The automotive industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity in battery thermal management is driven by the increasing demand for electric vehicles (EVs), improved safety, efficiency, reliability, and affordability, and growing importance of technologies such as diamond like carbon (DLC) coating, multi-stage constant-current (MCC) charging, supercapacitor (SC) battery energy storage system, and pulse charging current (PCC). In the last three years alone, there have been over 1.7 million patents filed and granted in the automotive industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Batteries in automotive: battery thermal managementBuy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over one million patents to analyze innovation intensity for the automotive industry, there are 300+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Battery thermal management is a key innovation area in batteries

Battery thermal management refers to the techniques and methods used to regulate the temperature of batteries in order to optimize their performance, prolong their lifespan, and ensure their safety. It involves controlling the heat generation and dissipation within the battery system to maintain the battery cells within an optimal temperature range.

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 30+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established automotive companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of battery thermal management.

Key players in battery thermal management – a disruptive innovation in the automotive industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of applications identified for each patent. It broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators. 

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of countries each patent is registered in. It reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.  

Patent volumes related to battery thermal management

Company Total patents (2010 - 2022) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Volvo 88 Unlock Company Profile
Mercedes-Benz Group 142 Unlock Company Profile
Subaru 89 Unlock Company Profile
Toyota Motor 1545 Unlock Company Profile
Johnson Controls International 83 Unlock Company Profile
Valeo 106 Unlock Company Profile
Samsung SDI 318 Unlock Company Profile
Robert Bosch Stiftung 487 Unlock Company Profile
BYD 409 Unlock Company Profile
Zhejiang Geely 63 Unlock Company Profile
Hyundai Motor 1193 Unlock Company Profile
Nissan Motor 310 Unlock Company Profile
Hitachi 189 Unlock Company Profile
Hanon Systems 98 Unlock Company Profile
Murata Manufacturing 82 Unlock Company Profile
Renault 197 Unlock Company Profile
Suzuki Motor 240 Unlock Company Profile
Honda Motor 609 Unlock Company Profile
Panasonic 271 Unlock Company Profile
Porsche Automobil 471 Unlock Company Profile
Proterra 69 Unlock Company Profile
General Motors 359 Unlock Company Profile
Mahle 63 Unlock Company Profile
Sony Group 60 Unlock Company Profile
Bayerische Motoren Werke 208 Unlock Company Profile
LG 503 Unlock Company Profile
Denso 185 Unlock Company Profile
Tesla 74 Unlock Company Profile
Brookfield 130 Unlock Company Profile
Toshiba 79 Unlock Company Profile
Kia 790 Unlock Company Profile
Ford Motor 592 Unlock Company Profile
Contemporary Amperex Technology 139 Unlock Company Profile
Gogoro 134 Unlock Company Profile
Thunder Power Hong Kong 116 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Toyota Motor is one of the leading patent filers in battery thermal management. The company has patented a new battery thermal management system that combines liquid and air cooling to improve battery performance, durability, and safety. This innovative approach offers increased efficiency, improved reliability, and reduced size and weight. The wider adoption of this system could make electric vehicles more appealing while reducing emissions and extending battery lifespan. Some other key patent filers in this space include Hyundai and Kia Motors.

In terms of application diversity, Hanon leads the pack, while Thunder Power Hong and Subaru stood in the second and third positions, respectively. By means of geographic reach, Gogoro held the top position, followed by Proterra and Suzuki Motor.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the automotive industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Automotive.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.