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Obama Announces $2.4 Billion in Grants for Electric Car and Advanced Battery Projects

President Barack Obama has announced that the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has chosen 48 advanced battery and electric drive projects to receive $2.4 billion in grant funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. A statement from the DOE says the awards include $1.5 billion to U.S.-based manufacturers to produce batteries and their components and to expand battery recycling capacity; $500 million to U.S.-based manufacturers to produce electric drive components for vehicles, including electric motors, power electronics, and other drive-train components; and $400 million in grants to purchase thousands of plug-in hybrid and all-electric vehicles for demonstrations, deployment, and evaluation, and for installation of electric charging infrastructure. Obama made the announcement in Elkhart, Indiana, one of several states that will see the most funding dollars; seven projects in the state will receive more than $400 million, including a $39 million grant for Navistar to manufacture electric trucks. Michigan will receive more than $1 billion, the largest share of any state; the three U.S. automakers are among the award recipients, as are several universities, for advanced battery manufacturing and electric drive projects. Florida will see a $95.5 million grant for Saft America, Inc. to construct a new plant in Jacksonville to manufacture lithium-ion battery packs, cells, and modules for military, industrial, and agricultural vehicles. Missouri companies and universities will receive more than $115 million for grants for plug-in hybrid vehicle projects and work force training on advanced vehicle technologies. North Carolina battery manufacturer Celgard will receive a $49 million grant to expand lithium-ion battery production at facilities there and in South Carolina. Pennsylvania's East Penn Manufacturing Company will receive $32.5 million to increase production capacity for valve-regulated lead-acid batteries and the UltraBattery, a lead-acid battery combined with a carbon supercapacitor for hybrid applications.

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