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Amazon granted patent for subterranean tunnel delivery network

A 33-page patent recently granted to e-commerce giant Amazon describes a delivery system utilising a series of conveyor belts or rails and vacuum tubes to transport goods underground.
The patent was first spotted by tech blog Geek Wire. It was discovered that the retail giant filed the patent three years ago, and it was granted in late 2016.
This is not the first time Amazon has made headlines for its bold entry into the logistics arena. From their rumoured development of an Uber-style delivery app and patents for flying warehouses, 3D printers in trucks and drones that can hitchhike of trucks and buses, Amazon is not short of outlandish and innovative ideas.
According to the tunnel patent, the delivery system would increase efficiency and reliability of delivery and bypass road traffic, whilst requiring fewer delivery vehicles on the network.Tunnel Amazon
The patent states, “A dedicated network delivery system may avoid congestion experienced by traditional networks and enable the delivery of objects from an origin to a destination using…subterranean or above ground elements.”
Newsweek reports that UK firm Mole Solutions unveiled details of a freight pipeline concept last year, describing it as the ‘21st –century link in the supply chain process of the future.”
Images via the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

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