A Look at Special Mission PT6A Powered Aircraft

In this blog post, we will talk about all of the special mission airforce aircraft powered by the PT6A.

King Air 350ER

Static display of King Air 350ER in Bahrain International Airshow at Sakhir Airbase, Bahrain on 16 January, 2014

The King Air 350ER special mission variants are based on the King Air 350i aircraft being offered by Beechcraft, a part of Textron Aviation. The high-performance aircraft are designed to meet the challenging needs of special missions.

The aircraft can be configured for pilot and crew training, military liaison, air ambulance, surveillance, maritime patrol, passenger and cargo transport, flight inspection, and other time-dependent missions.

The King Air 350ER aircraft is powered by two PT-6A-60A engines. It has a maximum payload capacity of 1,608kg. The maximum speed and range of the aircraft are 561km/h and 4,986km, respectively.

King Air 250

The King Air 250 special mission variants are in service with multiple military and government customers. The aircraft is widely deployed by significant players in the flight inspection industry.

The aircraft can be configured with mission-specific equipment to perform training, VIP transport, air ambulance, surveillance, maritime patrol, cargo transport, flight inspection, and high-capacity/airline operations.

Powered by a pair of 850hp Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A engines, the aircraft offers a maximum speed of 574km/h and a range of 3,185km. The payload capacity of the King Air 250 is 1,706kg.

Guardian 400

Guardian 400 (image credit to AirForce-technology.com)

The Guardian 400 is a special mission configuration of the Series 400 Twin Otter aircraft being offered by Viking Air. It was unveiled for the first time during the 2019 Paris Air Show held in June 2019.

The aircraft can carry EO/IR sensors, radar system, fixed camera systems, civil aircraft missile protection system and single/dual workstations, single and double seats, a stretcher, and front and rear baggage compartments.

The Guardian 400 platform can perform medium-range patrol, search-and-rescue, transport, drug enforcement, critical infrastructure support, and medical evacuation missions. It has a payload capacity of 1,683kg and can reach a distance of 2,408km.

PC-12 Spectre

PC-12 Spectre (image via FlyingMag.com)

The PC-12 NG Spectre is a special mission variant of the PC-12 NG offered by Pilatus Aircraft. It is intended to serve the special mission requirements of both military and law enforcement agencies.

The passenger transport configuration of the aircraft can be reconfigured to a full cargo or combination layout. It can be installed with EO/IR sensor lift and operator console to perform ISR or SAR missions. The aircraft also supports medical evacuation, air ambulance, and airdrop and jump operations.

The PC-12 NG Spectre is powered by a Pratt & Whitney PT6A-67P turboprop engine driving a full-reversing five-blade Hartzell propeller. The payload capacity of the aircraft is 1,209kg while its maximum range is 3,085km.

Grand Caravan EX Special Mission Aircraft

Grand Caravan EX Special Mission Aircraft

The Grand Caravan EX special mission variant is based on the Grand Caravan EX turboprop utility/transport aircraft developed by Cessna Aircraft. Featuring a hardpoint wing structure, the aircraft received certification in mid-2016.

It offers a spacious and easily reconfigurable cabin, as well as hardpoint provisions, which enable to carry a maximum payload of 1,520kg. The aircraft is suitable for multiple missions, including flight training, VIP transport, passenger/cargo transport, and humanitarian aid.

The power-plant of the Grand Caravan EX integrates a PT6A-140 engine coupled with a four-blade aluminium, constant speed, and full feathering propeller. The aircraft has a maximum cruise speed of 361km/h and a range of 1,785km.

Information compiled from Airforce-technology.com.

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