Walmart continues to work on it various blockchain applications and earlier this year filed a patent application entitled “Cloning Drone Using Blockchain.” The filing was made public recently by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
Walmart noted in the application filing, “A blockchain ledger may store any kind of information that may be stored in any other format or medium, for example, a large list of instructions of different types, navigational information, and maps. In such a way, a same software profile may be deployed across the cloned drones.”
The patent claims blockchain can be used for the transmission of drone information such as device identification numbers, flight heights, speeds and routes as well as battery readings. This drone system described by Walmart allows the drone to encrypt and store information that can be passed to another drone with decrypts, reads and configures to those parameters.
Walmart said it is a communication system between unmanned drones that could rely messages, provide access between communication networks and allow the machines to be aware of each other’s location. The benefit of using blockchain is data integrity.
The retail giant has been working on patenting blockchain solutions since 2017, according to patent filings.
The inventors listed on the patent filing are John O’Brien of Farmington, Donald High of Noel. Mo., Joseph Jurich of Molino, Fla., and Todd Mattingly of Bentonville.
Walmart also has dozens of other patent applications pending involving drone deliveries. The application is the first of many steps in the overall patent process.