MCP Engineered Products Archives - Mark C. Pope Associates, Inc. - Ground Power Equipment

MCP’s Custom Engineered Trailer for the 2300 Series Frequency Converters

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Mark C. Pope Associates, Inc. – A Value-Added Dealer for Hobart Ground Power

MCP has been a dealer for Hobart Ground Power equipment for over 35 years. During this time, we have spent a great deal of time in our market speaking with customers regarding their requirements, operational difficulties, budget concerns and how they serve their customers. These conversations have helped us to discover needs that can’t easily be met with off-the-shelf configurations of ground power equipment; that is why we offer custom engineered solutions to help our customers do their jobs more efficiently. We have engineered several stationary distribution systems for regional airlines, designed the current trailer system that is currently used on Hobart’s GPU-400 and GPU-600, re-engineered and manufactured obsolete items for early model GPUs, designed remote mounted controls for GPU configurations and engineered optional equipment to reduce handling expenses when dealing with ground power equipment. One of our most current projects was to develop a trailer system for the new 2300 series frequency converters.

Designing for a Targeted Market

2300-widthThe 2300 Series Ground Power unit is a frequency converter that can be configured to output from 30 to 90kVA. This GPU is designed to provide power for general aviation, FBO’s (fixed base operators) and regional airlines. One of the highlights of this particular product is the size of the machine. In a horizontal configuration, it measures only 46″L x 22″W x 24.6″H.

The main focus of this project was to design a trailer system that made the equipment easy to operate while also maintaining the small footprint of the design. As you can see by the image, the trailer assembly maintains its narrow width and can easily fit through a standard doorway. This unique size allows the user to have a mobile unit that also respects the operating floor space. Floor space is always at a premium and the 2300 can easily fit in some of the smallest areas of your operation with this trailer.

Ergonomic Design for Easy Operation

2300-tow-barThe braking system is incorporated with the front pull/tow bar to allow for easy operation for the user. Lifting up on the pull/tow bar will apply a break to the front caster of the trailer system. This design provides more control to the user when moving the machine by hand and also makes sure that the break is actuated whenever the machine is put into place. The pull/tow bar lock can easily be disengaged with your foot making it easy to prepare for re-positioning, and the same locking feature will automatically engage when the pull/tow bar is placed back in the upright position.

Designed for Serviceability and Access

2300-modular-controlsThe 2300 can be configured with a remotely mounted operator control that can be used with several configuration choices. One of the goals with this design was to keep the height as low as possible to make it easier to maneuver around aircraft wings and other low hanging obstacles. As you can see in the image to the right, we are mounting a control box to the front of the machine at its highest point. This positioning offers the best protection for the device while also making it easy for the operator to see the readout and adjust the operation of the machine.

You will also notice that the design of the trailer system does not interfere with the serviceability of the ground power unit. The side panel of the machine has been removed showing you access to the modular design of the GPU. This design makes it easy to perform upgrades, repairs or maintenance to your ground power unit.

Extreme Maneuverability

2300-finished-mockThe trailer project is configured with a fifth-wheel design. This design provides the smallest turning radius and the most maneuverability for any machine in the class. The dual front casters, wide stance and low center of gravity gives this machine and trailer package the best stability possible. The addition of fork-lift pockets to the frame allows for easy transport and relocation of your equipment without the dangers of an unbalanced/unstable load.

One other design feature is the non-marking solid rubber caster. These casters make it much easier to move the equipment by hand and they will not mark up painted or epoxy floors. The tray assembly on the top of the machine also gives you space to stow cables while on the move.

Designed and Fabricated by Experienced GSE Personnel

2300-brianThe technician working on this project is our lead fabricator, Brian Fusian. Brian has been with MCP for over 15 years and has been in the GSE industry for his entire career. His fabrication skills were strong before he came to work with MCP and he has certainly been a big part of our success in the ground power market.

Scott O’Connell is the division manager at MCP for the ground power division and he is also the designer/engineer for this project. His conversations with customers, engineering background and industry experience helped him to design a trailer system that will be a perfect fit in your operation.

US Navy goes “Green on the Ground” with 10 new Hobart Frequency Converters

Pt. Mugu Frequency Converter Installation

Hobart PoWerMaster ADV 180KVA Ground Power Units on Pad 4

On April 16, 2014, MCP completed the commissioning of ten new Hobart Ground Power Units at Airborne Command Control & Logistics Wing, Point Mugu Naval Air Station. The purpose of this project was to replace the existing 400hz power converters on the ramp with the latest in current technology. This last installation completes the population of the entire Flight Line Electrical Distribution System (FLEDS) with state-of-the art Hobart frequency converters.
Seven new converters were installed on the ramp and three were installed in the hangar completing a 6 year long project that was originally spearheaded by Ms. Stephanie Tagliaferri of Naval Industrial Services Support. These units will provide energy efficient, high quality power to E-2C and E-2D Hawkeye Aircraft, including other military and commercial aircraft with 400hz power requirements.

Among the many new benefits of this installation:

Higher energy efficiency and reduced greenhouse emissions – Hobart solid state frequency converters convert 60Hz “Shore Power” to 400Hz aircraft power by using sophisticated solid state electronics, rather than older rotary motor generators or diesel gensets. And since there is no diesel engine involved, there are no greenhouse emissions or particulates to contaminate the air. And with the high energy efficiency of these power units, energy costs are reduced significantly. Noise levels are reduced significantly as well.

New Safety Features – These new units also incorporate a new second generation military cable interlock system which senses the power cable attachment to the aircraft. If the power cable is not properly inserted into the aircraft power receptacle, the Hobart unit will not deliver power. And, if a power cord is removed while the aircraft is energized, the unit de-energizes automatically and the cable is “dead” even before the plug is pulled completely out of the aircraft. This eliminates any shock hazard to the ramp operator. Therefore, the interlock circuitry prevents “hot“ power conductors to be exposed near hands, aircraft, fuel vapors or GSE.

One Man Operation – Now, the operator can insert the power cables into the aircraft and merely press the “on” button at the Hobart control panel. No longer are two operators required to energize the aircraft, nor will there be time lost through miscommunications between GSE personnel.

Project Installation:

After the converters were installed by the local electrical contractor, MCP arrived to complete installation of the new cable interlock kits, tested each converter and conducted training classes.

Pt. Mugu LoadTestingCalibration of the Frequency Converters

Calibration and Load Testing

Testing – MCP used portable load banks to fully test each power unit prior to actual aircraft use. Doing so ensures that we have the best power quality at each and every aircraft location. Each converter and cable were calibrated for proper voltage under full operating load and also tested for proper safety interlock operation.

Pt-Mugu-in-usePt-Mugu-training

Training: “Just plug in the cables, press the ‘On’ button!”

Training – MCP Personnel conducted three training sessions on April 16, emphasizing the ease of use and safety factors of these new systems.

Pt. Mugu AircraftVertical ADV Installed

Silent ,energy efficient, small footprint, no greenhouse emissions

Summary

The incredible teamwork between MCP, Pueblo Construction, Tony Carlos Construction and Naval Industrial Services Support helped make the project a reality, with few glitches and quick installation times.

With the addition of these new Hobart GPU’s, several goals were accomplished:

  • Operator Safety
  • Smaller Footprint
  • Zero Air and Noise pollution
  • Lower Energy Costs

Future Plans – There are also plans to retrofit the older Hobart units installed several years ago with the new cabling interlock system, providing a consistent and safe operational method for the operators on the ramp.

About MCP: Mark C. Pope Associates, Inc. has been a full service Hobart Ground Power Dealer since 1966. MCP offers new, used and rental Hobart Ground Power units and operates a full service operation from its Atlanta area facility. To date, MCP has sold and serviced over 8,000 military and commercial power units nationwide and still supports Hobart legacy equipment produced over the last 50 plus years. Hobart technology is renowned worldwide for its reliability, ease of use and quality.

For further information, contact Scott O’Connell via eMail, scott.oconnell@markcpope.com