Patents by Inventor James E. Rouleau

James E. Rouleau 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: 20220212712
    Abstract: A steering column includes a steering column component. The steering column also includes a driven assembly operatively coupled to the steering column component. The steering column further includes a driving assembly. The steering column yet further includes a connection assembly that includes a connection gear having a first set of teeth operatively connected to the driving assembly, the connection gear having a set of gear clutch teeth. The connection assembly also includes a clutch member operatively connected to the driven assembly, the driven assembly moving along an axis in response to actuation from the driving assembly and causes the provided axially adjustable steering column to be adjusted along the axis, the clutch member having a set of clutch member teeth. The clutch member teeth and the gear clutch teeth are disengaged in an overload state.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 4, 2022
    Publication date: July 7, 2022
    Inventors: James E. Rouleau, Shawn A. Haring
  • Publication number: 20220097751
    Abstract: A rake pivot assembly for a steering column assembly includes a pair of flanges spaced from each other and oriented parallel to each other, each of the flanges defining an elongated opening. The assembly also includes a pair of lower brackets, each of the lower brackets having a portion thereof fitting over one of the pair of flanges. The assembly further includes a pair of alignment bushings, each of the pair of alignment bushings at least partially disposed within one of the elongated openings and positioned between one of the lower brackets and one of the flanges. The assembly yet further includes a pair of lower bracket pins, each of the lower bracket pins extending along a pivot axis of the steering column assembly and through one of the lower brackets and through one of the flanges to couple one of the lower brackets to one of the flanges.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 28, 2020
    Publication date: March 31, 2022
    Inventors: James E. Rouleau, Robert D. Maida, Scott A. Stinebring, Jacob A. Caverly
  • Patent number: 11267502
    Abstract: A rake pivot assembly for a steering column assembly includes a pair of flanges spaced from each other and oriented parallel to each other, each of the flanges defining an elongated opening. The assembly also includes a pair of lower brackets, each of the lower brackets having a portion thereof fitting over one of the pair of flanges. The assembly further includes a pair of alignment bushings, each of the pair of alignment bushings at least partially disposed within one of the elongated openings and positioned between one of the lower brackets and one of the flanges. The assembly yet further includes a pair of lower bracket pins, each of the lower bracket pins extending along a pivot axis of the steering column assembly and through one of the lower brackets and through one of the flanges to couple one of the lower brackets to one of the flanges.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2020
    Date of Patent: March 8, 2022
    Assignee: Steering Solutions IP Holding Corporation
    Inventors: James E. Rouleau, Robert D. Maida, Scott A. Stinebring, Jacob A. Caverly
  • Publication number: 20210323596
    Abstract: Embodiments described herein are for an absolute position sensor system integrated into a steering column assembly. The absolute position sensor system comprises: a sector connected to a rake adjustment mechanism of the steering column assembly and operable to be moved thereby; a gear coupled to the sector and operable to be rotated by the movement thereof; a magnet connected to and retained by the gear such that the magnet rotates responsive to the rotation of the gear; and a sensor device positioned below the magnet and connected to a stationary part of the steering column assembly. The sensor device is configured to: detect an angle of rotation of the magnet, where the angle of rotation of the magnet corresponds to a position of the rake adjustment mechanism.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 17, 2020
    Publication date: October 21, 2021
    Applicant: STEERING SOLUTIONS IP HOLDING CORPORATION
    Inventors: Damian Z. Gosztyla, Robert D. Bueche, James E. Rouleau
  • Publication number: 20210309281
    Abstract: Embodiments described herein are for a position sensor system integrated into a steering column assembly of a vehicle. The position sensor includes an elongated target comprising a sloping top surface, a first arcuate lateral surface, a second arcuate lateral surface, and an attachment feature for connecting the elongated target to a moveable part of the steering column assembly. The position sensor also includes a sensor device comprising an attachment feature for connecting the sensor device to a stationary part of the steering column assembly and a sensor situated over the sloping top surface of the elongated target. The sensor is configured to detect a position of the elongated target relative to the sensor, where the position of the elongated target corresponds to a position of a steering column of the steering column assembly.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 6, 2020
    Publication date: October 7, 2021
    Inventors: James E. Rouleau, Edward A. Cana, Damian Z. Gosztyla, Robert D. Bueche
  • Patent number: 11136059
    Abstract: Embodiments described herein are for a position sensor system integrated into a steering column assembly of a vehicle. The position sensor includes an elongated target comprising a sloping top surface, a first arcuate lateral surface, a second arcuate lateral surface, and an attachment feature for connecting the elongated target to a moveable part of the steering column assembly. The position sensor also includes a sensor device comprising an attachment feature for connecting the sensor device to a stationary part of the steering column assembly and a sensor situated over the sloping top surface of the elongated target. The sensor is configured to detect a position of the elongated target relative to the sensor, where the position of the elongated target corresponds to a position of a steering column of the steering column assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 6, 2020
    Date of Patent: October 5, 2021
    Assignee: Steering Solutions IP Holding Corporation
    Inventors: James E. Rouleau, Edward A. Cana, Damian Z. Gosztyla, Robert D. Bueche
  • Publication number: 20210291894
    Abstract: A method for controlling an electric machine includes, in response to receiving a command signal, determining a position of a steering column. The method also includes determining a desired direction of the steering column based on the command signal. The method also includes determining a voltage corresponding to motion of the steering column from the position and desired direction. The method also includes applying a pulse width modulated signal to the electric machine based on the position of the steering column, the desired direction of the steering column, and the voltage. The method also includes selectively adjusting the pulse width modulated signal based on a change in the voltage.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 23, 2020
    Publication date: September 23, 2021
    Inventors: James E. Rouleau, Edward A. Cana
  • Publication number: 20210231089
    Abstract: A programmable or configurable non-contact solid state switch device and method are provided for emulating a high reliability switch. The switch device senses position information related to a switch and is calibrated using a learning operation to learn position information of mechanical features of the switch and to map the positions of these features. Electrical outputs or functions are assigned to the mapped positions and stored such that the switch device generates the outputs when their corresponding positions are sensed. A switch device is uniquely configured to the mechanical system in which it operates.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 23, 2020
    Publication date: July 29, 2021
    Inventor: James E. ROULEAU
  • Publication number: 20210061341
    Abstract: An actuator leadscrew assembly is provided. The assembly includes a leadscrew shaft extending longitudinally. The assembly also includes a first bearing pressed over the leadscrew shaft. The assembly further includes a housing pressed over the leadscrew shaft and in abutment with the first bearing. The assembly yet further includes a second bearing pressed over the leadscrew shaft and in abutment with the housing. The assembly also includes a retaining ring disposed over the leadscrew shaft retaining the second bearing.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 25, 2020
    Publication date: March 4, 2021
    Inventors: Christopher W. Gibbs, James E. Rouleau, Harmony J. Hudnall
  • Patent number: 10906578
    Abstract: A power actuator assembly for a steering column assembly is provided. The power actuator assembly include an electric motor. Also included is a leadscrew. Further included is a gear arrangement operatively coupled to the electric motor, the gear arrangement driving rotation of the leadscrew. Yet further included is a nut threaded to the leadscrew, rotation of the leadscrew actuating linear motion of the nut relative to the leadscrew, the nut operatively coupled to a moveable portion of the steering column assembly to actuate motion of the moveable portion. Also included is a leadscrew housing, the leadscrew extending axially through the leadscrew housing. Further included is a helical bushing disposed between a radially inner surface of the leadscrew housing and a radially outer surface of the leadscrew.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 29, 2017
    Date of Patent: February 2, 2021
    Assignee: Steering Solutions IP Holding Corporation
    Inventors: James E. Rouleau, Scott A. Stinebring, Harmony J. Hudnall
  • Patent number: 10640139
    Abstract: A telescoping steering column is supported by a vehicle structure, and includes a steering shaft, first, second, and third jackets, and first and second adjustment mechanisms. The steering shaft is adapted to rotate about an axis. The first jacket is adapted to rotatably support the steering shaft. The second jacket is adapted to support the first jacket, and the first jacket is constructed to slide axially with respect to the second jacket. The third jacket is adapted to support the second jacket, and the second jacket is constructed to slide axially with respect to the third jacket. The first adjustment mechanism is supported by the first and second jackets for axial movement of the first jacket with respect to the second jacket. The second adjustment mechanism is supported by the second and third jackets for axial movement of the second jacket with respect to the third jacket.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 8, 2018
    Date of Patent: May 5, 2020
    Assignee: Steering Solutions IP Holding Corporation
    Inventors: Robert C. Derocher, Todd M. King, James E. Rouleau
  • Patent number: 10577010
    Abstract: A telescoping steering column is constructed to be mounted to a vehicle structure. The telescoping steering column includes a plurality of jackets in telescopic relation to one another along a telescopic axis, an electric motor, at least one leadscrew, first and second thread sets, and first and second nuts. The plurality of jackets include a first jacket and a second jacket. The electric motor is rigidly fixed to one of the plurality of jackets. Then at least one leadscrew is rotationally driven by the electric motor. The first and second thread sets are carried by the at least one leadscrew. The first and second nuts are threaded upon the respective first and second thread sets, and attached to the respective first and second jackets.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 8, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 3, 2020
    Assignee: Steering Solutions IP Holding Corporation
    Inventors: Robert C. Derocher, Todd M. King, James E. Rouleau, Donald A. Buzzard, Melvin L. Tinnin
  • Patent number: 10544821
    Abstract: A self-locking insert includes an insert body having an outer surface. Also included is a bore extending through the insert body, the bore defining an inner surface and configured to receive a lead screw. Further included is a self-locking feature configured to engage a holder to retain the self-locking insert in a predetermined position, the self-locking feature comprising at least one lug configured to be compressed by the holder during installation of the self-locking insert in the holder, the self-locking insert configured to be pressed into position in the holder. Yet further included is a de-lashing feature configured to interference fittingly engage the holder.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 26, 2016
    Date of Patent: January 28, 2020
    Assignee: Steering Solutions IP Holding Corporation
    Inventors: James E. Rouleau, Shawn A. Haring
  • Patent number: 10421476
    Abstract: An extendable steering column assembly includes a steering shaft, an energy absorption device, and a self-locking telescope actuator. The steering shaft is configured to rotate about an axis, and includes a forward shaft portion mounted for rotation to a fixed support structure, and a rearward shaft portion mounted for rotation to a jacket. The rearward shaft portion is configured to axially translate with the jacket. The energy absorption device is engaged to the jacket. The telescope actuator includes a rod extending along a centerline, a nut threaded to the rod, and a casing in operable contact with the nut. Rotational motion along with axial translational motion is induced between the rod and the nut when at least in at least a power state.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 21, 2017
    Date of Patent: September 24, 2019
    Assignee: Steering Solutions IP Holding Corporation
    Inventor: James E. Rouleau
  • Publication number: 20190210632
    Abstract: A telescoping steering column is supported by a vehicle structure, and includes a steering shaft, first, second, and third jackets, and first and second adjustment mechanisms. The steering shaft is adapted to rotate about an axis. The first jacket is adapted to rotatably support the steering shaft. The second jacket is adapted to support the first jacket, and the first jacket is constructed to slide axially with respect to the second jacket. The third jacket is adapted to support the second jacket, and the second jacket is constructed to slide axially with respect to the third jacket. The first adjustment mechanism is supported by the first and second jackets for axial movement of the first jacket with respect to the second jacket. The second adjustment mechanism is supported by the second and third jackets for axial movement of the second jacket with respect to the third jacket.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 8, 2018
    Publication date: July 11, 2019
    Inventors: Robert C. Derocher, Todd M. King, James E. Rouleau
  • Publication number: 20190210633
    Abstract: A telescoping steering column is constructed to be mounted to a vehicle structure. The telescoping steering column includes a plurality of jackets in telescopic relation to one another along a telescopic axis, an electric motor, at least one leadscrew, first and second thread sets, and first and second nuts. The plurality of jackets include a first jacket and a second jacket. The electric motor is rigidly fixed to one of the plurality of jackets. Then at least one leadscrew is rotationally driven by the electric motor. The first and second thread sets are carried by the at least one leadscrew. The first and second nuts are threaded upon the respective first and second thread sets, and attached to the respective first and second jackets.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 8, 2018
    Publication date: July 11, 2019
    Inventors: Robert C. Derocher, Todd M. King, James E. Rouleau, Donald A. Buzzard, Melvin L. Tinnin
  • Publication number: 20190202495
    Abstract: A power actuator assembly for a steering column assembly is provided. The power actuator assembly include an electric motor. Also included is a leadscrew. Further included is a gear arrangement operatively coupled to the electric motor, the gear arrangement driving rotation of the leadscrew. Yet further included is a nut threaded to the leadscrew, rotation of the leadscrew actuating linear motion of the nut relative to the leadscrew, the nut operatively coupled to a moveable portion of the steering column assembly to actuate motion of the moveable portion. Also included is a leadscrew housing, the leadscrew extending axially through the leadscrew housing. Further included is a helical bushing disposed between a radially inner surface of the leadscrew housing and a radially outer surface of the leadscrew.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 29, 2017
    Publication date: July 4, 2019
    Inventors: James E. Rouleau, Scott A. Stinebring, Harmony J. Hudnall
  • Patent number: 9919724
    Abstract: A steering column assembly is provided and includes a steering column shaft and a column adjustment assembly configured to translate the steering column shaft between a retracted position and a deployed position. A disengagement assembly selectively couples a steering column telescope lead screw to the column adjustment assembly. The disengagement assembly is configured to selectively disengage the telescope lead screw from the column adjustment assembly to facilitate manual movement of the steering column shaft between the retracted position and the deployed position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2015
    Date of Patent: March 20, 2018
    Assignee: STEERING SOLUTIONS IP HOLDING CORPORATION
    Inventors: Frank P. Lubischer, John F. Schulz, James E. Rouleau, Shawn A. Haring
  • Patent number: 9862403
    Abstract: A manually retractable steering column assembly includes a retractable portion translatable upon exertion of a manual force applied by a driver, the retractable portion restricted to a first translation range during a standard driving mode and translatable within a second translation range during an autonomous driving mode, the second translation range greater than the first translation range.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 29, 2016
    Date of Patent: January 9, 2018
    Assignee: STEERING SOLUTIONS IP HOLDING CORPORATION
    Inventors: James E. Rouleau, Todd M. King
  • Patent number: 9849904
    Abstract: According to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention a steering column assembly is provided. The steering column assembly includes a steering column shaft. The steering column assembly further includes a retraction actuator to translate an adjustment actuator mounting plate within a retraction range. The steering column further includes an adjustment actuator mounted on the adjustment actuator mounting plate to translate a steering column bracket within an adjustment range. The steering column bracket translates the steering column shaft within a steering column shaft movement range. The steering column shaft movement range is a sum of the retraction range and the adjustment range.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 31, 2015
    Date of Patent: December 26, 2017
    Assignee: STEERING SOLUTIONS IP HOLDING CORPORATION
    Inventor: James E. Rouleau