Tell us about Wing and why you participate in World
Wing and World ATM Congress are roughly the same
age. Wing began in 2012 with the objective of making deliveries by air a safer,
faster, cleaner alternative to road transport. A subsidiary of Alphabet, we
have developed a fleet of highly autonomous, lightweight delivery drones that
transport small packages directly to homes in minutes, and we offer commercial
drone delivery services on three continents. To further those efforts, Wing is
also developing services for UAS
traffic management (UTM), so
drones can fly safely with each other and in harmony with crewed aircraft.
Since its first edition in 2013,
World ATM Congress has provided a great forum for discussing how to integrate
drones successfully into airspace. The conversations and meetings this week
serve as a catalyst for change and innovation. Wing is looking forward to
meeting regulators, industry, ANSPs, and others; and is excited to be sponsoring
the Wing ATM Theatre and organizing three sessions in the education
How do you envision crewed aviation working with
companies like Wing to share airspace?
Sharing information between all airspace operators
is crucial. We have developed our ‘OpenSky’ application, an open UTM platform
which enables cooperation between industry, drone operators and regulators to
ensure safe, easy, and open access to the sky. All of this happens within
seconds and a few clicks. The publicly available OpenSky application was
successfully launched in Australia in 2019 and in the USA in 2021.
In Europe, Wing is working with France’s DSNA on
‘U-space Together,’ which demonstrates the role that UTM solutions can play in
curating open, safe, secure, and interoperable UAS ecosystems. As part of this
project, Wing has adapted and is trialling its OpenSky platform in France to
ensure that an open UTM platform can enable cooperation and communication
between UAS operators and airspace authorities in controlled airspace.
We are still in the early phases of integrating
drones into airspace but our work over the past seven years has shown that it
is certainly possible for crewed and uncrewed aviation services to safely and
efficiently share the sky.
Why has Wing chosen to play such a prominent role
in regulatory negotiations in the USA and Europe?
Wing has active delivery operations in
Australia, Finland, and the US. We believe that airspace should be a shared
resource for all operators, so we strive every day to empower diverse
communities with safe and equitable access to the sky. One of the ways we do
this is by working with regulators around the world to harmonize rules across
borders, which will ultimately make it easier for drone operators to comply
with laws and safety standards. Accordingly, we have maintained a close
dialogue with global regulatory authorities to share best practices and promote
regulatory frameworks that reflect the collective wisdom and needs of the drone
Looking ahead – when can we expect to see drone
delivery become mainstream, and what barriers are in the way?
You are going to see even more collaborative and
creative solutions! Through our collaborations, trials and tests, we have shown
how drones are creating a new era of accessible aviation. The expansion of
airspace access is firmly underway, and over the past several years, Wing has
been committed to global initiatives (research, technology development, and
policy) that demonstrate how industry ecosystems and collaboration can evolve
to support the volume and diversity of unmanned aviation. We believe drone
delivery will improve the way our cities operate by reducing road congestion
and pollution and creating new economic opportunities for local businesses.