As part of a giant Department of Energy Nissan Leaf sedans made available to consumers., the city is one of five locations in the U.S. to set up a network of charging stations for about 1,000
Juice Technologies, based in Columbus, Ohio, will supply its Plug Smart "intelligent charger" which should allow people to charge cars anywhere in SDG&E's service territory and have the usage billed to the driver's account.
The product, which can fit inside of a car trunk, also allows people toto take advantage of off-peak rates and to view data, such as the amount of kilowatt-hours used and carbon emissions.
The utility wants to use the charger to let consumers control charging and view their energy usage via the Web or a cell phone when used with a smart meter, said Hal Snyder, vice president of customer solutions for SDG&E, in a statement.
Juice Technologies will show a prototype of its Plug Smart device at the Plug In 2009 conference in Long Beach, Calif., next week.
The portable device would address one of the conundrums associated with plug-in electric vehicles: how to "refuel" on the go when there's a lack of public charging stations.
Nissan's all-electric cars, which are supposed to have a 100-mile range, are expected to be available next year. But there's significant concern with the chicken and egg problem. The Energy Department program includes $400 million, out of $2.4 billion, for charging infrastructure for consumers' cars and trucks.--often referred to as the electric car industry's