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Tuesday, August 16, 2022

Are Drones the Optimal Way to Distribute COVID-19 Tests?

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 Are Drones the Optimal Way to Distribute COVID-19 Tests?

Texas A&M Today

Rae Lynn Mitchell, July 22, 2022

A new COVID-19 test distribution framework developed by researchers at the Texas A&M University School of Public Health and the University of Houston uses trucks and aerial drones to deliver tests to individuals. The framework determines a feasible set of truck and drone routes, then applies a heuristic algorithm that attempts different route combinations to improve the initial solution. The researchers used a real-world situation to find a good routing schedule within roughly 60 minutes of computing time, then devised a measure of effectiveness based on total delivery time, number of participants, and virus transmission rate versus face-to-face testing. They found the proposed truck/drone delivery method could reduce transmission during testing 7.5-fold. ... '

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