Sept 09, 2016: Matternet, autonomous drone manufacturer, entered into a strategic partnership with Mercedes-Benz Vans to create an integrated delivery solution that will transform how people receive lightweight goods on demand.
Mercedes-Benz Vans unveiled its Vision Van, showcasing a new end-to-end platform for last-mile delivery, featuring a fully automated cargo management system and Matternet delivery drones.
Matternet developed the technology that is integrated into the roof of the van, allowing for precision landing and automatic payload and battery exchange. Matternet’s cloud technology is integrated with Mercedes-Benz’s van routing software, allowing end-to-end control of the supply chain. The first project bringing this vision into reality is “Vans and Drones”.
“We are driven by a common vision to automate last-mile logistics, which today is the least efficient and most expensive part of logistics. Through this partnership, we are building solutions that will dramatically reduce the time and cost of on-demand delivery,” said Andreas Raptopoulos, co-founder and CEO of Matternet.
“With our Vision Van, we are going beyond the vehicle,” said Volker Mornhinweg, head of Mercedes-Benz Vans.
“We have been working closely with Matternet to create the world’s first fully connected and automated cargo van with integrated delivery drones. Matternet is a trusted partner, and we are looking forward to what we can accomplish together.”
Matternet has developed a complete solution for automated aerial logistics that enables customers to implement and grow modular networks of any size to meet their needs. The company not only offers a fully autonomous aerial vehicle, but combines it with a sophisticated cloud system for automatic route planning, monitoring and analytics.
Matternet has also unveiled its second-generation drone, Matternet M2.
The new Matternet M2 drone is completely autonomous. It can transport up to 2 kilograms (4.4 pounds) and travel up to 20 kilometres (12 miles) on a single battery charge. It can drop and reload a payload and battery without human interaction, and features a smart payload box that can transmit data about its contents and destination. It also has precision landing capabilities and captures proof of delivery.