Advanced lithium-ion automotive battery producer EnerDel and the Nissan Motor Co. of Japan are teaming up to research a new generation of electrical conductive material intended to reduce cost and improve the performance of electric and hybrid vehicle batteries.
"This project is about continuing the evolution of a critical technology," said Charles Gassenheimer, CEO and Chairman of EnerDel, parent company Ener1, Inc. (Nasdaq: HEV). "Nissan is one of the leading companies driving the electric vehicle market today. Over 12 months of discussions on this effort, our management and technical teams have had a tremendous opportunity to get know one another. We are looking forward to successful realization of this project's important goals."
EnerDel recently cut the ribbon at one of the most advanced battery production lines for large format cells at its Indianapolis plant. The facility is currently the only high volume manufacturing facility for automotive lithium-ion batteries in the U.S.
Under the program started today, EnerDel and Nissan will co-fund research of a new electrolyte, a viscous liquid that serves as the essential conductive material between battery electrodes, at Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) outside Chicago. EnerDel and Argonne recently cooperated on the development of the lithium titanate battery chemistry, for which they shared the prestigious R&D 100 Award for excellence in technology and innovative design from R&D Magazine, and an Excellence in Technology Transfer award.
"Argonne and EnerDel have been working successfully together for years to advance electric drive in the U.S.," said Dr. Al Sattelberger of Associate Lab Director of ANL. "Our collaboration symbolizes how the best and brightest minds in America can work hand in hand with captains of industry to create best-in-class technology solutions."
"We are pleased to pursue another breakthrough technology working with the leading national lab in the U.S. for transportation and one of the world's most technologically innovative car companies," said EnerDel Chief Operating Officer Naoki Ota. "This is an opportunity to make a major new contribution to the future of electric drive in the U.S. and to forge a closer relationship with a major global car maker."