GS Caltex uses drone to demonstrate fuel delivery service in Seoul

By Park Sae-jin Posted : December 17, 2021, 11:15 Updated : December 17, 2021, 11:20

[Courtesy of GS Caltex]

SEOUL -- GS Caltex, a major refiner in South Korea, has demonstrated a drone-based fuel delivery service in Seoul. It is rare for drone-based service companies to operate or demonstrate their services in the capital city that restricts about 90 percent of its sky as a no-fly zone for drones for safety and security reasons.
The refiner said in a statement that a drone delivered kerosene from a gas station to a park that is about one kilometer (0.62 miles) away at a government-hosted drone fair. The demonstration was part of a government project to develop technology and infrastructure for parcel delivery services using drones.

A consortium led by GS Caltex has been selected for a government project to commercialize a drone-based fuel delivery service. "We will continue to carry out tests and demonstrations of various drone-based delivery services," an unnamed GS Caltex official was quoted as saying. 

GS Caltex said the demonstration in Seoul was designed to simulate a fuel test that takes place when a tanker arrives at a port. Inspectors use a small boat to pick up a fuel sample from the tanker and carry it to a port facility for testing. If the sample meets government standards, the tanker is allowed to dock and unload its cargo. The drone-based fuel delivery service will help tanker and port operators save time and costs.
The fuel delivery service is a business model that branches out from GS Caltex's innovative plan to transform gas stations into integrated refueling centers for internal combustion cars, electric vehicles, and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles. Gas stations will become a small-area logistics hub to provide storage spaces for parcel delivery workers and chargers for electric trucks. Drone control towers will be set up in each station to manage short-distance drone deliveries.
In 2020, the refiner demonstrated the use of delivery drones to carry lunchboxes and drinks from a gas station that served as the last-mile logistics hub in the southern resort island of Jeju. Drones carrying a payload of about five kilograms (11 pounds) flew about 750 meters to deliver lunch boxes to students at a nearby elementary school.
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