Amazon has filed a patent for a flying warehouse that would deliver packages using a fleet of drones. The "airborne fulfilment centre", patented in the U.S., would consist of a giant airship that remains at high altitude while drones collect packages from it to deliver to locations on the ground.
The online retail giant's patent was discovered by analytics firm CB Insights, which dubbed it Amazon's "death star".
CB Insights said members of its team had dug further into Amazon's patents and found plans to create a connected network of drones, where multiple drones would share information with each other about their surroundings.
It said Amazon was also considering fitting drone bases into buildings, mobile phone towers or lampposts, and had filed a patent for a drone defence system.
This patent detailed how a drone could defend itself from an attack by a "malicious person" wielding a bow and arrow by covering itself in protective foam that absorbs kinetic energy. It did not specify how the drone would anticipate the attack.