History

OVER A QUARTER CENTURY OF INNOVATION

When the Dries family acquired Diamond’s predecessor, HOAC, in 1991, they joined the aviation pioneers who came before them. Their plan for Diamond Aircraft was elegant in its simplicity. Use the best in class HK36 motorglider and its innovative use of advanced composite materials as the foundation for a new family of modern aircraft. Aircraft that wouldn’t be bound by the past, but ones that would set new standards for innovation, efficiency, performance and safety.

A quarter century later and Diamond remains the only manufacturer to deliver a full line of aircraft that combine innovative airframe technology, advanced avionics systems and modern electronically controlled jetfuel piston engines. Along the way there were many firsts and triumphs, as well as some setbacks and disappointments. Through all the trials and tribulations one thing has remained constant – our unwavering commitment to innovation – for the sake of improved safety, performance and efficiency.

Certified composite airframes were a novelty in the early 1990’s. Some salesmen of legacy manufacturers claimed that the composite wings of our DA20 would droop and melt if left out in the hot sun too long, that repairs were impossible and that composite airplanes were just a bad idea. Since then, Diamond has delivered more than 4,000 composite airplanes, and today, primary composite structures are a key part of aircraft by Cessna, Beechcraft, Cirrus, Honda, Bombardier, Airbus, Boeing and others, including most high performance military aircraft. Maybe it wasn’t such a bad idea after all.

It’s challenging to assume a leadership position in bringing new technologies to market and especially in aviation, any single area of innovation is challenge enough. Diamond has not only been one of the leaders in volume production of composite airframes, we have also taken leadership positions in integration of leading edge avionics, and most notably the development of proprietary jet fuel piston engine propulsion technology. Our technological leadership continues with advanced fly-by-wire flight control system development, advanced propulsion technologies, advancements in composite production methods and more.

  • 1981:Hoffmann Flugzeugbau, later HOAC, founded to produce H36 motorglider
  • 1991:Dries family acquires HOAC, Austria
  • 1992:Dries family acquires former Central Aircraft Factory facilities in London Ontario and founds Dimona Aircraft
  • 1993:DV20 type certified in Austria
  • 1994:DA20-A1 type certified in Canada
  • 1995:First DA20, built by Dimona Aircraft, delivered
  • 1996:Company first named Diamond Aircraft
  • 1998:DA20-C1 type certified
  • 2000:DA40 type certified
  • 2002:DA40tdi type certified, DA20 enters service at US Air Force Academy
  • 2004:DA42 type certified
  • 2005:DA20 enters service with DOSS Aviation as primary US Air Force Flight Screening Aircraft, in Pueblo Colorado
  • 2006:First flight D-JET
  • 2007:DA42 MPP Special Mission Aircraft type certified
  • 2008:First flight of DA50 “Magnum” prototype
  • 2009:Austro Engine AE300 and DA42 NG type certified
  • 2010:Diamond and Airbus present first flight with 100% algae based bio-fuel.
  • 2011:Diamond, Airbus and Siemens present serial electric-gasoline hybrid propulsion system in HK36 “E-STAR”
  • 2012:First flight of Fly-by-Wire DA42
  • 2014:Northrop Grumman announces collaboration with Diamond
  • 2015:DA62 type certified