Editor’s Note: We’re excited to introduce you to the innovative, bold, and talented individuals competing in GoFly. Our teams come from all over the world, shaped by their diverse backgrounds and unique life experiences. We can’t wait to see what they’ll build, but in the meantime, get to know the people behind the devices.

Team Aeroxo, a nine-person crew from Moscow, Russia, knows the clock is ticking when it comes to building the prototype of their GoFly Prize device. But team captain Vladimir Spinko also understands that taking extra time and care to perform necessary calculations, run tests and execute simulations will pay off in the long haul.

As the team wraps up research and development, Aeroxo is preparing to move their headquarters to Riga, Latvia, where they’ll continue building and perfecting until they bring their entry into the GoFly Prize challenge to life.

It’s an exciting time for Team Aeroxo—read on to learn more about Spinko, the leader at their helm.

How did you realize you were passionate about aviation? What’s your earliest memory associated with flight?

My earliest aviation memory is being a four-year-old kid, going on vacation with my parents and flying on a Tu-134 jet airliner. It wasn’t until high school, however, that I realized that flights are much more convenient than trains or cars.

What excites you about GoFly?  

It is a great opportunity to compete with teams from all over the world.

What does the world look like after you create your flying device? How do you think you will change the world?

We envision shorter, faster, and more convenient trips that will make people happier.

What is your biggest challenge in the GoFly Prize competition currently? How do you plan to overcome it?

Timing. We have to present a flying prototype in about a year, and that’s going to be really tough. Our team is going to do our the best with numerical and theoretical calculations to minimize probable errors during our experiments and save time.

What’s one fun fact about you that your team members don’t know?

I have a fear of heights, so standing on a balcony scares me. However, I am absolutely comfortable flying in an airplane.

What were some of your favorite courses in school? How did they enrich your understanding of aviation?

Math and physics. I have a technical background in applied physics, so the understanding of aviation comes easier to me than to the non-tech guys.

What’s the best piece of advice that you’ve ever received from a mentor?

“Do your best during design and simulations, as prototypes always underperform compared to initial expectations.”

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