Patents Assigned to Bell Textron Inc.
  • Publication number: 20200361622
    Abstract: An exemplary dual motor input includes a common shaft for coupling to a member to be rotationally driven, a first motor rotationally coupled to a first drive shaft, the first drive shaft coupled to the common shaft, and a second motor rotationally coupled to a second drive shaft, the second drive shaft coupled to the common shaft.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 16, 2019
    Publication date: November 19, 2020
    Applicant: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Kirk L. Groninga, Daniel B. Robertson
  • Patent number: 10836479
    Abstract: An example rotating swashplate ring to rotor mast connection includes a polygon-shaped drive tube secured to the rotor mast and a gimbal joint connected between the rotating swashplate ring and the polygon-shaped drive tube, wherein the gimbal joint rotates with the rotor mast and can translate axially along the polygon-shaped drive tube.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 2018
    Date of Patent: November 17, 2020
    Assignee: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Glenn Alan Shimek, Mark Adam Wiinikka, Michael Dean Dearman
  • Publication number: 20200354046
    Abstract: An aircraft having a differential rotor speed resonance avoidance system. The aircraft includes an airframe having structural elements subject to resonant vibration at critical frequencies. A thrust array is coupled to the airframe. The thrust array includes at least four rotor systems distributed about the airframe, each rotor system operable over a range of rotor speeds. A flight control system is operably associated with the thrust array and is configured to independently control the rotor speed of each rotor system. While preserving flight dynamics during flight operations, the flight control system selectively increases the rotor speed of some of the rotor systems by a speed delta and decreases the rotor speed of others of the rotor systems by the speed delta to avoid generating excitation frequencies by the rotor systems at the critical frequencies.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 10, 2019
    Publication date: November 12, 2020
    Applicant: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Jonathan A. Knoll, Jouyoung Jason Choi, Thomas Clement Parham
  • Patent number: 10829237
    Abstract: An inlet barrier filter system for a tiltrotor aircraft comprising a filter duct extending from a filter to a filter outlet, a ram air duct extending from a ram air inlet to an engine where the filter duct connects to the ram air duct at the filter outlet, and a closure member movable between a first position blocking the ram air duct and a second position blocking the filter outlet. In use, the inlet barrier filter system provides for two mutually exclusive air flow paths, one for introducing ram air to the engine while closing off the filter and another air flow path for introducing filtered air to the engine while closing off the ram air duct.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 2018
    Date of Patent: November 10, 2020
    Assignee: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: James Everett Kooiman, George Ryan Decker, Michael Rinehart, Jeffrey Matthew Williams
  • Publication number: 20200346743
    Abstract: An energy absorbing landing system for an aircraft having a fuselage includes landing legs rotatably coupled to the fuselage configured to outwardly rotate when receiving a landing load having a magnitude. The energy absorbing landing system also includes an energy absorption unit coupled to the fuselage and cables coupling the energy absorption unit to the landing legs. The energy absorption unit is configured to selectively apply a resistance to the outward rotation of the landing legs via the cables based on the magnitude of the landing load, thereby absorbing the landing load when the aircraft lands.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 30, 2019
    Publication date: November 5, 2020
    Applicant: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventor: Guy Bernard
  • Publication number: 20200347656
    Abstract: A versatile door system for an aircraft includes forward and aft door assemblies. The forward door assembly includes a forward hingeable door hingeably coupled to the airframe proximate a forward location of an aircraft opening and a forward slidable door slidably coupled to the forward hingeable door. The aft door assembly includes an aft hingeable door hingeably coupled to the airframe proximate an aft location of the aircraft opening and an aft slidable door slidably coupled to the aft hingeable door. In a closed configuration, the forward hingeable door, the forward slidable door, the aft hingeable door and the aft slidable door are securably disposed within the aircraft opening. In operation, the forward hingeable door, the forward slidable door, the aft hingeable door and the aft slidable door are individually operable to collectively provide access to a selectable width of the aircraft opening.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 2, 2019
    Publication date: November 5, 2020
    Applicant: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Kirk Landon Groninga, Daniel Bryan Robertson
  • Publication number: 20200339254
    Abstract: An aircraft rotor system including a hub having a hub axis about which the hub is configured to rotate; a plurality of rotor blades configured to extend from the hub and rotate about the hub axis, at least one of the rotor blades rotatable about a respective pitch change axis; wherein the hub is configured to be rotated about the hub axis only by the plurality of rotor blades. Another aspect includes a method of operating the rotor system.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 10, 2020
    Publication date: October 29, 2020
    Applicant: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Alison Ann Davis, Charles Speller
  • Publication number: 20200340894
    Abstract: A method of offset load testing a tubular composite specimen with two pairs of aligned holes and having at least one defect, the method comprising: providing a testing apparatus having a pair of arms including a fixed arm and a mobile arm; securing the pair of arms using a fastener assembly in each of the two pairs of aligned holes; and moving the mobile arm to impart an offset load force to the tubular specimen. One aspect includes a method of offset load testing comprising: providing a testing apparatus having a pair of arms including a fixed arm and a mobile arm; providing a tubular composite specimen with a top portion and a bottom portion; securing the pair of arms to the top and bottom portions of the tubular composite specimen; and moving the mobile arm to impart an offset load force to the tubular composite specimen.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 8, 2020
    Publication date: October 29, 2020
    Applicant: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Wei-Yueh Lee, Michael Burnett, Michael Dearman
  • Patent number: 10814960
    Abstract: A dynamic rotor-phasing unit can phase rotors in-flight for dynamic rotor tuning and in an idle state for aircraft storage. The input and output shafts can be clocked (e.g., rotated) from 0 degrees apart to in excess of 360 degrees apart or from 0 degrees apart to 140 degrees apart. Such rotation can minimize the footprint of an aircraft for stowing purposes, as the rotor blades can be folded to fit within a smaller area without disconnecting the drive system. Additionally, the unit can allow tiltrotor blades to be clocked during flight, which can allow the live-tuning of the aircraft's rotor dynamics. A fail-safe rotary actuator can rotate a stationary planet carrier to clock the input shaft and the output shaft. Alternatively, an actuator can position a slider housing to clock the input shaft and the output shaft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 12, 2020
    Date of Patent: October 27, 2020
    Assignee: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Colton Gilliland, Tyson Henry
  • Publication number: 20200331216
    Abstract: In an aspect, there is a method of determining allowable defects for a composite component comprising identifying at least one wrinkle characteristic of a composite component wrinkle defect; making a first plurality of specimens each having a predetermined wrinkle defect representative of the composite component wrinkle defect; measuring each of the predetermined wrinkle defects in the first plurality of specimens for at least one performance metric to generate performance data; and generating an allowable wrinkle defect profile based on the performance data from the first plurality of specimens. In other aspects, there are methods of making a specimen with a predetermined wrinkle defect.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 7, 2020
    Publication date: October 22, 2020
    Applicant: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Michael Burnett, Wei-Yueh Lee, Michael Dearman
  • Publication number: 20200333228
    Abstract: A notch treatment method for flaw simulation including providing the specimen with the notch, the notch having a re-melt material layer; isolating the notch; and selectively etching the notch to provide an etched surface of the notch; wherein at least a portion of the re-melt material layer has been removed from the notch. In one aspect, there is provided a notch treatment method for flaw simulation including providing the specimen with the notch, the notch having a re-melt material layer, the specimen includes steel or an alloy thereof; isolating the notch; and selectively etching the notch with a first etching solution and a second etching solution to provide an etched surface on the notch; wherein at least a portion of the re-melt material layer has been removed from the notch.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 26, 2020
    Publication date: October 22, 2020
    Applicant: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Xiaoming Li, Bogdan R. Krasnowski, Robert A. Figueroa, Robert Wardlaw
  • Publication number: 20200331626
    Abstract: A detachable cargo mirror assembly for use on a rotorcraft surface that includes a bracket for mounting to a surface on the rotorcraft, the bracket comprising a base portion and a retainer portion having a first pair of opposing holes, an elongated arm having two opposing ends, a first end for coupling with the bracket and a second end coupled to a mirror apparatus, the first end having a passage; and a releasable connector that engages with the first pair of opposing holes and the passage in the elongated arm when the elongated arm is in a first position to display a desired image on the mirror apparatus. The detachable cargo mirror assembly can be removed or in a stowed position when not in use.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 7, 2020
    Publication date: October 22, 2020
    Applicant: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Brian Lafon, Ricky Jenkins, Sean Morgan, William P. Sumner, William L. Neal
  • Publication number: 20200324885
    Abstract: A multimodal unmanned aerial system includes a fuselage forming a payload bay, a control wing forward of the fuselage including a first plurality of propulsion assemblies and a primary wing aft of the fuselage including a second plurality of propulsion assemblies. The primary wing has a greater wingspan than the control wing. The multimodal unmanned aerial system includes linkages rotatably coupling the fuselage to the control wing and the primary wing. The fuselage, the control wing and the primary wing are configured to synchronously rotate between a vertical takeoff and landing flight mode and a forward flight mode. The fuselage, the control wing and the primary wing are substantially vertical in the vertical takeoff and landing flight mode and substantially horizontal in the forward flight mode.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 15, 2019
    Publication date: October 15, 2020
    Applicant: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventor: Guy Bernard
  • Patent number: 10800129
    Abstract: In accordance with one embodiment of the present disclosure, a method for manufacturing a honeycomb core sandwich panel includes placing a thermoset facesheet in contact with a thermoplastic honeycomb core without using a separate adhesive and attaching the thermoset facesheet to the thermoplastic honeycomb core by using a curing profile comprising a temperature that is lower than a gel point temperature of the thermoset facesheet and higher than a softening point temperature of the thermoplastic honeycomb core.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 13, 2020
    Assignee: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Suvankar Mishra, Robert Mark Chris, Michael D. Ishmael, Ronald J. Turner
  • Patent number: 10793284
    Abstract: A multimode clutch assembly is positioned in a powertrain of a rotorcraft. The multimode clutch assembly includes a freewheeling unit having input and output races. The freewheeling unit has a driving mode in which torque applied to the input race is transferred to the output race and an overrunning mode in which torque applied to the output race is not transferred to the input race. A bypass assembly has an engaged position that couples the input and output races of the freewheeling unit. A hydraulic actuator shifts the bypass assembly between the engaged position and a disengaged position. In the disengaged position, the overrunning mode of the freewheeling unit is enabled such that the multimode clutch assembly is configured for unidirectional torque transfer. In the engaged position, the overrunning mode of the freewheeling unit is disabled such that the multimode clutch assembly is configured for bidirectional torque transfer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 11, 2019
    Date of Patent: October 6, 2020
    Assignee: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: David Andrew Prater, Eric Stephen Olson
  • Patent number: 10793275
    Abstract: Embodiments are directed to an aircraft, such as a tiltrotor, having an internal payload storage area. A rotatable deployment system is mounted within the payload storage area. The rotatable deployment system comprises a frame that is configured to rotate between a stowed position and a deployment position. Two extendible arms are attached to the frame, wherein each extendible arm is configured to move in opposite directions between a retracted position and a plurality of extended positions. Each extendible arm has a fixed end and a moving end. A payload mounting point on each moving end. The payload mounting point allows a payload to pan and tilt in azimuth and elevation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 8, 2018
    Date of Patent: October 6, 2020
    Assignee: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Jeremy Robert Chavez, Brent Chadwick Ross
  • Publication number: 20200307779
    Abstract: A fully compounding rotorcraft includes a fuselage having first and second wings extending therefrom and configured to provide lift compounding responsive to forward airspeed. A twin boom includes first and second tail boom members that extend aftward from the first and second wings. An empennage is coupled between the aft ends of the tail boom members. An anti-torque system includes a tail rotor that is rotatably coupled to the empennage. An engine is disposed within the fuselage and is configured to provide torque to a main rotor assembly via an output shaft and a main rotor gearbox. An auxiliary propulsive system is coupled to the fuselage and is configured to generate a propulsive thrust to offload at least a portion of a thrust requirement from the main rotor during forward flight, thereby providing propulsion compounding to increase the forward airspeed of the rotorcraft.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 26, 2019
    Publication date: October 1, 2020
    Applicant: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Brent Chadwick Ross, Alan Carl Ewing, Steven Ray Ivans
  • Publication number: 20200309066
    Abstract: A hybrid propulsion engine for a rotorcraft includes a core turboshaft engine having a gas path and an output shaft that provides torque to a main rotor. A fan module is disposed relative to the core turboshaft engine and is coupled to the output shaft. The fan module has a bypass air path that is independent of the gas path. A thrust nozzle is configured to mix exhaust gases from the core turboshaft engine with bypass air from the fan module and to discharge the mixture to provide propulsive thrust. In a turboshaft configuration, the fan module is closed to prevent the flow of bypass air therethrough such that the thrust nozzle does not provide propulsive thrust. In a turboshaft and turbofan configuration, the fan module is open allowing the flow of bypass air therethrough such that the thrust nozzle provides propulsive thrust, thereby supplying propulsion compounding for the rotorcraft.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 26, 2019
    Publication date: October 1, 2020
    Applicant: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Brent Chadwick Ross, Steven Ray Ivans, Alan Carl Ewing
  • Patent number: 10788088
    Abstract: A selectable clutch assembly for a multimode powertrain of a rotorcraft. The selectable clutch assembly includes a freewheeling unit having input and output sides. The freewheeling unit has a driving mode wherein torque applied to the input side is transferred to the output side and an over running mode wherein torque applied to the output side is not transferred to the input side. A bypass assembly is coupled to and rotatable with the output side of the freewheeling unit and is actuatable between engaged and disengaged positions with the input side of the freewheeling unit. In the disengaged position, the freewheeling unit is operable in the driving and the over running modes such that the selectable clutch assembly is configured for unidirectional torque transfer. In the engaged position, the over running mode of the freewheeling unit is disabled such that the selectable clutch assembly is configured for bidirectional torque transfer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 13, 2019
    Date of Patent: September 29, 2020
    Assignee: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Eric Stephen Olson, Mark Alan Przybyla, David R. Bockmiller
  • Patent number: D902122
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 27, 2019
    Date of Patent: November 17, 2020
    Assignee: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: James Everett Kooiman, Lynn Francis Eschete, Andrew Thomas Carter, Aaron Alexander Acee