In 2008, Szencorp funded the Institute for Sustainable Futures (ISF) to create Australia's first PHEV for the Szencorp headquarters at 40 Albert Road, which is the highest rated green building in Australia. Researchers from ISF and the UTS Faculty of Engineering collaborated on the project with Stan Baker, an entrepreneur starting a PHEV conversion business. This project was conceived to build on and complement the work of the Intelligent Grid Research Cluster.
About the Szencorp PHEV
The Szencorp PHEV, a converted Toyota Prius, can run on a combination of electricity and petrol as for conventional hybrids. However, the vehicle also has very safe and lightweight additional nickel metal hydride batteries fitted to it , so it can be charged using electricity from a normal household power point. If renewable energy (Green Power) is used to charge the car, this can effectively render the vehicle carbon neutral for commuting, as it can run on electricity for over 32 km which is the average daily commute in Sydney, the highest average in the country. Using electricity to drive this car costs as little as a quarter of the price of petrol-powered motoring. What sets the Szencorp PHEV apart from other electric cars is that it is also fitted with an inverter with a 'power out' capacity, enabling the user to power electrical appliances off the batteries. In principle, this means the vehicle could supply power to a home or office in high power demand periods.
- Base model: 2005 Toyota Prius
- 4.7kWh Nilar NiMH additional battery pack (85kg)
- Cost to recharge on Green Power at $0.18 per kWh is less than $1
- Range in electric only vehicle mode of over 30km
- Fuel economy of under 2L/100km or less in city driving (depending on conditions and driving style). This gives a fuel cost equivalent to under $0.40 per litre of petrol.
- Cost of about $15,000 for parts for this conversion
- Charge time adjustable (between 30min and 6 hours)
- Interfaces seamlessly with the Toyota Hybrid System and Toyota OEM battery
- Charged off standard 240V power using on board battery charger
- Inverter capable of delivering 1kW of power
- Embodied energy in batteries of less than 1 ton of CO2-eq (extrapolated from studies by the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology in Japan)
Further information: http://www.szencorp.net/projects.html
First Aussie plug-in hybrid - next step in green car revolution UTS newstory about the launch of the Szencorp PHEV in South Melbourne on 12 June OR July 2008 by the Minister for Finance and Deregulation, Lindsay Tanner.
Szencorp to develop first plug in hybrid car UTS newstory announcing partnership with Szencorp to develop Australia's first plug in hybrid car
Media coverage on the Szencorp PHEV
Electric plug-in cars - conversions now available.
The Warren Centre for Advanced Engineering, e-bulletin, issue 55, August 2008