Patent Number: 8,573,985

Title: Contactors for electric vehicle charging system

Abstract: The general field of invention is electrical connectors and their conductor geometry. This patent teaches how to make the register-free charge couplers to have self-cleaning ability as well as tolerating operation under dirty environments such as underbelly of cars, while still delivering the requirements imposed by the register-free functionality. Although this invention can benefit many connector designs and applications, it is particularly beneficial when applied to hands free connectors for charging electric vehicles--also known in the industry as the Electric Vehicle Charge Couplers. The specific geometry taught in the patent satisfies the requirements of register-free connectors such as not to be able to short circuit supply conductors, provide at least one drain side conductor for every supply side conductor, permit easy sliding between supply and drain side conductors and provide at least one drain side contact with its centerline to overlap each supply side contact. Additional treads on the contacts provide self-cleaning ability without disturbing the register-free functionality by providing a path for loose dirt and oxides to escape, while the ridges between the grooves break the dirt into small pieces. The groove pitch is adjusted in relation to the sliding distance between the contacts such that every broken down piece of the dirt finds an escape path.

Inventors: Patwardhan; Satyajit (Fremont, CA)


International Classification: H01R 12/00 (20060101)

Expiration Date: 1/05/12017