Big businesses know the people want their orders delivered as quickly as possible. Physical and online establishments are eager for innovation to streamline logistics as demand for same-day shipping grows. Elroy Air could possibly change the game sooner than we think with its hybrid-electric VTOL – the Chaparral C1.

What sets Elroy Air’s machine apart from the others is its versatility. Most all-electric systems have a limited range and cargo capacities. Thus, this severely limits their capabilities and could increase operating costs. It means retailers might charge higher fees in exchange for the convenience of drone deliveries.

On the other hand, the Chaparral C1 uses a lift + cruise configuration alongside a hybrid-electric turbine-based powertrain. The manufacturer states the UAV’s design makes it ideal for long-range operations. There are eight fans for vertical lift with another four for forward-flight propulsion.

The fully assembled unit can fit inside a 40-foot shipping container or a C-130 cargo plane. This allows Elroy Air to effortlessly deploy its fleet across the globe and service more markets. It will use a proprietary cargo pod that is lightweight and aerodynamic so as not to affect its in-flight performance.

It can transport loads anywhere between 300 lbs to 500 lbs. Operators only need a 50 square feet area to facilitate their drop-offs and pick-ups. The Chaparral C1 can also help in humanitarian scenarios. The UAV can pick up and deliver emergency supplies to locations rendered inaccessible via land or sea.

“It is built for full end-to-end automation, and it will safely and efficiently make express shipping possible in thousands of new places. It’s a delivery drone that’s faster than ground transport and lower cost than today’s traditional aircraft,” says Elroy Air Co-founder and CEO David Merrill.

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Images courtesy of Elroy Air