BAE Systems has awarded Saft $1.3 million in new funding to continue development of a lithium-ion (Li-ion) energy storage system (ESS) for the U.S. Army’s Ground Combat Vehicle (GCV) program. The new funding for the GCV project is an addition to the initial 2010 contract. Saft, which is designing and building ultrahigh-power cells for the vehicle’s hybrid-electric drive system, has already completed the demo battery system including hardware and software. Comprised of ultrahigh-power, high-voltage VL 5U cells, the Li-ion ESS supports the GCV’s electric drive system when the vehicle is not running on gasoline, such as during silent watch missions. Saft joins Northrop Grumman, MTU, QinetiQ, and L-3 Communications on the BAE Systems’ GCV team, one of two industry teams working on the technology development phase of the program. The 24-month technology development phase is aimed at completing preliminary design reviews to build prototype systems prior to the engineering and manufacturing phase. Saft believes it will likely be the battery supplier when production begins in 2019, if the BAE Systems/Northrop Grumman team is selected as the Army’s design and manufacturing partner.