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Publication numberUS235040 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 30, 1880
Filing dateAug 23, 1880
Publication numberUS 235040 A, US 235040A, US-A-235040, US235040 A, US235040A
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
US 235040 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

(No Model.)

ob A SULLIVAN. Flying Machine. No. 235,040. Patented Nov. 30,1880.


ATENT. Farce.




SPECIFICATION forming part of Letters Patent No. 235,040, dated November 30, 1880. Application filed August 23, 1880. (No model.)

To all whom it may concern Beit known that I, CHARLES A. SULLIVAN, of Starkville, in the county of Oktibbeha, and in the State of Mississippi, have invented certain new and useful Improvements in Flying- Machines; and I do hereby declare that the following is a full, clear, and exact description thereof, reference being had to the accompanying drawings, and to the letters ofreference marked thereon, making a part of this specification.

My invention relates to machines or vehicles for safely and successfully navigating the air; and the improvement consists, first, in making the balloon in separate compartments, each provided with safety-valves and alarms, and connecting with the gas-generatingapparatus arranged within the car, whereby the amount of gas-in the generators may be ascertained and regulated; second,in anovel means of suspending the car from a balloon, whereby the car is protected from sudden gusts of wind and its equanimity preserved; and, third, in providing the car with paddle-wheels arranged upon its sides and protected by hinged or pivoted hoods, that partly encircle the wheels, and may be revolved around them, to protect any desired portion of the wheel, whereby the car and machine may be propelled and raised or lowered in any desired direction, as will be hereinafter more fully described, and specifically pointed out in the claims, by aid of the accompanying drawing, which represents aperspective view of a flying-machine constructed according to my invention.

The lifting-power of the machine is hydrogen or any other suitable gas, to be contained in one or more oblong, cigar, or elongated spherical shaped balloons, 1, each of which is dividedinto sections, being separated by suitable partitions, so that the escape of the gas from one compartment will not impair the safety of the balloon, as the remaining compartments will support the car until the empty compartment is refilled with gas.

Each section of the balloon is provided with a separate safety-valve, 2, which will open in the event of adangerous expansion of the gas and relieve it of excessive pressure. Each of the safety-valves 2 is provided with an alarmwhistle, and when the gas, by its expansion or over-supply, operates the safety-valve and escapes it gives the signal of danger, thus admonishin g the traveler that a dangerous altitude has been reached, or that there is too much gas in the balloon, gas should be out off from the generator.

In addition to the automatic safety-valve and whistle, each section is provided with a supply-tube, 3, that connects it with an apparatus, 3, for manufacturing it, located in the carriage or vehicle below. Thus each compartment may be separately replenished with gas en route without interfering with the other compartments. The whistles will also indicate which of the balloons is already supplied with gas and determine which of them should be refilled.

The balloon is covered with a net-work of strong twine, that is fastened on either side and all around from point to point to stay ropes and rods 4, from which ropes 16 extend downwardly and inwardly, tbllo win gthe shape of the balloon below, until they concentrate from each side at a point below, where they are again fastened to another larger stay rope and rod, 5, running parallel with the bottom of the balloon, and from whence is suspended the vehicle and propelling-power. The ropes all concentrating at points in line with each other will act like a hinge, and the equanimity of the car would not be disturbed by the rolling of the balloon caused by sudden gusts of wind, and the carriage would simply swing under the balloon and follow its motion without turning over or upsetting.

The carriage 6 may be of any desired shape, and is suspended by the ropes l6 and suitable fastenings below the balloon. Each piece of timber ot' the car may be supplemented by a rope of the netting, to prevent entire separation of the partsshould it become broken. Rudders 7 may be secured to the endsof the carriage and operated by means of cords 8 under control of the pilot by means of a steerin g-wheel, 8.

The propelling-power consists of large tanwheels 9, made of suitable material, two of which are arranged upon each side of the car. The axles of the wheels extend all the way across the car, so that one axle serves for two wheels, one upon each side of the car, the said axle being journaled in bearings secured to or that the supply of the frame-work of the car. A small bandwheel is secured to the middle of each axle, and is operated upon to turn the axle and wheels by bands that pass around a larger band-wheel, 10, arranged between the axles in the center of the carriage, which may be operated by hand or by other motive power.

When turned the band-wheel gives motion to the fan-wheels, making all move in the direction desired. The upper half or side halves of the Wheels are covered by hoods 11, that are journaled to the axles of the wheels, to turn freely upon them and expose the side or bottom only of the wheel, so that the covered portion of the wheel will not react upon the exposed portion thereof. But slight resistanceis offered to the inclosed portion of the wheels, which resistance is practically overcome by the suction created therein by the rapid motion of the wheels. The hoods may be provided with pulleys, around which ropes or bandsmay pass, and be operated by a wheel, 12, under control of the pilot, so that the hoods may be all readily placed in any desired position.

The effect of the position of the covers relatively to the wheels will be readily understood. It the machine is being propelled forward by the forward rotative action of the fan-wheels, the covers must be placed above the wheels, and if it'is desired to lift or depress the machine by means of the wheels the hoods must be placed upon either one side or the other of the wheel. The movement of the car may also be determined by the forward or backward motion of the wheels.

Suitable masts, 13, may be provided to connect the ends of the car with the ends of the balloon, in a well-known manner, to properly brace the balloon upon the car, and a pulley, 14, may be secured to the upper end of one of the masts, through which a cord may be passed, and by means of which a small sail may be raised upon the mast, to be used in tacking or getting the benefit of any favorable breeze; but these features do not form a part of my invention.

Neither do I claim, broadly, aballoon made in compartments to be filled with separate quantities of gas; and I am aware that the gas for inflating the balloon has been heretofore supplied by apparatus'that generates the gas in trcmst'tu, and do not claim such as my invention.

I claim as new- 1. In a flying-machine,theballoon formed in compartments and each compartment having an automatic independent escape or safety valve, 2, operated by the pressure or expansion of the contained gas, the said valves being provided with alarm-wl1istles, in combination with a carriage or car suspended therefrom holding a gas-generator, whereby the compartments may be separately filled and their gas-pressure separately ascertained, substantially as described.

2. In a flying-machine, the combination of the balloon, the carriage,,the netting, and guyropes, the rod 5, with its pivotal connections 5, describing the plane of thelon gitudinal center of the balloon and carriage, as set forth.

3. In a flying-machine, the movable covers 11 and the means for operating them in either direction to change the direction of the carriage, in combination with the paddle-wheels 9 and belt-connections, as and for the purposes set forth.

In testimony that I claim the foregoing I have hereunto set my hand this 16th day of August, 1880.



H. G. Doxsnv, T. GILLEsPIE.

Cooperative ClassificationB64C39/008