Sailplane and Sky
07/31/2021

At the end of July, we received the sad news about the passing of Dieter Althaus.

Dieter Althaus was instrumental in setting up the laminar wind tunnel at the University of Stuttgart, thereby creating an experimental facility that is unique in the world and has provided significant input for the development of glider performance.

Since the 1970’s, he had been in close contact with several students of the german Akafliegs – the later developmental engineers of our company – and supported various thesis, among others, the optimization of the fuselage geometry and the fuselage-wing junction.

In close cooperation with Klaus Holighaus and Prof. F.X. Wortmann, he was able to optimize the first prototype wings for the Open Cirrus in 1965 using wind tunnel tests, so that Schempp-Hirth's first GFRP glider incorporated the airfoils FX66-196 and FX60-161, which he had tested.

One of his passions was the avoidance of high drag laminar separation bubbles. He developed special Dimple-tape turbulator that are still used today in a large number of SH aircrafts.

This fruitful cooperation continued into the 1990s and was the basis for our successful gliders in the decades that followed.

Our deepest compassion goes to his relatives and all those who were close to him.

In grateful remembrance,

Management and employees of the company Schempp-Hirth