The coronavirus outbreak has changed so much in such a short space of time. The whole situation has seemingly birthed a new age of technological innovation as well. Countries all over the world are seeking new ways to fight the crisis, with China leading the way.
China was the first country hit by the virus - and hit severely. In the last few months, they have started using drones to try and combat this terrible situation. Through smart thinking, they’ve taken this technology and shaped it to perform essential tasks that are helping the country move through this crisis.
As per the WHO, coronavirus can live on surfaces for up to 72 hours. This is one of the most troubling aspects of the virus. It’s all well and good people staying indoors, but if someone with the virus touches a surface in a public place, it can stay there for a few days and be passed on to anyone else that touches it.
In fact, this is one of the main things that governments worry about when letting people return to their normal lives. So, China started using DJI drones to disinfect streets and public areas. It’s a genius move, and many of the drones in use normally work within the agricultural industry. It’s common for drones to spray pesticides across fields, so these have been repurposed to disinfect areas of the country and kill the virus lingering on surfaces.
Next, China has used drones for transportation in two different ways:
- Transporting consumer goods
- Transporting medical supplies
In truth, China has been using drones for consumer delivery since 2019. However, coronavirus has increased the frequency and availability of this service. It has allowed people in remote areas to gain access to food and other essential supplies without needing to leave their homes or contact other humans.
The same goes for medical supplies as well. Obviously, medical facilities around China constantly need new supplies to keep up with the patients inside. Delivering these via trucks or vans was simply not efficient. Much of the country was literally locked down, meaning roads were closed, and it took a lot longer for deliveries to take place. As such, drones offered a faster and more efficient delivery option in these testing times.
Overall, the key benefit of using transportation drones is that they minimise human-to-human contact. It stops any slight chances of a delivery driver catching or spreading the virus as they move between hundreds of houses per day. This keeps people safe while also ensuring that consumers and medical facilities continue to receive essential supplies.
All of this shows you just how far the commercial drone industry has come. While this virus has caused mass disruption and chaos throughout the world, it has managed to show the potential of drone technology. Two questions remain: will other countries start using drones in these ways to fight back against the virus? Will we see more and more drone use after the coronavirus is finished? The answer to both should be yes, as it’s clear that commercial drones have so many innovative uses.