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Dornier Do 228 - Germany, 1982

Detailing the development and operational history of the Dornier Do 228 Utility Transport / Maritime Patrol Aircraft.

 Entry last updated on 11/8/2017; Authored by Staff Writer; Content ¬©

  Dornier Do 228  
Picture of Dornier Do 228

The Dornier Do 228 proved to be a versatile performer in the years covering its production run - restarted in 2009.

The Dornier Do 228 was introduced in 1982 and was developed as a light utility transport and maritime patrol aircraft for several global military branches while also finding homes in commercial service. The high-wing monoplane has become a versatile and steady performer for many with power coming from 2 x Garrett (later Honeywell) engines and crewed by two to four personnel depending on the model and specified role. The Dornier firm would later be acquired by Fairchild in 1996 and production of the model moved exclusively to India through the HAL brand label. This has helped India become one of the largest operators of the line.

The Do 228 followed the Do 28 line (detailed elsewhere on this site) which, itself, was based on the single-engine Do 27 of the mid-1950s. It was given a boxy fuselage design which allowed for high-quantity passenger seating and impressive cargo loads. The Do 228 appeared in several minor variants, each offering up subtle improvements and changes to suit differing roles, while others were pushed into more specialized military roles fitted with powerful search radars. The Do 28E-TNT became a Do 28D model outfitted with a High Technology wing and used to trial the design along with 2 x Garret TPE331-5-252D engines. First flight was on June 14th, 1979 and this wing later went on to serve the true Do 228 series. Formal Do 228 prototypes began flying in 1981.

The Do 228-100 (project E-1) was given passenger seating for fifteen and the Do 228-212 (project E-2) seating for up to nineteen. Among the users of the Do 228, Germany, India and Thailand have stood out and the latter fielding the system with a Bendix search radar for maritime patrol duty. India has utilized the aircraft across all three major air service branches - also in the maritime patrol role. Operators are plenty, ranging from Angola and Bangladesh to Seychelles and Venezuela - in both military and civilian market roles.

Production of Do 228s ran from 1981 until 1998 to which attention then fell on the Do 328 twin-engine product - successor to the Do 228. Do 228 lines were reestablished once more in 2009 and, to date, around 275 examples have been produced in all.

October 2017 - The Bangladeshi Navy has ordered a pair of Do 228 aircraft to further strengthen its existing Do-228 fleet. These aircraft are primarily used in the maritime patrol and Search and Rescue (SAR) roles. The Navy has used the an original pair of Do 228 aircraft since delivery in 2013. The new order will being its fleet strength to four examples.

Dornier Do 228-100 Specifications

Service Year: 1982
Status: Active, In-Service
Type: Utility Transport / Maritime Patrol Aircraft
National Origin: Germany
Manufacturer(s): Dornier GmbH - West Germany
Total Production: 275

Structural (Crew, Dimensions, Weights)

Operating Crew (Typical): 2
Overall Length: 49.31 feet (15.03 meters)
Overall Width: 55.68 feet (16.97 meters)
Overall Height: 15.94 feet (4.86 meters)

Weight (Empty): 7,132 lb (3,235 kg)
Weight (MTOW): 12,566 lb (5,700 kg)

Power / Performance (Engine Type, Top Speed)

Engine: 2 x Garrett TPE331-5 turboprop engines developing 715 horsepower each.

Maximum Speed: 233 knots (268 mph; 432 kph)
Maximum Range: 934 nautical miles (1,075 miles; 1,730 km)
Service Ceiling: 29,600 feet (9,022 meters; 5.61 miles)
Rate-of-Climb: 2,050 feet-per-minute (625 m/min)

Armament / Mission Payload


Global Operators (Customers, Users)

Angola; Bangladesh; Bhutan; Cape Verde; Finland; Germany; West Germany; India; Italy; Malawi; Mauritius; Netherlands; Oman; Seychelles; Thailand; United Kingdom

Model Variants

Do 228 - Base Series Designation
Do 228-100 - Improved Range Model
Do 228-101 - Strengthened fuselage and landing gears for increased payload support.
Do 228-200 - Increased Payload Model
Do 228-201 - Similar improvements as in the 228-101.
Do 228-202 - Licensed Production Models in India under HAL brand.
Do 228-212 - Definitive 228; improved performance, updated avionics package and increased operational weights.
Do 228NG ("Next Generation") - RUAG Aviation model of 2013 for Japanese service; five-bladed composite propellers; uprated engines; digital cockpit.

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