Patents Examined by Thomas S. Auchterlonie
  • Patent number: 5307271
    Abstract: A control system for a remotely controlled vehicle comprises a supervisory control system which receives supervisory speed and turn rate commands from a human operator which are provided to a servo-controlled vehicle; an obstruction detection system having multiple sensors mounted to the vehicle detect any obstructions in the path of the vehicle; and a collision avoidance control system coupled to the supervisory control system, the obstruction detection system, and to the vehicle. The collision avoidance control system disables the supervisory speed and turn rate commands when the obstruction detection system detects an obstruction. The collision avoidance control system also generates and provides obstacle avoidance speed and turn rate commands to the vehicle to direct the vehicle to avoid obstruction in the path of the vehicle, and enables the supervisory speed and turn rate commands after the obstruction is avoided so that control of the vehicle is returned to the human operator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 1990
    Date of Patent: April 26, 1994
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Secretary of the Navy
    Inventors: Hobart R. Everett, Jr., Gary A. Gilbreath
  • Patent number: 5267167
    Abstract: A method and system for formationfinding and formationkeeping in a constellation of satellites (20) orbiting about a primary body (34) is provided. A set of satellite (20) destination position (22) and time goals is selected corresponding to the satellite's (20) station in a desired constellation. The satellite (20) senses actual destination arrival positions (32) and times relative to reference positions independent of the constellation and compares these values to values from the set of goals. Corrective maneuvers are selectively implemented responsive to this comparison.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 1991
    Date of Patent: November 30, 1993
    Assignee: Ball Corporation
    Inventor: Ronald E. Glickman
  • Patent number: 5258922
    Abstract: A method and device for determining surface structure and subsurface structures wherein the article to be examined is placed upon a support surface and through a liquid or solid medium ultrasonic waves are directed at the surface and backscattered waves are received and processed. The frequency of the ultrasonic waves is selected to provide information of the subsurface structure to a depth of substantially one wavelength.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 30, 1992
    Date of Patent: November 2, 1993
    Assignee: Wieslaw Bicz
    Inventor: Wolfgang Grill
  • Patent number: 5257209
    Abstract: A method for using a computer-based imaging system, which may be in motion, to observe a moving object and determine its motion. The imaging system is used to obtain at least two images separated by a known time interval. The apparent motion of the observed object is expressed in terms of its true optical flow parameters with coefficients that represent the camera motion, projection geometry, and time interval. The result is a system of equations that may be solved for the true optical flow parameters.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 10, 1992
    Date of Patent: October 26, 1993
    Assignee: Texas Instruments Incorporated
    Inventor: Vishal Markandey
  • Patent number: 5257188
    Abstract: Herein disclosed is a control system to be used in a continuously variable transmission for a vehicle for continuously varying and transmitting the revolutions of an engine to the wheels. The control system comprises: a vehicle speed detector for detecting the running speed of a vehicle; a speed demand change detector for detecting a signal corresponding to the speed demand change by the driver; a setting device for setting the target speed of the vehicle to a predetermined value when the vehicle speed is higher than a preset value and the speed demand change is lower than a preset value; and a torque ratio controller for controlling the torque ratio between the input shaft and output shaft of the continuously variable transmission in accordance with the predetermined value of the target vehicle speed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 28, 1990
    Date of Patent: October 26, 1993
    Assignee: Aisin AW Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Shiro Sakakibara, Kazuo Kamiya
  • Patent number: 5257208
    Abstract: This is a specialized hand-held and battery-powered unit for field testing of backflow valves. It displays and prints a permanent record of simultaneous source- and discharge-port pressure values and their difference. To reduce operator distraction and confusion during backflow tests the source and discharge values are automatically equalized, bringing the difference to zero, whenever the actually sensed pressures are within a threshold differential such as 0.2 pounds per square inch. Preferably two pressure sensors are provided for connection to source and discharge ports respectively, yielding independent analog electrical signals representing the pressures; and two independent analog-to-digital converters respond to the two sensor signals respectively. Digital input signals from the converters pass to a microprocessor--which controls a digital display to show the three values continuously.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 1992
    Date of Patent: October 26, 1993
    Assignee: Fire & Safety Electronics Inc.
    Inventors: Arthur E. Brown, Cecil L. Pearson, Howard G. Corlett
  • Patent number: 5255207
    Abstract: An interactive method for designing and detailing cabinets utilizes a computer for storing design constraints and standards in a database and for performing the tedious parts of cabinet placement, costing, and planning. The user is freed from performing these functions and is able to focus on the esthetic aspects of the cabinet design, including cabinet placement and appearance. The computer creates an initial cabinet placement based upon constraints provided by the user, so that the user may modify an existing custom design. The user views the layout of the entire room or parts thereof at each stage of the design process on a video display terminal in three dimension, elevation, or plan views, permitting the use of computer aided design techniques. The user may make custom modifications to cabinet designs by overriding the standards or creating new standards at any point, and the changes are immediately incorporated into all aspects of design and detailing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 18, 1992
    Date of Patent: October 19, 1993
    Inventor: Larry Cornwell
  • Patent number: 5251152
    Abstract: Disclosed is a system for collecting and displaying statistical data for a plurality of local area networks (LANs). The data is collected in several remote nodes, each of which is attached to a local area network. The data is obtained by using a LAN driver that intercepts all records on the LAN. The records are sent to a collector process where statistics are accumulated into a shared memory area and then transferred to an archiver process in a management node. The archiver process writes the statistics to a history file while compressing older data to prevent the file from growing too large. The data is then displayed while allowing the user of the system to dynamically select the point in time of the data being displayed, the range of dates and times of the data being displayed as well as the resolution of the graphical screen display.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 17, 1991
    Date of Patent: October 5, 1993
    Assignee: Hewlett-Packard Company
    Inventor: Peter C. Notess
  • Patent number: 5251133
    Abstract: A reference point recognizing system for a steering control system comprising a light beam scanner and a beam receiver on a moving vehicle, the light beam scanner scanning a light beam generated in a light beam generator in the circumferential direction while vertically swinging it. The system determines azimuths of light from light reflector reference points detected in the beam receiver in response to the light beam scan prior to the traveling of the moving vehicle. A memory stores the azimuths of the lights and the number of times each of lights are detected. The system determines when the detection of lights in particular azimuths has reached a predetermined number, recognizes when an incident light is detected from substantially the same direction a predetermined number of times or more, and treats that substantially same direction as the azimuth of a predetermined light reflecting means.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 11, 1991
    Date of Patent: October 5, 1993
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Kenji Kamimura, Sadachika Tsuzuki
  • Patent number: 5249127
    Abstract: A vehicle movement data recording and analyzing system and a recording apparatus therefor can readily cope with variations of detailed specifications among users without modifying construction of the recording apparatus and also with an increase of specification items. The system includes a recording apparatus for compressing vehicle movement data in accordance with a predetermined set value and recording the data onto a record medium, and an analyzing apparatus for reading vehicle movement data from the record medium and expanding and analyzing the thus read vehicle movement data. The recording apparatus includes a reader for reading a predetermined set value from a record medium, a storage device for storing therein such predetermined set value, and a compressing device for compressing vehicle movement data in accordance with the predetermined set value and recording the vehicle movement data onto the record medium.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 13, 1991
    Date of Patent: September 28, 1993
    Assignee: Yazaki Corporation
    Inventor: Toshio Komatsu
  • Patent number: 5249128
    Abstract: A method and system for range detection using a passive infrared sensing device (10) is disclosed. The method includes determining a region (35,38) on a moving object, such as an automobile (13, 36, 37), the region (35, 38) having a size characteristic of the object and emitting energy (14) characteristic of the object. The next step is to characterize the region by a plurality of feature points (31, 32, 33, 34) and sense the energy emitting from the feature points. The next step is to calculate the distance between the sensing device (10) and the moving object as a function of the feature points. The method has application in adaptive cruise control for automobiles (13, 36, 37). The method includes the use of perspective projection formulae to determine the distance between the sensing device (10) and the moving object 13, 36, 37). To smooth measurements to each other, one embodiment of the method includes the use of an Euler predictor to integrate measurements across measurement firmness.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 1990
    Date of Patent: September 28, 1993
    Assignee: Texas Instruments Incorporated
    Inventors: Vishal Markandey, Bruce Flinchbaugh, Floyd H. Hollister
  • Patent number: 5243524
    Abstract: Disclosed is an automatic travelling apparatus which is capable of taking an image of an area ahead of a vehicle in its running direction by an image pick-up device fixed to the vehicle; determining, by processing the taken image, a permissible travel path in a X-Y coordinates having the Y-Axis corresponding to the axis of the vehicle's running direction; setting a target course in the determined permissible travel path; estimating a steering amount necessary for permitting the vehicle to follow the target course on the basis of the detected running condition of the vehicle; and steering the vehicle to follow the target course with reference to the steering amount; and also is capable of determining a side-slip angle of the vehicle and turning any one of patterns--image, permissible travel path and the target course--by the determined side-slip angle to coincide the actual running direction of the vehicle with the direction of the Y-axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 1991
    Date of Patent: September 7, 1993
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Shinnosuke Ishida, Akihiko Takei
  • Patent number: 5243543
    Abstract: Disclosed is a system for collecting and displaying statistical data for a plurality of local area networks (LANs). The data is collected in several remote nodes, each of which is attached to a local area network. The data is obtained by using a LAN driver that intercepts all records on the LAN. The records are sent to a collector process where statistics are accumulated into a shared memory area and then transferred to an archiver process in a management node. The archiver process writes the statistics to a history file while compressing older data to prevent the file from growing too large. Several display processes run currently in the management node to display the history data in various ways, updating the displays in a dynamic, real time, mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 17, 1991
    Date of Patent: September 7, 1993
    Assignee: Hewlett-Packard Company
    Inventor: Peter C. Notess
  • Patent number: 5243528
    Abstract: Land vehicle navigation apparatus (10) with a visual display (16, 20) is provided. The apparatus provides a visual display of a calculated navigation route (22) with a visual indication (23) of the direction of desired travel along the navigation route. An off route map display portion (28) is provided which has the visual navigation route display (22) in one color and, in a second contrasting color, a visual display (24, 26) of actual vehicle travel. A separate additional feature is that an off route display (20) provides a visual display portion (29) of a plurality of operator selectable off route recovery options (1-6). Off route recovery means (12, 49-63) are provided such that the vehicle operator can implement the visually displayed recovery options.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 12, 1990
    Date of Patent: September 7, 1993
    Assignee: Motorola, Inc.
    Inventor: Rebecca K. Lefebvre
  • Patent number: 5241480
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for detecting the quality of combustion in each cylinder of a multi-cylinder internal combustion engine is disclosed. The invention determines a combustion stroke of each cylinder by sensors and detects the rotational speed of the engine at least three times during each combustion stroke by a rotation speed calculation device. The detected rotational speeds are evaluated by an arithmetic calculation device to identify the variation in rotational speed of each piston during a combustion stroke whereby the quality of combustion is, thus, determined. In a feature of the invention fluctuations in rotational speed caused by reciprocating inertia (.omega..sub.c) are calculated and eliminated from fluctuation in engine speed caused by combustion (.omega..sub.g) so that the quality of combustion based only upon variation in detected speeds caused by combustion is derived.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 4, 1991
    Date of Patent: August 31, 1993
    Assignee: Hitachi, Ltd.
    Inventors: Yutaka Takaku, Mineo Kashiwaya, Toshio Ishii, Naoyuki Tanaka
  • Patent number: 5237505
    Abstract: The mass of a tire/wheel assembly is altered to apply a static imbalance to the assembly in a manner which reduces the overall tendency of the assembly to cause vibration in the plane perpendicular to its axis of rotation when in use. The applied imbalance, combined with any static imbalance initially inherent in the tire/wheel assembly, results in a desired net static imbalance oriented so as to induce a centrifugal force which opposes, and therefore tends to cancel, at least one component, such as the first order harmonic, of radial force variation characterizing the assembly. The magnitude of the net static imbalance is limited and is preferably selected to substantially equal the lesser of either: (a) a predetermined maximum limit, or (b) the amount of static imbalance required to generate at a designated highway speed a centrifugal force whose magnitude substantially equals that of the aforementioned radial force variation component.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 3, 1991
    Date of Patent: August 17, 1993
    Assignee: Illinois Toll Works Inc.
    Inventor: James C. Beebe
  • Patent number: 5237504
    Abstract: In order to detect misfire in an internal combustion engine, engine speed is determined by measuring the time of passage of a crankshaft disc from a first position to a second position during every revolution. A detection circuit takes the reciprocal of the measured times of passage to form a series of engine speeds and forms the difference between consecutive engine speeds. These differences are compared with a threshold to signal a misfire when the threshold is exceeded.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 13, 1991
    Date of Patent: August 17, 1993
    Assignee: Lucas Industries public limited company
    Inventors: Michael Holmes, Benjamin J. Bradshaw
  • Patent number: 5237518
    Abstract: An optimization method is used in a real-time diagnostic system that monitors alarm sources and detects possible sources of failure in an industrial process. When the diagnostic system detects one or more alarms, it determines which components are likely sources of failure. The system determines the level of criticality of certain other, currently off-line, alarms sources and schedules the off-line alarms for evaluation according to their levels of criticality. The system refines its analysis of likely sources of failure by evaluating the status of the previously off-line alarm sources Those previously off-line alarm sources are added to the grouping of possible sources of failure prior to repeating the evaluation process. The evaluation process is repeated, with the analysis of likely causes of failure being continually refined.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 27, 1990
    Date of Patent: August 17, 1993
    Assignees: Vanderbilt University, Osaka Gas Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Janos Sztipanovits, Csaba Biegl, Gabor Karsai, Samir Padalkar, Nobuji Miyasaka, Koji Okuda
  • Patent number: 5233524
    Abstract: An estimator for determining the distance of a moving vehicle to a stationary position includes the determination of actual and estimated velocities of the vehicle along a selected path. An up-dated distance estimate is established by multiplying estimated distance by the ratio of the actual velocity to the estimated velocity. The up-dated estimate is then utilized as the estimated and another up-dated distance is obtained. Iterations continue until the ratio approaches unity indicating that the estimated distance is approximately equal to the actual distance.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 12, 1991
    Date of Patent: August 3, 1993
    Assignee: Honeywell Inc.
    Inventor: Joseph W. Jackson
  • Patent number: 5231582
    Abstract: A shift control system detects a traveling resistance as a factor influencing the vehicular driving performance. The shift control system varies preset shift pattern according to the detected traveling resistance of the vehicle for optimizing selection of the shift pattern. The shift control system thus controls the speed ratio of an automatic power transmission depending upon the control parameters, such as an engine load and a vehicle acceleration.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 1, 1992
    Date of Patent: July 27, 1993
    Assignee: Nissan Motor Company
    Inventors: Hiroshi Takahashi, Yasushi Narita, Makoto Kimura, Toshimi Abo