Rugged design for regional development [INDODEF16-D2]

02 November 2016

PT Dirgantara Indonesia (Hall D, Stand 039) is showing a model of its latest regional airliner design. The N245 is a derivative of the CN235 utility transport that is being developed as a 54-seat passenger carrier. It is intended to fill the niche between the 19-seat N219, which was developed from the NC212 light transport, and larger airliners.

As with the N219, the N245’s military transport roots provide it with the capability to operate from short, unpaved runways in rugged terrain. Its primary role would be to ferry passengers between outlying areas and regional centres, from where they could join the main air transport network. Most of the sectors would be short, with the N245 optimised to undertake multiple flights before refuelling.

PTDI already has a production line for the CN235, and while much of the N245’s structure remains similar, there are notable changes. The most visually obvious is the adoption of a T-tail, while the cabin would also lose the military aircraft’s rear loading ramp.

The cabin is slightly longer, allowing more seats to be fitted. Power is provided by a pair of turboprops in the 2050kW (2,750shp) class. It has been reported that the Pratt & Whitney PW127 has been selected rather than the General Electric CT7 of the CN235.

With a maximum take-off weight of 18,300kg (40,345 lb), the N245 offers a 5,500kg (12,125 lb) payload. It can take off from a 1,000m (3,280ft) strip and land in 720m (2,362ft). The pressurised cabin permits flight at up to 7,620m (25,000ft). With 54 passengers aboard it has a range of 600nm (1,111km).

The N245 is destined to compete in the same sector as the Bombardier Dash 8-Q300 and ATR 42, PTDI claiming a five per cent reduction in operating costs over the latter, while offering a wider cabin than either. Low cabin noise levels are a design target, and the aircraft is equipped with an advanced ‘glass’ cockpit.

(320 words)