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United States Patent Application 20170229894
Kind Code A1
Durando; Ronald A. ;   et al. August 10, 2017

Portable Battery Booster

Abstract

A portable battery booster for providing a compact, light, and energy efficient battery to jump start a vehicle. The portable battery booster generally includes a housing, a battery means adapted to be received by the housing, a pair of cable means, each of the cable means having a proximal end and a distal end, the proximal end electrically connected to the battery means and the distal end detachably connected to a discharged battery of the vehicle. The battery is generally comprised of one or more batteries having the type of primary lithium-metal, rechargeable lithium-ion, and/or lithium-polymer and more specifically preferably comprised of lithium iron phosphate for fast charging, small size, and high performance. The battery may also be connected to one or more supercapacitors, an internal CPU, DC/DC converter, etc. to increase performance. The cable means includes jaws that detachably connect to the housing in a flush and sleek manner.


Inventors: Durando; Ronald A.; (Little Falls, NJ) ; Allen; Fred; (Little Falls, NJ) ; Simon; Steve; (Middletown, NJ) ; Ergul; Necdet; (Greenwich, CT)
Applicant:
Name City State Country Type

Schumacher Electric Corp.

Mount Prospect

IL

US
Family ID: 1000002619984
Appl. No.: 15/495167
Filed: April 24, 2017


Related U.S. Patent Documents

Application NumberFiling DatePatent Number
15381945Dec 16, 2016
15495167
12884340Sep 17, 2010
15381945

Current U.S. Class: 1/1
Current CPC Class: H02J 7/0054 20130101; H02J 7/0045 20130101; H02J 9/04 20130101; H01M 10/4264 20130101; H01M 2220/30 20130101; H02J 2007/0059 20130101; H02J 7/345 20130101; H02J 2001/006 20130101; H01M 2/1022 20130101
International Class: H02J 7/00 20060101 H02J007/00; H01M 10/42 20060101 H01M010/42; H01M 2/10 20060101 H01M002/10; H02J 9/04 20060101 H02J009/04

Claims



1. A portable battery booster for boosting a motor vehicle having a starter battery, the portable battery booster comprising: a housing; a lithium battery positioned within said housing to provide a first starter current to the motor vehicle via a pair of cables, wherein each of said cables is configured to detachably connect to the motor vehicle via a clamp; a supercapacitor positioned within said housing to provide a second starter current to the motor vehicle via the pair of cables; a DC/DC converter to receive a current from a power source and to provide a charging current to said lithium battery or said supercapacitor; a processor positioned within said housing to selectively control transfer of the first starter current or the second starter current to said motor vehicle; and a shorted load circuit to detect a shorted load condition across said pair of cables, wherein said processor is configured to prohibit flow of the starter current to said motor vehicle via the pair of cables when said shorted load circuit detects a shorted load condition.

2. The portable battery booster of claim 1, wherein the DC/DC converter is configured to draw a battery current from the starter battery and to provide a charging current to said supercapacitor using said battery current.

3. A portable battery booster for boosting a motor vehicle having a starter battery, the portable battery booster comprising: a housing; a lithium battery positioned within said housing to provide a starter current to the motor vehicle via a pair of cables, wherein each of said cables is configured to detachably connect to the motor vehicle; a processor to selectively control transfer of the starter current from said lithium battery to said motor vehicle via the pair of cables; and circuitry to prevent current from flowing from the motor vehicle, through the pair of cables, and into the lithium battery.

4. The portable battery booster of claim 3, wherein the housing includes a recharge port for charging the lithium battery, the port being electrically connected to the lithium battery.

5. The portable battery booster of claim 3, wherein the lithium battery is a lithium-metal battery, a lithium-ion battery, or a lithium-polymer battery.

6. The portable battery booster of claim 3, wherein the lithium battery is a lithium iron phosphate (LiFePO4) battery.

7. The portable battery booster of claim 3, wherein said housing includes a recharge port to electrically charge said lithium battery.

8. The portable battery booster of claim 3, further comprising a low voltage circuit to detect a low voltage condition for said lithium battery, wherein said processor is configured to prohibit flow of current from said lithium battery to the motor vehicle via the pair of cables when said low voltage circuit detects a low voltage condition.

9. The portable battery booster of claim 3, further comprising a shorted load circuit to detect a shorted load condition across said pair of cables, wherein said processor is configured to prohibit flow of current from said lithium battery to the motor vehicle via the pair of cables when said shorted load circuit detects a shorted load condition.

10. The portable battery booster of claim 3, wherein the lithium battery comprises a plurality of battery cells, each of said plurality of battery cells having a nominal voltage between 3 and 4 volts.

11. The portable battery booster of claim 10, wherein the plurality of battery cells consists of three of four battery cells.

12. The portable battery booster of claim 3, further comprising a supercapacitor electrically coupled to said lithium battery, wherein said processor is configured to control discharge of said supercapacitor to said motor vehicle.

13. The portable battery booster of claim 12, wherein said lithium battery is configured to provide a charging current to said supercapacitor.

14. The portable battery booster of claim 12, further comprising an ignition detection circuit to detect an ignition condition via said pair of cables, wherein the processor is configured to discharge said supercapacitor to said motor vehicle via the pair of cables when said ignition detection circuit detects an ignition condition.

15. The portable battery booster of claim 12, further comprising a DC/DC converter electrically connected to the motor vehicle and to said supercapacitor, wherein the DC/DC converter is configured to draw a battery current from the starter battery and to provide a charging current to said supercapacitor using said battery current.

16. The portable battery booster of claim 15, wherein the starter battery is a depleted battery.

17. The portable battery booster of claim 3, further comprising a battery diagnostics circuit to detect a battery diagnostic condition of said starter battery via said pair of cables, wherein the processor is configured to control current flow via the pair of cables based at least in part on said battery diagnostic condition.

18. A compact portable battery booster for boosting a motor vehicle having a starter battery, the portable battery booster comprising: a housing; a supercapacitor positioned within said housing to provide a starter current to the motor vehicle via a pair of cables, wherein each of said cables is configured to detachably connect to the motor vehicle; a DC/DC converter to draw battery current from the starter battery, wherein the DC/DC converter converts the battery current into a charging current to charge said supercapacitor; and a processor positioned within said housing to selectively control transfer of the starter current from said supercapacitor to said motor vehicle.

19. The portable battery booster of claim 18, further comprising an ignition detection circuit to detect an ignition condition via said pair of cables, wherein the processor is configured to discharge said supercapacitor to said motor vehicle via the pair of cables when said ignition detection circuit detects an ignition condition.

20. The portable battery booster of claim 18, further comprising a battery to provide a charging current to charge said supercapacitor, wherein the battery is electrically coupled to said supercapacitor via the DC/DC converter.

21. The portable battery booster of claim 20, wherein the battery is a lithium battery.

22. The portable battery booster of claim 18, wherein the housing includes a recharge port to receive a charging current to charge said supercapacitor, wherein the recharge port is electrically coupled to said supercapacitor via the DC/DC converter.

23. The portable battery booster of claim 21, wherein the housing includes a recharge port to receive a charging current to charge said lithium battery, wherein the recharge port is electrically coupled to said lithium battery via the DC/DC converter.

24. The portable battery booster of claim 18, further comprising a shorted load circuit to detect a shorted load condition across said pair of cables, wherein said processor is configured to prohibit flow of the starter current via the pair of cables when said shorted load circuit detects a shorted load condition.

25. The portable battery booster of claim 21, wherein said lithium battery is a lithium iron phosphate battery or a lithium-polymer battery.

26. The portable battery booster of claim 18, further comprising a low voltage circuit to detect a low voltage condition for said lithium battery, wherein said processor is configured to prohibit flow of the starter current via the pair of cables when said low voltage circuit detects a low voltage condition.

27. The portable battery booster of claim 18, further comprising a battery diagnostics circuit to detect a battery diagnostic condition of said starter battery via said pair of cables, wherein the processor is configured to control current flow via the pair of cables based at least in part on said battery diagnostic condition.

28. The portable battery booster of claim 18, wherein the starter battery is a depleted battery.
Description



RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0001] This application is a continuation of commonly owned U.S. patent application Ser. No. 15/381,945, filed on Dec. 16, 2016, which is a continuation of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 12/884,340 (U.S. Publication No. 2012/0068662), filed on Sep. 17, 2010, each of which is hereby incorporated by reference.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] Field of the Invention

[0003] The present invention relates generally to a battery booster and more specifically it relates to a portable battery booster for efficiently providing a compact, light, and energy efficient battery to jump start a vehicle.

[0004] Description of the Related Art

[0005] Any discussion of the related art throughout the specification should in no way be considered as an admission that such related art is widely known or forms part of common general knowledge in the field.

[0006] Battery boosters have also been around for many years and are generally utilized to provide power to a vehicle battery for starting the vehicle's engine (e.g., an internal combustion engine) in cases where the vehicle battery is substantially drained. Conventional battery boosters generally lose a charge over time, thus forcing the user to continually purchase new battery boosters, which can be expensive. In addition, conventional battery boosters are generally large, bulky, and heavy. Because of the inherent problems with the related art, there is a need for a new and improved portable battery booster for efficiently providing a compact, light, and energy efficient reserve activated battery to jump start a vehicle.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0007] A system for efficiently providing a compact, light, and energy efficient battery to jump start a vehicle's engine (e.g., an internal combustion engine). The invention generally relates to a reserve battery which includes a housing, a battery means adapted to be received by the housing, a pair of cable means, each of the cable means having a proximal end and a distal end, the proximal end electrically connected to the battery means and the distal end detachably connected to a discharged battery of the vehicle. The battery is generally comprised of one or more batteries having the type of primary lithium-metal, rechargeable lithium-ion, and/or lithium-polymer and more specifically preferably comprised of lithium iron phosphate for fast charging, small size, and high performance. The battery may also be connected to one or more supercapacitors, an internal CPU, DC/DC converter, etc. to increase performance. The cable means includes jaws that detachably connect to the housing in a flush and sleek manner.

[0008] There has thus been outlined, rather broadly, some of the features of the invention in order that the detailed description thereof may be better understood, and in order that the present contribution to the art may be better appreciated. There are additional features of the invention that will be described hereinafter and that will form the subject matter of the claims appended hereto. In this respect, before explaining at least one embodiment of the invention in detail, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited in its application to the details of construction or to the arrangements of the components set forth in the following description or illustrated in the drawings. The invention is capable of other embodiments and of being practiced and carried out in various ways. Also, it is to be understood that the phraseology and terminology employed herein are for the purpose of the description and should not be regarded as limiting.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0009] Various other objects, features and attendant advantages of the present invention will become fully appreciated as the same becomes better understood when considered in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which like reference characters designate the same or similar parts throughout the several views, and wherein:

[0010] FIG. 1 is an upper perspective view of the present invention with the clamps connected to the housing.

[0011] FIG. 2 is an upper perspective view of the present invention with the clamps disconnected to the housing.

[0012] FIG. 3 is an exemplary electrical diagram of a first embodiment of the present invention.

[0013] FIG. 4 is an exemplary electrical diagram of a second embodiment of the present invention.

[0014] FIG. 5 is an exemplary electrical diagram of a third embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

[0015] Turning now descriptively to the drawings, in which similar reference characters denote similar elements throughout the several views, FIGS. 1 through 5 illustrate a portable battery booster 10, which comprises a housing, a battery cell(s) 41 adapted to be received by the housing 20, a pair of cable means 30, each of the cable means 30 having a proximal end 31 and a distal end 32, the proximal end 31 electrically connected to the battery cells 41 and the distal end 32 detachably connected to a discharged battery of the motor vehicle having an internal combustion engine (e.g. automobile, boat, recreational vehicle, motorcycle, etc.), the vehicle battery generally being a conventional 12.7 volt starter battery; however different voltage batteries may be appreciated. The battery pack 40 generally includes one or more cells 41 having the type of primary lithium-metal, rechargeable lithium-ion, and/or lithium-polymer and more specifically preferably comprised of lithium iron phosphate for fast charging, small size, and high performance. The battery pack 40 may also be connected to one or more supercapacitors 60, an internal CPU 50, DC/DC converter 70, etc. to increase performance.

[0016] FIGS. 1 and 2 illustrate the mechanical structure of the present invention. The housing 20 is generally comprised of an injection molded plastic material being of a generally rectangular shape with rounded corners and having a substantially flat top 21, substantially flat bottom 22, and sides 23. The housing 20 is further generally sleek in structure, thus being relatively thin as compared to conventional booster systems. More particular, in the preferred embodiment, the housing 20 generally has a width of approximately 6 inches, a height of approximately 1.5 inches, and a depth of approximately 4.5 inches. Other sizes may be appreciated all which employ the sleek structure making the housing 20 portable, lightweight, and adaptable to various storage situations.

[0017] The housing 20 also generally includes slots 24 along a rear end of opposing sides 23 for receiving the proximal end 31 of the cables 33 (positive and negative cables) and a retaining element 25 spaced laterally from the sides 23 of the forward end of the housing 20 for receiving the jaws 36c, 38c of the clamps 34. The housing 20 may further include a recharge port 27 for charging the battery pack 40, the port 27 being electrically connected to the cells 41 of the battery pack 40. The housing 20 may further employ a pivotal handle 28 for carrying, wherein the handle 28 is received within a slot 29 of the housing 20. The handle 28 may also serve as a stand or support.

[0018] The cable means 30 generally includes the cables 31 electrically connected to the battery pack 40 for transferring power and a clamp 33 connected to each cable 33 forming the distal end 32. Generally, a pair of clamps 33 are utilized, one for positive and one for negative (ground). The clamp 34 includes a first section 35 and a second section 37, the first section 35 pivotally connected to the second section 37 near a longitudinal and lateral center pivot point 39 of the clamp 34, each section 35, 37 having an integral jaw 36c, 38c and handle 36a, 38a being comprised of a plastic injection molded structure, and each jaw 36c, 38c having copper clamping teeth 36d, 38d electrically connected to the cable 33 and battery pack 40. The handles 36a, 38a may include gripping means, such as gnp indentations 36b, 38b, for more easily maneuvering and operating the clamp 34. The exterior contour of the clamps 34 also generally includes rounded ends to follow the shape of the housing 20. The upper surface of the clamp 34 along the upper section 35 and the lower surface of the clamp 34 along the lower section 37 are generally flat and when the clamp 34 is detachably connected to the retainer element 25 of the housing 20, the upper surface and the lower surface of the clamp 34 is flush and parallel with the upper surface and the lower surface of the housing 20 as illustrated in FIG. 1.

[0019] The power supply of the present invention is generally comprised of a battery pack 40 having a plurality of battery cells 41 electrically connected for transferring power to the cables 33 to provide power to the discharged battery of the vehicle. The battery pack 40 is generally detachably connected to the housing 20 within an inner chamber 26. The battery pack 40 may be completely contained within the housing 20 or the inner chamber 26 be comprised of an indentation in the housing 20 and thus the battery pack 40 having exterior walls that integrally follow the exterior shape of the housing 20 and form an exterior surface (i.e. be flush with the exterior of the housing 20). Alternately, a plurality of battery cells 41 may be separately inserted and contained within the housing 20.

[0020] The battery cells 41 are generally small in size, thus allowing for the housing 20 to be small in size. Generally, each of the battery cells 41 employs a 26 mm.times.65 mm size, thus being substantially small so that the housing 20 may maintain a slim profile. The battery cells 41 are generally comprised of a primary lithium-metal type, a rechargeable lithium-ion type, and/or a lithium-polymer type. A preferably type of the battery cell 41 is a lithium iron phosphate (LiFeP04) type thus allowing for fast charging, small in size, and having high performance. In one embodiment, four cells 41 meet the specifications of a DOW-KOKAM cell being SLPB 9543140H5. Other embodiment includes an OMNICEL ER 18505HD lithium thionyl chloride cell and cells manufactured by A123 SYSTEMS, such as A123 ANR26650M1A. In further alternate embodiments, the cells 41 may include rechargeable battery cells combined with primary (non rechargeable) battery cells to enhance the overall performance of the batteries. Alternately, or additionally, the present invention may employ a hybrid system wherein the battery cells 41 may be combined with one or more supercapacitors 60 to store energy and provide quick jolts of power to the discharged battery. Alternately, a reserve battery cell(s) 41 may be utilized, such as a reserve battery that requires manual activation prior to use.

[0021] Additionally, the present invention generally employs a heat sink that uses minimal space and is light weight to maintain battery surface temperature that does not exceed 50 degrees Celsius during operation. Additionally, a wiring harness to individually connect each of the battery cells 41 is utilized. Further, an electronic circuit board that uses minimal space and is light weight is used to protect the battery cells 41 by providing features such as detecting a shorted load, preventing electric current from flowing through the terminals and into the lithium ion battery stack, detecting a low lithium ion battery voltage and not allowing discharge and related safety and performance features.

[0022] FIGS. 3 through 5 illustrates exemplary embodiments of the present invention. In FIG. 3, a plurality of battery cells 41 are controlled via a central processing unit (CPU 50) located within the housing 20 and the starter current from the battery cells 41 is delivered to the clamps 34 for powering the discharged battery, the battery cells 41 being comprised of a LiFeP04 type. In FIG. 4, a supercapacitor 60 (SuperCap) receives charge current from a DC/DC converter 70 that is controlled via the CPU 50, all within the housing 20. The SuperCap 60 is able to provide a jolt of power to the discharged battery through the clamps 34. A disadvantage to the configuration in FIG. 4 is that the unit must be charged before each usage since the SuperCap 60 has a high leakage current. A hybrid system, as shown in FIG. 5, illustrates a plurality of LiFeP04 battery cells 41 connected to a DC/DC converter 70 which provides charge current to a SuperCap 60 that provides starter current to the discharged battery through the clamps 34.

[0023] Unless otherwise defined, all technical and scientific terms used herein have the same meaning as commonly understood by one of ordinary skill in the art to which this invention belongs. Although methods and materials similar to or equivalent to those described herein can be used in the practice or testing of the present invention, suitable methods and materials are described above. All publications, patent applications, patents, and other references mentioned herein are incorporated by reference in their entirety to the extent allowed by applicable law and regulations. In case of conflict, the present specification, including definitions, will control. The present invention may be embodied in other specific forms without departing from the spirit or essential attributes thereof, and it is therefore desired that the present embodiment be considered in all respects as illustrative and not restrictive. Any headings utilized within the description are for convenience only and have no legal or limiting effect.

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