Polish Aircraft Showcased at a Defence Expo in Rio de Janeiro. M28 for the Brazilian Army?

M28 aircraft, manufactured by the Polish PZL-Mielec facility, is being showcased in Rio de Janeiro, during the LAAD Defence & Security exhibition. The demonstration, addressed both to the commercial sector, as well as to the Brazilian Army, constitutes an element of a two-weeks long “Latin America Demo Tour”.

PZL Mielec, working together with the Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, now owned by the Lockheed Martin company, is going to showcase the STOL capabilities, in possession of which the twin-turboprop M28 remains. The displays are to be attended by a number military, civil and commercial customers, during the LAAD Defence and Security event, taking place in Rio De Janeiro between 4th and 7th April.

The aircraft has already arrived at the Rio de Janeiro Jacarepaguá airport. Before that, the M28’s performance feats have also been showcased for the commercial customers in Trinidad and Tobago, and for the Brazilian Army, in Manaus and Brasilia. Some tactical capabilities of the aircraft have been demonstrated, including a take-off with a load of 2300 kilograms onboard, from a 548 meters long runway, along with rapid cabin rearrangement options, with available volume of 13.73 cubic meters in the passenger variant, cargo option, as well as a layout being a combination of the two.

We are very satisfied with the growing interest, referring to the M28 displays, among the commercial operators and military units stationed within the territory of Brazil. This very aircraft has the best payload capabilities within its class. The customers are out there on the market, looking for a dynamic, versatile airframe which would be cheap to operate, tailor-made to carry out cargo and passenger flights, take-off from unprepared strips, and to perform parachute or cargo drops in the areas affected by natural catastrophes in the mountain areas, on meadows, in the jungle, or on narrow island beaches.

Janusz Zakręcki, President of the Management Board, PZL Mielec

The representatives of the Brazilian Army also had a chance to get acquainted with the ways to prepare the M28 aircraft for MEDEVAC, troop transport (17 fully equipped soldiers) or precise partatrooper drop missions. Moreover, use of the rear door for cargo loading purposes has also been presented. The mission equipment is placed within the cabin with the use of a manual winch with load capacity of up to 700 kilograms.

The M28 aircraft, with its MTOW of 7500 kilograms, has been fitted with two PT6A-65B engines, offering combined power of 2200 HP. Thanks to the aforesaid engines, the Mielec-made design is capable of taking-off safely from a runway which is 548 meters long, and as PZL Mielec assures, should an emergency situation occur, the M28 should also remain able to continue its flight using only a single engine. In order to perform a landing, the Mielec-manufactured airframe only needs a 499 meters long runway, however during the test programme M28 was able to take off from runways only 160 meters long. The M28 may also operate from unprepared strips. The airplane, designed and manufactured in Poland, offers very good performance in the tropical as well as in low temperatures, carrying the maximum amount of payload, especially when compared to the competitors.

A single M28 aircraft cost, in its basic configuration, is going to be equal to an amount of USD 6.5 - 7 million.