TYPE: Light utility turboprop.
PROGRAMME: Wide-body version of Cresco with fuselage height overall raised 15 cm (6 in); design started January 2000 and prototype (ZK-XLA) first flown 5 September 2001. Optimised for parachute jumping. Other fields of use include carriage of freight, passengers and geophysical survey equipment and special operations.
Total 150 hours in 63 sorties up to December 2002. Preliminary tests showed need for leading-edge root extension and increase of maximum flap angle from 30° to 40°. Certification by NZ CAA was achieved on 23 July 2003, at which time two further aircraft were nearing completion.
COSTS: Approximately US$950,000 (2003).
DESIGN FEATURES: Based on Cresco, but optimised for utility market, especially sport parachuting. Design objectives included good visibility from cockpit, ease of handling and high crosswind limit (15 kt).
Wing section NACA 4415 (constant); 8° dihedral on outer wing panels; incidence 2°.
FLYING CONTROLS: Conventional and manual. Horn-balanced ailerons (travel +25/-10°), horn-/mass-balanced elevator (+30/8½°) and rudder; electric elevator trim with manual override; all-moving tailplane with full-span anti-servo tab; ground-adjustable tab on rudder; single-slotted flaps, maximum deflection 40°.
STRUCTURE: Conventional light alloy; single-spar wing; engine cowling of Kevlar and glass fibre; cockpit area stressed for 25 g impact.
LANDING GEAR: Non-retractable tricycle type; steerable nosewheel. Oleo-pneumatic shock absorption. Cleveland wheels and hydraulic disc brakes on main units. Goodyear tyres, size 8.50-10 (10 ply) on mainwheels, tailwheel 8.5-6 (6 ply).
POWER PLANT: One 559 kW (750 shp) Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-34 turboprop. Hartzell HC-B3TN-3D/T10282NS+4 three-blade constant-speed, fully feathering, reversible-pitch metal propeller. Four integral fuel tanks in wing centre-section, total capacity 861 litres (227 US gallons; 189 Imp gallons). Four refuelling points in upper surface of each wing.
ACCOMMODATION: Cabin carries nine passengers at 86 cm (34 in) pitch or 17 parachutists (plus single pilot) and has 16 floor-mounted tiedown points; cabin door on port side behind wing, plus two upward-hinged doors on each side of cockpit for crew entry. Dual controls, but starboard control removable. Max floor loading 730 kg/m² (150 lb/sq ft). Medevac version can carry two stretchers and three seated passengers, plus two flight crew.
SYSTEMS: 24 V DC electric system. Air conditioning optional.