ATR 42 MP Surveyor, Italy


ATR 42 MP Surveyor

ATR 42 MP (Maritime Patrol) Surveyor is a maritime patrol aircraft variant developed by Alenia Aermacchi (formerly Alenia Aeronautica). The aircraft is a variant of the ATR 42 commercial aircraft produced by ATR, a joint venture between Alenia Aermacchi and EADS.

In February 1999 the first ATR 42 MP aircraft took flight to Caselle Torinese. The aircraft received civil certification in October 1999 and was qualified for military operations in February 2000. Alenia Aermacchi is responsible for the integration and installation of mission systems and equipments of the aircraft.

The ATR 42 MP can be primarily deployed in maritime patrol, search-and-rescue (SAR), search and identification of vessels, exclusive economic zone (EEZ) patrol, smuggling and piracy control, and environmental control missions. Its secondary roles include the transportation of personnel and cargo, medical evacuation (MEDEVAC), and protection of civilians.

Alenia Aermacchi has delivered four ATR 42 MPs to the Italian Customs Police (Italian Guardia di Finanza) and three aircraft to the Italian Coast Guard. Two ATR 42 MP aircraft were delivered to the Nigerian Air Force between 2009 and 2010. The Libyan General Security Agency received one aircraft under a €31m contract signed in January 2008.

ATR 42 MP design

The ATR 42 MP is based on the airframe of ATR 42 short-haul regional airliner. The aircraft incorporates a semi-monocoque fuselage. The modular design of the aircraft allows for quick modifications for deployment in secondary missions.

"The ATR 42 MP can be primarily deployed in maritime patrol, search-and-rescue (SAR), search and identification of vessels, exclusive economic zone (EEZ) patrol, smuggling and piracy control, and environmental control missions."

The aircraft measures 22.67m in length and 7.59m in height. The wing span and wing areas are 24.57m and 54.5m2 respectively. The operational empty weight of the aircraft is 13,470kg and the maximum takeoff weight is 18,600kg.

Cockpit of the ATR 42 MP

The modern glass cockpit of ATR 42 MP can accommodate a pilot and a co-pilot. The avionics suite of the aircraft integrates five 6in x 8in liquid crystal display (LCD) units. The large format displays present the information related to flight characteristics and onboard avionics to ensure pilots are completely focused on the mission.

Cabin adaptability of ATR 42 maritime patrol aircraft

Operators can use the large internal volume of the cabin to configure the aircraft for passenger/troop/cargo transport, medical evacuation and paratroops launch. The aircraft, in passenger transport configuration, can carry 48 passengers, while it can accommodate 36 equipped soldiers in troop transport configuration.

The cargo transport configuration is equipped with a cargo handling system and can load a maximum of 5,450kg of bulk cargo and nine ATR standard containers. The MEDEVAC layout can house 14 stretchers and two medical attendants, while the paratroops launch configuration can carry up to 36 paratroopers.

The typical internal layout of ATR 42 MP houses a forward cargo area in front of the cabin. The operating area and coordination/rest areas are placed in the centre. The observation and launch areas are located in between the centre and rear part of the cabin. The rear side of the aircraft features an in-flight operable hatch for the launch of SAR kit. The cabin also features interphone, radio and internal communication systems, auxiliary rack, galley, toilet and bubble windows.

ATR 42 MP Surveyor mission equipment and systems

The Selex Galileo airborne tactical operator system (ATOS) is installed in two operator stations within the operating room cabin. The ATOS suite is interfaced with a multimode X-band search radar, automatic identification system (AIS), direction finder (DF), electro-optic / infrared (EO/IR) system, electronic support measures (ESM), and operational communications.

"The ATR 42 MP is also equipped with in-flight operable hatch, ESM antennae, gun pod, flare launcher and OMA search light pod to meet the demanding requirements of customers."

The mission system controls and monitors the onboard sensors and performs mission planning, and active and passive electronic surveillance according to the tactical situation. The electro-optical surveillance and tracking system integrates sensors, high resolution IR camera and colour TV, black and white long-range TV and auto-tracker in a gyro-stabilised five axis platform.

The ATR 42 MP is also equipped with in-flight operable hatch, ESM antennae, gun pod, flare launcher and OMA search light pod to meet the demanding requirements of customers.

Countermeasures of ATR 42 maritime patrol aircraft

The ATR 42 MP aircraft is incorporated with an ESM system supplied by Elettronica. The system identifies and detects the radar emissions of targets in all weather conditions. The six passive antennae installed in the front and back of the aircraft cover a 360° area around the aircraft. The aircraft can be fitted with flare launchers to deceive incoming missiles or rockets.

ATR 42 MP engines and performance

The ATR 42 MP is powered by two Pratt & Whitney Canada PW 127M turboprop engines driving Hamilton Sundstrand 568F six-blade, variable-pitch propellers. Each engine develops a maximum continuous power of 2,400shp (one engine out).

The aircraft has a maximum cruise speed of 520km/h and can operate at a maximum altitude of 7,620m. The ferry range of the aircraft is 2,020nmi. The aircraft can stay airborne for a maximum of 11 hours.

Defence Technology


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