With Power Monitor Patents (Class 368/66)
  • Patent number: 9543928
    Abstract: A gate driving circuit and method can improve the tradeoff relation between the noise and the loss caused in the turn-OFF switching of semiconductor device. The gate driving circuit includes first and second series circuits. The first series circuit includes first and second MOSFETs connected in series. The gate terminal of the semiconductor device is connected to a negative potential side of the first MOSFET and a positive potential side of the second MOSFET. The emitter of the semiconductor device is connected to the negative potential side of the second MOSFET or a DC power source. The second series circuit includes a capacitor and a third MOSFET connected in series. The second series circuit is connected in parallel with the second MOSFET. The semiconductor device is turned OFF by turning ON the second and third MOSFETs and turning OFF the first MOSFET.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 11, 2008
    Date of Patent: January 10, 2017
    Assignee: FUJI ELECTRIC CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Keisuke Yamashiro, Hiromu Takubo
  • Patent number: 9519270
    Abstract: Timepiece power reserve indicator for the display of the power reserve indication of a plurality of energy accumulators each including one indicator cooperating with one accumulator input of a differential mechanism comprised in the power reserve indicator, and wherein one output of the differential mechanism cooperates with a mechanism for the display of the total power reserve of the plurality of energy accumulators, and at least two of the inputs are coaxial.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 13, 2015
    Date of Patent: December 13, 2016
    Assignee: ETA SA Manufacture Horlogere Suisse
    Inventor: Ivan Villar
  • Patent number: 9160974
    Abstract: A set-top box (STB), digital video recorder (DVR), video player or other host device receives and interacts with a transcode module to provide enhanced transcoding capabilities that may be useful in placeshifting or other applications. The transcode module includes a host interface that couples to and communicates with the host device. The transcode module also includes a processor that receives an encrypted media stream from the host device via the bus interface, decrypts the encrypted media stream, transcodes the encrypted media stream to a different format, re-encrypts the transcoded stream, and provides the re-encrypted media stream to the host device via the host interface. The transcoded media content may be placeshifted to a remote player, stored at the host, or used for any other purpose.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 26, 2009
    Date of Patent: October 13, 2015
    Assignee: Sling Media, Inc.
    Inventors: Bhupendra Natwerlan Shah, Padmanabha R. Rao, Ilya Asnis
  • Patent number: 9036455
    Abstract: An electronic timepiece is operated with a power-supply voltage from a secondary battery charged with a voltage from a solar panel. An oscillation circuit generates and supplies a clock signal to a CPU when the voltage charged to the battery is lower than a first voltage. A reset circuit resets the CPU when the voltage charged to the battery does not exceed a second voltage higher than the first voltage, and cancels the reset of the CPU when the voltage charged to the second battery exceeds the second voltage. The CPU starts an operation when the voltage charged to the secondary battery exceeds the second voltage and the reset is cancelled, and performs a time-of-day display on a display unit when the voltage charged to the secondary battery is equal to or higher than a third voltage higher than the second voltage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 10, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 19, 2015
    Assignee: SEIKO INSTRUMENTS INC.
    Inventors: Kazuo Kato, Akira Takakura, Tomohiro Ihashi, Takanori Hasegawa, Toshitaka Fukushima
  • Patent number: 8982675
    Abstract: A power supply unit has a first power supply circuit that supplies a voltage to a load driving unit and a second power supply circuit that supplies a voltage to circuits other than the load driving unit. A first switching unit connects any one of a power supply that supplies a power supply voltage and a voltage step-down circuit that supplies a step-down voltage of the power supply voltage to the first power supply circuit. A second switching unit connects any one of the power supply and the voltage step-down circuit to the second power supply circuit. A control unit controls the connection by the first switching unit and the connection by the second switching unit to switch the voltage supplied to the first power supply circuit and the voltage supplied to the second power supply circuit in accordance with properties of the load driving unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 17, 2015
    Assignee: Seiko Instruments Inc.
    Inventors: Kazuo Kato, Akira Takakura, Toshitaka Fukushima, Keisuke Tsubata, Hisao Nakamura, Tomohiro Ihashi, Yoshinori Sugai, Eriko Noguchi, Satoshi Sakai, Takanori Hasegawa
  • Patent number: 8934320
    Abstract: An electronic timepiece includes: a timekeeping section which counts time; a time display section which displays time; an illuminating section which performs illumination; a wireless communication section which performs wireless communication by transmitting/receiving a wireless signal intermittently; and a drive control section which performs duty drive of the illuminating section when a period in which wireless communication is conducted by the wireless communication section and a period in which the illuminating section is driven overlap with each other.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 7, 2012
    Date of Patent: January 13, 2015
    Assignee: Casio Computer Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Makoto Nakagawa
  • Patent number: 8873344
    Abstract: A power consumption control device includes a power consumption control unit that receives the output potential of a photovoltaic cell generating an electromotive force, receives the output potential of a secondary battery charged by the electromotive force of the photovoltaic cell, causes a timepiece device to transition to a power saving state where a clock operation of measuring time is stopped when the output potential difference of the secondary battery is not greater than a predetermined threshold value, and the secondary battery is in a non-charging state indicating a state where the output potential difference of the photovoltaic cell is not greater than the output potential difference of the secondary battery.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2011
    Date of Patent: October 28, 2014
    Assignee: Seiko Instruments Inc.
    Inventors: Hiroshi Shimizu, Kazumi Sakumoto, Kenji Ogasawara, Kosuke Yamamoto, Keishi Honmura, Saburo Manaka, Akira Takakura
  • Patent number: 8730768
    Abstract: A timepiece including a movement, a mechanism controlling the power reserve of a drive means with an arbor whose angular position indicates said available torque, a striking mechanism controlled by a striking mechanism control mechanism, and a locking lever arranged to lock said movement. The timepiece includes a selective stop mechanism according to the drive torque available in the drive means, which manages said available drive torque by limiting or not limiting the operation of all of part of the striking works of said striking mechanism, by a transmission mechanism controlling an isolating wheel set controlling the position of said locking lever and arranged to release or prevent the movement of a striking mechanism control rod linkage and/or to allow or prevent the strike of a hammer on a gong.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 20, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 20, 2014
    Assignee: Montres Breguet S.A.
    Inventor: Eric Goeller
  • Patent number: 8699304
    Abstract: An electronic device includes a primary power supply portion generating power by converting a first energy into electric energy as a second energy; a secondary power supply portion storing the electric energy obtained by the power generation; a charge detection portion detecting a state where the secondary power supply portion is not charged with the electric energy; a clocking portion clocking time and stopping display of clocked time when an operation input is detected; and a low power consumption state control portion which measures a time of a state where the operation input is detected and the charging is not performed, and stops the operation of the clocking portion when the measured time exceeds a preset time.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 15, 2014
    Assignee: Seiko Instruments Inc.
    Inventors: Kazumi Sakumoto, Keishi Honmura, Saburo Manaka, Kosuke Yamamoto, Kenji Ogasawara, Hiroshi Shimizu
  • Publication number: 20130194897
    Abstract: There is provided an electronic timepiece of the invention that includes a solar panel which receives light to generate electric power, is operated with the electric power supplied from a secondary battery charged with an electromotive voltage of the solar panel, and stops a display operation of a display unit with transition to a power saving mode under predetermined conditions, the electronic timepiece including a control unit (mode control unit) which avoids transition from the normal mode to the power saving mode, when a voltage of the secondary battery is equal to or more than a predetermined voltage value.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 10, 2013
    Publication date: August 1, 2013
    Applicant: SEIKO INSTRUMENTS INC.
    Inventor: SEIKO INSTRUMENTS INC.
  • Publication number: 20130194898
    Abstract: There is provided an electronic timepiece that includes a solar panel which receives light to generate electric power, is operated with the electric power supplied from a secondary battery charged with output voltage of the solar panel, and includes a normal mode in which clock display is performed on a display unit and a power saving mode in which clock display on the display unit is stopped, based on illuminance detection of the solar panel, the electronic timepiece including: a mode control unit which switches cycles of the illuminance detection, by setting a cycle of the illuminance detection of the normal mode as a first cycle (for example, one minute), and a cycle of the illuminance detection of the power saving mode as a second cycle (for example, two seconds).
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 10, 2013
    Publication date: August 1, 2013
    Applicant: SEIKO INSTRUMENTS INC.
    Inventor: SEIKO INSTRUMENTS INC.
  • Publication number: 20130194896
    Abstract: According to an electronic timepiece of the invention, when a secondary battery is in an uncharged state and an oscillation circuit, a display unit, and a CPU are restored from an inoperable state to a normally charged state which makes the respective members to be operable, the electronic timepiece activates and oscillates the oscillation circuit when a secondary battery voltage reaches a predetermined first voltage (for example, 0.9 V), and cancels a reset of the CPU when the secondary battery voltage reaches a predetermined second voltage (for example, 1.2 V), and starts a time-of-day display on the display unit when the secondary battery voltage reaches a predetermined third voltage (2.2 V).
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 10, 2013
    Publication date: August 1, 2013
    Applicant: SEIKO INSTRUMENTS INC.
    Inventor: Seiko Instruments Inc.
  • Publication number: 20130188460
    Abstract: An electronic timepiece of the invention is configured to compare a no-illuminance no-operation period (a period in which no light is incident on a solar panel and a state in which no operation is performed in an operating unit continues), with a predetermined first transfer period (for example, 2 hours) when the time measurement action is not in execution in the chronograph mode or the timer mode, and compare the no-illuminance no-operation period with a predetermined second transfer period (for example, 72 hours) longer then the first transfer period when the time measurement action is in execution in a chronograph mode or the timer mode. The electronic timepiece is transferred to the power save mode when the no-illuminance no-operation period reaches the transfer period and stops a display action on a display unit.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 10, 2013
    Publication date: July 25, 2013
    Applicant: SEIKO INSTRUMENTS INC.
    Inventor: Seiko Instruments Inc.
  • Patent number: 8335133
    Abstract: A power reserve display mechanism includes a differential (22) having: a first input (22a) connected to a ratchet (16) of a barrel (24) and to an oscillating mass automatic winding system, a second input (22b) connected to the drum of a barrel (24), an output (22c) connected to a display system. The display system includes at least one disc (40) provided with digits for displaying numbers between a minimum number and a maximum number. Moreover, the disc is connected to the output (22c) of the differential (22) via a reduction train (26), arranged such that the display system displays the minimum number when the barrel is empty and the maximum number when the barrel is maximally loaded. The reduction train and the automatic winding system are arranged such that the disc advances by one pitch each time the oscillating mass performs on revolution.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 26, 2011
    Date of Patent: December 18, 2012
    Inventor: Frédéric Jouvenot
  • Publication number: 20120307598
    Abstract: A power generating unit generates electric power according to light incident on a light-receiving surface. A power storage unit stores the electric power generated by the power generating unit and outputs the stored electric power. A generated-power voltage detecting unit detects the voltage of the electric power generated by the power generating unit. A stored electricity voltage detecting unit detects the voltage output from the power storage unit. A display unit displays a character or an image. The display control unit changes contents to be displayed on the display unit on the basis of the voltage of the electric power generated by the power generating unit, which is detected by the generated-power voltage detecting unit, and the voltage of the electric power output from the power storage unit, which is detected by the stored electricity voltage detecting unit.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 24, 2012
    Publication date: December 6, 2012
    Inventor: Takanori HASEGAWA
  • Patent number: 8295128
    Abstract: A radio-controlled timepiece includes an antenna receiving a standard radio wave and a plurality of motors driving indicator portions which indicate information. A fourth motor which is driven at a lowest frequency during the standard radio wave reception of the antenna is disposed closer to the antenna than the rest of the motors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 19, 2008
    Date of Patent: October 23, 2012
    Assignee: Citizen Holdings Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Takayuki Hasumi, Moto Yamashita
  • Publication number: 20120188855
    Abstract: A timepiece according to a first aspect of the invention has a fan-shaped display unit including a display wheel that can rotate, a stepping motor that rotationally drives the display wheel in both forward and reverse directions, a reverse stop that limits reverse rotation of the display wheel, and an indication means that is attached to the display wheel; and a control unit that applies pulses to the stepping motor. The position of the reverse stop is set so that the orientation of one polar axis of the rotor of the stepping motor when the display wheel is stopped by the reverse stop at the reverse stop is within ±360°/(number of magnetic poles of rotor*2) from the static stable position of the polar axis. After stopping at the reverse stop, the polarity of the first pulse applied to the stepping motor by the control unit is constant.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 2, 2012
    Publication date: July 26, 2012
    Applicant: SEIKO EPSON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Yoichi HAYASHI, Takaya MASAKI
  • Patent number: 8213266
    Abstract: An electronic timepiece, comprises a timing section to perform timing of time based on an oscillation signal; an electric wave receiving section to receive an electric wave; a voltage detecting section to detect a power source voltage supplied from a power source section; and a stop control section to stop a receiving function of the electric wave receiving section and continue a timing operation of the timing section when the voltage detecting section detects that the power source voltage becomes lower than a first level range, and then to stop the timing operation of the timing section when a warning period for urging a user to perform the power generation by the power generating section elapsed in a state where the power source voltage is lower than the first level range without changing to a lower level than a second level range lower than the first level range.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 1, 2009
    Date of Patent: July 3, 2012
    Assignee: Casio Computer Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Tomoo Kasuo, Fumiaki Ochiai
  • Publication number: 20110199865
    Abstract: The invention is aimed to be capable of detecting lowering of a power source without providing a circuit specific for voltage detection such as a comparator circuit. A stepping motor control circuit includes a battery configured to supply an electric power at least to a stepping motor, a rotation detection circuit configured to detect the state of rotation of the stepping motor, and a control unit configured to select an upgraded main drive pulse from a plurality of the main drive pulses having energy ranks different from each other and drive the stepping motor with the selected main drive pulse. The control unit is configured to determine that the voltage of the battery lowered to a level equal to or lower than the predetermined value when the main drive pulse reaches a maximum main drive pulse in a predetermined rank by upgrading it a number of times smaller than the predetermined number of times within a predetermined time.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 15, 2011
    Publication date: August 18, 2011
    Inventor: Kenji Ogasawara
  • Publication number: 20110164474
    Abstract: A device comprises a basic clock movement MB whose time indicators are driven by a first barrel connected to a first wheelwork and a first regulator organ, and an autonomous chronograph module MCA whose indicators are driven by a second barrel independent from the first, connected to a second wheelwork and a second regulator organ. The chronograph module is exclusively composed of mechanical elements. The frequency of oscillation supplied by its regulator is equal N times the frequency of oscillation supplied by the regulator of the base movement, with the coefficient N being definable according to a specific application of the chronograph, so that any chronograph module thus previously defined can work with the same base movement. The chronograph regulator remains constantly engaged with the corresponding wheelwork. The chronograph module allows a time interval to be read with a minimum precision of a hundredth of second.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 14, 2011
    Publication date: July 7, 2011
    Applicant: LVMH SWISS MANUFACTURES SA
    Inventor: Hughes Jolidon
  • Patent number: 7933168
    Abstract: An electronic timepiece with a generator function, including a generating means, a storage means that stores electrical energy produced by the generating means, a timekeeping control means that is driven by the electrical energy stored in the storage means, a time display means that is controlled by the timekeeping control means and displays time, a power generation detection means that detects the power generation state of the generating means, and a power generation display means that displays the power generation state based on a detection result signal output from the power generation detection means. The power generation detection means includes a hand and an actuator that drives the hand in both forward and reverse directions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 11, 2008
    Date of Patent: April 26, 2011
    Assignee: Seiko Epson Corporation
    Inventor: Takashi Kawaguchi
  • Patent number: 7876070
    Abstract: An electronic timepiece with a generator function according to a first aspect of the invention has a generator, a storage unit that stores electrical energy produced by the generator, a timekeeping controller that is driven by the electrical energy stored in the storage unit, a time display that is controlled by the timekeeping controller and displays time, a voltage detector that detects the voltage of the storage unit, and a discharge unit that discharges the charge stored in the storage unit when the voltage of the storage unit detected by the voltage detector reaches a preset first setting.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 2, 2008
    Date of Patent: January 25, 2011
    Assignee: Seiko Epson Corporation
    Inventor: Joji Kitahara
  • Patent number: 7793135
    Abstract: The present invention provides a mobile equipment for non stationary use. The mobile equipment includes a real time clock (RTC) integrated in the mobile equipment for generating a real time information, a system time generator integrated in the mobile equipment for generating a system time information by adding an offset to the real time information given by the RTC, a non-volatile memory for the permanent storage of data and an input means for inputting instructions for changing the system time information. The possible changes of the system time information generated by the system time generator may be limited to a preset time range and the possible reset value of the RTC may be limited according to the data stored in the non-volatile memory.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 29, 2004
    Date of Patent: September 7, 2010
    Assignee: Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications AB
    Inventor: Dan Dinescu
  • Patent number: 7729207
    Abstract: An electronic timepiece with a generator function, including a generator, a battery or the like that stores electrical energy produced by the generator, a timekeeping controller that is driven by the stored electrical energy, a time display that is controlled by the timekeeping controller and displays time, a generator output detector that detects peaks of an electrical characteristic of the power generated by the generator, a remaining operating time calculator that integrates the average values corresponding to detected peaks and calculates a remaining operating time, and a remaining operating time display that displays the remaining operating time calculated by the remaining operating time calculator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 12, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 1, 2010
    Assignee: Seiko Epson Corporation
    Inventor: Takashi Kawaguchi
  • Patent number: 7715280
    Abstract: The invention provides a rechargeable electronic timepiece that restarts the operation of a clock circuit by inputting a power source, thereby securely confirming the clock operation. The electronic timepiece includes a first power source (2), a clock circuit (8) connected to the first power source, a power source input detecting circuit (86) for detecting an input of a second power source (3), a switch circuit (7, 9) for connecting the first power source and the second power source, and a control circuit (87) for controlling the switch circuit to connect the first power source and the second power source so that the first power source is charged by the second power source thereby operating the clock circuit when the power source input detecting circuit detects an input of the second power source.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 19, 2003
    Date of Patent: May 11, 2010
    Assignee: Citizen Holdings Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Akiyoshi Murakami, Motoki Funahashi, Masahiko Hitomi, Yoichi Nagata
  • Patent number: 7684285
    Abstract: The invention concerns a power reserve indicator mechanism for a timepiece of the type comprising: a mainspring (14), a power reserve indicator moving between two end positions, a differential gear (18), and an intermediate wheel set (32) including first and second parts respectively kinematically coupled to the differential gear (18) and to the indicator and a coupling member coupling said parts, which rotate conjointly while the winding of the mainspring (14) is comprised between its end positions, Said coupling member includes a friction mechanism arranged such that the first part can move with friction in relation to the second when the indicator has reached its first end position, and an elastic element arranged so as to be able to be cocked when the indicator has reached its second end position, by the movement of the first part with reference to the second part.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 7, 2005
    Date of Patent: March 23, 2010
    Assignee: Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier S.A.
    Inventor: Sébastien Jeanneret
  • Patent number: 7663978
    Abstract: In an electronic device 1 comprising a battery 200 and a piezoelectric actuator A, a power source voltage before drive control is started is maintained by a sample holding circuit 102, a reference voltage is set by a reference voltage generating circuit 103 on the basis of the power source voltage, and a control circuit 106 stops driving when the power source voltage falls below a drive stop voltage as compared by a second comparison circuit 105, and begins driving the piezoelectric actuator A again when the power source voltage exceeds the reference voltage as compared by a first comparison circuit 104. Therefore, the device can be more easily reduced in size by using a small power source, and the driving time can be markedly reduced using an intermittent driving procedure that corresponds to the conditions of the battery voltage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 28, 2005
    Date of Patent: February 16, 2010
    Assignee: Seiko Epson Corporation
    Inventors: Takashi Kawaguchi, Joji Kitahara, Makoto Okeya
  • Patent number: 7593292
    Abstract: The invention concerns a synchronisation method between analogue display means (4, 6) and a volatile time counter (8) in a multi-function electronic watch when the primary powering means (18) powering said watch are replaced, including the following steps, (i) calculating a value (Vtps) representative of a time information item by means of the time base (14) of the watch; (ii) storing the value in the volatile time counter; (iii) updating the value in the volatile time counter periodically as a function of the supply frequency of a time information item by the time base; (iv) synchronised display of the value representative of a time information item by the analogue display means in a first operating mode of the watch; (v) non-synchronised display of a value not representative of a time information item by the analogue display means in a second operating mode of the watch; (vi) detecting the end of life of the primary power means powering the watch; (vii) setting the analogue display means in a predetermined
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 2006
    Date of Patent: September 22, 2009
    Assignee: ETA SA Manufacture Horlogère Suisse
    Inventors: Fabien Blondeau, Laurent Christe, Jérôme Cuenin
  • Publication number: 20080225648
    Abstract: An electronic timepiece with a generator function, including a generating means, a storage means that stores electrical energy produced by the generating means, a timekeeping control means that is driven by the electrical energy stored in the storage means, a time display means that is controlled by the timekeeping control means and displays time, a generator output detection means that detects the power generated by the generating means, a remaining operating time calculation means that integrates the power output detected by the generator output detection means and calculates a remaining operating time, and a remaining operating time display means that displays the remaining operating time calculated by the remaining operating time calculation means.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 12, 2008
    Publication date: September 18, 2008
    Applicant: SEIKO EPSON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Takashi Kawaguchi
  • Publication number: 20080225647
    Abstract: An electronic timepiece with a generator function, including a generating means, a storage means that stores electrical energy produced by the generating means, a timekeeping control means that is driven by the electrical energy stored in the storage means, a time display means that is controlled by the timekeeping control means and displays time, a power generation detection means that detects the power generation state of the generating means, and a power generation display means that displays the power generation state based on a detection result signal output from the power generation detection means. The power generation detection means includes a hand and an actuator that drives the hand in both forward and reverse directions.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 11, 2008
    Publication date: September 18, 2008
    Applicant: SEIKO EPSON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Takashi Kawaguchi
  • Publication number: 20080225646
    Abstract: The present invention concerns a timepiece including a movement fitted with a power reserve indicator device, said timepiece including a barrel closed by a cover, a mainspring housed in said barrel and respectively connected to a barrel arbour and means for winding said mainspring, said indicator device including a differential gear kinematically connected by a first input to the barrel arbour, by a second input to the barrel and by an output to a power reserve indicator member and wherein the differential gear frame is arranged coaxially to the barrel arbour, characterized in that the second differential gear input is secured to the barrel cover, in that the differential gear output is formed by an inner toothed crown, in that the inner toothed crown is kinematically connected to the first input by at least first and second planetary wheel sets meshed with each other and in that the at least two planetary wheel sets are carried by the cover.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 6, 2008
    Publication date: September 18, 2008
    Applicant: MONTRES BREGUET S.A.
    Inventor: Alain Zaugg
  • Publication number: 20080205199
    Abstract: To provide a residual wound quantity display mechanism of a timepiece, in which it is possible to change a way of a display without changing a basic structure, and a timepiece with the mechanism concerned.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 6, 2008
    Publication date: August 28, 2008
    Inventor: Mamoru Watanabe
  • Patent number: 7357568
    Abstract: A running reserve indicator is provided for a mechanical clockwork provided with a main barrel for driving a gear-train and at least a second barrel for driving a gear-train allocated to an auxiliary function which is performed during a determined period. With the indicator, the running reserve displayed with the aid of a hand and a dial is always equal to the running reserve of the barrel having the smallest reserve.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 2004
    Date of Patent: April 15, 2008
    Assignee: Eterna SA
    Inventors: Paul Gerber, Willy Meier
  • Patent number: 7327638
    Abstract: Using an oscillating unit (601) that can start oscillation with a low voltage, an oscillation signal (S1) of the oscillating unit (601) is amplified via a waveform shaping unit (603), and is fed to a boosting control unit (105). A boosting unit (103) is caused to perform a boosting behavior by a boosting clock (Sa) with the same frequency as an oscillation frequency of the oscillation signal (S1) just after the oscillating unit (601) starts. Thereby, a whole electronic timepiece (100) can be self-actuated, even if a generation voltage is low. Further, the oscillating unit (601) is constituted such that a operating current always becomes constant. Thereby, the electronic timepiece can be provided with an electricity-generating unit (101) such as a solar cell with a one-stage constitution having a low open voltage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 2003
    Date of Patent: February 5, 2008
    Assignee: Citizen Holdings Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Yoichi Nagata
  • Patent number: 7300200
    Abstract: A timepiece has a mainspring winding state display apparatus for arranging a rotational center of a winding mark hand at an arbitrary pertinent position in a movement of the timeplace. The movement has a barrel complete and a speed reducing mechanism cooperatively moved with a barrel gear of the barrel complete for reducing a speed of ratotion of the barrel gear. A segment gear undergoes rotation in accordance with an output of the barrel gear. A winding mark indicator undergoes rotation in accordance with an operation of the segment gear. A mainspring winding state display member displays a winding state of the mainspring in accordance with rotation of the winding mark indicator. The segment gear includes a first segment gear for receiving an output of the speed reducing mechanism and a second segment gear for rotating the winding mark display wheel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 26, 2005
    Date of Patent: November 27, 2007
    Assignee: Seiko Instruments Inc.
    Inventor: Shigeo Suzuki
  • Publication number: 20070242568
    Abstract: The invention proposes a timepiece including a motion work (12) which drives analogue display means (14) and a strike train (16) which drives a striking mechanism (18), wherein the motion work (12) is driven in rotation by a barrel (20) including a spring, a toothing which meshes with the motion work (12), and a winding ratchet (38) coaxial to the barrel (20), the winding ratchet (38) being secured in rotation to the drive arbour (26) of the barrel (20), and wherein a winding member (44) is provided to mesh with the winding ratchet (38) in order to wind the barrel spring (24), characterized in that the winding ratchet (38) drives the strike train (16) in rotation via an intermediate wheel set (45) whose axis (A2) is shifted relative to the axis (A1) of the barrel (20), and in that the intermediate wheel set (45) includes a click device (47) for uncoupling the winding ratchet (38) relative to the strike train (16) during the winding phase of the spring (24).
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 11, 2007
    Publication date: October 18, 2007
    Applicant: MONTRES BREGUET SA
    Inventor: Eric Goeller
  • Patent number: 7274624
    Abstract: The invention concerns a timepiece including a mechanical power source (1) coupled, on the one hand, to first means (5) displaying time related information and, on the other hand, to a generator (2), a regulator circuit (6) for enslaving the generator frequency to a reference frequency, said regulator circuit including switching means (7) arranged for electrically braking the generator when the generator frequency is higher than the reference frequency, and second power-reserve display means (12a) controlled by means for measuring the power-reserve (12b), said timepiece being characterized in that it further includes means (11) for accumulating the electrical energy dissipated during the generator braking periods and means (13) for actuating said second display means to display the power-reserve by means of the electrical energy accumulated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 15, 2004
    Date of Patent: September 25, 2007
    Assignee: Asulab S.A.
    Inventor: Francois Gueissaz
  • Patent number: 7170825
    Abstract: To provide a power reserve display mechanism having a mainspring remaining amount display showing a novel behavior and a mechanical timepiece having the same. A power reserve display mechanism of a mechanical timepiece includes a displacement conversion mechanism having a first rotation input portion coupled to a ratchet wheel and rotated in accordance with rotation of the ratchet wheel and a second rotation input portion coupled to a barrel wheel and rotated in accordance with rotation of the barrel wheel as well as an output portion moved linearly in one direction in accordance with rotation of the first rotation input portion and moved linearly in other direction in accordance with rotation of the second rotation input portion, and mainspring accumulating remaining amount display means provided at the output portion of the displacement conversion mechanism for displaying a mainspring accumulating remaining amount by a position along a linear line.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 17, 2006
    Date of Patent: January 30, 2007
    Assignee: Seiko Instruments Inc.
    Inventor: Takashi Takahashi
  • Patent number: 7154816
    Abstract: An electronic timepiece (10) comprises time information generating unit (A) for generating time information, information generating unit for generating information (function information, warning information, etc.) other than the time information, and power-saving operation unit (D) for operating the electronic timepiece in a power-saving operation state entailing lower power consumption than in a normal operation state. The information generating unit or the power-saving operation unit (D) is operated preferentially.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 25, 2001
    Date of Patent: December 26, 2006
    Assignee: Citizen Watch Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Kiyotaka Igarashi, Kenji Shimoda, Masahiro Sase
  • Patent number: 7113452
    Abstract: When a stem switch (8) is pulled out, a switch signal forming unit 9 outputs a signal (RS) indicating that effect, a control unit (13) receives the signal (RS) and starts clocking by a timer (13a). The control unit (13) receives a signal (HS) output from an electricity-generation detecting unit (12) within the clocking period, detects the electricity generating operation of an electricity generating unit (10), and outputs a signal (CS) indicating that effect. A narrow pulse forming unit (7) forms a narrow pulse having a width of such a degree that the motor (5) is not driven based on the signal (CS), and outputs the narrow pulse to a motor driving circuit (4). The motor driving circuit (4) flows a fine current through a coil (4a) which drives the motor (5) based on the narrow pulse. An external device detects a variation of the narrow pulse, thereby confirming whether electricity is generated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 26, 2006
    Assignee: Citizen Watch Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Kenji Fujita, Akiyoshi Murakami, Haruhiko Higuchi, Motoki Funahashi
  • Patent number: 7102964
    Abstract: When a time keeping apparatus is in a power saving mode, performing time display is stopped, and the apparatus periodically receives a time data from outside and sets the data to a second time counter 98 and an hour-and-minute time counter 99. When the operation mode of the time keeping apparatus is switched from the power saving mode to the display mode, the apparatus resumes to display the current time based on the counted values in the second time counter 98 and the hour and minute time counter 99.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 21, 2004
    Date of Patent: September 5, 2006
    Assignee: Seiko Epson Corporation
    Inventor: Teruhiko Fujisawa
  • Patent number: 7009914
    Abstract: In detecting power generation of an electronic timepiece having a conventional power generating unit, voltage output by the power generating unit is limited by output from a storage unit since the power generating unit and the storage means are connected when the power generation state is detected, and voltage equal to or larger than voltage output from the storage unit cannot be detected. An electronic timepiece is provided which can overcome the problem and can check an operation of the power generating unit securely irrespective of the state of the storage means. In an electronic timepiece driven by power stored from a power generating unit (1) into a storage unit (4), the electronic timepiece includes a power generation detecting unit (2) that detects a power generation state of the power generating unit (1) and a switch unit (7) that separates the power generating unit (1) and the storage unit (4) when the power generation state of the power generating unit (1) is detected.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 29, 2003
    Date of Patent: March 7, 2006
    Assignee: Citizen Watch Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Haruhiko Higuchi, Akiyoshi Murakami, Motoki Funahashi
  • Patent number: 6958954
    Abstract: The invention concerns a device for indicating the state of watch batteries. Said device comprises, in combination: a circuit for determining (34) at least a physical characteristic of the cell (10) which varies when it is nearly discharged, a circuit for metering (36) the power consumed by the watch, a circuit for assessing (40) the capacity rating of the battery, connected to the determining (34) and metering (36) circuits and designed to process data and select the most relevant information derived either from the determining circuit (34), or from the metering circuit (36), means for displaying the state of the battery (38,40,42), and a circuit controlling (39) the display means.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 19, 2001
    Date of Patent: October 25, 2005
    Assignee: ISA France S.A.
    Inventors: Urs Haeni, Laurent Boillod
  • Patent number: 6912181
    Abstract: An electronic timepiece without system failure at the time of transfer from the power-saving mode to the display mode is provided. A power-saving control circuit 400 controls drive of a date dial displaying a date when updating a date display, which has been stopped in a power-saving mode, to a current date at the time of transfer from the power-saving mode to the display mode. The power-saving control circuit 400 outputs a date dial drive inhibiting signal, which prohibits drive of the date dial 75, to a date-updating control circuit 300, if a voltage VDD of a power source unit B is less than or equal to a low threshold voltage V1. It outputs a date dial deceleration driving signal, which drives a date dial 75 with a predetermined speed slower than a normal update speed when transferring to the display mode, to a date-updating control circuit 300, if a source voltage VDD is equal to or less than a high threshold voltage V2.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 21, 2003
    Date of Patent: June 28, 2005
    Assignee: Seiko Epson Corporatioin
    Inventors: Akihiko Maruyama, Akihiro Sawada
  • Patent number: 6876602
    Abstract: A first voltage detector detects whether the voltage of a secondary cell has reached to 1.2V and a first timer counts a time duration for which the voltage is equal to or above 1.2V. If the time counted by the first timer reaches one hour, a second timer starts counting time for one hour. An amount of charge accumulated in the secondary cell is displays after counting of the one hour by the second timer is over. As a result, an accurate display of the amount of charge accumulated in the secondary cell can be achieved.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 19, 2003
    Date of Patent: April 5, 2005
    Assignee: Citizen Watch Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Masakazu Ichikawa, Isao Kitazawa, Masao Sakuyama, Tomio Okigami
  • Patent number: 6826124
    Abstract: The present invention concerns a timepiece including a barrel, a spring housed in the barrel, time display members mechanically coupled to said barrel, an electric energy generator also coupled to said barrel, and a regulator circuit for enslaving the frequency of said generator to a reference frequency. The regulator circuit includes for this purpose switching means arranged for electrically braking said generator during braking periods, when said regulator circuit detects that the frequency of said generator is higher than the reference frequency. The generator controls actuating means of an analogue power reserve member, via an electric quantity transmitted by electric coupling between the actuating means and the generator, during said braking periods.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 7, 2003
    Date of Patent: November 30, 2004
    Assignee: Asulab S.A.
    Inventor: Jean-Jacques Born
  • Patent number: 6816439
    Abstract: To extend the clock operation duration of a multi-functional rechargeable electronic watch, and to provide a rechargeable electronic watch that would not affect the feeling of use of said rechargeable electronic watch.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 2000
    Date of Patent: November 9, 2004
    Assignee: Citizen Watch Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Hisashi Kawahara, Haruhiko Higuchi
  • Publication number: 20040100870
    Abstract: An electronic timepiece (10) comprises time information generating unit (A) for generating time information, information generating unit for generating information (function information, warning information, etc.) other than the time information, and power-saving operation unit (D) for operating the electronic timepiece in a power-saving operation state entailing lower power consumption than in a normal operation state. The information generating unit or the power-saving operation unit (D) is operated preferentially.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 3, 2003
    Publication date: May 27, 2004
    Inventors: Kiyotaka Igarashi, Kenji Shimoda, Masahiro Sase
  • Patent number: 6693852
    Abstract: An electronic device in which a braking torque can be increased while reduction in power generation is suppressed, and in which a rotor is prevented from stopping or rotating at an excessive speed. Such an electronic device includes a generator which is driven by an mechanical energy source and a rotation controller which controls the rotational period of the generator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 22, 2002
    Date of Patent: February 17, 2004
    Assignee: Seiko Epson Corporation
    Inventors: Kunio Koike, Eisaku Shimizu, Hidenori Nakamura
  • Patent number: RE41686
    Abstract: In an electronic watch having an electrical generation means, an electrical power storage means which stores electrical energy generated by the electrical generation means, an oscillator circuit, a control section which operates in response to a clock of the oscillator circuit, and a display section which is controlled by the control section, and which displays the time and also selectively displays a function other than the time, a voltage detection means which detects the voltage of the electrical power storage means and a control section management means which, in response to a detection signal from the voltage detection means controls the operation of the control section are provided, and hysteresis is provided between the operation starting point and operation ending point of the control section, which control such operations as storage of hand positions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 7, 2000
    Date of Patent: September 14, 2010
    Assignee: Citizen Holdings Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Kenji Fujita, Isamu Kobayashi, Kiyotaka Igarashi, Akiyoshi Murakami