Artificial intelligence, self-driving vehicles, and drones were once science fiction, but now they're reality. At DB, we are also testing innovative, forward-looking technologies so our customer services are even more climate-friendly and we generate less CO2. Fiction has begun to give way to reality.
Quiet and clean drone transportation
We worked with Volocopter to create the VoloDrone, an autonomous, electric-powered drone for carrying cargo deliveries. It can transport payloads of up to 200 kilograms and cover distances of up to 40 kilometers.
The project's goal is to use the VoloDrone as a means of transporting cargo for DB Schenker in the near future. This will make our supply chains even faster while also making them climate neutral. The drone is an ideal solution in many different situations. In Norway, for example, trucks or helicopters are necessary for supplying some of the country's fjords and offshore islands. Now, the eco-friendly VoloDrone can be used to move certain items faster – medication for local hospitals, for example. City deliveries are another field where the cargo drone can play to its strengths: It can get freight to locations that are out of bounds to diesel vehicles due to restrictions.
Comprehensive tests for more security
Before it can become part of DB Schenker's fleet, the drone has to complete a wide range of checks, include static tests at our site in Nuremberg. They are called static because the drone isn't airborne – instead, it remains on the ground, so we can assess the optimum way to load it. Certification from EASA, the European Union's aviation safety authority, is necessary before we can use the drone, first in unmanned areas and then in urban regions.
When the VoloDrone passes all of these tests, it could take its place at DB Schenker's bases, enabling us to make our logistics operations even a bit greener in the future.