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Adaptive Materials Gets $1M For Army Fuel Cell Research

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Ann Arbor-based Adaptive Materials, a manufacturer of fuel cells powered by propane, has been awarded $1 million to conduct a manufacturing research project for the United States Army. 

The focus of Adaptive Materials work will be on determining the cost-effectiveness of manufacturing fuel cell components for use in the Army’s Man Transportable Robotic System.

“Adaptive Materials is becoming known for its expertise in manufacturing fuel cells that are field-ready for use by our armed forces,” said Michelle Crumm, Adaptive Materials chief business officer. “Adaptive Materials will use this funding to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of manufacturing fuel cell filters. By drilling deeper into the logistics of manufacturing fuel cell systems, we are moving forward in putting portable power into the hands of our soldiers in the field.”

The MTRS program fields the iRobot Packbot and the Foster-Miller Talon to support the warfighter in performing reconnaissance, surveillance, and counter-IED missions. Propane fuel cell power systems allows these robots to operate for up to 20 times longer than they can with batteries.

In the battlefield, fuel cell equipped robots help to keep soldiers safe by minimizing their exposure to hostile action.

Funding for Adaptive Materials was awarded through the Industrial Base Innovation Fund, a Defense Logistics Agencies program that supports manufacturing technology for military applications.  Adaptive Materials was one of 21 companies selected for funding through the IBIF program.

To date, in 2010, Adaptive Materials has been awarded $11.9 million in federal funding.

More at www.adaptivematerials.com.

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