UQM Technologies has been awarded a $1.08 million contract supplement to an existing U.S. Air Force contract to convert a conventional one-half ton pickup truck to all-electric operation.
The contract supplement expands the scope of work to add the development of an electronic motor/generator controller that utilizes high operating temperature silicon carbide power switching modules.
UQM is developing the controller for the USAF Advanced Power Technology Office of the 542nd Combat Sustainment Wing at Robins Air Force Base in cooperation with the U.S. Army National Automotive Center and Mississippi State University.
The Air Force expects to field-test the controller in at least one of the Air Force’s hybrid electric vans, buses and/or in the all-electric pickup truck powered by lithium-ion batteries currently being built by the Company.
The contract supplement increases the total contract value to $1.83 million and extends the expected completion date to March 31, 2007. Initial delivery and testing of the all-electric pickup truck will not be impacted by the contract supplement and is scheduled for March 2006.
This program is focused on the development and application of high power silicon carbide modules that are currently not available. Silicon carbide power modules offer the advantage of substantially higher operating temperatures when compared to traditional silicon modules, and motor/generator controllers that use silicon carbide are able to operate in harsher environments which opens up new platform opportunities and simplifies vehicle architectures. This technology is of significant interest to both military and commercial hybrid electric vehicle customers, and we are excited that the Air Force has selected UQM to lead this effort.—Jon Lutz, UQM Technologies’ Director of Engineering