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Air Tractor OA-8 Longsword

United States (2018)

Detailing the development and operational history of the Air Tractor OA-8 Longsword Close-Air Support (CAS) Aircraft.

 Entry last updated on 3/22/2017; Authored by Staff Writer; Content ©

  Air Tractor OA-8 Longsword  
Picture of Air Tractor OA-8 Longsword Close-Air Support (CAS) Aircraft

The Air Tractor OA-8 Longsword is the dedicated armed derivative of the AT-802 agricultural / fire-fighting platform.

The OA-8 "Longsword" is one of many capable aircraft designs currently competing for the Close Air Support (CAS) role of various countries. The aircraft is based on the American Air Tractor AT-802 (detailed elsewhere on this site), modified by L-3 Technologies for the CAS role and debuting during Avalon Airshow 2017 (Australia). The design pairs the established Air Tractor agricultural / fire-fighting airframe with modern technologies and ordnance delivery capabilities to suit ongoing over-battlefield needs. The AT-802 is a globally popular aircraft in civilian market sectors and sees operations from Argentina and Brazil to Kenya and Indonesia.

The aircraft, in its CAS role, seats two personnel in tandem under a heavily framed canopy and within an armored cockpit due to the low-altitude flight envelopes at play in the CAS role. The cockpit is set well-aft of the long-running nose and, at the nose, is a five-bladed propeller unit powered by a Pratt & Whitney engine installation. The tail unit is of a conventional single-finned arrangement. The wing mainplanes are set low and each sports multiple hardpoints. An additional hard point pairing is seen under the belly and an optics set is fitted under the nose. The undercarriage is fixed and wheeled ("tail dragger" configuration).

Supported armament will run the gamut of widely-used munitions and ordnance options including gun pods, cannon pods, rocket pods (unguided rockets), and conventional drop bombs (smart and dumb). Armament load outs can capacity reach 6,200lb.

The Longsword has several distinct inherent features: strong low-altitude flying characteristics and handling, a 400 nautical mile operating range, and 10 hour mission endurance window. It can remain on station for over five hours.
Any available statistics for the Air Tractor OA-8 Longsword Close-Air Support (CAS) Aircraft are showcased in the areas immediately below. Categories include basic specifications covering country-of-origin, operational status, manufacture(s) and total quantitative production. Other qualities showcased are related to structural values (namely dimensions), installed power and standard day performance figures, installed or proposed armament and mission equipment (if any), global users (from A-to-Z) and series model variants (if any).
Air Tractor OA-8 Longsword Specifications
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United States
Year: 2018
Type: Close-Air Support (CAS) Aircraft
Manufacturer(s): Air Tractor / L-3 Technologies - United States
Production: 1
Supported Mission Types
Ground Attack
Close-Air Support
Airborne Early Warning
Electronic Warfare
Aerial Tanker
Passenger Industry
VIP Travel
Business Travel
Special Forces
Crew: 2
Length: 35.93 ft (10.95 m)
Width: 59.22 ft (18.05 m)
Height: 12.80 ft (3.90 m)
Empty Weight: 6,614 lb (3,000 kg)
MTOW: 16,535 lb (7,500 kg)

Installed Power
1 x Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A turboprop engine developing up to 1,940 horsepower and driving a five-bladed propeller at the nose.

Standard Day Performance
Maximum Speed: 224 mph (360 kph; 194 kts)
Maximum Range: 621 mi (1,000 km; 540 nm)
Service Ceiling: 25,098 ft (7,650 m; 4.75 mi)
Rate-of-Climb: 1,250 ft/min (381 m/min)

Up to 6,200lb of stores carried including cannon pods, conventional drop bombs and rocket pods.

Operators List
United States (possible)

Series Model Variants
• OA-8 "Longsword" - Base Series Designation