Research Projects Contributing to Innovation

Contributing to Innovation

Innovative thinking is about pulling “mind fences” down and being able to explore ideas in an environment with outstanding human capital. The Diamond Group is driven by passion and curiosity towards innovation and progress. As a result we are constantly involved in exiting research projects, often a contribution to the social and green environment.

We are proud to announce some milestone setting Research in the Diamond History:

Fly by Wire – the DA42 takes off with ‚electronic parachute’

Diamond Aircraft tests successfully "Fly-by-Wire" technology

Diamond Aircraft successfully tested the first fly-by-wire system for General Aviation on the twin-engine DA42.

The system enables flight envelope protection which protects the pilot from unintentional flight manoeuvres that could lead to structural or aerodynamical overstressing of the aircraft. Furthermore the aircraft should be able to land automatically in case of incapacity of the pilot in a single pilot operation. Fly-by-wire is already part of every big airliner like Airbus or Boeing and Diamond Aircraft expects a big increase in safety.

The tests take place within the EU project SAFAR (Small Aircraft Future Avionics Architecture) with partners from Austria, Germany, The Netherlands, Czech Republic, Spain and Belgium.
 
In the long run the company is working on fully automatic take-off, flight and landing for every DA42 and other aircraft models.

Euronews has made a great documentary about this fascinating project. Watch the video here.

For article reviews please visit

World’s 1st flights with algae bioful

A Diamond DA42 NG, powered by Austro Engine AE300 engines, and fuelled with biofuel derived from algae, has been making demonstration flights at the International Aerospace Exhibition (ILA) in Berlin..

The configuration burns 8% less fuel per hour (approx. 1.5 litres/0.4 gallons) at similar performance levels and produces 40% less nitrogen oxide. Algae-based biofuel is 100% carbon neutral and contains eight times less hydrocarbons than aircraft powered by traditional kerosene fuels.

Diamond's single and twin engine NG series aircraft are powered by the most modern piston aircraft engines based on Daimler Benz turbo-diesel/Jet A-1 (most common kerosene in commercial aviation) technology in existence. Austro Engine's AE300 already offer the very lowest exhaust emissions, lowest specific fuel consumption and lowest noise emissions. We are very proud to partner with EADS in these first flights of an aircraft powered by 100% bio fuel derived from algae.

"Our pure bio fuel flight from algae is a world first and an exciting milestone in our research at EADS." says Dr. Jean Botti, Chief Technical Officer (CTO) of EADS. "This opens up the feasibility of carbon-neutral flights."

For article review please visit

Diamond Aircraft proudly presents the world’s first serial hybrid electric aircraft “DA36 E-Star”

Diamond Aircraft, Siemens, Austro Engine and EADS are set to present the world's first aircraft with a serial hybrid electric drive system at the Paris Air Show Le Bourget 2011. The two-seater motor glider successfully completed its maiden flight on June 8 at the Wiener Neustadt airfield in Austria. The aircraft was built by the four partners to test the hybrid electric drive concept. In the future, the technology, which is intended for later use also in large-scale aircraft, will cut fuel consumption and emissions by 25 percent, compared to today's most efficient aircraft drives.

Air traffic accounts for some 2.2 percent of CO2 emissions worldwide. For this reason, aircraft, too, must become more efficient. One possible solution – which Siemens and its partners Diamond Aircraft and EADS are testing in the DA36 E-Star motor glider – is to electrify the drive system.
"A serial hybrid electric drive can be scaled for a wide range of uses, making it highly suitable for aircraft as well," said Dr. Frank Anton, the initiator of electric aircraft development at Siemens. "The first thing we want to do is test the technology in small aircraft. In the long term, however, the drive system will also be used in large-scale aircraft. We want to cut fuel consumption and emissions by 25 percent, compared to today's most efficient technologies. This will make air travel more sustainable."

The motor glider, which is based on Diamond Aircraft's HK36 Super Dimona, is the only aircraft of its kind in the world. It is the first to use a so-called serial hybrid electric drive, which has been utilized to date only in cars, as an integrated drive train. The plane's propeller is powered by a 70kW electric motor from Siemens. Electricity is supplied by a small Wankel engine from Austro Engine with a generator that functions solely as a power source. A Siemens converter supplies the electric motor with power from the battery and the generator. Fuel consumption is very low since the combustion engine always runs with a constant low output of 30kW. A battery system from EADS provides the increased power required during takeoff and climb. The accumulator is recharged during the cruising phase. "The serial hybrid electric drive concept makes possible a quiet electric takeoff and a considerable reduction in fuel consumption and emission," said Christian Dries, the owner of Diamond Aircraft. "It also enables aircraft to cover the required long distances."

The electric motor glider successfully completed its first flight at the Wiener Neustadt airfield in Austria on June 8, 2011. "On the long way to hybrid electric-powered commercial aircraft, the maiden flight of the DA36 E-Star is a small step and at the same time a historic milestone," said Dr. Jean Botti, Chief Technical Officer and member of the Executive Committee of EADS.

The DA36 E-Star will be exhibited at the Paris Air Show Le Bourget in a flight demonstration every day from June 20 to June 26, 2011.

For article reviews please visit

Austro Engine wins EU “Clean Sky” programme

Eurocopter, Austro Engine, Mecachrome and TEOS Power train Engineering set up cooperation to decrease future helicopter fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

Eurocopter as a major European helicopter manufacturer decided to increase the range of the EC 120 by significantly reducing the fuel consumption up to 40 % with using turbo charged diesel engines running on aviation jet fuel (e.g. Jet-A1, JP-8)

To achieve this goal EADS Eurocopter decided to choose Austro Engine, Mecachrome and TEOS Powertrain Engineering as partners. Austro Engine particularly is experienced in installing Jet-A1 powered turbo diesel engines into general aviation aircraft.

This cutting edge technology is partly funded by the European "Clean Sky" Programme.

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DA42 Twin Star crosses Atlantic non-stop…

…marking the first Atlantic crossing of a diesel powered aircraft!

On Monday August 16th, 2004 Diamond Test pilot Gerard Guillaumaud ferried the Oshkosh display DA42 Twin Star back to Wiener Neustadt, Austria, to continue optional equipment certification. Remarkably, the twin diesel engine DA42 was flown from London, Ontario, Canada to Porto, Portugal, Europe with only one stop, in St. John's Newfoundland, Canada.

The leg from London to St. John's (1,300 nm / 2,407 km), took Guillaumaud 7 ½ hrs. The trans Atlantic leg of (1,900 nm / 3,518 km), from St. John's to Porto Portugal, was completed in 12 ½ hrs.

Had it not been for adverse weather conditions in Europe, the remaining 5 hrs of fuel upon landing in Porto would have been sufficient to reach Guillaumaud's planned destination of Toulouse, France, a planned non stop distance of over (2,500 nm / 4,630 km). Average combined fuel burn for the crossing, flown at 11,000 ft (3,353 m), was an incredible 5.74 gph /22 l (2.87 gph / 11 l per engine)! Guillaumaud set engine power at a fuel conserving 42% and achieved an average ground speed of 152 kts (281.5 km/h).

The Diamond Star's optional 78 gallon(300 l) long range fuel tanks were supplemented with a 26 gallon (100 l) ferry tank.
The total amount of Jet fuel consumed for the crossing, 72 gallons (272 l) cost less than US$ 200! The point to point travel time was considerably faster than any available commercial flight combination, illustrating the Diamond Star's practicality as a personal or business transportation alternative.

This flight represents the first non-stop transatlantic crossing by a diesel engine powered aircraft in general aviation and underlines the efficiency and reliability of the DA42 Twin Star TDI.

Diamond motor glider to fly with fuel cell power plant

Boeing researchers and industry partners, including Diamond Aircraft, plan to conduct experimental flight tests this year of a manned airplane powered only by a fuel cell and lightweight batteries, in an effort to develop environmentally progressive technologies for aerospace applications. Technical innovation comes from research and development. Diamond Aircraft has always been a leader in general aviation innovation, producing certified all composite aircraft since 1981, launching the Garmin G1000 glass cockpit, flying the first true modern certified personal light jet, and introducing modern power plant technology to GA.

"With regards to power plant, Diamond Aircraft introduced the Rotax 912 in our 2 seaters in 1990, and pioneered the application of turbo-diesel engines in our DA40-TDI and DA42," said Christian Dries, CEO of Diamond Aircraft. "It was therefore only natural for us to participate in this very innovative fuel cell demonstrator project that could open the possibilities to alternative energy and clean emission powerplants for future generations of GA aircraft."

Diamond Aircraft offers the most comprehensive range of modern GA aircraft, including the 2 place DA20, the 4 place single DA40 Diamond Star, the twin turbo diesel engine DA42 Twin Star, and the D-JET, a 5 place luxury personal jet aircraft. For further information on Diamond Aircraft, visit www.diamond-air.at
For further information on the fuel cell powerplant program visit http://www.boeing.com/news/releases/2007/q1/070327e_nr.htm