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Inside Drones (Jan 2nd, 2018)

Drones have delivered more than 5,500 units of blood to remote areas in Rwanda during the past year. The partnership between Zipline, a Silicon Valley company, and the Rwanda health ministry led to the delivery service dubbed "Uber for blood." Zipline delivers the blood to a dozen regional hospitals from a base in eastern Rwanda. The service has cut down the average delivery time to about 30 minutes, from four hours. In the future, Zipline wants to deliver more medical supplies to a wider range of clinics throughout the country. - USNEWS

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Boeing unveiled a drone capable of refueling fighter jets in mid-air. The company is competing for a contract to build up to 76 of the drones for the Navy. The UAS would take off from aircraft carriers to deliver fuel to fighter jets up to 500 nautical miles away. General Atomics and Lockheed Martin are also competing for the contract, with bids due on Wednesday. - WAPO

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The drone manufacturer Quaternium claims to have set the record for longest drone flight of a self-powered multicopter. The European company flew its HYBRiX.20 fuel-electric quadcopter for four hours and 40 minutes in late December. It released a video of the time lapse. The flight surpassed times set by any hybrid, electric or hydrogen powered multicopter, the company said. Quaternium built the first HYBRiX.20 RPA model in 2015. - SUAS

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Drones could one day deliver blood samples in Palo Alto, California. Matternet partnered with the city and Stanford Blood Center to submit a proposal to the Federal Aviation Administration. If approved, the project would use Matternet's drone technology to transport units from the blood center to Stanford Hospital in emergencies. It would cut the transport time to 10 minutes, from up to an hour. - CNN

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A California couple is accused of using a drone to deliver drugs to customers in a church parking lot. After the drugs were delivered, the customers would allegedly drive by the couple's home and toss payments onto their lawn. Riverside police arrested Benjamin Baldassarre, 39, and Ashley Carroll, 31, who face felony drug charges and felony child endangerment. A 9-year-old girl was found living inside their home, which police say had a large stash of illegal narcotics. - ABC13

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