Dornier Seastar hopes to return

Profile picture for user J Boyle

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14 years 11 months

Posts: 9,617

The composite twin-turboprop amphibian Dornier Seastar project is looking to be revived with U.S. production for commercial, government, oil support and private customers. Here's a story from Aviation Week... http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/generic/story_channel.jsp?channel=busav&id=news/NBDORN10068.xml&show=nbaa08 The article mentions it as being a competitor to the SE Cessan Caravan on floats...but with a larger fuselage and of course, twin engines. Sounds like the newly relaunched Viking (formerly DHC) Twin Otter on floats would also be a competitor. It's intesting that they say the plane has a cabin larger than a King Air 200... (Wonder how that compares to a Twin Otter?). One point the article mentions, as a flying boat-type aircraft (as opposed to a float plane like the Caravan or Twin Otter on amphib floats) the Seastar would be better suited for rougher seas. It's a neat aircraft, I wish them well .
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Profile picture for user Newforest

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14 years 6 months

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Best wishes to the project. Here is a photo of the Dornier Seastar, not to be confused with the Do.24 which has three engines. It is unusual to have a Dornier model without a number designation. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dornier_Seawings_Seastar

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16 years 2 months

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At a guess the Twotter has possibly got a larger cabin by the looks of it. I guess the Seastar would have a higher cruising speed though. Just had a look at the specs. the Twin Otter is an altogether larger aircraft (20 as against 12 passengers). The Twin Otter on wheels has a maximum speed of 210mph against the Seastar's 209. How much the float equiped ones would lose I don't know but I reckon the Seastar would definitely win on cruise speed. I guess it's the old horses for courses thing again.

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16 years 7 months

Posts: 1,029

The Dornier (D-ICKS not D-IOKS as blue tape had been applied to fill the gap in the 'C') was at the NBAA last week as was the Viking Twotter (featuring a new all glass cockpit that brings it right up to date) I will try and get some pics uploaded in the next few days.

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11 years 11 months

Posts: 9

Yep, the Twin Otter on Floats (Straight) can carry about 15 people with luggage and proceed to fly for about an hour and a bit and land with reserves. On Amphibs it carries about 10 to 12 people with bags and can fly around for about 30 to 40 minutes and land with reserves. It's a huge penalty with Amphibs, especially if you can't have an up-gross weight increase (13'000 to 14'000 pounds) which would make this mod worthwhile. Having a aircraft built as an Amphib, with mostly composite structures and higher cruise speed with these engines makes a strong selling point in my view. The PT6-27 or 34's are thirsty (SGR) when strapped to a stoll airframe that was made in the 60's and then rebuild circa 2010. Looking at the numbers the Cessna Caravan would be the winner here hands down except that it's not a stoll airframe (Yet). Given the comment about it being better for big water operations is quiet interesting and I hope the trials prove Dornier right. The deep Keels on the Wipline Floats offer a distinct advantage to date for this sort of operation though. Nobody would want to put 6 million dollars worth of aircraft through this sort of punishment on a regular basis if they had any sense. Maybe a 2 million dollar aircraft but 6 million!