U.S. DOD Office of Naval Research: 14-SN-0012, Compact High-Density Tactical Energy Storage

Posted: May 13, 2014 - 19:04 / DOD / FOA-RFI-RFP

The Office of Naval Research (ONR) is interested in receiving proposals on the topic of “Compact High-Density Tactical Energy Storage.” The objective is to encourage innovation, advance technology development, and foster technology transition that benefits future war-fighters and meets US Marine Corps future needs. One example of USMC future needs for energy storage is documented in the 2012 Marine Corps Science & Technology Strategic Plan1 that identifies Expeditionary Energy Science & Technology Objective, EE STO-04, entitled “Energy Storage Other than Liquid” as a technology needed to bridge the gap between on-site energy harvesting and demand. Another example is the 2011 Marine Corps Initial Capabilities Document (ICD) for Expeditionary Energy, Water and Waste2 which identifies five gaps to be addressed by its Mobile Electric Hybrid Power Sources (MEHPS) initiative:

  1. Lack of existing capability to automatically match load to demand (3.LC.1);
  2. Lack existing capability to autonomously and automatically match power production to consumption (6.LC.1);
  3. Lack of existing capability to efficiently integrate multiple energy sources (6.LC.2);
  4. Lack of common and/or renewable power sources (14.LC.1); and
  5. No scalable expeditionary energy storage capability (22.LC.1).

The latter gap (22.LC.1) is the primary focus of this special notice. Scalable/modular expeditionary energy storage capability is desired as a means for matching power production to load demand through hybridization, and as a medium for storing harvested energy. This energy storage capability will be expected to function in support of peak shaving, cycle charging, silent watch and maintain flexibility for operations in future hybrid power generation systems such as those envisioned as a result of the MEHPS Analysis of Alternatives (AoA) study conducted by the Marine Corps3. The S&T effort herein seeks development and demonstration of system-level energy storage technology that provides a capability to expand the envelope of safe storage, transport and operating conditions beyond that which is currently available. Analyses and trade studies shall be conducted as necessary to determine the optimal system kW-hr rating and scaling approach to satisfy per each future expeditionary power need. The S&T effort shall address the following operational needs and desired attributes at a minimum:

  1. Storage and transport environments include vehicle, ship, and aircraft platforms. Applicable guidelines are contained in NAVSEAINST 9310.1c, the Technical Manual for Batteries, Navy Lithium Safety Program and Procedures, Rev 2 S9310-AQ-SAF-010, and UNECE Recommendations on the Transport of Dangerous Goods, Manual of Tests and Criteria.
  2. Operating environment is primarily terrestrial and the mobility platform is the Light Tactical Trailer-Marine Corps Chassis (LTT-MCC).
  3. Portability of the systems is required (2 person lift objective, 4 person lift threshold).
  4. Operation in 0 to 55°C (threshold) / -20 to 55°C (objective) environments.
  5. Typical charge and discharge rates of C/2 (threshold) and 2C (objective) are envisioned.
  6. DC round-trip efficiency target without power electronics is 90% (threshold) / 95% (objective) at C/2 rate.
  7. Long-term power and capacity retention are required; threshold life of 4,500 charge/discharge cycles, and an objective of 20,000 cycles.
  8. Long-term shelf life in -40°C to +40°C environments with self-discharge rates less than 5%/month (threshold), 2%/month (objective).
  9. All parasitic losses shall be identified and minimized to limit impact on operational use of the systems.
  10. System energy density shall be compared to existing fielded energy storage density of 72 W-hr/kg. Greater system energy density concepts will receive favorable consideration.
  11. The energy storage systems (in a stand-alone or modular/scalable configuration) shall support 3 hours (threshold) / 8 hours (objective) of silent watch operation under the loading scenarios detailed in the AoA study3.
  12. Life-cycle cost estimate shall be provided for the proposed energy storage solution.
  13. Favorable consideration will be given to open systems architecture approaches. Guidelines are provided in OSD’s Open Systems Architecture Initiative.7

Nominally, Budget Activity 2 (BA 2) applied research funds will be used for the base phase, and BA 3 Advanced Technology Development funds will be used in the option phase. The overall S&T effort is envisioned to be conducted at the TRL 4-6 stage. Achievement of TRL 5 is anticipated at the end of 18 months, and TRL 6 is expected by end of 36 months.