Patents by Inventor Gregory P. Prior

Gregory P. Prior 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: 20170113539
    Abstract: A system and method for controlling an active grille shutter system for a vehicle upon startup of an associated engine includes determining if flaps of the AGS system are in a closed position upon cold-startup of the vehicle; moving the flaps to the closed position if it is determined that the flaps are not in the closed position upon cold-startup of the vehicle; and maintaining the flaps in the closed position until an engine coolant temperature (ECT) reaches a predetermined temperature that initially overshoots a predetermined continuous ECT target associated with steady-state operation of the engine. The initial overshoot of the ECT during cold-startup is configured to rapidly raise an engine oil temperature (EOT) to a predetermined continuous EOT target thereby reducing viscosity of the engine oil during cold-startup operation and increasing fuel efficiency of the vehicle.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 27, 2015
    Publication date: April 27, 2017
    Inventors: Gregory P. Prior, Paul D. Netkowski, Mitchell S. Zajac
  • Patent number: 9032840
    Abstract: A vehicle transmission includes at least one rotatable component and is disposed in an environment at a first pressure. A transmission housing includes a sump portion disposed near a bottom portion of the transmission housing, where the transmission housing substantially encloses the at least one rotatable component. A hydraulic fluid is disposed at least partially in the sump portion of the transmission housing and a vacuum source is in pneumatic communication with the transmission housing. The vacuum source at least partially evacuates a gas from the transmission housing so that an interior of the transmission housing is at a second pressure. The at least one rotatable component is partially exposed to a gas at the second pressure and partially submerged in the hydraulic fluid when the transmission is under a predetermined dynamic load.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 7, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 19, 2015
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations, LLC
    Inventor: Gregory P. Prior
  • Patent number: 8683961
    Abstract: A fluid system for an intercooler has a fill level defining a maximum volume of liquid in the fluid system, a main fluid circuit and a secondary fluid volume. The main fluid circuit includes the intercooler, and one or more passages through which fluid is circulated with operation of the engine, and at least a portion of the main fluid circuit is located above the fill level. The secondary fluid volume has at least a portion located below the fill level that communicates with the main fluid circuit to receive liquid from the main fluid circuit at least when the engine is not operating to drain at least some of the liquid from the portion of the main fluid circuit that is located above the fill level. This reduces the volume of liquid that remains above the fill level when the engine is not operating.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 1, 2014
    Assignee: Chrysler Group LLC
    Inventors: Gregory P. Prior, E. Timothy Pawl
  • Patent number: 8567182
    Abstract: An exhaust heat recovery system (EHRS) for a vehicle is operable to direct exhaust heat to a vehicle transmission under certain operating conditions. In some embodiments, the EHRS may also direct exhaust heat to a heater for vehicle passenger compartment. Preferably, the EHRS is controllable to manage available exhaust heat according to vehicle operating conditions, by prioritizing the heat flow among the engine, the transmission, and the vehicle heater. The EHRS may also operate in a bypass mode during which exhaust heat is not directed to the engine, the transmission or the vehicle heater. A method of managing exhaust heat recovery on a vehicle having an EHRS is also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 2009
    Date of Patent: October 29, 2013
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations LLC
    Inventors: Gregory P. Prior, George M. Claypole
  • Patent number: 8550057
    Abstract: A supercharger is provided, comprising a plurality of rotatable supercharger rotors each having a plurality of interleavable lobes configured to move air from an inlet to an outlet of the supercharger. Inner chambers in the lobes define an end opening and perforated end faces, at the end openings defining at least one port, having a length and a diameter. The at least one port is configured to operate with an associated air mass in the inner chamber to attenuate sound adjacent to the end opening.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 24, 2009
    Date of Patent: October 8, 2013
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations LLC
    Inventor: Gregory P. Prior
  • Patent number: 8544435
    Abstract: A hydraulic valve lifter apparatus including a seal at the interface of a pushrod seat and a pushrod is provided herein. In one form, the hydraulic valve lifter apparatus includes a body, a piston slidably disposed within the body including a pushrod seat for contacting a pushrod, and a seal located between the pushrod seat and the pushrod.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 28, 2011
    Date of Patent: October 1, 2013
    Assignee: Chrysler Group LLC
    Inventor: Gregory P. Prior
  • Publication number: 20130153198
    Abstract: A fluid system for an intercooler has a fill level defining a maximum volume of liquid in the fluid system, a main fluid circuit and a secondary fluid volume. The main fluid circuit includes the intercooler, and one or more passages through which fluid is circulated with operation of the engine, and at least a portion of the main fluid circuit is located above the fill level. The secondary fluid volume has at least a portion located below the fill level that communicates with the main fluid circuit to receive liquid from the main fluid circuit at least when the engine is not operating to drain at least some of the liquid from the portion of the main fluid circuit that is located above the fill level. This reduces the volume of liquid that remains above the fill level when the engine is not operating.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 19, 2011
    Publication date: June 20, 2013
    Applicant: CHRYSLER GROUP LLC.
    Inventors: Gregory P. Prior, E. Timothy Pawl
  • Patent number: 8443594
    Abstract: A method of controlling the temperature of a thermoelectric generator (TEG) in an exhaust system of an engine is provided. The method includes determining the temperature of the heated side of the TEG, determining exhaust gas flow rate through the TEG, and determining the exhaust gas temperature through the TEG. A rate of change in temperature of the heated side of the TEG is predicted based on the determined temperature, the determined exhaust gas flow rate, and the determined exhaust gas temperature through the TEG. Using the predicted rate of change of temperature of the heated side, exhaust gas flow rate through the TEG is calculated that will result in a maximum temperature of the heated side of the TEG less than a predetermined critical temperature given the predicted rate of change in temperature of the heated side of the TEG. A corresponding apparatus is provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 2, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 21, 2013
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations LLC
    Inventors: Gregory P. Prior, Michael G. Reynolds, Joshua D. Cowgill
  • Patent number: 8439276
    Abstract: A shutter control system comprises a shutter closing module and a regenerative braking control module. The shutter closing module selectively closes a shutter to decrease aerodynamic drag on the vehicle based on at least one of a brake pedal position, a state of charge of an energy storage device, and a throttle position. The shutter blocks airflow into an engine compartment of the vehicle when closed. The regenerative braking control module controls a motor generator to perform regenerative braking when the shutter is closed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 25, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 14, 2013
    Inventor: Gregory P. Prior
  • Publication number: 20130104825
    Abstract: A hydraulic valve lifter apparatus including a seal at the interface of a pushrod seat and a pushrod is provided herein. In one form, the hydraulic valve lifter apparatus includes a body, a piston slidably disposed within the body including a pushrod seat for contacting a pushrod, and a seal located between the pushrod seat and the pushrod.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 28, 2011
    Publication date: May 2, 2013
    Applicant: CHRYSLER GROUP LLC
    Inventor: Gregory P. Prior
  • Patent number: 8413434
    Abstract: An exhaust heat recovery system (EHRS) for a vehicle is provided that is operable to direct coolant heated by exhaust heat to a vehicle transmission under certain operating conditions after the engine is adequately heated by the exhaust heat and without further heating the engine with the exhaust heat. Thus, recovery of exhaust heat is increased as the transmission is heated to a higher operating temperature than the engine using the heated coolant. The EHRS may also operate in a bypass mode during which exhaust heat is not directed to the engine or the transmission. A method of managing exhaust heat is also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 21, 2009
    Date of Patent: April 9, 2013
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations LLC
    Inventors: Gregory P. Prior, George M. Claypole, Daniel B. Glassford
  • Patent number: 8359845
    Abstract: An apparatus for a vehicle with an engine is provided that accomplishes exhaust heat recovery and exhaust gas recirculation with a common heat exchanger used for both purposes. The apparatus includes an exhaust system through which exhaust gas is discharged from the engine. A heat exchanger is positioned within the exhaust system. Coolant flow passages are provided in thermal communication with the engine and with the heat exchanger. A bypass valve is operable in a first position to direct the exhaust gas through the heat exchanger to transfer heat to the coolant flow passages in a coolant heating mode, and operable in a second position in which the exhaust gas bypasses the heat exchanger in a bypass mode during which no significant coolant heating occurs via the heat exchanger. A portion of the exhaust gas is recirculated to the engine after cooling via the heat exchanger.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 16, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 29, 2013
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations LLC
    Inventors: Gregory P. Prior, Daniel B. Glassford
  • Publication number: 20130000285
    Abstract: An internal combustion engine exhaust thermoelectric generator includes a stainless steel exhaust gas heat exchanger having an interior portion defined by a stainless steel wall and an exterior surface of the stainless steel wall distal to the interior portion. The exhaust gas heat exchanger receives a pressurized exhaust gas stream from the internal combustion engine and extracts thermal energy from the exhaust gas stream. At least one copper heat sink is in thermal contact with the exhaust gas heat exchanger to conduct thermal energy from the exhaust gas heat exchanger. A thermoelectric module has a hot side disposed on a surface of the at least one copper heat sink, and a cold side distal to the hot side. The thermoelectric module converts thermal energy to electrical energy for consumption or storage by an electrical load.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 28, 2011
    Publication date: January 3, 2013
    Applicant: GM GLOBAL TECHNOLOGY OPERATIONS LLC
    Inventor: Gregory P. Prior
  • Patent number: 8341951
    Abstract: An apparatus is provided for a vehicle with an engine that includes an exhaust system through which exhaust gas is discharged from the engine. A heat exchanger is positioned at least partially within the exhaust system. Coolant flow passages are provided in thermal communication with the engine and with the heat exchanger. A bypass valve is operable in a first mode to direct the exhaust gas across the heat exchanger along a first flow path to transfer exhaust heat to the coolant flow passages, and is further operable in a second mode to direct at least a portion of the exhaust gas across the heat exchanger along a second flow path to transfer exhaust heat to the coolant flow passages in a second coolant heating mode. The second flow path is restricted relative to the first flow path. A method of managing exhaust heat recovery is also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 4, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 1, 2013
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations LLC
    Inventors: Gregory P. Prior, Daniel B. Glassford
  • Patent number: 8316813
    Abstract: An engine intake air tuning assembly may include a housing assembly and an air flow control member. The housing assembly may include an air inlet, an air outlet, and a body portion extending therebetween. The body portion may define an air flow passage and a tuning chamber. The air flow passage may provide fluid communication between the air inlet and outlet. The air flow control member may be located within the body portion and may be displaced between first and second positions relative to the air flow passage. The air flow control member may provide a first communication path from the air flow passage to the tuning chamber when in the first position and a second communication path from the air flow passage to the tuning chamber when in the second position. The second communication path may define a greater number of openings than the first communication path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 5, 2009
    Date of Patent: November 27, 2012
    Inventor: Gregory P. Prior
  • Patent number: 8297238
    Abstract: An apparatus is provided that includes an engine, an exhaust system, and a thermoelectric generator (TEG) operatively connected to the exhaust system and configured to allow exhaust gas flow therethrough. A first radiator is operatively connected to the engine. An openable and closable engine valve is configured to open to permit coolant to circulate through the engine and the first radiator when coolant temperature is greater than a predetermined minimum coolant temperature. A first and a second valve are controllable to route cooling fluid from the TEG to the engine through coolant passages under a first set of operating conditions to establish a first cooling circuit, and from the TEG to a second radiator through at least some other coolant passages under a second set of operating conditions to establish a second cooling circuit. A method of controlling a cooling circuit is also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 2, 2010
    Date of Patent: October 30, 2012
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations LLC
    Inventor: Gregory P. Prior
  • Patent number: 8286424
    Abstract: An apparatus is provided that includes a thermoelectric generator and an exhaust gas system operatively connected to the thermoelectric generator to heat a portion of the thermoelectric generator with exhaust gas flow through the thermoelectric generator. A coolant system is operatively connected to the thermoelectric generator to cool another portion of the thermoelectric generator with coolant flow through the thermoelectric generator. At least one valve is controllable to cause the coolant flow through the thermoelectric generator in a direction that opposes a direction of the exhaust gas flow under a first set of operating conditions and to cause the coolant flow through the thermoelectric generator in the direction of exhaust gas flow under a second set of operating conditions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 2, 2010
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2012
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations LLC
    Inventors: Gregory P. Prior, Gregory P. Meisner, Daniel B. Glassford
  • Patent number: 8151773
    Abstract: An internal combustion engine for an automotive vehicle includes a belt, alternator, supercharger (BASC) power system having a positive displacement supercharger with coacting rotors, a belt drive from the engine to the supercharger, an overrunning clutch allowing the supercharger to overrun the belt drive, and a motor-generator connected to charge a battery when the motor-generator is overrunning the belt drive. The system allows electric overrun of the supercharger to increase engine charge air and power at low engine speeds, to electrically offset some parasitic losses and increase power at high engine speeds, to use supercharger inertia to drive the motor-generator and charge the battery during engine decelerations, and to electrically reduce belt drive loads by supplementing supercharger drive power during transmission downshifts that increase engine speed, and thus minimize “chirping” sounds due to belt slipping.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 2008
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2012
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations LLC
    Inventor: Gregory P. Prior
  • Patent number: 8113183
    Abstract: The present invention reduces the overheating of sealed oil gear cases and excessive charge air temperatures at high engine speeds in automotive supercharger use by providing liquid cooling of one or more of the housings of a supercharger. Cooling the front cover of the supercharger will reduce the gear case temperatures under boost. Cooling the bearing housing will also reduce gear case temperatures in the adjacent gear case. Cooling the rotor housing, in combination with cooling of the rotors by a separate system, will maintain more uniform clearances under continuous boost, as with racing and autobahn applications. Cooling may be by traditional liquid coolant or with oil, and with separate or combined systems. The invention discloses liquid coolant systems for controlling sealed gear case lubricant temperatures as well as supercharger charge air temperatures if desired. Combined coolant handling and flow systems and their advantages are also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 24, 2008
    Date of Patent: February 14, 2012
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations LLC
    Inventors: Gregory P. Prior, Roxann M. Bittner
  • Patent number: 8061484
    Abstract: An oil pump system is provided having a mechanism configured to receive oil, pressurize the oil, and output the pressurized oil. The oil pump system also includes an oil pump body configured to house the mechanism. A vent is defined by the body to purge air from the pump. Also, a device is arranged relative to the vent, and configured to close the vent when the pump body is subjected to g-forces up to a predetermined threshold magnitude. The device is additionally configured to open the vent when the pump body is subjected to g-forces exceeding the predetermined threshold magnitude, wherein air otherwise received by the pump mechanism with the oil, captured within the mechanism, and outputted with the pressurized oil is purged.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 2, 2009
    Date of Patent: November 22, 2011
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations LLC
    Inventor: Gregory P. Prior