|A TAROM ATR 72–500 photographed in flight|
|First flight||27 October 1988|
|Introduction||27 October 1989 (Finnair)|
|Primary users||Wings Air
|Number built||611 as of 2012|
|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.
- 1 Development
- 2 Design
- 3 Variants
- 4 Specifications (ATR 72–500)
- 5 Operators
- 6 Accidents and incidents
- 7 See also
- 8 References
- 9 External links
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, 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. 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.
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 72–201
- 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.
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 72-212A
- 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.
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 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. The largest –600 operator is Azul Brazilian Airlines, with 18 aircraft in its fleet. Scandinavian Airlines announced that in March 2014 they will acquire new fleet with ATR 72-600 with 28 departures a week. 
NOTE: According to the ATR42 & 72 EASA Type Certificate Data Sheet TCDS A.084, Iss 3, 17-10-2012, "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.
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.
- ATR 72 ASW
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 and has been selected by the Italian Navy for ASW and anti-surface warfare (ASuW) duties. Italy's order of four aircraft will begin deliveries in 2012. For the ASW and ASuW missions, the aircraft will be armed with a pod-mounted machine gun, lightweight aerial torpedoes, anti-surface missiles, and depth charges. 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.
The Turkish Navy, which initially decided to purchase ten ATR 72–500 MPA, later modified its order to eight ATR 72–600 aircraft: Two 72–600 TMUA (utility) versions, and six 72–600 TMPA (ASW/ASuW) versions. The two ATR 72–600 TMUA aircraft were delivered to the Turkish Navy in 2013.
A VIP version of the −500 is available with a luxury interior for executive or corporate transport.
- 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.
- 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).
Specifications (ATR 72–500)
Data from ATR
- 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
- 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) 
- Service ceiling: 7,620 m (25,000 ft) 
- Takeoff Run at MTOW: 1,165 m (3,822 ft)
- Aer Arann (8 + 8 on order)
- as a franchise of Aer Lingus Regional.
- Aero Caribbean (5)
- Air Algérie (12)
- Air Austral (3)
- Myanma Airways (3)
- Air Bagan (3)
- Yangon Airways (3)
- Air KBZ (7)
- Air Mandalay (2)
- Asian Wings Airways (3)
- Air Botswana (2)
- Air Calédonie (2)
- Air Caraïbes (3 + 1 on order)
- Air Contractors (12)
- Air Dolomiti (10)
- Air Madagascar (2)
- Air Mauritius (2)
- Air New Zealand (11 + 12 on order)
- Mount Cook Airline as a subsidiary of Air New Zealand.
- Air Nostrum (5)
- Air Saint-Pierre (1)
- Air Tahiti (7)
- Air Vanuatu (1)
- Airlinair (8)
- Alsie Express (2)
- Arkia Israel Airlines (5)
- Aurigny Air Services (3)
- Avanti Air (1)
- Avianca Holding (15)
- AZAL Azerbaijan Airlines (4)
- Azul Brazilian Airlines (20)
- Bangkok Airways (8)
- Belle Air (1)
- Buddha Air (3)
- Berjaya Air (4)
- B&H Airlines (2)
- Binter Canarias (19)
- Blue Islands (1)
- BoraJet Turkey (5)
- BQB Líneas Aéreas (2)
- Calm Air (2)
- Cambodia Angkor Air (2)
- Cape Air (2)
- Caribbean Airlines (5)
- Carpatair (2)
- CCM Airlines (6)
- Cebu Pacific (8)
- Ceiba Intercontinental (2)
- China Southern Airlines (5)
- Conviasa (7)
- DanubeWings (3)
- Danish Air Transport (2)
- Dutch Antilles Express (2 + 4 on order )
- Empire Airlines (7)
- EuroLOT (5)
- Farnair Switzerland (12)
- FedEx Express (21)
- Firefly (12)
- First Air (2)
- Flybe Nordic (12)
- Fly540 (1 (Ghana)
- Garuda Indonesia (25 on order)
- Golden Air (5)
- Halcyonair (2)
- Helitt Líneas Aéreas (3)
- Iran Aseman Airlines (5)
- Island Air (1)
- Islas Airways (5)
- Israir (2)
- Jat Airways (5)
- Jet Airways (20)
- Kal Star Aviation (3)
- Lao Airlines (4)
- LIAT (2 + 3 on order 2 options)
- MASwings (10)
- Malindo Air (1)
- Merpati Nusantara Airlines (1)
- Mountain Air Cargo (9)
- operated for FedEx Express
- Naysa Aerotaxis (10)
- operated for Binter Canarias
- Nok Air (2)
- OLT Express (9)
- Oman Air (2)
- Passaredo Linhas Aéreas (6)
- Precision Air (5)
- Royal Air Maroc (4)
- Royal Thai Air Force (4)
- Satena (1)
- Safair (unk)
- Sevenair (3)
- Virgin Australia Regional Airlines (11+ 7 on order & 8 options)
- Swiftair (13)
- Syrian Air (2)
- TACV Cabo Verde Airlines (2)
- Tarom (2)
- TransAsia Airways (9)
- Trigana Air Service (3)
- TRIP Linhas Aéreas (20)
- United Airways (3)
- Overland Airways (2)
- UNI Air (2)
- UTair Aviation (17)
- UTair-Ukraine (5)
- Villa Air (1)
- Vietnam Airlines (16, 2 leased by Cambodia Angkor Air)
- Wings Air (17 + 43 on order)
Major firm orders include:
- Overland Airways (5)
- Air Nostrum (10)
- as a franchise for Iberia
- Azul Brazilian Airlines (20, with 20 options)
- as a franchise for Alitalia CityLiner (2)
- Cebu Pacific (2, with 8 options)
- Firefly (20)
- Finncomm Airlines (3)
- Garuda Indonesia (25)
- Hansung Airlines (20)
- Kingfisher Airlines (38)
- MASwings (16)
- PAL Express (beginning on May 2014)
- Pantanal Linhas Aéreas (2)
- Royal Air Maroc Express (8)
- as a franchise for Royal Air Maroc
- Skywest Airlines (18)
- Wings Air (43)
Former civil operators
|This section requires expansion. (August 2011)|
- Cimber Sterling (4)
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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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. 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.  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.
- 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. This incident marks the first ATR 72-600 to be written off in a crash.
- Related development
- Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era
- Bombardier Dash 8 Series 400
- British Aerospace ATP
- CASA C-295
- Fokker 50
- Handley Page Herald
- Antonov An-140
- Ilyushin Il-114
- Xian MA600
- NAMC YS-11
- Saab 2000
- Indian Regional Jet
- ATR: delivery and turnover records in 2012
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- "ATR Profile." atraircraft.com. Retrieved: 17 November 2012.
- ATR 72–200
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to ATR 72.|
- Official site of manufacturer ATR
- Launch of a New Generation – ATR 72–600 – Global Aviation Resource article