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Publication numberUS1150311 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 17, 1915
Filing dateMay 21, 1908
Priority dateMay 21, 1908
Publication numberUS 1150311 A, US 1150311A, US-A-1150311, US1150311 A, US1150311A
InventorsElmer A Sperry
Original AssigneeElmer A Sperry
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Ship's gyroscope.
US 1150311 A
Images(4)
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

P8308 OR lnsmsll E. A. SPERRY. SHIPS GYROSCOPB APPLICATION man M21. 1903.

1,150,311 Patentd Aug. 17, 1915.

WITNE8-5 E-s PAW a.

COLUMBIA PLANOuRArl-l co. WASHINGTON. D. c.

E. A. SPERRY.

SHIPS GYROSCOPE.

APPLICATION FILED MAY 21. 1908. 1,1 50,31 1 Patented Aug. 17, 1915.

4 SHEETS-SHEET 3.

WITNESSES COLUMBIA PLANOORAPH co.. WASHINGTON, n. c.

E. A. SPERRY.

SHIPS GYROSCOPE.

APPLICATION FILED MAY 21, 1908.

1,150,31 1 1 Patented Aug. 17", 1915.

4 SHEETS-SHEET 4.

W1T1V [NV NTOR' 1 7/? 1 {40% QB 7 COLUMBIA PLANOORAPH :0" WASHINGTON. D. c.

UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE.

ELMER A. SPERRY, OF BROOKLYN, NEW YORK.

SHIPS G-YROSCOPE.

Application filed May 21, 1908.

-ticularly as applied to bodies in normally stable equilibrium but susceptible to oscillations,-as ships, for example.

Certain subject matter in this application,- .such as the broad idea of a. controllable mechanical precession for a gyroscope; the primary actuator or controlling pendulum; the combination of an artificially precessed gyroscope with a body in stable equilibrium; and the application of gyroscopes to rolling as well as to stabilizing ships,-is disclosed in my application Ser. N 0. 411,017, means for imparting stability to or moving ships or other bodies, filed J an. 15, 1908, and is continued in this application.

. It has been known that gyrosco-pes mounted in swinging frames pivoted in a plane transverse of a ship would reduce the rolling to some extent,the remaining roll of 'the ship being depended upon to give the motion to the gyroscope by which, through gyroscopic forces, its frame was caused to swing fore-and-aft, to create the transverse stabilizing forces. Such apparatus was sluggish, did not act effectively until the ship had acquired considerable momentum, and hence was only partially successful in dampening the rolling. It was entirely ineifective in causing the vessel to roll artificially, in cases where that was desirable.

One object of my invention is to provide means whereby the necessary swingof the gyroscope frame is produced without waiting for the roll of the ship or other body to appreciably develop, so that the gyroscope ecomes active promptly on incipient rolling and usually continues to exert its efi'ect until the ship rolls back in the other direction.

To attain this I swing the gyroscope frapae mechanically and under perfect contro Since the precession is mechanically produced and controlled, my apparatus may be used either to suppress the natural rolling Specification of Letters Patent.

Patented Aug. 1'7, 1915.

Serial No. 434,045.

of the ship, or tocause a ship to roll artificially, as may be desirable.

In connection with bodies in unstable equilibrium small gyroscopes have been used in which the precession was accelerated artificially by the use of falling weights or by pressing the rapidly rotating spindle of the gyroscope wheel against a rack or friction surface, in order to continually reverse the falling motion of the unstable body,by throwing it to one side and the other of the central. position. The violence of the swing thus imparted made the use of such means inapplicable to large gyroscopes; and the system could only be used with bodies in unstable equilibrium since the precession was always accelerated and the resulting righting impulse of very brief duration. The briefness of the precession movement, together with the fact that it was out of phase with the movement of the body, made the system totally inapplicable to bodies like ships, which are in normally stable equilibrium and susceptible to prolonged oscillations. The problem which I attacked was not to balance an unstable body, but to control the oscillations of a stable body. To do this, I make a mechanical precession substantially in phase with the oscillations of the body.

Accordingly another object of my invention is to make a mechanically controlled gyroscope which may be used with large bodies as well as small; which I attain by controlling the swing of the gyroscope frame both as to speed and duration, through motor means which may operate without shock and with any desired velocity,-either greater or less than the free precessional velocity. In short, I provide a fully controllable precession. And further, in order that my gyroscope may be applied to control oscillations of stable bodies, I arrange an automatic controller to operate the precession engines substantially in phase with the oscillations of the body,so that for example, when a ship is having a motion in oscillation, the precession engines will continually energize the gyroscope; and at the moments when the ship ceases to have such motion, the precession engines will cease to energize the gyroscope.

Other objects of my invention are to provide means for swiveling the entire gyroscope structure so that it may be operated in any desired direction; for looking it in the desired position; for locking any or all of the swinging frames whereby the gyroscope may be made idle, (incapable of doing work), partially or wholly.

Further objects are to provide sensitive automatic means for energizing the controller, and an intermediate control drum by which the gyroscope may be made to perform any desired movements.

The means I employ are briefly (1) a gyroscope pivoted to oscillate or precess relative to the body, (2) motor means producing or controlling the precession of the gyroscope,-.the motor means being susceptible of regulation and definite control, so that the duration and intensity of the stresses are controlled, (3) a controller, preferably automatic, for the precession motor, operating it in step with the move- -ments of the ship or other body so that natural oscillations of the ship may be either created or suppressed. To simplify the description the above elements will be analyzed separately and then their conjoint operation will be shown.

In the drawings forming a part of this specification, Figure 1 is a view of a gyroscope mounted on a swivel base. Fig. 2 is a'vertical section of a preferred embodiment 0f the invention, parts being shown in elevation. Fig.- 3 is a diagrammatic elevation of a modified form. Fig. 4 is a plan view of means for operating two gyroscope sets. Fig. 5 is an elevation of a controlling pendulum. Fig. 6 is an elevation of a further control apparatus.

Similar reference characters refer to like parts throughout the several views.

To make the gyroscopes operate automatically,-on shipboard for example,a device responsive to the motion of the ship (especially the incipient motion) must be provlded, in order that the motors be energized in the proper manner as the ship rolls. The device must be sensitive yet powerful enough to be able to operate switches, valves or other controlling means for the motors. Any suitable means might be used, and I will now describe one form of inertia device of the pendulum type which I prefer.

Referring to Fig. 5, a pendulum rod 45 is provided at its lower end with a heavy weight 46. The pendulum may be locked when desired by the pin 48 being engaged by the sleeve 49 which is vertically slidable in the fixed sleeve 47. Normally, however, the pendulum hangs freely so as to main tain a steady vertical position irrespective of the motion of the ship. To this end it is hung from the pivots 50, whose axis is longitudinal of the ship,-the pivots 50. being in turn supported in the ring 51 which is mary control devices except a small contact button 55 and its battery lead.

In detai1,-fixed to one of the hangers 54 is a reversible double-field motor 66, which through worm gearing drives the worm wheel 67, keyed to the shaft 59. The shaft 59 is mounted in suitable bearings at the ends of the hangers 54 and carries a frictlon drum 71.

Frictionally mounted on the drum 71 isthe conducting band 7 0,the degree of friction being adjusted by the clamping screw 72. The band 7 0 carries the contact switch finger 7 3 which swings between the contact plates 74 and 7 5,the contact plates forming the two poles of a reversing switch, by means of which the operation of the stabilizing gyroscopes is ultimately controlled.

One terminal of a suitable source of electricity B is connected to the pendulum rod 45 which carries the contact button 55. Spring contacts 5657 cotiperate with the two sides of the button 55, and are carried on a traveling sleeve or nut 58 which is internally screw-threaded to correspond to the threads on the shaft 59. These threads on the shaft 59 are preferably of long pitch so that, for example, one turn of the screw 59 would cause the nut 58 to travel from one end bearing to the other. The sleeve or nut 58 is longitudinally guided and prevented from rotation by guides sliding on the crossbar 60. The two contacts 56 and 57 are each connected to their respective terminals on the reversing double-field motor 66, to which is also connected the other terminal of the source of electric current B. Thus if the button 55 swings against the contact 56, the motor 66 will be run in one direction, and if the button 55 swings against the other contact 57, the motor 66 will be run in the other direction.

Since the pendulum 45 is universally supported on two sets of pivots, it is unaffected by either rolling or pitching of the ship; while the hangers 54 and their attached parts, having only the transverse pivots 5353, must roll with the ship, though unaffected by the pitching of the ship. Hence both parts of the apparatus are unaffected by the pitching of the ship, but the frame 5454 and its attached parts will move relatively to the pendulum 45 to the extent that the ship rolls. a

The operation of the inertia device or controlling pendulum as applied to either causing or suppressing the rolling of a ship search tion is therefore as follows. Assume the looking sleeve 49 pulled down and the pendulum 45 to be hanging free as shown; when the ship rolls to the right the lugs 5252 and pivots 5353, together with the hangers 54.54 and all their attached parts, will be turned in a clockwise direction,-while the pendulum 45 and its contact button 55 hang stationary. This, at the very beginning of conducted through the wire 75, and when contacts 74k or 75 are maintained so long as the swing of the ship continues.

Thus I have provided a means whereby a strong electric current may be reversed in accord with the reversing of the roll of the ship,-the means being sensitive in action the roll, will cause the spring contact 56 to yet unaflected by undesirable external influpress against the button 55, completing one ences which might cause periodic d1sturbof the circuits through the motor 66, and ances. Instead of connecting the wires 74 and causing it to drive the worm wheel 67 in a 75 directly to the precession motor or motors, direction to cause the nut 58 to travel towhich would involve heavy currents passward the right. The speed of travel of the ing through the simple controller above nut 58 is arranged to be greater than that described, this controller operates the moof the button 55 relative to the contact 56, tors through a relay or intermediate conso that the slightest contact at 5556 will trolling device which is adapted to start and cause the nut 58 to move to break the constop the flow of energy to the precession 2o tact. Thus the nut 58 will be fed along at motors. Where complex movements or sethe same rate as the button 55 moves, yet ries of movements are desired to be autothere will be no appreciable pressure h matically performed, the intermediate detween the button 55 and th Contact 56 50 Vice or relay may be of the drum controller that the pendulum 45 will continue to be type as shown in Fig. 6,--the drum conundisturbed in its vertical position in space. troller operating to drive the motors in one Conversely, when the ship starts to roll to direction or the other according as the electhe left, the connection will be mad betric current is received through the wire 7% tween the button 55 and the Contact spring or wire 75. The conducting bands on the 57, which will complete the other circuit of drum of such a controller may be spaced so the motor 66, to run it in the reverse di that they will pass under the brushes in any tion, and turn the shaft 59 to feed the nut desired sequence, so that the motors and 58 toward the left. In this manner the part brakes of the gyroscope may be energized 58 will be seen to follow delicately the movend de ne g zed i a y p ea r nged ments of the pendulum 45 in either direcquence. An example of such a controller tion and always stand in readiness to be re- Will be des r bed in Connec ion With the sponsive to a minute but predetermined m re 0 1111 16X operations Which the gyromovement. Thecontacts 55, 56 and 57 are scope may perform. made when the pendulum has moved rela- I have now shown means whereby the motive to the body through a small and almost tive fluid of the gyroscopes engines and inappreciable are, which may be known brakes is automatically supplied and conherein as representing the incipient movelled a cording o the roll of he ship. I ment or oscillation of the body or ship. will now proceed to describe a preferred Since the shaft 59 turns in one direction form of gyroscope with means for controlor the other according as the ship rolls, the ling the same.

comparatively heavy contact finger 73 will Fig. 1 shows a simple model with manbe swung forward or back because of th ual control adapted for demonstration purfriction of the band 70 on the drum 71, a poses to illustrate gyroscopio principles. It the latter is turned by the shaft 59. Thu will be first described in order to assist in as the ship rolls to the right, the haft 59 the understanding of the more complex dewill turn so as to swing the finger 73 back vice shown in Fig. 2. w 7

against the contact 75,continued motion Secured to the structure 18 which is to be of the shaft 59 merely turning the drum 71 steadied is the pivot pin 99, on which is frictlonally 1n the then stationary band 70. swivelly mounted the base 17 of the lower The electric current is then led through the gyroscope frame 17. This base 17 is shown contact sw1tch finger 73 to the contact and as held from turning by the lugs 45l6 wire 75,the contact switch finger 73 being engaging the pin 46. which may be set in connectedto a suitable source of electricity, any one of the holes 57. The base 17 may as the swltch 123, Fig. 6. WVhen the ship accordingly be locked in any position, or starts to roll to the left, the rotation of the may be rotated by the handle 4-3 through shaft 59 in the opposite direction,-through any desired angle,-as 180 for example. the reversing of the motor 66,causes the Branching up from the base 17 are the two finger 7 3 to be swung out against the conarms 17-17 which carry the base ring- 15 tact 74. Hence as the ship starts to roll pivoted at 161G. The base ring 15 may 65 to the right a strong electric current canbe be tilted by the handle 4-4, and carries the rotor ring 27 pivoted at 28-28, at right angles to the pivots '16-16. In the rotor ring 27 is the gyroscope rotor or flywheel 34, carried on the shaft 35, and spun by the motor 36. The rotor ring 27 may be locked by the band brake 40 attached through the extensions 11 to the base ring 15 at 4;2. A similar brake 41 may obviously be applied to any of the frames, as for example, to lock able means for moving or locking the three pivoted frames. Here, as in Fig. 1, the numeral 18 refers to the structure to which the gyroscope is secured and against which its force ultimately acts, as for example the frame or deck of a ship. The location of the gyroscope mechanism in theship is immaterial from a mechanical standpoint,- since by the laws of mechanics a given torque couple has the same torque effect on a turn- 1ng body irrespective of the distance from the center about which the body is turning. The location of the gyroscope plant is then in practice determined solely by considerations of convenience. To this frame or deck 18 is secured the fixed base 80, having the pivot pin 99. Rotatably mounted on the pin 99 is the swiveling base 17, supported by the roller thrust bearings 114: under the flange 109. The movements of this swiveling base 17' are controlled by the rack bar 103 turning the pinion 101 which is fixed to swiveling base 17 The roller 110 serves to hold the rack bar 103 in mesh with the swivel pinion 104, and the rack bar is moved and locked by any suitable means, as for example, the hydraulic cylinder 101 and the piston rod 102 shown in Fig. 1, controlled through the valve chest 111 and valve rods 112.

Rising from the swiveling base 17 are the arms 17-17, to which is pivoted at 1616 the base ring 15, (shown in section),

which extends in Fig. 2 horizontally around the rotor 34;, just as in Fig. 1. Pivotally mounted within the base ring 15 is the rotor ring 27, extended in Fig. 2 into a frame which envelops the rotor 34, this rotor ring or frame 27 being pivoted at 28-28 to the base ring 15,the pivotal axis 28-28 being at right angles to the pivotal axis 16-16, and lgth being at right angles to the pivot axis In order to move and lock the base ring 15 there is attached to it on the left hand which terminates in a gear segment at 15 which engages with the teeth of a gear 98,

the latter being rotatably mounted on the upper part of the pivot pin 99. The gear 98 is keyed to the motor97, having a commutator 117 by which the current is led into the motor, and magnetic brakes 100 by which the motor 97,-(and consequently the gear 98 and frame 15),may be locked against motion when desired. The gear segment on the arm 15 is held in contact with the gear 98 by means of the roller 115. Means are thus provided to move and lock the base ring 15 as desired.

In order to move and lock the rotor ring or frame 27, which is pivoted at 2828, there is provided the gear segment 95 secured to the frame 27 by the arms 95. This gear segment 95 meshes with the bevel gear segment 96, which is pivoted at right angles to the gear 95 by means of the trunnion 16 which is journaled to turn freely within the main pivotbearing 16. The gear segment 96 is operated through a depending arm which curves down and terminates in the gear segment 81 whose teeth mesh with the teeth of the gear 98, rotatably mounted on the upper end of the fixed pivot 99, (independent of the gear 104), and driven and controlled by the motor 97 and magnetic brakes 100, as described. Readily controllable mean s are thus provided to operate the gears controlling the swing of the rotor frame 27, in which the rotor or flywheel of the gyroscope is journaled. This rotor or flywheel of the gyroscope, from which the stabilizing forces are obtained, consists of a heavy, carefully balanced wheel 34: carried by the shaft 35 which is journaled in suitable lateral and thrust hearings in the frame 27 and rotated at a high but safe speed by the motor 36. The rotating parts are preferably inclosed in a vacuum casing 113, in order to reduce the air friction, and to keep the motor 36 from overheating, the ra diating fins 116 are provided. The bearings are lubricated by suitable means, as for example the oil cup 44. The electric current to operate the various motors and brakes is led in through the individual slip rings indicated diagrammatically at 128130, thus permitting the motors and brakes to be operated when the gyroscope is turned in any direction.

While I have above described a controlling mechanism operated by electricity, it is to be understood that any type of motor or engine may be used provided that it is susceptible to a nice control. The fact that a slight movement of the gyroscope frames creates powerful gyroscopic forces makes an indefinite control dangerous. Fig. 3 for example shows the control engines of the pis- 105. The rotor supporting ring 27 is oscillated by the bevel gear 95 secured thereto,

which in turn meshes with the gear segment 96 which is pivoted in the bearing 16 turning'freely within the bearing 16. The gear segment 96 is driven through the piston rod 118 by an individual cylinder 106,as CllS-l tinguished from Fig. 2 where the single motor 9-? operated both frames. For the purposes of economy the cylinders 105 and 106 are cross-coupled, in order that the fluid *used as a brake in one may be used to drive the other. If it is desired to omit the swivelingvfeature of Fig. 2, the frame 17, (shown broken away in Fig. 3), together with the v operating cylinders 105 and 106 may be secured to the deck or frame of the ship 18 as shown in Fig. 3. But if the swiveling feature is desired, the cylinders 105 and 106 may be secured to the swiveling pedestal 17 its is done with the operating motors in In Fig. 4 means are illustrated for swiveling and locking the gyroscope. It is shown as applied to a pair of gyroscopes. The

. use of a pair of gyroscopes prevents the steering being affected, as is well known, the rotors spinning in opposite directions so that when the ship turns they counteract each other. 'The view in Fig. 4 is a hori- 1 zontal section taken through the gear 104 of Fig. 2, which it will be recalled is secured to the gyroscope frame 17 The fixed pivot 09 on which the gear 104 turns rises from the base 80 which is secured to the ship. The thrust plate or flange which supports the weight of the gyroscope structure is indicated at 109. Cotiperating with the gear or pinion 104 is the rack bar 103, connected to the piston rod 102, driven by the cylinder 101. The fiuid in the cylinder is controlled by suitable valves in the valve chest 111, operated by the valve stems 112.

The roller bearings 110 hold the racks 103 in place. The mechanism of the two sets shown in'Fig. 4 is identical.

I have now described mechanism sensitive to the roll of the ship which releases energ the direction of the flow of energy being reversed as the roll of the ship reverses. I have also shown means adapted to receive this energy, or a relay thereof, and to apply it through definitely responsive yet powerful engines to the frames which swing were; an must the gyroscope flywheel,-that is, which cause the axis of the gyroscope rotor to precess.

I will now describe the principles on which the gyroscopic force is created which may operate to stabilize a ship or to exert a torque for any other desired purpose. Considering first Fig. 1, assume the rotor 34 to be spinning counter-clockwise as viewed from the top,-that is, the near side of the wheel to be moving toward the right. Then if'the top of the rotor frame 27 is tilted to the right, the result will be a strong force tending to lift the near side of the base ring 15, and to depress the far'side. That is, tilting of the axis of the gyroscope in the plane 1635 creates a powerful torque or force-couple in the plane 2835, which is at right angles to the first plane in which the original movement occurred. Conversely, tilting the top of the rotor frame 27 back toward the left will reverse the direction of the torque or force-couple on the base ring 15, depressing the near side and raising the far side of the base ring 15. Thus it is clear that if the base ring 15 were connected with a ship, then the fore-and-aft tilting of the rotor ring 27 would develop a transverse torque on the base ring 15 which might be used to oppose the roll of the ship.

Still considering Fig. 1, if the rotor ring 27 is left free, (except as partially retarded by the brake 40), and the base ring 15 is depressed on the near side, the top of rotor ring 27 will swing strongly to the right. Such movement to the right by the ring 27 causes a lifting force on the near side of the base ring 15, as stated in the preceding paragraph. The result is that when we depress the base ring 15, the ensuing tilt of the rotor ring 27 causes a force on the base ring 15 tending to lift the depressed side. Thus if applied to stabilizing a ship, with the axis 16-10 fore-and-aft, and the axis 28-28 transverse of the ship as before stated, then if the ship started to roll downward on the near side, swinging the top of the gyroscope toward the observer, the roll would be opposed by depressing the near side of the ring 15 and swinging the top of the ring 27 toward the right. The mere fact that the ring 15 was rotated in the direction that the ship rolled would tend to steady the ship, since the reaction torque would be in the opposite direction to the roll,action and reaction being equal and in opposite directions. But the main stabilizing torque would be due to the swing of the ring 27 toward the right. The resulting torque due to the movement of the latter ring is very powerful, and tends to twist the base frame 15 and the whole gyroscopic structure away from the observer, thus steadying the ship. The principal advantage of depressing the base ring 15 at all is to thus aid the motors which tilt the rotor ring 27,'since the depressing of the near side of the base ring urges, (through the described gyroscopic efi'ect), the rotor ring 27 in the same direction in which the precession motors would be moving it.

When the ship rolls in the other direction,

the direction of movement of all the parts should be reversed, as is evident. If the gyroscope in Fig. 1 had the frames 27 and 15 locked in the position shown, the whole structure could be swiveled on the base pivot 99 Without developing any gyroscopic force. Thus the set could be freely swiveled to act in any desired direction.

Referring now to Fig. 2, assume by way of example the rotor 34. to be spinning in a counter-clockwise direction as viewed from .above,--that is, the near side of the rotor 34 to be moving toward the right. If the device is to steady the rolling of a ship, as sume the pivots 1616 to be parallel to the longitudinal axis of the ship, which would make the pivots 28 transverse of the ship. Now consider the actuator illustrated in Fig. 5, where the pivot lugs 52 are mounted transverse of the ship. Whenthe ship rolls to the left in Fig. 5, or toward the observer in Fig. 2, the actuator in Fig. 5 will send the current through the contact 74:. This current, either directly or through a suitable relay, will energize the precession motor 97 to spin clockwise, as viewed from above. The energy is led into the motor 97 from the outside source through the slip rings 130-128 and commutator 117, as has been described. The motor 97 turning as stated will rotate the gear 98 keyed thereto, so that the teeth on the right hand side of the fixed pivot 99 move toward the observer. This will swing the meshing gear segment 81 toward the observer, thus rotating the attached gear 96 downward, which turns the gear 95 and the attached frame 27 in a clockwise direction. Thus the rotor axis 35 in the frame 27 is tilted to the right. This gives the stabilizing force desired, since it tends to swing the structure away from the observer, in the opposite direction to the assumed roll of the ship. Conversely, when the ship rolls in the other direction, the actuator shown in Fig. 5 operates to send the current through the contact 75, which accordingly causes the motor 97 to rotate in the opposite direction, which through the gearing described, tilts the rotor frame 27 in the opposite direction, or to the left, causing the gyroscopic torque to be reversed, i. 0., tending to swing the top of the structure toward the observer, and so opposing the backward roll of the ship.

Since the speed of the motor can be regulated the rate and period of the precessional swing of the ring 27 can be adjusted,

and the strength and duration of the gyroscopic forces accordingly can be controlled. It is 'thus possible to use the gyroscope 1n powerful units, and so to stabilize ships.

To assist in swinging the rotor ring 27 the base ring 15 is provided. This base ring 15 is connected through the gear segment 15 to the left hand side of the gear 98. Then as the gear 98, driven by the motor 97, turns in a clockwise direction, (viewed from above), so as to tilt the rotor frame 27 toward the right, (through the ears 8l9695), the gear segment 15 will e swung backward, thus tilting thenear side of the base ring 15 downward. But the gyroscopic effect of depressing the near side of the base ring 15, as explained in connection with Fig. 1, is to urge the rotor frame 27 to swing to the right. Thus by gearing to the frame 15 as well as to the frame 27, the gyroscopic reactions of the ring 15 are made to aid the gears'on the frame 27 to swing the latter frame in the desired direction.

Since the tilting of the frame 27 to the right or the left, fore-or-aft of the ship, creates a powerful unbalanced torque transverse of the ship, it is evident from the general law that action and reaction are equal that the torque so created must be absorbed by the body to which the apparatus is attached,namely, by the ship. Taking for example the case where the top of the ship rolls toward the observer, and the top of the rotor frame 27 is then tilted to the right by the operation of the precession motor 97;- the eflect of this tilting to the right is to create a strong torque in the gyroscope frame 27 tending to turn the top rotor bearing in the frame 27 away from the observer and to swing the lower bearing of the rotor toward the observer,in other words, to twist exactly opposite to the roll of the ship. But this twist or torque is resisted by the frames 15 and 17, and the arms connected thereto, which not only do not allow the rotor frame to turn in response to its gyroscopic torque forces, but the whole structure is compelled to swing against the gyroscopic torque since it is secured to the rolling ship,and the great gyroscopic torque merely acts as a brake to resist or diminish the rolling of the ship.

en it is desired to cause the ship to roll artificially, the operation of the apparatus is precisely the same as has been described, though the direction of application of the gyroscopic forces is of course reversed. The apparatus here shown is equally applicable to stabilizing or to rolling, depending on the direction in which it is run. The description has referred to the case of stabilizing merely for the purpose of illustration, and its uses are much more far reaching.

The above effects which involve merely the starting and stopping of the motor 97 might be obtained without using any further controller than that illustrated in Fig.

to the contact finger 73, shown in both Fig. and Fig. 6. The finger 73 swings against either the contact 74: or 75, depending on the action of the primary actuator shown in 5. But when more complicated operations Fig. 5. The contacts 74 and 75 are conne ct are desired, a controller of a type suitable ed by the wires 74 and respectively with for operating a plurality of motors and a pair of brushes which contact with sepabrakes must of course be used. Such a eonrate conducting bands surrounding the petroller is shown in Fig. 6. In the preferred riphery 76 of the controller drum, and reform which I have shown in Fig. 2 the gyrospectively connected with the brushes 7 7 75 scope is pivoted about three different axes, and 76 at each end of the drum, which lead each at right angles to the other two, and d wn through the arms 62 and 61 respecthe rotor may be swung about any or all of tively to the magnets 79 and 7 8. Thus these axes, since each has its controlling 1110- when the contact finger 7 3 swings in one d1- tor and brakes. Thus, by suitable regularection the magnet 79 is energized, and 60 tion of the motors, the gyroscope wheel may When the contact finger 73 swings in the 'be given any desired precession in ny d other dlrection the magnet 7 8 is energized. sired direction, and the rotor may be tilted The magnets 79 and 78 serve to tilt a and swung into any plane whatsoever. base 86 about the plvot 87 to the right or the With this gyroscope, or one constructed on left, the t lting base being held in its exsubstantially the same principles, any and treme position in either direction by the every gyroscopic efiect may be obtained that spring 88, whose roller tip cooperates with is possible with a single gyroscope. an extension of the tilting arm. Mounted Fig. 6 shows how a controller of the ordion the tllting table 86 are two sets of brushes nary dru n controller type may be applied 84: and 85, arranged 011 opposite sides 0f the 90 to a gyroscope set of the nature described to controller drum 82. Each numeral 84 and prod ce ny d ired eri f tio A 85 represents a whole set of brushes extendis well known, a drum controller,'such as is ing axially along the drum, each brush beused on streetcars for eXample,-consists of ing connected with the motor, brake, or a rotatable cylindrical drum havi g on it whatever mechanism it is to control. At 83 periphery a number of bands or segment of is shown the main brush or pair of brushes conducting material. Arranged usually which continually contact with bands or slip along in a line are a series of stationary rings on the drum connected with the varibrushes which contact with the conducting ous conducting segments for the sets of bands or segments a the drum turns. Th brushes 8% and 85. The sets of brushes 84.- currents are generally led into the controller and 85 alternately engage the segments -.on by brushes which contact with continuous the drum as the table 86 is tilted,for exbands or slip rings, so that their contact is ample, when the contact 7% is made and the not broken in any position of the drum. magnet 7 9 is energized, the brushes 8% are The segments through which the operating swung into contact with the drum, while the current i drawn off are connected t th brushes 85 are swung outof contact. Conmain bands or slip rings, and are made of versely, when the magnet 78 is energized such lengths that they will be in contact through the contact 75, the tilt of the base 86 with their respective brushes for the desired Will throw the brushes 84: out of contact with length of time as the drum revolves. Such the drum and the brushes 85 into contact.

drum controllers are very flexible, since by By arranging two sets of brushes in this suitably arranging the number of brushes manner, so that ei h se y be automatiand by suitably spacing the segments on the cally thrown into contact with its segments periphery of the drum, any number of on the controller drum, it is evident that by brushes can be connected to the source of appropriately arranging the conducting segpower in any predetermined sequence and ments and brushes any desired series of confor any predetermined period. nections on the drum may be made when one Such a controller may be adapted to a deset of brushes is in contact, and this series vice such as a gyroscope, which must automay be repeated with a reversed direction of matically reverse, by the means shown in current flow by interchanging the poles Fig. 6. The drum of the controller is when the other set of brushes is in contact. shown at 82, viewed from the end, and is lVhile one set of brushes remains in contact continuously turned in a constant direction with the drum, the period during which any by the motor 89 driving the worm gear 90 particular brush will receive current will of through the worm wheel 90*. This motor course depend on the length of the segment 8-9 is connected through the switch 119 and which it touches and the speed of rotation contact 124 to a source of electrical energy, of the drum. So by adjusting the speed of marked The same switch has another the motor 89, the operations controlled by contact 123 from which the electric current the drum may be made to occur with any .5 18 led as described in connection with Fig. 5 desired rapidity,while the relative duration of the periods of the individual brushes will be determined by the relative lengths of the segments on the periphery of the controller drum. In cases where the period of oscillation of the oscillating body is known, the control may be effected by rotating a controller cylinder after the manner of 82 synchronously with the period of oscillation.

Having shown how by an adaptation of the ordinary drum controller any number of motors, brakes, valves, etc., may be controlled by merely connecting them to the various brushes which are energized by the controller drum,a nd how consequently such motors, brakes, valves, etc., would be operated in any predetermined sequence according to the law of the controller, I will now follow the operation of a gyroscope in which such a control is utilized. For example, it is possible to have the gyroscope shown in Fig. 2 operate in one plane, and then return through difierent planes to its original starting point.

To follow such a series of operations, assume the rotor 34 to be spinning in a counter-clockwise direction as viewed from above,-that is, the near side of the rotor 34: to be moving toward the right. Then assume the drum controller to be turned so as to cut off the electric current to the brushes controlling the brakes 100, and another contact to be made with the brushes energizing the motor 97 to rotate in a clockwise direction about the pivot 99, as viewed from above. This would turn the right hand side of the gear 98 outward and the left hand side inward. The gear segment 15 mesh ing with the left hand side would be swung inward, depressing the near side of the base ring 15, and swinging the top of the rotor spindle toward the observer. Simultaneously the gear segment 81 meshing with the right hand side of the gear 98 is swung outward turning the gear 96 about the pivot 16 in a counter-clockwise direction as viewed from the left, and turning the meshing bevel gear 95 in a clockwise direction. The rotor frame 27 being secured to this gear 95, must then be tilted,the top swinging toward the right. As has been previously described, the result of these motions is to create a powerful torque on the whole system tending to swing the top back away from the observer. By making the gear faces sufliciently long, such motion might be continued through 90, 180, or 360, but there is little practical use in allowing more than 180 swing,or 90 each way from the mid position shown in Fig. 2,-s1nce the stabilizing forces as applied to a ship would cease to act when the rotor axis became parallel to the longitudinal axis of the ship.

., In the case under discussion, having 21- drum 82 would have meanwhile turned so that the brushes leading to the motor 97 would no longer engage their segments on the controller drum, thus stopping the motor 97; while other segments on the controller drum 82 would at the same time engage brushes to apply the magnetic brakes 100. The rotor and base frames 27 and 15 are thus locked in place, with the rotor axis substantially horizontal. During all the above operations the gear 104 controlling the main frame 17 has been locked against rotation by the rack 103 held by the hydraulic pressure in the piston 101, (Fig. 4). The controller drum 82 now being moved to energize any suitable means for the valve rod 112, the valves in the valve chest 111 will be opened to vary the fluid pressure in the cylinder 101, moving the piston rod 102 and rack 103, and turning the gear 104 on the fixed pivot 99, thus turning the main frame 17 and the whole gyroscope structure in either direction as desired. After this motion has continued for 180, the valve stem 112 can again be operated, stopping the flow of fluid in the cylinder 101, and so looking the main frame 17 from further movement. The swiveling movement around the pivot 99, if made while the base 80 is stationary, will require very little power, since there would be no opposing reaction. Now the upper end of the rotor spindle 35, which under the first operation had swung to the right of Fig. 2, will be found at the left of Fig. 2. If the brakes 100 are now released and the motor 97 operated in the reverse direction, (counter-clockwise as viewed from above), the frames 15 and 27 will move as before,-the near side of the base ring 15 being depressed and the top of the rotor frame 27 swinging toward the right. This would repeat the former stabilizing force tending to swing the top of the structure away from the observer, since the movement of the gyroscope rotor in space is precisely as under the first swing. This last swing however may be of twice the duration of the first swing, since it may turn through 180;

or if the duration is made the same, the force would be doubled due to the double velocity of the swing. If the roll of the ship had reversed at any time, the other set of brushes, 84 or 85, on the controller drum 82 would have been swung into contact, and the direction of all the motors, pistons, etc., controlling the gyroscope would be reversed, thus reversing the direction of the gyroscopic stabilizing reaction.

Many other complex movements may be obtained from the apparatus shown in Fig. 2, as will be evident to those skilled in the art. The form shown in Fig. 3, not being pivoted, is not of suchgeneral application, but may be used as well as the form shown in Fig. 2 for most practical purposes.

While I have throughout this specification described in more or less detail certain specific embodiments of my invention, I do not wish to be understood as limited to the particular forms here shown, as many adaptations of the fundamental combinations will be evident to those skilled in the art. Though the invention has been particularly described,-for the purpose of illustration,-as applied to stabilizing a ship against rolling in a seaway, it may also be useful at times to give ships a rolling motion, as in disengaging and withdrawing from rocks and ice-floes, working ofi' sand and mud bars, breaking through ice, life saving, elevating battleship gunfire, coaling, amusement purposes, and various other purposes as will occur to those familiar with the handling of ships. The uses of the device are not limited to ships however, and

capable of a natural oscillation, comprising the combination of a gyroscope mounted to precess in a direction transverse to the plane of oscillation of the mass, controllable means for precessing the gyroscope, and a controller which automatically reverses the action of the controllable means in synchronism with the oscillation of the mass.

2. In a gyroscopic mechanism for oscillating structures, a gyroscope pivotally supported to swing relative to the oscillating structure, a precession engine capable of steady action for controlling the swing of the gyroscope, and an automatic controller for the precession engine.

3. In a gyroscopic mechanism for oscillating structures, a gyroscope mounted to precess relative to the oscillating structure, a precession engine for controlling the precession of the gyroscope, and means for reversing the precession engine at the begin ning of each oscillation of the oscillating structure.

4. In a gyroscopic mechanism for a mass having an appreciable period of oscillation, a gyroscope mounted on said mass for pre cession relative thereto, motive means for controlling the rate of precession of the gyroscope, and an automatic controller for said motive means operating at the period of the oscillating mass.

5. In a gyroscopic mechanism adapted for a mass having extended periods of oscillation, the combination of a gyroscope mounted on said mass for precession relative thereto, motive means controlling the precession and regulating means for the motive means arranged to extend the period of precession through the period of oscillation.

6. A gyroscope, in combination with a precession engine having a constant rate of precession through appreciable periods, for controlling the precession.

7. The combination of an oscillating mass in stable equilibrium, a gyroscope mounted to apply torque to the mass, and means for mechanically causing the precession of said gyroscope.

8. In combination with a mass normall stable but subject to oscillation, a gyroscope pivoted for precession relative to said mass, and motive means for precessing the gyroscope.

9. In combination with a mass normally stable but subject to substantially periodic oscillation, means for applying a torque to said mass comprising a gyroscope mounted for precession relative to said mass, and means for starting the active precession of the gyroscope before the oscillating mass has attained an appreciable velocity.

10. The combination of a gyroscope adapted to be mounted on an oscillating mass for precession relative thereto, motive means for precessin'g the gyroscope, and power absorbing means for opposing the precession of the gyroscope.

11. The combination of a gyroscope mounted for precessional movements, power means for aiding the precessional movements, and means for opposing the precessional movements.

12. The combination of a mass subject to oscillations, a gyroscope adapted to be mounted on the oscillating mass for precession relative thereto, power means for aiding the precessional movements, means opposing the precession, and means operated by the oscillation of the mass for automatically controlling the power means and the opposing means.

13. The combination with a body capable of oscillation, of a gyroscope mounted upon said body, power operated means for causing and controlling the precession Ofthe gyroscope, and an automatic controller for energizing the power operated means at the beginning of each movement of oscillation of the body.

14:. gyroscope pivotally mounted for precesslonal movements, means energized by a motive fluid for causing and controlling the precession of thegyroscope, and automatic actuating means controlling the flow of the energizing motive fluid.

15. The combination with a body subject to oscillation, of a gyroscope pivotally of the gyroscope casing, and mechanism for mounted thereon for precessional movements, means energized by a motive fluid for causing and controlling the precession of the gyroscope, automatic means controlling the flow of the energizing fluid and actuated by. the oscillation of the body.

16. The )D'll)lllflti01i with a body subject to oscillation, of a gyroscope pivotally mounted thereon, a precession engine causmg and controlling the precession of the gyroscope, means controlling the flow of energizing fluid to the precession engine, and an automatic actuator operating the controlling means, the actuator being operated by the oscillation of the body.

17. The combination with a body subject to oscillation, of a gyroscope pivotally mounted for precessional movements thereon, power operated means controlling the precession and adapted to start the preces- S1011 at the beginning of an oscillation of the body, to stop the precession When the movement of the oscillating body stops, and to start the precession in the reverse direction at the beginning of the return swing of the oscillating body.

18. Means for applying gyroscopic forces to an oscillating vessel, comprising in com- .bination controllable gyroscopic means for imparting an oscillating force to the oscillating vessel, and mechanism moving relative to the vessel whereby said means is caused to reverse its action upon the oscillating vessel at regular and predetermined intervals of time.

19. Mechanism for applying gyroscopic forces to an oscillating vessel, comprising the combination of a gyroscope, means for moving its spinning axis in a predetermined path with respect to the oscillating vessel and at intervals corresponding to the pcriodicity of the oscillating vessel.

20. Means for applying gyroscopic forces to an oscillating vessel, comprising the combination of a plurality of gyroscopes, and means, independent of the action of the oscillating vessel, for moving their spinning axes in a predetermined path with respect to the oscillating vessel and at intervals corresponding to the periodicity thereof.

21. Means for applying gyroscopic forces to an oscillating vessel, comprising in combination a gyroscope mounted in the oscillating vessel, a casing within which the gyroscope is capable of spinning and having trunnions extending from its sides the axis of which is at right angles to the spinning axis of the gyroscope, a bracket on each side 1n whlch 1s Journaled one of the trunnions rocking the gyroscope casing upon its trunnions.

22. Means for applying gyroscopic forces to an oscillating vessel, comprising in comblnation a gyroscope, supporting means for said gyroscope which permits a forward and rearward movement of the spinning axis thereof in a predetermined path with respect to the oscillating vessel, and means moving relative to the vessel for imparting to the axis of the gyroscope movement at intervals eorrespomling to the periodicity of the oscillating vessel.

23. Means for applying gyroscoplc forces to an oscillating vessel, comprising in combination a gyroscope, supporting means for said gyroscope which permits a forward and rearward movement of the spinning axis thereof in a predetermined path with respect to the ship, and means moving relative to the vessel for imparting to the axis of the gyroscope movement at intervals corresponding to the periodicity of the oscillating vessel.

24. Means for applying gyroscopic forces to an oscillating vessel comprising in .com bination a plurality of gyroscopes mounted for angular movements relative to the oscillating vessel, power means for causing and controlling the said angular movements of the gyroscopes, and common automatic actuating means for said power means adapted to cause the gyroscopes to operate in synchronism with each other and with the periodicity of the oscillating vessel.

25. The combination with a structure in stable equilibrium, of a gyroscope mounted thereon for swinging movements relative thereto, power operated means for swinging the gyroscope, and an automatic actuator for the power operated means acting at such times as to cause the effect of the gyroscope to supplement the natural forces tending toward stable equilibrium.

26. The combination of a structure having a substantially definite period of oscillation, a gyroscope secured to said structure for oscillating movements relative thereto,- the plane of oscillation of the gyroscope being at an angle to the plane of oscillation of the structure, and power operated means controlling the oscillating movements of the gyroscope, the period of oscillation of the gyroscope being substantially synchronous with the period of oscillation of the structure, so that the moments of quiescence of the two oscillating elements substantially coincide in the cycle of operations.

27. In combination with a structure to which gyroscopic forces are to be applied, a gyroscope, a casing surrounding and inclosing said gyroscope, trunnions on the casing at right angles to the axis of the gyroscope for supporting it for swinging movements relative to the structure, a precession engine, and mechanical means connecting said engine and said casing whereby the casing may be swung upon its trunnions.

28. The combination of a structure to which gyroscopic forces are to be applied,

said structure being capable of oscillation, a gyroscope arranged for precessional movements relative to the structure, power means for controlling the precessional movements of the gyroscope, and an automatic actuator for said power means adapted to cause a precessional movement of the gyroscope to continue until the direction of swing of the oscillating structure reverses, whereupon the automatic actuator is adapted tostop and reverse the precessional movement of the gyroscope.

29. In a gyroscopic mechanism for oscillating structures, the combination of a gyroscope mounted for precessional movements, power operated means'causing the precession, controlling devices controlling the flow of power to the power operated means, and a sensitive actuator responsive to incipient oscillations of the structure.

30. In a gyroscopic mechanism for oscillating structures, the combination of a gyroscope mounted for precessional movements, a precession engine causing the precession, means controlling the precession engine and arranged to be automatically responsive to start the precession upon incipient oscillations of the structure irrespective of the dis tance from mid-position at which a swing of the structure starts.

31. In an automatic actuator for gyroscopes, a pendulum, a structure adapted to move relative to the pendulum, contacts on the pendulum and on the structure, the contact on the structure being movable on the structure so that it may follow the movement of the contact on the pendulum, in order that the actuator shall respond to incipient movement between the structure and the pendulum at any position.

In an automatic actuator for gyroscopes, the combination of a pendulum, a structure adapted for oscillatory movements relative to the pendulum, contacts on the pendulum and structure adapted to reverse the control effect upon reversal of the movelnent of the structure.

In an automatic actuator for gyroscopes, the combination of a pendulum, a structure adapted for oscillatory movements relative to the pendulum, electrical contacts between the pendulum and the structure arranged to be connected on slight relative movement betweenv the pendulum and the structure, the contacts on one of the two parts being arranged to travel relative to that part, so that the electrical contacts remain in close juxtaposition while the structure may have extended movement relative to the pendulum.

34. The combination of a gyroscope, a plurality of frames by which the gyroscope is universally mounted for precessional movements in any direction, mechanical means for tilting said frames relative to each other, brakes for retarding the motion of said frames, and means controlling the ope 'ation of the said mechanical means and the brakes.

In a gyroscope for universal movement, the combination with a tilta-ble structure, of a gyroscope, a plurality of frames connected at angles to each other by whlch the gyroscope is universally mounted upon the structure, a precession engine mounted to tilt with the structure, and mechanical means connecting the precession engine with the innermost one of the plurality of frames whereby precessional movements may be communicated to the gyroscope within the inner frame.

36. The combination, with a marine vessel, of controllable means operating in alternate directions on the vessel for imparting a rocking or oscillating movement thereto, and mechanism whereby said means is caused to reverse the direction of its action upon the vessel at regular and predetermined intervals of time.

37. The combination, with a marine vessel, of controllable means operating to impart a rocking or oscillating movement to the vessel, and mechanism whereby said means is caused to reverse the direction of its action upon the vessel at intervals corresponding to the periodicity of the vessel in actual service.

38. The combination, with a marine vessel, of controllable means for imparting a rocking or oscillating movement to said 100 vessel, and mechanism whereby said means is caused to reverse the direction of its action upon the vessel at regular and predetermined intervals of time.

39. The combination, with a marine ves- 105 sel, of a gyroscope, and'means for moving its spinning axis in a substantially fixed path with respect to the vessel and at intervals corresponding to the periodicity thereof.

40. The combination, with a marine ves- 110 sel, of a. plurality of gyroscopes and means, independent of the action of the vessel, for moving their spinning axes in a substantially fixed path with respect to the 'vessel and at intervals corresponding to the perio- 115 dicity thereof.

4L1. The combination, with a marine vessel, of a gyroscope mounted in the vessel, a casing within which. the gyroscope is capable of spinning and having trunnions ex 120 tending from its sides the axis of which is at right angles to the spinning axis of the gyroscope, a bracket located on each side of the gyroscope casing within which is journaled one of the trunnions of the gyroscope 125 casing, and mechanism moving relative to the vessel for locking the gyroscope casing upon its trunnions.

42. The combination, with a marine vessel, of a gyroscope having its spinning axis 1 0 vertical when in central position, a casing for the gyroscope having trunnions projecting from its sides at right angles to the spinning axis of the gyroscope and extending transverse the vessel and mounted within brackets, and mechanism moving relative to the vessel for swinging the spinning axis of the gyroscope a varied number of degrees each side of its vertical position.

43. The combination, with a marine vessel, of a gyroscope, supporting means for said gyroscope which permits a forward and rearward movement of the spinning axis thereof in a fixed path with respect to the vessel, and means for imparting to the axis of the gyroscope, movement at intervals corresponding to the periodicity of the vessel.

In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand in presence of two subscribing Witnesses.

ELMER A. SPERRY. lVitnesses A. D. KINNE, CHAs. M. BARUCI-I.

Copies of this patent may be obtained for five cents each, by addressing the Commissioner of Patents.

- Washington, I). 0.

It is hereby certified that in Letters Patent No. 1,150,311, granted August 17,

1915, upon the application of Elmer A. Sperry, of Brooklyn, New York, for an improvement in Ships Gyroscopes, errors appear in the printed specification requiring correction as follows: Page 10,1ine 80, claim 23, for the Word ship read oscillating vessel; page 11, line 127, claim 41, for the word locking read rocking; and that the said Letters Patent should be read with these corrections therein that the. same may conform to the record of the case in the Patent Oifice.

Signed and sealed this 28th day of September, A. D., 1915.

[SEAL-1 J. T. NEWTON,

Acting Commissioner of Patents.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3052128 *Dec 5, 1958Sep 4, 1962Globe Ind IncAuto pilot structure
US3871236 *Apr 5, 1973Mar 18, 1975Cierva Juan J DeDevice for the mechanical stabilization of the alignment of instruments
US5839386 *May 8, 1996Nov 24, 1998Edward FrielingVehicle stabilizing by rotating mass
US6360838Jul 21, 2000Mar 26, 2002Skye Associates, LlcSystem for balancing a two-wheeled vehicle at rest
US6973847Jun 4, 2003Dec 13, 2005Gearloose Engineering, Inc.Gyroscopic roll stabilizer for boats
US7240630Oct 4, 2004Jul 10, 2007Marine Motion Control, LlcGyrostabilizer for small boats
US7458329Mar 8, 2005Dec 2, 2008Exxonmobil Upstream Research CompanyHydrogyro ship stabilizer and method for stabilizing a vessel
US8523483Dec 29, 2010Sep 3, 2013Exxonmobil Upstream Research CompanyIce break-up using artificially generated waves
US20110041628 *Apr 17, 2008Feb 24, 2011Erke Erke Arastirmalari Ve Mˇhendislik A.S.Gear device, preferably motor device
EP1639314A1 *May 11, 2004Mar 29, 2006Gearloose Engineering, LLCGyroscopic roll stabilizer for boats
Classifications
U.S. Classification74/5.22, 74/5.4, 74/5.34, 114/24, 114/122
International ClassificationB63B39/04
Cooperative ClassificationB63B39/04
European ClassificationB63B39/04