BAE Systems makes hybrid lighter

BAE Systems is to supply a lightweight lithium-ion energy storage system with its HybriDrive propulsion system for hybrid electric buses, which could improve fuel economy and reduce emissions. The new energy storage system also is more efficient and lasts longer than alternatives in use today.

In addition to being lighter than some alternatives, the lithium-ion energy storage system is fault-tolerant, being designed to keep operating even if individual battery cells fail. The system also is self-monitoring and easy to service for reduced maintenance costs.

BAE Systems’ HybriDrive system is currently in service in major cities across North America, logging 105,000km a day.

The new battery features nanophosphate lithium-ion chemistry developed by Massachusetts-based A123Systems, one of the world’s largest suppliers of high-power lithium-ion batteries.

BAE Systems’ HybriDrive propulsion system is in use in three of the four largest hybrid bus fleets in the world today. The HybriDrive system featuring lithium-ion energy storage will be available for commercial buses beginning in 2008.