Airvan Project


General Autonomous Aeronautical Platform

View the Project on GitHub w2sz/Airvan

Airvan Project - Home

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Airvan is an inexpensive and mass reproducible open source, open hardware general autonomous aeronautical platform easily accessible and usable by the average person.

With modular payloads, this platform may be used for different purposes, such as:

Example use case:

  1. AirRepeater (Airvan + Radio Repeater) can be used to establish long range radio communications in the aftermath of environmental and human caused disaster.
  2. AirLens (Airvan + Camera + Computer Vision) can perform search and rescue with computer vision technology to spot creatures/objects in motion at a distance.
  3. AirSurveyor (Airvan + Camera + Photogrammetry) scan the landscape and generate orthomosaic maps or 3D textured mesh for civil engineering use.

AirRepeater System

Here is a video of an example mission simulation.


The project is in the active early design stage now. Specifications are subject to change.

General Airvan


Technical Approach



Fall 2022

Spring 2023


Please contact Zhemin ‘Hisen’ Zhang via zhangz29 at rpi dot edu if you are interested in sponsoring or donating to the project.

Financial information release available here.



This project is a collaborative outcome of three clubs at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.


FAA Regulation

This project is Title 14 CFR Part 107 compliant, referred to as the Small UAS Rule.


This project adopts MIT License.