Volanai, Merck and Vidant Health partnership is piloting the delivery of cold chain medicines from Merck’s manufacturing site to a Vidant health clinic in Wilson, NC. The project utilises Volansi’s VOLY C1 all-electric drone capable of carrying 10-pounds of cargo to locations up to 50 miles away. The drone’s VTOL system requires minimal infrastructure to operate and is capable of delivering items on the return flight to support order confirmation like temperature trackers and shipping confirmation. The flights aim to deliver temperature-controlled medicines in the US and Volansi is seeking FAA approval to provide deliveries in additional locations, for example enabling flexible on-demand delivery of vaccines.
Following conclusion of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Integration Pilot Program, there are five routine drone delivery operations now in place in North Carolina:
1. UPS Flight Forward/Matternet in partnerships with WakeMed Hospital in Raleigh, NC
2. Novant Health and Zipline in Kannapolis, NC
3. UPS Flight Forward/Matternet in partnership with Wake Forest Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem, NC
4. Flytrex/Causey Aviation in partnership with Walmart in Fayetteville, NC
5. Volansi in partnership with Merck/Vidant in Wilson, NC
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