Moving Projectile Responsive Sensor Or Indicator Patents (Class 473/198)
  • Patent number: 9962593
    Abstract: Disclosed is a system for measuring a baseball or softball catcher's response, or “pop” time. The system includes a first sensor operable to detect a catcher catching a pitched ball, a second sensor operable to detect a baseman catching a ball thrown by the catcher, and a device with circuitry operable to calculate a pop time based on signals from the first and second sensors. Alternative embodiments allow measurement of time for a pitcher to deliver a pitch to the catcher, and other throwing and catching sequence metrics. Also disclosed are accompanying methods.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 21, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 8, 2018
    Assignee: ACCU-POP, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Kirk Massner, Ronald D. Crowl, Matthew Wiskus
  • Patent number: 9936269
    Abstract: Apparatus and methods of collecting and transmitting data of an object during an activity where object is impacted by another object. A method of tracking an object's location and trajectory based on data received at a portable device used by the participant; to determine a location and trajectory based on data received at a mobile device embedded in the object. Collection of data transmitted to a server, compiled by a computer program, and sent to a participant during the activity. When used in a stand-alone mode, environmental conditions, velocity, change in velocity, heading, spin, exact location, force imparted to the device and the estimated resting point of the device is delivered to the participant or spectator. When used in tandem with another similar device, additional performance data of velocity, change in velocity, spin and maximum force that can be imparted onto another object is provided to the participant or spectator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 2014
    Date of Patent: April 3, 2018
    Inventors: Gordon Spielberg, Jefferson Nunn
  • Patent number: 8974313
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for determining an angle of attack of a golf swing based on multiple ball hitting is disclosed. Multiple golf balls of different known constructions are hit by a golfer. Club head speed and backspin data associated with each of the hit golf balls is measured. Based on a correlation between an angle of attack and measured data associated with the golf balls of different known constructions, an angle of attack of a golf swing can be determined. Different sets of golf balls of known constructions can be provided based on characteristics of a golfer. A kit including at least three golf balls of different known constructions and a database containing the correlation between data associated with the at least three golf balls and an angle of attack is also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 10, 2015
    Assignee: NIKE, Inc.
    Inventors: Hideyuki Ishii, Arthur P. Molinari, Nicholas A. Leech, Yutaka Kabeshita
  • Publication number: 20140378238
    Abstract: A golf equipment fitting system that uses advanced technology to not only objectively identify the optimum equipment for the golfer, but to also identify and help correct swing flaws so that the golfer can achieve optimum performance on the golf course. Thus, in one embodiment, golf fitting includes collecting data related to the golfer's swing and determining if the golfer's swing technique should be modified based at least in part on the collected swing data. When it is determined that the golfer's swing technique should be modified, then providing swing instruction to the golfer. When, however, it is determined that the golfer's swing technique is fine, then collecting data related to how the golfer's swing launches a golf ball. Finally, golf equipment, e.g., golf clubs, can be specified based on the collected swing data and launch data.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 5, 2014
    Publication date: December 25, 2014
    Inventors: Mitchell Clark Voges, Daniel Patrick Hollister
  • Patent number: 8912945
    Abstract: In a method of determining a deviation of a path of a projectile from a predetermined path, the method uses an image of a target area in which the desired path or direction is pointed out. Subsequently, the real direction or real path is determined and the deviation is determined.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 23, 2011
    Date of Patent: December 16, 2014
    Assignee: Trackman A/S
    Inventor: Fredrik Tuxen
  • Patent number: 8801529
    Abstract: Monitoring of a golf ball and apparatus for doing so is described using differential time locating. Launch parameters of a golf ball can be characterized independent of any specific positional measurement on the basis of a ball signal that is transmitted from the ball. These parameters include initial spin, initial velocity, and initial trajectory. Ground proximity detection is described as well as a landing position and rollout position detection technique and associated apparatus. Calibration techniques are described for various kinds of range receivers that subsequently receive the ball signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 18, 2012
    Date of Patent: August 12, 2014
    Assignee: GeoGolf, LLC
    Inventors: Larry J. Koudele, Guy R. Wagner
  • Patent number: 8708833
    Abstract: A method for measuring behavior of a head of a golf club and of a ball includes obtaining two-dimensional data of three or more marks on a face surface at two points in time before impact; identifying three-dimensional positions of the marks on the two points in time from the two-dimensional data; identifying behavior of the face surface of the three-dimensional position of each mark at the two points in time; identifying time of a contact of the face surface with the ball; estimating behavior of the head at the time of contact of the face surface with the ball; obtaining two-dimensional data of the ball at the two points in time; identifying three-dimensional position and posture of the ball at the two points in time; and estimating a behavior value of the ball from the three-dimensional position and posture of the ball.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 17, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 29, 2014
    Assignees: SRI Sports Limited, Sumitomo Rubber Industries, Ltd.
    Inventor: Masahiko Ueda
  • Patent number: 8608583
    Abstract: An ultrasonic trigger for a golf equipment performance monitor is described. In a preferred embodiment, the ultrasonic trigger comprises at least one emitter and receiver. The emitters periodically generate sound waves at an ultrasonic frequency. The sound waves are targeted towards an object or objects within a target area. The sound waves are reflected by the objects within the target area, and are detected by at least one receiver. The receiver may be connected to a computational device to determine the position and/or velocity of the objects within the field of view.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 31, 2011
    Date of Patent: December 17, 2013
    Assignee: Acushnet Company
    Inventor: Laurent C Bissonnette
  • Patent number: 8535169
    Abstract: A golf ball includes an inner layer, an outer layer, and a cavity therebetween. A fluid, such as a viscous damping fluid, is placed in the cavity. When the ball is struck, the inner and outer layers rotate independently of one another. Indicia are provided on the inner and outer layers. An examination of the relative position of the indicia before the ball is struck and after the ball is struck can yield data that indicate the shear force of the stroke.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 12, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 17, 2013
    Assignee: NIKE, Inc.
    Inventor: Arthur Molinari
  • Patent number: 8512160
    Abstract: A camera system that measures golf club and golf ball kinematics is disclosed. Preferably, a plurality of retroreflective markers are placed on a golf club and a plurality of fluorescent markers are placed on a golf ball. Using two separate strobe lamps, images of a golf club and golf ball are acquired. The output of each of the strobe lamps is preferably filtered to pass predetermined colors of light. The input to each of the cameras is also preferably filtered. Based on the filtered light outputs generated by each light source and the filtered camera inputs, at least two images of the golf club and the golf ball in motion may be acquired. The acquired images may be used to analyze the kinematics of the golf ball and golf club.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 2003
    Date of Patent: August 20, 2013
    Assignee: Acushnet Company
    Inventor: William Gobush
  • Publication number: 20130184091
    Abstract: Systems, methods, and computer readable media for changing and controlling settings for adjustable golf clubs are described. Such setting adjustment systems may alter one or more of: lie angle, loft angle, face angle, shaft stiffness, shaft kickpoint location, weighting, weight positioning, face flexibility, maximum face flex location, etc. These systems and methods may use various types of information to determine the appropriate settings, such as: ball launch monitor data, swing path data, weather input data, course condition input data for a location of play, course design input data for a location of play, daily course layout input data for a location and a time of play, golfer past performance data (e.g., recent past performance, past performances at the location of play, past performance during an ongoing round of golf (i.e., on earlier played holes), etc.), current adjustable club setting information, and information indicating specific holes to be played.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 13, 2012
    Publication date: July 18, 2013
    Applicant: NIKE, Inc.
    Inventors: William F. Rauchholz, James A. Niegowski
  • Publication number: 20130157772
    Abstract: Alternate characterizations of golf ball striking ability is provided, as well as methods for determining the alternate characterizations and systems for carrying out such determinations. Such methods may include performing one or more golf strikes to impart trajectories to one or more golf balls. Such methods may also include measuring each of the golf strikes to determine golf club head, golf ball speed, side spin angle, and offline angle, calculating a trajectory magnitude factor and a trajectory offline factor on the basis of the measurements, and reducing the trajectory magnitude factor by the trajectory offline factor.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 16, 2011
    Publication date: June 20, 2013
    Applicant: NIKE, INC.
    Inventors: Hideyuki Ishii, Nicholas A. Leech, Roland Rotheneder
  • Patent number: 8425350
    Abstract: Golf balls and a system for finding golf balls and methods for making golf balls and methods for using such balls. In the case of one exemplary golf ball, the ball includes a shell and a core material which is encased in the shell and a tag which is disposed within the core material and which has at least one perforation. The tag includes a diode and an antenna which are coupled together. Another exemplary golf ball includes a shell and a core material which is encased within the shell and a tag which is within the core material and which includes an electrical element which is coupled to an antenna; the tag is detectable over a range of at least 20 feet from a handheld device, and the golf ball has high durability and substantially complies with the golf ball specifications of the United States Golf Association.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 12, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2013
    Assignee: RF Corporation
    Inventors: Chris Savarese, Lauro C. Cadorniga, Forrest F. Fulton, Noel H. C. Marshall, John Glissman, Kenneth P. Gilliland, Marvin L. Vickers, Gerald Latus
  • Patent number: 8282499
    Abstract: A method, system and golf ball are provided to determine the deceleration of a golf ball and, in turn, the speed of a green. The system may include a golf ball and an offboard display device. The golf ball may include a golf ball body, a motion sensor disposed within the golf ball body to measure acceleration of the golf ball along each of three mutually perpendicular axes, and a transmitter disposed within the golf ball body to transmit data representative of deceleration. The display device may include a receiver to receive data representative of the deceleration of the golf ball from transmitter and a display to provide a representation of the deceleration of the golf ball. At least one of the golf ball and the display device may include a processor to determine deceleration of the golf ball based upon the acceleration measured by the motion sensor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 2011
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2012
    Assignee: Callaway Golf Company
    Inventor: David B. Rankin
  • Patent number: 8172680
    Abstract: An information processing system includes an input section that inputs movement information of an object on which a user performed an operation in an operation environment, and an output section that holds another object in a remote site remote from the operation environment and reproduces a movement of the object on which the user performed the operation on the basis of the movement information received from the input section.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 5, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 8, 2012
    Assignee: Sony Corporation
    Inventors: Tomohiro Yasuoka, Tetsujiro Kondo, Ryuhei Sakanoue
  • Patent number: 8167733
    Abstract: A training device assisting golfers in reading putting greens includes a housing having a central cavity shaped and dimensioned for receiving the golf ball therein. The housing includes a closed first end and an open second end. A force producing mechanism is positioned at the closed first end of the housing and extends toward the open second end within the housing. The force producing mechanism is positioned within the housing for selective actuation thereof so as to contact and push forward a golf ball positioned within the housing. Upon actuation, the force producing mechanism launches the golf ball smoothly onto the golf putting green surface at a pre-determined speed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 1, 2012
    Inventor: David T. Pelz
  • Patent number: 8085188
    Abstract: A method of determining a deviation of a path of a projectile from a predetermined path. The method uses an image of a target area in which the desired path or direction is pointed out. Subsequently, the real direction or path is determined and the deviation determined.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 1, 2005
    Date of Patent: December 27, 2011
    Assignee: Trackman A/S
    Inventor: Fredrik Tuxen
  • Patent number: 8070620
    Abstract: A method, system and golf ball are provided to determine the deceleration of a golf ball and, in turn, the speed of a green. The system may include a golf ball and an offboard display device. The golf ball may include a golf ball body, a motion sensor disposed within the golf ball body to measure acceleration of the golf ball along each of three mutually perpendicular axes, and a transmitter disposed within the golf ball body to transmit data representative of deceleration. The display device may include a receiver to receive data representative of the deceleration of the golf ball from transmitter and a display to provide a representation of the deceleration of the golf ball. At least one of the golf ball and the display device may include a processor to determine deceleration of the golf ball based upon the acceleration measured by the motion sensor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 12, 2009
    Date of Patent: December 6, 2011
    Assignee: Callaway Golf Company
    Inventor: David B. Rankin
  • Patent number: 8016688
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for measuring ball launch conditions is disclosed. Specifically, the accuracy of the calculations used to determine the kinematic characteristics may be increased. A background image of a field of view, without a golf ball present, may be acquired. Two or more images of a golf ball in motion are then be acquired based on positive or negative imaging. The background image is subtracted from each of the two or more images of the golf ball. After subtracting the background image, the two or more images of the golf ball are analyzed to determine the location of the circular perimeter of the golf ball. Based on the location of the circular perimeter of the golf ball, the location of the center of the golf ball may be calculated. Knowing the location of the center of the golf ball increases the accuracy of measurements of kinematic characteristics such as sidespin, backspin, velocity, and launch angle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 15, 2005
    Date of Patent: September 13, 2011
    Assignee: Acushnet Company
    Inventor: William Gobush
  • Patent number: 7999694
    Abstract: An electronic sensor module for us in an interactive system, such as an interactive sports training device, for accurately detecting a projectile brought within close proximity of a target. The sensor module includes a plurality of light sources arranged in a housing such that the light sources are visible through a surface of the housing when activated. A plurality of sensors are also arranged in the housing for detecting the presence of a projectile. In one aspect, the sensors are arranged in a polar array about a center of housing with spaces between adjacent sensors, and with a light source positioned in each space between adjacent sensors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 12, 2009
    Date of Patent: August 16, 2011
    Inventors: Arthur L. Martin, Mark Simonds, Mark Weber
  • Patent number: 7959517
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for changing the temperature pattern of the surface of a golf ball or golf club is disclosed. The apparatus includes a thermal device capable of imparting a temperature pattern onto the surface of a golf ball. The thermal device preferably imparts the temperature pattern from a distance, preferably while the golf ball is positioned on a golf tee. After a predetermined amount of time, the golf ball may be stuck by a golf club. A thermal imaging device, which may detect a cooling pattern imparted to the golf ball by prongs of a cooling device, is preferably used to acquire images of the temperature pattern. The acquired images may then be analyzed by a processor to determine the kinematic characteristics of the golf ball.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2004
    Date of Patent: June 14, 2011
    Assignee: Acushnet Company
    Inventor: Eric J. Lastowka
  • Patent number: 7891666
    Abstract: For measuring a shot force exerted on a movable game device, a time curve of the acceleration during the shot or of the pressure within the game device during the shot is recorded and processed to obtain an energy measure, said energy measure then serving to provide information about the shot force.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 27, 2006
    Date of Patent: February 22, 2011
    Assignee: Cairos Technologies AG
    Inventors: Udo Kuenzler, Walter Englert
  • Patent number: 7887427
    Abstract: Apparatus and a method for computing and outputting a putting backstroke instruction for a planned putt of a golf ball during recreational play. A computing means includes means for initializing or customizing according to a specific golfer putting on a specific golf green, the golfer putting at least one initializing putt a pre-selected distance on a level area of a green. During recreational play thereafter, in the preferred embodiment of the invention, the golfer, for each segment of a planned putt enters the applicable grade and length. The computing means outputs to the golfer an instruction for the length of the backstroke recommended, i.e., required for the planned putt. Another embodiment of the invention requires the inputting of the length of the planned putt but excludes the inputting of the grade of the green.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 5, 2007
    Date of Patent: February 15, 2011
    Inventors: Gary E. Schmidt, Philip A. Schmidt
  • Patent number: 7878916
    Abstract: An ultrasonic trigger for a golf equipment performance monitor is described. In a preferred embodiment, the ultrasonic trigger comprises at least one emitter and receiver. The emitters periodically generate sound waves at an ultrasonic frequency. The sound waves are targeted towards an object or objects within a target area. The sound waves are reflected by the objects within the target area, and are detected by at least one receiver. The receiver may be connected to a computational device to determine the position and/or velocity of the objects within the field of view.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 2003
    Date of Patent: February 1, 2011
    Assignee: Acushnet Company
    Inventor: Laurent C. Bissonnette
  • Patent number: 7874928
    Abstract: A performance measuring device for a golf club that measures a motion state of a golf ball hit by the golf club and displays a measurement result, includes a camera part that takes a picture of the hit golf ball, a sensor part that detects a passage of the golf club hitting the golf ball and sends a trigger signal of deciding a photographing timing of the golf ball to the camera part, a control box having storage unit that stores an image of the golf ball photographed by the camera part and a USB interface that sends the image, and a mobile type computer having an arithmetical operation unit that analyzes the image, and a liquid crystal monitor that displays an analytic result. The mobile type computer includes a central processing unit having a clock frequency of 500 MHz or more, and a basic software achieving multitask and multiwindow.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 3, 2005
    Date of Patent: January 25, 2011
    Assignee: Bridgestone Sports Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Shu Katayama
  • Patent number: 7744480
    Abstract: This application relates to a single camera monitoring system useful for determining parameters relating to a striking instrument as it approaches an object. The monitoring system may be used to determine the swing characteristics of a golf club as it approaches and impacts with a golf ball. The accuracy of the single camera system may be comparable to the accuracy of more complex, multi-camera systems. The application also relates to methods for calibrating a single camera system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 20, 2004
    Date of Patent: June 29, 2010
    Assignee: Acushnet Company
    Inventor: William Gobush
  • Publication number: 20100151955
    Abstract: Systems and methods are disclosed for integrating a transmitter into an object, such as a golf ball, that becomes active upon the motion of the object. This transmitter sends a signal to a receiver that is configured to determine the location of the object. The receiver is the able to determine the location of the object and outputs the location to a display.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 17, 2008
    Publication date: June 17, 2010
    Applicant: Enfora, Inc.
    Inventor: Robert William Holden
  • Patent number: 7662047
    Abstract: A stroboscope is utilized as an input device of a golf game system (10), for example. The golf game system includes a game machine (12) as an information processing apparatus and a golf-club-shaped input device (14), and within a housing of the game machine, an imaging unit (28) is housed, and the imaging unit is provided with an image sensor (40) and an infrared-LED. By utilizing the infrared-LED, an infrared ray is intermittently emitted to a predetermined range of an upper portion of the imaging unit. Accordingly, the image sensor intermittently images a reflective body provided in the golf-club-shaped input device moving within the range. Such the stroboscope image processing of the reflective body enables calculation of a velocity, and so on as an input of the game machine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 20, 2003
    Date of Patent: February 16, 2010
    Assignee: SSD Company Limited
    Inventors: Hiromu Ueshima, Katsuya Nakagawa
  • Patent number: 7651403
    Abstract: A golf club selecting method includes measuring a behavior of a golf club during a golf swing performed with the golf club gripped and selecting a golf club in accordance with the golf swing. At first, a swing information for characterizing the behavior of the gold club during the golf swing performed with the golf club gripped is acquired. Then a golf club is selected in accordance with the golf swing based on the acquired swing information, wherein the acquired swing information contains a movement speed at each of a plurality of predetermined positions which are different from each other on a golf club shaft axis of the golf club, and the movement speed is a speed in an impact state immediately before a golf ball is hit with the golf club.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 20, 2005
    Date of Patent: January 26, 2010
    Assignee: The Yokohama Rubber Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Masaki Yamamoto, Hiroshi Saegusa, Masahiko Miyamoto, Masayoshi Kogawa
  • Patent number: 7369158
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a launch monitor system that measures flight characteristics of an object moving in a predetermined field-of-view. The system includes a support structure, a lighting unit, a camera unit disposed on the support structure, and a calibration assembly. The calibration assembly includes a calibration fixture and at least one telescoping member. A first end of the telescoping member is coupled to the support structure and a second end is contactable with or coupled to the fixture. In an extended position of the telescoping member, the calibration fixture is in the field-of-view of the camera unit. In a retracted position, the calibration fixture out of the field-of-view. The calibration fixture further includes contrasting markings. In another embodiment, the system includes a frame and the launch monitor is pivotally suspended from the frame so that it self-levels. The present invention further includes a method of calibrating a launch monitor having a calibration fixture.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 2004
    Date of Patent: May 6, 2008
    Assignee: Acushnet Company
    Inventors: William Gobush, Diane I. Pelletier, Douglas C. Winfield, Charles Days, Steven Aoyama, Edmund A. Hebert, James Alan Silveira
  • Patent number: 7321330
    Abstract: The present invention provides a ball measuring apparatus capable of measuring a trajectory of a ball from a hitting position to a landing position, the landing position and a stop position. A ball measuring apparatus 100 according to a first embodiment includes a first millimeter wave radar device 1 capable of carrying out a measurement from the hitting position to a predetermined position of the trajectory and having at least one transmitting antenna and a plurality of receiving antennas, and a second millimeter wave radar device 2 capable of measuring the stop position and having at least one transmitting antenna and a plurality of receiving antennas. A ball measuring apparatus 101 according to a second embodiment has a millimeter wave radar device 31 and a CCD camera 32.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 8, 2006
    Date of Patent: January 22, 2008
    Assignee: SRI Sports Limited
    Inventor: Takahiro Sajima
  • Patent number: 7291072
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a monitor system that measures flight characteristics of at least one object moving in a predetermined field-of-view using at least one fluorescent marker. The system may include a lighting unit with a light filter, at least one camera unit with a camera filter. The lighting unit directs light in the direction of the object. If there is a light filter the light is filtered prior to reaching the object. The camera unit is pointed toward the object and the camera filter inhibits all wavelengths except those in a certain range. The reflected light from the object is transmitted to the camera through the camera filter. In one embodiment, the system includes a camera filter that is electronically switchable between at least two colors. The present invention further includes methods for monitoring at least one object with at least one marker using filters.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 2002
    Date of Patent: November 6, 2007
    Assignee: Acushnet Company
    Inventors: Laurent C. Bissonnette, William Gobush, Diane I. Pelletier, Mitchell E. Lutz
  • Patent number: 7220187
    Abstract: Apparatus and a method for computing and outputting a putting backstroke instruction for a planned putt of a golf ball during recreational play. A computing means includes means for initializing or customizing according to a specific golfer putting on a specific golf green, the golfer putting at least one initializing putt a pre-selected distance on a level area of a green. During recreational play thereafter, in the preferred embodiment of the invention, the golfer, for each segment of a planned putt enters the applicable grade and length. The computing means outputs to the golfer an instruction for the length of the backstroke recommended, i.e., required for the planned putt. Another embodiment of the invention requires the inputting of the length of the planned putt but excludes the inputting of the grade of the green.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 29, 2003
    Date of Patent: May 22, 2007
    Inventors: Gary E. Schmidt, Philip A. Schmidt
  • Patent number: 7086954
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a monitor system that measures flight characteristics of at least one object moving in a predetermined field-of-view using at least one fluorescent marker. The system may include a lighting unit with a light filter, at least one camera unit with a camera filter. The lighting unit directs light in the direction of the object. If there is a light filter the light is filtered prior to reaching the object. The camera unit is pointed toward the object and the camera filter inhibits all wavelengths except those in a certain range. The reflected light from the object is transmitted to the camera through the camera filter. In one embodiment, the system includes a camera filter that is electronically switchable between at least two colors. The present invention further includes methods for monitoring at least one object with at least one marker using filters.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 5, 2001
    Date of Patent: August 8, 2006
    Assignee: Acushnet Company
    Inventors: William Gobush, Diane Pelletier, Mitchell E. Lutz, Laurent C. Bissonnette
  • Patent number: 6929558
    Abstract: A system for a predicting golfer's performance is disclosed herein. The system inputs the pre-impact swing properties of a golfer, a plurality of mass properties of a first golf club, and a plurality of mass properties of a first golf ball into a rigid body code. Ball launch parameters are generated from the rigid body. The ball launch parameters, a plurality of atmospheric conditions and lift and drag properties of the golf ball are inputted into a trajectory code. This trajectory code is used to predict the performance of a golf ball if struck by the golfer with the golf club under the atmospheric conditions. The system can then predict the performance of the golf ball if struck by the golfer with a different golf club. The system of the present invention predicts the performance of the golf ball without the golfer actually striking the golf ball.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 15, 2004
    Date of Patent: August 16, 2005
    Assignee: Callaway Golf Company
    Inventors: Scott R. Manwaring, Frank H. Fan, Peter Ligotti, III
  • Patent number: 6929557
    Abstract: A golf putting teaching device includes a path with two side walls and each side walls has a plurality of first sensors on an inside thereof. An end piece has a top board and two side portions. The end piece is mounted across two sides of the path and a plurality of second sensors are located on an underside of the top board. The first sensors in the side walls are electronically connected to the second sensors of the top board. A controlling device is connected to one of the tow side portions and electronically connected to the first and the second sensors so as to process the data collected from the first and the second sensors to display the direction, speed, distance, and other necessary information for each putting.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 24, 2003
    Date of Patent: August 16, 2005
    Inventor: Jason Chou
  • Patent number: 6821209
    Abstract: A method for a predicting golfer's performance is disclosed herein. The method inputs the pre-impact swing properties of a golfer, a plurality of mass properties of a first golf club, and a plurality of mass properties of a first golf ball into a rigid body code. Ball launch parameters are generated from the rigid body. The ball launch parameters, a plurality of atmospheric conditions and lift and drag properties of the golf ball are inputted into a trajectory code. This trajectory code is used to predict the performance of a golf ball if struck by the golfer with the golf club under the atmospheric conditions. The method can then predict the performance of the golf ball if struck by the golfer with a different golf club. The method and system of the present invention predict the performance of the golf ball without the golfer actually striking the golf ball.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 31, 2003
    Date of Patent: November 23, 2004
    Assignee: Callaway Golf Company
    Inventors: Scott R. Manwaring, Frank H. Fan, Peter Ligotti, III
  • Patent number: 6781621
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a launch monitor system that measures flight characteristics of an object moving in a predetermined field-of-view. The system includes a support structure, a lighting unit, a camera unit disposed on the support structure, and a calibration assembly. The calibration assembly includes a calibration fixture and at least one telescoping member. A first end of the telescoping member is coupled to the support structure and a second end is contactable with or coupled to the fixture. In an extended position of the telescoping member, the calibration fixture is in the field-of-view of the camera unit. In a retracted position, the calibration fixture out of the field-of-view. The calibration fixture further includes contrasting markings. In another embodiment, the system includes a frame and the launch monitor is pivotally suspended from the frame so that it self-levels. The present invention further includes a method of calibrating a launch monitor having a calibration fixture.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 2000
    Date of Patent: August 24, 2004
    Assignee: Acushnet Company
    Inventors: William Gobush, Diane I. Pelletier, Douglas C. Winfield, Charles Days, Steven Aoyama, Edmund A. Hebert, James Alan Silveira
  • Publication number: 20040137996
    Abstract: A golf putting teaching device includes a path with two side walls and each side walls has a plurality of first sensors on an inside thereof. An end piece has a top board and two side portions. The end piece is mounted across two sides of the path and a plurality of second sensors are located on an underside of the top board. The first sensors in the side walls are electronically connected to the second sensors of the top board. A controlling device is connected to one of the tow side portions and electronically connected to the first and the second sensors so as to process the data collected from the first and the second sensors to display the direction, speed, distance, and other necessary information for each putting.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 24, 2003
    Publication date: July 15, 2004
    Inventor: Jason Chou
  • Publication number: 20040023724
    Abstract: A method for a predicting golfer's performance is disclosed herein. The method inputs the pre-impact swing properties of a golfer, a plurality of mass properties of a first golf club, and a plurality of mass properties of a first golf ball into a rigid body code. Ball launch parameters are generated from the rigid body. The ball launch parameters, a plurality of atmospheric conditions and lift and drag properties of the golf ball are inputted into a trajectory code. This trajectory code is used to predict the performance of a golf ball if struck by the golfer with the golf club under the atmospheric conditions. The method can then predict the performance of the golf ball if struck by the golfer with a different golf club. The method and system of the present invention predict the performance of the golf ball without the golfer actually striking the golf ball.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 31, 2003
    Publication date: February 5, 2004
    Inventors: Scott R. Manwaring, Frank H. Fan, Peter Ligotti
  • Patent number: 6602144
    Abstract: A method for a predicting golfer's performance is disclosed herein. The method inputs the pre-impact swing properties of a golfer, a plurality of mass properties of a first golf club, and a plurality of mass properties of a first golf ball into a rigid body code. Ball launch parameters are generated from the rigid body. The ball launch parameters, a plurality of atmospheric conditions and lift and drag properties of the golf ball are inputted into a trajectory code. This trajectory code is used to predict the performance of a golf ball if struck by the golfer with the golf club under the atmospheric conditions. The method can then predict the performance of the golf ball if struck by the golfer with a different golf club. The method and system of the present invention predict the performance of the golf ball without the golfer actually striking the golf ball.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 9, 2003
    Date of Patent: August 5, 2003
    Assignee: Callaway Golf Company
    Inventors: Scott R. Manwaring, Frank H. Fan, Peter Ligotti, III
  • Patent number: 6592465
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a methods and apparatus for monitoring objects, such as golf balls, in flight. The methods include providing a plurality of cameras with different orientations with respect to the object's flight path. For example, two cameras can be located downstream of the object's initial position on either side of the flight path and a plurality of other cameras can be located upstream of the object's initial position on one side of the flight path. With such an arrangement, data in three-dimensions can be obtained on the object. Furthermore, the methods can include providing an object with a material for emitting light when excited. For example, a phosphorescent material can be used to provide an object with high contrast as compared to a background that the object is imaged against. With such materials, the methods can include filtering so that the cameras use only light emitted by the object to form images of the object that will be analyzed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 2, 2001
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2003
    Assignee: Acushnet Company
    Inventors: Mitchell E. Lutz, William Gobush
  • Publication number: 20030119595
    Abstract: A method for a predicting golfer's performance is disclosed herein. The method inputs the pre-impact swing properties of a golfer, a plurality of mass properties of a first golf club, and a plurality of mass properties of a first golf ball into a rigid body code. Ball launch parameters are generated from the rigid body. The ball launch parameters, a plurality of atmospheric conditions and lift and drag properties of the golf ball are inputted into a trajectory code. This trajectory code is used to predict the performance of a golf ball if struck by the golfer with the golf club under the atmospheric conditions. The method can then predict the performance of the golf ball if struck by the golfer with a different golf club. The method and system of the present invention predict the performance of the golf ball without the golfer actually striking the golf ball.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 9, 2003
    Publication date: June 26, 2003
    Applicant: Callaway Golf Company
    Inventors: Scott R. Manwaring , Frank H. Fan , Peter Ligotti
  • Publication number: 20030027655
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a methods and apparatus for monitoring objects, such as golf balls, in flight. The methods include providing a plurality of cameras with different orientations with respect to the object's flight path. For example, two cameras can be located downstream of the object's initial position on either side of the flight path and a plurality of other cameras can be located upstream of the object's initial position on one side of the flight path. With such an arrangement, data in three-dimensions can be obtained on the object. Furthermore, the methods can include providing an object with a material for emitting light when excited. For example, a phosphorescent material can be used to provide an object with high contrast as compared to a background that the object is imaged against. With such materials, the methods can include filtering so that the cameras use only light emitted by the object to form images of the object that will be analyzed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 2, 2001
    Publication date: February 6, 2003
    Inventors: Mitchell E. Lutz, William Gobush
  • Patent number: 6506124
    Abstract: A method for a predicting golfer's performance is disclosed herein The method inputs the pre-impact swing properties of a golfer, a plurality of mass properties of a first golf club, and a plurality of mass properties of a first golf ball into a rigid body code. Ball launch parameters are generated from the rigid body. The ball launch parameters, a plurality of atmospheric conditions and lift and drag properties of the golf ball are inputted into a trajectory code. This trajectory code is used to predict the performance of a golf ball if struck by the golfer with the golf club under the atmospheric conditions. The method can then predict the performance of the golf ball if struck by the golfer with a different golf club. The method and system of the present invention predict the performance of the golf ball without the golfer actually striking the golf ball.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 21, 2001
    Date of Patent: January 14, 2003
    Assignee: Callaway Golf Company
    Inventors: Scott R. Manwaring, Frank H. Fan, Peter Ligotti, III
  • Patent number: 6458035
    Abstract: A method of measuring rotational motion of a golf ball. A hit golf ball is photographed by use of two cameras disposed along the traveling direction of the golf ball with a predetermined distance therebetween, and rotational motion of the golf ball is measured based on the photographed images of the golf ball. There is used a golf ball that has a no-depression polygonal mark in black or a dark color close to black printed on the surface of the golf ball. The hit golf ball is photographed by use of two cameras, and the position of an angular point of the no-depression polygonal mark is detected from photographed images, by means of image processing. The rotational motion of the hit golf ball is calculated based on change in position of the angular point in images photographed by the two cameras.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 14, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 1, 2002
    Assignee: Bridgestone Sports Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Sh{overscore (u)} Katayama
  • Patent number: 6371862
    Abstract: A game apparatus and method can determine flight characteristics of an object propelled by a player from a launch site toward a backstop. The foregoing can operate with a launch detector located at the launch site for producing a launch signal in response to launching of the object. A backstop sensing arrangement may be employed at the backstop having at least one spaced pair of sensors for producing a pair of arrival signals in response to arrival of the object at the backstop. A processor may be employed, which is coupled to the launch detector and the backstop sensing arrangement. The processor can (a) determine the relative response times of the launch detector and the backstop sensing arrangement, and (b) produce a characteristic signal as a function of the relative arrival times of the pair of arrival signals.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 15, 1999
    Date of Patent: April 16, 2002
    Inventor: Kenneth Reda
  • Patent number: 6350211
    Abstract: A simulated image of a batter facing a pitcher is provided for use in pitching practice. The lower portion of the batter includes one or more stakes which are inserted into the ground and provide a stable support. By positioning the simulated batter in an appropriate place near “home plate”, a pitcher can use the batter as a reference to determine the location of the strike zone. The size of the batter can be adjusted to vary the size of the strike zone. A ball detection apparatus and audio output can be provided to indicate when a pitch is detected and whether the pitch is a ball or a strike.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 2000
    Date of Patent: February 26, 2002
    Inventor: Laura Zane Kolmar
  • Publication number: 20020022531
    Abstract: A method of measuring rotational motion of a golf ball. A hit golf ball is photographed by use of two cameras disposed along the traveling direction of the golf ball with a predetermined distance therebetween, and rotational motion of the golf ball is measured based on the photographed images of the golf ball. There is used a golf ball that has a no-depression polygonal mark in black or a dark color close to black printed on the surface of the golf ball. The hit golf ball is photographed by use of two cameras, and the position of an angular point of the no-depression polygonal mark is detected from photographed images, by means of image processing. The rotational motion of the hit golf ball is calculated based on change in position of the angular point in images photographed by the two cameras.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 14, 1999
    Publication date: February 21, 2002
    Inventor: SHU KATAYAMA
  • Publication number: 20020016210
    Abstract: A method for identifying position and displaying information about the position is provided, including the steps of digitizing visual images and electronically storing information regarding positions displayed in the visual images; electronically displaying the visual images; and electronically displaying information regarding user-selected positions displayed in the visual images. A device is provided that includes an electronic display screen for displaying visual images and information stored on a removable memory module. A control panel includes a control pad and buttons that enable a user to selectively display the digitized photographs and selected information concerning positions and objects shown on the display device.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 5, 2001
    Publication date: February 7, 2002
    Inventor: Robert A. Helber