Patents by Inventor Thomas James Batzinger

Thomas James Batzinger 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: 10434641
    Abstract: Systems and methods for in situ gap inspection in a machine, such as a generator, an electric motor, or a turbomachine are described. A robotic crawler has multidirectional traction modules, an expandable body, and sensor modules. A control system communicates with the robotic crawler to provide a control signal to navigate an inspection path within an annular gap of the machine. The inspection path includes axial and radial movements to inspect the annular gap using the sensor modules.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 18, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 8, 2019
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Selim Akin, Thomas James Batzinger, Airton Rosa da Silva, Jr., Selami Haydar Icli, Christopher Paul Markman, Paulo Cesar Debenest, Michele Guarnieri, Shigeo Hirose
  • Patent number: 10427290
    Abstract: This disclosure provides systems and methods for in situ gap inspection in a machine, such as a generator, an electric motor, or a turbomachine. A robotic crawler includes an expandable body, multidirectional traction modules, and sensor modules. The expandable body is movable between a collapsed state and an expanded state. The multidirectional traction modules are removably connected to and positioned by the expandable body and configured to engage opposed surfaces within an annular gap of the machine. The sensor modules are removably connected to and supported by the expandable body and include a plurality of sensor types to inspect the annular gap of the machine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 18, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 1, 2019
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Selim Akin, Thomas James Batzinger, Airton Rosa da Silva, Selami Haydar Icli, Christopher Paul Markman, Paulo Cesar Debenest, Michele Guarnieri, Shigeo Hirose
  • Patent number: 10427734
    Abstract: This disclosure provides systems and components for an omnidirectional traction module for use in a robot, such as a crawler robot used in in situ gap inspection in a machine, such as a generator, an electric motor, or a turbomachine. The traction module may include an outer frame and a rotating frame rotatably mounted within the outer frame. At least one drive system may be mounted within the rotating frame. The at least one dive system may have a fixed orientation within the rotating frame. An actuator may be operatively connected to the rotating frame to controllably rotate the rotating frame to a desired orientation for robot travel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 18, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 1, 2019
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Selim Akin, Thomas James Batzinger, Selami Haydar Icli, Christopher Paul Markman, Paulo Cesar Debenest, Michele Guarnieri, Giorgio Valsecchi, Giacomo Cimarelli, Shigeo Hirose
  • Publication number: 20190022848
    Abstract: This disclosure provides systems and methods for in situ gap inspection in a machine, such as a generator, an electric motor, or a turbomachine. A robotic crawler includes an expandable body, multidirectional traction modules, and sensor modules. The expandable body is movable between a collapsed state and an expanded state. The multidirectional traction modules are removably connected to and positioned by the expandable body and configured to engage opposed surfaces within an annular gap of the machine. The sensor modules are removably connected to and supported by the expandable body and include a plurality of sensor types to inspect the annular gap of the machine.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 18, 2017
    Publication date: January 24, 2019
    Inventors: Selim Akin, Thomas James Batzinger, Airton Rosa da Silva, Selami Haydar Icli, Christopher Paul Markman, Paulo Cesar Debenest, Michele Guarnieri, Shigeo Hirose
  • Publication number: 20190022877
    Abstract: This disclosure provides systems and methods for an actuated sensor module for in situ gap inspection robots. A mounting interface attaches to the sensor module to the robot system. A least one arm is operatively connected to the mounting interface and has a joint. A sensor head is operatively connected to the arm at the joint and an actuator operatively connected to the arm moves the sensor head around the second joint.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 18, 2017
    Publication date: January 24, 2019
    Inventors: Selim Akin, Thomas James Batzinger, Airton Rosa da Silva, JR., Selami Haydar Icli, Paulo Cesar Debenest, Michele Guarnieri, Giorgio Valsecchi, Giacomo Cimarelli, Shigeo Hirose
  • Publication number: 20190022849
    Abstract: This disclosure provides systems and methods for in situ gap inspection in a machine, such as a generator, an electric motor, or a turbomachine. A robotic crawler has multidirectional traction modules, an expandable body, and sensor modules. A control system communicates with the robotic crawler to provide a control signal to navigate an inspection path within an annular gap of the machine. The inspection path includes axial and radial movements to inspect the annular gap using the sensor modules.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 18, 2017
    Publication date: January 24, 2019
    Inventors: Selim Akin, Thomas James Batzinger, Airton Rosa da Silva, JR., Selami Haydar Icli, Christopher Paul Markman, Paulo Cesar Debenest, Michele Guarnieri, Shigeo Hirose
  • Publication number: 20190022876
    Abstract: This disclosure provides systems and methods for in situ gap inspection in a machine, such as a generator, an electric motor, or a turbomachine, with an end region. A robotic crawler is configured to navigate an annular gap of the machine. A visual inspection module is connected to the robotic crawler and includes an extension member for extending a camera into the end region to collect visual inspection data.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 18, 2017
    Publication date: January 24, 2019
    Inventors: Selim Akin, Thomas James Batzinger, Airton Rosa da Silva, JR., Selami Haydar Icli, Christopher Paul Markman, Paulo Cesar Debenest, Michele Guarnieri, Giorgio Valsecchi, Shigeo Hirose
  • Publication number: 20190023334
    Abstract: This disclosure provides systems and components for an omnidirectional traction module for use in a robot, such as a crawler robot used in in situ gap inspection in a machine, such as a generator, an electric motor, or a turbomachine. The traction module may include an outer frame and a rotating frame rotatably mounted within the outer frame. At least one drive system may be mounted within the rotating frame. The at least one dive system may have a fixed orientation within the rotating frame. An actuator may be operatively connected to the rotating frame to controllably rotate the rotating frame to a desired orientation for robot travel.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 18, 2017
    Publication date: January 24, 2019
    Inventors: Selim Akin, Thomas James Batzinger, Selami Haydar Icli, JR., Christopher Paul Markman, Paulo Cesar Debenest, Michele Guarnieri, Giorgio Valsecchi, Giacomo Cimarelli, Shigeo Hirose
  • Patent number: 10161914
    Abstract: Various aspects include methods of inspecting a substantially round hole in a material. One method can include: feeding a probe axially into the substantially round hole until the probe completely passes through the substantially round hole while the probe is activated; rotating the probe at least ninety degrees around a primary axis of the substantially round hole after feeding the probe completely through the substantially round hole; removing the probe axially from the substantially round hole after rotating the probe at least ninety degrees while the probe is activated; and compiling at least one of eddy current data or ultrasound data about the hole from the feeding of the probe axially into the substantially round hole and the removing of the probe axially from the substantially round hole.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 20, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 25, 2018
    Assignee: GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY
    Inventors: Robert William Bergman, Thomas James Batzinger, Thomas Earnest Moldenhauer
  • Patent number: 10152784
    Abstract: A method for inspecting a component is presented. The method includes inducing, by an inductive coil, an electrical current flow into the component. Further, the method includes capturing, by an infrared (IR) camera, at least a first set of frames and a second set of frames corresponding to the component, wherein the first set of frames is captured at a first time interval and a second set of frames is captured at a second time interval. Also, the method includes constructing, by a processing unit, a thermal image based on at least the first set of frames and the second set of frames corresponding to the component. Furthermore, the method includes determining presence of a thermal signature in the thermal image, wherein the thermal signature is representative of a defect in the component.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 11, 2018
    Assignee: GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY
    Inventors: Venkata Vijayaraghava Nalladega, Thomas James Batzinger, Yuri Alexeyevich Plotnikov, Shyamsunder Tondanur Mandayam, Bryon Edward Knight, Satheesh Jeyaraman, Esha SenGupta
  • Patent number: 10031331
    Abstract: A valve body in a passage of a housing connected to a through hole in a sealed machine casing can allow an inspection apparatus into an interior of the casing when open, and prevents fluid flow through the passage when closed. Seals can engage the inspection apparatus to prevent fluid flow through the passage during inspection or inspection apparatus movement. A guide conduit in the casing can include branches and can guide the inspection apparatus to multiple inspection sites. Guide marks can identify the branches to assist with navigation within the casing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 9, 2013
    Date of Patent: July 24, 2018
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Daniel Lawrence Banowetz, Jordan Christopher Baker, Thomas James Batzinger, Anthony James George, Ronald Irving Longwell, Matthew Peter Scoffone, Daniel David Soloway
  • Patent number: 10012552
    Abstract: A system for monitoring a component is provided. The system may include a strain sensor configured on the component, an electrical field scanner for analyzing the strain sensor, and a processor in operable communication with the electrical field scanner. The processor may be operable for measuring an electrical field value across the strain sensor along a mutually-orthogonal X-axis and Y-axis to obtain a data point set. The processor may further be operable for assembling a field profile of the strain sensor based on the data point set. Methods of using the system are also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 23, 2015
    Date of Patent: July 3, 2018
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Thomas James Batzinger, Bryan J. Germann, William F. Ranson
  • Publication number: 20180172643
    Abstract: Various aspects include methods of inspecting a substantially round hole in a material. One method can include: feeding a probe axially into the substantially round hole until the probe completely passes through the substantially round hole while the probe is activated; rotating the probe at least ninety degrees around a primary axis of the substantially round hole after feeding the probe completely through the substantially round hole; removing the probe axially from the substantially round hole after rotating the probe at least ninety degrees while the probe is activated; and compiling at least one of eddy current data or ultrasound data about the hole from the feeding of the probe axially into the substantially round hole and the removing of the probe axially from the substantially round hole.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 20, 2016
    Publication date: June 21, 2018
    Inventors: Robert William Bergman, Thomas James Batzinger, Thomas Earnest Moldenhauer
  • Patent number: 9879981
    Abstract: A system and related methods for evaluating a component using a reference feature and a replicate of the reference feature. The component has an exterior surface with a reference feature thereon. The method includes determining an initial condition of the reference feature, subjecting the component to at least one duty cycle after determining the initial condition, determining a subsequent condition of the reference feature after the at least one duty cycle while the component is in a service position, and forming a replicate of the reference feature while the reference feature is in one of the initial condition or the subsequent condition. One of the initial condition or the subsequent condition may be determined based on the replicate of the reference feature.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 2, 2016
    Date of Patent: January 30, 2018
    Assignee: GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY
    Inventors: Ehsan Dehghan Niri, Thomas James Batzinger, Gregory Lee Hovis, Kevin Luo, Christopher Joseph Lochner
  • Publication number: 20180005368
    Abstract: A method for inspecting a component is presented. The method includes inducing, by an inductive coil, an electrical current flow into the component. Further, the method includes capturing, by an infrared (IR) camera, at least a first set of frames and a second set of frames corresponding to the component, wherein the first set of frames is captured at a first time interval and a second set of frames is captured at a second time interval. Also, the method includes constructing, by a processing unit, a thermal image based on at least the first set of frames and the second set of frames corresponding to the component. Furthermore, the method includes determining presence of a thermal signature in the thermal image, wherein the thermal signature is representative of a defect in the component.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 30, 2016
    Publication date: January 4, 2018
    Inventors: Venkata Vijayaraghava Nalladega, Thomas James Batzinger, Yuri Alexeyevich Plotnikov, Shyamsunder Tondanur Mandayam, Bryon Edward Knight, Satheesh Jeyaraman, Esha SenGupta
  • Publication number: 20170175566
    Abstract: Systems for monitoring a component in a turbomachine can include a strain sensor comprising at least two reference points disposed on a surface of the component, and a data acquisition device connected to the turbomachine comprising a field of view, wherein the field of view is positioned to at least periodically capture the strain sensor on the component.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 17, 2015
    Publication date: June 22, 2017
    Inventors: Jason Lee Burnside, Thomas James Batzinger, Bryan Joseph Germann, Gregory Lee Hovis, William Farris Ranson
  • Publication number: 20170167930
    Abstract: Components can comprise a substrate, an embedded strain sensor comprising at least two reference points disposed on the substrate, and an outer coating disposed over at least a portion of the embedded strain sensor.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 10, 2015
    Publication date: June 15, 2017
    Inventors: Jacob Andrew Salm, Thomas James Batzinger, Bryan Joseph Germann, John David Ward, JR., William Farris Ranson
  • Publication number: 20170146411
    Abstract: A system for monitoring a component is provided. The system may include a strain sensor configured on the component, an electrical field scanner for analyzing the strain sensor, and a processor in operable communication with the electrical field scanner. The processor may be operable for measuring an electrical field value across the strain sensor along a mutually-orthogonal X-axis and Y-axis to obtain a data point set. The processor may further be operable for assembling a field profile of the strain sensor based on the data point set. Methods of using the system are also provided.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 23, 2015
    Publication date: May 25, 2017
    Inventors: Thomas James Batzinger, Bryan J. Germann, William F. Ranson
  • Publication number: 20170138723
    Abstract: Systems and methods for monitoring components are provided. A component has an exterior surface. A method includes projecting structured light onto a predetermined location on the exterior surface of the component. The structured light is emitted from a structured light emitter. The method further includes detecting the structured light after the structured light is reflected by the exterior surface. The method further includes calculating at least one characteristic of the detected structured light.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 16, 2015
    Publication date: May 18, 2017
    Inventors: Gregory Lee Hovis, Thomas James Batzinger, William F. Ranson
  • Patent number: 9612211
    Abstract: A computer-implemented system for enhanced tip-tracking and navigation of visual inspection devices includes a visual inspection device. The system further includes a plurality of spatially sensitive fibers. The system includes a computing device. The computing device includes a memory device and a processor. The system includes a storage device. The storage device includes an engineering model representing the physical asset. The computing device is configured receive an insertion location from the visual inspection device. The computing device is configured to receive fiber information associated with the visual inspection device. The computing device is configured to determine the real-time location of the visual inspection device using the fiber information. The computing device is configured to identify the real-time location of the visual inspection device with respect to the engineering model.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 14, 2013
    Date of Patent: April 4, 2017
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Guiju Song, Kevin George Harding, Thomas James Batzinger, Vinod Padmanabhan Kumar, Joseph Vincent Pawlowski, Kelles Jay Fleming