OUR DESIGN APPROACH
The popularity of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems, or RPAS, started with technology that would allow anyone to fly at a low cost. Previous radio-controlled models, especially model helicopters were extremely hard to fly and offered no cost savings as they were so inefficient. Current models of RPAS offer simplicity, elegance and efficiently in a near-seamless vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) maneuver with advances in long-range connectivity that allow them to fly much farther distances.
Multirotor or "quadcopters" as they are called, can almost fly themselves, due to new gyroscopic sensors and micro autopilots that do most of the work. They offer a much higher value proposition to either remote or human piloted aircraft.
RPAS have minimal fuel costs, zero emissions and a design that lends itself both to simplicity and sustainability.
Most cargo drones that follow this quadcopter model have fundamental design flaws. They were never intended for robust commercial use and are therefore not certified for these types of operations. They are not made with high-quality parts and their use of public frequencies make them susceptible to hijacking and loss of control.
Instead of being valued as incredibly safe and energy efficient, they are at risk for major accidents and potential damage. Regulators such as the FAA have put in place rules that ban drones from commercial use, unless they are certified, and the pilot is licensed – much the same way as a piloted aircraft.
When we started Sky Canoe, our goal was to take what was promising about drones and make it work for commercial purposes. We wanted to be able to reach remote indigenous communities to transport goods to places that were otherwise inaccessible.
We began by looking at the problems with multirotor drones: first and foremost was their limited flight times – they required too much power to stay aloft long enough to be useful. They cannot fly in poor weather and most of their electronics and motors are out in the open. How to protect the mechanics, reduce power consumption and not add excess weight?
Another problem was the drones used public frequencies for flight control. This made them a security and theft risk as soon as they were turned on. They did not conform with any certification agency and their "pilots" have limited knowledge of manned flight, making them a hazard in shared airspace. There was no way to integrate them with manned aircraft flight plans.
They can land anywhere, but no control over who could approach them and no emergency plan or course of action should all systems fail. From a design perspective, multirotor drones use single axis tilt wings to provide vertical take-off and landing capabilities. This causes loss of pitch control and places gyroscopic forces throughout the airframe, which also leads to control issues. And finally, they have a very small cargo capacity with most only carrying 10kg or less, not at all practical for larger scale commercial deliveries.
Sky Canoe offers our customers and communities a safer, less expensive, cleaner way to move light cargo. We believe in the collective power of business and technology to solve urgent human problems.
We have partnered with Indigenous leaders to adopt a plan for moving forward and it is our mission to mainstream zero-emission light cargo transport. Our technology will pave the way to saving our customers money and provide a catalyst for economic development in remote areas.
Our patented aircraft offers ground-breaking solutions to deliver lower cargo costs to customers, while contributing zero gas emissions to the environment.
Sky Canoe is a Canadian Indigenous-owned company. Our founding purpose was to provide assistance to remote communities while maintaining sustainability and deep respect for the environment.