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foodpanda, ST Engineering test food delivery using drones
FOODPANDA and ST Engineering on Thursday completed their first test flight for pandaFly, a project which aims to make food delivery using drones a reality.
The test flight was hosted by PACC Offshore Services Holdings (POSH) and saw an order of five packets of ayam penyet delivered from Marina South Pier to a POSH vessel in under 10 minutes.
The successful drone delivery follows a partnership inked in March between foodpanda and ST Engineering to adapt the latter's DroNet solution to trial the delivery of light food items over short distances of up to three kilometres.
DroNet is an end-to-end drone network solution designed to carry out specific tasks or services autonomously in an urban environment, foodpanda said in a statement.
The food delivery firm said the drones are intended as a complement to its existing delivery riders. They will ideally pick up and deliver orders at designated collection points islandwide where one of its riders will be waiting to complete the last-mile delivery.
Luc Andreani, foodpanda Singapore managing director, said: "Much more than a novelty, drone deliveries will help us deliver over longer distances faster, while keeping costs low, so that we can continue to satisfy our customers more instantaneously."
The next phase in the partnership will be testing drones that can fly further and for longer durations, the statement added.
Jeffrey Lam, deputy president of ST Engineering's aerospace sector, said the collaboration with foodpanda to adapt its drone network solution for food deliveries is one which can help meet the need for safe distancing amid the Covid-19 situation.
Danny Chong, general manager, COE (Innovation), POSH, said: "There is still much work to be done to fully enable shore-to-ship drone delivery over longer-haul distances. POSH will continue to work with suitable partners so as to bring a taste of home to our seafarers onboard, in time to come."
Shares of ST Engineering were up S$0.14 or 4.3 per cent to S$3.41 as at 11.42am on Friday.