Selective Delivery Patents (Class 104/88.01)
  • Patent number: 11066241
    Abstract: It is disclosed storage and order-picking system, comprising: a control device configured for performing two-stage picking of articles, wherein the two-stage picking comprises a first article-orientated picking stage, and a second order-orientated picking stage; a warehouse, wherein the articles in the warehouse are stored in storage containers in an article-pure manner, and wherein the articles are retrieved in an article-orientated manner from the warehouse in the first picking stage; a sorter comprising: a loop-shaped main line operated continuously; at least one branch line, wherein each of the branch lines is coupled, preferably mesh-shaped, to the main line and is operable discontinuously; and a plurality of sorter trays, wherein each of the trays is configured to be moved along the lines and to be fed into and out from the main line; one or more separation stations, wherein each of the separation stations: is coupled to the main line via one of the branch lines; is coupled to the warehouse for being su
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 12, 2019
    Date of Patent: July 20, 2021
    Assignee: SSI Schäfer Automation GmbH
    Inventors: Elmar Issing, Christian Herzmaier
  • Patent number: 11061386
    Abstract: A system and method relating to determining, by a processing device, a first number of parts waiting to be processed in a subsequent step by a plurality of machines housed in a plurality of buildings interconnected by rails, determining a second number of parts that the plurality of machines housed in the plurality of buildings is capable of processing in the subsequent step of the manufacture process over a determined period of time, calculating a capability occupancy ratio based on the first number and the second number for each one of the plurality of buildings, determining a target building of the plurality of buildings based on the capability occupancy ratio, and causing to dispatch the part to the target building via the rails.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 3, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 13, 2021
    Assignee: SMARTFABS CORPORATION
    Inventor: Weiping Shi
  • Patent number: 11037382
    Abstract: A computer system is in wireless communication with a plurality of vehicles, each of the vehicles equipped with appropriate environmental sensors. Environmental reports are sent from the autonomous vehicles to the computer system using a V2X protocol or the like, and relate to such matters as worn line markings, obstacles on the roadway, and other conditions. The computer system is configured to evaluate the received environmental reports for accuracy. A comparison with similar environmental reports is made, and if there are few or no such reports for the location, an indication is reported to the vehicle that the vehicle's sensors may have a problem. The evaluation can be presented with a degree of confidence, taking into consideration various factors such as frequency of vehicles traversing the location, weather, time of day, etc.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 20, 2018
    Date of Patent: June 15, 2021
    Assignee: Ford Global Technologies, LLC
    Inventors: Oliver Lei, Allen R. Murray, Brian Bennie
  • Patent number: 10882540
    Abstract: A robotic service device for a robotic picking system grid. The robotic service device can be configured for driving to any location on the grid in order to restart malfunctioning robotic load handling devices or to perform maintenance operations or cleaning in situ. Additionally, the service device may be used to rescue robotic load handling devices operational in the picking system. The robotic service device can include a releasable docking mechanism to enable it to dock and latch on to malfunctioning load handling devices. The service device can also be provided with a cleaning device and camera device to enable a condition of a grid and other robotic devices to be monitored.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 28, 2017
    Date of Patent: January 5, 2021
    Assignee: OCADO INNOVATION LIMITED
    Inventors: Robert Stadie, Andrew John Ingram-Tedd, Matthew Whelan
  • Patent number: 10875557
    Abstract: A method for detecting obstacles in a hazardous area in front of a rail vehicle uses an obstacle detection arrangement to detect the obstacles in the hazardous area in front of the rail vehicle. In order to permit improved autonomous driving of the rail vehicle, a target value is determined for a value which characterizes the performance of the obstacle detection arrangement. A system for detecting obstacles in a hazardous area in front of a rail vehicle is also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 1, 2017
    Date of Patent: December 29, 2020
    Assignee: Siemens Mobility GmbH
    Inventors: Jens Braband, Bernhard Evers
  • Patent number: 10863140
    Abstract: Various driver assistance systems mountable in a host vehicle and computerized methods for detecting a vertical deviation of a road surface. The driver assistance system includes a camera operatively connectible to a processor. Multiple consecutive image frames are captured from the camera including a first image of the road and a second image of the road. Based on the host vehicle motion, the second image is warped toward the first image to produce thereby a warped second image. Image points of the road in the first image and corresponding image points of the road in the warped second image are tracked. Optical flow is computed between the warped second image to the first image. The optical flow is compared with an optical flow based on a road surface model to produce a residual optical flow. The vertical deviation is computed from the residual optical flow.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 20, 2019
    Date of Patent: December 8, 2020
    Assignee: MOBILEEYE VISION TECHNOLOGIES LTD.
    Inventors: Gideon Stein, Amnon Shashua
  • Patent number: 10635102
    Abstract: A host vehicle includes a driver re-engagement assessment system and an X-by-wire device adapted for both manual control and automated control by an automated guidance system. The driver re-engagement assessment system includes a controller, a user interface, and test execution module and a test evaluation module. The user interface is configured to interface with an occupant and output an occupant directive signal for manual control to the controller. The test execution module initiates an occupant re-engagement test upon receipt of the occupant directive signal by the controller. The test evaluation module is configured to receive an occupant performance signal indicative of occupant performance during the re-engagement test, and evaluate the occupant performance signal to determine a test pass result and a test fail result. The manual control of the host vehicle is assumed by the occupant upon the determination of the test pass result.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 17, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 28, 2020
    Assignee: Steering Solutions IP Holding Corporation
    Inventors: Patrik M. Ryne, Michael R. Story, Michelle Greb, Joachim J. Klesing, Pierre C. Longuemare, Ayyoub Rezaeian, Harold Li, Robert E. Llaneras
  • Patent number: 10604351
    Abstract: A travelling path includes a first path and a second path that branches off from or merges with the first path at a connection position of the first path. A management area and a check area are provided for the first path. The management area includes a section from the connection position to a position that is at a first preset distance upstream of the connection position, and a section from the connection position to a position that is at a second preset distance downstream of the connection position. The check area includes a section from a preset position to a position that is at a fourth preset distance upstream of the preset position. In a state where an article transport vehicle that includes a control unit is located in the check area, the control unit determines whether or not the article transport vehicle is in a leading state where no other article transport vehicle is present forward of the article transport vehicle in the check area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 8, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2020
    Assignee: Daifuku Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Masahiro Takahara, Akira Suzuki, Tomoaki Nishikawa
  • Patent number: 10590805
    Abstract: A gas turbine engine unit (110) for use in a modular power generation system includes an engine package (112) and a mechanical handling system adapted to convey components (114) out of and into the engine package (112). The engine package (112) includes a floor (132), a plurality of side walls (136), and a ceiling (134) that cooperate to define a sheltered space (140) sized to receive a gas turbine engine. The mechanical handling system includes rails (121) adapted to support components (114) conveyed out of and into the sheltered space (140) defined by the engine package (112).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 25, 2015
    Date of Patent: March 17, 2020
    Assignee: Industrial Turbine Company (UK) Limited
    Inventors: Brent R. Kersey, Christopher D. Gross, Allan G. Hanson, Loren J. Steady, Anthony Maczura
  • Patent number: 10581748
    Abstract: An information processing apparatus including a communication interface to communicate with another information processing apparatus, and a processor that executes a process including issuing, by a first thread, a reception request of data from the another information processing apparatus to the communication interface, determining, by using the first thread, whether a completion notification is stored in a queue that stores data transmitted from the other information processing apparatus, causing the first thread to transit to a suspended state when the completion notification is not stored, executing a processing by using a second thread included in the plurality of threads when the first thread is in the suspended state, determining whether the completion notification is stored in the queue after the processing, and transferring the received data to the first thread and causing the first thread to return from the suspended state, upon a storing of the completion notification.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 17, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 3, 2020
    Assignee: FUJITSU LIMITED
    Inventors: Yuki Matsuo, Munenori Maeda, Kohta Nakashima
  • Patent number: 10538172
    Abstract: Provided is an automated electrical connection apparatus for an electric vehicle. The automated electrical connection apparatus employs a primary connector connection apparatus at a charge site and a secondary connector connection apparatus on a vehicle. In its non-use state, the primary connector at the charge site is flush with the surface of the ground. When the charging system is activated, the primary connector will extend up from the surface of the ground to engage the secondary connector on the vehicle. The automated electrical connection apparatus provides a means to align the corresponding electrical connection within primary and secondary apparatus to establish a connection between the primary connector at the charge site and the secondary connector on the vehicle. Once the charging cycle is terminated, the component parts of the charging system will retract back to the flush position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 6, 2018
    Date of Patent: January 21, 2020
    Inventor: Alan Kauffmann
  • Patent number: 10266341
    Abstract: A temporary storage system has a large capacity and loads and unloads articles promptly. The temporary storage system includes a grid-shaped travelling rail and buffers over processing equipment except for an area over a load port, and local vehicles travel along the rail. The carriage of the local vehicles is provided with at least a longitudinal travelling unit, at least a lateral travelling unit, and at least an advancement and retraction mechanism selectively advancing one of the longitudinal travelling unit and the lateral travelling unit to a position supported by the travelling rail, and travels along the travelling rail longitudinally and laterally, and the transfer unit of the local vehicles is provided with a hoist and an arm moving the hoist horizontally. The local vehicles stop at a position corresponding to the load port, advances the arm towards the load port, and transfers an article between the load port.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 23, 2015
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2019
    Assignee: MURATA MACHINERY, LTD.
    Inventor: Masazumi Fukushima
  • Patent number: 10023386
    Abstract: A conveyor for suspended objects includes a first rail profile having a first upper track and a second track arranged below the first track, a conveyor chain that can be moved continuously in a direction of conveyance in the first track. The conveyor includes holding adapters for holding objects to be conveyed, with each holding adapter having a head part that is mounted so as to roll in the second track and is coupled to the conveyor chain. A sorting portion having a switch that follows in the direction of conveyance and via which the holding adapters can be transferred from the first rail profile to a second rail profile. The switch includes an overdrive and a drive belt, with the overdrive configured such that during operation the running speed of the drive belt is higher than the running speed of the conveyor chain.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 17, 2018
    Assignee: Dematic GmbH
    Inventor: Thomas Otto
  • Patent number: 10000940
    Abstract: A hotel room with furniture arranged for optimal television viewing from a bed and another location, such as a sofa or second bed. Furniture pieces are connected or closely aligned together and are arranged so that they provide premium viewing for a television, regardless of a location of a person within the hotel room. To this end, embodiments utilize furniture arrangements where the bed and/or sofa are turned at an angle to the walls of the room, and the room is laid out efficiently to account for this different design affect.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 23, 2015
    Date of Patent: June 19, 2018
    Assignee: SIX CONTINENTS HOTELS, INC.
    Inventors: Andrew James McLoughlin, Sangeetha Ramkumar, Thomas Zachary Lloyd, Sally Kyoko Halls, Luke Neil Pearson, Nick Stanley Borg Carpenter, Jack Charles Cheatle, Timothy Robert Jones
  • Patent number: 9834236
    Abstract: A conveyance system that prevents conveyance carriages from mistakenly entering an area includes a rail extending across a plurality of areas, a FOUP conveyance vehicle that travels along the rail, a conveyance vehicle that has a width and a height at least one of which differs from that of the FOUP conveyance vehicle, an optical sensor that is provided to the FOUP conveyance vehicle, arranged at a position that does not overlap the conveyance vehicle in a traveling direction, and detects an obstacle in front, and a member to be detected that is arranged, in an entry section into a certain area where only the conveyance vehicle is allowed to enter, at a position where the conveyance vehicle is allowed to enter the certain area, the position being detectable by the optical sensor provided to the FOUP conveyance vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 8, 2014
    Date of Patent: December 5, 2017
    Assignee: MURATA MACHINERY, LTD
    Inventor: Takanori Izumi
  • Patent number: 9616905
    Abstract: A navigation system for a train having at least one locomotive or control car and, optionally, at least one railroad car, operating in a track network, wherein an on-board computer determines or receives location data and communicates or causes the communication of the location data and/or railway data to another locomotive or control car, another train, a remote server, or the like. A train navigation method is also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 2, 2015
    Date of Patent: April 11, 2017
    Assignee: Westinghouse Air Brake Technologies Corporation
    Inventors: Jeffrey D. Kernwein, Kendrick W. Gawne
  • Patent number: 9440791
    Abstract: An assembly for arranging hanging goods in a space-saving manner, in particular for forming a block of hanging goods to be stored in a high bay warehouse, comprises a feeding unit for feeding the hanging goods along a transport direction and an arrangement unit for arranging the hanging goods, wherein the arrangement unit is provided with at least two transport rails arranged adjacent to one another when seen in the transport direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 25, 2015
    Date of Patent: September 13, 2016
    Assignee: DÜRKOPP FÖRDERTECHNIK GMBH
    Inventor: Michael Wend
  • Patent number: 9205772
    Abstract: A moving carriage that moves an overhead travelling vehicle that has been unloaded to the ground, includes a frame including travelling wheels, elevating mechanisms provided at a plurality of locations on the frame along a longitudinal direction of the frame, a track for an overhead travelling vehicle, the track being supported by the elevating mechanisms so as to be lifted and lowered and being configured to allow the overhead travelling vehicle to be transferred to and from another track, and a synchronizing mechanism that synchronizes the elevating mechanisms to lift and lower the track by the same or substantially the same amount.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 17, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 8, 2015
    Assignee: MURATA MACHINERY, LTD.
    Inventors: Hideki Kato, Tatsuo Tsubaki
  • Patent number: 9171459
    Abstract: A traffic monitoring and notification system for vehicles includes road devices to be spaced apart along a road, and a traffic management controller. A portion of the vehicles may carry an electronic device that transmits an electronic address associated therewith. Each road device detects vehicles traveling on the road, determines if each detected vehicle is carrying an electronic device, and if so, then detects the electronic address associated therewith. A vehicle detection signal is transmitted based on each detected vehicle, and an electronic address signal is transmitted based on each detected electronic address. The traffic management controller receives the vehicle detection signals and the electronic address signals, determines a traffic pattern of the vehicles on the road based on the vehicle detection signals, and transmits a respective travel notification signal to each electronic device transmitting the electronic address associated therewith to provide travel information to a driver.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 10, 2013
    Date of Patent: October 27, 2015
    Assignee: Blue-Band LLC
    Inventors: Kevin Yorke, Roberto Adair, William Waers, Kendal Yorke
  • Patent number: 9085375
    Abstract: One embodiment of an automated system for carrying passengers between airport terminal or concourse facilities and parked aircraft is shown. The embodiment comprises PRT guideways (13, 14, 15, 23, 27), vehicles (21) and stations (22). Some PRT stations are linked to parked aircraft (11) or aircraft parking positions by means of conventional loading bridges (12), while others are linked to terminal or concourse buildings (15). No PRT station is linked to more than one aircraft. Other embodiments are described and shown. The embodiments provide a high level of service while reducing the need to construct terminal or concourse buildings adjacent to each aircraft parking position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 2012
    Date of Patent: July 21, 2015
    Inventors: Steven Barrie Cornell, Peter John Muller
  • Patent number: 8825205
    Abstract: A method for controlling movement of travelling carriers includes providing, to a rear travelling carrier approaching a work area at a high speed, current location information corresponding to distances from a measurement starting point to the rear travelling carrier and a front travelling carrier, the rear travelling carrier calculating a following distance between the front and rear travelling carriers based on the current location information, and the rear travelling carrier performing deceleration control to the operating speed based on decremental changes of the following distance.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 20, 2013
    Date of Patent: September 2, 2014
    Assignee: Daifuku Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Toshiaki Yokota, Kazuhiko Miyoshi, Masatsugu Kamei, Atsunobu Iseki
  • Patent number: 8639380
    Abstract: Each load-carrier of a system is always controlled by one of a series of MCUs (monitoring and control units) that are assigned to contiguous regions along guideways. Each carrier is slowed down to maintain a safe distance behind a carrier ahead, or to avoid collision with another carrier when approaching a merge point of a convergent Y-junction or when otherwise desirable. Distance measurements take into account the lengths of carriers and of assigned regions and the counts of speed pulses sent to MCUs since entry of carriers into their respective regions. For merge control, arrival data are developed that include the times and speeds to and at arrival of two carriers at a merge point. Through repeated comparisons of arrival data developed from one carrier with arrival data previously developed and stored as to the other carrier, the one carrier is gradually slowed down as necessary to avoid a collision.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 8, 2013
    Date of Patent: January 28, 2014
    Assignee: Autran Corp.
    Inventor: Van Metre Lund
  • Patent number: 8494695
    Abstract: A rail vehicle includes of one or more locomotives and may further include one or more rail cars, and the rail vehicle further includes a locator element, a communications device and a control module located on the rail vehicle. The locator elements provide a location information of the rail vehicle to a control module. The control module is coupled to the communications device and the locator element. The control module determines control settings for controlling the operations of the communications device based on the location of the rail vehicle. The communications device sends and/or receives data, including communications data, off-board the rail vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 2, 2009
    Date of Patent: July 23, 2013
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Jared Klineman Cooper, John William Brand, Nick David Nagrodsky, Keith Gilbertson
  • Patent number: 8448579
    Abstract: An article transport facility in which electricity can be supplied properly from an electricity supply line to a power receiving portion even in a curved portion of a predetermined travel path without providing the power receiving portion to a connecting shaft. An article transport vehicle includes a travel portion having a guide wheel and a travel wheel that contacts the travel rail and is driven. The travel portion is connected to the vehicle main body by a connecting shaft. The power receiving portion is supported by the vehicle main body such that the power receiving portion can be moved in the lateral direction of the article transport vehicle. The article transport vehicle includes means for moving the power receiving portion outwardly of the curved portion of the article transport vehicle in association with the rotation of the connecting shaft when the travel portion rotates while traveling in the curved portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 22, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 28, 2013
    Assignee: Daifuku Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Yoshitaka Inui
  • Patent number: 8428770
    Abstract: Each load-carrier of a system is always controlled by one of a series of MCUs (monitoring and control units) that are assigned to contiguous regions along guideways. Each carrier is slowed down to maintain a safe distance behind a carrier ahead, or to avoid collision with another carrier when approaching a merge point of a convergent Y-junction or when otherwise desirable. Distance measurements take into account the lengths of carriers and of assigned regions and the counts of speed pulses sent to MCUs since entry of carriers into their respective regions. For merge control, arrival data are developed that include the times and speeds to and at arrival of two carriers at a merge point. Through repeated comparisons of arrival data developed from one carrier with arrival data previously developed and stored as to the other carrier, the one carrier is gradually slowed down as necessary to avoid a collision.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 1, 2010
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2013
    Assignee: Autran Corp
    Inventor: Van Metre Lund
  • Patent number: 8408140
    Abstract: A device for entering an object into a cell comprises mainly a track for guiding the object and a lifting pod extending the track. It is then possible to use robots and lower them on the floor of the cell to carry out inspection work.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 6, 2008
    Date of Patent: April 2, 2013
    Assignee: Commissariat A l'Energie Atomique Et Aux Energies Alternatives
    Inventors: Herve Vialle, Pascal Gire
  • Patent number: 8375865
    Abstract: A personal transportation and freight delivery system that can be operated as a fully automated driverless land transportation system consisting of vehicles that move on their own propulsion on a pair of overhead parallel steel rails that form a single track and allows people to go anywhere the tracks can take them and delivery of freight anywhere along the tracks. Passengers and freight are transported inside a module that hangs from a propulsion dolly with in-line wheels to roll along such tracks. Electric motors are used for propulsion with power supplied at the tracks assembly; however, the system is also suited for internal combustion engines. There's no need for track switches to route vehicles to its destination as each vehicle has a steering mechanism. Rubber bumpers at each end of the propulsion dollies allow the vehicles to fit bumper-to-bumper along the tracks.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 25, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 19, 2013
    Inventor: Jose Alberto Zayas
  • Patent number: 8322287
    Abstract: The article transport facility includes a plurality of article transport vehicles which can travel on a travel path defined by rails installed in the ceiling. The travel path includes a loop-shaped primary path, and secondary paths each arranged to extend along and by at least one article transport location, a first connecting path that connects the primary path and the secondary path, and a second connecting path, provided independently from the first connecting path, with one end portion connected to the secondary path located on one side of the primary path, and the other end portion connected to the secondary path located on the other side of the primary path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 16, 2010
    Date of Patent: December 4, 2012
    Assignee: Daifuku Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Keisuke Oguro, Motohiro Fujita, Yuuya Takemoto
  • Patent number: 8272331
    Abstract: A single main steel wheel rides on a single main steel rail of a guideway to support and drive a carrier and to facilitate steering and provide a simplified, more compact and less costly construction. The carrier can support a car through a platform having elements and chocks for locking contact with a front bumper and front wheels of the car Auxiliary wheels and rails cooperate to cause nearly all weight to be carried through the single main wheel. Traction is increased when necessary through application of increased upward forces to undersides of auxiliary rails and/or through developing magnetic forces between the steel wheel and steel rail. An AC induction motor is a main source of drive power. Acceleration and braking are assisted through epicyclic gearing, braking means and a DC motor/generator that is connected to a battery and that drives the carrier if supply of AC fails.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 1, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 25, 2012
    Assignee: Autran Corp.
    Inventor: Van Metre Lund
  • Patent number: 8256353
    Abstract: A system and method for optimally managing the inventory of railroad freight cars and for transporting and processing the unladen cars to reloading points. The system provides a means for returning unladen cars at one or more strategically located yards or aggregation facilities where the cars are cleaned, inspected, repaired/maintained, stored and blocked for ultimate delivery. After such processes the cars may be treated as generic, and used for the transport of any materials within the constraints of the car type, rather than being dedicated to specific products and returned to a specific production facilities as in current practice. As well, the method provides a means by which multiple car operators may pool their collective rail car assets to further optimize the rail car supply chain.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 8, 2002
    Date of Patent: September 4, 2012
    Inventor: Bradley N. Howell
  • Patent number: 8250989
    Abstract: A system and method for optimally managing the inventory of railroad freight cars and for transporting and processing the unladen cars to reloading points. The system provides a means for returning unladen cars at one or more strategically located yards or aggregation facilities where the cars are cleaned, inspected, repaired/maintained, stored and blocked for ultimate delivery. After such processes the cars may be treated as generic, and used for the transport of any materials within the constraints of the car type, rather than being dedicated to specific products and returned to a specific production facilities as in current practice. As well, the method provides a means by which multiple car operators may pool their collective rail car assets to further optimize the rail car supply chain.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 14, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 28, 2012
    Inventor: Bradley N. Howell
  • Patent number: 8146506
    Abstract: An active rail transport system for the automated transport of persons or goods on conventional rails includes a car having an autonomous drive unit, brake and steering mechanism. The car may be directed away from a running through car, decelerated unloaded and/or loaded and thereafter redirected to the running through car after the speed of the car is adjusted to the speed of the running through car. A first conducting system which includes a first scanning system provides continuous traction. The first scanning system can be adjusted to account for different rail gauges during travel. A second conducting system includes scanning systems and associated guide rails for determining the direction of the car when going over diverge points and crossings.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 29, 2007
    Date of Patent: April 3, 2012
    Inventor: Uwe Stahn
  • Publication number: 20120055367
    Abstract: A personal transportation and freight delivery system that can be operated as a fully automated driverless land transportation system consisting of vehicles that move on their own propulsion on a pair of overhead parallel steel rails that form a single track and allows people to go anywhere the tracks can take them and delivery of freight anywhere along the tracks. Passengers and freight are transported inside a module that hangs from a propulsion dolly with in-line wheels to roll along such tracks. Electric motors are used for propulsion with power supplied at the tracks assembly; however, the system is also suited for internal combustion engines. There's no need for track switches to route vehicles to its destination as each vehicle has a steering mechanism. Rubber bumpers at each end of the propulsion dollies allow the vehicles to fit bumper-to-bumper along the tracks.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 25, 2011
    Publication date: March 8, 2012
    Inventor: Jose Alberto Zayas
  • Patent number: 8090490
    Abstract: An automatic recovery and transport system includes a manufacture execution system, a path planning system electrically connected with the manufacture execution system, a vehicle control system electrically connected with the path planning system, a plurality of vehicles electrically connected with the vehicle control system; and an alarm system electrically connected with the path planning system and the vehicle control system. The alarm system will command the path planning system to command the vehicle control system to drive the vehicle about to stop to enter the maintenance area immediately. Accordingly, the stability and the work efficiency of the whole system are improved. The present invention also provides a method for executing an automatic recovery and transport system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 3, 2012
    Assignee: Inotera Memories, Inc.
    Inventors: Yu-Kun Chen, Chin-Hsiao Chuang
  • Patent number: 7987795
    Abstract: A mink/fox transportation system (2) for individual transport in connection with the production of mink/fox furs, for example, the transport of upright-standing expansion pelt boards (4), with or without tanned, or tanned and dried pelts, to one or more relevant receiving stations (170, 172), has at least one, preferably a plurality, of self-driven traction units/carriages (10) driven along a predetermined transport path in the form of a track (6) which is formed of track elements (8,8?,8?,8??) that have been assembled together configured to the arrangement of the particular production facility. The traction units/carriages (10) have a housing (12) with an upwardly-facing side (20) in which an opening (14) is formed for receiving a blunt part (18) extending from the foot end (16) of the pelt board, or surrounds a smaller part of the whole of the foot end of a pelt board.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 14, 2007
    Date of Patent: August 2, 2011
    Assignee: Dansk Mink Papir A/S
    Inventor: Jens Hedegaard
  • Patent number: 7966943
    Abstract: A transport system for providing increased capacity to move individuals and freight while still accommodating the individual needs of passengers and freight movers to travel to unique destinations. The transit system including a car including a set of switching wheels that are designed to engage with a set of switching rails, the switching wheels being moveable to selectively engage with the switching rails to either maintain the car on the track or switch the car off to another track. The car has the capability to travel on the relatively high-speed track and on a conventional surface street.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 5, 2009
    Date of Patent: June 28, 2011
    Inventor: Georges Brigham
  • Patent number: 7765936
    Abstract: A transporting system with a fire door (100) is provided with: a rail (1) installed within a facility; a transporting carriage (3), whose wheel (4) is set so as to roll over a surface for rolling of the rail; a fire door plate (7) for segmenting a space within the facility in a direction intersecting the rail at a predetermined position of the rail; and a door plate moving device (8) capable of moving the fire door plate from an open position for the transporting carriage to pass through the predetermined position, to a close position for the fire door plate to segment the space. A first cut (1a) is formed obliquely with respect to a width direction of the rail when planarly seen on the surface for rolling, in the rail at the predetermined position. The fire door plate has a shape capable of passing through the first cut when being moved to the close position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 26, 2008
    Date of Patent: August 3, 2010
    Assignee: Muratec Automation Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Masanao Murata, Senzou Kyutoku, Toshio Takasu
  • Patent number: 7757608
    Abstract: A rail non-contact vehicle includes wheels, a vehicle main body supported by the wheels, and a steering control system. The steering control system includes a control section configured to control a steering of the wheels in a non-mechanical manner, and a drive section configured to mechanically drive the steering of the wheels. The control section includes a first detector configured to detect 1-dimensional coordinate data of a target route, a steering angle holding section configured to hold a target steering angle corresponding to the 1-dimensional coordinate data, a second detector configured to detect a current deviation between the target route and a current position of the vehicle main body, and a control steering angle calculating section configured to generate a control steering angle corresponding to the current deviation and the target steering angle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 30, 2003
    Date of Patent: July 20, 2010
    Assignee: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd.
    Inventors: Hiroyuki Kono, Masahiro Yamaguchi, Hiroshi Yamashita, Masahisa Masukawa, Shunji Morhichika, Hiroyuki Mochidome, Koki Fukuda
  • Publication number: 20100043665
    Abstract: A transport system for providing increased capacity to move individuals and freight while still accommodating the individual needs of passengers and freight movers to travel to unique destinations. The transit system including a car including a set of switching wheels that are designed to engage with a set of switching rails, the switching wheels being moveable to selectively engage with the switching rails to either maintain the car on the track or switch the car off to another track. The car has the capability to travel on the relatively high-speed track and on a conventional surface street.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 5, 2009
    Publication date: February 25, 2010
    Inventor: Georges Brigham
  • Patent number: 7600478
    Abstract: A plurality of intra-bay routes and an inter-bay route between the intra-bay routes are defined as a logic bay, and the minimum number of allocated transportation vehicles is determined based on the unit of each logic bay.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 11, 2008
    Date of Patent: October 13, 2009
    Assignee: Murata Machinery, Ltd.
    Inventors: Ikuharu Shimamura, Toyokazu Kobayashi
  • Publication number: 20090235839
    Abstract: The invention relates to a public transport system for individually transporting persons or goods in an automated manner on conventional rails without using a conductor. In said transport system, automatically controlled conducting systems are arranged such that individual cars that have an autonomous drive unit, brake, and steering mechanism can be directed away from the rolling convoy (train), be decelerated, unloaded and/or loaded by merely changing the conducting system that mechanically influences the steering mechanism, lowering and lifting an associated scanning system, and can then be redirected into a rolling convoy (train) at a different point after the speed of the individual cars has been adjusted to the speed of the convoy. The first conducting system, which encompasses a first scanning system (1) on each car and the conventional rails, is used for providing continuous traction as well as for changing the track gauge along with the second conducting system.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 29, 2007
    Publication date: September 24, 2009
    Inventor: Uwe Stahn
  • Patent number: 7578240
    Abstract: Buffers 6, 8 are provided on both sides of a travel rail 10. An overhead traveling vehicle 4 has a SCARA arm movable back and forth to both of the left and right so that a rotation unit 22 and an elevation drive unit 4 can move to a position above either of the buffers 6, 8.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 10, 2007
    Date of Patent: August 25, 2009
    Assignee: Murata Kikai Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Tamotsu Shiwaku
  • Patent number: 7497167
    Abstract: The integrated conveyor system has a number of independent powered modules (11), each having a pair of rails (2, 3), and powered belt (4) stretched in the transverse space defined between the pair of rails and forming a continuous support and guide structure and along which run a number of trucks are moved by the belt of each module along the rails. The conveyor system also includes a number of modules having no powered belt, a push module (116) having a powered belt and a brake module (11c) having a nonpowered belt; the trucks having stop means for forming, a train of mutually contacting trucks between the push module and the brake module, and pushed by the powered belt of the push module.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 23, 2002
    Date of Patent: March 3, 2009
    Assignee: CPM S.p.A.
    Inventor: Massimo Bellezza
  • Patent number: 7461598
    Abstract: A loop-shaped maintenance bay route 6 directly connected to an inter-bay route 4 is provided for the maintenance of an overhead traveling vehicle 8. An operation check traveling line 16 and an operation check station 18 are provided along the maintenance bay route 6 for fully carrying out tests for traveling operation and transfer operation of the overhead traveling vehicle 8. In an adjustment/repair area 14, adjustment, configuration, repair, reconfiguration, or the like of the overhead traveling vehicle 8 are performed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 12, 2006
    Date of Patent: December 9, 2008
    Assignee: Murata Kikai Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Tamotsu Shiwaku
  • Patent number: 7325497
    Abstract: An airport terminal (100) has a department area (200) which includes at least one, and preferably a plurality of check-in counters (202), at least one, and preferably a plurality of airplane-loading zones (204), and a track system (110), arranged for the movement of wagons (10). Wagon (10) is for automatically transporting and sorting luggage, responsive to commands from a computerized management system (80). The wagon (10) includes a rigid frame for containing the luggage. The frame includes four sides and a double bottom having an upper plate, a lower plate, and an internal compartment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 27, 2001
    Date of Patent: February 5, 2008
    Inventor: Elishah Ben-Ezra
  • Patent number: 7137342
    Abstract: A carrier moving system for a painting process of a vehicle includes a loaded section, an unloaded section, and a plurality of multi-joint type carriers. The multi-joint carriers include a driving part and a driven part. A guiding monorail is disposed through both the loaded section and the unloaded section so as to guide each multi-joint type carrier through both sections. A storing monorail disposed in the unloaded section and arranged in parallel with the guiding monorail and a switching unit for switching a position of the driven part of the multi-joint type carrier between the guiding monorail and the storing monorail.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 2004
    Date of Patent: November 21, 2006
    Assignee: Hyundai Motor Company
    Inventor: Hyun Chul Cho
  • Patent number: 7082879
    Abstract: The invention is a method of coordinating the movement of a plurality of oppositely directed tramcars operating along a single guidelane. This includes positioning a plurality of fixed stop-boarding areas along the guidelane. By-pass lanes enabling oppositely moving tramcars to pass each other are located in association with at least some of the stop-boarding areas. A predetermined arrival time for each tramcar at each stop-boarding area is calculated such that oppositely moving pairs of tramcars approaching a common stop-boarding area will arrive at approximately the same time. A processor onboard each tramcar calculates the distance and time remaining to the next stop-boarding area. With a known time and distance remaining to the next stop-boarding area, each on-board processor adjusts the speed of the tramcar such that it arrives at approximately the predetermined arrival time.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 14, 2004
    Date of Patent: August 1, 2006
    Inventor: John D. Alt
  • Patent number: 6892649
    Abstract: Transportation system comprising a large number of platforms which can be displaced along guides and a smaller number of displacement devices which can be coupled to and uncoupled from the said platforms. Each displacement device comprises a linear actuator comprising a moving part and a stationary part. The stationary part comprises a laminated plate assembly with coils, and the moving part comprises a structure with permanent magnets, such as neodymium magnets. On the linear actuator, there may be a further linear actuator, so that movement in two directions is possible. A transportation system of this type can be used in a parking garage for positioning vehicles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 27, 2003
    Date of Patent: May 17, 2005
    Inventor: Berend Tent
  • Patent number: 6877438
    Abstract: A device that is usable to change the direction of a transport assembly, on which feed roller may be transported, includes a lower section and an upper section. The upper section is pivotally mounted on the lower section. The transport assembly is arranged on the side or on the top of the upper section and the upper section can be pivoted by an angular amount, relative to the lower section, by use of a drive unit. A drive motor of the drive unit has its output transmitted to the upper section by a drive belt. A positive drive exists between the motor and belt and a friction drive exists between the belt and the upper section.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 4, 2001
    Date of Patent: April 12, 2005
    Assignee: Koenig & Bauer Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventor: Josef Herbert Olbort
  • Patent number: 6834595
    Abstract: A transport system has a pair of laterally spaced apart guideways, each of the guideways having an upward facing track. A vehicle has supports on each side that engage the tracks. A pair of conductor rails are mounted to a shroud extending over the track. Each of the conductor rails has an engaging surface that faces generally laterally from the other. A follower assembly mounted to the vehicle raises into engagement with the rails. The follower assembly has brushes that engage the rails in sliding contact to receive power for the vehicle. The follower assembly is also connected to the steering mechanism of the device for steering the vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 18, 2003
    Date of Patent: December 28, 2004
    Inventor: J. Kirston Henderson