Pilatus Aircraft Designations

Apophenia

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Pilatus Flugzeugwerke AG, Stans, Switzerland

Most Pilatus designations are relatively straightforward. Originally, numbered designs were simply prefixed 'P' for Pilatus. The PC-6 designation sprang from its design name, 'Pilatus Commercial Nr. 6'. Since then, all internal Pilatus aircraft designs have received the 'PC' prefix.

The Pilatus designation style varies. Variations seen on 'P' and 'PC' designation display include hyphens, periods, spaces (and, sometimes no spaces), between letters and numerals. Pilatus, itself, now uses hyphens so I have stuck to that style. Variations like 'PC-XII' are strictly marketing efforts.

Variations are also seen on suffices ... best illustrated by the PC-6 Porter series. With most piston-engined Porters, variants are designed soley by horsepower, eg: PC-6/350. However, the one-off PC-6/D-H3 follows the Turbo Porter pattern. Here the basic sub-type is shown as PC-6/A and a slight variation would be PC-6/A1. Major changes would result in a new sub-type, PC-6/B. In some renderings, the sub-type 'slash' is omitted, eg: PC-6B2-H2

The 'H' suffix in that PC-6B2-H2 (or PC-6/B-H2) designation indicates an maximum take-off weight class. The 'base' MTOW class receives no 'H' suffix. As MTOW is increased from that 'base', the suffixes '-H1, '-H2, '-H3, and '-H4 would be applied. (Note that not all sub-types had the complete sequence of 'H' suffixes applied.)

Pilatus designation anomolies are the 1944 SB prefixes (anyone have any ideas about the meaning of this acronym?); glider designs built by Pilatus which retain their original designations; and, the long-form B4-PC11 designations applied to the licenced PC-11 gliders.

One further anomoly occurs due to a joint study project - the PD-01 - between Pilatus and Poligrat Development GmbH of Munich. According to Flight International (25 April 1974), the "new Master Porter PD-01 light cargo/passenger transport in the Skyvan class [...was ...] being constructed under a contract agreement with Pilatus." However, it seems highly unlikely that any actual construction work on a PD-01 prototype ever began.
http://www.flightglobal.com/pdfarchive/view/1974/1974%20-%200664.html

For undesignated Pilatus designs, see Pilatus post-war projects:
http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,8379.0.html

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Pilatus - Anomolous Powered-Aircraft Designations

SB-2 - 1944 Pelican STOL utility a/c, 1 + 5, x 1 (HB-AEP)
- SB-2: 1 x 450 hp P&W R-985 Wasp Junior, span 15.5 m
-- http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,12611.0.html
-- http://blogs.ethz.ch/digital-collections/files/2010/07/pelicanplan1_fur_blog.jpg

SB-5 - [Project] 1944 SB-2 deriv., 9-pax transport, 1000 hp engine

PD-01 - [Project] 1974 joint* study for enlarged, 24 pax Twin Porter
- PD-01: Master Porter: Rear ramp, 2 x 1120 shp PT6A-45, retractable u/c
-- * Poligrat Development GmbH, Germany and Pilatus Flugzeugwerke
-- http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_Ur4hnBNmcSY/TJHgu_0kKDI/AAAAAAAAA1A/mGv2jINlGpU/s1600/Photo+pilatus+016.jpg

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Pilatus Flugzeugwerke - Anomolous Glider Designations

WLM-1 - 1947 single-seat glider for Fliegertruppe, x 3
- WLM-1: Design by engineers Weber Landolf-Münch, span 14 m

Spyr V - 1948 2-seat (staggered) glider, mixed const, span 18.44 m
- Spyr V: Devel. of Ing. A Hug's single-seat Spyr IV glider

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Pilatus - 'P' and 'PC' Aircraft Designations

P-1 -- [Project] 1940-41* single-seat fighter trainer, span 9.2 m
- P-1: 1 x 240 hp Argus As 10E2 V-8, mixed construction
-- * Design begun 1940, internal project approval 1941

P-2 -- 1946 tandem 2-seat military trainer (related to P-1 project)
- P-2-01: Prototype (HB-GAB/A-101/U-101), 465 hp Argus As 410-A2
- P-2-02: Static test airframe
- P-2-03: 1 x 500 hp SLM-built HS-12Mb-57 V-12, ventral radiator
-- * HS-12Mb-57 engines came from FF Tp Dewoitine D 27 fighters
- P-2-O4: Armed vers. P-2-03, 1 x fixed/1 x flexible mg, bomb rack
- P-2-05: Prod'n vers., unarmed/no radio, Argus As 410-A2, x 26
- P-2-06: 1948, 1 x fixed/1 x flexible mg, 4 x wing racks, x 26

P-3 -- 1953 2-seat tandem military trainer, span 10.40 m
- P-3-01: 1953 first prototype (HB-HON), two-blade propeller
- P-3-02: 1954 second prototype (HB-HOO/A-801), 240 hp engine
- P-3-03: 1956 prod'n vers., 1 x 240 hp Lycoming GO-435-C2-A2, x 72*
-- * Incl. P-3-03 'Null-Serie': x 12 a/c for Swiss AF trials
- P-3-04: [??] Poss desig. held for 320 hp Lycoming/Continental vers.
- P-3-05: 1958 vers. (introduced underfuselage 'Seitenfiosse'), x 60
- P-3/06: 1966 desig. for turboprop vers. aka P-3B, aka PC-7

P-4 -- 1948 Single-engine, high-wing utility monoplane, x 1 (HB-AET)
- P-4: Braced wings, 1 x 190 hp Lycoming O-435, span 11.85 m

P-5 -- [Project] 19?? utility aircraft [?? poss. ref. to SB-5 project ??]

P-5 -- [Project] 1951 2-seat pod-and-boom artillery spotter
- P-5: 1 x 160 hp Walter Minor 6-III V-8, span 12 m

PC-6 - 1959 Porter high-wing, single-engine, utility a/c, x 73
- PC-6 : 1959 Porter prototype, 1 x Lycoming GSO-480-B1A6
-- PC-6/275: 1960 Porter, 1 x 260 hp Lycoming GO-480-D1A, x 1
-- PC-6/340: 1959 Porter, 1 x 340 hp Lycoming GSO-480-B1A6, x 64
-- PC-6/350: 1961 Porter, 1 x 350 hp Lycoming IGO-540-A1A, x 8
-- PC-6/D: 1970 Porter, 1 x 500 hp Lycoming TIO-720-C1A2 [conv ?]

PC-6/A, '/B, '?C Turbo Porter single turboprop PC-6 utility
- PC-6/A: 1961, 1 x 523 shp Turbomeca Astazou IIE/'G, x 35
-- PC-6/A1: 1967, 1 x 573 shp Turbomeca Astazou XII, x 6
-- PC-6/Ax: 1967, 1 x 573 shp Astazou X, x 1 conv (F-BKQU)
-- PC-6/A2: 1968, 1 x 573 shp Astazou XIVE, x 1 (F-BOSZ)
-- PC-6/B: 1964 Turbo Porter, 1 x 550 shp P&WC PT6A-6A, x 12
-- PC-6/B1: 1966 Turbo Porter, 1 x 550 shp PT6A-20, x 82
-- PC-6/B2: 1967 Turbo Porter, 1 x 680 shp PT6A-27, x 267*
-- PC-6/B2 (STC): 2001 1 x 750 shp PT6A-34, x 32 new/convers.
-- PC-6/B2-H4: 1984 Turbo Porter, 1 x 680 shp P&WC PT6A-27
-- PC-6/C: 1965, 1 x 575 shp Garrett TPE-331-25D, x 8
-- PC-6/C1: 1969, 1 x 576 shp Garrett TPE-331-1-100, x 1
-- PC-6/C2: 1967, 1 x 665 shp Garrett TPE-331-1-101F, x 0**
-- ** PC-6/C2 was Pilatus desig. for the Fairchild-built AU-23A
- PC-6: [Project] 'Module Porter', see PC-9B (II) below
-- http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_Ur4hnBNmcSY/TJHgu_0kKDI/AAAAAAAAA1A/mGv2jINlGpU/s1600/Photo+pilatus+016.jpg

PC-7 - 1966 single-turboprop tandem-seat basic military trainer
- P-3/06: 1966 desig. for PC-7, aka P-3B, 1 x 550 shp PT6A-20
- PC-7: Desig. introduced for 1967 Paris Air Show (Le Bourget)
- PC-7: 1975, aerobatic PT6A-25 engine, redesigned tailplanes
- PC-7: 1979, Series standard PC-7, redesigned tail & canopy
- PC-7/CH: 1981 Fliegertruppe order for 40 x PC-7 trainers
- NCPC-7: 2006, FF Tp PC-7/CH IFR 'glass' cockpit upgrade
-- NCPC-7 = 'New Cockpit PC-7'), x 28 upgraded FF Tp a/c
- PC-7 Mk II: 1992 PC-9 airframe/avionics, 550 shp PT6A-25C
--

PC-8 - 1967 Twin Porter, twin-engined* P.C.6 Porter convers, x 1
- P.C.8 : [Project] as 1st proposed, two nose engines (Do 28 style)
- P.C.8D: 2 x 290 hp Lycoming IO-540-GIBs, span 15.6 m, 1 + 9 pax
-- * Engines mounted on a stub-wing over windscreen (no loads on wing)
-- http://www.flightglobal.com/pdfarchive/view/1968/1968%20-%200446.html
- P.C.8[?]: [Project] proposed P.C.8D turboprop derivative
-- aka Projekt 26025 (Astazou XII, PT6-A20, or Garrett TPE-331)

PC-9 - [Project] 1969 transport studies by Ing. Karl Wöllner
- PC-9 : Utility transport, stretched PC-6 Turbo Porter
- PC-9B: (I) Turboprop development of PC-8D, 2 x PT6As
- PC-9B: (II) 'Module Porter', Porter with belly cargo carrier

PC-9 - 1984 turboprop tandem-seat advanced military trainer
- PC-9 : 2-seat 'Basic Trainer Aircraft', PT6A- span, 10.19 m
- PC-9/A: RAAF variant, licence built by Hawker De Havilland
- PC-9B : Luftwaffe 2-seat target tug (Southwest RM-24 winches)
- PC-9 M: 1997 'glass' cockpit vers., 900-950 shp PT6A-62
- PC-9 Mk II: Version for US JPATS, aka Beech Pilatus PC-9 Mk.2*
-- * Becomes USAF/USN Beechcraft T-6A Texan II

PC-10 - [Project] 1966-1974 Twin Porter concepts
- PC-10 Twin Porter: 1966, braced wings, tricycle u/c, 2 x 500 hp engines
-- Same as PC-10 MiniTwin [??], 11 seat, leftside loading door
- PC-10 Twin Porter: 1974, cantilever wings, tricycle u/c, 2 x P6A
-- Same as Twin Projekt PC-10B [??], 16 seat, rear fuselage loading door
-- http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-O-FISDBsP3g/TrOdfMvaE5I/AAAAAAAACHg/PthbnDo0Ahw/s1600/Page%2Braccord%25C3%25A9e%2B1_2.jpg
-- http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,8379.msg74313.html#msg74313

PC-11 - 1972 all-metal single-seat 'Standard' glider, span 15 m
- PC-11 : 1972, licenced Firma Rheintalwerke G. Basten B-4 glider
-- aka Pilatus B4-PC11
- PC-11A : 197?, B4-PC11A, stressed for higher gs, inverted loops
- PC-11AF: 1975, B4-PC11AF, fully aerobatic glider
- PC-XM: [Project] motoglider, 1 x 65 hp Limbach-VW HO-4 conv.

PC-12 - 1991 single-engined executive/lt transport turboprop
- PC-XII : Initial marketing designation for PC-12
- PC-12/41 : 1994 initial prod'n model, PT6A-67B engine
- PC-12/45 : 1996 prod'n model, PT6A-67B, increased 4,500 kg MTOW
- PC-12/47 : 2005 prod'n model, MTOW increased to 4,740 kg
- PC-12/47E: 2008 vers., upgraded avionics, 1200 shp PT6A-67P
-- PC-12/47E: aka PC-12 NG (Next Generation) for marketing purposes
- PC-12M: Multipurpose variant, more powerful electrical systems
-- PC-12M Spectre*: Marketing name for special missions platform PC-12M
-- * PC-12M Spectre originally marketed in the US as PC-12 Eagle

NB: After PC-12, the Pilatus designations become non-sequential

PC-21 - 2002 turboprop tandem-seat advanced military trainer
- PC-21: 1 x 1600 shp PT6A-68B, span 9.108 m, x 131+

PC-24 - (2015) short-field light twin-jet a/c, 10 pax, span 16.8 m
- PC-24: 2 x 3,400 lbf Williams International FJ44-4A turbofans
-- http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,16137.msg154926.html

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Stargazer2006

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Impeccable work, Apophenia, as usual. Thanks for this!
 

hesham

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Amazing work as usual my dear Apophenia
 

Apophenia

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Thanks folks!

One initial puzzle was the SB-2 is referred to as both the 'Pelican' and 'Pelikan'. Alain Genève explains why: "... SB-2 'Pelikan' ou (Pelican comme peint sur sur le fuselage)". That makes it sound like the German 'Pelikan' was preferred but 'Pelican' was the spelling of the name painted onto the prototype (presumably from the French pélican). http://pilatus-history-and-news.blogspot.com/2010/09/pilatus-sb2.html

What M. Genève has to say about the SB-5 project has already been related by Skyblazer. http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,8379.msg159699.html#msg159699

The Pilatus History and News blog notes that the SB-2 sprang out of the Schweizerisher Flugtechnischer of Zürich. Alas, that doesn't get us any closing to knowing what the 'SB' stood for. See the Pilatus History and News blog for other Pilatus projects too: http://pilatus-history-and-news.blogspot.ca/2010/10/pilatusles-projets.html

BTW, that blog also mentions the unbuilt PC-11/B4-based PC-XM motoglider project ... but I have no clue what that 'XM' stood for either :p
 

Stargazer2006

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I should think that "XM" must have stood for "Experimental Motorglider"...

As for SB-, it's not uncommon for certain companies to use the initials of the designer as prefixes, so it would be interesting to know who was in charge of the Pilatus design bureau at the time of the SB-2 and SB-5.

Finally, Switzerland being a country with FOUR official languages (and the only one I think), "Pelikan" and "Pelican" are just as legit depending on whether you come from the French-speaking or the German-speaking part of the country. The presence of both spellings may therefore depend on whether the name appeared in German language or French language documents. Just a thought...
 

Apophenia

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"Experimental Motorglider" for PC-XM sounds highly plausible.

I wondered about designer(s) names for that SB prefix as well. So, as you say, those names could have come from the Pilatus design department. Or, they may have come from the Schweizerisher Flugtechnischer ... about which Google was less than helpful :p

And, if there was an SB-2 and a SB-5, can we reasonably assume that an SB-1, SB-3, and SB-4 reached at least back-of-the-envelope stages of design?

Skyblazer said:
Finally, Switzerland being a country with FOUR official languages (and the only one I think), "Pelikan" and "Pelican" are just as legit depending on whether you come from the French-speaking or the German-speaking part of the country. The presence of both spellings may therefore depend on whether the name appeared in German language or French language documents. Just a thought...
So the official, quadriliguial name may have been SB-2 Pelikan/Pélican/Pellicano/Pelican ;D
 

Stargazer2006

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Skyblazer said:
So the official, quadriliguial name may have been SB-2 Pelikan/Pélican/Pellicano/Pelican ;D
Totally! :D

Apophenia said:
And, if there was an SB-2 and a SB-5, can we reasonably assume that an SB-1, SB-3, and SB-4 reached at least back-of-the-envelope stages of design?
Sure. But there may be more mysteries yet... What do you make of this "Pilatus 3B-2 Feeder Aircraft" mentioned in a 1944 publication? (see attachment)
 

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Stargazer2006

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Just thought of something: probably was a typo for "SB-2"... :-[
 

Apophenia

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Probably a typo ... but where were the proofreader's eyes? :D
 

Apophenia

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Interesting. And obviously taking advantage of design experience inherited when Pilatus' purchased Britten-Norman :D

BTW: I see the odd reference to Pilatus 'P for project' designations but didn't include any of them in my P/PC designation list.
 

hesham

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By the way,

the PC-10 accommodated 16-passenger and had 4700 kg weight.
 

Apophenia

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Hesham: There were a series of different PC-10 concepts. The first was a turboprop PC-8D derivative - so a 10-seater. The second was the MiniTwin - an 11-seater. The third was the design you refer to - the 16-seat Twin Projekt PC-10B.
 

hesham

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That's right my dear Apophenia,

I meant the PC-10B.
 

Kuno

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Apophenia said:
Alas, that doesn't get us any closing to knowing what the 'SB' stood for.
Here I can help - "SB" ist the abbreviation for "Schweizerisches Bergflugzeug" (Swiss Mountain-Aircraft)
 

hesham

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Kuno said:
Here I can help - "SB" ist the abbreviation for "Schweizerisches Bergflugzeug" (Swiss Mountain-Aircraft)
Hi Kuno,

is that mean a high altitude aircraft ?.
 

perttime

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^^ More like: suitable for operating in the mountains, I think.
A Swiss interpretation of bush plane.
 

hesham

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perttime said:
^^ More like: suitable for operating in the mountains, I think.
A Swiss interpretation of bush plane.
Thanks.
 

Maveric

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Schweizerisches Bergflugzeug-2 (Swiss Mountain-Aircraft)...

Any informations about the S.B.1?
 

richard B

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Two modified PC 11 motorglider :

This one (photo upper-left) is shown at the Luftfahrt und Technik Museum Merseburg (Germany)

https://hiveminer.com/Tags/pc11%2Cpilatus/Timeline

"Sarjano" in Finland (scroll to PP14 etc)

https://www.ilmailuliitto.fi/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/012017.pdf

I would like to see a picture of the Australian Lynch B4M1 :

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pilatus_B-4
 
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