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Plug Gains on U.S. Funding to Boost Range of Electric Trucks

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Jan. 7 (Bloomberg) -- Plug Power Inc., a maker of fuel-cells for warehouse forklifts, rose to a 32-month high after winning U.S. Energy Department funding to adapt its systems to extend the range of electric trucks.

Plug rose 39 percent to $3.85 at the close in New York, the highest since May 2011.

The Energy Department will provide $3 million for Plug to develop hydrogen fuel cells for 20 FedEx Corp. delivery trucks built by Smith Electric Vehicles Corp., Latham, New York-based Plug said today in a statement.

The hybrid trucks will use 10-kilowatt fuel cell systems that double the 80-mile (129-kilometer) range of their lithium-ion batteries. Boosting the range will make the trucks viable for additional applications and may spur wider demand for vehicles that don’t require fossil fuels.

Plug has quadrupled since it said Dec. 4 that cost reductions and increasing orders may generate a profit this year after 14 years of losses.

To contact the reporter on this story: Christopher Martin in New York at cmartin11@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reed Landberg at landberg@bloomberg.net