The NuVinci CVP is a continuously variable and broadly applicable technology, with applications for almost any product using a mechanical power transmission. NuVinci technology combines the advantages of a toroidal traction continuously variable transmission (CVT) with the advantages of a time-proven planetary gear arrangement. The NuVinci CVP is the only continuously variable transmission that has a planetary gearset's advantages of high torque density, versatility of use, inline shafts and low production cost. As a result, NuVinci technology is the only technology potentially capable of replacing the planetary gear transmission – in every application – as virtually a plug-and-play replacement.
Fallbrook Technologies Inc. (Fallbrook) is a technology development company headquartered in Cedar Park, Texas, just outside of Austin. The Company's core technology is its traction based, NuVinci® transmission – a continuously variable planetary (CVP) drive ideally suited for applications in virtually any mechanical device that has a transmission or requires speed variation.
The name represents a “tip of the hat” to Leonardo da Vinci who, over 500 years ago, sketched what is considered to be the first documented continuously variable transmission.
The NuVinci transmission uses a set of rotating balls between the input and output components of a transmission that tilt and vary the output speed of the transmission. Tilting the balls changes their contact diameters with the discs, which varies speed. As a result, the NuVinci CVP improves acceleration, performance and powertrain efficiency over conventional transmissions. It is far simpler, permits more stable control, is better packaged, provides more scalability across product lines, and is less expensive to manufacture and assemble than traditional CVTs.
The use of CVTs has not become widespread due to multiple problems including scalability challenges, questionable reliability and durability, high cost, and other factors. Despite some obvious drawbacks, some manufacturers such as Ford, Nissan, Honda, and Audi have implemented limited production with old CVT technology because the market need was so great. However, with the development of the NuVinci CVP, the technical roadblocks now have been eliminated – clearing the way for a wide range of CVP applications for which markets are ready and waiting.
The NuVinci CVP offers a wide range of advantages over conventional transmissions. These advantages include:
- Less complexity
- Greater powertrain system efficiency
- Greater acceleration and optimum performance
- Easier shifting
- Ability to accept multiple inputs while varying speed and managing torque
- Multiple power outlets such as for a power take off (PTO) application
- Easier to package and potentially lighter
- Easier and less costly to manufacture
- Greater scalability and potential to reuse tooling
- Improved hill-climbing
There are four widely accepted alternative approaches to CVT technology:
The NuVinci CVP, comparatively, offers better torque capacity and simpler control, and is more easily packaged for inclusion in a given application due to its concentric input and output shafts. It is also much more effective to scale across a vehicle range because of its modular nature, and is more durable because of its greater number of traction contacts.
The NuVinci CVP is simpler in design, more scalable, easier to control, allows for inline shifts, and is less expensive to manufacture. It also does not have the ultimate torque capacity limitations of the push belt and is expected to be more durable.
The NuVinci CVP is much easier to manufacture, easier to control, is lighter, more scalable, inherently quieter, and easier to maintain.
The NuVinci CVP has greater torque capacity, allows for inline shafts, is lighter, more scalable, inherently quieter, and less expensive to manufacture and maintain.
While the NuVinci CVP has application potential in virtually any mechanical product that has a transmission, Fallbrook has initially identified major industries for its NuVinci technology:
- Automotive Accessory Drives
- Electric Vehicles
- Industrial Equipment
- Lawn Care Equipment