On October 18, Workhorse announced significant strides in advancing Workhorse Aero, the company’s drone division with FAA drone certification and additional USDA grants. According to CEO Rick Dauch, “We are making important progress with our Aero Business, and the steps we are highlighting today reflect the strength of our technology, our systems and our people. We have clear growth strategies, and our team is focused on capturing the tremendous opportunities as we work to make last mile delivery more sustainable and more efficient.”
John Graber, President of Workhorse Aero, expresses his confidence, “Our Aero team is dedicated to constructing safe, reliable drones with the capacity to scale. Thousands of tests over hundreds of hours across various aircraft in our fleet have demonstrated the capabilities of our systems.
Collaboration with UPS: Taking flight
The company has entered the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) process to integrate the WA4-100, also known as Horsefly, into UPS Flight Forward’s (UPSFF) FAA Part 135 “drone airline” certificate. Workhorse Aero is working closely with UPSFF and the FAA, with plans to have Horsefly approved for FAA Part 135 operations by the end of 2023.
Gaining FAA approval is the next step in a productive, on-going collaboration between Workhorse and UPS Flight Forward as the two companies work together to bring safe, capable drone delivery systems to market. Workhorse Aero trained UPSFF personnel to operate and maintain the drones and UPSFF’s professionals have flown hundreds of successful missions with Workhorse Aero aircraft.
For the FAA to approve Horsefly for operations on UPSFF’s Part 135 certificate, Workhorse must complete an extensive and demanding flight test program. Flight tests span hundreds of hours over many separate flight tests using a fleet of aircraft and must be accomplished satisfactorily.
John Graber added, “We are pleased that UPS Flight Forward recognizes that our Horsefly drones are safe and reliable, and we are thrilled to take this next step with them. We will work closely with the USPFF and FAA teams to complete the required flight tests, on schedule.”
Additional grants for drone services
Over the last month, Workhorse Aero has been awarded two additional grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for farmland scanning, totaling approximately $1.1 million in additional USDA funding. This brings the total of USDA for sensor scanning work grants received this year to more than $2 million.
John Graber concluded, “We continue to witness substantial growth opportunities in agricultural markets, as government agencies and our partners depend on our drones to capture the data necessary to propel their work forward.”
About WA4-100 “Horsefly”
The WA4-100, or Horsefly, is a part of Workhorse’s family of all-electric, multipurpose uncrewed aerial systems (UAS) designed for various commercial and industrial applications. With a simple push of a button, the WA4-100 aircraft takes off, flies safely and quietly to its destination. Once there, the system – entirely automatically – hovers quietly while gently lowering the package on target. The aircraft then – still automatically – safely and quietly returns to base, where it is ready for another delivery within minutes. When properly equipped, Workhorse systems can carry up to 10 pounds and for as far as 10 miles.
The commercial drone industry is evolving, and Workhorse Aero is leading the way with delivery drones for sale now. Join us in this electrifying journey towards a cleaner, more efficient future. For more information about how Workhorse can transform your last-mile delivery operations, visit our website or contact us.