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Title:
ELECTRIC AXLE TRANSMISSION WITH A BALL VARIATOR CONTINUOUSLY VARIABLE PLANETARY TRANSMISSION WITH AND WITHOUT TORQUE VECTORING FOR ELECTRIC AND HYBRID ELECTRIC VEHICLES
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2018/045128
Kind Code:
A2
Abstract:
An electric axle powertrains having a continuously variable electric drivetrain including a motor/generator and a ball-type continuously variable planetary having a first traction ring assembly and a second traction ring assembly in contact with a plurality of balls; a drive wheel axle operably coupled to the continuously variable electric drivetrain; and a first wheel and a second wheel coupled to the drive wheel axle. In some embodiments, the continuously variable electric drivetrains include one or more gear sets to provide power paths that reduce torque through the ball-type continuously variable planetary. In some embodiments, the continuously variable electric drivetrains include gearing configurations to reduce speed through the ball-type continuously variable planetary. In some embodiments, the electric axles are provided with gearing configurations that enable torque vectoring.

Inventors:
KUMAR, Krishna (7420 Nightingale Drive, Holland, OH, 43528, US)
WALTZ, William, F. (3514 Northwood Avenue, Toledo, OH, 43613, US)
WESOLOWSKI, Steven, J. (8089 Silverstone Drive, Waterville, OH, 43566, US)
Application Number:
US2017/049534
Publication Date:
March 08, 2018
Filing Date:
August 31, 2017
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
DANA LIMITED (3939 Technology Drive, PO Box 1000Maumee, OH, 43537, US)
International Classes:
B60K1/00; B60K17/02; B60K17/04; F16H15/28; F16H15/40; F16H15/52
Foreign References:
US20080121487A12008-05-29
US8469856B22013-06-25
US8870711B22014-10-28
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
EVANS, Stephen, P. et al. (Marshall & Melhorn, LLCFour SeaGate - 8th Floo, Toledo OH, 43604, US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
WHAT IS CLAIMED IS:

1. An electric axle powertrain comprising:

a continuously variable electric drivetrain comprising a motor/generator and a ball-type continuously variable planetary having a first traction ring assembly and a second traction ring assembly in contact with a plurality of balls;

a drive wheel axle operably coupled to the continuously variable electric drivetrain; and

a first wheel and a second wheel coupled to the drive wheel axle.

2. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 1 , wherein the continuously variable electric drivetrain further comprises a first gear set operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly and the motor/generator, and further comprises a second gear set operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly, wherein the second gear set is configured to transmit power in or out of the continuously variable electric drivetrain.

3. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 1 , wherein the continuously variable electric drivetrain further comprises a first planetary gear set having a first ring gear, a first planet carrier, and a first sun gear, wherein the

motor/generator is operably coupled to the first sun gear, and the second traction ring assembly is configured to transmit power in or out of the

continuously variable electric drivetrain.

4. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 3, wherein the first planet carrier is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly, and the first ring gear is a ground member. 5. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 3, wherein the first ring gear is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly, and the first planet carrier is a ground member.

6. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 1 , wherein the continuously variable electric drivetrain further comprises a first planetary gear set having a first ring gear, a first planet carrier, and a first sun gear, wherein the

motor/generator is operably coupled to the first planet carrier, the first ring gear is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly, and the first sun gear is operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly.

7. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 3, further comprising a second planetary gear set having a second ring gear, a second planet carrier, and a second sun gear operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly and the first sun gear.

8. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 7, wherein the second ring gear is a grounded member, and the second planet carrier is configured to transmit power in or out of the continuously variable electric drivetrain.

9. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 7, wherein the second planet carrier is a grounded member, and wherein the second ring gear is configured to transmit power in or out of the continuously variable electric drivetrain.

10. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 1 , wherein the continuously variable electric drivetrain further comprises a first planetary gear set having a first ring gear, a first planet carrier, and a first sun gear, wherein the

motor/generator is operably coupled to the first sun gear.

1 1. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 10 further comprising a second planetary gear set comprising a second ring gear, a second planet carrier, and a second sun gear operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly, wherein the second ring gear is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly.

12. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 11 , wherein the first planet carrier is coupled to the second planet carrier, and the first ring gear is a grounded member. 13. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 12, wherein the first ring gear is operably coupled to the second planet carrier, and wherein the first planet carrier is a grounded member.

14. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 1 , wherein the continuously variable electric drivetrain further comprises a first planetary gear set having a first ring gear, a first planet carrier, and a first sun gear, wherein the

motor/generator is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly and the first sun gear, and the first ring gear is operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly.

15. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 14, further comprising a second planetary gear set having a second ring gear, a second planet carrier, and a second sun gear operably coupled to the first planet carrier. 16. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 15, wherein the second ring gear is a grounded member and the second planet carrier is configured to transmit power in or out of the continuously variable electric drivetrain.

17. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 15, wherein the second planet carrier is a grounded member and the second ring gear is configured to transmit power in or out of the continuously variable electric drivetrain.

18. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 14, further comprising a second planetary gear set having a second ring gear operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly, a second planet carrier configured to transmit power in or out of the continuously variable electric drivetrain, and a second sun gear operably coupled to the first planet carrier and the first traction ring assembly.

19. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 18, wherein the first ring gear is a grounded member, and the first planet carrier is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly and the second sun gear.

20. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 18, wherein the first planet carrier is a grounded member, and the first ring gear is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly and the second sun gear.

21. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 1 , wherein the ball-type continuously variable planetary further comprising a ball carrier assembly operably coupled to each ball, wherein the ball carrier assembly is configured to be rotatable.

22. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 21 , wherein the

motor/generator is operably coupled to the ball carrier assembly, the first traction ring assembly is a grounded member.

23. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 22, wherein the second traction ring assembly is configured to transmit power in or out of the continuously variable drivetrain.

24. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 22, further comprising a first planetary gear set having a first ring gear, a first planet carrier, and a first sun gear.

25. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 24, wherein the first ring gear is a grounded member, the first sun gear is operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly, and the first planet carrier is configured to transmit power in or out of the continuously variable electric drivetrain.

26. The electric drivetrain of Claim 24, wherein the first planet carrier is a grounded member, the first sun gear is operably coupled to the traction ring assembly, and the first ring gear is configured to transmit power in or out of the continuously variable electric drivetrain.

27. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 21 , further comprising a first planetary gear set having a first ring gear, a first planet carrier, and a first sun gear, wherein the motor/generator is operably coupled to the first sun gear, the first traction ring assembly is a grounded member, and the second traction ring assembly is configured to transmit power in or out of the continuously variable drivetrain.

28. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 27, wherein the first planet carrier is operably coupled to the ball carrier assembly, and the first ring gear is a grounded member.

29. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 27, wherein the first ring gear is operably coupled to the ball carrier assembly, and the first planet carrier is a grounded member.

30. The electric axle powertrain of Claim 21 , further comprising a first planetary gear set having a first ring gear, a first planet carrier, and a first sun gear, wherein the motor/generator is operably coupled to the first planet carrier, the first traction ring assembly is a grounded member, the first ring gear is operably coupled to the ball carrier assembly, the first sun gear is operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly and is configured to transmit power in or out of the continuously variable drivetrain.

Description:
ELECTRIC AXLE TRANSMISSION WITH A BALL VARIATOR

CONTINUOUSLY VARIABLE PLANETARY TRANSMISSION WITH AND WITHOUT TORQUE VECTORING FOR ELECTRIC AND HYBRID ELECTRIC VEHICLES

RELATED APPLICATIONS

The present application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application No. 62/381 ,675 filed on August 31 , 2016, U.S. Provisional Application No. 62/381 ,682 filed on August 31 , 2016, U.S. Provisional Application No.

62/381 ,693 filed on August 31 , 2016, U.S. Provisional Application No.

62/428, 127 filed on November 30, 2016, U.S. Provisional Application No.

62/434,0 5 filed on December 14, 2016, and U.S. Provisional Application No. 62/452,714 filed on January 31 , 2017, which are incorporated herein by reference in their entirety.

BACKGROUND

Hybrid vehicles are enjoying increased popularity and acceptance due in large part to the cost of fuel and greenhouse carbon emission government regulations for internal combustion engine vehicles. Such hybrid vehicles include both an internal combustion engine as well as an electric motor to propel the vehicle.

In current electric axle designs for both consuming as well as storing electrical energy, the rotary shaft from a combination electric motor/generator is coupled by a gear train, planetary gear set, to the wheel. As such, the rotary shaft for the electric motor/generator unit rotates in unison with the wheel based on the speed ratio of the gear train.

These fixed ratio designs have many disadvantages, for example the electric motor/generator unit achieves its most efficient operation, both in the sense of generating electricity and also providing additional power to the wheel or the main shaft of the internal combustion engine, only within a relatively narrow range of revolutions per minute of the motor/generator unit. As such, the overall electric or hybrid electric vehicle operates at less than optimal efficiency over a drive cycle. Therefore, there is a need for powertrain configurations that improve the efficiency of electric and hybrid electric vehicles.

SUMMARY

Provided herein is an electric axle powertrain including: a continuously variable electric drivetrain including a motor/generator and a ball-type continuously variable planetary having a first traction ring assembly and a second traction ring assembly in contact with a plurality of balls; a drive wheel axle operably coupled to the continuously variable electric drivetrain; and a first wheel and a second wheel coupled to the drive wheel axle.

INCORPORATION BY REFERENCE

All publications, patents, and patent applications mentioned in this specification are herein incorporated by reference to the same extent as if each individual publication, patent, or patent application was specifically and individually indicated to be incorporated by reference.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Novel features of the preferred embodiments are set forth with particularity in the appended claims. A better understanding of the features and advantages of the present embodiments will be obtained by reference to the following detailed description that sets forth illustrative embodiments, in which the principles of the embodiments are utilized, and the accompanying drawings of which:

Figure 1 is a side sectional view of a ball-type variator.

Figure 2 is a plan view of a carrier member that is used in the variator of Figure 1.

Figure 3 is an illustrative view of different tilt positions of the ball-type variator of Figure 1.

Figure 4 is a schematic diagram of an electric axle powertrain having a continuously variable electric drivetrain drivingly engaged to a differential, axle, and wheels of a vehicle. Figure 5 is a schematic diagram of a continuously variable electric drivetrain having two gear sets, a ball-type continuously variable planetary, and a motor/generator.

Figure 6 is a schematic diagram of a continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary, a planetary gear set, and a motor/generator.

Figure 7 is a schematic diagram of another continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary, a planetary gear set, and a motor/generator.

Figure 8 is a schematic diagram of yet another continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary, a planetary gear set, and a motor/generator.

Figure 9 is a lever diagram of a continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary, a planetary gear set, and a motor/generator.

Figure 10 is a lever diagram of a continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary, two planetary gear sets, and a motor/generator.

Figure 1 1 is a lever diagram of another continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary, two planetary gear sets, and a motor/generator.

Figure 12 is a lever diagram of yet another continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary, two planetary gear sets, and a motor/generator.

Figure 13 is a lever diagram of yet another continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary, two planetary gear sets, and a motor/generator.

Figure 14 is a lever diagram of a continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary, a planetary gear set, and a motor/generator.

Figure 15 is a lever diagram of a continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary, two planetary gear sets, and a motor/generator. Figure 16 is a lever diagram of another continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary, two planetary gear sets, and a motor/generator.

Figure 17 is a lever diagram of yet another continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary, two planetary gear sets, and a motor/generator.

Figure 18 is a lever diagram of yet another continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary, two planetary gear sets, and a motor/generator.

Figure 19 is a schematic diagram of a continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary equipped with a rotating carrier, and a motor/generator.

Figure 20 is a lever diagram of a continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary equipped with a rotating carrier, a planetary gear set, and a motor/generator.

Figure 21 is a lever diagram of another continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary equipped with a rotating carrier, a planetary gear set, and a motor/generator.

Figure 22 is a lever diagram of yet another continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary equipped with a rotating carrier, a planetary gear set, and a motor/generator.

Figure 23 is a lever diagram of yet another continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary equipped with a rotating carrier, a planetary gear set, and a motor/generator.

Figure 24 is a lever diagram of yet another continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary equipped with a rotating carrier, a planetary gear set, and a motor/generator.

Figure 25 is a schematic diagram of a continuously variable electric drivetrain having four gear sets, two ball-type continuously variable planetaries and a motor/generator.

Figure 26 is a schematic diagram of another continuously variable electric drivetrain having four gear sets, two ball-type continuously variable pianetaries and a motor/generator. Figure 27 is a schematic diagram of a continuously variable electric drivetrain having two ball-type continuously variable planetaries, two planetary gear sets, and a motor/generator.

Figure 28 is a schematic diagram of another continuously variable electric drivetrain having two ball-type continuously variable planetaries, two planetary gear sets, and a motor/generator.

Figure 29 is a schematic diagram of yet another continuously variable electric drivetrain having two ball-type continuously variable planetaries, two planetary gear sets, and a motor/generator.

Figure 30 is a schematic diagram of yet another continuously variable electric drivetrain having two ball-type continuously variable planetaries, two planetary gear sets, and a motor/generator.

Figure 31 is a schematic diagram of a continuously variable electric drivetrain having a ball-type continuously variable planetary, a planetary gear set, and a motor/generator.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

This powertrain relates to electric powertrain configurations and architectures that will be used in hybrid vehicles. The powertrain and/or drivetrain configurations use a ball planetary style continuously variable transmission, such as the VariGlide ® , in order to couple power sources used in a hybrid vehicle, for example, combustion engines (internal or external), motors, generators, batteries, and gearing. The powertrains disclosed herein are applicable to HEV, EV and Fuel Cell Hybrid systems.

A typical ball planetary variator CVT design, such as that described in

United States Patent Publication No. 2008/0121487 and in United States Patent No. 8,469,856, both incorporated herein by reference in their entirety, represents a rolling traction drive system, transmitting forces between the input and output rolling surfaces through shearing of a thin fluid film. The technology is called Continuously Variable Planetary (CVP) due to its analogous operation to a planetary gear system. The system includes an input disc (ring) driven by the power source, an output disc (ring) driving the CVP output, a set of balls fitted between these two discs and a central sun, as illustrated in Figure 1. The balls are able to rotate around their own respective axle by the rotation of two carrier disks at each end of the set of balls axles. The system is also referred to as the Ball-Type Variator.

The preferred embodiments will now be described with reference to the accompanying figures, wherein like numerals refer to like elements throughout. The terminology used in the descriptions below is not to be interpreted in any limited or restrictive manner simply because it is used in conjunction with detailed descriptions of certain specific embodiments. Furthermore,

embodiments include several novel features, no single one of which is solely responsible for its desirable attributes or which is essential to practicing the embodiments described.

Provided herein are configurations of CVTs based on a ball type variators, also known as CVP, for continuously variable planetary. Basic concepts of a ball type Continuously Variable Transmissions are described in United States Patent No. 8,469,856 and 8,870,711 incorporated herein by reference in their entirety. Such a CVT, adapted herein as described throughout this specification, includes a number of balls (planets, spheres) 1 , depending on the application, two ring (disc) assemblies with a conical surface contact with the balls, as input 2 and output 3, and an idler (sun) assembly 4 as shown on FIG. 1. Sometimes, the input ring 2 is referred to in illustrations and referred to in text by the label "r1". The output ring is referred to in illustrations and referred to in text by the label "r2". The idler (sun) assembly is referred to in illustrations and referred to in text by the label "s". The balls are mounted on tiltable axles 5, themselves held in a carrier (stator, cage) assembly having a first carrier member 6 operably coupled to a second carrier member 7. Sometimes, the carrier assembly is denoted in illustrations and referred to in text by the label "c". These labels are collectively referred to as nodes ("r1", "r2", "s", "c"). The first carrier member 6 rotates with respect to the second carrier member 7, and vice versa. In some embodiments, the first carrier member 6 is substantially fixed from rotation while the second carrier member 7 is configured to rotate with respect to the first carrier member, and vice versa. In one embodiment, the first carrier member 6 is provided with a number of radial guide slots 8. The second carrier member 7 is provided with a number of radially offset guide slots 9, as illustrated in FIG. 2. The radial guide slots 8 and the radially offset guide slots 9 are adapted to guide the tiltable axles 5. The axles 5 are adjusted to achieve a desired ratio of input speed to output speed during operation of the CVT. In some embodiments, adjustment of the axles 5 involves control of the position of the first and second carrier members to impart a tilting of the axles 5 and thereby adjusts the speed ratio of the variator. Other types of ball CVTs also exist, like the one produced by Milner, but are slightly different.

The working principle of such a CVP of FIG. 1 is shown on FIG. 3. The CVP itself works with a traction fluid. The lubricant between the ball and the conical rings acts as a solid at high pressure, transferring the power from the input ring, through the balls, to the output ring. By tilting the balls' axes, the ratio is changed between input and output. When the axis is horizontal the ratio is one, illustrated in FIG. 3, when the axis is tilted the distance between the axis and the contact point change, modifying the overall ratio. All the balls' axes are tilted at the same time with a mechanism included in the carrier and/or idler. Embodiments disclosed here are related to the control of a variator and/or a CVT using generally spherical planets each having a tiltable axis of rotation that is adjusted to achieve a desired ratio of input speed to output speed during operation. In some embodiments, adjustment of said axis of rotation involves angular misalignment of the planet axis in a first plane in order to achieve an angular adjustment of the planet axis in a second plane that is substantially perpendicular to the first plane, thereby adjusting the speed ratio of the variator. The angular misalignment in the first plane is referred to here as "skew", "skew angle", and/or "skew condition". In one embodiment, a control system coordinates the use of a skew angle to generate forces between certain contacting components in the variator that will tilt the planet axis of rotation. The tilting of the planet axis of rotation adjusts the speed ratio of the variator.

As used here, the terms "operationally connected," "operationally coupled", "operationally linked", "operably connected", "operably coupled",

"operably linked," and like terms, refer to a relationship (mechanical, linkage, coupling, etc.) between elements whereby operation of one element results in a corresponding, following, or simultaneous operation or actuation of a second element. It is noted that in using said terms to describe the embodiments, specific structures or mechanisms that link or couple the elements are typically described. However, unless otherwise specifically stated, when one of said terms is used, the term indicates that the actual linkage or coupling is capable of taking a variety of forms, which in certain instances will be readily apparent to a person of ordinary skill in the relevant technology.

It should be noted that reference herein to "traction" does not exclude applications where the dominant or exclusive mode of power transfer is through "friction." Without attempting to establish a categorical difference between traction and friction drives here, generally these will be understood as different regimes of power transfer. Traction drives usually involve the transfer of power between two elements by shear forces in a thin fluid layer trapped between the elements. The fluids used in these applications usually exhibit traction coefficients greater than conventional mineral oils. The traction coefficient (μ) represents the maximum available traction force which would be available at the interfaces of the contacting components and is the ratio of the maximum available drive torque per contact force. Typically, friction drives generally relate to transferring power between two elements by frictional forces between the elements. For the purposes of this disclosure, it should be understood that the CVTs described here are capable of operating in both tractive and frictional applications. For example, in the embodiment where a CVT is used for a bicycle application, the CVT operates at times as a friction drive and at other times as a traction drive, depending on the torque and speed conditions present during operation.

Embodiments disclosed herein are directed to hybrid vehicle

architectures and/or configurations that incorporate a CVP in place of or in addition to a regular fixed ratio planetary leading to a continuously variable electric axle or hybrid electrical vehicle drivetrain. It should be appreciated that the embodiments disclosed herein are adapted to provide hybrid modes of operation that include, but are not limited to series, parallel, series-parallel, or EV (electric vehicle) modes. The core element of the power flow is a CVP, such as a VariGlide, which functions as a continuously variable transmission having four nodes (rl , r2, c, and s). The CVP enables the electnc machines (motor/generators, among others) to run at an optimized overall efficiency. It should be noted that hydro-mechanical components such as hydromotors, pumps, accumulators, among others, are capable of being used in place of the electric machines indicated In the figures and accompanying textual

description. Furthermore, it should be noted that embodiments of E-axle architectures disclosed herein could incorporate a supervisory controller that chooses the CVP ratio of highest efficiency and/or power from motor/generator to wheel. Embodiments disclosed herein enable hybrid powertrains that are capable of operating at the best potential overall efficiency point in any mode and also provide torque variability, thereby leading to the optimal combination of powertrain performance and efficiency. It should be understood that electric or hybrid electric vehicles incorporating embodiments of the hybrid

architectures disclosed herein are capable of including a number of other powertrain components, such as, but not limited to, high-voltage battery pack with a battery management system or ultracapacitor, on-board charger, DC-DC converters, a variety of sensors, actuators, and controllers, among others.

For purposes of description, schematics referred to as lever diagrams are used herein. A lever diagram, also known as a lever analogy diagram, is a translational-system representation of rotating parts for a planetary gear system. In certain embodiments, a lever diagram is provided as a visual aid in describing the functions of the transmission. In a lever diagram, a compound planetary gear set is often represented by a single vertical line ("lever"). The input, output, and reaction torques are represented by horizontal forces on the lever. The lever motion, relative to the reaction point, represents direction of rotational velocities. For example, a typical planetary gear set having a ring gear, a planet carrier, and a sun gear can be represented by a vertical line having nodes "R" representing the ring gear, node "S" representing the sun gear, and node "C" representing the planet carrier. It should be appreciated that any mechanical coupling is depicted on a lever diagram as a node or a solid dot. For example, a node represents two components in a drivetrain that are rigidly connected.

Referring to FIG. 4, in some embodiments, an electric axle powertrain 10 includes a continuously variable electric dnvetrain 12 operably coupled to a differential 13. In some embodiments, the differential 13 is a common differential gear set implemented to transmit rotational power. The differential 13 is operably coupled to a wheel drive axle 14 configured to drive a set of vehicle wheels 15 (labeled as "15A" and "15B" in FIG. 4).

Turning now to FIG. 5, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 21 is optionally used in the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG 4. The CVED 21 includes a motor/generator 22 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 23 having a first traction ring assembly 24 and a second traction ring assembly 25. The CVED 21 includes a first gear set 26 operably coupled to the motor/generator 22 and the first traction ring assembly 24. The CVED 21 includes a second gear set 27 operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly 25. In some embodiments the first gear set 26 and the second gear set 27 are typical fixed ratio gear set having meshing gears. It should be appreciated that gear sets described herein are optionally replaced with other fixed ratio couplings including, but not limited to, chain and sprockets or belts and pulleys. In some embodiments, the second gear set 27 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 21.

Referring now to FIG. 6, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 28 is optionally used in the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG 4. The CVED 28 includes a motor/generator 29 operably coupled to a ball-type continuously variable planetary 30 having a first traction ring assembly 31 and a second traction ring assembly 32. In some

embodiments, the motor/generator 29 is coupled to the first traction ring assembly 31. The CVED 28 includes a planetary gear set 33 having a ring gear 34, a planet carrier 35, and a sun gear 36. The sun gear 36 is operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly 32. The planet carrier 35 is coupled to a grounded member. The ring gear 34 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 28.

Turning now to FIG. 7, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 37 is optionally used in the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG 4. The CVED 37 includes a motor/generator 38 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 39 having a first traction ring assembly 40 and a second traction ring assembly 41 . The CVED 37 includes a planetary gear set 42 having a ring gear 43, a planet carrier 44, and a sun gear 45. The sun gear 45 is operably coupled to the motor/generator 38. The first traction ring assembly 40 is operably coupled to the planet carrier 44. The ring gear 43 is a grounded member. The second traction ring assembly 41 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 37.

Referring now to FIG. 8, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 46 is optionally used in the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 46 includes a motor/generator 47 and a ball- type continuously variable planetary 48 having a first traction ring assembly 49 and a second traction ring assembly 50. The CVED 46 has a planetary gear set 51 including a ring gear 52, a planet carrier 53, and a sun gear 54. In some embodiments, the sun gear 54 is operably coupled to the motor/generator 47. The planet carrier 53 is grounded member. The ring gear 52 is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly 49. The second traction ring assembly 50 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 46.

Passing now to FIG. 9, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 55 is optionally used in the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 55 includes a motor/generator 56 and a ball- type continuously variable planetary 57 having a first traction ring assembly 58 and a second traction ring assembly 59. The CVED 55 includes a planetary gear set 60 having a ring gear 61 , a planet carrier 62, and a sun gear 63. In some embodiments, the motor/generator 56 is operably coupled to the planet carrier 62. The ring gear 61 is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly 58. The sun gear 63 and the second traction ring 59 are coupled at a node 64. The node 64 is configured to transmit a power in or out of the CVED 55.

Referring now to FIG. 10, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 65 is optionally used in the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 65 includes a motor/generator 66 and a ball- type continuously variable planetary 67 having a first traction ring assembly 68 and a second traction ring assembly 69. The CVED 65 is provided with a first planetary gear set 70 having a first ring gear 71 , a first planet carrier 72, and a first sun gear 73. In some embodiments, the motor/generator 66 is operably coupled to the first planet carrier 72. The first ring gear 71 is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly 68. The CVED 65 is provided with a second planetary gear set 74 having a second ring gear 75, and a second planet carrier 76, and second sun gear 77. In some embodiments, the first sun gear 73 and the second traction ring assembly 69 are coupled at a node 78. The node 78 is configured to operably couple to the second sun gear 77. The second ring gear 75 is a grounded member. The second planet carrier 76 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 65.

Turning now to FIG. 11, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 79 is optionally used with the electric axle

powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 79 includes a motor/generator 80 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 81 having a first traction ring assembly 82 and a second traction ring assembly 83. In some embodiments, the CVED 79 includes a first planetary gear set 84 having a first ring gear 85, a first planet carrier 86, and a first sun gear 87. The motor/generator 80 is operably coupled to the first planet carrier 86. The first ring gear 85 is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly 82. In some embodiments, the CVED 79 includes a second planetary gear set 88 having a second ring gear 89, a second planet carrier 90, and a second sun gear 91. The first sun gear 87 and the second traction ring assembly 83 are coupled at a node 92. The node 92 is configured to operably coupled to the second sun gear 91. The second planet carrier 90 is a grounded member. The second ring gear 89 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 79.

Passing now to FIG. 12, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 93 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 93 includes a motor/generator 94 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 95 having a first traction ring assembly 96 and a second traction ring assembly 97. The CVED 93 is provided with a first planetary gear set 98 having a first ring gear 99, a first planet carrier 00, and a first sun gear 101. The CVED 93 is provided with a second planetary gear set 102 having a second ring gear 103, a second planet carrier 104, and a second sun gear 105. In some embodiments, the motor/generator 104 is operably coupled to the first sun gear 01. The first ring gear 99 is a grounded member. The first planet carrier 100 is coupled to the second planet carrier 104. The second ring gear 103 is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly 96. The second sun gear 105 and the second traction ring assembly 97 are coupled at a node 106. The node 106 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 93.

Moving now to FIG. 13, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 107 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 107 includes a motor/generator 108 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 109 having a first traction ring assembly 110 and a second traction ring assembly 1 11. The CVED 107 is provided with a first planetary gear set 1 12 having a first ring gear 113, a first planet carrier 1 14 and a first sun gear 1 15. The CVED 107 is provided with a second planetary gear set 1 16 having a second ring gear 1 17, a second planet carrier 1 18, and a second sun gear 119. In some embodiments, the

motor/generator 108 is operably coupled to the first sun gear 115. The first planet carrier 1 14 is a grounded member. The first ring gear 1 13 is coupled to the second planet carrier 1 18. The second ring gear 1 17 is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly 110. The second sun gear 119 and the second traction ring assembly 11 1 are coupled at a node 120. The node 120 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 107.

Referring now to FIG. 14, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 121 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 121 includes a motor/generator 122 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 123 having a first traction ring assembly 124 and a second traction ring assembly 125. The CVED 121 is provided with a planetary gear set 126 having a ring gear 127, a planet carrier 128, and a sun gear 129. In some embodiments.the first traction ring assembly 124 and the sun gear 129 are coupled at a node 130. The node 130 is operably coupled to the motor/generator 122. The second traction ring assembly 125 is coupled to the ring gear 127. The planet carrier 128 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 121.

Turning now to FIG. 15, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 131 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 131 includes a motor/generator 32 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 133 having a first traction ring assembly 134 and a second traction ring assembly 135. In some

embodiments, the CVED 131 includes a first planetary gear set 136 having a first ring gear 37, a first planet carrier 1.38, and a first sun gear 39. The CVED 131 includes a second planetary gear set 140 having a second ring gear 141 , a second planet carrier 142, and a second sun gear 143. In some embodiments, the second ring gear 141 is a grounded member. The second planet carrier 142 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 131. The second sun gear 143 is coupled to the first planet carrier 138. The second traction ring assembly 135 is coupled to the first ring gear 137. The first sun gear 139 and the first traction ring assembly 134 are coupled at a node 144. The node 144 is operably coupled to the motor/generator 132.

Passing now to FIG. 16, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 145 is optionally used with the electric axle

powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 145 includes a motor/generator 146 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 147 having a first traction ring assembly 148 and a second traction ring assembly 149. The CVED 145 is provided with a first planetary gear set 150 having a first ring gear 151 , a first planet carrier 152, and a first sun gear 153. The CVED 145 is provided with a second planetary gear set 54 having a second ring gear 155, a second planet carrier 156, and a second sun gear 157. In some embodiments, the second planet carrier 156 is a grounded member. The second ring gear 155 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 145. The first planet carrier 152 is coupled to the second sun gear 157. The second traction ring assembly 149 is coupled to the first ring gear 151. In some embodiments, the first traction ring assembly 148 and the first sun gear 153 are coupled at a node 58. The node 158 is operably coupled to the motor/generator 146.

Moving now to FIG. 17, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 159 is optionally used with the electric axle

powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 159 includes a motor/generator 160 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 161 having a first traction ring assembly 162 and a second traction ring assembly 163. The CVED 159 includes a first planetary gear set 64 having a first ring gear 165, a first planet carrier 166, and a first sun gear 167. The CVED 159 is provided with a second planetary gear set 168 having a second ring gear 169, a second planet carrier 170 and a second sun gear 171. In some embodiments, the first sun gear 167 is operably coupled to the motor/generator 160. The first ring gear 165 is a grounded member. The first traction ring 162 and the second sun gear 171 are coupled at a node 172. The node 172 is operably coupled to the first planet carrier 165. The second traction ring assembly 132 is coupled to the second ring gear 169. The second planet carrier 170 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 159.

Referring now to FIG. 18, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 173 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 173 includes a motor/generator 174 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 175 having a first traction ring assembly 176 and a second traction ring assembly 177. The CVED 173 is provided with a first planetary gear set 178 having a first ring gear 179, a first planet carrier 180, and a first sun gear 181 . The CVED 173 is provided with a second planetary gear set 182 having a second ring gear 183, a second planet carrier 184, and a second sun gear 185. In some embodiments, the

motor/generator 174 is operably coupled to the first sun gear 181. The first planet carrier 180 is a grounded member. The first traction ring assembly 176 and the second sun gear 185 are coupled at a node 86. The node 186 is operably coupled to the first ring gear 179. The second traction ring assembly 177 is coupled to the second ring gear 183. The second planet carrier 184 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 173. It should be apparent to one skilled in the art that in FIGS. 16-18, the planetary rings and suns could be interchanged to give slightly different characteristics.

Turning now to FIG. 19, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 187 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 187 includes a motor/generator 88 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 189 having a first traction ring assembly 90, a second traction ring assembly 191 , and a ball carrier assembly 192. In some embodiments, the ball carrier assembly 192 is operably coupled to the motor/generator 87. The first traction ring assembly 90 is a grounded member. The second traction ring assembly 191 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 187.

Passing now to FIG. 20, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 193 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 193 includes a motor/generator 194 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 195 having a first traction ring assembly 196, a second traction ring assembly 197, and a ball carrier assembly 198. In some embodiments, the ball carrier assembly 198 is operably coupled to the motor/generator 194. The first traction ring assembly 194 is a grounded member. The CVED 193 is provided with a planetary gear set 99 having a ring gear 200, a planet carrier 201 , and a sun gear 202. The ring gear 200 is a grounded member. The sun gear 202 is operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly 197. The planet carrier 201 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 193.

Moving now to FIG. 21 , in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 203 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 203 includes a motor/generator 204 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 205 having a first traction ring assembly 206, a second traction ring assembly 207, and a ball carrier assembly 208. In some embodiments, the ball carrier assembly 208 is operably coupled to the motor/generator 204. The first traction ring assembly 206 is a grounded member. In some embodiments, the CVED 203 is provided with a planetary gear set 209 having a ring gear 210, a planet carrier 21 1 , and a sun gear 212. The sun gear 212 is operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly 207. The planet carrier 21 is a grounded member. The ring gear 210 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 203.

Referring now to FIG. 22, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 213 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 213 includes a motor/generator 243 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 2 5 having a first traction ring assembly 216, a second traction ring assembly 217, and a ball carrier assembly 218. The first traction ring assembly 216 is a grounded member. In some embodiments, the CVED 2 3 is provided with a planetary gear set 219 having a ring gear 220, a planet carrier 221 , and a sun gear 222. The sun gear 222 is operably coupled to the motor/generator 214. The planet carrier 221 is operably coupled to the ball carrier assembly 218. The ring gear 220 is a grounded member. The second traction ring assembly 217 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 213.

Turning now to FIG. 23, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 223 is optionally used with the electric axle

powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 223 includes a motor/generator 224 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 225 having a first traction ring assembly 226, a second traction ring assembly 227, and a ball carrier assembly 228. The first traction ring assembly 226 is a grounded member. In some embodiments, the CVED 223 is provided with a planetary gear set 229 having a ring gear 230, a planet carrier 231 , and a sun gear 232. The sun gear 232 is operably coupled to the motor/generator 224. The planet carrier 231 is a grounded member. The ring gear 230 is operably coupled to the ball carrier assembly 228. The second traction ring assembly 227 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 223.

Passing now to FIG. 24, in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 233 is optionally used with the electric axle

powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 233 includes a motor/generator 234 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 235 having a first traction ring assembly 236, a second traction ring assembly 237, and a ball carrier assembly 238. The first traction ring assembly 236 is a grounded member. In some embodiments, the CVED 233 is provided with a planetary gear set 239 having a ring gear 240, a planet carrier 241 , and a sun gear 242. The planet carrier 241 is operably coupled to the motor/generator 233. The ring gear 240 is operably coupled to the ball carrier assembly 238. The second traction ring assembly 237 and the sun gear 242 are coupled at a node 243. The node 243 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 233.

Referring now to FIG. 25, in some embodiments, a torque vectoring continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 250 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG.4. The CVED 250 includes a motor/generator 251 , a first ball-type continuously variable planetary 252 having a first traction ring assembly 253 and a second traction ring assembly 254, and a second ball-type continuously variable planetary 255 having a third traction ring assembly 256 and a fourth traction ring assembly 257. In some embodiments, the motor/generator 251 is operabiy coupled to the second traction ring assembly 254 and the third traction ring assembly 256. The CVED 250 is provided with a first gear set 258 operabiy coupled to the first traction ring assembly 253. The first gear set 258 is coupled to a second gear set 259. The second gear set 259 is configured to transmit power in and out of the CVED 250. The CVED 250 includes a third gear set 260 operabiy coupled to the fourth traction ring assembly 257. The third gear set 260 is coupled to a fourth gear set 261. The fourth gear set 261 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 250. During operation of the torque vectoring continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 250, the first ball-type continuously variable planetary 252 and the second ball-type continuously variable planetary 255 are controlled independently to vary the torque transmitted to the second gear set 259 and fourth gear set 261 respectively.

Turning now to FIG. 26, in some embodiments, a torque vectoring continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 262 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 262 includes a motor/generator 263, a first ball-type continuously variable planetary 264 having a first traction ring assembly 265 and a second traction ring assembly 266, and a second ball-type continuously variable planetary 267 having a third traction ring assembly 268 and a fourth traction ring assembly 269. In some embodiments, the motor/generator 263 is operabiy coupled to a first gear set 270 and a third gear set 272. The first gear set 270 is operabiy coupled to the second traction ring assembly 266. The third gear set 272 is operabiy coupled to the third traction ring assembly 268. In some embodiments, the first traction ring assembly 265 is operabiy coupled to a second gear set 271. The second gear set 271 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 263. The fourth traction ring assembly 269 is operabiy coupled to a fourth gear set 274. The fourth gear set 274 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 262. During operation of the torque vectoring continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 262, the first ball-type continuously variable planetary 264 and the second ball-type continuously variable planetary 267 are controlled independently to vary the torque transmitted to the second gear set 271 and fourth gear set 274 respectively.

Passing now to FIG. 27, in some embodiments, a torque vectoring continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 275 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG. 4. The CVED 275 includes a motor/generator 276, a first ball-type continuously variable planetary 277 having a first traction ring assembly 278 and a second traction ring assembly 279, and a second ball-type continuously variable planetary 280 having a third traction ring assembly 281 and a fourth traction ring assembly 282. In some embodiments, the motor/generator 276 is operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly 279 and the third traction ring assembly 281. The CVED 275 is provided with a first planetary gear set 283 having a first ring gear 284, a first ptanet carrier 285, and a first sun gear 286. The CVED 275 is provided with a second planetary gear set 287 having a second ring gear 288, a second planet carrier 289, and a second sun gear 290. In some embodiments, the first ring gear 284 and the second ring gear 288 are grounded members. The first sun gear 286 is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly 278. The second sun gear 290 is operably coupled to the fourth traction ring assembly 282. The first planet carrier 285 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 275. The second planet carrier 289 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 275. During operation of the torque vectoring continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 275, the first ball-type continuously variable planetary 277 and the second ball-type continuously variable planetary 280 are controlled independently to vary the torque transmitted to the first planet carrier 285 and second planet carrier 289 respectively.

Referring now to FIG. 28, in some embodiments, a torque vectoring continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 291 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG 4. The CVED 291 includes a motor/generator 292, a first ball-type continuously variable planetary 293 having a first traction ring assembly 294 and a second traction ring assembly 295, and a second ball-type continuously variable planetary 296 having a third traction ring assembly 297 and a fourth traction ring assembly 298. In some embodiments, the motor/generator 292 is operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly 295 and the third traction ring assembly 297. The CVED 291 is provided with a first planetary gear set 299 having a first ring gear 300, a first planet carrier 301 , and a first sun gear 302. The CVED 291 is provided with a second planetary gear set 303 having a second ring gear 304, a second planet carrier 305, and a second sun gear 306. In some embodiments, the first planet carrier 301 and the second planet carrier 305 are grounded members. The first sun gear 302 is operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly 294. The second sun gear 306 is operably coupled to the fourth traction ring assembly 298. The first ring gear 300 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 291. The second ring gear 304 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 291 . During operation of the torque vectoring continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 291 , the first ball-type continuously variable planetary 293 and the second ball-type continuously variable planetary 296 are controlled independently to vary the torque transmitted to the first ring gear 300 and second ring gear 304 respectively.

Turning now to FIG. 29, in some embodiments, a torque vectoring continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 307 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG 4. The CVED 307 includes a motor/generator 308, a first ball-type continuously variable planetary 309 having a first traction ring assembly 310 and a second traction ring assembly 31 1 , and a second ball-type continuously variable planetary 312 having a third traction ring assembly 313 and a fourth traction ring assembly 314. In some embodiments, the CVED 307 is provided with a first planetary gear set 315 having a first ring gear 316, a first planet carrier 317, and a first sun gear 3 8. The CVED 307 is provided with a second planetary gear set 319 having a second ring gear 320, a second planet carrier 321 , and a second sun gear 322. In some embodiments, the first ring gear 316 and the second ring gear 320 are grounded members. The motor/generator 308 is operably coupled to the first sun gear 318 and the second sun gear 319. The first planet carrier 317 is operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly 31 1. The second planet carrier 321 is operably coupled to the third traction ring assembly 313. The first traction ring assembly 310 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 307. The fourth traction ring assembly 314 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 314. During operation of the torque vectoring continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 307, the first ball-type continuously variable planetary 309 and the second ball-type continuously variable planetary 312 are controlled independently to vary the torque transmitted to the first traction ring assembly 3 0 and fourth traction ring assembly 314 respectively.

Referring now to FIG. 30, in some embodiments, a torque vectoring continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 323 is optionally used with the electric axle powertrains depicted in FIG4. The CVED 323 includes a motor/generator 324, a first ball-type continuously variable planetary 325 having a first traction ring assembly 326 and a second traction ring assembly 327, and a second ball-type continuously variable planetary 328 having a third traction ring assembly 329 and a fourth traction ring assembly 330. In some embodiments, the CVED 323 is provided with a first planetary gear set 331 having a first ring gear 332, a first planet carrier 333, and a first sun gear 334. The CVED 323 is provided with a second planetary gear set 335 having a second ring gear 336, a second planet carrier 337, and a second sun gear 338. In some embodiments, the first planet carrier 333 and the second planet carrier 337 are grounded members. The motor/generator 324 is operably coupled to the first sun gear 334 and the second sun gear 338. The first ring gear 332 is operably coupled to the second traction ring assembly 327. The second ring gear 336 is operably coupled to the third traction ring assembly 329. The first traction ring assembly 326 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 323. The fourth traction ring assembly 330 is configured to transmit power in or out of the CVED 323.

It should be appreciated that when combining electric axle powertrains with continuously variable electric drivetrains (CVED), the planetary rings that are optionally configured with clutches in electric axle powertrains could be grounded and that the grounded rings in continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) figures 27-30 could be clutched. It should further be noted that the electric axle powertrains disclosed herein are optionally used as primar drive axles, second drive axles, or both. Referring now to FIG. 31 , in some embodiments, a continuously variable electric drivetrain (CVED) 360 is optionally used in the embodiments of electric axles disclosed herein. The CVED 360 includes a motor/generator 361 and a ball-type continuously variable planetary 362 having a first traction ring assembly 363 and a second traction ring assembly 364. The CVED 360 includes a planetary gear set 365 operably coupled to the first traction ring assembly 363. The planetary gear set 365 is provided with a ring gear 366, a planet carrier 367, and a sun gear 368. In some embodiments, the ring gear 366 is coupled to the first traction ring assembly 363. The planet carrier 367 is coupled to the motor/generator 341. In some embodiments, the second traction ring 364 is coupled to the sun gear 368 at a combining node 369. In some embodiments, rotational power is transmitted in and out of the CVED 360 through the ring gear 366 and the combining node 369. In some embodiments, rotational power is transmitted in and out of the ring gear 366 and the

combining node 369 to the wheel 5A and the wheel 5B. It should be appreciated that in some embodiments, a typical ravigneaux gear set is optionally used in placed of planetary gear sets described herein.

It should be understood that additional clutches/brakes, step ratios are optionally provided to the hybrid powertrains disclosed herein to obtain varying powerpath characteristics. It should be noted that, in some embodiments, two or more planetary gears and a variator are optionally configured to provide a desired speed ratio range and operating mode to the electric machines. It should be noted that the connections of the electric machines to the

powerpaths disclosed herein are provided for illustrative example and it is within a designer's means to couple the electric machines to other components of the powertrains disclosed herein.

It should be noted that the battery is capable of being not just a high voltage pack such as lithium ion or lead-acid batteries, but also ultracapacitors or other pneumatic/hydraulic systems such as accumulators, or other forms of energy storage systems. The motor/generators described herein are capable of representing hydromotors actuated by variable displacement pumps, electric machines, or any other form of rotary power such as pneumatic motors driven by pneumatic pumps. The electric axle powertrain architectures depicted in the figures and described in text is capable of being extended to create a hydro- mechanical CVT architectures as well for hydraulic hybrid systems.

It should be noted that the description above has provided dimensions for certain components or subassemblies. The mentioned dimensions, or ranges of dimensions, are provided in order to comply as best as possible with certain legal requirements, such as best mode. However, the scope of the embodiments described herein are to be determined solely by the language of the claims, and consequently, none of the mentioned dimensions is to be considered limiting on the embodiments, except in so far as any one claim makes a specified dimension, or range of thereof, a feature of the claim.

While preferred embodiments have been shown and described herein, it will be obvious to those skilled in the art that such embodiments are provided by way of example only. Numerous variations, changes, and substitutions will now occur to those skilled in the art without departing from the preferred embodiments. It should be understood that various alternatives to the embodiments described herein are capable of being employed in practice. It is intended that the following claims define the scope of the preferred

embodiments and that methods and structures within the scope of these claims and their equivalents be covered thereby.