Evaluating Alternatives For Aircraft Ground Power, Heating, and Air Conditioning

Air quality (and specifically emissions) is an emerging issue that is beginning to affect airports and airlines. As such, airports are looking at alternatives for their own operations as well as for the airlines serving their airports. Aircraft auxiliary power units (APUs) are a source of emissions and noise; however, there are alternatives to APUs that provide ground power, heating, and air conditioning. These alternatives can be mobile units, terminal based, bridge based, or ramp based. Each of these alternatives has different capital and operating costs, as well as different effects on emissions. What works at one airport may not be applicable at another airport for various reasons such as different climate conditions, airline aircraft fleet, and terminal and ramp infrastructure. While airports are familiar with the range of alternatives to aircraft APUs, information is needed on their environmental benefits and other considerations (e.g., costs, funding, operational impacts, and maintenance) for selecting and implementing alternatives. Research is needed to provide such information to assist airports and airlines in evaluating APU alternatives. The objective of this research is to prepare a workbook for airport, airline, and environmental planners that can be used to evaluate alternatives to aircraft auxiliary power units (APUs) for power, heating, and air conditioning. The workbook should include tools to quantify the general emissions benefits of alternatives and to provide appropriate quantitative and/or qualitative analyses of the financial (e.g., capital, operating, and maintenance expenses) and operational implications, as well as any potential noise reductions that may occur. The workbook is intended to be a set of tools that will provide general emission information for various types of APUs, options, costs, and other considerations that can be applied.


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 2-25

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Federal Aviation Administration

    800 Independence Avenue, SW
    Washington, DC  USA  20591

    Airport Cooperative Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC    20001
  • Project Managers:

    Greenberger, Marci

  • Performing Organizations:

    Environmental Science Associates

  • Principal Investigators:

    Kim, Brian

  • Start Date: 20100706
  • Actual Completion Date: 20110806
  • Source Data: RiP Project 24418

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01461810
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 2-25
  • Files: TRB, RiP, USDOT
  • Created Date: Jan 3 2013 1:52PM