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Fokker 50 / 60

Twin-Engine Utility Aircraft

Netherlands | 1987

"Despite modest production totals and a bevy of former operators, the Fokker 50 series high-winged transport continues service with some entities today."

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 08/18/2020 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.
During the early-1980s, Fokker of the Netherlands moved on developing a new, all-modern cost-effective turboprop-powered airliner based on their earlier, proven Fokker F27 "Friendship". The F27, first-flying in 1955, found itself a useful section of market share that followed with some 586 units being completed from 1955 to 1987 (multiple military services also took the type into inventory). From this work was formed the basis for the follow-up "Fokker 50" which retained the same high-mounted monoplane wing arrangement and design attributes to ensure excellent Short Take-Off and Landing (STOL) capabilities often required of hard-to-reach airports as well as military operators. A first-flight in prototype form took place on December 28th, 1985, paving the way for stringent testing and type certification. Service introduction began in 1987.

The "Fokker 60" is a direct offshoot of the Fokker 50 line though it is given a lengthened fuselage to better serve the cargo-hauling market.

Production of the Fokker 50/60 ultimately spanned from 1985 until 1997 to which 213 examples were completed and delivered to customers around the globe. Though now officially out-of-production, the aircraft remains in active service with a handful of operators at various levels; these users include Iran, Kenya, Peru, Singapore, Sweden, Taiwan, Tanzania, and Thailand (2019).

At its core, the Fokker 50 relies on a largely conventional twin-engine arrangement seen in many other Cold War-era and modern aircraft designs. The fuselage is tubular in its general shape with the cockpit (seating two side-by-side) set at the nose and the passenger/cargo section taking up the bulk of the fuselage's volume. The tail unit is of single-rudder configuration with low-mounted horizontal planes for control. The mainplane members are shoulder-mounted along the sides of the fuselage and each carries an underslung, nacelled turboprop engine driving multi-bladed propeller units. At the base of each nacelle is a well for housing the retractable twin-wheeled main landing gear legs. The nose features a short-length, twin-wheeled landing gear leg. The aircraft sits relatively low to the ground providing enhanced access to the fuselage and cargo hold.

Like other aircraft of similar classification, the Fokker 50/60 series achieves its STOL quality through the tried-and-proven high-monoplane wing arrangement which provides the necessary lift-versus-drag balance. The elevated nature of the monoplanes also ensures excellent ground clearance for the spinning propeller blades and ground personnel moving about the exterior of the aircraft.

For its life, the aircraft has been powered by a pair of Pratt & Whitney Canada PW125B or PW127B turboprop engines, each unit supplying up to 2,500 horsepower. Maximum achievable speed is near 350 miles-per-hour with cruising near 330 mph. Range is out to 1,280 miles on internal fuel and its service ceiling reaches 25,000 feet.

The aforementioned primary marks of the line, the Fokker 50 and Fokker 60, each have produced sub-variants. The former has the "F27 Mark 050" and the "F27 Mark 0502", the Mark 0502 differing in its internal arrangement. The latter's "F27 Mark 0604" offering differs in being power by PW127B turboprops, having a longer fuselage and increased MTOW as well as an oversized cargo door to facilitate embarking/disembarking of cargo loads.

The versatility of this aircraft family is such that it quickly went on to see operations in various marketplaces: passenger airliner, Air Force transport and special missions platform, maritime aviation, law enforcement/border patrolling, and special agency transport - all this despite its rather modest production total covering several hundred airframes.

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August 2020 - Palestinian Airlines has announced its intent to sell off its two Fokker 50 regional turboprop airliners.

Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one aircraft design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Fokker 50 (Series 100) Twin-Engine Utility Aircraft.
2 x Pratt & Whitney Canada PW125B turboprop engines developing 2,500 horsepower each driving six-bladed propeller units.
348 mph
560 kph | 302 kts
Max Speed
25,000 ft
7,620 m | 5 miles
Service Ceiling
1,277 miles
2,055 km | 1,110 nm
Operational Range
City-to-City Ranges
Operational range when compared to distances between major cities (in KM).
The nose-to-tail, wingtip-to-wingtip physical qualities of the Fokker 50 (Series 100) Twin-Engine Utility Aircraft.
82.8 ft
25.25 m
O/A Length
95.1 ft
(29.00 m)
O/A Width
27.3 ft
(8.32 m)
O/A Height
27,007 lb
(12,250 kg)
Empty Weight
45,900 lb
(20,820 kg)
Design Balance
The three qualities reflected below are altitude, speed, and range. The more full the box, the more balanced the design.
Notable series variants as part of the Fokker 50 / 60 family line.
Fokker 50 - Base Series Designation.
F27 Mark 050 - Powered by 2 x PW125B or PW127B turboprops; revised structure with modernized avionics and engine controls.
F27 Mark 0502 - Revised internal layout; 2 x PW125B engines; Auxiliary Power Unit (APU).
Fokker 60 - Lengthened fuselage series.
F27 Mark 0604 - Lengthened fuselage, increased MTOW, oversized cargo door, and powered by 2 x PW127B turboprops; four examples completed.
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Fokker 50 / 60. Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national aircraft listing.

Total Production: 213 Units

Contractor(s): Fokker - Netherlands
National flag of Angola National flag of Australia National flag of Austria National flag of Belgium National flag of Bosnia and Herzegovina National flag of Brazil National flag of Colombia National flag of Denmark National flag of Estonia National flag of modern Germany National flag of Iceland National flag of India National flag of Iran National flag of Ireland National flag of Kazakhstan National flag of Latvia National flag of Luxembourg National flag of Malaysia National flag of Mongolia National flag of the Netherlands National flag of Nigeria National flag of Norway National flag of Peru National flag of the Philippines National flag of Singapore National flag of Spain National flag of Sweden National flag of Taiwan National flag of Thailand National flag of the United Kingdom National flag of Zimbabwe

[ Angola; Australia; Austria; Belgium; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Brazil; Brunei; Colombia; Denmark; Estonia; Germany; Iceland; India; Iran; Ireland; Kazakhstan; Kenya; Latvia; Luxembourg; Malaysia; Mongolia; Netherlands; Nigeria; Norway; Peru; Philippines; Singapore; Spain; Sweden; Taiwan; Thailand; United Kingdom; Zimbabwe ]
Relative Max Speed
Hi: 400mph
Lo: 200mph
Aircraft Max Listed Speed (348mph).

Graph Average of 300 MPH.
Era Crossover
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Showcasing Aircraft Era Crossover (if any)
Max Alt Visualization
Small airplane graphic
Production Comparison
Entry compared against Ilyushin IL-2 (military) and Cessna 172 (civilian) total production.
MACH Regime (Sonic)
RANGES (MPH) Subsonic: <614mph | Transonic: 614-921 | Supersonic: 921-3836 | Hypersonic: 3836-7673 | Hi-Hypersonic: 7673-19180 | Reentry: >19030
Aviation Timeline
1 / 1
Image of the Fokker 50 / 60
Image from the United States Department of Defense DVIDS database; Fokker F60 pictured.

Mission Roles
Some designs are single-minded in their approach while others offer a more versatile solution to airborne requirements.
Some designs stand the test of time while others are doomed to never advance beyond the drawing board; let history be their judge.
Going Further...
The Fokker 50 / 60 Twin-Engine Utility Aircraft appears in the following collections:
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