Researchers are utilising DLR’s fleet of specialist aircraft to gain a better understanding of the natural world and how new technology can play a role in aeronautics. James Ronayne reports from Oberpfaffenhofen.


The largest aircraft in the fleet is Airbus A320 D-ATRA.

The Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (German Aerospace Centre - DLR) is Germany’s national organisation tasked with research into aerospace, energy and transportation. It operates Europe’s largest civilian research fleet, consisting of 12 highly specialised fixed-wing and rotary aircraft, which can deploy globally. The aircraft are used for aeronautical exploration or as research platforms for Earth, sea or atmospheric studies.

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