US Army chooses resilient lead-acid batteries ‘to deploy energy storage systems anywhere in the world’

  • NATO member countries could benefit from the deployment of a new system

DURHAM, North Carolina, October 18, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — The The American army chose advanced lead-acid battery energy storage systems to improve its operational efficiency in disaster areas and in combat.

A project led by Paragon Solutions, Inc., and the Battery Innovation Consortium (CBI) provides a new set of systems capable of providing power for critical military operations anywhere in the world.

Paragon, a woman-owned engineering company and member of the Consortium for Energy, Environment and Demilitarization (CEED), has partnered with CBI, a global lead-acid battery research center, to develop the winning proposal in response to a request sent to CEED members by the Consortium Management Group (CMG). The effort is sponsored by the U.S. government under another settlement agreement between CMG and the United States Army Corps of Engineers.*

Paragon and CBI will develop transportable, rugged lead-acid battery energy storage systems that can be integrated into tactical microgrids and demonstrated at the Emergency Base Integration Training Evaluation Center (CBITEC) at Fort Leonard Woods, Missouri. The CBITEC site is managed by the US Army Engineer Research and Development Center, Construction Engineering Research Laboratory (ERDC-CERL).

The eighteen months $3.5 million The program also aims to demonstrate how U.S. Army units can use lead-acid batteries from the Department of Defense supply system and locally available sources such as vehicles, while increasing the life cycle of some types of batteries to meet the energy needs of the battlefield.

Retired US Army captain and government technical lead for this project, Tom Deckersaid: “This is an important project for the military because in any type of emergency environment, in a combat situation or following a natural disaster, everything depends on the corps of engineers of the military to provide the energy needed to continue operations. And that’s where lead-acid batteries come in.”

“By being able to use lead-acid batteries available in the field and turn them into an energy resource, we have the ability to pursue any mission, whether disaster relief or combat.”

“It just adds to our capabilities. The durability of lead-acid batteries has been proven over many decades, so we know what we’re getting when we use the technology. But then we get the added value of battery systems at the advanced leads that the industry provides, and it is the technology that makes the systems viable.”

“Lead-acid batteries allow us to deploy energy storage systems anywhere in the world, improving our resilience. And one of the priorities of the current US administration is to reduce the carbon footprint, therefore by decreasing our fuel consumption and by adopting more innovative energy storage systems, we are also reducing our carbon footprint.”

Implementation of the systems will be to NATO specifications and, if successful, would allow for deployment in many different countries. This solution aims to overcome problems with host nation power grids by designing an energy storage system that accepts host nation power, stores it, and then delivers it in a form compatible with military equipment. American.

The resilience, security and reliability of power supplies are priorities for military operations. Lead-acid batteries were chosen for the project as the technology of choice due to their inherent safety and robustness to extreme weather conditions as well as their availability in the field. The use of lead acid batteries would provide army commanders with local sources of batteries in vehicles and telecommunications towers around the world.

The Paragon/CBI team will develop energy storage systems providing between 125 kWh and 250 kWh of critical energy using three different lead-acid battery technologies supplied by US-based battery manufacturers, Advanced Battery Concepts (ABC), East Penn Manufacturing and EnerSys. These operational workhorses will be transportable, easy to use by military personnel, and can be integrated into tactical microgrids to provide power to critical loads.

The project team will also develop a 30 kWh “plug-and-play” energy storage system, which will give soldiers the option of plugging into an energy storage source made up of used lead-acid batteries found in locally available sources, such as vehicles. Marcus FergusonERDC-CERL project manager and CBITEC site manager said: “After Hurricane Maria in Porto Rico in 2017, approximately 130,000 damaged vehicles were idle with an untapped energy source: lead-acid batteries. If this energy could be harvested, future disaster relief and other military operations, wherever located in the world, could be supplied with reliable, low-cost energy.”

Prototype lead-acid battery energy storage systems will be built and tested in various simulated duty cycles to recreate typical field conditions for military operations. The goal is to develop systems that could be deployed throughout the US military. Additionally, when the lead-acid battery ESS prototypes are connected to the Army’s Tactical Quiet Generators (TQGs), the systems will provide low heat signature and quiet energy resources – critical requirements for U.S. Army operations on field.

dr. Matt RaifordCBI project manager, added: “Lead acid batteries were chosen for this important project because of their resilience, consistent performance at all temperatures and affordability. This will set a benchmark for smaller microgrids. providing essential power and security in a range of settings from remote rural areas to larger military installations.”

Raiford continued, “CBI is committed to developing advanced lead-acid batteries for energy storage applications and the recognition that this core technology has been chosen to support U.S. military operations is a testament to the safety, the reliability and durability inherent in the technology.


*Effort sponsored by the US government under other transaction number W9132T209D001 between Consortium Management Group, Inc. and the government. The United States Government is permitted to reproduce and distribute reprints for government purposes, notwithstanding any copyright notices.



The opinions and conclusions contained herein are those of the authors and should not be construed as necessarily representing official policies or endorsements, express or implied, of the US Government.


SOURCE Consortium for Battery Innovation