Switch Or Relay Patents (Class 340/644)
  • Patent number: 7423543
    Abstract: A multi-function relay module for use with a series of hazardous condition detectors that are interconnected by an interconnect line. The relay module is positioned between the interconnected hazardous condition detectors and one or more auxiliary devices such that the relay module can selectively activate each of the auxiliary devices. The relay module receives the interconnect signal and determines whether the interconnect signal is indicating a first sensed condition or a second sensed condition. A selection signal having multiple states is received by the control unit. The control unit is programmed to respond to the type of sensed condition indicated by the interconnect signal based upon the state of the selection signal. Thus, the relay module can selectively respond to either the first sensed condition, the second sensed condition or either of the first or second sensed conditions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 2, 2006
    Date of Patent: September 9, 2008
    Assignee: Maple Chase Company
    Inventors: Kirby W. Cartwright, Scott Young
  • Patent number: 7417554
    Abstract: A system displays information from and controls electrical switching apparatus, such as circuit breakers. The system includes a plurality of circuit breakers having separable contacts and a plurality of conditions, such as bus temperature and contact wear. A plurality of sensors are structured to sense the conditions of the circuit breakers and to communicate the sensed conditions over corresponding wireless signals. A display and control unit is operatively associated with the circuit breakers and is structured to receive the corresponding wireless signals and display information corresponding to the sensed conditions or to control the circuit breakers based upon one or more of the sensed conditions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 2006
    Date of Patent: August 26, 2008
    Assignee: Gaton Corporation
    Inventors: James J. Benke, Joseph C. Engel, James L. Lagree, Charles J. Luebke, Mark G. Solveson
  • Patent number: 7405671
    Abstract: A power failure alarm for use in sounding a warning in the occasion of a power failure, with built in electrical connectors, and a temporary source of light. The device is housed in a molded plastic enclosure in a rectangular shape and includes an emergency light, night-light, flashlight, and power failure alarm. All unit functions are completely automatic once the unit has been plugged into a standard 120 volt receptacle. The device has a three prong male plug on the back of the body and is designed to occupy one receptacle of a duplex receptacle thus leaving one receptacle still available for use. Alternate embodiments of the device are specifically intended to alert and notify the user of a power failure. The device utilized logic circuitry to determine if a power failure or improper setup has occurred. The battery charging and monitoring circuits ensure the batteries are always charged and ready for use.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 1, 2005
    Date of Patent: July 29, 2008
    Inventor: Andrew J. Sebescak
  • Patent number: 7403129
    Abstract: A circuit breaker includes a first lug and second and third acoustic lugs electrically connected to a power circuit. Separable contacts are electrically connected in series between the first lug and the second acoustic lug. An operating mechanism opens and closes the separable contacts. A first acoustic sensor is coupled to the second acoustic lug and senses a first acoustic signal from the second acoustic lug. A second acoustic sensor is coupled to the third acoustic lug and senses a second acoustic signal from the third acoustic lug. The first and second acoustic signals are operatively associated with a power circuit fault. A current sensor senses a current flowing between the first and second lugs. A circuit inputs the sensed acoustic signals and the sensed current and detects and distinguishes a parallel arc fault or a series arc fault from the sensed acoustic signals and the sensed current.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 2006
    Date of Patent: July 22, 2008
    Assignee: Eaton Corporation
    Inventors: Xin Zhou, Jerome K. Hastings, Joseph C. Zuercher
  • Patent number: 7362232
    Abstract: An arrangement is provided for use in an electrical utility meter that includes a metering unit, a service disconnect circuit, and a housing assembly. The service disconnect circuit has a connected state that operably couples utility power lines to a load, and a disconnected state and as armed state that operably decouples the utility power lines from the load. The housing assembly is disposed over the metering unit and the service disconnect circuit, and has at least one electronic indicator visible to an outside of the housing assembly. The electronic indicator is operable to provide a visual signal representative of the service disconnect circuit in the armed state. The housing further includes an externally accessible actuator operably connected to the service disconnect circuit to change the service disconnect switch from the armed state to the connected state.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 2006
    Date of Patent: April 22, 2008
    Assignee: Landis+Gyr, Inc.
    Inventors: Brett Holle, Michael Anderson, John Voisine
  • Publication number: 20080024314
    Abstract: A self-diagnostic acoustic wave touch actuated switch assembly includes a substrate having an acoustic wave cavity, a transducer operatively connected to the acoustic wave cavity, a processing unit, and at least one light emitting member operatively connected to the processing unit. The transducer is configured to generate a trapped acoustic wave within the acoustic wave cavity. The processing unit is operatively connected to one or both of the acoustic wave cavity and/or the transducer. The processing unit may be configured to activate the at least one light emitting member when the processing unit detects one or both of a switch malfunction and/or a potential switch malfunction.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 22, 2007
    Publication date: January 31, 2008
    Inventors: Gerald W. Hill, Brian J. Truesdale, Slawomir P. Kielian
  • Patent number: 7312719
    Abstract: A system for diagnosing breakdowns of a switch by using plural light emitting diodes (LEDs) on a front panel (10) of the switch includes: plural port LEDs (31, 32, 33, 34, . . . 3n), a user interface (50) for generating an instruction to convert display modes of the port LEDs, a CPU (central processing unit) (60) coupled to the user interface for dealing with the instruction, an LED driver (70) coupled to the port LEDs for refreshing the displays of the port LEDs; a physics (PHY) module (80) coupled to the LED driver and used for obtaining the operation statuses of the ports; and a periodic service manager (90) coupled to the LED driver for triggering the LED driver periodically. Display modes of the port LEDs can be converted selectively, which reduces the number of port LEDs needed, and still allows administrators to conveniently diagnose any breakdowns of the switch.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 8, 2005
    Date of Patent: December 25, 2007
    Assignee: Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Tsvng-Yin Hsieh
  • Patent number: 7301246
    Abstract: A switch for switching off at least one airbag having two identical sensors for detecting a switching state of the switch is provided, the two identical sensors being connected up in such a way that the electrical characteristic-quantity ranges to be evaluated for detecting the switching state differ from each other. This is achieved with the aid of different resistor networks between the two sensors and a signal evaluation unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 20, 2003
    Date of Patent: November 27, 2007
    Assignee: Robert Bosch GmbH
    Inventor: Frank Schou
  • Patent number: 7301467
    Abstract: In a position detection system, a plurality of first communication devices each comprise a transmitter for transmitting a distance-calculation signal for calculating distance to the second communication device; a detector for detecting, by receiving from the second communication device a signal corresponding to the distance-calculation signal, phase difference between the distance-calculation signal when transmitted and the signal corresponding to the distance-calculation signal when received; and a calculator for calculating the distance to the second communication device, based on the phase difference. A second communication device comprises a transmitter for transmitting the signal corresponding to the distance-calculation signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 18, 2005
    Date of Patent: November 27, 2007
    Assignee: Sanyo Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Shizuka Ishimura, Akira Iketani
  • Patent number: 7271714
    Abstract: This invention relates to a two stage push button control device, in which the push button (9) has at least one of its inputs (A, C) connected to the output of a processing organ (15) and its two outputs (B, D) connected to two inputs (E1, E2) of this processing organ (15).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 19, 2005
    Date of Patent: September 18, 2007
    Assignee: Airbus France
    Inventor: Jean-Philippe Beaujard
  • Patent number: 7256683
    Abstract: The circuit monitoring device is disclosed. The device is for monitoring circuit resistance. At configurable thresholds digital flags are triggered, the device can be used as a Security/Building management system. The device uses open technology is fully scaleable and allows programmable logic controllers to be used as security management systems. Using a soft logic option a PC could take the place of the PLC.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 3, 2001
    Date of Patent: August 14, 2007
    Inventor: Eric Bullmore
  • Patent number: 7239235
    Abstract: A switch is disclosed having first and second switch elements each configured to provide power to a sensor when in one state and configured to switch to a second state and provide positional information, for example. The sensor configured to effect the first and second switches to switch to the second state and to switch back to the one state, the first and second switch elements configured to switch alternately and in a complementary way.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 25, 2005
    Date of Patent: July 3, 2007
    Assignee: Williams Controls Industries, Inc.
    Inventor: Fred Eugene Yates
  • Patent number: 7230522
    Abstract: The present invention relates to the field of transferring information over the power line to and/or from the device or devices powered by said power line. For devices that may be powered by either alternating current (AC) or direct current (DC) their operation may be controlled by which type of power they are receiving, AC, +DC or ?DC. Data may also transmitted by alternating the polarity of each half cycle of the power line, on a one half by one half cycle basis, in a controlled manner such that the powered device may receive such data to control its mode of operation. A method of reducing the heat in the switching devices and a system of encoding the data such that each powered device may have a different address and therefore may return data when requested is also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 6, 2004
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2007
    Inventor: Carlile R. Stevens
  • Patent number: 7224287
    Abstract: An input voltage contacted at the input of a contact can be through-connected to an output of the contact or switched off via a movable contactor. In order to determine the switching state of the contact, any drop in the contact voltage between the input and the output is detected. By the detected contact voltage, it can at least be determined whether the input voltage has been through-connected to the output or switched off.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 14, 2002
    Date of Patent: May 29, 2007
    Assignee: Siemens Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventors: Peter Heider, Diethard Runggaldier, Bernhard Streich
  • Patent number: 7215251
    Abstract: A Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) transponder is provided. The RFID transponder may include a basic ID flag circuit having a VDD voltage node, an output voltage node, and a capacitor coupled to the VDD voltage node and the output voltage node to store an ID flag. A supplemental discharge current circuit coupled to the basic ID flag circuit is provided in order to control persistence duration of the state of the ID flag. The persistence duration of the state of the ID flag is controlled by maintaining supplemental discharge current, which is greater than the leakage current of the basic ID flag circuit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 2004
    Date of Patent: May 8, 2007
    Assignee: Impinj, Inc.
    Inventor: John D. Hyde
  • Patent number: 7177132
    Abstract: A technique for controlling a switching circuit includes one or more sensing circuits that generate signals based upon the presence of an actuating object and upon a randomly applied strobe signal. The generated signals are sampled and are used as a for determining the state of an output signal. The sensing circuit may generate the signals based upon capacitive coupling with the actuating object. The randomization of the sampling enhances immunity to periodic noise. Where more than one sensing circuit is included, the output of the circuits may be considered together for determining the state of the output signal, such as based upon predetermined ranges of signal levels. Signals of the sensing circuit may be sampled in the absence of the strobe to provide an indication of the relative noise level. If the noise level is determined to be elevated, the output signal may not change states.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 15, 2003
    Date of Patent: February 13, 2007
    Assignee: Rockwell Automation Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael Lee Gasperi, David Dale Brandt, Thong T. Nguyen
  • Patent number: 7151461
    Abstract: A tamper detection switch is primarily for use in an enclosure of a security system component. The enclosure has a base and a cover that may be repositioned relative to the base. One of the cover and the base holds a conductive magnetic element free to translate within a predetermined range generally perpendicular to the respective cover or base. The other of the cover and the base holds at least two ferrous metal contacts of an open tamper circuit in proximity of a conductive magnetic element. In the closed position the conductive magnetic element bridges the ferrous contacts and closes the tamper circuit. Attempts to tamper with the enclosure separate the ferrous contacts from the conductive magnetic element, opening the tamper circuit and signaling a possible attack.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 29, 2004
    Date of Patent: December 19, 2006
    Assignee: Honeywell International, Inc.
    Inventors: George N. Wilson, Robert E. Lee, Kevin G. Piel
  • Patent number: 7151462
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a circuit arrangement and a method for load diagnosis of a switch having a first and a second load connecting terminal. A first and a second current source arrangement are provided, which can in each case be connected to one of the load connecting terminals of the switch and which supply, depending on potential conditions at the said load connecting terminals, currents in a first and second current direction or oppositely to the said first and second current direction to the load connecting terminals. Furthermore, an evaluation circuit is provided, which evaluates the currents flowing to the first and second load connecting terminals and provides a load state signal depending on the said currents.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 30, 2004
    Date of Patent: December 19, 2006
    Assignee: Infineon Technologies AG
    Inventor: Wolfgang Horn
  • Patent number: 7119702
    Abstract: A device to audibly verify the activation of a solid state relay. The device includes an audio output device that is coupled to the solid state relay to produce a sound when the solid state relay is activated. The sound produced by the audio output devices emulates the sound of an electromechanical relay when switched.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 27, 2002
    Date of Patent: October 10, 2006
    Assignee: ADC DSL Systems, Inc.
    Inventor: Ronald R. Gerlach
  • Patent number: 7116240
    Abstract: A Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) transponder is provided. The RFID transponder may include a basic ID flag circuit having a VDD voltage node, an output voltage node, and a capacitor coupled to the VDD voltage node and the output voltage node to store an ID flag. The persistence duration of the state of the ID flag is controlled by maintaining a charge and leakage circuit. The charge and leakage circuit includes an NMOS device having a source, a drain and a gate, the source node of the NMOS device being coupled to the capacitor and the drain node of the NMOS device being coupled to a first CMOS inverter. The first CMOS inverter is powered by a regulated supply voltage such that the voltage on the capacitor is not dependent on the forward voltage drop of the NMOS device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 18, 2004
    Date of Patent: October 3, 2006
    Assignee: Impinj, Inc.
    Inventor: John D. Hyde
  • Patent number: 7091878
    Abstract: A tamper detection arrangement in a meter having a service disconnect switch employs a voltage sense circuit that requires only a single connection to digital processing circuitry for the feeder lines of typical residential service. In one embodiment, the voltage sense circuit includes an isolation device that electrically isolates the processing device from the line voltages. The voltage sense circuit senses a voltage on the feeder lines and is operable to generate a voltage detection signal having a characteristic representative of whether line voltage from the electrical power lines is present on the feeder lines.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 28, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2006
    Assignee: Landis+Gyr, Inc.
    Inventors: Brett Holle, Michael Anderson, John Voisine
  • Patent number: 7089736
    Abstract: A method of creating a solenoid temperature estimator includes operating a solenoid based on a data point including a plurality of operating parameters and determining a temperature of the solenoid. The method further includes recording steady-state values for the temperature and each of the plurality of operating parameters and generating the solenoid temperature estimator based on the steady-state values.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 27, 2004
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2006
    Assignee: General Motors Corporation
    Inventor: Mike M. Mc Donald
  • Patent number: 7042363
    Abstract: Systems, methods and devices are described that provide a three-state control signal across a single electrical conductor. A three-position switch provides an output signal that selects between the first reference voltage, a second reference voltage and an intermediate voltage. The output from the switch is transmitted to a voltage divider circuit that produces a predetermined result when the switch output corresponds to the intermediate state. The output of the voltage divider is then provided to an analog-to-digital converter to decode the state of the switch. The three-state control signal may be used, for example, to place a vehicle component such as a windshield temperature controller or rear-window defogger into a desired one of three operating states. Similarly, the three-state concepts may be widely applied in many automotive, industrial, consumer electronics and other settings.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 5, 2004
    Date of Patent: May 9, 2006
    Assignee: General Motors Corporation
    Inventors: Kerfegar K. Katrak, Paul A. Bauerle
  • Patent number: 7019532
    Abstract: A device for identifying a wire break between an electrical connection of a digital output and a load includes an evaluation module connected to the electrical connection and a voltage limiter module also connected to the electrical connection for co-determining a voltage value which is present at the evaluation module in the event of the wire break.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 29, 2004
    Date of Patent: March 28, 2006
    Assignee: Siemens Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventors: Knut Glöckner, Holger Röhle, Michael Slanina
  • Patent number: 7009514
    Abstract: A low cost self-contained power disruption alert device is configured with a light-weight pocket and/or palm sized compact body to generate a local audible alert that is output by a speaker when power to an electrical wall outlet is disrupted.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 22, 2003
    Date of Patent: March 7, 2006
    Assignee: BellSouth Intellectual Property Corporation
    Inventor: Wesley J. Dupeire
  • Patent number: 7005995
    Abstract: A system is provided for remotely detecting and locating damaged conductors. The system includes at least one slave controller disposed proximate at least one load and electrically connected to the loads via at least one conductor. The slave controller includes at least one solid-state switch capable of controllably altering the input current to the loads, as well as at least one measuring element for measuring at least one parameter associated with the loads and the solid-state switches. The solid-state switch can controllably alter the input current to the loads according to the parameters. The system also includes at least one damaged wire detector electrically connected to the conductors between the slave controller and the loads. The damaged wire detector is capable of detecting and/or locating at least one damaged conductor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 16, 2003
    Date of Patent: February 28, 2006
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Rodney M. Hornsby, John M. Maxwell, Jr., Charles R. Schwarz
  • Patent number: 6985084
    Abstract: An electrically operated equipment with a sealed enclosure containing circuitry with an exterior visual indicator to show a state of operation of the equipment. The visual indicator is illuminated by a magnetic flux sensor also exterior to the equipment, the sensor inducing an electrical current from a sensed magnetic flux passing through a permeable wall of the enclosure. The magnetic flux is provided by a magnetic field generator within the enclosure. The generator is connected to the equipment to generate the field when the circuitry is operating correctly whereby the indicator shows a correct state of operation. The invention avoids the use of sealed orifices in the enclosure for conductors to pass to exterior LEDs or LEDs sealed within the enclosure and possible resultant leakage. The invention is useful for optical network units. The invention also includes a visual indicating device of multi-layer configuration and a method of visually indicating the operational state of circuitry.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 17, 2001
    Date of Patent: January 10, 2006
    Assignee: Alcatel Canada Inc.
    Inventors: Jay Richard Sobel, Steven Daniel Armstrong
  • Patent number: 6977591
    Abstract: A method for monitoring a state of a switch is disclosed. The method includes providing a high side driver circuit in communication with a voltage source, activating the high side driver circuit at a first predefined time interval, and sourcing voltage to a resistor in communication with the high side driver circuit at the first predefined time interval. Further, the method monitors the switch at the first predefined time interval, and determines the state of the switch, and deactivates the high side drive at a second predefined time interval.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 29, 2002
    Date of Patent: December 20, 2005
    Assignee: Visteon Global Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Curtis Elroy Boyer, Benjamin T. Sung
  • Patent number: 6961005
    Abstract: An electrical apparatus including electrical components, wherein at least one of the electric components is a monitoring device including electromagnetic radiation receiving means connected to at least one sensor, the electromagnetic radiation receiving means for receiving electromagnetic radiation from electromagnetic emitting means, wherein the electromagnetic radiation receiving means are located on a side of the electrical apparatus and are for being directed towards a support including means for emitting an electromagnetic radiation, and the electromagnetic radiation receiving means is for supplying electrical power upon receipt of electromagnetic radiation from such means for emitting electromagnetic radiation located on such support.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 31, 2001
    Date of Patent: November 1, 2005
    Assignee: Schneider Electric Industries SA
    Inventors: Philippe Clement, Leonard Didier, Vernay Marc
  • Patent number: 6940414
    Abstract: In a pressure switch, which emits an electrical switching signal as a function of the magnitude of a pressure which is supplied to it, which electrical switching signal assumes a first value when the pressure is less than the threshold value and which assumes a second value when the value is greater than the threshold value, the threshold value is adjusted—assuming that this is provided at all—by hand, for example by moving a cam disk which is coupled to a rotary knob. In order to adjust the threshold value by an electrical signal, the pressure is supplied to a pressure sensor, which emits an electrical output signal, which is a measure of the pressure which is supplied to the pressure sensor. The pressure switch is supplied with an electrical input signal which is a measure of the threshold value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 9, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 6, 2005
    Assignee: Bosch Rexroth AG
    Inventors: Rainer Drechsler, Wolfgang Lukasczyk
  • Patent number: 6937134
    Abstract: In order to receive protection commands in a remote tripping device, one or more signals is or are received, protection commands and combinations of protection commands are coded by means of an individual signal or by means of a predetermined combination of signals, and each protection command is allocated a predetermined minimum safety and/or security value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 5, 2003
    Date of Patent: August 30, 2005
    Assignee: ABB Schweiz AG
    Inventor: Michael Strittmatter
  • Patent number: 6930611
    Abstract: A water activated release triggering mechanism is removably held to an exterior surface of a buckle housing and includes at least two probes and at least two batteries distributed between independent paths, for firing a squib. The distribution of batteries between independent paths precludes false firing from a single short with the body of the housing. The triggering mechanism is designed to be impervious to Electro Magnetic Interference (EMI) and to preclude false release in the presence of 20,000 volts of Electro Static Discharge (ESD). The triggering mechanism may be easily removed for servicing, replacement, or for upgrading. In one embodiment, the triggering mechanism causes the buckle to release in the same manner as during manual release.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 19, 2003
    Date of Patent: August 16, 2005
    Assignee: H. Koch & Sons Co., Inc.
    Inventors: Charles E. Van Druff, Douglas G. Scheid
  • Patent number: 6930613
    Abstract: A device representing a simple means of multiplying the functionality of wiring in point to point control circuits such that fault tolerant, fault reporting circuits can be constructed with less wire. The circuit can employ the wiring on a continuous basis by the use of AC and a series arrangement that may combine sensors and command loads on the same single wire loop. A bi-directional current detector with switchable impedance over each polarity can form the device. The detector may be equipped with an electrically isolated man-machine interface that communicates with light to achieve input-output functions. Command functions may be issued by changing the current level within the circuit over each polarity of current flow to series mounted remote loads that are polarized with diodes. The whole circuit can be in triplicate for high reliability and fault tolerance and use a common return wire.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 21, 2001
    Date of Patent: August 16, 2005
    Inventor: Robert Gardner
  • Patent number: 6917203
    Abstract: A solenoid health monitoring system uses a signal conditioner and controller assembly in one embodiment that includes analog circuitry and a DSP controller. The analog circuitry provides signal conditioning to the low-level raw signal coming from a signal acquisition assembly. Software running in a DSP analyzes the incoming data (recorded current signature) and determines the state of the solenoid whether it is energized, de-energized, or in a transitioning state. In one embodiment, the software identifies key features in the current signature during the transition phase and is able to determine the “health” of the solenoid.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 29, 2002
    Date of Patent: July 12, 2005
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: Jose M. Perotti, Angel Lucena, Curtis Ihlefeld, Bradley Burns, Karin E. Bassignani, Mario Bassignani
  • Patent number: 6900742
    Abstract: The present invention involves a lighting control module for at least one aviation obstruction light including a microcontroller, and switching means for selectively coupling the aviation obstruction light to a power source, the microcontroller coupled to the switching means and selectively activating the aviation obstruction light. The microcontroller has programming for sensing a master light controller such that if a master light controller is sensed, then the microcontroller coordinates activation of the aviation obstruction light with the master light controller, and if a master light controller is not sensed, then the microcontroller sends activation signals as a master light controller.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 2003
    Date of Patent: May 31, 2005
    Assignee: Little Circuits, Inc.
    Inventor: Charles B. Chesney, II
  • Patent number: 6891478
    Abstract: An electric power monitoring system includes a source monitor for measuring momentary power output of an electric source supplying electric power to a power distribution system having at least one electric load. The momentary power output is compared with a reference load capability for the electric source to determine the ability of the electric source to support additional load, and load capability data is transmitted based on the load capability. At least one load control receives the transmitted load capability data and controls the supply of power to the at least one corresponding electric load based on the load capability data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 7, 2001
    Date of Patent: May 10, 2005
    Inventor: Jay Warren Gardner
  • Patent number: 6861955
    Abstract: A circuit for detecting the state of a switch having a first circuit which substantially periodically attempts to provide a voltage across the switch. A second circuit detects the state of the switch by monitoring the voltage across the switch, and responsively generates an output having a voltage level representative of the voltage appearing across the switch.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 31, 2003
    Date of Patent: March 1, 2005
    Inventor: Tom Youssef
  • Patent number: 6850166
    Abstract: Disclosed is a stimuli providing indicator (107) that is responsive to nearby transmitted radio signals. Fixed and mobile stations may produce such signals. In addition a cellular telephone operating at a high transmit power may be detected. Indicator (107) may be supported by a lens (103) which itself may be supported by at least one head mount (101).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 28, 2001
    Date of Patent: February 1, 2005
    Assignee: Nokia Mobile Phones Limited
    Inventor: Douglas Deeds
  • Patent number: 6813524
    Abstract: An appliance control system includes a housing and a user cycle selector which is movable in relation to the housing between a first selector position and a second selector position. The appliance control system further includes a first spring secured to the housing, the first spring being configured to retain the user cycle selector at (i) the first selector position during a first period of time, and (ii) the second selector position during a second period of time. Additionally, the appliance control system includes a mode switch positioned within the housing, the mode switch having an actuated state and a deactuated state. The appliance control system also includes a second spring having a spring arm which is movable between a first arm position and a second arm position. Movement of the user cycle selector from the first selector position to the second selector position causes the spring arm to move from the first arm position to the second arm position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 17, 2002
    Date of Patent: November 2, 2004
    Assignee: Emerson Electric Co.
    Inventors: Gregory A. Peterson, Peter F. Stultz
  • Publication number: 20040179470
    Abstract: According to one embodiment of the invention a rugged Ethernet switch includes a housing and a passive cooling system associated with the housing and being devoid of fans as operable to cool the Ethernet switch. Ethernet switch also includes software operable to perform at least one of the functions selected from the group consisting of multiple spanning, rapid spanning, cluster management and IGMP snooping and querying. According to another embodiment, a rugged Ethernet switch includes a housing having a plurality of perforations formed therein for cooling the Ethernet switch. The switch also includes a passive cooling system be devoid of fans and that is operable to cool the Ethernet switch. A temperature sensor is operable to measure a temperature of the Ethernet switch is included as is an alarm software responsive to the temperature sensor and operable to initiate an alarm when a measured temperature of the Ethernet switch exceeds a particular limit.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 28, 2003
    Publication date: September 16, 2004
    Inventors: Yen Teresa Nguyen, Manrique J. Brenes, James E. Colinge
  • Patent number: 6788213
    Abstract: A component actuation circuit for an engineered safety features actuation system (ESFAS) includes a plurality of coincidence logic contacts, and a plurality of parallel-connected ESFAS component relays. Each of the coincidence logic contacts closes in response to a command signal. The plurality of parallel-connected ESFAS component relays are connected in series between at least two of the plurality of coincidence logic contacts. Closure of at least two of the coincidence logic contacts energizes the parallel-connected ESFAS component relays, thereby energizing a plurality of ESFAS components.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 24, 2002
    Date of Patent: September 7, 2004
    Assignee: Westinghouse Electric Company LLC
    Inventor: Dennis N. Menard
  • Publication number: 20040169588
    Abstract: An electronic apparatus comprises a main body operable in a first state and a second state, a power switch which is disposed in the main body and at least a part of which is made of a light transmissive member, a light emission unit disposed in the main body to emit a light of a first color or a second color through the light transmissive member, and a control unit for controlling the light emission unit to emit a light of the first color when an operation state of the main body is the first state, and to emit a light of the second color when the operation state of the main body is the second state.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 22, 2004
    Publication date: September 2, 2004
    Inventors: Shigeharu Imamura, Nobuyuki Hosoya
  • Patent number: 6720872
    Abstract: An arc fault/ground fault circuit interrupter for a power circuit includes a line terminal; a load terminal; and separable contacts electrically connected between the line and load terminals. An operating mechanism opens the separable contacts and has a closed position for closing the separable contacts. A trip mechanism cooperates with the operating mechanism to trip open the separable contacts. A ground fault protection circuit is operatively associated with the power circuit. An arc fault protection circuit is also operatively associated with the power circuit. A circuit tests the ground fault protection circuit, tests the arc fault protection circuit, and restores the operating mechanism to the closed position responsive to sequential activation of test and reset buttons.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 2002
    Date of Patent: April 13, 2004
    Assignee: Eaton Corporation
    Inventors: Joseph C. Engel, Robert T. Elms, John C. Schlotterer
  • Patent number: 6646551
    Abstract: A taut wire intrusion detection system includes posts that are used to detect an intrusion into a secured area. The supporting posts are used to both detect a movement of the taut wire and anchor the taut wire by using separate anchor and sensor elements. The taut wire system eliminates many of the weaknesses of prior taut wire systems by providing a less variant taut wire sensitivity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 8, 2001
    Date of Patent: November 11, 2003
    Inventor: Haim Perry
  • Patent number: 6614355
    Abstract: A microcontroller (122) uses a two-stage algorithm to sample the state of an AC switch (124) connected directly to an input pin (126). An AC line signal (102) is sampled by a pre-filtering routine that samples the AC line signal (102) to determine when a peak or trough is occurring and generates a trigger signal at or near the occurrence of a peak or trough. By basing the triggering signal on the state of the AC line signal (102), the triggering signal is independent of any shift of the phase angle of the AC line signal (102) and the microcontroller's operating clock (152). A switch sampling routine (204) is initiated at each occurrence of the triggering signal which samples the state of the AC switch (124). Successive sampled values are shifted into a shift register (150) on the microcontroller (122).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 25, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 2, 2003
    Assignee: Ranco Incorporated of Delaware
    Inventors: Phillip Ryan Wagner, John Gilman Chapman, Jr.
  • Patent number: 6580370
    Abstract: An integrated circuit receives as supply voltages a ground reference voltage, a logic supply voltage and a high voltage. A protection device is associated with at least one gate oxide circuit element. The protection device applies to a supply node of the circuit element either the logic supply voltage under normal conditions of operation of the integrated circuit, or the high voltage under abnormal conditions of operation of the integrated circuit for breaking down the gate oxide.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 29, 2001
    Date of Patent: June 17, 2003
    Assignee: STMicroelectronics S.A.
    Inventor: Richard Fournel
  • Patent number: 6507283
    Abstract: A self-validating output module in a control system includes a current detector and an operating component having at least two states. When the operating component is in the first state, current is directed away from a current detector and toward a load. When it is in its second state, current is directed toward the current detector and away from the load. The presence or absence of current on the current detector is thus a status signal indicative of whether or not current is being supplied to the load. This status signal is then made available to a controller.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 19, 1999
    Date of Patent: January 14, 2003
    Assignee: The Foxboro Company
    Inventor: James Calvin
  • Patent number: 6469629
    Abstract: A protective relay, system, and relay operation method which allows logic functions to be distributed amongst multiple protective relays associated with a power distribution system. The protective relays include communications ports for exchanging messages over a peer-to-peer communications network, and include programmable logic. Each protective relay receives logic operands contained in the messages from remote protective relays, executes logic equations using the received operands, provides protective control if needed, and outputs operands to other protective relays.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 12, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 22, 2002
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Colin Bruce Campbell, Roger Moore, Andrew W. Baigent
  • Patent number: 6459380
    Abstract: A semiconductor apparatus, including an intelligent power module, facilitates preventing sudden stop of an inverter due to an anomaly from affecting a factory operation adversely. When an anomaly occurs in IGBTs of the inverter, one of protection circuits outputs an alarm signal via an alarm enable line. In advance to the alarm signal, when the protection circuit detects a sign of a possible anomaly from a collector current or a chip temperature of any of the IGBTs exceeding a second predetermined collector current level or a second predetermined temperature level higher than the normal collector current value or the normal chip temperature but lower than a first predetermined collector current level or a first predetermined temperature level for outputting the alarm signal, the protection circuit outputs a preliminary alarm signal via a preliminary alarm line without turning off the pertinent IGBT.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 22, 2000
    Date of Patent: October 1, 2002
    Assignee: Fuji Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Manabu Watanabe, Tamao Kajiwara
  • Patent number: 6429779
    Abstract: A telephone line monitoring and alarm apparatus capable of continuously monitoring telephone line status and activating an audio-visual alarm if the telephone line becomes inoperative, incorporates an integral telephone plug to permit direct plug-in connection of the apparatus to a standard telephone wall jack as a self-contained and autonomous unit without the use of interconnecting cables or cable-plug attachments. An integral dual telephone jack splitter permits the uninterrupted use of standard telecommunication equipment, such as telephones, answering machines, or facsimile equipment while the apparatus monitors telephone line integrity. Micropower circuitry derives electrical power from the telephone line to provide visual ON status indication, and from a battery source independently of the telephone communication line voltage, to provide continuous telephone line monitoring, audio-visual alarms and audio-visual low battery voltage indication.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 26, 2000
    Date of Patent: August 6, 2002
    Inventors: Gino Petrillo, Brian Deane, Surjit Matharu, Christian De Saint-Rome