Patents by Inventor Donald Bennett Hilliard

Donald Bennett Hilliard has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Publication number: 20190071189
    Abstract: The present invention relates broadly to a process and apparatus in field of thin-walled structures possessing high strength-to-weight ratio, and particularly to mirror structures utilizing corrugated, or similarly structured, predominantly hollow-core panel structures; and, even more particularly, heat collector structures utilized for concentration of radiant heat. The disclosed invention relates to an optical element utilized for concentrating radiation, and more particularly, high-concentration, reflective concentrators that are constructed from discrete conical concentrators utilizing flexible high-reflectance layers that are produced by roll-to-roll manufacturing. In its first preferred embodiment, the disclosed optical element preferably comprises a quasi-parabolic, multi-frustum, concentration optic.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 5, 2018
    Publication date: March 7, 2019
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Publication number: 20180124839
    Abstract: The disclosed invention relates to an optical element preferably utilized for concentrating solar heat radiation, and more particularly, high-concentration, reflective concentrators that are constructed from discrete conical concentrators utilizing flexible high-reflectance layers that are produced by roll-to-roll manufacturing. In its first preferred embodiment, the disclosed optical element preferably comprises a quasi-parabolic, multi-frustum, concentration optic.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 27, 2017
    Publication date: May 3, 2018
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Publication number: 20170047887
    Abstract: The invention relates to apparatus utilized for concentrating and converting solar energy. In a first preferred embodiment, the disclosed solar concentrator is utilized in conjunction with a solar-energy conversion device located within the volume of the concentrator, and, in the first preferred embodiment, is a solar-thermal receiver module utilizing absorbing media wherein absorption occurs both in a liquid media and by means of a photovoltaic array.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 30, 2016
    Publication date: February 16, 2017
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Patent number: 9329285
    Abstract: The present invention provides a gamma-neutron detector based on mixtures of thermal neutron absorbers that produce heavy-particle emission following thermal capture. In one configuration, B-10 based detector is used in a parallel electrode plate geometry that integrates neutron moderating sheets, such as polyethylene, on the back of the electrode plates to thermalize the neutrons and then detect them with high efficiency. The moderator can also be replaced with plastic scintillator sheets viewed with a large area photomultiplier tube to detect gamma-rays as well. The detector can be used in several scanning configurations including portal, drive-through, drive-by, handheld and backpack, etc.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 14, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 3, 2016
    Assignee: Rapiscan Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Tsahi Gozani, Michael Joseph King, Donald Bennett Hilliard, Joseph Bendahan, William Gerhardus Johannes Langeveld
  • Publication number: 20160091618
    Abstract: The present invention provides a gamma-neutron detector based on mixtures of thermal neutron absorbers that produce heavy-particle emission following thermal capture. In one configuration, B-10 based detector is used in a parallel electrode plate geometry that integrates neutron moderating sheets, such as polyethylene, on the back of the electrode plates to thermalize the neutrons and then detect them with high efficiency. The moderator can also be replaced with plastic scintillator sheets viewed with a large area photomultiplier tube to detect gamma-rays as well. The detector can be used in several scanning configurations including portal, drive-through, drive-by, handheld and backpack, etc.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 14, 2015
    Publication date: March 31, 2016
    Inventors: Tsahi Gozani, Michael Joseph King, Donald Bennett Hilliard, Joseph Bendahan
  • Publication number: 20150229267
    Abstract: The present invention is related to the field of solar concentrators and associated energy conversion apparatus. More particularly, the invention discloses a solar tracking apparatus particularly advantageous for use with solar concentrating optics comprising compound conical concentrators, wherein modular tracking means and integration provide fast drop-in replacement, as well as low-material usage. Also disclosed are improved structures and methods for producing stackable frustum structures of the embodied optical concentrator. Additional structures specific to the inventive solar tracker are also disclosed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 2, 2015
    Publication date: August 13, 2015
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Patent number: 9097437
    Abstract: The disclosed invention relates to solar-thermal receiver tubes for heating high-temperature fluids such as molten salts and oils, such as those used in conjunction with trough reflectors or concentric concentrators. The disclosed invention utilizes fused silica receiver tube assemblies that provide optical absorption by way of optically-absorbing media that is imbedded within the thermal transfer fluid, preferably comprising inorganic “dyes” that comprise pulverized thin film coatings or dissolved materials that are specifically designed for maximizing optical absorption. Alternatively, the chemistry of the transfer fluid can be modified to increase optical absorption, or the optically absorbing media may comprise fine powders with density preferably similar to the thermal transfer fluid, such as fine graphite powder; or, in another preferred embodiment, absorbing means within the heat transfer fluid comprise a solid absorbing element disposed along the central axis of the receiver tube's interior.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 11, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 4, 2015
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Patent number: 8963094
    Abstract: The present invention provides a gamma-neutron detector based on mixtures of thermal neutron absorbers that produce heavy-particle emission following thermal capture. In one configuration, B-10 based detector is used in a parallel electrode plate geometry that integrates neutron moderating sheets, such as polyethylene, on the back of the electrode plates to thermalize the neutrons and then detect them with high efficiency. The moderator can also be replaced with plastic scintillator sheets viewed with a large area photomultiplier tube to detect gamma-rays as well. The detector can be used in several scanning configurations including portal, drive-through, drive-by, handheld and backpack, etc.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 29, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Rapiscan Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Tsahi Gozani, Michael Joseph King, Donald Bennett Hilliard, Joseph Bendahan
  • Publication number: 20130319501
    Abstract: The disclosed invention relates to solar-thermal receiver tubes for heating high-temperature fluids such as molten salts and oils, such as those used in conjunction with trough reflectors or concentric concentrators. The disclosed invention utilizes fused silica receiver tube assemblies that provide optical absorption by way of optically-absorbing media that is imbedded within the thermal transfer fluid, preferably comprising inorganic “dyes” that comprise pulverized thin film coatings or dissolved materials that are specifically designed for maximizing optical absorption. Alternatively, the chemistry of the transfer fluid can be modified to increase optical absorption, or the optically absorbing media may comprise fine powders with density preferably similar to the thermal transfer fluid, such as fine graphite powder; or, in another preferred embodiment, absorbing means within the heat transfer fluid comprise a solid absorbing element disposed along the central axis of the receiver tube's interior.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 11, 2011
    Publication date: December 5, 2013
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Publication number: 20130068881
    Abstract: One embodiment includes a launch vessel defining an elongate, linear interior extending from a bottom portion to an exit opening. The embodiment includes a ram slidably disposed in the launch vessel, the ram sealed to the vessel. The embodiment also includes one or more wedges coupled to the launch vessel along the interior proximal the exit opening, with each wedge shape sized to increasingly narrow a cross section of the interior along an exit vector extending from the bottom portion toward the exit opening. In the embodiment, the vessel is to house a charge proximal the bottom portion, the charge to propel the ram along the exit vector, with the one or more wedges sized to stop be ram inside the interior.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 31, 2010
    Publication date: March 21, 2013
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Publication number: 20120171596
    Abstract: A monolithic electrolyte assembly comprising improved as well as new associated structures and processes operative in the general field of solid oxide electrolytic devices is disclosed. The invention provides a reliable and durable interconnect for both structural and electrical components of such devices. In the present invention, thin-film-based solid oxide fuel cells and solid oxide oxygen/hydrogen generators may be fabricated using primarily solid metal alloys as underlying components of thin film and thick film structures built thereon.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 4, 2010
    Publication date: July 5, 2012
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Publication number: 20110220491
    Abstract: Previous limitations in utilizing energetic vapor deposition means are addressed through the introduction of a novel means of vapor deposition, namely, an Electron-Assisted Deposition (EAD) process and apparatus. The EAD mode of film growth disclosed herein is generally achieved by, first, forming a magnetic field that possesses field lines that intersect electrically non-grounded first and second surfaces, wherein at least one surface is a workpiece, thereby forming a magnetic trap between first and second surfaces; second, introducing a high flux of electrons axially into the magnetic field existing between the first and second surfaces, so that the electrons form an electron-saturated space-charge in the space adjacent to the substrate, wherein plasma interactions with the substrate are substantially avoided, and modification of film growth processes is provided predominantly by electron—rather than plasma—bombardment.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 23, 2011
    Publication date: September 15, 2011
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Publication number: 20110123892
    Abstract: A solid oxide fuel cell, solid oxide electrolyzer, and associated interconnect structure is disclosed for use in solid oxide electrolytic devices that use chrome-containing components, such as solid oxide fuel cells and solid oxide oxygen-generators. The invention provides a reliable and durable interconnect for both structural and electrical components of such devices. In general, the interconnect structure relies on a dual-layer, high-temperature seal which provides an effective diffusion barrier for both chrome and oxygen. As a result of the described interconnect, corrosion or loss in electrical conductivity in such solid oxide electrolytic devices is avoided. Also, a novel structure for such solid oxide electrolytic devices is disclosed, which provides an economical and high-integrity structure that utilizes the disclosed interconnect structure.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 31, 2011
    Publication date: May 26, 2011
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Patent number: 7931787
    Abstract: Previous limitations in utilizing energetic vapor deposition means are addressed through the introduction of a novel means of vapor deposition, namely, an Electron-Assisted Deposition (EAD) process and apparatus. The EAD mode of film growth disclosed herein is generally achieved by, first, forming a magnetic field that possesses field lines that intersect electrically non-grounded first and second surfaces, wherein at least one surface is a workpiece, thereby forming a magnetic trap between first and second surfaces; second, introducing a high flux of electrons axially into the magnetic field existing between the first and second surfaces, so that the electrons form an electron-saturated space-charge in the space adjacent to the substrate, wherein plasma interactions with the substrate are substantially avoided, and modification of film growth processes is provided predominantly by electron—rather than plasma—bombardment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 26, 2003
    Date of Patent: April 26, 2011
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Patent number: 7907655
    Abstract: A laser cavity structure is disclosed which pertains to laser resonator geometries possessing circular symmetry, such as in the case of disk or spherical lasers. The disclosed invention utilizes a very-high finesse Bragg reflector (VHF-BR) thin film reflectors of many layer pairs of very small refractive index difference, the VHF-BR deposited on a surface of revolution, thereby forming an optical cavity. These dielectric reflectors are disposed in such a way as to allow selection of preferred low order modes and suppression of parasitic modes while allowing a high cavity Q factor for preferred modes. The invention disclosed, in its preferred embodiments, is seen as particularly useful in applications requiring high efficiency in the production and coupling of coherent radiation. This is accomplished in a cavity design that is relatively compact and economical.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 14, 2008
    Date of Patent: March 15, 2011
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Patent number: 7879474
    Abstract: An interconnect structure is disclosed for use in solid oxide electrolytic devices that use chrome-containing components, such as solid oxide fuel cells and solid oxide oxygen-generators. The invention provides a reliable and durable interconnect for both structural and electrical components of such devices. In general, the interconnect structure relies on a dual-layer, high-temperature seal which provides an effective diffusion barrier for both chrome and oxygen. As a result of the described interconnect, corrosion or loss in electrical conductivity in such solid oxide electrolytic devices is avoided. Also, a novel structure for such solid oxide electrolytic devices is disclosed, which provides an economical and high-integrity structure that utilizes the disclosed interconnect structure. A result of the present invention is that thin film solid oxide fuel cells and solid oxide oxygen generators may be fabricated using only metal alloys as bulk components.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 29, 2007
    Date of Patent: February 1, 2011
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Publication number: 20080267244
    Abstract: A laser cavity structure is disclosed which pertains to laser resonator geometries possessing circular symmetry, such as in the case of disk or spherical lasers. The disclosed invention utilizes a very-high finesse Bragg reflector (VHF-BR) thin film reflectors of many layer pairs of very small refractive index difference, the VHF-BR deposited on a surface of revolution, thereby forming an optical cavity. These dielectric reflectors are disposed in such a way as to allow selection of preferred low order modes and suppression of parasitic modes while allowing a high cavity Q factor for preferred modes. The invention disclosed, in its preferred embodiments, is seen as particularly useful in applications requiring high efficiency in the production and coupling of coherent radiation. This is accomplished in a cavity design that is relatively compact and economical.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 14, 2008
    Publication date: October 30, 2008
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Patent number: 7408969
    Abstract: A novel laser cavity structure is disclosed which pertains to laser resonator geometries possessing circular symmetry, such as in the case of disk or spherical lasers. The disclosed invention utilizes a very-high finesse Bragg reflector (VHF-BR) thin film reflectors of many layer pairs of very small refractive index difference, the VHF-BR deposited on a surface of revolution, thereby forming an optical cavity. These dielectric reflectors are disposed in such a way as to allow selection of preferred low order modes and suppression of parasitic modes while allowing a high cavity Q factor for preferred modes. The invention disclosed, in its preferred embodiments, is seen as particularly useful in applications requiring high efficiency in the production and coupling of coherent radiation. This is accomplished in a cavity design that is relatively compact and economical. Of particular novelty is the combination of the disclosed cavity design with polymer multilayers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 18, 2004
    Date of Patent: August 5, 2008
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Publication number: 20080131749
    Abstract: An interconnect structure is disclosed for use in solid oxide electrolytic devices that use chrome-containing components, such as solid oxide fuel cells and solid oxide oxygen-generators. The invention provides a reliable and durable interconnect for both structural and electrical components of such devices. In general, the interconnect structure relies on a dual-layer, high-temperature seal which provides an effective diffusion barrier for both chrome and oxygen. As a result of the described interconnect, corrosion or loss in electrical conductivity in such solid oxide electrolytic devices is avoided. Also, a novel structure for such solid oxide electrolytic devices is disclosed, which provides an economical and high-integrity structure that utilizes the disclosed interconnect structure. A result of the present invention is that thin film solid oxide fuel cells and solid oxide oxygen generators may be fabricated using only metal alloys as bulk components.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 29, 2007
    Publication date: June 5, 2008
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard
  • Patent number: 6807216
    Abstract: A novel laser apparatus is disclosed which pertains to laser resonator geometries possessing circular symmetry, such as in the case of disk or spherical lasers. The disclosed invention utilizes multi-layer dielectric (MLD) thin film reflectors of many layer pairs of very small refractive index difference, the MLD deposited on a surface of revolution, thereby forming an optical cavity. These dielectric reflectors are disposed in such a way as to allow selection of preferred low order modes and suppression of parasitic modes while allowing a high cavity Q factor for preferred modes. The invention disclosed, in its preferred embodiments, is seen as particularly useful in applications requiring high efficiency in the production and coupling of coherent radiation. This is accomplished in a cavity design that is relatively compact and economical.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 20, 2001
    Date of Patent: October 19, 2004
    Inventor: Donald Bennett Hilliard