With A Sunlight Activated Device (e.g., Passive Solar Or Photoelectric) Patents (Class 52/173.3)
  • Patent number: 10972046
    Abstract: A solar device system includes one or more solar devices shingled into an array of solar devices. Each solar device includes one or more current generation cells configured to generate electric current, a plurality of current buses, and a control circuit configured to distribute the generated electric current to the plurality of current buses, and route the generated electric current to an adjacent solar device. Additionally, the solar device system includes an array collector electrically connected to the one or more solar devices, the array collector being configured to collect the generated electrical current from the one or more solar devices and direct the generated electrical current to an inverter or a power grid.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2018
    Date of Patent: April 6, 2021
    Assignee: SunPower Corporation
    Inventors: Jonathan L. Ehlmann, Lee J. Gorny, Thierry H. Nguyen, David C. Okawa
  • Patent number: 10947728
    Abstract: A roofing system for forming a roof includes a plurality of tiles. Each tile has a frame at a perimeter of the tile, and the frame includes an upstream element, an opposed downstream element, and opposed first and second side elements, thereby bounding a central panel area. Each tile further includes a side trim, a batten, and a ridge cap. When the tiles, side trim, batten, and ridge cap are arranged to form a roof, the batten is secured at a lower edge of the roof and directed upward to receive the downstream elements of the tiles, the side trim is secured at a side edge of the roof and directed laterally to receive one of the first and second side elements of the tiles, and the ridge cap is secured at a ridge of the roof and directed downward to lap over the upstream elements of the tiles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 20, 2020
    Date of Patent: March 16, 2021
    Inventor: Juan Eduardo Kladt Sobrino
  • Patent number: 10930804
    Abstract: A solar cell structure includes P-type and N-type doped regions. A dielectric spacer is formed on a surface of the solar cell structure. A metal layer is formed on the dielectric spacer and on the surface of the solar cell structure that is exposed by the dielectric spacer. A metal foil is placed on the metal layer. A laser beam is used to weld the metal foil to the metal layer. A laser beam is also used to pattern the metal foil. The laser beam ablates portions of the metal foil and the metal layer that are over the dielectric spacer. The laser ablation of the metal foil cuts the metal foil into separate P-type and N-type metal fingers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 5, 2017
    Date of Patent: February 23, 2021
    Assignee: SunPower Corporation
    Inventor: Thomas Pass
  • Patent number: 10917032
    Abstract: A mounting system for supporting a plurality of photovoltaic modules on a sloped support surface, such as a sloped roof, is disclosed herein. The mounting system may include one or more support surface attachment devices, each support surface attachment device configured to attach one or more photovoltaic modules to a support surface; and one or more module coupling devices, each module coupling device configured to couple a plurality of photovoltaic modules to one another.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 13, 2020
    Date of Patent: February 9, 2021
    Assignee: ECOUNI, LLC
    Inventor: Brian James Wildes
  • Patent number: 10917031
    Abstract: A tile, preferably a roof tile (1), for collecting energy from kinetic, thermal and light sources. The tile comprises a housing (2) with at least one photovoltaic cell (3) for collecting energy from a light source and at least one thermal collector (4). The tile comprises at least one wind channel (5) with a wind turbine (6).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 11, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 9, 2021
    Assignee: LOGIC SWISS AG
    Inventors: Heiko Schwertner, Romeo Maggi
  • Patent number: 10882213
    Abstract: A method for manufacturing a pre-fabricated element for construction and electricity production includes providing a formwork mould; introducing a photovoltaic module into the formwork mould, and for this purpose vertically positioning the photovoltaic module against or in replacement of one of the walls of the formwork mould, the front face of the at least one photovoltaic module being arranged so as to face an area of the space located outside the mould; depositing an adhesive structural material or a mixture of adhesive structural materials on all or part of the rear face of the at least one photovoltaic module arranged so as to face an area of the space located inside the mould, the adhesive structural material including at least one polymer from the epoxide, polyurethane, acrylic, or styrene-acrylic family, and pouring fresh concrete into the formwork mould so as to cover the adhesive structural material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 2016
    Date of Patent: January 5, 2021
    Assignee: HOLCIM TECHNOLOGY LTD
    Inventors: Matthieu Horgnies, Isabelle Dubois-Brugger, Fabienne Legrand, GĂ©rard Molines
  • Patent number: 10873290
    Abstract: What is disclosed is a mounting system for one or more solar panels for use, for example, on a roof, awning, parking structure, or other location. The mounting system preferably utilizes one or more generally u shaped tracks. The U shaped tracks are configured for insertion of an I-beam. The I beam is configured to extend beyond the end of the arms of the u-shaped tracks such that an edge of a solar panel can be positioned between an arm of the I beam and the end of the arm of the U shaped track. A tightening mechanism is utilized to provide tension on the I beam toward the bottom of the u shaped track to retain the solar panel between the arm of the I beam and the arm of the U shaped track.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 4, 2019
    Date of Patent: December 22, 2020
    Inventor: Greg J. Olson
  • Patent number: 10868490
    Abstract: The present disclosure describes a solar power system including rails, solar modules, and a plurality of adjustable clips to secure the solar modules to the rails. The clips include at least a base member, an elastomeric support member, a bracket member, and an alignment member configured to secure the various members of the clip together. The adjustable clips are configured to slide within a slot defined through a portion of a surface of a rail and including a recessed edge thereby allowing the rail system to accommodate solar modules of varying dimensions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 1, 2019
    Date of Patent: December 15, 2020
    Assignee: NEXTRACKER INC.
    Inventor: Tyler Watson
  • Patent number: 10847997
    Abstract: In an embodiment, a method for wirelessly transferring power through a low-e window includes: causing a first current to flow through a transmitter coil disposed in a first outer surface of the low-e window, the first current having a first frequency; inducing, with the first current, a second current to flow through a receiver coil disposed in a second outer surface of the low-e window, the low-e window having a metal or metal oxide layer having a first thickness; generating a voltage based on the second current; and powering an electronic device coupled to the receiver coil with the generated voltage, where the first frequency is associated with a first skin depth of the metal or metal oxide layer, and where the first skin depth is larger than the first thickness.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 7, 2019
    Date of Patent: November 24, 2020
    Assignee: SPARK CONNECTED LLC
    Inventors: Petru Emanuel Stingu, Kenneth Moore, Yulong Hou, Ruwanga Dassanayake
  • Patent number: 10756668
    Abstract: A universal mounting system for supporting a plurality of photovoltaic modules on a sloped support surface, such as a sloped roof, is disclosed herein. The universal mounting system may include one or more support surface attachment devices, each support surface attachment device configured to attach one or more photovoltaic modules to a support surface; and one or more module coupling devices, each module coupling device configured to couple a plurality of photovoltaic modules to one another.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 10, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 25, 2020
    Assignee: EcoUni, LLC
    Inventors: Christopher John Bamat, Devin Glen MacRostie
  • Patent number: 10742160
    Abstract: A panel member securing tool includes a stand holding a shaft with an external thread in a state of restricting movement in the axial direction, a cylindrical portion through which the stand is inserted, a lower holder having installation surfaces extending to both sides outward from the cylindrical portion, a flat plate portion through which a bolt hole portion and a tool hole portion are formed, an upper holder having panel pressing portions extending to both sides outward from the flat plate portion, a bolt inserted through the bolt hole portion and screwed with a first threaded groove formed in the stand, a second threaded groove formed in the cylindrical portion screwed with the external thread, and a hole or a space formed in the stand on an extended line of a center axis of the shaft between a tool engaging portion of the shaft and the tool hole portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 4, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 11, 2020
    Assignee: Yanegijutsukenkyujo Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Shuichi Kobayashi
  • Patent number: 10711394
    Abstract: The present disclosure provides a plant fiber textile, a laminate with the plant fiber textile and a fabricating method of the laminate. The plant fiber textile has a matrix resin and continuous plant fibers distributed within the matrix resin. The plant fibers are subjected to a surface modification pretreatment including a coupling treatment with a coupling agent and/or a fire retardation treatment with a fire retardant. The laminate has a stack structure including a layer of the plant fiber textile and at least one layer selected from a group consisting of following layers: glass fiber, aramid fiber or carbon fiber non-woven cloth or textile, preferably distributed within the matrix resin; polymer fiber non-woven cloth or textile, preferably distributed within the matrix resin; or polymer foam or rubber material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 1, 2013
    Date of Patent: July 14, 2020
    Assignees: AVIC COMPOSITE CORPORATION LTD., AVIC BEIJING INSTITUTE OF AERANUTICAL MATERIALS
    Inventors: Xiaosu Yi, Yanfeng Liu, Shuangying Ji, Jianfeng Tong, Hongyi Ma, Chunrong Jiao, Jianwen Bao, Qingman Liu, Xiancheng He, Xu Chen, Haichao Cui
  • Patent number: 10673151
    Abstract: In various representative aspects, the present invention relates generally to providing an apparatus for securing a solar panel module to a solar panel rail guide structure. More specifically, the invention relates to providing an end clamp that mounts a bottom flange of a solar panel module to a solar panel rail guide structure. The end clamp does not require any tools for insertion. It mechanically fastens and electrically bonds the solar panel module to a solar panel rail guide structure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 8, 2017
    Date of Patent: June 2, 2020
    Assignee: IronRidge, Inc.
    Inventors: Jon Ash, Anumeha Narain, Joseph Sirochman
  • Patent number: 10630229
    Abstract: A system for mounting a plurality of solar panels on a building may include mounting brackets each including a base to be positioned on the building and a vertical extension coupled to the base. A plurality of interior mounting clamps may each include a leg to be coupled to the vertical extension of a given panel mounting bracket. Each interior mounting clamp may also include a first lateral arm coupled to a distal end of the leg on a first side thereof for securing a first panel to the given panel mounting bracket with the first lateral arm having a first thickness, and a second lateral arm coupled to the distal end of the leg on a second side thereof opposite the first side for securing a second panel to the given panel mounting bracket with the second lateral arm having a second thickness less than the first thickness.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 10, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 21, 2020
    Inventor: Kevin Stapleton
  • Patent number: 10627135
    Abstract: A modular solar-energy and rainwater collection apparatus (10) comprising: a collector mount (12) adapted both for securement to a building and to an angularly-adjustable support (110); a plurality of rainwater collectors (14) supportable by the collector mount (12), each rainwater collector (14) having a base (18), and at least one solar-cell retainer (20), for securing at least one solar cell (22) relative to the base (18) of at least one said rainwater collector (14); and connection means (16), for rigidly interconnecting a plurality of like rainwater collectors (14) so that the bases (18) are in abutted liquid communication with each other thus forming a modular rainwater collection area (36).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 2, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 21, 2020
    Assignee: INTUITIVE DESIGNS (JERSEY) LTD
    Inventor: Wendy Thomson
  • Patent number: 10622939
    Abstract: A device for attaching a junction box to a photovoltaic. The photovoltaic panel has a photovoltaic side and a non-photovoltaic side. The device includes a bracket with a first side attachable to the junction box and a second side attachable to the non-photovoltaic surface of the photovoltaic panel. A central fastener is attachable at one end to the bracket and a plate is adapted for connecting to the other end of the central fastener and for mounting on the photovoltaic side of the photovoltaic panel. One or more rotatable spacers, connectible to the central fastener, may be located on the non-photovoltaic side of the photovoltaic panel. One or more fixed spacers may be located on the non-photovoltaic side connectible to the bracket.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 19, 2019
    Date of Patent: April 14, 2020
    Assignee: Solaredge Technologies Ltd.
    Inventors: Vadim Shmukler, Lior Handelsman, Nir Armony
  • Patent number: 10605282
    Abstract: Panel mounting devices are disclosed herein. The disclosed panel mounting devices comprise a clamp assembly and a configurable leg. The clamp assembly comprises a bolt, a nut and a body. The body comprises a first pressure surface operative to apply pressure to a first adjacent panel. The leg is configurable in at least two positions. In one position the leg rests on a rail thereby preventing lateral movement of the device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 9, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2020
    Inventor: Jonathan Young
  • Patent number: 10609831
    Abstract: Entry of water from the terminal portion side to the electronic component side is inhibited. A circuit unit includes: a circuit section including a terminal portion that can be connected to an external terminal, and a body portion to which an electronic component is mounted; a first waterproofing portion that is in intimate contact with a portion to be waterproofed located between the body portion and the terminal portion of the circuit section, and that includes a resin containing an adhesive component; and a second waterproofing portion that is in intimate contact with an outer surface of each of the circuit section and the first waterproofing portion, and that is made of a resin.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 6, 2019
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2020
    Assignees: AutoNetworks Technologies, Ltd., Sumitomo Wiring Systems, Ltd., Sumitomo Electric Industries, Ltd.
    Inventors: Yoshikazu Sasaki, Jun Ikeda
  • Patent number: 10587216
    Abstract: Photovoltaic modules are mounted onto PV module mounting brackets of a solar torque tube via clamps. The clamps include a first hook rotatably attached to a main body, and a second hook rotatably attached to the main body. The clamps provide for simultaneously securing a first photovoltaic module to the bracket with the first hook and securing a second photovoltaic module to the bracket with the second hook without the need for tools.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 20, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 10, 2020
    Assignee: SolarCity Corporation
    Inventors: Charles Bernardo Almy, Kathryn Austin Pesce
  • Patent number: 10574176
    Abstract: A waterproof connecting structure is used in coordination with a solar panel array in order to construct a vertical wall or a rooftop panel of a building. The waterproof connecting structure comprises two half components and a connecting component. The two half components are disposed between the two solar panels. The connecting component covers a joint between the two half components so that rainwater flowed into a conduit passage formed by each of the half components is guided out. Thereby, the rainwater is prevented from infiltrating into a building.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 15, 2018
    Date of Patent: February 25, 2020
    Inventor: Lien-Feng Hsueh
  • Patent number: 10563406
    Abstract: The present invention relates generally to roofing products. The present invention relates more particularly to roofing products for use with photovoltaic elements, and to photovoltaic systems that include one or more photovoltaic elements is joined to a roofing substrate. In one embodiment, a roofing product includes a flexible roofing substrate having a top surface, the top surface having one or more receptor zones thereon, each receptor zone being adapted to receive one or more photovoltaic elements, each receptor zone having a different surfacing than the area of the top surface adjacent to it.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 5, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2020
    Assignee: CertainTeed Corporation
    Inventors: Husnu M. Kalkanoglu, Gregory F. Jacobs, Wayne E. Shaw, Peter Chihlas
  • Patent number: 10511253
    Abstract: A photovoltaic module may include a plurality of photovoltaic shingles disposed on and electrically interconnected by an integrated backsheet, to which are attached a plurality of electrically conductive shingle connectors. A plurality of photovoltaic shingles may be installed upon a roof and electrically interconnected in a single step by aligning openings in the shingles with apertures in the backsheet, simplifying module installation. The photovoltaic module may mimic the appearance of asphalt shingles and may be integrated within a roof of a house or other structure. Photovoltaic shingles or arrays of photovoltaic shingles can be pre-manufactured for easier installation or constructed at the application site.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 11, 2019
    Date of Patent: December 17, 2019
    Assignee: Global Solar Energy, Inc.
    Inventor: Jeffrey S. Britt
  • Patent number: 10505494
    Abstract: Building integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) systems provide for solar panel arrays that can be aesthetically pleasing to an observer, with minimal visible difference between photovoltaic and non-photovoltaic areas of the BIPV system. BIPV systems can be incorporated as part of roof surfaces as built into the structure of the roof, particularly as roofing tiles that have photovoltaic elements embedded or incorporated into the body of the roofing tiles. BIPV systems can also include mimic or dummy tiles that appear similar to tiles with photovoltaic elements, but do not collect solar energy. In some configurations, the appearance of BIPV tile roof systems can be generally uniform to an observer at ground level, where the blending and distribution of photovoltaic and non-photovoltaic elements generate a consistent and elegant appearance that camouflages any differences between photovoltaic tile or non-photovoltaic tiles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 26, 2018
    Date of Patent: December 10, 2019
    Assignee: Tesla, Inc.
    Inventors: Daniel Preston Flanigan, Jack Raymond West
  • Patent number: 10502459
    Abstract: Systems and methods that increase the residence time of particles falling through a solar receiver using an induced magnetic field to suspend or slow down and/or alter the flight path of the particles falling through the concentrated beam of sunlight are disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 29, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 10, 2019
    Assignees: National Technology & Engineering Solutions of Sandia, LLC
    Inventors: Kenneth M. Armijo, Ryan R. Anderson, Sean Michael Babiniec, Clifford K. Ho, Malay Mazumder
  • Patent number: 10483904
    Abstract: An integrated solar building product panel that may be integrated into an existing structure's building materials providing an esthetically pleasing appearance and structural integrity. The shock absorbing and vibration damping construction panel comprises at least one solar cell assembly supported by a bottom support component with a vibration damping component surrounding each solar cell assembly. A top transparent protective component is mounted on the vibration damping layer with a gap between the solar cell assembly for protecting each solar cell assembly, and transferring any impact forces to the vibration damping layer isolated from the solar cells. Accordingly, in response to a force applied to the top protective component, the top protective component is deformable up to the width of the gap, and the vibration damping component transfers the force to the compressible bottom support component.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 2017
    Date of Patent: November 19, 2019
    Inventor: Roderick Matthew Costain
  • Patent number: 10469022
    Abstract: The invention relates to retention systems and, more particularly, for a modular retention apparatus, system and method for securing and leveling a photovoltaic (PV) panel and other objects on a wall, rooftop and other structure to secure and ground electrically. The photovoltaic panel retention assembly utilizes a solar cap with one or more integral elongated flange extensions of a predetermined dimension to provide spacing between PV solar panels and/or to stabilize the solar cap from tipping under installation forces and load in use. The flanges extend through a support bracket configured with a base portion to support adjacent PV panels in a PV panel array and a base platform portion. The solar cap comprises integral teeth on a surface of the solar cap spaced apart from the flanged projections to locate the teeth adjacent a frame of the PV panel for electrical grounding thereof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 4, 2018
    Date of Patent: November 5, 2019
    Assignee: PMC Industries, Inc.
    Inventor: Tamas Kovacs
  • Patent number: 10439548
    Abstract: A solar cell module includes a solar panel and a protecting portion. The solar panel has first and second surfaces each having a rectangular shape. The protecting portion holds the solar panel along each of a first side and a second side of the solar panel that are opposed to each other, and exposes a third side of the solar panel except at end portions of the third side. The protecting portion includes first and second protecting members. The first protecting member sandwiches the first side from both the first and second surface sides to protect the first side. The second protecting member sandwiches the second side from both the first and second surface sides to protect the second side. The first and second sides each includes a portion located on an outer side of the solar panel than the third side in a first direction along the first side.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 22, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 8, 2019
    Assignee: KYOCERA CORPORATION
    Inventor: Yuta Nishio
  • Patent number: 10396705
    Abstract: A system for mounting flexible photovoltaic (PV) modules on ribbed rooftops (e.g., purlin bearing rib-style roofs) may include a pair of mating mounting brackets, one affixed to the PV module and the other affixed to a rib of the roof. The PV module may have a concave-down profile when installed, with standoffs installed on a bottom side of the module and hold-down ridge caps installed on adjacent ribs of the roof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 2, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 27, 2019
    Assignee: Global Solar Energy, Inc.
    Inventor: Dale Huber Anderson
  • Patent number: 10355636
    Abstract: A structure and support device for photovoltaic arrays is provided. The device provides a structural connection between photovoltaic modules, wind deflectors and similar hardware. The invention provides an advantage of quick and easy installation of hardware components and associated parts, and meets the demand for a single device capable of combining solar energy associated hardware into photovoltaic arrays.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 19, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2019
    Assignee: Everest Solar Systems LLC
    Inventor: Matthew Danning
  • Patent number: 10340836
    Abstract: Assemblies and couplings for mounting PV modules are provided. An assembly is provided to avoid conflicts between linkages used to adjoin adjacent PV modules and leveling feet used to mount the PV modules to supporting structure. Specifically, an interlock support coupling is provided that may include a shaft with a locking portion disposed at the end that interfaces with an interlock bracket used to couple adjacent PV modules and a housing with an opening for receiving a connection with a supporting foot. An interlock bracket may be provided with a slot for receiving an interlock support coupling.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 2015
    Date of Patent: July 2, 2019
    Assignee: SolarCity Corporation
    Inventor: Martin Seery
  • Patent number: 10333458
    Abstract: A multi-drive solar-tracking photovoltaic (PV) system having several PV modules mounted on a torque tube is described. In an example, several motor drives input torque to the torque tube, and the motor drives are controlled by a single controller. The torque tube may include several sections joined by a torque tube coupler. For example, the torque tube coupler may having a medial section and end sections to join to the torque tube sections. The medial section and the adjoined torque tube sections may have a same outer diameter.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 1, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 25, 2019
    Assignee: SunPower Corporation
    Inventors: Tyler Grushkowitz, Brian Wares, Zachary Z. Judkins, Mark Adam Schimelpfenig, Richard Joseph Erb, Nicholas James McKibben
  • Patent number: 10298172
    Abstract: A mounting assembly for a photovoltaic (PV) module, and systems including such mounting assemblies, are described. In an embodiment, the mounting assembly includes a top strut to support a PV module, and a retainer fixed relative to the top strut. The retainer may have an upright and retaining tab portion forming a receiving gap to receive the PV module. The retainer may constrain movement of the PV module mounted on the top strut.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 1, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 21, 2019
    Assignee: SunPower Corporation
    Inventors: Jason Oh, Brian Wares, Nicholas James McKibben
  • Patent number: 10285478
    Abstract: The invention relates to a multi-functional waterproof protective sleeve for a mobile terminal comprising a face cover comprising a screen window and a face cover affixing portion provided in the peripheral edge of the screen window; a middle frame provided with a middle frame affixing portion and a middle frame clamping portion, a rear cover comprising a rear cover body and a rear cover clamping portion adapted to the middle frame clamping portion; a solar charging module, a wireless charging module, a portable power, a control mainboard and a charging plug connected with the control mainboard are provided in order on the side of the rear cover body in the vicinity of middle frame. The invention can obtain waterproof function without using seal ring, and is provided with solar charging module, wireless charging module and portable power, which improve the endurance ability of mobile terminal greatly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 8, 2017
    Date of Patent: May 14, 2019
    Inventor: Lixin Deng
  • Patent number: 10270385
    Abstract: A module connector connects a first solar module to a second solar module. A first part of the module connector includes a top component having a top flange that is slightly tilted lower at a tip of the top flange. A bottom component has a hook-shaped end that is shaped to slide and enclose an inner side of a module frame bottom of the first solar module. A first fastener is used to secure the first solar panel module between the top component and the bottom component. A second part of the module connector includes a top component having a top flange that is slightly tilted lower at a tip of the top flange. A bottom component of the second part has a hook-shaped end that is shaped to slide and enclose an inner side of a module frame bottom of the second solar module. A second fastener is used to secure the second solar panel module between the top component and the bottom component of the second part. A third fastener fastens the top component of the first part to the bottom component of the second part.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 7, 2018
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2019
    Inventor: Jason Sen Xie
  • Patent number: 10270383
    Abstract: A mounting system for supporting a plurality of photovoltaic modules on a sloped support surface, such as a sloped roof, is disclosed herein. The mounting system may include one or more support surface attachment devices, each support surface attachment device configured to attach one or more photovoltaic modules to a support surface; and one or more module coupling devices, each module coupling device configured to couple a plurality of photovoltaic modules to one another.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 20, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2019
    Assignee: Ecolibrium Solar, Inc
    Inventor: Brian James Wildes
  • Patent number: 10270384
    Abstract: Systems and methods for dual tilt, ballasted photovoltaic module racking are provided herein. Under one aspect, a system for supporting first and second photovoltaic modules can include first and second elongated stiffeners respectively configured to be coupled to and support the first and second photovoltaic modules. The system also can include first and second feet respectively configured to be coupled to first and second grooves respectively provided within first and second ballasts. The system also can include a first stiffener hinge rotatably coupling the first and second stiffeners to one another, a first foot hinge rotatably coupling the first foot to the first stiffener, and a second foot hinge rotatably coupling the second foot to the second stiffener. At least one of the first stiffener hinge and the first and second foot hinges can include a respective mechanical stop inhibiting rotation of that hinge beyond a respective predetermined angle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 9, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2019
    Assignee: Alion Energy, Inc.
    Inventors: Mark Kingsley, Jesse Atkinson, Sean Bailey, Karl Johnson, Brett West, Luis Francisco Castro Hernandez
  • Patent number: 10256766
    Abstract: A solar panel mounting system may include a solar panel mounting assembly for mounting to a support structure. The solar panel mounting assembly may include a restraining element, a retaining element and a biasing assembly that supports the restraining and retaining elements. The support structure may include an upper surface and a lower surface spaced from the upper surface. The biasing assembly may further include a biasing element that resiliently urges the retaining element toward a securing element for supporting a solar panel that is positioned between the retaining element and the upper surface of the support structure, and resiliently urges the restraining element toward the lower surface of the support structure. A retention device may resiliently bias the solar panels of a solar panel assembly together on a support structure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 21, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 9, 2019
    Inventor: Marc M. Thomas
  • Patent number: 10243507
    Abstract: A solar power system may include rails, solar modules, and a plurality of clamps to secure the solar modules to the rails. An end clamp may be partially disposed inside a rail at an end of the rail. The end clamp may secure a solar module to the rail by coupling to the frame of the solar module. The end clamp may include a fastener that may be tightened to engage the end clamp and secure the solar module by holding it on top of the rail. The end clamp may establish an electrical grounding connection between the frames of the solar module and the rail.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 6, 2017
    Date of Patent: March 26, 2019
    Assignee: SUNPOWER CORPORATION
    Inventors: John Paul Kapla, Kyle Donald Feldmann, Dylan Benjamin
  • Patent number: 10205421
    Abstract: A photovoltaic modular system is disclosed. One or more photovoltaic (PV) modules are connected together with embedded parallel wiring that facilitates the sharing of power from a plurality of PV modules to power one or more electrical devices. Control electronics within each individual PV module allows the isolation of PV modules that are shaded or otherwise not productive. No external connecting wiring, or devices are required to make the system functional. All wiring, connectors and electronics are integral and embedded within each individual PV module. The PV modules have adhesive on the back to allow them to be installed without additional mounting hardware. All PV module system components are completely encapsulated together in one modular component.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 9, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 12, 2019
    Assignee: Hall Labs LL
    Inventors: David R. Hall, Austin Carlson, Seth Myer
  • Patent number: 10186791
    Abstract: In various representative aspects, an apparatus for clamping and grounding solar panel frames to a mounting rail is disclosed herein. The apparatus comprises a fastener with an enlarged end, and a shank, with the enlarged end having one or more sharp protrusions that resemble teeth, and a washer with one or more sharp protrusions, and an opening. When installed, the shank is inserted through the opening of the washer, the sharp protrusions of the enlarged end penetrate either the lower or upper surface of the mounting rail and the sharp protrusions of the washer penetrate the other surface of the solar panel frames while at the same time creating a grounding path through the apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 2015
    Date of Patent: January 22, 2019
    Assignee: Ironridge, Inc.
    Inventors: Shawn Meine, Jon Ash, Bryan Lester
  • Patent number: 10170941
    Abstract: A non-contact type power transfer apparatus includes a power converter configured to convert input power into transmission power; a power transmitter configured to transmit the transmission power in a non-contact manner; and a controller configured to provide a power conversion control signal to control a power conversion operation of the power converter according to a state of the transmission power, and to output an input power control signal to control a power level of the input power according to the power conversion control signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 2016
    Date of Patent: January 1, 2019
    Assignee: Samsung Electro-Mechanics Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Sang Ho Cho, Tae Seok Ko
  • Patent number: 10158321
    Abstract: Methods and systems for mounting an array of photovoltaic modules atop a rooftop are disclosed. In particular the mounting hardware includes a photovoltaic module tray supported above the rooftop by a number of support structures fastened to the rooftop. The photovoltaic module trays include bottom and sidewalls configured to support and align photovoltaic modules along the rooftop. Since the bottom wall supports the weight of the photovoltaic module, the sidewalls can have a thin form-factor that allows the photovoltaic modules trays to be tightly spaced. In this way, the photovoltaic module tray can occupy very little area on the roof allowing the effective collection area of photovoltaic modules supported by the photovoltaic module trays to be significantly larger than photovoltaic modules using wider photovoltaic module frames.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 3, 2018
    Date of Patent: December 18, 2018
    Assignee: SolarCity Corporation
    Inventors: Trevor B. Guthrie, Gregory Philip Patnude, Brian Despard West, David Molina, Ryan Devine
  • Patent number: 10153724
    Abstract: A mounting unit for mounting a solar panel on a roof includes a base having a first flange and a second flange that extend laterally from the base and a mounting surface positioned above the base via walls that connect the mounting surface and the base. The mounting surface is couplable with the solar panel to elevate and orient the solar panel above a surface of the roof. The mounting unit also includes a flexible membrane material that is coupled with the first flange of the base and that extends laterally therefrom. The mounting unit further includes an adhesive or tape that is applied to an underside of the second flange so that the second flange is free of the flexible membrane material. The flexible membrane material is couplable with the roof and the adhesive or tape is adherable to the roof to secure the mounting unit to the roof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 26, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 11, 2018
    Assignee: Johns Manville
    Inventors: Francis John Babineau, Jr., Brian G Shamas, Eric Smith
  • Patent number: 10103682
    Abstract: A module bracket includes first and second mounting clips (202, 204) that are spaced from each other along the pitch of a roofing surface. An inlet (212) to the first mounting clip (202) faces or projects in the general direction that the second mounting clip (204) is spaced from the first mounting clip (202). An inlet (212) to the second mounting clip (204) faces or projects in the general direction that the first mounting clip (202) is spaced from the second mounting clip (204). A second module flange (134) of a first photovoltaic module (120) is slid into the first mounting clip (202) of the module bracket. A first module flange (128) of a second photovoltaic module (120) is slid into the second mounting clip (204) of this same module bracket.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 27, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2018
    Assignee: RMH TECH LLC
    Inventors: Robert M. M. Haddock, Dustin M. M. Haddock
  • Patent number: 10036577
    Abstract: A photovoltaic system comprises a photovoltaic module attached to a photovoltaic mount frame, the mount frame having a rectangular shape. A deflector is attached to the mount frame by a rotatable deflector and mount frame attachment wherein the deflector pivots around the rotatable deflector and mount frame attachment from a nesting position under the photovoltaic module in the mount frame to an installation position raising at least a first side of the mount frame. A mount foot is attached to the deflector by a rotatable mount foot and deflector attachment wherein the mount foot pivots around the rotatable mount foot and deflector attachment from a nesting position in a mount foot nesting indention in the deflector to an installation position planar to a mounting surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 8, 2016
    Date of Patent: July 31, 2018
    Inventor: David Ching
  • Patent number: 9985576
    Abstract: A system for mounting one or more photovoltaic (PV) modules to a structure. The system can include a base having quarter turn receptacles. A coupling member can mate to one of the receptacles to compress a mounting foot to the base and prevent it from moving. A handle attached coupling member can be used to lock the coupling member to the base. A PV module coupling device attached to the foot may support two PV modules.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 23, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 29, 2018
    Assignee: SolarCity Corporation
    Inventor: Charles Almy
  • Patent number: 9970685
    Abstract: The invention relates to a device for fixing objects, in particular solar panels, to a roof. The invention also relates to an assembly of such devices. The invention further relates to a method for fixing objects, in particular solar panels, to a roof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 8, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 15, 2018
    Assignee: ESDEC B.V.
    Inventors: Theo Jacob Smidt, Jeroen de Vogel
  • Patent number: 9923511
    Abstract: A solar module connector connects a first solar module to a second solar module. A solar module connector top part includes a slot insert that fits within a frame slot of a first solar module frame of the first solar module. A solar module connector bottom part includes a slot insert that fits within a frame slot of a second solar module frame of the second solar module. A fastener securely fastens the solar module connector top part to the solar module connector bottom.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 23, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 20, 2018
    Inventor: Jason Sen Xie
  • Patent number: 9923515
    Abstract: A solar panel array comprises a first plurality of solar panels arranged side-by-side in a first course and a second plurality of solar panels arranged side-by-side in a second course, the second course partially overlapping the first course. Electrical energy produced by each solar panel of the array is aggregated with the electrical energy produced by the other solar panels of the array without physical electrical contacts between the solar panels. In one embodiment, contactless inductive couplers are used to couple the electrical energies of the panels together.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 13, 2014
    Date of Patent: March 20, 2018
    Assignee: Building Materials Investment Corporation
    Inventors: Tommy F. Rodrigues, Sudhir Railkar, Daniel E. Boss, Adem Chich
  • Patent number: 9911891
    Abstract: A method of installing and connecting together one or more photovoltaic (PV) modules is disclosed. Electrically conductive contacts embedded into the surface of each of one or more photovoltaic (PV) modules provide the connection point for two PV modules to be connected together. PV modules are connected together by removing a protective backing material from an adhesive area surrounding a first set of contacts of a first PV module, and adhering to an adhesive area surrounding a second set of contacts of a second PV module, the adhesive making the connection and sealing and protecting the contact area. No external wiring, connectors or devices are required to make the electrical connection between two PV modules. Contacts are integral and embedded into the surface of each individual PV module. The PV modules have adhesive on the back to allow them to be adhesively attached to a surface without additional mounting hardware.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 14, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 6, 2018
    Inventors: David R. Hall, Seth Myer