Ship-to-Shore delivery is a huge business – it’s necessity for shipping logistics. Singapore drone company F-Drone wants to reinvent the process to reduce the time, costs, and carbon emissions by up to 80% – with their unique delivery drone.
In the hot Singapore start-up market, F-Drone, founded in 2019, has come a long way in a short time. They have a vision to enable large-scale and on-demand aerial deliveries for the industrial world, specifically, they are developing a drone that can deliver 100kg over 100km to ships and offshore platforms.
Co-founder Nicolas Ang is a veteran of the Singapore government as part of Singapore’s Office for Space Technology and Industry, working with foreign investors in a variety of sectors. “I have an insatiable appetite for new things, especially if they defy gravity. For instance, I was previously involved in Airbus’s Spaceplane collaboration with Singapore, and I first spoke with SpaceX about a decade ago,” says Ang. Co-founder Yeshwanth Reddy is a drone industry veteran who started India’s first drone company. In Singapore, the two found the perfect opportunity to test out a solution to a problem Ang was deeply acquainted with.
They found a really painful problem in the marine and offshore sector, which is being reliant on boats and helicopters to send supplies to ships and offshore platforms. “They are really expensive, slow and carbon intensive,” says Ang.
The F-Drone solution won’t eliminate existing vendors – but it makes the entire process more efficient, and could fundamentally change the workflow of the industry. They are offering an alternative for smaller deliveries which today have to be consolidated with bigger supply trips. For instance, a set of documents may have to wait a few hours to tag along the next boat that’s going to the vessel, or it would have to get a whole boat by itself.”
The Singapore government has been supportive of using commercial drones for a variety of applications. In Singapore, the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore and Maritime Port Authority conceptualized a Maritime Drone Estate, a sandbox where F-Drone first started their first trials.
This year, the Association of Aerospace Industries (Singapore) (“AAIS”) led setup of the Singapore Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) Community, to represent and serve the interests of the emerging UAS industry. We believe this is a great step in bringing together the ecosystem to help each other, not just commercially but also in the development of standards and related policies.
“What’s even more cool is AAIS operates an indoor flying development testbed!” says Ang.
For F-Drone, the Singapore environment has meant that the process from startup to first demo flight has been amazingly fast. For interested parties that want to see in-person their first demo flight in Singapore later this year, contact them at https://www.f-drones.com/