Autonomous delivery robot transports coronavirus aid

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An autonomous delivery robot developed by JD Logistics has been deployed to deliver medical aid to a hospital treating coronavirus sufferers in Wuhan.

The robot made its first delivery earlier this month, travelling from the Chinese logistics firm’s Renhe delivery station in the city of Panzhihua to Wuhan Ninth Hospital, the designated medical facility for the treatment of the disease in Wuhan.

Upon the robot’s arrival some 600m away from the hospital, it sends a message to the customer’s phone with a collection code that the user inputs to release the package.

The products being delivered in Wuhan, including daily necessities bought by medical personnel and medical supplies donated by the public, are larger than the items generally handled by the robots.

As such, JD Logistics said it will add more robots capable of carrying larger packages to support current delivery requirements in Wuhan.

According to the company, it decided to put the autonomous delivery robot to work after recognising the need to quickly reduce human-to-human contact in the Wuhan area.

“JD autonomous delivery robots can help reduce human-to-human contact making them an ideal solution for last-mile delivery in Wuhan during this unique time, protecting both our customers and our employees.” said Qi Kong, head of autonomous driving at JD Logistics.

JD’s autonomous delivery robots began daily operation in Chinese cities of Changsha and Hohhot in January 2019.

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