Country of Origin
STOL capable freight and utility transport
The An-72 was designed as a replacement for the An-26 tactical transport for the Soviet air force, but variants are in use as commercial freighters. The first of five flying An-72 prototypes flew for the first time on August 31 1977, although it was not until much later in December 1985 that the first of eight extensively revised preproduction An-72s flew. Included in this pre series batch were two An-74s, differing from the An-72s in their ability to operate in harsh weather conditions in polar regions. Production of the An-72/74 family continues. Versions of the An-72/74 family (NATO codename `Coaler') include the An-72 base model with extended wings and fuselage compared to the prototypes, the An-72S VIP transport and An-72P maritime patrol aircraft. Versions of the An-74 include the An-74A, the base An-74 model featuring the enlarged nose radome, the An-74T freighter, the An-74TK, 74TK100 and 74TK200 convertible passenger/freighter models, and the An-74P200D VIP transport. The most significant design feature of the An-72 and An-74 is the use of the Coanda effect to improve STOL performance, which utilises engine exhaust gases blown over the wing's upper surface to boost lift. Other features include multi slotted flaps, rear loading ramp and multi unit landing gear capable of operations from unprepared strips.
Two 63.7kN (14,330lb) ZMKB Progress D36 turbofans.
An-72 - Max speed 705km/h (380kt), cruising speed range 550 to 600km/h (295 to 325kt). Service ceiling 35,000ft. Range with max fuel and reserves 4800km (2590nm), with a 7500kg (16,535lb) payload 2000km (1080nm). An-74 - Speeds similar. Range with reserves and a 10,000kg (22,025lb) payload 1150km (620nm), or with a 1500kg (3310lb) payload 5300km (2860nm).
Empty 19,050kg, max takeoff (from a 1800m/5900ft runway) 34,500kg (76,060lb). Max takeoff from a 600-800m (1970-2630ft) runway 27,500kg (60,625lb).
Wing span 31.89m (104ft 8in), length 28.07m (92ft 1in), height 8.65m (28ft 5in). Wing area 98.6m2 (1062sq ft).
Flightcrew of three (two pilots and a flight engineer) for the An-72. An-74 also has provision for a radio operator. Main cabin designed primarily for freight, in which role it can carry a payload of 10 tonnes (22,045lb) including four UAK2.5 containers, or four 2.5 tonne (5510lb) PAV2.5 pallets. An-72 can seat 68 on removable seats, while the An-74 when configured for combi passenger/freight tasks can carry eight support crew.
Production totals more than 160, mostly for military customers. Most built in Ukraine but production transferred to Omsk in Russia in 1993. Around 30 An-72s and 6 An-74s were in commercial use in 1998.
The backbone of this section is from the The International Directory of Civil Aircraft by Gerard Frawley and used with permission. To get your own copy of the book click here.