Horten Flying Wing Prototype to Make Debut at Aero Friedrichshafen

Horten's unusual flying wing prototype is now undergoing flight testing in Germany.

A prototype flying wing from German aircraft manufacturer Horten Aircraft GmbH will debut at next month's Aero Friedrichshafen air show in Germany.Courtesy Horten Aircraft

After years of development, German aircraft manufacturer Horten Aircraft GmbH will show a prototype flying wing, which is already undergoing flight testing, at the upcoming Aero Friedrichshafen air show in Germany, next month.

The Horten prototype is billed as a “highly modern, economical two-seat tailless light aircraft without a fuselage.” It will be displayed in public for the first time at the air show in Friedrichshafen.

"Due to its low aerodynamic resistance, the flying wing flies farther and faster than a comparable aircraft with a fuselage," says Bernhard Mattlener, managing director of the company, a part of the LIFT Air group. "The design of the airframe makes it easily adaptable for installing new propulsion technologies we anticipate will become available in the future.”

He said Horten Aircraft plans further developments, such as unmanned or multi-seat versions of its current prototype. The aircraft will be built at the company's headquarters at Kindel Airfield near Eisenach, Germany.

The first designs for flying wings were made at the beginning of the 20th century. In 1910, Hugo Junkers received a patent for his work on flying wings. The company name honors the visionary aircraft designer Dr. Ing. Reimar Horten, who is regarded as a pioneer in the field of flying wings and made the most significant contributions to the development of the forerunner prototypes.