Technology used in mining, the military and real estate is now being adapted to provide critically needed medical supplies to remote areas of Australia and heavily congested city centres.

The Angel Drone is a remotely piloted aircraft which holds an incubator capable of carrying blood plasma. The idea is that the drone can be used to transport vital medical supplies by air to areas that are difficult to reach quickly by road. This could be congested areas, such as city centres, or remote areas of Australia that are not well served by road.

Flying in built­up areas is closely regulated by CASA, who require a safety case to permit this type of drone operation. So gathering data and information about how drones operate in a variety of conditions is a vital step in bringing this type of drone operation into acceptable usage. Trials of the Angel Drone are due to begin this year in rural NSW so that evidence of safe operation can be provided to CASA. If the trial is successful it is hoped that in the future the project can be used as a template for other medical applications of drones.

The Angel Drone project was launched last week, and is being run by the Australian RPAS Consortium of which Marque Lawyers is a member.