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The Aviat Husky is a two seat, high wing, utility light aircraft built by Aviat Aircraft of Afton, Wyoming .
It is the only all-new light aircraft that was designed and entered series production in the United States in the mid to late 1980s.
Design work by Christen Industries began in 1985. The aircraft is one of the few in its class designed with the benefit of CAD software . The prototype first flew in 1986 , and certification was awarded the following year.
The Husky has been one of the best-selling light aircraft designs of the last twenty years, with more than 650 sold since production began.
The plane features a braced high wing, tandem seating and dual controls. The structure is steel tube frames and Dacron covering over all but the rear of the fuselage , plus metal leading edges on the wings. The high wing was selected for good all-around visibility, making the Husky ideal for observation and patrol roles. Power is supplied by a relatively powerful (for the Husky's weight) Textron Lycoming O-360 flat four piston engine turning a constant speed propeller . The Husky's high power loading and low wing loading result in good short-field performance.
Options include floats, skis and banner and glider tow hooks.
The aircraft has been used for observation duties, fisheries patrol, pipeline inspection, glider towing, border patrol and other utility missions. Notable users include the US Department of the Interior and Agriculture and the Kenya Wildlife Service , which flies seven on aerial patrols of elephant herds as part of the fight against illegal ivory poaching .
The Husky comes in six versions:
Certified on 1 May 1987. Maximum gross weight is . Powered by a Lycoming 0-360-A1P or a Lycoming O-360-C1G of
Certified on 28 January 1998. Maximum gross weight is . Powered by a Lycoming 0-360-A1P of
Certified on 28 January 1998. Powered by a Lycoming 0-360-A1P of The A-1B can be modified to accept a Lycoming IO-360-A1D6 engine of and an MT MTV-15-B/205-58 propeller under an STC .
Husky A-1B-160 Pup
Certified on 18 August 2003 without flaps and 21 October 2005 with flaps. Powered by a Lycoming 0-320-D2A , . The Pup has a smaller engine, a gross weight of and a useful load of
Certified on 24 September 2007. Powered by a Lycoming 0-360-A1P of . The 180 has a gross weight of and a useful load of
Certified on 24 September 2007. Powered by a Lycoming IO-360-A1D6 of . The 200 has a gross weight of and a useful load of
* U.S. Border Patrol (until 1989)
Accidents and incidents
* On 14 July 1989 a Husky A-1 operated by the U.S. Border Patrol crashed in flat desert terrain in Arizona while tracking footprints near the US-Mexican border, killing the pilot. The aircraft was flying with flaps set at 20 degrees, while the pilot operating handbook recommends 30 degrees for all maneuvering with flaps extended and indicates that a loss of altitude of 150 feet can be expected in a power-off stall condition. The US National Transportation Safety Board determined the cause of the accident to be "failure of the pilot to maintain adequate airspeed, which resulted in a stall. The lack of altitude for recovery was a related factor." The U.S. Border Patrol eliminated the Husky from its inventory following this accident.