Marine Vehicle Patents (Class 701/21)
  • Patent number: 8798835
    Abstract: A hybrid diesel-electric powertrain includes a diesel engine in power flow communication with an electric motor and a controller. The diesel engine and electric motor are each configured to generate a respective torque in response to a provided torque command. The controller is in communication with the electric motor, the diesel engine, and an accelerator pedal, and configured to receive a driver torque request from the accelerator pedal. In response to the driver torque request, the controller is further configured to command the diesel engine to generate an output torque that is less than a smoke limit torque, and command the electric motor to generate an output torque equal to the difference between the driver torque request and the output torque of the diesel engine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2012
    Date of Patent: August 5, 2014
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations LLC
    Inventors: Christopher E. Whitney, Luca Scavone, Anthony H. Heap
  • Patent number: 8798824
    Abstract: A short-term planned route from a start position that is a ship position at a first time up to an end position that is the ship position at a second time is designed based on a planned route, an estimated encounter marine phenomenon information, operation performance information measured on a ship, and a hull motion model of the ship, the estimated encounter marine phenomenon information being measured on the ship based on actually encountered marine phenomenon information. The short-term planned route makes a first evaluation function optimal, the first evaluation function containing: an index indicating an influence of a fluctuation portion between a planned position that is a ship position planned at the second time on the planned route and the end position; a fuel consumption index when the ship sails along the short-term planned route; and a safety index when the ship sails along the short-term planned route.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 26, 2010
    Date of Patent: August 5, 2014
    Assignee: Kawasaki Jukogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Masanori Hamamatsu, Makoto Baino, Yasuo Saito, Hiroaki Mori
  • Patent number: 8788162
    Abstract: A system and method for shifting a hybrid vehicle is provided which utilizes one or more controllers to release one or more clutches and brakes when a transmission is shifted into neutral or park and then prevents a rotational element from being rotated by controlling an engine and a motor/generator when the transmission is in neutral or park. Accordingly, shift shock or slip is minimized when a transmission is shifted from a park or a neutral to a drive or a reverse, thus improving a shifting feeling and safety of the vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 22, 2011
    Date of Patent: July 22, 2014
    Assignees: Hyundai Motor Company, Kia Motor Corporation
    Inventor: Joonyoung Park
  • Patent number: 8781656
    Abstract: A vehicular interface may include an electromechanical interface between a handheld electronic device and subsystems on a vehicular bus or network. In selected embodiments the interface may operate in a “master mode” when a handheld device, such as a tablet computer or smart-phone, is not inserted therein. In this mode the interface may serve as a master controller and accesses and controls various subsystems on a vehicle (such as engine control subsystems, media controllers, navigation systems, sensors and transducers) as a master controller. In one embodiment, when a tablet device is inserted into the interface, the interface may automatically switch to “slave mode” in which it acts as an adapter or interface between the tablet device and the vehicular subsystems. In this mode of operation the user's exclusive interface is through the tablet computer and the tablet computer serves as the master controller for the system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 25, 2013
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2014
    Assignee: Nordic Capital Partners, LLC
    Inventors: David Lieberman, Robert Turgeon, Byron Tietjen, Greg Gardella
  • Patent number: 8764500
    Abstract: In an apparatus for controlling operation of an outboard motor having an engine to power a propeller, a transmission being selectively changeable in gear position to establish speeds including a first speed and second speed and transmitting power of the engine to the propeller with a gear ratio determined by established speed, and a trim angle regulation mechanism regulating a trim angle through trim-up/down operation, the transmission is controlled to change the gear position from the second speed to the first speed when the second speed is selected and a throttle opening change amount is at or above a predetermined value; and the trim angle regulation mechanism is operated to start the trim-up operation based on engine speed. With this, the transmission can be appropriately controlled to suppress the decrease in boat speed caused by change of gear position, thereby mitigating an unnatural feel given to the operator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 17, 2011
    Date of Patent: July 1, 2014
    Assignee: Honda Motor Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Koji Kuriyagawa, Hajime Yoshimura, Hiroshi Yamamoto, Nobuchika Katagiri, Masahide Shinokawa
  • Patent number: 8761976
    Abstract: A trolling motor control system that includes a main controller configured interface with a trolling motor. The main controller is configured to control the output power and directional heading of the trolling motor. In at least one embodiment, the main controller has an electronic interface configured to establish a two-way day data connection between the main controller and an electronic GPS-equipped mapping device. This two-way connection allows the main controller to use data stored on the GPS-equipped mapping device to execute functions of the trolling motor control system. It also allows functions of the trolling motor control system to be executed via controls on the GPS-equipped mapping device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 1, 2011
    Date of Patent: June 24, 2014
    Assignee: Johnson Outdoors Inc.
    Inventors: Paul D. Salmon, David Charles Evers
  • Patent number: 8761975
    Abstract: A computer implemented method, apparatus, and computer program product for real-time creation of vessel performance models. Performance inputs are received from a set of sensors during a voyage of a vessel. The performance inputs are data associated with a performance of the vessel during the voyage. A real-time performance model is generated during the voyage using a subset of the performance inputs. A predicted value for velocity made good is identified for the vessel using the real-time performance model.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 23, 2007
    Date of Patent: June 24, 2014
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventor: Derek G. Watson
  • Patent number: 8762022
    Abstract: A system and method is provided for efficiently changing controlled engine speed of a marine internal combustion engine in a marine propulsion system for propelling a marine vessel. The system responds to the operator changing the operator-selected engine speed, from a first-selected engine speed to a second-selected engine speed, by predicting throttle position needed to provide the second-selected engine speed, and providing a feed forward signal moving the throttle to the predicted throttle position, without waiting for a slower responding PID controller and/or overshoot thereof, and concomitant instability or oscillation, and then uses the engine speed control system including any PID controller to maintain engine speed at the second-selected engine speed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 17, 2012
    Date of Patent: June 24, 2014
    Assignee: Brunswick Corporation
    Inventors: Jason S. Arbuckle, Matthew W. Snyder, Thomas S. Kirchhoff
  • Patent number: 8753154
    Abstract: In a watercraft, a storage device stores area information including position information regarding a specified area. A controller compares a current position of a watercraft main body obtained by a global navigation satellite system receiver to the position information related to the specified area. The controller controls the watercraft main body in accordance with a normal mode when the current position of the watercraft main body is within the specified area. The controller controls the watercraft main body in accordance with a limited mode in which at least a portion of a plurality of functions of the watercraft main body are limited in comparison with the normal mode when the current position of the watercraft main body is not within the specified area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 2012
    Date of Patent: June 17, 2014
    Assignee: Yamaha Hatsudoki Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Kenichi Fujino, Yoshimasa Kinoshita
  • Patent number: 8755958
    Abstract: An underwater vehicle uses an undulatory fin propulsion system and a control apparatus to receive sensor data and control the operation of the vehicle in real time over a wide range of forward velocities. In an embodiment, a model of propulsive efficiency is used to achieve high values of propulsive efficiency, giving a lowered energy drain on the battery. Externally monitored information, such as that on flow velocity, is conveyed to the control apparatus residing in the vehicle's control unit, which in turn signals the propulsion system to adopt kinematics, such as fin frequency and amplitude, associated with optimal propulsion efficiency. In an embodiment, the model of propulsive efficiency is generated from a multilayer perception neural network model using data from aquatic species, such as undulatory fin propulsion in the knifefish (Xenomystus nigri), and a sensitivity analysis is used to lower the number of required inputs.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 2013
    Date of Patent: June 17, 2014
    Assignee: Zytek Communications Corporation
    Inventor: Robert W. Blake
  • Patent number: 8751075
    Abstract: An engine control strategy for a marine vessel propulsion system receives a request for a gear from among plural transmission gears, determines an engine speed for the requested transmission gear shift, adjusts the engine to the determined speed for a predetermined amount of time, and prevents the requested transmission gear shift from occurring for the predetermined amount of time while maintaining the engine at the predetermined speed. After the predetermined amount of time elapses, the requested shift is allowed to occur.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 2009
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2014
    Assignee: Cummins Intellectual Properties, Inc.
    Inventors: Conor A. Leehaug, Joseph H. Scott, Andrew H. Bazan, Jiuzhu Yi
  • Patent number: 8751158
    Abstract: A personal watercraft includes a handle having a pair of right and left grip portions, and a handle pad configured to cover a region of the handle, the region being located between the pair of grip portions. The handle pad is provided on a surface thereof with an accommodating concave portion configured to accommodate therein a portable information device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 26, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2014
    Assignee: Kawasaki Jukogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Kunihiko Kamio, Minoru Kanamori, Atsufumi Ozaki
  • Patent number: 8751241
    Abstract: The current invention provides a method and system for enabling a device function of a vehicle. A speech input stream is received at a telematics unit. A speech input context is determined for the received speech input stream. The received speech input stream is processed based on the determination and the device function of the vehicle is enabled responsive to the processed speech input stream. A vehicle device in control of the enabled device function of the vehicle is directed based on the processed speech input stream. A computer usable medium with suitable computer program code is employed for enabling a device function of a vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 10, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2014
    Assignee: General Motors LLC
    Inventors: Christopher L. Oesterling, William E. Mazzara, Jr., Jeffrey M. Stefan
  • Publication number: 20140156124
    Abstract: A ship steering device capable of steering a hull in an intended direction by correcting an unintended rotation that occurs during an oblique sailing operation regardless of the type and size of the hull. A ship steering device is provided with an elevation angle sensor for detecting the elevation angle ? of a hull, a hull speed sensor for detecting the speed V of the hull, a storage means storing the relation among the elevation angle ? of the hull, the speed V of the hull, and a correction value K, and a calculation means serving as a correction value determination means, and an operation amount by which a joystick is operated such that the hull does not turn in the state in which the hull is obliquely sailed is determined by the calculation means and used as the correction value K.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 29, 2012
    Publication date: June 5, 2014
    Applicant: YANMAR CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Naohiro Hara, Akiyoshi Hayashi, Toshimitsu Hirose
  • Publication number: 20140152455
    Abstract: The present invention has, as a first object, an autonomous underwater vehicle equipped for the acquisition of the gravimetric and magnetic gradient near the seabed, characterized in that it comprises: —at least one gravimetric gradiometer; —at least one magnetic gradiometer. In particular, said autonomous equipped underwater vehicle allows underwater explorations as far as 3,000 m.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 24, 2011
    Publication date: June 5, 2014
    Inventors: Italiano Giori, Massimo Antonelli, Roberto Finotello
  • Patent number: 8731750
    Abstract: A system for augmenting the coverage, information and robustness of an automatic identification system of ships incorporates standard AIS-type means, satellite links, coastal stations and processing centers handling the coordination of the means (maximizing the coverage of the system in time) and the processing of the data (merging of different information to create extended context information). The system implements a scheduling algorithm for the resources mobilized, in order to optimise the coverage by ensuring a given level of redundancy for the purposes of reliability and responsiveness of the system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 12, 2011
    Date of Patent: May 20, 2014
    Assignee: Thales
    Inventor: Yann Oster
  • Patent number: 8731749
    Abstract: A control system for a vehicle that includes an engine includes a speed generation module, an airflow determination module, and a throttle control module. The speed generation module generates a desired engine speed during a period after a measured vehicle speed is greater than or equal to a desired vehicle speed, wherein the desired engine speed is based on a difference between the desired vehicle speed and the measured vehicle speed. The airflow determination module determines a desired airflow based on a difference between the desired engine speed and a measured engine speed. The throttle control module determines a desired throttle position based on the desired airflow, and commands a throttle of the engine to the desired throttle position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 24, 2011
    Date of Patent: May 20, 2014
    Inventors: Timothy J. Clever, Kevin A. Cansiani, Ronald E. Gaskins
  • Patent number: 8731748
    Abstract: A method includes receiving, at a computing device, a search request that includes one or more search criteria for a body of water. The one or more search criteria include an identification of a fish species. One or more locations on the body of water that satisfy the one or more search criteria are identified. The one or more locations include at least one predicted location of the fish species within the body of water. The one or more locations are highlighted on a map of the body of water.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 25, 2011
    Date of Patent: May 20, 2014
    Assignee: Strategic Fishing Systems, LLC
    Inventors: Keely Brian Haymart, Daniel Kevin Reed, Ryan Richard Rist
  • Publication number: 20140136032
    Abstract: In order to reduce the switching hysteresis in a dynamic positioning system and/or an autopilot system for watercraft, an arrangement is provided for determining a force acting on a rudder for watercraft. This arrangement includes a processing unit, at least one measuring device for determining values of a physical quantity of a rudder, and means for transmitting the determined values of the physical quantity to the processing unit. The processing unit is configured to determine the force acting on the rudder on the basis of the determined values of the physical quantity.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 10, 2013
    Publication date: May 15, 2014
    Applicant: Becker Marine Systems GmbH & Co. KG
    Inventor: Dirk Lehmann
  • Patent number: 8725329
    Abstract: Systems and methods are for controlling of a hybrid propulsion system for a marine vessel. A control circuit controls an electric motor-generator according to at least two modes, including a first mode wherein the electric motor-generator receives power from a battery and rotates a driveshaft to drive a propulsor and a second mode wherein the electric motor-generator generates power to charge the battery based upon torque from an internal combustion engine. A time criteria and at least one user-desired operational characteristic of at least one of the internal combustion engine, electric motor-generator, and battery are input to the control circuit. Based on the time criteria and user-desired operational characteristic, the control circuit calculates a schedule for at least one of charging the battery with the electric motor-generator and discharging the battery to a house load of the marine vessel. The control circuit further controls operation of the electric motor-generator according to the schedule.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 7, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 13, 2014
    Assignee: Brunswick Corporation
    Inventors: Matthew W. Snyder, Thomas S. Kirchhoff, Jason S. Arbuckle
  • Patent number: 8725327
    Abstract: A present invention embodiment includes a navigation system with a front-end GPS receiver, auxiliary sensors and a digital signal processor providing filtering and other processing. The navigation system enhances a UTC type architecture by employing an inertial compensation unit and a stochastic regulator. The inertial compensation unit compensates for inertial errors within the sensors, while the stochastic regulator applies an optimal stochastic control law to control system operation. The inertial compensation unit and stochastic regulator mitigate instability within the navigation system and provide: the functionality to attain high position accuracy in the sub-meter range that is stable and reliable; an optimal solution evident in the process of signal recovery time after loss and reacquisition, thereby resulting in signal-loss recovery with an order of magnitude improvement; and the ability to mitigate inertial errors that originate in the sensors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 22, 2008
    Date of Patent: May 13, 2014
    Assignee: Exelis Inc.
    Inventor: Diniar S. Shroff
  • Patent number: 8725328
    Abstract: Systems and methods are for monitoring an operational characteristic of a pump pumping cooling water from upstream to downstream to cool a marine engine. A sensor senses a characteristic of the cooling water at a location that is downstream of the pump. A control circuit is in communication with the sensor and receives the sensed characteristic of the cooling water, compares the sensed characteristic of the cooling water to a stored nominal value, and determines a present operational condition of the pump based on the comparison.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 18, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 13, 2014
    Assignee: Brunswick Corporation
    Inventors: Jeffrey J. Dudarenke, Ronnie E. Randolph
  • Publication number: 20140129055
    Abstract: A system and method for controlling movement of a vehicle. A current state of the vehicle is identified. The current state comprises a current location of the vehicle. A next state for the vehicle is selected by a processor unit. The next state comprises a next location for the vehicle. A value for an attribute of the next state of the vehicle is randomly selected. The movement of the vehicle is controlled to move the vehicle from the current state to the next state.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 14, 2014
    Publication date: May 8, 2014
    Applicant: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Kimberly D. Mach, Robert P. Lutter, Trevor Lee Olson
  • Publication number: 20140129062
    Abstract: The invention relates to command input means (1) for balance assemblies (22) having a cover housing (15) to be intuitively turned and a rocker (4) as well as a quick button (6), which respectively trigger different lowering functions on the balance assemblies (22) in the bottom or the top rotary speed ranges, respectively, a neutral button (7) which neutralises all functions and causes the balance assemblies (22) to move fully upwards, and enables further functions by means of the controller (9), such as triggering of the adjustment of the balance assemblies (22) as a function of the rotary speed or by means of turning the steering wheel (20) in an automatic manner, and the signals can also be used at the same time for controlling the trim of a stern drive (16).
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 16, 2012
    Publication date: May 8, 2014
    Inventor: Peter A. Mueller
  • Patent number: 8718842
    Abstract: A hydroplaning vessel with several stability and handling design improvements. It has an enhanced reactive suspension and inner hull lift system positioned in the vessel between a set of separating inner and outer hulls. The outer hull does not float on its own as it has numerous fixed louvers formed there through and also has an open transom. Steering and braking are accomplished by a set of rear elevon flaps affixed to the outer hull. The drive unit resides in the inner hull and is connected by an annular drive transmission which is connected to the jet or prop drive which resides on the outer hull.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2011
    Date of Patent: May 6, 2014
    Inventor: Fred Pereira
  • Publication number: 20140114509
    Abstract: A motion control system for a ship has one or more sensors generating sea condition data and at least one ship control system. Analyzer software receives the sea condition data and predicts a sea condition event. Calculator software calculates one or more commands in preparation for the sea condition event. Interface software communicates the one or more commands to the at least one ship control system and the at least one ship control system implements a command in advance of the event. The at least one ship control system may comprise a ride control system having one or more motion control devices. The at least one ship control system may also comprise an auto pilot system.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 24, 2013
    Publication date: April 24, 2014
    Inventors: John D. Venables, Christopher M. Pappas, Benton H. Schaub, JR.
  • Patent number: 8706329
    Abstract: A method of facilitating movement of a vessel in a specific navigation environment. Characteristics of the vessel are evaluated relative to conditions in the environment to define a navigation procedure. The procedure is described on a navigational chart that includes information from sources of navigation-related experience, e.g., sovereign governmental authorities, hydrographic offices, port authorities, communication authorities, vessel masters, operators and port pilots. The vessel is indicated as geographically referenced to points in the environment indicative of successive positioning of the vessel in accordance with the procedure. Using such procedures can streamline coordination among masters, operators and ports and can shorten time needed to plan and perform navigation in complex environments.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 15, 2007
    Date of Patent: April 22, 2014
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Ross Brown, Tim Sukle, John Horner, Rodi Von Barby
  • Patent number: 8706330
    Abstract: A method of integrating, optimizing and combining in a marine hybrid system, the operation of one or more variable speed high voltage direct current (HVDC) generator(s), one or more energy storage units and a combination of one or more HVDC parallel hybrid and serial hybrid propulsion systems through use of an Energy Management Computer. One aspect of the invention involves the application of logic programming to automate the optimization and the operation of the Internal Combustion Engines (ICE) so that whenever the system requires their usage, they are operated at optimum efficiency conditions. For an ICE to operate at peak efficiency a combination of a large energy storage unit used as a buffer combined with a mixture of both a serial and a parallel hybrid system is used.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 29, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 22, 2014
    Assignee: Hybrid Innovation Technologies LLC
    Inventor: Pierre Caouette
  • Patent number: 8706376
    Abstract: To provide an ABS control system and software with an automatic parameter calibration function. An ABS control system according to the present invention includes an electronic control unit (ECU), a wheel speed sensor, and a brake pressure sensor. The wheel speed sensor and the brake pressure sensor measure wheel speed and brake pressure during ABS braking, and the ABS control system automatically calibrates an internal parameter used in ABS control in response to the wheel speed and brake pressure measurement results.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 22, 2008
    Date of Patent: April 22, 2014
    Assignee: Bosch Corporation
    Inventors: Shunsaku Ono, Shuichi Miyagawa
  • Patent number: 8700323
    Abstract: An underwater navigation system for indicating a return direction from an underwater return position to a starting position includes a processor and a power source, a three-dimensional compass, a timer, a water speed sensor and a display interfacing with the processor. The processor is adapted to determine a direction of the starting position relative to the underwater return position based on data received from the three-dimensional compass, the timer and the water speed sensor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 27, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 15, 2014
    Inventor: John Souza
  • Patent number: 8700238
    Abstract: A marine vessel propulsion control apparatus is arranged to control a propulsion unit and a steering unit. The marine vessel propulsion control apparatus includes a joystick unit, and a control unit programmed to control an output of the propulsion unit and a steering angle of the steering unit in accordance with an output signal of the joystick unit. The joystick unit includes a lever that is tiltable from a neutral position and arranged to be operated by a marine vessel operator to command a heading direction and stem turning of a hull. The control unit is programmed to maintain the steering angle of the steering unit when the output of the propulsion unit is stopped.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 23, 2010
    Date of Patent: April 15, 2014
    Assignee: Yamaha Hatsudoki Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Yuji Hiramatsu
  • Patent number: 8688298
    Abstract: A boat propelling system capable of reducing electric power consumption includes an outboard engine main body, a swivel bracket arranged to allow the outboard engine main body to pivot in a right-left direction with respect to a hull, an electric motor arranged in the swivel bracket to pivot the outboard engine main body in the right-left direction, a transmission mechanism arranged in the swivel bracket to transmit a driving force of the electric motor to the outboard engine main body, a locking clutch arranged to lock the transmission mechanism so that the outboard engine main body will not be pivoted in the right-left direction by an external force acting on the outboard engine main body, a steering section arranged to steer the outboard engine main body, a steering angle sensor arranged to detect a steering angle of the steering section, a pivot sensor arranged to detect an actual pivot angle of the outboard engine main body, and an ECU arranged and programmed to control the electric motor based on a resu
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 2, 2010
    Date of Patent: April 1, 2014
    Assignee: Yamaha Hatsudoki Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Makoto Mizutani, Ryuta Hayami
  • Patent number: 8688345
    Abstract: An electric motor includes one or more separate coil sets arranged to produce a magnetic field of the motor. The electric motor also includes a plurality of control devices coupled to respective sub-sets of coils for current control. A similar arrangement is proposed for a generator. A coil mounting system for an electric motor or generator includes one or more coil teeth for windably receiving a coil for the motor and a back portion for attachably receiving a plurality of the coil teeth. A traction control system and method for a vehicle having a plurality of wheels independently powered by a respective motor. A suspension control system and method for a vehicle having a plurality of wheels, each wheel being mounted on a suspension arm of the vehicle and being independently powered by a respective motor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 26, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 1, 2014
    Assignee: Protean Electric Limited
    Inventor: Martin Boughtwood
  • Patent number: 8688329
    Abstract: An automatic hatch system is disclosed. The system includes a hatch frame and a hatch cover connected thereto. A pneumatic actuator assembly is connected to the hatch frame and the hatch cover. The system also includes an automated member for controlling the pneumatic actuator assembly to open, close or adjust the opening of the hatch. The automated member for controlling the pneumatic actuator includes a compressor assembly, a valve assembly, and a controller assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 12, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 1, 2014
    Inventor: Bruce C. Cathcart
  • Patent number: 8688294
    Abstract: A Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition (SCADA) system guides navigation of a vessel enabled to extract energy from wind and/or water currents primarily in offshore marine environments. An exemplary SCADA system embodies server and client software applications running on microprocessor systems at a remote control central service logging and energy distribution facility, and the vessel itself.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 1, 2014
    Assignee: Integrated Power Technology Corporation
    Inventors: Andrew Roman Gizara, Michael Dominic Cicali
  • Patent number: 8682515
    Abstract: A marine vessel control system includes a control unit, a first communication bus, a second communication bus, and an auxiliary device connection section. The control unit includes a main output section arranged to output marine vessel maneuvering control information including starting information of a marine vessel propulsion device, and a sub output section arranged to output backup information including the starting information of the marine vessel propulsion device. The first communication bus is connected to the marine vessel propulsion device and the control unit, and is arranged to transmit the marine vessel maneuvering control information to the marine vessel propulsion device. The second communication bus is connected to the marine vessel propulsion device and the control unit, and is arranged to transmit the backup information to the marine vessel propulsion device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 25, 2014
    Assignee: Yamaha Hatsudoki Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Makoto Ito
  • Patent number: 8682516
    Abstract: In one example, a hybrid marine propulsion system includes a marine propulsor that propels a marine vessel; an internal combustion engine that selectively powers the marine propulsor; an electric motor that selectively powers the marine propulsor; a controller that controls operation of the internal combustion engine and the electric motor according to a plurality of modes including an engine mode wherein the engine alone powers the marine propulsor and a boost mode wherein the engine and the electric motor together power the marine propulsor; and a user input device that inputs a user-initiated command to the controller to thereby change control from the engine mode to the boost mode. Upon input of the user-initiated command, the controller can maintain an existing output of the internal combustion engine such that the power provided by the electric motor is added to the power already being provided by the internal combustion engine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 22, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 25, 2014
    Assignee: Brunswick Corporation
    Inventors: Daniel J. Balogh, Jason S. Arbuckle
  • Publication number: 20140081489
    Abstract: The disclosure relates to a marine vessel having a control system for automatically steering the marine vessel for the purpose of aiding an angler who has hooked a fish. The control system includes a GPS unit for determining the orientation of the marine vessel, a sonar unit for determining the bearing of a fish, and an algorithm for minimizing the error between the two. The control system will execute steering commands in the propulsion system in order to minimize the error in order to aid the angler as he tries to land the hooked fish.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 14, 2012
    Publication date: March 20, 2014
    Applicant: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Fu P. Yuet, Merritt P. Callaghan, Justin Anderson
  • Patent number: 8676402
    Abstract: An electric sentry system provides utilities for the welfare of a docked boat. The sentry system serves as boat and lift control, and security, system that has a wireless interface for two-way communications with a mobile wireless device. The system is configured to receive commands sent from the mobile wireless device. The system is also configured to independently monitor conditions involving the boat, the lift, or the premises surrounding the docked boat slip, and provide notifications to the boat owner/relevant user upon the occurrence of certain report-worthy events. This includes having the system monitoring online sources for extreme weather and/or other climatic data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 5, 2013
    Date of Patent: March 18, 2014
    Inventor: Stephen Foster
  • Patent number: 8676413
    Abstract: In order to reduce the switching hysteresis in a dynamic positioning system and/or an autopilot system for watercraft, an arrangement is provided for determining a force acting on a rudder for watercraft. This arrangement includes a processing unit, at least one measuring device for determining values of a physical quantity of a rudder, and means for transmitting the determined values of the physical quantity to the processing unit. The processing unit is configured to determine the force acting on the rudder on the basis of the determined values of the physical quantity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 26, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 18, 2014
    Assignee: Becker Marine Systems GmbH & Co. KG
    Inventor: Dirk Lehmann
  • Patent number: 8676412
    Abstract: A boat with several stability and handling design improvements. It has an enhanced reactive suspension system positioned in the vessel between a set of separating hull and body components. The boat also has improved braking, steering and stabilizing systems designed around multiple pivoting mechanisms on the vessel hull that work individually or in unison to achieve the desired braking or steering effect. The stabilizing system is operated by a computerized, gyroscopic hydraulic control to maintain stability and comfort of ride, minimizing the roll, pitch and yaw commonly experienced in the passenger compartment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 3, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 18, 2014
    Inventor: Fred Pereira
  • Publication number: 20140067168
    Abstract: A method for controlling control surfaces. A position limit is identified for movement of a control surface based on a load limit set for the control surface and a number of vehicle current operation parameters to form an identified position limit. Responsive to receiving a command to move the control surface on a vehicle to a new position, the control surface is commanded to move to a position within the identified position limit.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 16, 2012
    Publication date: March 6, 2014
    Applicant: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventor: The Boeing Company
  • Patent number: 8665122
    Abstract: System for detection and depiction of objects in the path of marine vessels and for warning about objects that may constitute a risk to the navigational safety. The system includes a sweeping unit for illumination of objects within the field of view of the system, including a light source which emits a beam within the field of view of the system, an optical sensor and pulse processing unit including optical detectors for monitoring of the beam output power and generation of a start pulse for measurement of distance, for detection/reception of radiant energy reflected from objects, including measurement of distance to the reflecting object(s) based on the time delay between emitted and reflected light, including energy and peak effect of the pulses.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 12, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 4, 2014
    Assignee: Kongsberg Seatex AS
    Inventor: John O. Klepsvik
  • Patent number: 8659661
    Abstract: Systems and methods disclosed herein provide for some embodiments infrared camera systems for maritime applications. For example in one embodiment, a watercraft includes a plurality of image capture components coupled to the watercraft to capture infrared images around at least a substantial portion of a perimeter of the watercraft; a memory component adapted to store the captured infrared images; a processing component adapted to process the captured infrared images according to a man overboard mode of operation to provide processed infrared images and determine if a person falls from the watercraft; and a display component adapted to display the processed infrared images.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 7, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 25, 2014
    Assignee: FLIR Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Jeffrey D. Frank, Patrick B. Richardson, James T. Woolaway, Austin A. Richards, Nicholas Högasten
  • Patent number: 8655522
    Abstract: A watercraft propulsion device includes an engine, a drive shaft, a propeller shaft, a rotational speed detector, and a controller. The drive shaft transmits power from the engine. The propeller shaft is rotationally driven by power transmitted from the drive shaft. The rotational speed detector detects an engine rotational speed. The controller executes a suppression control to suppress the engine rotational speed when a change rate of the engine rotational speed is equal to or larger than a prescribed value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 29, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2014
    Assignee: Yamaha Hatsudoki Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Takuya Kado
  • Patent number: 8655814
    Abstract: A method of generating a model of propulsive efficiency for an autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) is based on a multilayer perception neural network model using data from aquatic species, such as undulatory fin propulsion in the knifefish (Xenomystus nigri), and a sensitivity analysis is used to lower the number of required inputs. The model of propulsive efficiency allows an AUV to achieve high values of propulsive efficiency over a range of forward velocity, giving a lowered energy drain on the battery. In an embodiment, externally monitored information, such as that on flow velocity, is conveyed to an apparatus residing in the vehicle's control unit, which in turn signals the locomotive unit to adopt kinematics, such as fin frequency and amplitude, associated with optimal propulsion efficiency. Power savings could protract vehicle operational life and/or provide more power to other functions, such as communications.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 17, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2014
    Assignee: Zytek Communications Corporation
    Inventor: Robert W. Blake
  • Publication number: 20140046515
    Abstract: A marine vessel propulsion control device includes a marine vessel maneuvering pattern storage section that stores a plurality of marine vessel maneuvering patterns corresponding to a plurality of combinations of a propulsion device attached to a marine vessel and an operation device attached to the marine vessel, a selection information storage section that stores selection information that specifies one marine vessel maneuvering pattern selected from the plurality of marine vessel maneuvering patterns, and a control section programmed to read out from the marine vessel maneuvering pattern storage section a marine vessel maneuvering pattern corresponding to selection information stored in the selection information storage section, and to output a command signal to the propulsion device according to an operation signal of the operation device based on the read-out marine vessel maneuvering pattern.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 17, 2013
    Publication date: February 13, 2014
    Inventor: Makoto MIZUTANI
  • Patent number: 8647161
    Abstract: A personal watercraft comprises at least one seat including a driver seating portion and at least one passenger seating portion. At least one sensor is disposed on the watercraft for detecting at least one of a presence and an absence of a passenger on the watercraft. A control unit is electrically connected to the at least one sensor. The control unit enters a first control mode in response to a signal received from the at least one sensor indicative of the presence of a passenger on the watercraft. The control unit prevents at least one performance characteristic of the watercraft from exceeding a predetermined value when in the first control mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 14, 2010
    Date of Patent: February 11, 2014
    Assignee: Bombardier Recreational Products Inc.
    Inventor: Jean-Yves Leblanc
  • Patent number: 8649922
    Abstract: A electronic pet contains a diving device which includes a sealed main body with at least one flexible portion disposed on at least one part of the main body wherein the sealed main body is sealed from water external to the sealed main body by the at least one flexible portion together with the main body, and an actuator, directly connected to the flexible portion through a transmission shaft, wherein the actuator is adapted for controlling the air density of the diving device by pulling or pushing the flexible portion inwards or outwards through the transmission shaft respectively. The electronic pet also includes a driving device, a sensing device used to sense light, sound and contact/non-contact stimulations from an external environment, a signal transceiver device used to transceive signals to and from devices other than the electronic pet, and a processor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 28, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 11, 2014
    Assignee: Industrial Technology Research Institute
    Inventor: Ching-Min Shu
  • Patent number: 8644592
    Abstract: A method for determining a position of a fluid discharge in an underwater environment, the method including: collecting data relating to an underwater area through at least two acoustic sensors; filtering and processing the data collected to identify the presence of the discharged fluid and the underwater area involved; forming a single stereoscopic image by combining the plurality of single three-dimensional images; and estimating the position of the fluid discharge on the basis of the stereoscopic image thus obtained.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 6, 2009
    Date of Patent: February 4, 2014
    Assignee: ENI S.p.A.
    Inventors: Eliana De Marchi, Paolo Ferrara, Roberto Ferrario, Roberto Finotello