Red Vortex

Project Weather & Flying -

Work Package Wake Vortex 

Thomas Gerz, Frank Holzäpfel, Klaus Dengler, Robert Baumann, Ingo Hennemann, Markus Hirschberger, Stephan Rahm

last modified April 2012, Frank Holzäpfel

Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt
Institut für Physik der Atmosphäre
Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany


As a response to the lift aircraft create counterrotating vortices at the wing tips and at the edges of the flaps, the so-called wake vortices (WV). The WVs may exert a serious danger on following aircraft. Therefore, separation standards were established which limit at many airports the capacity during landing and take-off (e.g. at Frankfurt a. M. and London-Heathrow).

DLR Project Weather & Flying - Work Package Wake Vortex:

(involved partner's site)

In the DLR project Wirbelschleppe I & II the WSVBS (Wirbelschleppen Vorhersage- und Beobachtungssystem/Wake Vortex Prediction and Monitoring System) has been developed. The WSVBS has demonstrated its functionality during a three-month measurement campaign at Frankfurt airport. An excerpt of the investigations that were performed in the DLR project Wirbelschleppe is collected in a report pdf-download (10 MB) which also contains a complete list of publications emerging from the project. In January 2008 the DLR has established a follow-on project called Weather & Flying.

The following issues are investigated in the main work package Wake Vortex (Wirbelschleppe):

Work Package W (weather impact):

Work Package F (Flugzeug/aircraft):

Mitigation of the impact of gusts, wind shear and wake vortices upon the flight characteristics of an aircraft

European Activities:

For the past and recent European activities on the subject of wake vortices see the homepage of the Thematic Network WAKENET3-Europe.

Cooperation ONERA-DLR:

(involved partner's site)

Since January 1999 ONERA and DLR cooperate in Wake Vortex research.

Homepage - Institute of Atmospheric Physics