With the U.S. Department of Energy's help, a research group managed by the Detroit 3 is launching a drive to speed development of next-generation battery technologies for hybrids and electric vehicles, the department said today.
The U.S. Advanced Battery Consortium will coordinate r&d and explore more efficient and cost-effective technologies for energy storage in vehicles. The consortium is part of the U.S. Council for Automotive Research, a partnership among Chrysler Group, Ford Motor Co. and General Motors, and is funded in part by Energy Department.
The department will contribute $12.5 million annually for five years to fund the initiative, subject to congressional appropriations. Those funds will be matched dollar-for-dollar with private sources, the DOE said in a statement.
"By investing in these cutting-edge battery technologies, the Energy Department is helping to cut America's oil imports and provide American families and businesses with more transportation options," the department said.
The initiative aims to encourage cooperation among U.S. battery and component manufacturers, universities and national research labs.
It also will contribute to the EV Everywhere Grand Challenge, a department program unveiled by President Barack Obama in March 2012 to develop affordable EVs by 2022.
In the past, the EV Everywhere Grand Challenge has spurred initiatives such as the Workplace Charging Challenge, which aims to increase the number of charging stations tenfold within the next five years.