|N24A Nomad of the Indonesian Navy|
|Manufacturer||Government Aircraft Factories|
|First flight||23 July 1971|
|Status||Still in civil and military service|
|Primary users||Philippine Air Force
Indonesian National Navy
The GAF Nomad is a twin-engined turboprop, high-wing, short takeoff and landing (STOL) aircraft. It was designed and built by the Australian Government Aircraft Factories (GAF) at Fishermens Bend, Melbourne. Major users of the design have included the Royal Flying Doctor Service of Australia, the Australian Army and the Australian Customs Service. The Nomad is to be reengineered and put back into production as the Gippsland GA18.
Design and development
Development of the Nomad began in 1965 at GAF as Project N. The Australian government funded two prototypes in January 1970 for the twin-engined, multi-purpose transport. The government was keen to build an aircraft in order to maintain aircraft production at GAF after the end of Mirage III production. The first prototype (registered VH-SUP) flew for the first time on 23 July 1971. The aircraft was now known as the N2, and was aimed at the military and civilian markets. The designation N22 was to be used for military aircraft (becoming N22B in production), and N24 was to be used for the lengthened civilian version.
The original design intention was that the entire empennage would be hinged, so that it could be swung open, providing rear-loading access (the target payload was a small vehicle). This necessitated the raised cruciform tail.
The Nomad design was considered problematic and early Royal Australian Air Force evaluations were critical of the design. An early, stretched-fuselage variant crashed, killing GAF's chief test pilot Stuart Pearce (father of actor Guy Pearce), and the assistant chief designer. The Nomad has been involved in a total of 32 total hull-loss accidents, which have resulted in 76 fatalities.
Only 172 Nomads (including the two prototypes) were manufactured, due to the limited foreign sales achieved by GAF. In 1986, GAF was incorporated into Aerospace Technologies of Australia.
In June 2008, Gippsland Aeronautics (now GippsAero) announced it had won bidding to take over the Nomad's type certificate and would probably be restarting production. Some of the GippsAero design and testing engineers, including co-founder George Morgan, worked on Nomad development at GAF. The N24-based GA18 will be reengineered with new powerplants, propellers, glass cockpit and weight-saving measures. It is planned to bring it into service after the development and certification of the new ten-seat GA10, due to be complete in March 2013.
- N.2 Nomad
- Prototype, two built.
- Initial production version for 12 passengers for the Australian Army.
- 13 passenger civil version.
- Cargo variant modified from N.22B with Maximum Takeoff Weight increased to 4,050 kilograms (8,930 lb).
- N.22F Floatmaster
- Twin floatplane version, two built.
- Utility transport aircraft with a fuselage lengthened by 3 ft 9 in (1.14 m).
- Improved version for 17 passengers, 40 built.
- Re-engineered 18-seat N24 in development by GippsAero.
- Nomad Missionmaster
- Military transport and utility aircraft.
- Nomad Searchmaster
- Maritime patrol and surveillance aircraft.
- Nomad N.22 Searchmaster B
- Coastal patrol aircraft, seven built.
- Nomad N.22 Searchmaster L
- Improved version of the Searchmaster B, 11 built.
- Nomad N.22 Searchmaster LI
- Improved version of the Searchmaster B, fitted with the APS-104(N) 2 radar.
- Nomad N.22 Searchmaster LII
- Improved version of the Searchmaster B, fitted with the APS-104(V) 5 radar.
The Australian Army leased the second prototype N22 in 1973. It acquired 11 N22B between 1975 and 1977 for the 173rd Aviation Squadron. It subsequently acquired a 12th N22B from the Royal Australian Air Force in 1987. In 1993 the Army acquired eight more N22B and four N24A to replace its Pilatus PC-6 Porters. These 12 aircraft had been stored unsold when production ceased. All were withdrawn in 1995. Most were sold to the Indonesian Navy but two unflyable airframes are retained as training aids.
The Royal Australian Air Force acquired an N22B in 1977. Although owned by the RAAF it was operated as part of the Army's 173rd Aviation Squadron. It was transferred to the Army in 1987. The RAAF subsequently acquired a former Coastwatch Nomad Searchmaster and three N24As in 1989, one which had been a GAF/ASTA test frame and two from a cancelled order for United States Customs Service. They were withdrawn in 1993.
The Indonesian Navy Aviation Service acquired 12 Nomad Searchmaster B and six Searchmaster L in 1975-77. It subsequently acquired two N24A from the Royal Australian Air Force in 1993 then 14 N22B and four N24A from the Australian Army in 1995.
- Air Queensland (Previously Bush Pilots Airways)
- Barrier Reef Airways (Float plane version)
- National Safety Council of Australia
- Royal Flying Doctor Service of Australia
- Sunstate Airlines
- Transportes Aéreos Isla Robinson Crusoe
- Paraguay Air Service
- Rhine Air
- Coral Air
- Princeton Airways
- Australian Army Aviation
- Royal Australian Air Force - one N22B, one Nomad Searchmaster, three N24A
- Indonesian Navy - 42 N22B and N24A Nomad - 23 in storage: status AOG, 19 airworthy and six in service.
Other government operators
- On 6 June 1976, Tun Fuad Stephens, the 5th chief minister of Sabah, Malaysia, plus ten others, died in the crash of a Nomad in the state capital, Kota Kinabalu.
- On 23 December 1979, a Nomad operated by Douglas Airways (P2-DNL) crashed on the airstrip (MRM) at Manari, a village on the Kokoda Track in the Central Province of Papua New Guinea, killing all 16 passengers and crew. The presence of at least one baby on board, Maia Sori aged six months, accounts for the high number of fatalities and may make this the worst crash in the history of this aircraft type.
- On 4 May 1987, a Nomad of the Indonesian Naval Aviation Unit, PUSPENERBAL crashed at the Mapur Island, Bintan area, Riau Province. The aircraft was a total loss.
- On 9 September 1991, an Australian Army N22B Nomad crashed near Drake in northern NSW with the loss of four people, including the pilot.
- On 10 February 2001, Gum Air’s N24A Nomad (PZ-TBP) crashed on a flight from Paramaribo – Zanderij (Johan Adolf Pengel International Airport PBM/SMJP) to Njoeng Jacob Kondre Airstrip SMJK. The aircraft had fallen out of radio contact, and personnel at the airstrip in Jacob Kondre said it was flying low, and crashed into a mountain. All nine passengers plus the pilot perished.
- On 30 December 2007, a PENERBAL Nomad crashed in the area of We island, Nangroe Aceh Darussalam Province.
- On 7 September 2009, a Nomad of the Indonesian Naval Aviation Unit, PENERBAL, crashed in the area of Bulungan, East Borneo. The aircraft was on a routine patrol near Ambalat Oil Block. The accident caused the fatality of one Naval officer, plus three civilians on board. The pilot and copilot received serious injuries.
- On 28 January 2010, a Nomad of the Philippine Air Force (PAF) crashed shortly after takeoff into a residential area in Cotabato City, killing Maj. Gen. Butch Lacson, commander of the PAF 3rd Air Division, plus seven other officers on board.
Data from Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1982–83
- Crew: one or two pilots
- Capacity: 12 passengers
- Length: 12.56 m (41 ft 2⅜ in)
- Wingspan: 16.52 m (54 ft 2¼ in)
- Height: 5.52 m (18 ft 1½ in)
- Wing area: 31.10 m² (324.0 sq ft)
- Airfoil: NACA 23018 (modified)
- Empty weight: 2,150 kg (4,730 lb)
- Max. takeoff weight: 3,855 kg (8,480 lb)
- Powerplant: 2 × Allison 250-B17C turboprop engines, 313 kW (420 shp) each
- Cruise speed: 311 km/h (168 knots, 193 mph)
- Stall speed: 88 km/h (47 knots, 55 mph) (power off, flaps down)
- Range: 1,074 km (580 nm, 668 miles)
- Service ceiling: 6,400 m (21,000 ft)
- Rate of climb: 7.4 m/s (1,460 ft/min)
- GAF Nomad at airliners.net retrieved 5 December 2009.
- Guy Pearce biography at tiscali.co.uk retrieved 5 December 2009.
- "Aviation Safety Network Database". Aviation-safety.net. 2007-05-05. Retrieved 2011-02-15.
- "Nomad is set to soar once again". Theage.com.au. 2008-06-18. Retrieved 2011-02-15.
- "GippsAero Newsletter, March 2011" (PDF). GippsAero. March 2011. Retrieved 9 July 2011.
- Kelly, Emma (3 August 2010). "Gippsland preparing for G18 market entry within two years". Flight Global. Retrieved 9 July 2011.
- CASA civil aircraft register search, using "Government Aircraft Factories" as the search parameter. Search conducted 6 December 2009.
- List of NZ-registered N22s retrieved 6 December 2009.
- List of NZ-registered N24s retrieved 6 December 2009.
- Our Fleet - Transportes Aéreos Isla Robinson Crusoe retrieved 6 December 2009.
- "Navy to ground 27 old war machines". Jakarta Post. Retrieved 9 July 2011.
- Sydney Morning Herald 27 December 1979
- Harro Ranter (23 December 1979). "ASN Aircraft accident GAF Nomad N.22B P2-DNL Manari Airport (MRM)". Retrieved 26 December 2014.
- "2001". Retrieved 26 December 2014.
- 8 Killed in Air Force plane crash - ABS-CBN News website retrieved 28 January 2010.
- Taylor 1982, pp. 7–9.
- Taylor, John W. R. (1982). Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1982–83. London: Jane's Yearbooks. ISBN 0-7106-0748-2.
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