Per press release:
Firefly Energy Inc. the Peoria, Illinois based leader in developing next generation carbon and graphite foam batteries, announced today that the first preproduction versions of its BCI Group 31 truck battery – to be marketed under the new name “Oasis” – will be available for review and testing during the first quarter of 2008.
The company said its Oasis battery will primarily be utilized when the truck’s diesel engine is turned off, and provide up to 50 percent longer runtimes than competitors when powering accessories which collectively make up a truck’s “hotel loads.” This newly branded battery will be unveiled by Firefly Energy at its first ever tradeshow appearance at the SAE Commercial Vehicle Engineering Congress and Exhibition (ComVec), Oct. 30-Nov. 1, 2007, in Rosemont, IL.
“Antidiesel engine idling regulations will soon become pervasive across the nation, and better battery performance will be crucial in contributing to trucker safety, comfort, and productivity,” said Ed Williams, chief executive officer of Firefly Energy. “Our Oasis battery will help ensure truck drivers maintain a comfortable haven for their rest periods”
Earlier this month, Firefly Energy announced the commencement of its BCI Group 31 battery development program, previous post. . . .
Initial availability of the battery will be in the summer of 2008, with full production of the Oasis battery scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2008. Through its development program, Firefly Energy is responding to trucking related regulations soon taking effect in the State of California and across the nation. On January 1, 2008, diesel trucks operating in California face a five minute idling limit. Traditional batteries will now be challenged by the severe strain of trying to support a trucker’s various hotel loads (air conditioning, TVs, etc.) which were previously powered by diesel engine idling. The result will be premature battery failure, since traditional lead acid batteries cannot easily withstand repeated deep discharging.
Firefly Energy’s Oasis battery will have a sealed valve regulated design. The primary characteristic of the first Firefly Energy lead acid battery is the inclusion of a high surface area, noncorrodible and light weight carbon foam material. Firefly Energy’s 3D carbon foam unleashes the high power potential of lead acid chemistry which was impossible to achieve in the past. This technology not only reduces the lead content making the batteries smaller and lighter, but additionally enables faster, deeper and more reliable discharges and recharges. This significantly extends the battery’s life, makes it more environmentally friendly, and less expensive than lithium and nickel battery chemistries. . . .
When tested in cold weather extremes at minus 20°C, the batteries were capable of delivering above 65 percent of their rated “room temperature” capacity compared to 20 percent or less for standard Group 31 batteries. This can help minimize alternator damage incurred while attempting coldweather engine starts when batteries are low.
Additional characteristics of the Oasis battery include:
- Energy Density – Because the Firefly design utilizes an efficient highsurface area foam, more of the available chemistry can be engaged, leading to greater efficiencies in weight and size.
- Heat dissipation – Batteries with carbon foam electrodes instead of heavy lead plates are able to transfer heat out of the battery as rapidly as it is generated. Operating heat of the battery is lower, is also generated more uniformly, and is dissipated more rapidly, resulting in longer battery life in many applications.
- Vibration resistance – The low mass of Firefly’s 3D cells along with the better retention of the chemistry within the pores of the foam help make the Oasis battery more resistant to vibration.
Firefly Energy is a Peoria, Illinois based battery technology company developing a portfolio of next generation lead acid battery technologies. Firefly’s first innovation, the carbon foam based battery technology, can deliver a unique combination of high performance, extremely low weight and low cost, all in a battery which utilizes the best aspects of lead acid chemistry while overcoming the corrosive drawbacks of this same chemistry. This product technology delivers to battery markets a performance associated with advanced battery chemistries (Nickel Metal Hydride and Lithium), but for one fifth the cost, and can be both manufactured as well as recycled within the existing lead acid battery industry’s vast infrastructure.