<a href=”https://theaviationist.com/” rel=no-follow”>The Aviationist reports that the Pakistan Navy ATR-72-500 will be converted by Rheinland Air Service (RAS) into a Maritime Patrol Aircraft version, called a RAS-72-500 “Sea Eagle”. The ATR-72-500, with serial 77, arrived at Mönchengladbach airport, Germany, after a two-day flight. The aircraft departed PNS Mehran near Karachi, made an overnight stop at Izmir-Adnan Menderes and arrived in Germany at 10:15 in the morning. The “77″ is the third Pakistan Navy ATR which will be converted by RAS to the “Sea Eagle” variant. Earlier the 78 and 79 where already equipped as Maritime Patrol Aircraft. A fourth ATR, the 76, could still be converted in the future.
The Pakistan Navy inducted the second of two ATR-72 twin-engine turboprops converted into maritime patrol aircraft (MPA) by Germany-based company Rheinland Air Service (RAS) under a contract signed in 2015. The first aircraft, which was handed over by RAS in June 2018, re-entered service with the PN on 12 December 2018 in a ceremony held at naval air station PNS Mehran in Karachi (both ATR-72s had previously been in service with the PN as transports). The RAS 72 MPA which is now known as the RAS 72 Sea Eagle is equipped with a long-range, active electronically scanned array (AESA) multimode radar, as well as electro-optic/infrared (EO/IR) sensors to deliver aerial, maritime, and ground surveillance.
The platform also features an acoustic processing system, sonobuoy launchers, a broadband satellite communications system, an electronic support measures suite, a self-protection suite, and two weapon hard-points, enabling anti-submarine warfare (ASW) and maritime patrol capabilities. The PN’s two RAS 72 Sea Eagles also feature Aerodata’s mission management system, called AeroMission, for ASW. The RAS 72 multirole aircraft offers unrivalled efficiency as well as operational flexibility not only for anti-submarine warfare and maritime patrol missions, but also for search and rescue and other humanitarian operations.
Rheinland Air Service (RAS), established in 1972, is a German MRO providing comprehensive FAA and EASA Part 145-approved aircraft maintenance, part-out services, and special mission modifications for commercial and business aircraft. In addition, RAS offers spare parts, aircraft sales, special mission aircraft design, integrations and modifications as well as ground handling and fueling services. The company, headquatered in Mönchengladbach, employs 270 staff at four German locations. RAS` special mission division provides tailored turnkey solutions for various fixed and rotary wing airborne platforms and mission systems.