|The PC-21 demonstrator lands at RIAT 2008, England.|
|Role||Advanced Trainer aircraft|
|First flight||1 July 2002|
|Primary users||Swiss Air Force
United Arab Emirates Air Force
In November 1997 Pilatus flew a modified PC-7 Mk.II in order to test improvements for a next generation turboprop trainer. As a result of these tests, Pilatus funded the development of a new training system in November 1998. Development of the PC-21 started in January 1999. Roll-out of the PC-21 prototype was on 30 April 2002 at Pilatus' factory in Stans, Switzerland, with the first flight taking place on 1 July of the same year. The second PC-21 prototype flew on 7 June 2004. One of the prototypes, HB-HZB, crashed on 13 January 2005, in Buochs, Switzerland on an aerobatic training flight, killing the pilot and injuring another person on the ground. The other prototypes: HB-HZA, HB-HZC and HB-HZD, are still flying.
The PC-21 is a completely new aircraft design. The aircraft features a tandem-seating arrangement (student in-front/instructor behind) in a bird strike resistant glass canopy with all round vision, glass cockpit with three large colour liquid crystal displays (LCD), head-up displays (HUD), Hands on Throttle and Stick (HOTAS) controls and Zero-zero ejection seats for student and instructor.
On 21 January 2008, the first PC-21 for the Republic of Singapore Air Force completed its flight test prior to being accepted into service. On 13 July 2008, the type began to provide the RSAF with basic flying training. A further six aircraft have now been delivered with the remaining seven expected to be delivered in August 2008.
During the 2009 Dubai Airshow, UAE announced an order of 25 PC-21 for the United Arab Emirates Air Force to replace their aging fleet of Pilatus PC-7s. UAEAF's first PC-21 made its maiden on 22 November 2010, deliveries expected to commence from first quarter of 2011.
The PC-21 has been offered to the Royal Australian Air Force as part of project AIR 5428 to replace its Pilatus PC-9s. Moreover, the PC-21 has been evaluated by the Spanish Air Force, along the T-6 Texan II and the PZL-130 Orlik III, as a possible substitute for its ENAER T-35 Pillan and CASA C-101 Aviojet trainer aircraft.
- Swiss Air Force operates 8 PC-21s for advanced training, replacing the BAe Hawk which had been retired since 2003.
- United Arab Emirates Air Force: operates 25 PC-21s for advanced training, first flight made on 22 November 2010.
- Crew: Two (student & instructor)
- Length: 11.233 m (36 ft 11 in)
- Wingspan: 9.108 m (29 ft 11 in)
- Height: 3.749 m (12 ft 4 in)
- Wing area: 15.221 m² (163.848 ft²)
- Empty weight: 2,270 kg (5,005 lb)
- Max. takeoff weight: 3,100 kg (aerobatic) / 4,250 kg (utility) (6,834 lb (aerobatic) / 9,370 lb (utility))
- Powerplant: 1 × Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-68B Turboprop engine, 1,200 kW (1,600 shp)
- Maximum speed: 685 km/h (370 knots, 428 mph)
- Stall speed: 170 km/h (92 knots, 106.25 mph) gear and flaps up (20 km/h less with flaps and gear down)
- Range: 1,333 km (720 nm, 828 miles)
- Service ceiling: 11,580 m (38,000 ft)
- Rate of climb: 1,219 m/min (4,000 ft/min)
- Wing loading: 208 kg/m² (42.7 lb/ft²)
- Power/mass: 0.39 kW/kg (0.23 hp/lb)
- Hardpoints: Provisions provided for 4× under-wing and 1× centerline external store stations, capable of mounting up to 1,150 kg (2,540 lb) of payload of air-to-ground weapons to operate in the Counter-insurgency role.
- Related development
- Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era
- "PC-21: Aircraft Data". Pilatus Aircraft Ltd. Retrieved 29 April 2010.
- "Acceptance of the first four Pilatus PC-21 by armasuisse" (Press release). Swiss Federation. Retrieved 29 April 2010.
- Stans (17 December 2010). "Pilatus Wins PC-21 Follow-up Order From the Swiss Air Force". Pilatus Aircraft. Archived from the original on 29 July 2012. Retrieved 22 June 2013.
- "RSAF Pilatus PC-21 Makes its Maiden Flight" (Press release). Ministry of Defence (MINDEF). 15 February 2008. Retrieved 29 April 2010.
- "Basic Flying Training on the Pilatus PC-21 Aircraft Trainer Commences" (Press release). MINDEF. 13 July 2008. Retrieved 29 April 2010.
- Craig, Hoyle (17 November 2009). "Dubai 09: UAE signs deal for 25 PC-21 trainers". Flight Global. Retrieved 30 September 2012.
- "UAE's first PC-21 flown". Air Forces Monthly (Key Publishing Ltd) (274): page 26. February 2011. ISSN 0955-7091.
- Pittaway 2010, p. 20.
- "Evaluación del PC-21 Pilatus como entrenador Elemental/Básico/Avanzado", Ejército del Aire de España (Revista de Aeronáutica y Astronáutica) (778), noviembre de 2008
- Craig, Hoyle (23 May 2012). "Saudi Arabia signs 102-aircraft military training deal". Flight Global. Retrieved 29 September 2012.
- Craig, Hoyle (23 July 2012). "Qatar signs deal for 24 Pilatus PC-21s". Flight Global. Retrieved 29 September 2012.
- "Pilatus: PC-21 fact sheet" (PDF). Pilatus Aircraft Ltd. Retrieved 29 April 2010.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Pilatus PC-21.|
- Republic of Singapore Air Force factsheet: Pilatus PC-21
- Cyberpioneer, Singapore Armed Forces web publication on Pilatus PC-21