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German Aerospace Center

The German Aerospace Center (DLR) (German: Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt e.V.) is the national research center for aviation and space flight of the Federal Republic of Germany and of other member states in the Helmholtz Association.

Its extensive research and development projects are included in national and international cooperative programs. In addition to its research projects, the DLR is the assigned space agency of Germany bestowing headquarters of German space flight activities and its associates.

Table of contents


The DLR is present in Germany at eight locations:

Branch offices

There are further branch offices of the DLR in:

There are currently about 5,100 people employed at the DLR. It maintains 28 facilities for ground testing and ground control. The DLR has also foreign offices near its space flight partnrs in Brüssels, Paris, and Washington, D.C..

Board of directors

The board of directors are composed of:

  • Prof. Dr. Sigmar Wittig (Vors.) since March 2002
  • Prof. Dr. Bernd J. Höfer (stellv. Vors.) since April 2001
  • Prof. Dr. Achim Bachem (Space travel and Transport) since 1996
  • Prof. Dr. Joachim Szodruch (Aviation and Energy) since 2002
  • Dr. Ludwig Baumgarten (Space flight management and project bearer of the DLR) since April 2002


The DLR was formed in 1969 under the name of German Test and Research Institute for Aviation and Space Flight (DFVLR) (German: Deutsche Forschungs- und Versuchsanstalt für Luft- und Raumfahrt) through the merger of three former facilities. These were the Aerodynamics Laboratory (AVA) (German: Aerodynamische Versuchsanstalt), the German Laboratory for Aviation (DVL) (German: Deutsche Versuchsanstalt für Luftfahrt) and the German Research Institute for Aviation (DFL) (German: Deutsche Forschungsanstalt für Luftfahrt).

In 1989, the DFVLR was renamed to DLR which stood for German Research Institute for Aviation and Space Flight (German: Deutsche Forschungsanstalt für Luft- und Raumfahrt).

After the Merger with the German Agency for Space Flight Affairs (DARA) (in German: Deutschen Agentur für Raumfahrtangelegenheiten) in 1997 the name was changed to its current name of DLR which literally translates to German Center for Aviation and Space Flight (German: Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt) using the shorter translation of German Aerospace Center in English publications.


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