Pictures: India reveals details about RTA-70 regional aircraft

RTA model 1.JPGThere you go – India seems rather keen on going ahead with plans for a turboprop regional aircraft, which it is calling the RTA-70 (model above).

Diehl unveiled a proposed cabin mock-up (below) at India Aviation 2010 that it produced in consultation with the National Aerospace Laboratories, which is leading the efforts to develop the RTA-70.

NAL officials say that they plan to design the RTA-70 with the Indian market in mind, adding that existing turboprops do not meet those requirements. These include higher fuel efficiency, short landing and take-off capability, and the ability to transport cargo.

This will give the aircraft 25% lower acquisition costs, 25% lower operating costs and 50% lower maintenance costs than existing turboprop regional aircraft, says NAL.

The 70-seat aircraft will have a range of 1,100nm (2,000km), and require a take-off field length and landing field length of 900m (2,950ft). The aircraft would have a length of 28.6m and a wing-span of 29.4m. The aircraft would have a service ceiling of 30,000ft, a cruising speed of 300kt, and the noise level would meet Stage 4 criteria.

The cabin, which would be able to seat four abreast, would have a length of 3.01m and height of 3.35m. The cargo hold would have a volume of 25m³ (880ft³).

NAL is eyeing a composite airframe. The aircraft will be powered by two “next generation turboprop engines”, it adds. It would have a fly-by-wire control system, open distributed modular avionics, ADS-B navigation capabilities, and advanced displays.

This will primarily compete with ATR turboprop aircraft if the Indians go ahead. As to why they seem to think the world needs another regional aircraft is another issue altogether.

Cabin 1.JPG
Cabin 2.JPG

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8 Responses to Pictures: India reveals details about RTA-70 regional aircraft

  1. Akash 7 March, 2010 at 3:15 am #

    So Siva, why do you think they dont need another turboprop? Havent you given the answer yourself?

    NAL officials say that they plan to design the RTA-70 with the Indian market in mind, adding that existing turboprops do not meet those requirements. These include higher fuel efficiency, short landing and take-off capability, and the ability to transport cargo.

    This will give the aircraft 25% lower acquisition costs, 25% lower operating costs and 50% lower maintenance costs than existing turboprop regional aircraft, says NAL.

    ——

    Or is there something I am missing?

    Thanks

  2. Pragadeesh Shiva 7 March, 2010 at 3:32 am #

    “As to why they seem to think the world needs another regional aircraft is another issue altogether.”
    The other countries might not be in need of a new RTA but India is in need of one. The above mentioned comment of the author leads me to think that the author is satisfied with an India,which just buys Aircarfts instead of attempting to build one. In-house devlopment and manufacturing work will only benefit the Indian aviation base both economically and technically. Even thought this intiative started very late, it is good they started this work at least now. They must go ahead and set much higher goals.

  3. Thomas Fernandez 7 March, 2010 at 11:26 am #

    As long as this is not another SARAS in making!

    The figures they aim for are very impressive and quite not so easily achievable….

    I have no doubts about the technical capability of my fellow country men but programs like Tejas and SARAS just dont give me confidence regarding timelines :( we might as well see an EIS of 2030! by which time competition would have improved 200%

  4. Siva Govindasamy 8 March, 2010 at 9:19 am #

    Well, first up, it would take a long time to develop such an aircraft. The market is limited – they themselves don’t know how much of a market there is. An aircraft programme becomes financially viable if there is a big enough production run – otherwise it would just be bleeding money on an aircraft programme that is not really a priority when it comes to the Indian industry.

  5. Siva Govindasamy 8 March, 2010 at 9:24 am #

    Well Pragdeesh, it would cost several billion to develop an aircraft that may not have a market. There are viable alternatives out there in the global market – and there are others being planned too. Don’t get me wrong – I applaud India’s attempt to develop its local aerospace industry, but you don’t need to develop an aircraft to do that. There are other ways to do it.

  6. Siva Govindasamy 8 March, 2010 at 9:25 am #

    Thomas, that is my point too – by the time they actually manage to come up with an aircraft, it might be a design that is no longer relevant in the market!

  7. Kartik 8 March, 2010 at 9:55 am #

    Hi Siva,

    Any idea who else is partnering NAL in developing the RTA-70 ? What timelines are they talking about and where is the funding for this coming from? the GoI ? I hope they involve the private sector exensively in both R&D as well as design and manufacturing. It is an absolute necessity for India to have a vibrant private sector that ensures that the commercial viability of such projects is adequately looked into.

  8. Ullash Kotian 2 August, 2010 at 1:27 am #

    Hi,

    I am new to such blogs, but would like to know what will be the cost of developing a 70 seat aircraft in dollar terms, and what is the time line for such a project. And who all are the competitors for such an aircraft globally. I suppose Brazil has one such aircraft, correct me if i am wrong.

    Ullash

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