Lift-A-Loft Delivers Aircraft Maintenance Aerial Lift

Lift-A-Loft Corp., Muncie, Ind., recently began delivering its Mobile Man Lift to the Naval Air Warfare Center in Lakehurst, N.J., for U.S. Marine Corps. The aerial lift is specifically designed to support maintenance operations on V-22 Osprey aircraft manufactured by Bell Boeing. Lift-A-Loft’s Mobile Man Lift (MML) was developed to be a lightweight, easily deployable scissor lift that could access many points on the V-22. It was developed to operate in both land- or ship-based environments.

The U.S. Marine Corps’s MV-22 version of the Osprey recently completed an 18-month deployment supporting combat operations in Iraq and is currently undergoing its first amphibious deployment aboard the USS Bataan. While the largest operator of the V-22 is the United States Marine Corps, the U.S. Air Force Special Operations Command also flies this one-of-a-kind tiltrotor aircraft. 

According to Lift-A-Loft, a great deal of consideration was given on how this piece of equipment could be designed to fit the needs of the maintainers that work on the V-22. “The development and testing of the MML was quite a process,” said Lift-A-Loft CEO William Fulton, “but in the end we believe we have created a maintenance lift that will be a definite asset to the V-22 program.” Lift-A-Loft is currently working to finish the first 31 production units ordered by Bell Boeing and is in negotiations to manufacture more.

The MML was subjected to significant testing requirements to ensure that it would stand up to the rigors of military use in very extreme conditions. Among these tests included environmental testing, such as high heat, extreme cold, humidity, salt fog, and sand and dust. The unit is shielded from electromagnetic interference so it can be used aboard ship or in other locations where EMI protected equipment is essential. The unit also has a flexible operating system that can function with either 24 VDC power or 110 VAC.  The MML also went through extensive stability, reliability, mobility, and maintainability testing to ensure it works in the most adverse of conditions.

The resulting product offers a combination of unique features that make the MML an ideal product for accessing and maintaining the V-22. The MML offers a platform with 24 inches of side-to-side traverse in either direction along with a 3-foot forward extension. This flexibility allows maintainers to position in hard-to-reach places around the rotor or other areas of the aircraft. The unit can elevate to a maximum height of 19’2”, and it offers 750 pounds of capacity.

“The MML can effectively perform the work of two or three common military stands that are often employed for a variety of different access needs,” Fulton said. “I expect the MML to become an effective maintenance tool that will help support both the V-22 and other military aircraft for years to come.”