Friday, May 29, 2015

Ford Opens Portfolio of Patented Technologies to Competitors

* In 2014, Ford filed for 400-plus electrified vehicle patents – more than 20 percent of the total patents the company applied for last year

DEARBORN, Mich., May 28, 2015 – Ford Motor Company is offering competitors access to its electrified vehicle technology patents – a move to help accelerate industry-wide research and development of electrified vehicles.

In 2014, Ford filed more than 400 patents dedicated to electrified vehicle technologies. This is more than 20 percent of the patents the company filed – totaling more than 2,000 applications.

“Innovation is our goal,” said Kevin Layden, director, Ford Electrification Programs. “The way to provide the best technology is through constant development and progress. By sharing our research with other companies, we will accelerate the growth of electrified vehicle technology and deliver even better products to customers.”

Ford Motor Company is a leader in this area – offering six hybrid or fully electrified vehicles including Ford Focus Electric, Ford Fusion Hybrid, Ford Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid, Ford C-MAX Hybrid, Ford C-MAX Energi plug-in hybrid and Lincoln MKZ Hybrid. In total, Ford has more than 650 electrified vehicle patents and approximately 1,000 pending patent applications on electrified vehicle technologies.

Ford’s innovations have resulted in acclaimed electrified vehicles on the road today, but the company believes sharing its patented technologies will promote faster development of future inventions as all automakers look toward greater opportunities.

“As an industry, we need to collaborate while we continue to challenge each other,” said Layden. “By sharing ideas, companies can solve bigger challenges and help improve the industry.”

To access Ford’s patents and published patent applications, interested parties can contact the company’s technology commercialization and licensing office, or work through AutoHarvest – an automaker collaborative innovation and licensing marketplace. AutoHarvest allows members to showcase capabilities and technologies, then privately connect with fellow inventors to explore technology and business development opportunities of mutual interest. The patents would be available for a fee.

“Ford helped launch AutoHarvest as a founding member to enable efficient and transparent technology licensing across the automotive industry and beyond,” said Bill Coughlin, president and CEO, Ford Global Technologies, which manages intellectual property for Ford.

As part of Ford’s increased focus on new and innovative technologies, the automaker is set to hire an additional 200 electrified vehicle engineers this year as the team moves into a newly dedicated facility – Ford Engineering Laboratories – home to Henry Ford’s first labs in Dearborn.

Available Ford electrified vehicle patents

Here are some of Ford’s electrified vehicle patents available for competitors to purchase:

* Method and Apparatus for Battery Charge Balancing, patent No. US5764027: The patent covers passive cell balancing: discharging a cell through a resistor to lower the state of charge to match other cells. This innovation extends battery run time and overall life. This is the first invention to enable battery balancing at any time, instead of only while charging, and it enables the use of lithium-ion batteries in electrified vehicles. It was invented long before lithium-ion battery-powered vehicles became commonplace – truly ahead of its time.

* Temperature Dependent Regenerative Brake System for Electric Vehicle, patent No. US6275763: The technology works to maximize the amount of energy recaptured in a hybrid vehicle through regenerative braking. By improving the interplay between normal friction brakes and regenerative braking during stopping at certain air temperatures, a driver is able to recapture more energy than previously possible, helping the motorist drive farther on a charge.

* Driving Behavior Feedback Interface, patent No. US8880290: The patent provides a system and method for monitoring driver inputs such as braking and accelerating, and vehicle parameters including energy consumption to assess driving behavior. The feedback can be used to coach future driving behavior that may translate into better long-term driving habits and improve fuel economy. This technology also has enabled drivers of non-electrified vehicles, such as a Ford Focus, to develop better driving habits.

- Ford Motor Company

Monday, May 25, 2015

Target To Commercialise 360 High Impact R&D Products (11MP)

KUALA LUMPUR - Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin is optimistic the target to commercialise 360 high impact research and development (R&D) products can be achieved by 2020.

He said the decision to expand the scope of pre-commercialisation funds under the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (Mosti) was timely in helping more R&D products enter the market.

"Under the 11th Malaysia Plan (11MP), the government targeted to shift to a much higher level in Science Technology Innovation (STI) dominance with more effective outcome through programmes that would focus on R&D that had the traits of a 'game changer'.

"11MP strategies, namely the Malaysian National Development, is based on people oriented economy that stresses on enhancing the people's welfare and an economy that is based on a model that focuses on achieving a high income," he said when speaking at the National Innovation Awards (AIN) 2015 presentation here tonight.

Also present were Science, Teknology and Innovation Minister Datuk Dr Ewon Ebin and Education Ministry secretary-general Tan Sri Dr. Madinah Mohamad.

Muhyiddin, who is also Education Minister, said Mosti's move to expand the fund scope so as to finance the Mosti Social Innovation or MSI, namely developing or implementing ideas in the form of products, services or models to fulfil social requirements was very welcome.

"Hence I wish to suggest that Mosti expands AIN starting from next year to include social innovation.

"Also in taking into account the vital role of the media in empowering STI national agenda, I suggest that Mosti from next year sets up a special category under AIN to appreciate journalists or media who have also contributed to the national STI agenda," he said.

The ninth AIN is held in conjunction with the National Innovation Exhibition and Convention 2015.

At the function, Muhyiddin presented AIN in four categories - Product, Services, Grassroots and School.

He also presented the National Youth Scientist award and National Technologist award in recognition of contributions and achievements in leading Malaysia's science, technology and innovation research.

The National Youth Scientist award was won by Associate Prof Dr Sharifah Rafidah Wan Alwi from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) and the National Technologist award by Adz Jamros Razali from Universiti Teknologi Petronas (UTP).

This year AIN received 709 participation compared to only 430 last year. -Bernama