This year’s award goes to Dipl.-Ing. (BA) Michael Keller (Continental AG, Temic Automotive Electric Motors GmbH, Berlin) and Prof. Dr. Herbert Kohler (Daimler AG, Stuttgart). Both are responsible for the first large-scale use of a lithium-ion battery for a hybrid drive system of the companies Daimler AG and Continental AG. This innovative battery solution will go into series production with the delivery of the Mercedes S400 with mild hybrid drive in 2009. In the view of the jury selecting the Professor Ferdinand Porsche Award, this represents a milestone in the practical use of this currently best possible electrical storage technology in vehicles under large-scale production conditions. The lithium-ion battery, currently the most promising storage technology for hybrid drives, plug-ins and, in the future, also for purely electric vehicles, has achieved a breakthrough with this series launch. For this innovation, the two companies or, in accordance with the spirit of the award, the persons significantly involved in it should be recognized.
The “Professor Ferdinand Porsche Prize” of the Vienna University of Technology was endowed by Ferdinand Porsche’s daughter, Distinguished Businesswoman Louise Piech, in 1976, and in 1977 was awarded for the first time every two years since 1981 to technicians who provide innovations for the essential development of the automobile.