Aeronautical Vehicle Patents (Class 701/3)
  • Patent number: 10037632
    Abstract: Upon detecting a failure in a sensor in a vehicle, a request for a surrogate sensor is sent. Communications are established with an unmanned aerial vehicle carrying the surrogate sensor. A vehicle subsystem is actuated based at least in part on data from the surrogate sensor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 1, 2016
    Date of Patent: July 31, 2018
    Assignee: FORD GLOBAL TECHNOLOGIES, LLC
    Inventors: Aed M. Dudar, Douglas Raymond Martin, Kenneth James Miller
  • Patent number: 10037702
    Abstract: Methods and apparatus are provided for simulating an interval management (IM) procedure for an ownship aircraft and a target aircraft before the start of the performance of the IM procedure. The method comprises receiving an IM clearance message from air traffic control (ATC), parsing the received IM clearance message into parsed information components identifying the complexity of the IM clearance message based on the number of elements in the information components, generating a flight chart depicting the area over which the proposed IM procedure is to traverse using the mapping information wherein the flight chart includes a vertical view and a plan view, and simulating the IM procedure on the generated flight chart before any steps of the IM procedure are performed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 19, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 31, 2018
    Assignee: HONEYWELL INTERNATIONAL INC.
    Inventors: Rajanikanth Nagaraj Kashi, Vinayak Manohar Chitragar, Sathish Pakki
  • Patent number: 10025315
    Abstract: Some embodiments are directed to an unmanned vehicle for use with a companion unmanned vehicle. The unmanned vehicle includes a location unit that is configured to determine a current position of the unmanned vehicle. The unmanned vehicle includes a path planning unit that generates a planned path. The unmanned vehicle receives a planned path of the companion unmanned vehicle and a current position of the companion unmanned vehicle. The unmanned vehicle includes a position unit that is configured to determine a relative position between the unmanned vehicle and the companion unmanned vehicle based on at least the planned paths and the current positions of the unmanned vehicle and the companion unmanned vehicle. The unmanned vehicle also includes a control unit that is configured to control a movement of the unmanned vehicle based on at least the relative position between the unmanned vehicle and the companion unmanned vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 2016
    Date of Patent: July 17, 2018
    Assignee: PROXY TECHNOLOGIES, INC.
    Inventors: John Klinger, Patrick C. Cesarano
  • Patent number: 10018724
    Abstract: A system and method for scanning a surface and a computer program implementing the method. The method is suitable for performing the functions carried out by the system of the invention. The computer program implements the method of the invention. The system means for illuminating illuminates different sub-areas (Si) of a surface (S) with a light beam (Be) in an alternating manner, and receives and detects the portions of reflected light (Br) reflected on same, including: one or more light detectors (D); and light redirection means including a determined spatial distribution model (Qr) of the light redirection elements (GM), which receive the portions of reflected light (Br) and sequentially redirect them towards the light detector or detectors (D).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 21, 2014
    Date of Patent: July 10, 2018
    Assignee: UNIVERSITAT POLITECNICA DE CATALUNYA
    Inventors: Santiago Royo Royo, Jordi Rius Gras
  • Patent number: 10019906
    Abstract: An Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) air traffic control method is implemented in a UAV during a flight, for concurrently utilizing a plurality wireless networks for air traffic control. The UAV air traffic control method includes maintaining communication with a first wireless network and a second wireless network of the plurality of wireless networks; communicating first data with the first wireless network and second data with the second wireless network throughout the flight, wherein one or more of the first data and the second data is provided to an air traffic control system configured to maintain status of a plurality of UAVs in flight and perform control thereof; adjusting the flight based on one or more of the first data and the second data and control from the air traffic control system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 17, 2016
    Date of Patent: July 10, 2018
    Assignee: ETAK Systems, LLC
    Inventor: Lee Priest
  • Patent number: 10012517
    Abstract: A method and a system for calibrating an inertial measurement unit (IMU) via images of a calibration target are provided herein. The method may include: measuring parameters via an IMU; capturing a plurality of calibration images of a scene that contains at least one calibration target, wherein the calibration images are taken from different locations and/or orientations, wherein each of the calibration images shares a common calibration target with at least one other calibration image; calculating, based on the at least one common calibration target, a position and orientation of the sensing device relative to the calibration target, for each location of the capturing of the calibration images; and calibrating the IMU by comparing relative motion between two of the calibration images based on the calculated relative position and orientation, to measurements of the parameters taken by the IMU in time ranges corresponding to the at least two calibration images.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 1, 2016
    Date of Patent: July 3, 2018
    Assignee: Infinity Augmented Reality Israel Ltd.
    Inventors: Matan Protter, Motti Kushnir
  • Patent number: 10008122
    Abstract: Apparatus to generate aircraft intent and related methods are disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 21, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 26, 2018
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Michael W. Hardt, Francisco A. Navarro Felix
  • Patent number: 10007265
    Abstract: A method and system for detecting and recovering from hostile takeovers of aerial vehicles is described. In some examples, this can include receiving, at an aerial device at a first time, a first signal expected according to a communication scheme. It can be determined that a second signal was not received at a second time based at least in part on the communication scheme. In response, an alarm signal can be generated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 17, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 26, 2018
    Assignee: Amazon Technologies, Inc.
    Inventor: Glen C. Larsen
  • Patent number: 9994315
    Abstract: Systems and methods for the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in medical emergencies are disclosed herein. The systems and methods include receiving at a first UAV an indication of a medical emergency and coordinating with a second UAV based on the second UAV's capabilities. The first UAV determines if the capabilities of the second UAV complement the capabilities of the first UAV based on the indicated medical emergency. The disclosed systems and methods deploy both the first and second UAVs to the medical emergency if the capabilities of the second UAV complement those of the first UAV.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 18, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2018
    Assignee: Physio-Control, Inc.
    Inventors: Robert G. Walker, Mitchell Smith, Kristina Furlan, John Daynes, Michael Arbuck, Alex Esibov, Melissa Pochop-Miller, Dennis Skelton
  • Patent number: 9984389
    Abstract: Provided is a flying type in-store advertising system which advertises to many customers dispersed to respective counters while flying above an in-store passage for a commodity, an event or the like. In a flying type in-store advertising system of allowing an unmanned aircraft 11 displaying an in-store advertisement to fly in accordance with flight route data of an in-store passage, which is sent from a flight control terminal 12, the unmanned aircraft 11 has an aircraft side communication means 26 and an aircraft flight means 27 for allowing the unmanned aircraft 11 to fly in accordance with the flight route data, and the flight control terminal has a flight route setting means 35, a storage means 36 for storing the flight route data, a terminal side communication means 37 and a terminal side control means 42.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 14, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 29, 2018
    Assignee: ENUKANTO CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Toshio Nozawa
  • Patent number: 9978285
    Abstract: A navigation system including a vehicle dynamic model (VDM) that serves as the main process model within a navigation filter is described. When used in an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), the navigation system may work in communication with inertial measurement units (IMUs) and environment dependent sensors such as GNSS receivers. Particularly, the navigation system is beneficial in the case of GNSS signal reception outages, where conventional IMU coasting drifts quickly. Yet, the navigation system may also be employed in other scenarios, for example during GNSS presence for improved positioning, velocity and attitude determination, or in combination with GNSS when no IMU is available by design or due to a failure. In the navigation system, a solution to VDM equations provides an estimate of position, velocity, and attitude, which can be updated within a navigation filter based on available observations, such as IMU data or GNSS measurements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 8, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 22, 2018
    Assignee: ECOLE POLYTECHNIQUE FEDERALE DE LAUSANNE (EPFL)
    Inventors: Mehran Khaghani, Jan Skaloud
  • Patent number: 9977428
    Abstract: A method may include monitoring location information associated with a drone. The method may also include comparing the location information with an authorized zone. The method may also include, based on the comparison, determining a violation by the drone of a rule associated with the authorized zone. The method may include, in response to the violation, augmenting control of the drone to alter operation of the drone. The location information may include at least one of a current or predicted future location of the drone.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 26, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 22, 2018
    Assignee: AT&T Intellectual Property I, L.P.
    Inventor: Robert J. Hall
  • Patent number: 9969485
    Abstract: An inceptor apparatus (10) for controlling a vehicle, in particular an aircraft comprises a control stick (15) for operation by a user and a user feedback generator (28) coupled to the control stick and configured to receive signals from a vehicle condition indicator (40) remote from the inceptor apparatus. The apparatus also has a first vehicle condition sensor (54,56) dedicated to the operation of the inceptor apparatus. In a first mode of operation, the user feedback generator (28) is operable to generate tactile feedback to the user via the control stick in dependence upon signals received from the vehicle condition indicator (40). In a second mode of operation, in the event that no signal is received from the vehicle condition indicator (40), the user feedback generator (28) is operable to generate tactile feedback to the user via the control stick in dependence upon signals received from the first vehicle condition sensor (54,56).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 27, 2014
    Date of Patent: May 15, 2018
    Assignee: BAE SYSTEMS Plc
    Inventor: Robin William Davies
  • Patent number: 9963247
    Abstract: A method of automatic determination of a descent and approach profile for an aircraft is based on a backward computation of propagation of a state of the aircraft along segments S(i) from a backward computation start point to the start point DECEL of onset of the deceleration of the aircraft. The method of automatic determination comprises for each segment S(i) a step of determining an optimal speed VOPT(i) of the aircraft over the range of speeds of the next aerodynamic configuration C(j+1) to be implemented as a function of a predetermined deceleration strategy and/or of predetermined constraints inherent in the flight procedure or introduced by the pilot in his flight plan.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 7, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 8, 2018
    Assignee: THALES
    Inventors: Johan Boyer, Benoît Dacre-Wright
  • Patent number: 9950808
    Abstract: A method and a device for configuring an alerts management system for an aircraft comprises: generating a list of a plurality of alerts and of resolution procedures for an aircraft; for each alert, defining: distinctive characteristics of the alert; logic for detecting the alert; at least one procedure for resolving the alert; and, for each alert, defining recording in a dedicated alerts file the set of information defined for said alert, the alerts file having a structure and a format of data that are predefined for the alerts and the procedures; determining existing links between the dedicated alerts files; and in response to the determining step, updating the content of the dedicated alerts files according to the links identified.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 24, 2013
    Date of Patent: April 24, 2018
    Assignee: THALES
    Inventors: Fabien Guilley, Chris Deseure, Gilles Francois
  • Patent number: 9952592
    Abstract: A mobile terminal including a display unit; a wireless communication unit configured to wirelessly communicate with a flying object; and a controller configured to receive an input for setting at least one member of a created group of members to be a target, and remotely control the flying object to obtain an image of the at least one member set as the target.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 2015
    Date of Patent: April 24, 2018
    Assignee: LG ELECTRONICS INC.
    Inventors: Sungchae Na, Jungin Kwon, Dohwan Ahn, Hyohoun No
  • Patent number: 9950785
    Abstract: Architecture of an aircraft braking system having a brake (20) comprising a plurality of electromechanical actuators (25), with each electromechanical actuator (25) comprising a power module and a digital communication module (26). The brake digital communication modules are interconnected to form a digital network (30). The system also has two control units (22a, 22b) adapted for generating digital signals for controlling electric motors and one network interconnection member (23) connected to two control units and incorporated in the digital network for distributing the digital control signals to the digital communication modules via the digital network.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 24, 2018
    Assignee: SAFRAN LANDING SYSTEMS
    Inventors: Dominique Onfroy, Brian Goyez, Steve Coustenoble, Eric Evenor
  • Patent number: 9944407
    Abstract: The disclosed embodiments relate to methods and systems for avoiding a collision between an aircraft on the ground and an obstacle using a three-dimensional visual indication of the area or plane of winglets on the wingtips of the aircraft. The method includes receiving a video image from a camera positioned in one of the winglets, the video image representing a field of view through which the winglet of the aircraft will pass along a present heading of the aircraft. Next a processor determines a three-dimensional area or plane within the field of view through which the winglet of the aircraft will pass. An overlay is displayed within the field of view to assist the pilot in avoiding collisions with obstacles within the field of view.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 16, 2015
    Date of Patent: April 17, 2018
    Assignee: Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation
    Inventors: Robert O'Dell, Frank Manochio, Jason Meade, Michael Boost, Jamie Clive Marshall
  • Patent number: 9947230
    Abstract: A flight path of a physical aircraft vehicle is planned. A specification of a plurality of key locations within a virtual environment is received. A trajectory between the plurality of key locations is determined. A three-dimensional virtual preview of a flight on the trajectory is provided. Instructions for the physical aircraft vehicle to at least in part follow the trajectory is generated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 15, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 17, 2018
    Assignee: Amber Garage, Inc.
    Inventors: Botao Hu, Jiajie Zhang
  • Patent number: 9947233
    Abstract: A method and system for controlling access to restricted sectors in airspace. The method includes creating a multi-dimensional map of airspace, overlaying a sector having boundaries onto the map, wherein the sector contains a restricted flight zone and a buffer zone monitoring the flight of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), sending a command to the UAV if the UAV enters the buffer zone; and generating a response if the UAV does not leave the sector based on the command.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 12, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 17, 2018
    Assignee: AT&T Intellectual Property I, L.P.
    Inventors: Zhi Cui, Sangar Dowlatkhah, Venson Shaw
  • Patent number: 9940843
    Abstract: Methods, systems, and devices for providing data from a server to a UAV, enabling the UAV to navigate with respect to areas of restricted air space (“restricted areas”). A server may receive from a UAV, a request for restricted area information based on a position of the UAV. The server may determine boundaries of a surrounding area containing the position of the UAV and a number of restricted areas. The server may transmit coordinate information to the UAV defining the restricted areas contained within the surrounding area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 5, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2018
    Assignee: QUALCOMM Incorporated
    Inventors: Rajarshi Gupta, Michael Franco Taveira
  • Patent number: 9940895
    Abstract: Display systems and methods for configuring such display systems are disclosed. A display system may include a display and a monitoring processor in communication with the display. The monitoring processor may be configured to monitor a status of a device and present the status of the device on the display. The display system may also include a control processor in communication with the display. The control processor may be configured to operate independently with respect to the monitoring processor. The control processor may be further configured to process a user input and facilitate control of the device based on the user input received.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 31, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2018
    Assignee: Rockwell Collins, Inc.
    Inventors: Clifford R. Klein, Chad M. Williams
  • Patent number: 9940842
    Abstract: Concepts and technologies disclosed herein are directed to intelligent drone traffic management via a radio access network (“RAN”). As disclosed herein, a RAN node, such as an eNodeB, can receive, from a drone, a flight configuration. The flight configuration can include a drone ID and a drone route. The RAN node can determine whether capacity is available in an airspace associated with the RAN node. In response to determining that capacity is available in the airspace associated with the RAN node, the RAN node can add the drone ID to a queue of drones awaiting use of the airspace associated with the RAN node. When the drone ID is next in the queue of drones awaiting use of the airspace associated with the RAN node, the RAN node can instruct the drone to fly through at least a portion of the airspace in accordance with the drone route.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 2, 2015
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2018
    Assignee: AT&T Intellectual Property I, L.P.
    Inventors: Venson Shaw, Zhi Cui, Sangar Dowlatkhah
  • Patent number: 9928750
    Abstract: An Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) air traffic control method utilizing wireless networks includes communicating with a plurality of UAVs via a plurality of cell towers associated with the wireless networks, wherein the plurality of UAVs each include hardware and antennas adapted to communicate to the plurality of cell towers, and wherein each of the plurality of UAVs include a unique identifier; maintaining data associated with flight of each of the plurality of UAVs based on the communicating; and processing the maintained data to perform a plurality of functions associated with air traffic control of the plurality of UAVs.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 10, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2018
    Assignee: ETAK Systems, LLC
    Inventor: Lee Priest
  • Patent number: 9928749
    Abstract: Systems and methods include UAVs that serve to assist carrier personnel by reducing the physical demands of the transportation and delivery process. A UAV generally includes a UAV chassis including an upper portion, a plurality of propulsion members configured to provide lift to the UAV chassis, and a parcel carrier configured for being selectively coupled to and removed from the UAV chassis. UAV support mechanisms are utilized to load and unload parcel carriers to the UAV chassis, and the UAV lands on and takes off from the UAV support mechanism to deliver parcels to a serviceable point. The UAV includes computing entities that interface with different systems and computing entities to send and receive various types of information.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 28, 2017
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2018
    Assignee: United Parcel Service of America, Inc.
    Inventors: Julio Gil, Jeffrey Cooper
  • Patent number: 9921823
    Abstract: An improved integrated avionics system having a plurality of line replacement units (LRUs) is disclosed. At least one LRU stores in its memory software and configuration data stored and used by another LRU in the system. Upon detecting a new LRU installation, the at least one LRU may be configured to copy to its internal memory the software and configuration data loaded to the new LRU. The LRU may also store a table in its internal memory identifying each LRU that has been installed in the system, when each LRU was installed, and a copy of configuration and software data loaded to each LRU. If one of the LRUs in the system needs to be replaced, the LRU may determine which software and configuration data is applicable to the replaced LRU and load the determined software and configuration data to the new LRU, thereby improving the loading and installation process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 7, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 20, 2018
    Assignee: Garmin International, Inc.
    Inventors: Anup A. Gadgil, Mark W. Gepner, Daniel H. Johnson, David Lucero, John D. Layman, Justin T. Baird, Roger A. Orf, Kevin J. Brewer
  • Patent number: 9922572
    Abstract: An estimation unit including an element for computing an actual distance, representing the distance covered by the aircraft over at least one speed interval delimited between two speeds of the aircraft, the interval corresponding to rollout on a segment of the runway, for which the braking performance of the aircraft is limited by the friction of the runway, an element for computing a plurality of so-called reference distances corresponding to various runway states, an element for comparing the actual distance with the reference distances, and an element for selecting, on the basis of these comparisons, one of the reference distances, the runway state which corresponds to the reference distance thus selected representing the runway state determined by the device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 1, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 20, 2018
    Assignee: Airbus Operations (S.A.S.)
    Inventors: Nicolas Daveau, Laurent Berdoulat, Houssam Soueid
  • Patent number: 9916277
    Abstract: A Universal Armament Interface (UAI) translator for a legacy military standard-1760 (MIL-STD-1760) messaging interface can include a legacy interface, a UAI, and a processor. The legacy interface can transmit a legacy receive message (‘R’ message) and receive a legacy transmit message (‘T’ message). The legacy interface can include a MIL-STD-1760 remote terminal (RT) messaging interface. The UAI can receive a UAI ‘R’ message and transmit a UAI ‘T’ message. The processor can translate the legacy ‘R’ message to the UAI ‘R’ message, and translate the UAI ‘T’ message to the legacy ‘T’ message.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 2013
    Date of Patent: March 13, 2018
    Assignee: Raytheon Company
    Inventors: Bradley Bomar Hammel, Charles F. Huber
  • Patent number: 9910442
    Abstract: Ray tracing and static obstacle maps can be used in the operation of a vehicle. Sensor data of at least a portion of an external environment of the vehicle can be acquired. A dynamic obstacle in the external environment of the vehicle can be detected based on the acquired sensor data. In response to detecting a dynamic obstacle, it can be determined whether a secondary occluded area is located behind the dynamic obstacle relative to a current location of the vehicle based on a static obstacle map. Responsive to determining that a secondary occluded area is located behind the dynamic obstacle relative to a current location of the vehicle based on a static obstacle map, a driving maneuver for the vehicle can be determined based on at least the dynamic obstacle and the secondary occluded area. The vehicle can be caused to implement the determined driving maneuver.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 28, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 6, 2018
    Assignee: Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America, Inc.
    Inventors: Nobuhide Kamata, Xue Mei, Katsuhiro Sakai
  • Patent number: 9913102
    Abstract: Embodiments herein use a real-time system to conduct a line of sight (LOS) survey between radio sites. The system includes a drone controlled by a UAV LOS System (ULS) server to gather information regarding the LOS path between the radio sites. In one embodiment, the ULS server instructs the UAV to travel a LOS path between a first location and a second location, and determine a Fresnel radius at one or more defined locations along the LOS path between the first location and the second location. The ULS server determines a Fresnel zone between the first location and second location based in part on the determined Fresnel radius for each of the defined locations along the LOS path. The ULS server evaluates the Fresnel zone to determine if the LOS path can support a LOS wireless communication link.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 6, 2018
    Assignee: Cisco Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Baljit Singh, Om Prakash Suthar
  • Patent number: 9898821
    Abstract: A Method for providing information about an object using an unmanned aerial vehicle with a data acquisition unit is disclosed according to some embodiments of the invention. The method may include determining positional data with reference to the object, the positional data being referenced to a measuring coordinate system, providing a digital template regarding the object, the template at least partly representing the object in coarse manner, and referencing the template with the positional data so that the template corresponds as to its spatial parameters to the object in the measuring coordinate system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 25, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 20, 2018
    Assignee: HEXAGON TECHNOLOGY CENTER GMBH
    Inventors: Bernhard Metzler, Knut Siercks, Elmar Vincent Van Der Zwan
  • 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: 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: 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: 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: 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: 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: 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: 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: 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: 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: 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: 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: 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: 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: 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