The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport on Sept. 19 held an event at Sejong Lake Park in Sejong Special Self-Governing City to test drones that deliver food, like the one pictured here. (Yonhap News)

By Kim Young Deok and Lee Jihae

The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport has held an event at Sejong Lake Park in Sejong Special Self-Governing City showing how drones can deliver food.

The event on Sept. 19 was the first time for drones to be shown delivering food to people downtown.

Under the theme "Safe drones that make our lives convenient," organizers had five drones deliver hamburgers, chicken and macarons.

Three drones received orders via apps, departed from Sejong City Hall, flew 2.5 km as they crossed the Geumgang River and safely delivered food to the park. Another two left from an industrial park in the city's Naseong-dong neighborhood, crossed a throng of skyscrapers, and delivered food 1.5 km away. The average delivery time was 10 minutes.

The five multipurpose test drones were from domestic drone manufacturers such as Doosan Mobility Innovation and X Drone.

The event confirmed the drones' relevant technologies such as automatic takeoff and landing, flight routes and ordering systems using apps exclusively for delivery drones.

Jeong Yong Sik, the ministry's director general for aviation policy, said, "The government will provide various support so that industries using drones can become part of daily life as quickly as possible."



The outdoor self-delivery robot Dilly Drive delivers food to Gwanggyo Alleyway, an apartment complex with public facilities on the lower floors and residences on the upper ones, in Suwon, Gyeonggi-do Province. (Woowa Brothers Corp.)

By Kim Young Deok and Lee Jihae

The nation's first outdoor autonomous robot for food delivery, Dilly Drive, has been launched.

Woowa Brothers Corp., which runs the food delivery app Baedal Minjok, on Aug. 18 announced the start of trial runs of the gizmo at Gwanggyo Alleyway, an apartment complex in Suwon, Gyeonggi-do Province, with public facilities on the lower floors and residential areas on the upper ones.

The service is available to both visitors and residents of the complex, and the app can be used by residents and visitors to the plaza to order from restaurants and cafes in the complex.

When an order is made, the robot moves to the restaurant. A staff member puts food in the robot and presses the "Depart" button, after which the robot delivers food to the ordering customer. The customer can receive the food either on the first floor of the apartments or an outdoor table in the plaza.

The six-wheeled Dilly Drive moves at 4-5 km per hour, or about the speed of a walking person. With a light used to delivery at night, the robot can deliver about six lunchboxes or 12 drinks per trip.

Five of these robots will be run through late this month weekdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The operating hours will be gradually expanded.

Woowa Brothers plans to advance the technology for Dilly Drive and by the first half of next year, it will develop a robot that delivers in front of a customer's door.



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