SPECIAL MENTION: 2% of the U.S.’s 5,000 airports handle 96% of the cargo. Left out are small regional airports, which simply don’t get service. One possible solution: Xwing automated flight technology, which uses autonomous software to fly small cargo planes to where they’re needed. Xwing has already succeeded in flying proof of concept flights, flown autonomously with a pilot on board, including a four-hour delivery of PPE and other essentials from Concord, Calif to a Navajo reservation in Winslow, Ariz.—Jeffrey Kluger
Correction, Nov. 10.
The original version of this story misstated the nature of the company’s proof of concept flights. There was a pilot on board as required by federal aviation rules, they were not pilotless.
- TIME's Top 100 Photos of 2022
- I Tested Positive for COVID-19 Right Before the Holidays. What Should I Do?
- Column: How To Create a Sense of Belonging In a Divided America
- How to Survive the Holidays if You're a Scrooge
- Life Expectancy Provides Evidence of How Far Black Americans Have Come
- The 10 Best Albums of 2022
- Iran Has a Long History of Protest and Activism
- 6 Ways to Give Better Gifts—Based on Science