Patents Examined by Karin Tyson
  • Patent number: 5558173
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a power transmission that is interposed between the internal combustion engine and the drive ratio selection transmission of a vehicle. A motor/generator is operatively connected to the power transmission, and the power transmission selectively drives accessories to the internal combustion engine, such as an oil pump, power steering pump and air conditioning compressor. The power transmission employs compounded first and second planetary gear sets. A common gear member serves not only as the ring gear for the first planetary gear set but also as the sun gear for the second planetary gear set. The motor/generator drives the accessories when the internal combustion engine is idling or off, allowing those accessories to be smaller while delivering adequate output.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 1993
    Date of Patent: September 24, 1996
    Assignee: General Motors Corporation
    Inventor: James F. Sherman
  • Patent number: 5556129
    Abstract: A seat back for a motor vehicle having a tower extending upwardly from the seat back upper end along one lateral side of the seat back. The tower contains an inflatable air bag which is deployable to provide head side impact protection for a seat occupant. By mounting the air bag within a raised tower, the air bag is deployed from a higher location in the seat back to reduce the possibility of interference between the air bag and a shoulder belt. Furthermore, by not mounting the air bag to the seat back head restraint, it is possible to provide a fully adjustable head restraint attached to the seat back and extending upwardly from the seat back upper end. A removable side bolster is also provided which covers the air bag canisters mounted to the seat back frame. Following deployment of an air bag, the bolster and air bag canister are removed and replaced with new components. This enables the seat assembly to be repaired without replacement of the entire seat assembly or seat back.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 16, 1995
    Date of Patent: September 17, 1996
    Assignee: Hoover Universal
    Inventors: Sorin Coman, Frank Wu, Robert L. Demick
  • Patent number: 5509492
    Abstract: A compact, low maintenance, simple-design drive motor (1) for a vehicle wheel (2), rotatably mounted on a running gear (8), is obtained by virtue of the fact that an external rotor motor (1) is provided as the drive motor. The external rotor (3) of the external rotor motor (1) is designed as a wheel support and is rotatably mounted on the running gear (8) and on the stator laminations (4). Stator laminations (4) of the external rotor motor (1) are mounted in the external rotor (3) and nonrotatably mounted on the running gear (8).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 14, 1993
    Date of Patent: April 23, 1996
    Assignee: Siemens Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventor: Bernd Pfannschmidt
  • Patent number: 5478116
    Abstract: An occupant restraint system for an automotive vehicle of the type including multiple longitudinally spaced seating positions in which seats are arranged in back-to-back relationship includes a guide ring assembly having two D-rings mounted on a common double threaded bolt on a vertical body pillar that is in longitudinal registration with the backs of a pair of back-to-back seats. The double ended bolt construction permits assembly of one of the D-rings to the pillar independent of the other during vehicle assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 1994
    Date of Patent: December 26, 1995
    Assignee: Ford Motor Company
    Inventors: Corey J. Jarocki, Francis Wickenheiser, John T. Pustell, Edward J. Corpe, Jeffrey D. Elliott
  • Patent number: 5476151
    Abstract: A structure for arranging an auxiliary component of an electric vehicle has an auxiliary-component moving device for moving an auxiliary component disposed in a front body such that an overall length of the auxiliary component becomes less than an original overall length of the auxiliary components in a case where the front body is compressed and deformed. It is possible to reduce the amount of an impact load which is transmitted from an object located in front of the vehicle to a vehicle compartment by means of the auxiliary component.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 1994
    Date of Patent: December 19, 1995
    Assignees: Toyota Jidosha Kabushiki Kaisha, Kanto Jidosha Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Takuji Tsuchida, Junichi Harada, Toyohiko Eto, Katsuhisa Hasegawa, Tomoo Suzuki, Tadahiko Fuse, Keiji Kunikita
  • Patent number: 5458348
    Abstract: A ventilating skate including a skate body formed with several circular or polygonal through holes in which ventilating disks are disposed. One side of the ventilating disk is formed with a ventilating groove. A pivot plate formed with multiple through holes is rotatably connected with the ventilating disk to locate the same in the through hole of the skate body. The ventilating disk can be rotated to adjust the orientation of the ventilating groove and thus adjust the amount of incoming air. A whistling film is disposed in the ventilating groove, whereby when skating with the air passing through the ventilating groove, the whistling film is vibrated to emit a sound.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 1994
    Date of Patent: October 17, 1995
    Assignee: Hi Star Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Min-Kuo Lee
  • Patent number: 5437471
    Abstract: An inflator with a starter for starting a gas generator of a side collision air bag device is formed of: a needle disposed in the side face of a vehicle and made movable from the outside to the inside of the vehicle; an elastic member for urging the needle in the opposite direction to the movement of the needle; and a priming powder disposed forward of the movement of the needle. When the priming powder is hit by the needle, the ignition agent of the gas generator ignites to inflate an air bag.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 20, 1993
    Date of Patent: August 1, 1995
    Assignee: Takata Corporation
    Inventors: Ryouichi Yoshida, Hiroaki Fujii, Atsushi Tsuji, Tomoko Shimizu, Nobuya Osada, Takahiro Yamanishi
  • Patent number: 5342085
    Abstract: A safety air bag apparatus is disposed behind an instrument panel having an instrument panel opening which is inclined with respect to a direction of air bag expansion relative to an opening of an air bag container. The safety air bag apparatus has a lid which covers the instrument panel opening so as to be flush with the instrument panel and to have an outer surface with a profile matching an outer profile of the instrument panel. The lid opens upwards to uncover the instrument panel opening. The safety air bag apparatus is further provided with a control device which brings the air bag, during expansion, into contact with a lower portion of the lid no later than it is brought into contact with an upper portion of the lid.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 1991
    Date of Patent: August 30, 1994
    Assignee: Mazda Motor Corporation
    Inventors: Isao Hirashima, Tetsuya Umeki, Hiroshi Maeta, Shigefumi Kohno
  • Patent number: 5308107
    Abstract: A structure for mounting an air bag in an air bag system, comprises a retainer having an inflator mounting opening, an air bag having an inflator receiving opening aligned with the inflator mounting opening, a press ring cooperating with the retainer to sandwich the peripheral edge of the inflator receiving opening of the air bag, and means for securing the press ring to the retainer. The structure further includes a sheet made of synthetic resin and attached to the peripheral edge of the inflator receiving opening of the air bag.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 14, 1991
    Date of Patent: May 3, 1994
    Assignee: Takata Corporation
    Inventors: Kazuo Watanabe, Tadahiro Igawa
  • Patent number: 5240086
    Abstract: A personal mobility vehicle comprises front and rear frame sections which can be readily disassembled and assembled and further comprises a drive train unit which can be disassembled and assembled from the rear frame section.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 8, 1992
    Date of Patent: August 31, 1993
    Assignee: Electric Mobility Corp.
    Inventor: Robert C. Hopely, Jr.
  • Patent number: 5161818
    Abstract: A suspension system for an automobile includes a compound torsion bar arrangement. The compound arrangement has a first bar which acts as a sway bar and a second bar which provides an output torque opposite to that of an input torque. The two bars are arranged to operate together and to be attached to the same location of respective wheel support structures. Variation of the torsional characteristics of the two bars of the compound arrangement allows the roll stiffness to be varied while also varying the forces which tend to lift the inside wheel when the automobile is moving in a curved path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 22, 1991
    Date of Patent: November 10, 1992
    Inventor: Anthony M. J. Kopieczek
  • Patent number: 5149126
    Abstract: A concrete mixer truck frame is distorted when a concrete truck traverses a rough road and when the vehicle turns. Flexible mounting of pedestals which support the mixer drum accommodates distortion of the frame yet provides a rigid platform for the mixer drum. Each pedestal includes an upright frame with lower ends connected to side frame members with self aligning bearings. A central portion of a pedestal is flexibly connected to an upper part of a diagonal link with self aligning bearings. The truck frame includes "C" shaped cross members connected to the side frame members. A lower end of the diagonal link is flexibly connected to one of the cross members so that the load passes through the shear center of the "C" shaped cross member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 15, 1991
    Date of Patent: September 22, 1992
    Assignee: Rexworks, Inc.
    Inventor: George A. Brennan
  • Patent number: 5148886
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a motor vehicle having a brake mechanism capable of braking the vehicle to a stop, detection means adapted to detect the presence of a foreign object in the direct path only of slow movement of said vehicle on a supporting surface, and control means to apply the brakes and stop movement of said vehicle instantly upon the detection of such an object. The detection means, which preferably is yieldable a sufficient distance upon contact with a foreign object to prevent damage thereto while said vehicle is braked to a stop, may comprise a straight front part as wide as the vehicle with end panels extending at right angles to and away from the straight part, a like rear part, and/or an L-shaped flap on one or both sides of the vehicle having two integral panels with one of them at the front of the rear tires on one or both sides of said vehicle and the other extending along and spaced from the tire.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 11, 1989
    Date of Patent: September 22, 1992
    Inventor: Gary W. Parsons
  • Patent number: 5149135
    Abstract: A seat belt device for fastening a passenger seated on a seat comprises a shoulder belt carried by a seat back. A support strap is fixed at one end to the seat back and extends rearwardly. An anchor member is mounted on a body member of the vehicle rearward of the seat back for carrying the support strap. A retractor is mounted on a body member for winding up and retracting the support strap. A lock mechanism is provided in the retractor for preventing the support means from being drawn out from the retractor when a horizontal acceleration acting on the retractor is greater than a predetermined value. The seat belt device is reliable in case of an emergency and provides improved visuality.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 1991
    Date of Patent: September 22, 1992
    Assignee: Mazda Motor Corporation
    Inventors: Takeshi Konishi, Fumiyuki Otani, Hisao Muramoto, Isao Hirashima, Yoshinobu Nomura, Shigefumi Kohno
  • Patent number: 5145209
    Abstract: A seat belt pretensioner according to the present invention comprises a piston movable by high pressure gas. A flexible cable, responsive to movement of the piston, rotates the take-up spool in a belt retraction direction to pull the belt against the vehicle occupant and eliminate slack in the belt. A linear ignition material for generating a high pressure gas is in fluid communication with the piston to move the piston in response to ignition of said linear ignition material. The linear ignition material comprises a frangible sheath and at least one gas generating pyrotechnic cord disposed within said sheath.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 30, 1991
    Date of Patent: September 8, 1992
    Assignee: TRW Vehicle Safety Systems Inc.
    Inventor: Reiner Lenzen
  • Patent number: 5143400
    Abstract: The advantage of the theoretically correct Ackerman steering of land vehicles is well documented in the literature. Steering forces, vehicle handling, and tire wear are greatly improved by having correct toe angles of all steerable wheels. Adjustements in the suspension system and steering apparatus at the factory only provide first-order corrections to toe angles. A process for actively adjusting toe angles during operation of the vehicle is disclosed in this invention. Vehicle dynamics measuring devices to sense vehicle motion or position steering devices to measure toe angles are used in this process. Secondary toe angle corrections can be actively provided to account for inherent toe angle changes during maneuvers of the vehicle. An aftermarket apparatus for actively adjusting the toe angle is an embodiment of this invention.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 5, 1991
    Date of Patent: September 1, 1992
    Assignee: Michelin Recherche et Technique
    Inventors: Gerald R. Miller, Jean P. Couratier
  • Patent number: 5141245
    Abstract: An apparatus for adjusting a body height of a vehicle by supplying or discharging air into or from an air suspension system includes a controller for controlling a vertical vehicle body height to a predetermined set value responsive to a signal according to an adjustment amount of the vehicle body height obtained by subtracting an objective reference vehicle body height signal from a relative displacement signal. The apparatus further includes vehicle body height change control means connected to the controller for variably controlling a vehicle body height adjustment completion time and a vehicle body height adjusting speed responsive to the vehicle speed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 11, 1991
    Date of Patent: August 25, 1992
    Assignee: Fuji Jukogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Katsuyoshi Kamimura, Atsushi Mine, Yutaka Hiwatashi
  • Patent number: 5141247
    Abstract: A vehicle occupant safety apparatus including an inflatable air bag, an inflator for inflating the air bag, and a support plate for supporting the air bag and the inflator on a vehicle steering wheel. The safety apparatus further includes a retainer ring for clamping together the air bag, the inflator, and the support plate. The retainer ring has tabs which are bendable into positions for exerting clamping forces on the air bag, the inflator, and the support plate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 1990
    Date of Patent: August 25, 1992
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventor: Thomas H. Barth
  • Patent number: 5141244
    Abstract: A hydropneumatic vehicle suspension system has a cylinder with an accumulator and a damper at each wheel. There is a supplementary hydropneumatic accumulator for each axle of the vehicle and first and second supplementary dampers connected respectively between the cylinders of the wheels of an axle and the supplementary accumulator. A valve is provided for selectively switching the supplementary accumulators into and out of communication with the cylinders of the corresponding axles. Each supplementary damper has a selectively actuable throttle for varying its damping. A soft suspension is obtained when the supplementary accumulators are switched in, a medium suspension is obtained when the throttles of the supplementary dampers are also actuated, and a firm suspension is obtained when the supplementary accumulators are switched out of the circuit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 12, 1990
    Date of Patent: August 25, 1992
    Assignee: Automobiles Peugeot
    Inventors: Bruno Clotault, Joel Dessirieix
  • Patent number: RE34151
    Abstract: A double link type front suspension system for an automotive vehicle of the front engine front drive type or the four wheel drive type. The suspension system is comprised of upper and lower control arms adapted to connect a steering knuckle to a vehicle body. A shock absorber is disposed .[.generally vertical.]. so that its upper end .[.section.]. is connected to the vehicle body .[.while its.]. .Iadd.and the .Iaddend.lower end .[.section.]. is .[.relatively rotatably.]. .Iadd.pivotally .Iaddend.connected .[.to.]. way of a joint formed on the upper portion of .Iaddend.the knuckle either the knuckle itself or the lower end of an intermediate arm which is connected between the .Iaddend.upper .[.section is made around.]. .Iadd.arm and the knuckle. The lower control arm is connected to the knuckle by way of a ball joint. A steering axis is defined by .Iaddend.a .[.straight.]. line (steering axis).]. passing through .[.a.]. .Iadd.the .Iaddend.ball joint .[.for connecting.]. .Iadd.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 27, 1990
    Date of Patent: December 29, 1992
    Assignee: Nissan Motor Co. Ltd.
    Inventors: Takuya Murakami, Toshihiko Kakimoto