From: ENN
Published July 22, 2005 12:00 AM

Valence Technology Batteries Could Triple Hybrid Fuel Efficiency

AUSTIN, Texas — The US hybrid and electric vehicle battery market is expected to reach $4.5 billion in 2008 -- an increase of almost 65% from 2003. Valence Technology Inc. has created Saphion(R) technology, the industry's first commercially available, safe, large-format lithium-ion rechargeable battery technology, to power a variety of hybrid and electric vehicles.


When auto manufacturers first developed hybrid vehicles, the only viable battery technology was nickel-metal-hydride. While some hybrids using these types of batteries can offer 50 miles per gallon, new battery technology is now available to enable even greater fuel efficiency and fewer emissions. Today, hybrid auto manufacturers have access to advanced batteries that use a phosphate-based lithium-ion chemistry to provide much more energy with less weight while meeting automobile safety standards.


A concept PHEV powered by Valence Technology batteries was recently demonstrated in Europe and the U.S. Based on a 2004 Toyota Prius, the PHEV has a fuel efficiency that can average up to 150 miles per gallon for a daily commute of 50-60 miles per day. The car reduces fuel consumption and emissions, replacing gasoline with clean, regenerable energy. This is possible because the nickel-metal-hydride battery was replaced with Valence Technology's Saphion lithium-ion batteries, which provide more than 18 times the energy. As a result, the PHEV can be driven longer in zero-emission electric mode and offers dramatically improved gas mileage, which means fewer trips to the gas station.


In addition, the concept PHEV can be plugged into a standard 110V AC electrical outlet in order to charge the battery, which currently costs as little as $.33-$1.00 in the U.S. However, if a user chooses not to charge the battery through renewable power-grid energy, the car operates as a normal hybrid.


Battery technology is playing a key role in enabling hybrid and electric vehicles to become more ubiquitous. While the adoption of hybrid vehicles is faster for industrial and commercial fleets, such as taxis and delivery vehicles, consumer adoption is not far behind -- especially in countries with more significant environmental concerns and even higher fuel costs than in the U.S.


Based on its proprietary Saphion lithium-ion battery technology, Valence Technology's batteries replace toxic heavy metals with phosphates, creating an energy storage battery that is chemically more stable, safe and environmentally friendly than traditional oxide-based batteries. Valence Technology's batteries are also maintenance-free and offer longer life, better energy storage characteristics and lower overall ownership costs when compared to other battery types, such as lead-acid and nickel-metal-hydride.


About Valence Technology Inc.: Valence Technology developed Saphion(R) technology, the industry's first commercially available, safe, large-format lithium-ion rechargeable batteries. Valence holds an extensive, worldwide portfolio of issued and pending patents relating to its Saphion technology and lithium-ion rechargeable batteries. The company has facilities in Austin, Texas, Henderson, Nevada, and Suzhou and Shanghai, China. Valence is traded on the Nasdaq SmallCap Market under the symbol VLNC and can be found on the Internet at www.valence.com.


Source: Business Wire, Valence Technology Inc.


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