Hugues has extensive experience in certification of aircraft. At DGAC (French civil aiviation authority) he was responsible for the certification of general aviation and rotorcrafts. He was heavily involved in creating EASA – the European Union Aviation Safety Agency. In the last 30 years he has been involved in more than 25 certification projects and was responsible for the first aircraft certification to CS23 amendment 5. In our team he is responsible for the certification programme and the certification of our aircrafts.
Damian is one of only few civilian class 1 test pilots. He has flown as many as 138 different types of aircraft from gliders to airliners, including 15 first flights of prototypes. He has broad experience test flying electric aircrafts, including SolarStratus, and has been heavily involved in certifying many other aircrafts. He is also an accomplished engineer and project manager with a successful track record in cross-functional roles and broad scope programmes. Damian keeps a close watch over new technology trends and adapts proven business models to collaborative work environments. As our Chief Test Pilot, he runs the test flight programmes for all our aircrafts.
Felix cut his teeth in aerodynamics and flight mechanics as a scientific researcher at ZHAW in Winterthur where he worked on experimental aerodynamics under Prof. Dr. Leonardo Manfriani. He then went on to add a master’s degree in aerospace engineering at KTH in Stockholm to his CV. After various commitments at different companies including Pilatus Aircraft, SR Technics and Farner Air Services, Felix was hired as the first official employee at Dufour Aerospace, and has been knee deep in tilt-wing VTOL flight physics for a few years now. Our youngest team lead understands that modern distributed electric propulsion concepts allow for new solutions to old flight physics problems. At the same time, Felix tries to make use of proven, classical aircraft design procedures and borrow from previous tilt-wing vehicles as much as possible.
Thomas's career has spanned from Swisscom, where he was a research engineer for communications, to Solar Impulse where he was Head of Energy and Propulsion and responsible for all electrical systems on board the SI-2 solar powered aircraft that flew around the world, and finally to Swiss Hydrogen, where he integrated hydrogen range extender systems into electric vehicles. He has designed, built, integrated, and certified a wide range of systems including battery management, telemetry, hydrogen power, and actuation. The knowledge that Thomas brings, especially with his knowledge from Solar Impulse where he was responsible for building systems for a manned aircraft that can stay in flight for days and nights as it circumnavigates the world, accelerate the development of the electric power, propulsion and avionics systems needed for our electric VTOL aircraft.
Manuel arrived at Dufour from Kopter, where he has led several systems and components designs on the SH09 helicopter, including the innovative tail boom design. He has been part of Kopter's development team since the beginning, and has managed projects from conception to flight testing. Manuel holds a Master’s degree in mechanical engineering from ETH Zurich with a specialisation in advanced structures. He brings his experience in designing state of the art VTOL aircraft from scratch to Dufour.
Andy has worked in the field of aircraft structural analysis for 25 years. Former roles include Chief Stress Engineer for major suppliers to Airbus, and involvement in the design and certification of many large commercial aircraft. He brings this extensive professional experience to lead the structural analysis team designing Dufour Aerospace products.
Pascal has extensive experience in the fields of avionics and airworthiness. He has been working as Aircraft Electrician and Head of Airworthiness for the helicopter fleet at Swiss Air-Rescue Rega. At Dufour, he is responsible for the assembly of the Aero2 and Aero3 during the prototype phase, working closely together with our design team. He is also in charge of our prototype assembly facility in Dübendorf.
Daniel Bazzani brings over 14 years of experience in flight testing and design to our team. While at Sikorsky, he led performance flight testing for Part 29 FAA certification of the S-76D helicopter. Key experience includes pitot-static system development, initial type certification, high altitude takeoff and landing envelope expansion and cold weather expansion to -35°C. Daniel also led the performance testing for several high speed helicopter prototypes. He has additional experience in aerodynamic simulation/analysis, rapid prototype design, and unmanned aircraft piloting. Daniel's passion in aviation extends into his hobbies. He enjoys aero-modelling, flight simulations, and private pilot flying. As Lead Engineer for Flight Test at Dufour, Daniel Bazzani will be responsible for leading the envelope expansion and certification flight testing for both the Aero2 and Aero3 programs.
Thomas is a pilot with over 10'000 hours of flight experience and 3'000 rescue operations. He has extensive management and aviation expertise. His career has included several management board positions as CEO and CFO for both entrepreneurial and multinational companies. Thomas was CEO of the Swiss based Sotax Group, a world market leader in pharmaceutical testing instruments. He is a professional commercial helicopter rescue pilot with Air Zermatt, and a fixed-wing, IFR-rated and a passionate aerobatic pilot. He has also published a book about implementation of operations management manual and operation manuals concepts under EASA guidelines. Thomas holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics, a Master’s degree in Finance, and an MBA from the University St. Gallen. He is responsible for aircraft configuration, certification setup and the commercial operation of Dufour Aerospace.
Jasmine is responsible for design evaluations, simulation, control systems, software, and automation. She is a software engineer with 15 years of experience, the majority of which was with Google. She has built and scaled mission-critical systems with a wide array of technologies, from robotics, computer vision and simulation, to media processing, graphics and virtual reality. Jasmine is a co-founder of Daedalean, a provider of autonomous piloting systems for civil aircraft and advanced aerial mobility, and has training in DO-178C and safety critical software development processes. She brings her deep technical expertise and leadership to Dufour Aerospace.
Dominique has extensive aviation and engineering experience. He is a World Cup Champion in paragliding aerobatics and a Red Bull competition pilot. Dominique is widely recognized as being the inventor of many of today’s aerobatic manoeuvres where he was inspired by his close friendship with the world-renowned Red Bull Pilot Hannes Arch. Having a passion for paragliding and aerobatic flight, Dominique has developed and tested more than a dozen paragliders. He thus brings considerable expertise and experience in flight static, aerodynamics, flight-testing and system integration - especially for “man-carrying electric aircrafts”. Dominique acts as the CEO of Kissling & Zbinden with the responsibility for projects totalling more than CHF 1 billion with a team of over 130 engineers. Dominique holds university degrees in civil engineering and project management including a Master’s in Business. He is responsible for the overall design and construction of our aircrafts.
Sascha is responsible for the commercial activities of Dufour Aerospace, building on his many years of experience in Helicopter Emergency Medical Services (HEMS) and Search and Rescue (SAR) at Swiss Air-Rescue Rega, world-renowned helicopter rescue organisation and air ambulance provider. There, as member of the management board, he first headed the communications department, including Rega's famous patronage system, and later took charge of helicopter operations with 12 bases and the Operations Centre. Most recently, he was Head of Rega's Innovation cell. He is the father of Rega's ambitious drone programme. Educated at the University of Zurich, he has worked as a journalist, as a media spokesperson for the Swiss federal department of justice and police and on peace-keeping missions abroad for the military. He is an aviation enthusiast with time spent flying planes, gliders, paragliders, RC-models, and drones.
Simon's knowledge and experience of end-to-end vehicle design, manufacture and certification drives our aircraft design. He has over 20 years experience in aviation, having worked on projects from the F35 fighter jet to satellites. He has worked at companies including Airbus, and most recently, Aeromobil, where he was Chief Engineer. He brings broad experience in designing, developing, and certifying various categories of aircraft to Dufour Aerospace. During his career in aviation, Simon has held various positions starting in structural analysis and design before becoming director of several engineering services companies. In recent years, Simon has concentrated on the technical advancement of advanced aerial vehicle industries and has held DOA signatory authority for several companies and products.
Philippe has over 20 years of experience in supporting innovative companies with their funding and financial planning needs. His career has spanned over Credit Suisse’s investment bank where he managed IPOs, follow-on and secondary transactions with a focus on Swiss issuers; two biotech companies: Synosia Therapeutics and Telormedix, where he was CFO; and again Credit Suisse, where he, among others, supported young growth companies and unicorns with their private equity financing needs. He holds a Master's degree from University of St. Gallen in Finance and Capital Markets.
Darren has an impressive track record in leading high value, complex quality and safety focused projects. With over 20 years of experience in the quality management of renowned aerospace industries, he is the perfect addition to our senior leadership team. Before joining Dufour, he has worked, among others, for Rolls-Royce Defence, the UK Ministry of Defence and, most recently, Collins Aerospace Interiors, where he was Quality Director. He holds a Master of Science degree in Engineering Business Management from Warwick University.
Dufour Aerospace is a young start-up on a mission to accelerate sustainable aviation, and we're looking for people who share our vision and passion to join us on our journey.
Our growing engineering team brings together decades of experience with Airbus, Solar Impulse, Pilatus, Kopter, Leonardo, RUAG Space, Aeromobil and Google. Please get in touch at:
With over 30 years of experience in Swiss commercial helicopter operations, we understand the real world requirements of VTOL aircraft. Our engineering team with years of aircraft construction experience is building aircrafts for rugged operations in harsh environments. Our patented combination of proven aerodynamic concepts with the latest technology makes our aircraft rock solid with unparalleled performance.