Occupant Or Article Carriage Follows Stationary, Horizontally Winding, Track Or Platform Patents (Class 472/43)
  • Patent number: 9616349
    Abstract: Method and system of determining if a predetermined amount of time has passed since dispatch of a first one of the plurality of trackless vehicles onto one of a predefined plurality of intersecting paths. If the predetermined amount of time has passed, determining if a second one of the plurality of trackless vehicles was available for dispatch onto the predefined path or another predefined path. If the second trackless vehicle was available for dispatch, dispatching the second trackless vehicle, and if the second trackless vehicle was not available for dispatch, dispatching a third one of the trackless vehicles onto the predefined path or another predefined path. The predetermined amount of time may be calculated based on a time interval on which the trackless vehicles are dispatched onto the predefined plurality of paths.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 7, 2013
    Date of Patent: April 11, 2017
    Assignee: Oceaneering International, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael Wayne Boshears, Michael David Russell, Jr., Andrew Scott Grant, Frank Peter Hass
  • Patent number: 9457282
    Abstract: A ride control system includes a plurality of ride vehicles positioned within a course and configured to travel within the course. Each of the plurality of ride vehicles includes a vehicle controller configured to control movement of a respective one of the plurality of ride vehicles. Each of the plurality of ride vehicles also includes a position tracking system configured to facilitate identification of a location of the respective one of the plurality of ride vehicles within the course. Each of the plurality of ride vehicles further includes a vehicle transceiver in communication with the vehicle controller. The ride control system also includes a primary controller and a primary transceiver in communication with the primary controller. The ride control system further includes a primary wireless network formed by the vehicle transceiver and the primary transceiver to include at least the primary controller and the vehicle controller of each of the plurality of ride vehicles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 21, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 4, 2016
    Assignee: Universal City Studios LLC
    Inventors: Mark Bruce Maycock, Eric Vance
  • Patent number: 9387408
    Abstract: A waterslide attraction configured to display illuminated visualizations to a rider traveling thereon via one or more lights or LEDs. The waterslide attraction utilizes a slide for supporting a rider, either with a ride vehicle or without. The ride vehicle may be a mat, tube, or board with interactive elements, such as buttons, that allows the rider thereon to manipulate the interactive elements for providing rider input while on the slide. Upon manipulating an element, a signal may be transmitted, the illuminated visualizations being modified in response to such manipulations. Colors, shapes, and/or patterns may be displayed that animate or appear to shift or move in position along the waterslide. Gaming features, such as manipulating the interactive elements that corresponds to one or more displayed illumination visualizations may cause rewards or penalties, for example, based on position of the rider, as the rider travels on the slide.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 19, 2014
    Date of Patent: July 12, 2016
    Assignee: Whitewater West Industries Ltd.
    Inventors: Aaron Mendelson, Denise Chapman Weston
  • Patent number: 9340126
    Abstract: A vehicle includes a passenger compartment and at least one seat located in the passenger compartment. The seat can be moved from a front-facing position to a rear-facing position for when the vehicle is operating in an autonomous mode. The vehicle may further include autonomous driving sensors and an autonomous controller that receives signals generated by the autonomous driving sensors and controls at least one vehicle subsystems according to the signals received.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 20, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 17, 2016
    Assignee: FORD GLOBAL TECHNOLOGIES, LLC
    Inventors: Mark A. Cuddihy, Manoharprasad K. Rao, Jialiang Le
  • Patent number: 9155971
    Abstract: A selective illumination system for use with amusement park rides and other attractions. The system includes a first light source illuminating a first set of items in a physical set and also includes a second light source illuminating a second set of items in the physical set. The system further includes a first set of optical filters operating in time synchronization with the first light source to pass light from the illuminated first set of items and also includes a second set of optical filters operating in time synchronization with the second light source to pass light from the illuminated first set of items. The optical filters of the first and second sets may be shutter glasses or other filters that are operated at high rates to selectively pass received light, and the first and second light sources are operated in a time multiplexed manner synchronized with the optical filters.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 28, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 13, 2015
    Assignee: DISNEY ENTERPRISES, INC.
    Inventor: Scott Trowbridge
  • Patent number: 9096150
    Abstract: A vehicle includes a passenger compartment and at least one seat located in the passenger compartment. The seat can be moved from a front-facing position to a rear-facing position for when the vehicle is operating in an autonomous mode. The vehicle may further include autonomous driving sensors and an autonomous controller that receives signals generated by the autonomous driving sensors and controls at least one vehicle subsystems according to the signals received.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 20, 2013
    Date of Patent: August 4, 2015
    Assignee: Ford Global Technologies, LLC
    Inventors: Mark A. Cuddihy, Manoharprasad K. Rao, Jialiang Le
  • Patent number: 9073574
    Abstract: A vehicle includes a steering wheel located in a passenger compartment. The steering wheel is configured to be moved from an operational position to a stowed position. In the event of a collision, a first airbag is configured to deploy when the steering wheel is in the operational position and a second airbag is configured to deploy when the steering wheel is in the stowed position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 20, 2014
    Date of Patent: July 7, 2015
    Assignee: Ford Global Technologies, LLC
    Inventors: Mark A. Cuddihy, Christopher Attard, Jeff Allen Greenberg, Rajit Johri, Devinder Singh Kochhar, Jialiang Le, Manoharprasad K. Rao, Matthew Y. Rupp, John Shutko, Roger Arnold Trombley, Hongtei Eric Tseng, Andrew Waldis
  • Patent number: 9017178
    Abstract: An assembly adapted for visually disguising drive or support features of an amusement park ride or a display system using a drive to move a show element about a space. The assembly includes a platform and a drive mechanism for selectively moving a support member. The assembly also includes an object supported upon an end of the support member spaced apart from the drive mechanism, and the support member extends through a slot in the platform. The assembly also includes a canopy positioned between the supported object and a surface of the platform facing the supported object. The canopy blocks an observer from seeing the slot in the platform. The canopy includes a plurality of camouflaging elements positioned between the slot in the platform and the supported object, and the camouflaging elements are arranged in two or more layers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 2013
    Date of Patent: April 28, 2015
    Assignee: Disney Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventor: Philip John Jackson
  • Patent number: 9005044
    Abstract: Described herein is an amusement ride that includes an object that supports a passenger, a carriage that releasably supports the object, a propulsion mechanism that accelerates the carriage and the object releasably supported by the carriage up to a desired velocity, and a braking mechanism that decelerates the carriage to release the object from the carriage at the desired velocity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 27, 2013
    Date of Patent: April 14, 2015
    Inventor: Stanley J. Checketts
  • Patent number: 8968109
    Abstract: A method utilizes reduced operational time and motion paths with consequently reduced manufacturing, operational, and maintenance costs relative to roller coasters, motion simulators, and other similar thrills rides currently in use. This method is accomplished by an Aggressive Linear Acceleration System (A.L.A.S.) maneuver, which is defined as 1) moving a passenger vehicle (107) at a constant angular speed (A) about one central axis of rotation (105), 2) moving passenger vehicle (107) at constant angular speed (A) about central axis of rotation (105), and away from central axis of rotation (105) at an increasing speed by a negative driven acceleration C, and 3) moving passenger vehicle (107) at constant angular speed (A) about central axis of rotation (105), and away from central axis of rotation (105) at a decreasing speed by a positive driven acceleration E. Consequently, the A.L.A.S.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 6, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 3, 2015
    Inventor: Daniel James Stoker
  • Patent number: 8905852
    Abstract: A roadside personalized entertainment system will be inside a building that may be positioned on major highways or Interstates, or other areas of high vehicular traffic. The system will provide short audio-visual entertainment for travelers while they remain in their vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 1, 2013
    Date of Patent: December 9, 2014
    Inventor: Yuri Geylik
  • Patent number: 8795095
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for a motion ride for creating an illusion of teleportation on a multiple of passengers in a ride vehicle. Multiple embodiments of varying apparatus are presented for completing four steps of the method. Passengers observe motion of the passenger vehicle over several environments creating an anticipated location for a perceived final destination of the passenger vehicle following motion through an enclosing structure. The enclosing structure has motion distinct from motion of the passenger vehicle over a predetermined amount of time creating a separation between the actual final destination of the passenger vehicle and the perceived final destination anticipated by passengers. Revealing the actual final destination of the passenger vehicle to passengers creates the effect of the passenger vehicle appearing in a different and unanticipated location instantaneously. The effect can be used for complimenting a story-telling teleportation event of a motion ride.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 18, 2012
    Date of Patent: August 5, 2014
    Inventor: Daniel James Stoker
  • Patent number: 8727896
    Abstract: The attraction systems include underground or underwater tunnels having a visitor transportation system with ride vehicles and multiple audio and video systems for providing an experience of three-dimensional (3D) or four-dimensional (4D) video installations. In addition, the attraction systems may have various special effects devices to enhance visitors' experiences. These underground or underwater tunnels may be built in cities, and especially, in historic city centers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 14, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 20, 2014
    Inventor: Anton Frolov
  • Patent number: 8647212
    Abstract: An intersecting path ride providing close vehicle interaction without risk of collision. The ride includes a track assembly defining first and second linear, open channels bisecting at a vehicle path intersection point. The ride includes first and second vehicle guides movable within the channels. The ride includes first and second vehicle subassemblies supported by the guides, and the vehicle subassemblies move or reciprocate with the guides along linear paths defined by the channels. The ride includes a vehicle positioning assembly that concurrently reciprocates the guides back and forth along the linear channels through the intersection point. The vehicle positioning assembly includes a connection link pivotally coupled to the guides, a drive motor with an output shaft, and a crank arm rigidly coupled to the output shaft at one end and pivotally coupled to the connection link at another end moving the midpoint of the link through a circular drive path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 11, 2014
    Assignee: Disney Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventors: David W. Crawford, Edward A. Nemeth
  • Patent number: 8641540
    Abstract: A system for patron movement and entertainment comprising a track, and at least one vehicle engaged with and positioned below the track, capable of carrying at least one patron in a passenger portion and moving along the track. Each vehicle preferably includes a motion base between the track and the passenger portion, and a turntable between the track and the motion base for rotating the passenger portion in the yaw direction, and particularly for directing the patron's viewpoint toward desired show elements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 13, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 4, 2014
    Inventors: Roland Feuer, Matthew Sellers
  • Patent number: 8636600
    Abstract: Ride systems providing guest compartment(s) with a roll degree of freedom through radial mount(s) are described. The guest compartment of the vehicles is attached to a track via a chassis. The guest compartment and the chassis are configured such that the guest compartment has a roll degree of freedom relative to the chassis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 28, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 28, 2014
    Assignee: Disney Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventor: Derek Howard
  • Patent number: 8512158
    Abstract: An amusement ride system includes: a shooting device adapted to shoot a projectile; an aiming facility operable by a user to aim the shooting device; and a triggering device operable by the user to fire the shooting device. The user rides the vehicle, aims the shooting device, and fires the device to shoot the projectile. A method for a ride includes: providing a shooting device; providing a plurality of projectiles; and aiming and shooting the projectiles utilizing the shooting device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 2013
    Date of Patent: August 20, 2013
    Assignee: Blammo, LLC
    Inventors: Philip Stephen Bloom, Bing Yeh
  • Publication number: 20130143679
    Abstract: An amusement ride system includes: a shooting device adapted to shoot a projectile; an aiming facility operable by a user to aim the shooting device; and a triggering device operable by the user to fire the shooting device. The user rides the vehicle, aims the shooting device, and fires the device to shoot the projectile. A method for a ride includes: providing a shooting device; providing a plurality of projectiles; and aiming and shooting the projectiles utilizing the shooting device.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 24, 2013
    Publication date: June 6, 2013
    Applicant: BLAMMO, LLC
    Inventor: Blammo, LLC
  • Patent number: 8398497
    Abstract: A ride system for rotating vehicles through a vertical plane or ride space about a common horizontal axis. The ride system includes an elongated support member with a longitudinal axis. The system includes a housing with a base and a frame supporting the elongated support member with the longitudinal axis spaced apart a distance from the base and such that the longitudinal axis is substantially horizontal. The system also includes a plurality of vehicle support assemblies hanging from the elongated support member. Each of the vehicle support assemblies includes an extension arm supporting a passenger vehicle at one end and attached to the elongated support member at a second end via a support coupling assembly. The support coupling assembly is configured to rotate the extension arm about the longitudinal axis, whereby the passenger vehicle is moved through a vertical plane orthogonal to the longitudinal axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 13, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 19, 2013
    Assignee: Disney Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventors: David W. Crawford, Edward A. Nemeth
  • Patent number: 8375863
    Abstract: An amusement ride includes at least one passenger carrier, an amusement ride guide structure and a launch system adapted to accelerate the at least one passenger carrier from a starting position. The launch system includes a launch guide structure having a curvature, a launch arm rotatable about a rotation axis, an engagement device for providing a temporary connection between the launch arm and the at least one passenger carrier during the launch, and a launch drive providing the launch arm with an angular velocity. In the launch system, the radial distance between the engagement device and the launch arm support is variable such that portions of the launch guide structure have a deviating radius, or the distance in axial direction between the engagement device and the launch arm support is variable such that portions of the launch guide structure have curvatures perpendicular to the surface of rotation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 6, 2007
    Date of Patent: February 19, 2013
    Assignee: Vekoma Rides Engineering B.V.
    Inventors: Joop Roodenburg, Petrus Joseph Hubertus Clerx
  • Patent number: 8376869
    Abstract: An amusement ride system includes: a shooting device adapted to shoot a projectile; an aiming facility operable by a user to aim the shooting device; and a triggering device operable by the user to fire the shooting device. The user rides the vehicle, aims the shooting device, and fires the device to shoot the projectile. A method for a ride includes: providing a shooting device; providing a plurality of projectiles; and aiming and shooting the projectiles utilizing the shooting device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 16, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 19, 2013
    Assignee: Blammo, LLC
    Inventors: Philip Stephen Bloom, Bing Yeh
  • Patent number: 8360893
    Abstract: A ride system provides guest compartment(s) with a roll degree of freedom through a pivoting connection. The guest compartment is attached to a track via a chassis, the chassis being attached to the track such that the guest compartment rides substantially above the track but has a roll degree of freedom relative to the chassis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 24, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 29, 2013
    Assignee: Disney Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventor: Derek Howard
  • Publication number: 20130017893
    Abstract: A system for patron movement and entertainment comprising a track, and at least one vehicle engaged with and positioned below the track, capable of carrying at least one patron in a passenger portion and moving along the track. Each vehicle preferably includes a motion base between the track and the passenger portion, and a turntable between the track and the motion base for rotating the passenger portion in the yaw direction, and particularly for directing the patron's viewpoint toward desired show elements.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 13, 2011
    Publication date: January 17, 2013
    Applicant: Ride & Show Engineering, Inc.
    Inventors: Roland Feuer, Matthew Sellers
  • Patent number: 8347556
    Abstract: A spectator venue having a performance area and spectator area is disclosed. The spectator area is generally divided into to portions, a stationary seating area and a dynamic seating area, both of which overlook the performance area. In the performance area, a spectator event occurs, such as a sports game or music concert. In the dynamic seating area, a plurality of seats are provided on a series of dynamic seating platforms. The dynamic seating platforms move along a track to various viewing locations during the course of the spectator event to provide multiple vantage points of the performance area from each seat. The distance and timing of movement of the dynamic seating platforms is based on various criteria, including occurrences during the spectator event.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 12, 2008
    Date of Patent: January 8, 2013
    Inventors: Thomas R. Stelmaszek, Shin Takeda
  • Patent number: 8348776
    Abstract: An intersecting path ride providing close vehicle interaction without risk of collision. The ride includes a track assembly defining first and second linear, open channels bisecting at a vehicle path intersection point. The ride includes first and second vehicle guides movable within the channels. The ride includes first and second vehicle subassemblies supported by the guides, and the vehicle subassemblies move or reciprocate with the guides along linear paths defined by the channels. The ride includes a vehicle positioning assembly that concurrently reciprocates the guides back and forth along the linear channels through the intersection point. The vehicle positioning assembly includes a connection link pivotally coupled to the guides, a drive motor with an output shaft, and a crank arm rigidly coupled to the output shaft at one end and pivotally coupled to the connection link at another end moving the midpoint of the link through a circular drive path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 8, 2013
    Assignee: Disney Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventors: David W. Crawford, Edward A. Nemeth
  • Patent number: 8328651
    Abstract: A ride system provides guest compartment(s) with a roll degree of freedom through a pivoting connection. The guest compartment is attached to a track via a chassis, the chassis being attached to the track such that the guest compartment rides substantially above the track but has a roll degree of freedom relative to the chassis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 24, 2010
    Date of Patent: December 11, 2012
    Assignee: Disney Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventor: Derek Howard
  • Patent number: 8308232
    Abstract: A seat for amusement apparatus including a support and means for immobilizing the user on the support. The immobilizing means comprise at least one support in front of the user and opposing means suitable for acting on the user's back. The opposing means comprises an arm which can move between a lowered position in which the user can sit down on the support and a raised position in which one end of the arm abuts against the user's back. The seat may optionally have a motorcycle shape and include handlebars and retractable leg extensions projecting from each side of the seat for maintaining a user's legs in a crouched motorcycle riding position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 17, 2004
    Date of Patent: November 13, 2012
    Assignee: Antonio Zamperla S.p.A.
    Inventors: Alberto Zamperla, Antonio Nardin
  • Patent number: 8282496
    Abstract: An amusement apparatus has a platform with a slot that follows a continuous course including both clockwise and counterclockwise turns, a plurality of cars each supported by respective wheels that ride on the platform, an elongate flexible drive member that translates along a path corresponding to the slot, a plurality of couplers corresponding to the plurality of cars, each respective coupler including a member which couples a corresponding car to the drive member with the couplers allowing the corresponding cars to move away from the slot in opposite directions in response to whipping forces resulting from translational movement of the drive member in clockwise and counterclockwise turns of the path, and springs for the cars that act on the cars to move the cars toward the slot in order to counteract the movement of the car away from the slot as caused by the whipping forces.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2010
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2012
    Inventors: Jonathan I. Gordon, David P. Gordon
  • Patent number: 8179337
    Abstract: One particular implementation of the present invention may take the form of a mobile set configured to include one or more projection devices to display a media presentation to a viewer. The mobile set may be configured to follow a fixed path or may move through autonomous navigation. In one embodiment, the mobile set may be included as part of an amusement park ride to interact with the ride patrons and provide them with a greater entertainment experience. For example, the mobile projected set may be synchronized to move with a carrier vehicle carrying the ride patrons and project a presentation or display to the ride patrons during the ride. Placing the projected scene on a mobile set allows the patrons to interact with the projected scene for a longer period of time then if the projected scene was stationary. Further, the mobile sets may be used to configure and control sightlines through the ride to provide a more dynamic environment for the amusement park ride.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 2, 2008
    Date of Patent: May 15, 2012
    Assignee: Disney Enterprises
    Inventors: Gregory A. Wilzbach, Janice L. Mulholland, Thomas J. Fitzgerald, David A. Durham, David W. Crawford
  • Patent number: 8140202
    Abstract: A train is driven by drive stations positioned along a track for frictionally contacting side plates on the train. The drive speed is controlled in response to sensors located at each drive station sensing a position of a wheel and a side plate for confirming a presence of the train. A start command is transmitted from the drive station driving the train to a second drive station downstream when a lead car is within a preselected distance from the second drive station. The drive station at the second drive station is quickly accelerated to a target speed for synchronizing the first drive station with the second drive station. After receiving the train, the second drive station then transmits a stop command to the first drive station for fast decelerating the drive station to a stop.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 2007
    Date of Patent: March 20, 2012
    Assignee: Rail-Veyor Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Merton F. Dibble, Joe Capers
  • Publication number: 20110319178
    Abstract: A ride system provides guest compartment(s) with a roll degree of freedom through a pivoting connection. The guest compartment is attached to a track via a chassis, the chassis being attached to the track such that the guest compartment rides substantially above the track but has a roll degree of freedom relative to the chassis.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 24, 2010
    Publication date: December 29, 2011
    Applicant: Disney Enterprises
    Inventor: Derek Howard
  • Publication number: 20110319179
    Abstract: Ride systems providing guest compartment(s) with a roll degree of freedom through radial mount(s) are described. The guest compartment of the vehicles is attached to a track via a chassis. The guest compartment and the chassis are configured such that the guest compartment has a roll degree of freedom relative to the chassis.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 28, 2010
    Publication date: December 29, 2011
    Applicant: Disney Enterprises, Inc.,
    Inventor: Derek Howard
  • Patent number: 8057317
    Abstract: An amusement park attraction comprises an array of cells, the array including cells being arranged at various horizontal positions and various vertical positions. A movable passenger assembly, preferably a seat assembly, is provided for one or more passengers, which passenger assembly is at least movable in vertical direction. The passenger assembly and/or the array of cells is movable in horizontal direction. A cell is defined by a boundary and has a viewing opening. Mmultiple cells of said array each contain a discrete scene to be viewed by the one or more passengers. A programmable actuating system is provided, which actuating system provides a programmed route of said passenger assembly along the viewing openings of said scene containing cells, so that the one or more passengers are presented a predetermined sequence of scenes and at least experience a vertical motion along said route.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 5, 2004
    Date of Patent: November 15, 2011
    Assignees: Vekoma Rides Engineering B V, Olaf Karl-Heinz Mordelt
    Inventors: Joop Roodenburg, Johan Willem Philippen, Olaf Karl-Heinz Mordelt
  • Patent number: 8025581
    Abstract: A ride vehicle for use in amusement park rides with interactive game or show equipment. A vehicle body is included with a passenger seat and an interactive device operable by a passenger to interact with the interactive game. A mounting assembly is provided in or on vehicle body and is configured for pivotally mounting the interactive device on the vehicle body. The mounting assembly may be adapted such as with a cam or guide plate to rotate or otherwise position the interactive device through a range of positions at varying distances from the seat. Further, A passenger restraint assembly is provided and is used to determine a size of the passenger in the seat. The passenger restraint is linked to the mounting assembly to drive the mounting assembly so as to place the interactive device at a passenger-use position that is selected based on the defined size of the passenger.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 22, 2008
    Date of Patent: September 27, 2011
    Assignee: Disney Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventors: Susan M. Bryan, Gregory A. Wilzbach, James Stephen Frankenberger
  • Patent number: 8021236
    Abstract: An amusement ride system includes: a shooting device adapted to shoot a projectile; an aiming facility operable by a user to aim the shooting device; and a triggering device operable by the user to fire the shooting device. The user rides the vehicle, aims the shooting device, and fires the device to shoot the projectile. A method for a ride includes: providing a shooting device; providing a plurality of projectiles; and aiming and shooting the projectiles utilizing the shooting device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 4, 2009
    Date of Patent: September 20, 2011
    Assignee: Blammo, LLC
    Inventors: Philip Stephen Bloom, Bing Yeh
  • Publication number: 20110177870
    Abstract: A car 1 for amusement devices comprises a frame (not shown), which is connected to a person-receiving apparatus 10. A running gear 30 is arranged on the frame. Arranged on the running gear 30 and spaced at a distance from the frame and from the person-receiving apparatus 10 are rotatable wheels with coils and illumination elements 33 integrated therein. Between the wheels 31 and the running gear 30 is arranged in each case at least one magnet 32, such that electric current is induced in the coil by rotation of the wheels 31 for feeding the illumination elements 33.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 18, 2011
    Publication date: July 21, 2011
    Applicant: MAURER SOEHNE GMBH & CO. KG
    Inventor: Jörg Beutler
  • Patent number: 7967688
    Abstract: A motion simulator has a motive device suspended in midair and having a base, a moving panel, twelve universal joints mounted on the base and the moving panel and six actuators connected to the universal joints and being retractable. A seat assembly is hung on the moving panel. Therefore, as the actuators retract, the seat assembly is moved in six degrees of freedom such as heave, sway, surge, pitch, roll and yaw. Audiences sitting on the seat assembly are hung with their feet hanging in the air and therefore feel excited and experience vivid virtual reality. Moreover, the actuators bear axial force such as drag force and thrust force and are endurable and safety.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 16, 2009
    Date of Patent: June 28, 2011
    Assignees: Brogent Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Deng-Horng Lai, Ke-Cheng Chien
  • Patent number: 7918740
    Abstract: A circular track may be flat or hilly. Riding on the track is a big wheel sized larger than a rider compartment. The rider compartment is supported out bound from the big wheel's axle. The big wheel's inbound axle is attached to a radius arm which is powered by a conventional rotating hub. The radius arms are pivotally connected to the hub to allow an up and down movement on a hilly track. The rider compartment has a magnetic coupler assembly to the axle to enable an automatic and/or a rider controlled head over heels spinning of the rider compartment while the big wheel is traveling in its circular path around the hub.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 14, 2006
    Date of Patent: April 5, 2011
    Inventors: William J. Kitchen, John H Chance
  • Patent number: 7914384
    Abstract: An amusement device has an elongated track along which one or more amusement device seat assemblies adapted to carry the one or more passengers are moveable. Each seat assembly has a seat with a seating surface and a back support with a back support surface. The seat assembly further includes a bar construction attached to a pivot mechanism. This bar construction has a hip bar and one or more pivot arms integral with the hip bar, which bar construction is pivotable about the pivot axis from a raised position in which the hip bar is raised from the seating surface to allow a passenger to sit down in the amusement device seat assembly, to a lowered position. No part of the bar construction takes away the view of the person and limits the movements of the arms of the person, allowing the passenger to experience a great sense of freedom.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 2007
    Date of Patent: March 29, 2011
    Assignee: Vekoma Rides Engineering B.V.
    Inventors: Joop Roodenburg, Johan Willem Philippen
  • Patent number: 7905790
    Abstract: A vehicle and screen assembly is provided for theme park rides to create a ride-through screen experience. The assembly includes a vehicle for carrying passengers that includes a top or roof assembly with first and second sets of magnetic elements on an exterior surface of the top assembly, with each of the sets having a like pole oriented outward from the exterior surface. A screen assembly is included with first and second planar screen segments that are pivotably mounted adjacent to each other so as to hang or be positioned in a plane that is transverse to a track traveled by the vehicle. The screen segments include magnetic elements with exposed poles that match the outward facing pole of the corresponding sets of magnetic elements on the vehicle. The screen segments magnetically levitate away from the top assembly when the vehicle passes through the screen assembly without touching the vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 5, 2008
    Date of Patent: March 15, 2011
    Assignee: Disney Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventor: Gary W. Schnuckle
  • Patent number: 7905789
    Abstract: The patron restraint system for amusement rides includes a locking receiver with a locking assembly for engaging a restraining strap. The engagement of the restraining strap in the locking receiver can be verified by a ride operator by visual or physical inspection, or by a sensor system indicating the locked or unlocked state of the locking receiver. A latching ratchet mechanism may be provided in the receiver to restrict movement of the restraining strap until it is released by the ride operator. The sensor system includes an acoustic sensor that detects alignment of an aperture with a piezoelectric acoustic emitter and an acoustic detector.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 3, 2007
    Date of Patent: March 15, 2011
    Assignee: Team IX, Ltd.
    Inventors: David L. Collins, Sirzat Sayin, David Althoff, Jr.
  • Publication number: 20100307288
    Abstract: A lap bar assembly with dual lap bar and grab bar functions. The assembly includes a locking mechanism and a lap bar pivotally mounted to the locking mechanism via a support shaft. The locking mechanism includes a ratchet wheel affixed to the support shaft. A pawl is pivotally supported within the locking mechanism on a pawl support axle parallel to and spaced apart from the lap bar support shaft. The locking mechanism includes a trip cam pivotally attached to the lap bar support shaft. The locking mechanism includes a cam follower that selectively engages the pawl. The locking mechanism is configured to automatically first lock in a first position (or ride position) with the pawl engaging teeth of the ratchet wheel and then second lock in a second position (or released position) with the pawl engaging the ratchet wheel on an uplock surface spaced apart the ratchet teeth.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 25, 2009
    Publication date: December 9, 2010
    Applicant: DISNEY ENTERPRISES, INC.
    Inventors: Phillip J. Lubman, Sean A. Ramirez
  • Patent number: 7794330
    Abstract: An amusement apparatus has a platform, pulleys mounted below the platform, a cable extending around the pulleys, a motor coupled to a pulley to cause the cable to move, a passenger vehicle supported by wheels on the platform, and a swing coupling having a horizontal arm coupled to the passenger vehicle and a vertical element coupled to the arm and coupled to the cable. The cable traverses a path having both left and right turns. In one embodiment, the platform defines a continuous slot located above and substantially following the path. In another embodiment, the platform defines a continuous slot with first portions above but laterally parallel the cable on one side of the cable, second portions above and laterally parallel the cable on the other side of the cable, and third portions crossing over the cable and connecting the first and second portions. Different swing coupling arrangements are described.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 2007
    Date of Patent: September 14, 2010
    Inventors: Jonathan I. Gordon, David P. Gordon
  • Patent number: 7766754
    Abstract: One embodiment of the invention discloses a method for animating an advertising device. The method comprising multiple steps such as providing a track system and a tower that is operatively coupled to the track. The tower can comprise one or more substantially transparent sections. The method further comprises providing a base support system that is operatively coupled to the tower. The base can be operatively coupled to a facade with one or more substantially non-transparent sections. The method further includes providing a vehicle system comprising a passenger-carrying vehicle that is operatively coupled to the track. Finally, the method includes animating the advertising device by transporting the vehicle between the substantially transparent section of the tower and the substantially non-transparent section of the facade. The vehicle movement can, for example, simulate fluid movement between the tower and the facade.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 8, 2006
    Date of Patent: August 3, 2010
    Inventors: Daniel P. Davison, Jr., Richard H. Remmer
  • Patent number: 7762895
    Abstract: An amusement apparatus includes at least a pair of interconnected platforms configured to move on a track. A seat may be connected to at least one of the platforms and may include, for example, a support and an immobilization device for immobilizing the user on the support suitable for acting on the user's back. The seat may optionally have a motorcycle shape and may include handlebars and retractable leg extensions projecting from each side of the seat for maintaining a user's legs in a crouched motorcycle riding position. At least one of the platforms may include a bridging portion to bridge a gap between the platforms during, for example, loading and unloading of the amusement apparatus with riders.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 2, 2006
    Date of Patent: July 27, 2010
    Assignee: Antonio Zamperla S.p.A.
    Inventors: Alberto Zamperla, Antonio Nardin
  • Patent number: 7717798
    Abstract: A child motion device has a frame assembly configured to rest on a support surface. The frame assembly includes at least one track configured to slidably receive a child seat assembly. The track can extend in any desired direction and include a geometric profile so that as the seat assembly travels along the track, a desired motion profile is imparted onto the seat assembly and to the child seated therein.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 3, 2006
    Date of Patent: May 18, 2010
    Assignee: Graco Children's Products Inc.
    Inventors: William B. Bellows, Dennis Stauffer
  • Patent number: 7632191
    Abstract: A seat for amusement apparatus, unusually suitable for allowing the user to adopt a new position on the apparatus, comprising a support and means for immobilising the user on the support. The immobilising means comprise at least one support in front of the user and opposing means suitable for acting on the user's back. The opposing means comprises an arm which can move between a lowered position in which the user can sit down on the support and a raised position in which one end of the arm abuts against the user's back.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 3, 2003
    Date of Patent: December 15, 2009
    Assignee: Antonio Zamperla S.p.A.
    Inventors: Giambattista Zambelli, Alberto Zamperla
  • Publication number: 20080113822
    Abstract: A circular track may be flat or hilly. Riding on the track is a big wheel sized larger than a rider compartment. The rider compartment is supported out bound from the big wheel's axle. The big wheel's inbound axle is attached to a radius arm which is powered by a conventional rotating hub. The radius arms are pivotally connected to the hub to allow an up and down movement on a hilly track. The rider compartment has a magnetic coupler assembly to the axle to enable an automatic and/or a rider controlled head over heels spinning of the rider compartment while the big wheel is traveling in its circular path around the hub.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 14, 2006
    Publication date: May 15, 2008
    Inventors: William J. Kitchen, John H. Chance
  • Patent number: 7354351
    Abstract: A pair of opposed inflatable bladders form a false floor, ceiling or wall having a seam through which an object support is propelled, deforming the inflatable bladders around the support, thereby giving the appearance that an object mounted on the support above the bladders is self-propelled above the false floor, ceiling or wall.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 2, 2005
    Date of Patent: April 8, 2008
    Assignee: Universal City Studios LLLP
    Inventor: Ross Edwards
  • Patent number: 7351154
    Abstract: A fun-ride more particularly for amusement parks, fairs and the like comprises at least one rail vehicle 1 and a guide lap for the vehicle 1. In a lateral projection a lap section 2 of the guide lap essentially constitutes a loop, the lap section 2 comprising a first uphill section 3 and a second downhill section 4 and the top ends of the sections are connected together. At least in the uphill section 3 the means 5 for engagement with the vehicle 1 is arranged. This means may for example be a holding brake or a coupling device. It is preferably operated when the vehicle 1 comes to a halt after a downward movement owing to the action of gravity on the vehicle 1.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 9, 2005
    Date of Patent: April 1, 2008
    Assignee: Maurer Sohne GmbH & Co., KG
    Inventors: Alfred Müller, Jörg Beutler