Viking Air (Outdoor Exhibit 5122) is seeing growing demand in Latin America for its Series 400 Twin Otter utility aircraft. This has spurred the Canadian company to make plans to expand its sales network in the region and an announcement on this subject is expected fairly soon.
To date, Viking has sold 17 aircraft to customers in Latin America, with the majority of these (12) going to Peru. The versatile twin turboprop is also being used in Chile and another aircraft will soon be delivered to a customer in Panama.
Seven of the Twin Otters delivered to Peru are being used by the country’s air force to provide scheduled government flights to remote communities in the Amazon region as well as to provide support for infrastructure projects. In both Peru and Chile, aircraft are being used to support natural resource extraction and mining operations. The aircraft heading for Panama will feature a corporate-shuttle cabin configuration. In other parts of the world, such as the Seychelles islands and Malaysia, Twin Otters are being deployed for airline services.
“Market acceptance for the aircraft has been overwhelmingly positive,” said Viking director of sales Richard Libby, “with worldwide demand bolstering Viking’s production backlog, now stretching into2016.”
Viking’s modernized Twin Otter is well suited to operating in areas with limited infrastructure and is available with conventional landing gear, floats or skis. The aircraft has long performed reliably in environments as varied as jungles, the Arctic, mountains and deserts. It is powered by a pair of Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-34 engines driving Hartzell three-bladed propellers.
To help train the growing cadre of Twin Otter pilots, Pacific Sky Aviation and Viking Air contracted with Textron’s newly formed TRU Simulation + Training to build a level-D full-flight simulator for the Twin Otter. The simulator will be the first to feature a seaplane configuration, according to Pacific Sky, and will be available for pilot training in2016.
The simulator will be housed at Pacific Sky’s new training facility, being built next to the Viking Air headquarters in Victoria, British Columbia. TRU Simulation is a combination of two simulator companies purchased by Textron–Mechtronix (which is building the Twin Otter simulator) and Opinicus–and includes part of Textron’s AAI Logistics & TechnicalServices.
Simulator features of the Twin Otter simulator will include the ability to practice takeoffs, landings and docking operations in various sea states and water conditions. To make water operations more realistic, the visual system will incorporate additional projection devices so pilots can view water conditions prior to landing and also look rearward from the cockpit duringdocking.
“This simulator will break new ground in the industry as it will extend this advanced technology into a seaplane training application, something that has never been done before,” according to Pacific Sky CEO MichaelCoughlin.
Twin Otter By Numbers
Max takeoff weight: 12,500 pounds (5,670 kg)
Passengers: up to 20
Max range with standard tanks: 775 nm (1,435 km)
Max range with additional tank: 980 nm (1,815 km)
Takeoff and landing distance: 1,200 feet (366 m)
Max cruise speeds: 170 kt (315 km) at Sea Level; 182 kt (337 km)
Wing span: 65 ft (19.8 m)
Length: 51 ft 9 in (15.7 m)
Tail height: 19 ft 6 in (5.94 m)
Interior cabin height: 4 ft 11 in (1.50 m)
Cabin length: 18 ft 5 in (5.61 m)
Cabin volume: 384 cu ft (10.87 cu m)