Patents Represented by Attorney Thomas K. McBride
  • Patent number: 8226767
    Abstract: “Super-hetero-epitaxial” combinations comprise epitaxial growth of one material on a different material with different crystal structure. Compatible crystal structures may be identified using a “Tri-Unity” system. New bandgap engineering diagrams are provided for each class of combination, based on determination of hybrid lattice constants for the constituent materials in accordance with lattice-matching equations. Using known bandgap figures for previously tested materials, new materials with lattice constants that match desired substrates and have the desired bandgap properties may be formulated by reference to the diagrams and lattice matching equations. In one embodiment, this analysis makes it possible to formulate new super-hetero-epitaxial semiconductor systems, such as systems based on group IV alloys on c-plane LaF3; group IV alloys on c-plane langasite; Group III-V alloys on c-plane langasite; and group II-VI alloys on c-plane sapphire.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 20, 2008
    Date of Patent: July 24, 2012
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: Yeonjoon Park, Sang H. Choi, Glen C. King, James R. Elliott
  • Patent number: 8198976
    Abstract: A flexible thin metal film thermal sensing system is provided. A thermally-conductive film made from a thermally-insulating material is doped with thermally-conductive material. At least one layer of electrically-conductive metal is deposited directly onto a surface of the thermally-conductive film. One or more devices are coupled to the layer(s) to measure an electrical characteristic associated therewith as an indication of temperature.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 15, 2010
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2012
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventor: Donald Laurence Thomsen
  • Patent number: 8174695
    Abstract: A spectrometer system includes an array of micro-zone plates (MZP) each having coaxially-aligned ring gratings, a sample plate for supporting and illuminating a sample, and an array of photon detectors for measuring a spectral characteristic of the predetermined wavelength. The sample plate emits an evanescent wave in response to incident light, which excites molecules of the sample to thereby cause an emission of secondary photons. A method of detecting the intensity of a selected wavelength of incident light includes directing the incident light onto an array of MZP, diffracting a selected wavelength of the incident light onto a target focal point using the array of MZP, and detecting the intensity of the selected portion using an array of photon detectors. An electro-optic layer positioned adjacent to the array of MZP may be excited via an applied voltage to select the wavelength of the incident light.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 23, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 8, 2012
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: Sang H. Choi, Yeonjoon Park, Glen C. King, James R. Elliott
  • Patent number: 8108178
    Abstract: A method of validating a probability of detection (POD) testing system using directed design of experiments (DOE) includes recording an input data set of observed hit and miss or analog data for sample components as a function of size of a flaw in the components. The method also includes processing the input data set to generate an output data set having an optimal class width, assigning a case number to the output data set, and generating validation instructions based on the assigned case number. An apparatus includes a host machine for receiving the input data set from the testing system and an algorithm for executing DOE to validate the test system. The algorithm applies DOE to the input data set to determine a data set having an optimal class width, assigns a case number to that data set, and generates validation instructions based on the case number.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 18, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 31, 2012
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventor: Edward R. Generazio
  • Patent number: 8094306
    Abstract: A spectrometer includes a micro-ring grating device having coaxially-aligned ring gratings for diffracting incident light onto a target focal point, a detection device for detecting light intensity, one or more actuators, and an adjustable aperture device defining a circular aperture. The aperture circumscribes a target focal point, and directs a light to the detection device. The aperture device is selectively adjustable using the actuators to select a portion of a frequency band for transmission to the detection device. A method of detecting intensity of a selected band of incident light includes directing incident light onto coaxially-aligned ring gratings of a micro-ring grating device, and diffracting the selected band onto a target focal point using the ring gratings. The method includes using an actuator to adjust an aperture device and pass a selected portion of the frequency band to a detection device for measuring the intensity of the selected portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 10, 2012
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: Yeonjoon Park, Glen C. King, James R. Elliott, Sang H. Choi
  • Patent number: 8089677
    Abstract: A dynamic optical grating device and associated method for modulating light is provided that is capable of controlling the spectral properties and propagation of light without moving mechanical components by the use of a dynamic electric and/or magnetic field. By changing the electric field and/or magnetic field, the index of refraction, the extinction coefficient, the transmittivity, and the reflectivity of the optical grating device may be controlled in order to control the spectral properties of the light reflected or transmitted by the device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 8, 2008
    Date of Patent: January 3, 2012
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeuronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: Yeonjoon Park, Sang H. Choi, Glen C. King, Sang-Hyon Chu
  • Patent number: 8063171
    Abstract: A three dimensional structure fabricated from a self-healing polymeric material, comprising poly(ester amides) obtained from ethylene glycol, azelaic acid and 1,1-aminoundecanoic acid, wherein polymeric material has a melt index above 2.5 g/10 min. as determined by ASTM D1238 at 190° C. and 2.16kg, impact resistance and ductility sufficient to resist cracking and brittle fracture upon impact by a 9 mm bullet fired at a temperature of about 29° C. at subsonic speed in a range from about 800 feet/sec to about 1000 feet/sec. It has been determined that the important factors necessary for self-healing behavior of polymers include sufficient impact strength, control of the degree of crystallinity, low melting point and the ability to instantly melt at impacted area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 9, 2009
    Date of Patent: November 22, 2011
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventor: Daniel J. Klein
  • Patent number: 8059273
    Abstract: A spectrometer system includes an optical assembly for collimating light, a micro-ring grating assembly having a plurality of coaxially-aligned ring gratings, an aperture device defining an aperture circumscribing a target focal point, and a photon detector. An electro-optical layer of the grating assembly may be electrically connected to an energy supply to change the refractive index of the electro-optical layer. Alternately, the gratings may be electrically connected to the energy supply and energized, e.g., with alternating voltages, to change the refractive index. A data recorder may record the predetermined spectral characteristic.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 2, 2009
    Date of Patent: November 15, 2011
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: Yeonjoon Park, Sang H. Choi, Glen C. King, James R. Elliott
  • Patent number: 8052069
    Abstract: The present invention comprises a high performance, vertical, zero-net mass-flux, synthetic jet actuator for active control of viscous, separated flow on subsonic and supersonic vehicles. The present invention is a vertical piezoelectric hybrid zero-net mass-flux actuator, in which all the walls of the chamber are electrically controlled synergistically to reduce or enlarge the volume of the synthetic jet actuator chamber in three dimensions simultaneously and to reduce or enlarge the diameter of orifice of the synthetic jet actuator simultaneously with the reduction or enlargement of the volume of the chamber. The jet velocity and mass flow rate for the present invention will be several times higher than conventional piezoelectric synthetic jet actuators.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 26, 2009
    Date of Patent: November 8, 2011
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: Tian-Bing Xu, Xiaoning Jiang, Ji Su
  • Patent number: 8044294
    Abstract: New thermoelectric materials comprise highly [111]-oriented twinned group IV alloys on the basal plane of trigonal substrates, which exhibit a high thermoelectric figure of merit and good material performance, and devices made with these materials.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 20, 2008
    Date of Patent: October 25, 2011
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: Yeonjoon Park, Sang H. Choi, Glen C. King, James R. Elliott, Noel A. Talcott
  • Patent number: 8018815
    Abstract: An embodiment generally relates to an optical device suitable for use with an optical medium for the storage and retrieval of data. The optical device includes an illumination means for providing a beam of optical radiation of wavelength ? and an optical path that the beam of optical radiation follows. The optical device also includes a diffractive optical element defined by a plurality of annular sections. The plurality of annular sections having a first material alternately disposed with a plurality of annular sections comprising a second material. The diffractive optical element generates a plurality of focal points and densely accumulated ray points with phase contrast phenomena and the optical medium is positioned at a selected focal point or ray point of the diffractive optical element.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 24, 2009
    Date of Patent: September 13, 2011
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: Sang H. Choi, Yeonjoon Park, Glen C. King, James R. Elliott
  • Patent number: 8017190
    Abstract: A metal/fiber laminate has a plurality of adjacent layers. Each layer is porous and includes an arrangement of fibers. At least one of the layers has its fibers coated with a metal. A polymer matrix permeates each such arrangement.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 18, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 13, 2011
    Assignee: United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: Stephen J. Hales, Joel A. Alexa, Brian J. Jensen, Roberto J. Cano, Erik S. Weiser
  • Patent number: 7935414
    Abstract: An electroactive material comprises multiple layers of electroactive composite with each layer having unique dielectric, electrical and mechanical properties that define an electromechanical operation thereof when affected by an external stimulus. For example, each layer can be (i) a 2-phase composite made from a polymer with polarizable moieties and an effective amount of carbon nanotubes incorporated in the polymer for a predetermined electomechanical operation, or (ii) a 3-phase composite having the elements of the 2-phase composite and further including a third component of micro-sized to nano-sized particles of an electroactive ceramic incorporated in the polymer matrix.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 18, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 3, 2011
    Assignee: United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: Zoubeida Ounaies, Cheol Park, Joycelyn S. Harrison, Nancy M. Holloway, Gregory K. Draughon
  • Patent number: 7906043
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to the effective dispersion of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) into polymer matrices. The nanocomposites are prepared using polymer matrices and exhibit a unique combination of properties, most notably, high retention of optical transparency in the visible range (i.e., 400-800 nm), electrical conductivity, and high thermal stability. By appropriate selection of the matrix resin, additional properties such as vacuum ultraviolet radiation resistance, atomic oxygen resistance, high glass transition (Tg) temperatures, and excellent toughness can be attained. The resulting nanocomposites can be used to fabricate or formulate a variety of articles such as coatings on a variety of substrates, films, foams, fibers, threads, adhesives and fiber coated prepreg. The properties of the nanocomposites can be adjusted by selection of the polymer matrix and CNT to fabricate articles that possess high optical transparency and antistatic behavior.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 15, 2011
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: John W. Connell, Joseph G. Smith, Joycelyn S. Harrison, Cheol Park, Kent A. Watson, Zoubeida Ounaies
  • Patent number: 7906358
    Abstract: Hetero-epitaxial semiconductor materials comprising cubic crystalline semiconductor alloys grown on the basal plane of trigonal and hexagonal substrates, in which misfit dislocations are reduced by approximate lattice matching of the cubic crystal structure to underlying trigonal or hexagonal substrate structure, enabling the development of alloyed semiconductor layers of greater thickness, resulting in a new class of semiconductor materials and corresponding devices, including improved hetero-bipolar and high-electron mobility transistors, and high-mobility thermoelectric devices.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 20, 2008
    Date of Patent: March 15, 2011
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: Yeonjoon Park, Sang H. Choi, Glen C. King
  • Patent number: 6815570
    Abstract: A catalyst, a process for using the catalyst whereby the catalyst effectively transalkylates C7, C9, and C10 aromatics to C8 aromatics are disclosed. The catalyst comprises a support such as mordenite plus a metal component. The catalyst provides an enhanced life and activity for carrying out the transalkylation reactions at relatively low temperatures. This is achieved by reducing the maximum particle diameter of cylindrical pellets to {fraction (1/32)} inch (0.08 cm) or a trilobe to {fraction (1/16)} inch (0.16 cm).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 7, 2002
    Date of Patent: November 9, 2004
    Assignee: UOP LLC
    Inventors: Antoine Negiz, Edwin P. Boldingh, Gregory J. Gajda, Surgey V. Gurevich
  • Patent number: 6809054
    Abstract: An distributor arrangement introduces spent FCC catalyst more uniformly across the dense bed of the regenerator to provide more even contact with regeneration gas in order to avoid hot spots and zones of incomplete combustion. The invention forms a fluidized hopper to collect spent catalyst and a horizontally extended header with multiple horizontally extended outlet arms to place catalyst into the regenerator. The invention may use an aeration means to fluidize the header to further assist catalyst flow. Furthermore, the spent catalyst delivered to the top of the regenerator dense reduces NOx emissions in the flue gas.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 21, 2000
    Date of Patent: October 26, 2004
    Assignee: UOP LLC
    Inventors: Daniel N. Myers, Mikhail Tretyak, Rusty M. Pittman, Steven Niewiedzial
  • Patent number: 6809061
    Abstract: A novel catalyst and the use thereof in a reforming process are disclosed. The catalyst comprises a refractory inorganic oxide, uniform platinum-group metal, uniform Group IVA (IUPAC 14) metal and surface-layer lanthanide-series metal. The catalyst is particularly suitable for the reforming of a hydrocarbon feedstock to obtain an aromatics-rich product.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 13, 2002
    Date of Patent: October 26, 2004
    Assignee: UOP LLC
    Inventors: Paula L. Bogdan, Maureen L. Bricker
  • Patent number: 6740788
    Abstract: Enabling a transalkylation process to handle both C10 alkylaromatics and unextracted toluene permits the following improvements to be realized. No longer extracting toluene allows a reformate-splitter column to be eliminated. The extraction unit can be moved to the overhead of a benzene column. No longer requiring a rigorous split between C9 and C10 alkylaromatics allows a heavy aromatics column to be eliminated. Such an enabled transalkylation process requires stabilization of a transalkylation catalyst through the introduction of a metal function. A further enhancement to the flow scheme is accomplished through the elimination of clay treaters in favor of selective olefin saturation at the exits of a reforming unit and an isomerization unit. These improvements result in an aromatics complex with savings on inside battery limits curve costs and an improvement on the return on investment in such a complex.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 2002
    Date of Patent: May 25, 2004
    Assignee: UOP LLC
    Inventors: Gregory F. Maher, David A. Hamm
  • Patent number: 6576581
    Abstract: This invention is drawn to a catalyst system comprising two or more molecular sieves, including at least one non-zeolitic molecular sieve and one zeolitic aluminosilicate, having specified contrasting pore structures and to a process for isomerizing a non-equilibrium mixture of xylenes and ethylbenzene using the subject catalyst system to obtain an improved yield of para-xylene from the mixture relative to prior-art processes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 21, 2000
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2003
    Assignee: UOP LLC
    Inventors: Sanjay B. Sharma, Aaron J. Imrie