April 22, 2008
Quebec City, Quebec – An innovative joint study project on plug-in electric hybrid vehicles (PHEV) has been announced in Quebec City. If the pilot study is successful, a second phase of the project could integrate up to fifty PHEVs on the city’s streets.
The study is joint project of cooperative financial group Desjardins Group, industrial battery manufacturer Enersys and Université Laval. A team of researchers from the university will begin a series of studies, looking at technological improvements under real-world conditions as well as social, economic and environmental issues related to the use of these vehicles.
The pilot project test vehicle will be a Prius-type hybrid, with its standard battery replaced by a high-performance lithium ion battery with a range of over 70 km. The battery can be plugged in and recharged using household current from a regular outlet.
Researchers at the Faculty of Business Administration will study various economic, environmental and social impacts of the use of this type of vehicle; in particular, they will investigate the financial viability for consumers, evaluate the costs of installing power ports and imposing fees for recharging, and with Desjardins, develop financial contracts for this type of vehicle. They will also assess the vehicle’s performance, improve recharging techniques through the development of power ports, and test technologies for connecting the battery with the power grid.
Université Laval Security and Prevention, which has already integrated a PHEV into its fleet of conventional vehicles, is considering progressively replacing all of its vehicles with this type of hybrid.