Fruity Chutes Drone Parachute Recovery System Part of the Matternet M2 System that Earned First Non-Military FAA Type Certification
by DRONELIFE Staff Writer Ian M. Crosby
Fruity Chutes, the leading parachute recovery systems provider for UAS, announced its partnership with Matternet in earning an FAA Type Certification.
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Fruity Chutes provided Matternet with its drone-optimized Iris Ultralight parachute, alongside crucial safety components such as shock cords and harnesses. The successful acquisition of the Certification establishes Fruity Chutes as being the first ever UAS recovery company to have a drone parachute complete the FAA’s four-year evaluation process.
Fruity Chutes’ Iris Ultralight and its accompanying safety components were integrated with Matternet’s M2 drone over the course of the two companies’ six year collaboration. In order to satisfy all parachute recovery requirements, the M2 drone and the integrated 96” Iris Ultralight underwent third-party testing for ASTM F3322-18 standards, requiring flight testing of more than 45 successful parachute deployments under a range of various conditions. The FAA Type Certification process also requires systems utilizing parachutes to carry out a number of flight hours, ranging from hundreds to thousands depending on population density, all without any failures. This number of hours required is doubled for systems that forego a parachute.
“This long process is about arguing your safety case to the FAA, and the parachute helps you make that case. It lowers the statistical probability of injuries, fatalities, and other accidents,” said Fruity Chutes founder and CEO Gene Engelgau. “Safety has always been our priority, and this achievement reaffirms the safety and reliability of our parachutes.”
“Over the years, Fruity Chutes has been great to work with,” said Jim O’Sullivan, VP of Regulatory Strategy for Matternet. “They’ve helped us out with design and certainly helped us with product integration, and we’ve been happy with the quality of Fruity Chutes products.”
Fruity Chutes and Matternet have cultivated a strong partnership since 2015. Matternet decided on employing Fruity Chutes parachutes as part of its FAA Type Certification safety strategy in 2016. The two companies will continue their collaborative safety efforts going forward in leading practices for the UAS industry.
Ian attended Dominican University of California, where he received a BA in English in 2019. With a lifelong passion for writing and storytelling and a keen interest in technology, he is now contributing to DroneLife as a staff writer.
Miriam McNabb is the Editor-in-Chief of DRONELIFE and CEO of JobForDrones, a professional drone services marketplace, and a fascinated observer of the emerging drone industry and the regulatory environment for drones. Miriam has penned over 3,000 articles focused on the commercial drone space and is an international speaker and recognized figure in the industry. Miriam has a degree from the University of Chicago and over 20 years of experience in high tech sales and marketing for new technologies.
For drone industry consulting or writing, Email Miriam.
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