In March 2017, Matternet, a Silicon Valley-based tech startup, became the first company in the world to receive authorisation for full operations of drone logistics networks over densely populated areas in Switzerland.
Now, with the unveiling of the Matternet Station, users will have everything they need to send and receive packages. The Matternet Station occupies a small footprint of approximately 2 square meters and can be installed at ground or rooftop locations. A user is able to send a package to another location by simply scanning it into the Matternet Station, or receive a package from the Station by scanning a QR code. Each Station comes with its own automated aerial deconfliction system that manages drone traffic over the Station.
Starting this month, the first Matternet Stations will service healthcare systems in Switzerland to automate on-demand transportation of blood samples and other medical diagnostic materials between hospitals, laboratories, and clinics.
“For healthcare systems, an integrated Matternet network means that medical items can be delivered to any hospital facility within 30 minutes. This level of speed and predictability creates substantial opportunities for improved quality of care and operational savings.” said Matternet CEO, Andreas Raptopoulos.
Raptopoulos, is a 43-year-old Greek entrepreneur who led the team that came up with the idea for Matternet at Singularity University summer school in 2011. Matternet has been funded by Singularity Labs and Andreessen Horowitz.
Although medical delivery is not a new idea for drones, Matternet’s effort to improve upon traditional emergency response systems, may be the first time that drones are used for medical delivery in a dense, urban environment.
We’ve seen similar urges in Germany, where DHL developed “parcelcopters,” to deliver medicine to residents of a remote island in the North Sea called Juist and in Africa Zipline' “air corridor” is delivering vital supplies to the people of Rwanda and Tanzania.
Matternet is also the exclusive partner of Mercedes-Benz Vans for integrating its drone logistics system with Mercedes-Benz Vans.