Patents Represented by Attorney George F. Helfrich
  • Patent number: 8217143
    Abstract: Metal nanoshells are fabricated by admixing an aqueous solution of metal ions with an aqueous solution of apoferritin protein molecules, followed by admixing an aqueous solution containing an excess of an oxidizing agent for the metal ions. The apoferritin molecules serve as bio-templates for the formation of metal nanoshells, which form on and are bonded to the inside walls of the hollow cores of the individual apoferritin molecules. Control of the number of metal atoms which enter the hollow core of each individual apoferritin molecule provides a hollow metal nonparticle, or nanoshell, instead of a solid spherical metal nanoparticle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 12, 2007
    Date of Patent: July 10, 2012
    Assignees: National Institute of Aerospace Associates, The United States of America as represented by the Administration of NASA
    Inventors: Jae-Woo Kim, Sang H. Choi, Peter T. Lillehei, Sang-Hyon Chu, Yeonjoon Park, Glen C. King, James R. Elliott, Jr.
  • Patent number: 8206674
    Abstract: Boron nitride nanotubes are prepared by a process which includes: (a) creating a source of boron vapor; (b) mixing the boron vapor with nitrogen gas so that a mixture of boron vapor and nitrogen gas is present at a nucleation site, which is a surface, the nitrogen gas being provided at a pressure elevated above atmospheric, e.g., from greater than about 2 atmospheres up to about 250 atmospheres; and (c) harvesting boron nitride nanotubes, which are formed at the nucleation site.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 14, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 26, 2012
    Assignees: National Institute of Aerospace Associates, The United States of America as represented by the Administration of NASA
    Inventors: Michael W. Smith, Kevin Jordan, Cheol Park
  • Patent number: 7704553
    Abstract: A process for depositing nanometer-sized metal particles onto a substrate in the absence of aqueous solvents, organic solvents, and reducing agents, and without any required pre-treatment of the substrate, includes preparing an admixture of a metal compound and a substrate by dry mixing a chosen amount of the metal compound with a chosen amount of the substrate; and supplying energy to the admixture in an amount sufficient to deposit zero valance metal particles onto the substrate. This process gives rise to a number of deposited metallic particle sizes which may be controlled. The compositions prepared by this process are used to produce polymer composites by combining them with readily available commodity and engineering plastics. The polymer composites are used as coatings, or they are used to fabricate articles, such as free-standing films, fibers, fabrics, foams, molded and laminated articles, tubes, adhesives, and fiber reinforced articles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2007
    Date of Patent: April 27, 2010
    Assignees: National Institute of Aerospace Associates, The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of NASA
    Inventors: Kent A. Watson, Michael J. Fallbach, Sayata Ghose, Joseph G. Smith, Donavon M. Delozier, John W. Connell
  • Patent number: 7666939
    Abstract: Dispersions of carbon nanotubes exhibiting long term stability are based on a polymer matrix having moieties therein which are capable of a donor-acceptor complexation with carbon nanotubes. The carbon nanotubes are introduced into the polymer matrix and separated therein by standard means. Nanocomposites produced from these dispersions are useful in the fabrication of structures, e.g., lightweight aerospace structures.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 11, 2006
    Date of Patent: February 23, 2010
    Assignees: National Institute of Aerospace Associates, The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of NASA
    Inventors: Kristopher Eric Wise, Cheol Park, Emilie J. Siochi, Joycelyn S. Harrison, Peter T. Lillehei, Sharon E. Lowther
  • Patent number: 7510802
    Abstract: A thin-film electrode for a bio-nanobattery is produced by consecutively depositing arrays of a ferritin protein on a substrate, employing a spin self-assembly procedure. By this procedure, a first ferritin layer is first formed on the substrate, followed by building a second, oppositely-charged ferritin layer on the top of the first ferritin layer to form a bilayer structure. Oppositely-charged ferritin layers are subsequently deposited on top of each other until a desired number of bilayer structures is produced. An ordered, uniform, stable and robust, thin-film electrode material of enhanced packing density is presented, which provides optimal charge density for the bio-nanobattery.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 9, 2006
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2009
    Assignees: National Institute of Aerospace Associates, The United States of America as represented by the Administration of NASA
    Inventors: Sang-Hyon Chu, Sang H. Choi, Jae-Woo Kim, Peter T. Lillehei, Yeonjoon Park, Glen C. King, James R. Elliott, Jr.
  • Patent number: 7446459
    Abstract: A hybrid piezoelectric energy harvesting transducer system includes: (a) first and second symmetric, pre-curved piezoelectric elements mounted separately on a frame so that their concave major surfaces are positioned opposite to each other; and (b) a linear piezoelectric element mounted separately on the frame and positioned between the pre-curved piezoelectric elements. The pre-curved piezoelectric elements and the linear piezoelectric element are spaced from one another and communicate with energy harvesting circuitry having contact points on the frame. The hybrid piezoelectric energy harvesting transducer system has a higher electromechanical energy conversion efficiency than any known piezoelectric transducer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 13, 2006
    Date of Patent: November 4, 2008
    Assignees: National Institute of Aerospace Associates, The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of NASA
    Inventors: Tian-Bing Xu, Xiaoning Jiang, Ji Su, Paul W. Rehrig, Wesley S. Hackenberger
  • Patent number: 7351161
    Abstract: An improved golf ball driver has a first weight positioned within the clubhead of the driver, and a first means for adjusting the first weight in a generally vertical direction within the clubhead, that is, from top to bottom thereof. The improved driver also has a second weight positioned within the clubhead, and a second means for adjusting the second weight in a generally horizontal direction within the clubhead, that is from the heel to the toe thereof. Adjusting the weights allows a golfer to eliminate natural swing problems and/or to make a desired change in the flight pattern of a golf ball when it is struck by the driver.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 10, 2006
    Date of Patent: April 1, 2008
    Inventor: Adam Beach
  • Patent number: 7110921
    Abstract: A method for designing a profile extrusion die is based on an analogy that exists between membrane deflection under pressure and low Reynolds number pressure driven fluid flow. The analogy is used to predict the relative shape of the die to correct for die swell or die contraction. The application of the analogy takes into consideration the characteristics of the extruder, the operating conditions, and the extrudate composition.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 6, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 19, 2006
    Inventor: James J. Kauzlarich
  • Patent number: 7079993
    Abstract: Provided is an automated process for producing accurate statistical models from sample data tables. The process solves for optimal parameters of each statistical model considered, computes test statistics and degrees of freedom in the model, and uses these test statistics and degrees of freedom to establish a complete ordering of the statistical models. In cases where the sample data table is sufficiently small, the process constructs and analyzes all reasonable statistical models that might fit the data table provided. In cases where the number of possible models is prohibitively high, the process begins by constructing and solving more general models and then constructs and solves those more detailed models that are similar to those general models that achieved the highest ordering. In either of these two cases, the process arrives at a statistical model that is highest in the ordering and is thus deemed most suitable to model the sample data table.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 29, 2003
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2006
    Assignee: Daniel H. Wagner Associates, Inc.
    Inventors: David Mark Stephenson, William Reynolds Monach
  • Patent number: 7036800
    Abstract: A device is presented which automatically controls the interaction of a medium with an external environment, the temperature of which varies or remains constant. In addition to the medium, the device includes a mechanism for providing constant effectiveness of the medium in the external environment, and an automatic drive mechanism which drives the mechanism for providing constant effectiveness of the medium in the external environment. Advantageously, the device includes a receptacle for the medium, and the receptacle includes a housing incorporating the mechanism for providing constant effectiveness of the medium in the external environment, which is beneficially a movable vent or an expandable vent. The automatic drive mechanism is advantageously a temperature-responsive member or a temperature-responsive fluid movement device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 7, 2003
    Date of Patent: May 2, 2006
    Inventor: Earle R. Ellis
  • Patent number: 6925895
    Abstract: A system for collecting a representative, non-contaminated sample includes a sample intake positioned in a chosen location within a body of liquid. A first conduit section transfers a sample, which has been withdrawn from the body of liquid, from the sample intake to the pump. A second conduit section transfers the sample from the pump to a receptacle for collecting the sample. The second conduit section is connected to the receptacle by means providing for an air and watertight seal for the receptacle, which is coupled with means providing for the escape of air from the receptacle during collection of the sample therein. The means providing for an air and watertight seal for the receptacle is a specially designed transfer cap.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 2, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 9, 2005
    Assignee: Hampton Roads Sanitation District
    Inventor: Daniel L. Barker
  • Patent number: 6907620
    Abstract: A belt load distribution device channels the loads produced by heavy belts, such as gun belts worn by law enforcement officers, away from the user's spine, and distributes the load comfortably across the muscles of the user's back. Heavy belt loads, which typically cause chronic lower back pain in police officers, are significantly mitigated. The belt load distribution device comprises a lower back panel which houses vertical and horizontal stays, and a belt for securing the device around the waist of the user. In addition to alleviating lower back pain caused by the wearing of heavy belts, the device is light, comfortable, durable, adjustable, and easy to maintain.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 2002
    Date of Patent: June 21, 2005
    Inventor: Dawn L. Sullivan-West
  • Patent number: 6824516
    Abstract: A holistically integrated ultrasonic system for examining, mapping, diagnosing, and treating diseases of the prostate gland in a male human includes an ultrasonic transrectal probe and an ultrasonic transurethral probe. Each of these probes is adapted to pulse and to receive, as well as to produce and operate within a liquid-filled volume of the lumen into which they are inserted. Each probe is in operative communication with an integrated patient support platform and an integrated expert system. The integrated expert system collects data transmitted by sensors in the transrectal and transurethral probes and produces level-of-suspicion mapping of the prostate gland with cancer probability assessments for areas contained within the level-of-suspicion mapping. The integrated expert system communicates with, and provides targeting coordinates for operation of an automated slave biopsy subsystem and directs a biopsy needle to a selected point within the prostate gland.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 11, 2003
    Date of Patent: November 30, 2004
    Assignee: MedSci Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Bobby G. Batten, John A. Companion
  • Patent number: 6746384
    Abstract: An apparatus for exercising the muscles of the lumbar region of a subject's back includes a seat, a vertical support member to which the back end of the seat is attached so that the centerline extending from the from the front to the back of the seat forms an angle with the vertical member in the range of 65 to 75 degrees and with the front end of the seat being inclined downward to the surface on which the vertical support member stands, a base attached to the bottom end of the vertical support member, a cylindrical roller pad that is rotatably mounted to the vertical support member at a position above the seat, a knob that is adjustably mounted to the vertical support member, and a hand-held weight which the subject grasps and holds near the subject's body while performing the strengthening exercises.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 16, 2001
    Date of Patent: June 8, 2004
    Assignee: Maccole Enterprises, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Brian Cole, Wayne A. MacMasters
  • Patent number: 6748349
    Abstract: A general purpose program implemented on a computer analyzes steady state and transient flow in a complex fluid network, modeling phase changes, compressibility, mixture thermodynamics and external body forces such as gravity and centrifugal force. A preprocessor provides for the interactive development of a fluid network simulation having nodes and branches. Mass, energy, and specie conservation equations are solved at the nodes, and momentum conservation equations are solved in the branches. Contained herein are subroutines for computing “real fluid” thermodynamic and thermophysical properties for 12 fluids, and a number of different source options are provided for modeling momentum sources or sinks in the branches. The system of equations describing the fluid network is solved by a hybrid numerical method that is a combination of the Newton-Raphson and successive substitution methods.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 7, 1999
    Date of Patent: June 8, 2004
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: Alok Kumar Majumdar, John W. Bailey, Paul Alan Schallhorn, Todd E. Steadman
  • Patent number: 6742616
    Abstract: A hybrid air boost vehicle makes use of the porous panels and suction devices of a vehicle aerodynamic drag reduction system, and makes use of the air consumed by such a system, to provide the energy and air to power a land or water based ground effects vehicle. Energy and air consumed by the suction system, and normally wasted, is recycled by providing an air cushion to partially support the vehicle. The entire hybrid air boost vehicle system is more efficient than either a drag reduction system or a ground effects vehicle alone, and the benefits of both are realized, as well as benefits unique to the hybrid vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 14, 2001
    Date of Patent: June 1, 2004
    Inventor: Michael F. Leban
  • Patent number: 6740047
    Abstract: The system includes an array of transducers that simultaneously senses multiple intralumenal pressures, a data acquisition module that acquires and stores samples of the measured pressures, software routines for signal analysis, a software module for multi-dimensional data display presentations, and a software module to perform pattern recognition on the acquired data set to identify potential maladies that may be indicated by the analysis. The transduction elements are cylindrical segments that deform according to the circumferential pressures encountered. Distributing a quantity of these sensor segments at desired locations along a flexible support structure and providing a flexible sheath over the entire length forms the sensor array. Measuring the sensor deformation provides an electrical analog of the pressure causing the deformation. Acquiring these measurements in a suitable data acquisition and processing unit, including a display, printing, and plotting capability, completes the hardware elements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 25, 2002
    Date of Patent: May 25, 2004
    Inventors: Harlan K. Holmes, Ray E. Clouse, Domenic A. Bellino
  • Patent number: 6697473
    Abstract: A holistic, automated, personalized telephone call management system is capable of responding to all incoming calls. The system employs customized software, computer chips, printed circuit board, ANI, where available, and a data input/output module, which are applied in an integrated manner to accomplish a broad array of functions important to modem household communication needs. System accepts operational time factors and telephone numbers as stored data to be matched automatically with the telephone numbers of incoming calls. The telephone rings under certain qualifying criteria, and an incoming call is passed in silent mode to a smart answering machine under other criteria. The smart answering machine is capable of handling emergency call situations, and the integration of call-waiting options. System also has a smart software function to deal with a state of delinquency on any lease/rent contract for the system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 2001
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2004
    Inventor: Bobby G. Batten
  • Patent number: D533906
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 6, 2005
    Date of Patent: December 19, 2006
    Inventors: Chekesha T. White, Vander L. White
  • Patent number: D548134
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 13, 2004
    Date of Patent: August 7, 2007
    Inventor: Chris Pinder