Transavia Corporation

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Transavia Corporation
Typeaircraft design and manufacture
Founded1965
Defunctc. 1985
Fateceased aircraft production
HeadquartersParramatta, Sydney
ParentTransfield
OY-DVZ Transavia PL-12 Airtruk c/n 1238 built 1972, seen here on July 14, 1983, at Svævethy glider club, Denmark

Transavia Corporation was an Australian aircraft manufacturer active between 1965 and 1985.

Formation[edit]

Transavia Corporation was formed in 1965, as a subsidiary of Transfield to produce agricultural aircraft.

The initial design of the Airtruck had been done in New Zealand by Luigi Pellarini in 1956 as the single Kingsford Smith PL-7 tanker aircraft. This used parts from T-6 Texan aircraft and a Cheetah engine. Two further more refined PL-11 Airtruck aircraft were built in New Zealand during the early 1960s by Bennett Aviation, later Waitomo Aircraft.[1]

The design was taken over by Transavia Corporation in 1965 and the company refined the aircraft's specification as the Transavia PL-12 Airtruk.

Aircraft designs[edit]

Transavia PL-12 Airtruks of Hazair at Albury Airport in March 1988

The PL-12 had an unconventional but practical layout for its intended agricultural top-dressing role. The basic layout was inherited from the PL-11. This was a mid-wing monoplane, but with a small lower "wing" that carried the wing bracing struts and the two main wheels of the tricycle undercarriage. Slender booms carried the two separate tailplanes on top of the fin/rudder units. The two booms were not joined together at the aircraft's rear.[2]

The cockpit was located on top of a stubby fuselage, giving good visibility for low-level flying and the chemical hopper was situated below the pilot with a loading aperture just behind the cockpit. A cargo carrying utility version was also built. Power for early production was from a Continental IO-520-D 300 h.p. engine.

Further refinements in design in 1981 brought the PL-12-300 "Skyfarmer" with strengthened upper fuselage and a larger cockpit with roll-over truss. The final derivative was the PL-12-400 with a Lycoming I0-720 400 h.p. engine, larger dorsal fin and lower sesquiplane "wings". Total Airtruk production by Transavia was 118 aircraft. Examples are still in active operation.[3]

References[edit]

Notes
  1. ^ Simpson, 2001, p. 552
  2. ^ Simpson, 2005, p. 300
  3. ^ Simpson, 2005, p. 301
Bibliography
  • Simpson, Rod (2001). Airlife's World Aircraft. Airlife Publishing Ltd. ISBN 1-84037-115-3.
  • Simpson, Rod (2005). The General Aviation Handbook. Midland Publishing. ISBN 1-85780-222-5.