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Egrett/Strato 1
Role Reconnaissance aircraft
Manufacturer Grob Aircraft/E-Systems/AlliedSignal
First flight 24 June 1987
Number built 6

The Grob/E-Systems/AlliedSignal Egrett was a surveillance aircraft developed in Germany in the 1980s by an international partnership. It was intended to fill a joint Luftwaffe-USAF requirement for a high-altitude, long-duration surveillance platform for treaty verification and environmental monitoring. Known as "LAPAS" - Luftgestütztes, abstandsfähiges Primär-Aufklärungssystem in Germany and "Senior Guardian" in the US, the programme initially attempted to acquire the Lockheed TR-1 (U-2) for this role, but when this did not succeed, a new aircraft was sought. The Egrett (its name derived from the three companies involved in its design: E-Systems, Grob Aircraft, and Garrett,[1] the latter firm later changing its name to AlliedSignal) was a conventional mid-wing monoplane with extremely high aspect ratio wings. Power was provided by a single turboprop, and it was equipped with tricycle undercarriage, the main units of which retracted into fairings on the wings. The initial D-450 Egrett I development aircraft flew in 1987, and in September the following year set a class altitude record of 16,394 m (53,787 ft). Two pre-production machines followed in 1989 and 1990 as the D-500 Egrett II and then fitted out to the finalised G-520 design in 1991. These latter two aircraft were owned by E-Systems and Grob respectively, and used for promotional purposes, E-Systems' for various sensor packages, and Grob's (renamed the Strato 1) to market the design to civil authorities as a resource management platform. In 1992, the Luftwaffe placed an order for production of nine Egrett IIs, to be supplemented by G 520T two-seat trainer and one of the demonstrators.[2] However, in February 1993, before much production had taken place, the whole programme was cancelled[2] when Eastern Europe ceased to be perceived as a threat. The two seater was eventually completed, however, and sold to Airborne Research Australia in Adelaide.


Flag of Australia.svg Australia
  • Airborne Research Australia
Flag of Germany.png Germany

Specifications (G-520 Egrett II)Edit

Data from Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1993–94[2]

General characteristics
  • Crew: One pilot
  • Length: 12.10 m (39 ft 8½ in)
  • Wingspan: 31.50 m (103 ft 4½ in)
  • Height: 5.68 m (18 ft 7¾ in)
  • Wing area: 38.80 m2 (417.6 ft2)
  • Aspect ratio: 25.57:1
  • Empty weight: 3,063 kg (6,754 lb)
  • Gross weight: 4,700 kg (10,362 lb)
  • Powerplant: 1 × AlliedSignal TPE331-14F-801L turboprop, 559 kW (750 hp) each


  • Maximum speed: 284 km/h (176 mph)
  • Cruising speed: 139 km/h (86 mph)
  • Range: 4,586[3] km (2,850 miles)
  • Endurance: 13 hours
  • Service ceiling: 16,000 m (52,495 ft)
  • Rate of climb: 7.1 m/s (1,400 ft/min)


  1. Taylor 1996, p.172.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Lambert 1993, pp. 138–140.
  3. with maximum fuel
  • Lambert, Mark (1993). Jane's All The Worlds Aircraft 1993-94. Coudsdon, UK: Janes's Data Division. ISBN 0-7106-1066-1. 
  • Taylor, Michael J. H. (1989). Jane's Encyclopedia of Aviation. London: Studio Editions. pp. 924. 
  • Taylor, Michael (1996). Brassey's World Aircraft & Systems Directory 1996/97. London: Brassey's. ISBN 1-85753-198-1. 
  • World Aircraft Information Files. London: Bright Star Publishing. pp. File 895 Sheet 14. 

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