ROSEMEAD, CA – As automakers work toward putting plug-in hybrid electric vehicles on the road, Southern California Edison (SCE) announced a major milestone in advanced battery performance. Through ongoing evaluation and tests at its Pomona, Calif.-based ElectricVehicleTechnicalCenter, SCE has demonstrated battery life performance equivalent to more than 180,000 miles in a commercial delivery van with minimal battery deterioration, according to Business Wire



The battery test, conducted in a laboratory setting, uses a Johnson Control-Saft lithium-ion battery subpack that is one-sixth of the actual battery size used in a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle. The subpack has been tested continuously for two and a half years, and testing continues to monitor the battery’s remarkable performance.  


Based on the results achieved with the battery pack, the U.S. Department of Energy has provided SCE with a full-size lithium ion battery and has asked SCE to test and evaluate the battery’s viability for passenger car application.  


Edward Kjaer, SCE’s director of electric transportation, said SCE has long advocated for the benefits of “plugging in” transportation. The company’s technical center is a nationally recognized facility with broad-based capabilities. It is the focal point for SCE’s work to test, evaluate, and demonstrate advanced vehicle drive systems, battery types, and charging infrastructure.  


SCE is conducting the battery test in support of the Electric Power Research Institute’s (EPRI’s) evaluation of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. Vehicle modeling by EPRI indicates that plug-in hybrid electric vehicles may significantly reduce petroleum consumption and emissions while providing reduced operational cost for fleets.  


At its ElectricVehicleTechnicalCenter, through partnerships with EPRI, Ford, and other groups interested in the technology, SCE is evaluating the nation’s first plug-in hybrid Ford sport utility vehicle. The center evaluates all forms of electrodrive technologies for energy use, operating costs, efficiency, reliability, power quality, battery life, system impacts, and safety.  


In addition to its work in support of industry developing efficient and economical plug-in vehicle batteries, the technical center tests “plug-in” light-, medium-, and heavy-duty prototype vehicles through its collaborative industry partnerships.