Menendez Announces $28.4 Million For NJ-Owned Business To Help Increase Vehicle Fuel Efficiency Build Batteries For Electric Cars

Menendez Announces $28.4 Million For NJ-Owned Business To Help Increase Vehicle Fuel Efficiency Build Batteries For Electric Cars

Senator Menendez instrumental in securing funds that will allow New Jersey company to play key role in administration's efforts to wean America off fossil

Washington - Today, US Senator Menendez (D-NJ) announced that a New Jersey-owned company has received $28.4 in federal funding he helped to secure in order to improve battery technology for fuel-efficient vehicles. Princeton-based Rockwood Holdings, through its subsidiary Chemetall Foote, is the world's largest producer of lithium specialty chemicals and lithium compounds. . It will receive the funding through the economic recovery packages' Electric Drive Vehicle Battery and Component Manufacturing Initiative for the financing of two projects that will 1) help it expand its lithium carbonate production capacity and 2) produce battery grade lithium metal. Companies use this metal to produce battery cells that have the potential to produce as much as twofold increase in driving distance for hybrid and electric vehicles. Senator Menendez supported Rockwood's grant application in a letter earlier this year to the Secretary of Energy.
"This grant is important for several reasons. First, by helping the United States ability to build advanced batteries we are creating jobs and enhancing our competitiveness. Second, by securing a domestic source of lithium we ensure we are not trading one energy security problem for another. Lastly, enhancing lithium ion battery manufacturing will enable us to commercialize plug-in hybrids and electric cars. This will allow us to fill our cars on electricity generate by the sun or the wind. When this happens we will truly be on the road to energy independence and toward greening our transportation fleet."
Chematall Foote is the world's largest producer of lithium specialty chemicals and lithium compounds, and a subsidiary of Rockwood Holdings based in Princeton. It seeks to expand its lithium carbonate manufacturing facility in Silver Peak, NV, and convert it to geothermal -based electricity, which will increase its competitiveness relative to foreign producers of lithium carbonate. The company also seeks to install a lithium metal purification plant in Kings Mountain, NC, to produce battery grade lithium metal, which multiple companies are utilizing to produce battery cells that could provide as much as a twofold increase over the current lithium ion battery cells in terms of increased driving distance of hybrid and all electric vehicles.
Click here to read the full letter: http://menendez.senate.gov/pdf/08062009LetterSecChuElectric.pdf

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