In the middle of the Cold War (1947-1991), the Israel Aircraft Industries Corporation (IAI) produced the IAI "Arava" to perform the short take-off and landing (STOL) role coveted by many of the world's military services. Designed in 1965 1969, and the first flight in prototype form was recorded on 27 November 1969 (this example was later lost during flight testing) (followed by a second flight of the prototype on 8 May 1971).
Serial production then consisted of a total of 103 units - work was extended from 1972 to 1988.
Although overall production is rather low, Arava is used under various flags around the world, from Argentina and Bolivia to Thailand and Venezuela (see the Operators section for a full list of users). This aircraft is in the same class as Ukraine's Antonov An-28 "Cash", Spain's CASA C-212 "Aviocar", Canada's de Havilland DHC-6 "Twin Otter" light transport aircraft - all details on this page other places.
In terms of its STOL capability, the Arava achieves this through a lightweight design, powerful turboprop engines and a strutted, elevated monoplane wing assembly. The overall design is relatively traditional, with the "under" center fuselage nacelle containing the flight deck and cargo hold. The main aircraft is shoulder-mounted, and each member has an engine nacelle protruding from the leading edge.
The tail boom extends along the rear line of the member leading to the tail of the aircraft. The tail boom is connected at the rear by a common horizontal plane between them and is further covered by a single vertical fin. The elevated nature of the tail allows unobstructed access to the cargo area of ??the aircraft.
Fixed (non-retractable) tricycle landing gear installed for ground operations - its fixed nature reduces operating costs and complexity.
Dimensions include a barrel length of 41.5 feet, a wingspan of 68.8 feet, and a height of 17 feet. Empty weight is 8,815 lbs and maximum takeoff weight (MTOW) is 15,000 lbs.
These aircraft are usually flown by two pilots in a traditional side-by-side layout. The cargo compartment can accommodate up to 24 combat-ready infantry, or 16 fully equipped paratroopers (the latter for air strikes).
This can be further replaced with general cargo and medical waste, as required by mission parameters.
The aircraft is powered by 2 Pratt & Whitney Canada (PWC) PT6A-34 series proven turboprop engines, these special units produce 750 hp each. These engines are used to power the three-blade propeller units, which help propel the aircraft to speeds of just over 200 mph (typical cruising speed is closer to 195-198 mph).
Effective range is 655 miles, possible service is capped at 25,000 feet, and reported climb rate is 1,300 feet per minute.
The various forms of basic design are finally realized: the Model 101 goes live to serve the civilian transportation market and is eventually supplemented by the one-off Model 101A. Types 101B, 102 and 102B are also used in civil airspace. The Type 201 began its militarized form, the Type 202 introduced winglets and an airborne auxiliary power unit (APU), and the Type 202B was equipped with an electronic warfare (EW) role.
Other military models can be further equipped with weapon stations and mounts - supporting machine guns (medium and heavy), rocket pods and aerial torpedoes.
The proposed Type 203 was designed to use jet propulsion, but was not further developed. Likewise, the 301 model will be equipped with a French Turbomeca "Astazou" engine, while the 401 model will be an enlarged version with a turboprop engine - neither of which has been further developed.
- Ground Attack
- Close Air Support (CAS)
- Electronic Warfare (EW)
- Commercial Market
- VIP traffic
- Medical Evacuation (MEDEVAC)
- Search and Rescue (SAR)
- Special Forces
68.90 ft (21 m)
17.06 ft (5.2 m)
202 mph (325 km/h; 175 knots)
25,000 ft (7,620 m; 4.73 mi)
656 miles (1,055 km; 570 nautical miles)
Cargo hold for 16 airborne or 24 infantry.
Armed military model with machine guns, aerial torpedoes and rocket pods.
Arava 101 - Basic Passenger Transport
Arava 102 - Airliner variant
Arava 102B - Transport variant
Arava 201 - militarized troop transport variant
Arava 202 - Military transport aircraft with extended fuselage and modified wing layout.