Amazon has partnered with the U.K. government to test drones in Britain's rural and suburban areas, a move which aims to bring the unmanned flying machines closer to being used for deliveries, the U.S. e-commerce giant said on Tuesday.
The Government and the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), the U.K.'s aviation watchdog, has granted Amazon permission to explore "three key innovations":
- Flying drones beyond the line of sight of operations
- Testing sensors on the unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) to see if they can identify and avoid obstacles
- Flight where one person controls a number of drones
Currently, flying drones out of the line of sight of the operator is illegal in the U.K. and in the U.S., something that has pretty much blocked Amazon's attempts to deliver parcels via drone.
"The U.K. is a leader in enabling drone innovation – we've been investing in Prime Air research and development here for quite some time," Paul Misener, Amazon's vice president of global innovation policy and communications, said in a press release on Tuesday.