San Diego-based ultracapacitor supplier Maxwell Technologies is awarded a $2.68 million contract by the United States Advance Battery Consortium to develop a high-performance hybrid-energy storage system for use in stop-start applications.

The development project is co-funded with the U.S. Department of Energy and includes a 51% Maxwell cost share.

The 19-month program will focus on creating a 12-volt system that combines lithium-ion batteries and Maxwell’s ultracapacitors and includes the development of a next-generation capacitor.

The USABC is a collaborative organization operated by Chrysler Group, Ford and General Motors and is part of the United States Council for Automotive Research.

“We are pleased to announce the award of this contract to Maxwell Technologies as part of USABC’s broad battery technology research and development programs,” says Steve Zimmer, executive director of USCAR. “These programs are essential to advance the technology needed to meet both near- and long-term goals that will enable increasingly efficient and affordable vehicle electrification.”

Both Maxwell officials and industry insiders told WardsAuto earlier this year there has been some disatisfaction with the performance and durability of advanced lead-acid batteries in today’s stop-start systems, prompting interest in alternatives such as a battery-ultracapacitor hybrid systems.