Patents Assigned to Takata, Inc.
  • Patent number: 6244663
    Abstract: A seat belt retractor may be spaced from and mounted at an attitude to the vertical that is different than the attitude of the retractor; and a mechanical connection therebetween operates the retractor to block belt protraction from the retractor reel when the vehicle and/or seat belt experience an acceleration or deceleration above a predetermined amount. Preferably, the retractor is of substantial conventional manufacture, and the remote actuator uses the same kind of proven inertia-sensitive components to provide a low-cost and proven system. Preferably, the remote actuator is connected mechanically by a cable to the retractor, and the cable actuates the retractor to its blocking position to stop belt protraction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 13, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2001
    Assignee: Takata, Inc.
    Inventor: Gerald Arthur Doty
  • Patent number: 6019392
    Abstract: A seatbelt energy management device which includes a resistance mechanism coupled to a seatbelt apparatus having a magnetorheological fluid, a permanent magnet having a first magnetic field which orients the magnetorheological fluid to increase the magnetorheological fluid's viscosity, an electromagnet which generates a second magnetic field to cancel the first magnetic field of the permanent magnet to decrease the magnetorheological fluid's viscosity, where the resistance mechanism is controlled by the magnetorheological fluid's viscosity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 18, 1998
    Date of Patent: February 1, 2000
    Assignee: Takata, Inc.
    Inventor: James P. Karlow
  • Patent number: 5944346
    Abstract: An airbag folding pattern in which a portion of the airbag deploys vertically above or vertically below the airbag module retainer is folded so that it is located forward of the portion of the airbag that deploys directly forward of the retainer. By locating the portion of the bag that is vertically displaced forward of the remaining portion of the bag, the time necessary to deploy the airbag to position is reduced.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 25, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 31, 1999
    Assignee: Takata Inc.
    Inventors: Michael Joseph Lachat, Brian K. Genslak
  • Patent number: 5944350
    Abstract: A safety belt tensioner is provided for pulling a buckle part to tighten a safety belt system about an occupant. The tensioner includes a flexible member or cable having a first loop connected to the buckle part which pulls the buckle part when it is shortened, as by actuation of a power operated device such as a piston-cylinder device. To shorten the piston stroke while achieving the necessary displacement of the buckle part, the flexible member is provided with a second loop connected to the piston about a turning member thereof with one end of an anchored half of the second loop secured to a stationary part of the pretensioner, and the other loop half extending from the cylinder and connected to the portion of the flexible cable member for the buckle part. This provides about a 1:1 ratio between the length of piston travel and downward travel of the buckle part to minimize the piston travel to allow the length of the cylinder to be shorter for providing a more compact pretensioner.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 14, 1997
    Date of Patent: August 31, 1999
    Assignee: Takata Inc.
    Inventors: Richard M. Grabowski, Mark Richard Keyser
  • Patent number: 5906391
    Abstract: A dual chamber airbag and method for making a dual chamber side impact airbag with an integral vented panel. A partial vent panel is formed from a section in each airbag piece such that the to partial panels meet as the airbag pieces are assembled to make the airbag. The two panels are subsequently sewn together, thereby forming an integral vented panel separating an upper and lower chamber within the airbag.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 5, 1997
    Date of Patent: May 25, 1999
    Assignee: Takata, Inc.
    Inventors: Brian Arthur Weir, Jonathan Paul Hurford
  • Patent number: 5899485
    Abstract: An improved air bag module having a manifold designed with integral keys configured to lock the manifold, retainer, air bag and soft cover to the housing. The manifold is elastically deformable and the keys are configured to be inserted into slots in the retainer and housing while the manifold is elastically compressed. Upon releasing the compression force the manifold expands and the keys are locked into the retainer and housing slots locking the individual sub-module pieces together. The air bag and soft cover are trapped between the manifold and the retainer during assembly. The soft cover and module housing are configured to open upon air bag deployment, allowing the air bag to inflate outside of the air bag module.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 10, 1996
    Date of Patent: May 4, 1999
    Assignee: Takata, Inc.
    Inventors: Bruce Allen Folsom, Mohamed Boumarafi
  • Patent number: 5890792
    Abstract: A sun visor or other accessory for a motor vehicle. The sun visor includes a body made of rigid foam in which various structures (such as a support pin, detent and pivot arm) are insert molded. The foam has a rigidity which is sufficient to support said sun visor without requiring any additional reinforcing structures such as a support frame, support wire or centerboard. The pivot arm and detent are provided within a casing that prevents the foam from affecting the operation of the detent. Also insert molded into the body of the visor are mounts for an illuminated vanity. Terminals from a power supply are mounted in predetermined positions relative to the body so that when the vanity is mounted to the body, contacts coupled to a lamp and mounted to the vanity in predetermined positions, are caused engage the terminals.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 3, 1996
    Date of Patent: April 6, 1999
    Assignee: Takata, Inc.
    Inventors: Joseph R. Finn, James R. Jones, Kirk Jensen
  • Patent number: 5876060
    Abstract: A side impact air bag module assembly for restraining a side impact air bag to a vehicle seat frame which provides a visible cover on the outside of the seat and allows the seat cavity to be only as large as the module's reaction housing. The housing encloses an inflator with a retainer configured to fasten the air bag, inflator, and housing to the seat back frame.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 5, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 2, 1999
    Assignee: Takata, Inc.
    Inventors: Phillip K. Davidson, Jonathan P. Hurford
  • Patent number: 5839790
    Abstract: A seat belt actuator may be spaced from and mounted at an attitude to the vertical that is different than the attitude of the retractor. Preferably, the remote actuator is connected by a looped cable to the retractor to actuate the retractor to its blocking position to stop belt protraction. Herein, the retractor is mounted on a tiltable seat back of a vehicle seat that changes its attitude to the vertical while the remote inertia-sensitive actuator is mounted in the seat rest of the vehicle seat and does not change its attitude. The cable turns a gear in both the remote actuator and in the retractor. An inertia flywheel sensitive to rotation, or an inertia, weight sensitive to acceleration or deceleration, when deceleration is above the predetermined amount, stops rotation of the gear at the remote actuator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 6, 1995
    Date of Patent: November 24, 1998
    Assignee: Takata Inc.
    Inventor: Gerald Arthur Doty
  • Patent number: 5833265
    Abstract: A vehicle restraint system having an inflator for providing inflation gas and an airbag. The airbag having excursion restrictors made of localized adhesive deposited between and joining a front and a rear member of the airbag. The excursion restrictors retain portions of the front and rear members in proximity to one another until a predetermined threshold pressure is obtained. Thereafter, the adhesive of the excursion restrictor fails in a controlled fashion and the airbag is allowed to fully inflate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 21, 1997
    Date of Patent: November 10, 1998
    Assignee: Takata, Inc.
    Inventor: Brian T. Seymour
  • Patent number: 5772239
    Abstract: A supplemental restraint sub-module configured for integral use with a vehicle steering wheel comprising an air bag and an inflator enclosed in a fabric envelope. The sub-module is designed to be incorporated into a well in the central hub section of a steering wheel and is configured to use the well walls and steering wheel mounting plate as reaction surfaces during air bag deployment. The sub-module design eliminates the need for a module housing and thus is smaller and lighter than traditional modules. A membrane horn switch and backing plate can also be incorporated into the sub-module design. The reduced number of parts needed to manufacture the sub-module of the present invention allows the sub-module to be manufactured at a cost reduction. The reduced size and weight of the sub-module allows room for turn signal, light controls, wiper controls and redundant accessory switches to be attached by allowing extra room for the electronics needed to operate these functions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 24, 1996
    Date of Patent: June 30, 1998
    Assignee: Takata, Inc.
    Inventor: Brian T. Seymour
  • Patent number: 5743558
    Abstract: An occupant restraint system composed of a compact air cushion module containing a rotating vent ring which creates a variable venting system for inflation of an air cushion. The rotating vent ring moves to open one or more vents of different flow areas which allows inflation gas to vent to the atmosphere thereby controlling the pressure with which the inflatable air cushion fills. The rotating vent ring has a neutral or non-rotated position wherein the venting is minimized such that the inflatable air cushion fills with a maximum pressure. The rotating vent ring is rotated to a variety of positions in response to one or more changing environmental conditions within the vehicle. Such conditions may include occupant position, seat belt usage, occupant weight, ambient temperature or any other relevant environmental factor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 28, 1998
    Assignee: Takata, Inc.
    Inventor: Brian T. Seymour
  • Patent number: 5718450
    Abstract: An inflatable restraint system having a head/thorax air bag cushion configured to protect the head and thorax regions of a motor vehicle occupant during a side impact collision. The air bag is configured to be kidney shaped when inflated to optimize the protection area while eliminating excess volume. The air bag is inflated from the bottom up, thus inflating the region adjacent the thorax area of the occupant first. As the thorax area is loaded by the occupant, gas is forced into the head area of the air bag. As the head area is loaded by the occupant, gas is vented to atmosphere through vents located in the head area of the air bag.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 19, 1996
    Date of Patent: February 17, 1998
    Assignee: Takata, Inc.
    Inventors: Jonathan P. Hurford, Mohamed Boumarafi, Ross J. Laming, Aaron E. Bowen
  • Patent number: 5707078
    Abstract: An air bag module with adjustable cushion inflation is provided by including a valve member in the module which is movable to change the size of an inflation outlet through which inflation fluid flows into an air cushion while simultaneously changing the size of a vent outlet which enables inflation fluid to be vented to the ambient atmosphere. The valve member is positioned by a control unit which receives input from various sensors within the vehicle regarding such factors as ambient temperature, occupant position, occupant weight, seat belt usage, etc to produce an optimum cushion inflation based upon these factors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 26, 1996
    Date of Patent: January 13, 1998
    Assignee: Takata, Inc.
    Inventors: Jeffrey Scott Swanberg, James Peter Karlow
  • Patent number: 5681094
    Abstract: An easy-to-use seat belt mechanism is provided for use with a child seat and includes a seat belt retractor having a reel with a seat belt wound thereon which can be extended about a child in the child seat. A pawl and ratchet form a retractor mechanism for blocking rotation of the reel and seat belt protraction to restrain the child in the seat. A manually rotatable shaft is connected to the reel to wind the reel in a rewind direction to tighten the seat belt about the child and provide an accurate sensation of increasing belt tension on the child. A manually operable release is operable to disable the pawl and ratchet mechanism to allow protraction of the belt with rotation of the reel and thereby allowing removal of the child from the child seat. The release also allows the belting to be readily readjusted if the belt is not properly tightened about the child.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 1996
    Date of Patent: October 28, 1997
    Assignee: Takata Inc.
    Inventors: Doyle Eugene Brown, Gregory Allen Polsgrove, Kirk Edward Morris
  • Patent number: 5660414
    Abstract: A vehicle side impact restraint system especially adapted for providing head impact protection. The system employs a deployable restraint curtain which is maintained stowed in an undeployed condition within a slot along the upper edge of a vehicle side door window. A track assembly is vertically mounted along the rear edge of the window and includes a gas generator, a track, and a sliding projectile. The upper edge of the triangularly shaped curtain is attached to the vehicle whereas the rear end of the lower edge is mounted to the projectile. Upon deployment, the sliding projectile pulls the curtain to a downward position in response to a deployment signal sent to the gas generator. The projectile reaches the lower end of the track where it is locked in position thus stretching the curtain across a portion of the window area, thus providing a surface for impact energy absorption.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 2, 1995
    Date of Patent: August 26, 1997
    Assignee: Takata Inc.
    Inventors: James Peter Karlow, Mohamed Boumarafi, Jonathan Paul Hurford
  • Patent number: 5605347
    Abstract: An airbag module for a motor vehicle incorporating simplified assembly features. The airbag module assembly includes a retainer bracket element having a series of protruding tabs. These tabs are passed through slits of the airbag material and also engage slots in the module housing. The components are oriented and dimensioned such that the retainer bracket elastically deforms during assembly and allows the tabs to engage the housing slots by snapping into position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 10, 1995
    Date of Patent: February 25, 1997
    Assignee: Takata, Inc.
    Inventors: James P. Karlow, Mohamed Boumarafi
  • Patent number: 5588672
    Abstract: A side impact head restraint with inflatable deployment in which an inflatable member having a movable mounting point is used to deploy a fabric panel during a side impact collision for head protection. The inflatable member, made of coated fabric, is pressurized by a gas generator. The inflatable member is connected to fabric panel and is used to bring a fabric panel into position in the window area of a side door of the vehicle. The fabric panel is secured at three points, two fixed points located on the upper side rail and a third movable point on a track located on the "B" pillar. The inflatable member pushes the movable mounting point down the track from a position near the upper side rail down to a position immediately below the centerline of the side glass. The movable point locks into position at the end of the travel, when fully deployed. The fabric panel can then be loaded by the head wherein fabric elongation absorbs head impact energy.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 20, 1995
    Date of Patent: December 31, 1996
    Assignee: Takata, Inc.
    Inventors: James P. Karlow, Mohamed Boumarafi, Jonathan P. Hurford
  • Patent number: 5588671
    Abstract: A vehicle seat having a resealable tear seam through which a seat deployed side impact air bag is deployed during a side impact collision wherein the air bag expands causing the resealable tear seam to open and allowing the air bag to expand outside of the vehicle seat. The resealable tear seam comprises a first and a second seam member, preferably plastic locking fasteners, configured to form a resealable interlocking bond. The seam members elastically deform when forming the bond and when opening along the bond and return to an undeformed state after the bond forms or opens. The seam may be easily opened to install or service the air bag module and after installation or service is complete the interlocking bond may be easily reformed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 21, 1995
    Date of Patent: December 31, 1996
    Assignee: Takata, Inc.
    Inventors: Mohamed Boumarafi, Jonathan P. Hurford, William V. Collier, Ralph Lichlyter
  • Patent number: 5580091
    Abstract: A low-cost energy management device for dissipating a portion of the energy imparted to a safety belt in a rapid vehicular deceleration is preferably comprised of two pieces, viz., a strap and a channel-shaped guide and deflector member. The strap has a row of deflectable tabs or beams and is mounted to the vehicle. The channel-shaped guide and deflector member is secured to a seat belt retractor and straddles the strap and slides along the strap rectilinearly and guides the retractor in this linear sliding movement along the strap while an integral depending deflector portion on the channel-shaped member deflects the beams. The deflecting portion engages two adjacent, spaced, deflected beams on the strap and these spaced deflected abutting the deflecting portion aid in aligning the deflector member to travel in a straight line path. The guiding and deflecting member has staking tabs to stake the channel-shaped member to the retractor in a low-cost manner.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 6, 1995
    Date of Patent: December 3, 1996
    Assignee: Takata Inc.
    Inventor: Gerald A. Doty