The hybrid systems research team at GE Global Research, the company’s central technology development arm, announced a significant breakthrough that could help accelerate the electrification of bus fleets, delivery trucks and other larger, heavy-duty vehicle fleets. The GE team successfully demonstrated a dual battery system on a zero tailpipe emissions hybrid transit bus that pairs a high-energy density sodium battery with a high-power lithium battery.
While significant advances in battery technology have been made, further reductions in the size and cost of batteries will be needed to enable the widespread adoption of electric vehicles. GE researchers believe a dual system with high power and energy storage capacity could achieve the optimal electric driving range and acceleration requirements at a more practical size scale and cost for larger vehicles. The research is being done as part of a $13 million research project GE is engaged in with the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and Northeast Advanced Vehicle Consortium, funded under the National Fuel Cell Bus Program.