Portable Power Supplies for Aviation

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Aircraft and locomotive turbine engines are reliant upon batteries that must carry a great deal of starting voltage to power engines. Typically, aircraft engines require a 24-volt battery rather than the previously required 12-volt battery. This battery is lighter and requires lighter wiring, reducing the weight of the electrical system in the aircraft. Modern turbine engines do need a great deal of extra energy to start the engine and then charge the 24-volt battery to its pre-starting capacity.

To achieve this starting voltage and reduce wear and tear on batteries, a portable power supply is recommended to extend battery life. Typically, under normal stress, these batteries last for about 400 stress cycles of discharge and recharge. That means that the batteries are good for only 400 starts before needing replacement. With a power supply, the voltage can be boosted, reducing the sulfation of the battery.

portable power supplies
Photo credits: startpac.com

The portable power supplies, themselves, can be purchased with either lithium-ion batteries or lead-acid batteries. The advantage of lithium-ion is the lighter weight and freedom from sulfation, whereas the lead-acid is less expensive. Choices are available on the market. Contact with the manufacturer can give graphs and schematics indicating the value of each.

Cold weather in particular causes a great deal of stress on batteries and reduces their starting voltage necessary to run starter motors or motor/generators on turbine engines. Power supplies boost that voltage so the aircraft can start reliably every time even in the extreme weather experienced in the northern United States, Canada, Alaska, as well as the remainder of the world.

These portable power supplies are useful for racing aircraft, demonstration aircraft, and the aircraft maintained by individuals living in isolated areas where a small aircraft is vital to survival and access to the outer world. Reliable, efficient engine boosting can be a lifesaver for someone off the grid in Alaska or Australia.

Aircraft owners and airports will be pleased with both the affordability and portability of this American-made and American-reliable equipment available for personal or airport use. Properly maintained and operated power supplies will last for years without difficulty.

 

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