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Novel Reserve Power System with High-Power On-Demand Capability



OBJECTIVE: investigate and develop innovative reserve battery technologies that provide the required pulse power, exceed the 20 year shelf life, survive severe gun launch shock and heat environments, and are affordable and readily available within the commercial marketplace. 

DESCRIPTION: Current reserve batteries used in munitions meet operational requirements, however suffer performance loss at extreme temperatures and are only able to be used once (not conducive for emplaced munitions). Additionally, there is no significant commercial market for the reserve batteries used in munitions, so the cost is higher than it should be and availability is lower. The proposed project aims at developing new reserve power systems with energy management architectures and initiation methods that make the power system programmable to fit various application missions. Prior to activation, the energy storage system remains in a quiescent state with negligible self-discharge, power drain or leakage. Activation may occur via remote control or various triggering mechanisms and once activated the power system must be capable of providing a relatively low amount of electrical power over periods that may be as long as one month while being capable of providing short duration high power pulses on demand. Shelf life of the proposed power system concept is expected to exceed 20 years and the temperature performance of the energy storage system must meet full military required operational and storage temperature range of -65 deg. F to 165 deg. F. Additionally, the power system must be capable of being deployed by low and high spins rounds and withstand high launch accelerations and flight vibration. The power systems being sought by this topic must be scalable, miniaturizable and must be safe to operate across the harsh environments produced by military applications. The power system must be capable of providing a relatively low amount of electrical power over periods that may be as long as one month while being capable of providing short duration high power pulses on demand. As an example, the power system must provide 180 mW of power at 9 Volts over 30 days, while being capable of providing at least five pulses of 2-4 seconds duration of power at 5 and 9 Volts with 0.5 and 1 A current, respectively. It is highly desirable that the power system provide relatively fast initiation (200 mS), but power for the indicated pulses be available in 20-30 msec upon demand. The new power systems are desired to occupy relatively small volumes, 16 cubic cm threshold and less than 1 cubic cm objective. 

PHASE I: Study various novel reserve battery chemistries and designs that can provide the required nominal low and high pulse power over a 30 days period following activation. The feasibility study is expected to include and modeling and simulations and laboratory testing of the critical components of the candidate power system concepts, and development of a strategy for achieving the best possible power system architecture for minimal volume, initiation mechanisms, and all other system components, to meet power and application objective of topic. At the conclusion of Phase I efforts, a selected design meeting the power requirements of a host application would have to be proven feasible, in order to be ready to advance to the project Phase II. Phase I option will include delivery of the initial System Requirement Specification (SRS) which will annotate technical requirements and verification methods. The SRS shall be approved by the government. 

PHASE II: Build full-scale reserve power system prototypes and test in relevant environments, including simulated launch events. Demonstrate that prototypes can survive in operational environments while providing voltages and power requirements under simulated load conditions. Produce final prototypes of each design that meets power requirements mentioned in the description, conduct survivability and performance tests. Develop a manufacturing plan for transitioning from prototypes to low rate initial production. 

PHASE III: The objective goals of this SBIR project is the insertion of this novel reserve power system into a number of military applications with small and medium power requirements over long periods of times, which might be days, weeks or over a month, which may include short periods of high power requirements (pulses). Such power systems may be used to power devices in gun-fired munitions or mortars or devices that are deployed by air or hand placed. Possibility for application not limited to the area of munitions and could include power sources for remote sensor network devices, emergency memory back up for computer systems, and power sources for anti-tampering electronics. 


1: Handbook of Batteries - Linden, McGraw-Hill, "Technology Roadmap for Power Sources: Requirements Assessment for Primary, Secondary and Reserve Batteries", dated 1 December 2007, DoD Power Sources Working Group.

2:  Macmahan, W., "RDECOM Power & Energy IPT Thermal Battery Workshop – Overview, Findings, and Recommendations," Redstone Arsenal, U.S. Army, Huntsville, AL, April 30 (2004).

3:  Linden, D., "Handbook of Batteries," 2nd Ed., McGraw-Hill, New York, NY (1998).

4:  R. A. Guidotti, F. W. Reinhardt, J. D., and D. E. Reisner, "Preparation and Characterization of Nanostructured FeS2 and CoS2 for High-Temperature Batteries," to be published in proceedings of MRS meeting, San Francisco, CA, April 1-4, 2002.

5:  Delnick, F.M., Butler, P.C., "Thermal Battery Architecture," Joint DOD/DOE Munitions Technology Program, Project Plan, Sandia Internal Document, April 30, 2004.


Vincent Matrisciano 

(973) 724-2765 

Dr. Carlos Pereira 

(973) 724-1542 

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