ATR 72 TWIN ENGINE TURBOPROP SHORT HAUL REGIONAL PLANE
The ATR 72 is a twin-engine turboprop short-haul regional airliner built by the French-Italian aircraft manufacturer ATR.
ATR and Airbus are both built in Toulouse, and share resources and technology. It seats up to 78 passengers in a single-class configuration and is operated by a two-pilot crew.
ATR 72 Development
The ATR 72 was developed from the ATR 42 in order to increase the seating capacity (48 to 78) by stretching the fuselage by 4.5 metres (15 ft), increasing the wingspan, adding more powerful engines, and increasing fuel capacity by approximately 10 percent. The 72 was announced in 1986, and made its maiden flight on 27 October 1988. Exactly one year after that, on 27 October 1989, Finnair became the first airline to put the plane into service. Since then, at least 408 ATR 72s have been delivered worldwide with orders pending on at least 28 more.
Passengers are boarded using the rear door (which is rare for a passenger plane) as the front door is used to load cargo. Finnair ordered their ATR 72s with a front passenger door so that they could use the jet bridges at Helsinki–Vantaa airport.
A tail stand must be installed when passengers are boarding or disembarking in case the nose lifts off the ground, which is common if the aircraft is loaded or unloaded incorrectly.
The ATR aircraft does not have an auxiliary power unit (APU) as normally equipped. The APU is an option and would be placed in the C4 cargo section. Most air carriers normally equip the aircraft with a propeller brake (referred to as "Hotel Mode") that stops the propeller on the #2 (right) engine, allowing the turbine to run and provide air and power to the aircraft without the propeller spinning. The downside to the prop brake is improper usage; many airlines have burned out these brakes, so some companies have removed them from the aircraft entirely.
Types Of ATR 72 Aircraft - Variants
The new ATR 42–600 and ATR 72–600 will feature the latest technological enhancements while building upon the well-known advantages of the current aircraft, namely its high efficiency, proven dispatch reliability, low fuel burn and operating cost. It will include the new PW127M as standard engine (new engines provide 5% additional thermodynamic power at takeoff, thus improving performance on short runways, in hot weather and at high altitude. The incorporation of the “boost function” enables use of this additional power as needed, only when called for by the takeoff conditions.) glass cockpit flight deck featuring five wide LCD screens that will replace the current EFIS (Electronic Flight instrument System). In addition, a multi-purpose computer (MPC) will further enhance Flight Safety and operational capabilities. The new avionics, to be supplied by Thales, will also provide RNP capabilities. It will also include the new lighter and more comfortable seats and larger overhead baggage bins. The −600 series ATR aircraft were introduced during the second half of 2010. The ATR 72–600 Series launch customer is Royal Air Maroc Express (deliveries begin in July 2011).
Other ATR 72 versions
Bulk Freighter (tube versions) and ULD Freighter (Large Cargo Door). ATR unveiled a large cargo door modification for all ATR 72 at Farnborough 2002, coupled with a dedicated cargo conversion. FedEx, DHL, and UPS all operate the type.
ATR 72 ASW
A VIP version of the −500 is available with a luxury interior for executive or corporate transport.
ATR 72 Specifications General characteristics
ATR 72 Performance
Cruise speed: 511 km/h; 318 mph (276 kn)
Airlines That Operate The ATR 72
Republic of Ireland Aer Arann (8 + 8 on order) as a franchise of Republic of Ireland Aer Lingus Regional.
Major firm orders include:
Nigeria Overland Airways (5)
ATR 72 Notable Crashes Accidents and Incidents
On 31 October 1994, American Eagle Flight 4184 crashed due to icing in Roselawn, Indiana killing all 68 people on board. The accident had a significant effect on procedures for dealing with ATR in-flight icing as well as US airlines' utilization of ATR aircraft in specific geographical areas. After a period of mandatory grounding, American Eagle and Delta Connection permanently stopped using the plane on temperate routes. Since the Eagle incidents, ATR had improved the anti-ice boots, though ice-related incidents continued with the type, including a 2002 crash (see below) and a 2009 event where a smaller ATR-42 variant crashed during landing, in icy conditions. Despite this, ATRs are still used in European markets, including the Nordic countries. The ATR is also operated in the High Arctic by various Canadian Airlines.
On 21 December 2002, TransAsia Airways (TNA) cargo flight 791, an ATR 72–200, crashed due to icing during flight from Taipei to Macau. Both crew members were killed. The plane encountered severe icing conditions beyond the icing certification envelope of the aircraft and crashed into sea 17 km southwest of Makung city. The Aviation Safety Council of Taiwan investigation found that the crash was caused by ice accumulation around the plane's major components, resulting in the aircraft's loss of control. The investigation identified that flight crew did not respond to the severe icing conditions with the appropriate alert situation awareness and did not take the necessary actions.
On 6 August 2005, Tuninter Flight 1153, a Tuninter ATR 72 en route from Bari, Italy, to Djerba, Tunisia, ditched in the Mediterranean Sea about 18 miles (29 km) from the city of Palermo. Sixteen of the 39 people on board died. The accident resulted from engine fuel exhaustion due to the installation of fuel quantity indicators designed for the ATR 42 in the larger ATR 72.
On 24 August 2008, an Air Dolomiti ATR 72 en route from Munich, Germany, to Bologna, Italy, abandoned take off after the pilot announced a smoke alarm. The airline treated the plane's evacuation as a mild incident. On 26 August, an amateur video, filmed by a bystander, showed 60 passengers jumping from and fleeing the burning plane before fire department workers extinguished the flames.
On 4 August 2009, Bangkok Airways Flight 266, an ATR 72-212A from Bangkok Airways skidded into a disused tower at the airport on Koh Samui.The pilot of the aircraft died and 10 passengers were injured.
On 10 November 2009, Kingfisher Airlines Flight 4124, operated by ATR 72-212A VT-KAC skidded off the runway after landing at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport, subsequently damaging the nose section severely. The aircraft came to a halt just a few metres away from the fuel tanks of the airport. All 46 passengers and crew escaped unharmed.
On 4 November 2010, Aero Caribbean Flight 883, operated by an ATR 72–212, with 61 passengers and 7 crew members, crashed at Guasimal, Cuba, while on route from Santiago de Cuba to Havana. All 68 people on board were killed. The accident was due to the prevailing meteorological conditions and to the wrong decisions taken by the crew. The flight was due in Havana at 7:50 p.m. but had reported an emergency and lost contact with air traffic control at 5:42 p.m.
On 13 February 2012 Danish Air Transport DX627, operated by an ATR-72 with 16 passengers on route from Bergen to Moss (Oslo) Airport Rygge had trouble with the front landing wheel and performed an emergency landing at Rygge Airport. All passengers and crew escaped unharmed.
On 2 April 2012 UTair Flight 120 crashed soon after take-off from Roschino International Airport in western Siberia. 33 of the 43 passengers and crew on board were killed (10 survivors); the crash is still under investigation. The flight was from Tyumen to Surgut with 39 passenger and 4 crew members.
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