By Change In Pitch, Angle Of Attack Or Flight Path Patents (Class 244/181)
  • Patent number: 10440291
    Abstract: System and method for detecting adverse atmospheric conditions ahead of an aircraft. The system has multiple, infrared cameras 8 adjusted to spatially detect infrared radiance in different bands of infrared light, wherein each camera is connected to an image processing computer that processes and combines the images, and generates video display signals for producing a video display which indicates the position of the adverse atmospheric conditions relative to the aircraft. Each of the cameras is provided with a respective filter adjusted to filter infrared light with a bandwidth corresponding to infrared bandwidth characteristics of an adverse atmospheric condition from a set of adverse atmospheric conditions. The image processing computer is adapted to identify adverse atmospheric conditions, said identifying being based on threshold conditions and using the detected infrared radiance, data from a look-up table and measured parameters including information on the position and/or attitude of the aircraft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 12, 2018
    Date of Patent: October 8, 2019
    Assignee: Nicarnica Aviation AS
    Inventors: Alfredo Jose Prata, Cirilo Bernardo
  • Patent number: 10415977
    Abstract: A method of compensating for signal error is described, comprising: receiving a first signal from a first sensor, said first signal indicative of a movement characteristic; applying an error compensation to said first signal to produce an output signal; applying a variable gain factor to said error compensation; receiving a second signal from a second sensor indicative of said movement characteristic; wherein said error compensation is calculated using the difference between said output signal and said second signal, and said variable gain factor is calculated using said first signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 26, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 17, 2019
    Assignee: ATLANTIC INERTIAL SYSTEMS LIMITED
    Inventors: John Keith Sheard, Nicholas Mark Faulkner
  • Patent number: 10386859
    Abstract: A system including a set of computation modules configured to be utilized for computation of gains of at least one piloting law relative to at least one piloting axis of the aircraft and a data capture unit for capturing in at least one computation unit associated with a given piloting axis of the aircraft first values illustrating aerodynamic coefficients of the aircraft and second values defining delay and filter characteristics of the control chain relative to the given piloting axis, the computation unit being configured to compute the gains of the piloting law utilizing at least a part of the set of computation modules and the computation unit computing inputs intended for at least one actuator of a control surface adapted to control the aircraft relative to the given piloting axis in accordance with a corresponding current control value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 6, 2017
    Date of Patent: August 20, 2019
    Assignee: AIRBUS OPERATIONS SAS
    Inventor: Stéphane Delannoy
  • Patent number: 10355558
    Abstract: Computer-processor controlled energy harvester system. The system uses a plurality of oscillating weight type energy collectors, each configured to store the energy from changes in the system's ambient motion as stored mechanical energy, often in a compressed spring. The energy collectors are configured to move between a first position where the energy collector stores energy, to a second position where the energy collectors release stored energy to a geared electrical generator shaft, thus producing electrical energy, often stored in a battery. A plurality of processor controlled electronic actuators, usually one per energy collector, control when each energy collector stores and releases energy. The processor can use accelerometer sensors, battery charge sensors, and suitable software and firmware to optimize system function.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2019
    Assignee: RISING STAR PATHWAY, A CALIFORNIA CORPORATION
    Inventors: Rong Bao, YiWei An, YiWen Pu, Zeru Li, Ryane Li, Serena Mao
  • Patent number: 10310473
    Abstract: A system for path command generation includes an industrial machine, an interface accessible via a remote device, and a server communicably coupled to the industrial machine and the remote device via a network. The server includes processing circuitry configured to calculate an optimum path command, simulate the optimum path command based on the calculation of the optimum path command, calculate a cycle time and error of the path command, determine if the path command is acceptable, and transmit path command data to the industrial machine in response to the acceptable path command being selected.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 2017
    Date of Patent: June 4, 2019
    Assignee: Mitsubishi Electric Corporation
    Inventor: Yoshihiro Marushita
  • Patent number: 10261518
    Abstract: An aircraft automatic control system protects structural parameters of an aircraft based on angle of attack protection by use of maximum allowed angle of attack values as a function of dynamic pressure or a combination of parameters that permit computation of dynamic pressure. Example techniques herein limit the wing lift coefficient as a function of dynamic pressure (or velocity) to create a limitation for the maximum lift produced by an aircraft wing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 12, 2015
    Date of Patent: April 16, 2019
    Assignee: Embraer S.A.
    Inventor: Sérgio Luiz Miranda De Souza
  • Patent number: 10223924
    Abstract: Methods and devices are provided for controlling an unmanned aerial vehicle. The method includes: obtaining meteorological data in a current location of the UAV when the UAV is in a first flight state, where the first flight state may represent a steady flight state or a take-off preparing state of the UAV; determining a flight hazard level of the UAV based on the meteorological data, where the flight hazard level may represent a hazard level caused to a flight of the UAV by weather; and controlling the UAV to switch to a second flight state when the flight hazard level is a first preset level, where the first preset level may represent a level where the UAV cannot fly safely and the second flight state being used to represent an emergency flight state or a take-off suspended state of the UAV.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2017
    Date of Patent: March 5, 2019
    Assignee: Beijing Xiaomi Mobile Software Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Weizhao Wang, Yan Xie, Yueyue Chu
  • Patent number: 10209710
    Abstract: A piloting assistance system for an aircraft during manual piloting is provided. The piloting assistance system includes a monitoring module, configured to compare an acceleration of the aircraft to an authorized acceleration that depends on a speed of the aircraft, an acceleration control module, able to be switched between an activated state and a deactivated state, and configured so as, in the activated state, excluding the deactivated state, to generate a control signal of at least one control device of the acceleration of the aircraft to push the acceleration of the aircraft toward the authorized acceleration range, in order to keep or push the speed of the aircraft in a predefined usage speed range, the monitoring module being configured to activate the acceleration control module when the acceleration of the aircraft is not comprised in the authorized acceleration range.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 8, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 19, 2019
    Assignee: DASSAULT AVIATION
    Inventor: Sébastien Lepage
  • Patent number: 10107259
    Abstract: The invention relates to a method of controlling a wind turbine comprising one or more blades attached to a rotor hub, the one or more blades being arranged to pitch relative to the hub, the method comprising the steps of obtaining a blade load signal comprising data on an absolute load on the one or more blades; processing the blade load data to detect a high thrust wind event, and generating a control signal comprising a pitch contribution for affecting the blades to pitch out of the wind in response to the detected wind event. The invention also relates to a wind turbine, a control system for a wind turbine and a computer program product being adapted to enable a computer system to perform the method of the invention.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 14, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 23, 2018
    Assignee: VESYAS WIND SYSTEMS A/S
    Inventors: Jacob Krogh Kristoffersen, Asger Svenning Andersen, Søren Sørensen, Lars Risager
  • Patent number: 10099775
    Abstract: An autopilot system for an aircraft and related process are provided. The system includes a first load factor command definition and application module; a second roll command definition and application module; a control module of the first definition and application module and the second definition and application module, able to define parameters of a recovery maneuver seeking to return the aircraft to setpoint attitudes at the end of a maneuver from initial attitudes. The control module includes a submodule for computing at least one pair of authorities respectively applied by the first module and by the second module during the recovery maneuver. The authorities are computed as a function of at least a current movement parameter of the aircraft and a safety parameter.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 6, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2018
    Assignee: DASSAULT AVIATION
    Inventors: Arnaud Turpin, Nicolas Le Corre
  • Patent number: 10067235
    Abstract: A method of detecting a wind event utilizing Doppler lidar includes causing a Doppler lidar unit to operate in a course scan mode in which a lidar beam is scanned along several directions. Line-of-sight wind speed measurements are generated at each direction and a derivative with respect to distance of the line-of-sight wind speed measurements is calculated at each of the directions. A predicted angular position of a wind event is determined, and the lidar unit may then operate in a fine scan mode in which only a limited sector is scanned. The potential wind event is then quantified utilizing data obtained using the fine scan mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 14, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 4, 2018
    Assignee: THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AS REPRESENTED BY THE ADMINISTRATOR OF NASA
    Inventors: Grady J. Koch, Bruce W. Barnes
  • Patent number: 10063794
    Abstract: The system has multiple, infrared cameras 8 adjusted to spatially detect infrared radiance in different bands of infrared light, and connected to an image processing computer that processes and combines the images, and generates video display signals for producing a video display which indicates the position of the adverse atmospheric conditions relative to the aircraft. Each of the cameras is provided with a respective filter adjusted to filter infrared light with a bandwidth corresponding to infrared bandwidth characteristics of an adverse atmospheric condition from a set of adverse atmospheric conditions. The image processing computer is adapted to identify adverse atmospheric conditions, based on threshold conditions and using the detected infrared radiance, data from a look-up table and measured parameters including information on the position and/or attitude of the aircraft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 28, 2018
    Assignee: Nicarnica Aviation AS
    Inventors: Alfredo Jose Prata, Cirilo Bernardo
  • Patent number: 10062291
    Abstract: Systems and methods providing improved flight guidance are described. In some implementations, performance data from a plurality of completed flight segments of an aircraft are recorded and used to generate and/or update a regression model between one or more input parameters and one or more output parameters. Flight profile data for a current flight segment of the aircraft is estimated using the regression model and compared to flight profile data predicted based on pre-programmed performance data. The estimated and predicted flight profile data are compared to determine if a difference between the two exceeds a predetermined amount and flight guidance for a current flight segment is generated based on the estimated flight profile data if the difference exceeds the predetermined amount.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 21, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 28, 2018
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Geun I. Kim, Roy S. Alcantara
  • Patent number: 10043397
    Abstract: A framework for combining a weather risk analysis with appropriate operational rules includes a data initialization component, a rules processing component, and one or more weather risk analysis and assessment tools to evaluate a flight condition. The framework applies current, historical, predicted and forecasted weather data to the one or more operational rules governing a mission, a payload, a flight plan, a craft type, and a location of the mission for aircraft such as an unmanned aerial vehicle or remotely-piloted vehicle, and generates advisories based on the evaluation of flight conditions such as a mission compliance status, instructions for operation of unmanned aircraft, and management advisories. The flight condition advisories include either a “fly” advisory or a “no-fly” advisory, and the framework may also provide a mission prioritization and optimization system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 1, 2016
    Date of Patent: August 7, 2018
    Assignee: CLEAR AG, INC.
    Inventors: Dustin M. Salentiny, John J. Mewes
  • Patent number: 9989972
    Abstract: Systems and methods according to one or more embodiments are provided for limiting elevator deflection commands to avoid the aft body of an aircraft from contacting the ground during a landing maneuver. In one example, a system includes a memory configured to store a plurality of executable instructions and a processor. The processor is configured to determine a descent profile and a current pitch profile. A pre-determined maximum pitch profile associated with the descent profile is used to compare to the current pitch profile. The comparison is used to compute an elevator deflection value that limits an elevator command signal in order to avoid a tail strike. Additional systems and methods are also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 5, 2018
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: David P. Eggold, Tristan C. Flanzer
  • Patent number: 9939818
    Abstract: A system for automatic landing of an aircraft on a runway, including an onboard image capture system, image analyzer for detecting in an image a landing runway and determining characteristics of a segment connecting a planned point of impact on the runway and a vanishing point of the image, a measurement module for measuring observables in an inertial frame tied to the runway, on the basis of characteristics of the segment, the observables including a first observable, a second observable, and a third observable, an estimator for estimating longitudinal, lateral and vertical position deviations of aircraft position relative to point of impact from measurements of the first, second and third observables, and guidance for determining aircraft guidance orders from the longitudinal, lateral and vertical deviations and of the relative heading angle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 24, 2015
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2018
    Assignee: Airbus Operations (S.A.S.)
    Inventors: Josep Boada-Bauxell, Victor Gibert, Laurent Burlion, Abdelhamid Chriette, Franck Plestan
  • Patent number: 9925846
    Abstract: Sun load on a cabin of a vehicle is determined without a sun load sensor by affixing a relative humidity/temperature sensor to an inside of a windshield of the vehicle. The relative humidity/temperature sensor includes a relative humidity sensor that senses relative humidity of air at the relative humidity sensor, a temperature sensor that senses temperature of the air at the relative humidity sensor and a glass temperature sensor that senses temperature of glass of the windshield. A controller determines the sun load based on readings from the relative humidity/temperature sensor of relative humidity of the air at the relative humidity sensor, temperature of the air at the relative humidity sensor and temperature of the glass of the windshield.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 1, 2015
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2018
    Assignee: FCA US LLC
    Inventor: Allan W Flanagan
  • Patent number: 9914453
    Abstract: A method for predicting the expected travel path of a moving vehicle by numerical integration of a dynamic vehicle model using at least one rotational travel state and at least one longitudinal travel state is disclosed. To provide a prediction of the expected travel path, which does not depend on map information and provides the maximum possible accuracy even for non-steady-state travel states of a vehicle, time-related function rules for the rotational travel state ?Pre(t) and/or for the longitudinal travel state ?Pre(t) are determined, and values for the travel state concerned ?Pre, ?Pre are predicted at specific points in time by integration using said function rule ?Pre(t), ?Pre(t). In this process, the time-related function rule of the travel state concerned is determined by obtaining respective (rotational or longitudinal) input variables for at least two time-derivatives of the travel state concerned from measured values.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 2, 2014
    Date of Patent: March 13, 2018
    Assignee: VALEO Schalter und Sensoren GmbH
    Inventor: Martin Kraehling
  • Patent number: 9897517
    Abstract: A method for monitoring a thrust fault of a turbofan during a modification of the thrust setting of the turbofan, the method including a step of processing the thrust setting via a filtering function and a transient-phase model such as to obtain a modelled thrust, a step of comparing the modelled thrust to the actual thrust such as to determine a thrust difference, a step of comparing the thrust difference to an alarm threshold; and a step of emitting an alarm in the event of exceeding the alarm threshold, wherein at a given iteration, in which the prior modelled thrust is known, the transient-phase model provides a time constant in accordance with the prior modelled thrust, and the filtering function provides a modelled thrust in accordance with the time constant obtained, the prior modelled thrust and the thrust setting.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 27, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 20, 2018
    Assignee: SNECMA
    Inventor: Cedrik Djelassi
  • Patent number: 9845146
    Abstract: A vehicle, such as an airplane sets a limit for a control variable used to deflect a control surface. The limit is set as a function of an unfavorable flight condition/target angle of attack and a rate of change of angle of attack so that a pilot control variable command is prevented from exceeding the limit to prevent the vehicle from reaching an unfavorable flight condition and/or exceeding a desired angle of attack limit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 23, 2015
    Date of Patent: December 19, 2017
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventor: Henry L. Beaufrere
  • Patent number: 9840337
    Abstract: An activation device comprising a computation unit configured to compute a stall margin of the aircraft, an information reception unit configured to receive information indicating if an automatic angle-of-attack protection system of the aircraft is active or inactive, and an activation unit configured to activate the display of the stall margin indicator only if the automatic angle-of-attack protection system is inactive.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 25, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 12, 2017
    Assignee: AIRBUS OPERATIONS SAS
    Inventors: Alain Tanguy, Thierry Bourret, Florent Lanterna, Matthieu Boitrel
  • Patent number: 9824594
    Abstract: A method for predicting a short-term flight path of an aircraft, a computer program product, an associated prediction device, a guidance method, and a guidance system of an aircraft are disclosed. In one aspect, the flight path of the aircraft is associated at each time moment with a vector including at least one component from among a position of the aircraft, attitudes of the aircraft and order 1 and 2 time derivatives of the position and attitudes. The short-term flight path is the flight path of the aircraft for a time period of up to 30 seconds from a computation time of the flight path. The method includes acquiring a control signal representative of a displacement of a primary control member of the aircraft and predicting, at a subsequent prediction time, at least one component of the short-term flight path of the aircraft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 15, 2015
    Date of Patent: November 21, 2017
    Assignee: THALES
    Inventors: Sylvain Lissajoux, Alexandre Badatcheff, Matthieu Claybrough
  • Patent number: 9815571
    Abstract: Present novel and non-trivial system, device, and method for generating an aircraft energy indicator(s) is disclosed. The energy indicator generating system is comprised of one or more sources of aircraft performance factors data, an image generator (IG), and a presentation system. The IG may be configured to receive the aircraft performance factors data representative of at least aircraft altitude and speed; determine descent path data as a function of at least the aircraft performance data; determine target aircraft energy data as a function of at least the descent path data; determine actual energy data as a function of at least the aircraft performance data; and generate presentation data as a function of the target energy data and the actual energy data, where the presentation data is representative of one or more images of an aircraft energy indicator presentable to a viewer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 4, 2015
    Date of Patent: November 14, 2017
    Assignee: Rockwell Collins, Inc.
    Inventors: Collin D. Ogden, Bradley R. Mickelson, Kirk A. Kolek
  • Patent number: 9776734
    Abstract: A landing aid method and device for an aircraft including a unit for calculating automatically in a repetitive manner, during a final approach of the aircraft with a view to landing on a landing runway, using at least a ground speed of the aircraft, a height of the aircraft in relation to the ground, and a target vertical speed representing a vertical speed required on contact with the landing runway, a slope angle of a flight path allowing the aircraft to perform a flare, checking at least the target vertical speed on contact with the landing runway, and a unit for displaying automatically, on at least one screen of the flight deck of the aircraft, a first symbol illustrating the current slope angle of the aircraft and a second symbol illustrating the calculated slope angle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 25, 2015
    Date of Patent: October 3, 2017
    Assignee: AIRBUS OPERATIONS (S.A.S.)
    Inventor: Matthias Eberle
  • Patent number: 9671783
    Abstract: A method is described for aiding the piloting of an airplane by ensuring availability of an automatic pilot that is normally controlled as a function of speed information of the airplane when the speed information is lost. The method includes detecting a loss of the speed information of the airplane. In response to the detection of the loss of the speed information, the method includes determining flight data of the airplane being independent from the speed information of the airplane, determining control parameters from the flight data, and controlling the automatic pilot based on the control parameters and without the speed information of the airplane. The automatic pilot includes an automatic piloting system or a flight director.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 20, 2012
    Date of Patent: June 6, 2017
    Assignee: Airbus Operations (SAS)
    Inventors: Thierry Bourret, Pascale Louise, Jean Muller, Xavier Dal Santo
  • Patent number: 9663219
    Abstract: The system comprises at least one lift generator element that is able to modify directly the lift of the aircraft and means for defining a deflection instruction upon actuation by a pilot of the aircraft of a control column of the aircraft generating a vertical load factor control value and applying it to an elevator and simultaneously defining a command instruction and applying it to the lift generator element to generate a direct lift.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 23, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 30, 2017
    Assignee: AIRBUS OPERATIONS SAS
    Inventors: Mathieu Carton, Pierre Debusschere, David Chabe
  • Patent number: 9650152
    Abstract: Systems and methods to protect the flight envelope in both manual flight and flight by a commercial autopilot are provided. A system can comprise: an inertial measurement unit (IMU); a computing device in data communication with the IMU; an application executable by the computing device comprising: logic that estimates an angle of attack; a slip angle; and a speed of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) based at least in part on data received from the UAV. A method can comprise estimating, via a computing device, flight data of a UAV based at least in part on data received from an IMU; comparing the estimated flight data with measured flight data; and triggering an error indication in response to a determination that the measured flight data exceeds a predefined deviation of the estimated flight data. The estimated speed can comprise an estimated airspeed, vertical speed and/or ground velocity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 23, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 16, 2017
    Assignee: KING ABDULLAH UNIVERSITY OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
    Inventors: Christian Claudel, Mohammad Shaqura
  • Patent number: 9639085
    Abstract: A new apparatus and method for determining trajectories for hypersonic glide vehicles significantly reduces integrated, or total, heat load, with little reduction in time to distance and maximum range. The new approach identifies a trajectory having large phugoid oscillations and plotting a glide trajectory along the peaks of the phugoid oscillations. The glide trajectory is determined by calculating a first altitude that results in a maximum lift to drag ratio trajectory having damped or small phugoid oscillations, then calculating a different altitude that results in larger phugoid oscillations, and higher phugoid peaks, and finally plotting a trajectory from the first altitude that follows the peaks of the higher phugoid oscillation trajectory. The thus calculated trajectory can be input into a glide vehicle guidance system for controlling the trajectory of the glide vehicle from a point where it reaches the first altitude.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 5, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 2, 2017
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Secretary of the Air Force
    Inventor: Barry M. Hellman
  • Patent number: 9586695
    Abstract: A system and method for illuminating one or more sidestick controllers within a cockpit of an aircraft is described. In some embodiments, the system includes a sidestick controller having lighting components that display lighting behaviors representing the movement and/or control of an aircraft. In some embodiments, the system illuminates various different lighting components on a sidestick controller based on information received from aircraft control systems, cockpit lighting systems, and other systems associated with an aircraft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 25, 2015
    Date of Patent: March 7, 2017
    Assignee: Textron Innovations Inc.
    Inventor: Robert Edward Voros
  • Patent number: 9555897
    Abstract: The drone (10) comprises a camera with a hemispherical-field lens of the fisheye type pointing to a fixed direction (?) with respect to the drone body. A capture area (36) of reduced size is extracted from the image formed by this lens (42), the position of this area being function of the signals delivered by an inertial unit measuring the Euler angles characterizing the attitude of the drone with respect to an absolute terrestrial reference system. The position of this area is dynamically modified in a direction (44) opposite to that of the changes of attitude (38) of the drone detected by the inertial unit. The raw pixel data are then processed to compensate for the geometric distortions introduced by the fisheye lens in the image acquired in the region of the capture area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 7, 2015
    Date of Patent: January 31, 2017
    Assignee: PARROT
    Inventors: Pierre Eline, Adrien Fontvielle
  • Patent number: 9550579
    Abstract: Method of estimation of the speed of an aircraft relative to the surrounding air, in a reference frame tied to the aircraft estimates an estimated static pressure on the basis of measurements of geographical altitude. The process then estimates a first intermediate variation of the speed of the aircraft relative to the surrounding air using explicitly the fact that the pressure measured by the static probe is falsified by a known quantity under the effect of the speed of the aircraft relative to the surrounding air. Finally, temporal integration of the first intermediate variation of the speed of the aircraft relative to the surrounding air provides an estimated speed of the aircraft relative to the surrounding air.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 2015
    Date of Patent: January 24, 2017
    Assignee: Thales
    Inventors: Christian Mehlen, Jacques Coatantiec
  • Patent number: 9335883
    Abstract: Computer-readable media, computer systems, and computing devices for facilitating presentation of search result items having varying prominence is provided. The method includes referencing a search result item to be presented within a search results page in response to a search query. Thereafter, a determination is made that a size prominence of the search result item is to be modified. Such a determination can be based on a result attribute(s) associated with the search result item and a result attribute(s) associated with other search result items within the search results page. The size of the search result item is adjusted in accordance with the determination that the size prominence of the search result item is to be modified.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 2011
    Date of Patent: May 10, 2016
    Assignee: Microsoft Technology Licensing, LLC
    Inventors: Alec John Berntson, Sanaz Ahari, Kieran Richard McDonald, Muhammad Arif Iqbal
  • Patent number: 9254909
    Abstract: A system for optimizing a flap setting of an aircraft may include a flap optimizing computer configured to compute an optimum flap setting for one or more flaps of an aircraft. The system may further include a flap control system communicatively coupled to the flap optimizing computer. The flap control system may be operable to select any one of a plurality of flap settings including a designated flap setting. The flap control system may be configured to automatically command the one or more flaps from a first position to a second position corresponding to the optimum flap setting in response to the selection of one of the plurality of flap settings using the flap control system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 9, 2016
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Matthew A. Moser, Michael R. Finn, Benjamin M. Liu
  • Patent number: 9205931
    Abstract: A method and system for increasing pilot awareness in an aircraft during non-normal flight situations is provided. A non-normal flight situation is detected, and a critical flight parameter and its associated condition for monitoring based on the non-normal situation is determined. An envelope surrounding the aircraft is generated that is consistent with the non-normal situation, and the critical flight parameter is monitored based on the non-normal situation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 2014
    Date of Patent: December 8, 2015
    Assignee: Honeywell International Inc.
    Inventor: Amit Nishikant Kawalkar
  • Patent number: 9120556
    Abstract: A method and device for estimating an unwanted pitch moment of an aircraft, and applications to the pitch control of the aircraft. The device estimates an unwanted pitch moment, which can be used to form a compensation command which is added to a standard deflection command with the aim of producing an automatic, active compensation, in real time, for the unwanted pitch moment of the aircraft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 18, 2014
    Date of Patent: September 1, 2015
    Assignee: Airbus Operations (SAS)
    Inventors: Simon Oudin, Guilhem Puyou, Stephane Delannoy
  • Patent number: 9045220
    Abstract: Stable flight can be achieved without the need for a complicated throttle operation by a pilot even when part or all of control surfaces malfunction. A computer (15) calculates a thrust control signal for controlling engine thrust and a deflection angle control signal for controlling control surfaces based on state information regarding an airframe and an operation command signal from an operation end. An engine control unit (17) drives an engine based on the thrust control signal. An actuator (16) moves the control surfaces based on the deflection angle control signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 25, 2011
    Date of Patent: June 2, 2015
    Assignee: MITSUBISHI HEAVY INDUSTRIES, LTD.
    Inventor: Koichi Yamasaki
  • Patent number: 8880247
    Abstract: A method and computer program product for planning a landing approach of an aircraft based on an actual position or first nominal position of the aircraft during its approach for landing on a runway, including providing a stabilization flight path section and stabilization region and/or stabilization point defined by an altitude profile by at least one configuration change point in the stabilization flight path section with a change of the overall profile configuration of the airfoils and with a predetermined final approach flight status of the aircraft, and checking or changing position of the at least one configuration change measure in a change and/or the addition of an additional configuration change measure to the stabilization flight path section and by changing a speed profile along the stabilization flight path section so that the aircraft reaches the predetermined final approach flight status in the stabilization region or at the stabilization point.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 23, 2013
    Date of Patent: November 4, 2014
    Assignee: Airbus Operations GmbH
    Inventors: Robert Luckner, Matthias Lauterbach, Björn Dorr
  • Patent number: 8781653
    Abstract: The present invention provides a method of modifying the pitch attitude of an aircraft during landing, comprising: commanding the flaps to move to a landing setting; providing a current value for a flight condition parameter; providing a current flaps setting; comparing said current value to at least one threshold value; if said current value exceeds said threshold, determining a new flaps setting capable of producing an improvement in at least one of a selected aft body contact margin and a selected nose gear contact margin for the aircraft; and adjusting the flaps to said new flaps setting.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 11, 2012
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2014
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Robert E. Buchholz, Monte R. Evans, Jonathan P. Lee, Timothy G. Overton, Adam M. Thoreen
  • Patent number: 8746623
    Abstract: A process and device for the automatic flight optimization of the aerodynamic configuration of an aircraft. The device (1) includes means (7, 8, 10) for determining and applying to the spoilers (6) of the aircraft commands for providing the aircraft with an optimum aerodynamic configuration.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 26, 2010
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2014
    Assignee: Airbus Operations SAS
    Inventor: Frédéric Sauvinet
  • Patent number: 8700306
    Abstract: Autonomous collision avoidance systems for unmanned aerial vehicles are disclosed. Systems illustratively include a detect and track module, an inertial navigation system, and an auto avoidance module. The detect and track module senses a potential object of collision and generates a moving object track for the potential object of collision. The inertial navigation system provides information indicative of a position and a velocity of the unmanned aerial vehicle. The auto avoidance module receives the moving object track for the potential object of collision and the information indicative of the position and the velocity of the unmanned aerial vehicle. The auto avoidance module utilizes the information to generate a guidance maneuver that facilitates the unmanned aerial vehicle avoiding the potential object of collision.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 4, 2013
    Date of Patent: April 15, 2014
    Assignee: L-3 Unmanned Systems Inc.
    Inventors: Davis S. Duggan, David A. Felio, Craig S. Askew
  • Patent number: 8676403
    Abstract: The present invention relates to methods of controlling the flight path of an aircraft to follow as closely as possible a predetermined four-dimensional flight path, such as when flying continuous descent approaches. A method of controlling an aircraft to follow a predetermined four-dimensional flight path is provided that comprises monitoring an actual along-track position and an actual vertical position of the aircraft relative to corresponding desired positions on the predetermined flight path. Throttle commands are generated based on deviations of the actual vertical position of the aircraft from the desired vertical position. Elevator commands are generated based on the deviation of the actual along-track position from the desired along-track position and on the deviation of the actual vertical position from the desired vertical position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 15, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 18, 2014
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: David Garrido-Lopez, Ramon Gomez Ledesma
  • Patent number: 8653990
    Abstract: A method and system for indicating a potential stall condition for an aircraft during flight. An alert lift coefficient is identified for the aircraft. The alert lift coefficient is adjusted in response to a number of changes in a current state of the aircraft. A set of thresholds is identified for use in generating an alert indicating that the aircraft has reached the potential stall condition using the alert lift coefficient.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 18, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2014
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Joseph Michael Smyth, IV, Frank J. Lyman
  • Patent number: 8620492
    Abstract: An alternative system for damping the dutch roll mode in an aircraft is provided using roll control surfaces. Classical yaw dampers for the dutch roll mode utilize the yaw control surfaces such as a rudder to dampen the dutch roll mode oscillations. An alternative damper is described that utilizes roll control surfaces such as spoilers or ailerons to dampen the dutch roll mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 31, 2013
    Assignee: Textron Innovations Inc.
    Inventors: Steven G. Hagerott, Steven Klausmeyer, Gonzalo E. Mendoza
  • Patent number: 8606437
    Abstract: A longitudinal control law is designed to optimize the flying qualities when aircraft is set to approach configuration, i.e. when the flap lever is set to the landing position and landing gears are locked down. Under such circumstances, the effort of trimming the aircraft speed can be extremely reduced by the usage of a momentary on-off switch or other control in the sidestick, instead of or in addition to a conventional trim up-down switch, making easier the task of airspeed selection by the pilot. This control law provides excellent handling qualities during approach and landing, with the benefit of not needing or using radio altimeter information in safety-critical applications.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 28, 2011
    Date of Patent: December 10, 2013
    Assignee: Embraer S.A.
    Inventors: Fabricio Reis Caldeira, Marcos Vinicius Campos, Reneu Luiz Andrioli, Jr., Wagner de Oliveira Carvalho, Dagfinn Gangsaas, Eduardo Camelier, Daniel Siqueira, Lucas Rubiano
  • Patent number: 8583352
    Abstract: A method and hold path computation system for automatically generating a hold path for an aircraft flying in a holding pattern, wherein the holding pattern is defined by one or more orbits within a selectable holding area are provided. The system includes a processor configured to receive a hold departure time indicating a time the aircraft is to leave the hold path to meet a required time of arrival (RTA) at a waypoint, determine a present position of the aircraft within the holding pattern, and determine an amount of time to complete a current hold orbit. The processor is also configured such that if the determined amount of time to complete a current hold orbit is less than or equal to the hold departure time, maintain the aircraft flying in the holding pattern and determine an amount of time by which to shorten the next orbit to exit the holding pattern at the hold departure time.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 2010
    Date of Patent: November 12, 2013
    Assignee: GE Aviation Systems, LLC
    Inventors: Joel Kenneth Klooster, Joachim Karl Ulf Hochwarth
  • Patent number: 8538669
    Abstract: Methods and apparatus are provided for transmitting incursion alerts to a plurality of in-flight aircraft in accordance with preconfigured pilot preferences. The apparatus comprises a data store module containing data sets against which the pilot preferences are evaluated during flight, including weather, airspace and flight restrictions, ground delay programs, and air traffic information. The apparatus further includes a flight path module containing route and position information for each aircraft. An incursion alert processing module evaluates the flight path, data store, and pilot preferences and generates incursion alerts which are transmitted to each aircraft during flight, either directly or via ground based dispatchers or flight operations personnel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 9, 2011
    Date of Patent: September 17, 2013
    Assignee: Honeywell International Inc.
    Inventors: Anand Agarwal, David Brabham, Trip Redner, SatyaBhaskar Payasam
  • Patent number: 8489257
    Abstract: The invention relates to a method for actuating an adjusting drive for adjusting an elevator (12) and an adjusting drive for adjusting a moveable tail (23) provided with the steps: Generation of an elevator command to actuate the elevator adjusting drive; Calculating a moveable tail command (IHC1) for actuating the moveable tail adjusting drive in such a manner that the moveable tail (23) is tracked to the elevator input signal (10); Depending on the adjusting states of the elevator (12) and/or the moveable tail (23) or flight states, retaining the adjusting state of the moveable tail adjusting drive or actuating the moveable tail adjusting drive with a moveable tail command (IHCMD) for changing the adjusting state of the moveable tail (23), during actuation of the elevator adjusting drive with an elevator command for changing the adjusting state of the elevator (23) and in the event of a deviation from the calculated moveable tail command (IHC1) and the commanded moveable tail command (IHCMD), acting upon th
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 17, 2008
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2013
    Assignee: Airbus Operations GmbH
    Inventor: Torsten Holzhausen
  • Patent number: 8442701
    Abstract: A method, apparatus, and computer program product are present for operating an aircraft. A roll angle limit is identified using a load factor selected to allow a lateral maneuvering capability of the aircraft by forming an identified roll angle limit in response to vertical maneuvering of the aircraft. The vertical maneuvering of the aircraft is performed using the identified roll angle limit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 2, 2008
    Date of Patent: May 14, 2013
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventor: Frederick Charles Henry Blechen
  • Patent number: 8380425
    Abstract: Autonomous collision avoidance systems for unmanned aerial vehicles are disclosed. Systems illustratively include a detect and track module, an inertial navigation system, and an auto avoidance module. The detect and track module senses a potential object of collision and generates a moving object track for the potential object of collision. The inertial navigation system provides information indicative of a position and a velocity of the unmanned aerial vehicle. The auto avoidance module receives the moving object track for the potential object of collision and the information indicative of the position and the velocity of the unmanned aerial vehicle. The auto avoidance module utilizes the information to generate a guidance maneuver that facilitates the unmanned aerial vehicle avoiding the potential object of collision.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 2010
    Date of Patent: February 19, 2013
    Assignee: L-3 Unmanned Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: David S. Duggan, David A. Felio, Craig S. Askew
  • Patent number: 8352104
    Abstract: A method and device for servocontrolling an aircraft speed-wise in an approach phase. The device can adapt to the estimated time of passage of the aircraft at a particular point of the approach trajectory, the position of the start of deceleration of the aircraft in the approach phase.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 12, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 8, 2013
    Assignee: Airbus Operations SAS
    Inventors: Maxime Wachenheim, Jean-Louis De Menorval