The U.S e-commerce giant has been looking for a way to simplify its product delivery. They recently developed what could be the best method for delivery.
Recently, Amazon was awarded a patent to a flying warehouse that acts as a launchpad for drones that will deliver products to its buyers within minutes.
This is how this system will work: When an Amazon customer places an order, a drone or an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) will fly down and deliver the package. Amazon explained that this would save power as the drones will be gliding down from the warehouse instead of taking off from the ground up.
The plans for this project could be described similar to an airship or blimp, the “airborne fulfillment center” (AFC) is such that it would float at an altitude of around 45,000. The airship will be stocked with lots of products.
According to the patent filing, “When the UAV departs the AFC, it may descend from the high altitude of the AFC using little or no power other than to guide the UAV towards its delivery destination and/or to stabilize the UAV as it descends,”.
The drones would be able to communicate with each other via a mesh network to give information such as weather and route. UAVs could also recharge on the airship.
The airship could also be used as a giant advertising board, allowing customers to order the items on display. All of these can be ordered “within minutes”.
Amazon’s filing reveals several uses for the warehouse blimp. One example is at a football match where customers may want certain items such as food or merchandise. Ahead of the game, the AFC could stock up on items and deploy these during the game with drones when they are ordered.
Earlier this month, Amazon successfully trialed its first delivery by drone in the U.K. and is currently pushing ahead with plans to make this widely available. The U.S. firm files and is awarded many patents but it does not necessarily mean the ideas will become reality.