Automatic Guidance Patents (Class 244/3.15)
  • Patent number: 10351129
    Abstract: A respective confidence level of a potential collision is determined for each of a plurality of targets based on each target's heading angle and distance from a host vehicle. A threat number is determined for each target when its respective confidence level is above a threshold. A vehicle component is actuated based on the threat number.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 26, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2019
    Inventors: Wangdong Luo, Nanjun Liu, Kun Deng, Alex Maurice Miller
  • Patent number: 10296013
    Abstract: A vehicle guidance system, including: surface-mounted pressure sensors mounted on a vehicle; an air data estimation controller including: a preprocessor that sets initial values for angle of attack and sideslip angle, determines a converged value for the angle of attack using the initial values and values of one or more first sets of three sensors, each first set of sensors are located among three different planes that are parallel to the ground, and provides a converged sideslip angle value based on the converged value and values of one or more second sets of three sensors, each second set of sensors located among three different planes that are perpendicular to the ground; a processor that estimates air data based on the converged value for the angle of attack and the converged sideslip angle value; and processor that provides an output for adjusting orientation of a vehicle based on the air data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 16, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 21, 2019
    Inventor: Daniel R. Millman
  • Patent number: 10242578
    Abstract: Systems and methods for determining a flight path of an aircraft are provided. In one embodiment, a method can include identifying one or more parameter(s) associated with a moving target. The method can include determining a moving circular flight path associated with the moving target based at least in part on the parameter(s) associated with the moving target. The method can include identifying one or more condition(s) associated with at least one of the aircraft and the moving circular flight path. The method can include determining a flight path of the aircraft from a location of the aircraft to the moving circular flight path based at least in part on the parameter(s) associated with the moving target and the condition(s) associated with at least one of the aircraft and the moving circular flight path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 1, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 26, 2019
    Assignee: GE Aviation Systems LLC
    Inventors: Peter Mellema, Scott Robert Edwards, Kathy Jo Smith
  • Patent number: 10182214
    Abstract: An agricultural monitoring system, the agricultural monitoring system comprising: an imaging sensor, configured and operable to acquire image data at submillimetric image resolution of parts of an agricultural area in which crops grow, when the imaging sensor is airborne; a communication module, configured and operable to transmit to an external system image data content which is based on the image data acquired by the airborne imaging sensor; and a connector operable to connect the imaging sensor and the communication module to an airborne platform.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 2, 2015
    Date of Patent: January 15, 2019
    Inventor: Amihay Gornik
  • Patent number: 10073449
    Abstract: Techniques for using an aerial vehicle to provide a data service are provided. For example, information about a request for the data service is accessed. The request is sent to a provider computing device and identifies a user computing device to receive the data service. The provider computing device is configured to provide the data service. A location associated with providing the data service is determined based on the request. The aerial vehicle is flown to the location. The aerial vehicle includes a computing system configured to provide a portion of the data service. Based on detecting that the aerial vehicle is within a range of the location, the aerial vehicle provides the portion of the data service to the user computing device by using, for example, the computing system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 18, 2014
    Date of Patent: September 11, 2018
    Assignee: Amazon Technologies, Inc.
    Inventor: Abdul Sathar Sait
  • Patent number: 10065643
    Abstract: In a vehicle travel control apparatus configured to determine a target acceleration of an own vehicle based on an inter-vehicle distance to a predicted cutting-in vehicle predicted to cut in between the own vehicle and a following target vehicle as well as an inter-vehicle distance to the following target vehicle, it is necessary to notify a driver of the presence of the predicted cutting-in vehicle at an appropriate timing. A cutting-in probability, which is a probability that the predicted cutting-in vehicle carries out the cutting in, is acquired, and information on the predicted cutting-in vehicle is notified to the driver from a time point when a state where the cutting-in probability is higher than a start probability threshold has continued for a predetermined period to a time point when a state where the cutting-in probability is lower than an end probability threshold has continued for a predetermined period.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 31, 2017
    Date of Patent: September 4, 2018
    Inventors: Tatsuya Ito, Takayoshi Nohara
  • Patent number: 10001830
    Abstract: In an example, a method includes determining, at a host device, a power state of a digital input/output device, and transmitting a clock signal having a first frequency from the host device to the input/output device responsive to a determination that the input/output device is in a lower power state. The method also includes determining, at the host device, that the input/output device has transitioned into a higher power state, and transmitting a clock signal having a second frequency from the host device to the input/output device responsive to a determination that the input/output device has transitioned into the higher power state. The first frequency is lower than the second frequency.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 2, 2015
    Date of Patent: June 19, 2018
    Assignee: Marvell World Trade Ltd.
    Inventors: Benson Chau, Frank Huang, Xiaohua Luo, Venkatachalam Shanmugasundaram
  • Patent number: 9940522
    Abstract: There is provided a system including a non-transitory memory storing an executable code and a hardware processor executing the executable code to receive a plurality of training contents depicting a plurality of activities, extract training object data from the plurality of training contents including a first training object data corresponding to a first activity, extract training scene data from the plurality of training contents including a first training scene data corresponding to the first activity, determine that a probability of the first activity is maximized when the first training object data and the first training scene data both exist in a sample media content.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 15, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2018
    Assignee: Disney Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventors: Zuxuan Wu, Yanwei Fu, Leonid Sigal
  • Patent number: 9857459
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for determining a deviation between an actual direction of a launched projectile and a predetermined direction includes providing, using a camera fixed to a radar, an image representing a target area, receiving an indication of a position in the image, the indicated position corresponding to a position in the target area, determining, using a radar, the actual direction of the projectile, determining a launch position of the projectile, determining, from the launch position and the corresponding position, the predetermined direction and determining the deviation between the actual direction of the projectile and the predetermined direction. The indicating step include rotating the camera and radar to have the position in the target area presented at a center or with a predetermined offset form the center in the image.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 10, 2014
    Date of Patent: January 2, 2018
    Assignee: TRACKMAN A/S
    Inventor: Fredrik Tuxen
  • Patent number: 9823089
    Abstract: This disclosure describes systems, methods, and apparatus for automating the verification of aerial vehicle sensors as part of a pre-flight, flight departure, in-transit flight, and/or delivery destination calibration verification process. At different stages, aerial vehicle sensors may obtain sensor measurements about objects within an environment, the obtained measurements may be processed to determine information about the object, as presented in the measurements, and the processed information may be compared with the actual information about the object to determine a variation or difference between the information. If the variation is within a tolerance range, the sensor may be auto adjusted and operation of the aerial vehicle may continue. If the variation exceeds a correction range, flight of the aerial vehicle may be aborted and the aerial vehicle routed for a full sensor calibration.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 21, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 21, 2017
    Assignee: Amazon Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Scott Michael Wilcox, Naimisaranya Das Busek, Trevor Josph Myslinski Decker, Michael William Regner
  • Patent number: 9805264
    Abstract: Techniques disclose an incrementally expanding object detection model. An object detection tool identifies, based on an object detection model, one or more objects in a sequence of video frames. The object detection model provides an object space including a plurality of object classes. Each object class includes one or more prototypes. Each object is classified as being an instance of one of the object classes. Each identified object is tracked across at least one of the frames. The object detection tool generates a measure of confidence for that object based on the tracking. Upon determining that the measure of confidence exceeds a threshold, the object detection tool adds a prototype of the instance to the object detection model.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 19, 2015
    Date of Patent: October 31, 2017
    Assignee: Disney Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventors: Alina Kuznetsova, Sung Ju Hwang, Leonid Sigal
  • Patent number: 9785861
    Abstract: A method for optimizing the position and size of a search window in a tracking system is disclosed. According to some embodiments of the present invention, the method may comprise: calculating a velocity of a tracked object based on comparison of at least two previously captured consecutive frames; calculating an expected position of the tracked object in a subsequent frame based on calculated velocity of the tracked object; determine possible positions of the tracked object in the subsequent frame, based on the last known position of the tracked object, status of the tracked object, the expected position and the acceleration of the tracked object; and optimizing the size and position of the search window within the subsequent frame so that the search window covers the expected position and at least one of the possible positions of said tracked object.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 10, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 10, 2017
    Assignee: Umoove Services Ltd.
    Inventor: Yitzchak Kempinski
  • Patent number: 9785665
    Abstract: An information processing apparatus is provided, in which content and position information generated independently of each other are recorded in a recording medium. The apparatus includes a recording medium in which the content and the position information are recorded and a deletion unit deleting position information temporally associated with a piece of the content from the recording medium when the piece of content is deleted from the recording medium.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 26, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 10, 2017
    Inventors: Masayuki Ichihara, Masanao Tsutsui
  • Patent number: 9736368
    Abstract: Methods and apparatus track an object with a first camera causing a second camera to also track the object. The object is a moving object. Geospatial coordinates, including an elevation or altitude of a camera are determined on the camera. A pose of the camera, including a pitch angle and an azimuth angle are also determined. Azimuth is determined by a digital compass. A camera pose including pitch is determined by accelerometers and/or gyroscopes. Cameras are communicatively connected allowing to display an image recorded by one camera being displayed on a second camera. At least one camera is on a movable platform with actuators. Actuators are controlled to minimize a difference between a first image of the object and a second image of the object. Cameras are part of a wearable headframe.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 5, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2017
    Assignee: Spatial Cam LLC
    Inventor: Peter Lablans
  • Patent number: 9683814
    Abstract: A multi-function radio frequency (MFRF) module integrates command guidance, active and semi-active terminal guidance (and possibly passive) and fuzing sensors for gun-launched munitions into a single assembly. The MFRF module can be incorporated into a variety of different gun-launched munitions to execute missions currently performed by guided missiles. The MFRF module is programmable during munition activation to select the guidance mode, active or semi-active, and a primary fuze mode, proximity or height of burst.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 16, 2015
    Date of Patent: June 20, 2017
    Assignee: Raytheon Company
    Inventor: Richard L. Dryer
  • Patent number: 9667303
    Abstract: A system and a method for increasing a rate of transfer of data between a radio frequency (RF) generator and a host computer system is described. The rate of transfer of data is increased by implementing dedicated physical layers associated with the RF generator and the host computer system and a dedicated physical communication medium between the RF generator and the host computer system. Moreover, a dual push operation is used between the RF generator and the host computer system. There is no request for data sent from the RF generator to the host computer system or from the host computer system to the RF generator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 30, 2017
    Assignee: Lam Research Corporation
    Inventors: John C. Valcore, Jr., Tony San, Andrew Fong
  • Patent number: 9584077
    Abstract: A method and system of synthesizing impedance in a radio frequency (RF) amplifier includes receiving a voltage signal at a passive mixer. The passive mixer down-converts the voltage signal into a baseband frequency. The method includes converting the voltage signal into a digital signal. Further, the method includes performing convolution of the digital signal with an impulse response. The impulse response is of a low Q impedance and is programmable. Furthermore the method includes generating a current signal based on output of the convolution. Furthermore the method includes performing up-conversion of the current signal in the passive mixer. The passive mixer performs impedance transformation of the low Q impedance. Moreover, the method includes providing the current signal via the passive mixer to synthesize desired impedance in the RF amplifier, thereby controlling frequency response of the RF amplifier.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 6, 2015
    Date of Patent: February 28, 2017
    Inventors: Himamshu Gopalakrishna Khasnis, Naveen Mahadev
  • Patent number: 9541924
    Abstract: Embodiments of the present invention provide an alternative distributed airborne transportation system. In some embodiments, a method for distributed airborne transportation includes: providing an airborne vehicle with a wing and a wing span, having capacity to carry one or more of passengers or cargo; landing of the airborne vehicle near one or more of passengers or cargo and loading at least one of passengers or cargo; taking-off and determining a flight direction for the airborne vehicle; locating at least one other airborne vehicle, which has substantially the same flight direction; and joining at least one other airborne vehicle in flight formation and forming a fleet, in which airborne vehicles fly with the same speed and direction and in which adjacent airborne vehicles are separated by distance of less than 100 wing spans.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 12, 2015
    Date of Patent: January 10, 2017
    Inventors: Sergey V. Frolov, John Peter Moussouris, Michael Cyrus
  • Patent number: 9508265
    Abstract: According to one aspect, a flight controller constructed to control a parafoil in flight from a starting location to a target location is provided. The flight controller includes an interface constructed to connect to one or more actuators and one or more wind sensors, a memory, a processor coupled to the memory, the interface, and a flight manager component executable by the processor. The flight manager component is configured to identify the target location and the starting location, receive wind data, determine a relationship between a ground reference frame (GRF) and a wind fixed frame (WFF) based on the wind data, generate a trajectory between the starting location and the target location in the WFF, determine a desired heading based on the trajectory and the relationship between the GRF and the WFF, and generate an actuator control signal based on the desired heading to adjust a heading of the parafoil.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 24, 2014
    Date of Patent: November 29, 2016
    Inventors: Benjamin S. Chiel, Christopher Walden Dever
  • Patent number: 9502763
    Abstract: A stabilization control method for a satellite tracking antenna disclosed herein includes outputting a monopulse signal and a gyro signal through a satellite tracking antenna having a gyro mounted thereto, under a situation that disturbance is applied to the satellite tracking antenna, inputting the output monopulse signal and gyro signal into a Kalman filter for stabilization of the satellite tracking antenna, defining a state vector of the Kalman filter based on a pointing-error angle for the satellite tracking, corresponding to the monopulse signal, and a pointing-error angular velocity for the satellite tracking, corresponding to the gyro signal, predicting an original monopulse signal corresponding to a state prior to distortion of the monopulse signal based on the defined state vector, and continuously updating the prediction of the original monopulse signal, and carrying out the stabilization control for the satellite tracking antenna by using the predicted original monopulse signal as a pointing-error
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 21, 2014
    Date of Patent: November 22, 2016
    Inventors: Si Hun Jo, Ho Jung Lee, Byoung Uk Nam, Jong Wan Heo
  • Patent number: 9429403
    Abstract: A flight safety assembly onboard an aerial vehicle includes a first sensor configured to sense first information related to flight of the aerial vehicle and a second sensor configured to sense second information related to the flight of the aerial vehicle. A sensor input is adapted to receive third information related to the flight of the aerial vehicle. A processor is operably coupled to the first sensor, the second sensor, and the sensor input. The processor is configured to determine three independent instantaneous impact points for the aerial vehicle by independently analyzing each of the first information, the second information and the third information. The processor is also configured to generate three independent onboard flight termination indicators for each of the three independent instantaneous impact points that intersects with a region to be protected.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 18, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 30, 2016
    Assignee: Orbital ATK, Inc.
    Inventors: George B. Papadopoulos, Derek R. Devries, Steven W. Thomas, Timothy J. Van Dixhorn, Charles L. Weigel, Charles L. Dedon
  • Patent number: 9423497
    Abstract: A method for obstacle detection, the method may include receiving or generating, by a computerized system, detection information about input radio frequency (RF) signals detected by a RF receiver as a result of a transmission of RF output signals towards a space that comprises potential obstacles; and detecting, by the computerized system, obstacles by associating agent behaviors with clusters of input RF signals.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 17, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 23, 2016
    Inventors: Alon Slapak, Nirom Cohen-Nov Slapak
  • Patent number: 9285196
    Abstract: A guidance unit system is configured to be used for a ground-launched projectile. The system includes a housing configured to be attached to a ground-launched projectile. The housing is coupled to an attachment region that attaches to the projectile, wherein the housing is configure to rotate relative to the attachment region. A motor is contained within the housing and a bearing surrounding the motor. The bearing is rigidly attached to the housing such that the motor rotates with the housing and shields the motor from inertial loads experienced by the housing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 15, 2016
    Inventors: Gordon Harris, Stephen Harris
  • Patent number: 9170571
    Abstract: A position controller sets a variable friction compensation value which varies in accordance with a change in sliding characteristics by providing a variable friction compensation value calculation unit that includes a sliding torque normalization calculation unit that normalizes a sliding torque at a predefined speed; a compensation value amplifying ratio calculation unit that calculates a compensation value amplifying ratio based on the sliding torque at the normalized speed; and multipliers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 24, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 27, 2015
    Inventors: Masahiro Maeda, Satoshi Eguchi
  • Patent number: 9140784
    Abstract: A method for identification of one or more launched objects obscured by debris objects within a debris field comprises: directing one or more sensor pulses at the debris field to obtain a plurality of sensor images; identifying objects within the debris field based on the sensor images; determining acceleration characteristics for each of the identified objects within the debris field based on the sensor images; identifying objects exhibiting free fall acceleration characteristics as debris objects; and identifying objects exhibiting centripetal acceleration characteristics as the one or more launched objects.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 2013
    Date of Patent: September 22, 2015
    Assignee: Lockheed Martin Corporation
    Inventors: Mark A. Friesel, Paul Mountcastle
  • Patent number: 9127908
    Abstract: A system comprising an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) configured to transition from a terminal homing mode to a target search mode, responsive to an uplink signal and/or an autonomous determination of scene change.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 2, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 8, 2015
    Assignee: Aero Vironment, Inc.
    Inventor: Carlos Thomas Miralles
  • Patent number: 9111391
    Abstract: An image generating device includes: a gravity parameter changing section for changing a parameter relating to gravity of each of a plurality of rigid bodies which are constrained to one another and included in a first object based on a positional relationship between each of the plurality of rigid bodies and a second object; a physical calculation section for physically calculating a motion of each of the plurality of rigid bodies included in the first object based on the changed parameter; and an image rendering section for rendering an image representing a surface of the first object based on the motions of the plurality of rigid bodies included in the first object.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 2012
    Date of Patent: August 18, 2015
    Inventors: Fumito Ueda, Hitoshi Ishikawa, Rui Guerreiro, Atsuhiko Terada, Chihiro Kanno, Toshihiro Kamei
  • Patent number: 9098090
    Abstract: A flight control system and method for controlling full envelope banked turns of an aircraft, the flight control system including one or more of a control law architectures having one or more control laws adapted for controlling the flight of an aircraft for full envelope banked turns.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 4, 2015
    Assignee: Textron Innovations Inc.
    Inventors: Kevin Thomas Christensen, Shyhpyng Jack Shue, Troy Sheldon Caudill, Nicholas Dean Lappos
  • Patent number: 9035226
    Abstract: An exoatmospheric vehicle uses a control system that includes a thrust system to provide thrust to control flight of the vehicle. A regenerative heat system is used to preheat portions of the thrust system, prior to their use in control of the vehicle. The heat for preheating may be generated by consumption of a fuel of the vehicle, such as a monopropellant fuel. The fuel may be used to power a pump (among other possibilities), to pressurize the fuel for use by thrusters of the thrust system. The preheated portions of the thrust system may include one or more catalytic beds of the thrust system, which may be preheated using exhaust gasses from the pump. The preheating may reduce the response time of the thrusters that have their catalytic beds preheated. Other thrusters of the thrust system may not be preheated at all before operation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 20, 2014
    Date of Patent: May 19, 2015
    Assignee: Raytheon Company
    Inventors: Wayne C Jouse, Mark S Muktoyuk
  • Patent number: 9018572
    Abstract: A rocket is provided and includes booster stages at a rear of the nose cone, the booster stages being configured for propelling the nose cone in a propulsion direction and a divert control system housed entirely in the nose cone for controlling an orientation of the propulsion direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 6, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 28, 2015
    Assignee: Raytheon Company
    Inventors: Andrew B. Facciano, Michael S. Alkema, Robert T. Moore
  • Patent number: 9012822
    Abstract: Missile guidance involving projection of laser light to define a Laser Information Field (LIF) is augmented by interposition of information pulses, interleaved between laser emissions establishing the LIF. Information pulses encode further information for receipt by a missile, such as an angle of roll of a missile launch platform from which the LIF is emitted.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 18, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 21, 2015
    Assignee: Thales Holdings UK Plc
    Inventor: Wai Yu
  • Patent number: 9012823
    Abstract: A vehicle, such as a missile, is disclosed. The vehicle includes an optically transparent dome, a vehicle body, and a brazed joint directly coupling the dome to the vehicle body. The dome is formed of a Nanocomposite Optical Ceramic (NCOC) material comprising two or more different types of nanograins dispersed in one another. Each nanograin type has a coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE), and an aggregate CTE of the NCOC material is based on the CTE of each nanograin type.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 31, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 21, 2015
    Assignee: Raytheon Company
    Inventors: Wayne L. Sunne, Christopher E. Pentland, Christopher D. Marr
  • Patent number: 8997654
    Abstract: A guided munition (10) includes a warhead (20) within the nose section (60) and processing electronics (30) arranged within the munition (10) behind the warhead (20). A plurality of sensors (50) are arranged within the nose section (60) for sensing a target. The sensors (50) are remote from but in communication with the processing electronics (30).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 22, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 7, 2015
    Assignee: MBDA UK Limited
    Inventors: Lee Douglas Miller, George William Game
  • Patent number: 8975565
    Abstract: An interceptor is provided with an integrated propulsion and attitude control system (ACS) in which propellant burn forms a common pressure vessel for high-pressure gas. An aft port in the rocket motor directs gas through one or more main nozzles that expel high-velocity gas in a generally axial direction to propel the interceptor. A forward port directs gas through one or more attitude control nozzles that expel high-velocity gas in a generally radial direction to control the attitude of the interceptor. The main nozzle(s) and stabilization fins are fixed, there is no servo control to the main nozzles or fins to affect attitude control. The use of a common pressure vessel enables an integrated propulsion and ACS that can be compact, lightweight and inexpensive.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 17, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 10, 2015
    Assignee: Raytheon Company
    Inventors: Doron Strassman, Mark E. Elkanick
  • Patent number: 8975564
    Abstract: This invention advances the related state-of-the-art by eliminating the physical EO window used by electro-optical imaging infrared seekers for tactical missiles and high-altitude endo-atmospheric interceptors, widely employed in integrated defense systems. This invention increases the probability of intercepting exo-atmospheric ballistic warheads by exo-atmospheric interceptors, and eliminates the existing altitude “gap” of interception, as well as the geographical limitations posed by the mesospheric Noctilucent Clouds. The problem of protecting an imaging EO sensor from aeroheating is solved in this invention by a special purpose device which is enabled immediately after the nose cone ejection event.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 4, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 10, 2015
    Assignee: Sener Grupo De Ingenieria, S.A.
    Inventors: Jorge Sancho Ponce, Pedro Jose Herraiz Alijas, Rafael Rebolo Gomez, Carlos Miravet Fuster, Aitor Arce Aguinaga, Jose Maria Fernandez Ibarz, Daniel Ribas Nieto
  • Patent number: 8957355
    Abstract: Inertial measurement unit apparatus for use with guidance systems are disclosed herein. An example guidance system includes an inertial measurement unit removably coupled in a cavity of a guidance wafer via an access port of the guidance wafer defining a port axis that is non-parallel relative to a longitudinal axis of the guidance wafer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 20, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 17, 2015
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Angelo Truncale, James K. Gingrich, Stephen T. Butscher, Joseph E. Justin
  • Patent number: 8946606
    Abstract: Apparatus/method estimate LOS rotation, to track, approach, pursue, intercept or avoid objects. Vehicle-fixed imagers approach/recede-from objects, recording image series with background. Computations, from images exclusively, estimate rotation vs. the vehicle, applying the estimate. Preferably, recording/estimating provide proportional navigation; scan mirrors extend strapdown-sensor FOR; applying includes measuring “range rate over range”, exclusively from interimage optical flow, using results to optimize proportional-navigation loop gain; estimating includes evaluating interframe optical flow, preregistering roughly as first approximation, selecting sequence anchor points, and applying a second, finer technique developing output registration that's a coordinate translation, aligning inertial surroundings. The approximation operates optical flow with efficient embedded registration/mapping, applying a homography matrix to nearby imagery.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 26, 2010
    Date of Patent: February 3, 2015
    Assignee: Arete Associates
    Inventors: John Charles Dennison, Clayton Houston Davis, Brian Edward Frazier
  • Patent number: 8933860
    Abstract: A thermal management system and method for active cooling of high speed seeker missile domes or radomes comprising bonding to an IR dome or RF radome a heat pipe system having effective thermal conductivity of 10-20,000 W/m*K and comprising one or more mechanically controlled oscillating heat pipes, employing supporting integrating structure including a surface bonded to the IR dome or RF radome that matches the coefficient of thermal expansion the dome or radome material and that of said one or more mechanically controlled oscillating heat pipes, and operating the heat pipe system to cool the IR dome or RF radome while the missile is in flight.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 12, 2013
    Date of Patent: January 13, 2015
    Assignees: Integral Laser Solutions, Inc., The Curators of the University of Missouri
    Inventors: LaVerne Arthur Schlie, Hongbin Ma
  • Patent number: 8933382
    Abstract: A missile guidance system is configured to estimate a time to go, the time to go comprising an amount of time until a missile would reach a closest point of approach to a target. The guidance system is also configured to estimate a zero-effort miss distance along a zero-effort miss vector, the zero-effort miss distance comprising a distance by which the missile would miss the target if the missile performs no future maneuvers. The guidance system is also configured to determine a tolerance for the zero-effort miss distance, the tolerance being a function of the time to go. The guidance system is further configured to modify a course of the missile by adjusting an expenditure of propellant such that the estimated zero-effort miss distance in excess of the tolerance is removed from future consideration.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 31, 2011
    Date of Patent: January 13, 2015
    Assignee: Raytheon Company
    Inventor: Andrew E. Dolphin
  • Patent number: 8927915
    Abstract: Apparatus and a method for intercepting a rocket body during boost phase. A sensor is arranged to detect thermal emission in a range that is characteristic of a firing rocket body. The image detected by the sensor is applied to an analog-to-digital converter for digitization and application to a computer that includes a routine for separating the modulated photon energy of the detected image from the substantially unmodulated photon energy that characterizes rocket body emissions. The unmodulated photon energy, signature of the rocket body, may be utilized by a fire control system for tracking, targeting and aiming munitions at the firing rocket body.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 22, 2012
    Date of Patent: January 6, 2015
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Secretary of the Air Force
    Inventor: Frank O. Clark
  • Patent number: 8927914
    Abstract: An optical device forms a beam path between an optical end element at a beam path end and an object scene into which the beam path is directed via a field of view of the end element. The optical device contains an alignment device for pivoting the field of view relative to a predetermined direction, an end optical unit and an optical articulation for guiding the beam path from the pivoted field of view into the end optical unit. In order to achieve good shielding against spurious radiation, the device has a shielding unit containing a shielding element led partly around the optical articulation, which shielding unit shields the optical articulation against incident radiation that is not incident through the entrance or exit aperture of the optical articulation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 11, 2012
    Date of Patent: January 6, 2015
    Assignee: Diehl BGT Defense GmbH & Co. KG
    Inventors: Reiner Eckhardt, Joachim Barenz, Hubert Kuppel
  • Patent number: 8921748
    Abstract: An optical window for a detection system and method of employing the same. In one embodiment, the detection system includes an optical window configured to internally channel external incident radiation to an exit surface for emission. The detection system also includes a detector oriented to receive emitted radiation from the exit surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 18, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 30, 2014
    Assignee: Lockheed Martin Corporation
    Inventors: Umang R. Patel, Kurt Schuder
  • Patent number: 8921749
    Abstract: A perpendicular drive mechanism for a missile control actuation system employs an electric motor and power shaft operatively coupled to a first spur gear. A lead screw is coupled to a second spur gear. The lead screw is oriented parallel to the motor and perpendicular to a central longitudinal axis. The first and second spur gears meshingly engage such that the second spur gear rotates in the opposite direction as the first spur gear. A lead nut threadingly engages with and is configured to move linearly along the central axis of the lead screw. A crank arm is coupled on one end to the lead nut and on the other end to the canard shaft of a canard assembly. As the lead nut moves linearly along the central axis of the lead screw, the crank arm follows the lead nut and causes the canard assembly to actuate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 2013
    Date of Patent: December 30, 2014
    Assignee: The United States of America as Represented by the Secretary of the Navy
    Inventor: Aaron M. Scott
  • Publication number: 20140374533
    Abstract: A dual-mode, semi-active, laser-based and passive image-based seeker for projectiles, missiles, and other ordnance that persecute targets by detecting and tracking energy scattered from targets. The disclosed embodiments use a single digital imager having a single focal plane array sensor to sense data in both the image-based and laser-based modes of operation. A shuttering technique allows the relatively low frame-rate of the digital imager to detect, decode and localize in the imager's field-of-view a known pulse repetition frequency (PRF) from a known designator in the presence of ambient light and other confusing target designators, each having a different PRF.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 21, 2013
    Publication date: December 25, 2014
    Inventors: Todd Ell, Robert Rutkiewicz
  • Patent number: 8916809
    Abstract: A method is provided for optically providing at least one of power and data to a projectile from an external optical source. The method including: outputting an optical signal from an external optical source into an interior of the projectile; receiving the optical signal in the interior of projectile and at least one of converting the optical signal to electrical energy and storing data provided in the optical signal. The electrical energy can be provided to the one or more electronic components and/or energy storage medium disposed on the interior of the projectile. The data provided in the optical signal can be provided to a data storage medium disposed on the interior of the projectile.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 2008
    Date of Patent: December 23, 2014
    Assignee: Omnitek Partners LLC
    Inventors: Jahangir S. Rastegar, Thomas Spinelli
  • Patent number: 8884202
    Abstract: A system and methods are provided for combining systems of an upper stage space launch vehicle for enhancing the operation of the space vehicle. Hydrogen and oxygen already on board as propellant for the upper stage rockets is also used for other upper stage functions to include propellant tank pressurization, attitude control, vehicle settling, and electrical requirements. Specifically, gases from the propellant tanks, instead of being dumped overboard, are used as fuel and oxidizer to power an internal combustion engine that produces mechanical power for driving other elements including a starter/generator for generation of electrical current, mechanical power for fluid pumps, and other uses. The exhaust gas from the internal combustion engine is also used directly in one or more vehicle settling thrusters. Accumulators which store the waste ullage gases are pressurized and provide pressurization control for the propellant tanks.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 9, 2011
    Date of Patent: November 11, 2014
    Assignee: United Launch Alliance, LLC
    Inventor: Frank C. Zeglar
  • Patent number: 8872081
    Abstract: A relative navigation system projects a grid into space from a grid generator and an object, such as an unmanned aerial vehicle, may use the projected grid to aid in the landing of the object. Methods of adjusting the projected grid including stabilizing the projected grid and orienting the grid generator relative to the earth.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 1, 2011
    Date of Patent: October 28, 2014
    Assignee: GE Aviation Systems LLC
    Inventors: Michael Steven Feldmann, Frank Saggio, III, John Robert Washburn
  • Patent number: 8829401
    Abstract: A projectile and associated method are provided for seeking a target that has been laser designated even though the projectile does not include a laser receiver. A projectile includes an aerodynamic body and a GPS receiver configured to receive GPS signals indicative of a location of the aerodynamic body. The projectile also includes a radio receiver configured to receive radio signals from an offboard laser receiver that provide information relating to a location of the target based upon laser designation of the target. Further, the projectile includes a processor configured to direct flight of the aerodynamic body toward the target based upon the location of the aerodynamic body as determined from the GPS signals and the location of the target based upon the information provided by the offboard laser receiver.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 16, 2011
    Date of Patent: September 9, 2014
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Kevin Lutke, Aaron J. Kutzmann
  • Patent number: 8825231
    Abstract: A method and system for piloting a craft with a rear propulsion unit are disclosed. The method can include a servo loop where the attitude (?M) of the craft (1) is measured in the vicinity of the rear end (1R) of the craft, then the orientation (?) of the propulsion means (2), which can be oriented relative to the rear end (1R), is adjusted as a function of the attitude measurement (?M) in such a way that the craft (1) is stabilized on its flight path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 20, 2012
    Date of Patent: September 2, 2014
    Assignee: Astrium SAS
    Inventors: Paul Caye, James Caillaud, Guillaume Laporte
  • Patent number: 8816261
    Abstract: Control surfaces secured tangentially to a round projectile, such that the lift force generated by the control surfaces is generated through the projectiles centerline. This eliminates the need for an opposing fin to counter roll moment. Sizing the control surfaces to form an equilateral triangle gives each panel equal span, and enables the force generated by two panels to be equal and opposite to that of the opposing panel. The end effect is that each panel only has two active states (neutral and positive deflection). Thus, a solenoid and a return spring may be used to control the canards. Additionally, the control panels may fold along the surface of the projectile, which frees up internal volume and minimizes the length of the control section.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 29, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 26, 2014
    Assignee: Raytheon Company
    Inventors: Jesse H. Blake, Matthew G. Murphy