Paris, June 30, 2009 – Saft, the world specialist in the design and manufacture of high-tech industrial batteries, has delivered a state-of-the-art lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery system that offers a major improvement in performance and reliability for an electrically propelled Swimmer Delivery Vehicle (SDV) operated by the French Special Forces.
The Special Forces use the SDV – a small, piloted submersible craft – to transfer from an offshore point, such as a submarine, to a position close to the coast, at which point the pilots exit the vehicle and swim to land. The replacement of the existing on-board battery system with Saft’s Li-ion technology has enabled to achieve a significant increase in the SDV’s performance in terms of maximum speed, range and autonomy, as well as reducing maintenance requirements and offering a longer service-life.
“This successful project consolidates Saft’s position as the leading developer and supplier of Li-ion battery systems that deliver outstanding performance and reliability in even the most complex military applications” said Philippe Jehanno, General Manager, Space and Defence Division, Saft. “The use of Li-ion is expanding rapidly in smaller applications such as AUVs and SDVs, and this experience is providing invaluable as we move to larger projects, such as submarines.”
For this SDV, Saft has delivered a complete package comprising the Li-ion battery and charger. The 200 V, 20 kWh battery systems is based on Saft’s maintenance-free VL45E cylindrical cells designed specifically for regularly cycling charge/discharge applications that require a battery with a significantly reduced weight and volume.