Granted: June 29, 2017
A heat-recovering oven system based on temperature gradient comprises: multiple chambers arranged in a sequence, the chambers configured for operating at various temperatures according to a temperature gradient arrangement that spans the sequence; a conveyor configured for transporting product through the multiple chambers in the sequence for heat treatment according to the temperature gradient arrangement; and multiple temperature-segregated heat exchanger systems, each heat exchanger…
Granted: June 22, 2017
An energy storage system includes: a host; energy storage modules; a plurality of nodes, each implemented at a corresponding one of the energy storage modules and configured to monitor and control that energy storage module; a communications and data transmission medium forming a loop from a first portion of the host and sequentially through the nodes to a second portion of the host; and in each of the nodes, first and second devices configured to perform at least partially redundant…
Granted: June 1, 2017
A multi-port, multi-mode valve includes: a valve housing; multiple ports on the valve housing, a spacing between first and second ports being smaller than a spacing between third and fourth ports; and a stemshell positioned at least partly inside the valve housing, the stemshell having at least two channels configured for selectively coupling one or more of the ports to a selected at least other one of the ports.
Granted: May 25, 2017
A method for constructing an integrated end structure for a vehicle includes placing a center module for an integrated end structure for a vehicle in a fixture separate from the vehicle, attaching a side bracket to the center module in the fixture to form an assembly, the side bracket configured for holding a light unit of the vehicle, mounting the assembly onto at least a bracket in the vehicle that provides adjustability of the assembly in at least a z-direction, and, after mounting…
Granted: May 11, 2017
A closure system for a vehicle comprises: a dual-hinge closure comprising a first portion hinged to the vehicle by a first hinge, and a second portion hinged to the first portion by a second hinge; a frame that at least in part surrounds an opening in the vehicle; an adjustable bump stop subassembly mounted to the first portion, wherein the adjustable bump stop subassembly rests on the frame when the first portion is in a closed position; and a latch system comprising a latch configured…
Granted: May 11, 2017
A semiconductor device includes: a housing; a substrate inside the housing; first and second semiconductor circuits on the substrate; and first and second planar terminals electrically connected to the first and second semiconductor circuits, respectively, the first and second planar terminals stacked on top of each other, wherein each of the first and second planar terminals extends away from the housing.
Granted: May 4, 2017
A system and method for mitigating the effects of a thermal event within a non-metal-air battery pack is provided in which the hot gas and material generated during the event is directed into the metal-air cells of a metal-air battery pack. The metal-air cells provide a large thermal mass for absorbing at least a portion of the thermal energy generated during the event before it is released to the ambient environment. As a result, the risks to vehicle passengers, bystanders, first…
Granted: April 6, 2017
A vehicle includes an energy storage configured to store electric energy for at least propulsion of the vehicle, an energy storage thermal system configured to provide thermal conditioning of the energy storage, and a coupling configured to receive thermal conditioning of the energy storage from a thermal system external to the vehicle. The coupling provides thermal conditioning of the energy storage while charging when available from the thermal system external to the vehicle. The…
Granted: March 30, 2017
An energy storage system includes: a grid tie unit comprising at least one DC/AC converter; and multiple pods connected to the grid tie unit, each pod including: a number of cells; and a power electronics unit, wherein the cells are floating relative to the system and are galvanically isolated therefrom. The multiple pods may be organized into packs, with a pack including a thermal management system.
Granted: March 30, 2017
An energy storage device includes: a number of cells; and a dual-active-bridge converter connected to the cells, wherein the cells are floating relative to the system and are galvanically isolated therefrom. The energy storage device can be included in an energy storage system that includes: a grid tie unit comprising at least one DC/AC converter; and multiple pods connected to the grid tie unit, each pod including: a number of cells; and a power electronics unit, wherein the cells are…
Granted: March 16, 2017
An apparatus and method for identifying a presence of a short circuit in a battery pack. A fault-detection apparatus for a charging system that rapidly charges a collection of interconnected lithium ion battery cells, the safety system includes a data-acquisition system for receiving a set of data parameters from the collection while the charging system is actively charging the collection; a monitoring system evaluating the set of data parameters to identify a set of anomalous…
Granted: March 2, 2017
An ultrasonic sensor assembly is placed against an inside surface of a panel for sensing objects on an opposite side of the panel and includes an ultrasonic sensor, a preload structure, a coupling element, and a damping material. The preload structure applies a preload on the ultrasonic sensor toward the inside surface of the panel. The coupling element interfaces between the ultrasonic sensor and the inside surface of the panel. The damping material is placed against the inside surface…
Granted: March 2, 2017
An electrochemical cell includes a can configured to serve as one electric contact of the electrochemical cell, the can containing active materials, a diaphragm configured to serve as an opposite electric contact of the electrochemical cell, and a gasket that is initially of generally cylindrical shape, the diaphragm positioned inside the gasket in an opening of the can wherein an outer edge of the can is crimped onto the gasket, the gasket having an inner periphery inside the can and an…
Granted: February 2, 2017
A method includes: receiving information corresponding at least to (i) a state of charge of an energy storage of a vehicle, (ii) route information corresponding to a planned driving route for the vehicle, and (iii) a predicted driver characteristic; determining using the received information, and presenting to a driver of the vehicle, a first energy-versus-distance measure for the planned driving route; receiving a user input indicating a proposed change in at least the driver…
Granted: April 21, 2016
A battery pack lift system includes: a frame having nutrunners mounted thereon according to a battery pack fastener pattern for a vehicle; a lift configured to raise and lower the frame with regard to the vehicle; a first air bearing positioned between the frame and the lift, the first air bearing configured to allow relative movement between the frame and the lift; and a second air bearing positioned on the frame, the second air bearing configured to allow relative movement between a…
Granted: February 4, 2016
An inter-protocol charging adapter for equipment to be charged via a bus includes: first connectors corresponding to a first charging protocol that requires the bus to be energized before the equipment closes onto the bus; second connectors corresponding to a second charging protocol that does not energize the bus before the equipment closes onto the bus; and a boost converter coupled to the bus and to at least one of the second connectors, wherein the boost converter uses energy from…
Granted: November 26, 2015
A heatsink with an internal cavity for liquid cooling includes: a first part having a first group of fins extending into the internal cavity; a second part attached to the first part so that the internal cavity is formed, the second part having a second group of fins that extend into the internal cavity and that are configured to fit among the first group of fins; an inlet into the internal cavity on at least one of the first and second parts; and an outlet from the internal cavity on at…
Granted: November 5, 2015
A coil former, also referred to herein as a bobbin, is provided for use in conduction-cooled magnetic components that contain an air gap. The diameter of the disclosed bobbin is increased and ribs/splines or tabs are created to keep the winding centered about the core center post while allowing thermally conductive silicone-based or equivalent encapsulant to fill the voids between the coil former and the core, the coil former and the windings and/or both depending on the placement of the…
Granted: October 29, 2015
A method of thermally conditioning an energy storage of a vehicle while charging includes: receiving, at a charging station, thermal information about the energy storage; supplying, by the charging station, electric energy to the energy storage in a charging session; and providing, by the charging station and based on the thermal information, thermal conditioning of the energy storage during at least part of the charging session.
Granted: October 22, 2015
A torque box for a vehicle includes: first and second clamshells joined to each other at respective top and bottom edges and configured to form at least first and second enclosures with an inner joint in between, the first and second enclosures configured to provide top and bottom shear planes at the top and bottom edges, respectively, and at least first and second shear planes at the inner joint.