Members of the public across Scotland are being asked for their help in a bid to deliver the UK’s first medical distribution network using drones.

Project CAELUS, led by AGS Airports in partnership with 16 consortium partners recently held successful live flight trials between Glasgow Airport and NHS Golden Jubilee.

Now, the project has launched an innovative remote listening test which allows users to experience drones sound in different environments and feedback on how they sound.

The sound demonstrations used in the survey have been led by Project CAELUS partner The Drone Office and developed by Arup, using the companies experiential SoundLab technology.

Arup use this technology to create sound demonstrations that , take a human-centric approach that gives people the opportunity to hear with their own ears sounds of the future and make up their own mind about how they sound.

All members of the public need is a pair of headphones to take part.

Fiona Smith, Project Director for CAELUS, said: “We were delighted to see the successful start of live flight trials at the end of October.

“This new sound survey is an important initiative as the data gathered will help the industry form a better understanding of what considerations or mitigations may be required for future drone operations in rural and urban environments.

“We would invite everyone to take part in the survey.”

Adam Thomas of Arup said: “Drones have a unique sound character. It's unlike any other environmental noise sources that people are familiar with, such as road traffic or conventional aircraft noise”.

“It’s really important that as this new technology is implemented, we capture data on people’s views of these sounds, so that we understand public reaction to them, and can ensure operations are planned in a way that reduces disturbance or other possible negative effects.”

CAELUS (Care & Equity – Healthcare Logistics UAS Scotland), is part funded by the UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) Future Flight Challenge.

It brings together 16 partners including the Arup, University of Strathclyde, Skyports Drone Services, NATS and NHS Scotland. Together they are working to deliver what will be the first national drone network that can transport essential medicines, bloods and other medical supplies throughout Scotland including to remote communities.

Since January 2020, the CAELUS consortium has designed drone landing stations for NHS sites across Scotland and developed a virtual model (digital twin) of the proposed delivery network which connects hospitals, pathology laboratories, distribution centres and GP surgeries across Scotland.

Live flight trials were operated by CAELUS consortium member Skyports Drone Services. The UK-based operator is an experienced provider of drone delivery, survey and monitoring services.

The CAELUS consortium comprises:

  • AGS Airports Limited
  • ANRA Technologies UK
  • Arup
  • AtkinsRéalis
  • Cellnex UK
  • Commonplace Digital
  • Connected Places Catapult
  • DGP Intelsius
  • Dronamics
  • NATS
  • NHS Scotland
  • Plane Finder
  • Skyports Drone Services
  • The Drone Office
  • Trax International
  • University of Strathclyde

Further detail including video content on Project CAELUS is available at Have Your Say Today - CAELUS - Commonplace

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