Plugging In: Georgetown Helps Test Electric Cars
September 10, 2010 – Georgetown is test-driving a pre-market model of Toyota’s first generation of Prius Plug-in Hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV) to gather data for an international research initiative.
The U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities Program is managing a long-term evaluation of the vehicles, which use both electric and hybrid technologies.
Two cars were loaned to the university as part of an international electric vehicle research initiative with the Toyota Motor Corporation and ZEV Technologies, Inc.
“By taking steps toward accommodating electric vehicle use, Georgetown continues to advance our sustainability goals, including the reduction of our carbon footprint,” said Karen Frank, vice president for university facilities and student housing.
A total of 150 PHEVs are being delivered across the United States – 600 throughout the world – as part of a global program to educate the public about the cars and capture real-world driving data.
Georgetown is the first site in Washington, D.C., to participate in the program. Beginning this December, several Georgetown employees will have the opportunity to test-drive one of the vehicles for three months.
Data from the U.S. demonstration programs, to be used for the next generation of the cars, will be posted on http://www.toyota.com/esq.
Electric and Hybrid
The Prius PHEV can run on electricity (at speeds up to 62 mph) for approximately 13 miles, after which it operates as a conventional Prius hybrid.
Georgetown employees will use two newly installed electric vehicle charging stations in a parking garage below the new LEED-certified Hariri Building. LEED is an internationally recognized green building certification system created by the U.S. Green Building Council.
The Prius PHV can be recharged in approximately three hours with a standard 110V electrical outlet or 90 minutes with a 220V connection.
“Our experience so far suggests that the vehicles are very easy to plug in and to drive,” says Frank. “We're looking forward to additional feedback from the volunteer test drivers as the program continues.”
For more information visit: http://sustainability.georgetown.edu