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11/2/2005
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Startup Unveils Nanoscale Batteries

Startup A123Systems on Wednesday unveiled a line of nanoscale, lithium-based batteries said to deliver up to 10 times longer battery life and five times the power gains.

SAN JOSE, Calif. — Startup A123Systems Inc. on Wednesday (Nov. 2) unveiled its first product — a line of nanoscale, Lithium-based batteries that claim to be superior over competitive technologies.

A123Systems’ first battery is now in production and being delivered to the Black & Decker Corp. It will be first utilized by the corporation’s DeWALT brand, a manufacturer of power tools, according to A123Systems (Watertown, Mass.).

A123Systems’ technology delivers up to ten times longer battery life and five times the power gains, according to the company. Its batteries use proprietary, nanoscale electrode technology built on research at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and exclusively licensed from MIT.

Unlike conventional Lithium-ion batteries, A123Systems' batteries employ new thermally stable, non-combustible active materials, enabling a safer cell and allowing cost reductions such as the elimination of unnecessary battery pack components.

“A123's revolutionary technology will enable manufacturers to improve the performance and form factor of existing high-power portable devices and to transform products currently dependent on power cords and sockets into a new class of portable devices,” said David Vieau, CEO and president of A123Systems, in a statement.

“We expect that our technology will have the same impact on high-power products as the introduction of first generation Lithium-ion technology had on the development and commercialization of consumer electronics in the 1990s,” he said.

The company is also working with the U.S. Department of Energy as part of a major undertaking to develop battery materials for future use in hybrid electric vehicles. As part of its work with the DOE, A123Systems has already completed two development phases of advanced battery technology. Preliminary performance results show a technology with great promise for the future of electric and hybrid electric vehicles.

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