We spoke with Firefly Energy co-founder Mil Ovan a while back about these 3D batteries, which the U.S. military is also interested in. You can read our interview with Ovan here, but the short, short version is that 3D batteries use a non-corrosive carbon graphite foam grid instead of a fairly non-conductive lead metal grid in lead acid batteries. This change means less lead is used to make the batteries and the batteries "deliver four times greater power density at less than one quarter of the weight, double the life expectancy, recharge seven times faster and will cost one-tenth that of nickel metal hydride or lithium-ion battery options," according to Dan Green, our friend who does Firefly PR.
- Firefly Energy gets $5 million from U.S. Army for advanced battery tech
- AutoblogGreen Q&A with Firefly Energy co-founder Mil Ovan on new lead-acid battery tech: 3D2
Firefly Energy Selects NorthStar Battery Company as First Contract Battery Manufacturing Partner for Carbon-Graphite Foam Batteries
Manufacturing agreement to produce Firefly Energy's "6T – 3D" battery for U.S. Army applications
Peoria, IL – April 30, 2007 – Firefly Energy Inc. (www.fireflyenergy.com), the Peoria Illinois-based battery technology company now developing a carbon-graphite foam lead acid battery for commercial and military uses, today announced that a contract has been executed with NorthStar Battery Company, Inc. (Springfield, MO), forming a battery manufacturing partnership to enable prototype and production support of Firefly's "3D" battery technology to serve the U.S. Army. Specific terms were not disclosed.
Firefly Energy's 3D carbon-graphite foam lead acid battery, the first of several battery technology innovations from the company's technology portfolio for lead acid batteries, will be particularly valuable in Army field combat operations because of the dramatic advantages it offers over today's current lead acid battery products. Amongst many advantages, these batteries will deliver stronger, consistent performance in temperature extremes, at lighter weight, with greater power and life in deep cycle usage, along with increased overall run-time and stronger vibration resistance.
Under a product design provided by Firefly Energy, NorthStar (www.northstarbattery.com) will manufacture a "6T – 3D" carbon-graphite foam lead acid battery. "NorthStar Battery's world-class manufacturing expertise will be utilized to create a prototype and production capability for our 3D military battery project," said Edward F. Williams, Chief Executive Officer of Firefly Energy. "This partnership will ultimately offer a compelling next generation of Firefly and NorthStar products across the U.S. military, starting with the U.S. Army".
NorthStar Battery Company has quickly built a reputation for having one of the newest, most advanced lead-acid battery production facilities in the world. Jerry Hoffman, President of NorthStar Battery, said, "This manufacturing partnership will take advantage of NorthStar Battery's extensive experience, expertise and manufacturing resources for lead acid batteries. We're looking forward to partnering with Firefly Energy and supporting the prototyping and eventual production of this innovative technology."
About Firefly Energy, Inc.
Firefly Energy (www.fireflyenergy.com) is a Peoria, Illinois-based battery technology company developing a portfolio of next generation lead acid battery technologies, enhancing lead-acid battery performance for major portions of the $30 billion worldwide battery marketplace. Firefly's first innovation, the carbon-graphite foam-based battery technology, can deliver a unique
combination of high performance, extremely low weight and low cost, all in a battery which utilizes the best aspects of lead acid chemistry while overcoming the corrosive drawbacks of this same chemistry. This product technology delivers to battery markets a performance associated with advanced battery chemistries (Nickel Metal Hydride and Lithium), but for one-fifth the cost, and can be both manufactured as well as recycled within the existing lead acid battery industry's vast infrastructure. The company is backed by multi-billion dollar product companies such as Caterpillar (www.caterpillar.com NYSE: CAT), BAE Systems (www.baesystems.com London Stock Exchange over the counter symbol: BAESY), and Husqvarna (www.husqvarna.com Other OTC: HSQVY.PK). Additional investors include Chicago-area Venture Capital firm KB Partners (www.kbpartners.com), and the State of Illinois ' Illinois Finance Authority,
NorthStar Battery Company LLC was formed in June 2000 for the purpose of establishing a new industrial battery business, dedicated to manufacturing and marketing a wide range of valve-recombinant, sealed lead-acid batteries. The company was founded by a small team of international battery engineers, representing over 100 years' collective experience in the design and manufacture of lead-acid batteries for the global standby battery markets. The overriding goals of NorthStar Battery Company are to: Manufacture the most reliable batteries in the market; provide a level of unparalleled customer service; continue to develop innovative, leading-edge products. The company is headquartered in Springfield , Missouri .