Five battery makers have been awarded $5.43 million in contracts from the United States Advanced Battery Consortium to develop energy storage technologies for hybrid-electric and electric vehicles.
The companies include Envia Systems Inc., Quallion LLC., ActaCell Inc., Leyden Energy Inc. and K2 Energy Solutions Inc.
Nineteen companies bid on USABC contracts, and after almost a year of evaluations, 12 were chosen to work with the group. Seven more agreements should be announced in early 2011, said USABC spokesman Steven Clark.
USABC is a research collaboration among Chrysler Group LLC., Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Co. It is a subsidiary of the United States Council for Automotive Research.
Funding for USABC research is awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy, which pays half of the contract, while the individual battery firm covers the other half.
Envia, of Newark, Calif., was awarded the largest contract at $3.65 million for a three-year development project working with high-energy battery components.
Quallion was given the second-largest contract at $1.41 million. The Sylmar, Calif., company will spend 18 months demonstrating its hybridized battery pack design to see how it holds up against USABC goals.
ActaCell, of Austin, Texas, was given a $179,000, 16-month contract to assess its high-power lithium-ion cells.
Leyden, of Fremont, Calif., received almost $118,000 for eight months of assessment of its lithium-ion technology.
K2 Energy Solutions was awarded almost $74,000 for a one-year contract. The Henderson, Nev., company will assess its battery cells in relation to USABC targets.
The Detroit automakers have a long-term interest in battery technology, Clark said.
“The automakers really get an understanding of the status of the technology that is out in the industry,” Clark said. “It gives us a better idea of the potential design solution that we can use for future hybrids, plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles.”