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General Automotive Announces High-Temperature Sealing System

July 31, 2008

The company's joint venture with SenCer has produced a glass/ceramic technology for fuel cell and oxygen sensor applications that allows for thermal cycling of these devices and completely seals against free hydrogen gas molecules.

ORLANDO, FL /BUSINESS WIRE/ -- General Automotive Co. (GA), a global provider of parts, accessories, and advanced technology for the automotive industry, announced that its joint venture with SenCer Inc. has developed a high-temperature glass/ceramic sealing system for fuel cell and oxygen sensor applications. The development allows for thermal cycling of these devices and completely seals against free hydrogen gas molecules.

GA President and CEO Joseph DeFrancisci commented, "Our joint venture—focused on developing, commercializing, and marketing UltraTemp ceramic composite materials—is hitting the ground running. We're pleased to be able to announce an important advance so quickly. When combined with our high-temperature composite technology, the system can provide complete hermetic sealing of advanced solid oxide fuel cells and oxygen sensors at a low cost."

David Burt, President of SenCer and Chief Technology Officer of the joint venture, explained, "The development is an extension of a core glass developed at Los Alamos National Laboratory for space-based atmospheric re-entry. In addition to the lab's core national security mission, its work advances many other fields, such as materials science. By building on the lab's years of research, we can accelerate the development of commercial solutions for these complex problems."

General Automotive and SenCer recently formed a joint venture—Advanced Composite Technology LLC (ACT)—to develop, commercialize and market SenCer's groundbreaking UltraTemp ceramic composite materials for accelerating the development of energy-efficient, environmentally friendly fuel cell technologies. The joint venture is also intended to advance the development of next-generation oxygen sensors, which represent a significant part of GA's current business.

ACT's groundbreaking technology solves the two most persistent problems in fuel cell design—cost and durability—by replacing expensive platinum conductors with co-fired proprietary ceramic conductive layers. Hydrogen-powered fuel cells are widely viewed as a potential solution for higher energy prices and environmentally damaging emissions. The technology will also enable the design of more sophisticated oxygen sensors to help maximize fuel economy and minimize exhaust emissions.

About GA
General Automotive Co. is a global provider of parts, accessories, and advanced technology for the automotive industry. GA, which is focused on expanding its growth platform through the acquisition of successful niche manufacturing companies in the automotive industry, currently has two wholly owned subsidiaries, OE Source and Global Parts Direct. GA uses its relationships with manufacturers in China, Korea, and Japan to bring state-of-the-art parts and accessories to automobile manufacturers and major parts distributors in the U.S.

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