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What is a Ground Power Unit?

Ground Power Unit (GPU) is an electrical device which powers an aircraft while on the ground. Most aircraft use a fixed or portable ground power unit as one of the electrical systems to allow the aircraft to start and function while flying through the air. 

How Does a Ground Power Unit Work (GPU)?

A ground power unit works in conjunction with the battery, which stores the energy during take-off into the batteries for onward flight. The GPU can be fixed to a runway or can be mobile, depending on the height and weight of the aircraft.
Ground-based GPU's are similar to what you would find in an avionics suite on an aircraft. They are designed for use with aircraft that are low and slow to take off. Most pilots prefer the ability to start the aircraft from ground level using a remote starter rather than being required to initiate a take-off manually.

As an example, if the airplane requires you to manually start the engine prior to take-off, an additional ground power unit (GPU) is added to your aircraft to make up for the shortfall in power required. With an unpressurized GPU, the pressure on the throttle is reduced, allowing the aircraft to fly more gently and at slower speeds. Although not as strong as its pressurized counterpart, a GPU offers greater protection to your aircraft in the event of low pressure.

Most modern aircraft come with both ground power units and a battery. The GPU is connected to the positive (or "white") wire on the battery, whilst the battery is connected to the negative (or "red" wire). 

Ground power units for aircraft typically include a wire harness with terminals for the battery and throttle control. Ground power units will provide electrical power to your electrical components such as the brakes, flight instruments, rudder, lights, etc.

Most of an aircraft's power requirements will be fulfilled by a GPU, although a backup battery will probably be required in some situations. If you opt for an unpressurized GPU, you will find that these units are available in several different sizes. For ease of sizing, your aircraft wiring will be required to match the correct size of GPU to the correct sized battery. This can be a major hassle when looking at the wiring, so many new manufacturers have adopted the "standardized" wire harnesses, which eliminate the hassle.

As you can see, ground power units provide excellent aircraft electrical performance and are very reliable. When selecting your ground power units, make sure that the aircraft model you will be flying matches the size and power requirements of the Ground Source Unit. This will ensure that you receive the best flight capabilities from your aircraft system.

Learn more about Power All Systems' ground power units for aircrafts. Contact us here or call 321-237-0495