ABC endorsed by Crown Battery, chooses Wirtz for pasting lines

Bipolar lead acid battery firm Advanced Battery Concepts received further endorsement of its Greenseal bipolar battery technology on April 7 with an undisclosed investment from Hal Hawk, the president and owner of Crown Battery. Separately it later announced that Wirtz Manufacturing will install production scale paste lines for its prototype production facility.

ABC founder and CEO Ed Shaffer claims the firm’s technology is “the next revolution for lead” as it is an immediate substitute for traditional batteries but uses cheaper materials and less lead, thus lowering costs and offering a profit margin of 50% as opposed to the standard 22%.

Shaffer also says the batteries last longer because they are more robust and rugged.

The investment comes four months after ABC signed a licensing agreement with Johnson Controls for the technology. At the time Shaffer said another licensee was about to come on board — although this has not yet been announced.

“We are in negotiations still with multiple others,” Shaffer told BESB. “Unfortunately until they are concluded I cannot discuss them.

“But licensees are looking at a broad range of applications. ABC plans on installing a prototype production line to build 48V golf cart batteries to demonstrate the advantage of higher voltage monoblocs. GreenSeal Technology reduces production costs over 20% while improving performance. As our licensees and ABC continue to demonstrate scale production capability broader adoption will rapidly occur.

“Hal Hawk’s continued investment supports ABC’s contention that our bipolar battery technology is commercially viable and is beneficial for the lead battery industry. We appreciate his support greatly.”

Hawk said that by succeeding in licensing its technology to global battery licensees including JCI, ABC had demonstrated industry validation.

“I am personally committed to advancing lead battery technology and I am very pleased to have been a part of ABC’s success story. This is very exciting for our lead battery industry — the performance improvements and reduced environmental impact the technology delivers will ensure lead batteries have a sustainable and competitive future,” he said.

“From what I am seeing, bipolar lead batteries will play a significant role in our industry’s future and may prove to be as disruptive as AGM batteries were when they were first introduced.”

ABC also announced it had selected Wirtz Manufacturing to install production-scale paste lines for its own PrecisionAM pasting technology at its prototype production facility in Clare, Michigan.

PrecisionAM pasting is a patent pending method of applying active materials to a bipolar electrode that demonstrates many advantages over existing lead grid pasting methods employed today.  PrecisionAM pasting allows for precise application of leady pastes with unparalleled weight and thickness consistency.  PrecisionAM pasting is extremely clean with no off-fall or dust, greatly improving environmental stewardship.

John Wirtz, the head of Wirtz Manufacturing, said that ABC had repeatedly demonstrated its successful pasting of bipolar electrodes.

“Their resultant process is easily scalable, innovative and simple. We look forward to the broad adoption by licensees of Advanced Battery Concepts’ bipolar lead battery technology.”