Saft Chosen By Boeing To Provide Lithium-Ion Batteries

BALTIMORE, Maryland, July 5 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ --

- Agreement With Boeing Marks the Largest Contract for Saft Li-ion Satellite Batteries in the U.S.

Saft recently won an award from Boeing to supply lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries for the Mobile Satellite Ventures Satellite program. The multi-million dollar contract will mark Saft's largest U.S. commercial satellite contract for Li-ion batteries and the first commercial satellite program utilizing Li-ion technology for Boeing. The satellites will be among the largest and most powerful ever built and will be provided to Mobile Satellite Ventures (MSV) for an advanced commercial telecommunications network.

Saft will become Boeing's designated source for Li-ion technology for two of the Boeing-built GEO-Mobile MSV satellites, providing up to 18 years of battery life. The rechargeable Li-ion batteries will be installed on the satellites to power critical systems. Saft's VES140 40 Ah Li-ion cells (arranged in a 6P12S configuration) will provide a compact, weight-saving source of on-board power to ensure continuous, reliable operation of the satellites at times when their solar panels are in eclipse.

Saft's Li-ion batteries allow Boeing and MSV to decrease the satellite's weight significantly versus the previously used nickel-hydrogen battery chemistry. This approximately 30 to 50 percent weight savings on the battery (yielded from Saft's Li-ion battery high specific energy of 120 Wh/kg) allows the satellite manufacturer and user to dedicate more of the satellite's crucial mass to the payload, or revenue generating part of the spacecraft.

"Saft has been working with Boeing for many years and this award is the result of a group effort to get Li-ion batteries on-board their GEO-Mobile satellites," said John Searle, Saft CEO. "Li-ion is the ideal battery technology for space applications due to its superior performance and light weight. We believe this award strengthens Saft's position as a leading supplier of Li-ion battery systems for the U.S. space market."

Boeing will build the GEO-mobile satellites, based on its powerful 702 infrastructure, for the world's first commercial mobile satellite service using both space and terrestrial elements. The network, based on MSV's patented Ancillary Terrestrial Component (ATC) technology, combines the best of satellite and cellular technology. It will deliver reliable, advanced and widespread voice and data. Each spacecraft will supply 11,000 watts of power.

This award from Boeing adds to Saft's extensive list of spacecraft programs (39 programs to date), and enhances Saft's growth in the U.S. space battery market.

About Saft

Saft is a world specialist in the design and manufacture of high-tech batteries for industry. Saft batteries are used in high performance applications such as industrial infrastructure and processes, transportation, space and defense. Saft is the world's leading manufacturer of nickel cadmium batteries for industrial applications and of primary lithium batteries for a wide range of end markets. The group is also the European leader for specialized advanced technologies for the defense and space industries. With approximately 3,800 employees worldwide, Saft is present in 18 countries. Its 18 manufacturing sites and extensive sales network enable the group to serve its customers worldwide.

    For more information, visit Saft at 
www.saftbatteries.com

    Press Contacts:

    Jill Ledger,
    Saft Corporate Communications and Institutional Relations Director,
    Tel.: +33-1-49-93-17-77,
    e-mail: 
Email Contact

    US Press contact :
    Paige Sargent,
    French/West/Vaughan,
    Tel.: +1-919-277-1162,
    e-mail: 
Email Contact

    Corporate Press contact :
    Elodie Marchand,
    Financial Dynamics
    Tel : +33-1-47-03-68-17
    e-mail : 
Email Contact

    Antoine Brenier,
    Saft Specialty Battery Group,
    Business Development Manager,
    Tel.: +33-1-49-93-19-18;
    e-mail: 
Email Contact



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