Saft is working with CALSTART, a member organization that works with business, fleets, and government to develop and implement clean, efficient transportation solutions, to test its e6T Lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery for use in military and commercial applications. This development marks the first time the military e6T Li-ion battery configuration will be tested for commercial trucks and could result in the power supply’s wide scale adoption beyond the military.
The partnership is part of a larger program, funded by the U.S. Army, in which CALSTART and participants will evaluate and test 12V Li-ion military format batteries as starter batteries. Compared to lead-acid batteries, Saft's Li-ion technology enables increased lifecycle, depth of charge and faster recharges, resulting in greater fuel and cost savings. The agreement also includes delivery of 24V e6T power supplies to TARDEC, the U.S. Army's Tank and Research Development and Engineering Center.
The company is among three battery suppliers chosen for this testing and will deliver the 12V batteries as well as integration services for assessing the technology's use in commercial trucks. CALSTART will be collecting the data generated from Saft and from Navitas Systems LLC and EaglePicher Technologies during the evaluation and testing. Delivery of the batteries is underway.
The Saft e6T Li-ion battery system features an advanced, lightweight design within the dimensions of a traditional lead-acid battery, enabling easy installation into the vehicle. The system provides power for starting, lights and ignition, as well as devices critical to safety during silent watch missions. Li-ion technology enables soldiers to safely recharge electronics, such as a night sight or GPS, while the vehicle is turned off. Additionally, the 12V and 24V power supplies feature CANBus communications that relay vital information, including state-of-charge, cell voltages, temperatures and battery diagnostics.
"As a leader in the research and advancement of Li-ion technology, the CALSTART partnership provides Saft with the unique opportunity to grow market demand of the e6T product line," said Ben Helminen, Marketing & Strategic Planning Director for Saft. "We are proud to be an integral part of providing technology that keeps the country's military personnel safe, and we look forward to contributing those advantages to the commercial industry."