DescriptionThe Antonov An-72 (NATO reporting name: Coaler) is a Soviet/Ukrainian transport aircraft, developed by Antonov.
It was designed as an STOL transport and intended as a replacement for the Antonov An-26, but variants have found success as commercial freighters.
The An-72 and the related An-74 get their nickname, Cheburashka, from the large engine intake ducts, which resemble the oversized ears of the popular Soviet animated character of the same name.
The An-74 variant adds the ability to operate in harsh weather conditions in polar regions, because it can be fitted with wheel-skis landing gear, de-icing equipment and a number of other upgrades, allowing the aircraft to support operations in Arctic or Antarctic environments.
An unusual design feature of the An-72 is the use of the Coandă effect to improve STOL performance, utilizing engine exhaust gases blown over the wing's upper surface to boost lift. The first flight was made on 31 August 1977, but it was only in the 1980s that production started. The powerplant used is the Lotarev D-36 turbofan engine. The An-72 bears a resemblance to the Boeing YC-14, a prototype design from the early 1970s (design submitted to the Air Force in February 1972) which had also used overwing engines and the Coandă effect.
The rear fuselage of the aircraft has a hinged loading ramp with a rear fairing that slides backwards and up to clear the opening. Up to 7.5 tons[clarification needed] can be airdropped while there are folding side seats for 52 passengers.
In August 2006, a total of 51 An-72 and Antonov An-74 aircraft were in airline service. Major operators include Badr Airlines (three), and Shar Ink (eight). Some 17 other airlines operate smaller numbers of the type.
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Passenger Variant (windows)
Model An-74TK-300D with underslung engines
- Crew: five Capacity: up to 52 passengers or 10 tonnes of cargo
- 28.07 m (92 ft 1 in)
- 31.89 m (104 ft 7.5 in)
- 8.65 m (28 ft 4.5 in)
- Wing Loading:
- 98.62 m2 (1,062 sq ft)
- Empty Weight:
- 19,050 kg (42,000 lb)
- 34,500 kg (76,058 lb)
- Two Lotarev D-36 turbofans
- Maximum speed: 472 mph (760km/h)
- Cruise Speed:
- 447 mph (720km/h)
- Max fuel: 2,050 nm (3,800km); Max load: 540 nm (1,000km)
- Service Ceiling:
- 10.700 m 35.105 ft