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Firefly Energy Snares $2.5M in Defense Spending for Battery Development

Firefly Energy, the developer of a new graphite-foam lead-acid battery technology (earlier post), is slated to received a $2.5-million appropriation from the 2006 defense spending bill to further develop its battery technology for military applications.

Firefly Energy will use the funds to develop prototypes of its advanced lead-acid battery to power a variety of military equipment. Firefly contends it can deliver lead-acid battery performance comparable to NiMH, but at about one-fifth the cost, and with greatly reduced weight compared to traditional lead-acid batteries.

The Firefly battery replaces the conventional lead plates in a lead-acid battery with a lightweight carbon or graphite foam to which the chemically active material—in the form of a paste or slurry—has been applied.

The use of the foam structure increases the interface between the electrodes and the active chemistry; the carbon material resists corrosion and sulfation build-up, reducing weight and delivering a formidable jump in specific power, energy and cycle life. The technology is not limited to use in lead-acid batteries.

The battery can be both manufactured as well as recycled within the existing lead acid battery industry’s vast infrastructure.



"The technology is not limited to use in lead-acid batteries."

Does this mean this technology could be used with NiMH to create a battery with the power of Li-ion, but expense of NiMH? or better yet, a Li-ion super battery?

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