Inflatable Patents (Class 244/100A)
  • Patent number: 6158691
    Abstract: A process for preventing overturning during the landing of an aircraft or spacecraft using an air bag type landing impact-damping system, which is inflated with gas before the landing and from which gas is discharged via discharge valves during the landing. The process includes using as the air bag type landing impact-damping system a system that is divided into a plurality of chambers that can be inflated with gas and from which gas is released independently from one another, and that a pressure difference is generated during landing in the individual chambers of the air bag type landing impact-damping system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 1998
    Date of Patent: December 12, 2000
    Assignee: DaimlerChrysler AG
    Inventors: Stefan Menne, Yasar Ovadya, Bernhard Schmidt, Adalbert Wagner
  • Patent number: 6042051
    Abstract: An aircraft landing assist system comprised of a preformed and prepacked parawing-bag and fuselage housing and deployment is described. In case of emergency the system can be deployed automatically, manually, or by means of explosive charge. After deployment the open doors and the self inflated parawing-bag catch the on rushing air forcing the nose of the aircraft up. This helps increase the glide ratio and decrease the velocity of the aircraft. Control of the aircraft remains through the use of the upper wing surfaces and tail assembly. Upon landing the system helps extend the time of, and surface area of impact. Drains are provided in the aft section of the parawing-bag(s) to release rain or snow.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 10, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 28, 2000
    Assignee: Jon C. Hagerty
    Inventor: Jon C. Hagerty
  • Patent number: 6029932
    Abstract: The detonating valve for releasing openings of air bag landing systems for aircraft and spacecraft has a wedge type charge and a cover closing the opening, which cover is shorn off during the ignition of the wedge type charge. The cover is a thin-walled disk or a membrane, which is integrated either within the aircraft and spacecraft or within the air bag landing system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 1998
    Date of Patent: February 29, 2000
    Assignee: DaimlerChrysler AG
    Inventor: Adalbert Wagner
  • Patent number: 5944282
    Abstract: A landing shock absorber for aircraft including brake parachutes and comprising a landing cushion for creating damping upon impact of the aircraft, the landing cushion having an inflatable inner bag including a pressure-tight, plastically deformable sheet. The inner bag defines a plurality of inflatable air chambers, and at least one opening between the chambers for establishing communication between the chambers. The landing cushion further includes an outer bag enclosing the inner bag and having a greater internal volume that an internal volume of the inflatable air chambers of the inner bag when the chambers are inflated, the outer bag including a tear-resistant fabric defining a plurality of throttle openings therein.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 15, 1997
    Date of Patent: August 31, 1999
    Inventors: Hans-Juergen Clausnitzer, Johann Schweren
  • Patent number: 5909857
    Abstract: The hybrid dirigible craft belongs to the category of flying vehicles which use an air cushion and take off and land at any type of airfield. The air of the invention is to design an improved dirigible craft capable of taking off from and landing on water and low-load bearing surfaces.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 8, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 8, 1999
    Inventor: Alexandr Iosifovich Filimonov
  • Patent number: 5873545
    Abstract: A combined flying machine comprises a fuselage (1) in the form of a central hick wing with a vertical open tunnel (2), in which there is mounted a lifting rotor (4). Said machine is also provided with outboard wings and a tail unit (8). The machine is equipped with a landing device on an air cushion (19) that surrounds an outlet from the tunnel. A power plant of said flying machine comprises two engine modules (13), disposed from two sides of the tunnel (2) and connected with the lifting rotor (4) and the propulsion propellers (12). The area of the tunnel cross-section in the plane of the lifting rotor rotation amounts to 0.3 to 0.8 of the area of the landing device air cushion, which ensures a safe landing of the flying machine on an unprepared landing site even with a failure of one of the engine modules.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 17, 1995
    Date of Patent: February 23, 1999
    Assignee: Tovarischestvo S Ogranichennoi Otvetstvennostju Kompania "Inalet"
    Inventors: Viktor Mikhailovich Kapin, Valery Andreevich Ivchin, Nikolai Serafimovich Pavlenko, Eygeny Lyovich Pogrebinsky, Viktor Vladimirovich Subbotin, Oleg Nikolaevich Maiorov
  • Patent number: 5765778
    Abstract: An aircraft which is capable of safely landing during an emergency landing is disclosed. The aircraft has a safety device which includes a plurality of auxiliary engines. Each auxiliary engine is movable so as to vary the thrust axis in a range between a substantially horizontal direction and a substantially vertical direction. The safety device also includes a plurality of gas bags contracted and disposed at a lower portion of the aircraft body so as to be instantly expandable at a necessary time, such as during an emergency landing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 15, 1996
    Date of Patent: June 16, 1998
    Inventor: Ayako Otsuka
  • Patent number: 5692706
    Abstract: An improved step reinforcement system is disclosed for use in inflatable or pneumatic aircraft floats such as are employed in waterborne and amphibious aircraft. The float itself comprises a continuous tubular shell having spaced apart upper and lower walls interconnected by spaced apart first and second side walls to define an interior space within the float. The lower wall further includes a step extending continuously and transversely between vertically spaced fore and aft portions thereof. According to the improvement of the present invention, at least one inflatable bladder is disposed within the interior space of the float so as to be adjacent to the step and abut at least the lower wall of the float. The bladder has an internal pressure sufficiently greater than the internal pressure of the float so as to reinforce the step. An elongate stiffening element abuts the fore portion of the lower wall of the float forward from the step.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 2, 1995
    Date of Patent: December 2, 1997
    Inventors: Donald B. Arney, Peter L. Brooke
  • Patent number: 5681010
    Abstract: The invention discloses a deployable, inflatable aerodynamic control structure for aerospace vehicles which has a desired noncircular or noncylindrical cross-section and fabrication methods therefor. In a preferred embodiment, the control structure is configured as an inflatable airfoil and includes a flexible skin and a plurality of internally disposed airfoil-shaped bulkheads or integral rib members that are arranged, spaced apart, in cross-wise fashion along the axial length of the airfoil shaped control structure. The flexible skin is fabricated as a lay up, in ordered sequence, of plural layers of elastomeric rubber material and plural ply layers of resin-impregnated yarns or fabric. The result is a fiber-reinforced pressure membrane that is flexible and compactly foldable.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 13, 1995
    Date of Patent: October 28, 1997
    Assignee: Lockheed Missiles & Space Co., Inc.
    Inventor: Duane Lowell Jensen
  • Patent number: 5622133
    Abstract: The transport facility with dynamic air cushion, which has a hull, a wing with flaps, and a tail empennage. A power system turns propellers connected with a transmission. The propellers are installed in front of the wing. Pneumatic cylinders are located at the ends of the wings parallel to the fore-and-aft axis of the transport facility. The engine is installed inside the hull and the propellers, used for a power-augmented ram technique, are driven by the transmission system connected to the engine. Turning pylons connected to the propeller bosses change the propellers rotation plane within the angle ( The pylons are installed on the hull. The tail empennage consists of two fins and a stabilizer installed on the fins. A retractable elastic pneumatic ski is installed at the lower bow surface of the hull. The lower surface of the ski, in a release position, is located below the lower surface of the side pneumatic cylinders.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 20, 1994
    Date of Patent: April 22, 1997
    Assignee: Seagull Decor Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Dmitry N. Sinitsyn, Vladislav G. Alyamovsky, Anatoly A. Antonov, Genrich L. Radovitsky, Vladimir V. Tomilin, Leonid O. Litinsky, Vladimir V. Shmelev
  • Patent number: 5538203
    Abstract: The invention is a ballonet system for a lighter-than-air-vehicle, the vehicle having a lift producing gas bag and a longitudinal, vertical and lateral axis. In detail, the ballonet system includes a plurality of ballonets located within the gas bag positioned along the longitudinal axis and on each side of the vertical axis of the vehicle. Each of the ballonets include a flexible sheet joined at its periphery thereof to a portion of the wall of the gas bag. A ballonet pressurization system is coupled to each ballonet for pressurizing them with air that includes the portion of the wall of the gas bag forming the ballonet having a plurality of holes therethrough. A manifold having an inlet port is joined to the wall covering the holes therein and is adapted to diffuse the pressurized air entering therein.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 20, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 23, 1996
    Assignee: Lockheed Corporation
    Inventor: James A. Mellady
  • Patent number: 5356097
    Abstract: An aircraft includes a cockpit permanently connected to a fuselage base. At least one fuselage segment is detachably mounted to the support. In case of an imminent crash the segment is detachable from the remainder of the aircraft and can float to safety after being detached by having at least one parachute and an airbag secured to the segment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 1993
    Date of Patent: October 18, 1994
    Inventor: Stefan Chalupa
  • Patent number: 5265829
    Abstract: An apparatus and method is disclosed for decelerating and absorbing impact of a re-entry vehicle suitable for payloads that are relatively light as well as payloads weighing several tons or more. The apparatus includes four inflatable legs displaced equidistantly from each other around a capsule or housing which contains a payload. The legs are inflated at a designated altitude after entering Earth's atmosphere to slow the descent of the re-entry vehicle. Connected between each of the four legs are drag inducing surfaces that deploy as the legs inflate. The drag inducing surfaces are triangularly shaped with one such surface being connected between each pair of legs for a total of six drag inducing surfaces. The legs have drag inducing outer surfaces which act to slow the descent of the re-entry vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 3, 1993
    Date of Patent: November 30, 1993
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventor: Michael L. Roberts
  • Patent number: 5259574
    Abstract: A device for protecting a helicopter and its occupants from damage during a crash or difficult landing. The device includes an inflatable bag attached to the bottom fuselage which covers a totality of the surface of the helicopter's bottom fuselage. The bag is inflatable into a trapezoidal shape having a very large volume, exceeding the helicopter's internal volume, for substantially cushioning the helicopter upon impact with the ground during a crash. The bag is equipped with distortion-control reinforcements for preventing toppling of the helicopter after a landing and bag air-pressure controlling and limiting devices.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 6, 1992
    Date of Patent: November 9, 1993
    Inventor: Louis Carrot
  • Patent number: 4923145
    Abstract: Auxiliary landing equipment for aircraft which comprises a plurality of inflatable cushions arranged in a predetermined array relative to each other and structure for securing them to the aircraft so that, in an inflated state, the cushions can contact the ground during landing or on take-off and so that, in a deflated state, the equipment can closely follow the contour of the aircraft part to which it is attached.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 11, 1988
    Date of Patent: May 8, 1990
    Assignee: Woodville Polymer Engineering Limited
    Inventor: Jeffrey C. Broadhurst
  • Patent number: 4915052
    Abstract: A method for restoring and maintaining buoyancy for floatplane floats by inserting an inflatable air bag into the leaking compartment in the float and inflating the air bag until the water in the float is expelled from the float and the air bag seals the leak. A puncture resistant air bag also may be permanently installed in a floatplane float at the time of manufacture in order to prevent leaks.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 1988
    Date of Patent: April 10, 1990
    Inventors: Gregory C. Reeser, Terry Wolgamot
  • Patent number: 4828058
    Abstract: Disclosed is a hovercraft having a pair of air cushions, associated with each air cushion is a rotatable fan which partly produces lifting force and partly propels and maneuvers the craft. The fans are mounted perpendicular to the direction of travel, peripherally on the craft, wherewith the forces produced have long moment arms, and consequently produce a strong turning torque. The fans are mounted on the craft in such a manner that their orientation may be adjusted both horizontally and vertically with respect thereto.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 9, 1987
    Date of Patent: May 9, 1989
    Inventor: Olof Bjorn-Ake
  • Patent number: 4757962
    Abstract: An amphibious vehicle comprises a fuselage having a pair of support pods at the front end thereof and a single support pod at the rear. In accordance with one embodiment of the invention, each pod has a fan therein and in accordance with another embodiment, the pods serve as floats. The vehicle has a top wing adjacent the rear thereof and a bottom wing adjacent the front, each of which have elevator surfaces thereon. Port and starboard engines are positioned adjacent the rear of the vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 9, 1987
    Date of Patent: July 19, 1988
    Inventor: Terrence Grant
  • Patent number: 4697762
    Abstract: Inflatable or pneumatic float assembly has tough outer fabric tubular shell with an upper wall having a first elongated sleeve extending therealong to receive an elongated stiffening member. A lower wall of the float is stiffener by stiffeners to provide a step having an essentially upright transversely extending step wall. The float has a plurality of internal baffles which form inflatable compartments within the float, preferable to receive air filled bladders. The elongated stiffening member extending through the first sleeve has exposed portions to provide access for attachment means which cooperate with the exposed portions to permit the stiffening member to cooperate with an aircraft undercarriage. Wheels can be provided to permit the aircraft to be amphibious for landing on land as well as water, with various structures to permit changing relative positions of the wheels and the floats.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 28, 1986
    Date of Patent: October 6, 1987
    Inventor: Donald B. Arney
  • Patent number: 4660670
    Abstract: An air-cushion vehicle of the type having a flat rigid platform with rigid longitudinal walls attached to the platform. In such an air-cushion vehicle a plurality of transverse trough-shaped skirts are provided so as to form a space bounded by the skirt and the platform which, when supplied with higher pressure air, serves to provide an air cushion chamber. The vertical height of the air cushion chamber can be varied in accordance with the present invention by extending or retracting the material of the trough-shaped skirts by way of an adjustment mechanism. In a preferred embodiment, the adjustment mechanism comprises a skirt bar attached to each of two longitudinal edges of the skirt and a mechanism for moving the skirt bars sideways closer together or further apart, thus varying the skirt's vertical dimension.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 2, 1986
    Date of Patent: April 28, 1987
    Inventor: Darryl F. Mattox
  • Patent number: 4655415
    Abstract: A helicopter flotation pack includes an inflatable flotation bladder secured to an intermediate structural member which includes means for attachment to a helicopter landing skid. The structural member cooperatively defines a sheltered chamber for inflation apparatus and also carries an environmentally protective cosmetic cover which advantageously directs the deployment of the flotation bladder during inflation. The nature of the interconnection between the inflation bladder and structural member is such that both in-flight stability and flotation load-bearing capacity of the flotation bladder are increased.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 1985
    Date of Patent: April 7, 1987
    Assignee: The Garrett Corporation
    Inventors: Ralph A. Miller, Frank J. Brown
  • Patent number: 4645142
    Abstract: One end of a hose is affixed to the underside of the object which may descend and whose impact has to be cushioned while the other end of the hose is pulled through the first end, the two ends are separately fastened permitting filling of the hose; a second hose may be inserted in the first one to provide separate filling spaces, one being the interior of the second hose and the other one being the gas space between the two hoses whereby different pressures permit selection of the resilient characteristics of the cushion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 21, 1983
    Date of Patent: February 24, 1987
    Assignee: MBB GmbH
    Inventor: Michael Soelter
  • Patent number: 4624441
    Abstract: A pilot-operated valve suitable for pontoon inflation arrangements contains a main valve poppet urged against a valve seat connecting the inlet and outlet ports of the valve. A portion of the inlet pressure urges a piston carrying the valve poppet away from the valve seat, but this is resisted by a portion of the inlet pressure acting in a pressure volume on the opposite side of the piston. By way of an electrical signal, a manual operation or pneumatic pressure, a pilot valve is opened so as to relieve the pressure on the main valve poppet tending to close it. This allows the valve to open and fluid to pass through the valve assembly. Once the pilot valve has opened pressure from the inlet is applied within the pilot valve to hold it in the open position until the inlet pressure has been substantially reduced. Operation of the pilot valve also allows inlet pressure to be applied to a crossover connection of the valve.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 1982
    Date of Patent: November 25, 1986
    Assignee: Valcor Engineering Corporation
    Inventors: Morton A. Kreitchman, Kurt Arnold
  • Patent number: 4383664
    Abstract: In an aircraft air cushion takeoff and landing system with a flexible trunk section in the form of a large expandable tube, having multiple air exhaust holes in the bottom thereof, encircling the bottom of the fuselage, a group of flexible finger-like protrusions beneath the forward section of the trunk. The downwardly extending finger-like protrusions make intermittent contact with the ground surface to suppress vertical vibrations in the trunk when the aircraft is hovering at ground level with the trunk inflated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 1, 1978
    Date of Patent: May 17, 1983
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Secretary of the Air Force
    Inventor: David J. Perez
  • Patent number: 4312484
    Abstract: A flow control is provided between an inflatable and a smaller inflatable log which positions the inflatable with respect to the craft to which it is affixed. The flow control permits the inflation of the positioning log through the inflatable but restricts the flow of fluid back from the positioning log to the inflatable.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 4, 1979
    Date of Patent: January 26, 1982
    Assignee: The Garrett Corporation
    Inventor: David J. Meisner
  • Patent number: 4298175
    Abstract: There is disclosed an airplane having an inflatable type air cushion confining undercarriage thereunder wherein the airplane wing structures comprise three-dimensionally enlarged inner wing components merging aerodynamically with the airplane fuselage. The under surfaces of the inner wing components and the fuselage cooperate to provide a downwardly convex broad base structure which is oval-shaped in planform, and a toroidal configured inflatable trunk is attached to the perimeter of the base structure for circumscribing the air cushion cavity under the airplane. Thus, an enlarged width and length air cushion type undercarriage is provided to give the airplane improved stability characteristics when operating in air cushion, ground, or water supported mode. When the trunk system is deflated the elastic sheet material thereof retracts snugly against the slightly convex bottom surface of the base structure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 21, 1979
    Date of Patent: November 3, 1981
    Assignee: Textron Inc.
    Inventor: T. Desmond Earl
  • Patent number: 4205811
    Abstract: An inflatable landing bag having a valve for release of the inflating fluid from the landing bag as the pressure of the inflating fluid of the landing bag rises above a given level, such valve including a sleeve comprised at least in part of a woven stretch fabric having interstitially variable inflating fluid porosity such as to control release of inflating fluid from the landing bag.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 28, 1978
    Date of Patent: June 3, 1980
    Assignee: Irvin Industries Canada Ltd.
    Inventors: Lorenz A. Palm, David B. Webb
  • Patent number: 4194708
    Abstract: A recoverable remotely piloted vehicle (RPV) having: a deflectable canard/elevator placed very close to the nose tip; a constant (cross) section fuselage; wings mounted low and well aft on the fuselage; elevons; a centrally positioned weapons/payload bay, with doors, located internal of the upper portion of the fuselage; and, inflatable landing skids. The weapon/payload is dropped from the RVP, while the RVP is in flight in an inverted position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 21, 1978
    Date of Patent: March 25, 1980
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Secretray of the Air Force
    Inventors: Daniel J. Tracy, John P. Palmer, Daniel J. O'Brien
  • Patent number: 4165059
    Abstract: A float assembly for supporting a vehicle having three cylindrical float tubes tangentially secured together by a suitable adhesive with two of the float tubes being positioned so that the centerlines thereof are in a horizontal plane. The three float tubes are secured together to form a pyramid whereby the intersections thereof form a Y-shaped cross-sectional configuration so that the centers of the cylindrical float tubes form a triangle which is or approaches an equilateral triangle. Girths are secured to the float assembly in the horizontal plane and are suitably bolted to skids which are attached to the vehicle. The forward and aft ends of each of the cylindrical float tubes are frustoconical shaped cones which are inclined upwardly to increase the maneuverability of the vehicle and prevent pitch poling. The outboard and top float tubes have bulkheads to provide several sections to enable the float tubes to provide flotation in the event that one of the sections is deflated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 8, 1977
    Date of Patent: August 21, 1979
    Assignee: American Safety Equipment Corporation
    Inventor: James R. Summer
  • Patent number: 4077589
    Abstract: A ground-effect landing gear for use on aircraft intended for performing take-off and landing on unprepared soft ground comprises a platform mounting a flexible enclosure constructed in the form of a system of inflatable envelopes bounding an overpressure space near the ground surface. During transition to hovering and during movement of the aircraft the space is kept in communication with a compressed air source.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 2, 1976
    Date of Patent: March 7, 1978
    Inventors: Alexei Yakovlevich Belolipetsky, Pavel Afanasievich Levochkin, Ivan Ivanovich Jurkovsky, Boris Makarovich Kolomiets, deceased
  • Patent number: 4069977
    Abstract: Apparatus for producing a component of thrust at right angles to the main thrust direction of a jet engine. The apparatus comprises a deflecting device which provides a surface, bounded by side walls normal to the surface, that curves outwardly from tangency to the main thrust direction at the tail pipe edge. A series of control ports extending transversely of the curved surface at the point of tangency are connected to ambient air pressure through a normally open remotely controlled air valve. Closure of the air valve causes that portion of the jet stream adjacent to the curved surface to follow the surface because of the Coanda effect, thus producing a thrust component normal to the main jet stream. The device is particularly useful for yaw control of air cushion equipped jet powered aircraft when taxiing and during the low speed portions of takeoff and landing runs.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 11, 1976
    Date of Patent: January 24, 1978
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Secretary of the Air Force
    Inventor: John C. Vaughan, III
  • Patent number: 4032088
    Abstract: An air bag landing system for an aircraft. The landing system has an air bag assembly which is stored in the fuselage of the aircraft during cruise and which extends for landing. The assembly consists of a rigid arm with either two or three folding portions and an inflatable bag attached to the underside of the arm. The inflatable bag cushions the impact of the aircraft at landing. Actuators are provided to extend and retract the assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 8, 1976
    Date of Patent: June 28, 1977
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventor: John Jerome McAvoy
  • Patent number: 4019698
    Abstract: An improved ground-run/skid-braking and/or maneuvering control system for an aircraft or ground effect machine having an air cushion type undercarriage of the type comprising an elastically retractable inflatable trunk or other air inflatable air cushion confining device fabricated of elastic sheet material. The braking/control system comprises a mechanically actuated multiple spine system disposed interiorly of the trunk fabric; and is operable under pilot control to cause portions of the trunk to curvilinearly project downwardly below the basic footprint level of the trunk when inflated, to provide the desired ground-friction braking/maneuvering effects. The projected portions of the trunk are externally armored by means of wear/tear resistant friction pads which are relatively pleat-folding automatically incidental to elastic contractions of the trunk sheet material, to minimize craft flight drag effects.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 25, 1976
    Date of Patent: April 26, 1977
    Assignee: Textron, Inc.
    Inventor: T. Desmond Earl
  • Patent number: 4004761
    Abstract: An air cushion landing system for an aircraft. The landing system has an air cushion assembly which is stored in the fuselage of the aircraft during cruise and which extends for landing. The assembly consists of a rigid arm with two folding portions, inflatable bags attached to the underside of the arm, and flaps to define an area of cushion air. The inflatable bags provide primary attenuation of landing impact. Actuators are provided to retract the assembly following takeoff and extend it for landing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 1976
    Date of Patent: January 25, 1977
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventor: John Jerome McAvoy
  • Patent number: 3990658
    Abstract: An air cushion landing system for aircraft, ground effect machines and the like utilizing boundary layer control around the outer sides of an inflated bag to improve its aerodynamic characteristics. This is achieved by air jets along the outside walls of the bag, the jets being normal or essentially tangential to the outside wall surface of the bag depending upon the aerodynamic effect desired. Preferably, the air jets are produced by simply permitting air, used to inflate the air cushion landing bag, to escape through orifices in the side walls of the bag.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 24, 1974
    Date of Patent: November 9, 1976
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventor: Gary R. Letsinger
  • Patent number: 3981462
    Abstract: The invention relates to aircraft and more particularly an air-cushion landing gear comprising a system of landing gear units suspended from an aircraft, with at least two of the units being spaced transversely with respect to the longitudinal axis of the aircraft, and one of them being arranged on the axis ahead of the aircraft center of gravity; each landing gear unit comprises a platform with an annular inflatable cell attached to its underside and used, when inflated, as a flexible curtain circumscribing an air cushion space under the platform, the inflation of each cell and the formation of the air cushion is accomplished by an independent injecting device built in the platform; the spaced-apart cells are provided with an operating device for decelerating and controlling the movement of the aircraft on the runway surface; such a design of the air-cushion landing gear makes it possible to easily and rapidly adapt modern planes and helicopters to such a landing gear with the take-off, landing and taxiing t
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 15, 1975
    Date of Patent: September 21, 1976
    Inventors: Igor Alexandrovich Berezhnoi, Albert Ivanovich Elatontsev, Vladimir Vasilievich Ignatiev, Djuis Danilovich Ivlev, Boris Veniaminovich Mayanov, Vasily Andriyanovich Svinukhov, Vladimir Petrovich Kuzmin, Igor Alexandrovich Evdokimov, Boris Alexeevich Zhidkov, deceased
  • Patent number: 3964698
    Abstract: The inflatable cell portion(s) of an air cushion type undercarriage for airplanes, air cushion vehicles, or the like, of the type which are formed with air outlet openings in the ground tangent areas thereof are individually provided with air flow control devices having highly abrasive tear-resistant bottom surfaces disposed externally of the cell fabric, in lieu of the conventionally employed coverply or "wear strips". The devices of the present invention receive the ground contact abrasion and tear-inducing stresses normally imposed upon the cell fabric, and protect the latter in improved manner; and are simply snap-fitted (and thereby detachably locked) into the cell fabric apertures, and may be easily replaced as required.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 5, 1974
    Date of Patent: June 22, 1976
    Assignee: Textron, Inc.
    Inventor: T. Desmond Earl
  • Patent number: 3963198
    Abstract: A mooring and landing device for aircraft which are capable of vertical dent for landing comprising an inflatable tube-type device, or trunk, attached to the bottom surface of the craft. The trunk is in the shape of a doughnut and the open interior compartment formed by the inflated trunk and the bottom surface of the craft is evacuated to a pressure lower than atmospheric so that the difference between the compartment pressure and the atmospheric pressure moors the craft to the ground. The trunk is inflated to a pressure greater than atmospheric and may be formed with a plurality of holes to provide an air cushion for lubrication purposes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 2, 1975
    Date of Patent: June 15, 1976
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Secretary of the Navy
    Inventor: John C. Vaughan