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United States Patent
(io) Patent No.: (45) Date of Patent:
US 7,895,932 Bl Mar. 1, 2011
OPTICALLY CLEAR TURRET DOME, AND
COMBINED TURRET SHROUD
Inventor: Thomas S. Ohnstad, Salem, OR (US)
Assignee: D&O Innovations, LLC, Scappoose,
Notice: Subject to any disclaimer, the term of this patent is extended or adjusted under 35 U.S.C. 154(b) by 532 days.
Filed: Oct. 19, 2007
Related U.S. Application Data
Provisional application No. 60/859,117, filed on Nov. 14, 2006.
U.S. CI 89/36.13; 89/931; 89/935
Field of Classification Search 89/36.13,
89/40.03, 40.04, 41.02, 36.02, 931, 935 See application file for complete search history.
(56) References Cited
U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS
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2,358,257 A * 9/1944 Schwab 89/36.03
2,445,852 A * 7/1948 Hueyetal 89/41.02
2,685,233 A * 8/1954 Rose 89/37.17
3,429,222 A * 2/1969 Flanneryetal 89/41.02
3,625,563 A * 12/1971 Dickinson et al 297/333
3,954,041 A * 5/1976 Mechulam et al 89/36.13
4,004,494 A * 1/1977 Mechulam et al 89/36.14
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5,170,690 A * 12/1992 Smirlocketal 89/36.08
5,333,532 A * 8/1994 Smirlocketal 89/36.02
5,353,680 A * 10/1994 Tiomkin et al 89/37.03
II1519 H * 3/1996 Semple 89/36.02
H1567 H * 8/1996 Parsons et al 89/36.02
5,665,450 A * 9/1997 Dayetal 428/114
5,686,689 A * 11/1997 Snedeker et al 89/36.02
6,101,917 A * 8/2000 Klatte et al 89/41.01
6,532,857 Bl * 3/2003 Shih et al 89/36.02
7.030.579 Bl* 4/2006 Schmitz et al 318/139
7,413,247 B2* 8/2008 Van Draff et al 297/339
7.478.580 Bl* 1/2009 Parimi et al 89/36.13
2005/0188831 Al * 9/2005 Squires etal 89/36.02
2007/0000377 Al * 1/2007 Ohnstad 89/36.13
* cited by examiner
Primary Examiner — Michael Carone
Assistant Examiner — Jonathan C Weber
(74) Attorney, Agent, or Firm—Jon M. Dickinson, Esq.;
Robert D. Varitz, Esq.
OPTICALLY CLEAR TURRET DOME, AND
COMBINED TURRET SHROUD
This Application claims priority from U.S. Patent Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 60/859,117, for Optically Clear Turret Dome, and Combined Turret Shroud, filed Nov. 14,2006, the entire contents of which are incorporated herein by reference.
FIELD OF THE INVENTION
This invention pertains to structure for providing anti-bal- 15 listic and anti-blast-shock-wave protection for a military gunner who is stationed on the roof of a vehicle, such as a military High Mobility Multi-wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV), also referred to as a Humvee vehicle. In particular, it relates both to a unique, optically clear, dome-shaped overhead spanner 20 structure which seats on the upwardly facing shoulder of a generally annular turret shroud which is disposed around a vehicle-top weapon, and to this dome in combination with the mentioned shroud.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
In a warfare operating theater one of the weapons which is often deployed is a single gun, such as a large caliber machine gun, disposed on the roof of a military vehicle to be operated 30 by a gunner positioned at least partially on top of the vehicle with that gun. Such a vehicle-top gun is made not only for raising and lowering of its barrel, but also for swiveling 360° about a generally upright axis.
It is obvious that a gunner positioned with this kind of a weapon is highly exposed as an enemy target, and the present invention provides structure which is intended to afford significant anti-ballistic, and also anti-blast-shock-wave, protection to such a gunner.
A vehicle-top gun turret shroud-dome structure for mounting on a vehicle-top gun turret includes a turret shroud having 45 a generally annular base and an open upper margin; an optically clear dome structure constructed to mate with and seal to the open upper margin; wherein the turret shroud and the dome structure provide, for a gunner enclosed thereby, antishock, anti-ballistic and anti-blast Shockwave protection. 50
This summary and objectives of the invention are provided to enable quick comprehension of the nature of the invention. A more thorough understanding of the invention may be obtained by reference to the following detailed description of the preferred embodiment of the invention in connection with 55 the drawings.
FIG. 4 is a somewhat schematic view of a turret drive mechanism of the invention.
FIG. 5 is a front elevation of a seat structure of the invention.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED
The invention includes, and now referring to FIGS. 1-3, a turret shroud-dome structure 10 for mounting on a vehicle 12, such as the military HMMWV, using the existing M-1114 turret mount. The turret shroud-dome structure of the invention includes a generally annular turret shroud 14 which circumsurrounds a roof-top weapon 16 and the operating gunner 18, and an optically clear dome-like spanner structure 20 which seats on top of the generally annular rim, or upwardly facing shoulder, 22, also referred to herein as an open upper margin, of turret shroud 14. Collectively, the shroud and the dome-like cover provide substantial anti-ballistic and antiblast-shock-wave protection against projectiles and blast shock waves that may be experienced by someone seated within the combined shroud and dome structure. Optical, clarity in the dome affords both high visibility for a rooftop gunner, while at the same time significantly protecting that gunner against the threats just mentioned above.
The turret shroud is designed with the gunner in mind. The turret shroud is flexible, providing a flexible shroud base, in that, an impact with the gunner's shoulder will not cause contusions or broken bones, as may be caused by conventional, rigid metallic shroud systems. The flexibility of the shroud also enhances the ballistic, including blast event, absorption capability because the flexibility of the composite structure absorbs and distributes ballistic energy over a larger area than does a rigid structure. Sitting in the turret has a "feel" of wearing a protective piece of body armor, yet, there is no additional weight which must be carried by the gunner. Advanced lightweight composite materials are used to provide cost effective gun turret Systems which have, among others, the following advantages:
Ballistic and fragmentation protection over a full horizontal 360° and, with the dome structure in place, vertical 180° protection above shoulder 22 of turret shroud 14.
The shroud is, configurable for both .50 cal. and .30 cal. guns. The turret shroud and a gun shield (provided with a .50 cal. gun, not shown) have multi-hit capabilities and provide protection from small arms fire, including 7.62 mm LPS rounds. Ports 14a and 20a in turret shroud 14 and dome structure 20, respectively, allow projection of gun 16 therethrough.
Turret shroud 14 has a base 24 which connects to the M-1114 turret, or to other similar turret systems on other military vehicles. The lower portion 26 of the turret shroud has an inward slope over approximately two-thirds of its periphery, terminating in a curved portion 28 midway up the height of the turret shroud, which flows into an upper portion 3 0 having an outward slope, or reverse curve, which has turret shroud shoulder 22 located at its upper margin. The curved shape of the turret shroud provides for off-angle obliquities of incoming rounds, which further enhances the protective qualities of the shroud. A reverse curl located adjacent the top margin of the shroud provides additional protection against ricochets or shrapnel, as from improvised explosive devices (IEDs).
The overall weight of the turret shroud, dome structure and gun shield is less than that of a conventional, metallic turret shroud, and is fabricated to be more balanced than existing turret shroud systems, thus provided enhanced functionality