Protonex to extend capabilities of unmanned vehicle propulsion systems

SOUTHBOROUGH, Mass., 26 April 2008. Protonex Technology Corp., a provider of fuel cell power systems for portable, remote, and mobile applications, won a $1.62 million contract with the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) for advanced development of high-power fuel cell systems for small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). This program expands upon Protonex' portfolio of UAV power system initiatives.

SOUTHBOROUGH, Mass., 26 April 2008. Protonex Technology Corp., a provider of fuel cell power systems for portable, remote, and mobile applications, won a $1.62 million contract with the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) for advanced development of high-power fuel cell systems for small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). This program expands upon Protonex' portfolio of UAV power system initiatives.

Says Warren Schultz, associate superintendent, chemistry division, Naval Research Laboratory: "We have a real need for advanced power solutions to enable longer flight times and fuel cells show great potential to outperform batteries and other traditional power sources to meet this objective."

Development work under the program will focus on increasing power output of the company's Pulse UAV fuel cell platform and improving overall efficiency of the system. The advanced system will be integrated into a small NRL plane designed for extended flight testing. The resulting hydrogen fuel cell system will be compatible with a variety of fuels, offer a very low noise profile, and deliver up to four times the endurance of today's advanced batteries.

Dr. Paul Osenar, chief technology 0fficer, Protonex, comments: "In addition to the rapidly growing segment of electric UAVs designed for military and commercial missions, the power system developed under this program will address a wide variety of high power applications and will complement Protonex's other fuel cell products. We expect to leverage the outcome of this program to help us gain greater access to both our military and commercial target markets."

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