Outdoor power equipment manufacturer MTD Products has signed a joint development agreement with energy storage startup Gridtential that supports MTD’s push to replace the combustion engines in its lawn and garden fleet with batteries.

Gridtential says the move shows that the $3 billion traction market, which includes small-scale vehicles and equipment historically reliant on combustion engines, is making strides in energy storage adoption.

Gridtential partner Intevac is supporting process development and preparation of its high-performance battery plates. Intevac is providing both technical and manufacturing support based on its widely deployed thin-film deposition equipment for the hard drive media and solar cell markets.

The initial Alpha units are maintenance-free, 6V AGM batteries that deliver high-energy density, longer battery life and improved cycling performance, Gridtential says.

Also this month Mitsubishi Heavy Industries said it is selling its lithium-ion rechargeable battery business assets, including machinery, to Taiwan’s Delta Electronics. MHI plans to shift its management resources into operations in energy storage system products employing lithium-ion rechargeable batteries.