Watch out, Duracell. Xtreme Power may have you beat on the durability front with its PowerCell battery, a cheap dry-cell battery that lasts up to 20 years and keeps working after a machine gun blasts it repeatedly.
The fiberglass battery technology isn’t new. Corning, British Aerospace, and Ford Aerospace designed it in the 1990s, and tried to market it for zero-emissions vehicles. But electric vehicle technology wasn’t mature enough, and the technology lay dormant until Xtreme Power bought it in 2004. And now that the company has raised $20 million, the battery is almost ready for prime time.
Xtreme’s battery isn’t intended for everyday use, however. The fiberglass battery system is currently being tested for wind energy storage by Hawaii Electric Power and as a power system for a remote Antarctica base. The system reportedly costs just one-tenth of a similarly sized lithium ion battery system with comparable efficiency.
Despite being originally tested for EVs, Xtreme has no plans to bring its battery to the vehicle market. For now, the company is sticking with wind, solar, and mass transit energy storage applications. But if the battery is as durable as Xtreme claims, it could one day be the technology of choice for the Army’s energy storage needs.