altair origins

The History behind a name

Altair, an Arabic word that means “the flying eagle

It is the 12th brighter star and it is part of Aquila (Eagle) constellation. Together with Deneb and Vega composes the “Summer Triangle”, and you can find it as the lower left corner. It is 16.8 light years far from earth, its radius is about 1.7 times our sun’s one and is 11 times brighter than our star. Its rotational period is 9 hours and it spins rapidly.


If you watch the images that represent Altair and the Summer Triangle, you can understand where our logo comes from. With a very direct and simple design, we wanted to make visible the link between the laboratory, the stars and what the stars represent for us.

If you take a look at the picture of the spaceship created for the movie you can recognize our stain. Besides, in the movie appears one of the most famous robots of all the times: Robby. You can recognize it in the on the right.

Stars mean bewitch unknown and desire of knowledge since the dawn of mankind. So we stopped looking for a name for the laboratory when we focus on the name of a star: Altair.

This name is a great acronym that explain our aim and recall our sense of challenge and research.

Prof. Paolo Fiorini

ALTAIR Lab. Founder

The name of our web host is metropolis.
In 1927 Fritz Lang created one of the first movies, with Dr. Smith’s automaton and L’uomo meccanico, where an anthropomorphic robot appears. In Metropolis, a silent movie, the genius of Lang shows a futuristic and chaotic town. It is impressive that you can find the, maybe, first cyborg in cinema history (try to look at the hand of robot’s creator), and a video telephone really in advance.