Air Tractor AT-802

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Air Tractor AT-802 SEAT (Single Engine Air Tanker)
Role Agricultural / Fire-fighting aircraft
Manufacturer Air Tractor
First flight 1990

The Air Tractor AT-802 is an agricultural aircraft that may also be adapted into fire-fighting or armed versions. It first flew in the United States in October 1990 and is manufactured by Air Tractor Inc. The AT-802 carries a chemical hopper between the engine firewall and the cockpit and another one under the belly. In the U.S., it is considered a Type III SEAT, or Single Engine Air Tanker.[1]


In its standard configuration, the aircraft utilizes conventional landing gear (two main wheels and a tail wheel). However, a number of aircraft have been converted to the Fire Boss aerial firefighting configuration, which utilizes Wipaire 10000 amphibious floats, so that it can land on a traditional runway or on water. The Fire Boss can scoop water from a lake or river for use on a fire. In addition to the 820 US gallons (3,100 L)[2] standard fuselage-mounted retardant tank, the Fire Boss can have optional 70 US gallons (260 L) tanks in the floats.[3] Operations with floats installed have been shown to produce a shorter and narrower retardant drop pattern than wheeled AT-802s.[4]

Armed version[edit]

AT-802U prototype at Paris Air Show

In response to the United States Air Force's LAAR program and the growing requirement for light counter-insurgency aircraft,[5] Air Tractor developed an armed model, the AT-802U, in 2008, with engine and cockpit armor, a bulletproof windscreen, self-sealing fuel tanks, and structural reinforcements for the carriage of 9,000 pounds (4,100 kg) of payload. A reinforced wing spar was certified for 12,000 hours of flight time,[6] and the AT-802U was displayed in 2009 at the Paris Air Show.[7]

The AT-802 has also been used in counter-drug operations in the USSOUTHCOM AOR by the U.S. Department of State as a delivery vehicle for herbicides and defoliants over narcotics production facilities.


  • AT-802 - two seat (tandem) cockpit
  • AT-802A - single-seat cockpit
  • AT-802U - two seat (tandem) heavily armored military version, modified with sensors and reinforced for weapons carriage[8]
  • AT-802F or AT-802AF - An aerial firefighting model 802 equipped with the Air Tractor Computerized Firegate[9] designed, developed and serviced by Trotter Controls Inc.[10]
  • Fire Boss - A model 802 equipped with Wipaire amphibious floats and Air Tractor's Computerized Firegate system designed, developed and serviced by Trotter Controls Inc.[10]


Montenegrian air force AT-802A Fire Boss
Israeli AT-802F in a firefighting drill
  • Aerotech First Response (South Australia) - 11 AT-802
  • Dunn Aviation (Western Australia) - 10 AT-802[11]
  • Kennedy Aviation (New South Wales) - 4 AT-802[12]
 Burkina Faso
  • Forest Protection Limited,[14] New Brunswick Department of Natural Resources - 6 AT-802F and 1 AT-802A Fire Boss
  • Conair Group - 13 AT-802A Fire Boss
  • Combate de Incendios Forestales, Martinez Ridao Chile Ltda.[15] AT-802A Fire Boss
  • - Fire-fighting
  • Protection and Rescue Directorate of the Republic of Macedonia - 3 AT-802A Fire Boss
  • 2 AT-802A Fire Boss[18]
  • Ministry of Environment (CEGISA) - 3 AT-802A[19]
  • Avialsa T35 - 15 AT-802 + 14 AT-802F [20]
 South Africa
  • Kishugu Aviation - Parent of Working on Fire.
 United States
  • Aerospray, Inc.[22]

Specifications (AT-802)[edit]

Three Croatian AT-802F Fire Bosses

Data from Jane's All The World's Aircraft 2003–2004[23]

General characteristics

  • Crew: Two
  • Capacity: 820 US Gal (3,104 L) of chemicals
  • Length: 35 ft 11 in (10.95 m)
  • Wingspan: 59 ft 3 in (18.06 m)
  • Height: 12 ft 9 in (3.89 m)
  • Wing area: 401.0 ft2 (37.25 m2)
  • Aspect ratio: 8.8:1
  • Empty weight: 6,505 lb (2,951 kg)
  • Gross weight: 16,000 lb (7,257 kg)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Pratt & Whitney PT6A-67F turboprop, 1,350 hp (1,007 kW) each


  • Cruise speed: 221 mph (356 km/h)
  • Range: 800 miles (1,289 km)
  • Service ceiling: 25,000 ft (7,620 m)
  • Rate of climb: 850 ft/min (4.3 m/s)

Specifications (AT-802U)[edit]

Data from[citation needed]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 2 (tandem)
  • Length: 35 ft 8 in (10.87 m)
  • Wingspan: 59 ft 1 in (18 m)
  • Height: 11 ft 6 in (3.5 m)
  • Wing area: 401 sq ft (37.3 m2)
  • Empty weight: 6,400 lb (2,903 kg)
  • Gross weight: 16,000 lb (7,257 kg)
  • Max takeoff weight: 16,000 lb (7,257 kg)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-67F turboprop, 1,600 shp (1,200 kW)
  • Propellers: 5-bladed Hartzell Propeller HC-B3TN


  • Maximum speed: 230 mph; 370 km/h (200 kn)
  • Cruising speed: 184 mph; 296 km/h (160 kn)
  • Range: 1,841 mi; 2,963 km (1,600 nmi)
  • Endurance: 10 hours
  • Service ceiling: 25,000 ft (7,620 m)


  • 8 hardpoints for up to 9,000 pounds (4,100 kg) payload, including but not limited to:

Specifications Fire Gate Control (F.R.D.S.)[24][edit]

  • F.R.D.S. Fire Retardant Delivery System (Gen 2) Generation 2
  • Main dumping system with tertiary backup systems to ensure gate operation
  • Adjustable coverage and gallons to dump
  • Compensates for G's, Gallons in hopper
  • On board self diagnostics

The Air Tractor AT-802F and the Fire Retardant Delivery System (FRDS)[24] have grown up together. Proven to be a formidable firefighting system since its introduction in 1993, the AT-802F aircraft and the Generation II FRDS have moved single engine air tanker firefighting into a new era of improved control, reliability and overall effectiveness. The original Air Tractor FRDS represented a leap forward in fire gate control technology for aerial firefighting applications. With its computerized fire gate technology, air tanker pilots could simply and quickly dial-in coverage level, drop amount and ground speed. Calculations were then handled by the system's on-board computer, making it possible for the pilot to deliver a consistent and controlled amount of fire retardant to the specified drop zone. This is the only true computerized constant flow fire gate in service today. Since its introduction, the Air Tractor FRDS fire gate has earned a reputation in wildland firefighting circles for uniform coverage and system reliability. But in the past 16 years computer technology has made exponential advances, so the Generation II FRDS fire gate has been updated to allow pilots and operators to take full advantage of those

See also[edit]

Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era
Related lists


  1. ^ "Interagency Standards for Fire and Aviation Operations 2007, Chapter 17" (PDF). National Interagency Fire Center. Archived from the original on 2007-09-28. Retrieved 2007-08-31. 
  2. ^ AT-802 Fire Boss Factsheet at
  3. ^ Wipaire Fire Boss Service Manual
  4. ^ "Evaluation of Long Term Retardant Drop Patterns from Air Tractor 802 Amphibious Float and Wheel Equipped Aircraft", Forest Engineering Research Institute of Canada, February 2006
  5. ^ Trimble, Stephen. "PARIS AIR SHOW: Cropduster-turned-gunship makes Le Bourget debut". 15 June 2009. retrieved 7 November 2010.
  6. ^ Exciting Product Developments In 2009. airtractor (2010-02-10). Retrieved on 2010-11-04.
  7. ^ PHOTOS: New gunship flies to Paris Air Show debut - The DEW Line. Retrieved on 2010-11-04.
  8. ^ Photos: Air Tractor AT-802U Air Truck Aircraft Pictures. (2009-06-18). Retrieved on 2010-11-04.
  9. ^ AT802A
  10. ^ a b [1]
  11. ^ Dunn Aviation - Firebombing
  12. ^ "Aircraft register search results". Civil Aviation Safety Authority. Retrieved 16 February 2013. 
  13. ^ Hoyle Flight International 13–19 December 2011, p. 35.
  14. ^ Welcome to Forest Protection Limited. Retrieved on 2010-11-04.
  15. ^ [2]. En Chile trabajando para Forestal Mininco y Forestal Celco.
  16. ^ Hoyle Flight International 13–19 December 2011, p. 39.
  17. ^ Egozi, Arie (2011-08-06). "Israel's new firefighting squadron". Flightglobal. Retrieved 2011-09-07. 
  18. ^ Prvi crnogorski avioni za gašenje požara :: Dnevni list Pobjeda. (2008-04-30). Retrieved on 2010-11-04.
  19. ^ Keijsper 2008, pp. 43.
  20. ^ "Flota de Aviones". Avialsa. Retrieved 2011-09-07. 
  21. ^ Trimble, Stephen (2011-01-25). "AirTractor delivers UAE's first AT-802Us". Flightglobal. Retrieved 2011-09-07. 
  22. ^ - first us contract
  23. ^ Jackson 2003, pp. 509–510.
  24. ^ a b
  • Hoyle, Craig. "World Air Forces Directory". Flight International, 13–19 December 2011. pp. 26–52.
  • Jackson, Paul. Jane's All The World's Aircraft 2003–2004. Coulsdon, UK: Jane's Information Group, 2003. ISBN 0-7106-2537-5.
  • Keijsper, Gerard. "Water-Bombers Required!" Air Forces Monthly, London: Key Publishing, July 2008 Issue.
  • Simpson, R. W. (1995). Airlife's General Aviation. Shrewsbury: Airlife Publishing. pp. 31–32. 

External links[edit]