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A friend of mine saw this plane at Tampa Bay International Airport recently:

Plane

It has an odd combination of a negative dihedral and pylonless overwing engines, all traits I've seen individually but not together.

Does anyone know what this plane is, and what its purpose is?

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    $\begingroup$ Could be... the wings/engine were built or fitted in Australia? $\endgroup$ – Criggie May 26 '17 at 12:41
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    $\begingroup$ Is it built by Pokemon? $\endgroup$ – Koyovis May 27 '17 at 23:43
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If I am not horribly mistaken, it seems to be an Antonov 72 or 74, that were produced together, hence the similarity.

Another image (not included for copyright reasons) can be found here.

The wikipedia article classifies it as a "transport aircraft". It mentions a VIP transport variant and a maritime patrol one for the An72, several more variants are listed for the An74 version.


EDIT:

Flightradar24 lists only one An72 in the possession of CAVOK Air (thanks to bjelleklang for identifying the livery), registration UR-CKC.

The historical data indicates that this aircraft landed in Tampa on the 24th of May after a stop in St. John's on its way from Reykjavik.

screen shot of extract of plane's flight history


It has an odd combination of a negative dihedral and pylonless overwing engines, all traits I've seen individually but not together.

Concerning the anhedral (the name of "negative dihedral") angle, you can find more info here, but we can summarize here that it has more to do with the high wing mount rather than the engine one.

The overwing mount of the engine contributes to reducing the risk of foreign object ingestion on unpaved runways.


Update:

The aircraft has been damaged beyond repair in a runway overrun accident occurred on Jul 29th 2017.

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  • $\begingroup$ Wow! This was way more information than I was ever expecting! Thanks! $\endgroup$ – Timpanus May 26 '17 at 15:30
  • $\begingroup$ The forward mounting of the overwing engines, blowing exhaust over the upper surface of the wing, also contributes to lift via Coandă effect which helps with short-takeoff performance. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coandă_effect $\endgroup$ – Russell Borogove May 28 '17 at 6:45
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    $\begingroup$ An-74 is a special variant of the -72 for arctic operations, hence the similarities. The aircraft was designed as a tactical military transport for operation on short, unpaved, runways. The US had a similar aircraft around that time but it never entered production, the YC-14. The -74 was later built in more versions for military (and some civilian, probably military surplus) operators. $\endgroup$ – jwenting Aug 10 '17 at 6:47
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Looks like it could be a An-74 from CAVOK Air based on the paint scheme. There appears to be some in non-military ownership, but for this airplane it's difficult to say who owns it due to the low resolution.

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  • $\begingroup$ In particular, Wikipedia says that CAVOK Air's AN-74 is operated under contract to the US Dept of Transportation, so this sounds pretty plausible. $\endgroup$ – David Richerby May 27 '17 at 9:18
  • $\begingroup$ Probably correct. While the lettering is hard to read, this seems to be UR-CKC and the text underneath the cockpit would say AN74TK-100 $\endgroup$ – MSalters May 27 '17 at 11:10
  • $\begingroup$ Seems like the aircraft is written off. According to Wikipedia: On 29 July 2017, Antonov An-74TK100 UR-CKC crashed on take-off from São Tomé International Airport and was damaged beyond repair. A birdstrike was reported and the aircraft overran the end of the runway whilst attempting to abort the take-off. $\endgroup$ – jwenting Aug 10 '17 at 6:50

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