Wingcopter Named as Finalist in AUVSI XCELLENCE Awards
Arlington, Va./Darmstadt, 03 June, 2020 – Wingcopter has been named a finalist in the XCELLENCE Awards by the Association for Unmanned Vehicles Systems International (AUVSI). The Germany-based manufacturer of autonomous delivery drones was selected from a pool of accomplished applicants as one of six finalists for the Humanitarian category, sponsored by DJI. Winners will be announced during the keynote session on Thursday, Oct. 8 at AUVSI XPONENTIAL 2020 in Dallas, Texas.
"The AUVSI XCELLENCE Awards celebrate the achievements of individuals and organizations who have applied unmanned systems technology to create solutions to address a range of challenges affecting business and society," said Brian Wynne, president and CEO of AUVSI. “AUVSI is pleased to recognize these finalists for their perseverance and dedication to turn dreams into reality.”
Dedicated to improving the lives of people worldwide, a significant part of Wingcopter’s projects are of humanitarian nature. In fact, its aircraft are perfectly fitted for long-range delivery of urgently needed medical goods in areas where infrastructure is poor or destroyed, and traditional means of transport would take too long. Thanks to its patented tilt-rotor mechanism the Wingcopter can take off and land in the smallest spaces, while at the same time fly as fast and efficiently as a fixed-wing unmanned aircraft. A proprietary winch mechanism even allows to safely and accurately lower the cargo at the point of destination without the need for any landing infrastructure.
Wingcopter has proven its technology works in various humanitarian projects. Examples of Wingcopter’s humanitarian missions include a project in the South Pacific island state of Vanuatu, where Wingcopter set up a drone-based on-demand supply network on behalf of the local Ministry of Health and supported by UNICEF. By delivering vaccines for children to 19 remote health clinics, delivery times could be reduced from several hours or even days to a few minutes. Also in Tanzania and Malawi, Wingcopter was able to prove that drone delivery can drastically shorten patients’ waiting times, especially for urgently needed medicines.
“Being recognized for our humanitarian efforts, something that is deeply rooted in our company DNA, encourages us to continue on the path we have chosen. Even though we will expand our activities in parcel and food delivery as well, we will always use our cutting-edge technology for the purpose of saving or improving people’s lives, as we believe that advances in technology should not be a privilege of economically developed societies,” explains Tom Plümmer, Co-Founder and CEO of Wingcopter.
The nomination as finalist in the XCELLENCE Awards for the Humanitarian category is not the first of this kind for Wingcopter. The company recently won the #SmartDevelopmentHack, a global hackathon initiated by the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) that solicited innovative digital solutions to tackle the challenges caused by the coronavirus outbreak in low- and middle-income countries. Together with its partners UNICEF and African Drone and Data Academy, the team is granted up to €3 million to set up a locally operated medical delivery drone network in Malawi and build local capacity through training programs for 160 Malawian youth. Earlier this year, Wingcopter was awarded the Sustainable Development Goals Spotlight prize at NTT DATA’s Open Innovation Contest in Japan.
“DJI is proud to recognize the AUVSI XCELLENCE Awards finalists, whose pioneering accomplishments highlight the critical role drones play in a wide variety of public safety and humanitarian applications, from directly saving lives through search and rescue missions to safely transporting life-saving deliveries in urgent times of need, and many more,” said Romeo Durscher, Senior Director of Public Safety Integration at DJI. “Their collective effort showcases the best of what can be achieved with drone technology today and will encourage innovators to push the boundaries for what’s possible with drone technology in the years to come.”
The AUVSI XCELLENCE Awards honor individuals and organizations that are innovators in the unmanned systems industry, with a demonstrated commitment to advancing autonomy, leading and promoting safe adoption of unmanned systems, and developing programs that use these technologies to save lives and improve the human condition. Winners will be announced at XPONENTIAL, which offers a broad-based and balanced educational program brimming with cutting-edge content and inspirational insights, ranging from policy implications and technical challenges to use cases and best practices across vertical markets and everything in between.
For more information about XPONENTIAL and the XCELLENCE Awards, visit xponential.org.
About Wingcopter: Wingcopter is a leading German manufacturer of industrial-grade unmanned eVTOL aircrafts dedicated to improving the lives of people worldwide through meaningful commercial and humanitarian applications. The start-up focuses on the delivery of medical products, parcels, and food in beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) flights over long distances.
With its patented tilt-rotor mechanism, Wingcopter drones combine the advantages of multicopters (vertical take-off and landing) and unmanned fixed-wing aircrafts (fast and efficient forward flight), achieving a new dimension of efficiency. They can cover distances of up to 75 miles (120 kilometers) with just one battery charge and hold a Guinness world record for performing a top speed of 150 mph (240 km/h).
Wingcopter is the winner of the emergency delivery category at World Bank-sponsored Lake Kivu Challenge, the German Aviation Innovation Award (IDL), the Digital Logistics Award, as well as the Sustainable Development Goals Spotlight Winner of the global NTT Open Innovation Challenge. Co- founder and CEO Tom Plümmer was featured in the 2019 Forbes 30 Under 30 list.