Amazon released its latest design for drone delivery on Sunday, to much expected tremendous reaction on social media. Many were amazed and excited by the footage presented in the two minute video showcasing the new delivery device. But many others remain skeptical of the new technology Amazon has drawn up. Tech junkies on social media began to raise questions like, “How long would it take for the delivery to be used in real life?” or “when they are launched, what will ensure those flying robots won’t crash into buildings, birds or other obstacles?”
Many answers to those questions lie in a pending patent that Amazon published two months ago. On Oct. 1, the U.S. Patent And Trademark Office showed the retailer’s filing for “sense and avoid for automated vehicles,” which details how its UAVs would use laser, sonar and other signals to perform necessary tasks like planning routes, negotiating obstacles and landing.
Gur Kimchi the so called leader of prime air who was immediately made aware of the public’s questions on the video was released on Sunday ensured that the service would not be released until amazon proved to the public that it was a safe and reliable way of delivery.
Amazon stated in their patent “While there are many beneficial uses of these vehicles, they also have many drawbacks… For example, UAVs require involvement to ensure that the vehicles do not collide with other UAVs or other objects.”
According to this pending patent amazon plans to have a laser-based rangefinder spin on the drone’s propellers. The device is designed to allow the drone to detect objects in a 360-degree plane around the device.
Amazon also plans to have transmitters in fixed positions on or near “gas stations, landing areas, cell towers”so the drone will always know where it is and where to go to avoid crashing into objects. There is also talks about a transmitter-loaded landing pad, which the company says may be used in areas without GPS–like fulfillment centers–to help guide drones land safely.
Amazon detailed some of these technologies in their patent which read “In some implementations, the wireless mesh network may be used to deliver content and/or other information to other computing resources, such as personal computers, electronic book reading devices, audio players, mobile telephones, tablets, desktops, laptops, etc.,” “For example, the mesh network may be used to deliver electronic book content to electronic book reading devices of