Having Electric Or Fluid Powered, Actuation Or Release, Of Interlock Patents (Class 24/603)
  • Patent number: 10640229
    Abstract: A ram air turbine actuator having: a housing; at least one solenoid; a latch mechanism operably connected to the at least one solenoid and located within the housing, the latch mechanism in operation moves from a first position to second position when the at least one solenoid is activated; and a hydraulic pressure system operably connected to the latch mechanism, the hydraulic pressure system in operation moves the latch mechanism from the second position to the first position using hydraulic pressure from a hydraulic fluid, when the at least one solenoid is deactivated. The hydraulic pressure system is located within the housing. The hydraulic pressure is relieved when the latch mechanism is in the first position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 5, 2020
    Assignee: HAMILTON SUNDSTRAND CORPORATION
    Inventor: Timothy Scott Konicek
  • Patent number: 10507778
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a coupling-releasing device for airbag actuator cable 1 for vehicles having two or more wheels, said airbag being contained in a wearable jacket or coat. The coupling-releasing device of an airbag actuator cable 1 according to the present invention comprises at least one coupling unit 2,2? adapted to be installed on board a vehicle and actuator means 4,4?,4? operatively connected to said at least one coupling unit 2,2? to operate said coupling unit 2,2? between a first closing configuration adapted to retain said end of said airbag actuator cable and a second opening configuration adapted to release said end of said airbag actuator cable.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 22, 2014
    Date of Patent: December 17, 2019
    Assignee: Quadro Vehicles S.A.
    Inventors: Riccardo Marabese, Marco Moroni
  • Patent number: 10493635
    Abstract: A robot assembly having an exchangeable application device is provided. The application device is connected and exchangeable via an intermediate flange, with the respective construction lengths of the application device and the intermediate flange being matched to each other as a pair such that an exchange of the application device together with the associated and individually matched intermediate flange maintains the tool center point.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 6, 2015
    Date of Patent: December 3, 2019
    Assignee: DÜRR SYSTEMS GMBH
    Inventors: Steffen Sotzny, Alexander Schulz, Mario Heunsch
  • Patent number: 10470528
    Abstract: A seatbelt buckle that includes a housing, an attracting member, an attractable element, and a plate adapted to retain a seatbelt clip within the housing. The member, the element, and the plate may be carried by the housing. The buckle is adapted so that when the member is electronically actuated, the element causes the plate to move toward the member and thereby release the clip.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 25, 2017
    Date of Patent: November 12, 2019
    Assignee: FORD GLOBAL TECHNOLOGIES, LLC
    Inventors: Alvaro Jimenez Hernandez, Oswaldo Perez Barrera
  • Patent number: 9845166
    Abstract: A rail-captive sled for deploying payloads into outer space from a space launch vehicle. The sled is driven by a piston, powered by residual tank pressure from a tank native to the space launch vehicle. The rails are arranged parallel and adapted to a cross-sectional shape of a payload, such as small satellites or cubesats. The sled is a box frame sled with an adaptation to receive the piston. The rails may be attached to the residual pressure tank, with the piston in the residual pressure tank and aligned to the rails, or the pressure may be drawn from tank plumbing to a cylinder specific to the piston. The rails have a releasable closure to avoid unplanned egress of the payload, and the closure locks in the open position once released. The piston may be constrained by a direct constraint or by the closure via the payload.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 1, 2015
    Date of Patent: December 19, 2017
    Assignee: Ventions, LLC
    Inventors: Adam P London, Bevan Gerber-Siff
  • Patent number: 9820534
    Abstract: A wireless quick release buckle. The release buckle includes a male plug fastened into a female socket creating a locked buckle assembly. A wireless signal from a remote control is used to quickly release the male plug from the female socket. The male plug further includes springs, a lock rod and riveted hinges attached to plug arms; the hinges are secured to allow the plug arms to simultaneously move inward. The male plug further includes an actuation mechanism which includes a small motor and a receiver to receive a signal from the remote control which activates the actuation mechanism to thereby quickly release the buckle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 2, 2015
    Date of Patent: November 21, 2017
    Inventor: Todd A Kelley
  • Patent number: 9586557
    Abstract: A seat belt buckle for engaging a latch inserted into buckle and retained in a latched mode until released by depressing a press release button. In a locked mode, with the vehicle ignition switch ON and the latch inserted into buckle, a complementary lock is activated preventing press the release button from effecting release of latch from buckle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 10, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 7, 2017
    Inventors: David John O'Brien, Kenneth Hugh Dibble
  • Publication number: 20150135493
    Abstract: A seat belt buckle for engaging a latch inserted into buckle and retained in a latched mode until released by depressing a press release button. In a locked mode, with the vehicle ignition switch ON and the latch inserted into buckle, a complementary lock is activated preventing press the release button from effecting release of latch from buckle.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 10, 2012
    Publication date: May 21, 2015
    Inventors: David John O'brien, Kenneth Hugh Dibble
  • Patent number: 8918968
    Abstract: A clamp has a housing with a piston assembly positioned in the housing. A piston rod lock assembly is coupled with the piston rod and is positioned in the housing. A clamping arm is coupled with the piston rod and moves from a position parallel to the piston rod, when in an unclamped position, to a position substantially perpendicular to the piston rod, when in a clamping position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 11, 2010
    Date of Patent: December 30, 2014
    Assignee: Delaware Capital Formation, Inc.
    Inventor: Matthew Rentz
  • Publication number: 20140223703
    Abstract: The invention provides an electronic assembly that disengages an automobile seat belt lock following an impact. The Seatbelt Safety Release device is installed directly into the seatbelt locking bay and is equipped to automatically release the belt five seconds after impact by means of sensors located in the bumper and fenders of an automobile which send a signal to a receiver activating a solenoid to disengage the seatbelt lock upon sensing an impact.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 31, 2014
    Publication date: August 14, 2014
    Inventor: Albert Ammons
  • Patent number: 8695182
    Abstract: Disclosed is a retaining mechanism for a buckle and buckle release system. The buckle release system is locked or unlocked via a manual release lever. A locking lever overlies the manual release lever and protects against the unintended release of the buckle. The retaining mechanism provides a further degree of protection. It includes a retaining bar that is pivotally interconnected to the locking lever. The retaining mechanism has a closed orientation wherein the locking lever cannot be actuated. The retaining mechanism can only be opened via a two part motion. First, the retaining bar is pivoted with respect to the locking lever. Second, the retaining bar and the locking lever are rotated together to permit access to the underlying manual release lever.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 15, 2010
    Date of Patent: April 15, 2014
    Assignee: Carleton Life Support Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Robert E. Clark, Elizabeth Rinehart, Nick Pandelos
  • Patent number: 8631545
    Abstract: Disclosed is a rotary buckle assembly for harness. The assembly is adapted to selectively secure or eject the tongue plates for the straps of the harness. The buckle assembly includes a mechanism for automatically releasing the harness in the presence of water.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 2013
    Date of Patent: January 21, 2014
    Assignee: Carleton Life Support Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Brian Ford, Kevin Holler
  • Patent number: 8539652
    Abstract: Latching fastener with male and female parts configured to separatably latch. Several embodiments described, including one where the male part has a latch coupler, the female part has a bistable actuator and a plurality of latches with lower latch levers. To fasten, the latching fastener is configured so that when the female part is pressed down over the male part, the lower latch levers contact the latch coupler, the latch coupler pushes up the lower latch levers, causing rotation of the latches into a latched position. To separate, the latching fastener is configured so that in response to an actuator member of the bistable actuator moving from an upper to a lower stable position, the actuator member pushes down the lower latch levers, the lower latch levers rotate the latches to an unlatched position, and the lower latch levers push down the latch coupler, separating the male and female parts.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 2011
    Date of Patent: September 24, 2013
    Inventor: Ralph Robin Richardson
  • Patent number: 8490256
    Abstract: Arrangement with one or more buckles, wherein each buckle has at least two buckle parts that are detachably connectable with each other, at least one release mechanism, actuatable by means of pressure for detaching the buckle parts from each other, and at least one pressure accumulator connected via at least one pressure line with the buckle(s) for actuating the release mechanism of the buckle, and with at least one release valve for opening a pressure connection guided via the pressure line between the pressure accumulator and the buckle or the buckles, and with at least one trigger for actuating the release valve, wherein the arrangement has a pump for the build-up of pressure in the pressure accumulator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 23, 2013
    Inventors: Paul Carter, Andreas Hoertnagl
  • Patent number: 8375530
    Abstract: A buckle assembly for a vehicle includes a seat belt tongue and a seat belt buckle with a blocking mechanism and a manual release button. The blocking mechanism is configured to latch the tongue in the buckle. The buckle assembly further includes a remote buckle release mechanism, including a buckle release cable and a module operably connected to the cable. The module is configured to pull the cable to release the blocking mechanism to thereby release the seat belt tongue from the buckle. The buckle assembly is also configured to be actuated by an occupant via the manual release button on the buckle. The remote buckle release mechanism does not interfere with operation of the manual release button. The remote buckle release mechanism may also be configured to automatically release the buckles a predetermined time after an airbag deployment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 19, 2013
    Assignee: TK Holdings Inc.
    Inventors: Frank Glenn Walega, Thomas Grzybowski, Brandon Scott Marriott, Nicklaus John Pelliccia
  • Patent number: 8327511
    Abstract: The fixing device for the assembly and quick release of objects includes a holding element that can be fixed to one of the objects to be held together, and a retaining device that can be fixed to another one of the objects to be held together and engage the holding element. The retaining device includes a plurality of separable parts that can be held closely together around the holding element by a disengageable pre-tensioning device. The separable parts are connected to each other by an elastically deformable mechanisms which stretch to in order to draw the parts located at a distance from each other together, while the pre-tensioning device includes a link wound around the parts in order to keep them closed on the holding element, at least one end of the link being fixed to a tensioning mechanism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 15, 2009
    Date of Patent: December 11, 2012
    Assignee: Conseil et Technique
    Inventor: Guy Valembois
  • Publication number: 20120279028
    Abstract: A buckle assembly for a vehicle comprises a seat belt tongue and a seat belt buckle with a blocking mechanism and a manual release button. The blocking mechanism is configured to latch the tongue in the buckle. The buckle assembly further comprises a remote buckle release mechanism, including a buckle release cable and a module operably connected to the cable. The module is configured to pull the cable to release the blocking mechanism to thereby release the seat belt tongue from the buckle. The buckle assembly is also configured to be actuated by an occupant via the manual release button on the buckle. The remote buckle release mechanism does not interfere with operation of the manual release button. The remote buckle release mechanism may also be configured to automatically release the buckles a predetermined time after an airbag deployment.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 16, 2012
    Publication date: November 8, 2012
    Inventors: Frank Glenn WALEGA, Thomas Grzybowski, Brandon Scott Marriott, Nicklaus John Pelliccia
  • Patent number: 8240012
    Abstract: A buckle assembly for a vehicle includes a seat belt tongue, a seat belt buckle with a blocking mechanism and a manual release button, and a remote buckle release mechanism. The blocking mechanism is configured to latch the tongue in the buckle. The remote buckle release mechanism includes a buckle release cable and a motor module configured to pull the cable to release the blocking mechanism to thereby release the seat belt tongue from the buckle. The buckle assembly is also configured to be actuated by an occupant via the manual release button on the buckle. The remote buckle release mechanism does not interfere with the operation of the manual release button. The remote buckle release mechanism may also be configured to automatically release the buckle a predetermined time after an airbag deployment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 31, 2009
    Date of Patent: August 14, 2012
    Assignee: TK Holdings Inc.
    Inventors: Frank Glenn Walega, Thomas Grzybowski, Brandon Scott Marriott, Nicklaus John Pelliccia
  • Patent number: 8196377
    Abstract: A safety release for emergency separation from an animal of an affixed harness includes a structural body having formed integral therewith a mechanism for securing the body to a first portion of a riding harness, such as, for example, a bull rope, and a selectively releasable shackle assembly. The shackle assembly is structurally adapted for affixation to a second portion of the riding harness. The mechanism for securing the body to the riding harness comprises a preferably arcuate channel formed in a first, channel end of the body, the channel end of the body being generally opposite a shackle end. The shackle end is adapted to selective receive and secure the shackle assembly to the body.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 4, 2010
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2012
    Inventors: William Barnes Putty, James D. Benner, Jr.
  • Publication number: 20110126387
    Abstract: Arrangement with one or more buckles, wherein each buckle has at least two buckle parts that are detachably connectable with each other, at least one release mechanism, actuatable by means of pressure for detaching the buckle parts from each other, and at least one pressure accumulator connected via at least one pressure line with the buckle(s) for actuating the release mechanism of the buckle, and with at least one release valve for opening a pressure connection guided via the pressure line between the pressure accumulator and the buckle or the buckles, and with at least one trigger for actuating the release valve, wherein the arrangement has a pump for the build-up of pressure in the pressure accumulator.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 22, 2010
    Publication date: June 2, 2011
    Inventors: Paul Carter, Andreas HOERTNAGL
  • Publication number: 20110113605
    Abstract: A device for the restraint and release of a deployable body mounted on a support structure, the device being operable between a stowed condition and a released condition, and having: a pair of subassemblies each for being attached to either the deployable body or the support structure, these subassemblies having mating surfaces which interlock with one another in the stowed condition to substantially prevent lateral movement of the deployable body relative to the support structure; a releasable tensioned element which is connected to both of the subassemblies exerting a compressive pre-load action on the said subassemblies that keep them together; a force measurement system that allows monitoring the cited compressive pre-load action applied; a releasing device for releasing the cited pre-load, allowing the free separation of the subassemblies; further being provided with a tensioning mechanism embedded in the device such that it applies a substantially pure-tension pre-load to the releasable tensioned ele
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 21, 2010
    Publication date: May 19, 2011
    Applicant: EADS CASA Espacio S.L.
    Inventor: Miguel Angel Plaza Baonza
  • Patent number: 7941902
    Abstract: The safety belt release mechanism includes a sensor component and a belt release component. The sensor component is installed at a low point within the vehicle. The sensor component contains a water-soluble material that retains a spring in its compressed state so long as the water-soluble material is dry. If the vehicle is immersed in water, the water-soluble material dissolves, releasing the spring. The spring drives a pin into the end of a pressurized gas (e.g., CO2) cartridge, releasing the gas therein. The gas passes through a tube to the belt release component installed upon a belt latch mechanism to drive a pin from an engaged position in the latch to release the latch. While one such assembly is disclosed herein, it is most preferred that one such assembly be installed along each safety belt assembly of the vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 19, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 17, 2011
    Inventors: Julien Edwin Roy, Douglas Clifton Cruthirds
  • Publication number: 20100186203
    Abstract: A system releases seat belts on school buses electronically via driver command or automatically by an inertia switch and electronic timer that then activate solenoids at each seat. This system operates on 12V direct current furnished by the load side of the bus's ignition switch. The system also has a level sensor that prohibits the system from energizing the solenoids when a bus equipped with the system does not have an upright position. The system provides a switch under each seat that notifies the driver when a child occupies it or a light at the dashboard. A second light flashes to notify the driver when the clip engages a buckle of each seat on a bus. The system allows for normal daily usage of seat belts and simultaneously releases the seat belts in an emergency.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 6, 2010
    Publication date: July 29, 2010
    Inventor: GARY D. THOMAS
  • Publication number: 20100101060
    Abstract: A buckle assembly for a vehicle comprises a seat belt tongue and a seat belt buckle with a blocking mechanism and a manual release button. The blocking mechanism is configured to latch the tongue in the buckle. The buckle assembly further comprises a remote buckle release mechanism, including a buckle release cable and a motor module operably connected to the cable. The motor module is configured to pull the cable to release the blocking mechanism to thereby release the seat belt tongue from the buckle. The buckle assembly is also configured to be actuated by an occupant via the manual release button on the buckle. The remote buckle release mechanism does not interfere with operation of the manual release button. The remote buckle release mechanism may also be configured to automatically release the buckles a predetermined time after an airbag deployment.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 31, 2009
    Publication date: April 29, 2010
    Inventors: Frank Glenn Walega, Thomas Grzybowski, Brandon Scott Marriott, Nicklaus John Pelliccia
  • Patent number: 7610783
    Abstract: The invention discloses several types of fastener, fastening systems, fastener assemblies and related areas. In particular, the invention discloses a releasable fastening system (150) which has a pin (152) with a locking cavity (163). The pin is intended for insertion in an aperture (154). A locking means (158, 160) engages the locking cavity (163) of the pin (152) when the pin (152) is received in the aperture (154). The system (150) also includes unlocking means (162) which includes material adapted to contract when activated. When a material contracts, engagement means (158) included in the locking means (158, 160), disengage the locking cavity (154).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 17, 2004
    Date of Patent: November 3, 2009
    Assignee: Telezygology Inc.
    Inventors: Dickory Rudduck, Lachlan Richard Goldspink, Nicholas Anthony Ng, Lee David Blattmann, Joshua Robert Park, Christopher Gerarh Kelliher, Edward David Farren-Price
  • Publication number: 20090139069
    Abstract: The automatic seat belt release system will energize solenoids mounted on the female portion of the seat belt latches. The solenoids will push the release button on the female seat belt latch via the solenoid and release the belt automatically. In addition, the individual seat belt can manually opened by the children in each seat in the school bus for normal day to day operation.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 3, 2007
    Publication date: June 4, 2009
    Inventor: Gary D. Thomas
  • Publication number: 20090031541
    Abstract: A passenger restraint system includes a seatbelt buckle mechanism which includes a tongue having an aperture for receiving the belt and a pair of opposing recesses formed in an opposite edge of the tongue. A housing is provided for receiving a tongue and a latch is pivotably attached to the housing for locking the tongue to the housing. A retainer is provided for releasably locking the housing and latch and a solenoid is disposed in an operative relationship with the retainer for moving the retainer out of engagement with the latch in a remote manner. Apertures in the housing and latch enable mechanical access to the retainer for moving the retainer out of engagement with the latch independent of this solenoid if desired or necessary.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 22, 2008
    Publication date: February 5, 2009
    Inventor: Edward M. Pribonic
  • Publication number: 20080141505
    Abstract: A seat belt buckle for seat belts has a housing, an opening for inserting a seat belt tongue, a locking device for locking the seat belt tongue, and a release device for releasing the seat belt tongue from the lock. A sensor device electrically senses whether the seat belt tongue is locked, wherein the sensor device has a switch arrangement which can be activated by the seat belt tongue. The switch arrangement has an electrically conductive snap-action plate that can be moved between a first switched position and a second switched position. A mechanical activation device transmits a force exerted on the seat belt tongue during the insertion of the seat belt tongue onto the snap-action plate in order to move the snap-action plate from the first switched position into the second switched position. As a result, an electrical contact element is closed or opened.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 21, 2008
    Publication date: June 19, 2008
    Applicant: ROLF PRETTL
    Inventor: Peter BORST
  • Patent number: 7162978
    Abstract: A retractable leash assembly structured to facilitate quick connection of at least one animal to at least one lead interconnected at a proximal end to an activation assembly and to a quick connect coupling assembly at a distal end. The quick connect coupling assembly includes an electromotive release mechanism structured to permit removable connection of a collar, harness, or similar attachment assembly to the distal end of the lead. Upon actuation of the electromotive release mechanism, the components of the quick release coupling assembly are disposed into a release orientation such that the components are detached from one another. The quick connect coupling assembly may also include an electromotive propulsion mechanism structured to selectively impart a separation force between the components of the coupling assembly to facilitate detachment of the components from one another.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 26, 2004
    Date of Patent: January 16, 2007
    Assignee: DeBien Products, Inc.
    Inventor: Humberto Debien
  • Patent number: 7144037
    Abstract: A safety device is disclosed which is configured to be actuated by the supply of gas. The safety device incorporates an outlet vent pipe which is sealed by a releasable clip. The releasable clip has a first elongate main gripping element and a second elongate moveable gripping element. The main gripping element has a retaining element to retain one end of the moveable gripping element. The safety device also includes an arrangement to retain the other end of the moveable gripping element in a predetermined position such that the clip may grip a fabric tube or the like between the main gripping element and the moveable gripping element. A mechanism is provided which responds to a supply signal to move the other end of the moveable gripping element to release the grip.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 2004
    Date of Patent: December 5, 2006
    Assignee: Autoliv Development AB
    Inventors: Peter Qvint, Mats Karlin
  • Patent number: 7013538
    Abstract: A releasable fastening system for retaining two surfaces at each other or disengaging the two surfaces from each other comprises a first electrode disposed at a first surface, a second electrode disposed at a second surface, and a polymer film disposed between the first and second electrode, and an electrolyte disposed in electrical communication with the first electrode, the polymer film, and the second electrode. A volume of the polymer film is controllably variable to cause the retention of the first surface at the second surface. A method of releasably fastening adjacently-positioned surfaces comprises disposing a first electrode at a first surface, disposing a second electrode at a second surface, and increasing the volume of an electrolyte disposed in electrical communication with the first electrode and the second electrode to cause the retention of the first surface at the second surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 5, 2003
    Date of Patent: March 21, 2006
    Assignee: General Motors Corporation
    Inventors: Alan Lampe Browne, William Barvosa-Carter, Nancy L. Johnson, Leslie A. Momoda, Thomas B. Stanford
  • Patent number: 6973701
    Abstract: A releasable fastening system comprises a knob portion comprising a knob element, a cavity portion comprising a cavity configured to receive the knob element, and an ionic polymer metal composite actuator disposed at the knob element. The ionic polymer metal composite actuator is operable to mechanically interlock the knob element with the cavity. A method of operating a releasable fastening system comprises contacting a knob portion with a cavity portion to form a releasable engagement, wherein the knob portion comprises a knob element disposed on a first support, and wherein the cavity portion comprises a cavity disposed at a second support; maintaining constant shear forces and constant pull-off forces between the knob portion and the cavity portion; and activating an ionic polymer metal composite actuator at the knob portion to facilitate the interlocking of the knob portion and the cavity portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 7, 2003
    Date of Patent: December 13, 2005
    Assignee: General Motors Corporation
    Inventors: Leslie A. Momoda, Alan Lampe Browne, Nancy L. Johnson, William Barvosa-Carter, Thomas B. Stanford
  • Patent number: 6763557
    Abstract: A buckle including a buckle release system for releasing a parachute canopy from a harness. The buckle comprises a lock lever, a manual release lever, a spring biased catch, and a latch positioned in a frame. A slide member is provided. The slide member operates to hold the latch in the locked position, and prevents a buckling member from being released from the buckle when the buckle is in a locked position. In the open position, a spring moves the slide and the buckling member out of the frame, thereby releasing the buckling member from the buckle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 1, 2003
    Date of Patent: July 20, 2004
    Assignee: Conax Florida Corporation
    Inventors: Byron K. Steiff, Robert Clark
  • Patent number: 6357091
    Abstract: An apparatus includes a lockable element (16) and a buckle (12). The buckle (12) includes a base (28) that defines a passage (32) into which the lockable element (16) is insertable, and a latch (42) movable to lock the lockable element against movement in the passage. The buckle (12) also includes a sensor (60) and a magnet (62). The magnet (62) is movable from a first position to a second position when the lockable element (16) is inserted into the passage (32). The magnet (62) creates a magnetic field of a first flux density acting on the sensor (60) to cause the sensor to provide a first output when the magnet is in the first position. The magnet (62) creates a magnetic field of a second flux density, different than the first flux density, acting on the sensor (60) to cause the sensor to provide a second output, different than the first output, when the magnet is in the second position. The magnet (62) has an interference fit with one of the lockable element (16) and the buckle (12).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 1999
    Date of Patent: March 19, 2002
    Assignee: TRW Vehicle Safety Systems Inc.
    Inventor: Scott D. Devereaux
  • Patent number: 6205629
    Abstract: A ferromagnetic latch (42) is moveable from a first position to a second position in which the latch locks a lockable element (16) against movement in a passage (22) in a buckle (12). The buckle (12) also includes a switch (60) which includes a ferromagnetic support member (62). The switch (60) also includes a ferromagnetic flux collecting member (70), a Hall effect device (72), and a magnet (74) fixed to the support member (62). The magnet (74) creates a magnetic field that is conducted by the flux collecting member (70) and the latch (42) away from the Hall effect device (72) when the latch is in the first position. The magnetic field is conducted by the flux collecting member (70) and the support member (62) towards the Hall effect device (72) when the latch (42) is moved away from the switch (60) to the second position. The Hall effect device (72) senses a first flux density when the latch (42) is in the first position which causes the Hall effect device (72) to provide a first output signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 1999
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2001
    Assignee: TRW Inc.
    Inventor: David L. Becker
  • Patent number: 6123166
    Abstract: A buckle release apparatus (42) includes a seat belt buckle (36) which may be mounted in a vehicle. The buckle (36) is operable to receive and retain a buckle tongue (28) within the buckle (36). A sensor (56), which senses a vehicle emergency condition, is electrically connected with a pyrotechnic device (58). The sensor (56) is operable to effect actuation of the pyrotechnic device (58). The pyrotechnic device (58), when actuated, effects operation of the buckle (36) to release the buckle tongue (28) retained within the buckle (36).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 28, 1998
    Date of Patent: September 26, 2000
    Assignee: TRW Vehicle Safety Systems Inc.
    Inventor: Lawrence J. Verellen
  • Patent number: 6000110
    Abstract: A buckle for safety belts in vehicles comprises a load bearing housing in which an insertion path for receiving an insert tongue is formed. A movable latch is mounted on the housing. A casing is provided which surrounds the housing. The casing is provided with an opening at a rear side thereof remote from the insertion path. Within the casing at least one electric switch is arranged. This switch is fitted through the opening in the buckle in an already assembled condition thereof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 24, 1996
    Date of Patent: December 14, 1999
    Assignee: TRW Occupant Restraint Systems GmbH
    Inventor: Franz Wier
  • Patent number: 5970587
    Abstract: A buckle for receiving and locking a tongue connected to a vehicle safety belt, the buckle comprising: a locking element for locking a tongue to the buckle; a sensor to sense locking of the tongue to the buckle; and an indicator arrangement actuable by an output of the sensor to indicate whether the buckle is in a locked or an unlocked condition.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 11, 1997
    Date of Patent: October 26, 1999
    Assignee: Autoliv Development AB
    Inventor: Matthew J. Knox
  • Patent number: 5941337
    Abstract: A seat belt arrangement selectively enables vehicle drivability when a buckle member carried on a restraint belt is engaged with a mounted buckle receiving mechanism. The buckle member is removable from the restraint belt, and may be hidden or carried on the person of the user when leaving the vehicle unattended, thereby providing a vehicle anti-theft feature. The detachable buckle plate member is advantageously keyed to the buckle receiving mechanism such that only a particular buckle plate member will operate a correspondingly keyed receiving mechanism with which it is brought into engagement. Such keying may be provided mechanically in the form of a special shape such as employed in the construction of standard keys, or may employ other recognizable identifying factors, such as digitized, audio, optical or other discernable discrete data communicated between the plate and locking members.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 24, 1999
    Inventors: Julio Castellanos, Marie-Paule Castellanos
  • Patent number: 5857246
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a liquid activated buckle release mechanism for safety belt harnesses and restraint devices used in moving crafts such as airplanes, boats, land based vehicles and the like. The buckle includes a latch for receiving and retaining one end of a safety belt within the buckle, a release mechanism for releasing the latch in order to free the belt, a liquid detection circuit for detecting the presence of liquid and controlling the operation of the release mechanism when liquid is detected.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 6, 1995
    Date of Patent: January 12, 1999
    Assignee: Stratus Systems, Inc.
    Inventor: Steven A. Becnel
  • Patent number: 5857247
    Abstract: A buckle system for release of a crew member's harness from a parachute. The buckle system has a frame which holds the harness. A tang assembly holds the parachute strap and snaps into the frame. The tang assembly is held by a latch which pivots between a closed position and an open position. The latch in turn is held by a lever which includes a cavity which holds the free end of the latch. When the lever is moved to an open position the latch is released. The latch has a spring which urges it into an open position. The result is a buckle system which can be opened with very little force being exerted on the lever. The lever is covered by a spring loaded cover. An automatic release is provided wherein a pyrotechnic charge opens the cover and lever and thereby releases the latch.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 1997
    Date of Patent: January 12, 1999
    Assignee: H. Koch & Son, Inc.
    Inventors: James C. Warrick, Jason L. Bulle
  • Patent number: 5815895
    Abstract: A latch system for joining a first strap section or section of flexible support to a second strap section or section of flexible support. Attached to the second strap section is a rod that is adapted for insertion into the latch system, and for releasing the second strap section in response to a control signal. The latch system also includes a support housing with a cross member and an attachment for attaching the housing to the first strap. The system also includes a crank shaft with a longitudinal axis and which is rotatably supported within the support housing. The crank shaft also includes a generally slotted opening that is substantially parallel to its longitudinal axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 7, 1996
    Date of Patent: October 6, 1998
    Inventors: Bradley O. Carlson, Brian L. Griffis
  • Patent number: 5758393
    Abstract: A buckle for safety belts in vehicles comprises a load bearing housing in which an insertion path for receiving an insert tongue is formed. A movable latch is mounted on the housing. A casing is provided which surrounds the housing. The casing is provided with an opening at a rear side thereof remote from the insertion path. Within the casing at least one electric switch is arranged. This switch is fitted through the opening in the buckle in an already assembled condition thereof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 24, 1996
    Date of Patent: June 2, 1998
    Assignee: TRW Occupant Restraint Systems GmbH
    Inventor: Franz Wier
  • Patent number: 5749130
    Abstract: A locking seat belt buckle assembly is configured for placement and operation within a standard seat belt buckle and tongue. In one embodiment, the seat belt buckle includes a latch that engages the tongue and a latch release plate to disengage the latch from the tongue upon depression of the release plate. The assembly includes a stop block that is movable by way of an actuator, such as a reversible micro-motor, to a position beneath the release plate to prevent depression of the latch plate. A pair of limit switches disconnect the motor from a power supply when contacted by the stop block at opposite ends of its travel. An indicator light is provided that is illuminated when the stop block is in position beneath the latch release plate. In one aspect, the motor is mounted within a housing with a spring disposed between the motor and the housing to bias the motor toward the release plate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 4, 1996
    Date of Patent: May 12, 1998
    Inventors: Paul D. Bilyeu, Felicia M. Hinant, James H. Hobby, Donel A. Hoffman
  • Patent number: 5742986
    Abstract: A seat belt buckle (12) includes a latch mechanism (20) and a Hall effect assembly (26). The latch mechanism (20) releasably interlocks with a seat belt tongue (16). The Hall effect assembly (26) has a first output if the seat belt tongue (16) is not interlocked with the latch mechanism (20) and has a second, different output if the seat belt tongue (16) is interlocked with the latch mechanism (20). The output of the Hall effect assembly (26) thus indicates whether or not the seat belt tongue (16) is interlocked with the latch mechanism (20).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 13, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 28, 1998
    Assignees: TRW Inc., TRW Vehicle Safety Systems Inc.
    Inventors: Steven G. Corrion, Scott B. Gentry, Brian K. Blackburn
  • Patent number: 5692275
    Abstract: A remotely actuatable clasp responsive to photonic energy beams is provided. The clasp has a housing that defines a longitudinally extending latch cavity with a latch window. A photonic receiver circuit converts received photonic energy into an electrical signal. A latch member with a first end and a second end. The first end of the latch member has a latch head insertable into the latch cavity to the latch window. The second end of the latch member has a first attach point attachable to the garment. An electromechanical latch is electrically connected to said photonic receiver circuit and pivotally mounted to the housing. The electromechanical latch is engageable in a first position with the latch head through the latch window. The electromechanical latch is disengagable in a second position from the latch head in response to the electrical signal from the receiver circuit. A second attach point is positioned on the housing and is attachable to the garment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 1996
    Date of Patent: December 2, 1997
    Assignee: Cyberstrip, Inc.
    Inventors: Charles H. Freeman, Morgan H. Dunn
  • Patent number: 5435046
    Abstract: A tongue includes a tongue base which can project therefrom. A solenoid at the forward end of a buckle attracts a tongue face plate. After the tongue base is inserted into the buckle, the tongue base is drawn deep into the buckle by the pawl portion of a hook. A latch plate is engaged with a hole at the forward end of the tongue plate, and a lock plate slides under pegs of a base, thereby latching the tongue base. The lock plate and the hook are advanced and withdrawn by a pinion which is rotated by a stepper motor, and when the pinion is reversely rotated, the tongue base is released from the latched state, and the tongue base is pushed out of the buckle by an ejector, thereby separating the tongue from the buckle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 21, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 25, 1995
    Assignee: Takata Corporation
    Inventors: Kiyotaka Miyauchi, Tetsuya Hamaue
  • Patent number: 5375304
    Abstract: An automatic buckling device comprising a tongue attached to a seat belt and a buckle for latching the tongue. The tongue includes a cover case, a tongue plate which can project from the forward end of the cover case, a spring for urging the tongue plate in the direction in which the tongue plate is withdrawn into the cover case, and a recessed portion provided on the surface of the tongue plate at the forward end thereof so as to engage a ball.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 18, 1994
    Date of Patent: December 27, 1994
    Assignee: Takata Corporation
    Inventors: Kiyotaka Miyauchi, Tetsuya Hamaue
  • Patent number: 5359756
    Abstract: A tongue includes a tongue base which can project therefrom and a tongue face plate at the forward end thereof. A buckle includes a solenoid provided at the forward end so as to attract the tongue face plate. After the tongue base is inserted into the buckle, the tongue base is drawn deep into the buckle by the pawl portion of a long hook, rocking arms are engaged with the notched portions of the tounge base, and a latch plate comes into close contact with the claw portions of the rocking arms at the back sides of the claw portions, thereby latching the tongue base. The latch plate and the long hook are advanced and withdrawn by a pinion which is rotated by a stepper motor. When the pinion is reversely rotated, the tongue base is released from the latched state, and the tongue base is pushed out of the buckle by an ejector, thereby separating the tongue from the buckle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 18, 1994
    Date of Patent: November 1, 1994
    Assignee: Takata Corporation
    Inventors: Kiyotaka Miyauchi, Tetsuya Hamaue
  • Patent number: 5353482
    Abstract: A releasable latching apparatus having a monitoring means for electrically indicating whether the latching apparatus is in the engaged or disengaged positions. The apparatus includes a main housing with a tab member selectively engageable therewith. A trigger member is pivotally mounted upon a trigger pin which in turn is pivotally mounted in the main housing. The trigger member is selectively engageable with the tab member for engaging or releasing thereof with respect to the main housing. An ejector member is movable between an engagement position and a released position responsive to whether the tab member is engaged to the trigger member. The ejector includes an ejector pin extending outwardly therefrom through an ejector pin opening defined in the main housing to selectively contact the switch lever of a switch which is affixedly secured to the exterior of the main housing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 31, 1993
    Date of Patent: October 11, 1994
    Inventors: Theodore Ziaylek, Jr., Michael P. Ziaylek