Tesla Motors Patent Grants

Hazard mitigation through gas flow communication between battery packs

Granted: January 17, 2017
Patent Number: 9548616
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…

Motor vehicle front bumper with hood

Granted: December 27, 2016
Patent Number: D775005

Motor vehicle front bumper with hood

Granted: December 27, 2016
Patent Number: D775006

Charging station providing thermal conditioning of electric vehicle during charging session

Granted: December 27, 2016
Patent Number: 9527403
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.

Integrated vehicle-end structure

Granted: December 27, 2016
Patent Number: 9527450
An integrated end structure for a vehicle comprises: a storage compartment module that comprises a shell forming a storage compartment therein, the storage compartment module configured to sit onto a frame rail of the vehicle; and a vehicle end module configured to be mounted onto a bracket in the vehicle that provides adjustability of the vehicle end module in a z-direction, the vehicle end module configured for holding a light unit of the vehicle. The storage compartment module is…

Transient detection of an exceptional charge event in a series connected battery element

Granted: December 27, 2016
Patent Number: 9529048
A system and method for identifying and responding to exceptional charge events of series-connected energy storage elements.

Vehicle wheel

Granted: December 20, 2016
Patent Number: D774435

Seat

Granted: December 6, 2016
Patent Number: D773197

Methodology for charging batteries safely

Granted: November 29, 2016
Patent Number: 9506990
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…

Electric motor using multiple reference frames for flux angle

Granted: November 29, 2016
Patent Number: 9509240
A drive unit includes: an electric motor; a flux estimator circuit configured to estimate at least a flux angle; a synchronous frame generator coupled to a rotor of the AC induction motor and configured to detect a rotor mechanical angle; and a switch configured to selectively provide either the flux angle or the rotor mechanical angle for controlling the motor.

Controlling end ring balance in pre-balancing spinning process

Granted: November 15, 2016
Patent Number: 9496775
A rotor includes: a shaft; a core around the shaft; at least one end ring connected to rotor bars that are at least partially enclosed in the core; and means for balancing the end ring around the shaft in a pre-balancing spinning process. A method includes: assembling rotor bars so that they are at least partially enclosed in a core of a rotor; connecting an end ring to ends of the rotor bars; inserting a shaft into the core; step for balancing the end ring around the shaft in a…

Method and system for servicing high voltage battery packs

Granted: October 11, 2016
Patent Number: 9466992
A system and method for providing energy management and maintenance of a high energy battery pack that does not require installation of the battery pack into an operational EV. A battery service unit has multiple access mechanisms to charge or discharge a high energy battery pack through a primary or secondary high voltage port of the pack, irrespective of whether the battery pack is installed into an operating environment by adding a capability of providing a signature duplicating…

Vehicle wheel

Granted: September 20, 2016
Patent Number: D766802

Sunroof utilizing two independent motors

Granted: September 20, 2016
Patent Number: RE46149
Continuous cross sectional profile guide tracks in an outer sliding sunroof/moonroof are provided where both the front and rear mechanism or mechanism links travel fore/aft in the same channels as each other and have fore/aft travel that is limited only by vehicle architecture. The guide track channel is partly or entirely outside/outboard of the primary water/wind sealing system of the sunroof.

Fast charging of battery using adjustable voltage control

Granted: August 16, 2016
Patent Number: 9419450
A method for charging at least one lithium ion cell the method includes: (a) applying, to the lithium ion cell, a constant first stage charging current until a first stage charging voltage is about equal to a first stage complete voltage less than a maximum cell voltage, the constant first stage charging current greater than about 1C; and thereafter (b) applying multiple constant second stage charging currents to the lithium ion cell at different current levels, wherein the constant…

Extrusion piece with dissimilar ends

Granted: August 9, 2016
Patent Number: 9409218
A method includes: determining a design for a longitudinal piece of a particular length, wherein first and second ends of the longitudinal piece have dissimilar shapes; extruding a piece that is at least twice the particular length, wherein a profile throughout the extruded piece has the first end shape; hydroforming the extruded piece to generate an expanded portion between ends of the extruded piece, wherein the ends retain essentially the first end shape; and cutting through the…

Electromagnetic switch with damping interface

Granted: June 21, 2016
Patent Number: 9373471
An electromagnetic switch includes: a stationary electrical contact; a moveable electrical contact; an actuated member to which the moveable electrical contact is attached for driving the moveable electrical contact into and out of contact with the stationary electrical contact; and a damping interface between the moveable electrical contact and the actuated member.

Vehicle crush rail with substantially square cells and initiators

Granted: May 31, 2016
Patent Number: 9352783
A vehicle crush rail includes: a body configured to be at least partially crushed along an axis between first and second ends thereof, the body having a cross section profile that comprises first, second and third cells that are substantially square, wherein at least one of the first, second and third cells extends from the first end to the second end, wherein the first, second and third cells have respective initiators arranged according to a crush pattern for the crush rail.

Adapter for crush rail and torque box

Granted: May 31, 2016
Patent Number: 9352784
An adapter for a vehicle includes: an adapter body configured to bridge between a crush rail at a vehicle end and a back-up structure, the adapter body having a socket configured to receive and enclose four sides of the crush rail, the adapter body having a plug configured to fit into the back-up structure; and an opening in the adapter body configured to have a drive shaft extend through the adapter.

Torque box with shear planes at inner joint

Granted: May 31, 2016
Patent Number: 9352789
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.