Grob G103 Twin Astir
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|G 103 Twin Astir|
|G103 Twin Astir landing|
|First flight||31 December 1976|
The Grob G 103 Twin Astir is a
that was developed in Germany in the 1970s by
Grob Aircraft AG
as a counterpart to the single-seat
G 102 Astir
then in production. Construction throughout is similar, although to preserve the
centre of gravity
of the design, the wings were given a slight forward sweep. While many two-seat derivatives of single-seat sailplanes have fixed undercarriage, due to the added space restrictions created by the second seat, Grob devised a novel retraction system for the Twin Astir. The single wheel was designed to rotate 90° sideways before retracting “flat” under the rear seat, resulting in a rather unusual seating position. This was only incorporated in early examples, later on, the wheel was fixed. Factory options offered to customers included whether the front seat should be equipped with flight instruments, and whether water ballast capacity should be installed.
Production continued until around 1980, when it was replaced in production by the
, a new and not directly related design originally designated G 118 but later redesignated the G 103a. The G 103a was in turn replaced by the
in production in 1989.
The Twin was one of the first two-seat sailplanes built from
and has higher glide performance than most similar sailplanes of the time (e.g.
Schleicher ASK 21
Scheibe SF 34
Italian Air Force
operated 9 Grob G103 Twin Astir from 1975 until 1999
Australian Air Force Cadets
currently operates 2 Twin Astirs as of 2020
- Crew: one
- Capacity: one passenger
- Length: 8.1 m (26 ft 7 in)
- Wingspan: 17.5 m (57 ft 5 in)
- Height: 1.60 m (5 ft 3 in)
- Wing area: 17.8 m2 (191.6 sq ft)
- Aspect ratio: 17.1
- Empty weight: 390 kg (860 lb)
- Gross weight: 610 kg (1,345 lb)
- Maximum speed: 250 km/h (160 mph, 140 kn)
- Maximum glide ratio: 38
- Rate of sink: 0.60 m/s (120 ft/min)
Grob G103 family
Grob G103a Twin II
Grob G103c Twin III
. Australian Air Force Cadets – Gliding. 1 January 2018. Retrieved 20 April 2020.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to
Grob G 103 Twin Astir.
- Taylor, Michael J. H. (1989). Jane’s Encyclopedia of Aviation. London: Studio Editions. p. 441.
- Hardy, Michael (1982). Gliders and Sailplanes of the World. Shepperton: Ian Allan. p. 49.
- Coates, Andrew (1978). Jane’s World Sailplanes and Motor Gliders. London: MacDonald and Jane’s. p. 61.
Homepage of Grob Aircraft AG
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