“Motor Vehicle Accessory To Increase Power Supply And Reduce Fuel Requirements” in Patent Application Approval Process (USPTO 20190168621)

Information Technology Business Daily

| Wednesday, 26 June 2019 17:52 (EST)

2019 JUN 26 (NewsRx) — By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Information Technology Business Daily — A patent application by the inventor Healy, Thomas Joseph (Austin, TX), filed on October 30, 2018, was made available online on June 6, 2019, according to news reporting originating from Washington, D.C., by NewsRx correspondents.

This patent application is assigned to Hyliion Inc. (Austin, Texas, United States).

The following quote was obtained by the news editors from the background information supplied by the inventors: “Conventionally, Fuel accounts for nearly 40% of operating costs in the trucking industry. For trucking fleets that face large costs associated with diesel gasoline, any way to off-set those costs would be worth considering. A product for the automotive and/or trucking industry that reduces fuel consumption and optimizes an energy footprint would be highly acclaimed. There are presently sliding axle/suspension systems that bolt on under a trailer, but conventionally they are a passive system and thus no power is typically applied to the wheels.”

In addition to the background information obtained for this patent application, NewsRx journalists also obtained the inventor’s summary information for this patent application: “One example embodiment of the present application may provide a device that identifies vehicle movement information and applies electronic motor support to the trailer based on the trailer movement information.

“Another example embodiment of the present application may include an apparatus comprising at least one of: a power creation module configured to generate electrical power, a battery configured to store the electrical power, a motor affixed to an axle of a trailer and/or truck and configured to provide a turning force to the axle when enabled to operate from the stored electrical power of the battery, and a motor controller configured to initiate the motor to operate according to a predefined sensor condition.

“Yet another example embodiment of the present application may include an apparatus comprising at least one of: a battery configured to store electrical power generated from movement of a trailer, a motor affixed to a vehicle axle of a trailer and/or truck and configured to provide a turning force to the trailer axle when enabled to operate from the stored electrical power of the battery, and a motor controller configured to initiate the motor to operate according to a predefined sensor condition.

“Still yet another example embodiment of the present application may include an apparatus comprising at least one of: at least one sensor affixed to a vehicle (or to a trailer coupled to the vehicle) configured to receive sensor data during movement of the vehicle, a motor affixed to a vehicle axle of the vehicle configured to provide a turning force to the vehicle axle when enabled to operate from battery power, a vehicle controller configured to identify a threshold sensor condition has been triggered based on the sensor data received from the at least one sensor, and a motor controller configured to initiate the motor to operate according to the threshold sensor condition.

“Yet still another example embodiment of the present application may include an apparatus comprising at least one of: at least one sensor affixed to a vehicle (or to a trailer coupled to the vehicle) configured to receive sensor data during movement of the vehicle, a motor affixed to a vehicle axle of the vehicle configured to provide a turning force to the vehicle axle when enabled to operate from battery power, and a vehicle controller configured to identify a threshold sensor condition has been triggered based on the sensor data received from the at least one sensor and control a speed of the vehicle based on the threshold sensor condition.”

The claims supplied by the inventors are:

“1. (canceled)

“2. An apparatus for use in a vehicle including a fuel-fed engine configured to supply primary motive forces to the vehicle, the apparatus comprising: a suspension assembly including a frame, a suspension, one or more drive axles, and one or more wheels coupled to respective ones of the one or more drive axles; a first wheel of the one or more wheels including at least a first electric motor-generator coupled to provide, in a first mode of operation, a motive rotational force at the first wheel to supplement the primary motive forces, and to provide, in a second mode of operation, a regenerative braking force; an energy store from which energy is supplied to power the first electric motor-generator in the first mode of operation and to which energy is supplied by regenerative braking in the second mode of operation; and a controller operatively coupled between the first electric motor-generator and a sensor input to transition the first electric motor-generator between the first, the second and at least a third mode of operation, during motion of the tractor-trailer vehicle over a roadway, using the sensor input; wherein, based on the sensor input, the controller transitions the first electric motor-generator between the first, the second, and the third mode of operation.

“3. The apparatus of claim 2, wherein the vehicle includes a tractor-trailer vehicle.

“4. The apparatus of claim 2, wherein the vehicle includes a tractor-trailer vehicle; and wherein the first electric motor-generator is coupled to provide the motive rotational force at a wheel of a trailer of the tractor-trailer vehicle.

“5. The apparatus of claim 2, wherein the vehicle includes a tractor-trailer vehicle; and wherein the first electric motor-generator is coupled to provide the motive rotational force at a wheel of a tractor of the tractor-trailer vehicle.

“6. The apparatus of claim 2, wherein the vehicle includes a tractor-trailer vehicle, and wherein a second wheel of the one or more wheels includes a second electric motor-generator; wherein the first electric motor-generator is coupled to provide the motive rotational force at a wheel of a trailer of the tractor-trailer vehicle; and wherein the second electric motor-generator is coupled to provide the motive rotational force at a wheel of a tractor of the tractor-trailer vehicle.

“7. The apparatus of claim 2, wherein the suspension assembly is configured as a retrofit assembly for attachment beneath a trailer of the tractor-trailer vehicle as a replacement for an existing suspension assembly thereof which lacks a drive axle to boost fuel efficiency of the tractor-trailer vehicle configuration.

“8. The apparatus of claim 2, wherein the energy store is further configured to receive at least one of compressed air energy and flywheel energy.

“9. The apparatus of claim 2, further comprising: a cooling system coupled to the energy store and configured to cool the energy store.

“10. The apparatus of claim 9, wherein the energy store includes a battery array, and wherein the battery array is submerged within a non-conductive fluid of the cooling system.

“11. The apparatus of claim 2, wherein the controller is couplable to receive signals from a controller area network bus (CANbus) or electronic control module (ECM) interface of a tractor of the tractor-trailer vehicle and responsive to at least some signals received therefrom.

“12. A method comprising: replacing an existing suspension assembly of a trailer with a hybridizing suspension assembly, wherein the hybridizing suspension assembly includes a frame, a suspension, one or more drive axles, and one or more wheels coupled to respective ones of the one or more drive axles, a first wheel of the one or more wheels including at least a first electric motor-generator coupled to provide, in a first mode of operation, an assistive motive force at the first wheel and, in a second mode of operation, a regenerative braking force, the one or more wheels configurable with tires to allow the trailer to roll along a roadway when motivated by a fuel consuming engine of a tractor to which the trailer is mechanically coupled in a tractor-trailer vehicle configuration; coupling a controller between the first electric motor-generator and one or more sensor inputs to transition the first electric motor-generator between the first, the second, and at least a third mode of operation, during motion of the tractor-trailer vehicle over the roadway, using the one or more sensor inputs; and transitioning, based on a first sensor input and by the controller, the first electric motor-generator between the first, the second, and the third mode of operation.

“13. The method of claim 12, further comprising: coupling an energy store to receive energy regenerated by the first electric motor-generator.

“14. The method of claim 13, further comprising: coupling the energy store to further receive at least one of compressed air energy and flywheel energy.

“15. The method of claim 12, wherein the first electric motor-generator is coupled to provide the motive rotational force at a wheel of the trailer of the tractor-trailer vehicle.

“16. The method of claim 12, wherein the first electric motor-generator is coupled to provide the motive rotational force at a wheel of the tractor of the tractor-trailer vehicle.

“17. The method of claim 12, wherein a second wheel of the one or more wheels includes at least a second electric motor-generator; wherein the first electric motor-generator is coupled to provide the motive rotational force at a wheel of the trailer of the tractor-trailer vehicle; and wherein the second electric motor-generator is coupled to provide the motive rotational force at a wheel of the tractor of the tractor-trailer vehicle.

“18. The method of claim 12, further comprising: coupling the controller to a controller area network bus (CANbus) or electronic control module (ECM) interface of the tractor to receive and respond to at least some signals received therefrom.

“19. An apparatus for use in a vehicle including a fuel-fed engine configured to supply primary motive forces to the vehicle, the apparatus comprising: a suspension assembly including a frame, a suspension, one or more drive axles, and one or more wheels coupled to respective ones of the one or more drive axles; a first wheel of the one or more wheels including a first electric motor-generator and a second wheel of the one or more wheels including a second electric motor-generator, the first and second electric motor-generators coupled to provide, in a first mode of operation, a motive rotational force at respective ones of the first and second wheels to supplement the primary motive forces, and to provide, in a second mode of operation, a regenerative braking force; an energy store from which energy is supplied to power the first and second electric motor-generators in the first mode of operation and to which energy is supplied in the second mode of operation; and a controller operatively coupled between the first electric motor-generator, the second electric motor-generator, and one or more sensor inputs to independently transition each of the first and second electric motor-generators between the first, the second and at least a third mode of operation, during motion of the vehicle over a roadway, using the one or more sensor inputs; wherein, based on a first sensor input, the controller transitions the first electric motor-generator between the first, the second, and the third mode of operation.

“20. The apparatus of claim 19, wherein, based on a second sensor input, the controller transitions the second electric motor-generator between the first, the second, and the third mode of operation.

“21. The apparatus of claim 19, wherein the vehicle includes a tractor-trailer vehicle; and wherein at least one of the first and second electric motor-generators is coupled to provide the motive rotational force at a wheel of a trailer of the tractor-trailer vehicle.”

URL and more information on this patent application, see: Healy, Thomas Joseph. Motor Vehicle Accessory To Increase Power Supply And Reduce Fuel Requirements. Filed October 30, 2018 and posted June 6, 2019. Patent URL: http://appft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PG01&p=1&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsrchnum.html&r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=%2220190168621%22.PGNR.&OS=DN/20190168621&RS=DN/20190168621

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