Glasflügel 401

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401 Kestrel
Kestrel over the "Bergisches Land" in Germany
Role Open class sailplane
National origin Germany
Manufacturer Glasflügel
Designer Eugen Hänle
First flight 9 August 1968
Number built 129

The Glasflügel H-401 "Kestrel" is a glider that was developed in 1968 for the open class. It has a wingspan of 17 metres. It is named after the kestrel bird.


The Kestrel can be seen as the prototype of today's 18 meter class.

129 Kestrel gliders were built by Glasflügel between 1968 and 1975.

The British company Slingsby also built the Kestrel under license as the T59 and T59B. The T59B has a wingspan of 19 metres and was developed for the 1970 World Gliding Championships.[1]

On 18 May 2005, Gordon Boettger flew 2061 km in his Kestrel in lee waves along the Sierra Nevada in the USA.[2]


General characteristics

  • Crew: One pilot
  • Length: 6.72 m (22 ft 1 in)
  • Wingspan: 17.00 m (55 ft 9 in)
  • Wing area: 11.6 m2 (125 ft2)
  • Aspect ratio: 25
  • Empty weight: 260 kg (570 lb)
  • Gross weight: 400 kg (880 lb)


  • Maximum speed: 250 km/h (160 mph)
  • Maximum glide ratio: 43:1

See also[edit]

Related development
Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era
Related lists


  1. ^ Ellison, Norman (1971), British Gliders and Sailplanes, p.230. A & C Black, Limited, London. ISBN 0-7136-1189-8
  2. ^ FAI 2000 km Flight Register Retrieved 2012-01-02