SOUTHFIELD, MI - The United States Advanced Battery Consortium (USABC), a research collaboration involving Chrysler Group, Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Co., announced approximately $15.6 million in advanced battery development and technology contracts to Cobasys, Maxwell Technologies and SK Energy Co.

In addition, USABC has awarded an $8 million battery development contract to A123 Systems. The 24-month contract with A123 calls for the supplier to continue development of its Nanophosphate lithium-ion battery systems.

The competitively bid contract awards are co-funded by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and include a 50-percent cost-share from each of the contracted companies.

USABC said it awarded the contracts to develop and assess advanced energy storage technologies for a lower-energy energy storage system for power-assist hybrid-electric vehicles (PAHEV) and high-energy density battery cells and battery packs for electric vehicle (EV) applications.

Cobasys LLC of Orion, Mich., a subsidiary of SB LiMotive, was awarded a three-year $8.36 million contract for the development of high-energy lithium-ion cells for use in EV applications. The contract involves development of conforming design-intent cells as well as development of a 40kWh technology demonstration battery pack.

Maxwell Technologies Inc. of San Diego, Calif., was awarded $7.01 million for a two-year ultracapacitor program to help develop technology that will double existing capacitor power density from 10 to 20 kilowatts per kilogram (kW/kg) and double existing energy density from 15 to 30 watt-hours per kilogram Wh/kg. The advanced ultracapacitors then will be integrated into modules that will be evaluated against USABC goals for low-energy energy storage system applications.

SK Energy Co. LTD of Seoul, South Korea, was awarded $195,149 for a one-year technology assessment of the performance, cycle life and accelerated calendar life of the company's EV batteries against USABC goals.

"We are pleased to announce the award of these contracts as part of USABC's broad battery technology research and development programs," said Steve Zimmer, executive director of USCAR. "These programs are essential to advance the technology needed to meet both near- and long-term goals that will enable a broad spectrum of vehicle electrification."

USABC is a subsidiary of the United States Council for Automotive Research (USCAR). Enabled by a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), USABC is developing electrochemical energy storage technologies that support commercialization of electric, hybrid electric and fuel cell vehicles. As such, USABC has developed mid- and long-term goals to guide its projects and measure their progress.

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