Military Vehicle Batteries
Hybrid-electric technology is transforming the mission capabilities of tactical vehicles at a time when new national security threats are dramatically changing the way vehicles are used in combat zones. For example, troop re-supply vehicles no longer stay behind the combat lines but rather are deployed in forward positions facing the same threats as lighter, faster tactical vehicles. The addition of heavy armor and combat responsive equipment to these larger trucks to protect the war fighter and sustain these operations add considerable weight and thereby reduce operating range. Unique hybrid drive technologies are emerging to address these limitations.
While these revolutionary hybrids also enjoy the same significant improvements in fuel efficiency and carbon emissions as their counterparts in consumer markets, electric systems also allow entirely new applications in military vehicles used for attack, reconnaissance, or surveillance. The ability to run in silent watch (or electric-only)mode means that these vehicles are capable of operating with significantly reduced acoustic and thermal signatures, thus enabling deep strike and reconnaissance missions that were not previously possible. In addition, the hybrid systems allow far greater overall range, a significantly lighter fuel load, and added bursts of power for rapid accelerations or for maximum torque on steep gradients.
Lithium ion battery technology has the power to enable this next generation of military vehicles by offering significantly greater energy for a hybrid-electric drive system than traditional NiMH or lead acid battery systems.The inherent high power and high energy battery strengths of using li-ion chemistry will enable manufacturers to develop vehicle applications that simply were not possible in the past.
The development of the next generation military vehicles will hinge upon cutting-edge power solutions. These vehicles have the potential to transform operations on the battlefield, but only if robust batteries can deliver high power and steady performance over countless miles and charge-discharge cycles without adding unwanted weight, maintenance, or cost. In addition, the batteries must perform safely and reliably in the most rugged conditions imaginable.
As part of EnerSys Advanced Systems, both advanced lead acid (Hawker) and lithium ion technology can enable the next generation of military vehicles.