IA-58 Pucara is a two-seater advance ground attack and counter-insurgency (COIN) aircraft designed and manufactured by Argentina-based Fabrica Militar de Aviones (FMA, now known as Lockheed Martin Argentina) for the Argentina Air Force (AAF). About 150 to 160 IA-58s were built between 1978 and 1986.
Pratt & Whitney Canada was contracted by the AAF in November 2011 to supply PT6A-62 engines for the upgrade of Pucara aircraft. The AAF currently operates 30 Pucara aircraft.
IA-58 Pucara variants
The IA-58 Pucara has seven variants, namely the AX-02 Delfin, AX-04, IA-58A Pucara, IA-58B Pucara Bravo, IA-58C Pucara Charlie, IA-58D Pucara Delta and IA-66.
The AX-02 Delfin is the initial prototype. The AX-04 is the second prototype built jointly by the AAF and the Argentine Navy in May 1982. It is fitted with Mark 13 torpedoes to increase the anti-ship capabilities of the AAF.
AX-02 Delfin @taringa.net
The IA-58A Pucara is the first production version. It is a two-seater aircraft fitted with a 20mm cannon. It can carry out COIN and close air support (CAS) missions.
The IA-58B Pucara Bravo is a single-seater aircraft fitted with two 30mm DEFA cannons and upgraded avionics. It completed its maiden flight in May 1979, but was never produced.
The IA-58C Pucara Charlie is a single-seater prototype built by upgrading the IA-58B. The upgrades include incorporating head up display, identification friend or foe and 30mm DEFA 553 cannons in the nose. It features two additional hardpoints to carry Magic 2 air-to-air missiles and Martin Pescador anti-ship missiles.
IA-58C Pucara Charlie – Image @taringa.netIA-58C Pucara Charlie – Image @taringa.net
The IA-58D Pucara Delta is a meliorated version of IA-58A.
The IA-66 is built by superseding the IA-58A’s engine with a 1,000hp Garrett TPE331-11-601W turboprop engine.
Customer orders of the IA-58 Pucara included 108 aircraft by the AAF and six aircraft by the Uruguayan Air Force.
Development of the IA-58 Pucara ground attack aircraft
The development of the IA-58 Pucara started in August 1966 with the requirement of the AAF for COIN and ground attack aircraft.
The AX-02 Delfin prototype completed its maiden flight in August 1969. It was powered by 674kW (904hp) Garrett TPE331I/U-303 turboprop engines. The subsequent prototypes and production versions were fitted with Turbomeca Astazou XVIG turboprop engines.
Garrett TPE331I/U-303 turboprop engine
- Type: Single-shaft turboprop with integral gearbox
- Length: 46 in (1168 mm) (TPE331-43A), 42.82 in (1,088 mm) (TPE331-10)
- Diameter: 21 in (533 mm) (TPE331-43A)
- Dry weight: 336 lb (153 kg) (TPE331-43A), 385 lb (175 kg) (TPE331-10)
- Compressor: Two-stage centrifugal
- Combustors: Reverse annular
- Turbine: Three-stage axial
- Maximum power output: 575 hp (429 kW)(TPE331-43A), 940 hp (700 kW) (TPE331-10)
- Overall pressure ratio: 10.55 (TPE331-10)
- Specific fuel consumption: 0.534 lb/hp (325 g/kW) per hour (TPE331-10)
- Power-to-weight ratio: 1.71 hp/lb (2.8 kW/kg) (TPE331-43A), 2.44 hp/lb (4.01 kW/kg) (TPE331-10)
The first production version completed its maiden flight in November 1974 and entered service with the AAF in 1975.
Colombia received three IA-58s in December 1989 on lease to attack drug manufacturers and smugglers in the country.
FMA IA-58 Pucará Fuerza Aérea Uruguaya – Image @Marce Sosa V
Sri Lanka deployed the aircraft in COIN mission between 1993 and 1999. The engines of the IA-58s were superseded with an engine operating on soy derived bio jet fuel in 2007.
Design of the IA-58 Pucara
The IA-58 has a low wing monoplane design with all metal construction. The aircraft was designed to operate both day and night on rough airfields or unprepared airstrips or dirt runways. It can execute COIN, CAS, intelligence gathering, surveillance and reconnaissance missions.
The aircraft is fitted with a semi-monocoque fuselage, T-tail and sloping nose. It can carry maximum internal fuel of 1,280l.
The IA 58 Pucará is of conventional, all-metal (mainly duralumin) construction. The unswept cantilever wings have 7 degrees of dihedral on the outer panels and are fitted with slotted trailing-edge flaps. The IA-58 has a tandem cockpit arrangement; the crew of two is seated under the upward opening clamshell canopy on Martin-Baker Mk 6AP6A zero/zero ejection seats and are provided with dual controls. Armour plating is fitted to protect the crew and engines from ground fire. The aircraft is powered by a pair of Turbomeca Astazou engines, driving sets of three-bladed Ratier-Forest 23LF propellers; the propellers are also capable of being used as air brakes. Source @revolvy.com
Cockpit, armaments and landing gear
The IA-58 boasts a pressurised cockpit enclosed by a single piece clamshell canopy that opens upwards. It can accommodate two flight crew members in tandem seat configuration with dual flight controls.
The cockpit is fitted with two Martin-Baker Mk 6AP6A zero/zero ejection seats which can be activated by pulling the face blind located over the pilot’s head. The rear seat is slightly raised by 0.25m to provide clear forward visibility.
The IA-58 is armed with two 20mm Hispano MS 804 cannons and four 7.62mm FN M2-30 machine guns. The aircraft comprises three hardpoints, two underwing and one under the centreline fuselage. It can carry up to 1,500 kg of payload.
20mm Hispano MS 804 cannon
HS 804 20mm cannon – Image @bevfitchett.us
Two 20-mm Hispano MS 804 cannon with 270 rounds per gun
7.62mm FN M2-30 machine gun
Four 7.62-mm (0.3in) FN M2-30 machine-guns with 900 rounds per gun
Other armaments attached include 7.62mm and 12.7mm gun pods, two conventional unguided drop bombs, two 70mm rocket pods, one mine dispenser and one anti-ship torpedo.
70 mm (2.75 in) LAU-68A/G-LAU-19
2 x pods 70 mm (2.75 in) LAU-68A/G
Mk 82 500 lbs bombs
The IA-58 is fitted with a tricycle type retractable landing gear comprising dual main wheels and a single steerable nose wheel.
The main wheels retract into the engine nacelles, while the nose wheel resiles into centreline fuselage section upon take-off from runway.
Engines and performance
The IA-58 is powered by two Turbomeca Astazou XVIG turboprop engines rated at 729kW of output power each.
Turbomeca Astazou XVIG turboprop engine
The IA-58 Pucara can climb at the rate of 18m/s. The maximum and cruise speeds of the aircraft are 500km/h and 480km/h respectively.
The economical cruise speed is 430km/h. The stall speed is 143km/h. The range and service ceiling of the aircraft are 3,710km and 10,000m respectively.
Argentina Air Force to Re-engine Pucara Fleet with PT6A-62s: Here
Similar to the PT6A-60, but is de-rated to 950 SHP – used on the Pilatus PC-9. Source @iascanada.com
November 24, 2015 at the airfield Military Aviation School in Cordoba Argentina Air Force, the first flight of the prototype remotorizovannogo Argentine Pucara light attack, received a modernized version of the designation IA-58H. Remotorizovanny prototype, converted from serial aircraft IA-58A, tail number A-561 (AX-561 a new number), received two turboprop engines Pratt & Whitney Canada PT-6A-62 take-off power of about 1000 hp with four-with propellers instead of standard French turboprop engines Turbomeca Astazou XVIG with three-bladed propellers. Release Astazou series engines Turbomeca was discontinued in 1984, and service support for these engines also now been implemented INE, which was the main reason for re-engine. The aircraft also received a new wing to the “zeroing” flight resource. Modernization Development of IA-58H with remotorization was carried out by the former developer and serial manufacturer Airplane Pucara Argentine state company Fabrica Argentina de Aviones «Brigadier San Martín » SA (FAdeA, the former Fábrica Militar de Aviones, FMA) in Cordoba, together with Israeli Corporation Aerospace Corp. Industries, Israel (the IAI). Translated by google – Source @nevskii-bastion.ru
FIRST FLIGHT Upgrade the plane Pucara 08/25/2016 Air force Uruguay decided March 17, 2017, the day of celebration of the anniversary of the Air Force of the country, to retire light attack aircraft IA-58 “Pucara”. According to “Infodifensa”, this decision calls into question the continued existence of one of the two Uruguayan Air Force combat squadrons (№1), because the prospect of a replacement aircraft rather illusory due to lack of funding. The decision to bring the aircraft out of service due to the big problems in their operation and maintenance of operational readiness in the past few years. In particular, this applies to service “Turbomeca” engines for repair that lack of spare parts. At the moment in the battle of the Uruguayan Air Force has only attack aircraft A-37B «Dregoflay” and IA-58 “Pucara”, do not have opportunities to intercept aircraft enemy. among the main options under consideration to replace them in 2011, called the purchase Russian Yak-130, or Chinese L-15, but the decision is still pending. also conducted negotiations with Switzerland for the acquisition of 10 refurbished fighters F-5E / F «Tayger- 2 “, which also came to nothing lead. TSAMTO – Translated by google – Source @nevskii-bastion.ru
The IA-58 Pucara motorized (El IA-58 pucara motorizado)
The IA-58 Pucara with new engines made its maiden flight Today, it is marked as historic for AIR FORCE ARGENTINA and the aviation industry in our country, it made its first flight on IA-58 Pucara “H” or Pucara series II on the grounds of the Military Aviation School. Being 11: Local 15hs, the prototype of the repowering of the aircraft, registration a-561 belonging to the Center flight Test flew away, in just a few meters from Trail the track of the iconic School, flight only lasted 15` minutes served to check the status and operation of its turbines P & W PT6A. in that Act Defense Minister Agustin Rossi Mr Secretary of Industry for Defense Sergio Rodriguez were present and staff of the IAI company Israel, suppliers of engine mounts, as well as staff our Air Out. soon more flights of this aircraft were developed, which will certification for fleet replacement thereof Systems FAA weapons. Translated by google – Source @taringa.net
IA-58 Pucara with re-engined P & W PT6A – Image @taringa.netImage @taringa.net
- Sri Lanka Air Force (1993–1999, 2 shot down, 2 retired)
- Royal Air Force (A captured Pucara was evaluated at A&AEE Boscombe Down after the Falkands conflict before being donated to the RAF museum).
FMA, Fabrica Militar de Aviones IA 58 Pucara
|Propulsion||2 Turboprop Engines|
|Engine Model||Turbomeca Astazou XVIG|
|Engine Power (each)||729 kW||978 shp|
|Speed||500 km/h||270 kts
|Service Ceiling||9.997 m||32.800 ft|
|Range||3.710 km||2.003 NM
|Empty Weight||4.020 kg||8.863 lbs|
|max. Takeoff Weight||6.800 kg||14.991 lbs|
|Wing Span||14,50 m||47 ft 7 in|
|Wing Area||30,3 m²||326 ft²|
|Length||14,25 m||46 ft 9 in|
|Height||5,36 m||17 ft 7 in|
|Production Status||out of production|
|Total Production||ca. 200|
|Data for (Version)||FMA IA 58A Pucara|
|Variants||IA-58D Pucará Delta|
Technical specification @flugzeuginfo.net
Main material source @airforce-technology.com