Maersk Tankers, of the A.P. Moller – Maersk Group, is conducting a test of delivery to drone vessels which are certified for to operate in explosive environments. The test aims at using a drone which is ATEX approved already for explosive environments, and at seeing the way this concept works.
The very first test conducted in Denmark included cookie delivery. Offshore in the Great Belt of Denmark, the drone gains height rapidly in the cloudy white. It quickly motors in the small divide between tanker and barge, hovering above (at a distance of 5 meters) the deck, dropping its cargo freight with Maersk cookies upon a landing spot it is designated with. Due to the fog, there was a change in the initial plan of launching from shore, which made the team work from the flat-bottomed barge instead.
The test, collaborated with Xamen Technologies, drone maker for Bauer, was the very first one making use of a drone for conducting a delivery aboard a vessel.
Markus Kuhn, Manager of Supply Chain, says that they are quite early at the process, thus need an assurance of the technology’s safety. It is quite a challenge getting things aboard for cargo shipping sometimes, so he was happy with the test working out fine, he added.
Drones have to be safe to their operating environment and to intrinsically safe Tankers, so they do not lead to sparks even if crashes occur.
Drones are cost-effective in context of their use as it is sometimes expensive and complicated to deliver products to vessels because of their absence besides the quay.
Average costs for one barge are $1,000, which can also be higher. Thus, drone use, with the present payload, could bring savings of around $3,000 to $9,000 per vessel each year, as estimated by Maersk Tankers.
The Group and its branch Maersk Tankers, have the evaluation of test findings as their next step. Drone technology has seen a fast development and the board of the Group Technical Innovation specified this area putting in the list of 5 projects that will commence in this year, being a part of a struggle to the development of a pipeline as well as culture of initial-stage technical creation.
Captain Christensen, aboard Maersk Edgar, says that today it was cookies; some other time it can be medicine needed to treat people aboard.