In the rapidly evolving landscape of sustainable transportation, electric vehicles (EVs) are at the forefront. However, ‘range anxiety’ – the fear of running out of battery before reaching a charging station – has been a persistent concern for potential EV owners. Ford has proposed an innovative solution to this issue: a removable roof battery for EVs.
“The techniques described relate to an electrified vehicle backup battery system, which includes a traction battery pack and a backup battery assembly that is removably mounted to the vehicle. This backup battery assembly can recharge the traction battery pack through a charge port of the vehicle.”
Ford’s patent application for this removable roof battery technology has been making waves in the industry. The proposed system involves a backup battery pack that is conveniently mounted on the roof of the car, providing drivers with additional battery power. This ingenious solution is designed to alleviate range anxiety, ensuring that drivers don’t have to worry about their EV running out of power before they can reach the next charging station.
“The backup battery assembly is particularly useful for vehicles that frequent areas lacking high numbers of charging stations, such as off-roading vehicles utilized for off-roading.”
The patent suggests that these removable roof batteries could be rented or leased prior to embarking on long drives or off-roading adventures. This indicates that the battery packs will not only be removable but also compatible with a variety of EV models. This versatility could potentially win over drivers who have been hesitant about purchasing an EV due to concerns about battery life and charging infrastructure.
“A method of charging the traction battery pack 14 with the backup battery assembly 42 can include charging the backup battery assembly 42 and then mounting the backup battery assembly 42 to the roof rack 38 of the electrified vehicle 10. The electrified vehicle 10 is then driven to a location, such as a campsite, without readily accessible recharging stations. The driving reduces the state of charge of the traction battery pack 14.
The shift to EVs is a significant step towards a more sustainable future. On average, EVs produce 30-50% less pollution than vehicles with internal combustion engines. Therefore, innovations like Ford’s removable roof battery are not just technological advancements; they’re also significant strides towards environmental sustainability.
However, the patent application leaves some questions unanswered. For instance, given that EV batteries can weigh over 1,000 pounds, how are drivers supposed to mount such a hefty battery pack on top of their cars? What kind of reinforcements will cars need to support that kind of weight? Speculations suggest that Ford might opt for a smaller capacity battery, similar to the original Prius plug-in hybrid’s 4.4-kWh battery, which weighed a manufacturer-claimed 176 pounds.
Currently, there’s no definitive timeline for when these removable roof batteries will be available for widespread use. However, the patent application is a clear indication that automakers like Ford are eager to provide more versatile EV options to cater to a broader range of drivers and their diverse driving demands.
Ford’s patent for a removable roof battery represents a significant leap forward in the EV industry. It not only addresses one of the most pressing concerns of potential EV owners – range anxiety – but also underscores the industry’s commitment to innovation and sustainability. As we await further developments, one thing is clear: the future of EVs is bright, and it’s charging ahead at full speed with innovations like the removable roof battery.
Article Last Updated: July 27, 2023.
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