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Publication numberUS1757050 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 6, 1930
Filing dateMar 15, 1928
Priority dateMar 15, 1928
Publication numberUS 1757050 A, US 1757050A, US-A-1757050, US1757050 A, US1757050A
InventorsJohnson Otto E
Original AssigneeJohnson Otto E
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Traffic signal
US 1757050 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

May"r "v6, 1930. 4o. E. JOHNSON TRAFFIC SIGNAL Filed March Y15, 1928 I N VEN TOR.


Patented May 6, 1930 UNITED STATES l OTTO E. JOHNSON, OF IMEINTOMINEE,v MICHIGAN TRAFFIC, SIGNAL l Appnoation med Maron 15, 192s. serial No. 261,743..

This invention relates to electrically operated traffic signalsintended for use Y at street intersections. y

The purposes of the invention are to pro- '5 vide a simple and reliable construction wherein differently colored signals will become visible throughthe same lenses at re'- quired intervals and to provide a simple means for changing the timing of said signals; to provide means whereby the same siglnals may be continuously displayed when de- 'sired or certain signals continuously displayed in one direction while signals in the other direction alternate as usual; and to provide convenient means for individual and' group control of a plurality of signalling devices.

The objects of the invention are accomplished by a 'construction as shown in the accompanying drawings, in which Figure 1 isa plan view including one of the signalling devices in section and a wiring diagram for a plurality of such signalling devices.

Fig. 2 is a view in elevation showing a commutator device for controlling the signals arid the wiring connections for the commutator and motor for driving the same.

Fig. 3 is a view in elevation and partly in section of one of the signalling devices.

Fig. 4 illustrates a plurality of sections through the commutator, and

Fig. 5 isa projected plan view of the commutator.' j

The apparatus by which the invention is carried into practice consists of a plurality of electrically operated signalling devices which are arranged in multiple in a two-wire circuit, under the control of a distantly 1ocated commutator having a brush which is adjustable into different contact relationships with the commutator. By this adjustable brush the time interval between signals may be varied. Each signaling device for location at street intersections consists of a casing provided with-a set of lenses each facing in a different direction, and means within the casing for alternately changing the color of the light at each lens. In the drawings 1 indicates a supporting post for one of the signalling devices. Secured to the upper end of this post is a base plate 2 which is connected to a cover 3 bytie rods 4. A casing 5 is slidably mounted on the tie rods 4 and normally held in its upper position byl a latch 6 extending into a recess 7 in the case. The.base 2 of the signalling device has a central upwardly extendingpost 8v which supports a rotatable drum shaped .signal color determining means 9. v This color determining means rests upon the ball `10 at the upper end ofthe post. The upwardly extending wall 11 of the drum 9 is preferably octagonal in form as shown in Fig. 1 and carries a plurality of diierentlycolored glass windows 12 for registering vwith. the glass lenses 13 inthe casing 5. A cluster of incandescent lamps 34 is suspended from the top 3 by rod 15. The light from these lamps serves to illuminate the lenses 13 through the colored windows 12. The windows are arranged so that while red is exposed through two of the lenses green will be exposed through the remainin two lenses. There are four amber windows getween the red and the green. The windows in the drum 9 are suc cessively brought before the lens by rotating this drum with a step-by-step motion arranged to allow a. regulatable time interval between the movements of the drum.

The ratchet means for imparting a stepby-step movement to the drum 9 consists ofv 1 a series of pins 14 projecting downwardly 'from the base of the drum and a coactin operating lever 15. The lever 15 is actuate by magnets 16 and carries a pawl 17 forengaging pins 14 in one direction of movement of the lever and idly ride over such ins in the opposite movement of the lever. o prevent, the drum 9 from overrunnng or bein dragged backward on the -return motion o lever 15 a retaining means in the form of a spring` 18 (Fig. 3) is provided for engaging the pins 14. The lever 15 is pivoted at 19 and normally held in the position shown in Fig. 1 by spring 20. The magnets 16 oscillate the lever 15 from this position to the dotted line position thus causing one-eighth of a rotation of drum 9 for each operation of the magnets.

The magnets 16 are in a circuit shown in Fig. 1. One wire 21 of this circuit leads from switch 22 connected with the line 23, to the branches 24 and 25 connected with the electro-magnets 16, the return wires from these magnets being indicated at 26 and 27. The lamp circuit is made through lever 15 when in the dotted line position. This lever by connecting contacts 29 and 30 allows current to flow from conductor 25 to conductor 1 31 leading to the lamp. The return conductor for the lamps is indicated at 32.' The switch 22 is provided between the conductor 21 and the line wire 23 so that the circuit for the magnets may be opened at this point and if desired the lamp circuit may be closed by throwing the switch22 over to the contact 28. In this position of the switch, the signal remains illuminated but its colors do not 2hange since the drum 9 remains stationary. Ordinarily in the normal operation of the signal, while the drum is rotating, the lamps are illuminated when the drum is at rest since at this timethe lever 15 engages contacts 29 'Ihe line conductors 23 and 33 respectively lead to any number ol signals arranged in parallel across the'line as indicated at 23 and 33 in Fig. 1. Any number of signalling devices may be controlled to operate in unison by means of a commutator construction such as shown in Fig. 2.

The common control means or commutator Jfor a group of signalling devices consists of a motor driven cylinder 40. The motor forV driving this cylinder is indicated at 41 and drives the cylinder at a slow rate through worm gearing 42. LThe current for supplying the line conductors 23 and 33 for operating all of a group of signals is supplied through a conductor 43, switch 44, conductor 45, brush 46 engaging the edge of the commutator and from the commutator the current flows through the adjustable brush 47 to the conductor 23. Current returns from the conductor 33 through the conductor 48 and switch 44, to the return conductor 49. The motor 41 is under the control of a switch 50 arranged as shown in Fig. 2 so that the motor circuit ma be openedwithout interferingwith the ow of current through the commutator in order that the signal lamps may remain lighted when it is not desired to have the signal drums rotated to change the color of the signal. In the normal operation of the commutator when it is constantly driven by the motor the flow of current to the signalling devices is interrupted at the required times b insulator inserts 51, which are arranged m annular rows around the commutator. `The brush 47 is adjustable along its supporting rod 52 so that it may be set to cooperate with any one row of insulators. These are arranged differently as indicated at Fig. 4 so that the relative periods at which red, green and amber signals are displayed ma be changed as desired.

Should 1t be desired to permanently display red in one direction without interfering with the normal signal arrangement for ditferent directions, this may be done by using red colored translucent windows 53 located above the lense 13 as shown in Fig. 3. The windows 53 are normally covered by a plate 54 having a single aperture 55 for normally registering with lense 13 but the plate 54 may be swung on its fastening pivot 56 so that the opening registers with the window 53 and the'lense 13 is'covered. Mirrors `57 reflect the light through windows 53.

In the operation of the signalling device motor 41 is normally constantly driven and current flows through the commutator 40 to all of the signalling devices connected therewith. lVhen the brush 47 disengages an insulator 51 and makes contact with the commutator surface, current low through the brush to the conductor 23 and from it to the magnets 16 causing the lever 15 to move from full-line position to the dotted line position as shown in Fig. 1. This causes the drum member to be rotated one step. The lamps of the signalling devices are also illuminated when the lever 15`co1nes into contact with the contacts 29 and 30, in the lamp circuits. The lamp remains illuminated until another insulator 51 comes below the brush 47, when the commutator lever 15 is released and swings back tothe full-line position (Fig. 1) under the action of spring 20. This action is regu` larly repeated at intervals according to the number and setting of the insulators 51 with respect to brush 47 The vcolored windows 12 carried by the drum 9 are arranged so that while red is shown through one pair of lenses 13 reen is shown through the remaining pair o lenses.

Next amber shows at all of the lenses. All of these colors are shown through one set of lenses 13.

Although but one specific embodiment of this invention has been herein shown and described, it will be understood that numerous details of the construction shown may be altered or omitted without departin from the spirit of this invention as deined y the following claims.

I claim:

1. A signalling device of the class described comprismg a housing provided with a plurality of lenses each facing in a different direction, illuminatin means within said housing, a drum in sald housing comprising differently colored translucent members, means for displaying differently colored lights at said lenses to give dierent traiic signals, translucent colored windows in said housing for giving a stop signal, one near each of said lenses, and a cover for each of said windows, said-covers being mounted to be movable from said windows across said lenses.

2. A signalling device of the class described comprising a housin provided with a plurality of lenses each acing in a different direct-ion, illuminating means within said housing, a drum rotatably mounted in said housing comprising differently colored translucent' members for displaying differently colored lights at said lenses to give different traiiic signals, translucent colored Windows in said housing to give a stop signal, one for each of said lenses, a cover for each of said Windows,

said covers being mounted to be movable from said Windows across said lenses, and means Within said housing for reiecting light from the illuminating means through said translucent colored Windows.

3. In a signal device of the class described, comprising a housing having a pair of apertures in each side thereof, a drum rotatably mounted in said housing comprising a plurality of dierently colored transparent plates arranged to register with one aperture of each side of said housing, and having spaced apertures therein arranged to register With the lother aperture of each side of said housing, Windows of a uniform color in said last-mentioned apertures, illuminating means in said housing, means for rotating said screen for projecting differently colored light rays through one .aperture of each side of said housing successively to give different traffic "signals, and for intermittently projecting light rays of a single color through the other aperture on each side to give a stop signal, and an adjustable cover on each side of said housing for alternatively concealing the light rays projected through one of the apertures thereof.

Signed at Chicago this 12th day of March, 1928.


Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3022490 *Jun 22, 1960Feb 20, 1962Martin R DosalTraffic lights for controlling the flow of traffic at a traffic crossing
US3022491 *Mar 11, 1960Feb 20, 1962Roberto Dosal MartinTraffic lights
US4652851 *Nov 7, 1983Mar 24, 1987Ian LewinLamp control system
US5387908 *May 6, 1992Feb 7, 1995Henry; EdgetonTraffic control system
U.S. Classification340/932.1, 340/914, 192/142.00R
International ClassificationG08G1/095
Cooperative ClassificationG08G1/095
European ClassificationG08G1/095