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PHILADELPHIA LAW FIRM HELPS MAKE ELECTRIC CAR A REALITY; U.S. OFFICE OF PATENTS AND TRADEMARKS ISSUES PATENT FOR FLYWHEEL MECHANICAL BATTERY

PHILADELPHIA LAW FIRM HELPS MAKE ELECTRIC CAR A REALITY; U.S. OFFICE OF

PATENTS AND TRADEMARKS ISSUES PATENT FOR FLYWHEEL MECHANICAL BATTERY
 PHILADELPHIA, June 30 /PRNewswire/ -- The Philadelphia intellectual property firm of Woodcock Washburn Kurtz Mackiewicz & Norris has played a key role in the development of a battery that will make electric cars practical and competitive.
 The patent was issued June 23 by the U.S. Office of Patents and Trademarks. The holder of the patent for the battery, which is mechanical, not electrochemical, is American Flywheel Systems (AFS) of Seattle.
 AFS is headed by Philadelphia native Edward W. Furia, the first administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency Middle Atlantic regional headquarters in Philadelphia, and head of Philadelphia's first Earth Day in 1970. Furia serves as president and chief executive officer.
 "This piece of technology is the missing link that has eluded scientists and inventors ever since the first electric car was invented a century ago," according to John Caldwell, the Woodcock Washburn partner who handled the patent.
 Caldwell added that the battery will have major implications for the automobile industry, in light of pollution and other environmental concerns, as well as for utility companies, which could use the battery to store off-peak


power and increase their peak capacity.
 California and New York recently passed legislation requiring 2 percent of new cars sold there in 1998 to be free of exhaust fumes. By 2003, the zero emission vehicles must equal 10 percent. Pennsylvania and New Jersey are among 12 East Coast states that are promoting similar legislation.
 The mechanical flywheel is a direct outgrowth of technology originally developed to power life support systems for Army chemical defense suits. American Flywheel Systems, Inc. was formed in 1990 to use the former defense technology in civilian applications.
 Tests on the new battery have already been conducted in both computer and laboratory simulations. AFS Chief Executive Officer Furia expects to build an integrated flywheel unit in the next 10 to 12 months, have a device in a vehicle within 12 to 18 months, and actually in production cars within 3 years.
 According to Caldwell, the aerospace scientists who developed the AFS technology expect that it will make possible low-cost, high-powered electric cars which emit no air pollution and present none of the toxic waste problems associated with chemical batteries.
 Woodcock Washburn Kurtz Mackiewicz & Norris is the largest firm in Pennsylvania specializing in patent, trademark and unfair competition law. Located in Philadelphia, the firm represents a national client base in diverse fields including biotechnology, electronics, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, medical devices and computer science.
 -0- 6/30/92
 /CONTACT: Rachael Kramer of Rosanio, Bailets & Talamo, 609-488-5500, for Woodcock Washburn, or John Caldwell of Woodcock Washburn, 215-568-3100/ CO: Woodcock Washburn Kurtz Mackiewicz & Norris; American Flywheel
 Systems ST: Pennsylvania, California, New York, Washington IN: AUT SU: PDT


JS-LJ -- PH005 -- 5073 06/30/92 10:10 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jun 30, 1992
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