Log in to use our free company, program and sector update tracker feature.

March 2006 edition

South Africa deal marks new horizons for airship manufacturer

By Daniel Cook

Following on from our February edition, Airframer's Daniel Cook speaks to airship manufacturer Zeppelin New Technology about the role of the airship in today's aircraft manufacturing industry.

After a sixty year gap, Zeppelin airships are once again being built in Friedrichshafen, Germany. The original Zeppelins were used in the First World War for surveillance and bombing missions. The new Zeppelin project gets no money from the German government or from the EU, confirmed Zeppelin ceo Brandt, and it seems likely to stay that way.

Nevertheless, Zeppelin NT last year proved it was more than a blast from the past when it sold an airship to De Beers for mining exploration in South Africa.

Imaging devices on board the De Beers Zeppelin are able to measure the density of the ground beneath the ship, spotting areas where there was once volcanic activity, and looking for other criteria that might signal the presence of diamonds. Slow-moving, long-range airships are perfect for the work, said Brandt, and the fact that the Zeppelin NT07 does not vibrate in flight is essential to allow the imaging hardware to operate properly.

The second airship was sold to a firm in Japan, where it will be used for sightseeing and commercial advertising. The first NT07 is operated by Zeppelin in Germany, performing a similar role.

"Special missions are arising more and more," Brandt insisted. "You do different tasks, fly over football matches, take measurements, monitor energy consumption over towns. ....

Full report (917 words) is available by subscription:  

Tell a friend/colleague about this story:



 Contact details from our directory:
ZLT Zeppelin Luftschifftechnik GmbH & Co. KG Airframer

Subscribers are able to access the full text of articles on this web site, and in a downloadable PDF newsletter. If you have a subscription already then please log in, otherwise see our latest subscription offers.

Enhanced listings:

Ascent Aerospace
Ascent Aerospace is the leading provider of aerospace tooling systems, assembly automation and factory integration.

Sigma ASL Limited
Engineering and manufacturing company with in-house and outsourced operations, AS9100 accredited and fully NADCAP compliant.

Interface Force Measurements Ltd
Accurate & reliable torque, force & pressure sensors, pressure mapping systems & calibration systems.

Fine Tubes
Manufacturer of precision tubes in high strength titanium, stainless steel and nickel alloys, seamless, welded or welded & redrawn

Oerlikon Balzers AG
Oerlikon Balzers is one of the world’s leading suppliers of surface technologies

See our advertising tariff.


data pages remaining in monthly quota for non-subscribers

© Airframer Limited, operated under licence by Stansted News Limited 2018. Terms & Conditions of reading. Privacy policy