Skip to comments.What Is So Super About The Tucano
Posted on 12/06/2010 9:55:33 PM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld
Indonesia has reduced its original order of sixteen Brazilian EMB-314 Super Tucano aircraft, to eight. The Indonesian generals wanted sixteen, but the politicians, and budget realities, cut that in half. The Tucanos will replace twelve 1960s era American OV-10s. The two seat, 5.2 ton, single engine turbo prop Super Tucano will be used for COIN (Counter Insurgency) operations. It can fly low and slow, yet still has a 1,000 combat kilometer radius, five hour endurance, 600 kilometers per hour top speed, and a 35,000 foot ceiling. The Super Tucano armament consists of twin 12.7mm (.50 caliber) machine guns and nearly two tons of guided bombs and rockets. ECM (Electronic Counter Measure) equipment is available for defense against ground-to-air, or air-to-air, missiles. The OV-10, at least in its prime, was a hard act to follow. The OV-10 is a 6.5 ton, twin prop aircraft that could carry over two tons of weapons and stay in the air for three hours per sortie. The first one was delivered to the U.S. Air Force, for use in Vietnam, in 1968. The last one was produced (for export to Indonesia) in 1976. The U.S. Air Force and Marines were the primary users of OV-10s, and the last of these was retired, by the marines, in 1994. Over a hundred were exported to Germany, Thailand, Colombia, Venezuela and Indonesia. Several dozen of these are still in use out of over 300 manufactured. In Vietnam, the OV-10 was used more for reconnaissance and directing air and artillery strikes, than in using its own firepower. But that's what irregular warfare was all about, finding an elusive enemy, and killing him. That's what the OV-10 was designed to do, and did it well. But now a new generation of aircraft are taking over.
(Excerpt) Read more at strategypage.com ...
Looks like a WWII Spit Fighter except it has modern weapon mounts and electronics.
It can be outfitted to fire nearly anything it can take off with.
Good close support plane, but drones still are better and you can get them cheaper.
Only thing this has on a drone is the flexible weapons packages it can use.
Actually, the nose is painted like a P40 of the Flying Tigers fame of China in WWII and the body(with the hump behind the cockpit)looks more like a hurricane than a SpitFire.
Being a turpo prop I am sure the performance is a little better than any WWII aircraft, except in WWII prop planes had pretty much reached the pinnacle of their performance, which is limited by prop speed rather than engine power.
But can it fly over an erupting volcano which is spitting fire?
high wing (does not block the vision of the pilot, unlike the ST)
Can deploy paratroopers
Ya, but the SPAD is better yet..... Still, our miltary is looking at an upgraded OV-10 for a COIN A/C.
How about a turboprop Spad?
This site talks of a O-2 + STOL kit and the addition of helio turbines, I like that idea, sort of a cheap OV-10, high wing and all.
The OV-10 has it's own problems, short(er) range and it was loud
"Not to mention a redesign that saves the crew's hearing. The OV-10 had the worst acoustic environment and their crews experienced the most hearing loss compared to other AF planes - at least according to one of my old AF audiologists. " So noise is an issue.
We are not alone in the quest for a good COIN A/C. Seems the Brits are looking as well.
**The military seem to be obsessed with fast jets, yet history has proved that small and slow is far superior for close air support. For the price of one Eurofighter we could have a squadron of Super Tucanos.
They can carry the same ordnance as a Harrier, with its loud bang, but unlike the Harrier, which can be over the battlefield for no more than 20 minutes, Tucanos can loiter overhead for hours on end, ready for use in a ground attack at a moments notice.
We also tend to go in for expensive and complicated helicopters, which soak up manpower, like all complicated equipment. There appears to be little understanding of how light helicopters can be used effectively for ground attack.**
However, this Brit put paid to the whole notion of 'cheap COIN' system. Worth the read - as it makes sense!
Budgets cuts will kill this anyway, so at this point, it is pretty much a waste of dollars....