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Title:
PROTECTION AND CONTROL OF WIRELESS POWER SYSTEMS
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/006376
Kind Code:
A9
Abstract:
Methods, systems, and devices for protecting a wireless power transfer system. One aspect features a sensor network for a wireless power transfer system. The sensor network includes a differential voltage sensing circuit and a current sensing circuit. The differential voltage sensing circuit is arranged within a wireless power transfer system to measure a rate of change of a voltage difference between portions of an impedance matching network and generate a first signal representing the rate of change of the voltage difference. The current sensing circuit is coupled to the differential voltage sensing circuit and configured to calculate, based on the first signal, a current through a resonator coil coupled to the wireless power transfer system.

Inventors:
DANILOVIC, Milisav (22 Coolidge Hill Road, Unit 2Watertown, Massachusetts, 02472, US)
ESTEBAN, Bryan Ashworth (513 Belmont Street, Apt. 2Belmont, Massachusetts, 02478, US)
YEUNG, Kinjeo (11 North Gate Park, Newton, Massachusetts, 02465, US)
Application Number:
US2018/040411
Publication Date:
September 12, 2019
Filing Date:
June 29, 2018
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
WITRICITY CORPORATION (57 Water Street, Watertown, Massachusetts, 02472, US)
International Classes:
H02J50/12; H02H3/26; H02J7/00
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
POULIN, Peter et al. (Fish & Richardson P.C, P.O. Box 1022Minneapolis, Minnesota, 55440-1022, US)
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Claims:
CLAIMS

1. A sensor network for a wireless power transfer system, the sensor network comprising:

a differential voltage sensing circuit arranged within a wireless power transfer system to measure a rate of change of a voltage difference between portions of an impedance matching network and generate a first signal representing the rate of change of the voltage difference; and

a current sensing circuit coupled to the differential voltage sensing circuit and configured to calculate, based on the first signal, a current through a resonator coil coupled to the wireless power transfer system.

2. The sensor network of claim 1, wherein the differential voltage sensing circuit is configured to scale the first signal in response to a second signal, the second signal representing a current through the impedance matching network.

3. The sensor network of claim 1, wherein the portions of the impedance matching network are tunable matching networks comprising one or more tunable capacitors.

4. The sensor network of claim 1, wherein the differential voltage sensing circuit comprises an amplification stage comprising a unity gain amplifier.

5. The sensor network of claim 4, wherein the unity gain amplifier is configured to provide the first signal as a single-ended voltage signal.

6. The sensor network of claim 4, wherein the differential voltage sensing circuit is arranged to apply a second signal to the unity gain amplifier to scale the first signal in response to the second signal, the second signal representing a current through the impedance matching network.

7. The sensor network of claim 1, wherein the differential voltage sensing circuit comprises a differentiator circuit.

8. The sensor network of claim 1, wherein the current sensing circuit comprises a differential circuit configured to generate a second signal representing the current through the resonator coil coupled to the wireless power transfer system by subtracting the first signal from a second signal, the second signal representing a current through the impedance matching network.

9. A protection system for a wireless power transfer system, the protection system comprising:

a differential voltage sensing circuit arranged within a wireless power transfer system to measure a rate of change of a voltage difference between portions of an impedance matching network and generate a first signal representing the rate of change of the voltage difference;

a first current sensing circuit arranged to measure a first current and generate a second signal representing the first current, the first current being through the impedance matching network; and

a second current sensing circuit coupled to the differential voltage sensing circuit and to the first current sensing circuit, the second current sensing circuit configured to calculate, based on the first signal and the second signal, a second current and generate a third signal representing the second current, the second current being through a resonator coil coupled to the wireless power transfer system.

10. The protection system of claim 9, wherein the differential voltage sensing circuit is coupled to the first current sensing circuit, and wherein the differential voltage sensing circuit is configured to scale the first signal in response to the second signal.

11. The protection system of claim 9, wherein the differential voltage sensing circuit comprises an amplification stage comprising a unity gain amplifier.

12. The protection system of claim 11, wherein the unity gain amplifier is configured to provide the first signal as a single-ended voltage signal.

13. The protection system of claim 11, wherein the differential voltage sensing circuit is coupled to the first current sensing circuit, and wherein the differential voltage sensing circuit is arranged to apply the second signal to the unity gain amplifier to scale the first signal in response to the second signal.

14. The protection system of claim 11, wherein the differential voltage sensing circuit comprises a differentiator circuit.

15. The protection system of claim 11, wherein the second current sensing circuit comprises a differential circuit configured to generate the third signal by subtracting the first signal from the second signal.

16. The protection system of claim 11, further comprising fault protection circuity coupled to respective output terminals of the first current sensing circuit and the second current sensing circuit, the fault protection circuitry configured to bypass a tunable matching network (TMN) in response to a magnitude of the second signal or a magnitude of the third signal exceeding a respective threshold value.

17. The protection system of claim 16, wherein the fault protection circuitry is further configured to bypass the tunable matching network by latching a control signal for a TMN bypass transistor in an asserted state.

18. The protection system of claim 17, wherein the fault protection circuitry is further configured to delay latching the control signal until a voltage across the TMN is below a TMN voltage threshold value.

19. The protection system of claim 11, further comprising fault protection circuity coupled to respective output terminals of the first current sensing circuit and the second current sensing circuit, the fault protection circuitry configured to shutdown an inverter-rectifier in response to a magnitude of the second signal or a magnitude of the third signal exceeding a respective threshold value.

20. A wireless power transfer system comprising:

a resonator coil;

an impedance matching network coupled to the resonator coil; and

a sensor network comprising:

a differential voltage sensing circuit arranged to measure a rate of change of a voltage difference between portions of the impedance matching network and generate a first signal representing the rate of change of the voltage difference, and

a current sensing circuit coupled to the differential voltage sensing circuit and configured to calculate, based on the first signal, a current through the resonator coil.

Description:
PROTECTION AND CONTROL OF WIRELESS POWER SYSTEMS

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application Nos. 62/526,842, filed on June 29, 2017; 62/608,052, filed on December 20, 2017; 62/662,148, filed on April 24, 2018; 62/662,462, filed on April 25, 2018; and 62/662,486 filed on April 25, 2018, the entire contents of which are incorporated herein by reference.

TECHNICAL FIELD

[0001] The disclosure generally relates to wireless power systems and, more particularly, the disclosure relates to protection and sensors for wireless power systems.

BACKGROUND

[0002] Wireless power systems employ tunable impedance matching circuits to efficiently transmit power to a coupled load. The behavior of the load may be outside the control of the wireless power system and may thus cause undesirable conditions in the components of the wireless power system, leading to dangerous operation and possible damage.

SUMMARY

[0003] In general, the disclosure features control and protection systems for uni directional and bidirectional wireless power transfer systems. The devices and process described herein can be used in a variety of contexts, including implantable devices, cell phone and other mobile computing device chargers, and chargers for electric vehicles.

[0004] In a first general aspect, the disclosure features, a sensor network for a wireless power transfer system. The sensor network includes a differential voltage sensing circuit and a current sensing circuit. The differential voltage sensing circuit is arranged within a wireless power transfer system to measure a rate of change of a voltage difference between portions of an impedance matching network and generate a first signal representing the rate of change of the voltage difference. The current sensing circuit is coupled to the differential voltage sensing circuit and configured to calculate, based on the first signal, a current through a resonator coil coupled to the wireless power transfer system.

[0005] In a second general aspect, the disclosure features a wireless power transfer system that includes a resonator coil, an impedance matching network coupled to the resonator coil, and a sensor network. The sensor network includes a differential voltage sensing circuit and a current sensing circuit. The differential voltage sensing circuit is arranged to measure a rate of change of a voltage difference between portions of the impedance matching network and generate a first signal representing the rate of change of the voltage difference. The current sensing circuit is coupled to the differential voltage sensing circuit and configured to calculate, based on the first signal, a current through the resonator coil.

[0006] These and the following aspects can each optionally include one or more of the following features.

[0007] In some implementations, the differential voltage sensing circuit is configured to scale the first signal in response to a second signal, the second signal representing a current through the impedance matching network.

[0008] In some implementations, the portions of the impedance matching network are tunable matching networks that include one or more tunable capacitors.

[0009] In some implementations, the differential voltage sensing circuit includes an amplification stage having a unity gain amplifier. In some implementations, the unity gain amplifier is configured to provide the first signal as a single-ended voltage signal. In some implementations, the differential voltage sensing circuit is arranged to apply a second signal to the unity gain amplifier to scale the first signal in response to the second signal, the second signal representing a current through the impedance matching network.

[0010] In some implementations, the differential voltage sensing circuit includes a differentiator circuit.

[0011] In some implementations, the current sensing circuit includes a differential circuit configured to generate a second signal representing the current through the resonator coil coupled to the wireless power transfer system by subtracting the first signal from a second signal, the second signal representing a current through the impedance matching network. [0012] In a third general aspect, the disclosure features a protection network for a wireless power transfer system. The protection network includes a differential voltage sensing circuit, a first current sensing circuit, and a second current sensing circuit. The differential voltage sensing circuit is arranged within a wireless power transfer system to measure a rate of change of a voltage difference between portions of an impedance matching network and generate a first signal representing the rate of change of the voltage difference. The first current sensing circuit is arranged to measure a first current and generate a second signal representing the first current, where the first current is through the impedance matching network. The second current sensing circuit is coupled to the differential voltage sensing circuit and to the first current sensing circuit. The second current sensing circuit is configured to calculate, based on the first signal and the second signal, a second current and generate a third signal representing the second current, where the second current is through a resonator coil coupled to the wireless power transfer system. This aspect can optionally include one or more of the following features.

[0013] In some implementations, the differential voltage sensing circuit is coupled to the first current sensing circuit, and wherein the differential voltage sensing circuit is configured to scale the first signal in response to the second signal.

[0014] In some implementations, the differential voltage sensing circuit comprises an amplification stage includes a unity gain amplifier.

[0015] In some implementations, the unity gain amplifier is configured to provide the first signal as a single-ended voltage signal.

[0016] In some implementations, the differential voltage sensing circuit is coupled to the first current sensing circuit, and wherein the differential voltage sensing circuit is arranged to apply the second signal to the unity gain amplifier to scale the first signal in response to the second signal.

[0017] In some implementations, the differential voltage sensing circuit comprises a differentiator circuit. In some implementations, the second current sensing circuit comprises a differential circuit configured to generate the third signal by subtracting the first signal from the second signal. [0018] Some implementations further include fault protection circuity coupled to respective output terminals of the first current sensing circuit and the second current sensing circuit, the fault protection circuitry configured to bypass a tunable matching network (TMN) in response to a magnitude of the second signal or a magnitude of the third signal exceeding a respective threshold value.

[0019] In some implementations, the fault protection circuitry is further configured to bypass the tunable matching network by latching a control signal for a TMN bypass transistor in an asserted state.

[0020] In some implementations, the fault protection circuitry is further configured to delay latching the control signal until a voltage across the TMN is below a TMN voltage threshold value.

[0021] Some implementations further include fault protection circuity coupled to respective output terminals of the first current sensing circuit and the second current sensing circuit, the fault protection circuitry configured to shutdown an inverter-rectifier in response to a magnitude of the second signal or a magnitude of the third signal exceeding a respective threshold value.

[0022] In a fourth general aspect, the disclosure features a fault protection method for a bidirectional wireless power transfer system. The method includes the actions of detecting, by control circuitry of a wireless power transfer device, a fault for the bidirectional wireless power transfer system. Identifying an operating personality of the wireless power transfer device and a hardware configuration of the wireless power transfer device. Identifying, in response to detecting the fault and based on the operating personality and the hardware configuration, protection operations for protecting the wireless power transfer device from the fault. Controlling operations of the wireless power transfer device according to the protection operations. Other implementations of this aspect include corresponding systems, circuitry, controllers, apparatus, and computer programs, configured to perform the actions of the methods, encoded on computer storage devices.

[0023] These and other implementations can each optionally include one or more of the following features. [0024] In some implementations, in response to the operating personality indicating that the wireless power transfer device is operating as a wireless power transmitter, the protection operations include shutting down an inverter-rectifier and shorting at least a portion of an impedance matching circuit. In some implementations, shutting down the inverter-rectifier includes overriding inverter-rectifier pulse width modulation (PWM) control signals.

[0025] In some implementations, in response to the operating personality indicating that the wireless power transfer device is operating as a wireless power receiver and the hardware configuration indicating that the wireless power transfer device is configured as a grid-connected system, the protection operations include shutting down an inverter- rectifier, shorting at least a portion of an impedance matching circuit to dissipate current from a resonator coil, and switching in a resistor configured to dissipate excess power from the inverter-rectifier. In some implementations, shutting down the inverter-rectifier includes overriding inverter-rectifier pulse width modulation (PWM) control signals.

[0026] In some implementations, in response to the operating personality indicating that the wireless power transfer device is operating as a wireless power receiver, the protection operations include shutting down an inverter-rectifier, and shorting at least a portion of an impedance matching circuit to dissipate current from a resonator coil.

[0027] In some implementations, shutting down the inverter-rectifier includes overriding inverter-rectifier pulse width modulation (PWM) control signals.

[0028] In some implementations, in response to the operating personality indicating that the wireless power transfer device is operating as a wireless power receiver and the hardware configuration indicating that the wireless power transfer device is configured as a device-connected system, the protection operations include closing switches of an inverter-rectifier to provide a short circuit between terminals of a resonator coil. In some implementations, the protection operations cause a corresponding fault condition in a second wireless power transfer device that is magnetically coupled to the first wireless power transfer device.

[0029] In some implementations, the fault is at least one of: a tunable impedance matching network fault, an over current fault, or an overvoltage fault. [0030] In some implementations, the fault is an overvoltage fault or an overcurrent fault triggered by a load disconnect.

[0031] In some implementations, the method includes initiating the fault by

disconnecting a load from the wireless power transfer device in response to detecting a vehicle collision.

[0032] In a fifth general aspect, the disclosure features a method of operating a bidirectional wireless power transfer system. The method includes the actions of transmitting, by a first wireless power transfer device to a second wireless power transfer device, instructions to reverse a direction of power flow between the first wireless power transfer device and the second wireless power transfer device. Receiving, from the second wireless power transfer device, an indication that the second wireless power transfer device has reconfigured to operate according a reverse direction of power flow.

In response to the indication the first wireless power device assigns an operating personality of the first wireless power transfer device in accordance with the reverse direction of power flow, and controls operation of an inverter-rectifier of the first wireless power transfer device for operation according to the operating personality. Other implementations of this aspect include corresponding systems, circuitry, controllers, apparatus, and computer programs, configured to perform the actions of the methods, encoded on computer storage devices.

[0033] These and other implementations can each optionally include one or more of the following features.

[0034] In some implementations, the operating personality indicates that the first wireless power transfer device is operating as a wireless power transmitter, and controlling operation of the inverter-rectifier includes generating pulse width modulation (PWM) control signals for operating the inverter-rectifier as an inverter.

[0035] In some implementations, the operating personality indicates that the first wireless power transfer device is operating as a wireless power receiver, and controlling operation of the inverter-rectifier includes generating pulse width modulation (PWM) control signals for operating the inverter-rectifier as a rectifier.

[0036] In some implementations, the operating personality indicates that the first wireless power transfer device is operating as a wireless power receiver, and controlling operation of the inverter-rectifier includes in response to a power at the inverter-rectifier being less than a threshold value, operating the inverter-rectifier in a passive rectifier mode; and in response to the power at the inverter-rectifier being greater than the threshold value, generating pulse width modulation (PWM) control signals for operating the inverter-rectifier in an active rectification mode.

[0037] In some implementations, the PWM control signals alternately turn on corresponding pairs of transistors in the inverter-rectifier to generate a DC output signal.

[0038] In some implementations, the PWM control signals alternately turn on corresponding pairs of transistors in the inverter-rectifier in response to detecting a zero current condition at an input to the inverter-rectifier.

[0039] In some implementations, the method includes in response to the indication, resetting a tunable matching network of the first wireless power transfer device and controlling the operation of the tunable matching network in accordance with the assigned operating personality.

[0040] In some implementations, the first wireless power transfer device is coupled to a vehicle and the second wireless power transfer device is coupled to a power grid.

[0041] In a sixth general aspect, the disclosure features a method for protecting a wireless power system during a load disconnect condition in which a load is disconnected from an output of a rectifier of a wireless power receiver, the wireless power system comprising the wireless power receiver and a wireless power transmitter, the wireless power receiver configured to receive power from the wireless power transmitter. The method includes detecting, by a load disconnect sensor, a load disconnect condition. Shorting, by a first controller, two or more rectifier-protection switches, each protection switch coupled to a diode of the rectifier. Shorting, by a second controller, a first TMN- protection switch coupled to a receiver-side tunable capacitor, the tunable capacitor coupled to an input of the rectifier. Detecting, by a current sensor coupled to the transmitter, an overcurrent condition in an inverter of the transmitter. Shutting off, by a third controller, the inverter. Shorting, by a fourth controller, a second TMN-protection switch coupled to a receiver-side tunable capacitor, the tunable capacitor coupled to an output of the receiver. Other implementations of this aspect include corresponding systems, circuitry, controllers, apparatus, and computer programs, configured to perform the actions of the methods, encoded on computer storage devices.

[0042] In a sixth general aspect, the disclosure features a method for protecting a wireless power system during a load short condition in which a load is shorted at an output of a rectifier of a wireless power receiver, the wireless power system comprising the wireless power receiver and a wireless power transmitter, the wireless power receiver configured to receive power from the wireless power transmitter. The method includes detecting, by a voltage sensor coupled to the rectifier output, an undervoltage condition. Shorting, by a first controller, a first protection switch coupled to a tunable capacitor of the wireless power receiver. Detecting, by a current sensor coupled a tunable capacitor of the wireless power transmitter, an overcurrent condition in the tunable capacitor.

Shorting, by a second controller, a second protection switch coupled to a tunable capacitor of the wireless power transmitter. Other implementations of this aspect include corresponding systems, circuitry, controllers, apparatus, and computer programs, configured to perform the actions of the methods, encoded on computer storage devices.

In some implementations, the method includes shutting off an inverter of the wireless power transmitter, the inverter coupled to the tunable capacitor of the wireless power transmitter.

[0043] In a seventh general aspect, the disclosure features a method for protecting a bidirectional wireless power system during a load disconnect condition in which the load is disconnected from an output of a ground side inverter of a ground side wireless power transmitter, the bidirectional wireless power system comprising the wireless power transmitter and a wireless power receiver, and the wireless power transmitter configured to receive power from the bidirectional wireless power receiver. The method includes detecting, by a load disconnect sensor, a load disconnect condition. Shutting off, by a first controller, the ground-side inverter. Shorting, by a second controller, a first TMN- protection switch coupled to a first ground-side tunable capacitor, the at least one tunable capacitor coupled to an input of the ground-side inverter. Switching in, by the first controller, a first resistor parallel with the disconnected load. Transmitting an error signal from the wireless power transmitter to the wireless power receiver. Upon receipt of the error signal, shutting off, by a third controller, the vehicle-side inverter. Other implementations of this aspect include corresponding systems, circuitry, controllers, apparatus, and computer programs, configured to perform the actions of the methods, encoded on computer storage devices.

[0044] Particular implementations of the subject matter described in this specification can be implemented so as to realize one or more of the following advantages.

Implementations may provide a modular sensor network that can be readily configured for use on either a wireless power transmitter or receiver. Implementations may provide a modular sensor network that can be readily configured for use on either a wireless power transmitter or receiver. Implementations may provide a sensor/protection network that can be used with either uni-directional or bidirectional wireless power transfer systems. Implementations provide a sensor network capable of making remote measurements of resonator coil current. For example, implementation can provide so the sensor network is capable of measuring the current through a transmitter resonator coil that is positioned remote (e.g., along a 8-10 foot cable) from the sensors and other control circuitry of the wireless power transmitter. In some implementations that use analog circuitry to implement sensors and protection circuitry may provide faster protection response to hazardous operating conditions. Some implementations provide protection without reliance on communication schemes. For example, implementations can initiate protective actions between a wireless power receiver and a wireless power transmitter without reliance on a wired or wireless communication link in a forward and reverse charging direction. Some implementations allow for modularity of non-redundant hardware, code, and memory. For example, assigning operating personalities to components in bidirectional systems can allow for greater modularity of hardware and software, which may allow for fast, safe, and on-the-fly for power reversals. In addition, the increased modularity may increase efficiency in product manufacturing.

[0045] Implementations of the devices, circuits, and systems disclosed can also include any of the other features disclosed herein, including features disclosed in combination with different implementations, and in any combination as appropriate.

[0046] The details of one or more implementations of the subject matter described in this specification are set forth in the accompanying drawings and the description below. Other features, aspects, and advantages of the subject matter will be apparent from the description, the drawings, and the claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0047] FIG. 1 A is a diagram of a schematic model of an exemplary wireless power transmitter.

[0048] FIG. 1B is a diagram of a schematic model of an exemplary wireless power receiver.

[0049] FIG. 1C is a block diagram of an exemplary sensor network for use in wireless power systems.

[0050] FIG. 1D is a block diagram of an exemplary protection network for use in wireless power transfer systems.

[0051] FIG. 2A is a schematic of an exemplary voltage sensor for the tunable matching networks (TMNs).

[0052] FIG. 2B is a plot showing an exemplary waveform output of the voltage sensor as compared to a waveform output of a direct voltage measurement at the tunable capacitor.

[0053] FIGS. 3A-3C are schematics of an exemplary voltage sensor across one or more capacitors in position C2 of the wireless power transmitter or receiver.

[0054] FIG. 3D is a plot of an exemplary waveform output of voltage sensor and exemplary waveform output of a direct measurement of Vc2 voltage (VC2+, VC2-) provided in FIGS. 1 A-1B.

[0055] FIGS. 3E-3F are plots of exemplary waveforms of voltages VC2_diff, Vy, and VC2_sense.

[0056] FIG. 4A is a schematic of an exemplary current sensor to compute current II at inductor Lsl.

[0057] FIG. 4B is a plot of an exemplary waveform output of current sensor and exemplary waveform output of a direct measurement of the current II at inductor Lsl.

[0058] FIG. 4C is a plot of an exemplary waveform of voltage Vc2_diff

[0059] FIG. 4D is a plot of an exemplary waveform of voltage VI. [0060] FIG. 5 A is a schematic of an exemplary current phase detect circuit having inputs CS1 and CS2 from a current sense transformer (CST).

[0061] FIG. 5B is a schematic of an exemplary circuit configured to generate a reset signal for the peak detect circuits.

[0062] FIG. 5C is an exemplary peak detector circuit configured to detect the peak(s) of voltage signal VC2_sense.

[0063] FIG. 5D is an exemplary peak detect circuit configured to detect the peak(s) of the signal representing coil current V Il sense.

[0064] FIG. 5E is a plot of an exemplary waveform output of the circuit in FIG. 5A.

[0065] FIG. 5F is a plot of an exemplary waveform of input voltage signal VC2_sense and an exemplary waveform of output VC2_peak_detect.

[0066] FIG. 5G is a plot of an exemplary waveform of input signal V II sense and an exemplary waveform of output V l l sense pk.

[0067] FIG. 5H is a plot of an exemplary waveform output of the reset voltage signal Vreset.

[0068] FIG. 6A is an exemplary peak detector circuit configured to sample the current in the TMN of the transmitter or receiver.

[0069] FIG. 6B is an exemplary zero-crossing detector circuit.

[0070] FIGS. 7A-7E are schematics of exemplary window comparator circuits configured to detect overvoltage or undervoltage conditions for signals within the system.

[0071] FIGS. 8A-8E are schematics of exemplary fault latch circuits configured to latch when a fault is detected.

[0072] FIG. 8F is a schematic of an exemplary latch circuit that combines two or more of the faults from the latch circuits in FIGS. 8A-8E.

[0073] FIGS. 9A and 9B are schematics of an exemplary protection circuit for a TMN.

[0074] FIG. 10A illustrates the effect of a latched fault in an exemplary transmitter at time when the duty cycle is great than zero.

[0075] FIG. 10B illustrates the effect of a latched fault when the duty cycle equals zero.

[0076] FIG. 11 A is a digital logic circuit to enable or disable switching in the TMN if there is a hardware fault (HW FAULT) or external fault (EXT FAULT).

[0077] FIG. 11B is a switch to enable or disable the hardware protection. [0078] FIG. 12 is an exemplary plot of waveforms during a hardware test of a TMN overvoltage fault condition.

[0079] FIG. 13 is an exemplary wireless power system having one or more protection mechanisms.

[0080] FIG. 14 is a plot of exemplary waveforms in exemplary wireless power system during a load disconnect condition.

[0081] FIG. 15 is a plot of exemplary waveforms in exemplary wireless power system during a load short condition.

[0082] FIG. 16 is a schematic of an exemplary bidirectional wireless power transfer system.

[0083] FIG. 17 depicts flowchart of an exemplary bidirectional control process that can be executed in accordance with implementations of the present disclosure.

[0084] FIG. 18 depicts a schematic of an exemplary inverter-rectifier and a timing diagram illustrating operation of the inverter-rectifier in an inverter operating mode.

[0085] FIG. 19 depicts a schematic of an exemplary inverter-rectifier and a timing diagram illustrating operation of the inverter-rectifier in a rectifier operating mode.

[0086] FIG. 20 depicts a flowchart of exemplary protection operations that can be executed in accordance with implementations of the present disclosure

[0087] FIG. 21 is a diagram of a bidirectional wireless power transfer device that illustrates an arrangement of fault sensing circuits.

[0088] FIG. 22A is a block diagram of exemplary protection logic for a bidirectional wireless power transfer device.

[0089] FIG. 22B illustrates logic truth tables associated with the exemplary protection logic shown in FIG. 22A.

[0090] FIG. 23 shows a series of diagrams depicting the operation of the inverter- rectifier in response to a load disconnect when assigned a rectifier operating personality.

[0091] Like reference numbers and designations in the various drawings indicate like elements.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION [0092] In general, the disclosure features control and protection systems for uni directional and bidirectional wireless power transfer systems. Implementations include sensor and protection networks to protect wireless power transfer systems from various hazardous conditions including overvoltage, overcurrent, over-temperature, and sudden changes to power that may cause damage to the system. Implementations include control systems for managing the shutdown of wireless power transmission system components (e.g., tunable matching networks, inverters, rectifiers, and inverter-rectifiers) in response to a protective action. Implementations include control systems and processes for managing the reversal of power flow in a bidirectional wireless power transfer system.

[0093] Fig. 1 A is a diagram of an equivalent model of an exemplary wireless power transmitter 100 (also known as a wireless power source or ground assembly (GA)). The wireless power transmitter 100 is part of an overall wireless power system that further includes a wireless power receiver 112 (in FIG. 1B) that is configured to receive power transmitted by the wireless power transmitter 100. A wireless power transmitter 100 is generally coupled to a power supply such as a power grid, AC generator, etc.

Furthermore, the wireless power transmitter 100 is generally used to transfer power from the power supply to power a load or charge a battery coupled to a wireless power receiver 112. This mode of operation is referred to herein as the normal operating mode and is used in reference to the normal power flow direction in a uni-directional wireless power transfer system. However, power flow can be reversed (e.g. a reverse power flow direction) in a bidirectional wireless power transfer system. Such operation would be considered a reverse operating mode. For example, in a bidirectional wireless power transfer system the transmitter 100 can operate as a“receiver” and the receiver 112 can operate as a“transmitter,” for example, to transfer power from battery, or a stored power source, to a load coupled to the transmitter 100. For example, during a power outage, a battery of an electric vehicle could be used to provide emergency power to a home through a bidirectional wireless power system. Accordingly, the terms“transmitter” and “receiver” as used herein are in reference to respective components is in reference to their function in the normal operating mode, but is not intended to limit their function to either transmitter or receiving power alone. [0094] The exemplary wireless power transmitter 100 includes an inverter 102, which receives an input voltage and is coupled to an impedance matching network 103 and a resonator coil 104. Note that the model takes into account the equivalent reflected impedance R refi 105 of the wireless power receiver and load that is reflected to the transmitter. Within the impedance matching network 103 is a tunable matching network (TMN) 106 having at least one first tunable capacitor. In this example, the TMN 106 includes a first tunable capacitor l08a and a second tunable capacitor l08b. In some implementations, the TMN 106 is coupled to one or more controllers 109, such as a microcontroller, configured to provide control signals such as tuning signals to tune the tunable capacitors 108a- 108b, protection signals to protect the TMN 106 from damage, and the like. Examples and description of tunable matching networks can be found in commonly owned U.S. Patent Application No. 15/427,186 filed on February 8, 2017 and titled“PWM capacitor control”.

[0095] In the exemplary implementation shown in Fig. 1 A, the inverter 102 provides a voltage (V1+, V1-) to the impedance matching circuit 103 having inductors Ls3a and Ls3b. These inductors Ls3a and Ls3b are coupled in series with a tunable capacitor l08a and l08b, respectively. Tunable capacitor l08a has a first end with positive voltage Vcap+ and a second end with negative voltage Vcap-. Tunable capacitor l08b has a first end with positive voltage Vcap++ and a second end with negative voltage Vcap—.

Tunable capacitor l08a is coupled in series with an optional current sense transformer 110. In some implementations, the tunable capacitors l08a, l08b can be coupled in series to fixed capacitors Cs3a, Cs3b respectively. Coupled to the right-hand ends of capacitors Cs3a, Cs3b is capacitor Cs2 having voltage (Vc2+, Vc2-). Coupled in parallel to capacitor Cs2 is capacitor Csla, inductor Lsl, and capacitor Cslb. Inductor Lsl, when driven, is configured to generate an oscillating magnetic field to transfer energy to a wireless power receiver. Note that any of the electrical components discussed herein may represent one or more components coupled to each other. For example, a single capacitor in transmitter model 100 may represent two or more capacitors coupled in parallel or in series. Note also that any values of components indicated in any of the provided figures are exemplary values and can be adjusted for specific applications. [0096] Fig. 1B is a diagram of an equivalent model of an exemplary wireless power receiver (also known as a wireless power device or vehicle assembly (VA)). The structure of the wireless power receiver largely mirrors the structure of the transmitter 100 with some important differences. In the receiver model 112, a voltage is induced in the receiver coil 114 when the transmitter 100 generates an oscillating magnetic field. The voltage source 116 in the receiver 112 models this induced voltage. The receiver coil 114 is coupled to a capacitor network, which includes capacitors C12 and C32 in series and capacitor Cl 1 in parallel. Coupled in series to this network is a tunable matching network (TMN) 122 that includes a current sense transformer (CST) 118 and tunable capacitors l20a, l20b. Note that the CST 118 and/or tunable capacitors l20a, l20b may be packaged together in a module, such as an integrated circuit (IC). Ultimately, the matched voltage originating from the receiver coil is rectified at rectifier 124 and outputted to a load 126. In some implementations, the load 126 may be a battery manager coupled to a battery. In some implementations, the load 126 may be the battery itself. In an exemplary implementation, a smoothing capacitor 128 may couple the output of the rectifier 124 to the load 126 and serve to filter the rectified output. In some implementations, the TMN 122 is coupled to one or more controllers 130, such as a microcontroller, configured to provide control signals such as tuning signals to tune the tunable capacitors l20a-l20b, protection signals to protect the TMN 122 from damage, and the like.

[0097] Note that many of the below implementations of sensors and protection mechanisms are discussed in the context of the wireless power transmitter. However, they can be applied to similar structures and functions of the wireless power receiver.

[0098] In some implementations, inverter 102 can be implemented as a bidirectional inverter-rectifier as discussed in more detail below. Similarly, in some implementations, rectifier 124 can be implemented as a bidirectional inverter-rectifier as discussed in more detail below.

[0099] FIG. 1C is a block diagram of an example sensor network 132 for use in wireless power systems. For clarity, sensor network 132 is depicted in FIG. 1C as being implemented within a wireless power transmitter 100. It should be noted that, wireless power transmitter 100 is similar to the wireless power transmitter 100 illustrated in FIG.

1 A, except that the wireless power transmitter 100 is represented as a block diagram rather than a schematic model. In addition, sensor network 132 can be implemented within a wireless power receiver (e.g., wireless power receiver 112 shown in FIG. 1B). For example, sensor network 132 can be arranged in a similar fashion within a wireless power receiver 112 to measure voltages and currents of wireless power receiver components that correspond to the wireless power transmitter components discussed below.

[0100] Sensor network 132 includes TMN voltage sensors 134, differential voltage sensor 136, voltage sensor 138, current sensor 140, current phase sensor 142, and current sensor 150. Each of sensors 134, 136, 138, 140, 142, and 150 can be implemented as analog circuits as shown, for example, in FIGS. 2A, 3 A-3C, 4A, 5 A, and 6A and described in more detail below. In some implementations, one or more of sensors 134, 136, 138, 140, 142, and 150, or portions thereof, can be implemented in software. For example, voltages or currents measured by sensors 134, 136, 138, 140, 142, and 150 can be converted from analog to digital and further processed by a microprocessor or microcontroller according to software instructions.

[0101] TMN voltage sensors 134 are arranged to measure the voltage across TMN 106. For example, TMN voltage sensor A is electrically connected on either side of TMN A to measure the voltage drop across TMN A. For example, voltage sensor 134 is connected at Vcap+ and Vcap-. In some implementations, the sensor network 132 can include one voltage sensor 134 for each TMN 106 in a wireless power transmitter 100. For example, a wireless power transmitter 100 may have only one TMN 106 and only one

corresponding voltage sensor 134, while in another implementation a wireless power transmitter 100 may have multiple TMNs 106 with a corresponding voltage sensor 134 for each TMN 106. As described in more detail below in reference to FIG. 2A, Voltage sensor 134 is configured to generate an output voltage signal that represents the measured voltage across a TMN 106. In some examples, the output voltage signal is a single ended voltage signal, for example, a voltage signal that ranges between zero and a positive or negative bound (e.g., 0 to 3V or 0 to -3V).

[0102] Although illustrated as being in series with the resonator coil 104, in some implementations the TMN 106 is be arranged in parallel with the resonator coil 104. In such implementations, voltage sensor 134 can also be arranged in parallel with the TMN 106.

[0103] Differential voltage sensor 136 is arranged to measure the rate of change (e.g., the first derivative) of the voltage difference between portions of the impedance matching network. For example, differential voltage sensor 136 is arranged to measure the rate of change of the voltage difference between the respective output terminals of TMN A and TMN B. For example, the differential voltage sensor 136 can be connected at Vcap- and Vcap++. As described in more detail below in reference to FIGS. 3A and 3B, differential voltage sensor 136 is configured to generate an output signal that represents the measured rate of change of the voltage between the outputs of TMNs 106. In some examples, the output voltage signal is a single ended voltage signal. The output of the differential voltage sensor 136 also represents the rate of change of the voltage across capacitor C2s. Two different transmitter 100 parameters can be determined based on the differential voltage obtained at this location in the transmitter 100; the voltage across capacitor C2s and the current through the resonator coil 104 (current II s).

[0104] Voltage sensor 138 is configured to measure the voltage across capacitor C2s. As described in more detail below in reference to FIG. 3C, voltage sensor 136 is configured to generate an output signal that represents voltage across capacitor C2s. For example, voltage sensor 138 can be configured to integrate the output of differential voltage sensor 138 to provide an output signal that represents the voltage across capacitor C2s, or more generally any parallel components of matching network. In some examples, the output signal is a single ended voltage signal.

[0105] Current sensor 140 is configured to measure the current through the resonator coil 104 (e.g., current Ils). As described in more detail below in reference to FIG. 4A, current sensor 140 is configured to generate an output signal that represents current through the resonator coil 104. For example, current sensor 140 is configured to calculate the current I2s through capacitor C2s based on the differential voltage measured by differential voltage sensor 136 and obtain the current through the coil 104 by subtracting the calculated current 12 s from the current 13 s through the impedance matching network as measured by current sensor 150. In some examples, the output signal of current sensor 140 is a single ended voltage signal. [0106] Current sensor 150 is coupled to transformer 110, e.g., in a transmitter 100. Similarly, currents sensor 150 can be coupled to a corresponding transformer, e.g., CST 118 in a receiver 112. Current sensor 150 is configured to measure the current through the impedance matching network (e.g., current 13 s). As described in more detail below in reference to FIG. 6A, current sensor 150 is configured to generate an output signal (CSI) that represents current 13 s through the impedance matching network (e.g., TMN 106, inductor L3sA, and capacitor C3sA).

[0107] Current phase sensor 142 is configured to measure the phase of the current 13 s through the impedance matching network. As described in more detail below in reference to FIG. 5 A, current phase sensor 142 is configured to generate an output signal that represents phase of current 13 s.

[0108] In some implementation of a wireless power transmitter 100 it is not practical to directly measure the current through the resonator coil 104 because the coil may be located at the end of a cable that is at a distance from the transmitter’s control circuitry.

In such situations, the indirect measurements provided by the sensor network 132 may provide accurate and efficient current measurements to effectively maintain safe operations of the wireless power transmitter 100. In some implementations, the sensors in sensor network 132 can be implemented in analog circuitry. Such implementations may provide faster detection and response to hazardous conditions than digital circuitry or software based sensors.

[0109] In some implementations, differential voltage sensor 136 is configured to scale its output signal based the current measurement obtained by current sensor 150. For example, the differential voltage sensor 136 can scale its output signal to account for a voltage drop across capacitors C3sA and C3sB (when present in a transmitter 100) based on the output (CSI) of current sensor 150.

[0110] FIG. 1D is a block diagram of an exemplary protection network 180 for use in wireless power transfer systems. Protection network 180 incorporates sensor network 132. Protection network 180 is configured to generate faults in response to detecting a hazardous operating condition in the wireless power transmitter 100 (or receiver 112). Protection network 180 can also be configured to perform protective actions for a wireless power transmitter 100 (or receiver 112) in response to detecting a hazardous operating condition. Hazardous operating conditions can include, but are not limited to, over/under voltage/current conditions in the impedance matching network and/or TMN, over/under voltage/current conditions at the resonator coil, over/under voltage conditions at capacitor C2. These or other hazardous operation conditions can be indicative of one or more operational faults within the wireless power transfer system including, but not limited to, a load short, a load disconnect, the presence of foreign object debris (FOD) too close to the resonator coil 104, or a failure of one or more components of the transmitter 100 or receiver 112.

[0111] Protection network 180 includes sensor network 132, peak detectors 146, 148, 151, reset signal generator 144, comparator circuits 152-160, fault logic 162-170, optional combined fault logic 172, and protection/control circuitry 109. Each of the components of protection network 180 can be implemented as analog circuits as shown, for example, in FIGS. 2A, 3A-3C, 4A, 5A, 6A, 6B, 7A-7E, and 8A-8F and described in more detail below. In some implementations, one or more of sensors 134, 136, 138, 140, 142, and 150, or portions thereof, can be implemented can be implemented in software. For example, voltages or currents measured by sensors 134, 136, 138, 140, 142, and 150 can be converted from analog to digital and further processed by a microprocessor or microcontroller according to software instructions.

[0112] Protection/control circuitry can include separate protection and control circuitry for the TMN (e.g., TMN protection/control circuitry 174) and for the inverter (or rectifier in a receiver) (e.g., inverter protection/control circuitry 176). Furthermore, the protection and control functions of the protection/control circuitry 109 can be integrated (e.g., into a signal a common processor or set of processors) or segmented (e.g., in which separate protection circuitry functions separately to override normal control signals from control circuitry during in response to a fault condition). The protection/control circuitry 109 can be implemented in hardware, software, or a combination thereof. For example, the protection/control circuity 109 can be implemented as one or more software programs executed by one or more processors. The protection/control circuitry 109 can be implemented in analog or digital circuits. For example, the protection/control circuitry 109 can be implemented as analog circuitry, as an ASIC, or as an FPGA. [0113] The current phase sensor 142, and the peak detectors 146, 148, 151, provide output signals to the TMN protection/control circuitry 174 which can be used to control the operations of the TMN 106. The details of the current phase sensor 142 and the peak detectors 146, 148, and 151 are described below in reference to FIGS. 5 A, 5D, 5C, and 6 A. Generally, peak detector 146 generates an output signal that indicates the timing, magnitude, or both of voltage peaks (e.g., positive and negative peaks) across capacitor C2s based on the output of voltage sensor 138. Peak detector 148 generates an output signal that indicates the timing, magnitude, or both of current peaks (e.g., positive and negative peaks) through the resonator coil 104 based on the output of current sensor 140. Peak detector 151 generates an output signal that indicates the timing, magnitude, or both of current peaks (e.g., positive and negative peaks) through the impedance matching network (e.g., 13 s) based on the output of current sensor 150. Reset signal generator 144 generates a reset signal that is used to reset the circuitry in peak detectors 148 and 146. Reset signal generator 144 is configured to generate the reset signal based on the output of differential voltage sensor 136.

[0114] The comparator circuits 152-160 and fault logic 162-170 detect abnormal output values from respective sensors in sensor network 132 and generate corresponding fault signals. The details of the comparator circuits 152-160 and fault logic 162-170 are described below in reference to FIGS. 7A-7E and 8A-8E. Generally, the comparator circuits 152-160 detect abnormal conditions in the transmitter 100 by comparing an output of a respective sensor to one or more threshold values. The fault logic 162-170 receives an output from a respective one of the comparator circuits 152-160 and generates a fault detection signal if an abnormal condition is detected. For example, the fault logic 162-170 can include a latch circuit that latches (e.g., temporarily or

permanently stores) the output of a comparator circuit when a fault is indicated. In response, the fault logic passes a fault signal to either the combined fault logic 172 (if available) or to one or both of the TMN and inverter protection/control circuitry 174, 176. If the combined fault logic 172 is not implemented, each fault logic 162-170 passes its output along signal paths 178 to the protection/control circuitry 109.

[0115] TMN protection/control circuitry 174 is configured to shutdown or bypass the TMN 106 (or TMNs 106) in response to the detection of a fault in the wireless power transmission system. As described in more detail below in reference to FIGS. 9A-10B, TMN protection/control circuitry 174 is configured to bypass the TMN in response to a fault. For example, the TMN protection/control circuitry 174 can be configured to bypass the TMN 106 by routing current around the TMN (e.g., shorting the TMN). In some implementations, TMN protection/control circuitry 174 is configured to bypass the TMN 106 by retaining (e.g., latching) one or more control signals (such as a pulse width modulation (PWM) signal) in an asserted state. An asserted state refers to a signal value that holds a bypass transistor in an“on” state. For example, an asserted state for a P-type transistor may be a negative drive signal whereas an asserted state for an N-type transistor may be a positive drive signal. In some implementations, TMN

protection/control circuitry 174 can delay latching the control signal until the voltage across the TMN is below a threshold value (e.g., 50 V), for example, to minimize current transients.

[0116] Inverter (or rectifier) protection/control circuitry 176 is configured to shutdown the inverter 102 (or rectifier 124) in response to the detection of a fault in the wireless power transmission system. As described in more detail below in reference to FIGS. 14, and 20-23, inverter protection/control circuitry 176 is configured to shutdown the inverter in response to a fault by isolating the inverter (rectifier) from a power source to stop current flow through the transmitter 100 (receiver 112).

[0117] Fig. 2A is a schematic of an exemplary voltage sensor 134 for the tunable matching networks (TMNs) 106 and 122. An instance of the voltage sensor 134 can be coupled to each of the tunable capacitors l08a, l08b of the TMN 106 or to each of the tunable capacitors l20a, l20b of the TMN 122. For example, in TMN 106, lead 202a of a first instance of voltage sensor 134 is configured to be coupled to voltage node Vcap+ of tunable capacitor l08a and lead 202b of the first instance of voltage sensor 134 is configured to be coupled to voltage node Vcap- of tunable capacitor l08a. Similarly, lead 202a of a second instance of voltage sensor 134 is configured to be coupled to voltage node Vcap++ of tunable capacitor l08b and lead 202b of the second instance of voltage sensor 134 is configured to be coupled to voltage node Vcap— of tunable capacitor l08b. Thus, in an exemplary tunable matching network having two tunable capacitors, there are two voltage sensors, each coupled to a tunable capacitor. [0118] The exemplary voltage sensor 134 is a two-stage sensor having a first or passive stage 204 and a second or amplification stage 206. The exemplary passive stage 204 includes a capacitive coupler (made up of capacitors C17 and Cl 8) that couples the voltage at leads 202a, 202b to the rest of the sensor circuit. In some implementations, the passive stage 204 may include a capacitive coupler, resistive divider, magnetic coupler, optical coupler, or any combination of these. Coupled to the capacitive coupler is a capacitive divider made up of capacitors C20 and C21. The capacitor divider divides the voltage coupled into the sensor for passing to the amplification stage 206. The capacitor divider includes a bias voltage 207. The bias voltage can be set in a range between 0 and 2 volts, or, in some implementations between 1 and 1.5 volts. The amplification stage 206 is a unity gain amplifier Ul 3 that converts the differential voltage from the passive stage 204 to a single-ended voltage output Vcap_sense2. Note the bias voltage 208 on the positive input to the amplifier Ul 3. The bias voltage 208 may be, for this sensor configuration, between 0 V and 3 V. In other implementations, the bias voltage 208 is tailored for the specific sensor configuration and can have a different value. In some implementations, the amplifier may be implemented using a single positive or dual voltage power supply. Although a capacitive divider is shown in the figure as part of the voltage sensor, a resistive divider may be used as the voltage sensor. In some

implementations, the unity gain amplifier serves as a filter. For example, the

amplification stage 206 can be configured as a low pass filter (e.g., with a bandwidth of approximately 0-2MHz).

[0119] Fig. 2B is a plot showing an exemplary waveform 210 of the output of voltage sensor 134 as compared to a waveform 212 of a direct voltage measurement at the tunable capacitor l08a or l08b. The two waveforms, 210 and 212, overlay one another. Due to the high degree of accuracy, the difference between the sensor waveform 210 (light waveform) is nearly imperceptible from the waveform 212 (dark waveform) of the direct measurement. In some implementations, the accuracy of the voltage sensor can be within +/- 10%, +/- 5%, or less of the direct voltage measurement. To produce waveform 210, the bias voltage is subtracted from the single-ended voltage output Vcap_sense2 and the difference is scaled by the sensor gain. Thus, the waveform 210 is defined by the following relationship: waveform 210 = (Vcap_sense2 - bias voltage 208)*sensor gain. In the plot shown in Fig. 2B, the bias voltage 208 is 1.5 V which can be modified for the needs of a specific wireless power transmitter or receiver. In the plot an artificial sensor gain of 750 is applied to show correspondence of the sensor waveform 210 and the measured voltage waveform 212.

[0120] In some implementations, the output Vcap_sense2 of the voltage sensor is passed to one or more protection mechanisms. For example, the output Vcap_sense2 can be passed to a window comparator to determine the existence of an overvoltage condition in TMN 106 or 122. For example, if a desirable voltage level for this particular system is 500-550 V, then an error signal may be produced if the output of the sensor reads over 550 V. This error signal can be used to prevent any potential damage due to an overvoltage condition in TMN 106 or 122. In another implementation, the output Vcap_sense2 is passed to a controller 109 coupled to TMN 106 or 122. The controller 109 can digitize the output Vcap_sense2 for use in controlling the tunable capacitor(s) within TMN 106 or 122. In yet another implementation, the output Vcap_sense2 of the voltage sensor is passed to both protection mechanism(s) and to controller(s).

[0121] Fig. 3A is a schematic of an exemplary first stage 300 of a differential voltage sensor 136 across one or more capacitors in position C2 of the wireless power transmitter (capacitor Cs2) or receiver (capacitor Cd2). The operational amplifier U5 in the first stage 300 of the differential voltage sensor 136 acts as a differentiator. The output of the first stage 300 is a single-ended voltage Vy that is passed to the second stage 302 in Fig. 3B. The second stage 302 includes an amplifier U10 that is a unity gain amplifier with inputs Vy and 304. For a voltage sensor implemented in a transmitter, input 304 is equal to the bias voltage if the impedance matching network 103 of transmitter 100 does not include the fixed capacitors Cs3a, Cs3b. If, however, network 103 includes the fixed capacitors Cs3a, Cs3b, then VI is used for input 304. VI is the TMN input current information. The output of the second stage 302 is the differential voltage at position C2, VC2_diff. The implementation in the receiver mirrors that of the transmitter.

[0122] Fig. 3C is a schematic of voltage sensor 138 which includes an amplifier U7 in an integrator configuration. The differential voltage Vc2_diff is passed to the negative input of the amplifier U7 with a bias voltage at the positive input. The output of the third stage 306 is voltage signal VC2_sense. [0123] Fig. 3D is a plot of an exemplary waveform output 310 of voltage sensor 138 and exemplary waveform output 312 of a direct measurement of Vc2 voltage (VC2+, VC2-) (provided in Figs. 1A-1B). The waveform output 310 is attained by the following relationship: output 310 = -((VC2_sense2) - bias voltage)* sensor gain, where the bias voltage equals 1.5 V and sensor gain is 1000. Note that phase of VC2_sense is negative (see a plot of the original VC2_sense waveform in Fig. 3F). Fig. 3E is a plot of exemplary waveforms of voltages VC2_diff and Vy. Note that these waveforms were produced with fixed capacitors Cs3a = Cs3b = 300 nF.

[0124] Fig. 4A is a schematic of an exemplary current sensor 140 to compute current II in the transmitter 100. The differentiator circuit 400 uses measurements VC2_diff, which contains current information through capacitor Cs2 or C2d (see waveform in Fig. 4C), and VI, which is the current information through portion 111 of the impedance matching network 103 (see waveform in Fig. 4D) to output the differential signal, V Il sense, which has coil current information. The differential current signal is attained by subtracting the current through capacitor Cs2 from the current from the TMN 106.

[0125] Fig. 4B is a plot of an exemplary waveform output 402 of current sensor 140 and exemplary waveform output 404 of a direct measurement of the current II in the transmitter 100. The waveform output 402 is attained by the following relationship: output 402 = ((V II sense) - bias voltage)* sensor gain, where the bias voltage equals 1.5 V and sensor gain is 142.5. Note that it is difficult to perceive the difference between the waveforms of current sensor 140 output and the direct measurement I(Lsl) due to the high accuracy of current sensor 140. Fig. 4C is a plot of an exemplary waveform of voltage Vc2_diff and Fig. 4D is a plot of an exemplary waveform of voltage VI.

[0126] Fig. 5A is a schematic of an exemplary current phase detector 142 having inputs CS1 and CS2 from CST 110 or 118. In some implementations, the sensor 142 is configured to detect the phase of the current signal (13 current) from tunable capacitor l08a or tunable capacitor l20a. In some implementations, sensor 142 is configured to detect rising or falling current phase (CP) or both. Fig. 5E is a plot of an exemplary waveform output 502 (in dashed line) of sensor 142. The waveform 502 is a square wave representing output CP of sensor 142. In an implementation, an analog-to-digital converter of the controller samples on the positive transition (of a rising edge) and/or negative transition (of a falling edge) of waveform 502. The current phase sensor can include filters to filter out harmonics. The filters can be after the current sense transformer. For example, the filter can include a low pass filter, a high pass filter, or a bandpass filter.

[0127] Fig. 5B is a schematic of an exemplary reset generator 144 configured to generate a reset signal for the peak detect circuits 506, 508. The inputs of reset generator 144 are differential voltage signal VC2_diff and bias voltage (1.5 V in this example). The circuit 144 outputs a voltage reset signal Vreset. Fig. 5H is a plot of an exemplary waveform output 510 of the reset voltage signal Vreset. The reset signal Vreset 510 is generated once a cycle of differential voltage signal VC2_diff and placed on the rising edge of the voltage signal VC2_sense.

[0128] Fig. 5C is an exemplary peak detector 146 configured to detect the peak(s) of voltage signal VC2_sense. Thus, circuit 146 uses voltage signals VC2_sense and Vreset to output peak detection signal VC2_peak_detect. Fig. 5F is a plot of an exemplary waveform of input voltage signal VC2_sense 512 and an exemplary waveform of output VC2_peak_detect 514. Note that the peak detect signal 514 sustains the peak of voltage signal VC2_sense 512 until the reset signal Vreset 510 triggers.

[0129] Fig. 5D is an exemplary peak detector 148 configured to detect the peak(s) of the signal representing coil current V Il sense. Thus, circuit 148 uses voltage signals V I l sense and Vreset to output peak detection signal V ll sense pk Fig. 5G is a plot of an exemplary waveform of input signal V Il sense 518 and an exemplary waveform of output V l l sense pk 520. Note that the peak detect signal 520 sustains the peak of voltage signal V_Il_sense 518 until the reset signal Vreset 510 triggers.

[0130] Fig. 6A is a schematic of an exemplary current sensor 150 and peak detector 151. Peak detector 151 is configured to sample the current in TMN 106 or 122. Note that, in an exemplary implementation, an integrator 602 is included in the peak detector 151. This configuration has an advantage over, for example, a differentiator, in that integrator 602 can attenuate noise at frequencies above the operating frequency of the wireless power system. An exemplary operating frequency is 85 kHz. To obtain information about the current in the TMN, the output CSI2 of the integrator 602 is sampled by the current phase signal 502. This implementation avoids being affected by switching noise associated with the inverter 102. Fig. 6B is an exemplary zero-crossing detector (ZCD) circuit 604. Zero crossing detector circuit outputs the digital CP signal, which is high when the current in the TMN is negative and low when the current is positive.

[0131] Figs. 7A-7E show schematics of exemplary comparator circuits 152-160.

Comparator circuits 152-160 are window comparator circuits configured to detect overvoltage or undervoltage conditions for signals within the system. In some implementations, the window comparator circuit can be coupled to the various measurement circuits described herein. For example, comparator circuits 156 or 158 can be coupled to the output of the voltage sensor 134 to detect an overvoltage condition of any of tunable capacitors l08a, l08b, l20a, or l20b. In some implementations, the window comparator circuits each produce a count for each time the input value is outside a preset window defined by an upper limit and a lower limit. For example, the window comparator circuit 700 produces a count signal nVtmnB HIGH when the TMN voltage signal VtmnB is greater than 550 V and count signal nVtmnB LOW when the TMN voltage signal VtmnB is less than -550 V. Each TMN voltage signals VtmnA, VtmnB are measured by voltage sensor 134. In other words, VtmnA equals output signal Vcap_sense2 for a voltage sensor 134 on tunable capacitor l08a (transmitter) or l20a (receiver). VtmnB equals output signal Vcap_sense2 for a voltage sensor 134 on tunable capacitor l08b (transmitter) or l20b (receiver).

[0132] Note that an overcurrent or undercurrent condition can be derived from the detected overvoltage or undervoltage conditions. For example, Fig. 7B is a window comparator circuit 154 with input voltage input V Il sense that is converted into a current reading. The below table lists the exemplary window comparator circuits shown in Figs. 7A-7E and their respective inputs and outputs.

Table 1. Input and output signals for window comparators.

[0133] Figs. 8A-8E are schematics of exemplary fault logic circuits 162-170 configured to latch when a fault is detected. The output signals from the window comparators 152- 160 are fed into the logic circuits which are configured to latch or turn off a circuit in case of a value outside of predetermined thresholds. For example, the count signals nVtmnB LOW, nVtmnB HIGH from window comparator 156 are input into fault logic 166. The exemplary fault logic 166 includes a NAND gate 802 which provides an output to a flip-flop circuit 804, producing fault signal VtmnB FAULT.

Below is a table of exemplary latch circuits and their respective inputs and outputs.

Table 2. Input and output signals for window comparators.

[0134] Fig. 8F is a schematic of an exemplary combined fault logic 172 and includes logic circuit 808 that combines fault output signals from two or more of the fault logic circuits in FIGS 8A-8E. For example, as illustrated, the combined fault logic 172 combines fault output signals from two or more of the fault logic circuits in FIGS. 8A-8E using logic OR gates. In some implementations, the controller 109 and/or 130 is configured to read each of the fault signals independently. In other implementations, the controller 109 and/or 130 is configured to read the output of the logic circuit 808, which produces an overall hardware fault signal HW FAULT. In some implementations, the controller can read any combination of the fault signals described herein.

[0135] Fig. 9A is an exemplary detection circuit configured to detect if the TMN voltage is low voltage while TMN duty cycle is zero. The detection circuit takes in PWM signals, s_PWM_l and s_PWM_2, which are generated by the controller 109 or 130 to control the switches (e.g., FETs) of the TMN 106 or 122, respectively, and outputs detection signal fet low. These PWM signals and the detection signal fet low is input to circuits 902 and 904 (as shown in Fig. 9B) to produce the control signals, s_PWM_l_o and s_PWM_2_o, which are configured to control the switches of the TMN. Fault signal latch fets short the switches of the TMN to protect the switches from damage.

[0136] In a first implementation, when the duty cycle of a TMN is greater than zero and a fault is detected, the TMN voltage is allowed to decrease to zero before the switches of the TMN are shorted. This prevents any damage from occurring from the short. FIG. 10A illustrates the effect of a latched fault in an exemplary transmitter at time 1000 when the duty cycle is great than zero. The signal V(latch fets) goes to 1 V and the voltage V(s_Vcap+, s Vcap-) at tunable capacitor l08a goes to zero.

[0137] In a second implementation, when the duty cycle of a TMN is zero and a fault is detected, shut down occurs when the voltage in the TMN reaches a particular low range, such as within +/- 50 V. FIG. 10B illustrates the effect of a latched fault when the duty cycle = 0. At time 1002, the latch signal goes to 1 V. The voltage V(s_Vcap+, s_Vcap-) at the tunable capacitor l08a has some magnitude and is allowed to approach 50 V before going to zero at time 1004. The FIG. 10B graph illustrates the operation of the TMN protection/control circuitry 174 to delay latching the control signal until the voltage across the TMN is below a threshold value (e.g., 50 V), for example, to minimize current transients.

[0138] Fig. 11 A is a digital logic circuit to enable or disable switching in of the TMN if there is a hardware fault (HW FAULT) or external fault (EXT FAULT). Fig. 11B is a switch to enable or disable the hardware protection. Note that if pins 2 and 3 are switched on, the hardware is enabled to latch the TMN switches on. If pins 1 and 4 are switched on, the enable signal is bypassed. In some implementations, if a fault is detected, the TMN is configured to be shut down within one switching cycle of the TMN switches.

[0139] Fig. 12 is an exemplary plot of waveforms during a hardware test of a TMN overvoltage fault condition. Output voltage 1202 and output current 1204 are from the exemplary inverter 102. Waveform 1206 represents the voltage at the TMN while waveform 1208 represents the TMN overvoltage fault signal. At time 1210, a fault is detected as shown in waveform 1208. A short time after, at time 1212, the inverter shuts down. At time 1214, the switches of the TMN are forced short. This creates a bypass at the TMN by routing current around the TMN. Note that when the voltage at the TMN (e.g. at the tunable capacitor) is high, as it is in this example, the circuit waits for the voltage to decrease before shorting the switches of the TMN.

[0140] Fig. 13 is an exemplary wireless power system 1302 having one or more protection mechanisms from various fault conditions. Exemplary fault conditions that can occur in system 1302 include, but are not limited to: load disconnect (e.g., in which the load disconnects from the wireless power receiver); load short (e.g., in which the load is shorted); load overvoltage (e.g., in which a battery overcharges or a load disconnect occurs); coil overcurrent (e.g., in which overcurrent condition is detected in resonator coil Lld and/or Lls); TMN overvoltage (e.g., in which an overvoltage condition occurs in TMN 122 or 106); or a combination thereof. These fault conditions can cause large transients in the system which can lead to the damage of various components. Note that one or more controllers coupled to one more sensors described herein may protect the system and the system’s components from damage. These controllers include controller 1304 coupled to the inverter, controller 1306 coupled to the transmitter-side TMN (Tx- TMN), controller 1308 coupled to the receiver-side TMN (Tx-TMN), and controller 1310 coupled to the rectifier. In some implementations, controller 1304 and 1306 may be one controller 1312. In some implementations, controller 1308 and 1310 may be one controller 1314. Described below are scenarios in which the sensors discussed herein mitigate these fault conditions.

[0141] Fig. 14 is a plot of exemplary waveforms in exemplary wireless power system 1302 during a load disconnect condition. At time 1402, the load disconnects due to various reasons. For example, a battery manager coupled to the battery may sense an unfavorable condition and disconnect the battery from the wireless power receiver. The load disconnect causes the charging current to go through the decoupling capacitor C7 at the output of the rectifier. Subsequently, voltage V(v_bus+) in the output capacitor C7 starts rising from time 1402 to time 1404. At time 1404, an overvoltage condition at the output capacitor C7 is detected. An overvoltage fault signal (signal V(ov flg)) may be generated. At or near time 1404, protection switches S5, S6, S9, and S10 of FIG. 13 short the rectifier 124. In some implementations, the rectifier 124 can be shorted by closing one set of switches, e.g., either the switches on the high side of the rectifier bridge S9 and S10 or the switches on the low side of the rectifier bridge S5 and S6. This causes the voltage at the output capacitor C7 to stop rising. This may cause distorted current through the TMN 122; thus, at or near time 1404, protection switches short the receiver-side TMN 122

[0142] From time 1404 to 1406, the distorted reflected impedance in the transmitter electronics causes the current in the inverter (current signal I(Ls3a) at the output of the inverter) and resonator coil (current signal I(Lls)) to rise. At time 1406, an overcurrent condition at the inverter is detected and the inverter shuts off. At or near time 1406, the switches of transmitter-side TMN 106 are shorted such that the current through the TMN is diverted through the closed switches instead of the capacitor. This prevents damage to the TMN. Note that many of the current signals become distorted from time 1404 to time 1406. These signals include the current at the output of the inverter I(Ls3a), the current in the transmitter resonator coil I(Lls), the current in the receiver resonator coil I(Lld). These distortions can cause the various sensors described herein to trigger. The overcurrent flag signal V(oc flag) is generated when the peak of the current signal I(Ls3a) goes above a threshold. After time 1406, the energy in the system decreases. In some implementations, the receiver may be able to communicate with the transmitter fast enough for the transmitter to protect itself.

[0143] In some implementations, normally open voltage blocking switches can be provided in parallel with the parallel capacitors C10 or C13 shown in FIG. 13. For example, if the over current condition is detected at the inverter, the normally open switch in parallel with the capacitor C10 can be closed, thus reducing any excess coil current in the coil Lls.

[0144] In some implementations, a load disconnect may be initiated by the system itself. For example, a VA-side wireless power transfer system can include a sensor coupled to the controller. A value or range of values from the sensor may be read by the controller. For example, a collision sensor (e.g. an accelerometer), may be coupled to the controller (1314, and/or 1310 on the vehicle side). A reading from the collision sensor signifying another vehicle crashing into the charging vehicle can cause the load to disconnect. The controller can open at least one switch (e.g., relay, MOSFET, IGBT) coupled between an output of the rectifier and the load (on the positive and/or ground side) in response to detecting a fault value from the sensor. The system further protects itself and the systems turns off and/or de-energizes via the response as shown in Fig. 14.

[0145] In some implementations, instead of (or in addition to) detecting a rising voltage on the output capacitor C7, a current sensor can be coupled to the output to the load. If the current sensor reads a zero (or approximately zero) current, then the system can detect a load disconnect condition.

[0146] FIG. 15 is a plot of exemplary waveforms in exemplary wireless power system 1302 during a load short condition. There are multiple reasons a load short condition may occur. For example, if the output capacitor C7 fails, it can cause a short. If an output filter (such as for electromagnetic interference (EMI) reduction purposes) fails, it can cause a short. If the rectifier fails, it too can cause a short. In the example provided in FIG. 15, a load short occurs at time 1502, illustrated by signal V(V_LOAD+). Shortly thereafter, at time 1504, the short is detected. At this time, an undervoltage fault signal is generated (signal V(uv_flg)). To protect itself, the TMN switches also short, as shown by voltage signal V(V2d_l, d Vcap-). After time 1504, an overcurrent condition is detected in the transmitter-side TMN 106 and, subsequently, the switches of transmitter- side TMN 106 are shorted. At time 1506, an overcurrent condition is detected in the inverter (flag V(oc flg)) and the inverter shuts off, causing the system to de-energize.

[0147] FIG. 16 shows schematic of an exemplary bidirectional wireless power system 1600. The schematic depicts both a ground assembly (GA) side wireless power transfer device l600a and a device side wireless power transfer device l600b. As noted above, the GA side wireless power transfer device l600a generally operates as a wireless power transmitter for the case of a similar uni-directional wireless power transfer system. As discussed below, however, in the bidirectional system the GA side refers generally to a wireless power transfer device that is coupled to or configured to be coupled to a stationary power supply or load such as a power grid, AC generator, etc. Furthermore, the GA side system is generally capable of handling higher power, voltage, or current transients than the device side wireless power transfer device l600b. On the other hand, the device side wireless power transfer device l600b generally operates as a wireless power receiver for the case of a similar uni-directional wireless power transfer system. As discussed below, however, in the bidirectional system the device side refers generally to a wireless power transfer device that is coupled to or configured to be coupled to a mobile (or generally more limited) power supply or load such as a battery or a battery powered device (e.g., a computing device or an electric vehicle). The device side wireless power transfer device l600b can also be referred to as a vehicle assembly (VA) or VA side device when used in the context of a wireless power transfer device coupled to an electric vehicle or other mobile vehicle.

[0148] Both the GA wireless power transfer device l600a and the VA wireless power transfer device l600b include an inverter-rectifier 1602. The inverter rectifier 1602 includes a bridge configuration of switching elements. For example, the inverter-rectifier 1602 can include active switching elements, such as MOSFETs, which permit the inverter-rectifier 1602 to operate as either an inverter or a rectifier in a bidirectional system. As discussed in more detail below, the operating mode (also referred to herein as an“operating personality) of the inverter- rectifier 1602 can be controlled based on the pattern of PWM control signals supplied to the switching elements.

[0149] The system 1600 is able to power a load with power transfer in a first direction (e.g., a normal power flow direction), such as a battery of a vehicle, off of power input to the ground side (GA). Alternatively, the system 1600 can supply power in a second direction (e.g., a reverse power flow direction), such as suppling power to a power grid coupled to the GA side device l600a from a battery of an electric vehicle coupled to the VA side device l600b. As another example, the bidirectional system 1600 can be used to power a home during a power outage from a battery of an electric vehicle battery parked in a garage. Note that any or all of the sensors and protection mechanisms discussed above can be implemented in the bidirectional system 1600 that uses the inverter-rectifier 1602. Where single components are shown, including resistors, inductors, and capacitors, banks of components, including in series and/or parallel can be utilized. Where tunable components are shown, fixed components can be included in series and/or parallel with the tunable components. In some implementations, the controller 1304 and 1306 can be combined in a single controller 1620. Likewise, in some implementations, the controller 1308 and 1310 can be combined in a single controller 1640. Furthermore controllers 1304, 1306, 1620, 1308, 1310, and 1640 can be implemented in a configuration similar to control and protection circuitry 176 and 178 discussed above.

[0150] In some implementations, the controllers 1620 and 1640 include a bidirectional manager. The bidirectional manager coordinates the configuration of different hardware and software components wireless power transfer device (e.g., either l600a/l600b) according to the direction of power flow as indicated by an operating personality assigned to the device. For example, an operating personality of INV indicates that the inverter-rectifier is operating as an inverter and therefore the wireless power transfer device 1600a/ 1600b is operating as a transmitter. Similarly, for example, an operating personality of REC indicates that the inverter-rectifier is operating as a rectifier and therefore the wireless power transfer device l600a/l600b is operating as a receiver. The bidirectional manager also coordinates transitions from one direction of power flow to the opposite direction of power flow. For example, the bidirectional manager of the VA side device l600b can communicate with the bidirectional manager of the GA side device l600a through a wireless communication link 1650 (e.g., a WiFi link) to coordinate a power reversal. The bidirectional manger can be can be implemented as separate controller within each device 1600a/ 1600b or in software.

[0151] More specifically, various hardware and software components of the system can have different operating setpoints, modes and/or ranges of operations depending on the direction of flow of power, and by extension, the operating personality of the wireless power transfer device l600a/l600b. The various operating set points, modes and/or ranges of operation can be stored in memory or in hardware. Each component of the system (e.g. the inverter-rectifier 1602, TMN 106, and other components) including various controllers, filters, communication systems, and/or protection systems can assume a different“operating personality” depending on the direction of power flow.

[0152] The wireless power transfer device’ s bidirectional manager can assign an appropriate personality at system startup and/or during a power flow transition based on the expected direction of power flow through the wireless power transfer system 1600 as a whole. For example, upon receipt of a command to switch from one mode of operation for the system to another, (for example, by an operator interface, and/or user interface connected to either or all of the controllers, on either or both sides of the system or off system, such as on a network, the grid, or a mobile device), the bidirectional manager can assign the various component controllers (e.g., 1304, 1306, 1308, and 1310) a respective operating personality. Each controller can use the assigned operating personality to identify and load appropriate operating processes or software code to control associated components of the wireless power transfer device 1600a/ 1600b. For instance, when an inverter-rectifier controller is assigned an operating personality of an inverter (e.g., INV), the controller will load software code to generate PWM control signal patterns to operate the inverter-rectifier switching elements to generate AC output signals from a DC input signal. On the other hand, when an inverter- rectifier controller is assigned an operating personality of a rectifier (e.g., REC), the controller will load software code to generate PWM control signal patterns to operate the inverter-rectifier switching elements to rectify an AC input signal into a DC output signal.

[0153] Furthermore, the bidirectional manager can provide the power demand, the power flow direction, choose the appropriate software code blocks, and assign

personalities to sub-controllers or other controller(s). The bidirectional manager can determine the errors that are recoverable or not recoverable, depending on the side the system the controller is located on, and the operating personality it assumes for components of the system. The operational personalities can be assigned based on the expected power flow direction, e.g. V2G - vehicle-to-grid power flow, or G2V - grid-to- vehicle power flow. Moreover, the bidirectional manager can determine the time and/or mode for recovery for those errors and/or clear errors when they are recovered so no user intervention is needed. The bidirectional manager can communicate with the user, the controller(s) of the other side of the system (e.g., the bidirectional manager on the other side of the system).

[0154] The bidirectional manager can receive notification of an error from a component of the wireless power transfer system and the error messages can be allocated to other components of the wireless power transfer system, either directly by the bidirectional manager or after a callback request from the components.

[0155] The bidirectional manager can receive communication from components of the wireless power transfer system (e.g., via WiFi from components from the other side of the system). The bidirectional manager can fulfill callback requests from components for messages related to the component, or can allocate the message to the relevant components. The bidirectional manager can control, including dynamically, the privileges of the components of the wireless power system to receive and send error and

communication messages. The bidirectional manager can be responsible for controlling the components of the wireless power transfer system during the transition phases, including handling any error conduction arising from the change of power transfer direction (both V2G and G2V transitions). For example, the bidirectional manager can oversee turning down of power, confirm power has fully or partially turned off, and sequence the components of the system to turn on (while assigning personalities to the components).

[0156] As an example, the bidirectional manager on the GA controller receives a command to turn on power from idle, the bidirectional manager may assign G2V personality to the various controllers and hardware in the system. Upon receipt of a communication to change the power transfer direction, the bidirectional manager communicates between the GA and VA to change power transfer direction. The bidirectional manager can be responsible for handling any error arising from the change of power transfer direction, including during the power down of the first direction and the power up of the second direction. When the error is cleared, the bidirectional manager can assign personality to the controller(s), for example by selecting a subset of instructions from a non-transitory computer readable medium, or causing the controller(s) to select the subset of instructions.

[0157] In some implementations, each controller of the system (e.g., a dedicated inverter-rectifier processor, or a dedicated TMN processor, or a dedicated transmitter or receiver processor) can contain a bidirectional manager. The bidirectional manager can operate as a top-level manager.

[0158] Generally, assigning a personality to components/controllers can allow for modularity, non-redundant parts, code, and memory, allows for faster and on-the-fly switchover from G2V (grid-to-vehicle power flow) to V2G (vehicle-to-grid power flow) and back.

[0159] FIG. 17 depicts flowchart of an exemplary bidirectional control process 1700 that can be executed in accordance with implementations of the present disclosure. The example process 1700 can be implemented, for example, by the example wireless power transfer systems disclosed herein. For example, the process 1700 can be executed between a bidirectional manager of a GA wireless power transfer device l600a and a bidirectional manager of a VA wireless power transfer device l600b. Process 1700 shows divided master side operations 1702 and slave side 1704 operations. Generally, the master side operations 1702 are performed by a VA wireless power transfer device l600b while the slave side operations 1704 are performed by a GA wireless power transfer device l600a. For example, the VA (or device-side) wireless power transfer device l600b may generally be coupled to a smaller capacity or more limited power source or load. Implementing the VA wireless power transfer device l600b as a master device may provide more precise control of the bidirectional control process 1700 to prevent exceeding possible lower operating limits of the VA side system or its load/source. In some examples, the example process 1700 can be provided by one or more computer-executable programs executed using one or more computing devices, processors, or microcontrollers. For example, the example process 1700, or portions thereof, can be provided by one or more programs executed by control circuitry of wireless power transfer devices l600a, l600b.

[0160] The master device initiates a power flow transition within the wireless power system. The initiation may be prompted by a user input, or in some implementations by an automatic power transition determination performed by the master device (1706). For example, the master device can determine to shift power flow based on various criteria including, but not limited to, state of charge of a battery, time of day, and availability and/or demand of grid-power. For example, a VA wireless power transfer device l600b can be configured to initiate a power flow reversal process when a connected battery is above a threshold charge level and a loss of grid power occurs. As another example, a VA wireless power transfer device l600b can be configured to initiate a power flow reversal process when a connected battery is above a threshold charge level and during a preset time of day. For instance, the VA wireless power transfer device l600b can be configured reverse power flow in order to provide supplemental power to a home during peak load periods of a power grid (e.g., periods of high demand and/or high energy prices such as evenings). In some implementations, the slave device can determine when to initiate a power flow transition, but would perform an additional step of requesting initiation of the power flow transition from the master device.

[0161] The master device sends instructions to the slave device to reverse the direction of power flow (1708). In response to the instructions, the slave device reconfigures for operating in the opposite power flow direction from its current operations (1710). For example, if the slave device was operating as a transmitter it will reconfigure for operation as a receiver. If the slave device was operating as a receiver it will reconfigure for operation as a transmitter. For example, the slave device’s bidirectional manager can coordinate controller operations within the slave device to shut down power flow in the present direction by, for example, securing operation of the inverter-rectifier, shifting switches to disconnect a load/power supply (as appropriate), toggling bypass switches to dissipate residual currents within the slave device, or a combination thereof.

[0162] The slave device assigns a new operating personality in accordance with the new power flow direction (1712). For example, the slave device’s bidirectional manager assigns a new operating personality to respective controllers within the slave device as appropriate to the new direction of power flow. The bidirectional power manager can assign the new operating personality by toggling a flag bit (e.g., TMN_SIDE discussed in more detail below) to indicate operation as a transmitter/inverter or operation as a receiver/rectifier.

[0163] In response to the new operating personality assignment, the various slave device controllers can reconfigure their respective operations. For example, the controllers can load control algorithms (e.g., software code blocks) to perform operations according to the new power flow direction. For example, a TMN controller can reset a TMN and load control code for generating appropriate TMN control signals for operation in according to the new power flow direction. The TMN may need to adjust set points (e.g., impedance values, impedance adjustment step sizes, and/or protection schemes) to accommodate power transfer in the new direction or to prepare for power ramp up in the new direction or both. For example, power flow in a V2G mode may generally be lower than in a G2V mode, e.g., due to asymmetries between GA and VA side resonator coils and/or discharge constraints on a battery. Consequently, TMN and/or inverter-rectifier set points may be different for operating in a V2G mode vice a G2V mode. [0164] The slave device (e.g., the slave device’s inverter controller) can control the inverter-rectifier operation according to the new operating personality (1714). For example, an inverter-rectifier controller can load appropriate algorithms for generating PWM control signals for operating as an inverter when the slave device is a transmitter and operating as a rectifier when the slave device is a receiver. The specific inverter and rectifier operations are described in more detail below in reference to FIGS. 18 and 19.

[0165] The slave device sends a reply to the master device indicating its

reconfiguration status (1716). When the slave device indicates that its reconfiguration is still in progress or is stalled, the master device waits and/or resends an instruction 1708. By the master device waiting for confirmation that the slave device has completed updating its operating personality the process 1700 may provide for safer and more robust operations. For example, it may prevent the power flow from commencing or reversing with mismatched personalities assigned to either the slave or master device. When the slave device indicates that its reconfiguration is complete, the master device reconfigures for operating in the opposite power flow direction from its current operations (1718). For example, if the master device was operating as a transmitter it will reconfigure for operation as a receiver. If the master device was operating as a receiver it will reconfigure for operation as a transmitter. For example, the master device’s bidirectional manager can coordinate controller operations within the slave device to shut down power flow in the present direction by, for example, securing operation of the inverter-rectifier, shifting switches to disconnect a load/power supply (as appropriate), toggling bypass switches to dissipate residual currents within the slave device, or a combination thereof.

[0166] The master device assigns a new operating personality in accordance with the new power flow direction (1720). For example, the master device’s bidirectional manager assigns a new operating personality to respective controllers within the master device as appropriate to the new direction of power flow. The bidirectional (power) manager can assign the new operating personality by toggling a flag bit (e.g.,

TMN SIDE discussed in more detail below) to indicate operation as a

transmitter/inverter or operation as a receiver/rectifier. [0167] In response to the new operating personality assignment, the various master device controllers can reconfigure their respective operations. For example, the controllers can load control algorithms (e.g., software code blocks) to perform operations according to the new power flow direction. For example, a TMN controller can reset a TMN and load control code for generating appropriate TMN control signals for operation in according to the new power flow direction. The TMN may need to adjust set points (e.g., impedance values and/or protection schemes) to accommodate power transfer in the new direction or to prepare for power ramp up in the new direction or both.

[0168] The master device (e.g., the master device’s inverter controller) can control the inverter-rectifier operation according to the new operating personality (1722). For example, an inverter-rectifier controller can load appropriate algorithms for generating PWM control signals for operating as an inverter when the slave device is a transmitter and operating as a rectifier when the slave device is a receiver. In some implementations, a TMN controller in the master device can control the TMN according to the new operating personality. For example, a TMN controller on the master device can load appropriate control algorithms for generating TMN adjustment signals for operating as a load coupled TMN in a first direction, or a power supply coupled TMN in a second direction.

[0169] FIG. 18 depicts a schematic 1800 of an exemplary inverter-rectifier 1602 and a timing diagram 1802 illustrating operation of the inverter-rectifier in an inverter operating mode. The schematic 1800 shows a phase shifted full-bridge inverter. The inverter bridge circuit uses active switching elements Ql, Q2, Q3, and Q4, which can be, for example , MOSFETSs, transistors, FETs, IGBTs, etc.

[0170] The timing diagram 1802 illustrates the driving signal pattern for the switches Ql, Q2, Q3, and Q4. The switches are grouped into two legs; Leg A (Ql, Q3) and Leg B (Q2, Q4). The corresponding switches in each leg are alternately switched on and off by respective PWM control signals. On time and off time, for each gate drive signal Gl, G2, G3, and G4 are shown. The dead time t d shown is when both gate drivers of the same leg are off. The off time may be larger than the on time for each driving signal in a period Ts.

[0171] The delay time tps between Leg A (Ql and Q3) and Leg B (Q2 and Q4), when expressed in degrees, is known as the phase-shift angle and is a means for adjusting the overall power sourced by the inverter-rectifier when operating as an inverter. At start-up, output power VAB(X) from inverter-rectifier terminals VA and VB, can have an 11% duty cycle (leg phase-shift angle 9ps = 20 degrees). At max power, VAB(t) can be at a 100% duty cycle (leg phase 6ps = 180 degrees). Total power output is controlled by adjusting the delay time tps between the Leg A and Leg B PWM signals.

[0172] Although a full bridge inverter is shown, in some implementations the inverter- rectifier switches can be arranged in a half-bridge configuration. In some

implementations, the inverter-rectifier can implement zero-voltage switching operations to ensure the switches are operated when the voltage across them is zero or near-zero.

[0173] FIG. 19 depicts a schematic 1900 of an exemplary inverter-rectifier and a timing diagram 1902 illustrating operation of the inverter-rectifier 1602 in a rectifier operating mode. FIG. 19 illustrates a synchronous rectifier operation utilizing the same switches as shown in FIG. 18. The gate drive signals (Gl, G2, G3, G4) corresponding to respective switches (Ql, Q2, Q3, Q4) are shown in the timing diagram 1902. Although zero current switching operation is shown, zero-voltage switching (ZVS) naturally follows the operation and can be used in some implementations. However, ZVS switching in active rectification mode is not shown in figures.

[0174] The synchronous rectifier can receive the zer- crossing of the 13 s current (shown as 13 d or 13 s in FIG. 16) and creates the timing of the synchronous rectification (zero current switching) as shown in timing diagram 1902. In the rectifier mode, the inverter-rectifier 1602 rectifies an AC input signal into a DC output signal by alternately switching on corresponding pairs of switches (Q1/Q4 and Q2/Q3). For example, the inverter-rectifier controller (e.g., inverter/protection and control circuitry 176) can receive 13 d or 13 s current and/or phase measurements from a current or phase sensor such as phase sensor 142 or current sensor 150 illustrated in FIGS. 1C, 1D, 5A, and 6A. The switches Ql, Q2, Q3, and Q4 can be turned off at the zero current (or near zero current) of the input to the inverter-rectifier 1602, and an appropriate time delay t d may be permitted to lapse before operating the next pair of switches (e.g., Ql and Q4 or Q2 and Q3). This can prevent power losses within the switch. In some implementations, the time delay may be adjusted by the system as needed. [0175] In some implementations, during a startup, the inverter-rectifier does not begin does not begin switching until the measured input power is above a threshold value that ensures continuous conduction of the 13 current. The threshold value can be, e.g., between 2kW and 4kW, and/or between 20-40 % of a target power. During the low power operations below the threshold input power value, the input AC signal may be noisy, potentially resulting in inaccurate zero-crossing detections and possibly large transients for imprecise switching. For example, the 13 current that is used to generate the PWM synchronization may be discontinuous and noisy resulting in inaccurate zero crossing detections and possibly large transients or even in a destructive shorting of the power stage. Instead, rectification can be performed passively when power is below the threshold value by conduction through the body-diodes of the switches. In such implementations, the switching operations performed above the threshold input power value can be considered an active rectification mode and the body-diode conduction below the threshold input power value can be considered a passive rectification mode.

[0176] FIG. 20 depicts a flowchart of exemplary protection operations 2000 that can be executed in accordance with implementations of the present disclosure. The example operations 2000 can be implemented, for example, by the example wireless power transfer devices (e.g., l600a, l600b) disclosed herein. For example, the operations 2000 can be executed by control circuitry of a wireless power transfer device. For example, the operations 2000 can be executed by an inverter-rectifier controller and inverter protection circuitry such as the logic circuits shown in FIG 22A. In some

implementations, the operations 2000 can be executed in a different order than that shown in FIG. 20. Furthermore, the protection operations 2000 will be described in reference to FIGS. 20-22B.

[0177] FIG. 21 is a diagram 2100 of a bidirectional wireless power transfer device that illustrates an arrangement of fault sensing circuits. Diagram 2100 illustrates the locations at which various fault signals described below are measured in the wireless power transfer device. The fault signals illustrated include OV CMD, VOUT I, VOUT V, OVP, WIFI FLT, and TMN FLT. FIG. 22A is a block diagram 2200 of exemplary protection logic for a bidirectional wireless power transfer device and FIG. 22B illustrates logic truth tables associated with the exemplary protection logic shown in FIG. 22A.

[0178] In FIG. 22 A the logic circuitry 2210 evaluates faults during an operating personality as an inverter, and logic circuitry 2212 evaluates faults during an operating personality as a rectifier. The logic circuitry 2220 enables particular protective actions specific to a rectifier operating personality. The illustrated protection logic is exemplary, and may be simplified or further expanded, and may be implemented in hardware or software. Logic can be active high or active low, and the outputs of previous logic can be appropriately negated.

[0179] The logic circuitry 2210 evaluates various system faults including DESAT flg, UVLO flg WIFI FLT, TMN FLT, and OC FLT. DESAT flg and UVLO flg are flags that are used in some implementations to indicate proper operation of the rectifier- inverter switches. For example, they may indicate a desaturation condition in an IGBT switch. WIFI FLT indicates that a WiFi fault has occurred. For example, if a fault occurs on one wireless power transfer device (e.g. a receiver) it may communicate the fault to another device (e.g., the transmitter) to allow the device to execute appropriate actions to maintain the safety of the system as a whole. TMN FLT is discussed above, and indicates that a fault has occurred at the TMN (e.g., a TMN over and/or under current fault). OC FLT indicates that an over current condition has occurred at the inverter- rectifier. The logic circuitry 2220 generally evaluates the same faults as logic circuitry 2210, but also may include an additional fault signal; OV FLT. OV FLT may indicate an over voltage fault at the wireless power device. For example, when operating as a rectifier, the OV FLT may serve as an indication of a load disconnect fault, as discussed below.

[0180] The control circuitry detects a fault condition (2002). For example, the control circuitry receives one of the fault signals shown in FIGS 21, 22A, and 22B. For example, Truth Table 2 of FIG. 22B shows the logic combinations that generate an inverter enable signal (INV_ENBL). When the INV_ENBL signal is high the PWM signals are passed through the NAND gate 2202 in FIG. 22 A. However, if any of the faults in Truth Table 2 are detected (e.g., the fault signal goes low), the INV_ENBL signals is disabled (low), indicating the existence of a fault condition. [0181] The control circuitry identifies an operating personality and a hardware configuration of the wireless power transfer device (2004). For example, the particular protective action that the control circuitry will perform is executed based on the operating personality and hardware configuration of the wireless power transfer device. As discussed above, the operating personality can be indicated by a flag such as the

TMN SIDE flag shown in FIG. 22 A and the truth tables in FIG. 22B. The TMN SIDE flag indicates whether the wireless power transfer device is operating as a receiver or a transmitter. Referring to Truth Tables 1 and 4, the value of TMN SIDE corresponds to an operating personality of INV (e.g., operation as an inverter and a transmitter) when the value is 0 and an operating personality of REC (e.g., operation as a rectifier and a receiver) when the value is 1. A hardware configuration refers to a flag that indicates whether the control circuitry is controlling a wireless power transfer device configured as a GA side device (e.g., a grid-connected system) or a VA side device (e.g., a device- connected system). The hardware configuration indicates to the control circuitry which protective actions can be executed based on the operating configurations and limitations of the hardware. For example, GA side resonators and TMNs can be configured differently from VA side resonators and TMNs. Consequently, GA side resonators and TMNs may have different (e.g., generally higher) operating limits than VA side components, and different protective actions may be required. Referring to Truth Tables 1 and 4, the value of INVREC SIDE indicates that the wireless power transfer device is configured as a GA side device when the value is 0 and that the wireless power transfer device is configured as a VA side device when the value is 1.

[0182] The control circuitry identifies protection operations for protecting the wireless power transfer device from the fault condition based on the identified operating personality and hardware configuration (2006). The control circuitry controls the operations of the wireless power transfer device in accordance with the protection operations (2008). For example, as indicated by Truth Table 1, if the wireless power transfer device is operating as an inverter (e.g., a power transmitter) (TMN SIDE = 0) and is configured as a either a GA or a VA (INVREC SIDE = 0 or 1) the PWM control signals for the inverter-rectifier will be overridden and force to zero if any fault occurs that disables INV ENBL, thereby, shutting down the inverter-rectifier. In addition, a component of the IMN 103 can be shorted to dissipate residual current in the resonator coil. For example, switches SW1 1608 of FIG. 16 can be closed to dissipate any residual resonator current. In some implementations, if the hardware configuration of the wireless power transfer device indicates that the device is configured as a GA side device and the operating personality is an inverter (power transmitter) the protective operations can further include switching in a resistor configured to dissipate excess power from the inverter-rectifier. For example, the control circuitry can close switch SW2 1610 to dissipate excess power from the power source 1604 through resistor Rl 1612 shown in FIG. 16. In some implementations, the resistor may only be switched in for certain fault types. For example, if the device is configured as a GA and operating as an inverter the resistor may be switched in for an over current fault. If the device is configured as a GA and operating as a rectifier the resistor may be switched in for an over voltage fault.

[0183] If the operating personality indicates that the wireless power transfer device is operating as a rectifier (power receiver) (e.g., TMN SIDE = 1) and a fault occurs (e.g., as indicated by INV ENBL falling low in Truth Table 1) the control circuitry can shutdown the inverter-rectifier by overriding the PWM control signals. In some implementations, the control circuitry can also short a component of the matching network to dissipate residual current in the resonator coil by, for example, closing switches SW1 1608 of FIG. 16.

[0184] As indicated by Truth Tables 1 and 4, if the operating personality indicates that the wireless power transfer device is operating as a rectifier (power receiver) (e.g.,

TMN SIDE = 1) and the hardware configuration is as a VA (INVREC SIDE = 1) when a fault occurs (e.g., as indicated by REC FLTS going high) the control circuitry can shutdown the inverter-rectifier by overriding the PWM control signals to short the AC side of the inverter-rectifier (e.g., gate drive signals G3, G4 = 1). For example, FIG. 23 shows a series of diagrams 2300 depicting the operation of the inverter-rectifier in response to a load disconnect when assigned a rectifier operating personality. The diagrams 2300 illustrate the switching of the grid tied inverter if there is a grid disconnect, or the switching of the vehicle inverter if there is a battery disconnect (when battery is the load) is shown. In diagram 2302 the inverter-rectifier is operating normally as a rectifier. In diagram 2304 the load disconnect occurs routing current through capacitor Cdc. The output capacitor (decoupling capacitor Cdc) operates as the overvoltage/load disconnect sensor as described above, however it is understood that other sensing means can be employed. As discussed above, upon detection of the load disconnect and identification that the inverter-rectifier is operating as a rectifier and has a hardware configuration as a VA, the control circuitry shorts the AC side of the inverter by turning transistors Q3 and Q4 on, and open circuits the DC side by turning transistors Ql and Q2 off (diagram 2306).

[0185] In some implementations, shorting the AC side of the inverter-rectifier in response to a VA side fault (such as a load disconnect) during operation as a rectifier (power receiver) causes a corresponding fault to occur on the associated GA side device by initiating overcurrent and/or overvoltage transients on the GA side device, as discussed above in reference to FIG. 14. Initiating a GA side shutdown in this manner may provide a quicker system wide fault response rather than passing fault codes through the communication link. For example, if the communication link fails or experiences a slow connection (e.g., increased noise or bit errors).

[0186] In some implementations, the assertion of REC FLTS also causes the

OC CMD signal to be asserted. This signal drives the switch 2102 in FIG. 21, which switches in a resistor to aid in power dissipation.

[0187] In some implementations, in the event of a grid-disconnect (e.g., when the hardware configuration is GA) the control circuitry can shutdown the inverter by turning all the transistors Q1-Q4 off. The signal may also directly drive switches which short components of the impedance matching network, such as SW1 1608 of FIG. 16.

[0188] In some implementations, the wireless power transfer devices can include a load disconnect sensor. For example, a load disconnect can be detected by an over voltage or an under current condition at the output (load side) of an inverter-rectifier when operating as a rectifier. For example, a VA side device operating as a receiver may detect a load disconnect by receiving an over voltage fault, an undercurrent fault, or both. In response, control and protection circuitry in the VA side device can shutdown the inverter-rectifier by shorting two or more rectifier protection switches (e.g., Q3 and Q4 of FIG. 21). Each of the protection switches may also be coupled to a diode to include a body-diode. The control and protection circuitry in the VA side device can short a protection switch coupled to a TMN to short (and protect) the TMN. Shorting the inverter-rectifier may cause a corresponding overcurrent transient on the GA side device. In response to the overcurrent fault, the GA side device (operating as a transmitter) can shutdown its inverter-rectifier and short its TMN. The current and voltage response to a load disconnect event are described in more detail above in reference to FIG. 14.

[0189] In reference to FIG. 16, in some implementations, the resonator coil Lls may be designed to accommodate for higher current during load disconnect conditions. However, methods such as shorting parallel TMN elements (such as C2) and/or switching in a resistor (such as Rl), may be important in implementations where excess coil

current/voltage may cause arcing or heating at the coil Lls.

[0190] In some implementations, a communication link (e.g., a WiFi link) can be used to protect the system from failure. For example, if a load disconnect occurs the receiver can inform the transmitter of the fault via the communication link. During low power operation the shutdown operation of the receiver as described above may not induce a large enough transient current in the transmitter to produce a corresponding over current fault. Therefore, the fault communicated through the communication link may serve to trigger protective action by the transmitter. For example, the receiver side, upon detection of a fault, such as a load disconnect (over voltage), would communicate the fault information to the transmitter side via the WiFi or other out-of band communication requiring the source side inverter to turn-off. In the meantime until the transmitter-side inverter turns off, protection mechanisms on the receiver side such as switching in resistor Rl and or shorting components of the TMN and or IMN can allow for reducing of coil currents.

[0191] In some implementations, upon detection of an overvoltage condition (e.g. because of load disconnect), upon detecting V(v_bus+) rising in the output capacitor, the resistor Rl parallel with the load, can be switched in, and/or the capacitor C2 in parallel with the load can be shorted in by the controller. Switching in the parallel resistor Rl can allow some or all the current to circulate in the resistor, and shorting the capacitor C2 can reduce excess coil current on the load-side coil. This can ensure the system is safe until an error message containing information regarding the fault can be communicated from the load side to the source side. The error message can include requiring the source side inverter to turn-off, or the error message can be interpreted by the source side inverter as a command to turn off. In some implementations (e.g., for anl 1 kW system), the resistor Rl can be sized according to the power rating of the system and the communication channel latency (from the load side to the source side) time, and/or the time the source side takes to shut down power.

[0192] In some implementations, a load short fault can be detected by an under voltage fault at the output of the rectifier. For example, a VA side device operating as a receiver (e.g., inverter-rectifier operating as a rectifier) can detect a load short condition when the output voltage drops at the rectifier output. In response, the control and protection circuitry of the VA side device can short a protection switch coupled to a TMN on the VA side device. This may cause a corresponding current transient in the GA side device operating as a transmitter. In response, the control and protection circuitry on the GA side device may detect an overcurrent condition. In response, the he control and protection circuitry on the GA side device can short a protection switch coupled to a TMN on the GA side device

[0193] In this disclosure, certain circuit or system components such as capacitors, inductors, resistors, are referred to as circuit“components” or“elements.” The disclosure also refers to series and parallel combinations of these components or elements as elements, networks, topologies, circuits, and the like. More generally, however, where a single component or a specific network of components is described herein, it should be understood that alternative implementations may include networks for elements, alternative networks, and/or the like.

[0194] As used herein, the term“direct connection” or“directly connected,” refers to a direct connection between two elements where the elements are connected with no intervening active elements between them. The term“electrically connected” or “electrical connection,” refers to an electrical connection between two elements where the elements are connected such that the elements have a common potential. In addition, a connection between a first component and a terminal of a second component means that there is a path between the first component and the terminal that does not pass through the second component. [0195] As used herein, the term“coupled” when referring to circuit or system components is used to describe an appropriate, wired or wireless, direct or indirect, connection between one or more components through which information or signals can be passed from one component to another. Furthermore, the term“coupled” when used in reference to electric circuit components or electric circuits generally refers to an “electrical connection” unless otherwise stated.

[0196] Implementations of the subject matter and the operations described in this specification can be realized in digital electronic circuitry, or in computer software, firmware, or hardware, including the structures disclosed in this specification and their structural equivalents, or in combinations of one or more of them. Implementations of the subject matter described in this specification can be realized using one or more computer programs, i.e., one or more modules of computer program instructions, encoded on computer storage medium for execution by, or to control the operation of, data processing apparatus. Alternatively or in addition, the program instructions can be encoded on an artificially generated propagated signal, e.g., a machine-generated electrical, optical, or electromagnetic signal that is generated to encode information for transmission to suitable receiver apparatus for execution by a data processing apparatus. A computer storage medium can be, or be included in, a computer-readable storage device, a computer-readable storage substrate, a random or serial access memory array or device, or a combination of one or more of them. Moreover, while a computer storage medium is not a propagated signal; a computer storage medium can be a source or destination of computer program instructions encoded in an artificially generated propagated signal.

The computer storage medium can also be, or be included in, one or more separate physical components or media (e.g., multiple CDs, disks, or other storage devices).

[0197] The operations described in this specification can be implemented as operations performed by a data processing apparatus on data stored on one or more computer- readable storage devices or received from other sources.

[0198] The term“data processing apparatus” encompasses all kinds of apparatus, devices, and machines for processing data, including by way of example a programmable processor, a computer, a system on a chip, or multiple ones, or combinations, of the foregoing. The apparatus can include special purpose logic circuitry, e.g., an FPGA (field programmable gate array) or an ASIC (application-specific integrated circuit). The apparatus can also include, in addition to hardware, code that creates an execution environment for the computer program in question, e.g., code that constitutes processor firmware, a protocol stack, a database management system, an operating system, a cross- platform runtime environment, a virtual machine, or a combination of one or more of them. The apparatus and execution environment can realize various different computing model infrastructures, such as web services, distributed computing and grid computing infrastructures.

[0199] A computer program (also known as a program, software, software application, script, or code) can be written in any form of programming language, including compiled or interpreted languages, declarative or procedural languages, and it can be deployed in any form, including as a stand-alone program or as a module, component, subroutine, object, or other unit suitable for use in a computing environment. A computer program may, but need not, correspond to a file in a file system. A program can be stored in a portion of a file that holds other programs or data (e.g., one or more scripts stored in a markup language document), in a single file dedicated to the program in question, or in multiple coordinated files (e.g., files that store one or more modules, sub-programs, or portions of code). A computer program can be deployed to be executed on one computer or on multiple computers that are located at one site or distributed across multiple sites and interconnected by a communication network.

[0200] The processes and logic flows described in this specification can be performed by one or more programmable processors executing one or more computer programs to perform actions by operating on input data and generating output. The processes and logic flows can also be performed by, and apparatus can also be implemented as, special purpose logic circuitry, e.g., an FPGA (field programmable gate array) or an ASIC (application-specific integrated circuit).

[0201] Processors suitable for the execution of a computer program include, by way of example, both general and special purpose microprocessors, and any one or more processors of any kind of digital computer. Generally, a processor will receive instructions and data from a read-only memory or a random access memory or both. Elements of a computer can include a processor for performing actions in accordance with instructions and one or more memory devices for storing instructions and data. Generally, a computer will also include, or be operatively coupled to receive data from or transfer data to, or both, one or more mass storage devices for storing data, e.g., magnetic, magneto-optical disks, or optical disks. However, a computer need not have such devices. Moreover, a computer can be embedded in another device, e.g., a wireless power transmitter or receiver or a wirelessly charged or powered device such as a vehicle, a mobile telephone, a personal digital assistant (PDA), a mobile audio or video player, a game console, or a Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver, to name just a few. Devices suitable for storing computer program instructions and data include all forms of non-volatile memory, media and memory devices, including by way of example semiconductor memory devices, e.g., EPROM, EEPROM, and flash memory devices; magnetic disks, e.g., internal hard disks or removable disks; magneto-optical disks; and CD-ROM and DVD-ROM disks. The processor and the memory can be supplemented by, or incorporated in, special purpose logic circuitry.

[0202] While this specification contains many specific implementation details, these should not be construed as limitations on the scope of any implementation of the present disclosure or of what may be claimed, but rather as descriptions of features specific to example implementations. Certain features that are described in this specification in the context of separate implementations can also be implemented in combination in a single implementation. Conversely, various features that are described in the context of a single implementation can also be implemented in multiple implementations separately or in any suitable sub-combination. Moreover, although features may be described above as acting in certain combinations and even initially claimed as such, one or more features from a claimed combination can in some cases be excised from the combination, and the claimed combination may be directed to a sub-combination or variation of a sub combination.

[0203] Similarly, while operations are depicted in the drawings in a particular order, this should not be understood as requiring that such operations be performed in the particular order shown or in sequential order, or that all illustrated operations be performed, to achieve desirable results. In certain circumstances, multitasking and parallel processing may be advantageous. Moreover, the separation of various system components in the implementations described above should not be understood as requiring such separation in all implementations, and it should be understood that the described program components and systems can generally be integrated together in a single software product or packaged into multiple software products.