Endless, Flexible Patents (Class 180/9.1)
  • Patent number: 10589809
    Abstract: Endless vehicle tracks including a body having an outer surface formed of an elastomeric material displaying a series of ground engaging profiles longitudinally spaced along the outer surface, and an inner surface formed a urethane reinforcement material. The inner surface generally displays a series of longitudinally spaced guide-drive lugs for retaining the track on the vehicle and/or driving the vehicle. The urethane reinforcement defines the inner surface of the body. The urethane reinforcement may define wheel path regions of the body, and the urethane reinforcement may even form the guide-drive lugs. The endless vehicle track may further include a fabric reinforcement layer disposed beneath or upon the outer surface of the upper face of the guide-drive lugs. The urethane reinforcement is formed from an admixture including a castable urethane material liquid which fills a mold and hardens to form the urethane reinforcement. The mold also includes a metal reinforcement therein.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 12, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 17, 2020
    Assignee: ContiTech Transportbandsysteme GmbH
    Inventors: Matthew A. Linn, David M. Burtchin
  • Patent number: 10562574
    Abstract: A slider for a track assembly of a machine is provided. The slider includes an elongated base portion coupled to a frame and a sliding portion extending from the elongated base portion. The sliding portion includes an outer surface configured to slidably engage with a track link of the track assembly. The sliding portion includes a set of wear indicators defined in the outer surface. The set of wear indicators includes a first wear indicator and a second wear indicator. The first and the second wear indicators are located at a first predefined thickness and a second predefined thickness respectively, measured along a central axis of the sliding portion. Further, the first wear indicator indicates partial wear of the sliding portion and the second wear indicator indicates substantial wear of the sliding portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2020
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventor: Mircea Dumitru
  • Patent number: 10427291
    Abstract: A moving robot includes a main body, a drive assembly moving the main body, and a cleaner head performing cleaning on a cleaning area in which the main body is positioned, wherein the drive assembly includes a plurality of pulleys, a motor connected to any one of the plurality of pulleys and generating a driving force, a belt rotated in contact with the plurality of pulleys, and a support shaft connected to some of the plurality of pulleys and changing a position of the pulley such that an area in which the belt is in contact with a ground or an obstacle is maintained to be equal to or greater than a reference area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 3, 2019
    Date of Patent: October 1, 2019
    Assignee: LG ELECTRONICS INC.
    Inventors: Hwang Kim, Sungil Park, Soohyun Kim, Byungho Yoon, Sanghoon Han, Youngjun Jeon
  • Patent number: 10300596
    Abstract: A moving robot includes a main body, a drive assembly moving the main body, and a cleaner head performing cleaning on a cleaning area in which the main body is positioned, wherein the drive assembly includes a plurality of pulleys, a motor connected to any one of the plurality of pulleys and generating a driving force, a belt rotated in contact with the plurality of pulleys, and a support shaft connected to some of the plurality of pulleys and changing a position of the pulley such that an area in which the belt is in contact with a ground or an obstacle is maintained to be equal to or greater than a reference area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 17, 2017
    Date of Patent: May 28, 2019
    Assignee: LG ELECTRONICS INC.
    Inventors: Hwang Kim, Sungil Park, Soohyun Kim, Byungho Yoon, Sanghoon Han, Youngjun Jeon
  • Patent number: 10272959
    Abstract: A track assembly for traction of a tracked vehicle, such as an agricultural vehicle, an industrial vehicle (e.g., a construction vehicle) or a military vehicle, is provided. The track assembly comprises a plurality of wheels which comprises a drive wheel and a plurality of roller wheels, as well as an elastomeric endless track disposed around the plurality of wheels for engaging the ground. A roller wheel may comprise a wheel body and a covering on the wheel body. The covering may comprise a lateral portion dimensioned to contact a drive/guide lug of the track. The roller wheels and the track may implement a self-alignment system of the track assembly. The track assembly may comprise a cooling system for transferring heat away from a roller wheel. The track assembly may comprise a lateral motion mechanism allowing a roller wheel to move widthwise in response to a side load.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 9, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 30, 2019
    Assignee: Camso Inc.
    Inventors: Jeremie Zuchoski, Alain Lussier, Patrice Boily, Francois Leblanc
  • Patent number: 10246310
    Abstract: A large mobile crane including an undercarriage. The undercarriage includes a middle section between tracks, wherein a distance between the tracks can be increased or decreased by the insertion or removal of expansion parts. The two tracks are connected on opposite sides of the undercarriage to permit movement of the large mobile crane. The undercarriage also includes a drive unit, a superstructure, one or more control stations, at least two main booms, at least one derrick boom, and at least two lifting devices and counterweights. The counterweights are either arranged separately of or mounted on the undercarriage. The large mobile crane further includes a circular track, and support rollers attached to the superstructure, wherein the support rollers ride on the circular track, and wherein the circular track is an integral part of the expansion parts.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 3, 2014
    Date of Patent: April 2, 2019
    Assignee: TEREX GLOBAL GMBH
    Inventors: Rüdiger Zollondz, Alfons Weckbecker, Fritz-Botho Köster, Günter Karp, Hans-Peter Franzen
  • Patent number: 10183711
    Abstract: The present invention provides an amphibious caterpillar track shoe, which has a novel structure and has greater buoyancy while increasing the durability of the track shoe by means of a foam buoyant member and a fixing frame, and has webbed protruding parts capable of improving the movement speed of a track vehicle on water.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 1, 2016
    Date of Patent: January 22, 2019
    Inventor: Chung Chul Lee
  • Patent number: 10119246
    Abstract: A vehicle having a long track or wheel-trail wheel combination on one side and a smaller ground engaging member, such as a short track or wheel on the other. The vehicle has a work attachment on one end of as frame, which is provided clearance on the side of the vehicle with the short track or wheel. A control system is provided to allow an operator to properly control a direction of the vehicle despite the fact that different forces may be required to operate the long track and the short track or wheel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 17, 2017
    Date of Patent: November 6, 2018
    Assignee: The Charles Machine Works, Inc.
    Inventors: Cody L. Sewell, Brant Douglas Kukuk
  • Patent number: 10099734
    Abstract: Endless vehicle tracks including a body having an outer surface formed of an elastomeric material displaying a series of ground engaging profiles longitudinally spaced along the outer surface, and an inner surface formed a urethane reinforcement material. The inner surface generally displays a series of longitudinally spaced guide-drive lugs for retaining the track on the vehicle and/or driving the vehicle. In some aspects, the urethane reinforcement defines the inner surface of the body, and the urethane reinforcement may even be a continuous structure forming a base of the inner surface. In some cases, the urethane reinforcement defines wheel path regions of the body, and the urethane reinforcement may even form the guide-drive lugs. In some embodiments, the endless vehicle track further includes a fabric reinforcement layer disposed beneath or upon the outer surface of the upper face of the guide-drive lugs.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 1, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2018
    Assignee: ContiTech Transportbandsysteme GmbH
    Inventors: Matthew A. Linn, Robert I. Anderson, Jr., James Weir
  • Patent number: 10060093
    Abstract: A device for receiving and removing plastic, sludge-like materials deposited on beds of bodies of water. The device systematically senses the bottom of the body of water, suctions it off layer by layer, and independently moves along even if coarse obstacles are present. The device has at least one pump/compressor, at least one hydraulic unit and at least one electric power generator and is connected on one side to a disposal site or a settling basin or a transportable container on land and on the other side to the suction module by pipelines. The suction module moves along on the bottom independently by a special tracked chassis unit, is connected by a cable to an echo sounding emitter arranged floatingly above the suction module and/or to a GPS receiver, and has a pivoting arm, which independently adapts to the bed of the body of water and oscillates freely.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 13, 2015
    Date of Patent: August 28, 2018
    Inventor: Georg Linner
  • Patent number: 10023193
    Abstract: An agricultural vehicle and method of controlling the same are provided, the vehicle having a motive power unit providing a driving torque to at least one driven wheel and having at least one tire or track frictionally coupled with the periphery of the driven wheel. A vehicle operating parameter is controlled in dependence on the driving torque and a slippage characteristic relating the respective driving torque at which the frictional coupling between driven wheel and tire or track begins to slip for a range of vehicle operating parameter values. The operating parameter is suitably a tire pressure or track tension, and the control may involve reducing driving torque or increasing pressure/tension to prevent slipping.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 31, 2015
    Date of Patent: July 17, 2018
    Assignee: AGCO International GmbH
    Inventors: Richard Heindl, Martin Brenninger
  • Patent number: 9963177
    Abstract: A track system for use as a wheel replacement on typically wheeled vehicle is disclosed. The track system comprises a drive wheel configured to be mounted to the vehicle, a support frame, front and rear idler wheels respectively pivotally mounted at the front and at the rear of the support frame, road wheels pivotally mounted along the support frame between the front and read idler wheels, and an endless track mounted about the wheels. The position of the front and/or rear idler wheels is adjustable in order to modify the overall shape of the perimeter of the track system generally defined by the endless track, thereby changing the riding behavior of the track system. A method to change the position of the adjustable idler wheels is also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 1, 2017
    Date of Patent: May 8, 2018
    Assignee: SOUCY INTERNATIONAL INC.
    Inventors: Louis-Frederic Marchildon, Martin Bellemare, Patrick L'Herault
  • Patent number: 9791035
    Abstract: A suspension assembly for a motorized vehicle includes a rotatable drive-unit driveshaft extending outwardly from an aperture of a drive unit. A first portion of a dropcase is pivotally coupled to the drive unit. A first end portion of a dropcase driveshaft is coupled to the drive-unit driveshaft such that rotation of the drive-unit driveshaft causes a corresponding rotation of the dropcase driveshaft. A second end portion of the dropcase driveshaft extends outwardly from a second portion of the dropcase and is suitable for coupling to a wheel hub. A pivotal-coupling assembly pivotally couples the dropcase to the drive unit. The pivotal-coupling assembly provides a pivot axis between the dropcase and the drive unit along a longitudinal length of the drive-unit driveshaft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 31, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 17, 2017
    Assignee: Altoz, Inc.
    Inventors: Dennis Brazier, Mark Reese
  • Patent number: 9764784
    Abstract: An endless track assembly that mounts to a vehicle drive linkage. The track assembly includes a belted track, drive sprocket and serial sets of pivoting internal idler wheel rocker suspensions that support interior track surfaces. Pinch wheels are supported in contact with the terrain engaging track surface. Frame and/or sprocket mounted tensioners establish track tension. Resilient torsion support assemblies, rollers and/or layers of resilient and/or slippery materials are incorporated between the track assembly and vehicle frame/chassis to prevent damage to the vehicle as the track assembly rises and falls with terrain changes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 26, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 19, 2017
    Inventor: Glen Brazier
  • Patent number: 9694861
    Abstract: A suspension assembly of a work machine being movable in a forward direction. The work machine includes a frame, an undercarriage supporting the frame and at least one ground-engaging track. The suspension assembly includes a torsion assembly having an axle, a torsion bar adapted to be fixedly coupled to the frame, and an axle arm coupled at one end to the axle and at an opposite end thereof to the torsion bar. A locking arm has a first end and a second end, where the first end is coupled to the axle arm. A hydraulic actuator is coupled to the second end of the locking arm. The hydraulic actuator is operably controlled between a locked configuration and an unlocked configuration. In the unlocked configuration, the axle arm is pivotable relative to the frame, and in the locked configuration the axle arm is restricted from pivoting relative to the frame.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 7, 2015
    Date of Patent: July 4, 2017
    Assignee: Deere & Company
    Inventors: Galen C. Thomas, Steven R. Whiteman, Steve G. Fleischmann, Justin C. Gross, James Wentzloff
  • Patent number: 9663161
    Abstract: In one example, mobile industrial equipment for coupling to a truck for on highway transportation is provided. The mobile industrial equipment includes a frame to connect to the truck, a plurality of wheels connected to the frame, and a track assembly connected to the frame. In another example a method for using mobile equipment is provided. The method includes transporting mobile industrial equipment over the highway with a plurality of wheels connected to a frame of the mobile industrial equipment. The frame of the mobile industrial equipment is separated from the truck. The mobile industrial equipment is moved while separated from the truck using a track connected to the frame of the mobile industrial equipment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 5, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 30, 2017
    Inventor: Steve L. Gilbert
  • Patent number: 9623968
    Abstract: An unmanned air-ground vehicle is provided. The unmanned air-ground vehicle includes a frame having a center portion connecting two substantially parallel transversely spaced apart track supports. Tracks that generally form loops are disposed about the track supports. Track drive motors are connected to the frame and configured to propel the tracks about the track supports. A plurality of propellers, each having propeller drive motors, are attached to the frame and disposed within the loops formed by the tracks. The tracks are configured to propel the vehicle in a ground mode while the propellers are configured to propel the vehicle in a flying mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 11, 2014
    Date of Patent: April 18, 2017
    Inventor: Jon Rimanelli
  • Patent number: 9540061
    Abstract: A magnetic robot includes a chassis and at least one track assembly associated with the chassis. The track assembly has a linear series of non-circulating magnet modules displaceably mounted with respect to the chassis. A driven track circulates about the magnet modules and travels on guide portions of the magnet modules.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 27, 2015
    Date of Patent: January 10, 2017
    Assignee: Foster-Miller, Inc.
    Inventors: Scott R. Albin, Anthony Chesna, Geoffrey Blake Lansberry, David J. Shane
  • Patent number: 9389611
    Abstract: A kit for building an adaptive unmanned CIED vehicle comprising a vehicle chassis having a locomotion system for moving the vehicle in an operating environment, and a controllable steering mechanism for steering the vehicle as it moves in the operating environment; one or more motors for coupling to the locomotion system to the controllable steering mechanism; a remote control unit for communication with and for controlling the one or more motors and the controllable steering mechanism; payload devices for performing tasks attributed to the vehicle; and a platform for providing the capability of adapting the vehicle to perform new tasks in view of evolution in the operating environment, the platform comprising: a casing for mounting on or in the vehicle chassis; a computing device for connection to a selection of payload devices from the payload devices, and a memory for storing computing instructions for controlling operation of the selection of payload devices; a power source for powering at least one of th
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 11, 2012
    Date of Patent: July 12, 2016
    Assignee: Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada as Represented by the Minister of National Defence
    Inventors: David Ryan Erickson, Matthew WJ Ceh, Dale Anderson
  • Patent number: 9387892
    Abstract: A robotic system that can have a body and four flippers is described. Any or all of the flippers can be rotated. The flippers can have self-cleaning tracks. The tracks can be driven or passive. The robotic system can be controlled by, and send audio and/or video to and/or from, a remote operator control module. The methods of using and making the robotic system are also described.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 1, 2014
    Date of Patent: July 12, 2016
    Assignee: RoboteX Inc.
    Inventors: Nathan D. Gettings, Adam M. Gettings, Taylor J. Penn, Edward J. Siler, III, Andrew G. Stevens
  • Patent number: 9365123
    Abstract: In electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE), interruption of charging due to overheating is prevented by adjusting the pulse duty cycle on the control pilot conductor communicating the maximum allowed current level to the electric vehicle, the adjustment being performed whenever the EVSE temperature exceeds a predetermined threshold temperature below the maximum operating temperature as a function of the approach of the temperature to the maximum operating temperature.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 28, 2014
    Date of Patent: June 14, 2016
    Assignee: AEROVIRONMENT, INC.
    Inventor: Albert Joseph Flack
  • Patent number: 9352793
    Abstract: A slide shoe installs on an undercarriage frame assembly of an excavating machine to prevent contact by the lugs of track links when the track buckles. The slide shoe is connected at a top surface to a mounting bar extending between side plates of the frame assembly. The slide shoe may include a front bottom beveled surface extending forward from a bottom surface to a front surface and a rear bottom beveled surface extending rearward from the bottom surface, with the beveled surfaces oriented at upward angles with respect to a line parallel to the bottom surface. A rear upper beveled surface extends rearward from the top surface and is oriented at a downward angle with respect to a line parallel to the top surface and intersects the rear bottom beveled surface at a rear tip of the slide shoe.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 12, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 31, 2016
    Assignee: Caterpillar Global Mining LLC
    Inventors: Jonathan Vitas, Jeanne Yaunke
  • Patent number: 9346497
    Abstract: A system and method for varying the tread width of a vehicle. The system includes extensible shafts coupled to the wheels of the vehicle. Eccentric cylinders rotate out of frictional locking engagement with the extensible shafts to allow the extensible shafts to be extended or refracted to adjust the tread width of the vehicle. The eccentric cylinders rotate into frictional locking engagement with the extensible shafts to reduce undesired travel of the extensible shafts during vehicle operation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 9, 2014
    Date of Patent: May 24, 2016
    Assignee: Hagie Manufacturing Company
    Inventors: Matthew W. Dames, James A. Schaffer
  • Patent number: 9333998
    Abstract: An undercarriage assembly includes a link assembly, including a plurality of laterally spaced pairs of track links pivotally connected to one another at pivot joints to form an endless chain, each laterally spaced pair of track links including a first track link and a second track link with a space between the first track link and the second track link. The undercarriage assembly may also include a first carrier skid projecting upward into the space between the first track link and the second track link of at least one of the laterally spaced pairs of track links.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 25, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 10, 2016
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Timothy A. Thorson, Robert L. Meyer, Gregory J. Kaufmann, Mark S. Diekevers
  • Patent number: 9242523
    Abstract: An apparatus, method and system for utilizing commercial cargo containers is disclosed. The present invention utilizes containers made autonomous by coupling a container with a detachable propulsion system, having a motor and navigation and steering controls, permitting the rapid, controlled, efficient and safe delivery of cargo containers individually by water. Ballast units, deployment systems and control via remote units are also disclosed. The containers, utilizing their inherent buoyancy, can move autonomously according to a preplanned or remote controlled route to a specific location.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 30, 2011
    Date of Patent: January 26, 2016
    Assignee: Aeplog, Inc.
    Inventors: William Teppig, Jr., James Whang
  • Patent number: 9238492
    Abstract: In a chassis (1) for a robot for traveling over smooth, curved or firm surfaces with two track guides that are mirror-symmetric to one another and firmly arranged in the chassis (1) in parallel with the traveling surface and self-contained in each case, along which controllable adhesive modules (14) circulate one behind the other in such a way that their adhesive feet (15), which can be lifted and lowered vis-a-vis the traveling surface, always point towards the traveling surface, the individual adhesive modules (14) have their own controllable lifting and traveling drives in each case.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 6, 2012
    Date of Patent: January 19, 2016
    Assignee: Logistics Wash Holding AG
    Inventor: Anton Niederberger
  • Patent number: 9233724
    Abstract: A hull robot includes a robot body, at least one drive module for maneuvering the robot about the hull, an on-board power source, and a motive subsystem for the drive module powered by the on-board power source. A plurality of permanent magnet elements are associated with the drive module and each are switchable between a non-shunted state when adjacent the hull and a shunted state when not adjacent the hull.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 11, 2013
    Date of Patent: January 12, 2016
    Assignee: Raytheon Company
    Inventors: Howard R. Kornstein, James H Rooney, III, Jeremy C. Hermann, Jonathan T. Longley, Joel N. Harris, Wen-te Wu
  • Patent number: 9056638
    Abstract: A tracked platform, comprising: a main frame having a bottom side and a top side; a plurality of driving wheels mounted on said main frame; a continuous track mounted on said driving wheels; wherein a distance between said continuous track and said bottom side is between 20% and 45% of said driving wheel diameter and said bottom side is essentially concave.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 26, 2013
    Date of Patent: June 16, 2015
    Assignee: Robo-Team Ltd.
    Inventors: Daniel Cantor, Yehonatan Asher, Mor Rotbart, Mark Vaynberg, Yosi Wolf, Elad Levy
  • Patent number: 9027676
    Abstract: A construction machine includes: a lower propelling body; and an upper slewing body which is slewably mounted on the lower propelling body. The upper slewing body includes: an engine room provided with an intake opening and a discharge opening; a duct provided in the engine room so as to communicate with the discharge opening; and an exhaust gas pipe which guides exhaust gas discharged from the engine into the duct. The discharge opening and an outlet of the duct are open downward from the engine room. A portion on a distal end side of the exhaust gas pipe is inserted into the duct. The duct and the exhaust gas pipe are configured to cause the exhaust gas to be mixed with cooled air in the duct and cause the mixture of the exhaust gas and the cooled air to be discharged downward from the discharge opening.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 11, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 12, 2015
    Assignees: Kobelco Construction Machinery Co., Ltd., Kobe Steel, Ltd.
    Inventors: Hajime Nakashima, Masaru Numasawa, Kazuhiro Ueda, Zenzo Yamaguchi, Yasumasa Kimura
  • Patent number: 9027677
    Abstract: The present invention relates to an electric tracklaying gear and the use thereof for a self-propelled working machine, preferably for a construction or earth-moving machine or a surface mining machine such as Surface Miner, which includes an endlessly circulating track chain which can be driven by a crawler drive that is arranged inside the path of circulation of the track chain. It is proposed to associate a cooling device with a closed fluid cooling circuit to the electric motor of the crawler drive arranged in the interior of the path of circulation of the track chain. Due to the high thermal capacity of a suitable cooling fluid such as oil or water-glycol mixture small volumetric flow rates in the fluid cooling circuit and hence small conduit cross-sections are sufficient. On the other hand, due to the closed formation of the fluid cooling circuit any dust input into the crawler drive and also any generation of dust by exhaust air can be avoided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 4, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 12, 2015
    Assignee: Liebherr-Components Biberach GmbH
    Inventors: Klaus Graner, Johann Lis
  • Patent number: 9004200
    Abstract: A robot has a track assembly having tracks configured to move the robot in a first direction and a wheel assembly having wheels configured to move the robot in a second direction orthogonal to the first direction. A toggling assembly switches between the track assembly and the wheel assembly. The robot modules can mate with each other. The robot module has an elongated shaft with a head and a narrow neck. The shaft extends outward from the side of the robot module. A mating robot module has a clamping mechanism with opposing clamps which in an opened position receive the shaft. In a closed position, the clamps define an opening which matches and engages the cross-section of the neck of the elongated shaft. The clamping mechanism has a drive mode to drive the module, a clamping mode for docking, and neutral mode for alignment prior to clamping.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 14, 2015
    Inventors: Pinhas Ben-Tzvi, Paul Marie Moubarak
  • Publication number: 20150096818
    Abstract: The present invention relates to the field of motorized mobility devices for wheelchair users, specifically, portable collapsible motorized mobility devices for wheelchair users that removably engage the frame of a traditional wheelchair allowing for the wheelchair user to have a greater degree of autonomy and to negotiate a variety of terrains otherwise inaccessible to them. The present invention includes a collapsible platform operatively connected to a plurality of motorized rolling tracks and a plurality of securing means to secure the user's traditional wheelchair to the device to allow the wheelchair user a greater degree of autonomy.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 8, 2013
    Publication date: April 9, 2015
    Inventor: Gregory Ewing
  • Patent number: 8985250
    Abstract: A method for managing a drive mode of a tracked vehicle, including reading an output of a sensor and, in response to the output of the sensor, performing a control action to manage the drive mode of the vehicle. An apparatus for managing a drive mode of a tracked vehicle is also provided and comprises a sensor outputting a signal that conveys information that can be used to manage the drive mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 14, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 24, 2015
    Assignee: Camoplast Solideal Inc.
    Inventors: Alain Lussier, Francois Leblanc, Patrice Boily
  • Publication number: 20150068823
    Abstract: This disclosure is related to undercarriages for power machines that have tracks as tractive elements. In some embodiments, an adjustable idler mounting structure for an idler pulley in a track assembly is disclosed. In other embodiments, a roller mounting structure for attaching a roller to a track frame is disclosed. In yet other embodiments, an idler pulley is disclosed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 31, 2013
    Publication date: March 12, 2015
    Inventor: Donovan D. Knutson
  • Patent number: 8973671
    Abstract: The proposed invention is an indoor firefighting robot which has the capability to climb stairs and negotiate several types of floor materials inside buildings. it can withstand very high temperature up to 700 Celsius for as long as 60 minutes using multiple thermal insulation technique. It can communicate with trapped and injured persons inside the fire scene and can send back video and audio information describing the fire environment inside the building to the controller. It has also an insulated container at the rear with oxygen masks to help victims to breathe safely in the smoke environment in the early stage of the firefighting process. Several of these compact firefighting robots can be launched and can work together inside the room or multiple rooms under fire with assistance of remote control unit. The fire robot can avoid obstacles while trying to rescue injured victims.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 4, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 10, 2015
    Assignee: King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology
    Inventors: Khalid A. Alsaif, Byung Soo Kim
  • Publication number: 20150060157
    Abstract: The present disclosure provides a pivot joint about which a track frame pivots relative to a main frame of a work machine. The pivot joint includes a housing having a first cover portion, a second cover portion, and at least one load-bearing rib. The pivot joint also includes a holder configured to be coupled to the main frame and includes a first leg and a second leg. An upper body and a lower body are coupled to one another and are adapted to be coupled to the track frame. The pivot joint further includes a plurality of plates stacked on top of one another. The plurality of plates is positioned between the first leg and second leg of the holder and between the upper body and lower body. The plurality of plates defines a pivot axis of the pivot joint.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 29, 2013
    Publication date: March 5, 2015
    Inventor: Patrick J. Mulligan
  • Patent number: 8955925
    Abstract: The present invention generally provides a wheel replacing traction assembly which uses, for propulsion, a longitudinally extending traction band disposed around and cooperating with a sprocket wheel, a supporting structure, and idler and/or road wheels. The supporting structure of the traction assembly comprises an independent suspension generally replacing the suspension of the vehicle. In use, the suspension of the vehicle is replaced by a rigid member that can be adjustable in length in a further embodiment. The presence of a suspension in the supporting structure of the traction assembly decreases its unsprung mass.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 24, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 17, 2015
    Assignee: Kimpex Inc.
    Inventors: Robert Bessette, Robert Handfield
  • Publication number: 20150040442
    Abstract: A vehicle having a long track or wheel-trail wheel combination on one side and a smaller ground engaging member, such as a short track or wheel on the other. The vehicle has a work attachment on one end of its frame, which is provided clearance on the side of the vehicle with the short track or wheel. A control system is provided to allow an operator to properly control a direction of the vehicle despite the fact that different forces may be required to operate the long track and the short track or wheel.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 12, 2014
    Publication date: February 12, 2015
    Inventors: Cody L. Sewell, Brant Douglas Kukuk
  • Publication number: 20150021108
    Abstract: A robotic system that can have a body and four flippers is described. Any or all of the flippers can be rotated. The flippers can have self-cleaning tracks. The tracks can be driven or passive. The robotic system can be controlled by, and send audio and/or video to and/or from, a remote operator control module. The methods of using and making the robotic system are also described.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 18, 2014
    Publication date: January 22, 2015
    Applicant: ROBOTEX INC.
    Inventors: Nathan D. GETTINGS, Adam M. GETTINGS, Taylor J. PENN, Edward John SILER, III, Andrew G. STEVENS, Michael SCHNEIDER, Jon APPLEBY, Matthew GAWLOWSKI
  • Patent number: 8930022
    Abstract: Methods and systems for determining a status of a component of a robotic device are provided. An example method includes triggering an action of a component of a robotic device, and responsively receiving information associated with the action of the component from a sensor. The method further includes a computing system having a processor and a memory comparing the information with calibration data and determining a status of the component based on the comparison. In some examples, the calibration data may include information derived from data received from a pool of one or more robotic devices utilizing same or similar components as the component. The determined status may include information associated with a performance of the component with respect to performances of same or similar components of the pool of robotic devices. In one example, the robotic device may self-calibrate the component based on the status.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 3, 2013
    Date of Patent: January 6, 2015
    Assignee: Google Inc.
    Inventors: James J. Kuffner, Jr., Ryan Hickman
  • Publication number: 20140367181
    Abstract: A farm implement includes an undercarriage including at least a front crossbeam and a rear crossbeam and first and second dual track propulsion systems. Each dual track propulsion system includes a first track assembly and a second track assembly. Each track assembly includes at least a track frame, at least two wheels and a track belt looped around the wheels. Each track assembly also includes a track support beam coupled to the track frames of the first and second track assemblies. The track support beam is pivotably coupled to the front and rear crossbeams such that said track support beam can pivot about a first axis of rotation parallel to a longitudinal axis of the track support beam, thereby allowing the first track assembly to move generally upwardly and downwardly in the opposite direction of the second track assembly.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 16, 2014
    Publication date: December 18, 2014
    Applicant: Unverferth Manufacturing Company
    Inventor: Michael D. Van Mill
  • Patent number: 8905164
    Abstract: A vehicle has a sacrificial buoyancy structure for attenuating damage to the vehicle body due to an under-vehicle explosion. The vehicle has a primary hull, connector plates disposed along the primary hull, track assemblies mounted to the connector plates, and gussets attaching the connector plates to the primary hull. The connection of the gussets to the primary hull is sacrificial in that a sufficient amount of explosive force detaches the gussets, connector plates and track assemblies from the primary hull, whereby the gussets, connector plates and track assemblies absorb a portion of the explosive force. The vehicle further has cross rods disposed between the connector plates and affixed thereto. The vehicle also has a sacrificial buoyancy hull beneath the primary hull attached to the cross members wherein the buoyancy hull, connector plates and primary hull form an enclosed buoyancy compartment enabling the vehicle to float on water.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 20, 2013
    Date of Patent: December 9, 2014
    Assignee: US Government as Represented by the Secretary of the Army
    Inventors: James A. Capouellez, Bijan Khatib-Shahidi, Leo J. Greene
  • Patent number: 8905174
    Abstract: A traction unit has carrier sections on which suction cups are mounted that are connected to a vacuum source. The carrier units are driven around the frame by a chain driven by a motor. The frame has sections which move relative to one another in order to permit turning control of the traction unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 6, 2014
    Date of Patent: December 9, 2014
    Inventor: Edward T. Saylor, Jr.
  • Publication number: 20140305717
    Abstract: A track-supporting roller assembly, according to the disclosure, for supporting a crawler track of a crawler chassis includes a bearing unit and a track-supporting roller rotatably coupled to the bearing unit. The track-supporting roller includes at least one supporting body made of plastic. The supporting body serves as a damper and prevents a metal-on-metal contact between track chain links of the crawler track and the track-supporting roller. The track-supporting roller assembly according to the disclosure ensures a reduced noise development in the crawler chassis. At the same time, it is possible to also reduce the wear of the track-supporting rollers to a considerable extent.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 10, 2014
    Publication date: October 16, 2014
    Applicant: JOSEPH VOEGELE AG
    Inventors: Christian PAWLIK, Martin BUSCHMANN, Ralf WEISER, Arthur BRAUN
  • Patent number: 8844665
    Abstract: A skid steered light all terrain vehicle (LATV), including two driving units for the wheels or tracks on both sides of the vehicle and a differential steering device with a differential gear. The differential steering device is designed to produce a defined differential speed of the two drive units of the vehicle related to the steering angle of the steering device regardless to the surface condition where the vehicle is driving. The LATV also includes an additional steering drive acting on the differential gear.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 27, 2007
    Date of Patent: September 30, 2014
    Assignee: Swissauto Powersport LLC
    Inventors: Urs Wenger, Beat Kohler, Hans-Rudolf Jenni
  • Publication number: 20140262563
    Abstract: A vehicle wheel assembly is provided which includes a vehicle frame having a first axle, a wheel assembly having a housing with an aperture engaging the first axle and enabling the wheel assembly to pivot in a first plane about a first axis formed by the first axle. A cylindrical member is carried by the housing of the wheel assembly, the cylindrical member and housing are arranged perpendicular to the first axle. A first wheel is pivotably connected to a first portion of the cylindrical member and a second wheel is pivotably connected to a second portion of the cylindrical member. The first wheel and second wheel independently pivot in a second plane about a second axis formed by the cylindrical member. The first axis is arranged perpendicular to the second axis and the first plane is arranged perpendicular to the second plane.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 27, 2014
    Publication date: September 18, 2014
    Applicant: Camoplast Solideal Inc.
    Inventor: Lyn Rosenboom
  • Publication number: 20140251701
    Abstract: A wall-crawling robot or other electroadhesive device can include a battery or other low voltage power source driving a motor that provides a primary device function, a voltage convertor adapted to convert the low voltage to a high voltage using the motor output, and electrodes configured to apply the high voltage to produce an electrostatic force between the electroadhesive device and a foreign substrate. The electrostatic force maintains a current position of the electroadhesive device relative to the foreign substrate, and the voltage convertor is separate from the primary function of the electroadhesive device. The primary function can be a mechanism for locomotion, and the voltage convertor can be a Van de Graff generator, a piezoelectric generator, or an inductive switch generator, any of which are driven in a secondary manner as a result of the motor output.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 22, 2014
    Publication date: September 11, 2014
    Applicant: SRI INTERNATIONAL
    Inventors: Harsha Prahlad, Ronald E. Pelrine, Philip A. Von Guggenberg, Roy D. Kornbluh, Joseph S. Eckerle
  • Publication number: 20140230711
    Abstract: A chassis clings to a ship hull or other ferrous surface by a magnet that moves toward or away from the surface to adjust the magnet air gap and thus the attractive force. The magnet(s) can be the only clinging force or used with other sources such as a suction chamber or fluid jet drive. An internal magnet on a crank mechanism can pivot around a wheel rotation axis inside a wheel body having a non-ferrous traction surface or tire. The magnet gap is least at an angle perpendicular to the surface on which the wheel rests, and larger at an angle oblique to that, for varying the attractive force to two or more levels. The vehicle can be an autonomous hull maintenance device with sensors, controllers and actuators to sense, measure and clean away fouling.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 28, 2014
    Publication date: August 21, 2014
    Applicant: SeaRobotics Corporation
    Inventors: Reginald Benjamin Lovelace, Donald T. Darling, Kenneth W. Holappa
  • Patent number: 8783795
    Abstract: A track assembly comprising an endless track trained about a sprocket and forward and aft sets of idler wheels. A plurality of apertures at the sprocket engage drive lugs that project from an interior track surface. Longitudinal stabilizer arms restrain the idler wheel axles, idler wheels, sprocket support rollers, sprocket and track against lateral movement and tension the track. Overlapping seals are formed at the idler wheels and/or sprocket support rollers. Alternative sprockets having cutouts or pockets that capture different drive lug configurations are also disclosed along with several alternative track tensioning assemblies that rotate in an eccentric fashion to tension the track.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 24, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 22, 2014
    Inventor: Glen Brazier
  • Patent number: 8777337
    Abstract: The present disclosure relates to a chain drive assembly for a work machine, in particular for a crawler-mounted crane or a crawler excavator, having a drive crawler track, at least one displaceably supported sprocket wheel, in particular a guide wheel or idler wheel, and at least one tensioning device to tension the crawler track, wherein at least one abutment is provided which bounds the displacement of the displaceably supported sprocket wheel. The present disclosure further relates to a work machine, in particular to a crawler-mounted crane or a crawler excavator, having such a chain drive assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 21, 2011
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2014
    Assignee: Liebherr-Werk Nenzing GmbH
    Inventors: Peter Juen, Werner Haiden