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Constraining Movement of a Work Tool or Linkage to Prevent Interference or Damage

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000242490D
Publication Date: 2015-Jul-20
Document File: 2 page(s) / 46K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Work vehicles may have work tools attached to them via a linkage that allows movement of the work tool relative to a chassis of the vehicle. Certain linkage designs permit sufficient movement that it is possible for the work tool or portions of the linkage to move so far that it comes into contact with the chassis of the vehicle. When this occurs, it may interfere with the operation of the work vehicle, or the work tool, linkage, or chassis may be damaged by the contact or bind such that further effort is required to unbind the linkage and/or work tool. In order to avoid such interference or damage, the work vehicle may include a controller or control system which monitors the position (including orientation), velocity, and/or acceleration of the work tool, linkage, and/or chassis, and slows, stops, or issues an alert if there is a risk of interference or contact between the work tool, linkage, and chassis. This controller may be configured to calculate envelopes in which the work tool and linkage may operate, or, conversely, the controller may be configured to calculate one or more envelopes in which the work tool and linkage should not operate, should only operate at a reduced speed or force, or should be allowed to operate but with an alarm given to the operator of the work vehicle.

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Constraining Movement of a Work Tool or Linkage to Prevent Interference or Damage

Work vehicles may have work tools attached to them via a linkage that allows movement of the work tool relative to a chassis of the vehicle. Certain linkage designs permit sufficient movement that it is possible for the work tool or portions of the linkage to move so far that it comes into contact with the chassis of the vehicle. When this occurs, it may interfere with the operation of the work vehicle, or the work tool, linkage, or chassis may be damaged by the contact or bind such that further effort is required to unbind the linkage and/or work tool.

In order to avoid such interference or damage, the work vehicle may include a controller or control system which monitors the position (including orientation), velocity, and/or acceleration of the work tool, linkage, and/or chassis, and slows, stops, or issues an alert if there is a risk of interference or contact between the work tool, linkage, and chassis. This controller may be configured to calculate envelopes in which the work tool and linkage may operate, or, conversely, the controller may be configured to calculate one or more envelopes in which the work tool and linkage should not operate, should only operate at a reduced speed or force, or should be allowed to operate but with an alarm given to the operator of the work vehicle.

To enable this controller to function, sensors may be attached to the work tool, linkage, and chassis to allow position, velocity, and/or acceleration to be monitored. Using data from such sensors (e.g., potentiometers, accelerometers, gyros, inclinometers, LVDTs), and other data available to the controller such as commands given to hydraulic pumps, valves, or other actuators which may move the work tool, linkage, and chassis, the controller may determine the current position and path of each of the work tool, linkage, and chassis. For example, the position of the work tool may be determined by sensing the angular position of a boom relative to a chassis to which it is pivotally connected, sensing the angular position of an arm relative to the boom to which it is pivotally connected, sensing the angular position of a work tool relative to the arm to which it is pivotally connected, and calculating the position of the work tool based on this combination of angular measurements.

The current position and path of these components may then be compared with a static envelope wh...