When researching new flight guidance concepts, it is very important to conduct field tests and demonstrate their use in realistic environments in order to ensure acceptance among future users and decision-makers.
To this end, the Institute maintains comprehensive installations at Braunschweig Wolfsburg Airport to explore new air traffic management systems in an operational environment – the Airport Research Facility (ARF). These installations at Braunschweig research airport, an airport with good technical facilities and comparatively lower traffic levels, allow the Institute to implement prototypes and conduct field tests in the direct vicinity, without jeopardising the required safety of flight operations. This is not possible at a large airport.
DLR operates the "National Experimental Test Center for Unmanned Aircraft Systems" at Magdeburg-Cochstedt Airport. The Institute of Flight Guidance uses the test centre for practical research activities around the integration of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) into the airspace and the development and testing of new UAS concepts.