Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc. is supporting the University of Southern California (USC) and the institution’s Viterbi School of Engineering as it develops a special campus-wide Smart Grid “Living Laboratory” project including the use of Mitsubishi’s diminutive electric vehicles.
The company says the Mitsubishi Motors/USC Electric Vehicle Smart Grid Demonstration Project will work to further develop and improve virtually all phases of electric vehicle infrastructure to accommodate their widespread usage in the future.
This USC Smart Grid Living Laboratory program will simulate a city with a population between 50,000 to 60,000 citizens, tourists, visitors and two hospitals as they document their experiences operating a fleet of electric vehicles (EVs) under a wide range of conditions and simulations over a period of two years.
“Mitsubishi Motors is proud to offer our support to the USC Smart Grid Living Laboratory program,” said Yoichi Yokozawa, President & CEO of Mitsubishi Motors North America. “This project will help cities of all sizes develop a very cost-effective electric vehicle infrastructure game plan for drivers of 100 percent electric-powered vehicles including the Mitsubishi i-MiEV.”
Mitsubishi Motors says it will be providing a total of twelve Mitsubishi i-MiEV vehicles, several Level 2 EVSE charging systems to the Smart Grid program, and will consult with the university throughout the course of the research program.
“We are excited to build a partnership with Mitsubishi Motors in the area of electric vehicle integration into the Smart Grid that demonstrates that USC and Mitsubishi Motors are serious about the future of electric vehicles,” said Dr. Yannis Yortsos, dean of the USC Viterbi School of Engineering. “This is a substantial electric vehicle fleet that will not only provide a useful pool of data for technical and behavioral research projects but will also have a highly visible impact on the USC community due to interaction with students, faculty, staff, alumni and the surrounding neighborhood.”
Mitsubishi has been researching, designing and developing electric-powered vehicles for more than 40 years. The company says more than 30,000 Mitsubishi i-MiEV and i-MiEV-based vehicles are on the road around the world today.
Conducted in coordination with the Smart Grid Regional Demonstration Project of the U.S. Department of Energy under contract to the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, many elements of the University of Southern California (including several academic departments, the USC Department of Transportation; the Department of Public Safety; Facilities Management Services; and the Department of Athletics) will work with the USC Viterbi School of Engineering and the USC Energy Institute to collect and analyze data under various operating scenarios.
The end goal is a better integration of electric-powered vehicles into society as well as successfully scaling up the outcomes of the Mitsubishi/USC project to larger cities.