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Atr 72-600

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Atr 72-600

ATR 72
A TAROM ATR 72–500 photographed in flight
Role Regional airliner
Manufacturer ATR
First flight 27 October 1988
Introduction 27 October 1989 (Finnair)
Status In service
Primary users Aer Lingus Regional
Bangkok Airways
Aer Arann
FedEx Express
Jet Airways
Produced 1988–present
Number built 611 as of 2012[1]
Unit cost
72–500: US$16.5–20 million (2008)[2]
72–600: US$22.7 million (2011/2012)[3]
Developed from ATR 42

The ATR 72 is a twin-engine turboprop short-haul regional airliner built by the French-Italian aircraft manufacturer ATR. A stretched variant of the ATR 42, the aircraft seats up to 78 passengers in a single-class configuration, and is operated by a two-pilot crew.


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,[4] and made its maiden flight on 27 October 1988. One year later, on 27 October 1989, Finnair became the first airline to put the aircraft into service.[5] 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 aircraft) 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. Air New Zealand's standard rear door aircraft can use jet bridges at airports with this equipment. 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.


ATR 72–100

Two sub-types were marketed as the 100 series (−100).

ATR 72–101
Initial production variant with front and rear passenger doors, powered by two PW124B engines and certified in September 1989.
ATR 72–102
Initial production variant with a front cargo door and a rear passenger door, powered by two PW124B engines and certified in December 1989.

ATR 72–200

Two sub-types were marketed as the 200 series (−200). The −200 was the original production version, powered by Pratt & Whitney Canada PW124B engines rated at 2,400 shp (1,800 kW).[6]

ATR 72–201
Higher maximum take-off weight variant of the −101, a PW124B powered variant certified in September 1989.
ATR 72–202
Higher maximum take-off weight variant of the −102, a PW124B powered variant certified in December 1989.

ATR 72–210

Two sub-types were marketed as the 210 series (−210), the −211, (and with an enlarged cargo door, called the −212), is a −200 with PW127 engines producing 2,750 shp (2,050 kW) each for improved performance in hot and high-altitude conditions. Difference between the sub-types is the type of doors, emergency exits

ATR 72–211
PW127 powered variant certified in December 1992.
ATR 72–212
PW127 powered variant certified in December 1992.

ATR 72–500

ATR 72-212A
Marketed as the −500 and certified in January 1997 with either PW127F or PW127M engines the −212A is an upgraded version of the −210 using six-bladed propellers on otherwise identical PW127F engines. Other improvements include higher maximum weights and superior performance, as well as greater automation of power management to ease pilot workload.

ATR 72–600

The –600 series aircraft was announced in October 2007; the first deliveries were planned for the second half of 2010.[7][8]

The new ATR 42–600 and 72–600 feature a number of improvements over previous versions. They are powered by the new PW127M engines, which enable a 5% increase in takeoff power called for by a "boost function" as needed, only when called for by the takeoff conditions. The flight deck features five wide LCD screens (improving on the EFIS from previous versions). A multi-purpose computer (MPC) aims at increasing flight safety and operational capabilities, and new Thales-made avionics provide RNP capabilities. Finally, the aircraft feature lighter seats and larger overhead baggage bins.

The prototype ATR 72–600 (registered F-WWEY[9]) first flew on 24 July 2009; it had been converted from an ATR 72–500.[10]

The ATR 72–600 Series launch customer is Royal Air Maroc Express. Air New Zealand announced in October 2011 that it would purchase 12 new ATR 72–600 to add to their 11 ATR 72–500 regional Mount Cook Airlines fleet. Colombia and El Salvador airline Avianca-TACA signed a contract for 15 ATR 72–600 in December 2012, with an option for 15 airplanes more, to replace older Fokkers.[11] The largest –600 operator is Azul Brazilian Airlines, with 18 aircraft in its fleet.

NOTE: According to the ATR42 & 72 EASA Type Certificate Data Sheet TCDS A.084, Iss 3, 17-10-2012,[12] "ATR 72-500" and "ATR 72-600" are the manufacturer's marketing designations of ATR 72-212A aircraft model with certain options installed. These marketing designations are not recognised by EASA as any new certified aircraft model or variant, and must not be used on ATR certified/approved documentation, where only ATR 72-212A must be indicated.

Other 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.[13]


The ATR 72 ASW integrates the ATR 42 MP (Maritime Patrol) mission system with the same on-board equipment but with additional ASW capabilities. An anti-submarine warfare (ASW) variant of the −500 (itself a version of the maritime patrol variant of the ATR 42–500) is also in production[14] and has been selected by Turkish Navy and Italian Navy for ASW and anti-surface warfare (ASuW) duties. Ten aircraft will be delivered to the Turkish Navy beginning in 2010. Italy's order of four aircraft will begin deliveries in 2012. For ASW and ASuW missions, the aircraft will be armed with a pod-mounted machine gun, lightweight aerial torpedoes, anti-surface missiles, and depth charges.[15] They will also be equipped with the AMASCOS (Airborne Maritime Situation and Control System) maritime surveillance system of Thales, as well as electronic warfare and reconnaissance systems, and will also be used for maritime search and rescue operations.[16][17]


A VIP version of the −500 is available with a luxury interior for executive or corporate transport.[18]

ATR 82 

During the mid-1980s, the company investigated a 78 seat derivative of the ATR 72. This would have been powered by two Allison AE2100 turboprops (turbofans were also studied for a time) and would have had a cruising speed as high as 330kt. The ATR-82 project (as it was dubbed) was suspended when AI(R) was formed in early 1996.[19]

ATR Quick Change 

This version was proposed in order to meet the increasing worldwide demand of cargo and express mail markets,where the aim is to allow operators to supplement their passengers flights with freighter flights.

In Quick Change configuration,the smoke detector is equipped alongside other modifications required in order to meet the certification for full freight operations.The aircraft was equipped with substantially large cargo door at 1.27 m (50 in) in width and 1.52 m (60 in) height,and the containerized freight loading is made easy by the low door sill height located on an average 1.2 m (4 ft).

It takes 30 minutes to convert the aircraft on ATR 42,while for ATR 72, it takes 45 minutes for the same tasks. Each optimized container has 2.8 m3 (99 cu ft) of usable volume and maximum payload is 435 kg (960 lb).[20]

Specifications (ATR 72–500)

Data from ATR[21]

General characteristics
  • Crew: 2
  • Capacity: 68 to 74 passengers
  • Length: 27.17 m (89 ft 2 in)
  • Wingspan: 27.05 m (88 ft 9 in)
  • Height: 7.65 m (25 ft 1 in)
  • Wing area: 61.00 m2 (656.6 sq ft)
  • Aspect ratio: 12.0:1[22]
  • Empty weight: 12,950 kg (28,550 lb)
  • Max takeoff weight: 22,500 kg (49,604 lb)
  • Powerplant: 2 × Pratt & Whitney Canada PW127F turboprops, 1,846 kW (2,475 shp) each


  • Cruise speed: 511 km/h; 318 mph (276 kn)
  • Range: 1,324 km (823 mi; 715 nmi) [22]
  • Service ceiling: 7,620 m (25,000 ft) [22]
  • Takeoff Run at MTOW: 1,165 m (3,822 ft)


Major firm orders include:

Former civil operators

 New Zealand
 United Kingdom

Military operators


Accidents and incidents

  • On 31 October 1994, American Eagle Flight 4184, a ATR 72-212 crashed due to icing in Roselawn, Indiana killing all 68 people on board.
  • 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 aircraft 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 aircraft's major components, resulting in a loss of control. The investigation found that flight crew did not respond to the severe icing conditions with the appropriate alert situation awareness and did not take the necessary actions.[32]
  • On 6 August 2005, Tuninter Flight 1153, a Tuninter ATR 72-202 en route from Bari, Italy, to Djerba, Tunisia, ditched in the Mediterranean Sea about 18 miles (29 km) from the city of Palermo. 16 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.[33]
  • On 24 August 2008, an Air Dolomiti ATR 72-500 en route from Munich, Germany, to Bologna, Italy, aborted take off after the pilot announced a smoke alarm. The airline treated the aircraft'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 aircraft before fire department workers extinguished the flames.[34]
  • 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.[35]
  • 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 en 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 made by the crew.[36] 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.[37]
  • On 17 July 2011, Aer Arann ATR 72-212 EI-SLM was damaged beyond economical repair when the nose gear collapsed on landing at Shannon International Airport, Ireland. The aircraft was operating an international scheduled passenger flight from Manchester Airport, United Kingdom. There were no injuries amongst the 4 crew and 21 passengers on board.[38]
  • On 13 February 2012 Danish Air Transport DX627, operated by an ATR 72-200 with 16 passengers en 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.[39]
  • On 2 April 2012, UTair Flight 120, a ATR 72-201 crashed soon after takeoff from Roshchino International Airport in western Siberia. 33 of the 43 passengers and crew on board were killed. [40] the crash cause was wrong de-icing procedures. The flight was from Tyumen to Surgut with 39 passenger and four crew members.
  • On 2 February 2013, a Carpatair ATR 72–212A flying on behalf of Alitalia crashed at Leonardo da Vinci–Fiumicino Airport in Rome while landing after a flight from Pisa. 16 people were injured, 2 seriously, including the co-pilot. During the interval between the crash that Saturday evening and sunrise on Sunday, the turboprop - which had worn Alitalia's green, white and red livery - was repainted entirely in white.[41]
  • On 16 October 2013, Lao Airlines Flight 301, an ATR 72-600 crashed into the Mekong River whilst on approach to Pakse International Airport, Laos, killing all 49 people on board.[42] This incident marks the first ATR 72-600 to be written off in a crash.

See also

Aviation portal
France portal

Related development
Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era




  • Hoyle, Craig. "World Air Forces Directory". Flight International, Vol. 182, No. 5370, 11–17 December 2012. pp. 40–64. ISSN 0015-3710.
  • Jackson, Paul. Jane's All The World's Aircraft 2003–2004. Coulsdon, UK: Jane's Information Group, 2003. ISBN 0-7106-2537-5.

External links

  • Official site of manufacturer ATR
  • Launch of a New Generation – ATR 72–600 – Global Aviation Resource article

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