Patents by Inventor Michael J. Keeler

Michael J. Keeler 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).

  • Patent number: 10744836
    Abstract: Composite suspension components are disclosed. The components are made from resin containing elongated fibers (8). The arms of the suspension components may receive reinforcement (40) using different devices and methods. A composite torque rod also incorporates a tunable compliance feature.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 21, 2016
    Date of Patent: August 18, 2020
    Assignee: Hendrickson USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Jeffrey R. Zawacki, Michael J. Keeler, Scott Allen Massa, Dmitriy Enrikovich Rubalskiy
  • Patent number: 10611206
    Abstract: An automatic air suspension control system is provided for use in combination with a vehicle having a non-driven rear axle, a driven rear axle, and an air suspension associated with the rear axles to apply a load to each of the rear axles. The air suspension control system is programmed to maintain the load applied to the non-driven rear axle at a level that is less than the load applied to the driven rear axle until the load applied to the driven rear axle is equal to a threshold amount. The threshold amount may be equal to the maximum load that may be legally applied to the driven rear axle or some lower level. There may be no load applied to the non-driven rear axle prior to the load on the driven rear axle reaching the threshold amount or may be a non-zero amount.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 12, 2014
    Date of Patent: April 7, 2020
    Assignee: Hendrickson USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Jeffrey R. Zawacki, Michael J. Keeler, Ashley Thomas Dudding
  • Patent number: 10137749
    Abstract: An air spring with damping characteristics for a suspension assembly of a heavy-duty vehicle includes a bellows and a piston. The bellows includes a bellows chamber. The bellows is attached to a main member of the heavy-duty vehicle and to the piston. The piston includes an open bottom that is sealingly closed by a disc attached to the open bottom. The piston and the disc define a piston chamber. The piston is mounted on the suspension assembly of the heavy-duty vehicle. The bellows chamber and the piston chamber are in fluid communication with each other via at least one opening, wherein airflow between the bellows chamber and the piston chamber provides damping to the suspension assembly of the heavy-duty vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 18, 2017
    Date of Patent: November 27, 2018
    Assignee: Hendrickson USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Michael J. Keeler, Jeff R. Zawacki, Andrew J. Westnedge, Jason M. Ramus, Jacob Andreasen, Nicholas J. Giamati
  • Publication number: 20180229567
    Abstract: A clamp group for a vehicle leaf spring suspension is disclosed. The clamp group secures a longitudinally disposed, leaf spring at separate and distinct locations, between which the leaf spring is undamped and spaced away from the top and bottom pads of the clamp group. Shear stress is reduced and the spring remains active throughout its length.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 9, 2016
    Publication date: August 16, 2018
    Inventors: Michael J. KEELER, Dmitriy Enrikovich RUBALSKIY, Scott Allen MASSA, Jeffrey R. ZAWACKI, Michael P. BLOINK, Damon E. DILWORTH, Matthew J. van METER
  • Publication number: 20170326935
    Abstract: An air spring with damping characteristics for a suspension assembly of a heavy-duty vehicle includes a bellows and a piston. The bellows includes a bellows chamber. The bellows is attached to a main member of the heavy-duty vehicle and to the piston. The piston includes an open bottom that is sealingly closed by a disc attached to the open bottom. The piston and the disc define a piston chamber. The piston is mounted on the suspension assembly of the heavy-duty vehicle. The bellows chamber and the piston chamber are in fluid communication with each other via at least one opening, wherein airflow between the bellows chamber and the piston chamber provides damping to the suspension assembly of the heavy-duty vehicle.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 18, 2017
    Publication date: November 16, 2017
    Inventors: Michael J. Keeler, Jeff R. Zawacki, Andrew J. Westnedge, Jason M. Ramus, Jacob Andreasen, Nicholas J. Giamati
  • Patent number: 9738131
    Abstract: An air spring with damping characteristics for a suspension assembly of a heavy-duty vehicle includes a bellows and a piston. The bellows includes a bellows chamber. The bellows is attached to a main member of the heavy-duty vehicle and to the piston. The piston includes an open bottom that is sealingly closed by a disc attached to the open bottom. The piston and the disc define a piston chamber. The piston is mounted on the suspension assembly of the heavy-duty vehicle. The bellows chamber and the piston chamber are in fluid communication with each other via at least one opening, wherein airflow between the bellows chamber and the piston chamber provides damping to the suspension assembly of the heavy-duty vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 2016
    Date of Patent: August 22, 2017
    Assignee: Hendrickson USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Michael J. Keeler, Jeff R. Zawacki, Andrew J. Westnedge, Jason M. Ramus, Jacob Andreasen, Nicholas J. Giamati
  • Publication number: 20160347145
    Abstract: A fabricated torque rod including a rod having first and second ends, a first bushing hub welded to the first end of the rod and a second bushing hub welded to the second end of the rod; wherein the rod is a piece cut from a metal plate or sheet, wherein the first and second bushing hubs are made of cut tubing, wherein the first end of the rod has a radius that conforms to an outer surface of the first bushing hub and the second end of the rod has a radius that conforms to an outer surface of the second bushing hub, and wherein the first end of the rod is welded to the outer surface of the first bushing hub and the second end of the rod is welded to the outer surface of the second bushing hub.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 31, 2016
    Publication date: December 1, 2016
    Inventors: Michael J. Keeler, Jeffrey R. Zawacki, Scott Allen Massa, Jason C. Fugitt, Matthew D. Kowalski
  • Publication number: 20160332497
    Abstract: An air spring with damping characteristics for a suspension assembly of a heavy-duty vehicle includes a bellows and a piston. The bellows includes a bellows chamber. The bellows is attached to a main member of the heavy-duty vehicle and to the piston. The piston includes an open bottom that is sealingly closed by a disc attached to the open bottom. The piston and the disc define a piston chamber. The piston is mounted on the suspension assembly of the heavy-duty vehicle. The bellows chamber and the piston chamber are in fluid communication with each other via at least one opening, wherein airflow between the bellows chamber and the piston chamber provides damping to the suspension assembly of the heavy-duty vehicle.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 10, 2016
    Publication date: November 17, 2016
    Inventors: Michael J. Keeler, Jeff R. Zawacki, Andrew J. Westnedge, Jason M. Ramus, Jacob Andreasen, Nicholas J. Giamati
  • Patent number: 9193236
    Abstract: An axle-to-beam or crossbrace-to-beam connection for a vehicle axle/suspension system includes an axle or crossbrace having at least one depression formed therein. A sleeve is formed with at least one depression and disposed about the axle or crossbrace so that the axle or crossbrace depression and the sleeve depression matingly engage one another to form a mated pair of depressions. A method of forming the axle-to-beam or crossbrace-to-beam connection includes providing an axle or crossbrace and disposing a sleeve about the axle or crossbrace. At least one mated pair of depressions is simultaneously formed in the axle or crossbrace and the sleeve. The sleeve is immovably mounted to a vehicle axle/suspension system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 10, 2015
    Date of Patent: November 24, 2015
    Assignee: Hendrickson USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Andrew J. Westnedge, Jason P. Shiffler, Michael J. Keeler, Dmitriy E. Rubalskiy, Phillippi R. Pierce
  • Publication number: 20150329099
    Abstract: An automatic air suspension control system is provided for use in combination with a vehicle having a non-driven rear axle, a driven rear axle, and an air suspension associated with the rear axles to apply a load to each of the rear axles. The air suspension control system is programmed to maintain the load applied to the non-driven rear axle at a level that is less than the load applied to the driven rear axle until the load applied to the driven rear axle is equal to a threshold amount. The threshold amount may be equal to the maximum load that may be legally applied to the driven rear axle or some lower level. There may be no load applied to the non-driven rear axle prior to the load on the driven rear axle reaching the threshold amount or may be a non-zero amount.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 12, 2014
    Publication date: November 19, 2015
    Applicant: Hendrickson USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Jeffrey R. Zawacki, Michael J. Keeler, Ashley Thomas Dudding
  • Patent number: 9157529
    Abstract: A piston for an air spring of a heavy-duty vehicle includes a sidewall and a central hub. The sidewall and the central hub are attached to a first bottom plate of the piston. A top plate is removeably attached to a top portion of the sidewall and a top portion of the central hub. A bottom portion of said central hub includes a second bottom plate that is recessed relative to the first bottom plate for attachment to a piston mounting pedestal that is in turn mounted to a beam of a suspension assembly of the heavy-duty vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 16, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 13, 2015
    Assignee: HENDRICKSON USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Andrew J. Westnedge, Dmitriy Enrikovich Rubalskiy, Michael J. Keeler
  • Publication number: 20150273964
    Abstract: An axle-to-beam or crossbrace-to-beam connection for a vehicle axle/suspension system includes an axle or crossbrace having at least one depression formed therein. A sleeve is formed with at least one depression and disposed about the axle or crossbrace so that the axle or crossbrace depression and the sleeve depression matingly engage one another to form a mated pair of depressions. A method of forming the axle-to-beam or crossbrace-to-beam connection includes providing an axle or crossbrace and disposing a sleeve about the axle or crossbrace. At least one mated pair of depressions is simultaneously formed in the axle or crossbrace and the sleeve. The sleeve is immovably mounted to a vehicle axle/suspension system.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 10, 2015
    Publication date: October 1, 2015
    Inventors: Andrew J. Westnedge, Jason P. Shiffler, Michael J. Keeler, Dmitriy E. Rubalskiy, Phillippi R. Pierce
  • Patent number: 9079467
    Abstract: An axle-to-beam or crossbrace-to-beam connection for a vehicle axle/suspension system includes an axle or crossbrace having at least one depression formed therein. A sleeve is formed with at least one depression and disposed about the axle or crossbrace so that the axle or crossbrace depression and the sleeve depression matingly engage one another to form a mated pair of depressions. A method of forming the axle-to-beam or crossbrace-to-beam connection includes providing an axle or crossbrace and disposing a sleeve about the axle or crossbrace. At least one mated pair of depressions is simultaneously formed in the axle or crossbrace and the sleeve. The sleeve is immovably mounted to a vehicle axle/suspension system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 4, 2013
    Date of Patent: July 14, 2015
    Assignee: Henderickson USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Andrew J. Westnedge, Dmitriy E. Rubalskiy, Michael J. Keeler, Phillippi R. Pierce
  • Publication number: 20130343931
    Abstract: A vehicle tire inflation system includes an air supply that is connected to a vehicle tire by a pneumatic conduit. A pump that is independent of and pneumatically parallel to the vehicle air supply includes an inlet and an outlet. The pump inlet receives air from atmosphere, the pump compresses the air, and the pump outlet is fluidly connected to the pneumatic conduit. When the air pressure in the pneumatic conduit drops below a predetermined level, compressed air from the pump is introduced into the pneumatic conduit, thus increasing the air pressure in the conduit to increase the air pressure that is available to the tire. A reservoir tank, which is also independent of the vehicle air supply, may be in fluid communication with the pump outlet and the pneumatic conduit. The invention also includes a parallel pump that captures air to increase the pressure in the vehicle air supply.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 13, 2013
    Publication date: December 26, 2013
    Applicant: HENDRICKSON USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Matt J. Wilson, Phillippi R. Pierce, Matthew J. VanMeter, Santo Padula, Michael J. Keeler
  • Publication number: 20130277936
    Abstract: An axle-to-beam or crossbrace-to-beam connection for a vehicle axle/suspension system includes an axle or crossbrace having at least one depression formed therein. A sleeve is formed with at least one depression and disposed about the axle or crossbrace so that the axle or crossbrace depression and the sleeve depression matingly engage one another to form a mated pair of depressions. A method of forming the axle-to-beam or crossbrace-to-beam connection includes providing an axle or crossbrace and disposing a sleeve about the axle or crossbrace. At least one mated pair of depressions is simultaneously formed in the axle or crossbrace and the sleeve. The sleeve is immovably mounted to a vehicle axle/suspension system.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 4, 2013
    Publication date: October 24, 2013
    Applicant: HENDRICKSON USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Andrew J. Westnedge, Dmitriy E. Rubalskiy, Michael J. Keeler, Phillippi R. Pierce
  • Patent number: 8540222
    Abstract: An air spring for a heavy-duty vehicle axle/suspension system includes a bellows chamber operatively connected to a piston chamber. An opening is disposed between the bellows chamber and the piston chamber in order to allow fluid to communicate between the bellows chamber and the piston chamber. The cross-sectional area of the opening and the volumes of the bellows chamber and the piston chamber are tuned in order to optimize the damping characteristics of the air spring.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 9, 2011
    Date of Patent: September 24, 2013
    Assignee: Hendrickson USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Andrew J. Westnedge, Michael J. Keeler
  • Patent number: 8528611
    Abstract: A vehicle tire inflation system includes an air supply that is connected to a vehicle tire by a pneumatic conduit. A pump that is independent of and pneumatically parallel to the vehicle air supply includes an inlet and an outlet. The pump inlet receives air from atmosphere, the pump compresses the air, and the pump outlet is fluidly connected to the pneumatic conduit. When the air pressure in the pneumatic conduit drops below a predetermined level, compressed air from the pump is introduced into the pneumatic conduit, thus increasing the air pressure in the conduit to increase the air pressure that is available to the tire. A reservoir tank, which is also independent of the vehicle air supply, may be in fluid communication with the pump outlet and the pneumatic conduit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 25, 2009
    Date of Patent: September 10, 2013
    Assignee: Hendrickson USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Matt J. Wilson, Phillippi R. Pierce, Matthew VanMeter, Santo Padula, Michael J. Keeler
  • Patent number: 8454040
    Abstract: An axle-to-beam connection for a vehicle axle/suspension system includes an axle having at least one depression formed therein. A sleeve is formed with at least one depression and disposed about the axle so that the axle depression and the sleeve depression matingly engage one another to form a mated pair of depressions. A method of forming the axle-to-beam connection includes providing an axle and disposing a sleeve about the axle. At least one mated pair of depressions is simultaneously formed in the axle and the sleeve. The sleeve is immovably mounted to a vehicle axle/suspension system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 29, 2011
    Date of Patent: June 4, 2013
    Assignee: Hendrickson USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Andrew J. Westnedge, Dmitriy E. Rubalskiy, Michael J. Keeler, Phillippi R. Pierce
  • Publication number: 20120291626
    Abstract: A piston for an air spring of a heavy-duty vehicle includes a sidewall and a central hub. The sidewall and the central hub are attached to a first bottom plate of the piston. A top plate is removeably attached to a top portion of the sidewall and a top portion of the central hub. A bottom portion of said central hub includes a second bottom plate that is recessed relative to the first bottom plate for attachment to a piston mounting pedestal that is in turn mounted to a beam of a suspension assembly of the heavy-duty vehicle.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 16, 2012
    Publication date: November 22, 2012
    Applicant: HENDRICKSON USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Andrew J. Westnedge, Dmitry Enrikovich Rubalskiy, Michael J. Keeler
  • Publication number: 20120080573
    Abstract: A brake system component axle mount for a vehicle axle/suspension system includes an axle having at least one depression formed therein. A sleeve is formed with at least one depression and disposed about the axle so that the axle depression and the sleeve depression matingly engage one another to form a mated pair of depressions. A brake mount assembly is rigidly attached to the sleeve. A method of forming the brake system component axle mount includes providing an axle and disposing a sleeve about the axle. At least one mated pair of depressions is simultaneously formed in the axle and the sleeve. A brake mount assembly is rigidly attached to the sleeve.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 30, 2011
    Publication date: April 5, 2012
    Applicant: HENDRICKSON USA, L.L.C.
    Inventors: R. Scott Fulton, Andrew J. Westnedge, Dmitriy E. Rubalskiy, Michael J. Keeler, Phillippi R. Pierce