|Engines||2*7500kg Progress D-436TP
Options available (see text)
|Loaded weight (firefighter)||43000kg|
|Loaded weight (other)||37200kg|
|Wing Load (kg/m2)||?|
|Landing Roll||?m ?sec|
|Takeoff Roll||?m ?sec|
|Runway demand||class B, 1800m|
|Dry tank Range||3850km|
|Preferred operational altitude||8000m|
|Cargo as Cargo/Passenger||3000kg|
|Cargo as Transport||6000kg|
Be-200 is the first and the only large airplane whose basic version development was started in the post-perestroika years.
Development of the Be-200 was stimulated by increasing freight air traffic in all world regions, including Russia's vast territory and Asia-Pacific countries with their numerous islands. Building of large airports for land-based aircraft (and reconstruction of the existing ones) demands large capital investment. Some states even have too little land suitable for large airfield but have long sea borders.
In this situation modern high performance amphibian may became a strong competitor to land-based planes.
Be-200 was developed from the A-40/Be-42 'Mermaid'. It has a high-mounted swept wing with engines mounted above the center wing section. T-tail and pressurized 2-step boat hull with conventional airliner-style pilot cabin conclude aircraft appearance. Hull is divided into separate watertight compartments, keeping it afloat even if any two adjacent compartments are flooded. Unlike existing competitors, Be-200 fuselage is entirely watertight.
Retractable tricycle landing gear allows Be-200 to operate from class B airfields. Amphibian can operate from water surface deeper than 2m and wave height 1.2m (sea state 3). Water taxi speed is up to 50km/h, controlled by the stern water rudder and/or engines thrust variation.
Be-200 uses reliable and economical Ukrainian built engines. Location of engines and mounts design allows to accommodate almost any turbojet (or turboprop) powerplant of sufficient power. BMW-Rolls-Royce BR-715-53 turbofan or Allison GMA-2100 turbofan are also considered as a custom option for production aircraft. This is good news for countries with existing service infrastructure for Allison or BMW-RR engines.
The aircraft has been designed and will be tested in conformity with FAR-25 airworthiness standards which will ease its certification under the U.S. Federal Air Register and European Air Register.
Aircraft is equipped by all-weather navigation system developed specifically for this airplane by the American firm Allied Signal and the Russian Institute of Navigation Equipment. In addition to standard features available on any modern passenger or cargo aircraft, this system provides information about relative position in a group as well as automatic lead-out to the point of waterdrop for second run.
Be-200 is built at IAPO at Irkutsk. This production complex built aircraft from almost every design bureau (mostly military). Be-200 is a practical step towards practical conversion of the plant. The first static specimen was delivered in March 1995 and transferred to TANTK to undergo strength tests. The second Be-200 for flight tests in Taganrog passed live tests of its electrical equipment and hydraulic and control systems.
Be-200 differs from other amphibian aircraft by it unbeatable multi-functionality (without negative impact on performance in any role). Following roles may be performed:
Waste majority of firefighting aircraft in service are plaqued by tight link to airfields. As a result, firefighters often have to operate at limit of aircraft range or with partially empty water tanks. Certain areas of the world are completely out of range for ground based firefighters.
Introduction of the Be-200 solves this problem. Amphibian aircraft carries
12tons of water in 8 tank compartments under the cabin floor. In aquaplaning mode all this
water may be scooped in 12
Fully fueled, Be-200 can perform up to 25 firefighting sorties (10km water carry, 200kmfrom the refueling spot), delivering 300tons of water to fire area. Firefighting crews with necessary equipment may be delivered to the blaze during same missions, because water tanks do not occupy room in the cargo/passenger cabin.
Water tanks have individually operated doors, allowing water drop in a single salvo or in series of successive passes. Be-200 navigation system may automatically bring aircraft back to the spot of the previous waterdrop, securing safe in-group operation.
Be-200 in patrol configuration may help borderguards. Since it may be refueled on water from the supply ship or basic refueling utilities, its range is not restricted by 'dry' airfield location. Here are (some of) possible missions:
Ecological duties may include monitoring of the environment and weather. Be-200 amphibian with its significant payload may be very helpful during oil spill removal. With proper equipment installed it will allow taking samples of water or soil from the reservoirs bottom, as well as air quality control.
The passenger version interior is designed and manufactured by the British company AIM Aviation (LTD). As mentioned above, passenger cabin is pressurized. It may be equipped to carry 64 economy class passengers (75cm) seat spacing, 13+36 seats in business and economy configuration, 8+24 seats for first and business class or 18 seats in executive version. Be-200 is fitted with a toilet room, wardrobe and a gally/pantry. In addition to pilot and co-pilot, two flight attendants are added to a crew to serve the passengers.
Those are described together because Be-200 may be converted from one version to another within an hour by the aircraft crew. Required procedures include installation/removal of seats, transposition of protective partitions etc. Suitable for mail, passengers and cargo as required.
Specific features are pressurized cargo compartment 18.7mx2.4mx1.8m and cargo hatch door 1.76mx2.05m in the front section of the fuselage. In Transport version it accommodates up to 6000kg of cargo in LD-1, LD-2 and AKS containers. Pallets PA-1.5 and R-8 are also acceptable. Cargo/Passenger variant accepts half of this load, but part of the cargo cabin is separated and equipped with 19 passenger seats.
Existing floating facilities may be used to carry loading/unloading afloat without major modifications.
Spacious cabin of the Be-200 has room for 30 stretchers, seven seats for medical personal and room for special medical equipment. This configuration may also be used as a mobile hospital for rural areas, inaccessible to land-base fixed-wing aircraft, cars or ships. And of course capacity, speed, comfort and operation cost of the Be-200 make it superior to ambulance helicopters. Of course sufficient water reservoir is still required...
Russian Ministry of Forestry and Emergency Situations Ministry plan to buy 50 to 60 and 10 to 15 aircraft correspondingly. European aircraft operating companies are likely to order 20 to 25 aircraft in 1999 through 2010.
In North America strong presence of formidable rival Canadair makes prospects for Be-200 sales uncertain, but involvement of the Allied-Signal Aerospace, offering its own maintenance facilities to service the equipment of the Be-200 opens some perspective. South American countries are interested in the patrol and search-and-rescue versions of this aircraft.
According to Jane's Information Group, Italian ALENIA and Swiss ILTA Holding, in the period from 1998 to 2002 the demand for the Be-200 amphibian in South-East Asia region will constitute about 90 aircraft and from 2002 to 2010 it will rise to about 300 aircraft.
On September 24, 1998 in Irkutsk Be-200 made its first flight from the land airfield. Trials were performed by Beriev Design Bureau crew: test-pilot K.V.Babich as the first pilot, test-pilot V.P.Dubemskij as the second pilot and Trial Engineer Major A.N.Ternovoj. Aircraft took off at 11:30 (Moscow time) and landed after 30min successful flight.
On October 17, 1998 Official presentation of flight tested (and beautifully painted!) Be-200 took place. Watch for Be-200 at your closest Amphibian Aircraft Retail Store :-)
From Andrew I. Salnikov, Press-Secretary of the Designer General
Beriev TASTC is ready to consider any proposals concerning the development of amphibious aviation and relieving congestion at airports.
|23k drawing from Ukraina Aero Page created by A.Chekhov;|