US 3669026 A
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nited States atent Mouritzen [4 1 June 13, 1972  TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM  Inventor: Gunnar Mouritzen, San Diego, Calif.
 Assignee: Geoscience Limited  Filed: May 18, 1970  App1.No.: 37,978
Related US. Application Data  Continuation-in-part of Ser. No. 717,610, April 1,
2,702,114 2/1955 Jensen.. ..105/153 2,992,692 7/1961 Chavsson.. 104/245 3,265,011 8/1966 Golden..... ....l04/93 2,574,067 11/1951 Seidman "238/10 R 3,161,250 12/ l 964 Gardner ..180/22 3,508,497 4/1970 Matsukata. 104/138 R 3,090,328 5/1963 Berggren 104/134 3,343,793 9/1967 Waser ..104/134 3,500,763 3/1970 Mesnager ..104/134 3,373,697 3/1968 Hartje 104/ 1 34 2,604,521 7/1952 Boucher ..104/138 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 1,138,317 1/1969 Great Britain 104/23 FS Primary Iimminvr- Arthur 1.. La Point Assistant Examiner Richard A. Bertsch Attorney-Lyon & Lyon [5 7] ABSTRACT A transportation system uses a curved trackway in the nature of a trough and a special vehicle having wheels engaging the trough such that in making turns the wheels may move such that the center of gravity may be displaced to compensate for centrifugal forces. Aerodynamic wings may be on the vehicle to develop lift forces and take weight off the wheels and the vehicle may be contoured to the shape of the trough to provide an air cushion between the vehicle and track at high speeds. The wheels may be extended so that the vehicle may also travel over level terrain.
7 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures Q PATENTEDJUM 13 I972 SHEET 1 BF 2 INVENTOR. GOA/M45 MOl/K/ TZEA/ PATENTEDJun 163 1912 SHEET 2 OF 2 FIG-.6.
INVENTOR GOA/NAB MOVE/736M TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM The present application is a continuation in part of my pending U. S. application, SenNo. 717,610 filed Apr. 1, 1968, now abandoned.
The present invention relates to improved transportation systems.
An object of the present invention is to provide a rapid transit system using to advantage a curved track.
A specificobject of the present invention is that the rapid transit system may use existing right of ways, and passenger facilities of airports, railroads and bus lines as well as existing roads.
Another specific object of the present invention is that the rapid transit system-may be used simultaneously with existing railroads.
Another specific object of the present invention is to provide improved means and techniques whereby an improved rapid transit system results.
The features of the present invention which are believed to be novel are set forth with particularity in the appended claims. This invention itself, both as to its organization and manner of operation, together with further objects and advantages thereof, may be best understood by reference to the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings in which;
FIG. 1 is a perspective view illustrating a system embodying features of the present invention.
FIG.- 2 is a section taken along lines 2-2 of FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a view like FIG. 2 but of a modified form of the invention. I
4 FIG. 4 is a view like FIG. 2 but of another modified form of the invention.
FIG. 5 illustrates still another form of the present invention.
FIG. 6 illustrates another form of the present invention.
In FIG. 1, the streamlined generally tubular shaped vehicle 10 is guided for movement on a curved track which bears the entire weight of the vehicle and its cargo and/or passengers and may comprise a'single section or two sections 11A, 11B, as illustrated, separated by a small trench 12 if desired.
,These tracks 11A, 118 may be of concrete and may be secured in the ground or form a part of a trestle supported by a series of posts 14. In some instances the track may be in the form'of a tube forming a tunnel or bridge through which the vehicle 10 travels. v
"The vehicle10 is generally of conventional construction except that the pairs of wheels comprising, for example, the wheels 20 and 21 have their planes of rotation intersecting at a central point 24 within the vehicle which is above the center of gravity point 26 of the vehicle. I The curvature or surface of the track sections 11A, 11B is such that it corresponds substantially to the arc of a circle drawn with the'point 24 as a center. The plane of rotation of such wheels 20, 21 remains substantially perpendicular to a tangent on such arc drawn at the point of intersection of the wheel with the track and thus when the vehicle travels around curved lengths of the track the vehicle may ride up and down the track sections 11A, 11B as indicated by the curved arrows 30, 31 to allow the center of gravity point 26 to rotate about the center point 24 such that equilibrium conditions may be automatically established with respect to centrifugal forces developed on such vehicle in its travel around such curved lengths of track. In other words, when the vehicle is driving in a turn, it will automatically rise on the curved track in such a way that the angle between the vehicle center line and the vertical gravity vector or component results in a force balance of the gravity and centrifugal forces on the vehicle.
If desirable to operate at lower wheel loadings at high speeds, the vehicle can be furnished with aerodynamic wings 40 as indicated in FIG. 3 to create a lift preferably up to but not equal to or larger than the vehicle weight.
Also, the upper portion of each track 11A, 11B may be formed with an inwardly extending rail member 11D as a safety measure for retention of the vehicle in its trough so formed under all conditions.
An additional wheel 42, in addition to and intermediate each wheel pair 20, 21 may be added and in such case the track 11 may be a solid mass formed with spaced water drain channels 11E.
Advantages of the present invention also involve the considerations that it can use existing passenger facilities of airports, railroads and bus lines and indeed may be located around existing railroad tracks 50, 51 as seen in FIG. 4 wherein the track sections 11A, 1 1B are anchored adjacent to ends of the conventional railroad ties 52 upon which railroad tracks 50, 51 are laid. The railroads can then be used simultaneously for both conventional trains and the curved track vehicle 10.
Another form of the invention involves the hanging monorail construction'shown in FIG. 5 wherein the end of the supporting structure 60 is formed with a curved track 60 A having an upper concave surface 60 Band a lower concave surface 60 C engaged respectively by individual ones of a plurality of wheel pairs.64, 65 rotatably supported on a corresponding framework 66 extending upwardly from the cabin portion of vehicle 67. In this case, the planes of rotation of wheels 64, 65 not only intersect but are coextensive and correspond generally to the vertical axis of the vehicle. The track 60A is curved as previously to allow automatic positioning of the center of gravity in turns to compensate for centrifugal forces.
The vehicle 67 of FIG. 5 may be provided with aerodynamic wings as illustrated at in FIG. 3 and excessive lift forces are then controlled by the wheel 65 engaging surface 60 C. In some cases the track 60 A need have only the curved surface 60 B and the wheel 65 may be eliminated. The track 60 B may be provided with side rails 60 F, 60, G to assure retention under all conditions. Another feature of the invention is that the vehicles of FIGS. 1- 4 maybe used for transport on conventional flat road surfaces in which case the axis of rotation of the wheel pairs 20, 21 are made coextensive. For these purposes one end of each of the axles 20 A, 21 A of wheels 20, 21 are pivoted on a support 70 at 71 and 72 respectively, the other ends of such axles 20 A, 21 A being connected respectively to the piston 75, 76 of hydraulic rams 77, 78.
Thus the position of these hydraulic pistons 75, 76 may be adjusted to adapt the wheels 20, 21 for travel in the curved trackway as described above or on level ground.
In FIG. 6 the track on which the vehicle 102 travels in a tube that completely surrounds the vehicle 102.
This tube has an inner wall of radius R measured, of course, from the center point 104.
The vehicle 102 is uniquely related to the geometry of this tube 100 in that the planes of rotation of the vehicle wheels intersect at a common point which is the center point 104 of the tube. This is indicated by the dotted lines 107, 108, and 109 representative of the planes of rotation of these wheels.
The wheels 102 A, 102 B, and 102 C are fixed for that purpose for rotation on corresponding wheel axles 120, 121, 122 which are rigidly supported on the vehicle chassis 125 by the series of streets 130, 131, 132, and 133.
The vehicle in its movement in straight sections of the tube track 100 has the plane of rotation of the center wheel 102 B extending vertically, and the vehicle floor is horizontal. In travelin curved sections of the tube, there is a shifting of the vehicle in response to centrifugal forces. The center of gravity 15-0 of the vehicle is below the tube center 104. The shifting of the center of gravity is such that there is a balance between centrifugal and gravity forces corresponding to a self-banking position.
Advantages of this FIG. 6 system involves safety, weather protection, placement underground, and in some cases stacking in the sense that one such tube may be positioned above another like tube track.
While the particular embodiments of the present invention have been shown and described, it will be obvious to those skilled in the art that changes and modifications may be made without departing from the invention in its broader aspects.
l, A transportation system including a concave trackway forming generally a trough, a vehicle having wheels engaging said trough and movable laterally of said trackway to permit said vehicle to shift its center of gravity and compensate for centrifugal forces, said trough having a width substantially equal to the largest lateral dimension of the vehicle, said vehicle having said wheels rotating in planes which intersect at a point which is the center of curvature of the trackway within the vehicle, said trackway being of substantially constant curvature along that portion of its surface engaged by said wheels, said point of intersection being above the center of gravity of the vehicle.
2. A system as set forth in claim 1 in which means are provided to reorient said wheels such that the vehicle may also travel over level terrain.
3. A system as set forth in claim 1 in which a third wheel is disposed between said wheels and has its plane of rotation in a substantially vertical plane.
4. A system as set forth in claim 1 including aerodynamic wings on said vehicle.
5. A system as set forth in claim 1 in which said trough is above the passenger compartment of the vehicle.
6. A system as set forth in claim 1 in which said wheels have their planes of rotation extending through a central point of said vehicle.
7. A system as set forth in claim 1 in which the trackway is a tube.