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Piper "Aerostar"
American Twin-engined Propeller-driven Executive or Light Transport Aircraft


Archive Photos 1


1977 Aerostar 601P (N11TT, s/n 61P-0394-134) at the 2009 Cable Air Show, Upland, California

History 2


  • Role: American Twin-engined Propeller-driven Executive or Light Transport Aircraft
  • Manufacturer: Ted Smith Aircraft Company Piper Aircraft Corporation
  • Designed by: Ted R. Smith
  • First Flight: 1967
  • Number Built: 1010

The Piper Aerostar or Ted Smith Aerostar is an American twin-engined propeller-driven executive or light transport aircraft, designed by Ted R. Smith. It was originally built by Ted Smith Aircraft Company, which after 1978 became part of the Piper Aircraft Corporation.

Development 2


Ted Smith flew the first Aerostar 600 in October 1967. It was a mid-wing cantilever monoplane powered by two wing-mounted Avco Lycoming piston engines, with a tricycle landing gear. It was fitted with luxury accommodation for six. Also flown was a version with a turbocharged engine, the Aerostar 601.

The aircraft were being built at Van Nuys in California, when in 1968 the company was bought by the American Cement Company. The acquisition was not a success and in 1969 the company was sold again to Butler Aviation, owners of Mooney Airplane Company. The new company was named Aerostar Aircraft Corporation and it was intended to move production to a Mooney plant at Kerryville. In 1972 Ted Smith bought back all the rights to the aircraft, so that he could continue to manufacture Aerostars; he also introduced the Aerostar 601P. The 601P had engines with higher-rate turbochargers to feed a cabin pressurisation system. Another variant was the stretched Aerostar 700 Superstar. In 1976 the company name was changed to the Ted Smith Aerostar Corporation.

In 1978 the company was taken over by the Piper Aircraft Corporation. It continued to build three variants (600A, 601B and 600P) and then re-introduced the 601P and 602P (sometimes known as the Sequoya). After discontinuing production of the non-pressurised models, Piper moved production to Vero Beach. The last Aerostar was produced in 1984.

Variants 2


  • Model 600: Initial production model with two 290hp Lycoming IO-540-K engines, 282 produced under four different company names.
  • Model 600A: Model 600 with some minor detail changes.
  • Model 600E: Designation used for aircraft sold in Europe.
  • Model 601: (later PA-61): This aircraft still holds the land closed speed record for a production piston twin. Model 600 with turbocharged engines, 117 built.
  • Model 601B (later PA-61): Model 601 with increased wingspan, 44 built.
  • Model 601P (later PA-61P): Pressurised version of the 601 with increased gross weight, 492 built
  • Model 602P (later PA-60): Piper developed version of the 601P with the 290 hp Lycoming TIO-540-AA1A5 engines, 124 built, originally named Sequoya.
  • Model 620: A pressurised Aerostar with 310 hp TIO-540 engines, one built.
  • Model 700 Superstar: Prototype of stretched fuselage variant with two IO-540M engines.
  • Model 700P: 602P with counter-rotating Lycoming TIO-540-U2A engines, 26 built, also designated the PA-60
  • Model 800: 601P with stretched fuselage, enlarged tail and two 400 hp Lycoming engines, one built.

Specifications and Performance (600A, 601B and 601P) 3


Type:

  • Twin-engined light transport aircraft.
Wings:
  • Cantilever mid-wing monoplane.
  • Wing section NACA 641A212.
  • Dihedral 2°.
  • Incidence 1°.
  • No sweepback.
  • All-metal structure using heavy gauge skins attached to three spars, several bulkheads and stringers.
  • Entire wing assembly, excluding attachments for ailerons and flaps, contains fewer than 50 detail parts.
  • Ailerons and flaps each comprise a spar, ribs, nose skin and one-piece wraparound light alloy skin aft of spar.
  • No trim tabs.
  • Models 601B and 601P have increased wing span.
  • De-icing for wing leading-edges optional.
Fuselage:
  • All-metal fail-safe monocoque structure.
  • Skin composed of large segments of light alloy sheet over stringers and frames.
  • Entire fuselage contains fewer than 100 parts, including skin panels.
  • All fuselage assemblies designed basically for pressurization.
Tail Unit:
  • Cantilever all-metal structure, with swept vertical and horizontal surfaces.
  • Both fixed and control surfaces are interchangeable.
  • Electrically-operated trim tab in rudder and each elevator.
  • De-icing boots for fin and tailplane leading-edges optional.
Landing Gear:
  • Hydraulically-retractable tricycle type.
  • Main units retract inward, nosewheel forward.
  • Steerable nosewheel.
  • Hydraulically-operated dual caliper brakes.
  • Parking brake.
Power Plant:
  • Two Lycoming engines, as detailed in model listings, each driving a Hartzell three-blade constant-speed and fully-feathering metal propeller with spinner.
  • Fuel in integral wing tanks and fuselage tank with total capacity of 669 litres (177 US gallons), of which 660.5 L (174.5 US gallons) are usable.
  • Oil capacity 22.7 L (6 US gallons).
Accommodation:
  • Cabin seats six people on track-mounted individual reclining seats, in pairs.
  • Dual controls standard.
  • Door on port side by pilot's seat; top half hinges upward, bottom half downward.
  • Emergency escape windows at rear of cabin.
  • Tinted windscreen and dual pane tinted cabin windows.
  • Large utility shelf in aft cabin.
  • Baggage compartment, capacity 109 kg (240 lb), aft of cabin, with external access.
  • Individual air vents and reading lights for each seat.
  • Cabin heated/ventilated in 600A/601B, and also pressurised in 601P.
  • Control locks.
  • Windscreen defrosting; alcohol de-icing system optional.
Systems:
  • Heating/ventilation system includes a Janitrol 35,000 BTU heater.
  • Pressurization system for Model 601P supplied by engine bleed air; pressure differential 0.29 bars (4.25 psi).
  • Hydraulic system for landing gear actuation, wheel brakes and flaps, powered by an engine-driven pump, pressure 69 bars (1,000 psi).
  • Dual pneumatic systems for instrument gyros and optional de-icing boots.
  • Electrical system powered by two 28V 70A engine-driven alternators with failure warning lights.
  • Two 12V 24Ah batteries.
  • External power socket.
  • Models 601B and 601P each have an oxygen system, with individual outlets at each seat, as standard; capacity 601B 3.26 m3 (115 ft3), 601P 0.31 m3, (11 ft3).
Avionics and Equipment:
  • Standard avionics by King for Models 600A and 601B include:
    • Dual KX 175B nav/coms
    • KI 204 VOR/ILS/glideslope indicator and VOR/LOC converter
    • KI 203 VOR/ILS indicator and VOR/LOC converter
    • KN 73 glideslope receiver
    • KR 85 ADF receiver and KI 225 ADF indicator with rotating azimuth (601B only)
    • KN 61 DME unit with KI 261 indicator and Nav 1/Nav 2 switching
    • KT 76 transponder
    • KMA 20 control console including audio amplifier and marker beacon receiver, and associated antennae, filters, microphone and cabin speaker.
  • Standard avionics for Model 601P include
    • Dual Collins VHF-250 com transceivers and antennae
    • Dual VIR-350 nav receivers with VOR/LOC converters and antenna
    • GLS-350 glideslope with antenna
    • IND-351 course deviation indicator with glideslope indicator
    • IND-350 course deviation indicator
    • ADF-650 ADF system with indicator and antennae
    • TDR-950 transponder
    • AMR-350 marker/audio panel
    • Dual PWC-150 power converters
    • Radio master switch
    • Narco DME-195
    • Narco AR-500 altitude encoder
    • Dual cabin speakers
    • Microphones and associated equipment.
    • A wide range of optional avionics was available to customer's requirements.
    Standard equipment includes:
    • Map lights
    • Red and white instrument panel lights
    • Baggage compartment light
    • Dual taxi and landing lights
    • Navigation lights
    • Strobe lights
    • Full blind-flying instrumentation
    • Eight-day clock
    • Outside air temperature gauge
    • Flight hour recorder
    • Emergency locator transmitter
    • Heated pitot
    • Full flow oil filters
    • Control locks
    • Sun visors
    • Jack pads and
    • Towbar
    • The 601P has in addition as standard an alternate static source.
Dimensions (external):
  • Wing span (600A): 10.41 m (34 ft 2 in)
  • Wing span (601B): 11.18 m (36 ft 8 in)
  • Wing span (601P): 11.18 m (36 ft 8 in)
  • Wing chord at root: 2.18 m (7 ft 2 in)
  • Wing chord at tip (600A): 0.87 m (2 ft 10.375 in)
  • Wing chord at tip (600B): 0.76 m (2 ft 6 in)
  • Wing chord at tip (601P): 0.76 m (2 ft 6 in)
  • Wing aspect ratio (600A): 6.83
  • Wing aspect ratio (601B): 7.55
  • Wing aspect ratio (601P): 7.55
  • Length overall: 10.61 m (34 ft 9.75 in)
  • Height overall: 3.70 m (12 ft 1.5 in)
  • Tailplane span: 4.37 m (14 ft 4 in)
  • Wheel track: 3.11 m (10 ft 2.5 in)
  • Propeller diameter: 1.98 m (6 ft 6 in)
  • Passenger door height: 1.14 m (3 ft 9 in)
  • Passenger door width: 0.71 m (2 ft 4 in)
  • Baggage compartment door height: 0.61 m (2 ft 0 in)
  • Baggage compartment width: 0.56 m (1 ft 10 in)
Dimensions (internal):
  • Cabin length: 3.81 m (12 ft 6 in)
  • Cabin width: 1.17 m (3 ft 10 in)
  • Cabin height: 1.22 m (4 ft 0 in)
  • Baggage space: 0.85 m3 (30 ft3)
Areas:
  • 600A Wings, gross: 15.79 m2 (170 ft2)
  • 601B Wings, gross: 16.54 m2 (178 ft2)
  • 601P Wings, gross: 16.54 m2 (178 ft2)
  • Tailplane: 4.20 m2) (45.2 ft2)
Weights and Loadings:
  • Weight empty, equipped (600A): 1,715 kg (3,780 lb)
  • Weight empty, equipped (601B): 1,808 kg (3,985 lb)
  • Weight empty, equipped (601P): 1,857 kg (4,095 lb)
  • Max T-O and landing weight (600A): 2,495 kg (5,500 lb)
  • Max T-O and landing weight (601B): 2,721 kg (6,000 lb)
  • Max T-O and landing weight (601P): 2,721 kg (6,000 lb)
  • Max wing loading (600A): 158.2 kg/m2 (32.4 lb/ft2)
  • Max wing loading (601B): 164.5 kg/m2 (33.7 lb/ft2)
  • Max wing loading (601P): 164.5 kg/m2 (33.7 lb/ft2)
  • Max power loading (600A): 5.77 kg/kW (9.5 lb/hp)
  • Max power loading (601B): 6.29 kg/kW (10.34 lb/hp)
  • Max power loading (601P): 6.29 kg/kW (10.34 lb/hp)
Performance at max T-O weight, A: 600A; B: 601B; C: 601P):
  • 600A Cruising speed at average cruise weight:
    • 75% power at 2,285 m (7,500 ft): 220 knots (408 km/h; 253 mph)
    • 65% power at 3,050 m (10,000 ft): 213 knots (395 km/h; 245 mph)
    • 55% power at 3,050 m (10,000 ft): 200 knots (371 km/h; 230 mph)
  • 601B Cruising speed at average cruise weight:
    • 75% power at 7,620 m (25,000 ft): 257 knots (476 km/h; 296 mph)
    • 65% power at 7,620 m (25,000 ft): 238 knots (441 km/h; 274 mph)
    • 55% power at 7,620 In (25,000 ft): 218 knots (404 km/h; 251 mph)
  • 601P Cruising speed at average cruise weight):
    • 75% power at 7,620 m (25,000 ft): 257 knots (476 km/h; 296 mph)
    • 65% power at 7,620 m (25,000 ft): 238 knots (441 km/h; 274 mph)
    • 55% power at 7,620 In (25,000 ft): 218 knots (404 km/h; 251 mph)
  • 600A Stalling speed, flaps down: 74 knots (137 km/h; 85 mph) IAS
  • 601B Stalling speed, flaps down: 77 knots (143 km/h; 89 mph) IAS
  • 601P Stalling speed, flaps down: 77 knots (143 km/h; 89 mph) IAS
  • 600A Max rate of climb at S/L: 549 m/min (1,800 ft/min)
  • 601B Max rate of climb at S/L: 466 m/min (1,530 ft)/min
  • 601P Max rate of climb at S/L: 466 m/min (1,530 ft/min)
  • 600A Rate of climb at S/L, one engine out: 137 m/min (450 ft/min)
  • 601B Rate of climb at S/L, one engine out: 77 m/min (254 ft/min)
  • 601P Rate of climb at S/L, one engine out: 77 m/min (254 ft/min)
  • 600A Service ceiling: 6,460 m (21,200 ft)
  • 601B Service ceiling: 9,145 m (30,000 ft)
  • 601P Service ceiling: 7,620 m (25,000 ft)
  • 600A Service ceiling, one engine out: 1,875 m (6,150 ft)
  • 601B Service ceiling, one engine out: 2,835 m (9,300 ft)
  • 601P Service ceiling, one engine out: 2,835 m (9,300 ft)
  • 600A T-O run: 307 m (1,008 ft)
  • 601B T-O run: 579 m (1,900 ft)
  • 601P T-O run: 579 m (1,900 ft)
  • 600A T-O to 15 m (50 ft): 427 m (1,400 ft)
  • 601B T-O to 15 m (50 ft): 759 m (2,490 ft)
  • 601P T-O to 15 m (50 ft): 759 m (2,490 ft)
  • 600A Landing from 15 m (50 ft): 735 m (2,410 ft)
  • 601B Landing from 15 m (50 ft): 619 m (2,030 ft)
  • 601P Landing from 15 m (50 ft): 619 m (2,030 ft)
  • 600A Landing run: 272 m (892 ft)
  • 601B Landing run: 375 m (1,230 ft)
  • 601P Landing run: 375 m (1,230 ft)
  • Range with max fuel, allowances for start, taxi, T-O, climb and 45 min reserves at long-range cruise power:
    • 600A at 75% power at 1,830 m (6,000 ft): 1,103 nm (2,044 km; 1,270 miles)
    • 600A at 65% power at 2,745 m (9,000 ft): 1,223 nm (2,266 km; 1,408 miles)
    • 600A at 55% power at 3,050 m (10,000 ft): 1,320 nm (2,446 km; 1,520 miles)
    • 601B at 65% power at 4,570 m (15,000 ft): 1,063 nm (1,970 km; 1,224 miles)
    • 601B at 55% power at 4,570 m (15,000 ft): 1,244 nm (2,305 km; 1,432 miles)
    • 601P at 65% power at 4,570 m (15,000 ft): 1,086 nm (2,013 km; 1,251 miles)
    • 601P at 55% power at 6,100 m (20,000 ft): 1,271 nm (2,355 km; 1,464 miles)

References


  1. Photos, John Shupek, Copyright © 2009 Skytamer Images. All Rights Reserved
  2. Wikepedia. "Piper Aerostar." [Online] Available http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Piper_Aerostar, 11 September 2009
  3. Taylor, John W.R. (ed.) Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1979-80. London, Jane's Publishing Company, ISBN 0 531 03915 3, 1979, pp 419-20.