Patents Assigned to New Venture Gear, Inc.
  • Patent number: 6846262
    Abstract: A controllable, multi-mode, bi-directional overrunning clutch assembly and a shift system adapted for use in a transfer case for transferring drive torque from a primary output shaft to a secondary output shaft so as to establish a four-wheel drive mode. The clutch assembly includes a first ring journalled on a first rotary member, a second ring fixed to a second rotary member, and a plurality of rollers disposed in opposed cam tracks formed between the first and second rings. The first ring is split to define an actuation channel between its end segments. A cam rod is moveable between positions engaged with and released from one or both end segments of the split first ring. The shift system includes a mode fork which controls movement of the cam rod for establishing four distinct operational modes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 25, 2003
    Date of Patent: January 25, 2005
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventors: Randolph C. Williams, Aaron Ronk
  • Patent number: 6835154
    Abstract: A torque transfer system is disclosed which is particularly well-suited for use in four-wheel drive transfer cases to establish distinct two-wheel and four-wheel drive modes as well as providing an automatic (“on-demand”) four-wheel drive mode. The torque through system includes a planetary gearset having a first component driven by an input member, a second component driving an output member, and a third component driven by a worm gearset. The worm gearset includes a worm gear fixed for rotation with the third component and a worm meshed with the worm gear. A variable speed motor drives the worm for varying the speed ratio between the first and third components of the planetary gearset, thereby causing a corresponding variation in the drive torque transferred from the input member to the output member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 19, 2003
    Date of Patent: December 28, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventors: Yakov Fleytman, Carl D. Schleuder
  • Patent number: 6824487
    Abstract: A transfer case is provided with a range unit, an interaxle differential, a clutch assembly and a power-operated actuation mechanism. The range unit includes a planetary gearset driven by an input shaft, and a synchronized dog clutch assembly for releasably coupling one of the input shaft or an output component of the planetary gearset to an input member of the interaxle differential. The interaxle differential further includes a first output member driving a first output shaft, a second output member operably driving a second output shaft. The clutch assembly is a multi-plate friction clutch operably disposed between the first and second output shafts. The power-operated actuation mechanism includes a range actuator assembly, a ball-ramp clutch actuator assembly and a motor assembly operable to control actuation of the range actuator assembly and the clutch actuator assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 30, 2003
    Date of Patent: November 30, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventors: Randolph C. Williams, Hemant S. Suthar, Aaron Ronk
  • Patent number: 6821227
    Abstract: A full-time two-speed transfer case is equipped with an integrated planetary gearset assembly and a range shift mechanism to provide high-range and low-range drive connections. The integrated planetary gearset assembly includes a first gearset which acts as a two-speed reduction unit and a second gearset which acts as an interaxle differential. The synchronized range shift mechanism is arranged to concurrently move two components of the first gearset and can be synchronized to permit on-the-move range shifts. The transfer case is also equipped with a dual-mode bi-directional overrunning clutch and a mode shift mechanism to establish automatic full-time and locked four-wheel drive modes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 10, 2003
    Date of Patent: November 23, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventor: Randolph C. Williams
  • Patent number: 6814681
    Abstract: A drive axle assembly for use in an all-wheel drive vehicle having a first hydraulic coupling operable to automatically transfer drive torque to a secondary driveline in response to slip of the primary driveline and a second hydraulic coupling operable to bias torque and limit slip between the wheels of the secondary driveline.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 26, 2003
    Date of Patent: November 9, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventor: Fred C. Porter
  • Patent number: 6811007
    Abstract: A transfer mechanism is provided for controlling a magnitude of clutch engagement force exerted on a multi-plate clutch assembly operably disposed between input and output members. The transfer clutch includes an actuator fixed for rotation with the input member, a piston slidably disposed within a piston chamber of the actuator and selectively engaging the multi-plate clutch assembly, a pump in fluid communication with the piston chamber, and operably engaged with the input member and the output member. A rotational speed differential between the input member and the output member induces pumping action for pumping a magnetorheological fluid through the piston chamber. An electromagnetic coil is operably disposed between the piston chamber and the pump. The electromagnetic coil is selectively energized for manipulating a viscosity of the magnetorheological fluid to induce a back pressure within the piston chamber, thereby inducing axial movement of the piston for engaging the clutch pack.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 9, 2004
    Date of Patent: November 2, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventor: James P. Dolan
  • Patent number: 6808053
    Abstract: A torque transfer mechanism is provided for controlling the magnitude of a clutch engagement force exerted on a multi-plate clutch assembly that is operably disposed between a first rotary and a second rotary member. The torque transfer mechanism includes a clutch actuator assembly for generating and applying a clutch engagement force on the clutch assembly. The clutch actuator assembly includes an electric motor/brake unit, a torque/force conversion mechanism, and a force amplification mechanism. The motor/brake unit can be operated in either of a motor mode or a brake mode to cause bi-directional linear movement of an output member of the torque/force conversion mechanism. The thrust force generated by the torque/force conversion mechanism is increased by the force amplification mechanism with the resultant clutch engagement force applied to the clutch assembly. The dual mode feature of the electric motor/brake unit significantly reduces the power requirements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 21, 2003
    Date of Patent: October 26, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventors: Malcolm E. Kirkwood, Thomas C. Bowen
  • Patent number: 6808037
    Abstract: A torque transfer mechanism is provided for controlling the magnitude of a clutch engagement force exerted on a multi-plate clutch assembly that is operably disposed between a first rotary and a second rotary member. The torque transfer mechanism includes a clutch actuator for generating and applying a clutch engagement force on the clutch assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 8, 2003
    Date of Patent: October 26, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventor: Joseph G. Mueller
  • Patent number: 6808052
    Abstract: A torque transfer mechanism is provided for controlling the magnitude of a clutch engagement force exerted on a multi-plate clutch assembly that is operably disposed between a first rotary and a second rotary member. The torque transfer mechanism includes a clutch actuator assembly for generating and applying a clutch engagement force on the clutch assembly. The clutch actuator assembly includes an electric motor/brake unit and a torque/force conversion mechanism. The motor/brake unit can be operated in either of a motor mode or a brake mode to cause bi-directional linear movement of an output member of the torque/force conversion mechanism. The thrust force generated by the torque/force conversion mechanism is applied to the clutch assembly. The dual mode feature of the electric motor/brake unit significantly reduces the power requirements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 10, 2003
    Date of Patent: October 26, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventors: Malcolm E. Kirkwood, Thomas C. Bowen
  • Patent number: 6805652
    Abstract: A controllable, multi-mode, bi-directional overrunning clutch assembly and a mode shift system are adapted for use in a transfer case for transferring drive torque from a primary output shaft to a secondary output shaft so as to establish four-wheel drive modes. The clutch assembly includes a first ring journalled on a first rotary member, a second ring fixed to a second rotary member, and a plurality of rollers disposed in opposed cam tracks formed between the first and second rings. The first ring is split to define an actuation channel having a pair of spaced end segments. An actuator ring is moveable between positions engaged with and released from the end segments of the first ring. The shift system includes a moveable clutch actuator which controls movement of the actuator ring for establishing an on-demand four-wheel drive mode and a locked or part-time four-wheel drive mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 7, 2003
    Date of Patent: October 19, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventor: Randolph C. Williams
  • Patent number: 6780134
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a power transfer system for a four-wheel drive vehicle equipped with a torque transfer coupling which includes a clutch pack and a ball-screw actuator. The ball-screw actuator functions to axially translates an apply plate to operatively engage the clutch pack and vary the frictional engagement. This arrangement yields numerous operational advantages over the prior art including, but not limited to, establishing a direct drive between the motor output shaft and the apply plate, concentric mounting of the actuator elements with the motor output shaft, and a simplified mechanical arrangement that reduces the number of frictional elements increasing operational efficiency and decreasing motor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 10, 2003
    Date of Patent: August 24, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventors: Carl H. Vonnegut, Mozaffar Khazaee, Sankar K. Mohan, Eric A. Bansbach, Daniel J. Miller
  • Patent number: 6779641
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a power transfer system for a four-wheel drive vehicle equipped with a torque transfer coupling which includes a clutch pack and a ball-screw actuator. The ball-screw actuator functions to axially translates an apply plate to operatively engage the clutch pack and vary the frictional engagement. This arrangement yields numerous operational advantages over the prior art including, but not limited to, establishing a direct drive between the motor output shaft and the apply plate, concentric mounting of the actuator elements with the motor output shaft, and a simplified mechanical arrangement that reduces the number of frictional elements increasing operational efficiency and decreasing motor requirements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 2, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 24, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventors: Carl H. Vonnegut, Mozaffar Khazaee, Sankar K. Mohan, Eric A. Bansbach, Daniel J. Miller
  • Patent number: 6770192
    Abstract: A treatment system for use in a water delivery system for eradicating bacteria such as the Legionella bacteria. The treatment system includes an ultraviolet light source for killing bacteria entering the water delivery system, an electrochemical precipitation unit and a blending valve in communication with water discharged from the precipitation unit and a source of hot water.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 17, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 3, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventor: Robert R. Peterson
  • Patent number: 6766889
    Abstract: A torque transfer mechanism is provided for controlling the magnitude of a clutch engagement force exerted on a multi-plate clutch assembly that is operably disposed between a first rotary and a second rotary member. The torque transfer mechanism includes a clutch actuator for generating and applying a clutch engagement force on the clutch assembly. The clutch actuator includes a wedge fork having a gear rack segment and a tapered tang segment and a reaction block defining a tapered edge in sliding engagement with the tapered tang segment. An electric motor drives a pinion that is meshed with the gear rack to cause bi-directional linear movement of the wedge fork which causes corresponding sliding movement of the reaction block relative to the clutch assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 2003
    Date of Patent: July 27, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventor: Dale L. Pennycuff
  • Patent number: 6757949
    Abstract: An apparatus is provided for manufacturing a gear component. The apparatus includes a plurality of tooling stocks movable relative to a base. The tooling stocks function to retain a component, as well as operably driving a combination hob/shaver tool and a combination chamfer/debur tool. The apparatus reduces the number of machines required to complete the gear component as well as reducing the cycle time for complete component manufacture. In this way, a more efficient manufacturing system is provided, whereby capital investment and operational costs are reduced.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 9, 2003
    Date of Patent: July 6, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventors: Brian M. Fitzgerald, Jeffrey A. Rynders
  • Patent number: 6755290
    Abstract: A torque transfer mechanism is provided for controlling the magnitude of a clutch engagement force exerted on a multi-plate clutch assembly that is operably disposed between a first rotary and a second rotary member. The torque transfer mechanism includes an actuator having a first segment fixed for rotation with the first rotary member and a second segment having a screw thread formed thereon which is rotatably and slidably disposed within a chamber filled with magnetorheological fluid. An electromagnetic coil is disposed in proximity to the chamber and is selectively energized for varying the viscosity of the magnetorheological fluid so as to induce axial movement of the actuator for engaging the multi-plate clutch assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 3, 2003
    Date of Patent: June 29, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventor: James P. Dolan
  • Patent number: 6745879
    Abstract: A transfer mechanism is provided for controlling a magnitude of clutch engagement force exerted on a multi-plate clutch assembly operably disposed between input and output members. The transfer clutch includes an actuator fixed for rotation with the input member, a piston slidably disposed within a piston chamber of the actuator and selectively engaging the multi-plate clutch assembly, a pump in fluid communication with the piston chamber, and operably engaged with the input member and the output member. A rotational speed differential between the input member and the output member induces pumping action for pumping a magnetorheological fluid through the piston chamber. An electromagnetic coil is operably disposed between the piston chamber and the pump. The electromagnetic coil is selectively energized for manipulating a viscosity of the magnetorheological fluid to induce a back pressure within the piston chamber, thereby inducing axial movement of the piston for engaging the clutch pack.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 3, 2003
    Date of Patent: June 8, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventor: James P. Dolan
  • Patent number: 6725990
    Abstract: A transfer clutch includes a magnetorheological actuator which controls operation of a ball screw operator for controlling the magnitude of clutch engagement force exerted on a multi-plate clutch assembly that is operably disposed between an input member and an output member. The magnetorheological actuator includes an electromagnetic coil, and a rotor having a first segment retained in a sealed chamber filled with magnetorheological fluid. The ball screw operator includes a threaded screw mounted on the output member and which is splined to a second segment of the rotor, a threaded nut, a plurality of balls retained between the aligned threads of the screw and nut, and a drag spring providing a predetermined drag force between the screw and the output member. The multi-plate clutch assembly includes a drum driven by the input member, a hub driving the output member, and a clutch pack operably disposed between the drum and hub.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 22, 2003
    Date of Patent: April 27, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventor: Thomas C. Bowen
  • Patent number: 6719656
    Abstract: A hybrid transfer case includes a mainshaft, front and rear output shafts, an electric motor/generator connected to the mainshaft, and an input clutch for selectively coupling the transmission to the mainshaft. The transfer case further includes a planetary gearset having a sun gear driven by the mainshaft, a ring gear, and planet gears supported from a carrier. The carrier drives the rear output shaft and a transfer assembly couple to the front output shaft. A direct clutch is operable to selectively coupled the carrier for rotation with the mainshaft. A low brake is operable to selectively brake rotation of the ring gear. A transfer clutch controls the amount of drive torque delivered through the transfer assembly to the front output shaft. A hybrid control system is provided for controlling actuation of the various clutch and brake assemblies and the electric motor/generator to establish various drive modes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 22, 2003
    Date of Patent: April 13, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventor: Thomas C. Bowen
  • Patent number: 6716126
    Abstract: A multi-speed transmission having an input shaft driven by the engine, an output shaft connected to the driveline, an electric motor, a planetary geartrain driven by one or both of the engine and the electric motor, a plurality of power-operated clutches operable for selectively engaging components of the planetary geartrain, and a control system for controlling automated operation of the power-operated clutches and coordinated actuation of the engine and the electric motor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 9, 2003
    Date of Patent: April 6, 2004
    Assignee: New Venture Gear, Inc.
    Inventor: Thomas C. Bowen