The Airbus A320-Advanced Technology Research Aircraft (ATRA) is operated by the German Aerospace Center (DLR) Flight Experiments facility in Braunschweig; it is the largest member of DLR’s fleet. The aircraft acts as a research platform for various DLR institutes and can also be used by the European aviation industry for research and development projects. The airliner is designed to investigate various areas, such as aerodynamics, aeroacoustics, flight management, and energy and noise-optimised approach procedures.
Largest fleet member and highly versatile
The Airbus A320-ATRA is the largest research aircraft operated by DLR. The combination of a flexibly deployable research infrastructure and a commercial airliner makes the facility unique.
In addition to an experimental interface for a wide range of aircraft parameters, users can carry out almost any experiment-specific modifications to the aircraft and thus, with the support of DLR’s own development facility, optimally prepare the aircraft for their experiments.
The large-scale A320-ATRA facility is used for experimental purposes in the European aviation industry; research is focused on making commercial aircraft safer, more efficient, more environmentally friendly and more comfortable.
A key benefit of the A320-ATRA is that it enables the implementation of research concepts devised by DLR institutes. From the point of view of those institutes, the aircraft acts as a valuable interface between the European aviation industry and research.