s largest cargo drone airline,” said Svilen Rangelov, the Chief Executive of Dronamics. “We are very excited that Malta will be the first country in Europe to serve, and its strategic position and great commercial heritage make it the perfect place for our European base.”
“Malta is the perfect operational and strategic location for our first Black Swan flights,” adds Dronamics COO Sergio Oliveira e Silva. “We aim to connect Malta to Italy first, where the Italian Civil Aviation Authority has established testbed airports for remote piloted aircraft system tests. Transport Malta and the Directorate of Civil Aviation have given us a clear path to establish our first trade routes and aim to make the first demonstration flights in 2022. ”
The support of Maltese officials will also be helpful in facilitating the certification of Black Swan drones in the country. Dronamics says the aircraft – which can carry up to 350 kg of cargo over maximum distances of 2,500 km – operates at a cost between 50% and 80% less than existing aircraft.
In July, DHL joined the company in launching future medium-distance, cross-border, and intercity drone cargo delivery missions. The previous month, German freight forwarder Helmann Worldwide Logistics announced it would operate longer delivery flights across the European Union.