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New generation of Dornier Seastar completed first flight


The prototype SN1003, a New Generation of the Dornier Seastar amphibious aircraft successfully performed its first flight today at Oberpfaffenhofen EDMO airport, Germany. The flight was performed by Dornier Seawings test pilot crew and took 31 minutes.


New generation of Dornier Seastar completed first flight The operational concept of the Seastar is to enhance short to medium haul trips with lower cost and flight time but higher safety and capacity, efficiently connecting land and sea through the sky (Picture source: Dornier)


The Seastar SN1003 attained the required approvals from EASA and LBA on 19 March 2020, this was a major milestone and achievement for the program.

The New Generation Seastar is significantly improved from the original Seastar which was designed and developed by Claudius Dornier Jr. in the 1980s. The New Generation is equipped with a state-of-the-art full digital glass cockpit, new highly efficient propellers, several systems including air-conditioning and stern thruster, plus a corrosion-resistant composite structure that results in reduced maintenance keeping costs significantly down particularly in sea water operations.

The operational concept of the Seastar is to enhance short to medium haul trips with lower cost and flight time but higher safety and capacity, efficiently connecting land and sea through the sky. The New Generation Seastar has a maximum takeoff weight of 5100 kilograms, a maximum cruise speed of 180 KTAS (333 km/hr) and 900nm (1667 km) as a maximum range.

Possible customizable interiors include cargo, VIP, passenger and special mission configurations.

Pilot’s feedback after the first flight of the New Generation Seastar: “First flight was completed successfully and confirmed the nice handling qualities of the Seastar. All systems functioned correctly. The advanced avionic system reflects the state-of-the-art in cockpit design and is a good baseline for future development.” – Wolfram Cornelius, Chief Test Pilot

The Seastar is the ideal aircraft for operations such as coastal surveillance, patrolling, environmental control, fisheries protection, emergency medical services, search and rescue, drug interdiction and disaster relief, to name a few. Used as a multi-role platform the Seastar is able to perform the combined operational tasks usually requiring both air and seaborne assets. This ability to combine asset tasking will produce faster response times, increase operational flexibility and reduce costs in comparison with the use of existing fixed wing, helicopter and seaborne assets.