AFS Trinity Power Corporation has been awarded a patent for its Extreme Hybrid drivetrain that combines ultracapacitors and other power electronics and energy storage devices with off the shelf chemical batteries in plug-in hybrid vehicles.
AFS Trinity expects DOE and U.S. Congressional recognition of the cost, safety and performance benefits of the new technology in the form of the full plug-in hybrid tax credit of $7500 to vehicles using this breakthrough technology.
Although the tax credit is presently tied to the total energy stored in the batteries in a plug-in hybrid vehicle, the new AFS Trinity technology makes possible the use of as few as 50% as many batteries while actually increasing battery durability and performance through the use of ultracapacitors, thus driving down the total cost of the drive train and the overall plug-in hybrid vehicle cost by as much as a third.
The patent provides very broad protection for the new AFS Trinity technology, covering the use of ultracapacitors, flywheels and so-called “power batteries” used to protect the main energy storage battery bank.
The Extreme Hybrid is the first practical drive train for a Plug-in Hybrid Vehicle. Its two-part energy storage system combines Lithium-ion batteries with ultracapacitors. This “hybrid within a hybrid” energy storage system exploits the strengths of lithium-ion batteries (light weight and high energy density) and ultracapacitors (small size and high power density). Batteries alone, have high energy density but they must be greatly oversized in today’s hybrid vehicles to avoid deep discharges. Battery-only hybrids also require a powerful internal combustion engine for hill climbing and acceleration.
Adding ultracapacitors with their high power density and high cycle life allows the Extreme Hybrid Plug-in to achieve top speeds and rapid acceleration in electric-only mode equal to a conventional hybrid. The Extreme Hybrid design allows for a smaller internal combustion engine while preserving high vehicle performance. For a typical daily commute of 40 miles round trip, an Extreme Hybrid vehicle does not use its internal combustion engine at all.[wzslider height=”400″ lightbox=”true”]