Patents Represented by Attorney, Agent or Law Firm Robert W. Keller
  • Patent number: 6243168
    Abstract: A dynamic optical micrometer for measuring the position of a moving object is invented. The optical micrometer includes a laser for generating an optical signal, an RF signal generator, an acousto-optic modulator that is responsive to the optical signal and the RF signal and is operative to provide a first light beam and a second light beam that is up shifted in frequency by the RF frequency, an optical interferometer that reflects the first beam off the object and interferometrically combines the reflected light beam and the second light beam into a heterodyned signal, means responsive to the heterodyned signal and operative to produce an electrical signal at the optical beat frequency corresponding to the RF and means responsive to the RF signal and the electrical signal and operative to provide a linear output signal that corresponds to the position of the object. A method for accomplishing the same is also invented.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 1, 1999
    Date of Patent: June 5, 2001
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Donald G. Heflinger, Lee O. Heflinger
  • Patent number: 6243515
    Abstract: An apparatus for optically pumping an optical fiber from the side comprising a laser for supplying a beam of pump light, and an optical fiber having a longitudinal surface disposed to the beam, a grating formed in the flat surface for diffracting the beam at a predetermined angle, and an outer clad layer proximate the grating and so as to establish at least one propagating mode characterized by an angle, the predetermined angle being matched to such angle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 18, 1999
    Date of Patent: June 5, 2001
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Donald G. Heflinger, Michael G. Wickham, Gerald W. Holleman
  • Patent number: 6243560
    Abstract: The present method for reducing latency in satellite communication includes the steps of applying, at a first earth terminal, a discriminator to user data. The discriminator delineates action data and forward data, thereby forming delineated user data. The action data represents data to be processed on board a satellite, while the forward data represents data to be forwarded through the satellite without processing. At the satellite, the delineated user data is partitioned into the action data and the forward data. The satellite then processes the action data to form processed action data and transmits, if necessary, the processed action data from the satellite. During processing of the user data, the satellite may generate result data in response to the action data and may transmit the result data alone or appended to the processed action data. Furthermore, the satellite may store a world model in a memory onboard the satellite.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 30, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 5, 2001
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventor: Keith R. Jenkin
  • Patent number: 6243053
    Abstract: A deployable antenna reflector structure (10) that provides a reduced number of components without compromising mechanical stability or deployment reliability. The structure (10) uses a truss hoop (21) with identical elements (20) and parallel pivot axes (30) to transition from a stowed position (50) to a deployed position (51). The use of identical elements (20) provides reduced manufacturing and assembly costs due to the reduction in components and added simplicity of the design. The truss hoop (21) achieves mechanical stability by making use of a two-dimensional element design having vertical portions (23) and horizontal portions (22) located in the same plane. Each parallel pivot axis (30) is defined by two pivot points. The first pivot point (31) connects horizontal portions (22) of adjacent identical elements (20) and the second pivot point (31) connects vertical portions (23) of adjacent identical elements (20). The structure (10) also provides a reflector (40) and a deployment control mechanism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 1999
    Date of Patent: June 5, 2001
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventor: Emil M. Shtarkman
  • Patent number: 6239761
    Abstract: A tapered slot antenna (20) includes a dielectric (22) with a metallization layer (24) deposited on one side. The metallization layer (24) is etched to the dielectric substrate (22) to form a tapered slot (26, 28, 30, 32). In order to tune the antenna 20), for example, such that the E and H field beam width are symmetrical, the (22) extends beyond the wide portion of the slot as a dielectric loading (26, 28, 30, 32). A microstrip feed line (40, 42, 44, 46) is formed by a metallization deposit on an opposing side of the substrate (22). The microstrip feed line (40, 42, 44, 46) extends across a narrow portion of the tapered slot (26, 28, 30, 32) and is configured to optimize the coupling between the microstrip feed line (40, 42, 44, 46) and the tapered slot antenna (20).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 8, 1999
    Date of Patent: May 29, 2001
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Yong Guo, G. Samuel Dow
  • Patent number: 6229616
    Abstract: An optical heterodyne wavefront sensor uses a radio frequency (RF) signal for measuring an optical wavefront having a state of phase that differs throughout its aperture. It comprises a lens, optical fiber and optical frequency shifter arrangement to develop a reference optical wavefront having substantially the same phase throughout and that is shifted in frequency by an amount corresponding to the RF. A beam combiner interferometrically combines the optical wavefront and the shifted reference optical wavefront into a heterodyne optical signal at the RF frequency, each subaperture of which has a phase that corresponds to the state of phase of a like subaperture of the optical wavefront.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 1, 1999
    Date of Patent: May 8, 2001
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Stephen J. Brosnan, Donald G. Heflinger, Lee O. Heflinger
  • Patent number: 6201283
    Abstract: A field effect transistor with a double sided airbridge comprises a substrate containing a conductive region and source, drain and gate electrodes disposed on the substrate. The gate electrode has a finger portion with a first end secured to the substrate between the source and drain electrodes and a second end, and a double sided airbridge portion flaring outwardly from the second end and having opposed first and second extremities. A first gate pad is disposed on said substrate outwardly from the source electrode and is connected to the first extremity. A second gate pad is disposed on said substrate outwardly from the drain electrodes and is connected to the second extremity. The gate pads serve to support the airbridge gate finger so as to reduce stress on the gate finger. The first and second gate pads receive and transmit signals through the airbridge and to and from the gate finger.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 1999
    Date of Patent: March 13, 2001
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Richard Lai, Yaochung Chen, Huan-Chun Yen, James C. K. Lau
  • Patent number: 6175320
    Abstract: An apparatus for stabilizing optical interferometers utilized in an all analog to digital converter using an additional optical signal that differs in wavelength by a factor of two from the wavelength used for the analog to digital conversion is disclosed. The optical interferometers have an optical path length that is tunable. They develop a first interference pattern from the additional optical signal when the optical path length is a prescribed value. The interferometers develop a second interference pattern from the additional optical signal when the optical path length is not the prescribed value. Optoelectronic detectors are responsive to the optical interference pattern generated by the additional optical signal and develop electronic feedback signals when the first interference patterns are not present.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 18, 1999
    Date of Patent: January 16, 2001
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventor: Donald G. Heflinger
  • Patent number: 6147755
    Abstract: A dynamic instrument measures the state of optical phase of light and provides an output signal having a magnitude that varies linearly relative to the state of optical phase of a first light beam. It comprises means for generating an optical signal, means for generating a radio frequency (RF) signal that is responsive to the optical signal and the RF signal and provides a first light beam and a second light beam, at least one of which is shifted in frequency by an amount corresponding to the RF, an optical interferometer that allows the state of optical phase of the first beam to be changed and that interferometrically combines and heterodynes the changed first light beam and the second light beam, means responsive to the heterodyne signal and operative to produce an electrical signal at the optical beat frequency corresponding to the RF, and means responsive to the RF signal and the electrical signal for providing the linear output signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 1, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 14, 2000
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Donald G. Heflinger, Lee O. Heflinger
  • Patent number: 6067108
    Abstract: Apparatus, and a related method for its operation, for generating multiple parallel streams of data from a large solid-state mass storage device, under the individual control of multiple users requesting the data streams. The apparatus includes a hardware interface table containing a user command and current memory address for each active user requesting data from storage. Memory array addressing logic cycles through the hardware interface table and generates multiple streams of memory array addresses based on the user commands and the current memory addresses, but without using a processor to generate the addresses. The address streams are directed to a memory array, from which are output multiple streams of corresponding data. User commands for selective control of each data stream are converted to new memory addresses, which are stored in the hardware interface table and almost instantly result in performance of requested control functions with respect to the data streams.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 12, 1996
    Date of Patent: May 23, 2000
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Timothy A. Yokote, Dirk K. Brandis, Thomas J. Gritzmacher
  • Patent number: 6064507
    Abstract: A high speed differential optoelectronic receiver comprises a first photodetector responsive to a first incident amplitude modulated optical signal and operative to develop a first electrical signal, a second photodetector responsive to a second incident amplitude modulated optical signal that is complementary to the first optical signal and operative to develop a second electrical signal, and an amplifier having a first input that is responsive to the first electrical signal and a second input that is responsive to the second electrical signal and is operative to provide a differential output signal that is proportional to the difference between the first and the second electrical signals. Also, a method for transforming complementary amplitude modulated optical signals into a complementary electrical output signal is invented.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 7, 1998
    Date of Patent: May 16, 2000
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Donald G. Heflinger, Phillip D. Hayashida, Todd E. Humes, John D. Hyde
  • Patent number: 5832100
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for providing access to computerized information services for users unequipped with computers, particularly information services related to commercial transactions. Facsimile images of hardcopy forms are used as means for conveying transactional information.Each facsimile image contains character and data fields with information for a particular trade transaction. The system captures the facsimile image in bitmap form and converts the character and data fields into computer readable form. The system enhances each image and performs several levels of feature extraction, including character recognition techniques. To efficiently and automatically convert great document volumes, the system optimizes database lookup and human operator manual keying to assist character recognition techniques in developing accurate coded text from the features of the facsimile image.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 3, 1993
    Date of Patent: November 3, 1998
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Stephen R. Lawton, George H. Warfel, Jr.
  • Patent number: 5798942
    Abstract: An N-best feasible hypotheses multitarget tracking system for accurately detecting and tracking large numbers of closely spaced objects in a dense target environment in real time.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 5, 1994
    Date of Patent: August 25, 1998
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Roy Danchick, George E. Newnam, Jack E. Brooks
  • Patent number: 5734736
    Abstract: Disclosed is an autonomous rendezvous and docking system and method therefor used for the rendezvous and docking of spacecraft. The autonomous rendezvous and docking system allows spacecraft rendezvous, proximity maneuvering, and docking between a chase spacecraft and a target spacecraft by determining the relative position between the two spacecrafts. The relative position is determined based on the location of target reflections from a reflective target positioned on the target spacecraft. The target reflections are identified by intensity, shape, size and location from various other spurious reflections. This ultimately allows the autonomous rendezvous and docking system to determine the x, y, z, roll, pitch and yaw positions of the target spacecraft in relation to the chase spacecraft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 17, 1994
    Date of Patent: March 31, 1998
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Leon G. Palmer, Timothy J. Murphy, John A. Morrison, Teresa M. Morrison
  • Patent number: 5721691
    Abstract: Apparatus, and a related method, for photographing the interior of a building to which access by personnel has been limited or denied because of contamination of some kind, and then converting the resulting photographic images to a three-dimensional digital model, which may be used to generate different types of information for safe and efficient decontamination or deconstruction of the building. In the embodiment of the invention disclosed herein by way of example, the photographs are taken by personnel in protective clothing or by a remotely controlled mobile robot. Then the photographic images are digitized and processed to create a three-dimensional model stored in a database. The model database is updated to include information not in the original photographs, and then used to create additional interior views, animated videos of the interior, real-time computer displays, or drawings in a conventional computer aided design (CAD) format.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 1994
    Date of Patent: February 24, 1998
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Charles E. Wuller, George H. Gelb
  • Patent number: 5692917
    Abstract: An insert device provides a conductive path between various pins of a host computer's communication port in order to provide a computer program with the capability of determining the presence of the insert device for software copy protection purposes. The insert device is of a shape, size, and character such that a normal mating engagement between a mated connector pair is unaffected.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 18, 1996
    Date of Patent: December 2, 1997
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Sean Michael Rieb, Paul Jay Miller, Kevin Gale Foreman
  • Patent number: 5672840
    Abstract: An automatically oriented computer display for a targeting computer used in connection with a shoulder-fired missile launcher. A computer operator member of an air defense team will read a computer display from a handheld targeting computer so as to give directional and distance information of approaching aircraft. An electronic compass rigidly secured to the handheld computer continually updates the directional orientation of the computer display as the computer operator moves. Therefore, the computer operator is able to accurately give directional information to a gunner operating a shoulder-fired missile launcher such that the gunner is ready to assess the hostility of the approaching aircraft as they become visible. An embedded computer is provided to decipher the compass signals so they are readable by the handheld computer. Additionally, a global positioning system receiver is provided to give positional information of the gunner and the computer operator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 21, 1994
    Date of Patent: September 30, 1997
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: John Sage, Jack Ailes, Mike Gonzalez, Henry Liverpool, Jr., Neil Siegel, Pirom Supapkooha
  • Patent number: 5651129
    Abstract: A modular solid-state mass data storage device providing high-density, high capacity storage of numerous full-length movies for video server applications. The mass data storage device employs a modular pipeline architecture in which a distributed array of controller/memory modules is arranged in parallel controller/memory channels on one or more controller/memory cards. The modular pipeline architecture, in which each controller/memory channel has multiple controller/memory modules connected in a serial chain by address, data and control buses, allows the number of controller/memory modules in each channel and the number of controller/memory channels to be selected to accommodate a desired storage size and transfer rate, without an undesirably high latency time. An asynchronous transfer mode (ATM) switch allows multiple viewers to access the movies stored in the mass data storage device with independent video cassette recorder (VCR)-like control of the movie being watched.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 6, 1996
    Date of Patent: July 22, 1997
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Timothy A. Yokote, Grant J. Stockton, Eric L. Upton, Arthur G. Enyedy, Dirk K. Brandis
  • Patent number: 5590058
    Abstract: A device for monitoring the environment of a battery. The device takes the form of a generally flat wafer-like substrate having openings therein for receiving the posts of the battery. The device is arranged so that it is sandwiched between the battery and its connector when the female receptacles of the connector are mated with the posts. Circuitry on the wafer contains a memory for recording information about the battery characteristics. This information can be read from the memory to provide knowledge about battery operating time, number of charge/discharge cycles, number and severity of deep-discharge cycles, total time spent in deep discharge, temperature fluctuations and G-loads applied to the battery. By taking advantage of the existing space between mated battery connectors, no additional mounting hardware or battery modifications are required.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 24, 1995
    Date of Patent: December 31, 1996
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventors: Kevin G. Foreman, Paul J. Miller, Steven M. Siska
  • Patent number: 5577202
    Abstract: An automated gateway system for interfacing a first message handling system with a second message handling system. In the preferred embodiment, the automated gateway of the present invention allows the exchange between a formal system such as the United States Department of Defense AUTODIN message handling system and an informal system such as the International Standards Organization X.400 message handling system. Messages received from a first one of the message handling systems are processed and sent to a message routing unit which determines if the message should be sent to the first or second message handling system. If the second message handling system address exists, an automated gateway user agent validates the address and creates a second message handling system envelope around the entire message and submits it to the second message handling system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 24, 1992
    Date of Patent: November 19, 1996
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventor: Robert D. Padgett