Patents by Inventor Dwight A. Burford

Dwight A. Burford 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: 20160008918
    Abstract: A friction stir processing tool and method for manufacturing the same are provided. The tool includes a non-consumable, interchangeable friction stir probe body. The tool includes a material flow path defined by an outer surface of a probe body, which has a non-linear, continuous, monotonically-decreasing axial profile. The probe body is adapted to engage a workpiece material to perform a friction stir process by rotating about an axis thereof thereby directing a weld material toward a distal end of the probe body along the flow path. The flow path varies in pitch as the lateral cross-sectional dimension of the probe body decreases toward the distal end thereby causing the weld material to maintain a controlled speed as it travels along the flow path. Geometric surface features such as threads, helical grooves, ridges, flutes, and/or flats, integrated with the probe body may define the flow path.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 10, 2015
    Publication date: January 14, 2016
    Inventor: Dwight A. Burford
  • Patent number: 9132504
    Abstract: An apparatus includes a connector and is configured to mount to a machine having multiple axes of control. A control signal on the connector determines a path of a rotating tool holder.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 24, 2013
    Date of Patent: September 15, 2015
    Assignee: Wichita State University
    Inventor: Dwight A. Burford
  • Patent number: 8579180
    Abstract: A mandrel tool probe is provided for performing a friction-stir process. The mandrel tool probe includes a shank and a tip coupled to the shank, where the shank and tip are concentric and rotatable about a given axis. The tip includes a set of a plurality of physically-separate, spiraled surfaces each of which has a linear or curved cross-section that extends along a length of the tip at a constant or varying spiral angle around the circumference of the tip. The tip also has a cross-section with a constant shape along the length of the tip, with the cross-section of the tip including a plurality of major segments each of which is formed of the cross-section of a respective spiraled surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 20, 2012
    Date of Patent: November 12, 2013
    Inventor: Dwight A. Burford
  • Patent number: 8444040
    Abstract: An apparatus includes a connector and is configured to mount to a machine having multiple axes of control. A control signal on the connector determines a path of a rotating tool holder.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 10, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 21, 2013
    Assignee: Wichita State University
    Inventor: Dwight A. Burford
  • Publication number: 20130075452
    Abstract: A mandrel tool probe is provided for performing a friction-stir process. The mandrel tool probe includes a shank and a tip coupled to the shank, where the shank and tip are concentric and rotatable about a given axis. The tip includes a set of a plurality of physically-separate, spiraled surfaces each of which has a linear or curved cross-section that extends along a length of the tip at a constant or varying spiral angle around the circumference of the tip. The tip also has a cross-section with a constant shape along the length of the tip, with the cross-section of the tip including a plurality of major segments each of which is formed of the cross-section of a respective spiraled surface.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 20, 2012
    Publication date: March 28, 2013
    Inventor: Dwight A. Burford
  • Patent number: 8016179
    Abstract: A friction stir welding tool having a shoulder section with a scroll pattern that terminates prior to the edge or boundary of the shoulder section to create a scroll-free concentric surface area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 17, 2006
    Date of Patent: September 13, 2011
    Assignee: Wichita State University
    Inventor: Dwight A. Burford
  • Patent number: 7942306
    Abstract: A friction stir welding tool having one or more tapered flats for promoting flow of weld material toward the pin terminus and one or more counter-spiraling channels or threads which for promoting flow of the weld material toward the tool shoulder.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 13, 2007
    Date of Patent: May 17, 2011
    Assignee: Wichita State University
    Inventor: Dwight A. Burford
  • Publication number: 20100200642
    Abstract: An apparatus includes a connector and is configured to mount to a machine having multiple axes of control. A control signal on the connector determines a path of a rotating tool holder.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 10, 2010
    Publication date: August 12, 2010
    Applicant: Wichita State University
    Inventor: Dwight A. Burford
  • Publication number: 20080251571
    Abstract: A friction stir welding tool having one or more tapered flats for promoting flow of weld material toward the pin terminus and one or more counter-spiraling channels or threads which for promoting flow of the weld material toward the tool shoulder.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 13, 2007
    Publication date: October 16, 2008
    Inventor: Dwight A. Burford
  • Publication number: 20080011810
    Abstract: A friction stir welding tool having a shoulder section with a scroll pattern that terminates prior to the edge or boundary of the shoulder section to create a scroll-free concentric surface area.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 17, 2006
    Publication date: January 17, 2008
    Inventor: Dwight A. Burford
  • Patent number: 7255258
    Abstract: A system and associated friction stir welding (FSW) assembly, controller and method for performing a friction stir welding operation are provided. The friction stir welding system includes a FSW device, such as a CNC machine, that includes an actuator capable of moving a FSW tool relative to a workpiece. The system also includes a controller capable of controlling the FSW device to drive the actuator to move the FSW tool. In this regard, the actuator is capable of being driven such that the FSW tool is capable of performing a friction stir welding operation on the workpiece. The controller is capable of monitoring a torque of the actuator to thereby control the FSW device to drive the actuator such that the torque is maintained within a range about a torque setting.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 27, 2003
    Date of Patent: August 14, 2007
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Dwight A. Burford, Edwin H. Fenn, Danny R. High, Robert M. Kay
  • Patent number: 6955283
    Abstract: There is provided a mandrel for spin forming that has a backing plate with removably attached mandrel portions and mandrel spacers, such that the mandrel is adaptable to numerous configurations. The various configurations of the mandrel are used to provide different spin forming contour surfaces upon which metal sheets or other spin formable materials can be spin formed. The adaptable mandrel also provides the ability to create a desired spin formed product from either a single metal sheet or multiple metal sheets joined by friction stir welding or other suitable processes. A spin formed welded metal sheet may also undergo a trimming process to remove the portions of the welded metal sheet having sufficiently different material properties resulting from the weld process, including the weld joint.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 2003
    Date of Patent: October 18, 2005
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Ronnie G. Kendall, Dwight A. Burford
  • Publication number: 20040129763
    Abstract: A system and associated friction stir welding (FSW) assembly, controller and method for performing a friction stir welding operation are provided. The friction stir welding system includes a FSW device, such as a CNC machine, that includes an actuator capable of moving a FSW tool relative to a workpiece. The system also includes a controller capable of controlling the FSW device to drive the actuator to move the FSW tool. In this regard, the actuator is capable of being driven such that the FSW tool is capable of performing a friction stir welding operation on the workpiece. The controller is capable of monitoring a torque of the actuator to thereby control the FSW device to drive the actuator such that the torque is maintained within a range about a torque setting.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 7, 2004
    Publication date: July 8, 2004
    Applicant: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Dwight A. Burford, Edwin H. Fenn, Danny R. High, Robert M. Kay
  • Publication number: 20040050908
    Abstract: There is provided a mandrel for spin forming that has a backing plate with removably attached mandrel portions and mandrel spacers, such that the mandrel is adaptable to numerous configurations. The various configurations of the mandrel are used to provide different spin forming contour surfaces upon which metal sheets or other spin formable materials can be spin formed. The adaptable mandrel also provides the ability to create a desired spin formed product from either a single metal sheet or multiple metal sheets joined by friction stir welding or other suitable processes. A spin formed welded metal sheet may also undergo a trimming process to remove the portions of the welded metal sheet having sufficiently different material properties resulting from the weld process, including the weld joint.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 8, 2003
    Publication date: March 18, 2004
    Applicant: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Ronnie G. Kendall, Dwight A. Burford