NORTHBROOK, Ill., April 6, 2010 - Underwriters Laboratories (UL), a global leader in safety testing and certification, was recently named the exclusive Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory for The EV Project, a groundbreaking study of electric vehicle (EV) charging station infrastructure. The company signed a memorandum of understanding with Electric Transportation Engineering Corporation (eTec), a wholly owned subsidiary of ECOtality, Inc. (OTCBB: ETLE), to test and certify eTec's vehicle charging stations that will be used in the project. UL joins eTec, U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and more than 40 other partners embarking on the largest deployment of electric vehicles and charge infrastructure in history.
The EV Project began in October 2009 when ECOtality's eTec was awarded a federal stimulus grant of nearly $100 million from the DOE, and will deploy 4,700 zero-emissions vehicles, the Nissan LEAF, for the three-year study. The vehicles will be powered by 11,210 UL Listed charging stations in homes, and commercial and public locations in five U.S. states: Arizona (Phoenix and Tucson), Washington (Seattle), Oregon (Portland, Salem, Corvallis and Eugene), California (San Diego) and Tennessee (Chattanooga, Knoxville and Nashville).
"UL's partnership with eTec and involvement in The EV Project exemplifies our commitment to the development and deployment of safe, reliable clean technologies," said Gary Savin, vice president and general manager, UL Power and Controls business unit. "Public safety remains essential as governments, manufacturers, public utilities, certification organizations and other partners work together to build a global electric vehicle infrastructure and introduce safe products to the marketplace more quickly and efficiently."
Manufacturers work with UL to develop safer products and increase consumer confidence. To support the advancement of EV infrastructures, UL tests and certifies products and components such as electric vehicle large batteries, charging stations and power cord sets to the safety standards it publishes.
UL will test and certify eTec's Level Two charging systems and Level Three DC fast chargers to its safety requirements, UL Subject 2594, and its standard for Safety of Electric Vehicle Charging System Equipment, UL 2202, respectively. These standards and requirements are used to assess the safety of the overall charging systems and interoperability of its components.
Once UL certified, Level Two plug-in systems will be installed in homes of the electric vehicles owners for overnight charging, as well as in many publicly accessible areas. Level Three fast-charge stations, which are capable of charging an EV battery to 80 percent capacity in 15 to 20 minutes, will be installed in a variety of commercial venues in participating cities to further extend the range of electric vehicles.
ECOtality's President and CEO Jonathan Read said, "Our goal is to facilitate simple, smart and effective transition to electrically-powered vehicles in the United States and around the world. I am very pleased to have UL join us in reaching that goal."
eTec's President and CEO Don Karner added, "This is an exciting and pivotal time in the EV industry. UL's experience in ensuring the safety of consumers is critical to the success of The EV Project, and the successful launch and acceptance of electric transportation."
The EV Project will collect data that will allow project partners to analyze vehicle use in diverse topographic and climatic conditions, evaluate the effectiveness of charge infrastructure, and test revenue systems for commercial and public charge infrastructure. For more information about The EV Project, visit http://www.theevproject.com/.