Aviation Battery Systems' (ABS) popular StartStick line of portable ground power units (GPU) achieved an important milestone in mid-2022. The company announced delivery of its 2,000th StartStick GPU, with units utilized worldwide since 2014.
ABS’ lightweight GPUs provide benefits to a wide range of fixed and rotary wing aircraft models. With weights ranging from 10 to 20 pounds and a compact form factor, StartStick GPUs allow ease of field and ramp operations as well as maximum aircraft availability. Remote starts, database/avionics updates and compressor washes are all easily accomplished with StartStick.
The delivery in August to longtime client PJ Helicopters of northern California means more than 2,000 StartStick units are now in operation globally.
StartStick portable power provides multiple starts of single and twin-engine helicopters or fixed wing aircraft before recharge.
Mike Underwood, owner/general manager at Texas-based SVT Aviation Maintenance, recommends StartStick for a variety of reasons.
“The biggest benefits are of course the size and weight making the unit portable even in a small helicopter,” says Underwood. “Of course, those benefits translate into having portable power anywhere you go in the event of a battery failure, or for everyday use during starts.”
Underwood adds that starts are cooler and faster, causing less wear and tear on the engine. And StartStick helps maintain the main aircraft battery as well, helping it potentially last longer.
ABS reports more aerial applicators, air medical, corporate, fire/utility and airborne law enforcement programs utilizing the StartStick. The standard GPU/NATO power port connector handles a range of aircraft. And each StartStick comes with a comprehensive two-year warranty.
“For several years, leading operators like PJ Helicopters, Firehawk, Metro Aviation and many other rotary wing programs moved to StartStick for their GPU needs,” states ABS global business director Paul Ross Jr. “And now we see expanding utilization in the fixed wing segment, bringing a range of benefits.”
The company’s newest offering, the 20 amp-hour StartStick 20 model, allows ease of field and ramp operations as well as maximum aircraft applicability. Fixed base operators (FBO) and fixed wing owners traditionally rely on heavy, non-portable wheeled GPU’s, slowing operations and restricting flights to fields where this support is available.
“The StartStick 20 now allows FBOs and operators to improve efficiencies and self-reliance as well as lower their operating costs,” adds Ross.
A growing number of customers also report extending their main batteries’ service life thanks to the discipline of using StartStick for their first start each day.