Tilting Patents (Class 244/56)
  • Patent number: 10556700
    Abstract: An aerial vehicle adapted for vertical takeoff and landing using a set of wing mounted thrust producing elements and a set of tail mounted rotors for takeoff and landing. An aerial vehicle which is adapted to vertical takeoff with the rotors in a rotated, take-off attitude then transitions to a horizontal flight path, with the rotors rotated to a typical horizontal configuration. The aerial vehicle uses different configurations of its wing mounted rotors and propellers to reduce drag in all flight modes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 3, 2017
    Date of Patent: February 11, 2020
    Assignee: Joby Aero, Inc.
    Inventors: Joeben Bevirt, Alex Stoll
  • Patent number: 10538321
    Abstract: Systems, methods, and devices provide a vehicle, such as an aircraft, with rotors configured to function as a tri-copter for vertical takeoff and landing (“VTOL”) and a fixed-wing vehicle for forward flight. One rotor may be mounted at a front of the vehicle fuselage on a hinged structure controlled by an actuator to tilt from horizontal to vertical positions. Two additional rotors may be mounted on the horizontal surface of the vehicle tail structure with rotor axes oriented vertically to the fuselage. For forward flight of the vehicle, the front rotor may be rotated down such that the front rotor axis may be oriented horizontally along the fuselage and the front rotor may act as a propeller. For vertical flight, the front rotor may be rotated up such that the front rotor axis may be oriented vertically to the fuselage, while the tail rotors may be activated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 11, 2018
    Date of Patent: January 21, 2020
    Assignee: UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AS REPRESENTED BY THE ADMINISTRATOR OF NASA
    Inventors: David D. North, Mark J. Aull, William J. Fredericks, Mark D. Moore, Paul M. Rothhaar, William T. Hodges, Zachary R. Johns
  • Patent number: 10513332
    Abstract: An aircraft includes a fuselage defining an aircraft attitude axis. The fuselage houses an engine fixed relative to the aircraft attitude axis. A rotor assembly is operatively connected to rotate back and forth relative to the aircraft attitude axis from a first position predominately for lift to a second position predominately for thrust. The rotor assembly includes a rotor that is operatively connected to be driven by the engine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 4, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 24, 2019
    Assignee: SIKORSKY AIRCRAFT CORPORATION
    Inventors: Mark R. Alber, Jeffrey Parkhurst, Charles Gayagoy
  • Patent number: 10457390
    Abstract: An aircraft includes an airframe and a distributed propulsion system including a plurality of propulsion assemblies coupled to the airframe. Each of the propulsion assemblies includes a nacelle, an engine disposed within the nacelle, a proprotor coupled to the engine and a thrust vectoring system. Each thrust vectoring system includes a pivoting plate, a rotary actuator operable to rotate the pivoting plate about a propulsion assembly centerline axis and a linear actuator operable to pivot the pivoting plate about a pivot axis that is normal to the propulsion assembly centerline axis. The engine is mounted on the pivoting plate such that operation of the pivoting plate enables resolution of a thrust vector within a thrust vector cone.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 21, 2019
    Date of Patent: October 29, 2019
    Assignee: Bell Textron Inc.
    Inventors: John Richard McCullough, Paul K. Oldroyd
  • Patent number: 10351235
    Abstract: Apparatus, systems, and methods are contemplated for electric powered vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft. Such are craft are engineered to carry safely carry at least 500 pounds (approx. 227 kg) using a few (e.g., 2-4) rotors, generally variable speed rigid (non-articulated) rotors. It is contemplated that one or more rotors generate a significant amount of lift (e.g., 70%) during rotorborne flight (e.g., vertical takeoff, hover, etc), and tilt to provide forward propulsion during wingborne flight. The rotors preferably employ individual blade control, and are battery powered. The vehicle preferably flies in an autopilot or pilotless mode and has a relatively small (e.g., less than 45? diameter) footprint.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 21, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2019
    Assignee: Karem Aircraft, Inc.
    Inventors: Abe Karem, William Martin Waide
  • Patent number: 10266252
    Abstract: A pylon assembly for a tiltrotor aircraft includes a rotor assembly operable to rotate between a generally vertical orientation, in a VTOL flight mode, and a generally horizontal orientation, in a forward flight mode, and having an intermediate orientation therebetween, in a conversion flight mode. The rotor assembly includes a proprotor operable to produce a slipstream. A wing extension, positioned outboard of the rotor assembly, has a minimal dimension and an outboard end. A winglet is coupled to the outboard end of the wing extension and has a minimal dimension. The wing extension and the winglet are operable to rotate generally with the rotor assembly such that the minimal dimensions of the wing extension and the winglet remain in the slipstream of the proprotor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 19, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2019
    Assignee: Bell Helicopter Textron Inc.
    Inventors: Adam Bryant Anderson, Steven Ray Ivans, Jeremy Robert Chavez
  • Patent number: 9688398
    Abstract: An aircraft for use in fixed wing flight mode and rotor flight mode is provided. The aircraft can include a fuselage, wings, and a plurality of engines. The fuselage can comprise a wing attachment region further comprising a rotating support. A rotating section can comprise a rotating support and the wings, with a plurality of engines attached to the rotating section. In a rotor flight mode, the rotating section can rotate around a longitudinal axis of the fuselage providing lift for the aircraft similar to the rotor of a helicopter. In a fixed wing flight mode, the rotating section does not rotate around a longitudinal axis of the fuselage, providing lift for the aircraft similar to a conventional airplane. The same engines that provide torque to power the rotor in rotor flight mode also power the aircraft in fixed wing flight mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 10, 2015
    Date of Patent: June 27, 2017
    Assignee: DZYNE Technologies, INC.
    Inventors: Mark Allan Page, Matthew Robert McCue, Robert Anthony Godlasky
  • Patent number: 9676479
    Abstract: A vertical takeoff and landing aircraft includes a pair of ducted lift/thrust fans that are rotatably movable between a first vertical lift position and a second horizontal thrust position. The lift/thrust fans are disposed within curvilinear fan recesses formed within leading edge portions of the aircraft's wings. A downwardly exhausting, ducted lift fan is disposed within the aircraft's fuselage, aft of the aircraft's pitch axis. A power plant, disposed within the fuselage, is coupled with the lift/thrust fans and the lift fan by a transmission system. The lift/thrust fans and lift fan are positioned with respect to one another to be triangulated about the aircraft's center of gravity and the aircraft's center of lift.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 7, 2015
    Date of Patent: June 13, 2017
    Assignee: XTI AIRCRAFT COMPANY
    Inventors: David E. Brody, Dennis D. Olcott
  • Patent number: 9464958
    Abstract: A computer-implemented method for determining center of gravity of a tiltrotor aircraft includes storing a multi-dimensional matrix mapping multiple tiltrotor aircraft parameters to a plurality of three-dimensional (3D) centers of gravity of the tiltrotor aircraft, where each 3D center of gravity includes a respective longitudinal center of gravity, lateral center of gravity, and vertical center of gravity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 16, 2015
    Date of Patent: October 11, 2016
    Assignee: Bell Helicopter Textron Inc.
    Inventor: ShyhPyng Jack Shue
  • Patent number: 9193452
    Abstract: A direct orientation vector rotor (DOVER) for use on rotary wing aircraft includes a gear set for multidirectional rotor orientation based on the spherical coordinate system; an inclination mechanism, wherein the rotor is moved from the 0° horizontal position to an inclined position; a rotational turret, wherein the rotor is moved along the azimuth and wherein the inclination mechanism is housed; and a motion-adapted gear lubrication housing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 14, 2012
    Date of Patent: November 24, 2015
    Inventor: Raymond George Carreker
  • Patent number: 9004395
    Abstract: The rotors of a helicopter are directly connected with electric high-torque motors, and are powered by the latter. Energy generation and rotor drive are separate from each other. The high-torque motor of the main rotor is pivoted to the cabin canopy, so that it can be tilted together with the main rotor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 14, 2015
    Assignees: EADS Deutschland GmbH, Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH
    Inventors: Jean Botti, Johannes Stuhlberger, Peter Jänker, Georg Niesl, Valentin Klöppel
  • Patent number: 8991751
    Abstract: An aircraft for use in fixed wing flight mode and rotor flight mode is provided. The aircraft can include a fuselage, wings, and a plurality of engines. The fuselage can comprise a wing attachment region further comprising a rotating support. A rotating section can comprise a rotating support and the wings, with a plurality of engines attached to the rotating section. In a rotor flight mode, the rotating section can rotate around a longitudinal axis of the fuselage providing lift for the aircraft similar to the rotor of a helicopter. In a fixed wing flight mode, the rotating section does not rotate around a longitudinal axis of the fuselage, providing lift for the aircraft similar to a conventional airplane. The same engines that provide torque to power the rotor in rotor flight mode also power the aircraft in fixed wing flight mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 23, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2015
    Assignee: DZYNE Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Mark Allan Page, Matthew Robert McCue, Robert Anthony Godlasky
  • Patent number: 8960591
    Abstract: A convertiplane having a fuselage with a first axis; and two rotors having respective shafts and fitted to a wing having a fixed portion connected to the fuselage, and a movable portion which supports the rotors, is connected to the fixed portion to rotate about a second axis crosswise to the first axis and to the shafts of the rotors, and is formed in one piece defined by two half-wings located on opposite sides of the fixed portion and each supporting a respective rotor, and by an elongated member extending along the whole wing and connecting the two half-wings; the rotors being powered by a motor via a transmission comprising a transmission shaft connecting the shafts of the rotors and coaxial with the second axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 10, 2010
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Alenia Aermacchi S.p.A.
    Inventor: Santino Pancotti
  • Patent number: 8935073
    Abstract: A turbofan engine control system and method includes a core nacelle housing (12), a compressor and a turbine. A turbofan is arranged upstream from the core nacelle and is surrounded by a fan nacelle (34). A bypass flow path (39) is arranged downstream from the turbofan between the core and fan nacelles. The bypass flow path includes a nozzle exit area (40). A controller (50) detects at least one of a take-off condition and a landing condition. The controller changes effectively the nozzle exit area to achieve a thrust vector in response to the take-off and landing conditions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 12, 2006
    Date of Patent: January 13, 2015
    Assignee: United Technologies Corporation
    Inventors: Wayne Hurwitz, Ashok K. Jain
  • Publication number: 20140367509
    Abstract: An aircraft may have a fuselage, a left wing extending from the fuselage, a right wing extending from the fuselage, a tail section extending from a rear portion of the fuselage, and a first engine and a second engine operably connected by a common driveshaft, wherein the first and second engines are configured for freewheeling such that if one of the first and second engines loses power the other of the first and second engines continues to power the aircraft.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 14, 2014
    Publication date: December 18, 2014
    Inventor: Frick A. Smith
  • Patent number: 8820676
    Abstract: Swiveling engines attached to the fuselage by struts, for example to the rear part of the fuselage are used to control the pitch and yaw movements of an aircraft. The swivel axes of the engines are oriented to form a V so that swiveling one engine creates a variation of the vertical and lateral components of the engine thrust. Controlled swiveling of the two swiveling engines makes it possible to generate a component of the resultant thrust in a vertical plane that can be controlled in direction and intensity to generate pitch and yaw torques. The swiveling engines also include pods provided with jet deflection flaps for the engine considered, and the struts are profiled and provided with a trailing edge control surface using ruddervator architecture.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 30, 2009
    Date of Patent: September 2, 2014
    Assignee: Airbus Operations SAS
    Inventors: Olivier Cazals, Thierry Druot
  • Patent number: 8800912
    Abstract: A vertical takeoff and landing aircraft having at least three wings and at least six propulsion units, each of which are located radially from two adjacent propulsion units, by equal or substantially equal angles. The at least six propulsion units together being located symmetrically, or at substantially symmetric positions, about the approximate center of gravity of the aircraft, when viewed from above. A vertical stabilizer may or may not be employed. If no vertical stabilizer is employed, yaw control during horizontal flight may be achieved through differential thrust using the at least six propulsion units. Yaw control during vertical flight may be provided by a plurality of yaw control panels. Absent yaw control panels, yaw control during vertical flight may be provided using differential propulsion unit tilt angles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 12, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 12, 2014
    Assignee: Oliver VTOL, LLC
    Inventor: Richard David Oliver
  • Patent number: 8777150
    Abstract: There is described a convertiplane comprising a pair of semi-wings, a first and a second rotor which may rotate about relative first axes and tilt about relative second axes together with first axes with respect to semi-wings between a helicopter mode and an aeroplane mode; first axes are, in use, transversal to a longitudinal direction of convertiplane in helicopter mode, and are, in use, substantially parallel to longitudinal direction in aeroplane mode; first and second rotors may tilt about relative second axes independently of each other.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 27, 2012
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2014
    Assignee: Agustawestland S.p.A.
    Inventor: James Wang
  • Patent number: 8721383
    Abstract: An aircraft for unmanned aviation is described. The aircraft includes an airframe, a pair of fins attached to a rear portion of the airframe, a pair of dihedral braces attached to a bottom portion of the airframe, a first thrust vectoring module and a second thrust vectoring module, and an electronics module. The electronics module provides commands to the two thrust vectoring modules. The two thrust vectoring modules are configured to provide lateral and longitudinal control to the aircraft by directly controlling a thrust vector for each of the pitch, the roll, and the yaw of the aircraft. The use of directly articulated electrical motors as thrust vectoring modules enables the aircraft to execute tight-radius turns over a wide range of airspeeds.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 9, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 13, 2014
    Assignee: Aurora Flight Sciences Corporation
    Inventors: Adam Woodworth, Brandon Suarez
  • Patent number: 8708273
    Abstract: A vertical takeoff and landing aircraft having a fuselage with, preferably, three wings and six synchronously tilt-able propulsion units, each one mounted above, below, or on each half of the aforementioned three wings. The propulsion units are oriented vertically for vertical flight and horizontally for forward flight. Each propulsion unit comprises a propeller having a plurality of blades, where the pitch angle associated with the distal end of each blade and the proximal end of each blade are independently adjustable. As such, each of the propellers can be adjusted to exhibit a first blade pitch angle distribution optimized for vertical flight and a second blade pitch angle distribution optimized for forward flight.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 24, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 29, 2014
    Assignee: Oliver Vtol, LLC
    Inventor: Richard David Oliver
  • Patent number: 8702031
    Abstract: VTOL amphibious aircraft comprising two fuselages spaced apart to enable the placement of single center wing and split ailerons, engine and rotor or fan such that they may be rotated from vertical flight to horizontal flight and back while center wing ailerons counter rotor torque. Out board wings remain fixed and the twin fuselages provide buoyant hulls to facilitate water landings. Standard aircraft components are employed such as a vertical tails and horizontal stabilizers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 20, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 22, 2014
    Inventor: Richard David Morris
  • Patent number: 8631637
    Abstract: A fire enclosure for an auxiliary power unit having a hot zone formed by a gas turbine comprises an annular fire enclosure body, an axial expansion joint and a radial expansion joint. The annular fire enclosure body is configured to encapsulate the hot zone. The fire enclosure includes a first end and a second end. The axial expansion joint is connected to the first end. The radial expansion joint is connected to the second end.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 30, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 21, 2014
    Assignee: Hamilton Sundstrand Corporation
    Inventors: Brian C. DeDe, David Eugene Martinez, David Lau, Mark C. Tate
  • Publication number: 20140008489
    Abstract: A method for operating an aircraft that is driven forward in the air with a propulsion system in the form of two engines of the jet or propeller type one on each side of the fuselage is disclosed, and it is characterized in that during the forward movement of the plane, the two engines move in a mutual synchronous relationship with a longitudinal direction of the plane. Furthermore, the invention relates to an arrangement of such a propulsion system for aircraft operations. Moreover, the invention relates analog designs adapted for ships.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 9, 2012
    Publication date: January 9, 2014
    Inventor: Gunnar Rosenlund
  • Patent number: 8616492
    Abstract: A vertical takeoff and landing aircraft having a fuselage with three wings and six synchronously tilt-able propulsion units, each one mounted above, below, or on each half of the aforementioned three wings. The propulsion units are vertical for vertical flight, and horizontal for forward flight. The aircraft wings are placed such that the rear wing is above the middle wing which is placed above the front wing. The placement of each of the propulsion units relative to the center of gravity of the aircraft about the vertical axis inherently assures continued stability in vertical flight mode, following the loss of thrust from any one propulsion unit. The placement of the propulsion units, viewing the aircraft from the front, is such that each propulsion units' thrust wake does not materially disturb the propulsion unit to its rear.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 8, 2010
    Date of Patent: December 31, 2013
    Assignee: Oliver VTOL, LLC
    Inventor: Richard David Oliver
  • Patent number: 8602348
    Abstract: A vertical take-off and landing flying-wing aircraft has a pair of thrust-vectoring propulsion units mounted fore and aft of the aircraft pitch axis on strakes at opposite extremities of the wing-structure, with the fore unit below, and the aft unit above, the wing-structure. The propulsion units are pivoted to the strakes, either directly or via arms, for individual angular displacement for thrust-vectored maneuvering of the aircraft in yaw, pitch and roll and for hover and forward and backward flight. When arms are employed, the arms of fore and aft propulsion units are intercoupled via chain drives or linkages. The wing-structure may have fins, slats and flaps and other aerodynamic control-surfaces, and enlarged strakes may incorporate rudder surfaces. Only one propulsion unit may be mounted at each extremity and additional fan units may be used.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 2, 2009
    Date of Patent: December 10, 2013
    Inventor: Ashley Christopher Bryant
  • Patent number: 8579226
    Abstract: A power assisted flying device is powered via a vector thrust control apparatus supporting the motor where the vector thrust control apparatus includes a gyratory group that allows the motor to pivot up and down and from side to side. At least two servo motors are attached to the vector thrust control apparatus to move said motor up and down and from side to side. Alternatively, the flying device may incorporate a non-rotating outer ring and a rotating inner ring disposed around a shaft. At least two servo motors are connected to the non-rotating outer ring and the rotating inner ring in relation to the rotational axis. At least two linkage rods connect between the rotating inner ring and the propeller. Tilting of the non-rotating outer ring is transmitted to the propeller to effectuate at least one of cyclic pitch modulation or teetering hub modulation of the propeller.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 16, 2010
    Date of Patent: November 12, 2013
    Assignee: Premier Kites, Inc.
    Inventors: Valentine Deale, Peter Loehnert
  • Patent number: 8544787
    Abstract: Provided is a high performance tilt rotor aircraft in which a nacelle tilt angle and a flaperon angle mechanically interlock with each other. In the tilt rotor aircraft having nacelles in which rotors are mounted in left and right main wings and configured so that the nacelles rotate according to whether the tilt rotor aircraft conducts forward flight or vertical take-off and landing flight, each of the main wings is provided with a flaperon, and the nacelle and the flaperon are connected to each other by a power transfer unit, such that the flaperon also rotates together with the nacelle at the time of rotation of the nacelle, thereby allowing a change in a nacelle tilt angle to lead to a change in a flaperon angle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 21, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 1, 2013
    Assignee: Korea Aerospace Research Institute
    Inventors: Myeong Kyu Lee, Sung Ho Chang, Seong Wook Choi, Sam Ok Koo, Jai Moo Kim
  • Publication number: 20130153708
    Abstract: An aft-loading aircraft with a twin T-tail assembly is provided. In one example embodiment, the aft-loading aircraft includes a fuselage portion having an aft opening with a cargo door, a first and second vertical stabilizer attached to the fuselage portion, and, a horizontal stabilizer transversely attached to the first and second vertical stabilizers.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 22, 2011
    Publication date: June 20, 2013
    Applicant: BELL HELICOPTER TEXTRON INC.
    Inventor: John Brunken, JR.
  • Patent number: 8376268
    Abstract: A flight control system use in relation to an aviation vehicle having a thrust vectoring device for producing thrust, an air deflecting device for producing thrust having a box structure, and a computing system for receiving operation requirements is used to orient the thrust device and/or air deflecting device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 9, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 19, 2013
    Inventor: Paul Robert Otto
  • Patent number: 8376263
    Abstract: A roadable aircraft and an associated method are disclosed herein. The roadable aircraft includes a body extending along a longitudinal axis and operable to house a human occupant. The roadable aircraft also includes at least first and second wings each being selectively moveable relative to the body between a retracted position for stowing and an extended position for flight. Each of the first and second wings extend a wing cord along the longitudinal axis when in the extended position between a leading edge and a wing trailing-edge vectoring nozzle. The roadable aircraft also includes a system for directing first and second streams of air through the first and second wings, respectively, and out of the first and second wing trailing-edge vectoring nozzles such that thrust for the body is generated. In addition, embodiments of the invention can include a plurality of deployable, vectoring lift fans which are also capable of producing thrust.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 27, 2010
    Date of Patent: February 19, 2013
    Assignee: Rolls-Royce Corporation
    Inventor: David John Howard Eames
  • Patent number: 8271149
    Abstract: The difference between a first position of a first pylon of a tiltrotor aircraft and a second position of a second pylon of the aircraft is prevented from becoming too large. An actuator position error for the first pylon is calculated from a difference between the first position and a commanded first position of the first pylon. An actuator position error for the second pylon is calculated from a difference between the second position and a commanded second position of the second pylon. An absolute value of the actuator position error for the first pylon is compared to the preset limit. If the absolute value of the actuator position error for the first pylon is greater than or equal to a preset limit, the actuator position error for the second pylon is calculated from the difference between the first position and the second position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 21, 2006
    Date of Patent: September 18, 2012
    Assignee: Bell Helicopter Textron Inc.
    Inventor: Kenneth E. Builta
  • Patent number: 8262016
    Abstract: An airborne vehicle having a wing-body which defines a wing-body axis and appears substantially annular when viewed along the wing-body axis, the interior of the annulus defining a duct which is open at both ends. A propulsion system is provided comprising one or more pairs of propulsion devices, each pair comprising a first propulsion device mounted to the wing-body and positioned on a first side of a plane including the wing-body axis, and a second propulsion device mounted to the wing-body and positioned on a second side of the plane including the wing-body axis. A direction of thrust of the first propulsion device can be adjusted independently of the direction of thrust of the second propulsion device and/or a magnitude of thrust of the first propulsion device can be adjusted independently of the magnitude of thrust of the second propulsion device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 16, 2008
    Date of Patent: September 11, 2012
    Assignee: Go Science Limited
    Inventor: Harry George Dennis Gosling
  • Patent number: 8245966
    Abstract: A propulsion unit for an airship comprises a driveshaft, having a gimbal mount to a mounting frame attachable to a fuselage, the gimbal being mounted in the mounting frame and comprising an inner ring and an outer ring having orthogonal rotational axes, the inner ring including a propeller unit having a conical housing pivotable on trunnions with the gimbal and a propeller affixed to a propeller shaft coaxial with the axis of the conical housing. The outer ring includes a toroidal Orientation of the conical housing and propeller shaft is accomplished by actuators, a first actuator controlling the angle of the outer ring relative to the framework and a second actuator controlling the angle of the conical housing relative to the outer ring.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 4, 2010
    Date of Patent: August 21, 2012
    Assignee: 21st Century Airship Technologies Inc.
    Inventor: Hokan S. Colting
  • Patent number: 8240601
    Abstract: A coaxial rotary coupling (11) includes a hollow inner tube (4) and a hollow outer tube (7), with inner and outer splines (12 and 13) in mutual engagement. The coupling (11) further includes: approach elements for longitudinally approaching the inner and outer tubes (4, 7) together with elements presenting a wedge arrangement for causing the inner and outer tubes (4, 7) to turn (23) relative to each other in opposite directions so as to limit tangential assembly slack; a soleplate (16) of the driven tube (7); and a flange (17); the driving tubes (4) having complementary splines (12, 13, 18) together with dogs including force-transformation ramps (31) that are distributed peripherally within the coupling (11).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 27, 2010
    Date of Patent: August 14, 2012
    Assignee: Eurocopter
    Inventors: Etienne Rampal, Elio Zoppitelli
  • Patent number: 8240600
    Abstract: A pylon for suspending an engine beneath an aircraft wing, capable of being attached by one end to a casing of the engine and by another end to the wing is disclosed. The pylon includes at least one articulation actuated by a actuator making it possible to change the height position of the engine on the ground and in flight.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 27, 2008
    Date of Patent: August 14, 2012
    Assignee: Snecma
    Inventor: Wouter Balk
  • Patent number: 8201772
    Abstract: A method is disclosed for suppressing an external acoustic signature of an aircraft having at least one pair of non-intermeshing multiple-blade rotors. During operation of the aircraft, the at least one pair of rotors are rotated in an asymmetrically indexed manner that causes the blades of one of each pair of rotors to be consistently out of phase from the blades of the other of each pair of rotors. The selected amount in degrees of asymmetrical indexing is equal to the desired phasing in degrees divided by a number of blades of one of the rotors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 11, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 19, 2012
    Assignee: Textron Innovations Inc.
    Inventors: Joseph W. Wendelsdorf, Victor L. Berry
  • Patent number: 8196856
    Abstract: A method is disclosed for suppressing vibration in an aircraft having at least one pair of multiple-blade rotors. The first step of the method is to install in the aircraft at least one pair of vibration suppression devices to form a system, the devices of each system being mounted on opposing sides of the aircraft. Then, during operation of the aircraft, the next step is to rotate the at least one pair of rotors in a manner that causes the blades one of each pair of rotors to be out of phase from the other of each pair of rotors. The final step is to use the system to suppress vibrations caused by the out-of-phase rotation of the rotors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 11, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2012
    Assignee: Textron Innovations Inc.
    Inventors: James A. Wilson, Charles L. Barkley, Jr., Gerald Smith, Jr., Jeffrey B. Cloud
  • Patent number: 8181903
    Abstract: Aircraft having two, preferably four or more, rotors (20) in wing hatches (10) which can be closed. The closure mechanism has, at the top, individually curved elements on a rollshutter (scroll/roller blind) (40) and, at the bottom, a set of longitudinal fins (30). One or more propeller/impeller drives are firmly connected to the stabilator (60), which can be pivoted over a wide extent. In hovering flight, the wing hatches (10) are opened and the impeller drives (60), together with the stabilator, are pivoted largely vertically downwards. During the transition to cruise flight, the large flaperons (100) are lowered, and the propeller/impeller drives (60), together with the stabilator, are slowly pivoted to the horizontal. When the forward speed is sufficient, the wing hatches (10) are closed, the rotors (20) are stopped, and the flaperons (100) are raised somewhat again. The pilot has unobstructed visibility through the gap between the wingtips (70).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 2007
    Date of Patent: May 22, 2012
    Inventor: David Posva
  • Patent number: 8177159
    Abstract: A rescue aircraft having a rigid body with gas-filled envelopes and propulsion devices located inside rotatable aerodynamic toroidal modules. A longitudinal through passage in the lower part of the aircraft connects a crew cabin, a cargo-and-passenger compartment, fuel tanks, and accessories. The aircraft has exit hatches, mooring devices, and a gangway with railings and a removable cart. The aircraft also has a cross passage with exits onto its wings and a vertical passage with a pulley and other devices for lowering and lifting people and cargo. The lower part of the aircraft and hollow wings are filled with a foamed plastic for buoyancy and strength.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 22, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 15, 2012
    Inventors: Boris V. Khakimov, Alexandr N. Chernikov, German V. Demidov, Rustem Z. Khamitov
  • Patent number: 8091825
    Abstract: An aircraft with a long body 1 which has a forward end 2 and an aft end 3, which is able to achieve vertical take-off by means of a tilt-able rotor and blade assembly 4 at the forward part of the aircraft and a tilt-able turbojet 19 at the rear of the aircraft. The rotor and blade assembly is rotated by an engine assembly 8, with the engine assembly, the rotor and blades all positioned on top a multi-directional tilt enabling joint 9. The turbojet is fitted to a multi-directional tilt enabling joint 27 to allow control of lateral movement of the aircraft as well as providing vertical lift and forward propulsion during forward flight. The turbojet is connected to the tilt enabling joint 27 by a rivet 30 such that the turbojet can be rotated relative to the tilt enabling joint.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 10, 2012
    Inventor: Tom Kusic
  • Patent number: 8020803
    Abstract: Systems and methods are provided in which an electrical control system independently effects acceleration of both driven and driving elements of a clutch to engage each other. In preferred embodiments the clutch is not a friction clutch, but a dog clutch, and forms part of a drive drain of a rotorcraft. A second clutch can be used, along with a mechanical interlock to prevent simultaneous engagement of the clutches. Speeds of the driven and driving elements can be sensed, and altered using at least one of a rotor, a brake, a generator, an electric motor, and a combustion motor. In rotorcraft embodiments, the gearbox can have a neutral condition in which no power is transmitted from the engine to the rotor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 28, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 20, 2011
    Assignee: Karem Aircraft, Inc.
    Inventors: William Martin Waide, Abe Karem
  • Patent number: 7997526
    Abstract: The present invention includes an embodiment defined as a flying vehicle having a pair of wings and a transition assembly partially housed within each of the pair of wings. The transition assembly has ends rotatable with respect to each other and separately secured to the wing in which the end is housed. The transition assembly has a first position defined as having each wing positioned at an angle offset from a substantial horizontal orientation and oriented in an opposite direction from the other wing. When the transition assembly is in the first position the vehicle spins and will fly in a substantially hovering vertical orientation. The transition assembly has a second position defined as having each wing positioned in a substantial horizontal position. When the transition assembly is in the second position the vehicle will fly in a substantially horizontal orientation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 10, 2008
    Date of Patent: August 16, 2011
    Inventor: Peter Greenley
  • Patent number: 7992820
    Abstract: An aircraft with a long body 1 which has a forward end 2 and an aft end 3, which is able to achieve vertical take-off by means of a tilt-able rotor and blade assembly 4 at the forward part of the aircraft and a tilt-able turbojet 19 at the rear of the aircraft. The rotor and blade assembly is rotated by an engine assembly 8, with the engine assembly, the rotor and blades all positioned on top a multi-directional tilt enabling joint 9. The turbojet is fitted to a multi-directional tilt enabling joint 27 to allow control of lateral movement of the aircraft as well as providing vertical lift and forward propulsion during forward flight. The turbojet is connected to the tilt enabling joint 27 by a rivet 30 such that the turbojet can be rotated relative to the tilt enabling joint.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2010
    Date of Patent: August 9, 2011
    Inventor: Tom Kusic
  • Patent number: 7967243
    Abstract: The invention relates to a configuration of engines (3) for aircraft located in the rear part of the fuselage (2) of said aircraft, the engines (3) being attached in a fixed manner by pylons (5) to the structure of the aircraft, said structure comprising a torsion box (14) which traverses the fuselage (2) and is used to attach the pylons (5), the fuselage (2) comprising an opening (4) allowing the passage of the suspension pylons (5) for the engines (3), said configuration further comprising a pivoting area (8), an actuator (7) and a fitting (6) through which the actuator (7) is attached to the suspension pylons (5) and to the torsion box (14) of the aircraft, such that the assembly formed by the actuator (7) and the fitting (6) allow balancing the pylon (5) and engine (3) assembly of the aircraft through the pivoting area (8), thus achieving controllable and optimal thrust vectoring of the aircraft for each flight phase.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 21, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 28, 2011
    Assignee: Airbus Espana, S.L.
    Inventors: Jorge Pablo Verde Preckler, José Miguel Vizarro Toribio, Raúl Carlos Llamas Sandin, Stephane Viala
  • Patent number: 7913947
    Abstract: A tiltrotor aircraft having a wing and a rotatable pylon carried by the wing is disclosed. The pylon is secured to a pylon support spindle that extends into the wing. A link connects a radial portion of the pylon support spindle to a radial portion of an actuator spindle, such that the pylon support spindle is rotated as the actuator spindle is rotated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 2004
    Date of Patent: March 29, 2011
    Assignee: Textron Innovations Inc.
    Inventors: David F. Haynes, Andrew D. Smith
  • Patent number: 7874515
    Abstract: A gimbaled truss assembly is disclosed including a frame rotatably mounted in a gimbal mount, and a truss rotatably mounted within the frame. The truss is configured to retain a propulsion system. The frame and the truss rotate independently of one another. A fastening system for mounting the propulsion system to the truss includes vibration isolators. A plurality of braces are coupled to the gimbal mount. The braces conform to the external surface of an air vehicle on which the assembly is to be attached.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 25, 2007
    Date of Patent: January 25, 2011
    Assignee: Lockheed-Martin Corporation
    Inventors: Joseph W. Kinkopf, David E. Carlile, Alex Siler, Andrew Yuhas, Thomas H. Walsh
  • Patent number: 7874513
    Abstract: A fixed wing Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) aircraft for use as a Personal Air Vehicle (PAV) or unmanned vehicle. A first double-ended drive shaft engine is mounted sideways in the front of the fuselage to serve a first pair of ducted fans mounted at the ends of the front wing. A second double-ended drive shaft engine is mounted sideways in the rear of the fuselage to serve a second pair of ducted fans mounted on the rear fuselage. The ducted fans are rotatable from a horizontal orientation to a vertical orientation to permit the aircraft to take off and land as a VTOL or conventional aircraft, and to be flown as a conventional aircraft. A parachute is provided with inflation assistance to permit rapid low altitude deployment for a controlled descent of the aircraft in an emergency.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 16, 2006
    Date of Patent: January 25, 2011
    Inventor: Frick A. Smith
  • Patent number: 7871035
    Abstract: A propulsion system for an airship or hybrid aircraft includes a propeller and a pivot mechanism connected to the propeller. The pivot mechanism enables the propeller to pivot around a first pivot axis between a maneuver thruster position and an emergency ballonet fill position. Under normal conditions, when the propulsion system is disposed in the maneuver thruster position, the pivot mechanism also enables the propeller to pivot around a second pivot axis to control the attitude and thrust of the vehicle. However, in an emergency descent situation, the propeller may be rotated to the emergency ballonet fill position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 11, 2007
    Date of Patent: January 18, 2011
    Assignee: Hamilton Sundstrand Corporation
    Inventor: David V. Arel
  • Patent number: 7871033
    Abstract: An aircraft is equipped with hingeless rotors on tilting nacelles, and the tilt angles of the nacelles are controlled using either or both of an actuator and a mast moment generated by a hingeless rotor. An aircraft with two or more rotors on tilting nacelles can achieve control of yaw orientation by differential tilt of its nacelles or masts. Hingeless rotors can be manipulated to control a tilt angle of a mast by changing the rotor blade pitch to produce a mast moment. The rotor and nacelle tilt of a tiltrotor rotorcraft can be controlled and effected in order to manipulate the yaw orientation and flight mode of a rotorcraft such as a tiltrotor. The use of mast moment to control nacelle tilt angle can reduce tilt actuator loads and allows for the control of nacelle tilt even in the event of an actuator failure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 10, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 18, 2011
    Assignee: Karem Aircraft, Inc
    Inventors: Abe Karem, William Martin Waide, Dan Patt
  • Patent number: 7866598
    Abstract: Systems and methods are provided in which an electrical control system independently effects acceleration of both driven and driving elements of a clutch to engage each other. In preferred embodiments the clutch is not a friction clutch, but a dog clutch, and forms part of a drive drain of a rotorcraft. A second clutch can be used, along with a mechanical interlock to prevent simultaneous engagement of the clutches. Speeds of the driven and driving elements can be sensed, and altered using at least one of a rotor, a brake, a generator, an electric motor, and a combustion motor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 6, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 11, 2011
    Assignee: Karem Aircraft, Inc.
    Inventors: William Martin Waide, Abe Karem