De Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter Fuel Consumption: Exploring the Efficiency

The de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter, renowned for it’s versatility and reliability, is an iconic aircraft widely utilized in various industries, from passenger transportation to remote operations in challenging environments. Amidst the intricacies of aircraft performance, one crucial aspect that holds the attention of operators is fuel consumption. As aviation seeks to optimize efficiency and reduce environmental impact, understanding the Twin Otter's fuel consumption becomes paramount. When considering a payload for a range of 400 nautical miles (741 km), it’s essential to assess the aircraft's fuel requirements to ensure operational feasibility and cost-effectiveness. With a payload capacity of 3,031 lbs. (1,375 kg.), determining fuel consumption becomes crucial. Based on an average ground speed of 165kts, a typical sector fuel burn of 575lb per hour has been observed, considering a fuel cost of $6 per US Gallon. However, for those aiming for a higher ground speed of 175kts, it’s advisable to consider a typical sector fuel burn of 640lbs. Mastering the intricacies of fuel consumption in the de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter is instrumental in planning successful flights while balancing both financial and operational considerations.

How Fast Does an Otter Plane Go?

The otter plane, specifically the de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter, is known for it’s impressive speed range. This versatile aircraft has the capability to fly at speeds ranging from 80 to 160 knots. It’s exceptional maneuverability and rugged design make it ideal for various purposes.

The low stall speeds of the Twin Otter, combined with it’s abundant power, contribute to it’s safety and efficiency. This aircraft can handle takeoff and landing on short runways, thanks to it’s Short Takeoff and Landing (STOL) capabilities. It offers excellent performance in challenging terrains, making it suitable for surveys that require drape flying over rough topography.

The Twin Otter is also capable of maintaining low air speeds when necessary, allowing for precise and controlled flights. This feature is particularly beneficial for aerial surveys or missions that demand detailed observations.

Originally produced from 1965 to 1988 by de Havilland Canada, production of the Twin Otter was restarted in 2008 by Viking Air after acquiring the type certificate. This iconic aircraft has proven it’s reliability and continued to adapt to modern aviation standards over the years.

It’s low stall speeds and abundant power provide the necessary safety and efficiency for successful missions.

The Technical Specifications of the Otter Plane, Such as It’s Engine Power, Fuel Efficiency, and Payload Capacity

  • Engine Power
  • Fuel Efficiency
  • Payload Capacity

The De Havilland DHC-6 Twin Otter, Series 300, uses the United Aircraft of Canada Limited PT6A-27 turboprop engine. This type of aircraft is designed to run on jet fuel, with a fuel load capacity of 2,500 lbs. There’s also an optional cabin auxiliary tank that can add an additional 1,000 lbs. of fuel, although this reduces the aircraft’s maximum payload capacity.

What Kind of Fuel Does a Twin Otter Use?

The De Havilland DHC-6 Twin Otter, Series 300, manufactured by United Aircraft of Canada Limited, is equipped with PT6A-27 engines. These engines are turboprops, which means they use a combination of jet fuel and air to create thrust. This type of engine is known for it’s reliability and efficiency, making it a popular choice for aircraft like the Twin Otter.

The fuel load for the Twin Otter is 2,500 pounds, but it can be increased by an additional 1,000 pounds if an optional cabin auxiliary tank is installed. It’s important to note that installing the auxiliary tank will reduce the useful load of the aircraft, so this option may not be suitable for all flights.

As for the type of fuel used, the Twin Otter requires jet fuel. Jet fuel is a type of kerosene that’s been specially refined for use in aircraft. It’s designed to have a low freezing point and high energy content, making it ideal for powering jet engines and turboprops like those found on the Twin Otter.

It’s important to ensure that the fuel used meets the appropriate specifications and quality standards to ensure the safe and efficient operation of the aircraft.

With a fuel load of 2,500 pounds, it’s the capability to carry an additional 1,000 pounds with the installation of an optional cabin auxiliary tank.

Maintenance and Safety Considerations for Fuel Storage and Handling in Twin Otter

Maintenance and safety considerations for fuel storage and handling in Twin Otter aircraft involve several important measures to ensure the proper functioning and safety of the fuel system. These include regular inspection and maintenance of fuel tanks, fuel lines, and fuel pumps to detect any leaks or damage that could lead to fuel spills or fires. Additionally, fuel should be stored in approved containers and kept away from heat sources or open flames to prevent ignition. Proper grounding of the aircraft and use of static dissipaters help to minimize the risk of static electricity-induced accidents. Pilots and ground crew should also receive training on proper fuel handling procedures, emergency response protocols, and fire suppression techniques to ensure the highest level of safety during refueling operations. By adhering to these maintenance and safety practices, the risk of fuel-related incidents can be significantly reduced.

How Much Is a DC 6 Twin Otter?

This versatile and reliable aircraft, known for it’s short takeoff and landing capabilities, has become a favorite among operators worldwide. The cost of a DC 6 twin otter largely depends on it’s condition, age, maintenance history, avionics package, and modifications.

The average price of $4,500,000.00 mentioned earlier is subject to change and may vary significantly. Buyers should take into account factors such as interior refurbishment, engine upgrades, and any additional equipment installed. It’s essential to thoroughly inspect the aircraft and review it’s logbooks to determine it’s value accurately.

The Twin Otter is a popular choice for various missions, including passenger transport, cargo delivery, and skydiving operations. It’s rugged design and ability to operate in harsh environments make it a preferred option for remote locations and short-haul routes. With seating capacity for up to 19 passengers, it offers versatility for both commercial and private operators.

Finally, it’s important to keep in mind that aircraft prices can fluctuate due to market demand, global economic conditions, and other factors.

Common Modifications and Upgrades for the DC 6 Twin Otter

  • Engine upgrades
  • Avionics upgrades
  • Interior modifications
  • Wingtip extensions
  • Strengthened landing gear
  • Cargo door modifications
  • Installation of floats for water landings
  • Increased fuel capacity
  • Improved cabin pressurization system
  • Custom paint schemes

Source: de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter

Moving on to the next topic, let’s explore the various considerations and features associated with the turbine otter, and delve into it’s performance and capabilities.

How Much Does a Turbine Otter Cost?

However, it’s important to note that this price can vary significantly depending on various factors such as the age of the aircraft, it’s overall condition, the number of flight hours it’s accumulated, and any additional modifications or equipment installations.

In terms of age, older models of the Turbine Otter tend to have a lower price tag due to their decreased market demand and usage. Conversely, newer models are likely to be priced higher as they offer advanced features and technology.

The overall condition of the aircraft also plays a crucial role in determining it’s cost.

Flight hours accumulated by the aircraft are another critical factor affecting it’s price. Turbine Otters with fewer flight hours will generally be priced higher as they’re considered to have a longer potential lifespan and fewer wear and tear issues.

The inclusion of any additional modifications or equipment installations can also impact the final price. Aircraft equipped with specialized avionics, upgraded interiors, or other modifications will typically have a higher price due to the added value and enhanced capabilities.

Overall, while the average cost for a pre-owned Turbine Otter hovers around $1,500,000.00, potential buyers should consider these factors and consult with aviation professionals to get an accurate estimate based on their specific requirements and preferences.

Flight Hours and It’s Effects on the Cost of a Turbine Otter

  • Flight hours determine the maintenance schedule and costs of a turbine Otter.
  • Increasing flight hours usually leads to higher maintenance expenses.
  • The more hours a turbine Otter flies, the more wear and tear it experiences.
  • This wear and tear requires more frequent inspections and component replacements.
  • Regular maintenance helps to identify and address potential issues before they become major problems.
  • Increased flight hours also impact the lifespan of the aircraft.
  • Components may need to be replaced earlier due to higher usage.
  • Flight hours should be closely monitored to ensure the safety and efficiency of the aircraft.
  • Proper maintenance and adherence to recommended flight hour limits are crucial for cost-effective operations.
  • Flight time logs are essential for tracking the usage and planning maintenance activities.


With a payload of 3,031 lbs., this aircraft proves it’s capability in delivering goods and passengers efficiently. It’s also essential to acknowledge the impact of fuel costs, with an average price of $6 per US Gallon.

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