Short 312 Tucano

$5 million turboprop basic trainer aircraft

Shorts Tucano T1
photo: Ronnie Macdonald

The Short 312 Tucano is a license-built version of the tandem-seat turboprop basic trainer aircraft of Embraer EMB312 Tucano. The Short 312 Tucano was built by the Irish aerospace company Short Brothers from 1986 to 1995.

Manufacturer:
Short Brothers
Country:
United Kingdom
Manufactured:
1986 to: 1995
ICAO:
S312
Price:
US$5 million (1991)

Specifications

Avionics:
Engine:
1x Garrett TPE331-12B
turboprop
Power:
1,100 horsepower
Max Cruise Speed:
274 knots
507 Km/h
Approach Speed (Vref):
43 knots
Travel range:
899 Nautical Miles
1,665 Kilometers
Fuel Economy:
Service Ceiling:
34,000 feet
Rate of Climb:
3510 feet / minute
17.83metre / second
Take Off Distance:
524 metre - 1,719.14 feet
Landing Distance:
573 metre - 1,879.90 feet
Max Take Off Weight:
3,275 Kg
7,220 lbs
Max Landing Weight:
2,755 Kg
6,074 lbs
Max Payload:
1,258 Kg
2,773 lbs
Fuel Tank Capacity:
191 gallon
723 litre
Baggage Volume:
Seats - Economy / General:
2 seats
Seats - Business Class:
Seats - First Class:
Cabin Height:
Cabin Width:
Cabin Length:
Exterior Length:
9.86 metre - 32.35 feet
Tail height:
3.4 metre - 11.15 feet
Fuselage Diameter:
1 metre - 3.28 feet
Wing Span / Rotor Diameter:
11.28 metre - 37.01 feet
Wing Tips:
no winglets
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Description

On December 30, 1986, the Tucano T.Mk 1 conducted its first flight. It was the first standard production model that rolled out on January 20, 1987. On March 10, 1987, the second aircraft took its maiden flight, and after a month, the third production model had joined the clearance and final testing of the test fleet, which was greatly undertaken in a military testing site at MOD Boscombe Down.

On June 16, 1988, the fourth production aircraft was delivered to the Royal Air Force (RAF) at the Central Flying School. On January 25, 1993, the last aircraft was delivered to RAF after a 5-year delivery period. The aircraft were also ordered by various customers such as the Kenyan Air Force with an order of twelve units while sixteen units were exported to Kuwait.

The aircraft delivered to the Kuwait Air Force were made to be combat-capable and were armed for the intention of weapons training and light attack missions. These aircraft were equipped with four hardpoints that can mount different rocket pods, bombs, cannons, and external fuel tanks.

The Short Tucano is more receptive to changes in thrust due to its Garett engine and is less quiet compared to the original Tucano. Aside from the engine change, the primary dissimilarities of the latter are a reinforced airframe for an enhanced stress life, a cockpit configuration the same with the Hawk advanced trainer of RAF, an improved oxygen system, a flight recorder to facilitate the investigation of accidents and incidents in flight, a four-bladed propeller, ventral airbrake for steep approaches, and redesigned wingtips.

The aircraft is also equipped with two MB 8LC ejection seats built by Martin-Baker, and the canopy was improved to target the requirements of RAF for bird strike. While in the production span, the company presented the airframe as “100% British-built”. The aircraft has an external length of 9.86 meters, a height of 3.4 meters, and a fuselage diameter of 1 meter. It has a wingspan of 11.28 meters.