PowerGenix Develops More Powerful Vehicle Batteries for Purchase by US Army TARDEC

March 14, 2010 by Jeff Shepard

PowerGenix, a developer and manufacturer of Nickel-Zinc (NiZn) rechargeable batteries, announced that the U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) has purchased NiZn batteries for test as a possible replacement for the lead-acid "6T" batteries currently in use. PowerGenix states that its NiZn technology offers significant performance gains, delivering what is described as twice the energy in half the space of lead-acid batteries.

"As the U.S. military develops more sophisticated technologies for use in high risk, demanding environments, outfitting these vehicles with lighter and more powerful batteries will increase performance and safety," said PowerGenix CEO Dan Squiller. "The advantages that PowerGenix’s Nickel-Zinc systems offer over lead acid systems are transformative, and we look forward to working with the U.S. Army to develop and deploy battery systems that meet the rigorous requirements of military vehicles."

The most widely deployed battery format, 6T, is used in 95% of U.S. military vehicles. In 2008, the military purchased roughly 700,000 6T batteries. Last year, after recognizing the need to develop more advanced vehicle batteries, TARDEC formed the Advanced Automotive Battery Initiative to pursue cost-effective, lightweight and reliable battery components and materials.

PowerGenix states that its technology is well suited for a variety of applications in military vehicles, including starting, lighting and ignition; silent watch; equipment actuation; and hybrid-electric propulsion systems. Testing of PowerGenix’s Nickel-Zinc packs is anticipated to begin in the fourth quarter of 2010.