October, 1997

solectriaOvonic NiMH Batteries Power EV From Boston to New York on a Single Charge

ROY, Mich., Oct. 24 -- Powered by Ovonic nickel metal-hydride (NiMH) batteries, a Solectria Sunrise, 4-passenger prototype electric vehicle (EV) sedan, traveled from Boston to New York City on a single charge at normal highway speeds. Mr. S. R. Ovshinsky and Dr. I. M. Ovshinsky, co-founders of Energy Conversion Devices, Inc. (ECD), and its subsidiary Ovonic Battery Co., Inc. (Ovonic Battery) congratulated Mr. James Worden, CEO of Solectria Corporation, as he completed the drive in front of the New York Academy of Sciences building in New York City. Mr. Ovshinsky said,
"The Ovonic NiMH battery with its high specific energy and robust design, demonstrated that it can provide electric vehicles (EVs) with a driving range that makes them a practical choice for many motorists."
With about 40% of daily driving trips in the United States under 40 miles, the long-life, maintenance-free Ovonic NiMH batteries are an ideal choice for EV manufacturers who want to provide their customers with outstanding acceleration and range, ample driving range reserve, and the convenience of quick charge as well as at-home charging.

Mr. R. C. Stempel, chairman of ECD noted that, "Early EV buyers like the smooth, fast and quiet driving characteristics coupled with low operating costs." The Sunrise EV, with a prototype composite fiber body, was equipped with a 30 kW Ovonic NiMH battery pack. A total of 28.3 kW was used from the pack to travel the 216 miles between City Hall Square, Boston, and the N.Y. Academy of Science in New York City at an average speed of 55 MPH with the driver, one passenger and their luggage on board. At the end of the trip there was still ample range remaining. All significant manufacturers of NiMH batteries operate under agreements with ECD and Ovonic Battery, which originated the NiMH battery technology. Proprietary rechargeable Ovonic NiMH batteries are based on new hydrogen storage principles and materials invented and developed by ECD and Ovonic Battery. They were initially developed and commercialized in small cell sizes for notebook computers, cellular phones and other portable electronic devices. Ovonic batteries are ideal in these applications since they store more than twice as much energy per unit weight as lead-acid or nickel-cadmium batteries. Ovonic NiMH batteries have high power, long cycle life, no memory effect, are environmentally friendly and are ideally suited for EV and Hybrid electric vehicles.

The Ovonic NiMH battery continues to gain global acceptance to provide power for portable electronic devices and electric bicycles, scooters and vehicles, hybrid electric vehicles and numerous other applications. This fall, General Motors, has said it will introduce the GM Ovonic NiMH battery in the EV1 and the Chevrolet S-10 electric vehicles. GM Ovonic NiMH batteries are being manufactured by GM Ovonic, L.L.C., the joint venture between GM and Ovonic Battery established for that purpose. Based on the Ovonic "Family of Batteries," GM Ovonic L.L.C. expects to produce a full product line of NiMH batteries for EVs and HEVs. Solectria is one of the leaders in the EV industry and they have pioneered many technological innovations in the manufacturing of advanced EVs and EV components, including AC induction motors, brushless permanent magnet motors, and high efficiency motor controllers. Other innovations include all-electric air conditioning and heating, and an automatic battery thermal management system to keep vehicle range consistent even in the coldest winter conditions. Solectria cars and trucks can be found in many public and corporate fleets throughout the U.S. and around the world, and are widely recognized as among the finest production EVs on the road. Ovonic Battery is proud that Solectria has selected Ovonic NiMH batteries for use in many of their vehicles now in daily service.

The Northeast Alternative Vehicle Consortium (NAVC) served as lead technical sponsor for the Boston to New York drive that was sponsored by the Metropolitan Section of the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) and by Spectrum Magazine of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE). Dr. Victor Wouk, speaking at the New York Academy of Science, and the overall event coordinator, said: "The Academy organized this project to show that EVs are practical and can provide adequate driving ranges." Energy Conversion Devices, Inc., is a leader in the synthesis of new materials and the development of advanced production technology and innovative products. ECD has pioneered the development of products and production technology based on amorphous, disordered and related materials, with an emphases on alternative energy and advanced information technologies. ECD's web site is . SOURCE Ovonic Battery Co., Inc.

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