Photoelectric Patents (Class 340/583)
  • Patent number: 11093744
    Abstract: Provided is a method for determining types of ice-and-snow cover. The method includes: determining typical RGB component values of typical types of ice-and-snow cover, establishing a one-to-one corresponding relation between the typical types of ice-and-snow cover and the typical RGB component values, and establishing a database of typical types of ice-and-snow cover; and extracting RGB values of an ice-and-snow covering point from an ice-and-snow cover image of a measurement area, comparing RGB component values of the ice-and-snow covering point with typical RGB component values in the database of typical types of ice-and-snow cover, and determining the type of ice-and-snow cover of the measurement area according to a comparison result.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 21, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 17, 2021
    Inventors: Longji Li, Qingfeng Wen, Yongfu Wang, Xiaoguang Wang, Yuyan Man, Xiaoguang Xi, Chi Zhang, Wei Fan
  • Patent number: 10914882
    Abstract: A projection device includes a laser source and a birefringent depolarizer. The birefringent depolarizer is a single wedge shape and is arranged in front of a projection lens. The laser source is configured to emit a laser beam to penetrate the birefringent depolarizer to be a projection beam having multiple polarization patterns different from polarization patterns of the laser beam. The projection beam is projected onto a projection screen through the projection lens. The polarization patterns are multiple different polarization directions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 18, 2018
    Date of Patent: February 9, 2021
    Assignee: DELTA ELECTRONICS, INC.
    Inventors: Yu-Nien Lin, Meng-Han Liu
  • Patent number: 10809192
    Abstract: A device for measuring the state of a phase change material inside a vessel, the device includes at least one optical fiber arranged inside the vessel, the optical fiber including a cladding around a core, a light source emitting light coupled into a first end of the at least one optical fiber at a wavelength ?, optical measuring devices for measuring the amount of light at the output at a second end of the at least one optical fiber. The at least one optical fiber also includes a plurality of sections with the cladding removed so that at these sections the core is in direct contact with the phase change material inside the vessel and where the refractive index at the wavelength ? of the core is higher than that of the phase change material in a first phase and lower in a second phase.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 21, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 20, 2020
    Assignee: VITO NV
    Inventor: Robbe Salenbien
  • Patent number: 10611488
    Abstract: Apparatus and associated methods relate to projecting a light beam onto an interior surface of an aircraft window so as to indicate a testing location to test for ice accretion. The testing location is determined, by a boundary locator, based on aircraft flight conditions, aircraft exterior shape, and a predetermined size of super-cooled droplets, which could present a hazard to the aircraft. The determined test location corresponds to a calculated boundary that separates locations where super-cooled water droplets of the predetermined size cause ice-accretion from locations where such particles do not cause ice accretion, for such aircraft flight conditions. The light beam is then projected onto the interior surface of the aircraft window at the determined test location. The projected beam of light can indicate, to an observer and/or a detector, a location to monitor for ice accretion caused by super-cooled water droplets of the predetermined size.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 5, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 7, 2020
    Assignee: Rosemount Aerospace Inc.
    Inventors: Vincent R. LoPresto, Mark Sherwood Miller
  • Patent number: 10494108
    Abstract: A hazard warning system can be utilized in an aircraft. The hazard warning system can include a processing system configured to determine an icing condition. The icing condition can be annunciated and/or displayed. An avionic display can be used to display the icing condition in response to a sum of icing concentration factors along a radial or flight path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 17, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 3, 2019
    Assignee: ROCKWELL COLLINS, INC.
    Inventors: Jeffery A. Finley, Jean-Philippe Wasselin
  • Patent number: 10310219
    Abstract: An imaging apparatus includes a lens optical system, a color image sensor that includes at least first pixels and second pixels, and a first optical element array disposed between the lens optical system and the color image sensor. In the imaging apparatus, the lens optical system includes optical regions, and the optical regions include a first optical region and a second optical region that differ in terms of at least one selected from the group of spectral transmittance characteristics and transmissive polarization characteristics. The first pixels include respective spectral filters having mutually different spectral transmittance characteristics, and the second pixels include respective spectral filters having at least one type of spectral transmittance characteristics. The first optical element array directs light that has passed through the first optical region to the first pixels and directs light that has passed through the second optical region to the second pixels.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 7, 2015
    Date of Patent: June 4, 2019
    Assignee: PANASONIC INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY MANAGEMENT CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Norihiro Imamura, Michihiro Yamagata, Tsuguhiro Korenaga
  • Patent number: 10252808
    Abstract: Method and system to sense ice protection fluid and verify a Fluid Ice Protection System (FIPS) is distributing the ice protection fluid correctly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 9, 2019
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventors: Jason J. Jackowski, Steve G. Mackin
  • Patent number: 10214299
    Abstract: Method and system to detect ice accumulation on ice prone surfaces of an aircraft. The method and system sweeps a Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) beam across ice prone surfaces to measure the shape of the ice prone surfaces. The change in shape of the ice prone surfaces indicates the presence of ice on the ice prone surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 2017
    Date of Patent: February 26, 2019
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventors: Jason J. Jackowski, Steve G. Mackin
  • Patent number: 10135225
    Abstract: The invention describes a laser device (10) comprising an array (50) of laser emitters (100) and a control unit (200), the array (50) comprises at least a first sub array (110) of laser emitters and a second sub array (120) of laser emitters, wherein the first sub array (110) emits laser light of a first polarization and the second sub array (120) emits laser light of a second polarization being different from the first polarization, and wherein the control unit (200) is adapted to control the first sub array (110) and the second sub array (120) such that the polarization of the laser light emitted by the array (50) can be changed. The invention further describes a sensor device (300) and an optical detection system (400) comprising such a laser device (10). Furthermore, a method of determining the shape of an object by means of the optical detection system (400) is described.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 28, 2014
    Date of Patent: November 20, 2018
    Assignee: KONINKLIJKE PHILIPS N.V.
    Inventors: Ulrich Weichmann, Mark Carpaij
  • Patent number: 9975547
    Abstract: A method for automatically detecting and safely traversing an accumulation of ice on an impending bridge. The method automatically identifies, by the vehicle, impending approach of the vehicle to a bridge and senses an accumulation of ice on the bridge. The method then calculates a speed of the vehicle needed to prevent longitudinal slip between the vehicle and the bridge, and automatically slows the vehicle at a rate sufficient to enable the vehicle to reach the calculated speed by the time it reaches the bridge. A corresponding system is also disclosed and claimed herein.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 3, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 22, 2018
    Assignee: FORD GLOBAL TECHNOLOGIES, LLC
    Inventors: Scott Vincent Myers, Sneha Kadetotad, Ashley Elizabeth Micks, Harpreetsingh Banvait
  • Patent number: 9912404
    Abstract: A method to measure and report electromagnetic radiation power includes receiving electromagnetic radiation and generating an electrical signal in response to the received electromagnetic radiation. The electrical signal may have a magnitude based on the power of the electromagnetic radiation. The method also includes applying a logarithmic gain to the electrical signal to generate a logarithmically amplified electrical signal. The method also includes sampling the logarithmically amplified electrical signal to generate a digital sample of the logarithmically amplified electrical signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 15, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 6, 2018
    Assignee: Finisar Corporation
    Inventors: Lucy G. Hosking, Andrew Zocher, Theron Jones
  • Patent number: 9851312
    Abstract: Inspection systems employing radiation filters with different attenuation characteristics to determine specimen irregularities, and related methods are disclosed. An inspection system includes a radiation emitter configured to emit a radiation beam along a radiation trajectory. Some of the radiation may be reflected by the specimen as backscatter and received by at least one radiation detector of the inspection system along the radiation trajectory. Irregularities and various materials of the specimen may produce backscatter radiation at different energies and/or scatter angles which may be identified by employing radiation filters having different attenuation characteristics. By employing these filters in communication with the radiation emitter and the radiation detector, the backscatter radiation passed through the filters may be measured and integrated at different positions of the radiation beam to produce a composite image of the specimen.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 7, 2014
    Date of Patent: December 26, 2017
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventors: William Talion Edwards, Gary Georgeson, James E. Engel, Morteza Safai
  • Patent number: 9821903
    Abstract: Closed loop control of control surfaces is described herein. One disclosed example method includes measuring a flight metric of an aircraft during flight and calculating, using a processor, a deflection of a control surface of the aircraft based on the flight metric. The disclosed example method also includes adjusting the deflection to an effective deflection level based on the calculated deflection to reduce a drag coefficient of the aircraft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 14, 2014
    Date of Patent: November 21, 2017
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Abraham J. Pachikara, Matthew A. Moser, Paul H. Carpenter, Michael R. Finn, Thomas S. Koch, Stefan R. Bieniawski, Brian T. Whitehead
  • Patent number: 9618761
    Abstract: A vision system for obtaining an image of a patterned retarder comprising first and second patterns having different optical axes is provided. The vision system comprises a camera, a ½ wavelength plate arranged in front of a lens of the camera, a rotatable ¼ wavelength plate arranged in front of the ½ wavelength plate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 21, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 11, 2017
    Assignee: LG DISPLAY CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Wonki Park, Mikyung Park
  • Patent number: 9568305
    Abstract: A system and method for providing an estimate of the thickness of the ice regardless of the shape of its surface at the level of the air/ice interface. To this end the system and method measure an intensity profile of a luminous pattern generated by diffusion in the ice, which enables the system to measure the thickness of the ice even when the air/ice surface is not plane.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 2015
    Date of Patent: February 14, 2017
    Assignees: AIRBUS OPERATIONS (S.A.S.), AIRBUS DEFENCE AND SPACE GMBH
    Inventors: Marc Marcel Weber, François Antoine Olchewsky, Ricardo Maiko Uehoka Entz
  • Patent number: 9297755
    Abstract: A system for detecting ice or supercooled large droplets within an area of interest having a detection system measuring radiance or reflectance of the area of interest when exposed to shortwave infrared radiation having a wavelength in the range of about 2.05 ?m to about 2.30 ?m. The detection system measures the radiance or reflectance in a first band having a wavelength in the range of about 2.05 ?m to about 2.15 ?m and outputting a first band signal, and further measures the radiance or reflectance in a second band having a wavelength in the range of about 2.15 ?m to about 2.30 ?m and outputting a second band signal. A processing unit determines a ratio of the first band signal and the second band signal and compares the ratio to a predetermined critical ratio and outputs a determination signal indicating presence of ice or supercooled water droplets.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 14, 2014
    Date of Patent: March 29, 2016
    Assignee: The Regents Of The University Of Michigan
    Inventor: Nilton O. Rennó
  • Patent number: 9096323
    Abstract: A system for detecting contamination of a window of an optical system includes a polarizing beamsplitter, a quarter waveplate, a photodetector, and a processor. The polarizing beamsplitter is configured to receive a laser beam having a first polarization and reflect the laser beam having the first polarization to the window. The photodetector is configured to sense a magnitude of reflections of the laser beam from the window having a second polarization, wherein the polarizing beamsplitter passes the reflections of the laser beam from the window having the second polarization to the photodetector. The processor is configured to determine a contamination level of the window based upon the magnitude of the reflections of the laser beam from the window.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 10, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 4, 2015
    Assignee: Rosemount Aerospace Inc.
    Inventors: Mark Ray, Kaare Josef Anderson
  • Patent number: 9057773
    Abstract: Systems and methods for displaying weather data relating to weather near an aircraft are provided. A method includes generating a three-dimensional weather profile of the weather near the aircraft based on reflectivity data from radar returns of a weather radar system of the aircraft. Generating the three-dimensional weather profile includes estimating weather data above a freezing layer height using a function that is based on a rate of reduction in reflectivity above the freezing layer. The method further includes transmitting weather display data to a display device, the weather display data being configured to cause the display device to display a visual representation of the three-dimensional weather profile.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 6, 2012
    Date of Patent: June 16, 2015
    Assignee: Rockwell Collins, Inc.
    Inventors: Mark C. Fersdahl, Venkata A. Sishtla, Edward A. St. John, Jeffery A. Finley
  • Patent number: 9013332
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for detecting icing conditions. An icing condition detection system comprises a number of sensors and an icing condition detector. The number of sensors is located in a number of locations on an aircraft. A sensor in the number of sensors is configured to emit electromagnetic radiation into drops of water in an environment around the aircraft. The sensor in the number of sensors is configured to detect responses to the electromagnetic radiation. The sensor in the number of sensors is configured to generate data from the responses. The icing condition detector is configured to monitor for the data from the number of sensors. The icing condition detector is further configured to detect a presence of a number of types of icing conditions for the aircraft using the data from the number of sensors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 21, 2015
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventor: Charles Steven Meis
  • Patent number: 8952822
    Abstract: A smoke alarm comprises smoke detection circuitry for detecting smoke and generating a detection signal responsive thereto. Proximity detection circuitry generates a proximity detection signal responsive to detection of an object within in a selected distance of the smoke alarm. Alarm generation circuitry generates an audible alarm responsive to the detection signal. The audible alarm may be deactivated for a predetermined period of time responsive to at least one proximity detection signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 5, 2014
    Date of Patent: February 10, 2015
    Assignee: Google Inc.
    Inventor: Wayne T. Holcombe
  • Patent number: 8754773
    Abstract: The present invention is a thermally activated electrical switch for use in simulating human activity. The invention is features dual heat sources enclosed in a thermally isolated chamber within the invention. Since the activation of the switch is dependent upon the ambient temperature of the environment, it opens and closes at sufficiently random intervals to simulate human activity. Other embodiments include the use of photoelectric sensors and timers to further vary timing of the switch actuation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 2005
    Date of Patent: June 17, 2014
    Inventor: Lee Von Gunten
  • Patent number: 8624738
    Abstract: Apparatuses, methods and systems related to an improved golf data collecting and golf club notification system. The system reminds golfers when a club has been mistakenly left behind on the golf course and notifies the golfer when a golf club or clubs are in or out of the golf bag. The system can notify a golfer if a club or golf bag has been removed without authorization. In one preferred embodiment an apparatus that attaches to a golf club includes dual light sensors—one light sensor configured as a switch and one light sensor configured as a light meter. Algorithms make use of the light sensor data to determine whether a golf club is in or out of a golf bag.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 10, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 7, 2014
    Assignee: Radar Corporation
    Inventors: Chris Savarese, Noel H. C. Marshall, Susan McGill, Kenneth P. Gilliland, Marvin L. Vickers
  • Patent number: 8456655
    Abstract: A scanning apparatus includes a transparent platen on which an item can be placed for scanning; a light source configured to emit light through the transparent platen to reflect off the item; a photosensor array that is movable to receive light reflected from successive portions of the item and convert the reflected light into electrical signals; a controller for providing digitized data from the electrical signals to form a digitized image of the item; and a lid including a first position such that the lid covers the transparent platen; a second position such that the lid does not cover the transparent platen; and a door that is configured to expose a portion of the transparent platen when the lid is in the first position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 13, 2010
    Date of Patent: June 4, 2013
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventor: Siow Kiat Tan
  • Patent number: 8416058
    Abstract: In various embodiments, a method for biometric verification of a person is provided. The method may include detecting a biometric sample of a biometric characteristic of the person, and reading out a stored biometric feature from a data carrier and carrying out a comparison of the stored biometric feature with the detected biometric sample by means of a control unit; wherein at least one data area of the stored biometric feature is altered by means of disturbances, the control unit determines the altered disturbed data area of the stored biometric feature and omits the determined disturbed data areas during the comparison.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 18, 2009
    Date of Patent: April 9, 2013
    Assignee: Infineon Technologies AG
    Inventors: Marcus Janke, Peter Laackmann
  • Patent number: 8395514
    Abstract: An optical system is proposed which is configured to detect an obscuration of the optical components and to optionally initiate measures, which either warn the driver and/or activate a heater which reduces the detected obscuration of the image. The system is controlled by a method for detecting an obscuration, which comprises a high reliability for detecting obscurations through the evaluation of additional sensors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 23, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 12, 2013
    Assignee: SMR Patents S.a.r.l.
    Inventors: Frank Linsenmaier, Daniel Wagner, Oliver Eder, Hans-Clemens Steffel
  • Patent number: 8295894
    Abstract: A portable wireless communications device to be carried by a holster includes a portable housing carrying a wireless transceiver, a holster sensor, a local alert indicator, a user authentication input device, and a controller. The controller may store data and is connected to the wireless transceiver, the holster sensor, the local alert indicator, and the user authentication input device. The controller may be switchable to a pickpocket mode for activating the local alert indicator, wirelessly sending at least one remote alert message, and rendering unusable at least a portion of the stored data upon removal from the holster unless a user authentication is input before expiration of a predetermined time.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 29, 2005
    Date of Patent: October 23, 2012
    Assignee: Research In Motion Limited
    Inventors: David V. Macfarlane, Neil Adams
  • Patent number: 8022842
    Abstract: An optical system for detecting ice and water on the surface of an aircraft includes an elongated transparent optical element having first and second end portions. A light source and light detector are disposed in one end of the optical element and a reflective surface is disposed in the opposite end portion. The reflective surface defines a critical angle and reflects light from the light source to the light detector when the critical angle is in contact with air and refracts the light toward the external environment when the reflective surface is in contact with ice or water. The system may also incorporate an optical element wherein the reflective surface includes a continuous array of convex elements extending outwardly from and across one end of the optical element and wherein each of the convex elements defines a critical angle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 2, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 20, 2011
    Assignee: Safe Flight Instrument Corporation
    Inventor: Paul Levine
  • Patent number: 7969566
    Abstract: An apparatus for detection of the existence of a film on a surface comprises a lens, a light emitter and a light sensor. The light emitter is preferably disposed in spaced relation to the lens and is configured to emit light toward the lens such that the light is incident thereupon. The light sensor is also preferably disposed in spaced relation to the lens and is mounted adjacent to the light emitter. The light sensor is configured to measure light reflected back from the lens. The presence or absence on the film on the surface is based upon the amount (i.e., intensity) of light that is reflected back from the lens. The apparatus may further comprise a temperature sensor or atmospheric sensor for measuring a temperature of the lens and atmospheric conditions in order to determine whether conditions are appropriate for the formation of ice, frost and other frozen contaminants.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 5, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 28, 2011
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventor: Becky Smith
  • Patent number: 7775482
    Abstract: An apparatus for detecting the presence of ice includes a sensory circuit including a sensor operable to be coupled to a surface exposed to moisture. The sensory circuit is operable to create an electromagnetic standing wave. A heating element is coupled to the surface and a first transmission line. A first source is coupled to the first transmission line and is operable to inject a driving signal into the first transmission line, the driving signal being operable to drive the heating element. A mixing element is coupled to the sensory circuit and first transmission line and is operable to produce a mixed signal from the driving signal and a measure of the standing wave. A comparator is operable to compare at least one characteristic of the mixed signal with reference data for determining the presence of ice contacting the sensor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 18, 2008
    Date of Patent: August 17, 2010
    Assignee: Honeywell International Inc.
    Inventor: Grant A. Gordon
  • Patent number: 7772993
    Abstract: An icing detector is disclosed for detecting presence of ice in static air. An exemplary detector includes an ice collecting surface; a light emitter for emitting a light beam crossing an ice collecting surface, having a prismatic light manipulating window for internally-reflecting the light beam when no ice is present on the ice collecting surfaces, and externally-refracting the light when clear ice is present on the ice collecting surface, wherein the ice collecting surface is oriented to cause standing water to be directed away from the prismatic light manipulating window by gravity; a light sensor in a path of the reflected light; and an annunciator coupled to the light sensor for annunciating the presence of ice when light is sensed by the light sensor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 20, 2007
    Date of Patent: August 10, 2010
    Inventor: Richard Hackmeister
  • Patent number: 7750824
    Abstract: An optical system for detecting ice and water on the surface of an aircraft includes an elongated transparent optical element having first and second end portions. A light source and light detector are disposed in one end of the optical element and a reflective surface is disposed in the opposite end portion. The reflective surface defines a critical angle and reflects light from the light source to the light detector when the critical angle is in contact with air and refracts the light toward the external environment when the reflective surface is in contact with ice or water. The system may also incorporate an optical element wherein the reflective surface includes a continuous array of convex elements extending outwardly from and across one end of the optical element and wherein each of the convex elements defines a critical angle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 13, 2008
    Date of Patent: July 6, 2010
    Assignee: Safe Flight Corporation
    Inventor: Paul Levine
  • Patent number: 7705739
    Abstract: A collection and detection system is directed to a combined system in which a detect to warn system is integrated with a detect to treat system. Such a combined system provides multi-levels of detection to determine the presence and identity of one or more different types of specific particles. In some applications, the combined system is configured to detect and identify one or more different types of specific biological particles such as toxins and pathogens. The combined system includes a first level detection device, in which the presence of one or more toxins and/or pathogens are detected, and a second level detection device. Upon detection by the first level detection device, the second level detection device performs a second level of detection in which the one or more toxins and/or pathogens are identified.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 24, 2006
    Date of Patent: April 27, 2010
    Assignee: Microfluidic Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Allen Northrup, Farzad Pourahmadi, Bob Yuan, Amy J. Devitt
  • Publication number: 20090315723
    Abstract: An optical system is proposed which is configured to detect an obscuration of the optical components and to optionally initiate measures, which either warn the driver and/or activate a heater which reduces the detected obscuration of the image. The system is controlled by a method for detecting an obscuration, which comprises a high reliability for detecting obscurations through the evaluation of additional sensors.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 23, 2009
    Publication date: December 24, 2009
    Applicant: Visiocorp Patents S.a.r.l
    Inventors: Frank Linsenmaier, Daniel Wagner, Oliver Eder, Hans-Clemens Steffel
  • Patent number: 7474226
    Abstract: A method for calibrating a smoke detector includes adjusting the sensitivity of the smoke detector to get a consistent predetermined response over the expected operating range. The sensitivity is generally consistent for all detectors and an independent offset value is determined for each detector. This offset value basically corresponds to the signal from the detector in a clean atmosphere. The sensitivity of the smoke detector is determined by measuring the response at different levels of obscuration and then appropriately adjusting the output of the light source of the detector. This process is repeated until the desired sensitivity is achieved. Thereafter, the offset value is measured or calibrated and stored in the smoke detector for use in setting alarm values.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 9, 2007
    Date of Patent: January 6, 2009
    Assignee: Tyco Safety Products Canada Ltd.
    Inventors: Zhexin Mi, William J. Rattman
  • Patent number: 7400260
    Abstract: An optical system for detecting ice and water on the surface of an aircraft includes an elongated transparent optical element having first and second end portions. A light source and light detector are disposed in one end of the optical element and a reflective surface is disposed in the opposite end portion. The reflective surface defines a critical angle and reflects light from the light source to the light detector when the critical angle is in contact with air and refracts the light toward the external environment when the reflective surface is in contact with ice or water. The system may also incorporate an optical element wherein the reflective surface includes a continuous array of convex elements extending outwardly from and across one end of the optical element and wherein each of the convex elements defines a critical angle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 29, 2005
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2008
    Assignee: Safe Flight Corporation
    Inventor: Paul Levine
  • Patent number: 7337621
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a device and method for operating a fully automatic, “on demand” refrigeration defrost cycle and controlling the frost build-up on the evaporative surfaces of both medium temperature (above freezing), and low temperature (below freezing) refrigeration devices or on any system or device requiring control by optical contrast.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 7, 2005
    Date of Patent: March 4, 2008
    Assignee: BBC Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventors: Alan Bagley, Jeffrey Bagley
  • Patent number: 7327273
    Abstract: This invention relates to a device to monitor the administration of a fluid through a conduit, such as intravenous fluid, and detect the completion of fluid delivery by monitoring the fluid level inside a chamber. The device will monitor, through an optical fluid sensor comprising a radiation source, two sensors, a logic means, and an indicating means, the bottom half of any “user supplied” drip chamber that is normally full during the administration of fluids. When the fluid level in the chamber drops below a predetermined level, the indicating means will initiate an electromechanical device that releases a pinching device to occlude the conduit. The pinching device is a rotary pincher that derives its force from a torsion spring and is held in the open position by the electromechanical device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 2005
    Date of Patent: February 5, 2008
    Inventors: Orlando R. Hung, Peter H. Gregson, David C. Roach
  • Patent number: 7324001
    Abstract: A system for detecting and discriminating between water and ice formation on a number of objects, such as aircraft or roadways is described. The system includes an optical element or sensor adapted to receive at least first and second wavelengths of light from a multi-wavelength light source and for outputting attenuated versions of the first and second wavelengths of light. A detector senses and converts the attenuated versions of the first and second wavelengths of light to electrical signals proportional to the light intensities of the first and second wavelengths of light. A processor is coupled to receive and process the electrical signals for determining one or more light intensity values and for actuating one or more indicators corresponding to one of a number of predetermined states of operation of the optical element, including a normal state of operation, a rain state of operation and/or an ice state of operation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 29, 2005
    Date of Patent: January 29, 2008
    Assignee: United States of America as represented by the Secretary of the Air Force
    Inventor: Everett E. Crisman
  • Patent number: 7312713
    Abstract: A system for detecting ice formation on metal, painted metal and other material surfaces can include a transparent window having an exterior surface upon which ice can form; a light source and optics configured and arranged to illuminate the exterior surface of the window from behind the exterior surface; and a detector and optics configured and arranged to receive light backscattered by the exterior surface and any ice disposed on the exterior surface and determine the thickness of the ice layer. For example, the system can be used with aircraft by placing one or more windows in the wings of the aircraft. The system is used for a novel optical method for real-time on-board detection and warning of ice formation on surfaces of airplanes, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and other vehicles and stationary structures to improve their safety and operation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 15, 2005
    Date of Patent: December 25, 2007
    Assignee: Research Foundation of the City University of New York
    Inventors: Robert R. Alfano, Wubao Wang, Henry Sztul, Yury Budansky
  • Patent number: 7301478
    Abstract: Apparatus, methods, system and devices for monitoring road surface temperature to detect hazardous road surface conditions. An indicator provides the sensed road surface temperature and hazardous road condition warning to a driver while a tail light interface automatically produce a tail light signal to warn drivers traveling behind the vehicle when a hazardous condition is detected. In an embodiment, the system includes a vehicle engine retardation system interfaced with the hazardous road condition warning system. When the retardation system is in use and hazardous road surface conditions are detected the controller automatically produces the brake light signal unless a tail light control switch is used to manually deactivating the automatic tail light flashing signal when the vehicle is traveling in a state that does not allow alternative control of the brake lights.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 3, 2006
    Date of Patent: November 27, 2007
    Assignee: Overland Safety Technologies Corporation
    Inventors: Gregory F. Chinn, Michael Laughead, John Toman
  • Patent number: 7265846
    Abstract: Methods for detecting the presence or absence of ice or liquid water on surfaces are provided. In a first embodiment of the invention, a reflectance spectrum from a surface to be tested is measured using any suitable near-infrared optical system. The midpoint wavelength of the transition or step of the measured reflectance spectrum near 1.4 microns is calculated, and compared to a decision threshold wavelength. If the midpoint wavelength is less than the decision threshold wavelength, the presence of liquid water on the surface is indicated. If the midpoint wavelength is greater than the decision threshold wavelength, the presence of ice is indicated on the surface. In a second embodiment of the invention, at least three reflectance levels are measured at three wavelengths, and a dimensionless decision function is applied to the measured reflectance levels. Output of the decision function is compared to at least two pre-defined ranges.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 3, 2004
    Date of Patent: September 4, 2007
    Assignee: Sensors Unlimited, Inc.
    Inventor: Keith W. Forsyth
  • Patent number: 7224284
    Abstract: A method for calibrating a smoke detector includes adjusting the sensitivity of the smoke detector to get a consistent predetermined response over the expected operating range. The sensitivity is generally consistent for all detectors and an independent offset value is determined for each detector. This offset value basically corresponds to the signal from the detector in a clean atmosphere. The sensitivity of the smoke detector is determined by measuring the response at different levels of obscuration and then appropriately adjusting the output of the light source of the detector. This process is repeated until the desired sensitivity is achieved. Thereafter, the offset value is measured or calibrated and stored in the smoke detector for use in setting alarm values.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 24, 2005
    Date of Patent: May 29, 2007
    Assignee: Tyco Safety Products Canada Ltd.
    Inventors: Zhexin Mi, William J. Rattman
  • Patent number: 7154400
    Abstract: A method for detecting a fire while discriminating against false alarms in a monitored space containing obstructed and partially obstructed views includes the steps of positioning an infrared camera in a location where the camera has both a direct view of a first portion of the monitored space and an obstructed view of a second portion of the monitored space, the camera including a charge coupled device (CCD) array sensitive to wavelengths in the range of from about 400 to about 1000 nm and a long pass filter for transmitting wavelengths greater than about 700 nm; filtering out radiation wavelengths lower than about 700 nm; converting an electrical current from the CCD array to a signal input to a processor; processing the signal; and generating alarms when predetermined criteria are met to indicate the presence of a fire in one or both of the first portion of the monitored space and the second portion of the monitored space.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 28, 2004
    Date of Patent: December 26, 2006
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Secretary of the Navy
    Inventors: Jeffrey C. Owrutsky, Daniel A. Steinhurst
  • Patent number: 7151460
    Abstract: A smoke detection device for use in a portable device such as a mobile terminal. The smoke detection device comprises a light emitter and a light detector disposed on different locations on the portable device so that when smoke or an intruding object is presence in the light path of the light emitter outside the device housing, it causes the light emitted by the light emitter to be scattered or reflected. When the light detector senses the scattered or reflected light, it can cause an alarm signal to be produced by the portable device. The emitted light can be in the infrared region so that the detection is independent of the ambient light. Alternatively, the light emitter is operated in a pulsed mode. Additional light emitter and light detectors can be disposed on the portable device for proximity sensing in addition to smoke detection.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 10, 2005
    Date of Patent: December 19, 2006
    Assignee: Nokia Corporation
    Inventors: Jakke Mäkelä, Terho Kaikuranta
  • Patent number: 7091869
    Abstract: The measuring arrangement contains a measuring cell and a reference cell, respectively, and microphones assigned to these cells, to which microphones an electronic evaluation circuit is connected and in which a subtraction of the signals of the microphones takes place, as well as a radiation source for applying a modulated signal to the measuring cell. The modulation frequency of the radiation source coincides with the resonant frequency of the measuring cell, and the measuring cell and the reference cell are open at at least one end to the gas to and/or aerosol to be detected. The measuring arrangement is used as smoke alarm, gas alarm, fire hazard alarm or as combined smoke and gas alarm, wherein each of the measuring cells is exposed to a radiation of a wavelength at which a relevant substance to be detected is absorbent and an opto-acoustic effect is produced as a result.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 1, 2001
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2006
    Assignee: Siemens Building Technologies AG
    Inventors: Martin Forster, Peter Nebiker
  • Patent number: 6954146
    Abstract: In a method for determining the state of a road during driving of a motor vehicle, the sound which is generated when a vehicle tire rolls on an underlying surface is sensed. A frequency signal is determined by means of a sound level signal which describes the sound, and is divided into at least two sub-zones by means of at least one limiting frequency. The sub-zones are each assigned to an associated frequency band, and an intensity value is determined for each of at least two frequency bands from the assigned sub-zone of the frequency signal. The intensity value is characteristic of the sound intensity which is present in a frequency band. An intensity ratio is formed from two intensity values by dividing the first intensity value of the first frequency band by the second intensity value of the second frequency band, and is used to determine the state of a road.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 2003
    Date of Patent: October 11, 2005
    Assignee: DaimlerChrysler AG
    Inventors: Seshu Bhagavathula, Shanmukh Katragadda, Ravindra Peravali, Juergen Trost
  • Patent number: 6753778
    Abstract: An orientation/time sensing alarm device is provided, which comprises an orientation sensor, a time sensor connecting to the orientation sensor, and an alarm connecting to the orientation sensor and the time sensor, forming a circuitry. The time sensor is activated by the orientation sensor when the orientation sensor senses the alarm device is above a predetermined orientational threshold. The alarm is activated when the time sensor senses the duration of activation of the time sensor being above a predetermined timing threshold. Also provided is a self-reminding golf club having an orientation/time sensing alarm device connected to the grip of the golf club for reminding a golfer of a misplaced golf club.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 6, 2001
    Date of Patent: June 22, 2004
    Inventor: Douglas Brown Kruger
  • Patent number: 6737977
    Abstract: An improved fire detector unit has a plastic base defining a smoke chamber for detection of a smoke density in terms of light scattering due to the smoke particles in the smoke chamber. The base carries a circuit board mounting a light emitting element, a light receiving element, and other components forming a fire detecting circuit responsible for generating a fire warning signal based upon the detected smoke density. A metal-made electromagnetic shield is molded into the base to protect the light receiving element from electromagnetic radiation noises. The electromagnetic shield includes a ground terminal for connection with a ground line of the circuit board. In addition, terminal pins are molded into the base for electrical and physical connection of the circuit board to the base.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 9, 2002
    Date of Patent: May 18, 2004
    Assignee: Matsushita Electric Works, Ltd.
    Inventors: Takayuki Nishikawa, Shoichi Oka, Koji Sakamoto, Takeshi Wada, Yasuyuki Kawano, Kenji Toyoda, Naoya Nagasawa, Shinji Kirihata
  • Patent number: 6654484
    Abstract: An identification system for use in controlling the operation of a device comprises comparing fingerprint data with stored data to identify both an individual and which of the individual's fingerprints has been input, and using the identity of the individual and the finger in controlling the operation of the device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 26, 2000
    Date of Patent: November 25, 2003
    Inventor: Catherine Topping
  • Patent number: 6529132
    Abstract: This device comprises at least one sensor of a CCD camera of very short spectral band lying between 0.4 &mgr;m and 1.1 &mgr;m, fitted with an infrared filter eliminating the spectral band lying between around 0.4 &mgr;m and 0.8 &mgr;m, this sensor being associated with a computer catering in particular for image processing, at least one display screen and a control board. It is thus possible, with the aid of a single type of sensor, to detect hot spots, flames, smoke and the shifting of objects, and to provide a visualization of the inside of the enclosure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 8, 2001
    Date of Patent: March 4, 2003
    Assignee: Societe Industrielle d'Avation Latecoere
    Inventor: Gerard Boucourt