Saab has awarded power solutions firm EaglePicher Technologies a contract to design and fabricate a 24-volt lithium-ion battery for the Gripen E-series supersonic multirole fighter aircraft.
The agreement is a milestone for Saab’s combat jet program as it will produce the first lithium-ion-based power source for the Gripen aircraft.
EaglePicher worked on a similar project in the early 2000s, when the company was contracted to develop the first lithium-ion battery for the US Air Force’s B-2 Spirit stealth bomber.
“EaglePicher’s legacy is in aviation and aerospace. We are thrilled to partner with the talented team at Saab on this innovative aircraft.” EaglePicher CEO Rich Hunter stated.
Gripen’s New Battery
According to EaglePicher, Gripen’s latest battery can be integrated as a primary and emergency power source to “improve redundancy and add robustness” for the jet.
It incorporates advanced charging, performance electronics technology, and a power management system with a bi-directional communications connection for enhanced situational awareness.
The system will leverage the battery to employ avionics and weapon systems and sustain operability in austere, low-temperature environments.
Once installed, the component is expected to support longer deployments and reduced maintenance for the aircraft.
Batteries under the program are qualified under the Federal Aviation Administration’s RTCA DO-311A safety standards and RTCA DO178, DAL A software standards.