Norway-based ships agency services provider Wilhelmsen Ships Service (WSS) revealed plans to launch drone deliveries to vessels.
According to the company, drone technology has “obvious applications” in the shipping industry.
“Whether in case of deliveries of critical documents or vital medical supplies, tank inspections, or monitoring cargo and stockpile levels, we believe semi-autonomous drone flights can support and further enhance what our ships agency team can offer our customers,” Marius Johansen, VP Business Solutions & Marketing, WSS Ships Agency, explained.
“Relied upon by owners, operators, vessels and crew to get spare parts, medicine, documents, or cash to master where it needs to be at moment’s notice, drone delivery is a natural extension of our existing agency service portfolio,” Johansen added.
Johansen estimates drone flights would reduce costs significantly. Namely, the cost of drones amounts to USD 150, compared to that of launch vessels which stands at USD 1,500.
The company said it intends to launch a large-scale working pilot project in one of the world’s busiest ports in 2017, in spite of the complexity of global aviation rules and restrictions placed on unmanned aerial vehicles.