Alatron is the name of the bi-modal UAV that was designed and built for Sierra’s senior design project at the University of Nevada, Reno. The UAV was designed for both rotary and fixed-wing flight in order to maximize the craft’s versatility, and was hand built using a combination of extremely light-weight and composite materials. The project was sponsored by the Nevada Advanced Autonomous Systems Innovation Center and supported by the Mechanical Engineering Department at the University of Nevada, Reno. Information on the design process can be found on the UNR Mechanical Engineering Capstone Blog.

The below video features a test-flight of the Alatron UAV. The craft was designed as a tandem wing, with a vertical offset between the fore and aft wings in order to maximize the aerodynamic lift in forward flight. This offset created some interesting dynamics in the aircraft, which made flying the craft challenging.