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Publication numberUS2632153 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMar 17, 1953
Filing dateJan 11, 1951
Priority dateJan 11, 1951
Publication numberUS 2632153 A, US 2632153A, US-A-2632153, US2632153 A, US2632153A
InventorsSwanger John E
Original AssigneeAlfred T Swanger
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Moving traffic signal device
US 2632153 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

March 17, 1953 .1. E. swANGl-:R 2,632,153

MOVING TRAFFIC SIGNAL DEVICE Filed Jan. ll, 1951 2 SHEETS--SHEET l John E. Swanger JNVENToR.

BY u dola..

mwyfMtgg-W March 17, 1953 J. E; SWANGER 2,632,153

MOVING TRAFFIC SIGNAL DEVICE Filed Jan. 1I, 1951 2 SHEETS- SHEET 2 John E. Swanger INVENTOR.

Attorneys Patented Mar. 17, 1953 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE MOVING TRAFFIC SIGNAL DEVICE John E. Swanger, Canton, N. C., assignor of onchalf to Alfred T. Swanger, Canton, N. C.

9 Claims.

This invention comprises novel and useful improvements in trafc control devices, and more particularly pertains to control devices for regulating the speed of vehicles in traiic control zones.

An important object of this invention is to provide a traflic control device for regulating the speed of traflic in both directions in a traffic control zone.

An important feature of this invention resides in the provision of a traffic control device which is movable parallel to the vehicle roadway at a predetermined rate of speed and which device carries a trahie control light which is directed in opposition to the `direction of movement of the traffic control device to control the speed of the trac which is moving in the same direction as the control device.

Another feature of this invention resides in the provision of a tramo control device, in accordance with the foregoing feature together with a means for selectively reversing the direction of movement of the traffic control device and for simultaneously changing the light so that it is directed in opposition to the direction of movement of the device.

A further feature of this invention resides in the provision of a track for supporting the traffic control device, constructed in accordance with the foregoing features, with a means carried by the track for actuating the reversing mechanism for the traiiic control device and light.

Still another feature of this invention resides in the provision of a pair of traic control devices which are movable over the trafc control zone in opposite directions to each other to regulate the traiiic going in opposite directions, together with a mechanism for selectively reversing both devices, and the lights carried thereby.

These, together with various ancillary objects and features are attained by this device, a preferred embodiment of which has been illustrated by way of example only in the accompanying drawings wherein:

Figure 1 is a fragmentary perspective elevational view of a trahie control zone with the control device shown mounted for movement parallel to the zone;

Figure 2 is a side elevational view of the traffic control device;

Figure 3 is an end elevational View of the traffic control device;

Figure 4 is a top plan view of the traffic control device;

Figure 5 is a transverse sectional View of the traflic control device, taken on the plane 5-5 of Figure 2; and,

Figure 6 is a diagrammatic view of the wiring circuit of the traffic control device.

Reference is now made more specifically to the accompanying drawings wherein the trafhc control device is indicated generally by the numeral I0.

The traffic control device is adapted to be supported by a pair of parallel track wires l2 and I4 which are supported by transverse cross wires IS carried by poles IB. As will be noted, the track wires I2 and I4 extend parallel to and vertically spaced from the center line 2l) of the vehicle roadway 22, and that the cross wires I6 are reinforced by suitable guy wires 24. As it is intended that the track wires l2 and I4 serve as conductors by means of which power is supplied to the trafic control device, it will be appreciated that the same must be suitably insulated from each other and from the ground.

The traflic control device l0 includes a housing 2S having journals 28 thereon for rotatably receiving the shafts 3D. Grooved wheels 32 are carried by the ends of the shafts 30 and are disposed on the track wires l2 and I4. It is contemplated that the wheels serve as current col-- lectors, although other suitable means such as brushes may be utilized. In utilizing the wheels 32 are collectors, it is apparent that the wheels 30 of each pair must be insulated from each other, and that they may be electrically connected to the traffic control device in any conventional manner. As the specific manner of electrically connecting the trahie control device to the support wheels 32 forms no part of this invention, and as the various alternative means for electrically connecting the same are well known to those skilled in the art, further description is believed unnecessary.

In order to drive the traic control device, the device is provided with a motor 34 which is disposed within the housing 26, the pulley 36 carried by the motor shaft being operatively connected as by the belt 38 to the pulley 40 on one of the supporting shafts 30.

A rst and a second traffic control light 42 and 44, respectively are disposed in a casing 46, carried by the housing 26, each of which lights are directed in opposition to each other parallel to the path of movement of the traflic control device.

The intended operation of the device thus far described is as follows:

The traffic control device lll is moved at a predetermined rate of speed by the motor 34, in one direction, and at the same time the tramo light which is directed in opposition to the direction of movement is actuated, and the other traffic light deactuated. The rate of travel of the traic control device is regulated so that it moves at the maximum rate speed prescribed for the tralc control zone, the actuated light warning motorists on the vehicle roadway therebelow, and which are moving in the same direction as the trailic control device that they should not pass under the light that is actuated, thereby regulating the speed of the trailic. In order to return the trailic control device to its starting position, it will be appreciated that there may be provided a continuous oval track. However, it has been found desirable to provide a track, as is shown in the accompanying drawings and selectively reverse the direction of movement of the traffic control device and to reverse the trafilc control lights. It is also contemplated that a single traino light may be utilized, the same being movably mounted on the device, so asy to be reversible relative thereto, when the direction of movement of the light is reversed.

It is preferred that two or more trac control devices be utilized for each zone, although it will be appreciated that a single control device may also be utilized without departing from the spirit of this invention. When two control devices are utilized, they are moved in opposite directions to each other and reverse at the midpoint and at the end of the zone, whereby one traic control device regulates traiiic moving in one direction to the midpoint of the zone, at which time it reverses and controls the trame moving in the opposite direction, the other traffic control device, after reversing and moving away from the midpoint of the control zone regulating the trame formerly regulated by the rst traffic control device. Obviously, when additional traffic control devices are utilized, because of the length of the traflic control zone, then they are synchronized with the other devices, to move in relatively opposite directions to the adjacent trailc control devices.

In order to reverse the direction of movement of the traic control device, and to also reverse the lights carried thereby, there may be provided a common time actuated reversing switch mounted adjacent the control zone, which selectively reverses the motor 34, and through a suitable mechanism also reverses the lights 42 and 44. The reversing mechanism, shown in the drawings is actuated in response to a predetermined travel of the traic control device, and includes an L-shaped crank arm 48 having a bifurcated end 50 which has a guide wheel 52 rotatably mounted therebetween for engagement with one of the guide tracks. The other leg of the crank arm is rotatably disposed through bores in the housing 26, and a compression spring 54 is attached to the housing and crank arm to urge the latter out of a dead center position in which the bifurcated end 50 thereof is disposed vertically.

In order to reverse the motor 34, there is provided a reversing switch 56 which is operatively connected by lever 58 to the crank arm 48. A pair of light switches 66 and 62 are carried by the housing 26, each of which light switches is adapted to be engaged by the crank arm 48, when the latter is in either off-center position, to thereby actuate one of the lights 42 or 44.

The motor 34 is connected by conductors 64 to the collector and support wheels 34 and to the reversing switch 56 by conductors 66. The light switch 60 is connected by conductor 68 to one collector wheel, and is otherwise connected as by conductor 10 to the light 44, the latter being otherwise electrically connected by conductors 12 and 64 to the other collector wheel. The light switch 62 is also connected to one collector wheel, as by conductors 'I4 and 68, the switch being otherwise connected to the light 42 by conductor 16, and which light is otherwise connected by conductors 'I8 and 64 to the other of the collector wheels.

Whenever the traffic control device is moving to the left, as is viewed in Figure 6, then the switch 60 will be closed by the bell crank 48, and the light 44, directed in opposition to the direction of movement of the traffic control device will be actuated. The wheel 52 on the end of the crank arm engages an abutment disposed on the track wires adjacent the ends and at intermediate points in the trahie control zone. This causes the crank arm to pivot about its axis, into the opposite off-center position, in which it is retained by the spring 54. The crank arm, through the link 58 shifts the reversing switch 56 into its reverse position to change the direction of movement of the traic control device. Simultaneously, the switch 6U is deactuated and returned to its inoperative position by a spring (not shown) and the switch 62 is actuated, thereby energizing the light 42 while deenergizing the light 44.

It will thus be seen that the trame control device l and the lights 42 and 44 carried thereby are reversed each time the guide wheel 52 engages one of the abutments 80, whereby the trafc control device is cyclically moved in opposite directions, and that light which is directed in opposition to the direction of movement of the control device is energized to regulate the rate of travel of the vehicles moving in the same direction as the traffic control device. Further, it will be noted that when two or more traflic control devices are utilized that they will jointly serve to control trafic moving in both directions, each device controlling the trailic moving in one direction for a portion of the zone and then reversing and controlling the trafhc moving in the opposite direction. Since the light which is directed in the direction of movement of the traffic control device is deactuated, it will be appreciated that the device will not control the traflic moving in opposition to the direction ol' movement of the control device.

Having described the invention, what is claimed as new is:

1. A trailic controlling device comprising a. traflic control light, track means extending parallel to a vehicle roadway for supporting said light thereabove, housing means movably mounting said light on said track means carried by said housing means, means for moving said light on said track means at a predetermined rate of speed to regulate the rate of movement of the trame on the roadway therebelow.

2. A traffic control device comprising a trailic control light, track means extending parallel to and above a vehicle roadway for supporting said light, housing means movably mounting said light on said track motive means, means carried by said housing means for moving said light on said track means at a predetermined rate of speed to regulate the movement of traffic on the roadway therebelow.

3. A traffic control device comprising a trailic control light, track means extending parallel to a vehicle roadway for supporting said light thereabove, housing means movably mounting said light on said track means, impelling means carried by said light for moving said light on said track means at a predetermined rate of speed to regulate the movement of traffic on the roadway therebelow, means for selectively reversing the direction of movement of said light.

4. A tralc signal device comprising a housing, track means extending parallel to a Vehicle roadway for supporting said housing, means movably mounting said housing on said track means, first and second traine control lights carried by said housing in opposing relation to each other, means for moving said housing on said track means, means for selectively reversing the direction of movement of said housing, and means for selectively energizing that one of the lights carried by said housing which is directed in opposition to the direction of movement of said housing.

5. A traic signal device comprising a housing, means extending parallel to a vehicle roadway for supporting said housing means movably mounting said housing on said supporting means for movement parallel to said highway, a iirst and a second traiiic control light carried by said housing in opposing relation and directed parallel to the path of movement of said housing, means carried by said housing for driving said housing on said support means, means for reversing the direction of movement of said housing, means for actuating the light directed opposite to the direction of movement of said housing and for deactuating the other of said lights.

6. A traic signal device comprising a housing, means extending parallel t0 a vehicle roadway for supporting said housing, means movably mounting said housing on said supporting means for movement parallel to said highway, a iirst and a second traiic control light carried by said housing in opposing relation and directed parallel to the path of movement of said housing, means carried by said housing for driving said housing on said support means, means for reversing the direction of movement of said housing, means for actuating the light directed opposite to the direction of movement of said housing and for deactuating the other of said lights, means carried by said support means for actuating said reverse means when said light reaches a predetermined position.

7. A traffic signal device comprising a housing, means extending parallel to a vehicle roadway for supporting said housing, means movably mounting said housing on said supporting means for movement parallel to said highway, a rst and a second traffic control light carried by said housing in opposing relation and directed parallel to the path of movement of said housing, means carried by said housing for driving said housing on said support means, means for reversing the direction of movement of said housing, means for actuating the light directed opposite to the direction of movement of said housing and for deactuating the other of said lights, means carried by said support means for actuating said reverse means and for controlling said light actuating means when said housing reaches a predetermined position on said support means.

8. A traic control system comprising a rst and a second traic control unit, a pair of lights in each unit disposed in opposing relation to each other, means for supporting said control units for movement parallel to a vehicle highway, means for driving said control units in opposite directions to each other on said support means at a predetermined rate of speed, means for reversing the direction of movement of each of said control units when said units reach the midpoint and the ends of said support means, and means for actuating that light of each unit which is disposed in opposition to the direction of travel of the units.

9. A traic control system comprising a pair of parallel track members, a housing, shafts mounted on said housing, grooved wheels carried by said shafts and disposed on said track elements, a motor disposed within said housing, said motor being operatively connected to one of said shafts, a rst and second trafc control light carried by the housing, said lights being directed in opposition to each other and parallel to the path of movement of said housing, a control lever mounted on said housing, means for reversing the position of said lever, a motor reversing switch actuated by said lever, switch means for each of said lights, said switch means being selectively actuated by said lever for energizing that light directed opposite to the direction of movement of said housing.

JOHN E. SWANGER.

REFERENCES CITED UNITED STATES PATENTS Name Date Alimaras Aug. 23, 1938 Number

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2128067 *Apr 17, 1935Aug 23, 1938Constantine AlimarasApparatus for controlling vehicular traffic by radio
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2987009 *Mar 1, 1957Jun 6, 1961Colorado Fuel & Iron CorpAerial transporter and system
US3983978 *Sep 26, 1974Oct 5, 1976Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.Current collecting system for self-propelled aerial tramway carriage using two supporting cables
US5134393 *Apr 2, 1990Jul 28, 1992Henson H KeithTraffic control system
Classifications
U.S. Classification340/932, 340/908, 104/89, 340/332, 191/33.00R, 105/148, 191/57
International ClassificationG08G1/09
Cooperative ClassificationG08G1/096716, G08G1/096783, G08G1/096758
European ClassificationG08G1/0967C2, G08G1/0967B3, G08G1/0967A1