The ATR 42 is a passenger transport aircraft belonging to the French regional transport aircraft group. This aircraft made its first flight on August 16, 1984 and was put into service on December 9, 1985. There is another version called the ATR 72, as well as a cargo version. A special arrangement was also carried out for Alenia Aeronautica, on a dozen ATR 42 for the maritime surveillance. They were delivered to the Coast Guard and Italian Customs Patrol.
The ATR 42 is available in -300 and -500 versions. The -500 version, a variation of the initial model -300, appeared in 1995. It has powerful Pratt and Whitney engines E to reduce vibration. This provides better comfort for passengers. The objective of the ATR consortium is to compete with jets on short routes.
The ATR 42 Cargo offers a cargo hold of 56 m3 and 30 m3 in the ATR42-500 Quick Change. For the ATR 42 MP Surveyor version, the aircraft is used for maritime patrol by the Italian Coast Guard. They are aimed at sea surveillance, research and identification of vessels, search and rescue at sea, combating drug trafficking, smuggling and piracy, monitoring of hydrocarbons and chemical pollution and the monitoring of specific economic zones such as fishing or oil rigs. It also has secondary missions such as the transport of personnel, paratroopers and freight, freight, medical evacuations and civil protection.
The ATR 42 has a configuration with high wings, a tapered cone with a very elongated tip, and a bulge under the fuselage. Its secondary structures are mainly made of polymers. The use of polymers has been designed to lighten the aircraft. Polymers account for about 20% of the total structure of ATR 42-500.
The ATR 42 MP Surveyor is used for maritime patrol by the Italian coast guard (12 aircraft). Their missions are surveillance at sea, search and identification of ships, search and rescue at sea, fight against drug trafficking, smuggling and piracy, environmental monitoring (hydrocarbon and chemical pollution) and surveillance of specific economic zones (fishing, oil platforms). Its secondary missions are the transport of personnel, paratroopers and goods, freight, medical evacuation and civil protection.