Patents by Inventor Michael L. Oliver

Michael L. Oliver 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: 7077227
    Abstract: A suspension system, typically for use between a cab and an associated truck frame, including a s strut module having a strut, an air spring and a control module. The control module is connected to a source of pressurized air, is integral with the strut and includes a height sensor for sensing a distance between the cab and truck frame. The integral control module selectively pressurizes the air spring in response to changes in that distance. Preferably, the strut is a magnetorheological, McPherson-type strut and the air spring encloses at least a portion of the strut to provide a compact assembly. The strut damping characteristics are varied by the control module to provide optimal ride characteristics. The strut module includes a three-point connection to the cab and frame to resist relative lateral movement between the cab and frame.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 21, 2003
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2006
    Assignee: Delphi Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer, Eric L. Jensen, Todd A. Bishop
  • Patent number: 7077226
    Abstract: The invention is a suspension system, typically for use between a cab and a truck frame, includes a strut module having a strut and an air spring, and a control module, connected to a source of pressurized air, for sensing a distance between the cab and truck frame and selectively pressurizing the air spring in response to changes in that distance. Preferably, the strut is a McPherson-type strut and the air spring encloses at least a portion of the strut to provide a compact assembly and includes a three point connection to the cab and frame to resist relative lateral movement between the cab and frame. The strut also preferably is a magnetorheological-type damper so that the control module can adjust the damping characteristics of the strut to optimize rider comfort.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 21, 2003
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2006
    Assignee: Delphi Technologies,Inc.
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, Todd A. Bishop, Eric L. Jensen, William C. Kruckemeyer
  • Patent number: 6902045
    Abstract: A vehicle suspension system comprising a damper having a lower mount end and an upper mount end and a spring having a lower end and an upper end positioned around the damper. The spring and the damper have a common central axis. An adjustment assembly is operably attached at the lower mount end of the damper and the lower end of the spring is operably attached to and supported by the adjustment assembly thereby allowing the position of the lower end of the spring to continuously vary along the central axis of the damper. The method comprising supporting a lower end of a spring positioned around a damper and moving the end of the spring for adjusting vehicle ride height.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 3, 2003
    Date of Patent: June 7, 2005
    Assignee: Delphi Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer
  • Patent number: 6863163
    Abstract: A suspension damper comprises a cylinder tube and a control partition. The cylinder tube is disposed within a reservoir tube to define a fluid reservoir, and has at least one first hole. The control partition is disposed in the fluid reservoir, and communicates with the at least one hole.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 4, 2002
    Date of Patent: March 8, 2005
    Assignee: Delphi Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer, Todd A. Bishop, Eric L. Jensen
  • Patent number: 6837344
    Abstract: A damper includes a piston that carries a relatively compact control valve for controlling fluid flow through the piston. The control valve provides a variable amount of damping by regulating damper fluid flow between the extension chamber and the compression chamber of the damper during extension and compression strokes. Pressure regulation across the piston is controlled through a flow path as determined by the control valve. The damping force of the damper varies depending upon the loading conditions of the vehicle. The control valve is air pressure actuated to adjust the damping force and control the flow of fluid in the flow path. The piston and rod assembly include unique features such as a seal plate design, and spring retainer that aid in the efficient and reliable assembly in a commercial production setting.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 11, 2002
    Date of Patent: January 4, 2005
    Assignee: Delphi Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Troy A. Miller, Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer
  • Patent number: 6805381
    Abstract: A seatbelt retractor is operably coupled to a belt dereeling retarder mechanism which utilizes a magnetorheological fluid and a coil for imposing a magnetic field on the fluid to selectively change the fluid properties and a braking or retarding effect imposed on the belt retractor during dereeling or payout of the belt. The retarder may include a piston coupled to a rotatable shaft coupled to the belt retractor reel and displacing fluid through the magnetic field in response to actuation of the belt. Alternate embodiments include a multiple disc brake coupled to the retractor reel through a gear drive speed increaser or a cylindrical housing and core member defining an annular space occupied by the magnetorheological fluid and connected to the belt retractor reel through a speed increasing gear drive.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 20, 2001
    Date of Patent: October 19, 2004
    Assignee: Delphi Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Ronald G. Smith, Jr., Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer
  • Publication number: 20040195745
    Abstract: A vehicle suspension system comprising a damper having a lower mount end and an upper mount end and a spring having a lower end and an upper end positioned around the damper. The spring and the damper have a common central axis. An adjustment assembly is operably attached at the lower mount end of the damper and the lower end of the spring is operably attached to and supported by the adjustment assembly thereby allowing the position of the lower end of the spring to continuously vary along the central axis of the damper. The method comprising supporting a lower end of a spring positioned around a damper and moving the end of the spring for adjusting vehicle ride height.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 3, 2003
    Publication date: October 7, 2004
    Applicant: DELPHI TECHNOLOGIES INC.
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer
  • Publication number: 20040129468
    Abstract: A suspension system, typically for use between a cab and an associated truck frame, including a s strut module having a strut, an air spring and a control module. The control module is connected to a source of pressurized air, is integral with the strut and includes a height sensor for sensing a distance between the cab and truck frame. The integral control module selectively pressurizes the air spring in response to changes in that distance. Preferably, the strut is a magnetorheological, McPherson-type strut and the air spring encloses at least a portion of the strut to provide a compact assembly. The strut damping characteristics are varied by the control module to provide optimal ride characteristics. The strut module includes a three-point connection to the cab and frame to resist relative lateral movement between the cab and frame.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 21, 2003
    Publication date: July 8, 2004
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer, Eric L. Jensen, Todd A. Bishop
  • Publication number: 20040104061
    Abstract: The invention is a suspension system, typically for use between a cab and a truck frame, includes a strut module having a strut and an air spring, and a control module, connected to a source of pressurized air, for sensing a distance between the cab and truck frame and selectively pressurizing the air spring in response to changes in that distance. Preferably, the strut is a McPherson-type strut and the air spring encloses at least a portion of the strut to provide a compact assembly and includes a three point connection to the cab and frame to resist relative lateral movement between the cab and frame. The strut also preferably is a magnetorheological-type damper so that the control module can adjust the damping characteristics of the strut to optimize rider comfort.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 21, 2003
    Publication date: June 3, 2004
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, Todd A. Bishop, Eric L. Jensen, William C. Kruckemeyer
  • Publication number: 20040040806
    Abstract: A suspension damper comprises a cylinder tube and a control partition. The cylinder tube is disposed within a reservoir tube to define a fluid reservoir, and has at least one first hole. The control partition is disposed in the fluid reservoir, and communicates with the at least one hole.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 4, 2002
    Publication date: March 4, 2004
    Applicant: DELPHI TECHNOLOGIES INC.
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer, Todd A. Bishop, Eric L. Jensen
  • Patent number: 6679508
    Abstract: The subject inventive steering damper assembly includes a rotor sleeve having open first and second ends and a drive plate disposed in the open second end. A core is co-axially disposed in the rotor sleeve closing the open first end of the rotor sleeve and defining a magnetic fluid chamber with the sleeve. A Magneto-Rheological fluid is disposed in the magnetic fluid chamber. The drive plate is flexible to provide manufacturing and operational tolerance, and is securely attached to the open second end of the rotor sleeve. Flexibility is derived from at least one aperture disposed in the drive plate. The aperture may be formed in a variety of shapes including elongated, round and oval shaped apertures.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 1, 2001
    Date of Patent: January 20, 2004
    Assignee: Delphi Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Ronald G. Smith, Jr., Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer
  • Patent number: 6637560
    Abstract: The invention provides a vehicle damper assembly and a method for modulating fluid flow through the same. The assembly includes a housing including a fluid carried therein. A piston is slidably carried in the housing and includes a ring and a core. At least one gap to allow fluid flow is formed between the ring and core. A rod is operably attached to the piston. The ring moves axially with respect to the core to vary the gap size and modulate fluid flow during operation of the assembly. The method includes axially moving a ring with respect to a core during assembly operation. At least one gap size is varied based on the axial movement, wherein the gap is formed between the ring and core.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 26, 2002
    Date of Patent: October 28, 2003
    Assignee: Delphi Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer, Todd A. Bishop, Eric L. Jensen
  • Patent number: 6637558
    Abstract: A damper for dampening vibrations of a rotatable steering shaft of a motor vehicle comprises a rotor and means for rotating the rotor at a rate proportional to and greater than rotation of the steering shaft. Magnetorheological fluid is disposed at least partially around the rotor, and has a viscosity variable to vary a load on the rotor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 7, 2001
    Date of Patent: October 28, 2003
    Assignee: Delphi Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer, Eric L. Jensen, Ronald G. Smith
  • Patent number: 6637555
    Abstract: The invention provides a damper assembly (10) comprising a housing (12) defining an inner chamber (22, 24) having a damping fluid disposed therein. A piston rod (14) is slidably retained by the housing (12), and at least partially extends into, the chamber (22, 24). A piston (18) is disposed at a first distal end (21) of the piston rod (14) and strokes inside the housing (12). The piston (18) defines a first chamber (22) and a second chamber (24) within the housing (12) and includes at least one aperture (26) for allowing damping fluid to flow between the first (22) and second (24) chambers. An actuator (30) is disposed within the piston (18) for varying the flow of damping fluid through the aperture (26) between the first (22) and second (24) chambers within the housing (12). The piston rod (14) includes an inner bore (16) that receives pressurized air from an external source for communicating pneumatic control signals to the actuator (30).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 2001
    Date of Patent: October 28, 2003
    Assignee: Delphi Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Troy A. Miller, Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer
  • Patent number: 6637557
    Abstract: An adjustable vehicle suspension strut configured to be arranged between a wheel assembly and a body of a vehicle, the adjustable strut including a tube. A piston is slidably carried in the tube on a piston rod. A coil is carried on the piston adjacent a first flow passageway in the piston to produce a magnetic field thereacross and a control valve is carried on the piston controlling fluid flow through a second flow passageway in the piston. The control valve is positioned at the distal end of the rod upstream of the first flow passageway.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 13, 2001
    Date of Patent: October 28, 2003
    Assignee: Delphi Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer, Todd A. Bishop, Eric L. Jensen
  • Patent number: 6622830
    Abstract: A rotary damper for use in motor vehicle suspensions comprising a rotor disposed within damping fluid in a fluid chamber of a casing to form inner fluid volume and outer fluid volume, with first valve and second valve for controlling flow between the inner fluid volume and the outer fluid volume, and an accumulator using closed cell foam as a compressible material for fluid fill variation and thermal expansion. First valve controls flow from the outer fluid volume to the inner fluid volume for one direction of rotation of the rotor, while second valve controls flow from the inner fluid volume to the outer fluid volume for the opposite rotation of the rotor. Thus, the valves are configured to provide independent control of damping for each direction of rotation. A valve holder supporting the valves and providing flow passages is designed for powdered metallurgy fabrication.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 6, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 23, 2003
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer, Mark Bodie, Ronald G. Smith, Jr., James E. Dingle
  • Patent number: 6616124
    Abstract: The problem of flow induced instability in a control valve for a vehicle damper is solved by a generally tubular shaped valve spool having an open, bridged, flow-through end, rather than side flow openings. The flow-through end of the spool has a narrow flat edge oriented perpendicularly to the axis of the spool, with an inside surface of the spool forming a 55 to 90 degree angle with the flat edge, and meeting the flat edge in a sharp corner.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 2002
    Date of Patent: September 9, 2003
    Assignee: Delphi Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, Troy A. Miller, William C. Kruckemeyer
  • Publication number: 20030159897
    Abstract: The invention provides a vehicle damper assembly and a method for modulating fluid flow through the same. The assembly includes a housing including a fluid carried therein. A piston is slidably carried in the housing and includes a ring and a core. At least one gap to allow fluid flow is formed between the ring and core. A rod is operably attached to the piston. The ring moves axially with respect to the core to vary the gap size and modulate fluid flow during operation of the assembly. The method includes axially moving a ring with respect to a core during assembly operation. At least one gap size is varied based on the axial movement, wherein the gap is formed between the ring and core.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 26, 2002
    Publication date: August 28, 2003
    Applicant: DELPHI TECHNOLOGIES INC.
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer, Todd A. Bishop, Eric L. Jensen
  • Publication number: 20030106752
    Abstract: The invention provides a vehicle damper assembly including a housing including a fluid carried therein, a piston slidably carried in the housing, and a rod operably attached to the piston. The piston includes a curved portion positioned adjacent a housing inner surface. The invention further provides a vehicle damper assembly including housing means for carrying a fluid, piston means from reducing binding contact with the housing means, and rod means for moving the piston means. The invention further provides a method of reducing binding contact in a vehicle damper assembly. A longitudinal radius is determined for a piston based on a housing inner surface. The piston is formed with a curved portion based on the longitudinal radius. The curved portion is positioned adjacent the housing inner surface.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 7, 2001
    Publication date: June 12, 2003
    Applicant: DELPHI TECHNOLOGIES INC.
    Inventors: Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer, Todd A. Bishop, Eric L. Jensen
  • Publication number: 20030098210
    Abstract: A valve spool for a suspension damper comprises a body portion and a bridge connected to the body portion. The body portion has an upper edge, and the bridge extends at least partially beyond the upper edge of the body portion.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 26, 2001
    Publication date: May 29, 2003
    Applicant: DELPHI TECHNOLOGIES INC.
    Inventors: Troy A. Miller, Michael L. Oliver, William C. Kruckemeyer