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Cessna 208B Grand Caravan
Single-turboprop engine fixed-tricycle gear short-haul regional airliner and utility light high-wing transport, U.S.A.


Archive Photos [1]


[Cessna 208B "Caravan" (N713FX) at the 2000 NAS Point Mugu Airshow (Photo by John Shupek)]

Overview [2]


  • Cessna 208 Caravan
  • Role: Light transport turboprop
  • Manufacturer: Cessna
  • First flight: August 8, 1982
  • Introduction: 1984
  • Status: In production
  • Primary user: FedEx Feeder
  • Produced: 1982-present
  • Number built: 2,500
  • Unit cost: USD $2,022,450 (Base price, Caravan 675, 2011 price)
  • Variants: Soloy Pathfinder 21

The Cessna 208 Caravan is a single-engined turboprop, fixed-tricycle landing gear, short-haul regional airliner and utility aircraft that is built in the United States by Cessna. The airplane typically seats nine passengers with a single pilot, although with a FAR Part 23 waiver it can seat up to fourteen passengers. The aircraft is also used for cargo feederliner operations.

Design and Development [2]


The prototype first flew in December 1982. The production model was certified by the FAA in October 1984. Since then, the Caravan has undergone a number of design evolutions. Working with FedEx, Cessna produced first the Cargomaster and followed that with the stretched and upgraded Super Cargomaster. The passenger model, the Grand Caravan, was derived from the Super Cargomaster. In January 2013 a higher-powered (867 shp from P&WC PT6A-140) version, the Grand Caravan EX, received FAA certification. This higher-powered version will be produced by a Cessna-AVIC joint venture in China.

Cessna offers the 208B in many configurations. The basic 208 airframe can be outfitted with various types of landing gear, allowing it to operate in a wide variety of environments. Some common adaptations include skis, enlarged tires for unprepared runways and floats on the Caravan Amphibian model.

The Caravan interior can be outfitted with seats or cargo holds. The standard high-density airline configuration features four rows of 1-2 seating behind the two seats in the cockpit. This variant is capable of holding up to thirteen passengers, although it is marketed as being able to make a profit carrying just four. The cabin can be configured in a low density passenger configuration, with 1-1 seating, as a combination of passengers and cargo, or as a strictly cargo aircraft. Many variants include an underbelly cargo pod, which can be used for additional freight capacity, or for passenger baggage. A number of Caravans are operated as skydiving aircraft with the left-side cargo hatch converted to a roll-up door.

On April 28, 2008, Cessna announced that the Garmin G1000 glass cockpit will be standard equipment on all new Caravans. In May 2012 Cessna announced that an assembly line for the 208 would be established in the People's Republic of China. The government-owned China Aviation Industry General Aircraft (CAIGA) will conduct final assembly of Caravans at its plant in Shijiazhuang for the Chinese market. In August 2016, Textron announced that it is moving the Cessna 208 production from its Wichita headquarters to its Independence, Kansas production facility, where it will be built alongside along the piston-powered Cessna 172S Skyhawk, Cessna 182T Skylane, Cessna T206H Turbo Stationair and Cessna TTx, and the Cessna Citation Mustang and Cessna Citation M2 light jets. The move was made to make room for the Cessna Citation Longitude and Cessna Denali in Wichita.

Civilian Variants [2]


  • Cessna 208 Caravan I: The basic introductory model, outfitted for passenger operation.
  • Cessna 208 Caravan 675: The current production model of the basic Caravan, with higher-powered PT6A-114A engine.
  • Cessna 208A Cargomaster: Developed with FedEx, a pure-cargo version of the Caravan. The "A" designation has caused some confusion over the years. It denotes a specific option package for FedEx aircraft only, and not a distinct model. All Cessna 208A aircraft were produced and serialized as Cessna 208 models. FedEx purchased 40 of this version.
  • Cessna 208B Grand Caravan: A 4 feet (1.2 m) stretch of the Cessna 208 Caravan I. The Cessna 208B features a more powerful PT6A-114A engine.
  • Cessna 208B Grand Caravan EX: Version certified in December 2012, powered by a 867 hp (647 kW) Pratt and Whitney Canada PT6A-140 that improves climb by 38%. The model's upgrade is aimed at float operators and will compete with aftermarket conversions.
  • Cessna 208B Super Cargomaster: The cargo variant of the Cessna 208B series. FedEx purchased 260 of this model.
  • Cessna Caravan Amphibian: A Cessna 208 Caravan with Wipaire 8000 floats in place of the landing gear, for water landings or land operations.
  • Soloy Pathfinder 21: A twin-engined stretch of the 208 that was developed by the Soloy Corporation. This aircraft features two PT6D-114A engines driving a single propeller and a 70-inch (1,800 mm) fuselage stretch behind the wing.
  • Cessna 850 Caravan: Cessna 208 with an 850 hp (634 kW) Honeywell TPE331-12JR-701S engine, installed by Aero Twin Inc.
  • Cessna 950 Grand Caravan: Cessna 208B with a 1,000 hp (746 kW) Honeywell TPE331-12JR-704AT engine, installed by Aero Twin Inc.
  • Cessna Blackhawk Caravan: Cessna 208 and Cessna 208B conversion to 850 hp (634 kW) PT-6A-42A.
  • Cessna Supervan 900: Cessna 208B with a 850 hp (634 kW) (900 hp (671 kW) flat-rated) Honeywell TPE331-12JR engine, installed by Texas Turbine
  • Cessna XP42A Upgrade: Cessna 208B with an 850 hp (634 kW) Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-42A engine, installed by Blackhawk

Military Variants [2]


  • Cessna U-27A: A military offering of the Cessna 208.
  • Cessna C-98: The Brazilian Air Force designation for the standard Cessna U-27.
  • Cessna C-16: The proposed United States Army designation.
  • Cessna AC-208 "Combat Caravan": An ISTAR version built by ATK armed with Hellfire missiles is used by the Iraqi air force. The Cessna AC-208 received its combat debut in January 2014 when the Iraqi Air Force began employing it against insurgents in Anbar province. One aircraft crashed in March 2016. The Lebanese Air Force requested a new Cessna AC-208 and the conversion of the Cessna C-208 it already operates. Other Cessna AC-208s are scheduled to be delivered to countries in the Middle East and Africa through the Foreign Military Sales program. Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Burkina Faso are possible recipients of these Cessna AC-208 Combat Caravans.

Civilian Operators [2]


The Cessna 208 is used by governmental organizations and by a large number of companies for police, air ambulance, passenger transport, air charter, freight and parachuting operations. FedEx Feeder is the largest operator of the Cessna 208, with over 250 aircraft.

Military Operators [2]


  • Afghanistan: Afghan Air Force - 26 in service as of December 2013.
  • Argentina: Argentine Army ordered 2 Cessna Grand Caravan EX 208s, one delivered in June 2015.
  • Bahamas: Royal Bahamas Defence Force
  • Bangladesh: Bangladesh Army 1 Cessna C-208B Grand Caravan for logistical, Para drops.
  • Brazil: Brazilian Air Force - Operates 32 as of December 2012.
  • Chile Chilean Army
  • Colombia: Colombian Air Force - Operates 16 as of December 2013; Colombian Army; Colombian Navy - two in operation, one awaiting delivery.
  • Djibouti: Djibouti Air Force
  • Iraq: Iraqi Air Force, five aircraft in active service.
  • Jordan: Royal Jordanian Air Force - Six Cessna 208s
  • Lebanon: Lebanese Air Force - three aircraft in active service.
  • Liberia: Liberian Army bought two Cessna Caravans in 1986, one of which crashed in 1987.
  • Mauritania: Force Aerienne Islamique de Mauritanie received two reconnaissance-equipped Cessna Caravans on 25 June 2014.
  • Niger: Niger Armed Forces received two Cessna Caravans in July 2013.
  • Paraguay:: Paraguayan Air Force operated two Cessna Caravans as of December 2013, with a further two on order.
  • South Africa: South African Air Force
  • Uganda: Uganda People's Defence Force - In March 2015, the UPDF received two military Cessna 208B Caravans from the United States Air Force for use in AMISOM duties.
  • United Arab Emirates: United Arab Emirates Air Force
  • United States: United States Army
  • Yemen: Yemeni Air Force

Specifications (Cessna 208B Grand Caravan EX) [2]


General Characteristics

  • Crew: one or two
  • Capacity: nine passengers or 13 with FAR Part 23 waiver
  • Length: 41 ft 7 in (12.67 m)
  • Wingspan: 52 ft 1 in (15.88 m)
  • Height: 15 ft 1 in (4.60 m)
  • Wing area: 279 ft² (25.9 m²)
  • Aspect ratio: 9.555
  • Airfoil: NACA 23000 Series
  • Empty weight: 4,558 lb (2,067 kg) (weight of typically equipped unit is 2127 kg/4690 lb)
  • Gross weight: 8,807 lb (3,995 kg) (maximum landing weight is 3856 kg/8500 lb.)
  • Fuel capacity: 335.6 gallon/2246 lb
  • Powerplant: 1 × Pratt & Whitney PT6A-140 turboprop, 868 hp (647 kW)
  • Propellers: 3-bladed Hartzell Constant speed, full feathering, reversible pitch, 8.8 ft 106 in (5.37 m) diameter

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 213 mph (343 km/h; 185 kn) true air speed
  • Cruise speed: 213 mph (185 kn; 343 km/h) true air speed
  • Stall speed: 70 mph (61 kn; 113 km/h) calibrated air speed
  • Never exceed speed: 201 mph (175 kn; 323 km/h) indicated air speed
  • Range: 1,240 mi (1,078 nmi; 1,996 km) with max fuel and reserves
  • Service ceiling: 25,000 ft (7,620 m)
  • Rate of climb: 1,275 ft/min (6.48 m/s)
  • Wing loading: 31.49 lb/ft² (153.7 kg/m²)

Avionics

  • Garmin G1000 with GFC700 integrated digital automatic flight control system

References


  1. Photos: John Shupek, Copyright © 2000 Skytamer Images (Skytamer.com). All Rights Reserved
  2. Wikipedia. Cessna 208 Caravan

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