Ener1 Signs Memorandum of Understanding with Leading Japanese Power and Utility Provider
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Ener1 and Kyushu Electric Power to Co-Develop Rapid Re-Charging Stations for Next-Generation Electric Vehicles
NEW YORK, November 18, 2008: Ener1, Inc. maker of advanced lithium-ion battery solutions to power the next generation of hybrid, plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles, today announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding ("MOU") with Kyushu Electric Power ("KEPCO"), the fourth largest publicly traded power and utility company in Japan. The MOU marks an understanding that Ener1 and KEPCO will work together to create and manufacture rapid recharging systems for electric vehicles. KEPCO has already developed one of the most advanced rapid charging stands and plans to customize that solution with the EnerDel High Energy Pack System. KEPCO's next-generation electric vehicle rapid charging station has exhibited one of the highest levels of performance for rapid charging in Japan.
The target date to have the first integrated systems available is by March, 2009. The relationship will accelerate the development and diffusion of charging systems to match the anticipated growth in electric vehicles. The ability to rapidly recharge lithium-ion batteries will be crucial in enabling the widespread adoption of the electric vehicle, and it is anticipated that these systems will allow customers to recharge up to 80% of their vehicle's battery capacity in less than 20 minutes.
"Drivers need to know they can recharge an electric car as easily as they fill the tank in today's conventional vehicles," said Ener1 Chairman and CEO Charles Gassenheimer. "The batteries are here. What we need is the infrastructure to charge them quickly. We have often suggested that the customer for electric drive is not just the auto manufacturers, but also the integrated power and utility companies. Together with ITOCHU Corporation, we are privileged to work with such prestigious partners on this important project. The opportunity underscores Ener1's strategy to be a total systems and solutions provider in pioneering the electrification of the automobile."
"We are excited to be working with Ener1, which we consider to be an early leader in the development of this industry," said Toshiro Noguchi, General Manager of the Research Laboratory at KEPCO. "We believe that Ener1's state of the art technology is now ready for rapid adoption and are excited to be partnering with them at this critical time."