Amazon (AMZN) there is now the so-called Part-135 air carrier’s certificate, which must be held before a company can start delivering unmanned aerial vehicles. Amazon said it would use the approval to begin testing the deliveries, but declined to say when or where the tests would take place.
Amazon said it has confirmed more than 500 safety and performance processes as part of its application for certification.
The company has long said it plans to use drones to deliver in 30 minutes or less. CEO Jeff Bezos first announced the program in December 2013. Amazon says it has test centers in the United States and around the world today and has registered thousands of flight hours.
Since then, its progress has been slow. In June 201
9, Jeff Wilk, CEO of Amazon Worldwide Consumer, said the company planned to deliver by drone within months, but not yet. (Wilke will retire early next year.)
David Carbon, a former Boeing CEO, joined Amazon and took the lead in his drone program last March.
He called certification an important step.
“We will continue to develop and refine our technology to fully integrate drones for airspace delivery, and work closely with the FAA and other regulators around the world to realize our vision of 30-minute delivery,” Carbon said. .
Problems with social exclusion during the pandemic have increased interest in the use of delivery robots, but the technology is not yet ready for widespread use. The FAA is still developing provisions necessary for the widespread use of unmanned aerial vehicles, such as the remote identification of unmanned aerial vehicles.
Amazon is the third FAA-certified drone delivery company. UPS and Wing, a subsidiary of the parent company of Google Alphabet, both received theirs in 2019. UPS made medical deliveries at two hospitals in North Carolina. He also delivers recipes from CVS to The Villages, Florida, according to a UPS spokesman. Wing launches unmanned aerial vehicles in Christiansburg, Virginia, in October 2019.