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Title:
REGENERATIVE BRAKING USING PHOSPHORESCENCE
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/213655
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
Provided herein are systems and methods for regenerative braking. A method for regenerative braking may comprise converting mechanical energy from a braking event to electrical energy. The electrical energy may activate a photon battery comprising phosphorescent material.

Inventors:
DIGGINS, Alex (2003 Franklin Street, Apt. #1San Francisco, California, 94109, US)
Application Number:
US2019/030897
Publication Date:
November 07, 2019
Filing Date:
May 06, 2019
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
NIMBUS ENGINEERING INC. (2003 Franklin Street, Apt. #1San Francisco, California, 94109, US)
International Classes:
H01M10/42; B60G13/18
Foreign References:
US20080245407A12008-10-09
US20070062572A12007-03-22
US20090266397A12009-10-29
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
LEE, Na Kyung (Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, 650 Page Mill RoadPalo Alto, California, 94304, US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

WHAT IS CLAIMED IS:

1. A system for regenerative braking in a vehicle, comprising:

an energy harvesting system mechanically coupled to said vehicle, wherein said energy harvesting system is configured to convert mechanical energy generated from a braking event in said vehicle to electrical energy;

a light source, powered by said electrical energy from said energy harvesting system, configured to emit optical energy at a first wavelength from a surface of said light source;

a phosphorescent material configured to (i) absorb said optical energy at said first wavelength, and (ii) at a rate slower than a rate of absorption, emit optical energy at a second wavelength, wherein said second wavelength is greater than said first wavelength; and

a photovoltaic cell, wherein said photovoltaic cell is configured to (i) absorb optical energy at said second wavelength, and (ii) generate electrical power from optical energy.

2. The system of claim 1, wherein said light source is further powered by a power source external to said vehicle.

3. The system of claim 1, further comprising a second light source disposed remotely from said vehicle and configured to emit optical energy at a third wavelength, wherein said

phosphorescent material is configured to absorb said optical energy at said third wavelength emitted from said second light source.

4. The system of claim 3, wherein said third wavelength is different than said first wavelength.

5. The system of claim 3, wherein said third wavelength is substantially the same as the first wavelength.

6. The system of claim 1, wherein said phosphorescent material is adjacent to said surface of said light source.

7. The system of claim 6, wherein said phosphorescent material is in contact with said surface of said light source.

8. The system of claim 1, wherein said photovoltaic cell is adjacent to with said

phosphorescent material.

9. The system of claim 8, wherein said photovoltaic cell is in contact with said

phosphorescent material.

10. The system of claim 1, further comprising a waveguide adjacent to said phosphorescent material, wherein said waveguide is configured to (i) direct said optical energy at said first wavelength from said light source to said phosphorescent material or (ii) direct said optical energy at said second wavelength from said phosphorescent material to said photovoltaic cell.

11. The system of claim 10, wherein said waveguide is configured to direct said optical energy at said first wavelength from said light source to said phosphorescent material and wherein said system comprises a second waveguide configured to direct said optical energy at said second wavelength from said phosphorescent material to said photovoltaic cell.

12. The system of claim 11, wherein said second waveguide and said phosphorescent material are concentric.

13. The system of claim 10, wherein said waveguide is configured to direct said optical energy at said first wavelength from said light source to said phosphorescent material, and wherein said waveguide is adjacent to said light source.

14. The system of claim 13, wherein said waveguide is in contact with said light source.

15. The system of claim 10, wherein said waveguide is configured to direct said optical energy at said second wavelength from said phosphorescent material to said photovoltaic cell, and wherein said waveguide is adjacent to said photovoltaic cell.

16. The system of claim 15, wherein said waveguide is in contact with said photovoltaic cell.

17. The system of claim 10, wherein said waveguide comprises one or more reflective surfaces, wherein said reflective surfaces are configured to (i) direct said optical energy at said first wavelength from said light source to said phosphorescent material or (ii) direct said optical energy at said second wavelength from said phosphorescent material to said photovoltaic cell.

18. The system of claim 10, wherein said waveguide is configured to direct said optical energy at said first wavelength from said light source to said phosphorescent material, wherein said waveguide comprises a plurality of reflective surfaces having increasingly large reflective surfaces along an optical path within said waveguide, such that a first set of waves from said light source are configured to be reflected at a first reflective surface of said plurality of reflective surfaces for excitation of a first volume of phosphorescent material, and a second set of waves from said light source are configured to be reflected at a second reflective surface of said plurality of reflective surfaces for excitation of a second volume of phosphorescent material, wherein said second volume of phosphorescent material is disposed at a greater distance from said light source than said first volume of phosphorescent material.

19. The system of claim 10, further comprising a coating on said waveguide, wherein said coating is in optical communication with said waveguide and said phosphorescent material, wherein said coating comprises an optical filter.

20. The system of claim 19, wherein said optical filter is a dichroic element.

21. The system of claim 19, wherein said optical filter is configured to transmit waves having said first wavelength from said waveguide to said phosphorescent material and reflect waves having said second wavelength from said phosphorescent material back to said phosphorescent material.

22. The system of claim 19, wherein said coating is in contact with said waveguide and said phosphorescent material.

23. The system of claim 1, wherein said energy harvesting system comprises an induction motor mechanically coupled to said vehicle.

24. The system of claim 1, wherein said light source is a light-emitting diode (LED).

25. The system of claim 1, wherein a secondary energy storage system is electrically coupled to said photovoltaic cell, and wherein at least part of said electrical power generated by said photovoltaic cell charges said secondary energy storage system.

26. The system of claim 25, wherein said secondary energy storage system comprises a rechargeable chemical battery.

27. The system of claim 1, wherein said phosphorescent material comprises strontium aluminate and europium.

28. The system of claim 27, wherein said phosphorescent material comprises dysprosium.

29. The system of claim 1, wherein said phosphorescent material comprises grains having a particle size of less than about 5 micrometers.

30. The system of claim 1, wherein said phosphorescent material comprises grains having a particle size of less than about 20 nanometers.

31. A system for wireless optical charging, comprising:

an electronic device electrically coupled to a photon battery assembly, wherein said photon battery assembly comprises:

a phosphorescent material configured to (i) absorb optical energy at a first wavelength, and (ii) at a rate slower than a rate of absorption, emit optical energy at a second wavelength, wherein said second wavelength is greater than said first wavelength; and

a photovoltaic cell, wherein said photovoltaic cell is configured to (i) absorb optical energy at said second wavelength, and (ii) generate electrical power from optical energy, wherein said electrical power is used by said electronic device; and

a light source configured to emit said optical energy at said first wavelength from a surface of said light source, wherein said light source is detached from said electronic device and in optical communication with said phosphorescent material.

32. The system of claim 31, wherein said electronic device is integrated in a vehicle.

33. The system of claim 31, further comprising a connector tool configured to provide optical communication between said light source and said phosphorescent material.

34. The system of claim 31, further comprising a waveguide adjacent to said phosphorescent material, wherein said waveguide is configured to (i) direct said optical energy at said first wavelength from said light source to said phosphorescent material or (ii) direct said optical energy at said second wavelength from said phosphorescent material to said photovoltaic cell.

35. A method for regenerative braking, comprising:

(a) converting mechanical energy from a braking event in a vehicle to electrical

energy;

(b) activating a light source with said electrical energy to emit optical energy at a first wavelength from a surface of said light source;

(c) directing said optical energy at said first wavelength to a phosphorescent material;

(d) at a rate slower than a rate of absorption of said optical energy at said first

wavelength, emitting, by said phosphorescent material, optical energy at a second wavelength, wherein said second wavelength is greater than said first wavelength;

(e) directing said optical energy at said second wavelength to a photovoltaic cell; and

(f) generating electrical power from said optical energy at said second wavelength.

36. The method of claim 35, further comprising powering said light source by a power source external to said vehicle.

37. The method of claim 35, further comprising directing optical energy at a third

wavelength, emitted from a second light source disposed remotely from said vehicle, to said phosphorescent material.

38. The method of claim 37, wherein said third wavelength is different than said first wavelength.

39. The method of claim 37, wherein said third wavelength is substantially the same as the first wavelength.

40. The method of claim 35, wherein said phosphorescent material is adjacent to said surface of said light source.

41. The method of claim 40, wherein said phosphorescent material is in contact with said surface of said light source.

42. The method of claim 35, wherein said photovoltaic cell is adjacent to with said phosphorescent material.

43. The method of claim 42, wherein said photovoltaic cell is in contact with said phosphorescent material.

44. The method of claim 35, wherein a waveguide adjacent to said phosphorescent material (i) directs said optical energy at said first wavelength from said light source to said

phosphorescent material or (ii) directs said optical energy at said second wavelength from said phosphorescent material to said photovoltaic cell.

45. The method of claim 44, wherein said waveguide directs said optical energy at said first wavelength from said light source to said phosphorescent material, and wherein a second waveguide directs said optical energy at said second wavelength from said phosphorescent material to said photovoltaic cell.

46. The method of claim 45, wherein said second waveguide and said phosphorescent material are concentric.

47. The method of claim 44, wherein said waveguide directs said optical energy at said first wavelength from said light source to said phosphorescent material, and wherein said waveguide is adjacent to said light source.

48. The method of claim 47, wherein said waveguide is in contact with said light source.

49. The method of claim 44, wherein said waveguide directs said optical energy at said second wavelength from said phosphorescent material to said photovoltaic cell, and wherein said waveguide is adjacent to said photovoltaic cell.

50. The method of claim 49, wherein said waveguide is in contact with said photovoltaic cell.

51. The method of claim 44, wherein said waveguide comprises one or more reflective surfaces, wherein said reflective surfaces (i) directs said optical energy at said first wavelength from said light source to said phosphorescent material or (ii) directs said optical energy at said second wavelength from said phosphorescent material to said photovoltaic cell.

52. The method of claim 44, wherein said waveguide directs said optical energy at said first wavelength from said light source to said phosphorescent material, wherein said waveguide comprises a plurality of reflective surfaces having increasingly large reflective surfaces along an optical path within said waveguide, such that a first set of waves from said light source are reflected at a first reflective surface of said plurality of reflective surfaces for excitation of a first volume of phosphorescent material, and a second set of waves from said light source are reflected at a second reflective surface of said plurality of reflective surfaces for excitation of a second volume of phosphorescent material, wherein said second volume of phosphorescent material is disposed at a greater distance from said light source than said first volume of phosphorescent material.

53. The method of claim 44, wherein said waveguide comprises a coating, wherein said coating is in optical communication with said waveguide and said phosphorescent material, wherein said coating comprises an optical filter.

54. The method of claim 53, wherein said optical filter is a dichroic element.

55. The method of claim 53, wherein said optical filter transmits waves having said first wavelength from said waveguide to said phosphorescent material and reflects waves having said second wavelength from said phosphorescent material back to said phosphorescent material.

56. The method of claim 53, wherein said coating is in contact with said waveguide and said phosphorescent material.

57. The method of claim 35, wherein said converting mechanical energy comprises using an induction motor mechanically coupled to said vehicle.

58. The method of claim 35, wherein said light source is a light-emitting diode (LED).

59. The method of claim 35, further comprising charging a secondary energy storage system electrically coupled to said photovoltaic cell using at least part of said electrical power generated by said photovoltaic cell.

60. The method of claim 59, wherein said secondary energy storage system comprises a rechargeable chemical battery.

61. The method of claim 35, wherein said phosphorescent material comprises strontium aluminate and europium.

62. The method of claim 61, wherein said phosphorescent material comprises dysprosium.

63. The method of claim 35, wherein said phosphorescent material comprises grains having a particle size of less than about 5 micrometers.

64. The method of claim 35, wherein said phosphorescent material comprises grains having a particle size of less than about 20 nanometers.

Description:
REGENERATIVE BRAKING USING PHOSPHORESCENCE

CROSS-REFERENCE

[0001] This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application No.

62/666,994, filed May 4, 2018, which is entirely incorporated herein by reference.

BACKGROUND

[0002] Especially in an age where so many activities and functions depend on a continuous supply of power, lapses or interruptions in the provision of power may lead to highly undesirable results. These recent years have seen a fast-growing market for readily accessible power, such as in batteries, supercapacitors, fuel cells, and other energy storage devices. However, such energy storage devices are often limited in many aspects. For example, they may be volatile or unstable under certain operating conditions (e.g., temperature, pressure) and become ineffective or pose a safety hazard. In some cases, an energy storage device may itself be consumed during one or more cycles of converting or storing energy and thus have limited lifetime. In some cases, a rate of charging or discharging may be too slow to effectively support or satisfy a rate of

consumption of power.

SUMMARY

[0003] Regenerative braking can require an energy storage system to store up to about 100,000 Joules (J) or about 1/30 of a kilowatt-hour (kWh) of kinetic energy within the seconds spanning a brake event. For example, it may require storage of about 1/30 kWh of kinetic energy within 3 seconds, 2 seconds, or less. Given the limited capacity and volume afforded to such energy storage systems in vehicles employing regenerative braking, chemical batteries (e.g., lithium ion batteries) alone are unable to support such high charging rates, even using a 50 kWh battery assembly to distribute the power surge across different battery units.

[0004] Recognized herein is a need for energy storage systems that have efficient charging rates at compact volumes for use with regenerative braking. The energy storage systems used with regenerative braking herein may have a volume of less than a hundredth the volume of conventional chemical battery packs. The regenerative braking systems disclosed herein may provide superior charging rates to those that use conventional chemical batteries, for example, on the order of 100 times faster or more. The regenerative braking systems disclosed herein may provide superior lifetimes to those that use conventional chemical batteries, for example, on the order of 10 times more recharge cycles or more. The regenerative braking systems disclosed herein may be stable and effective in relatively cold operating temperature conditions. The regenerative braking systems disclosed herein may be stable and effective in relatively hot operating temperature conditions. In some instances, the regenerative braking systems disclosed herein may be used in conjunction with conventional chemical battery packs.

[0005] The regenerative braking systems disclosed herein may use phosphorescent material to store energy over a finite duration of time. For example, the phosphorescent material may store and/or convert energy with substantial time delay. In operation, upon deceleration of a vehicle having the regenerative braking system, a motor may harvest the kinetic energy to power a light source. The phosphorescent material may initially receive optical energy (at a first wavelength) from the light source. The light source can be an artificial light source, such as a light emitting diode (LED) powered by the motor. The phosphorescent material may release optical energy (at a second wavelength) after substantial time delay. A photovoltaic cell may receive the optical energy (at the second wavelength) to generate electrical power. In some instances, a waveguide may direct waves between the light source and the phosphorescent material and/or between the photovoltaic cell and the phosphorescent material. The electrical power from the photovoltaic cell may be discharged to various electrical loads, such as one or more of various electrical systems within the vehicle, to external electrical systems, to a secondary energy storage system such as a battery pack, to power the motor, and other electrical loads.

[0006] In an aspect, provided is a system for regenerative braking in a vehicle, comprising: an energy harvesting system mechanically coupled to the vehicle, wherein the energy harvesting system is configured to convert mechanical energy generated from a braking event in the vehicle to electrical energy; a light source, powered by the electrical energy from the energy harvesting system, configured to emit optical energy at a first wavelength from a surface of the light source; a phosphorescent material configured to (i) absorb the optical energy at the first wavelength, and (ii) at a rate slower than a rate of absorption, emit optical energy at a second wavelength, wherein the second wavelength is greater than the first wavelength; and a photovoltaic cell, wherein the photovoltaic cell is configured to (i) absorb optical energy at the second wavelength, and (ii) generate electrical power from optical energy.

[0007] In some embodiments, the light source is further powered by a power source external to the vehicle.

[0008] In some embodiments, the system further comprises a second light source disposed remotely from the vehicle and configured to emit optical energy at a third wavelength, wherein the phosphorescent material is configured to absorb the optical energy at the third wavelength emitted from the second light source. In some embodiments, the third wavelength is different than the first wavelength. In some embodiments, the third wavelength is substantially the same as the first wavelength.

[0009] In some embodiments, the phosphorescent material is adjacent to the surface of the light source. In some embodiments, the phosphorescent material is in contact with the surface of the light source.

[0010] In some embodiments, the photovoltaic cell is adjacent to with the phosphorescent material. In some embodiments, the photovoltaic cell is in contact with the phosphorescent material.

[0011] In some embodiments, the system further comprises a waveguide adjacent to the phosphorescent material, wherein the waveguide is configured to (i) direct the optical energy at the first wavelength from the light source to the phosphorescent material or (ii) direct the optical energy at the second wavelength from the phosphorescent material to the photovoltaic cell.

[0012] In some embodiments, the waveguide is configured to direct the optical energy at the first wavelength from the light source to the phosphorescent material and wherein the system comprises a second waveguide configured to direct the optical energy at the second wavelength from the phosphorescent material to the photovoltaic cell. In some embodiments, the second waveguide and the phosphorescent material are concentric.

[0013] In some embodiments, the waveguide is configured to direct the optical energy at the first wavelength from the light source to the phosphorescent material, and wherein the waveguide is adjacent to the light source. In some embodiments, the waveguide is in contact with the light source.

[0014] In some embodiments, the waveguide is configured to direct the optical energy at the second wavelength from the phosphorescent material to the photovoltaic cell, and wherein the waveguide is adjacent to the photovoltaic cell. In some embodiments, the waveguide is in contact with the photovoltaic cell.

[0015] In some embodiments, the waveguide comprises one or more reflective surfaces, wherein the reflective surfaces are configured to (i) direct the optical energy at the first wavelength from the light source to the phosphorescent material or (ii) direct the optical energy at the second wavelength from the phosphorescent material to the photovoltaic cell.

[0016] In some embodiments, the waveguide is configured to direct the optical energy at the first wavelength from the light source to the phosphorescent material, wherein the waveguide comprises a plurality of reflective surfaces having increasingly large reflective surfaces along an optical path within the waveguide, such that a first set of waves from the light source are configured to be reflected at a first reflective surface of the plurality of reflective surfaces for excitation of a first volume of phosphorescent material, and a second set of waves from the light source are configured to be reflected at a second reflective surface of the plurality of reflective surfaces for excitation of a second volume of phosphorescent material, wherein the second volume of phosphorescent material is disposed at a greater distance from the light source than the first volume of phosphorescent material.

[0017] In some embodiments, the system further comprises a coating on the waveguide, wherein the coating is in optical communication with the waveguide and the phosphorescent material, wherein the coating comprises an optical filter. In some embodiments, the optical filter is a dichroic element. In some embodiments, the optical filter is configured to transmit waves having the first wavelength from the waveguide to the phosphorescent material and reflect waves having the second wavelength from the phosphorescent material back to the phosphorescent material. In some embodiments, the coating is in contact with the waveguide and the phosphorescent material.

[0018] In some embodiments, the energy harvesting system comprises an induction motor mechanically coupled to the vehicle.

[0019] In some embodiments, the light source is a light-emitting diode (LED).

[0020] In some embodiments, a secondary energy storage system is electrically coupled to the photovoltaic cell, and wherein at least part of the electrical power generated by the photovoltaic cell charges the secondary energy storage system. In some embodiments, the secondary energy storage system comprises a rechargeable chemical battery.

[0021] In some embodiments, the phosphorescent material comprises strontium aluminate and europium. In some embodiments, the phosphorescent material comprises dysprosium.

[0022] In some embodiments, the phosphorescent material comprises grains having a particle size of less than about 5 micrometers. In some embodiments, the phosphorescent material comprises grains having a particle size of less than about 20 nanometers.

[0023] In another aspect, provided is a system for wireless optical charging, comprising: an electronic device electrically coupled to a photon battery assembly, wherein the photon battery assembly comprises: a phosphorescent material configured to (i) absorb optical energy at a first wavelength, and (ii) at a rate slower than a rate of absorption, emit optical energy at a second wavelength, wherein the second wavelength is greater than the first wavelength; and a photovoltaic cell, wherein the photovoltaic cell is configured to (i) absorb optical energy at the second wavelength, and (ii) generate electrical power from optical energy, wherein the electrical power is used by the electronic device; and a light source configured to emit the optical energy at the first wavelength from a surface of the light source, wherein the light source is detached from the electronic device and in optical communication with the phosphorescent material.

[0024] In some embodiments, the electronic device is integrated in a vehicle.

[0025] In some embodiments, the system further comprises a connector tool configured to provide optical communication between the light source and the phosphorescent material.

[0026] In some embodiments, the system further comprises a waveguide adjacent to the phosphorescent material, wherein the waveguide is configured to (i) direct the optical energy at the first wavelength from the light source to the phosphorescent material or (ii) direct the optical energy at the second wavelength from the phosphorescent material to the photovoltaic cell.

[0027] In another aspect, provided is a method for regenerative braking, comprising: (a) converting mechanical energy from a braking event in a vehicle to electrical energy; (b) activating a light source with the electrical energy to emit optical energy at a first wavelength from a surface of the light source; (c) directing the optical energy at the first wavelength to a phosphorescent material; (d) at a rate slower than a rate of absorption of the optical energy at the first wavelength, emitting, by the phosphorescent material, optical energy at a second wavelength, wherein the second wavelength is greater than the first wavelength; (e) directing the optical energy at the second wavelength to a photovoltaic cell; and (f) generating electrical power from the optical energy at the second wavelength.

[0028] In some embodiments, the method further comprises powering the light source by a power source external to the vehicle.

[0029] In some embodiments, the method further comprises directing optical energy at a third wavelength, emitted from a second light source disposed remotely from the vehicle, to the phosphorescent material. In some embodiments, the third wavelength is different than the first wavelength. In some embodiments, the third wavelength is substantially the same as the first wavelength.

[0030] In some embodiments, the phosphorescent material is adjacent to the surface of the light source. In some embodiments, the phosphorescent material is in contact with the surface of the light source.

[0031] In some embodiments, the photovoltaic cell is adjacent to with the phosphorescent material. In some embodiments, the photovoltaic cell is in contact with the phosphorescent material.

[0032] In some embodiments, a waveguide adjacent to the phosphorescent material (i) directs the optical energy at the first wavelength from the light source to the phosphorescent material or (ii) directs the optical energy at the second wavelength from the phosphorescent material to the photovoltaic cell.

[0033] In some embodiments, the waveguide directs the optical energy at the first wavelength from the light source to the phosphorescent material, and wherein a second waveguide directs the optical energy at the second wavelength from the phosphorescent material to the photovoltaic cell. In some embodiments, the second waveguide and the phosphorescent material are concentric.

[0034] In some embodiments, the waveguide directs the optical energy at the first wavelength from the light source to the phosphorescent material, and wherein the waveguide is adjacent to the light source. In some embodiments, the waveguide is in contact with the light source.

[0035] In some embodiments, the waveguide directs the optical energy at the second wavelength from the phosphorescent material to the photovoltaic cell, and wherein the waveguide is adjacent to the photovoltaic cell. In some embodiments, the waveguide is in contact with the photovoltaic cell.

[0036] In some embodiments, the waveguide comprises one or more reflective surfaces, wherein the reflective surfaces (i) directs the optical energy at the first wavelength from the light source to the phosphorescent material or (ii) directs the optical energy at the second wavelength from the phosphorescent material to the photovoltaic cell.

[0037] In some embodiments, the waveguide directs the optical energy at the first wavelength from the light source to the phosphorescent material, wherein the waveguide comprises a plurality of reflective surfaces having increasingly large reflective surfaces along an optical path within the waveguide, such that a first set of waves from the light source are reflected at a first reflective surface of the plurality of reflective surfaces for excitation of a first volume of phosphorescent material, and a second set of waves from the light source are reflected at a second reflective surface of the plurality of reflective surfaces for excitation of a second volume of phosphorescent material, wherein the second volume of phosphorescent material is disposed at a greater distance from the light source than the first volume of phosphorescent material.

[0038] In some embodiments, the waveguide comprises a coating, wherein the coating is in optical communication with the waveguide and the phosphorescent material, wherein the coating comprises an optical filter. In some embodiments, the optical filter is a dichroic element. In some embodiments, the optical filter transmits waves having the first wavelength from the waveguide to the phosphorescent material and reflects waves having the second wavelength from the phosphorescent material back to the phosphorescent material. In some embodiments, the coating is in contact with the waveguide and the phosphorescent material. [0039] In some embodiments, the converting mechanical energy comprises using an induction motor mechanically coupled to the vehicle.

[0040] In some embodiments, the light source is a light-emitting diode (LED).

[0041] In some embodiments, the method further comprises charging a secondary energy storage system electrically coupled to the photovoltaic cell using at least part of the electrical power generated by the photovoltaic cell. In some embodiments, the secondary energy storage system comprises a rechargeable chemical battery.

[0042] In some embodiments, the phosphorescent material comprises strontium aluminate and europium. In some embodiments, the phosphorescent material comprises dysprosium.

[0043] In some embodiments, the phosphorescent material comprises grains having a particle size of less than about 5 micrometers. In some embodiments, the phosphorescent material comprises grains having a particle size of less than about 20 nanometers.

[0044] Additional aspects and advantages of the present disclosure will become readily apparent to those skilled in this art from the following detailed description, wherein only illustrative embodiments of the present disclosure are shown and described. As will be realized, the present disclosure is capable of other and different embodiments, and its several details are capable of modifications in various obvious respects, all without departing from the disclosure.

Accordingly, the drawings and description are to be regarded as illustrative in nature, and not as restrictive.

INCORPORATION BY REFERENCE

[0045] All publications, patents, and patent applications mentioned in this specification are herein incorporated by reference to the same extent as if each individual publication, patent, or patent application was specifically and individually indicated to be incorporated by reference.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0046] The novel features of the invention are set forth with particularity in the appended claims. A better understanding of the features and advantages of the present invention will be obtained by reference to the following detailed description that sets forth illustrative embodiments, in which the principles of the invention are utilized, and the accompanying drawings (also“Figure” and“FIG.” herein) of which:

[0047] FIG. 1 illustrates a schematic of a regenerative braking system.

[0048] FIG. 2 shows an exemplary photon battery assembly.

[0049] FIG. 3 shows a photon battery in communication with an electrical load.

[0050] FIG. 4 shows an exemplary photon battery assembly in application. [0051] FIG. 5A illustrates a photon battery assembly with a waveguide.

[0052] FIG. 5B illustrates a photon battery assembly with a coating comprising an optical filter.

[0053] FIG. 5C illustrates a wireless charging system.

[0054] FIG. 5D illustrates another example of a wireless charging system including a connector tool.

[0055] FIG. 5E illustrates another example of a wireless charging system including another connector tool.

[0056] FIG. 6 illustrates another photon battery assembly with a waveguide.

[0057] FIG. 7 illustrates another photon battery assembly with waveguides.

[0058] FIG. 8 shows a stack of a plurality of photon battery assemblies.

[0059] FIG. 9 shows an exploded view of another configuration for a photon battery assembly stack with hollow core waveguides.

[0060] FIG. 10 illustrates a partial cross-sectional side view of the photon battery assembly stack of FIG. 9.

[0061] FIG. 11 illustrates a method of storing energy in a photon battery.

[0062] FIG. 12 illustrates a method for regenerative braking.

[0063] FIG. 13 shows a computer system configured to implement systems and methods of the present disclosure.

[0064] FIG. 14 illustrates examples of photon battery performance during discharge.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0065] While various embodiments of the invention have been shown and described herein, it will be obvious to those skilled in the art that such embodiments are provided by way of example only. Numerous variations, changes, and substitutions may occur to those skilled in the art without departing from the invention. It should be understood that various alternatives to the embodiments of the invention described herein may be employed.

[0066] Regenerative braking may be an energy harvesting mechanism which slows (or decelerates) a vehicle or object by converting its kinetic energy into a form which can either be stored or used immediately (or substantially immediately). For example, such kinetic energy may be converted for storage and/or use as, electrical, thermal, optical, potential, and/or other forms of energy. In some instances, energy may be stored in one form (e.g., optical energy) and used in another form (e.g., electrical energy). In the regenerative braking system, energy may undergo more than one conversion. Such harvesting in regenerative braking systems contrasts with conventional braking systems, where the excess kinetic energy is often converted to unwanted and wasted heat by friction in the brakes, or with dynamic brakes, where energy is recovered by using electric motors as generators but is immediately dissipated as heat in resistors. In addition to improving the overall efficiency of the vehicle, regenerative braking can greatly extend the life of the braking system by diverting energy that may otherwise result in wear and tear of parts or assemblies in the braking system.

[0067] Provided herein are systems and methods for regenerative braking using

phosphorescence. The systems and methods disclosed herein may use phosphorescent material to store the kinetic energy derived from a braking event of a vehicle over a significant duration of time, such as by making use of the time-delayed re-emission properties of phosphorescent material. For example, the phosphorescent material may store and/or convert energy with substantial time delay. The kinetic energy of a brake event may be directed to power a light source, such as via a motor. The light source can provide an initial source of energy to the phosphorescent material in the form of optical energy. For example, the phosphorescent material may absorb optical energy from the light source at a first wavelength, and after a time delay, emit optical energy at a second wavelength. The light source can be an artificial light source, such as a light emitting diode (LED). A photovoltaic cell can generate electrical power from optical energy, such as from optical energy at the second wavelength that is emitted by the phosphorescent material. A waveguide may direct waves, such as the optical energy from the light source at the first wavelength between the light source and the phosphorescent material and/or the optical energy at the second wavelength between the phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell. Such waveguides may increase energy density and compactness of the energy storage system. The waveguide may greatly increase efficiency of the time-delayed optical energy transfer between the phosphorescent material and the light source and the photovoltaic cell, as well as facilitate efficient use of the available phosphorescent material. The electrical power from the photovoltaic cell may be discharged to various electrical loads, such as one or more of various electrical systems within the vehicle, to external electrical systems, to a secondary energy storage system such as a battery pack, to power the motor, and other electrical loads.

[0068] Beneficially, the energy storage systems used with regenerative braking herein may have a volume of less than a hundredth the volume of conventional chemical battery packs. The regenerative braking systems disclosed herein may provide superior charging rates to those that use conventional chemical batteries, for example, on the order of 100 times faster or more. The regenerative braking systems disclosed herein may provide superior lifetimes to those that use conventional chemical batteries, for example, on the order of 10 times more recharge cycles or more. The regenerative braking systems disclosed herein may be stable and effective in relatively cold operating temperature conditions. The regenerative braking systems disclosed herein may be stable and effective in relatively hot operating temperature conditions.

[0069] The regenerative braking systems disclosed herein may be used in conjunction with conventional chemical battery packs.

[0070] Reference will now be made to the figures. It will be appreciated that the figures and features therein are not necessarily drawn to scale.

[0071] FIG. 1 illustrates a schematic of a regenerative braking system 100. In operation, upon a brake event of a vehicle 101 having the regenerative braking system, an energy harvesting system 102 may harvest the kinetic energy to charge or activate a photon battery system 103.

The energy harvesting system 102 may be electrically coupled to the vehicle 101 and the photon battery system 103. The photon battery system 103 may store the energy from the brake event for some duration of time. The photon battery system 103 may then discharge electrical energy to an electrical load, such as to electrical systems in the vehicle 101, to external electrical systems (external to the vehicle 101 and/or electrically coupled to the vehicle 101), to a secondary energy storage system 104, to power the energy harvesting system 102, or to other electrical loads. In some instances, the secondary energy storage system 104 may then discharge electrical energy to an electrical load, such as to electrical systems in the vehicle 101, to external electrical systems (external to the vehicle 101 and/or electrically coupled to the vehicle 101), to the photon battery system 103, to power the energy harvesting system 102, or to other electrical loads.

[0072] The vehicle 101 may be an automobile having braking capabilities. For example, the vehicle may be a car, a truck, a bus, a tank, a motorcycle, a bicycle, a trailer, a board, a scooter, a railcar, a trolley, a train, an airplane, or any other type of vehicle. The vehicle may interface with a surface (e.g., road surface) via rotating (e.g., wheels, tracks, etc.), sliding, pedaling, or via any other method configured to move a vehicle relative to the surface. The vehicle may be an electrical vehicle. The vehicle may be a hybrid vehicle. The vehicle may be an unmanned or automated vehicle. The vehicle may be any object having braking capabilities.

[0073] The energy harvesting system 102 may be electrically coupled to the vehicle 101 to harvest mechanical energy (e.g., kinetic energy) from the braking event. The energy harvesting system 102 may comprise an energy harvesting device to convert the mechanical energy to electrical energy. For example, the energy harvesting device may be a motor (e.g., induction motor) configured to convert the mechanical energy to electrical energy. The motor may be an electric motor. The motor may be mechanically coupled to one or more wheels of the vehicle 101. Alternatively or in addition, the motor may be mechanically coupled to any other part or assembly of the vehicle 101 (e.g., drivetrain, transmission, gear trains, etc.). Alternatively or in addition, the energy harvesting system 102 may comprise a different type of energy harvesting device configured to harvest mechanical energy or other energy derived from the mechanical energy from the braking event. For example, the energy harvesting system 102 may comprise a heat sink or heat exchanger to harvest heat derived (e.g., dissipated) from the mechanical energy of the braking event. The energy harvesting system 102 may have a plurality of motors and/or any combination of energy harvesting devices to, individually or collectively, harvest the mechanical energy.

[0074] The energy harvesting system 102 may be electrically coupled to the photon battery system 103, such as to deliver the converted electrical energy to activate the photon battery system 103. The photon battery system 103 may comprise a light source, a phosphorescent material, and a photovoltaic cell, as described elsewhere herein. The phosphorescent material may initially receive optical energy at a first wavelength from the light source. The light source can be an artificial light source, such as a light emitting diode (LED). The light source may be powered by the energy harvesting system 102. The light source may be scaled to accommodate the mechanical energy from a braking event of the host vehicle (e.g., vehicle 101). For example, the LED wattage may be selected to accommodate the required power output of the electric drivetrain of the vehicle 101 during the braking event. In an example, for a 2,000 kilogram (kg) vehicle moving at 25 miles per hour (mph), the LED wattage can be selected to be about 15 kilowatts (kW) to accommodate about 100,000 joules (J) of energy. As will be appreciated, a higher LED wattage can be selected for vehicles heavier than 2,000 kg. After a substantial time delay, the phosphorescent material may release optical energy at a second wavelength. A photovoltaic cell may receive the optical energy at the second wavelength to generate electrical power. In some instances, a waveguide may direct waves between the light source and the phosphorescent material and/or between the photovoltaic cell and the phosphorescent material. The photon battery system 103 may then discharge electrical energy to an electrical load, such as to electrical systems in the vehicle 101, to external electrical systems (external to the vehicle 101 and/or electrically coupled to the vehicle 101), to a secondary energy storage system 104, to power the energy harvesting system 102, or to other electrical loads.

[0075] The photon battery system 103 may be any photon battery assembly described herein, such as with respect to FIGs. 2-11.

[0076] The secondary energy storage system 104 may be any type of energy system. For example, the secondary energy storage system 104 may be batteries (e.g., solid state batteries), fuel cells, electrochemical cells, rechargeable cells (e.g., secondary cells), capacitors, supercapacitors (or ultracapacitors), energy harvesting devices (as described elsewhere herein) or other storage systems. In an example, the secondary energy storage system 104 is a conventional chemical battery pack (e.g., lithium ion battery pack) in the vehicle 101. The secondary energy storage system 104 may be a backup energy source for the vehicle 101. The secondary energy storage system 104 may be electrically coupled to the photon battery system 103. In some instances, the photon battery system 103 may discharge electrical energy to the secondary energy storage system 104 for storage. Alternatively or in addition, in some instances, the secondary energy storage system 104 may discharge electrical energy to the photon battery system 103, such as to charge the photon battery system 103 (by powering the light source). The secondary energy storage system 104 may be electrically coupled to other electrical loads, such as to electrical systems in the vehicle 101, to external electrical systems (external to the vehicle 101 and/or electrically coupled to the vehicle 101), to power the energy harvesting system 102, or to other electrical loads.

[0077] In some instances, a vehicle may draw electrical energy from both the photon battery system 103 and one or more secondary energy storage systems (e.g., 104), such as a lithium ion battery pack. In some instances, at least about 1%, 2%, 3%, 4%, 5%, 6%, 7%, 8%, 9%, 10%, 15%, 20%, 25%, 30%, 35%, 40%, 45%, 50%, 55%, 60%, 65%, 70%, 75%, 80%, 85%, 90%,

95% or more of the electrical energy stored in a vehicle can be stored in the photon battery system, and the remainder in the one or more secondary energy storage systems. In some instances, at most about 95%, 90%, 85%, 80%, 75%, 70%, 65%, 60%, 55%, 50%, 45%, 40%, 35%, 30%, 25%, 20%, 15%, 10%, 9%, 8%, 7%, 6%, 5%, 4%, 3%, 2%, 1% or less of the electrical energy stored in a vehicle can be stored in the photon battery system, and the remainder in the one or more secondary energy storage systems. In some embodiments, about 25% of the electrical energy may be stored in the photon battery system and the remainder in the one or more secondary energy storage systems.

[0078] While the present disclosure illustrates examples specific to vehicles and regenerative braking therein, the photon battery systems and methods described herein may be applicable to any fast charging application, such as other electronics. For example, an electronic device (e.g., cellphone, tablet, computer, other energy storage system such as supercapacitors, ultracapacitors, batteries, and fuel cells, other transportation system such as trains, boats, planes, and other machines, etc.) may use the systems and methods described herein.

[0079] FIG. 2 shows an exemplary photon battery assembly. A photon battery assembly 200 can comprise a light source 201, a phosphorescent material 202, and a photovoltaic cell 203.

The phosphorescent material may be adjacent to both the light source and the photovoltaic cell. For example, the phosphorescent material can be sandwiched by the light source and the photovoltaic cell. The phosphorescent material can be between the light source and the photovoltaic cell. While FIG. 2 shows the light source, phosphorescent material, and photovoltaic cell as a vertical stack, the configuration is not limited as such. For example, the light source, phosphorescent material, and photovoltaic cell can be horizontally stacked or concentrically stacked. The light source and the photovoltaic cell may or may not be adjacent to each other. In some instances, the phosphorescent material can be adjacent to a light-emitting surface of the light source. In some instances, the phosphorescent material can be adjacent to a light-absorbing surface of the photovoltaic cell.

[0080] Regardless of contact between the phosphorescent material 202 and light source 201, the phosphorescent material and the light source may be in optical communication. For example, as described elsewhere herein, the phosphorescent material and the light source may be in optical communication via a waveguide. Regardless of contact between the phosphorescent material and photovoltaic cell 203, the phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell may be in optical communication. For example, as described elsewhere herein, the phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell may be in optical communication via a waveguide. In some instances, the same waveguide may be configured to facilitate optical communication between the phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell and between the phosphorescent material and the light source.

[0081] The phosphorescent material 202 may or may not be contacting the light source 201. If the phosphorescent material and the light source are in contact, the phosphorescent material can interface a light-emitting surface of the light source. The phosphorescent material and the light source can be coupled or fastened together at the interface, such as via a fastening mechanism.

In some instances, a support carrying the light source and/or a support carrying the

phosphorescent material may be coupled or fastened together at the interface. Examples of fastening mechanisms may include, but are not limited to, form-fitting pairs, hooks and loops, latches, staples, clips, clamps, prongs, rings, brads, rubber bands, rivets, grommets, pins, ties, snaps, velcro, adhesives, tapes, a combination thereof, or any other types of fastening

mechanisms. In some instances, the phosphorescent material may have adhesive and/or cohesive properties and adhere to the light source without an independent fastening mechanism. For example, the phosphorescent material may be painted or coated on the light-emitting surface of the light source. In some instances, the phosphorescent material may be coated onto primary, secondary, and/or tertiary optics of the light source. In some instances, the phosphorescent material may be coated onto other optical elements of the light source. The phosphorescent material and the light source can be permanently or detachably fastened together. For example, the phosphorescent material and the light source can be disassembled from and reassembled into the photon battery assembly 200 without damage (or with minimal damage) to the

phosphorescent material and/or the light source. Alternatively, while in contact, the

phosphorescent material and the light source may not be fastened together.

[0082] If the phosphorescent material 202 and the light source 201 are not in contact, the phosphorescent material can otherwise be in optical communication with a light-emitting surface of the light source, such as via a waveguide. For example, the phosphorescent material can be positioned in an optical path of light emitted by the light-emitting surface of the light source. In some instances, there can be an air gap between the phosphorescent material and the light source. In some instances, there can be another intermediary layer between the phosphorescent material and the light source. The intermediary layer can be air or other fluid. The intermediary layer can be a light guide or another layer of optical elements (e.g., lens, reflector, diffusor, beam splitter, etc.). In some instances, there can be a plurality of intermediary layers between the phosphorescent material and the light source.

[0083] The phosphorescent material 202 may or may not be contacting the photovoltaic cell 203. If the phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell are in contact, the phosphorescent material can interface a light-absorbing surface of the photovoltaic cell. The phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell can be coupled or fastened together at the interface, such as via a fastening mechanism. In some instances, a support carrying the photovoltaic cell and/or a support carrying the phosphorescent material may be coupled or fastened together at the interface. In some instances, the phosphorescent material may have adhesive properties and adhere to the photovoltaic cell without an independent fastening mechanism. For example, the phosphorescent material may be painted or coated on the light-absorbing surface of the photovoltaic cell. In some instances, the phosphorescent material may be coated onto primary, secondary, and/or tertiary optics of the photovoltaic cell. In some instances, the phosphorescent material may be coated onto other optical elements of the photovoltaic cell. The phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell can be permanently or detachably fastened together. For example, the phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell can be disassembled from and reassembled into the photon battery assembly 200 without damage (or with minimal damage) to the phosphorescent material and/or the photovoltaic cell. Alternatively, while in contact, the phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell may not be fastened together.

[0084] If the phosphorescent material 202 and the photovoltaic cell 203 are not in contact, the phosphorescent material can otherwise be in optical communication with a light-absorbing surface of the photovoltaic cell. For example, the light-absorbing surface of the photovoltaic cell can be positioned in an optical path of light emitted by the phosphorescent material. In some instances, there can be an air gap between the phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell. In some instances, there can be another intermediary layer between the phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell. The intermediary layer can be air or other fluid. The intermediary layer can be a light guide, light concentrator, or another layer of optical elements (e.g., lens, reflector, diffusor, beam splitter, etc.). In some instances, there can be a plurality of intermediary layers between the phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell.

[0085] In some instances, the photon battery assembly 200 can be assembled or disassembled, such as into the light source 201, phosphorescent material 202, or the photovoltaic cell 203 independently, or into sub-combinations thereof. In some instances, the photon battery assembly can be assembled or disassembled without damage to the different parts or with minimal damage to the different parts.

[0086] In some instances, the photon battery assembly 200 can be housed in a shell, outer casing, or other housing. The photon battery assembly 200, and/or shell thereof can be portable. For example, the photon battery assembly can have a maximum dimension of at most about 1 meter (m), 90 centimeters (cm), 80 cm, 70 cm, 60 cm, 50 cm, 45 cm, 40 cm, 35 cm, 30 cm, 25 cm, 20 cm, 15 cm, 10 cm, 9 cm, 8 cm, 7 cm, 6 cm, 5 cm, or smaller. A maximum dimension of the photon battery assembly may be a dimension of the photon battery assembly (e.g., length, width, height, depth, diameter, etc.) that is greater than the other dimensions of the photon battery assembly. Alternatively, the photon battery assembly may have greater maximum dimensions. In some instances, the photon battery assembly can have a volume of at most about 5000 centimeter cubed (cm 3 ), 4500 cm 3 , 4000 cm 3 , 3500 cm 3 , 3000 cm 3 , 2500 cm 3 , 2000 cm 3 , 1900 cm 3 , 1800 cm 3 , 1700 cm 3 , 1600 cm 3 , 1500 cm 3 , 1400 cm 3 , 1300 cm 3 , 1200 cm 3 , 1100 cm 3 , 1000 cm 3 , 900 cm 3 , 800 cm 3 , 700 cm 3 , 600 cm 3 , 500 cm 3 or less. Alternatively, the photon battery assembly may have greater volumes. In some instances, the photon battery assembly can have a mass of at most about 10 kilograms (kg), 9.5 kg, 9 kg, 8.5 kg, 8 kg, 7.5 kg, 7 kg, 6.5 kg, 6 kg, 5.5 kg, 5 kg, 4.75 kg, 4.5 kg, 4.25 kg, 4 kg, 3.75 kg, 3.5 kg, 3.25 kg, 3 kg, 2.75 kg, 2.5 kg, 2.25 kg, 2 kg, 1.75 kg, 1.5 kg, 1.25 kg, 1 kg, 0.75 kg, 0.5 kg, 0.25 kg or less. Alternatively, the photon battery assembly may have greater mass. In an example, the photon battery assembly may have the following specifications: 10 cm width, 30 cm length, 3.3 cm height, 1000 cm 3 volume, 3.75 kg mass, 15 kilowatts (kW) LED wattage, and 100 kilojoules (kJ) energy capacity.

[0087] In some instances, the photon battery assembly 200 may not be portable. For example, a photon battery assembly having a higher energy storage capacity can have larger dimensions. [0088] The dimensions of the photon battery assembly 200 (and/or LED wattage of the light source 201) may be selected to accommodate the power output associated with a regenerative braking event of a host vehicle. For example, the photon battery assembly 200 can have an energy capacity of at least about 50 kW, 55 kW, 60 kW, 65 kW, 70 kW, 75 kW, 80 kW, 85 kW, 90 kW, 95 kW, 100 kW, 105 kW, 110 kW, 115 kW, 120 kW, 125 kW, 130 kW, 135 kW, 140 kW, 145 kW, 150 kW or greater. Alternatively or in addition, the photon battery assembly 200 can have an energy capacity of at most about 150 kW, 145 kW, 140 kW, 135 kW, 130 kW, 125 kW, 120 kW, 115 kW, 110 kW, 105 kW, 100 kW, 95 kW, 90 kW, 85 kW, 80 kW, 75 kW, 70 kW, 65 kW, 60 kW, 55 kW, 50 kW or less. As will be appreciated, a heavier host vehicle can be associated with a greater burst of power than a lighter host vehicle during the regenerative braking event, and larger dimensions may be selected to accommodate the greater burst of power.

[0089] The light source 201 can be an artificial light source, such as a light emitting diode (LED) or other light emitting device. For example, the light source can be a laser or a lamp. The light source can be a plurality of light emitting devices (e.g., a plurality of LEDs). In some instances, the light source can be arranged as one LED. In some instances, the light source can be arranged as rows or columns of multiple LEDs. The light source can be arranged as arrays or grids of multiple columns, rows, or other axes of LEDs. The light source can be a combination of different light emitting devices. A light emitting surface of the light source can be planar or non- planar. A light emitting surface of the light source can be substantially flat, substantially curved, or form another shape.

[0090] The light source 201 may be scaled to accommodate the mechanical energy from a braking event of the host vehicle. For example, the LED wattage may be selected to

accommodate the required power output of the electric drivetrain of the host vehicle during the braking event. The LED wattage may be at least about 10 kilowatts (kW), 10.5 kW, 11 kW, 11.5 kW, 12 kW, 12.5 kW, 13 kW, 13.5 kW, 14 kW, 14.5 kW, 15 kW, 15.5 kW, 16 kW, 16.5 kW, 17 kW, 17.5 kW, 18 kW, 18.5 kW, 19 kW, 19.5 kW, 20 kW, 20.5 kW, 30 kW, 31 kW, 32 kW, 33 kW, 34 kW ,35 kW, 36 kW, 37 kW, 38 kW, 39 kW, 40 kW, 45 kW, 50 kW or greater.

Alternatively or in addition, the LED wattage may be at most about 50 kW, 45 kW, 40 kW, 39 kW, 38 kW, 37 kW, 36 kW, 35 kW, 34 kW, 33 kW, 32 kW, 31 kW, 30 kW, 20.5 kW, 20 kW, 19.5 kW, 19 kW, 18.5 kW, 18 kW, 17.5 kW, 17 kW, 16.5 kW, 16 kW, 15.5 kW, 15 kW, 14.5 kW, 14 kW, 13.5 kW, 13 kW, 12.5 kW, 12 kW, 11.5 kW, 11 kW, 10.5 kW, 10 kW or less. As will be appreciated, a higher LED wattage can be selected for a heavier host vehicle than a lighter host vehicle. In an example, for a 2,000 kg vehicle travelling at 25 mph, the LED wattage can be selected to be about 15 kW to accommodate about 100 kilojoules (kJ) of energy.

[0091] The light source 201 can be supported by rigid and/or flexible supports. For example, the supports can direct the light emitted by the light source to be directional or non-directi onal. In some instances, the light source can comprise primary and/or secondary optical elements. In some instances, the light source can comprise tertiary optical elements. In some instances, the light source can comprise other optical elements at other levels or layers (e.g., lens, reflector, diffusor, beam splitter, etc.). The light source can be configured to convert electrical energy to optical energy. For example, the light source can be powered by an electrical power source, which may be external or internal to the photon battery assembly 200. The light source can be configured to emit optical energy (e.g., as photons), such as in the form of electromagnetic waves. In some instances, the light source can be configured to emit optical energy at a wavelength or a range of wavelengths that is capable of being absorbed by the phosphorescent material 202. For example, the light source can emit light at wavelengths in the ultraviolet range (e.g., 10 nanometers (nm) to 400 nm). In some instances, the light source can emit light at other wavelengths or ranges of wavelengths in the electromagnetic spectrum (e.g., infrared, visible, ultraviolet, x-rays, etc.).

[0092] In some instances, the light source 201 can be a natural light source (e.g., sun light), in which case the phosphorescent material 202 in the photon battery assembly 200 may be exposed to the natural light source to absorb such natural light.

[0093] The phosphorescent material 202 can absorb optical energy at a first wavelength (or first wavelength range) and emit optical energy at a second wavelength (or second wavelength range) after a substantial time delay. The second wavelength can be a different wavelength than the first wavelength. The optical energy at the first wavelength that is absorbed by the

phosphorescent material can be at a higher energy level than the optical energy at the second wavelength that is emitted by the phosphorescent material. The second wavelength can be greater than the first wavelength. In an example, the phosphorescent material can absorb energy at ultraviolet range wavelengths (e.g., 10 nm to 400 nm) and emit energy at visible range wavelengths (e.g., 400 nm to 700 nm). For example, the phosphorescent material can absorb blue photons and, after a time delay, emit green photons. The phosphorescent material can absorb optical energy (e.g., photons) at other wavelengths (or ranges of wavelengths) and emit optical energy at other wavelengths (or ranges of wavelengths), such as in the electromagnetic spectrum (e.g., infrared, visible, ultraviolet, x-rays, etc.) wherein the energy emitted is at a lower energy level than the energy absorbed. A rate of emission of optical energy by the phosphorescent material can be slower than a rate of absorption of optical energy by the phosphorescent material. An advantage of this difference in rate is the ability of the

phosphorescent material to release energy at a slower rate than absorbing such energy, thus storing the energy during such time delay.

[0094] The phosphorescent material 202 can be crystalline, solid, liquid, ceramic, in powder form, granular or other particle form, liquid form, or in any other shape, state, or form. The phosphorescent material can be long-lasting phosphors. In an example, the phosphorescent material can comprise strontium aluminate doped with europium (e.g., SrAl 2 0 4 :Eu). Some other examples of phosphorescent material can include, but are not limited to, zinc gallogermanates (e.g., Zn 3 Ga 2 Ge 2 Oio:0.5%Cr 3+ ), zinc sulfide doped with copper and/or cobalt (e.g., ZnS:Cu, Co), strontium aluminate doped with other dopants, such as europium, dysprosium, and/or boron (e.g., SrAl 2 0 4 :Eu 2+ , Dy 3+ ,B 3+ ), calcium aluminate doped with europium, dysprosium, and/or neodymium (e.g., CaAl 2 0 4 :Eu 2+ , Dy 3+ , Nd 3+ ), yttrium oxide sulfide doped with europium, magnesium, and/or titanium, (e.g., Y 2 0 2 S:Eu 3+ , Mg 2+ , Ti 4+ ), and zinc gallogermanates (e.g., Zn 3 Ga 2 Ge 2 0io:0.5%Cr 3+ ). In some instances, the phosphorescent material may be provided in granular or other particle form. Such grain or particle may have a maximum diameter of between about 1 and about 5 micrometer. In some instances, the grain or particle may have a maximum diameter of at least about 1.0, 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 1.6, 1.7, 1.8, 1.9, 2.0, 2.1, 2.2, 2.3,

2.4, 2.5, 2.6, 2.7, 2.8, 2.9, 3.0, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 3.4, 3.5, 3.6, 3.7, 3.8, 3.9, 4.0, 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.4, 4.5, 4.6, 4.7, 4.8, 4.9, 5.0 micrometers or more. Alternatively or in addition, the grain or particle may have a maximum diameter of at most about 5.0, 4.9, 4.8, 4.7, 4.6, 4.5, 4.4, 4.3, 4.2, 4.1, 4.0, 3.9, 3.8, 3.7, 3.6, 3.5, 3.4, 3.3, 3.2, 3.1, 3.0, 2.9, 2.8, 2.7, 2.6, 2.5, 2.4, 2.3, 2.2, 2.1, 2.0, 1.9, 1.8, 1.7,

1.6, 1.5, 1.4, 1.3, 1.2, 1.1, 1.0 micrometers or less.

[0095] In some instances, the afterglow (e.g., emitted optical energy) emitted by the

phosphorescent material can last at least about 1 hour (hr), 2 hr, 3 hr, 4 hr, 5 hr, 6 hr, 7 hr, 8 hr, 9 hr, 10 hr, 11 hr, 12 hr, 1 day, 2 days, 3 days, 4 days, 1 week, 2 weeks, 3 weeks, or longer. In some instances, the phosphorescent material can store and/or discharge energy for at least about 1 hr, 2 hr, 3 hr, 4 hr, 5 hr, 6 hr, 7 hr, 8 hr, 9 hr, 10 hr, 11 hr, 12 hr, 1 day, 2 days, 3 days, 4 days, 1 week, 2 weeks, 3 weeks, or longer. Alternatively, the afterglow emitted by the phosphorescent material (or energy stored by the phosphorescent material) can last for shorter durations.

[0096] In some instances, the phosphorescent material 202 may absorb optical energy at the first wavelength from any direction. In some instances, the phosphorescent material may emit optical energy at the second wavelength in any direction (e.g., from a surface of the phosphorescent material). [0097] The assembly 200 can comprise one or a plurality of photovoltaic cells (e.g., photovoltaic cell 203) that are electrically connected in series and/or in parallel. The photovoltaic cell 203 can be a panel, cell, module, and/or other unit. For example, a panel can comprise one or more cells all oriented in a plane of the panel and electrically connected in various configurations. For example, a module can comprise one or more cells electrically connected in various

configurations. The photovoltaic cell 203, or solar cell, can be configured to absorb optical energy and generate electrical power from the absorbed optical energy. In some instances, the photovoltaic cell can be configured to absorb optical energy at a wavelength or a range of wavelengths that is capable of being emitted by the phosphorescent material 202. The photovoltaic cell can have a single band gap that is tailored to the wavelength (or range of wavelengths) of the optical energy that is emitted by the phosphorescent material. Beneficially, this may increase the efficiency of the energy storage system of the photon battery assembly 200. For example, for strontium aluminate doped with europium as the phosphorescent material, the photovoltaic cell can have a band gap that is tailored to the green light wavelength (e.g.,

500-520 nm). Similarly, the light source 201 can be tailored to emit ultraviolet range

wavelengths (e.g., 20 nm to 400nm). Alternatively, the photovoltaic cell can be configured to absorb optical energy at other wavelengths (or ranges of wavelengths) in the electromagnetic spectrum (e.g., infrared, visible, ultraviolet, x-rays, etc.).

[0098] In some embodiments, organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) can replace the

phosphorescent material 202 in the photon battery assembly 200. In some embodiments, OLEDs can replace both the light source 201 and the phosphorescent material. OLEDs can be capable of electro-phosphorescence, where quasi particles in the lattice of the diodes store potential energy from an electric power source and release such energy over time in the form of optical energy at visible wavelengths (e.g., 400nm to 700nm). For example, OLEDs can be powered by an electrical power source, which may be external or internal to the photon battery assembly 200.

A light-emitting surface of the OLEDs can interface with a light-absorbing surface of the photovoltaic cell 203 to complete the photon battery assembly. For example, with OLEDs, the photovoltaic cell can have a band gap that is tailored to the visible wavelength range (e.g., 400-700 nm).

[0099] The photovoltaic cell 203 may have any thickness. For example, the photovoltaic cell may have a thickness of about 20 micrometers. In some instances, the photovoltaic cell may have a thickness of at least about 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, 100 micrometers or more. Alternatively, the photovoltaic cell may have a thickness of at most about 100, 90, 80, 70, 60, 50, 40, 30, 29, 28, 27, 26, 25, 24, 23, 22, 21, 20, 19, 18, 17, 16, 15, 14, 13, 12, 11, 10 micrometers or less.

[0100] FIG. 3 shows a photon battery in communication with an electrical load. The photon battery 301 can power an electrical load 302. The photon battery and the electrical load can be in electric communication, such as via an electric circuit. While FIG. 3 shows a circuit, the circuit configuration is not limited to the one shown in FIG. 3. The electrical load can be an electrical power consuming device. The electrical load can be an electrical system of the host vehicle, such as navigation, internal combustion engine hybrid motor control, battery

management, front radar for adaptive cruise control, engine cooling, fluid pump, emergency brake system, infotainment, window lifting, secure gateway, security, interior lighting, exterior lighting, monitoring (e.g., tire pressure monitoring), air suspension, cameras (front and rear cameras), self-parking, remote parking, and other electrical systems. The electrical load can be external to the host vehicle. The electrical load can be an electronic device, such as a personal computer (e.g., portable PC), slate or tablet PC (e.g., Apple® iPad, Samsung® Galaxy Tab), telephone, Smart phone (e.g., Apple® iPhone, Android-enabled device, Blackberry®), or personal digital assistant. The electronic device can be mobile or non-mobile. The electrical load can be a vehicle, such as an automobile, electric car, train, boat, or airplane. The electrical load can be a power grid. In some cases, the electrical load can be another battery or other energy storage system which is charged by the photon battery, such as the secondary energy storage system 104. In some instances, the photon battery can be integrated in the electrical load. In some instances, the photon battery can be permanently or detachably coupled to the electrical load. For example, the photon battery can be removable from the electrical load.

[0101] In some cases, a photon battery 301 can power a plurality of electrical loads in series or in parallel. In some cases, a photon battery can power a plurality of electrical loads

simultaneously. For example, the photon battery can power 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 or more electrical loads simultaneously. In some cases, a plurality of photon batteries, electrically connected in series or in parallel, can power an electrical load. In some cases, a combination of one or more photon batteries and one or more other types of energy storage systems (e.g., lithium ion battery, fuel cell, etc.) can power one or more electrical loads.

[0102] FIG. 4 shows an exemplary photon battery assembly in application. Any and all circuits illustrated in FIG. 4 are not limited to such circuitry configurations. A photon battery assembly 400 can be charged by a power source 404 and discharge power to an electrical load 406. For example, the power source 404 may be an energy harvesting system (e.g., 102) of the vehicle, such as a motor. The photon battery assembly can comprise a light source 401, such as a LED or a set of LEDs. The light source can be in electrical communication with the power source 404 through a port 405 of the light source. For example, the power source and the port 405 can be electrically connected via a circuit. The power source 404 may be external or internal to the photon battery assembly 400. The power source can be a power supplying device, such as another energy storage system (e.g., another photon battery, lithium ion battery, supercapacitor, fuel cell, etc.). The power source can be an electrical grid.

[0103] The light source 401 can receive electrical energy and emit optical energy at a first wavelength, such as via a light-emitting surface of the light source. The light-emitting surface can be adjacent to a phosphorescent material 402. The light source can be in optical

communication with the phosphorescent material. The phosphorescent material can be configured to absorb optical energy at the first wavelength and, after a time delay, emit optical energy at a second wavelength. In some cases, the rate of emission of the optical energy at the second wavelength can be slower than the rate of absorption of the optical energy at the first wavelength. An advantage of this difference in rate is the ability of the phosphorescent material to release energy at a slower rate than absorbing such energy, thus storing the energy during such time delay. In some instances, the phosphorescent material can store and/or discharge energy for at least about 1 hr, 2 hr, 3 hr, 4 hr, 5 hr, 6 hr, 7 hr, 8 hr, 9 hr, 10 hr, 11 hr, 12 hr, 1 day, 2 days, 3 days, 4 days, 1 week, 2 weeks, 3 weeks, or longer.

[0104] FIG. 14 illustrates examples of photon battery performance during discharge. Panel A illustrates a plot of intensity (in arbitrary units (a.u)) against wavelength (in nanometers (nm)) during discharge. The emission wavelength peaks between about 500 to 550 nm. Panel B illustrates a plot of intensity (in a.u) against time (in seconds (s)) during discharge, and Panel C illustrates an expanded view of the plot of Panel B. As illustrated in Panels B and C, the intensity of the phosphor light output goes down exponentially over time in a discharge decay curve. The total duration in which the total light energy is output may depend on the type of phosphorescent material. For example, depending on the phosphor, the total light energy (or substantially all of the light energy) is output relatively quickly or over a longer period of time. For a regenerative braking system described herein, the phosphorescent material may be selected to charge quickly and then discharge the majority of the captured energy over an approximately 3-5 minute period.

[0105] The total area under the decay curve, highlighted in Panel C, is the total amount of energy output during the discharge between about time t=0 and t=200 seconds. The

phosphorescent material may be selected such that the output discharged in the first 200 seconds is more than 50% of the total energy capacity of the photon battery (if fully charged or substantially fully charged). The State of Charge (SOC) of the photon battery may be between about 90% and 100% to discharge the 50% of energy in about 200 seconds. For the purpose of recapturing energy in a regenerative braking event and then reusing it over the following 200 seconds, the photon battery assembly 400 may already have a SOC of greater than 50% (prior to charging). Once charged, for example to between about 90% and 100% of capacity, the energy input may be discharged in the next 200 seconds. That is, the regenerative braking system may make use of only about 50% of the full capacity of the photon battery. The photon battery may have a total energy capacity that is about twice the total amount of energy that is required (or desired) to be stored during a single braking event. The SOC of the photon battery can also be controlled by the secondary energy storage system (e.g., 104) electrically coupled to the photon battery (e.g., 103). Alternatively, the photon battery may have a total energy capacity that is at least about 0.5, 0.6, 0.7, 0.8, 0.9, 1, 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 1.6, 1.7, 1.8, 1.9, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9,

10 times or greater than the total amount of energy that is required (or desired) to be stored during a single braking event. Alternatively, the photon battery may have a total energy capacity that is less than about 0.5 times the total amount of energy that is required (or desired) to be store during a single braking event.

[0106] Referring back to FIG. 4, the photon battery assembly can comprise a photovoltaic cell 403. The photovoltaic cell can be configured to absorb optical energy at the second wavelength, such as via a light-absorbing surface of the photovoltaic cell. The photovoltaic cell can be in optical communication with the phosphorescent material 402. The light-absorbing surface of the photovoltaic cell can be adjacent to the phosphorescent material. The photovoltaic cell can generate electrical power from the optical energy absorbed. The electrical power generated by the photovoltaic cell can be used to power an electrical load 406. The photovoltaic cell can be in electrical communication with the electrical load through a port 407 of the photovoltaic cell. For example, the electrical load and the port 407 can be electrically connected via a circuit.

[0107] The energy stored by the photon battery assembly 400 can be charged and/or recharged multiple times. The power generated by the photon battery assembly can be consumed multiple times. The photon battery assembly can be charged and/or recharged by supplying electrical energy (or power) to the light source 401, such as through the port 405. The photon battery assembly 400 can discharge power by directing electrical power generated by the photovoltaic cell to the electrical load 406, such as through the port 407. For example, the photon battery assembly 400 can last (e.g., function for) at least 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 100, 500, 1000, 10 4 , 10 5 , 10 6 , or more recharge (or consumption) cycles. [0108] The photon battery assembly 400 may provide superior charging rates to those of conventional chemical batteries, for example, on the order of 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, 100 times faster or more. For example, the photon battery assembly can charge at a speed of at least about 800 watts per cubic centimeters (W/cc), 850 W/cc, 900 W/cc, 1000 W/cc, 1050 W/cc, 1100 W/cc, 1150 W/cc, 1200 W/cc, 1250 W/cc, 1400 W/cc, 1350 W/cc, 1400 W/cc, 1450 W/cc, 1500 W/cc or greater. Alternatively, the photon battery assembly can charge at a speed of less than about 800 W/cc. The photon battery assembly may provide superior lifetimes to those of conventional chemical batteries, for example, on the order of 2, 3,

4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 times more recharge cycles or more.

[0109] The photon battery assembly 400 may be stable and function effectively in relatively cold operating temperature conditions. For example, the photon battery assembly may function stably in operating temperatures as low as about -55° Celsius (°C) and as high as about 65°C.

The photon battery assembly may function stably in operating temperatures lower than about - 55°C and higher than about 65 °C. In some instances, the photon battery assembly may function stably under any operating temperatures for which the light source (e.g., LEDs) functions stably. The photon battery assembly may not generate excess operating heat. In some cases, an active cooling system already on board the host vehicle can be used to maintain the temperature of the photon battery assembly. Alternatively or in addition, the photon battery assembly may be regulated with a passive cooling system (e.g., heat sink). The photon battery assembly may be capable of cooling between charging cycles.

[0110] FIG. 5A illustrates a photon battery assembly with a waveguide. A photon battery assembly 500 can comprise a light source 501, a phosphorescent material 502, a photovoltaic cell (not shown), and a waveguide 504. The waveguide may be adjacent to the light source and the phosphorescent material. For example, the waveguide may be sandwiched by the light source and the phosphorescent material. In other examples, as shown in FIG. 5A, some surfaces of the waveguide may be adjacent to the phosphorescent material and some surfaces of the waveguide may be adjacent to the light source. In some instances, additionally, the waveguide may be adjacent to the photovoltaic cell. The configuration of the photon battery assembly with the waveguide is not limited to FIG. 5A.

[0111] Regardless of contact between the phosphorescent material 502 and waveguide 504, the phosphorescent material and the waveguide may be in optical communication. Regardless of contact between the light source 501 and waveguide, the light source and the waveguide may be in optical communication. In some instances, regardless of contact between the photovoltaic cell and waveguide, the photovoltaic cell and the waveguide may be in optical communication. [0112] The waveguide 504 may or may not be contacting the light source 501. If the waveguide and the light source are in contact, the waveguide can interface a light-emitting surface of the light source. The waveguide and the light source can be coupled or fastened together at the interface, such as via a fastening mechanism. In some instances, a support carrying the light source and/or a support carrying the waveguide may be coupled or fastened together at the interface. Examples of fastening mechanisms may include, but are not limited to, form-fitting pairs, hooks and loops, latches, staples, clips, clamps, prongs, rings, brads, rubber bands, rivets, grommets, pins, ties, snaps, velcro, adhesives, tapes, a combination thereof, or any other types of fastening mechanisms. In some instances, the waveguide may have adhesive and/or cohesive properties and adhere to the light source without an independent fastening mechanism. The waveguide and the light source can be permanently or detachably fastened together. For example, the waveguide and the light source can be disassembled from and reassembled into the photon battery assembly 500 without damage (or with minimal damage) to waveguide and/or the light source. Alternatively, while in contact, the waveguide and the light source may not be fastened together.

[0113] If the waveguide 504 and the light source 501 are not in contact, the waveguide can otherwise be in optical communication with a light-emitting surface of the light source. For example, the waveguide can be positioned in an optical path of light emitted by the light- emitting surface of the light source. In some instances, there can be an air gap between the waveguide and the light source. In some instances, there can be another intermediary layer, such as a solid material (e.g., glass, plastic, etc.) and/or another waveguide, between the waveguide and the light source. The intermediary layer can be air and/or other fluid. The intermediary layer can be a light guide or another layer of optical elements (e.g., lens, reflector, diffusor, beam splitter, etc.). In some instances, there can be a plurality of intermediary layers between the waveguide and the light source. In some instances, the waveguide may be in optical

communication with one or more surfaces of the waveguide. For example, the light source may comprise an array and/or row of LEDs that are in optical communication with one or more surfaces of the waveguide. The waveguide may receive light from the light source from any surface. In some instances, a surface of the waveguide in optical communication with a surface of a light source may be parallel, perpendicular, or at any angle whether in direct contact or not in contact. Either or both surfaces may be flat. Either or both surfaces may be angled and/or have a curvature (e.g., convex, concave). Either or both surfaces may have any surface profile.

[0114] The waveguide 504 may or may not be contacting the phosphorescent material 502. If the waveguide and the phosphorescent material are in contact, the waveguide can interface a light-absorbing surface of the phosphorescent material. The waveguide and the phosphorescent material can be coupled or fastened together at the interface, such as via a fastening mechanism. In some instances, a support carrying the phosphorescent material and/or a support carrying the waveguide may be coupled or fastened together at the interface. Examples of fastening mechanisms may include, but are not limited to, form-fitting pairs, hooks and loops, latches, staples, clips, clamps, prongs, rings, brads, rubber bands, rivets, grommets, pins, ties, snaps, velcro, adhesives, tapes, a combination thereof, or any other types of fastening mechanisms. In some instances, the waveguide may have adhesive and/or cohesive properties and adhere to the phosphorescent material without an independent fastening mechanism. In some instances, the phosphorescent material may have adhesive and/or cohesive properties and adhere to the waveguide without an independent fastening mechanism. For example, the phosphorescent material may be painted or coated on a light-emitting surface of the waveguide. The waveguide and the phosphorescent material can be permanently or detachably fastened together. For example, the waveguide and the phosphorescent material can be disassembled from and reassembled into the photon battery assembly 500 without damage (or with minimal damage) to waveguide and/or the phosphorescent material. Alternatively, while in contact, the waveguide and the phosphorescent material may not be fastened together.

[0115] If the waveguide 504 and the phosphorescent material 502 are not in contact, the waveguide can otherwise be in optical communication with a light-absorbing surface of the phosphorescent material. For example, the phosphorescent material can be positioned in an optical path of light emitted by the light-emitting surface of the waveguide. In some instances, there can be an air gap between the waveguide and the phosphorescent material. In some instances, there can be another intermediary layer, such as another waveguide, between the waveguide and the phosphorescent material. The intermediary layer can be air or other fluid.

The intermediary layer can be a light guide or another layer of optical elements (e.g., lens, reflector, diffusor, beam splitter, etc.). In some instances, there can be a plurality of intermediary layers between the waveguide and the phosphorescent material. In some instances, the waveguide may be in optical communication with one or more surfaces of the phosphorescent material. The phosphorescent material may receive light from the waveguide from any surface. In some instances, a surface of the waveguide in optical communication with a surface of a phosphorescent material may be parallel, perpendicular, or at any angle, whether in direct contact or not in contact. Either or both surfaces may be flat. Either or both surfaces may be angled and/or have a curvature (e.g., convex, concave). Either or both surfaces may have any surface profile. [0116] The waveguide 504 may be configured to direct waves at a first wavelength emitted from the light source 501 to the phosphorescent material 502. Beneficially, the waveguide may deliver optical energy from the light source to the phosphorescent material with great efficiency and minimal loss of optical energy (or other forms of energy). The waveguide may provide optical communication between the light source and distributed volumes of the phosphorescent material where otherwise some volumes of phosphorescent material would not be in optical communication with the light source, allowing for flexible arrangements of the light source relative to the phosphorescent material. For example, without waveguides, the optical energy at the first wavelength emitted from the light source may be absorbed most efficiently by the immediately adjacent volume of phosphorescent material (relative to the light source or otherwise in immediate optical communication with the light source), such as at the

phosphorescent material-light source interface. However, once such immediately adjacent phosphorescent material absorbs the optical energy at the first wavelength, it may no longer have capacity to receive further optical energy and/or prevent other volumes of phosphorescent material (further downstream in the optical path) from absorbing such optical energy. While large surface area interface between the phosphorescent material and the light source may facilitate efficient optical energy delivery from the light source to the phosphorescent material, this may be impractical when constructing compact energy storage systems. By implementing waveguides to facilitate optical communication between the light source and the phosphorescent material, different volumes of the phosphorescent material may evenly absorb the optical energy from the light source even if such phosphorescent material and the light source are not immediately adjacent.

[0117] The waveguide 504 may have a maximum dimension (e.g., width, length, height, radius, diameter, etc.) of at least about 10 micrometers, 20 micrometers, 30 micrometers, 40

micrometers, 50 micrometers, 60 micrometers, 70 micrometers, 80 micrometers, 90

micrometers, 100 micrometers, 200 micrometers, 300 micrometers, 400 micrometers, 500 micrometers, 600 micrometers, 700 micrometers, 800 micrometers, 900 micrometers, 1 millimeter (mm), 2 mm, 3 mm, 4 mm, 5 mm, 6 mm, 7 mm, 8 mm, 9 mm, 1 centimeter (cm), 2 cm, 3 cm, 4 cm, 5 cm, 10 cm, 15 cm, 20 cm, 30 cm, 40 cm, 50 cm or more. Alternatively or in addition, the waveguide may have a maximum dimension of at most about 50 cm, 40 cm, 30 cm, 20 cm, 15 cm, 10 cm, 5 cm, 4 cm, 3 cm, 2 cm, 1 cm, 9 mm, 8 mm, 7 mm, 6 mm, 5 mm, 4 mm, 3 mm, 2 mm, 1 mm , 900 micrometers, 800 micrometers, 700 micrometers, 600 micrometers, 500 micrometers, 400 micrometers, 300 micrometers, 200 micrometers, 100 micrometers, 90 micrometers, 80 micrometers, 70 micrometers, 60 micrometers, 50 micrometers, 40 micrometers, 30 micrometers, 20 micrometers, 10 micrometers, or less. The waveguide may be square, rectangular (e.g., having an aspect ratio for length to width of about 1 : 1.1, 1 : 1.2, 1 : 1.3, 1 : 1.4, 1 : 1.5, 1 : 1.6, 1 : 1.7, 1 : 1.8, 1 : 1.9, 1 :2, 1 :3, 1 :4, 1 :5, 1 : 10, etc.), or any other shape. The waveguide may comprise material such as plastic or glass. The waveguide may comprise material used in an injection mold.

[0118] For example, in FIG. 5A, the optical energy emitted from the light source 501 is directed through the layer of waveguide 504 to reach various locations of the phosphorescent material 502. As described elsewhere herein, after a time delay, the phosphorescent material 502 may emit optical energy at the second wavelength for absorption by a photovoltaic cell (not shown). The waveguide may comprise one or more reflective surfaces 505 to direct waves from the light source to the phosphorescent material. The one or more reflective surfaces may have

increasingly large reflective surfaces in the optical path within the waveguide to allow some waves to be reflected at a first reflective surface for excitation of a first volume of

phosphorescent material, and some waves to travel further before being reflected at a second reflective surface for excitation of a second volume of phosphorescent material that is further from the light source than the first volume, and some waves to travel further before being reflected at a third reflective surface for excitation of a third volume of phosphorescent material that is further than the second volume, and so on. There may be any number of reflective surfaces in the waveguide. For example, there may be at least about 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, 100, 200, 300, 400, 500, or more reflective surfaces. Alternatively or in addition, a single reflective surface may gradually increase surface area, such as in a conical shape, in the optical path within the waveguide to achieve a similar outcome.

[0119] In some instances, the waveguide may be adjacent to the phosphorescent material from a first surface, and adjacent to the light source from a second surface, wherein the first surface and the second surface are substantially orthogonal. The one or more reflective surfaces may be configured to direct waves in a substantially orthogonal direction such as to receive from the light source from the second surface and to transmit through the first surface. Alternatively or in addition, the first surface and the second surface may be at any other angle and the one or more reflective surfaces may be configured to direct waves in the other angle, such as to receive from the light source from the second surface and to transmit through the first surface. As illustrated in FIG. 5A, the waveguide may be adjacent to a plurality of layers of phosphorescent material (e.g., interfacing different surfaces of the waveguide). The one or more reflective surfaces may be configured to direct waves received from the light source to the plurality of layers of phosphorescent material by reflecting the waves (e.g., light) to the plurality of layers. [0120] In some instances, the waveguide may be coated at one or more surfaces. Otherwise, the waveguide may be adjacent to and/or in contact with another layer at one or more surfaces. For example, the waveguide may be coated at one or more surfaces that interfaces the

phosphorescent material 502. An example coating configuration is shown in FIG. 5B. A photon battery assembly can comprise a light source (not shown), a phosphorescent material 552, a photovoltaic cell 553, and a waveguide 551, which has a coating 554 on one or more of its surfaces that interfaces the phosphorescent material. The waveguide may be adjacent to the light source and the phosphorescent material, as described elsewhere herein.

[0121] The coating 554 may be disposed between the waveguide 551 and the phosphorescent material 552. In some instances, all surfaces of the waveguide interfacing (or in optical communication with) the phosphorescent material may be covered by the coating. In other instances, a portion of the surfaces interfacing (or in optical communication with) the

phosphorescent material may be covered by the coating and a portion of the surfaces interfacing (or in optical communication with) the phosphorescent material may not be covered by the coating. For example, such surfaces may be uncovered by anything and in direct optical communication with the phosphorescent material, or be covered by another coating or another layer (e.g., glass, another waveguide, etc.) and be in optical communication with the

phosphorescent material through the other coating or other layer. In some instances, the other layer can be a light guide or another layer of optical elements (e.g., lens, reflector, diffusor, beam splitter, etc.). In some instances, there may be a plurality of layers between the waveguide 551 and the phosphorescent material 552, including the coating 554. For example, the plurality of layers may include an air gap or other fluid gap, a solid layer (e.g., glass, plastic.), other optical elements (e.g., lens, reflector, diffusor, beam splitter, etc.), and/or any other layer, in any combination, and arranged in any order or sequence. Regardless of coating or waveguide configuration, the phosphorescent material 552 and the waveguide 551 may be in optical communication.

[0122] The waveguide 504 may or may not be contacting the coating 554. The waveguide and the coating can be coupled or fastened together at the interface, such as via a fastening mechanism. In some instances, a support carrying the coating and/or a support carrying the waveguide may be coupled or fastened together at the interface. Examples of fastening mechanisms may include, but are not limited to, form-fitting pairs, hooks and loops, latches, staples, clips, clamps, prongs, rings, brads, rubber bands, rivets, grommets, pins, ties, snaps, velcro, adhesives, tapes, a combination thereof, or any other types of fastening mechanisms. In some instances, the coating may have adhesive and/or cohesive properties and adhere to the waveguide without an independent fastening mechanism. In some instances, the waveguide may have adhesive and/or cohesive properties and adhere to the coating without an independent fastening mechanism. For example, the coating may be painted or coated on a surface of the waveguide. The waveguide and the coating can be permanently or detachably fastened together. For example, the waveguide and the coating can be disassembled from and reassembled into the photon battery assembly without damage (or with minimal damage) to waveguide and/or the coating. Alternatively, while in contact, the waveguide and the coating may not be fastened together.

[0123] The coating 554 may be a dichroic coating or comprise other optical filter(s). For example, the coating may be configured to allow waves at certain first wavelength(s) (e.g., longer wavelength) in to excite the phosphorescent material 552, but reflect the waves at certain second wavelength(s) (e.g., shorter wavelength). For example, waves with longer wavelength(s) may be allowed to reach the phosphorescent material through the coating, and waves with shorter wavelengths(s) emitted by the phosphorescent material may be reflected by the coating and kept within the phosphorescent material layer to (i) increase the likelihood that such waves with shorter wavelengths are incident upon the photovoltaic cell 553, and (ii) prevent such waves from entering the waveguide 551 and generating undesired heat.

[0124] The coating 554 may have any thickness. For example, the coating may be between 0.5 micrometers and 5 micrometers. In some instances, the coating may be at least about 0.5, 0.6,

0.7, 0.8, 0.9, 1.0, 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 1.6, 1.7, 1.8, 1.9, 2.0, 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 2.4, 2.5, 2.6, 2.7, 2.8, 2.9, 3.0, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 3.4, 3.5, 3.6, 3.7, 3.8, 3.9, 4.0, 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.4, 4.5, 4.6, 4.7, 4.8, 4.9, 5.0 micrometers or more in thickness. Alternatively or in addition, the coating may be at most about

5.0, 4.9, 4.8, 4.7, 4.6, 4.5, 4.4, 4.3, 4.2, 4.1, 4.0, 3.9, 3.8, 3.7, 3.6, 3.5, 3.4, 3.3, 3.2, 3.1, 3.0, 2.9, 2.8, 2.7, 2.6, 2.5, 2.4, 2.3, 2.2, 2.1, 2.0, 1.9, 1.8, 1.7, 1.6, 1.5, 1.4, 1.3, 1.2, 1.1, 1.0, 0.9, 0.8, 0.7, 0.6, 0.5 micrometers or less in thickness.

[0125] Alternatively or in addition to the coating 554, the waveguide 551 may comprise a surface feature 555 (or multiple features) to facilitate the direction of waves towards a certain direction, and/or increase the uniformity of the direction in which waves are directed. For example, one or more surfaces of the waveguide may comprise physical structures or features, such as grooves, troughs, indentations, hills, pillars, walls, and/or other structures or features. In an example, a bottom surface of the waveguide may comprise one or more grooves formed inwards the waveguide such that waves from the light source are uniformly reflected in a direction towards the phosphorescent material to excite the phosphorescent material. Such grooves (and/or other physical structures or features) may be patterned into the waveguide. The patterns may be regular or irregular. For example, the grooves may be spaced at regular intervals or irregularly spaced. In some instances, such grooves (and/or other physical structures or features) may be discrete features. The physical structure or feature may be formed by any mechanism, such as mechanical machining. In some instances, diamond turning can be used to etch or cut the physical structures or features (e.g., grooves) into the waveguide. In some instances, one or more physical features may be integral to the waveguide. In some instances, one or more physical features may be external to, and/or otherwise coupled/attached to the waveguide by any fastening mechanism described elsewhere herein. Alternatively or in addition to the coating 554 and/or the surface feature 555, the waveguide 551 may further comprise surface marking to facilitate the direction of waves towards a certain direction. For example, one or more surfaces of the waveguide may comprise painted markings having certain optical properties that facilitating the scattering of waves in a certain direction. For example, such painted markings may be white painted dots that facilitate scatter of light towards the

phosphorescent material to excite the phosphorescent material. The waveguide may comprise any number of such painted dots (or other surface markings). The waveguide may comprise any type of painted markings, including other colored dots. The markings may form a pattern. The patterns may be regular or irregular. For example, the dots may be spaced at regular intervals or irregularly spaced. In some instances, such dots may be discrete markings.

[0126] Any of the photon battery assemblies described herein may comprise a waveguide in optical communication with an optical filter, such as the dichroic coating described with respect to FIG. 5B, or comprise a waveguide comprising the physical features and/or markings described with respect to FIG. 5B. For example, the photon battery assembly 100 of FIG. 1 may comprise a waveguide (not shown) in optical communication with a coating disposed between the waveguide and the phosphorescent material 102. For example, the photon battery assembly 500 of FIG. 5A may comprise a coating disposed between the waveguide 504 and the phosphorescent material 502.

[0127] Referring back to FIG. 5A, in some instances, alternative to or in addition to the light source 501, the photon battery assembly 500 may be charged (or the phosphorescent material excited) wirelessly.

[0128] FIG. 5C illustrates a wireless charging system. In some embodiments, a photon battery assembly 572 can comprise the phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell, without having the light source integrated in the photon battery assembly. Optionally, the photon battery assembly may comprise any waveguide (e.g., waveguide 504) or waveguide system as described elsewhere herein. The photon battery assembly 572 may be portable and/or mobile, such as via a vehicle 571. For example, the photon battery assembly may be integrated in the vehicle. A light source 573 can be remote and detached from the other components of the photon battery assembly 572. For example, the photon battery assembly may be entirely portable and/or mobile with respect to the light source. In some instances, the photon battery assembly may comprise an integrated light source, separate from the remote light source 573. For example, such integrated light source may be electrically coupled to and at least partially powered by an integrated mechanical energy harvesting system (e.g., from regenerative braking) of the vehicle. The integrated light source and the remote light source may be the same type of light source (e.g., LED, laser, etc.). The integrated light source and the remote light source may be different types of light sources. In some instances, the integrated light source and the remote light source may be configured to emit optical energy at substantially the same wavelength. In some instances, the integrated light source and the remote light source may be configured to emit optical energy at different wavelengths.

[0129] The light source 573 may be driven by a power source that is separate and/or detached from the photon battery assembly that it charges. The light source may be stationary. The light source may be portable and/or mobile. Such remote light source can be configured to provide optical energy to the assembly 572 to achieve wireless charging of the assembly. Regardless of where the light source is disposed with respect to the assembly, the light source may be in optical communication with the waveguide and/or the phosphorescent material in the assembly to provide optical energy for excitation of the phosphorescent material. For example, the photon battery assembly may be located in the vehicle 571 where the phosphorescent material, waveguide, and/or other optical elements are in optical communication (e.g., via a window, openly exposed, etc.) with, or otherwise accessible for optical communication with (e.g., accessible upon opening a door to expose a window to the assembly or openly expose the assembly, etc.) the remote light source 573. In some instances, a photon battery assembly configuration may maximize (or otherwise) increase the exposed surface area of one or more waveguides and/or the phosphorescent material to facilitate wireless charging.

[0130] The remote light source 573 can be configured to provide optical energy at a higher energy level than the optical energy emitted by the phosphorescent material in the battery assembly. For example, where the phosphorescent material is strontium aluminate, the remote light source may provide optical energy at wavelengths that is shorter than the emission wavelength of about 520 nanometers. For example, the remote light source may provide waves at wavelengths between about 300 nanometers to about 470 nanometers. The remote light source may provide such optical energy via LED, lasers, or other optical beams, as described elsewhere herein. Beneficially, the compactness and the transportability of the photon battery assemblies described herein may be greatly increased by allowing for wireless charging.

Further, such wireless charging may allow for fast charging, optical charging, and on-demand charging, as well as benefit from the general widespread availability of charging sources (e.g., availability of light sources). Any of the photon battery assemblies described herein may be configured for wireless charging, either in addition to wired (e.g., integrated) light source charging, or alternative to integrated light source charging.

[0131] FIG. 5D illustrates another example of a wireless charging system including a connector tool. In some instances, a connector tool 574 may be used to optically connect the remote light source 573 with the photon battery assembly 572 to facilitate optical communication between the remote light source and the phosphorescent tool. For example, the connector tool 574 may be, or comprise, one or more waveguides. The connector tool may be entirely or partially substantially rigid. The connector tool may be entirely or partially substantially flexible. The connector tool may be substantially rigid in part and substantially flexible in part. The connector tool may shield or reduce the optical energy from escaping between the light source and the

phosphorescent tool. FIG. 5E illustrates another example of a wireless charging system including another connector tool. In some instances, a connector tool 575 may allow a user to bring the remote light source 573 disposed at or near one end of the tool closer to the photon battery assembly 572 to facilitate optical communication between the remote light source and the phosphorescent tool. For example, the connector tool 574 may be connected to a power source 576 (which may or may not itself be stationary). The connector tool may be entirely or partially substantially rigid. The connector tool may be entirely or partially substantially flexible. The connector tool may be substantially rigid in part and substantially flexible in part. The connector tools described herein may be configured to removably couple to a corresponding structure in the photon battery assembly, such as its supporting structure or in the vehicle 571.

[0132] The wireless charging systems described herein may be conveniently implemented in charging stations for electronics that integrate or otherwise apply the photon battery assemblies described herein. For example, a vehicle (e.g., 571) integrating a photon battery assembly may be charged at a wireless charging station, such as a dedicated charging station, a toll booth, a drive-thru, or any convenient location where a charging station can be set up. For example, another electronic device (e.g., cellphone, tablet, computer, etc.) integrating a photon battery assembly may be charged at a wireless charging station, such as a dedicated charging station, desktop docking station, desktop surface, or any convenient location where a charging station can be set up. [0133] In some instances, a photon battery assembly may be charged while it is stationary relative to a remote light source. In some instances, a photon battery assembly may be charged while it is undergoing motion relative to a remote light source, or while the remote light source is undergoing motion relative to the photon battery assembly. In some instances, a photon battery assembly may be charged from multiple light sources simultaneously (some or all of which may or may not be remote to the phosphorescent material). In some instances, a photon battery assembly may be charged from multiple light sources sequentially, for example, continuously, such that it is charged by a first light source and then by a second light source without interruption. Alternatively, a photon battery assembly may be assembly may be charged from multiple light sources sequentially, with time intervals between different light sources. In examples, where a photon assembly is integrated in a vehicle, charging may occur while the vehicle is parked or while the vehicle is in motion, by having the photon battery assembly in the vehicle be in optical communication with a remote light source (or multiple light sources). For example, in some cases, a remote light source and/or a plurality of remote light sources may be installed along a road (e.g., integrated in a road surface, installed as a lamp near the road surface, installed in a side support, etc.), and a vehicle may be charged while it is parked on or adjacent to, or while driving on or adjacent to, the road by allowing the photon battery assembly to be in optical communication with the remote light source and/or the plurality of remote light sources.

[0134] FIG. 6 illustrates another photon battery assembly with a waveguide. A photon battery assembly 600 can comprise a light source (not shown), a phosphorescent material 602, a photovoltaic cell 603, and a waveguide 606. The waveguide may be adjacent to the photovoltaic cell and the phosphorescent material. For example, the waveguide may be sandwiched by the photovoltaic cell and the phosphorescent material. In other examples, as shown in FIG. 6, some surfaces of the waveguide may be adjacent to the phosphorescent material and some surfaces of the waveguide may be adjacent to the photovoltaic cell. In some instances, additionally, the waveguide may be adjacent to the light source. The configuration of the photon battery assembly with the waveguide is not limited to FIG. 6.

[0135] Regardless of contact between the phosphorescent material 602 and waveguide 606, the phosphorescent material and the waveguide may be in optical communication. Regardless of contact between the photovoltaic cell 603 and waveguide, the photovoltaic cell and the waveguide may be in optical communication. In some instances, regardless of contact between the light source and waveguide, the light source and the waveguide may be in optical

communication. [0136] The waveguide 606 may or may not be contacting the photovoltaic cell 603. If the waveguide and the photovoltaic cell are in contact, the waveguide can interface a light-absorbing surface of the photovoltaic cell. The waveguide and the photovoltaic cell can be coupled or fastened together at the interface, such as via a fastening mechanism. In some instances, a support carrying the photovoltaic cell and/or a support carrying the waveguide may be coupled or fastened together at the interface. Examples of fastening mechanisms may include, but are not limited to, form-fitting pairs, hooks and loops, latches, staples, clips, clamps, prongs, rings, brads, rubber bands, rivets, grommets, pins, ties, snaps, velcro, adhesives, tapes, a combination thereof, or any other types of fastening mechanisms. In some instances, the waveguide may have adhesive and/or cohesive properties and adhere to the photovoltaic cell without an independent fastening mechanism. The waveguide and the photovoltaic cell can be permanently or detachably fastened together. For example, the waveguide and the photovoltaic cell can be disassembled from and reassembled into the photon battery assembly 600 without damage (or with minimal damage) to waveguide and/or the photovoltaic cell. Alternatively, while in contact, the waveguide and the photovoltaic cell may not be fastened together.

[0137] If the waveguide 606 and the photovoltaic cell 603 are not in contact, the waveguide can otherwise be in optical communication with a light-emitting surface of the photovoltaic cell. For example, the photovoltaic cell can be positioned in an optical path of light emitted by a light- emitting surface of the waveguide. In some instances, there can be an air gap between the waveguide and the photovoltaic cell. In some instances, there can be another intermediary layer, such as another waveguide, between the waveguide and the photovoltaic cell. The intermediary layer can be air or other fluid. The intermediary layer can be a light guide or another layer of optical elements (e.g., lens, reflector, diffusor, beam splitter, etc.). In some instances, there can be a plurality of intermediary layers between the waveguide and the photovoltaic cell.

[0138] The waveguide 606 may or may not be contacting the phosphorescent material 602. If the waveguide and the phosphorescent material are in contact, the waveguide can interface a light-emitting surface of the phosphorescent material. The waveguide and the phosphorescent material can be coupled or fastened together at the interface, such as via a fastening mechanism. In some instances, a support carrying the phosphorescent material and/or a support carrying the waveguide may be coupled or fastened together at the interface. Examples of fastening mechanisms may include, but are not limited to, form-fitting pairs, hooks and loops, latches, staples, clips, clamps, prongs, rings, brads, rubber bands, rivets, grommets, pins, ties, snaps, velcro, adhesives, tapes, a combination thereof, or any other types of fastening mechanisms. In some instances, the waveguide may have adhesive and/or cohesive properties and adhere to the phosphorescent material without an independent fastening mechanism. In some instances, the phosphorescent material may have adhesive and/or cohesive properties and adhere to the waveguide without an independent fastening mechanism. For example, the phosphorescent material may be painted or coated on the waveguide. The waveguide and the phosphorescent material can be permanently or detachably fastened together. For example, the waveguide and the phosphorescent material can be disassembled from and reassembled into the photon battery assembly 600 without damage (or with minimal damage) to waveguide and/or the

phosphorescent material. Alternatively, while in contact, the waveguide and the phosphorescent material may not be fastened together.

[0139] If the waveguide 606 and the phosphorescent material 602 are not in contact, the waveguide can otherwise be in optical communication with a light-emitting surface of the phosphorescent material. In some instances, there can be another intermediary layer, such as another waveguide, between the waveguide and the phosphorescent material. The intermediary layer can be air or other fluid. The intermediary layer can be a light guide or another layer of optical elements (e.g., lens, reflector, diffusor, beam splitter, etc.). In some instances, there can be a plurality of intermediary layers between the waveguide and the phosphorescent material.

[0140] The waveguide 606 may be configured to direct waves at a second wavelength emitted from the phosphorescent material 602 to the photovoltaic cell 603. Beneficially, the waveguide may deliver optical energy from the phosphorescent material to the photovoltaic cell with great efficiency and minimal loss of optical energy (or other forms of energy). The phosphorescent material may emit optical energy at the second wavelength without directional specificity, such as in isotropic emission. The waveguide may provide optical communication between the photovoltaic cell and distributed volumes of the phosphorescent material where otherwise some volumes of phosphorescent material would not be in optical communication with the

photovoltaic cell, allowing for flexible arrangements of the photovoltaic cell relative to the phosphorescent material. For example, without waveguides, the optical energy at the second wavelength emitted from the phosphorescent material may be absorbed most efficiently by the immediately adjacent light absorbing surface of the photovoltaic cell, if it reaches the photovoltaic cell at all. The optical energy that is emitted away from the light absorbing surface of the photovoltaic cell may be lost in the process. While large surface area interface between the phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell may facilitate efficient optical energy delivery from the phosphorescent material to the photovoltaic cell, this may be impractical and expensive when constructing compact energy storage systems. By implementing waveguides to facilitate optical communication between the photovoltaic cell and the phosphorescent material, the photovoltaic cell may efficiently absorb the optical energy from the phosphorescent material even if they are not immediately adjacent.

[0141] The waveguide 606 may have a maximum dimension (e.g., width, length, height, radius, diameter, etc.) of at least about 1 millimeter (mm), 2 mm, 3 mm, 4 mm, 5 mm, 6 mm, 7 mm, 8 mm, 9 mm, 1 centimeter (cm), 2 cm, 3 cm, 4 cm, 5 cm, 10 cm, 15 cm, 20 cm, 30 cm, 40 cm, 50 cm or more. Alternatively or in addition, the waveguide may have a maximum dimension of at most about 50 cm, 40 cm, 30 cm, 20 cm, 15 cm, 10 cm, 5 cm, 4 cm, 3 cm, 2 cm, 1 cm, 9 mm, 8 mm, 7 mm, 6 mm, 5 mm, 4 mm, 3 mm, 2 mm, 1 mm or less. The waveguide may be square, rectangular (e.g., having an aspect ratio for length to width of about 1 : 1.1, 1 : 1.2, 1 : 1.3, 1 : 1.4, 1 : 1.5, 1 : 1.6, 1 : 1.7, 1 : 1.8, 1 : 1.9, 1 :2, 1 :3, 1 :4, 1 :5, 1 : 10, etc.), or any other shape. The waveguide may comprise material such as plastic or glass. The waveguide may comprise material used in an injection mold.

[0142] For example, in FIG. 6, the optical energy emitted from the phosphorescent material 602 is directed through the layer of waveguide 606 to reach the photovoltaic cell 603. As described elsewhere herein, the phosphorescent material 602 may have absorbed optical energy at the first wavelength from a light source (not shown), such as in the configuration illustrated in FIG. 5. The waveguide 606 may have a refractive index such as to allow for total internal reflection of the optical wave at the second wavelength within the waveguide 606 until such optical energy is transmitted to the photovoltaic cell 603. The waveguide may have a lower refractive index than any adjacent layer to the waveguide. In some instances, the waveguide may be adjacent to the phosphorescent material from a first surface, and adjacent to the photovoltaic cell from a second surface, wherein the first surface and the second surface are substantially orthogonal. In some instances, the waveguide may be adjacent to a plurality of layers of phosphorescent material (e.g., interfacing different surfaces of the waveguide), and configured to direct waves received from the plurality of layers of phosphorescent material to the photovoltaic cell.

[0143] FIG. 7 illustrates another photon battery assembly with waveguides. A photon battery assembly 700 can comprise a light source 701, a phosphorescent material 702, a photovoltaic cell 703, a first waveguide 704, and a second waveguide 706. In some instances, the first waveguide 704 may correspond to the waveguide 504 described with respect to FIG.5. In some instances, the second waveguide 706 may correspond to the waveguide 606 described with respect to FIG. 6.

[0144] The photon battery assembly 700 may be constructed such that the first waveguide 704 is adjacent to the second waveguide 706, and the second waveguide is adjacent to the

phosphorescent material 702. The first waveguide and the phosphorescent material may each be adjacent to two surfaces of the second waveguide that are substantially parallel. The first waveguide may be adjacent to the light source 701. The light source and the second waveguide may be adjacent to two surfaces of the first waveguide that are substantially orthogonal. The second waveguide may be adjacent to the photovoltaic cell 703. The photovoltaic cell and the phosphorescent material may be adjacent to two surface of the second waveguide that are substantially orthogonal. In some instances, the photovoltaic cell and the light source may be substantially parallel and/or coplanar. The configuration of the photon battery assembly with waveguides is not limited to FIG. 6.

[0145] In operation, the photon battery may be charged via the first waveguide 704 which guides optical energy emitted by the light source 701 at the first wavelength to the phosphorescent material 702. The optical energy received from the light source may be substantially

orthogonally reflected (e.g., via a reflective surface) within the first waveguide to pass through the second waveguide 706 (with minimal energy loss) for even absorption across the

phosphorescent material and subsequent excitation. After a time delay, as described elsewhere herein, the phosphorescent material may emit optical energy at a second wavelength. Such emission may be isotropic (e.g., non-direction specific). The emitted optical energy may be directed by the second waveguide, such as via total internal reflection, to the photovoltaic cell for absorption by the photovoltaic cell. Alternatively or in addition, the emitted optical energy may be directed to the photovoltaic cell directly. In some instances, the second waveguide may have a refractive index that is lower than that of the first waveguide and that of the phosphorescent material to allow for total internal reflection. As illustrated in FIG. 7, the photon battery may be stacked in a similar configuration.

[0146] FIG. 8 shows a stack of a plurality of photon battery assemblies. A photon battery assembly can be connected to achieve different desired voltages, energy storage capacities, power densities, and/or other battery properties. For example, an energy storage system 800 may comprise a stack of a first photon battery assembly, a second photon battery assembly, a third photon battery assembly, a fourth photon battery assembly, and so on, which are stacked vertically or horizontally. Each photon battery assembly may comprise (or share) a light source, phosphorescent material, photovoltaic cell, first waveguide, and second waveguide, as described elsewhere herein. While FIG. 8 shows six photon battery assemblies stacked together, any number of photon battery assemblies can be stacked together in any configuration. For example, at least 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 100, 200, or more photon battery assemblies can be stacked together. While FIG. 8 shows a linear grid-like stack in the horizontal and vertical directions, the assemblies can be stacked in different configurations, such as in concentric (or circular) stacks.

[0147] FIG. 9 shows an exploded view of another configuration for a photon battery assembly stack with hollow core waveguides. A waveguide 906 may comprise a hollow core. For example, the waveguide may be an optical fiber or cable with a hollow core. Alternatively, the waveguide may have a cavity or trench with an opening. The waveguide may have a plurality of cavities or trenches with a plurality of openings. The hollow core (or cavity or trench) may be filled by phosphorescent material 902 such as to form filled cylindrical units. Alternatively, the hollow core may be any shape (e.g., rectangular, triangular, hexagonal, non-polygonal, etc.).

The cylindrical units may be linearly stacked, such as in groups of 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 20,

30, 40, 50, 100, 200, or more units. The groups of linearly stacked cylindrical units may be sandwiched on opposing sides by light source panels 901. In some instances, a single light source panel may stretch along a length of a cylindrical unit. Alternatively, as shown in FIG. 9, a plurality of light source panels may be intermittently placed along the length of the single cylindrical unit. In some instances, groups of linearly stacked cylindrical units and the sandwiching light source panels may be stacked in alternating layers. Although this example shows four groups of six linearly stacked cylindrical units alternating with five light source panels for each unit length of cylindrical unit, the stack may be in any configuration (e.g., 25 groups of 7 linearly stacked cylindrical units alternating with 26 light source panels). A photovoltaic cell 903 may be adjacent to the end of the cylindrical units, substantially orthogonal to the lengths of the cylindrical units, and substantially orthogonal to the light source panels.

The photon battery assembly may resemble a cuboid shape, as illustrated in FIG. 9. The photon battery assembly is not limited to the configuration illustrated in FIG. 9.

[0148] In some instances, the light source panel 901 may comprise a light source (e.g., LED) and a waveguide. The waveguide may correspond to the waveguide 504 described with respect to FIG. 5 and configured to direct optical energy from the light source to different cylindrical units. FIG. 10 illustrates a partial cross-sectional side view of the photon battery assembly stack of FIG. 9. The optical energy emitted by a light source 1001 is directed by one or more reflective surfaces 1005 in a first waveguide (e.g., in the light source panel 901) to the phosphorescent material 1002 in different cylindrical units. The optical energy may pass through a second waveguide 1006 (configured to direct optical energy emitted from the phosphorescent material to the photovoltaic cell (not shown)). The first waveguide may comprise increasingly larger reflective surfaces (e.g., 1005) in the direction of the optical path of the optical energy emitted by the light source 1001 such as to evenly distribute the optical energy to the different cylindrical units (e.g., in the linear stack).

[0149] Each photon battery assembly can be configured as described in FIGS. 2-10.

Alternatively, different components of the photon battery assembly (e.g., light source, phosphorescent material, photovoltaic cell, first waveguide, second waveguide) can be stacked in different configurations (e.g., orders). A plurality of photon battery assemblies can be electrically connected in series, in parallel, or a combination thereof. In some instances, there may be interconnects and/or other electrical components between each photon battery assembly. In some instances, a controller can be electrically coupled to one or more photon battery assemblies and be capable of managing the inflow and/or outflow of power from each or a combination of the battery assemblies.

[0150] FIG. 11 illustrates a method of storing energy in a photon battery. The method can comprise, at a first operation 1101, emitting optical energy at a first wavelength (e.g., li) from a light source. The optical energy at the first wavelength can be emitted from a light-emitting surface of the light source. The light source can be an artificial light source, such as a LED, laser, or lamp. The light source can be a natural light source. The light source can be powered by an electric power source, such as another energy storage device (e.g., battery, supercapacitors, capacitors, fuel cells, etc.) or another power supply (e.g., electrical grid).

[0151] At a second operation 1102, a phosphorescent material that is adjacent to the light source can absorb the optical energy at the first wavelength. The optical energy may be directed from the light source to the phosphorescent material via a first waveguide. For example, the phosphorescent material can be adjacent to the light-emitting surface of the light source. In some instances, the first wavelength can be an ultraviolet wavelength (e.g., 20-400 nm).

[0152] At a next operation 1103, after a time delay, the phosphorescent material can emit optical energy at a second wavelength (e.g., l 2 ). In some instances, the first wavelength can be a visible wavelength (e.g., 400-700 nm). The second wavelength can be greater than the first wavelength. That is, the optical energy at the first wavelength can be at a higher energy level than the optical energy at the second wavelength. In some instances, the rate of absorption of the optical energy at the first wavelength by the phosphorescent material can be faster than the rate of emission of the optical energy at the second wavelength by the phosphorescent material.

[0153] At a next operation 1104, a photovoltaic cell adjacent to the phosphorescent material can absorb the optical energy at the second wavelength that is emitted by the phosphorescent material. The optical energy may be directed from the phosphorescent material to the

photovoltaic cell via a second waveguide. For example, a light-absorbing surface of the photovoltaic cell can absorb the optical energy at the second wavelength. In some instances, the photovoltaic cell can be tailored to absorb the wavelength or range of wavelengths that is emitted by the phosphorescent material. In some instances, the light-absorbing surface of the photovoltaic cell can comprise one or more depressions defined by corresponding protrusions to allow for increased interfacial surface area between the phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell.

[0154] At a next operation 1105, the photovoltaic cell can convert the absorbed optical energy at the second wavelength and generate electrical power. In some instances, the electrical power generated by the photovoltaic cell can be used to power an electrical load that is electrically coupled to the photovoltaic cell. The electrical load can be an electronic device, such as a mobile phone, tablet, or computer. The electrical load can be a vehicle, such as a car, boat, airplane, or train. The electrical load can be a power grid. In some instances, at least some of the electrical power generated by the photovoltaic cell can be used to power the light source, such as when no electrical load is connected to the photovoltaic cell. In some instances, at least some of the electrical power generated by the photovoltaic cell can be used to charge a rechargeable battery (e.g., lithium ion battery), such as when no electrical load is connected to the photovoltaic cell. The rechargeable battery can in turn be used to power the light source. Beneficially, a photon battery assembly used in this method can be at least in part self-sustaining and prevent loss of energy from the system (e.g., other than from inefficient conversion of energy).

[0155] FIG. 12 illustrates a method for regenerative braking. The method can comprise, at a first operation 1201, upon a braking event, converting mechanical energy to electrical energy by an energy harvesting system. For example, the energy harvesting system may comprise an electric induction motor as described elsewhere herein. The converted electrical energy can be used to power a light source, such as a LED, laser, or lamp, that emits optical energy at a first wavelength (e.g., li). The optical energy at the first wavelength can be emitted from a light- emitting surface of the light source.

[0156] At a second operation 1202, a phosphorescent material that is adjacent to the light source can absorb the optical energy at the first wavelength. The optical energy may be directed from the light source to the phosphorescent material via a first waveguide. For example, the phosphorescent material can be adjacent to the light-emitting surface of the light source. In some instances, the first wavelength can be an ultraviolet wavelength (e.g., 20-400 nm).

[0157] At a next operation 1203, after a time delay, the phosphorescent material can emit optical energy at a second wavelength (e.g., l 2 ). In some instances, the first wavelength can be a visible wavelength (e.g., 400-700 nm). The second wavelength can be greater than the first wavelength. That is, the optical energy at the first wavelength can be at a higher energy level than the optical energy at the second wavelength. In some instances, the rate of absorption of the optical energy at the first wavelength by the phosphorescent material can be faster than the rate of emission of the optical energy at the second wavelength by the phosphorescent material.

[0158] At a next operation 1204, a photovoltaic cell adjacent to the phosphorescent material can absorb the optical energy at the second wavelength that is emitted by the phosphorescent material. The optical energy may be directed from the phosphorescent material to the

photovoltaic cell via a second waveguide. For example, a light-absorbing surface of the photovoltaic cell can absorb the optical energy at the second wavelength. In some instances, the photovoltaic cell can be tailored to absorb the wavelength or range of wavelengths that is emitted by the phosphorescent material. In some instances, the light-absorbing surface of the

photovoltaic cell can comprise one or more depressions defined by corresponding protrusions to allow for increased interfacial surface area between the phosphorescent material and the photovoltaic cell.

[0159] At a next operation 1205, the photovoltaic cell can convert the absorbed optical energy at the second wavelength and generate electrical power. In some instances, the electrical power generated by the photovoltaic cell can be used to power an electrical load that is electrically coupled to the photovoltaic cell. For example, the electrical load can be one or more electrical systems in the host vehicle. The electrical load can be external to the host vehicle. The electrical load can be an electronic device, such as a mobile phone, tablet, or computer. In some instances, at least some of the electrical power generated by the photovoltaic cell can be used to charge a secondary energy storage system, such as a rechargeable chemical battery (e.g., lithium ion battery). The rechargeable chemical battery can in turn be used to power the energy harvesting system. B

[0160] FIG. 13 shows a computer control system. The present disclosure provides computer control systems that are programmed to implement methods of the disclosure. A computer system 1301 is programmed or otherwise configured to regulate one or more circuitry in a regenerative braking system and/or one or more circuitry in a photon battery assembly, in accordance with some embodiments discussed herein. For example, the computer system 1301 can be a controller, a microcontroller, or a microprocessor. In some cases, the computer system 1301 can be an electronic device of a user or a computer system that is remotely located with respect to the regenerative braking system or the photon battery assembly. The electronic device can be a mobile electronic device. In some cases, the computer system 1301 can control and/or regulate an electrical system in a host vehicle, in accordance with some embodiments discussed herein. The computer system 1301 can be capable of sensing the connection(s) of one or more electrical loads with a photon battery assembly, the connection(s) of one or more rechargeable batteries with a photon battery assembly, the connection(s) of a photovoltaic cell and a light source within a photon battery assembly, and/or the connection(s) between the photon battery, energy harvesting system, secondary energy storage system, and/or the host vehicle. The computer system 1301 may be capable of managing the inflow and/or outflow of power from each or a combination of photon battery assemblies electrically connected in series or in parallel, and in some cases, individually or collectively electrically communicating with a power source and/or an electrical load. The computer system 1301 may be capable of computing a rate of discharge of power from the photon battery and/or a rate of consumption of power by an electrical load. For example, the computer system may be based on such computation, determine whether and how to direct power discharged from a photovoltaic cell to a light source, a secondary energy source (e.g., lithium ion battery), and/or an electrical load. The computer system may be capable of adjusting or regulating a voltage or current of power input and/or power output of the photon battery. The computer system 1301 may be capable of adjusting and/or regulating different component settings. For example, the computer system may be capable of adjusting or regulating a brightness, intensity, color (e.g., wavelength, frequency, etc.), pulsation period, or other optical characteristics of a light emitted by a light source in the photon battery assembly. For example, the computer system may be configured to adjust a light emission setting from a light source depending on the type of phosphorescent material used in the photon battery.

[0161] For example, the computer system 1301 can be capable of regulating different charging and/or discharging mechanisms of a photon battery assembly. The computer system may turn on an electrical connection between a light source and a power supply to start charging the photon battery assembly. The computer system may turn off an electrical connection between the light source and the power supply to stop charging the photon battery assembly. The computer system may turn on or off an electrical connection between a photovoltaic cell and an electrical load. In some instances, the computer system may be capable of detecting a charge level (or percentage or SOC) of the photon battery assembly. The computer system may be capable of determining when the assembly is completely charged (or nearly completely charged) or discharged (or nearly completely discharged). In some instances, the computer system may be capable of maintaining a certain range of charge level (e.g., 5% ~ 95%, 10% ~ 90%, etc.) of the photon battery assembly, such as to maintain and/or increase the life of the photon battery assembly, which complete charge or complete discharge can detrimentally shorten. The computer system may otherwise optimize performance of the regenerative braking system, such as by maintaining a certain range of charge level of the photon battery assembly.

[0162] The computer system 1301 includes a central processing unit (CPU, also“processor” and “computer processor” herein) 1305, which can be a single core or multi core processor, or a plurality of processors for parallel processing. The computer system 1301 also includes memory or memory location 1310 (e.g., random-access memory, read-only memory, flash memory), electronic storage unit 1315 (e.g., hard disk), communication interface 1320 (e.g., network adapter) for communicating with one or more other systems, and peripheral devices 1325, such as cache, other memory, data storage and/or electronic display adapters. The memory 1310, storage unit 1315, interface 1320 and peripheral devices 1325 are in communication with the CPU 1305 through a communication bus (solid lines), such as a motherboard. The storage unit 1315 can be a data storage unit (or data repository) for storing data. The computer system 1301 can be operatively coupled to a computer network (“network”) 1330 with the aid of the communication interface 1320. The network 1330 can be the Internet, an internet and/or extranet, or an intranet and/or extranet that is in communication with the Internet. The network 1330 in some cases is a telecommunication and/or data network. The network 1330 can include one or more computer servers, which can enable distributed computing, such as cloud computing. The network 1330, in some cases with the aid of the computer system 1301, can implement a peer-to-peer network, which may enable devices coupled to the computer system 1301 to behave as a client or a server.

[0163] The CPU 1305 can execute a sequence of machine-readable instructions, which can be embodied in a program or software. The instructions may be stored in a memory location, such as the memory 1310. The instructions can be directed to the CPU 1305, which can subsequently program or otherwise configure the CPU 1305 to implement methods of the present disclosure. Examples of operations performed by the CPU 1305 can include fetch, decode, execute, and writeback.

[0164] The CPU 1305 can be part of a circuit, such as an integrated circuit. One or more other components of the system 1301 can be included in the circuit. In some cases, the circuit is an application specific integrated circuit (ASIC).

[0165] The storage unit 1315 can store files, such as drivers, libraries and saved programs. The storage unit 1315 can store user data, e.g., user preferences and user programs. The computer system 1301 in some cases can include one or more additional data storage units that are external to the computer system 1301, such as located on a remote server that is in communication with the computer system 1301 through an intranet or the Internet.

[0166] The computer system 1301 can communicate with one or more local and/or remote computer systems through the network 1330. For example, the computer system 1301 can communicate with all local energy storage systems in the network 1330. In another example, the computer system 1301 can communicate with all energy storage systems within a single assembly, within a single housing, and/or within a single stack of assemblies. In other examples, the computer system 1301 can communicate with a remote computer system of a user.

Examples of remote computer systems include personal computers (e.g., portable PC), slate or tablet PC’s (e.g., Apple® iPad, Samsung® Galaxy Tab), telephones, Smart phones (e.g., Apple® iPhone, Android-enabled device, Blackberry®), or personal digital assistants. The user can access the computer system 1301 via the network 1330.

[0167] Methods as described herein can be implemented by way of machine (e.g., computer processor) executable code stored on an electronic storage location of the computer system 1301, such as, for example, on the memory 1310 or electronic storage unit 1315. The machine executable or machine readable code can be provided in the form of software. During use, the code can be executed by the processor 1305. In some cases, the code can be retrieved from the storage unit 1315 and stored on the memory 1310 for ready access by the processor 1305. In some situations, the electronic storage unit 1315 can be precluded, and machine-executable instructions are stored on memory 1310.

[0168] The code can be pre-compiled and configured for use with a machine having a processor adapted to execute the code, or can be compiled during runtime. The code can be supplied in a programming language that can be selected to enable the code to execute in a pre-compiled or as-compiled fashion.

[0169] Aspects of the systems and methods provided herein, such as the computer system 1301, can be embodied in programming. Various aspects of the technology may be thought of as “products” or“articles of manufacture” typically in the form of machine (or processor) executable code and/or associated data that is carried on or embodied in a type of machine readable medium. Machine-executable code can be stored on an electronic storage unit, such as memory (e.g., read-only memory, random-access memory, flash memory) or a hard disk.

“Storage” type media can include any or all of the tangible memory of the computers, processors or the like, or associated modules thereof, such as various semiconductor memories, tape drives, disk drives and the like, which may provide non-transitory storage at any time for the software programming. All or portions of the software may at times be communicated through the Internet or various other telecommunication networks. Such communications, for example, may enable loading of the software from one computer or processor into another, for example, from a management server or host computer into the computer platform of an application server. Thus, another type of media that may bear the software elements includes optical, electrical and electromagnetic waves, such as used across physical interfaces between local devices, through wired and optical landline networks and over various air-links. The physical elements that carry such waves, such as wired or wireless links, optical links or the like, also may be considered as media bearing the software. As used herein, unless restricted to non-transitory, tangible “storage” media, terms such as computer or machine“readable medium” refer to any medium that participates in providing instructions to a processor for execution.

[0170] Hence, a machine readable medium, such as computer-executable code, may take many forms, including but not limited to, a tangible storage medium, a carrier wave medium or physical transmission medium. Non-volatile storage media include, for example, optical or magnetic disks, such as any of the storage devices in any computer(s) or the like, such as may be used to implement the databases, etc. shown in the drawings. Volatile storage media include dynamic memory, such as main memory of such a computer platform. Tangible transmission media include coaxial cables; copper wire and fiber optics, including the wires that comprise a bus within a computer system. Carrier-wave transmission media may take the form of electric or electromagnetic signals, or acoustic or light waves such as those generated during radio frequency (RF) and infrared (IR) data communications. Common forms of computer-readable media therefore include for example: a floppy disk, a flexible disk, hard disk, magnetic tape, any other magnetic medium, a CD-ROM, DVD or DVD-ROM, any other optical medium, punch cards paper tape, any other physical storage medium with patterns of holes, a RAM, a ROM, a PROM and EPROM, a FLASH-EPROM, any other memory chip or cartridge, a carrier wave transporting data or instructions, cables or links transporting such a carrier wave, or any other medium from which a computer may read programming code and/or data. Many of these forms of computer readable media may be involved in carrying one or more sequences of one or more instructions to a processor for execution.

[0171] The computer system 1301 can include or be in communication with an electronic display 1335 that comprises a user interface (EΊ) 1340 for providing, for example, user control options (e.g., start or terminate charging, start or stop powering an electrical load, route power back to self-charging, etc.). Examples of ET’s include, without limitation, a graphical user interface (GET) and web-based user interface. [0172] Methods and systems of the present disclosure can be implemented by way of one or more algorithms. An algorithm can be implemented by way of software upon execution by the central processing unit 1305. The algorithm can, for example, change circuitry of a photon battery assembly or a stack of photon battery assemblies based on, for example, sensing the connection(s) of one or more electrical loads with a photon battery assembly, the connection(s) of one or more rechargeable batteries with a photon battery assembly, and/or the connection(s) of a photovoltaic cell and a light source within a photon battery assembly. The algorithm may be capable of managing the inflow and/or outflow of power from each or a combination of photon battery assemblies electrically connected in series or in parallel, and in some cases, individually or collectively electrically communicating with a power source and/or an electrical load.

[0173] While preferred embodiments of the present invention have been shown and described herein, it will be obvious to those skilled in the art that such embodiments are provided by way of example only. It is not intended that the invention be limited by the specific examples provided within the specification. While the invention has been described with reference to the aforementioned specification, the descriptions and illustrations of the embodiments herein are not meant to be construed in a limiting sense. Numerous variations, changes, and substitutions will now occur to those skilled in the art without departing from the invention. Furthermore, it shall be understood that all aspects of the invention are not limited to the specific depictions, configurations or relative proportions set forth herein which depend upon a variety of conditions and variables. It should be understood that various alternatives to the embodiments of the invention described herein may be employed in practicing the invention. It is therefore contemplated that the invention shall also cover any such alternatives, modifications, variations or equivalents. It is intended that the following claims define the scope of the invention and that methods and structures within the scope of these claims and their equivalents be covered thereby.