Learn about Wing Delivery
Wing aircrafts are custom-designed to deliver packages safely, reliably, and efficiently. Our UAS traffic management system (UTM) plans the best route, taking into account safety, efficiency, and aviation regulation.
Delivery Benefits
Wing’s delivery drone is one of the safest ways to transport for items. Our aircraft have flown tens of thousands of flights, and we’ve been delivering everyday goods to doorsteps, driveways, and backyards. Wing complies with all regulations in each area we operate, and adheres to an extremely rigorous safety framework. We have multiple levels of redundancy built into our aircraft and operations, and these have been thoroughly tested throughout the 70,000 test flights we’ve conducted.
Your items can be quickly delivered to you by Wing, at a fraction of the carbon emissions generated by the delivery of items by cars or trucks. In Australia’s ACT territory (pop. 419,200), it is estimated that by 2030 drone delivery could reduce traffic congestion by up to 35 million vehicle kilometres each year. With road transportation accounting for 69% of the territory’s greenhouse gas emissions, Wing provides a helpful source of emissions reductions.
With Wing, we help bring neighborhoods closer together. We’re partnering with local businesses to help them deliver goods to community members within minutes. We strive to partner with community members, through in-person engagement in cities where we fly, to understand the needs of each person. We also welcome feedback and ideas through our website contact form, here.
How Wing Delivery works
Wing has designed a drone that can pick up a package, fly to a designated site, hover over the delivery area, and gently lower the package to the ground at a precise location. Our drones map a safe route to a designated location using our UAS traffic management system (UTM). The UTM plans a flight path from take-off to landing, avoiding other Wing drones and obstacles.
1. Order.
Customers order goods from a merchant via the Wing mobile app. Goods can include meals, beverages, over-the-counter pharmaceuticals, and other essential goods. After receiving an order, the merchant packs the goods in a specialised package and requests that Wing send a drone to pick-up the package.
2. Flight Planning.
Wing software automatically calculates the route from the launch site to the customer, taking into account safety and regulatory restrictions. The flight plan is then uploaded to the drone.
3. Package Pick Up.
The drone launches automatically and proceeds to the merchant pick up area, then hovers at a safe height above ground (7m) while the merchant connects the package to an extendable tether beneath the drone.
4. Delivery.
The drone climbs to cruise height and commences forward flight. At the customer destination, the drone enters hover and descends to delivery height 7m above ground. The drone lowers the tether and automatically releases the package containing the ordered merchandise.
5. Recovery.
The drone climbs back to cruise height and returns to the Wing site. At the Wing site, the drone lands automatically on a charging pad to prepare for the next delivery.
How much does drone delivery cost?
Testers are able to purchase a range of food and convenience items and Wing will deliver these items without a delivery charge during testing.
How much weight can the drone carry?
Our drones can carry packages that weigh up to 1.5 kilograms (kg).
How does Wing know where to deliver packages?
Using the Wing App, our team will verify a safe delivery zone where the package will be lowered from 7 meters to the location that is viewable on our Wing app.
How do testers take the package off the drone?
Our testers do not interact directly with the delivery drone. The aircraft hovers around 7 metres above the ground and lowers the package to the ground slowly, attached to a line. We ask testers to remain 2 metres away from the package drop-off point to avoid interfering with the delivery process. Once on the ground, the package disconnects from the line (which is then reeled back in) and the drone flies away. The tester can then safely pick up the package.
How do you test your drones to ensure they can fly safely and reliably?
Wing’s delivery drone service is one of the safest ways to transport items. Our aircraft have flown tens of thousands of flights, and we’ve been delivering everyday goods to doorsteps, driveways and backyards. Wing complies with all regulations in each area we operate, and adheres to an extremely rigorous safety framework. We have multiple levels of redundancy built into our aircraft and operations, and these have been thoroughly tested throughout the 70,000 test flights we’ve conducted.
How are the drones better for the environment compared to ground transportation?
Road transportation accounts for 12% of Finland’s greenhouse gas emissions, and replacing some of those road journeys with delivery drones could significantly curb emissions. Research we’ve commissioned in Canberra, Australia shows that a car driving to a store emits 16 times more carbon emissions per trip than our delivery drones, and an on-demand driving delivery service generates 22 times more CO2. These energy savings are a result of the to the energy-efficient all-electric design of our delivery drones.
How close do the drones get to people?
We've been operating with permissions that require that testers remain at least 2 metres away from the drones. Due to the accuracy of our drone delivery system, this distance ensures we can deliver to testers in a location that is convenient for them while maintaining the highest level of safety. Another key feature of our delivery system is our testers do not interact with the drone. The aircraft hovers around 7 metres above the ground, lowers the package to the ground on a line, and then the package unloads itself. With the help of gravity the package disconnects from the line (which is then wound back up) and the drone flies back on home.
How big are Wing’s drones?
Each drone has a wingspan of approximately 1 metre, and weighs around 5 kilograms (kg).
What do your drones sound like?
Our drones are quieter than a range of noises you would experience in a suburb but they make unique sound that people are unlikely to be familiar with. However, we’re working to improve the sound of drone, by developing new, quieter and lower-pitched propellers. The aircraft we use to deliver in Australia and Finland will be our quietest yet.
Are there cameras on the drones?
Wing’s delivery drones use cameras for safety purposes to navigate in the event GPS is unavailable. In the unlikely event that GPS is unavailable, the drone on-board camera navigation system compares images frame by frame to determine how fast and in what direction the drone is moving, providing a backup navigational reference. The camera is downward facing and collects low resolution, greyscale still-images of the ground or ground features. There's no real-time transmission of images to the pilots.
How do drones operate in adverse weather conditions like rain? Can they fly at night?
We operate during daylight hours and in favorable weather conditions. Our drones are designed to fly in both the day and night and are capable of safely delivering a package in a strong breeze and rain.
Why is Wing focused on low-altitude airspace?
The layer of airspace under 122 metres is a space where drones can have a positive impact. We want to help bring about a future for this airspace in which both manned aircraft and drones can fly together safely. One of our goals is to enable a network of UAS traffic management system (UTM) platforms to safely offer access to this airspace to anyone.
What’s next for Wing?
We’re excited about the potential for our aviation technology to transform how we think about transportation of a wide range of goods, from emergency aids to food. Today we’re focused on advancing aviation technology and working with regulators to make that vision a reality.
How are you ensuring safety?
Safety is our top priority. We have some of the world’s most highly skilled hardware and software engineers designing, building and testing aircraft. The aircraft are designed with redundant motors, batteries and even navigation systems with intelligent controls so backup systems can help keep aircraft safely in flight.
How do you manage traffic in the sky?
Wing’s unmanned traffic management (UTM) platform is designed to automatically manage the flight paths of different types of drones-planning new, clear routes for each aircraft if and when conflicts arise. In June 2016, Wing took part in a set of nationwide tests convened by NASA and the FAA to explore how to manage the growing number of drones in the sky. As part of these tests, we demonstrated Wing’s UTM platform and the core elements of real-time route planning and airspace notifications.
Where has Wing conducted tests?
We tested in various parts of Canberra, Australia intermittently since in 2014. Since then we’ve been improving our design in the labs at X in Mountain View and rural airfields in California. In September 2016, Wing tested its aerial delivery system at an FAA-approved test site at Virginia Tech, run by the Mid-Atlantic Aviation Partnership. These tests were designed to generate data for the FAA’s ongoing study of drone delivery systems.
Do you need permission to fly?
We adhere to governmental guidelines and requirements to conduct safe and responsible development and flight testing. We work with civil aviation authorities and air traffic control to secure and maintain the appropriate permissions and licenses.
How high do these planes fly? Can I see them or hear them?
Our delivery drones fly up to 122 metres above the ground. Our goal is to design a system that is as unobtrusive as possible during takeoff, flight and delivery.
Why is Wing designing its own aircraft?
Opening access to the sky in a responsible and safe manner requires careful design. We are designing our own aircraft to ensure that the aviation technology works seamlessly and safely together across our entire drone delivery fleet.
What do delivery drones look like?
Our designs have changed significantly from our first concepts and continue to be refined as we test different deliveries and environments. Our current aircraft has fixed wings like an airplane, rotors like a helicopter and a wingspan less than 1.5 meters.
How automated are Wing aircraft?
Pilots currently monitor our delivery drones and can take control of their movements at any moment. Our long-term approach towards automated flight is to build a safe, effective, and scalable delivery system that won’t require individual pilot control.
What can the aircraft carry?
Currently we deliver fresh foods and local goods, but we want to be able to carry all sorts of things. To do so, we need to reduce aircraft weight so we can maximize the percentage of weight that is the delivery item itself.