The US Department of Defense (DoD) has awarded EaglePicher $22 million in funding under the Defense Production Act Title III Program (DPA Title III) for Phase II of the Lithium-Ion Battery for Military Applications (LIMA) project. The original solicitation for the LIMA project was in 2011.
The program goal assures the affordable production of critical items deemed essential for national defense, alleviating concerns regarding market volatility and uncertainty within the current international market for Li-Ion. As a leading specialty battery manufacturer with a legacy of supplying US military power needs, EaglePicher is poised to assist the defense industrial base by providing a timely, reliable supply of Li-Ion materials and products.
Title III of the Defense Production Act (DPA) currently provides unique authorities, under which the Government may provide appropriate incentives to create, maintain, protect, expand, or restore the productive capacities of domestic sources for critical components, critical technology items, and industrial resources essential for the execution of the national security strategy of the United States. It was under Title III that the US Departments of Navy, Energy, and Agriculture recently awarded contracts worth a combined $210 million to three companies to construct and commission biorefineries capable of producing drop-in biofuels. (Earlier post.)
The original solicitation (BAA-11-17-PKM) specified Li-ion cells with an energy density ≥ 250 Wh/kg at 250 W/kg continuous (i.e. 1C rate) for military applications.
During Phase I, competitors were required to demonstrate electrochemical cell technology capable of exceeding 250 Wh/kg at an elevated discharge rate. EaglePicher was selected as the sole contractor for Phase II of the LIMA program. This phase of the program provides cost-shared financial assistance to establish a production facility supporting the manufacture of raw materials, cells, and batteries utilizing this newly-developed, high-energy density formulation.
This award assures EaglePicher will continue to be the leader in advanced lithium-ion technology for defense applications. We are delighted to take part in an investment that is critical to our national defense. Currently, the US government relies on lithium-ion cells that are produced outside the US. Most of our military's current rechargeable portable power requirements and some critical energy-dependent weapons being developed and fielded for the future use these cells. I applaud the Department of Defense’s vision in bringing this capability home to the USA. We are respectfully grateful they have entrusted this critical capability to EaglePicher.—Randy Moore, President of EaglePicher
EaglePicher’s new 100,000-plus square-foot facility, required to meet future demand, is currently planned to be constructed as an expansion at its existing facility in Joplin, Missouri, featuring advanced equipment and production areas to accommodate the large-scale manufacturing necessary for this effort.
The improvements in battery energy density that we have created can truly be an enabling technology and allow for reduction of weight and extension of mission critical applications.—Ron Nowlin, Vice President and General Manager of Aerospace at EaglePicher
EaglePicher Technologies, LLC, an OM Group company, has been a leading producer of batteries and energetic devices for more than one hundred years, currently serving the defense, aerospace, medical, commercial, grid energy storage, and oil and gas industries.