Drone Delivery Canada has successfully recommenced flight testing of its large Condor unmanned drone at its Commercialization Centre test range facility.
The largest drone in the company’s fleet, the Condor is a two-stroke gasoline-powered helicopter drone with a maximum payload of 180kg (300 lbs), a range of 200km (125 miles) and a maximum take-off weight of 476kg (1,050 lbs).
Toronto-based Drone Delivery Canada (DDC) is developing cargo-carrying unmanned drones that will fly from depot-to-depot along pre-determined routes while being monitored from a ground station. The company was founded in 2016.
DDC has already tested several of the Condor’s systems, avionics and components and performed cold-weather testing, functional testing, wind testing, cargo-area temperature profiles, long-duration flight testing, aircraft attitude, position controller tuning, autonomy, and autonomous waypoint navigation.
Following these tests and since September DDC has completed an avionics and flight controls upgrade for the Condor that the company believes will improve communications, mitigate electrical interference, and improve manufacturability.
The company has also subcontracted some engineering and development work to accelerate the Condor’s development. DDC has also recently upgraded the Condor’s engine control unit and other mechanical systems along with ground testing of these systems.
Steve Magirias, CEO of DDC said, “We are extremely pleased with the recent acceleration of the development and testing of our Condor drone, the largest drone in our fleet with the highest payload and distance capabilities, which has the potential to unlock far more use cases and commercial opportunities. We look forward to continued progress and the eventual commercialization of the Condor.”
Last month DDC began a six-month pilot project with Halton Healthcare and DSV Air and Sea transporting medical supplies to a hospital in Oakville, Ontario that will use one of its smaller drones, called Sparrow.
Read our in-depth feature on why, where and how cargo drones are the first application of autonomous unmanned technology in aviation.