DOE Doles Out $30m for PHEV Research

Jonny Lieberman
by Jonny Lieberman

Twenty-four hours after Ford's PR man Mark Fields declared battery research a "national priority," the US Department of Energy (DOE) announced it's giving $30m in research money to General Motors, Ford and General Electric. (Don't despair Mopar fans, as GE is already working with Chrysler on a plug-in hybrid.) Each company will work on a different aspect of battery technology. GM will focus on lithium ion packs and their integration with vehicles and homes. Ford will attempt to tackle the manufacturing process. GE will concern themselves with "dual-battery" technology, whatever that may mean. While the DOE's grant isn't exactly the $500m Fields declared necessary to secure our technological borders, it's still a hefty chunk of change. Expect the initiative to bear PHEV fruit in 2016, some six years after the plug-in electric gas hybrid Chevrolet Volt's supposed debut.

Jonny Lieberman
Jonny Lieberman

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  • Landcrusher Landcrusher on Jun 13, 2008

    Once again, can someone explain how this is NOT theft? It's one thing to do a university grant for something that the market won't likely generate cash for, but that may have good social return. However, how do you justify this? Doesn't this directly punish the independent companies working on these things right now in search of profit? If I had a small company working on this stuff, I would be royally pissed. Hell, I am royally pissed already, and all it cost me was my measly share of the $30 million. Wait, that's not true. It cost me my share of the $30 million, PLUS the damage to the market. What great scientific breakthrough will we not enjoy because the future inventor will now be waiting for a government grant because he can't get private funds because no one wants to compete with Uncle Sugar and his corporate clique? Bastards!

  • Kevin Kevin on Jun 13, 2008

    If we're going to spew out corporate welfare, I think the $30 million would be much more productively employed by Toyota!

  • Redbarchetta Redbarchetta on Jun 13, 2008

    Great more money pissed down a rat hole. Didn't they already prove to be totaly irrisponsible when they got BIllions of our tax dollars a decade ago to make hybrids. Actually it doesn't bother me that Ford gets it aleast they have had the Escape hybrid on the market for some time, but GM, stupid politicians giving away our money for executive bonuses. Landcrusher is right, free market my ass.

  • John Horner John Horner on Jun 14, 2008

    I'm still waiting for the New Generation vehicles promised by the big Clinton era Private-Public partnership.