Altavian is an aerospace and defense company headquartered in Gainesville, FL. Founded in 2011, Altavian has grown out of its start-up stages into a small-company of over 40 employees. Altavian produces and manufactures its equipment in-house. The engine of our core design process is our multi-disciplinary engineering team. Their expertise ranges from aerospace, to avionics, to software, and mechanical hardware. We also support an experienced core of operators as well as business-support teams. We are a privately held and funded entity with a long track record of success in both the commercial and defense spaces.


Core values

  • We believe in strong, open, and honest communication.
  • We commit ourselves to engineering excellence.
  • We take ownership of our company and our offerings.
  • We embrace in open systems and innovative approaches.
  • We value work ethic and continuous improvement.



John is Altavian’s CEO and Co-Founder. His dedication to drone technology grew from witnessing the incredible ability drones have to put even the most remote, dangerous, and difficult data to acquire within easy reach. John’s love of geomatics inspires his work. He believes that drone-collected data is essential to better managing our environment, our resources, and the infrastructure that secures our future.





Thomas is Altavian’s COO and Co-Founder. His focus is on Altavian’s professional services division including field collection, processing, and finalizing of geospatial data collected by drones. Thomas led the autonomous system development, including mission planning and monitoring software, for Altavian’s sUAS.





Thomas is Altavian’s CPO and Co-Founder. He currently directs the entire product and technology development cycle for all Altavain products managing a team of over 20 engineers and technicians. He led the development of both the Nova F7200 and the Galaxy R8700 as well as the Fusion MP22 payload, Flare GCS and Altavian’s Frequency Reallocation Effort with the US Army.





Paul is Altavian’s CSO and brings his expertise to Altavian’s financial strategies, processes, and operations.

Prior to assuming the post of CSO, Paul was the founder and CEO of Cogent Risk, a boutique consulting firm that provides analytics, valuation and risk planning services to government research institutions and select private entities.


Origins & Founding


Founded out of UF

The origin of Altavian is in the University of Florida’s Micro Aerial Vehicle Lab. The co-founders worked together in the MAV Lab when an opportunity presented itself. There was a need for a cheaper, and safer alternative to manned flights surveying wildlife in the Everglades. After developing the original concept for the Nova, a small fixed wing drone, the co-founders entered into the UF Office of Technology and Licensing entrepreneurship program out of which they founded Altavian.


Work with Army Corps

The early-generation Nova was an ideal system-fit for the work of the Army Corps of Engineers. The Army Corps turned into one of Altavian’s earliest and most productive partners. The Nova was a rugged, small drone capable of water landings and endurance flying. This filled an empty niche in the commercial drone space. Academic, commercial, and government parties tapped the Nova for specialized work in difficult environments. As demand grew, Altavian grew, and our expertise expanded work moved to many systems associated with the Army Corps.


Commercial and Defense Space

Today, Altavian is a veteran in the drone industry. Altavian is one of the few American-based companies that still designs and produces their systems in-house. Altavian blends the our experience in the commercial and defense markets to create open, modular systems. This engineering philosophy, coupled with the expertise and experience of our multidisciplinary engineering teams, has brought Altavian to the forefront of small unmanned aircraft development. Modular, interoperable systems are the hallmark of Altavian’s offerings today.