Schiphol Airport Trials New Electric Ground Equipment

Schiphol and KLM Equipment Services are trialling new electric ground equipment for handling widebody planes at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol.

The electric ground equipment will replace the diesel-powered models to provide planes with power while they are parked. The trial will investigate whether the new electric ground equipment has the same technical quality as the diesel generators and whether they can be successfully deployed at the airport.

Schiphol Electric Ground Equipment
Royal Schiphol Group aims to have an emission-free ground operation at its airports in the Netherlands by 2030
Oscar Maan, innovation manager assets at Royal Schiphol Group, said:

“Planes need electricity when they are parked at the gate or on the apron in order to keep the systems on board running. Special diesel generators were used for that. However, we've been making changes for some time now to improve air quality and reduce emissions. 73 of the 128 gates at Schiphol now have fixed power units for planes. Our aim is to install them at all gates. Because the airport doesn't have fixed power units at all locations yet and, for example, cargo planes do not park at the gate, Schiphol collaborated with ITW to develop an electric and portable generator. We call it an electric ground power unit (e-GPU).”

This latest trial of electric ground equipment for widebody planes builds upon the version currently in place at Schiphol Airport for smaller aircraft.

There are currently seven electric ground power units in operation at Schiphol, which are deployed at Pier D for smaller, narrowbody planes. However, larger aircraft require more power than the existing e-GPUs provide. Three units with double the power capacity will therefore be tested at Schiphol Airport over the course of six months.

Schiphol Electric Ground Equipment
The e-GPUs will help eliminate the airport’s production of CO2, (ultra)fine particle, and nitrogen emissions from diesel-powered equipment

These three power units will initially be tested on cargo planes and subsequently with passenger planes. Data will be collected throughout the trial to draw conclusions about the electric ground equipment’s deployability and roll-out at Schiphol.

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