Workhorse Group Inc., a company focused on providing drone-integrated electric vehicles to the last mile delivery sector, has submitted its formal Type Certification application to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for the HorseFly Unmanned Aerial System (UAS).
A type certificate signifies the airworthiness of a particular category of aircraft according to its manufacturing design. From application to approval, the certification process takes approximately 12 to 24 months.
The HorseFly UAS has been designed to meet the FAA’s stringent standards for commercial drone operations and includes a safe, reliable, multi-use aircraft that can deliver parcels, carry sensors and cameras and operate autonomously with a high degree of precision.
The system’s success has been validated through real-world commercial deliveries, including approximately 80% of most commercial package sizes, shapes, and weights, having demonstrated the ability to carry a ten-pound payload up to 10 miles.
The aircraft’s flexible design allows users to operate select, patent-pending delivery methods, including air drops, winch deliveries from various altitudes and ground deliveries. Its quick-change battery system also effectively reduces ground time between missions. The aircraft’s durable structure supports superior levels of reliability in the high-utilization, demanding markets of commercial and industrial users.
FAA Type Certification is the only path to scaling meaningful, long-term commercial revenue operations in the US, and we believe our Aerospace division is firmly on that path. We first started developing our unmanned aerial system over four years ago and have come a very long way in that time. Workhorse Aerospace has flown hundreds of live package deliveries in multiple states. With direct operating costs of the aircraft coming in at less than three cents per mile, package delivery integrated via drone represents a true step function improvement in terms of cost and efficiency. While there is much work ahead, this formal application is a milestone achievement for our team. We will continue to work diligently over the coming months as we progress through the various stages of the approval process.—Workhorse CEO Duane Hughes