Various restraint systems to protect vehicle occupants in case of an accident have been specifically designed for pregnant women and the ideas are filed for patents. The concepts cover a wide range of designs; from ‘add-on’ to standard 3-point seat belt solutions to relatively complex mechatronics applications. Auxiliary tools and equipments to offer lap belt solutions constitute the majority of the reviewed patents. Designs also vary according to their working principles. Some designs exclusively focus on the lap belt part of the seat belt, whereas some others attempt to resolve the problem from a broader perspective, offering overall seat belt solutions with or without the use of standard seat belt. In this article around forty patented ideas on seat belt designs for pregnant women are reviewed, classified and presented, highlighting the working principles and inventors claims.
This article gives an overview of several new, patented (proprietary) carburising and nitriding techniques. The SAT12 process, developed by Swagelok Company, and the Kolsterising process are carburising methods that may give rise to colossal carbon supersaturation to the surface layer of austenitic stainless steels, resulting in substantial improvement to mechanical and corrosion properties. A newly-invented, patented nitriding technique for achieving colossal nitrogen content in the surface layer of austenitic stainless steel is introduced in this article, too. One of the weaknesses of conventional carburization/nitriding techniques is the formation of carbides and nitrides. However, nearly no carbide/nitride/carbonitride precipitation takes place for the new carburising/nitriding techniques until very high C/N contents. Besides, very thick carburized/nitrided layers may be achieved with the new techniques. In addition to carburising and nitriding, a variety of novel, new, and potentially patentable surface enhancing methods (e.g., surface nanostructuring processes and laser surface treatment) are also presented in this article.
Low-cost, high efficiency, multi-purpose and compact aircraft capable of Vertical Takeoff and Landing (VTOL) or Short Takeoff and Landing (STOL) flight have long been desired by the aerospace community. The channel wing concept, first proposed by Willard Custer in the late 1940s, is a promising candidate for efficient V/STOL performance. A channel wing has an upwardly opening semi-cylindrical channel placed near the aircraft fuselage. A propulsion unit is mounted in the channel; usually a propeller located towards the rear. When the propeller is operated at static or low speed conditions, the speed of the air flowing through the channel is much higher than that of the air flowing below the wing. As a result, high lift is generated. The concept was brought to life in prototype airplanes manufactured by the Custer Channel Wing Corporation in the 1950s and the 1960s, but these designs had a number of problems. The improvements in aerospace technology since then and recent developments in circulation control technology may facilitate the realization of a superior channel wing configuration. This paper presents a comprehensive review of the most significant patents on this subject and concludes with comments on possible future developments.
In Europe, improvement in traffic safety is a major topic since the economic cost of traffic accidents is estimated to be 2 of the gross national product (about 200 billion Euros per year). Research in traffic safety has led to numerous safety systems for avoidance and reduction of collision severity (primary or active safety), reduction of injury risk during an accident (secondary or passive safety) and post-crash treatment (tertiary safety). A recent trend in traffic safety is the introduction of various Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) as primary safety systems acting in normal driving conditions and prior to collision as well as improved interaction of primary and secondary safety systems (Integrated Vehicle Safety). The present paper aims at giving an overview of recent innovations in the field of integrated vehicle safety and ADAS. The focus is on new ideas, methods, products and systems to improve the current situation. The paper is not intended for detailed description of the state of the art and analysis of different safety systems with respect to functionality and effectiveness. Forty-four patents out of several hundreds of relevant documents were reviewed. The patents were selected using search functions of electronic patent databases with the keywords listed below. To reduce their number, the relevancy score of the electronic database was used to decide upon their importance in a first automatic step. The date of publication was limited mainly to the years 2007 to 2009. Non-relevant patents were excluded from the list. The remaining patents are classified and discussed. The present review shows that revolutionary new ideas of safety systems are rare at the moment. Future developments will involve more reliable technologies at lower costs that can be implemented in the complete car fleet to become effective for a statistical relevant reduction of traffic accident consequences. Safe and reliable X-by-wire technologies will enable mechatronic systems with enhanced driver assist functionalities. It will be necessary to provide safety systems with intuitive usability and functionalities that involve the driver in the loop. Combination of safety and comfort functions will be extended in future to allow systems that are beneficial not only in emergency situations. An important issue is the standardisation, security and data privacy in communication technologies as well as solving legal aspects of introduction of advanced mechatronic technologies.
The effect of UV radiation on the thermal, structural and mechanical properties of Bayfol CR6-2 polymer samples has been investigated. These samples were exposed to different energy fluences of UV in the range 10-200 J/cm2. Simultaneous thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) and differential thermal analysis (DTA) have been performed on Bayfol samples of 0.3 mm thickness. The structural modifications in the UV irradiated Bayfol samples have been studied as a function of fluence using Fourier Transform Infrared spectroscopy. In addition, the mechanical properties of the irradiated and non irradiated samples were studied. The results indicate that the irradiation of Bayfol polymer at the fluence range 130-200 J/cm2, leads to cross-linking process that strengthens the polymer against thermal degradation. The results of FTIR and mechanical measurements indicated that the scission takes place at the carbonate site with the formation of hydroxyl group. Also, at the fluence range 0-130 J/cm2, the standard chains and a great number of chain ends weaken and the material may become softer. This paper also reviews recent developments along with some patents. It concentrates on solving the low thermal stability of the material due to some structural defects during polymerization process. The attempts to decrease these defects and improving the thermal stability help in using these materials in industry applications.
In comparison with vertical hinge doors which they are attached at the front-facing edge of the door to the vehicles pillars, gull-wing doors are hinged at the roof enabling the passenger to egress and ingress into the vehicle far easier. This is due to the increased area created by the upward motion of the door. By using the gull-wing doors, the need for extra space between parallel-parked cars also decreases. The use of gull-wing doors for vehicles is born out of its necessity rather than an innate desire to use this type of door feature. This could be for a variety of reasons. The most common reason being that the cooling ducts and radiators are found in the sills left and right of the vehicles doors, which is why gull-wing doors are used primarily in racing cars. The location of the ducts and radiators eliminate the use of conventional opening mechanisms and create the need for gull-wing doors. The door hinges act as a means of pivoting a door from an open and closed position, but must also withstand sufficient loads to protect passenger against injury during collision. In this paper, a review of various design possibilities for gull-wing door hinges specifically for automotive applications from available patents has been discussed and the advantage and disadvantage of each design highlighted.
The aim of this paper is to present the developed procedure for the simulation of the hot rolling process also referring to some patents. Rolling is a 3D process but using the generalized plane strain method, the real 3D problem can be solved using 2D Finite Element Model (FEM), saving an important computing time. Thus, this procedure is really useful to give assistance in the roll design and to obtain the stock cross-section temperature distribution in the whole rolling process. On the other hand, it is also presented the thermo-mechanical characterization of the R260 quality steel, 0.7% C pearlitic steel, commonly used in rail rolling. Finally, the procedure is applied to simulate the UIC-60 rail hot rolling. A good agreement between FEM results and the sample shapes was obtained in the ArcelorMittal, S.A. rail mill facility in Asturias (Spain).
In this paper, the effect of three main parameters: a) welding speed, b) cooling rate of fluid flow through the main pipe; and c) number of welding passes, have been studied to obtain an effective method to reduce the burn-through risk during the in-service welding of AISI-316 pipe branch connection to perform hot-tapping. In addition, important patents regarding the new methods of hot-tapping have been reviewed. To carry out numerical simulation, a 3D Finite Element (FE) based thermo-mechanical model has been developed. Using this model, thermo-mechanical stresses and temperature distribution along the main-pipe wall-thickness have been obtained with maximum and minimum allowable welding speeds; and with two high and low level of steam flow rate through the main pipe. The Von-Mises yield criterion using the temperature dependent yield stress has been used to check the main pipe failure during the welding process. The results show that current techniques, including API recommendations, which only rely on the observation of the main-pipe inner wall temperature, do not take into account the effect of mechanical or thermal stresses due to the inline pressure or other working parameters which have significant role in burn-through. In addition, the results show that the increase of welding speed reduces the risk of burn-through but it increases the risk of hot cracking. On the other hand, decreasing the steam flow rate has the opposite effect. It has also been shown that using smaller electrode size is the most effective way to decrease burn-through risk.