Cutting-edge research from fundamental principles through to applications

DLR is the Federal Republic of Germany's research centre for aeronautics and space. We conduct research and development activities in the fields of aeronautics, space, energy, transport, security and digitalisation. The German Space Agency at DLR plans and implements the national space programme on behalf of the federal government. Two DLR project management agencies oversee funding programmes and support knowledge transfer.

DLR employs approximately 10000 people at 30 locations: Cologne (Headquarters and location of the Executive Board), Augsburg, Berlin, Bonn, Braunschweig, Bremen, Bremerhaven, Cochstedt, Cottbus, Dresden, Geesthacht, Göttingen, Hamburg, Hanover, Jena, Jülich, Lampoldshausen, Neustrelitz, Oberpfaffenhofen, Oldenburg, Rheinbach, Sankt Augustin, Stade, Stuttgart, Trauen, Ulm, Weilheim and Zittau. DLR also has offices in Brussels, Paris, Tokyo and Washington D.C.

An active member of the Helmholtz Association

As the largest institution in the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres, DLR is responsible for the fields of aeronautics, space and transport research, and also makes important contributions to energy research. Germany’s major non-university research institutions come together under the Helmholtz name. These differ from other non-university research institutions such as the Max Planck Society, the Fraunhofer Society and the Leibniz Association, in that they are dedicated to finding solutions to major and pressing societal issues relating to Earth and the environment, health, energy, the structure of matter and key technologies. Of course, the work also includes aeronautics, space and transport. Research and development work is conducted on topics that range all the way from fundamental principles to their application in the form of services and products.

Organised as a registered association

DLR operates in the legal form of a registered association. As such, DLR is a legally independent entity with its own charter and statutory bodies (boards).


DLR receives 90 percent of its institutional funding from the federal government via programme-oriented funding from the Helmholtz Association (via the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action), and 10 percent from the federal states in which its 30 sites are located. In addition, it receives third-party funds from industry and additional support programmes, granted through competitive tenders.

DLR Senate

DLR's highest body is its General Assembly. This has delegated essential tasks to the DLR Senate, which meets twice a year as a supervisory body. The DLR Senate consists of up to 33 members, representing the scientific, business, industrial and state sectors equally. The Chair of the Senate is a State Secretary in the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action, which is responsible to the Federal Government for DLR. In addition to its supervisory role, the Senate advises and supports DLR on important issues such as its strategic direction and setting the course for the further development of DLR.

DLR Executive Board

DLR is managed by its Executive Board. Since October 2020, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Anke Kaysser-Pyzalla has been Chair of the Executive Board, while Klaus Hamacher is Vice Chairman. The Executive Board also includes Prof. Dr. Karsten Lemmer, responsible for the Executive Board department 'Innovation, Transfer and Research Infrastructure', and Dr. Walther Pelzer, responsible for the 'German Space Agency at DLR' based in Bonn.