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RUAG celebrates roll-out of Do 228NG

13th November 2009 - 09:55 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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RUAG Aerospace achieved today another important milestone toward a successful relaunch of the Do 228. In a ceremony on the special airport in Oberpfaffenhofen (D) the completely modernized 19-passenger aircraft was today presented to the public.

In October 2007 the RUAG supervisory board decided to resume the production of the Dornier 228 aircraft, under the name Dornier 228NG (New Generation). This aircraft is currently built for 19 passengers and equipped with state-of-the-art avionics, glass cockpit and new 5-blade propeller.

Two years after its go-ahead the Relaunch Dornier 228 NG project is entering in November 2009 a decisive phase. After successful ground tests the flight test phase of the type platform, the Do 228 NG prototype, is now commencing.

A milestone in this project, which was duly celebrated on 12 November 2009 in Oberpfaffenhofen, in the presence of high-ranking representatives from local politics, military and industry. During the event which was presented by aviation expert Carl-Ludwig Paeschke, employees of the project-involved departments – board of management, project management, test pilot, engineering and production - reported about their work for a successful Do 228 NG relaunch project.

“For us the view of our employees is of paramount importance”, said Dr. Peter Guggenbach, CEO of RUAG Aerospace, and added “that the employees of RUAG Aerospace in Germany and Switzerland can be proud of the new RUAG product”.

And that this product is a completely modernized aircraft is evidenced by approx. 350 modifications carried out on the Do 228 NG. While fuselage, wings and tail unit are manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) in Kanpur (India) and then transported to Oberpfaffenhofen where RUAG carries out aircraft final assembly and outfitting, the most visible changes are the following:

· Complete new digital glass cockpit
· Up-to-date navigation system
· State-of-the-art communication systems
· Five-blade propeller
· New landing gear design
· New cabin layout with new comfort seats

Also, the Do 228 NG features excellent flight characteristics such as short-takeoff capability, high payload and long range as well as its capability to start and land from unpaved runways with limited ground support services.

Global customers include both airlines and authorities and organizations with security tasks using the new RUAG aircraft, after appropriate conversion, for coast, environmental and border control operations. Especially the fact that the Do 228 NG is ideal as special task platform, and RUAG has long experience in this field, has had the consequence that the company announced the manufacture of an MPA (Maritime Patrol Aircraft) version of the Do 228 NG. “With a modular concept the customer will get an overall system tailored to his needs”, said Wolfgang Neumann, managing director of RUAG Aerospace Services in Oberpfaffenhofen.

Subsequent to the reports by the employees on their experience the guests were given the opportunity to have a close look onto the Do 228 NG type platform and the aircraft production line. And at 12:30 pm the Do 228 NG type platform took off into the Bavarian sky. Together with two Do 228 aircraft of the German Navy and the DLR (German Aerospace Centre) the airplanes, in formation, circled twice the Oberpfaffenhofen special airport.

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