GAF N22 & N24 Nomad


Country of Origin
STOL utility transport
The Nomad was developed by Australia's Government Aircraft Factory from the late 1960s to help provide the facility with work after construction of licence built Mirage jet fighters was completed, and to offer a new rugged STOL utility transport suited to both military and civil operators. First flight of the prototype Nomad N2 occurred on July 23 1971. A second prototype first flew on December 5 that year. First deliveries of the production N22 (to the Philippines military) began in 1975. Features of the new utility included retractable undercarriage, two Allison 250 turboprops, a braced high mounted wing with full span double slotted flaps and a squared sided fuselage. The initial N22 was followed by the N22B with an increased maximum takeoff weight, which was certificated in 1975. The N22 also formed the basis for the Searchmaster coastal patrol aircraft which apart from military users also saw service with Australian and US customs services. The Floatmaster was a N22B fitted with Wipaire floats with retractable undercarriage. The N22 was stretched by 1.14m (3ft 9in) resulting in the N24. Aimed more at regional airlines (and marketed as the Commuterliner) than utility operators, the main cabin could seat 16. Versions of the N24 offered included the Cargomaster freighter and the Medicmaster aerial ambulance. Nomad production ceased in 1984, as much due to mismanagement by the Australian government departments entrusted with its development as any faults with the aircraft. It is interesting to note that GAF was renamed ASTA (Aerospace Technologies of Australia), which was acquired by Rockwell in 1996 and hence was subsequently inherited by Boeing late that year.
Two 313kW (420shp) Allison 250B17C turboprops driving three blade Hartzell propellers.
Typical cruising speed 311km/h (168kt). Service ceiling N22B 21,000ft, N24A 20,000ft. Range with standard fuel, reserves and operating at 90% power 1352km (730nm). Search mission endurance at 259km/h (140kt) at 5000ft up to 8 hours.
N22B - Basic empty 2150kg (4741lb), max takeoff 3855kg (8500lb). N24A - Operating empty 2377kg (5241lb), max takeoff 4268kg (9400lb).
N22B - Wing span 16.52m (54ft 2in), length 12.56m (41ft 2in), height 5.52m (18ft 1.5in). Wing area 30.1m2 (324.0sq ft). N24A - Same except length 14.36m (47ft 1in).
Accommodation for two pilots although certificated for single pilot operation. Seating in main cabin at two abreast for 12 (N22) or 16 (N24). Searchmaster B patrol aircraft is fitted with a Bendix RDR 1400 search radar and has a normal crew of four. The more sophisticated Searchmaster L has a Litton LASR (AN/APS504) search radar with 360 degree coverage in an undernose radar.
Production ceased in late 1984 when 172 Nomads for civil and military customers had been built, including two prototypes. Approx 50 remain in service with civilian operators.
Related Links
GAF N22 & N24 Nomad
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.