Aeronautical Vehicle Patents (Class 701/3)
  • Patent number: 9892571
    Abstract: A data processing unit for monitoring the performance of at least one undercarriage which is used for braking and/or steering an aircraft, wherein the data processing unit is configured to: receive data representative of operating characteristics of the undercarriage(s) and use that data to calculate a maximum achievable braking force and/or yaw moment to be generated by the undercarriage(s). Also a method for monitoring the performance of at least one aircraft undercarriage which is used for braking and/or steering an aircraft, the method including: receiving data representative of operating characteristics of the undercarriage(s); and using that data to calculate a maximum achievable braking force and/or yaw moment to be generated by the undercarriage(s).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 13, 2018
    Assignees: Airbus Operations Limited, Airbus Operations (S.A.S.)
    Inventors: Louis-Emmanuel Romana, Miguel Angel Gama
  • Patent number: 9880563
    Abstract: A method of unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) operation, including: receiving from a customer a first data request, the first data request having: a first geographic coverage area; and a refresh rate for the first geographic coverage area; planning a first plurality of flight missions to accomplish the first data request; uploading flight missions data representing the first plurality of flight missions into a UAV pod; and deploying the UAV pod.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 10, 2016
    Date of Patent: January 30, 2018
    Assignee: AEROVIRONMENT, INC.
    Inventors: Christopher Eugene Fisher, Jason Sidharthadev Mukherjee, William Arden Lott
  • Patent number: 9881213
    Abstract: Methods, systems, and apparatus, including computer programs encoded on computer storage media, for an unmanned aerial system inspection system. One of the methods is performed by a UAV and includes receiving, by the UAV, flight information describing a job to perform an inspection of a rooftop. A particular altitude is ascended to, and an inspection of the rooftop is performed including obtaining sensor information describing the rooftop. Location information identifying a damaged area of the rooftop is received. The damaged area of the rooftop is traveled to. An inspection of the damaged area of the rooftop is performed including obtaining detailed sensor information describing the damaged area. A safe landing location is traveled to.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 17, 2017
    Date of Patent: January 30, 2018
    Assignee: UNMANNED INNOVATION, INC.
    Inventors: Bernard J. Michini, Hui Li, Brett Michael Bethke
  • Patent number: 9875658
    Abstract: A method for computing a setpoint trajectory of an aircraft comprising at least two subsets comprises the formulation and the solving of an optimization problem for the trajectory, and the formulation of the problem comprises at least the formulation of a constraint related to a transition of legs on at least one first subset of the trajectory, and the formulation of a constraint related to a transition of vertical flight phases on at least one second subset of the trajectory. The invention also relates to a system and a computer program for the computation of a trajectory.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 3, 2015
    Date of Patent: January 23, 2018
    Assignee: THALES
    Inventors: Mathieu Le Merrer, Benoit Dacre-Wright, François Coulmeau
  • Patent number: 9870005
    Abstract: Embodiments of methods and apparatus for close formation flight are provided herein. In some embodiments, an apparatus for close formation flight, comprises a plurality of sensors for collecting measurements characterizing airflow near an aircraft. The plurality of sensors are attachable to at least one of a wing, fuselage, or tail of the aircraft, and the measurements provide information about airflow velocity in a direction transverse to a direction of the aircraft flight.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 7, 2016
    Date of Patent: January 16, 2018
    Assignee: SUNLIGHT PHOTONICS INC.
    Inventors: Sergey V. Frolov, Michael Cyrus, Allan J. Bruce, John P. Moussouris
  • Patent number: 9862397
    Abstract: A system (e.g., a control system) includes a sensor configured to monitor an operating condition of a vehicle system during movement of the vehicle system along a route. The system also includes a controller configured to designate one or more operational settings for the vehicle system as a function of time and/or distance along the route. The controller is configured to operate in a first operating mode responsive to the operating condition of the vehicle system being at least one of at or above a designated threshold, and in a second operating mode responsive to the operating condition of the vehicle system being below the designated threshold. The controller designates operational settings to drive the vehicle system toward achievement of a first objective when in the first operating mode and toward achievement of a different, second objective when in the second operating mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 2016
    Date of Patent: January 9, 2018
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Brian Nedward Meyer, Harry Kirk Mathews, Jr., James D. Brooks, Kristopher Ryan Smith
  • Patent number: 9864366
    Abstract: Methods, apparatus, and computer program products for analyzing, monitoring, and/or modeling the manufacture of a type of part by a manufacturing process. Non-destructive evaluation data and/or quality related data collected from manufactured parts of the type of part may be aligned to a simulated model associated with the type of part. Based on the aligned data, the manufacturing process may be monitored to determine whether the manufacturing process is operating properly; aspects of the manufacturing process may be spatially correlated to the aligned data; and/or the manufacturing process may be analyzed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 14, 2014
    Date of Patent: January 9, 2018
    Assignee: Etegent Technologies Ltd.
    Inventors: Joseph M. Kesler, Thomas D. Sharp, Uriah M. Liggett, Brian Bahr, Chris M. Hodapp, Gary E. Coyan
  • Patent number: 9856032
    Abstract: A method and device for controlling at least one actuator control system of an aircraft, an associated computer program product and aircraft are disclosed. In one aspect, the method includes determining a variation in thrust of the aircraft for controlling a variable relating to the aircraft relative to a set point, calculating a first control command signal to be sent to an engine control system in order to obtain the variation in thrust, and transmitting the first control command signal to the engine control system. The controlled variable can be an acceleration along a direction taken by a speed vector among the air speed vector and the ground speed vector and the set point can be an acceleration set point along the direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 3, 2015
    Date of Patent: January 2, 2018
    Assignee: THALES
    Inventors: Sylvain Lissajoux, Matthieu Claybrough, Christophe Garnavault
  • Patent number: 9849996
    Abstract: A method of engine electrical load shed control includes receiving an accessory load indicator corresponding to an accessory load of an engine. A request for acceleration of the engine is detected. One or more electrical buses are depowered based on the accessory load indicator exceeding a shedding threshold and detection of the request for acceleration of the engine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 2015
    Date of Patent: December 26, 2017
    Assignee: SIKORSKY AIRCRAFT CORPORATION
    Inventors: John H. Judge, Nicholas D. Kefalas, Mark P. Eisenhauer, Frederick L. Bourne, Robert J. Andrejczyk, Michael Patrick Wade
  • Patent number: 9851716
    Abstract: One variation of a method for imaging an area of interest includes: within a user interface, receiving a selection for a set of interest points on a digital map of a physical area and receiving a selection for a resolution of a geospatial map; identifying a ground area corresponding to the set of interest points for imaging during a mission; generating a flight path over the ground area for execution by an unmanned aerial vehicle during the mission; setting an altitude for the unmanned aerial vehicle along the flight path based on the selection for the resolution of the geospatial map and an optical system arranged within the unmanned aerial vehicle; setting a geospatial accuracy requirement for the mission based on the selection for the mission type; and assembling a set of images captured by the unmanned aerial vehicle during the mission into the geospatial map.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 5, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 26, 2017
    Assignee: Airphrame, Inc.
    Inventor: Bret Kugelmass
  • Patent number: 9845020
    Abstract: A transportable ground station for a UAV includes a container in which the UAV may be transported and housed. The container includes a wireless or contact-based recharging station that recharges the UAV's batteries or other power sources after the UAV returns from a mission. The recharging station may be directly or indirectly connected to one or more solar panels that generate energy to power the recharging station. The ground station may be deployed virtually anywhere, from any vehicle (e.g., plane, train, boat, truck, etc.), and may operate over an extended period of time without human intervention.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 28, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 19, 2017
    Assignee: SWIFT ENGINEERING, INC.
    Inventor: Andrew Streett
  • Patent number: 9830828
    Abstract: A receiver includes an RF module to receive and down convert multiple types of RF signals received from at least one antenna; a communication unit configured to communicate signals with at least one external device; and a processing unit communicatively coupling the radio frequency module with the communication unit. Processing unit receives operation mode selection. When first operation mode is selected, processing unit receives first input signal from antenna via RF module (the first input signal including ILS signal and/or VOR signal) and outputs first output signal based on first input signal to external device. When second operational mode is selected, processing unit receives second input signal from antenna via radio frequency unit (second input signal including AIS signal including data regarding a current location of remotely located transmitting device) and outputs second output signal based on second input signal to external device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 24, 2015
    Date of Patent: November 28, 2017
    Assignee: Honeywell International Inc.
    Inventors: James Alexander Nicholls, Mark Karl Sutter, Robert S. Doyle, Matt Glassburn
  • Patent number: 9830827
    Abstract: Disclosed are algorithms and agent-based structures for a system and technique for analyzing and managing the airspace. The technique includes managing bulk properties of large numbers of heterogeneous multidimensional aircraft trajectories in an airspace, for the purpose of maintaining or increasing system safety, and to identify possible phase transition structures to predict when an airspace will approach the limits of its capacity. The paths of the multidimensional aircraft trajectories are continuously recalculated in the presence of changing conditions (traffic, exclusionary airspace, weather, for example) while optimizing performance measures and performing trajectory conflict detection and resolution. Such trajectories are represented as extended objects endowed with pseudo-potential, maintaining objectives for time, acceleration limits, and fuel-efficient paths by bending just enough to accommodate separation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 6, 2015
    Date of Patent: November 28, 2017
    Assignee: SMARTSKY NETWORKS LLC
    Inventors: Bruce K. Sawhill, James W. Herriot, Bruce J. Holmes
  • Patent number: 9829341
    Abstract: The present invention is a flight deck situational awareness system for displaying Required Time of Arrival (RTA) information for an aircraft. The system may include a memory configured for storing aircraft navigation information for the aircraft. The system may also include a processor. The processor may be configured for being communicatively coupled with the memory and may further be configured for receiving the aircraft navigation information stored in the memory. The processor may generate a depiction based upon the aircraft navigation information. The depiction may include a Required Time of Arrival (RTA) flight cue for the aircraft. The system may further include a display, which may be communicatively coupled with the processor. The display may receive the depiction from the processor and may display the depiction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 26, 2008
    Date of Patent: November 28, 2017
    Assignee: Rockwell Collins, Inc.
    Inventors: Frank J. Swiderski, Michael J. Krenz
  • Patent number: 9826413
    Abstract: A system and method are provided for producing radio-frequency (RF) coverage maps for networks of ground stations. The coverage maps are produced from ground station log files that are generated for a particular network of RF radio stations, including an ARINC VHF Data Link Mode 2 (VDLM2) Network. A coverage map regarding interactive communications between aircraft and various ground stations at a particular location therefrom is generated based on actual available operating data including geographic locating of an aircraft, which may be according to Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) system data or other aircraft geolocating data, and Received Signal Strength Indication (RSSI) measurements for the data exchange with the aircraft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 21, 2017
    Assignee: Rockwell Collins, Inc.
    Inventors: Ramsey F. Abid, Ning Shen, Douglas H. Feiock
  • Patent number: 9815567
    Abstract: The invention relates to systems and methods for displaying flight information representative of a deviation from a specified four-dimensional flight path. Particularly, but not exclusively, the invention relates to a cockpit display for enabling pilots to arrive at a particular location at a particular time and to achieve the necessary changes to aircraft speed to achieve a preferred ground speed. There is described a system and a method that displays flight information relating to a predetermined flight path. The predetermined flight path specifies locations and corresponding scheduled times. A current location of an aircraft along the predetermined flight path is monitored. A current time at which the aircraft is at the current location is determined. A scheduled time for the aircraft to be at the current location is provided. A time deviation between the current time and the scheduled time is calculated. The time deviation is displayed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 2012
    Date of Patent: November 14, 2017
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventor: Lars Fucke
  • Patent number: 9815561
    Abstract: A device for regulating the speed of rotation of at least one main rotor of a rotorcraft, which speed is known as the speed NR. Such a rotorcraft comprises at least one manual flight control member for delivering a collective pitch control setpoint C for the blades of the at least one main rotor, the control setpoint C being a function of a current position of the at least one control member; and detector means enabling a current state to be detected from at least two distinct states of the rotorcraft, namely a “ground” state in which the rotorcraft is in contact with the ground, at least in part, and a “flight” state in which the rotorcraft is at least being sustained in the air.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 22, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 14, 2017
    Assignee: AIRBUS HELICOPTERS
    Inventors: Jean-Baptiste Vallart, Setareh Taheri, Nicolas Certain
  • Patent number: 9816897
    Abstract: A monitoring system for an aircraft engine includes a plurality of wireless engine sensors that sense engine parameters based on an engine sampling algorithm. The wireless engine sensors receive a new engine sampling algorithm to change the engine parameter sensing and generate engine data based on the new engine sampling algorithm. An engine monitoring module is mounted at the aircraft engine and collects and stores in a memory the engine data and transmits the engine data over a wireless communications signal into the aircraft and receives a new engine sampling algorithm and transmits it to the wireless engine sensors. A wireless LAN is within the aircraft and receives the new engine sampling algorithm from a ground based control center and transmits the new engine sampling algorithm to the engine monitoring module.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 28, 2015
    Date of Patent: November 14, 2017
    Assignee: HARRIS CORPORATION
    Inventor: James J. Ziarno
  • Patent number: 9817654
    Abstract: A vehicle includes at least one programmable computing device including a memory configured to store instructions that are executable by a processor. The vehicle also include a software loader configured to modify or replace the instructions based on a loadable software part. The vehicle includes a data interface and a loadable software part memory. The vehicle further includes a switch coupled to the data interface, to the loadable software part memory, and to software loader. While the switch is in a first position, a first data path between the data interface and the loadable software part memory is enabled and a second data path between the loadable software part memory and the software loader is disabled. While the switch is in a second position, the second data path is enabled and the first data path is disabled.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 14, 2017
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventor: Ian G. Angus
  • Patent number: 9815568
    Abstract: A method of monitoring a power transmission system of an aircraft, the aircraft including at least one main rotor driven in rotation by a rotor mast and an auxiliary unit having an auxiliary rotor. Control means control the auxiliary rotor. A power relationship is determined providing a first reduced power parameter of the auxiliary unit as a function of a position (POS) of the control means. A setpoint limit is set for a second power parameter for the rotor mast. A current position (POSACTU) of the control means is determined and a calculated value (Vcal) is also determined at least by applying the current position (POSACTU) to the power relationship. A limit value that is not to be exceeded by a power plant is determined, with the limit value being equal to the sum at least of the setpoint limit plus the calculated value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 27, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 14, 2017
    Assignee: AIRBUS HELICOPTERS
    Inventors: Jean-Baptiste Vallart, Setareh Taheri, Samuel Leyder
  • Patent number: 9807996
    Abstract: A drone with a high-voltage trap seeks, identifies, pursues and destroys flying insects within a patrolling area. During its passive attracting mode, the drone lands on a designated ground site and attracts insects with light, sound, and scents. Once insects are lured, the high voltage screens trap will immediately electrocute targeted insects. In its active offensive mode, the drone hovers closer to insect nests using its high-velocity propellers, producing strong downdraft jet streams to disturb the nest and force insects, such as mosquitoes and the like, to evacuate their nest. Once insects are airborne, the drone pursues fleeing insects from below or behind, making use of its propellers and vacuuming the fleeing insects. Slow flying insects that come in contact with the high-voltage electrified screens are immediately electrocuted. Insects that are vacuumed into the fast-spinning propellers blades are knocked down and killed. A rectified charging pad recharges the drone batteries.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 19, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 7, 2017
    Inventor: Simon Siu-Chi Yu
  • Patent number: 9809306
    Abstract: A system for flock-based control of a plurality of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). The system includes UAVs each including a processor executing a local control module and memory accessible by the processor for use by the local control module. The system includes a ground station system with a processor executing a fleet manager module and with memory storing a different flight plan for each of the UAVs. The flight plans are stored on the UAVs, and, during flight operations, each of the local control modules independently controls the corresponding UAV to execute its flight plan without ongoing control from the fleet manager module. The fleet manager module is operable to initiate flight operations by concurrently triggering initiation of the flight plans by the multiple UAVs. Further, the local control modules monitor front and back end communication channels and, when a channel is lost, operate the UAV in a safe mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 5, 2015
    Date of Patent: November 7, 2017
    Assignee: Disney Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventors: James Alexander Stark, Clifford Wong, Robert Scott Trowbridge
  • Patent number: 9811950
    Abstract: An aircraft electric taxi system diagnostics and prognostics evaluation method, including receiving, with a computer, an electronically recorded first performance parameter of a first electric taxi system of a first aircraft during a taxi operational event at an airport; and comparing the first performance parameter with a first performance factor statistical model generated in response to the first performance parameter and first comparative performance parameters; and calculating a first performance parameter difference based on the comparison.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 18, 2014
    Date of Patent: November 7, 2017
    Assignee: HONEYWELL INTERNATIONAL INC.
    Inventors: Joseph Nutaro, Stephen Abel, Grant Gordon
  • Patent number: 9805608
    Abstract: A method having a step of preparing an on-board database containing various kinds of geographical data. During a step of preparing a risk database, at least one local weather risk is stored prior to flight for at least one mesh. During a weather determination step, current and/or forecast weather conditions are acquired for at least one mesh. During a processing step, at least one combined parameter is determined for at least one mesh, each value of a combined parameter being obtained by applying a logic function giving the value of the combined parameter for a mesh as a function of the geographical data and also of the weather risk and the meteorological data. During an analysis step, the presence of a potential local weather danger, at least around the aircraft, is detected in flight as a function of the combined parameter values.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 23, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 31, 2017
    Assignee: Airbus Helicopters
    Inventors: Marianne Gillet, Etienne Poudrai
  • Patent number: 9802623
    Abstract: Disclosed is an autonomous driving device in which a threshold value for switching to manual driving which is used for switching a driving state from autonomous driving to manual driving with respect to degree to which a steering operation is carried out by a driver is calculated to be a greater value by a calculation unit when the direction of the steering operation is predicted to be a direction close to an obstacle than a threshold value when the direction of the steering operation is predicted to be a direction away from the obstacle or a threshold value when no obstacle is detected.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 18, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 31, 2017
    Assignee: TOYOTA JIDOSHA KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Taisuke Sugaiwa, Hiromitsu Urano, Toshiki Kindo
  • Patent number: 9798324
    Abstract: A method for an autonomous vehicle to follow a target is provided. The method may include obtaining a position and a velocity of a target and obtaining a position of an autonomous vehicle. The method may also include obtaining a path that encloses the position of the target and determining a path rate for the autonomous vehicle to move along the path based on the velocity of the target. The method may also include determining a path position along the path based on the position of the autonomous vehicle and determining a change in the position of the autonomous vehicle based on the path position, the path rate, and the velocity of the target. The method may also include adjusting a velocity and a direction of the autonomous vehicle to achieve the change in the position of the autonomous vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 28, 2015
    Date of Patent: October 24, 2017
    Assignee: HELICO AEROSPACE INDUSTRIES SIA
    Inventors: Ilja Nevdahs, Janis Spogis, Nils Trapans, Edgars Rozentals, Agris Kipurs
  • Patent number: 9798329
    Abstract: An Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) comprises a situational awareness system coupled to at least one onboard sensor and senses the location of other UAVs. A cooperative Radio Access Network (RAN)-signal processor is configured to process RAN signals cooperatively with at least one other UAV to increase the rank of the RAN channel and produce RAN performance criteria. A flight controller provides autonomous navigation control of the UAV's flight based on the relative spatial locations of other UAVs and the RAN performance criteria, which operates within predetermined boundaries of navigation criteria. The UAV can employ mitigation tactics against one or more UEs identified as a threat and may coordinate other UAVs to conduct such mitigations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 25, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 24, 2017
    Assignee: Genghiscomm Holdings, LLC
    Inventor: Steve Shattil
  • Patent number: 9785153
    Abstract: The present invention relates to methods of controlling the flight path of an aircraft to follow as closely as possible a predetermined four-dimensional flight path, such as when flying continuous descent approaches. A method of controlling an aircraft to follow a predetermined four-dimensional flight path is provided that comprises monitoring the actual along-track position and the actual vertical position of the aircraft relative to the corresponding desired positions on the predetermined flight path. The aircraft's elevators are used to correct deviations of the along-track position and the aircraft's throttle is used to correct deviations of the vertical position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 24, 2009
    Date of Patent: October 10, 2017
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventors: Ramon Gomez Ledesma, David Garrido-Lopez, Luis Pedro D'Alto
  • Patent number: 9786280
    Abstract: A method for accessing electronic charts stored on an aircraft is provided. The method receives, via an onboard avionics system, location data for the aircraft; receives a set of speech data via a user interface of the aircraft; identifies one or more applicable electronic charts, based on the received location data and the received set of speech data, wherein the electronic charts stored on the aircraft comprise at least the one or more applicable electronic charts; and presents, via an aircraft display, a first one of the one or more applicable electronic charts.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 3, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 10, 2017
    Assignee: HONEYWELL INTERNATIONAL INC.
    Inventors: Erin Elizabeth Alves, Robert E De Mers
  • Patent number: 9785147
    Abstract: An unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) may select a subject to track or follow and capture images including the subject. A visual recognition system of the UAV may generate a profile of reference images portraying the subject breaking the reference images down into pixel sets corresponding to the subject and his/her components and distinguishing characteristics (body parts, clothing, facial features, accessories). The visual recognition system may break the incoming stream of incoming images into pixel sets, analyzing the pixel sets to distinguish the subject from his/her surroundings (i.e., in a crowd) and determine movement of the subject and the current orientation of the UAV to the subject. The UAV may then change its heading, velocity, or position based on any difference between the current orientation and the desired or predetermined orientation between the UAV and the subject.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 2, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 10, 2017
    Assignee: Trace Live Network Inc.
    Inventors: Craig McDermott, Bruce McDonald
  • Patent number: 9772712
    Abstract: Systems, methods and computer-storage media are provided for a touch-screen interface panel (TSIP) of an aircraft. The TSIP may communicate with one or more aircraft systems. In other words, the TSIP is configured to display information of one or more aircraft systems. For example, the TSIP may receive a request for weather information. In response, the TSIP receives weather information from a weather system and displays it via the TSIP screen. In another example, the TSIP may display warnings or alerts that are detected by an aircraft warning system, maintenance system, or the like. Furthermore, information that may have typically been looked up physically or called in to a tower may now be provided via the TSIP by the interfacing of the TSIP with the systems maintaining the information. For example, a charts database may communicate with the TSIP and the information thereof displayed via the TSIP.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 9, 2015
    Date of Patent: September 26, 2017
    Assignee: Textron Innovations, Inc.
    Inventors: Jeremy Joseph Kneuper, Christopher Adair Pinkerton
  • Patent number: 9773421
    Abstract: This disclosure is directed to systems and methods for generating outputs based on collected aircraft maneuver data. In one example, a system is configured to collect surveillance data from one or more aircraft. The system is further configured to identify, from the collected surveillance data, aircraft maneuver data indicative of maneuvers of the one or more aircraft. The system is further configured to store the aircraft maneuver data in a data store. The system is further configured to perform one or more analyses of the stored aircraft maneuver data in the data store. The system is further configured to generate an output based on the one or more analyses of the stored aircraft maneuver data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 19, 2015
    Date of Patent: September 26, 2017
    Assignee: Honeywell International Inc.
    Inventors: Guoqing Wang, Rong Zhang, Kevin J Conner, Ruy C. Brandao, Zhong Chen
  • Patent number: 9764652
    Abstract: The present invention extends to methods, systems, devices, and apparatus for replenishing vehicle resources. Vehicles can be aligned with and docked to replenishment devices. In one aspect, a flying vehicle (e.g., an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)) is aligned onto electrical recharging contacts. The flying vehicles fuel level or battery charge can be replenished with minimal, if any, human intervention. Vehicle docking (e.g., landing), alignment, and replenishment can be performed automatically. A circular ring or shaped surface of a vehicle can engage with a conical sloping surface of a docking apparatus as a vehicle moves towards and/or into the docking apparatus. The conical sloping surface shape aligns the vehicle with recharge contacts or a refueling probe at the base of the docking apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 21, 2017
    Date of Patent: September 19, 2017
    Assignee: Olaeris, Inc.
    Inventor: Paul E. I. Pounds
  • Patent number: 9766619
    Abstract: A plurality of wireless engine sensors each includes a sensing circuit that senses an engine parameter as engine data. A radio transceiver receives and transmits the engine data regarding the sensed engine parameters. An engine monitoring module includes a housing configured to be mounted at the aircraft engine. A sensor receiver is mounted within the housing and receives the engine data from the wireless engine sensors. A first wireless transmitter is carried by the housing. A memory is carried by the housing and a processor is carried by the housing and coupled to the memory and the first wireless transmitter and configured to collect and store in the memory engine data related to engine parameters sensed during operation of the aircraft engine by the plurality of wireless engine sensors and transmit the engine data via the first wireless transmitter.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 9, 2015
    Date of Patent: September 19, 2017
    Assignee: HARRIS CORPORATION
    Inventor: James J. Ziarno
  • Patent number: 9754497
    Abstract: A method for providing air traffic controlled flight of a large number of commercial drones each carrying one or more packages in to and out of an air traffic controlled space around an airport. The method includes providing an outbound corridor from a carrier facility through and out of the air traffic controlled space, where the outbound corridor does not allow any other air traffic to fly therein, and allowing the drones to fly through the outbound corridor to leave the air traffic controlled space without requiring air traffic control. The method also includes providing an inbound corridor through the air traffic controlled space to the carrier facility that does not allow any other air traffic to fly therein, and allowing drones to return to the carrier facility through the air traffic controlled space by flying through the inbound corridor without requiring air traffic control.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 27, 2017
    Date of Patent: September 5, 2017
    Assignee: Northrop Grumman Systems Corporation
    Inventors: Charles R. Smith, Matthew A. Neal
  • Patent number: 9747807
    Abstract: A flight display system or method in accordance with this disclosure involves the presentation, on an aircraft, of a “quick preview” notice to airmen (“NOTAM”) display that includes a plurality of stacked flight route portion boxes, each of the plurality of flight route portion boxes pertaining to and being labeled as one of: a departure taxiing portion, a standard instrument departure portion, an en route portion, a standard terminal arrival route portion, an approach portion, and an arrival taxiing portion; each of the plurality of flight route portion boxes graphically displaying flight route symbology pertaining to and labeled as each airport taxiing reference point and/or each aeronautical waypoint that falls within its labeled flight route portion; and wherein at least one of the plurality of flight route portion boxes further graphically displays NOTAM symbology pertaining to at least one of the NOTAMs that are relevant to the flight route.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 27, 2015
    Date of Patent: August 29, 2017
    Assignee: HONEYWELL INTERNATIONAL INC.
    Inventors: Subash Samuthirapandian, Markus Alan Johnson, Pramod Kumar Malviya, Jayasenthilnathan B, Bretislav Passinger
  • Patent number: 9741252
    Abstract: A flight management assembly including two guidance systems, each one provided with a flight management system. The flight management systems are independent and hosted in different computer equipment. Each of the flight management systems being configured to carry out at least a computation of guidance commands for the aircraft. The flight management assembly also includes a monitoring unit hosted in computer equipment different from the computer equipment hosting the flight management systems and configured to monitor at least the guidance commands computed by the two flight management systems to detect and identify a defective flight management system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 10, 2015
    Date of Patent: August 22, 2017
    Assignee: Airbus Operations (SAS)
    Inventors: Jean-Claude Mere, Mathieu Versini
  • Patent number: 9733103
    Abstract: A flight deck display system for an aircraft includes a processor architecture configured to receive aircraft instrument data, waypoint restriction information, and position data for the aircraft and, based upon the received data, generate image rendering display commands. The system also includes a display element configured to receive the image rendering display commands and, in response thereto, to render a display that includes a perspective view of terrain and at least one waypoint marker corresponding to an approaching waypoint. The waypoint marker includes visually distinguishable characteristics that convey waypoint restriction information (e.g., altitude or airspeed constraint information that governs the waypoint).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 21, 2016
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2017
    Assignee: HONEYWELL INTERNATIONAL INC.
    Inventors: Gang He, John G. Suddreth, Thea L. Feyereisen
  • Patent number: 9734684
    Abstract: Aspects include a method, system and computer program product for monitoring a fence about an ad-hoc perimeter. The method includes defining an ad-hoc perimeter to be monitored. A number of autonomous drones are determined for creating a monitoring fence arrangement of the ad-hoc perimeter, each of the autonomous drones including a movement detection mechanism. A position is determined for each of the determined number of autonomous drones. The position is transmitted to each of the autonomous drones. A status of the autonomous drones is monitored. A signal is transmitted in response to at least one of the autonomous drones detecting a breach of the ad-hoc perimeter with the movement detection mechanism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 4, 2016
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2017
    Assignee: INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS MACHINES CORPORATION
    Inventors: Donald L. Bryson, Eric V. Kline, Sarbajit K. Rakshit
  • Patent number: 9714089
    Abstract: Techniques are provided for analyzing data obtained while delivering items with unmanned aerial vehicles. For example, instructions may be provided to an unmanned aerial vehicle to deliver an item. The unmanned aerial vehicle may be configured to record data while delivering the item. In embodiments, the captured data may be received by a computer system and properties about a destination for the delivery may be identified by analyzing the data. A recommendation may be generated based at least in part on the identified properties.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 25, 2015
    Date of Patent: July 25, 2017
    Assignee: Amazon Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: David Brian Louw, Robert James Silk
  • Patent number: 9710145
    Abstract: A method and system for interacting with the systems of an aircraft using touch screen technology that includes a human machine interface device for interacting with aircraft systems. The human machine interface including an input/display device configured to provide for navigating among graphical representations of a plurality of aircraft avionics systems via the common human machine interface; selecting an aircraft system via at least one of a touch gesture and a voice command input to the input/display device; inputting an instruction to the selected aircraft system; and outputting information via at least one of visual, aural, haptic and tactile channels.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2015
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2017
    Assignees: UNIVERSITY OF MALTA, QUAERO LTD.
    Inventors: David Zammit-Mangion, Mateusz Jedruszek, Alan Muscat
  • Patent number: 9689667
    Abstract: The invention relates to a system (21) for receiving a light beam, comprising an array of light sensors (26). The system also comprises a pixelated light switch array (24), in which each switch is adapted to receive at least one portion of the light beam and direct it to the array of light sensors (26), and the pixelated light switch array (24) comprises a higher number of switches than the number of light sensors comprised in the array of light sensors (26).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2012
    Date of Patent: June 27, 2017
    Assignee: UNIVERSITAT POLITECNICA DE CATALUNYA
    Inventors: Santiago Royo Royo, Jordi Riu Gras
  • Patent number: 9690294
    Abstract: A method for an autonomous vehicle to follow a target is provided. The method may include obtaining a position and a velocity of a target and obtaining a position of an autonomous vehicle. The method may also include obtaining a path that encloses the position of the target and determining a path rate for the autonomous vehicle to move along the path based on the velocity of the target. The method may also include determining a path position along the path based on the position of the autonomous vehicle and determining a change in the position of the autonomous vehicle based on the path position, the path rate, and the velocity of the target. The method may also include adjusting a velocity and a direction of the autonomous vehicle to achieve the change in the position of the autonomous vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 28, 2015
    Date of Patent: June 27, 2017
    Assignee: HELICO AEROSPACE INDUSTRIES SIA
    Inventors: Ilja Nevdahs, Janis Spogis, Nils Trapans, Edgars Rozentals, Agris Kipurs
  • Patent number: 9682768
    Abstract: A flight control system for a rotary wing aircraft, the aircraft following a track Tsol, relative to the ground with a ground course angle TKsol, a forward speed Va, a flight path angle P, and a heading ?, the aircraft having one or more rotary wings provided with blades of collective pitch and of cyclic pitch that are variable about respective pitch axes and that are capable of performing movements in rotation and in translation. The flight control system has two control members each provided respectively with at least one movement axis A, B, C, D, and an autopilot for generating control signals. An action on one of the control members relative to one of the movement axes A, B, C, D gives rise independently to a modification to the forward speed Va, to the ground course angle TKsol, or indeed to the flight path angle P by means of the autopilot.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 25, 2015
    Date of Patent: June 20, 2017
    Assignee: AIRBUS HELICOPTERS
    Inventor: Marc Salesse-Lavergne
  • Patent number: 9663078
    Abstract: The present disclosure provides systems and methods for brake actuator operation sensor error compensation. In various embodiments, a system for brake actuator operation sensor error compensation determines the existence of potential sensor errors and compensates for the effects of such errors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 28, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 30, 2017
    Assignee: Goodrich Corporation
    Inventor: Todd Rook
  • Patent number: 9666082
    Abstract: A method of flight management and guidance of an aircraft executed by a flight management system FMS comprises the steps of: generating a reference trajectory, generating a short-term trajectory, periodically transmitting the short-term trajectory, generating a long-term trajectory, formatting the segments of the long-term trajectory, periodically transmitting the long-term trajectory, storing the long-term trajectory transmitted, testing the validity of the FMS sub-assembly, when the FMS sub-assembly is valid: identifying, by the autonomous guidance module, the active segment of the short-term trajectory, generating, by the autonomous guidance module, a first flight guidance order on the basis of the active segment of the short-term trajectory; when the FMS sub-assembly is not valid: identifying, by the autonomous guidance module, the active segment of the stored trajectory, generating, by the autonomous guidance module, a second flight guidance order on the basis of the active segment of the stored trajecto
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 30, 2017
    Assignee: THALES
    Inventors: Michel Roger, Mathieu Orvain
  • Patent number: 9663226
    Abstract: An unmanned vehicle receives a message from another unmanned vehicle. The recipient unmanned vehicle uses information included with the message to determine whether a quorum of other unmanned vehicles have vetted information in the message. If a quorum of unmanned vehicles have vetted the message, the unmanned vehicle uses the information in the message to determine how to perform one or more operations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 27, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 30, 2017
    Assignee: Amazon Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Darren Ernest Canavor, Varadarajan Gopalakrishnan, Jesper Mikael Johansson, Jon Arron McClintock, Brandon William Porter, Andrew Jay Roths
  • Patent number: 9658623
    Abstract: Example aircraft intent processors are described herein that can be used both for the prediction of an aircraft's trajectory from aircraft intent, and the execution of aircraft intent for controlling the aircraft. An example aircraft intent processor includes an aircraft intent input to receive aircraft intent data representative of aircraft intent instructions, an aircraft state input to receive state data representative of a state of the aircraft, and a residual output. The aircraft intent processor is to calculate residual data representative of an error between a state of the aircraft commanded by the received aircraft intent data and the state of the aircraft expressed by received state data, and output the residual data via the residual output.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 5, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 23, 2017
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Francisco Navarro, Carlos Querejeta, Ernesto Valls Hernandez, Francisco García de Blanes, Luis D'Alto
  • Patent number: 9643736
    Abstract: A landing light system and steering method and computer readable medium is provided. A landing light system includes a camera, a controller, and a landing light. A tangible, non-transitory memory may have instructions for controlling a landing light. The controller may perform operations including receiving a first image at a first time from the camera, receiving a second image at a second time from the camera, estimating a focus of expansion between the first image and the second image, and aiming the landing light based on the focus of expansion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 14, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 9, 2017
    Assignee: Goodrich Corporation
    Inventor: Todd Ell
  • Patent number: 9635248
    Abstract: A mobile terminal and a method of controlling therefor are disclosed. The mobile terminal according to one embodiment of the present invention includes a touch interface module configured to receive a touch input, a communication module configured to establish communication with at least one or more drones and a controller configured to control the communication module and the touch interface module. The controller transmits location information of the mobile terminal to the drone with which the communication is established, designates a position of the drone based on the transmitted location information, receives a preview image obtained by a camera of the drone, displays the received preview image on a predetermined first area and if the touch input is recognized, captures the preview image displayed on the first area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 9, 2015
    Date of Patent: April 25, 2017
    Assignee: LG ELECTRONICS INC.
    Inventors: Jeonghwa Yang, Hyejin Bae, Kyungha Lee