Early this year, Diamond had a successful demonstration tour of Africa. Diamond Aircraft is having a strong foothold in Africa since many years already and is touring the continent regularly in Autumn since 2016. For four weeks in September and October 2018 Diamond Aircraft’s special mission aircraft DA62 MPP and training aircraft DA40 NG visited several countries in East and South Africa.
Reinhard Schwaiger, Sales Manager Africa & Middle East at Diamond Aircraft Austria: “We are proud of our long list of clients with particular focus on institutional as well as fleet customers on the African market. After intensive planning we had the opportunity to demonstrate the performance and capabilities of our Diamond DA40 NG and DA62 to a new audience while touring South to East Africa. The full composite structure as well as the turbocharged JET-A1 engines showed perfect performance throughout the whole journey at very low operating cost. Our operational performance has been particularly apparent at African high altitude airports in hot conditions, where our aircraft can fully develop its systemic advantages. Of course we expect further growth opportunities for the future in an increasingly important African market.”
On the first stop of the tour in Chilongolo, Zambia, the Diamond Aircraft team was welcomed by Bryan Wilson, Managing Director of Flying Mission Zambia (FMZ). The Flying Mission Zambia fleet of aircraft dates from the late 1970’s to early 1980’s. They feel the aging of their planes in the increased maintenance needed on them. In the last couple of years, FMZ have been looking for solutions to replace this fleet and is showing interest in planes from Diamond Aircraft. FMZ operates as a force-multiplier for the gospel, serving those whose work is in the more remote areas of Zambia, as well as the less remote. The aim is to facilitate the work of their partners, helping to make them more effective. For further information, please visit www.flyingmission.org.
The Diamond Special Mission Aircraft department allocated a massive attraction from private companies as well as governmental bodies since it has introduced the DA62 MPP, which is the next larger Diamond Surveillance aircraft featuring the latest in tracking and sensor technology. During numerous demo flights potential customers had the possibility to experience firsthand the cabin volume and payload capability of the new DA62 MPP platform.
The platform was equipped with the SWE400LE EO/IR camera and a moving map from Trakker, an AIS receiver, Thuraya BLOS SATCOM system and the in-house modified maritime radar, called NEPTUN. It was demonstrated along with Diamond’s Command Compact Ground Station. Diamond Aircraft offers a number of customized ground stations – designed to operate as the counterpart to its Special Mission Aircraft. They are easy to setup for in the field operations where different mission profiles can be handled from operators on ground. Standard functions of each variant are live video transmission from the airborne platform to the ground station(s) via different datalinks including META data, voice communications, mission planning and moving map, video management as well as secured connectivity with organizations’ headquarters.
“After our very successful Demo Tour 2017 in West Africa we spend all our efforts to establish the same tour in East Africa 2018 as well. Our Special Mission Aircraft can be used for various operations like border control, anti-poaching, drug smuggling, piracy and illegal fishing activities. We have provided evidence during our “Africa Demo Tour 2018”, which presents the wide range of capabilities of our aircraft. Our vision is to provide a powerful & cost efficient airborne solution, which perfectly meets the requirements of our customers and this for a unique cost-benefit ration,” says Michael Neufingerl, Sales Manager Africa & APAC Special Mission Aircraft Division at Diamond Aircraft Austria.
Mathias Hutterer, Diamond Aircraft Austria Head of Engineering and Operations & Test Pilot Special Mission Aircraft Division: “Once again we got the possibility to demonstrate our DA62 MPP to prospective customers in their countries. It is not only the beautifulness of the countries we overflew and where we demonstrate, it is the climate and sometimes the harsh environment where it makes sense to operate both, the platform and the equipment. For us, as the manufacturer, it is more than important to show and operate the turnkey solution within the whole spectrum of capability to our clients. This will give the end customer the certainty that the platform including the sensor suite will meet his expectations, within his usual surroundings as well as in conjunction with his operational envelope.”