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Altair Nanotechnologies Inc. (NASDAQ: ALTI), a leading provider of advanced materials and products for power and energy systems, today announced it received an initial $540,000 order for four hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) demonstration battery packs from DesignLine International. The HEV battery packs will be utilized in buses for three city transit customers, and one HEV battery pack will be used for a modular testing program.
"This key, initial milestone in our HEV commercialization strategy leverages the distinctive value our technology can bring to the mass transit sector," said Terry M. Copeland, Altair's Chief Executive Officer. "With the completion of a successful demonstration program, we can anticipate an initial ramp-up of orders from DesignLine in 2009. We are aggressively pursuing similar opportunities in the mass transit sector and fully expect to have more customer wins with our enabling technology."
Altair will provide DesignLine International with 11Ah cells, which will be assembled into four 44kWh demonstration battery packs. Altair will configure the cells into modules and then integrate a battery management system supplied by DesignLine International. During the assembly process Altair will train DesignLine's personnel, preparing them to perform future modular assembly without Altair's assistance.
"The Altair lithium titanate cell technology in our proprietary battery design is particularly well suited for the DesignLine EcoSaver IV Hybrid System allowing the delivery of a superior performing product to our mass transit customers," said Brad C. Glosson, DesignLine International's Chief Executive Officer. "The selection of Altair battery cells for the company's hybrid demonstration buses was based on meeting four key criteria: the high energy capturing efficiency of the cells; its energy density to weight capability; the cell's ability to rapidly charge and discharge in temperatures ranging from -40 degrees C to +55 degrees C; and a long cycle life that complements our technically advanced vehicle platform."
DesignLine targets the mass transit sector with buses constructed with advanced, extruded aluminum technology for superior strength and reduced weight. The company employs a component manufacturing strategy and a manufacturing process that has been refined to approximate automotive tolerances. The bus features a curved, streamlined body, an expansive use of seamless windows, and provides a luxury ride for up to 42 passengers. The HEV bus operates in an electric-only mode for as much as 30 percent of its range and provides a 100 percent improvement in fuel economy over a diesel bus, with fuel savings of up to 6,000 gallons per year.
About DesignLine International
Headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, with manufacturing facilities in Charlotte and Ashburton, New Zealand, DesignLine was established in 1985 and produces high quality coaches, buses and specialty vehicles for the worldwide market with particular focus on its industry leading ECOSaver IV hybrid vehicle.
About Altair Nanotechnologies Inc.
Altair is charging the energy revolution with their proprietary nano-lithium titanate material. This unique material is incorporated into energy storage solutions for the stationary power and transportation markets. A seasoned management team complements Altair's leading edge scientists and engineers with substantial experience in commercializing innovative, disruptive technologies.
This release may contain forward-looking statements as well as historical information. Forward-looking statements, which are included in accordance with the "safe harbor" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, may involve risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the company's actual results and performance in future periods to be materially different from any future results or performance suggested by the forward-looking statements in this release. These risks and uncertainties include, without limitation, the risks that development of the advanced lithium ion-based batteries and related products described herein will not be completed for technical, political, strategic or other reasons; that any products developed will not perform as expected in future testing or real-world applications; and that even if full commercialization occurs, product sales may be limited and costs associated with production may exceed revenues. In addition, other risks are identified in the company's most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and Form 10-Q, as filed with the SEC. Such forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this release. The company expressly disclaims any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements found herein to reflect any changes in company expectations or results or any change in events.
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Altair Nanotechnologies Inc.
C. Robert Pedraza
Vice President, Corporate Strategy
McCloud Communications, LLC
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