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Publication numberUS3918367 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 11, 1975
Filing dateApr 30, 1973
Priority dateApr 30, 1973
Publication numberUS 3918367 A, US 3918367A, US-A-3918367, US3918367 A, US3918367A
InventorsAlimanestianu Mihai, Alimanestianu Nicholas M
Original AssigneeAlimanestianu Mihai
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Transport system
US 3918367 A
Abstract
A transport system for people and the like, wherein vehicles of limited capacity move rapidly on one level and are adapted to be transferred from the one level to a second level which is vertically displaced from the one level. Guide means is provided for directing the movement of the vehicles between the two levels in a vertical path portion connecting the two levels, the vertical path portion having curvilinear portions at the opposite ends thereof for interconnecting the vertical path portion with the respective levels; carrier means being provided for receiving vehicles from one level and for discharging the vehicles at the other level, the carrier means being arranged for movement on selected path portions including said vertical path portion; the carrier means being further adapted to operate in a manner such that the vehicles thereon maintain horizontal positions over the selected path portions.
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'Alimanestianu et al.

11] 3,918,367 Nov. 11, 1975 [54] TRANSPORT SYSTEM 7 [75] Inventors: Mihai Alimanestianu; Nicholas M.

Alimanestianu, both of Upper Nyack, NY.

[73] Assignee: Mihai Alimanestianu, New York,

[22] Filed: Apr. 30, 1973 [21] Appl. No.: 355,687

[52] US. Cl. 104/88; 104/172 R; 214/161 B [51] Int. Cl. B61] 3/00 [58] Field of Search .1 104/88, 89, 93, 96, 105,

104/112, 116, 118, 121, 130, 131, 147, 261, 27, 28,172 B; 214/l6.l B, 16.1 BA, 16.1 BB

Primary Examiner-M. Henson Wood, Jr. Assistant E.raminerRichard A. Bertsch [57 ABSTRACT A transport system for people and the like, wherein vehicles of limited capacity move rapidly on one level and are adapted to be transferred from the one level to a second level which is vertically displaced from the one level. Guide means is provided for directing the movement of the vehicles between the two levels in a vertical path portion connecting the two levels, the vertical path portion having curvilinear portions at the opposite ends thereof for interconnecting the vertical path portion with the'respective levels; carrier means being provided for receiving vehicles from one level and for discharging the vehicles at the other level, the carrier means being arranged for movement on se-v lected path portions including. said vertical path portion; the carrier means being further adapted to operate in a mannertsuch that the vehicles thereon maintain horizontal positions over the selected path portlons. 1

15 Glaims, 10 Drawing Figures US. Patent Nov. 11, 1975 Sheet 1 of 5 US. Patent N0v.11, 1975 Sheet3of5 3,918,367

US. Patent Nov.11, 1975 Sheet40f5 3,918,367

U.S. Patent Nov. 11, 1975 Sheet50f5 3,918,367

TRANSPORT SYSTEM way of mass transit systems, has been receiving increasing attention, particularly with increasing usage of such systems and the congestion accruing therefrom. With conventional systems such as the subway, a number of disadvantages are apparent, including (1) a relatively low people moving capacity; (2) Substantial cost of the system, taking into account the large tunnels and heavy equipment requirements; (3) the station arrangements where passengers are loaded and discharges; and which involve the use of steps or escalators to connect the street level with the depressed subway level.

Alternatively, if the station is located at the street level, as proposed; long inclined track portions must be provided to connect the lower subway level with the upper street level. Also, with conventional subway systems, the stations must be of substantial length to accommodate the multi-car trains of increasing length. It has been established that conventional subway systems are incapable of efficiently handling the ever increasing numbers of passengers and the capital costs of such systems have reached astronomical figures.

. Accordingly, an object of this invention is to provide an improved mass transport system which utilizes relatively small capacaity vehicles arranged to move at high speed under automatic controls to selected destinations; the vehicles moving over a depressed main line level and switched from the main line track to street level stations corresponding to the selected destinations, the movement of the vehicles between levels being in a vertical path.

Another object of this invention is to provide a transport system of the character described, wherein the switched vehicles are arranged to meet individual carriers which engage the vehicles and have guided movement in sepected paths to effect the transfer of such vehicles between levels; the vehicles maintaining their normal horizontal position at all times.

A further object of the invention is to provide in a transport system of the character described, guide means for directing the carrier means in a path such as to progressively engage the vehicles; separating such vehicles from a terminal track portion; moving the carrier and vehicle contained therein in a curvilinear path in a vertical plane which joins the vertical path.

Still another object of this invention is to provide in a transport system of the character described, coacting means on the carrier means and the vehicles for registering the vehicles with the carrier means, preventing relative lateral movement thereof while allowing relative vertical movement whereby the vehicle can be separated from the carrier means.

Yet another object of this invention is toprovide a transport system of the character described, wherein the carrier means are arrangedfor movement in selected patterns related to the displaced levels; the carrier means being pivotally connected to extended, flexible members which are moved positively in the selected patterns.

Still a further object of this invention is to provide in a transport system of the character described, which includes track means traversed by the vehicles, the track means terminating at a given point in the path thereof; the carrier means having guided movement to progressively approach the terminal track in a path converging with the track means to effect separation of the vehicle from the track means and to continuously move in a curvilinear path from a substantially horizontal path to a substantially vertical path.

Yet another object of this invention is to provide a transport system involving multi-le-vels wherein the mode of movement of the vehicles may be of I) shuttle type; (2) intersecting main lines at vertically spaced levels with a single station level for handling the intersecting main lines which are at levels vertically spaced from the station level, by way of vertical path portions connecting the several levels.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a diagrammatic showing a transport system embodying the invention, as applied to a selected pattern of movement of vehicles between vertically displaced levels;

FIG. 2 is a plan view indicated diagrammatically and showing a portion of the system set forth in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a diagrammatic plan view showing a single vehicle of the transport system in relation to trackage and propulsion means;

FIG. 4 is a diagrammatic side elevational view showing the relative disposition of a vehicle and its carrier immediately before their engagement;

FIG. 5 is a diagrammatic end elevational view of the related vehicle and carrier shown in FIG. 4;

FIG. 6 is a partial side elevational view showing details of the carrier, guide means therefor, carrier moving means in relation to each other;

FIG. 7 is an end elevational view showing details of the carrier, guide means therefor, and carrier moving means;

FIG. 8 is a top plan View showing details of driving means related to carrier means, guide means, and guide members; FIG. 9 is a top plan view showing the details of guide members on a carrierin relation to chain drive means for moving the carri'erin a selected transport pattern; and

FIG. 10 is a perspective view of another pattern of a transport system embodying the invention, comprising a pair of intersecting main line, and spur lines for each including a station portion for both main lines at a street level.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Essentially the transportation system of the instant invention is based on the use of small capsules or vehicles which carry a limited number of passengers, travel at relatively high speed and are automatically switched between main line tracks and spur line tracks at the various successive stations along the main line tracks.

However, the stations are located at levels which are vertically. displaced from the level of the main line tracks. Typically the stations are at street levels while the main level is depressed below the station level, as in a subway. Such arrangement necessarily involves the movement of the vehicles over a vertical path as the same move between the main line track and the portion of the spur line track which extends through the station level.

Accordingly, thereis provided carrier units adapted to engage and carry the individual vehicles over the substantially vertical paths which extend at opposite ends of the station track to the spur line portions located at the depressed main line level. The disposition of the vehicles on the individual carrier units is such as to maintain the vehicles at their usual position, on the vertical path as well as horizontal paths.

Also, the transition of the combined carrier unit and vehicle from the horizontal to the vertical and from the vertical to the horizontal is effected in a smooth manner by providing for curvilinear movement in a vertical plane for the vehicles by virtue of the pattern of movement of the carrier units.

The system of the instant invention may be applied to a variety of vehicle movement patterns, involving displaced levels and vertical or substantially vertical path portions which extend between the displaced levels; including endless main lines; shuttle lines between two points; intersecting main lines at different levels, and the like.

Thus, as shown in FIGS. 1, 2, the system of the instant invention is illustrated as applied to one end of a shuttle system which interconnects a pair of spaced points by way of a depressed main line level and stations at said points located at a street level.

Such system indicated generally at 10, comprises a station level generally indicated at 11 and a depressed track level generally indicated at 12. On track level 12, is disposed track 13 terminating at point 14 for vehicles V travelling in direction A and track 15 for vehicles V travelling in the opposite direction B. Track 15 terminates at point 16.

Vehicles V travel on track 13 to point 14 therein which is somewhat in advance of the track 17 in station level 11 at terminal point 18 thereof; track 17 terminating at point 19 at the other end thereof.

Means is provided for transferring vehicles V from track 13 at terminal point 14 thereof, to track 17 at point 18 thereof; such means taking the form of carrier units C which are adapted to move in a given path having successive portions for effecting engagement of a carrier C by a vehicle V immediately before point 14, followed by separation of the combined carrier C and vehicle V from track 13 and then moving in a vertical path generally indicated at 20 towards the station level The transition of movement of carrier C and vehicle V thereon is marked by a curvilinear path portion 21 which extends between the horizontal path portion immediately beyond track end 14 and the lower end of vertical path portion 20. Similarly at the upper end of path portion 20, a curvilinear path portion 22 provides the transition between the vertical and horizontal at station level 11.

However, vehicle V on carrier C is brought into alignment with track end 18 and passes to track 17 at point 18 where carrier C is separated from vehicle V by depression of path portion 23 of carrier C. When vehicle V standing on track 17 is to move out of station level 11, the moving vehicle V is in alignment with a carrier C which is raised to the proper level by path portion 24 of the carrier.

The carrier C and vehicle V thereon then traverse the curvilinear path portion 25, followed by downward movement on path portion 26 and continued movement on curvilinear path portion 27. At this point vehicle V can move on aligned track 15 at track end 16 with separation of the carrier C from vehicle V. The

empty carriers C continue their movement on path portion 28 for location beneath track 13 at track end 14, where the original operation is repeated. The carriers C are moved in determined path portions by a chain 46, later described in detail, and advanced by a motor driven sprocket wheel .29 which is also effective to change the direction of movement of carriers C.

Track 15 immediately at track end 16 includes an offset portion 15A which is parallel to track 13, to allow vehicles V to move on track 15A in the opposite direction B. It is understood that the transfer arrangement of vehicles V from main line level 12 to station level 11 and back to main line level 12, is repeated at the other end of the shuttle line.

The carriers C, as shown in FIGS. 6, 7, comprise a bottom wall 35 and parallel side wall portions generally indicated at 36. Each side wall portion 36 comprises spaced upstanding arm portions 37 having concavely curved upper edges 38; and an upstanding triangular shaped wall portion 39 interconnecting arm portions 37.

Outwardly projecting guide rollers 40, 41 are mounted on the base corners of each of wall portions 39. Further guide rollers 42, 43 are mounted in axially spaced relation on outwardly projecting stub shafts 44 which are fixed at their inner ends to the apex portions of wall portions 39, as at 45. Movement of carriers C in their specified movement patterns, is provided by roller chains 46 which are connected to the carriers C by way stub shafts 44, lying between rollers 42, 43. The chains 46 engage sprocket wheels 47 suitably mounted on fixed base portions which are driven by a motor 48, pullies 49, 50 and a belt drive 51.

The pattern of movement of carriers C is established by guide channel members fixedly mounted to base portions of wall or other structure defining the overall selected path. Thus. as shown in FIG. 6, an upper run portion 46A of chain 46 is received in channel guide means 52 while a lower run portion 46B of chain 46 is received in channel guide means 53.

Rollers 40, 41 on carrier C are also received in guide channel members such as those indicated at 55, 56 which are suitably fixed to base portions. When carriers C move on horizontal path portions, guide members 55, 56 are in horizontal alignment. When carriers C move in vertical paths, guide members 55, 56 are in a vertically, laterally displaced arrangement. Thus, the carriers C have a swivelling or pivotal connection to roller chains 46 which allows for flexibility of movement of the carriers C in all path portions.

Guide roller 40 is mounted on one side of the carrier C and is located in a forward position while guide roller 41 is mounted on the other side of carrier C and is located in a rearward position. Such arrangement of guide rollers 40, 41 together with the opposed apex guide rollers 42, 43, serves to insure proper movement of the carriers C in all path portions and in particular the curvilinear and vertical path portions. Further, carriers C maintain their normal position relative to the vertical and horizontal at all times while traversing the vertical and curvilinear path portions as well as the horizontal path portion.

Means is provided for interengaging the vehicles V with their respective carriers C and maintaining the same in engaged relation. To this end, vehicles V have downwardly extending members 60 having convexly curved outer ends 61. When the empty carriers C move in converging relation to vehicles V on track end 14, the depending members 60 align with arms 37 and the opposed end edges 61,38 abut. Thus, vehicles V are kept from lateral movement while allowing for vertical displacement when necessary.

To allow for proper movement of the carriers C from a position below track 13 in advance of track end 14 to a position above track end 14, to thereby engage vehicle V and to separate the same from track end 14;

track end 14 s suitably cantilevered and bottom wall 35 As shown in FIG. 3, the lower portion of vehicle V includes motors M coupled to wheels W for propulsion over tracks including the usual main line track, not shown; spur line track extending from the main line track, and the like. The motors M are supplied with current from a third rail R by way of conventional shoes S.

The instant invention is applicable to a variety of transport patterns, particularly where stations are located at street level or any upper level, in relation to a relatively depressed main line, with switching therefrom to a spur line having a portion extending through the station level.

As a further example of a transport pattern to which the instant invention is particularly adapted, a pair of intersecting main lines 65, 66 are shown in FIG. 10. Here the main lines 65, 66 are in vertically displaced relation to each other and may be at right angles to each other.

A single station 67 which is at street level, serves both main lines 65, 66 which are at depressed levels in relation to the street level. Vehicles are adapted to be switched from main line 65 to a spur line portion 68 colevel with main line 65 and then proceed in a vertical path portion 69 and thence to the station level portion 70. Upon leaving the station level portion 70, th vehicles move downwardly in a vertical path portion 69' and thence in a horizontal spur line portion 68 back to main line 65, to continue movement on said main line 65.

Similarly, vehicles switched from the other main line 66, traverse a spur line portion 71 colevel with main line 66, a vertical path portion 72 up to the station 67, the station level portion 73 which is spaced from and colevel with station level portion 70. The vehicles leaving station 67 travel downwardly by way of vertical path portion 72' and thence on spur line portion 71 colevel with main line 66, back to said main line 66.

It is understood that the vehicles will be moved by carriers C over the various path portions, in the manner previously indicated. Further, a station platform, not shown, is located between the station level portions 70, 73 for passenger loading and unloading of the vehicles.

It will be apparent, that with movement of vehicles in carriers C, particularly over vertical path portions in transfer between main line and station levels; that the station platforms may be relatively short, thereby conserving space at the street level.

While the transport pattern shown in FIG. 1, shows the carriers C separated from vehicles V as they enter on track 17; it is understood that alternatively, the

combined vehicle and carrier units may be arranged for movement over track 17 without separation of the carriers C from vehicles V.

The instant invention is particularly applicable to a transport pattern where the main line is of the endless type, with stations connected to such main line at spaced points; the stations being at a street level and the main line at a depressed level, the connections being by way of spur line portions having vertical path portions.

We claim:

1. A transportation system comprising a moving vehicle and carrier means for engaging said moving vehicle, guide means for directing said moving vehicle in a substantially horizontalrectilinear path to a given point in said path, guide means for directing said carrier means in a rectilinear path converging with said first mentioned path whereby said carrier means will meet said vehicle at said given point in said first mentioned path and said carrier means will engage said vehicle, said first and second guide means being arranged relative to each other to effect the engagement of said carrier means with said vehicle while said carrier means and said vehicle are in motion, said second guide means including a first portion operative to effect a progressive separation of said vehicle from said first guide means, said second guide means including a second portion operative to effect a conjoint movement of said vehicle and carrier means in a curvilinear path portion in a verticle plane, said second guide means including a third portion operative to effect the further movement of said vehicle and carrier means in a substantially vertical path.

2. A system as in claim 1, and further including a second substantially horizontal path in vertically displaced relation to said first substantially horizontal path, third guide means on said second path, said second guide means further including a portion operative to effect conjoint movement of said carrier means and vehicle in a second curvilinear path in said vertical plane and extending from a terminal portion of said vertical path,

said second guide means further including a portion operative to direct said carrier means and vehicle to said third guide means on said second horizontal path.

3. A system as in claim 2, wherein the last mentioned portion of said second guide means'is vertically displaced from said third guide means whereby said vehicle is separated from said carrier means for further movement along said third guide means.

4. A system as in claim 2, wherein the last mentioned portion of said second guide means moves in a path operative to effect conjoint movement of said carrier means and said vehicle along said second path.

5. A system as in claim 1, wherein said first guide means includes track means, said track means terminating at a given point in said first horizontal path, the terminal portion of said track means being in cantilever relation to the portion of said track means being in cantilever relation to the portion of said track means extending rearwardly of the terminal portion of said track means, said second guide means being operative to guide said carrier means in a first path portion below the terminal portion of said track means and a second portion beyond said first path portion progressively app'roaching the terminal portion of the track means whereby said carrier means will engage said vehicle and upon continued movement of said carrier means will raise said vehicle above the terminal portion of said track means.

6. A system as in claim wherein said carrier means includes aligning means and said vehicle includes aligning means for registering with the aligning means on said carrier means whereby to register said vehicle and carrier means in determined spatial relation to each other.

7. A system as in claim 6 wherein the aligning means on said carrier means and said vehicle include interengageable portions for retaining said vehicle against lateral movement relative to said carrier means while permitting relative vertical separating movement of said vehicle and said carrier means.

8. A transport system as in claim 1 and including means for moving said carrier means, said moving means comprising a movable elongated flexible member, and means interconnecting said elongated member and said carrier means.

9. A transport system as in claim 8, wherein said interconnecting means comprises means for pivotally coupling said carrier means to said flexible member.

10. A transport system as in claim 1, and further including guide elements on said carrier means and fixed guide means for receiving said guide elements on said carrier means, said fixed guide means being arranged relative to each other to maintain said carrier means in horizontally level positions at all points in the paths of movement thereof.

11. A transport system as in claim 10, wherein said guide elements comprise guide roller members on opposite sides of said carrier means, said guide rollers being in triangular spatial relation to each other.

12. A transport system comprising first track means on one level, vehicles movable on said track means, second track means on a second level vertically displaced from said first level, means for transferring said vehicle from the first track means on the first level to the second track means on the second level, said first track means terminating at a transfer point therein, said transfer means comprising carrier means, means for moving said carrier means and guide means for directing the movement of said carrier means in a path related to the termination point of said first track means and said second track means, said path including successive portions including (1) a path portion disposed to bring the carrier means into engagement with a vehicle on the terminal portion of said first track means, (2) a path portion disposed to efiect separation of the vehicle from the terminal portion of' the first track means and continued conjoint movement of the carrier means and the vehicle, (3) a path portion of curvilinear configuration to progressively effect the conjoint movement of the carrier means and the vehicle from the horizontal to the vertical, 4) a path portion to effect the continued conjoint movement of the carrier means and the vehicle in a vertical path, (5) a path portion of curvilinear configuration to progressively effect the conjoint movement of the carrier means and the vehicle from the vertical to the horizontal, and (6) a path portion to direct at least the vehicle to said second track means on said second level.

13. A transport system comprising a pair of main tracks in adjacent relation on a given level, a station at another level, track means in said station, vehicles movable in one direction on one of said main tracks and movable in the opposite direction on the other of said main tracks, means for transferring vehicles between said main tracks and the track means in said station, said transferring means comprising carrier means, means for moving said carrier means, guide means for directing the movement of the moving means in a predetermined path related to said main tracks and the track means in said station, said carrier means being movably connected to said moving means whereby said carrier means may assume a horizontal position at all points in said predetermined path, said path including successive portions including l) a path portion for directing the moving carrier means to engage a vehicle and to separate the vehicle from one of said main tracks, (2) a path portion of curvilinear configuration for progressively changing the conjoint movement of the carrier means and the vehicle from the horizontal to the vertical, (3) a path portion for directing the conjointly moving carrier means and vehicle in a vertical path, (4) a path portion of curvilinear configuration for progressively changing the conjoint movement of carrier means and vehicle from the vertical to the horizontal, (5) a path portion for directing at least the vehicle to the track means in the station, (6) a path portion for directing the conjointly moving carrier means and vehicle to a terminal portion of the other of the main tracks, and effecting a separation of the carrier means from the vehicle and directing the carrier means to path portion (1) while leaving the vehicle on the other of the main tracks.

14. A transportation system comprising a first main line track on one level, a second main line track on another level and in angular relation to said first main line track, a station vertically displaced from said main line tracks, a pair of adjacent coplanar spur line tracks in said station, track means connecting the opposite ends of one of said spur line tracks to one of said main line tracks at spaced points therein, second track means connecting the opposite ends of the other of said spur line tracks to the other of said main line tracks at spaced points therein, each of said track means comprising a pair of vertical portions and a horizontal portion, vehicles moving on said main line tracks, selected vehicles being adapted to be switched from said main line tracks to said spur line tracks via said connecting track means, and means for transferring vehicles between the spur line tracks and said track means.

15. A transport system including carrier means, said carrier means being movable in a determined path, said path comprising successive horizontal, curvilinear and vertical portions, guide means defining said path portions, guide members on said carrier means for engaging said guide means, and means for advancing said carrier means in said path, said guide members and guide means coacting to maintain said carrier means in a normal position thereof relative to the horizontal and vertical while said carrier means is advanced over said horizontal, curvilinear and vertical path portions.

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4206708 *Apr 14, 1978Jun 10, 1980O & K Orenstein & Koppel AktiengesellschaftTransporter with pallet cars coupled with each other for escalators
US4465174 *Sep 29, 1982Aug 14, 1984American Standard Inc.Apparatus and method for transferring articles to and from carriers moving in a vertical path
US4548135 *Oct 11, 1984Oct 22, 1985Fredenhagen KgFloor conveyor system
US4850473 *Jul 23, 1987Jul 25, 1989International Business Machines CorporationConveyor system including a buffer store
US6240851 *Oct 18, 1996Jun 5, 2001Gerrit OudakkerTransport system
US6640958 *May 16, 2002Nov 4, 2003Inventio AgConveying device for persons, with directly driven step bodies and a step body for such a device
US6705450 *Jan 22, 2001Mar 16, 2004Renesas Technology Corp.Clean room having an escalator, and method of transporting a semiconductor device therein
US8892278 *Mar 15, 2012Nov 18, 2014Inotera Memories, Inc.Overhead rail guided transport system and implementation method thereof
US20130138277 *Mar 15, 2012May 30, 2013Huan-Cheng LinOverhead rail guided transport system and implementation method thereof
EP0513460A1 *May 17, 1991Nov 19, 1992FluidelecDevices for the transport of light loads on self-propelled rail-borne trucks
EP2431319A1 *Sep 15, 2011Mar 21, 2012ThyssenKrupp Elevator Innovation Center S.A.Accessible transport system for moving passengers and/or goods
WO1987000493A1 *Jul 16, 1986Jan 29, 1987Sysmo SaModular plant for the controlled transportation of parts or products
Classifications
U.S. Classification104/127, 198/793, 104/172.1, 414/254, 104/130.4, 198/797, 104/48, 198/800, 198/321
International ClassificationB61J1/08, B65G47/56, B61J1/00, B61B13/00, B65G47/57, B61B1/02, B61B1/00, B61K1/00
Cooperative ClassificationB61K1/00, B61B1/02, B61J1/08, B65G47/57, B61B13/00
European ClassificationB61B13/00, B65G47/57, B61K1/00, B61J1/08, B61B1/02