What is the hourly fuel consumption of an ATR 72-500?

Air Travel

By Kristy Tolley

Understanding the ATR 72-500

The ATR 72-500 is a popular twin-engine turboprop aircraft used for regional and short-haul flights. It is designed and manufactured by ATR, a joint venture between Airbus and Leonardo. The ATR 72-500 has a seating capacity of up to 78 passengers and a maximum range of 1,500 nautical miles. It is used by many airlines worldwide, including regional carriers and major airlines.

Fuel Consumption: What is it?

Fuel consumption refers to the amount of fuel used by an aircraft per unit of time. It is an important factor in the operation of an aircraft, as it affects the range, payload, and operating costs. Fuel consumption is influenced by various factors, such as the type of engine, altitude, airspeed, and weather conditions. It is typically measured in gallons or liters per hour (GPH or LPH).

Factors Affecting Fuel Consumption

Several factors can affect the fuel consumption of an aircraft, including:

  • Engine type and efficiency: Turboprop engines are generally less fuel-efficient than jet engines, but they are more suitable for short-haul flights.
  • Altitude and airspeed: Higher altitudes and lower airspeeds can reduce fuel consumption, as the air is thinner and the drag is lower.
  • Weight and payload: Heavier aircraft and payloads require more fuel to maintain the same speed and altitude.
  • Weather conditions: Strong headwinds, turbulence, and icing can increase fuel consumption.

What Determines the ATR 72-500’s Fuel Economy?

The ATR 72-500’s fuel economy is determined by several factors, including:

  • Engine type and efficiency: The ATR 72-500 is powered by two Pratt & Whitney Canada PW127F turboprop engines, which are known for their reliability and fuel efficiency.
  • Payload and range: The ATR 72-500’s fuel consumption varies depending on the payload and range of the flight.
  • Flight profile: The ATR 72-500’s fuel consumption is influenced by the altitude, airspeed, and weather conditions of the flight.

How to Calculate Hourly Fuel Consumption

Hourly fuel consumption can be calculated by dividing the total fuel used by the total flight time. For example, if an ATR 72-500 uses 2,000 gallons of fuel during a 4-hour flight, its hourly fuel consumption is 500 gallons per hour (GPH).

ATR 72-500’s Hourly Fuel Consumption: A Comparative Analysis

The ATR 72-500’s hourly fuel consumption varies depending on the flight profile, but it typically ranges from 500 to 700 GPH. This is lower than the fuel consumption of many jet aircraft, which can range from 1,000 to 3,000 GPH. However, the ATR 72-500’s fuel efficiency is higher than many other regional turboprop aircraft, such as the Bombardier Q400 and Embraer E-Jet E2.

Fuel Efficiency: A Key Consideration for Airlines

Fuel efficiency is a key consideration for airlines, as fuel costs can account for up to 30% of their operating expenses. By optimizing fuel consumption, airlines can reduce their costs and improve their profitability. Fuel efficiency is also important for environmental reasons, as it can reduce carbon emissions and contribute to a more sustainable aviation industry.

How to Optimize Fuel Consumption in the ATR 72-500

Several strategies can be used to optimize fuel consumption in the ATR 72-500, including:

  • Proper flight planning and route selection: This can help avoid adverse weather conditions, optimize the flight profile, and reduce fuel consumption.
  • Engine maintenance and performance monitoring: Regular maintenance and monitoring can ensure that the engines are operating at peak efficiency and reduce fuel consumption.
  • Efficient use of aircraft systems: Pilots can optimize fuel consumption by using the aircraft’s systems, such as the autopilot, to maintain the most efficient flight profile.
  • Weight management: Airlines can reduce fuel consumption by optimizing the weight of the aircraft and payload, such as by using lighter materials and reducing unnecessary cargo.

The Role of Pilot Training in Fuel Consumption

Pilot training is also an important factor in optimizing fuel consumption, as pilots play a critical role in controlling the aircraft’s flight profile and systems. By providing pilots with training on fuel-efficient techniques and procedures, airlines can further improve their fuel efficiency and reduce their operating costs.

Future trends in ATR 72-500’s fuel consumption are likely to focus on improving the efficiency of the engines and aircraft systems. This could include the development of more fuel-efficient engines, the use of electric and hybrid propulsion systems, and the integration of advanced avionics and data analytics to optimize flight profiles.

Conclusion: The Importance of Fuel Efficiency

Fuel efficiency is a critical factor in the operation of the ATR 72-500 and other aircraft, as it affects the range, payload, and operating costs. By optimizing fuel consumption, airlines can reduce their costs, improve their profitability, and contribute to a more sustainable aviation industry. By using the strategies and techniques outlined in this article, airlines can optimize the fuel consumption of their ATR 72-500 aircraft and achieve greater efficiency and profitability.

References: Sources of Information

  • ATR. (n.d.). ATR 72-500. Retrieved from https://www.atr-aircraft.com/aircraft/atr-72-500/
  • Pratt & Whitney Canada. (n.d.). PW100. Retrieved from
  • Boeing. (2019). Fuel Efficiency. Retrieved from
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Kristy Tolley

Kristy Tolley, an accomplished editor at TravelAsker, boasts a rich background in travel content creation. Before TravelAsker, she led editorial efforts at Red Ventures Puerto Rico, shaping content for Platea English. Kristy's extensive two-decade career spans writing and editing travel topics, from destinations to road trips. Her passion for travel and storytelling inspire readers to embark on their own journeys.

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