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How much weight can a delivery drone carry?

Not long ago, we considered drones to be a futuristic thing. But today, the times have changed. Thanks to technology, we can now use drones for different tasks, be it commercial or personal. 

Drones have garnered a lot of attention, and the users of them are increasing exponentially. You can even buy a drone for yourself. You can use it to carry and deliver things. But before that, it’ll be good to know how much weight a drone can carry.  

Drone carrying capabilities

You’ll be surprised to know that a drone can carry a camera as well as a human! Yes, you heard it right. An average drone can carry up to 1-4 pounds (0.5-2 kgs) of weight. This is perfect for delivering small items. However, a professional drone can lift even 200 kgs. The payload capacity is dependent on the power-to-weight ratio a drone possesses. 

Types of drones and their weight limits

Microdrones: 

Microdrones are used for aerial photography and rescue operations. They can lift lightweight objects such as vlogging cameras and search cams that weigh about 4.5-44 pounds (2-20 kgs). 

Heavy lift drones:

Heavy lift drones have high payload capacity. They are used to take scenic shots in movies from an elevated view. These drones can lift heavy cameras that are impossible for a man to carry alone. 

Consumer drones:

Consumer drones carry smaller weights and can be used to deliver small items. Anything that weighs around half a pound should be good to go. 

Prosumer drones:

The prosumer drone is a hybrid between consumer and professional drones. It can carry weights up to 6.5 pounds (3 kgs). Prosumer drones like Prime Air are used to deliver packages door-to-door. They are perfect to carry moderate weights. They use sophisticated systems of technologies for them to deliver packages safely.  

They have 4-8 propellers and are guided remotely by a stationed operator. The operator can track the movements of the drone while they are flying. Various drone delivery software uses technologies like 4G and GPS to get real-time flight data of the drones. A thorough location tagging system done by the operator helps in the safe landing and take-off of the drones. 

Factors that affect how much weight a drone can carry

There are a plethora of factors that affect the payload capacity of a drone. Let’s have a look at them. 

  1. Size and number of the propellers: The size and number of propellers are directly proportional to the weight a drone can carry
  2. Motor Power: A durable motor power can increase the weight the drone can carry substantially. 
  3. Battery: You need a good battery life for a drone to spin longer and carry heavier weights.
  4. Flight time: Heavier the drone is, the less will be its flight time. 

Who can fly a delivery drone?

A delivery drone is an unmanned aerial vehicle. Its operator can fly it remotely by using a controller. The drone has special sensors and cameras that allow it to stay away from air obstructions like telephone wires, hot air balloons, buildings, etc. The operator has the whole flight data on a real-time basis and can control the drone, the way he likes. 

The technology has even advanced to the point where drones have inbuilt systems and AI mechanisms that allows them to get 3D imaging of the surroundings. It can process the intrusions and through geo-tagging facilities can make deliveries to the required spot all on its own.  

Some interesting facts about drone delivery

  • A company named Griff 300 lifted the heaviest weight a drone can carry, a whooping 225 kgs!
  • FPT industrial and Forvola lifted a 5 ft. tall box weighing about 220 lbs. It could hold the package for a minute. This broke the Guinness book of world record for the heaviest parcel a drone can carry. 
  • Ehang launched the first-ever drone that could carry a human!
  • Amazon was the market maker of drone deliveries. The amazon drones can deliver packages that weigh around 4 pounds (2 kgs).
  • DHL partnered with Ehang to deliver parcels that weigh about 11 pounds (5 kgs).
  • Shell is using drones to get an aerial view of the operations of their European oil plants. 

Conclusion

Drones are not a marketing gimmick anymore. They are here to stay. It can be a valuable addition for personal and commercial use. They have a plethora of features, and you can get maximum usage out of it if you want to deliver packages, take cinematic shots, monitor your surroundings, and the list goes on. 

Companies across the globe are innovating and exploring the possibilities of drone delivery. Drones hold untapped potential to benefit us during the pandemic time. It can reduce human touchpoints and ensure social distancing. 

We are here to see more of it. 

 

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