Claude Dornier

Claude Honoré Desiré Dornier, 14. May 1884 in Kempten in the general-outer; † 5. December 1969 in course, Switzerland), was a German airplane technical designer.

He was coworker of Ferdinand count von Zeppelin and created 1914 in Friedrichshafen one airplane-thrown, the Dornier works.

He built above all complete metal airplanes, in particular land planes and Flugboote: Whale, superwhale, DO 18, DO X. In the third realm he built mainly combat bombers for Luftwaffe. After the Second World War the STOL developed - for airplane DO 27 in Spain.

Starting from 1956those was again taken up the aircraft production to Munich-Neuaubing and Oberpfaffenhofen. In the Dornier works starting from 1970 in French-German co-operation the Alpha-Jet was developed and built.


Dornier was born in Kempten in the general-outer as a son of a French father and a German nut/mother. Itstudied mechanical engineering at the technical university Munich, where it followed the Corps Guestphalia (today Suevo Guestphalia).

To 2. November 1910 began to work that at that time 26-jährige engeneering graduate Claude Dornier in the test department the building of airships Zeppelin GmbH. This activity was the foundation-stone for its interestat means of transport “more heavily than air”. After the beginning of the First World War persisted the count Zeppelin, who recognized already early that airships would not fit now soon no more into the war picture, on its conceptions of giant airplanes. The count proceeded double-railed: On the one hand it left large land planesdevelop, on the other hand one it gave the impact to Claude Dornier Flugboot - to constructions.

In December 1914 Claude Dornier with its department of “DO” left the office space of the count Zeppelin in Friedrichshafen and continued to pull with its small staff of technical designers and draughtsmen a few kilometer after Seemoos.At the Seemooser horn developed a roomy resounds from wood, highly enough for one Dreidecker and 50 m broad, and the design engineering department, which is used today still almost invariably by the Württembergi yacht club as “youth centre Claude Dornier”.

Briefly after in January 1917 Claude Dornier department of an independentSociety in the Zeppelin company became, died the old count at the age of 79 years. After the lost war Claude Dornier evaded due to the allied aircraft construction prohibition to Italy, in order to design and build starting from 1921 its airplanes there further. There the legendary whale developed.

Parallel to it the Dornier buildings of metals GmbH renamed in the meantime continued to draw 1923 of Seemoos a kilometer after one cell on the area, which once the king of Württemberg for to count Zeppelins had put first flight tests at the disposal. There those became comet II and the comet IIIdeveloped. This gave a noticeable upswing to the work, since production went almost exclusively abroad.

For the recovery of the housing shortage in Friedrichshafen, which was heated up also by the strongly growing work in one cell, developed by initiative of Claude Dornier starting from 1924 in one cell the Dornier settlement.

1932 acquired Claude Dornier all portions the Dornier buildings of metals GmbH. In the time of the national socialism production grew so strongly that new locations were created. Beside civilian airplanes for German Lufthansa bombers for the Air Force were produced, among them the models DO 17 and DO 217. 1934 were lent to Dornier the honour citizenry of the city Friedrichshafen. it occurred 1940 the NSDAP, “military industrial leader” was appointed and directors/conductors of the specialized division aircraft construction of the branch of economic activity aircraft industry. In one cell still became before the Second World War with the building of a large lug workbegun. After the lost war Dornier “was relieved” as entnazifiziert, was pending however before the second economical; the work one cell was completely destroyed. Since the aircraft construction was forbidden in postwar Germany first, Dornier shifted its domicile after course (Switzerland) and let in Spain produce.

In Germany the new start of the enterprise in Lindau, Oberpfaffenhofen and Immenstaad at the Bodensee began. Dornier could at that time tie with short take-off and landing aircrafts and VTOL aircraft earlier economic successes and became a president of the Federal association of German air and space industry. 1962 it pulled itself from thatEnterprise back.

See also: List of the airplanes Claude Dornier


  • „I always set itself with all drafts the goal as highly as possible, in the realization of the fact that the finally attainable would be the substantially under hoped for one. “


  • Lutz Tittel: 100 years Claude Dornier, Metallflugzeugbau. 1914-1969. Urban Bodensee museum, Friedrichshafen 1984, ISBN 3-926162-70-8
  • Joachim quail: Claude Dornier. A life for aviation. Aviatic publishing house, Planegg 1989, ISBN 3-925505-10-5


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