Vahanas’ Alpha One Soars On Its First Fully Self-Piloted Flight

It was a historic day for Airbus, A3, and the Vahana team when Alpha One, the first full-scale aircraft lifted off on January 31, 2018, in Pendleton, Oregon. At 8:52 AM Pacific Time the fully self-piloted vehicle reached a height of 5 meters (16 feet) before descending and landing safely. The vehicle completed a second flight the following day. In attendance was the full Vahana team, representatives from the FAA, and A3leadership, all coming together to witness this historic accomplishment.


The first flight also marked the successful completion of significant milestones by Modern Technology Solutions, Inc. (MTSI) and its team of subcontractors supporting Vahana for the past 18 months.  Integrated directly with the experts at Vahana from early in the project, MTSI, a 100% employee-owned engineering services and technology solutions provider for the defense industry, intelligence community, and commercial markets, contributed to the vehicle reaching its first flight milestone by performing the following tasks:

  • Coordinated and presented a Safety Evaluation resulting the award of a Special Airworthiness Certificate – Experimental
  • Served as Test Director during flight and ground tests
  • Authored Flight Test Plans and Ground Test Plans that captured test objectives and test requirements for an evolving experimental platform
  • Authored the Flight Manual, Maintenance Program Manual, Vehicle Maintenance Logs, and Standard Operating Procedures for flight test
  • Design, assembly, installation, and programming of an instrumentation pallet monitoring critical subsystems with the assistance of Advanced Aircraft Equipment LLC and Adjutant Engineering LLC
  • Completion of Safety Review Boards for Test Range approval from NexGen UAS Range Management and the City of Pendleton, Oregon.


Vahana’s aim has long been to design and build a self-piloted, single passenger, all electric VTOL aircraft to answer the growing need for urban mobility. Its goal is to democratize personal flight by leveraging the latest technologies such as electric propulsion, energy storage, and machine vision. The first flights mark a huge milestone for Vahana as well as the global pursuit of urban air mobility.


MTSI will soon resume flight testing of Vahana and continue hover, transition, and cruise test profiles at the Pendleton UAS Test Range. For more information on openings MTSI currently has, company information, and benefits offered, please visit the MTSI Careers page and MTSI Vahana job opportunity listings.


About Modern Technology Solutions, Inc. (MTSI)
MTSI is a 100% employee-owned engineering services and technology solutions company delivering first-choice capabilities to solve problems of global importance in the critical mission areas of missile defense, cyber security, intelligence, unmanned/autonomous systems, aviation, space, and homeland security. MTSI’s mission is to make important and lasting contributions to the nation’s defense and security by providing leadership and best-value solutions to solve America’s most technically challenging strategic problems. Founded in 1993, MTSI today has over 800 employees, based at 20 offices and field sites worldwide. Read more at

For more information on available job opportunities with MTSI and benefits offered including 401K with immediate vesting, zero deductible health plans, employee stock ownership plan (ESOP), $10k annual tuition reimbursement, and more first year paid time off, please visit

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