The project has secured £10.1 million in funding from the Future Flight Challenge at UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). The consortium is working to deliver what will be the first national drone network that can transport essential medicines, bloods and other medical supplies throughout Scotland including to remote communities.
DRONAMICS, leading middle-mile cargo drone developer and operator, is to take part in the CAELUS project - a consortium of partners set to revolutionise the way in which healthcare services are delivered in Scotland. CAELUS is a consortium led by AGS Airports that will develop and trial the UK’s first national distribution network using drones to transport essential medicines, blood, organs, and other medical supplies throughout Scotland.
CAELUS (Care & Equity – Healthcare Logistics UAS Scotland) has successfully acquired over £10 million ($12 million) in funding from the Future Flight Challenge at UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). The CAELUS consortium is in the process of establishing a national drone delivery network for medical supplies across Scotland. CAELUS, which consists of 16 partners, including AGS Airports (Glasgow and Aberdeen Airports), NHS Scotland, the University of Strathclyde, National Air Traffic Services (NATS), is developing a national drone network for medical distribution in Scotland.
The project launch was announced at Farnborough Airshow. DRONAMICS will be collaborating with the consortium to power time-critical medical deliveries in the middle-mile using their “Black Swan” cargo drone, capable of carrying up to 350kg at a range of up to 2,500km. The flight trials are scheduled to be completed by 2024.
Fiona Smith, AGS Airports Group Head of Aerodrome Strategy and CAELUS Project Director, said, “The CAELUS project is set to revolutionize the way in which healthcare services are delivered in Scotland. A drone network can ensure critical medical supplies can be delivered more efficiently, it can reduce waiting times for test results and, more importantly, it can provide equity of care between urban and remote rural communities.”
Svilen Rangelov, CEO and Co-founder of DRONAMICS, said, “This is an excellent opportunity for us to kick-off operations in the UK by leveraging our authorization experience in the EU with EASA. The flight trials for NHS Scotland would also validate our ongoing product development towards delivering medical goods. We have seen that our solution could be vital for remote communities in Scotland, drastically decreasing the transit time for medical supplies.”
The project is funded under the Future Flight Challenge, the UKRI-led investment program that has committed £125 million ($149 million) into the next wave of aviation tech.
The CAELUS consortium comprises: AGS Airports Limited NHS Scotland, DRONAMICS Global Ltd. Delivering Today, NATS, University of Strathclyde, Connected Places Catapult, ANRA Technology, Atkins, Arup, Cellnex, UK Commonplace Digital, DGP Intelsius, Dronamics, Plane Finder, Skyports, The Drone Office and Trax International.