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Ortsteil of Weßling
Coat of arms of Oberpfaffenhofen
Coat of arms
Oberpfaffenhofen   is located in Germany
Coordinates: 48°4′41″N 11°15′9″E / 48.07806°N 11.25250°E / 48.07806; 11.25250Coordinates: 48°4′41″N 11°15′9″E / 48.07806°N 11.25250°E / 48.07806; 11.25250
Country Germany
State Bavaria
Admin. region Oberbayern
District Starnberg
Municipality Weßling
Population (1987)
 • Total 1,323
Time zone CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)
Vehicle registration STA
Website www.gemeinde-wessling.de

Oberpfaffenhofen is a village which is part of the municipality of Weßling in the district of Starnberg, Bavaria, Germany. It is 20 kilometers from the city center of Munich.

German Space Operations Center (GSOC) in Oberpfaffenhofen

The village is home to a major site of the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt, DLR) and became hence known to a wide audience when, in 1983 the first West-German astronaut, the physicist Ulf Merbold flew to space on board a Space Shuttle in the context of the Spacelab missions. These missions were partly supervised by the German Space Operations Center (GSOC) located at Oberpfaffenhofen.[1]

The research centre in Oberpfaffenhofen houses the DLR, including the Columbus Control Center which DLR operates for the European Space Agency and EADS Astrium, and also the Fraunhofer Institutes and other scientific institutes.

Also situated in Oberpfaffenhofen is the industrial area of (the now insolvent) Dornier Luftfahrt GmbH (later part of Fairchild Dornier). The aircraft manufacturer shared the airfield with the DLR.


  1. ^ Only the scientific mission control was in Oberpfaffenhofen, the technical stayed with NASA in Houston, Texas.

During the occupation of Germany the airport was designated Oberpfaffenhofen Air Force Depot which also served as the maintenance depot for the aircraft that were utilized during the Berlin Airlift of 1948-49.

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