General Electric announced Tuesday it will open a new factory to manufacture high tech batteries in upstate New York, creating 350 new jobs.

GE said that the new facility will start making batteries for its hybrid locomotive which will be commercialized in 2010. The new factory would produce approximately 10 million cells each year which can store 900 megawatt hours of energy when operating at full capacity.

GE has invested more than $150 million in the development of advanced battery technologies, including a high energy density, sodium-based chemistry battery.

We believe the advanced battery business could be a $1 billion business over the next decade, said Jeff Immelt, Chairman and CEO of GE in a statement today.

The initial investment in the New York factory will be $100 million, GE said. The company applied this week for a federal loan from the U.S. Department of Energy to finance the project. If approved GE hopes to have the new plant in operation by mid-2011.