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Cessna CE-208 Caravan

 

ce208bgrand
CE-208B Grand Caravan


First flown on 9 December 1982, the Caravan I was Cessna’s first wholly new design for some years. The type was planned as the Model 208 to succeed the company’s earlier Models 180, 185, and 206 while also assuming the utility mantle of de Havilland Canada types such as the Beaver and Otter. The Caravan I is a thoroughly utilitarian design with a strut-braced wing in the high-set postion, a capacious fuselage accessed by large doors, and fixed tricycle landing gear with tall legs so that a ventral freight container can be fitted when required. The spring steel main undercarriage legs were designed to tear away without damaging the fuselage structure in an accident. The nosewheel fore-and-aft location is taken not on the airframe but by means of a drag link spring, attached near the fork to reduce bending loads in the strut. Steering to 15 degs either way is by linkage to the rudder pedals, and the wheel is free to castor to 56 degs either side. All fuel is carried inside the wings between the two spars for safety, and the tips and leading and trailing edges are made from lighter-gauge metal than the rest of the wing structure, which should thus remain intact in the event of minor damage. The wings are an aerofoil section the same as the Citation's, and the flaps take up so much of the span that lateral control is helped by spoilers on the top surface acting in conjunction with the ailerons.


The first production aircraft rolled out in August 1984.


The 208 received FAA certification in October 1984 and the first deliveries in February 1985. Because of FAR Part 23 restrictions, American registered Caravans have no more than 10 seats in their 17 foot cabins. An increase in MAUW to 8000 lbs (from 7300) allows them to carry more than their basic empty weight of 3800 lbs and promising much useful load-carrying.


The higher gross weight Model 208A, ordered in December 1983 by the US small parcel airline Federal Express and called Cargomaster by them, is fitted with more comprehensive all-weather avionics and an underfuselage pannier, but has the fuselage windows deleted. Flight testing began on 3 March 1986, followed by certification and first delivery to Federal Express, who have ordered 210, in October the same year. By the end of 1989 more than 370 variants of the Model 208 had been delivered.
In 1984 the company launched development of a purely military model as the U-27A. This is externally identical with the Model 208A but is stressed for higher maximum take-off and landing weights in its role as a utility transport for troops and freight. The type can also be configured for the casualty evacuation and forward air control roles, while the 100-cu ft (2.83 cu.m) freight container can be replaced by a reconnaissance pod with optical and infra-red sensors as well as a data-link.


In 1985 Cessna released details of a quasi-military/special mission version of the Caravan I designated U-27A by the US Department of Defense and marketed as the Low Intensity Conflict Aircraft (LICA). Equipped with six hardpoints under the wing plus another on the fuselage centreline able to carry either a General Dynamics F-16 reconnaissance pod, or a cargo pannier, the LICA also has a electrically operated 'roll up' cargo door with slipstream deflector, openable in flight, and bubble windows for downward surveillance and observation. Cessna are also offering a similarly equipped version of the stretched Model 208B for special mission.


Following experience with the 208A, Federal Express ordered the Model 208B Super Cargomaster with the fuselage stretched by four feet / 1.22m, also built without windows and equipped with a pannier. The first Caravan Super Cargomaster flew on 3 March 1986.

 

CE-208B
Cessna 208B Super Cargomaster

 

The Caravan family of aircraft consists of four distinct aircraft: the original Cessna Caravan, the Grand Caravan, the Super Cargomaster and the Caravan Amphibian. The original Caravan had its origins dating back to the early 80s and the Grand Caravan, like the Super Cargomaster, is essentially a stretched version of the original Cessna Caravan but powered by the A variant of the reliable Pratt and Whitney Canada PT6A-114 turboprop, which produces 675 shp (75 shp more than the standard version).

 

Cess-208-01

 

The Grand Caravan 208B first flew in 1990, some eight years after the Caravan I, and retains all of the conventional design aspects of the original: single-engine, high wing, unpressurised, with a fixed tricycle undercarriage. The PT6A-114A drives a three-blade McCauley propeller, which is governed to a constant speed of 1900 rpm and can be both feathered and reversed. While 1.2 m longer at 12.7 m, the Grand Caravan has room for up to fourteen (a pilot and thirteen passen-gers), the same as the Caravan I, and the fuselage itself is made up of a sheet metal bulkhead and a stringer and skin design. Although it narrows slightly towards the tail, the 5.1 m cabin is spacious and offers 9.6 cu.m of volume. This, combined with the more powerful turboprop, means that the Grand Caravan does have a higher useful load than the original. The wings on the Grand Caravan (which span 15.9 m) are conventional aerofoils, and both contain an integral fuel bay with a capacity totalling 1270 litres which feeds into a fuel reservoir before continuing to the turbine. The tail stands 4.5 m high and the control surfaces are again conventional: horn-balanced elevators and rudder. The flight control system is cables, bell cranks and push-pull rods, providing positive control and simple maintenance. The aircraft is steered by the nose wheel and the shock absorption for the main landing gear is provided by the tubular spring steel struts with an “intertube” connecting the two. Once at 10,000 ft, the Grand Caravan will cruise at 184 kts and, with a payload of just under 2,000 lbs and a reserve of 45 minutes, has a range of about 900 nm. Block time for such a flight would be around five hours. With 3,500 lbs on board, range drops to about 100 nm. It is these tasks where the Grand Caravan comes into its own; flying large loads to or from rough and short surfaces. At gross weight, landing requires just 745 ft, 1655 ft to clear a 50-ft obstacle, while a zero-wind take-off requires 1205 ft (2,210 ft to clear a 50 ft obstacle).


In 1997 the Caravan 675, which used the same engine as the Grand Caravan, was announced and deliveries started in May 1998.


The type was in service with military air arms in Brazil, Liberia, Thailand and with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police as amphibians.

 

Cess-208-04

 

Variations:
Soloy Corp Pathfinder

 

Gallery

 

CE-208
Engine: Pratt & Whitney PT6A-114, 600 shp.
Prop: Hartzell 3 blade 100-inch dia.
Wing span: 51ft 8in.
Length: 37ft 7in.
Height: 14ft 2in.
Cruise: 186 kt (214 mph).
MTOW: 6,700 lbs.
Seats: 14 pax.
Cabin width: 5ft 2in.
Cabin height: 4ft 3in.
Cabin vol: 337 cu. ft.
Payload: 3000 lbs.
Fuel cap: 330USG.

Cessna 208 Caravan I
Engine: 1 x Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-114 turboprop, 477kW
Take-off weight: 3629 kg / 8001 lb
Empty weight: 1752 kg / 3863 lb
Wingspan: 15.88 m / 52 ft 1 in
Length: 11.46 m / 37 ft 7 in
Height: 4.32 m / 14 ft 2 in
Wing area: 25.96 sq.m / 279.43 sq ft
Cruise speed: 341 km/h / 212 mph
Ceiling: 8410 m / 27600 ft
Range: 1797 km / 1117 miles

Cessna 208 B Caravan I

Engine: Pratt & Whitney Canada PT 6 A 114,  441 shp
Length: 37.73 ft / 11.5 m
Height: 14.108 ft / 4.0 m
Wingspan: 52.165 ft / 15.9 m
Wing area: 279.864 sq.ft / 26.0 sq.m
Max take off weight: 7336.0 lb / 3327.0 kg
Weight empty: 3801.4 lb / 1724.0 kg
Payload: 3534.6 lb / 1603.0 kg
Max. speed: 184 kts / 341 km/h
Landing speed: 60 kts / 111 km/h
Cruising speed: 175 kts / 325 km/h
Initial climb rate: 1200.79 ft/min / 6.10 m/s
Service ceiling: 26608 ft / 8110 m
Wing load: 26.24 lbs/sq.ft / 128.00 kg/sq.m
Range: 972 nm / 1800 km
Crew: 1
Payload: 9-14pax

2008 Cessna 208B Grand Caravan

Standard Price: US$1,990,000
Engine: Pratt & Whitney PT6A-114A, 675 shp
Prop: 2.7m
Length: 12.7m.
Wing span: 15.9m.
Height: 4.5m
Max ramp wt: 8785 lbs.
Gross Weight (lbs.): 8750
Empty Weight (lbs.): 5013
Useful Load (lbs.): 3772
Max ldg wt: 8500 lb
Fuel Capacity (gals./lbs.): 335/2245, 1270 lt
Payload, Full Standard Fuel (lbs.): 1548   
Rate Of Climb, SL (fpm): 975
Max Operating Altitude (ft.): 23,700
Max Cruise Speed, 10,000 Ft. (kts.): 184
Max Range, 10,000 Ft. (nm): 917
Ldg roll: 745 ft
T/O run: 1205 ft
Ldg dist from 50 ft: 1655 ft
T/O dist to 50 ft: 2210 ft
Capacity: 450 cu.ft

U-27A Caravan I
Engine: one 600-shp (447-kW) Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-114 turboprop.
Maximum speed 203 mph (326 km/h) at optimum altitude
Initial climb rate 1050 ft (320 m) per minute
Service ceiling 30,000 ft (9,145 m)
Range 1,105 miles (1,778 km)
Empty wt: 3,850 lb (1,746 kg)
Maximum take-off 8,000 lb (3,629 kg)
Wing span 52 ft 1 in (15.88 m)
Length 37 ft 7 in (11.46 m)
Height 14 ft 2 in (4.32 m)
Wing area 279.4 sq ft (25.96 sq.m).
Payload: 14 passengers or 4,185 lb (1,898 kg) of freight.

Caravan 675

Engine: Pratt & Whitney PT6A-114A turboprop, 675 shp.

 

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