NM Battery Research

New Mexico – Some $4.2 million in federal stimulus funds is going to help Sandia National Laboratories improve its Battery Abuse Testing Laboratory to develop low-cost batteries for electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles.

Sandia says its lab is a leader in the field of battery testing, making sure batteries meet real-world performance requirements.

The lab's tests help determine how much abuse lithium ion batteries can safely handle and include crushing batteries, pounding them with nails and heating them to boiling temperatures.

The lab tests everything from regular small cells about the size of a laptop computer battery up to packs weighing several hundred pounds for hybrid vehicles.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press.