Patents by Inventor Thomas A. Brey

Thomas A. Brey 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: 9914407
    Abstract: The rear side of a head unit bezel is shaped and arranged to receive and retain an electronic device such as a radio, cell phone, GPS receiver, roadway toll payment transponder, stolen vehicle transponder, WI-FI or Bluetooth transceiver or an antenna. Electrical connectors provided to the rear side mate with connectors on the front side of a head unit. When the bezel and head unit are connected, the electronic device in the bezel is mechanically and electrically connected to the head unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 6, 2014
    Date of Patent: March 13, 2018
    Assignee: Continental Automotive Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: David Zeiger, Thomas Brey
  • Patent number: 9854664
    Abstract: An assembly for providing electromagnetic interference (EMI) shielding and for dissipating heat from electronic components. The assembly including: a metallic frame including a wall extending upwardly from a circuit board; an EMI shield having a top with holes and having sidewalls that surround the top, extend downwardly, and are attachable to the wall of the frame in a first latched position and in a second, un-latched position; a layer of thermally-conductive, viscous heat sink grease on the top of the EMI shield and filling holes in the top of the EMI shield, heat sink grease in the holes being in direct physical contact with the top surface of the at least one electronic component when the EMI shield is in the second, un-latched position; and a heat sink on top of and in direct physical contact with the heat sink grease on top of the EMI shield.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 9, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 26, 2017
    Assignee: Continental Automotive Systems, Inc.
    Inventor: Thomas Brey
  • Patent number: 9729181
    Abstract: The front side of a vehicle infotainment system head unit is provided with a removable faceplate that carries a network access device such as a cell phone or GPS receiver and an associated antenna. A removable user-interface display panel, also referred to herein as a display screen, is also carried by the faceplate. When the head unit and faceplate are assembled into a vehicle dashboard, a removable bezel conceals the network access device, antenna and provides access to the display panel. The network access device and its antenna are thus readily accessible by simply removing the bezel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 9, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 8, 2017
    Assignee: Continental Automotive Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Thomas Brey, James R Snider
  • Publication number: 20170181264
    Abstract: An assembly for providing electromagnetic interference (EMI) shielding and for dissipating heat from electronic components. The assembly including: a metallic frame including a wall extending upwardly from a circuit board; an EMI shield having a top with holes and having sidewalls that surround the top, extend downwardly, and are attachable to the wall of the frame in a first latched position and in a second, un-latched position; a layer of thermally-conductive, viscous heat sink grease on the top of the EMI shield and filling holes in the top of the EMI shield, heat sink grease in the holes being in direct physical contact with the top surface of the at least one electronic component when the EMI shield is in the second, un-latched position; and a heat sink on top of and in direct physical contact with the heat sink grease on top of the EMI shield.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 9, 2016
    Publication date: June 22, 2017
    Inventor: Thomas Brey
  • Patent number: 9554476
    Abstract: Circuit boards are mechanically connected to each other by a U-shaped pin, the legs of which are forcibly inserted into holes along edges of the circuit boards. The holes are conventional through-holes having metal linings that are electrically connected to circuit board traces that extend to components on the circuit boards. The U-shaped pin thus electrically connects components on the two circuit boards to each other.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 14, 2014
    Date of Patent: January 24, 2017
    Assignee: Continental Automotive Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Jake P Cassin, Thomas Brey
  • Patent number: 9452720
    Abstract: When a vehicle is “off” many electrically powered devices will continue to draw power from the battery, which will eventually deplete the battery. Instead of leaving such devices on, when the engine is shut off, a message is transmitted from a vehicle's telematics communications device to one or more of: the operator, a telematics service provider or elsewhere, and which notifies the recipient of the power-down condition. The recipient of the message can thereafter respond with a directive that tells the telematics communications device which devices to leave powered on, turn off or schedule to be shut off. Absent such a message, the system powers down devices according to a default power down ordering.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 27, 2012
    Date of Patent: September 27, 2016
    Assignee: Continental Automotive Systems, Inc.
    Inventor: Thomas A. Brey
  • Publication number: 20160164561
    Abstract: The front side of a vehicle infotainment system head unit is provided with a removable faceplate that carries a network access device such as a cell phone or GPS receiver and an associated antenna. A removable user-interface display panel, also referred to herein as a display screen, is also carried by the faceplate. When the head unit and faceplate are assembled into a vehicle dashboard, a removable bezel conceals the network access device, antenna and provides access to the display panel. The network access device and its antenna are thus readily accessible by simply removing the bezel.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 9, 2014
    Publication date: June 9, 2016
    Inventors: Thomas Brey, James R. Snider
  • Publication number: 20160129849
    Abstract: The rear side of a head unit bezel is shaped and arranged to receive and retain an electronic device such as a radio, cell phone, GPS receiver, roadway toll payment transponder, stolen vehicle transponder, WI-FI or Bluetooth transceiver or an antenna. Electrical connectors provided to the rear side mate with connectors on the front side of a head unit. When the bezel and head unit are connected, the electronic device in the bezel is mechanically and electrically connected to the head unit.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 6, 2014
    Publication date: May 12, 2016
    Inventors: David Zeiger, Thomas Brey
  • Publication number: 20160049741
    Abstract: Circuit boards are mechanically connected to each other by a U-shaped pin, the legs of which are forcibly inserted into holes along edges of the circuit boards. The holes are conventional through-holes having metal linings that are electrically connected to circuit board traces that extend to components on the circuit boards. The U-shaped pin thus electrically connects components on the two circuit boards to each other.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 14, 2014
    Publication date: February 18, 2016
    Inventors: Jake P. Cassin, Thomas Brey
  • Patent number: 9208629
    Abstract: A garage door can be detected as being open by sensing various physical conditions the existence of which indicate the garage door as being open. When a door is determined to be open, a notification message is wirelessly transmitted to a predetermined entity or person notifying them that the door is open. Corrective action can then be taken to close the door to keep the vehicle and contents of the garage secure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 30, 2014
    Date of Patent: December 8, 2015
    Assignee: Continental Automotive Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Peter Saladin, Michael Daleki, Thomas Brey
  • Publication number: 20150084779
    Abstract: A garage door can be detected as being open by sensing various physical conditions the existence of which indicate the garage door as being open. When a door is determined to be open, a notification message is wirelessly transmitted to a predetermined entity or person notifying them that the door is open. Corrective action can then be taken to close the door to keep the vehicle and contents of the garage secure.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 30, 2014
    Publication date: March 26, 2015
    Inventors: Peter Saladin, Michael Daleki, Thomas Brey
  • Patent number: 8890670
    Abstract: A trailer is provided with various parametric sensors. Trailer operating characteristics obtained from the sensors are conveyed to an attached tow vehicle. The tow vehicle is configured to respond to trailer operating conditions or characteristics and/or warn the tow vehicle operator of trailer conditions. The tow vehicle's operation can also be changed responsive to an attached trailer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 9, 2011
    Date of Patent: November 18, 2014
    Assignee: Continental Automotive Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Thomas A. Brey, Don Peterson
  • Patent number: 8862313
    Abstract: A smart trailer RFID system includes a vehicle such as a trailer or cargo van having one or more RFID tag readers configured to acquire load-specific data from RFID tags attached to a load. The load-specific data is collected by a computer and conveyed wirelessly to a tow vehicle. Depending on the nature of the load, the load data can be used to control or change operation of the tow vehicle or be displayed to a vehicle operator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 9, 2011
    Date of Patent: October 14, 2014
    Assignee: Continental Automotive Systems, Inc
    Inventor: Thomas A. Brey
  • Publication number: 20140118111
    Abstract: A garage door can be detected as being open by sensing various physical conditions the existence of which indicate the garage door as being open. When a door is determined to be open, a notification message is wirelessly transmitted to a predetermined entity or person notifying them that the door is open. Corrective action can then be taken to close the door to keep the vehicle and contents of the garage secure.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 30, 2012
    Publication date: May 1, 2014
    Applicant: CONTINENTAL AUTOMOTIVE SYSTEMS, INC.
    Inventors: Peter Saladin, Michael Daleki, Thomas Brey
  • Publication number: 20130193753
    Abstract: When a vehicle is “off” many electrically powered devices will continue to draw power from the battery, which will eventually deplete the battery. Instead of leaving such devices on, when the engine is shut off, a message is transmitted from a vehicle's telematics communications device to one or more of: the operator, a telematics service provider or elsewhere, and which notifies the recipient of the power-down condition. The recipient of the message can thereafter respond with a directive that tells the telematics communications device which devices to leave powered on, turn off or schedule to be shut off. Absent such a message, the system powers down devices according to a default power down ordering.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 27, 2012
    Publication date: August 1, 2013
    Applicant: CONTINENTAL AUTOMOTIVE SYSTEMS, INC.
    Inventor: Thomas A. Brey
  • Patent number: 8436775
    Abstract: A circuit-board mountable antenna (50, 80, 90) has a substrate (12,14) compliant with the IPC/JEDEC J-STD_0202C and IEC-norm standard 60068, which specifies the spacing and pin arrangements for a printed circuit board (PCB) mountable connector commonly known in the automotive electronic art as a “FAKRA” or “Fakra.” A radio frequency (RF) energy transducer or antenna (54) is applied to or formed over the substrate (12, 14) which is provided with at least one mounting pin (16) and a signal lead (18), the spacing and locations of which are compliant with the Fakra ISO-compliant hole pattern. The antennae (50, 80, 90) thus provide a circuit board (70) mountable antenna, compliant with the Fakra standard. The Fakra-compliant antenna or a Fakra-compliant connector can be attached to the circuit board (70) for a communications device (100) at the time of assembly to enable the communications device to use either a concealed or concealable antenna or an external antenna.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 14, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 7, 2013
    Assignee: Continental Automotive Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Thomas Brey, David Teteak, Bhavna Mantha, Peter Saladin
  • Publication number: 20130038731
    Abstract: A camera that is movable is provided for a vehicle. It can be placed at the rear of a vehicle or at the rear of a towed trailer to capture images that might not be within the driver's field of view. Captured images are modulated onto a radio frequency signal, which is broadcast and picked up by a mating radio frequency receiver, typically located inside the towing vehicle. Captured-picture information on the radio frequency signal is recovered and used to generate an image on a display device that can be seen by the driver. An attaching device is provided to the camera to allow the camera to be attached to the vehicle or a trailer and its location changed as needed. The camera thus provides a method and apparatus for wirelessly conveying to the driver, images in an otherwise obstructed field of view.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 9, 2011
    Publication date: February 14, 2013
    Applicant: CONTINENTAL AUTOMOTIVE SYSTEMS, INC.
    Inventors: Thomas A. Brey, Don Peterson
  • Publication number: 20130041524
    Abstract: A smart trailer RFID system includes a vehicle such as a trailer or cargo van having one or more RFID tag readers configured to acquire load-specific data from RFID tags attached to a load. The load-specific data is collected by a computer and conveyed wirelessly to a tow vehicle. Depending on the nature of the load, the load data can be used to control or change operation of the tow vehicle or be displayed to a vehicle operator.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 9, 2011
    Publication date: February 14, 2013
    Applicant: CONTINENTAL AUTOMOTIVE SYSTEMS, INC.
    Inventor: Thomas A. Brey
  • Publication number: 20130038730
    Abstract: An apparatus and method by which a rear-facing, ceiling-mounted entertainment display for a vehicle can be made transparent or virtually transparent to a vehicle's driver uses a camera and a second, forward-facing display panel on which an image what the entertainment display blocks from the driver's view. The camera is attached to the entertainment display and captures image-forming light blocked to the driver's rear-view mirror by the downwardly extending entertainment display. The second display panel projects forwardly, i.e., toward the rear-view mirror, what the camera sees looking rearwardly.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 9, 2011
    Publication date: February 14, 2013
    Applicant: CONTINENTAL AUTOMOTIVE SYSTEMS, INC.
    Inventors: Don Peterson, Sheldon Waite, Thomas A. Brey
  • Publication number: 20130038436
    Abstract: A trailer is provided with various parametric sensors. Trailer operating characteristics obtained from the sensors are conveyed to an attached tow vehicle. The tow vehicle is configured to respond to trailer operating conditions or characteristics and/or warn the tow vehicle operator of trailer conditions. The tow vehicle's operation can also be changed responsive to an attached trailer.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 9, 2011
    Publication date: February 14, 2013
    Applicant: CONTINENTAL AUTOMOTIVE SYSTEMS, INC.
    Inventors: Thomas A. Brey, Don Peterson