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Thu, Dec 07, 2023

Guardian Agriculture Claims First eVTOL AG Ops

American-Made Crop Duster Offers 200-lb Payload, 1-Minute Downtime

Guardian Agriculture says it's the first to utilize eVTOL aircraft in traditional agriculture operations, using a fleet of 4 "aviation-grade" aircraft to spray crops in the Salinas Valley.

The company says its eVTOL drones "spray crops more efficiently, sustainably, and safely than traditional crop-dusters or ground-based equipment". Just one of their Guardian eVTOLs can cover "up to 60 acres per hour" and "carry a 200-pound payload". Downtime is pretty short, too, with a combined refueling and recharging time of "less than 1 minute". The firm gained approval from the FAA last March, allowing it to scoop up more than $100 million in customer orders as the "only autonomous, electric, aerial crop protection system designed specifically for large-scale agriculture." The use of automated aircraft supposedly reduces spray usage by “up to 20%”, a nifty way to save for perennially cash-strapped farmers.

“This is a watershed moment for sustainable farming and a giant leap forward for eVTOL technology,” said Guardian founder and CEO Adam Bercu. “While several companies are developing eVTOL technologies, we are now the only one that has both secured FAA approval to operate commercially nationwide, and that’s actually started flying missions on behalf of paying customers.”

Guardian stresses that its drones are manufactured "entirely within the US," adding that every purchase and operation goes to support "US competitiveness, jobs, and national security." Their leadership boasts some familiar faces from high-level positions at corps like Apple, BAE, Sikorsky, Righthand Robotics, Tesla, and Uber.

FMI: www.guardian.ag

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