published Monday, December 9th, 2013

German firm testing drones to deliver goods

FRANKFURT, Germany — Germany's express delivery and mail company Deutsche Post DHL is testing a drone that could be used to deliver urgently needed goods to hard-to-reach places.

The small pilotless helicopter was to fly a package of medicine Monday from a pharmacy in the town of Bonn to the company's headquarters on the other side of the Rhine River. The aircraft can carry up to 3 kilograms (6.6 pounds).

Company spokesman Thomas Kutsch says the flights all this week are strictly a research project to see if the technology works and there are no plans yet to start actual drone deliveries. The test flights required permission from local aviation authorities.

On-line retailer Amazon is also working on a drone to deliver goods to customers despite legal obstacles in the U.S.

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