Most delivery drones undergoing testing today are small and light enough to pick up with one hand, with payloads usually comprising a snack or some meds.

Volocopter, however, has built a much larger drone-like machine for much heavier payloads.

In the VoloDrone’s first-ever public flight this week, the German company demonstrated the vehicle’s airworthiness and showed how it can be deployed for cargo transportation.

Conducted in partnership with logistics firm and Volocopter investor DG Schenker, the demonstration involved a typical drone-delivery operation, including loading, launch, flight, landing, and unloading.

The VoloDrone electric vertical-takeoff-and-landing (eVTOL) aircraft was first unveiled in 2019 as a greener solution for transporting large payloads, with the aircraft able to be flown remotely or autonomously.

Since then, the company has been refining the design of the 18-rotor vehicle, with changes including the addition of a robust container to replace the…