The S-2T was commissioned to replace the fleet of S-2A airtankers with a faster and more maneuverable aircraft. This model has been in operation since 1996, although the airframes are as old as 1958 with the newest being 1975.
The S-2T is based on surplus S-2E/G anti-submarine warfare aircraft purchased from the United States Navy. The aircraft were outfitted with upgraded turbo-prop engines to allow the planes to carry a greater load of fire retardant.
Conair Aviation Ltd of Canada began similar turbo-prop conversions in 1988 using the name Turbo Firecat. These aircraft were in service in Canada until 2012. France continues to operate a small fleet of Turbo Firecats with the Securite Civile.
- Manufacturer: Grumman Aerospace
- Crew: 1 pilot
- Payload: 1,200 gallons (4,542 ) fire retardant
- Gross Weight: 29,150 pounds (13,200 kg)
- Max. Operating Speed: 270 mph (430 kph)
- Range: Loaded: 500 miles/Empty: 800 miles (800 km/1,280 km)
- Wing Span: 73 feet (22.3 m)
- Endurance: 4.5 hours
- Engines: Two Garrett TPE331-14GR turbine engines. (1,650 horsepower each)