Delivery by drones most complicated task: Rimanshu Pandey

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“Delivery by drones is one of the most complicated tasks carried out by drones. Logistics operations are time sensitive and contribute largely to the brand experience,” says Rimanshu Pandey, Co-Founder and CTO of TSAW – a drone logistics service provider in India.

Recently, TSAW Drones launched its drone-based logistics and transport service arm DRONECO. This new logistics service DRONECO by TSAW makes delivery by drones making it among the very few logistics and transport service providers in India that are using drones today.

In this interview, Rimanshu Pandey, Co-Founder and CTO of TSAW talks to TechHerald about the new logistic service arm DRONECO and its availability n India, its expansion plans, challenges with delivery by drones and securing operations against cybersecurity and more.

Edited excerpts…

Q1. Can you brief us about the availability of this new drone logistics service DRONECO by TSAW as well as costs for clients?
Rimanshu Pandey:
The service is now available in 21 pin codes near Hyderabad and will expand to a few more in February. Pricing is entirely dependent on distance, package weight, and region, yet it is comparable to road logistics pricing and still much faster.

Q2. What are your plans to expand this new service as well as make it a successful and viable business model?
Rimanshu Pandey
: We have a strategy to cover all of India’s geography, but initially, we’d like to concentrate on a limited number of regions to work on unit economics and other issues before beginning a rapid expansion. We aim to do 122 million deliveries in the next five years while covering 478 cities and more than 10,000 pin codes.

Q3. Which are the major challenges you see in using drones for logistics purposes in India?
Rimanshu Pandey:
Delivery by drones is one of the most complicated tasks carried out by drones. Logistics operations are time sensitive and contribute largely to the brand experience. The most difficult aspects along with meeting include managing a sizable fleet of drones, operating them all simultaneously and ensuring operational efficiency, safety, and reliability.

Q4. How are you making DRONECO service efficient and reliable so more customers are confident in using it?
Rimanshu Pandey:
In order to conduct operations efficiently, we are automating every step of logistics, from receiving orders to automatically allocating them to the drones and delivering them to their destinations. Only monitoring the entire procedure will be needed of the pilots. In addition, our drones are designed with several redundancies to ensure their dependability and safety to the point where they can land safely even if a motor fails.

Q5. Which type of drones are being used for DRONCEO service and what type of staff have been employed in the operations and execution of drone-based delivery?
Rimanshu Pandey:
We presently use two distinct drone models: the e-VTOL Adarna for long-range, lighter packages up to 8 kg and the hexacopter Maruthi 2.0 for short-range, large packages up to 20 kg. We are also developing a variant with a 50 kg lift capability. All drones are flown under the supervision of certified technicians and pilots.

Q6. From technology per se, can you share some insights on the entire operation and management of drone-based logistics service and delivery?
Rimanshu Pandey:
Our delivery system is founded on a proprietary cloud-based platform that combines a number of cutting-edge technologies, including machine learning models for failure predictions, AI-based object identification, unique algorithms for 4-dimensional airspace de-confliction, and dynamic path planning. We are diligently working on the hardware components as well.

To increase the effectiveness of our drones, we are combining numerous sensor datasets. And to increase the drones’ battery life cycle and durability, we created a model that predicts the battery discharge curve. The goal is for our drones to truly be automated to Level 5.

Q7. How prepared are you to thwart any attempts or incidents of malware and cyberattacks on networks and drones?
Rimanshu Pandey:
We have a very strong IT infrastructure, and are working to make it even stronger by examining data at various levels of scrutiny. To prevent any sort of middle-man attacks, all communication between the drone, the server, and other nodes takes place through an encrypted channel. We are evaluating the usage of blockchain as a future strategy.

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