Patents by Inventor Norval P. Thomson

Norval P. Thomson 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: 8626404
    Abstract: The described system and method are implemented within a motor grader or other machine for grading of surfaces, wherein the machine includes a ground engaging element, as well as one or more blades for removing surface material. In this context, the described system and method prevent slippage of the ground engaging element against the underlying surface. In an embodiment, a torque limit is applied, wherein the torque limit corresponds to a torque that is less than that required for slippage under the current operating conditions, thus avoiding the problems caused by both overly aggressive and overly conservative cut depth strategies.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 19, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 7, 2014
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Norval P. Thomson, Gregory Durst, Martin Lehman, Shane McBride, Daniel P. Sergison
  • Patent number: 8340868
    Abstract: A steering system for steering a machine having opposing first and second sides with first and second pairs of rotatably mounted rear wheels disposed along the respective sides and at least one rotatably mounted, spaced front wheel. The system includes at least one first drive unit and at least one second drive unit for rotating the rear wheels of the respective pairs, and a steering input device that provides a signal to a controller that produces drive unit request signals to control the drive units to rotate the associated rear wheels along one side at rotational speeds greater than those along the other side to facilitate turning.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 2011
    Date of Patent: December 25, 2012
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Norval P. Thomson, Steven A. Daniel, John V. Mount, Christopher E. Bright
  • Patent number: 8300844
    Abstract: A sensor is provided in a machine having a continuously variable transmission, for example, and the amount of force exerted by the machine against a load is sensed. Based on the sensed power, an appropriate audio signal is generated which simulates the sounds an operator would expect to hear when such force is applied with a machine having a conventional geared transmission. The sounds can include engine noises, as well as sounds associated with the flow of oil or other hydraulic fluids. In addition, the sounds can be generated from digitally pre-recorded audible data, or can be output based on calculated audible data. User controls are also provided to adjust the volume and frequency or pitch of the generated sounds.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 5, 2006
    Date of Patent: October 30, 2012
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Kent A. Casey, Norval P. Thomson, Vernon R. Smith
  • Patent number: 8262125
    Abstract: A machine (100) includes a frame (102) portion and a tandem wheel arrangement, which includes a main linkage (312) and a stabilizing linkage (322) that are pivotally connected to the frame (102) portion. A first mount (304) and a second mount (304) are pivotally connected to the main linkage (312) and to the stabilizing linkage (322), such that the main linkage (312), the stabilizing linkage (322), the first mount (304), and the second mount (304) define a four-bar-linkage arrangement (202) that operates to transfer unbalanced torque loads from the first mount (304) and the second mount (304) to the frame (102) portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 13, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 11, 2012
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Daniel Sergison, Norval P. Thomson, Steven A. Daniel, W. Christopher Swick
  • Publication number: 20120130600
    Abstract: The described system and method are implemented within a motor grader or other machine for grading of surfaces, wherein the machine includes a ground engaging element, as well as one or more blades for removing surface material. In this context, the described system and method prevent slippage of the ground engaging element against the underlying surface. In an embodiment, a torque limit is applied, wherein the torque limit corresponds to a torque that is less than that required for slippage under the current operating conditions, thus avoiding the problems caused by both overly aggressive and overly conservative cut depth strategies.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 19, 2010
    Publication date: May 24, 2012
    Applicant: CATERPILLAR INC.
    Inventors: NORVAL P. THOMSON, GREGORY DURST, MARTIN LEHMAN, SHANE MCBRIDE, DANIEL P. SERGISON
  • Patent number: 8118706
    Abstract: The machine may have a power system that includes a prime mover, a multiple-ratio transmission, a propulsion device, and power-system controls. The method may include propelling the machine by transmitting power from the prime mover to the propulsion device through the multiple-ratio transmission, while controlling operation of the prime mover and the multiple-ratio transmission with the power-system controls. This may include determining with the power-system controls at least one energy-efficiency estimate based at least on energy-efficiency characteristics of the prime mover and energy-efficiency characteristics of the multiple-ratio transmission. Controlling the prime mover and the multiple-ratio transmission may further include controlling a prime-mover operating speed of the prime mover and a transmission drive ratio of the multiple-ratio transmission based at least in-part on the at least one energy-efficiency estimate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 2008
    Date of Patent: February 21, 2012
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Alan R. Coutant, Michael G. Cronin, Steven A. Daniel, Norval P. Thomson
  • Publication number: 20120006603
    Abstract: A steering system for steering a machine having opposing first and second sides with first and second pairs of rotatably mounted rear wheels disposed along the respective sides and at least one rotatably mounted, spaced front wheel. The system includes at least one first drive unit and at least one second drive unit for rotating the rear wheels of the respective pairs, and a steering input device that provides a signal to a controller that produces drive unit request signals to control the drive units to rotate the associated rear wheels along one side at rotational speeds greater than those along the other side to facilitate turning.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 23, 2011
    Publication date: January 12, 2012
    Applicant: CATERPILLAR INC.
    Inventors: Norval P. Thomson, Steven A. Daniel, John V. Mount, Christopher E. Bright
  • Patent number: 8061466
    Abstract: A wheel tractor scraper having a rear wheel drive assist, the wheel tractor scraper includes a tractor portion pivotally coupled to a rear scraper portion, the rear scraper portion having a bowl for hauling material and a fluid powered work tool configured to assist in loading the bowl, the work tool powered by a fluid pump connected to a fluid operated work tool motor. The rear wheel drive assist includes a fluid operated drive motor coupled to the rear wheels of the machine, a diverter valve having a first position at which fluid flow is delivered from the pump to the work tool motor and a second position at which fluid flow is delivered from the pump to the drive motor, and a controller being configured to control the diverter valve to engage the rear wheel drive assist. The machine may be operated by engaging the pump and work tool motor, and then actuating the diverter valve to the second position to divert flow from the work tool motor to the drive motor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 24, 2008
    Date of Patent: November 22, 2011
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Douglas J. Carlton, Steven A. Daniel, Daniel P. Sergison, Robert E. Stone, Corwin E. Storer, Norval P. Thomson, Todd M. Weier
  • Patent number: 8051916
    Abstract: A rear wheel drive assist for a wheel tractor scraper, the wheel tractor scraper having a tractor portion with a power source operatively connected to the front driven wheels, and a rear, scraper portion having a bowl, work tool, and first and second rear wheels, the rear wheel drive assist includes a work tool pump fluidly connected to a work tool motor to drive the work tool, fluid operated drive motors operatively connected to the rear wheels, and a diverter valve selectively movable between a first position that delivers fluid flow from the pump to the work tool motor, and a second position that delivers fluid flow from the work tool pump to the rear wheel drive motors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 24, 2008
    Date of Patent: November 8, 2011
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: C. Erik Bright, Steven A. Daniel, Bradley J. McManus, Daniel P. Sergison, Norval P. Thomson
  • Patent number: 8055411
    Abstract: A steering system for steering a machine having opposing first and second sides with first and second pairs of rotatably mounted rear wheels disposed along the respective sides and at least one rotatably mounted, spaced front wheel. The system includes at least one first drive unit and at least one second drive unit for rotating the rear wheels of the respective pairs, and a steering input device that provides a signal to a controller that produces drive unit request signals to control the drive units to rotate the associated rear wheels along one side at rotational speeds greater than those along the other side to facilitate turning.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 31, 2008
    Date of Patent: November 8, 2011
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Norval P. Thomson, Steven A. Daniel, John V. Mount, Christopher E. Bright
  • Patent number: 8016068
    Abstract: A tandem drive arrangement includes one or more independently driven wheels (118) that are arranged in a tandem configuration along a beam (120). The beam (120) is rotatably connected to a frame (102) of a machine (100). The tandem drive arrangement further includes an actuator (206) operating to selectively impart a rotating moment to the beam (102). The rotating moment tends to rotate the beam (120) in one direction and counteracts a torque imbalance resulting from operation of motors (128) rotating one or more independently driven wheels (118) connected to the beam (120).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 23, 2008
    Date of Patent: September 13, 2011
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Steven A. Daniel, Norval P. Thomson, Daniel Sergison, John V. Mount
  • Publication number: 20110114410
    Abstract: A machine (100) includes a frame (102) portion and a tandem wheel arrangement, which includes a main linkage (312) and a stabilizing linkage (322) that are pivotally connected to the frame (102) portion. A first mount (304) and a second mount (304) are pivotally connected to the main linkage (312) and to the stabilizing linkage (322), such that the main linkage (312), the stabilizing linkage (322), the first mount (304), and the second mount (304) define a four-bar-linkage arrangement (202) that operates to transfer unbalanced torque loads from the first mount (304) and the second mount (304) to the frame (102) portion.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 13, 2010
    Publication date: May 19, 2011
    Applicant: CATERPILLAR INC.
    Inventors: Daniel Sergison, Norval P. Thomson, Steven A. Daniel, W. Christopher Swick
  • Patent number: 7937162
    Abstract: An operator interface for a machine is disclosed. The operator interface may have an operator interface device for receiving operator input corresponding to a requested machine function, wherein a machine function signal is generated in response to the received operator input. The operator interface may also have a help request device configured to receive an operator's request for information and generate a help signal. The operator interface may further have a controller in communication with the operator interface device and the help request device. The controller may be configured to provide information to the operator in response to receiving the help signal and the machine function signal. The information may relate to the requested machine function.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 31, 2006
    Date of Patent: May 3, 2011
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Norval P. Thomson, Mark C. Redden, Timothy J. Silvers
  • Patent number: 7837220
    Abstract: A machine (100) includes a frame (102) portion and a tandem wheel arrangement, which includes a main linkage (312) and a stabilizing linkage (322) that are pivotally connected to the frame (102) portion. A first mount (304) and a second mount (304) are pivotally connected to the main linkage (312) and to the stabilizing linkage (322), such that the main linkage (312), the stabilizing linkage (322), the first mount (304), and the second mount (304) define a four-bar-linkage arrangement (202) that operates to transfer unbalanced torque loads from the first mount (304) and the second mount (304) to the frame (102) portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 2008
    Date of Patent: November 23, 2010
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc
    Inventors: Daniel P. Sergison, Norval P. Thomson, Steven A. Daniel, W. Christopher Swick
  • Patent number: 7836967
    Abstract: A radiator of a cooling system is disposed within an engine compartment, between a rear mounted engine and a cab on a wheeled machine. The remaining components within the engine compartment are arranged such that they are lower in height than the radiator, the engine compartment enclosure generally angling down from the cab rearward. The enclosure includes an air intake that opens into a gap between the enclosure and cab. A fan disposed rearward the radiator may pull cooling air through the air intake and past the radiator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 28, 2008
    Date of Patent: November 23, 2010
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc
    Inventors: Steven A. Daniel, Avert Glen Vannette, Daniel Peter Sergison, Norval P. Thomson
  • Patent number: 7832509
    Abstract: A machine (100) includes a frame that is pivotally connected to a tandem drive arrangement. The tandem drive arrangement includes a beam (120) and a first motor (128) having a first stator portion (202) connected to a first end of the beam (120). The first motor (128) also includes a first rotor portion (204) connected to a first drive wheel (118). A load sharing arrangement (412) is associated with the tandem drive arrangement and includes a first collar (414) rotatably disposed around the first stator portion (202) and a second collar (426) rotatably disposed around a portion of the beam (120). A first linkage (424) is pivotally connected between the first and second collars such that the load sharing arrangement (412) balances unbalanced loading in the tandem drive arrangement by transferring the unbalanced loading to the frame.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 2008
    Date of Patent: November 16, 2010
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc
    Inventors: Norval P. Thomson, Steven A. Daniel, Daniel Sergison, John V. Mount
  • Patent number: 7793740
    Abstract: A ride control arrangement for a machine having a frame, a ripper, a hydraulic actuator operative to move the ripper includes at least one accumulator assembly, and a valve mechanism operatively disposed between the accumulator assembly and the hydraulic actuator to either block or allow fluid communication between the hydraulic actuator and the accumulator assembly. A ride control arrangement for a motor grader with an implement operated by a hydraulic actuator similarly includes at least one accumulator assembly selectively fluidly connected to the hydraulic actuator by way of a valve mechanism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 31, 2008
    Date of Patent: September 14, 2010
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc
    Inventors: Norval P. Thomson, Steven A. Daniel
  • Publication number: 20100114430
    Abstract: A steering system for steering a machine having opposing first and second sides with first and second pairs of rotatably mounted rear wheels disposed along the respective sides and at least one rotatably mounted, spaced front wheel. The system includes at least one first drive unit and at least one second drive unit for rotating the rear wheels of the respective pairs, and a steering input device that provides a signal to a controller that produces drive unit request signals to control the drive units to rotate the associated rear wheels along one side at rotational speeds greater than those along the other side to facilitate turning.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 31, 2008
    Publication date: May 6, 2010
    Applicant: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Norval P. Thomson, Steven A. Daniel, John V. Mount, Christopher E. Bright
  • Publication number: 20100108336
    Abstract: A ride control arrangement for a machine having a frame, a ripper, a hydraulic actuator operative to move the ripper includes at least one accumulator assembly, and a valve mechanism operatively disposed between the accumulator assembly and the hydraulic actuator to either block or allow fluid communication between the hydraulic actuator and the accumulator assembly. A ride control arrangement for a motor grader with an implement operated by a hydraulic actuator similarly includes at least one accumulator assembly selectively fluidly connected to the hydraulic actuator by way of a valve mechanism.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 31, 2008
    Publication date: May 6, 2010
    Applicant: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Norval P. Thomson, Steven A. Daniel
  • Patent number: D624028
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 3, 2008
    Date of Patent: September 21, 2010
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc
    Inventors: Robert L. Stamate, Norval P. Thomson