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Firefly Energy Wins 2007 R&D 100 Award for its Graphite Foam Battery


Firefly Energy Inc, the Peoria Illinois-based company developing an innovative carbon-graphite foam lead acid battery for commercial and military applications, today announced that it is the recipient of an R&D Magazine R&D 100 award for 2007. The company believes its patented technology has the potential to revolutionize today's multi-billion dollar worldwide lead acid battery market.

While Firefly Energy is currently developing the first version of the battery technology for the highway truck and military markets, the battery technology could also serve emerging applications such as hybrid electric vehicles which historically haven't been served effectively by traditional lead acid batteries due to heavy weight and poor cycle life.

The R&D 100 awards are presented by R&D Magazine, and are recognized as the "Oscars of Invention" by the Chicago Tribune. The annual awards recognize the 100 most technologically significant products introduced worldwide over the past year. The awards are a symbol of excellence known throughout the industry by influencers in commercial, government and academic sectors. Each year, an independent panel of judges works with the editors of R&D Magazine to review, identify and select breakthrough products. Firefly Energy will be accepting the award and exhibiting at the 45th annual black tie R&D 100 awards ceremony at Chicago's Navy Pier on Thursday, October 18th, 2007.

"The drive for technological innovation inherent at Firefly Energy reflects the same spirit found in past winners of this prestigious award," says Ed Williams, CEO of Firefly Energy. "It's a special honor for our team to receive the R&D 100 award. It provides a well deserved recognition to an exceptional engineering team and a technology breakthrough that has the potential to bring high performance and lower cost to many of the world's battery markets."

Kurt Kelley, the inventor of Firefly's graphite foam battery technology, adds that removal of corrosive heavy lead grids and replacing them with graphite foam helps unleash the innate power of lead acid chemistry. "Our battery technology can rival other advanced chemistries in performance, take advantage of an existing manufacturing base and address environmental concerns through the removal of up to two-thirds of the lead content," Kelley said.

Firefly Energy's 3D carbon-graphite foam lead acid battery, the first of several battery technology innovations from the company's technology portfolio for lead acid batteries, uses a three dimensional high surface area foam material that unleashes the high power potential of lead acid chemistry that was impossible to achieve in the past. The porous, conductive nature of the foam electrode enables faster, deeper and more reliable discharges and recharges. Battery life is extended since sulfation is reduced, the carbon-graphite foam makes the battery more environmentally friendly, and the battery is less expensive than lithium and nickel battery chemistries. The carbon-graphite foam replacing much of the lead content also enables the battery to perform at cooler temperatures - a key feature considering that the corrosion rate of lead doubles for every 15 degrees the temperature rises above 70-degrees Fahrenheit.

Examples of end-use applications include lawn and garden care equipment, commercial and military vehicles, and Uninterruptible Power Supplies.

R&D Magazine will feature Firefly and the other award winners in its September 2007 issue.





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