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The Near-Future - Amazon Drones

            One day, drones will be as common in the sky as mail trucks are on the road today. This is the goal of Amazon's CEO, Jeff Bezos. They want to be able to deliver packages, via drones, for places within a ten-mile radius of one of their many fulfillment centers. Amazon has been rapidly expanding their warehouse facilities across the country. Amazon's promise of offering drone delivery to consumers within thirty minutes of purchase demands that they build more warehouses. With all of the competition and threats within the delivery programs of various companies, Amazon has come up with a way to gain a competitive advantage. Whether or not that will actually happen, is still yet to be determined. There are many things to consider when it comes to the use of drones in delivery. It has problems that need to be resolved, but also has a lot of up side and advantages to be considered. .
             Amazon is working on a same-day delivery drone affectionately called the "octocopter " (Rooney, [1]). They will call this service Prime Air. The US has not yet allowed Amazon to test this system here in country because of FAA restriction, but DHL has begun testing drone delivery over in the United Kingdom. DHL ran ten test flights and only two of the flights got delayed or cancelled due to weather (Walker, [1]). Weather could cause a big problem in the drone delivery service that Amazon wants to offer. If it is cloudy or windy one day then all orders will not be sent out. That could put Amazon on a huge back-order. It would mess up their logistics for days on end. Another huge problem that Amazon will have to face is that of nature. Birds will cause many problems in the drone delivery process. The drones will be constantly attracting wild birds that will want to come and land on and mess with the drones. The FAA has tracked more than 121,000 instances of bird-aircraft collisions since 1990 (Lund, [1]). That is about 8,700 bird-aircraft collisions per year.

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