Dornier Seawings is introducing the Orca, an amphibious mission platform featuring an all-composite airframe. The Orca is designed for government use to enhance typical maritime security missions, while merging seaborne and airborne operations, making it superior to rotor wings.
The Orca is based on the design concept of the Seastar, Dornier Seawings’ flying boat for business purposes. Like the Seastar, the Orca airframe is built from non-corrosive carbon and glass fiber composite materials, qualified and produced in-house. The Orca boasts the same features and advantages of the Seastar, but with optional internal and external mission equipment stations.
The Orca will be used for high-level missions such as maritime rescue, anti-piracy, fishery control, disaster management, and border control, and can be equipped with typical equipment for search and surveillance, such as stretchers for medical evacuation and self-protection items for defense. Customization is also available. The all-composite airframe makes the Orca corrosion-free, even in salty environments. Its boat-shaped fuselage can handle rough sea conditions and its combination of 5-blade propellers, and powerful turbine drive makes the Orca is efficient and the fastest amphibious in its class.
Another positive aspect of the Orca is that it is useful in environmental missions to analyze plastic waste in the ocean on a daily basis, something most seaborne assets cannot accomplish. This in-water analysis could help define waste origins and, as a result, design the right countermeasures.
Dornier Seawings is in talks with several governmental marine departments interested in using the Orca to ensure maritime security. The company plans to launch the first Orcas in 2022.
As mentioned, Dornier Seawings’ Seastar was the inspiration for the Orca. Learn more about the Seastar in this Composites Manufacturing Magazine blog post from September 2017: