January 27, 2023

Athens News

News in English from Greece

Trikala: the first city in Europe to launch the “delivery droids” project

The city of Trikala in central Greece will be the first place in Europe to launch a pilot project to use fully automated delivery droids.

The droids’ first mission began at Elf’s Mill, where smart mechanisms delivered letters written by children from the Elf Post Office to Saint Basil. Their next task will be to cross the Asklipiou pedestrian road in the city center to deliver mail, newspapers and small packages from suppliers to local shops.

According to the municipality of Trikala, the “droids” are trained with lasers and a mapped route to not only follow a predetermined route, but also recognize obstacles along the way, changing their movements according to the movement of pedestrians, bicycles and other objects – unpredictable factors. with which they may encounter.

The purpose of the pilot project is to test whether they can be used as a solution for transporting goods in the city center, taking into account traffic, time, electrical load and other technical data. Similar droids are already being used in controlled environments, and the goal is to see if they can be used in a typical urban environment with many unpredictable factors.

The pilot project was launched in collaboration with e-Trikala, the University Research Institute for Communications and Computer Systems (EPISEY) and the University of Geneva, as part of the European SHOW programme. Delivery robots were created by the Italian company YAPE.

Trikala was the first city to launch a similar drone, but was not the first city to test these drones. The first was Stockholm, where test trials of ground-based drones began back in 2021.

It is worth noting that Trikala is the leading city in Greece for the introduction of technological and environmental innovations. In this city, the first in Greece went on the line unmanned buseswas no smokingand was also the first to implement smart city project.

Trikala recently became the first Greek city to successfully pass a drug delivery trial with an unmanned drone. A red drone with four blades took off from the northwestern city of Trikala and flew 3 kilometers (0.5 miles) to Leptokaria to deliver its cargo. The drone made two stops, landing near a pharmacy and a farmer’s field. A pharmacy employee unloaded the medicine from the drone’s storage compartment and it took off again.

“These are not science fiction scenes,” Dimitris Papastergiou, mayor of Trikala and president of the Association of Greek Municipalities, said of the process. “These are moments from the future and the not too distant future of our daily lives, how can we transport essentials such as medicine during emergencies.”

It should be noted that in other countries of the world such projects have been implemented for a long time, but in conservative Europe, technologies are being introduced rather slowly. And we must pay tribute to the mayor of Trikala, who takes responsibility for the introduction of such technological innovations.

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