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Patent Application Titled “Unmanned Aerial Vehicle With Propeller Guard” Published Online (USPTO 20190225327): Mattel Inc.

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08/14/2019 | 05:34pm EDT

2019 AUG 14 (NewsRx) -- By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Entertainment Business Daily -- According to news reporting originating from Washington, D.C., by NewsRx journalists, a patent application by the inventor KIDAKARN, Mac (Harbor City, CA), filed on January 22, 2018, was made available online on July 25, 2019.

The assignee for this patent application is Mattel Inc. (El Segundo, California, United States).

Reporters obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: “Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) typically rely on one or more spinning rotors for lift and thrust. As the rotor spins, air flows through its rotating blades to generate the necessary lift and thrust to respectively counteract the gravitational force and aerodynamic drag on the UAV. By controlling the speed and rotation of the rotor, the UAV can be controlled to hover and fly in the air.

“In order to generate sufficient air flow, the rotor of a UAV typically spins at high speeds. Therefore, direct contact with the rotating blades of the rotor can be dangerous for a user, as well as potentially cause damage to the blades and other parts of the rotor. However, a user, especially a younger or inexperienced user, may still be inclined to grab onto the rotor or a portion of the rotor while the UAV is in flight due to the prominence and/or position of the rotor in relation to the rest of the UAV body. Thus, a need exists for a UAV having a propeller guard that limits direct contact with its rotating propeller blades and more specifically, reduces harm or injury that may occur from contacting its rotating propeller blades.”

In addition to obtaining background information on this patent application, NewsRx editors also obtained the inventor’s summary information for this patent application: “The present invention provides an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) having a propeller guard that helps protect a user from potential harm or injury that may occur from contacting its rotating propeller blades. The propeller guard is structured in a way that limits direct contact with the rotating propeller blades. In particular, a movable guard section of the propeller guard is positioned between the user and the propeller blades. When sufficient pressure is applied on the propeller guard (such as when the propeller guard is grabbed or held onto), the movable guard comes into contact with the propeller blades. Continued pressure from the user onto the movable guard is translated to the propeller blades, which are subsequently stopped from further rotation by the movable guard. This safety feature significantly reduces injuries that may occur when a user comes into contact with the UAV while its rotor is spinning at high speeds.

“According to one aspect of the present invention, an unmanned aerial vehicle is provided. The unmanned aerial vehicle comprises a rotor having one or more propeller blades and a propeller guard surrounding the rotor. The propeller guard comprises a main guard surrounding the one or more propeller blades and a movable guard vertically displaced from the main guard. The movable guard is movable from a default position to an engaged position where a section of the movable guard intersects a plane defined by the main guard. Moving the movable guard from the default position to the engaged position results in the movable guard contacting and obstructing rotation of the one or more propeller blades. The movable guard returns to the default position when not in the engaged position. In some embodiments, the movable guard further includes a loop that contacts the main guard when the movable guard is moved from the default position to the engaged position.

“In one or more embodiments, the propeller guard further comprises an ancillary guard vertically displaced from the main guard and positioned on a side of the main guard opposite from the position of the movable guard. In some embodiments, at least one of the main guard, movable guard, and ancillary guard is a ring structure or a section of a ring structure. In certain instances, the main guard and movable guard are concentric sections of ring structures and the length of the propeller blade is less than the radius of the main guard and greater than the radius of the movable guard. In a further instance, the ancillary guard is a ring structure or a section of a ring structure having a radius less than the radius of the main guard.

“In one or more embodiments, the movable guard is supported by a linkage connected to a body of the unmanned aerial vehicle. Typically, at least one of the movable guard and linkage is made of a flexible and/or pliable material, such that moving the movable guard to the engaged position comprises temporarily deforming at least one of the movable guard and linkage (for example, bending at least a portion of the movable guard or linkage). In some of these embodiments, the linkage connects the movable guard to the main guard and a support beam connects the main guard to the body of the unmanned aerial vehicle. In one instance, two or more linkages connect the movable guard to the main guard. In other embodiments, the linkage directly connects the movable guard to the body of the unmanned aerial vehicle.

“In one or more embodiments, the main guard is substantially parallel to a plane of rotation of the one or more propeller blades. Furthermore, in some of these embodiments, the movable guard is also substantially parallel to the main guard when in the default position.

“In one or more embodiments, the unmanned aerial vehicle comprises a plurality of rotors and propeller guards. In some of these embodiments, the unmanned aerial vehicle further comprises a stall system that stops rotation of all the rotors when one or more of the propeller guards obstructs rotation of a respective rotor.

“According to another aspect of the present invention, a toy aerial vehicle is provided. The toy aerial vehicle comprises a rotor having one or more propeller blades and a propeller guard surrounding the rotor. The propeller guard comprises a main guard surrounding the one or more propeller blades and a movable guard vertically displaced from the main guard. The movable guard is supported by a linkage connected to a body of the toy aerial vehicle. The movable guard is also movable from a default position to an engaged position by temporarily deforming at least one of the movable guard and linkage such that the movable guard contacts and obstructs rotation of the one or more propeller blades. The default position of the movable guard allows the one or more propeller blades to rotate and the movable guard remains in and/or returns to the default position when not in the engaged position.

“In one or more embodiments, the toy aerial vehicle further comprises an ancillary guard vertically displaced from the main guard and positioned on a side of the main guard opposite from the position of the movable guard. In certain embodiments, the main guard, movable guard, and ancillary guard are concentric sections of ring structures.

“According to a further aspect of the present invention, a method of protecting a user from contact with a rotating propeller blade is provided. The method comprises providing an unmanned aerial vehicle comprising a rotor having one or more propeller blades and providing a propeller guard surrounding the rotor. The propeller guard comprises a main guard surrounding the one or more propeller blades and a movable guard vertically displaced from the main guard. The movable guard is supported by a linkage connected to a body of the unmanned aerial vehicle. The movable guard is also movable from a default position to an engaged position by temporarily deforming at least one of the movable guard and linkage. The one or more propeller blades freely rotate when the movable guard is in the default position. The movable guard contacts and obstructs rotation of the one or more propeller blades when in the engaged position.

“Other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art from the following detailed description. It is to be understood, however, that the detailed description and specific examples, while indicating some embodiments of the invention, are given by way of illustration and not limitation. Many changes and modifications within the scope of the invention may be made without departing from the spirit thereof, and the present invention includes all such modifications.”

The claims supplied by the inventors are:

“1. An unmanned aerial vehicle comprising a rotor having one or more propeller blades and a propeller guard surrounding the rotor, the propeller guard comprising: a main guard surrounding the one or more propeller blades; and a movable guard vertically displaced from the main guard, the movable guard being movable from a default position to an engaged position where a section of the movable guard intersects a plane defined by the main guard; wherein moving the movable guard from the default position to the engaged position results in the movable guard contacting and obstructing rotation of the one or more propeller blades.

“2. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 1, wherein the movable guard returns to the default position when not in the engaged position.

“3. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 1, wherein the main guard is substantially parallel to a plane of rotation of the one or more propeller blades.

“4. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 1, wherein the movable guard is substantially parallel to the main guard when in the default position.

“5. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 1, wherein the movable guard is supported by a linkage connected to a body of the unmanned aerial vehicle.

“6. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 5, wherein at least one of the movable guard and linkage is made of a flexible material, such that moving the movable guard to the engaged position comprises temporarily deforming at least one of the movable guard and linkage.

“7. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 6, wherein temporarily deforming the movable guard or linkage includes bending at least a portion of the movable guard or linkage.

“8. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 5, wherein the linkage connects the movable guard to the main guard and a support beam connects the main guard to the body of the unmanned aerial vehicle.

“9. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 5, wherein the linkage directly connects the movable guard to the body of the unmanned aerial vehicle.

“10. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 1, wherein the movable guard includes a loop that contacts the main guard when the movable guard is moved from the default position to the engaged position.

“11. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 1, wherein the propeller guard further comprises an ancillary guard vertically displaced from the main guard and positioned on a side of the main guard opposite from the position of the movable guard.

“12. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 11, wherein at least one of the main guard, movable guard, and ancillary guard is a ring structure or a section of a ring structure.

“13. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 12, wherein the main guard and movable guard are concentric sections of ring structures and the length of the propeller blade is less than the radius of the main guard and greater than the radius of the movable guard.

“14. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 13, wherein the ancillary guard is a ring structure or a section of a ring structure having a radius less than the radius of the main guard.

“15. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 1, wherein the unmanned aerial vehicle comprises a plurality of rotors and propeller guards.

“16. The unmanned aerial vehicle of claim 15, wherein the unmanned aerial vehicle further comprises a stall system that stops rotation of all the rotors when one or more of the propeller guards obstructs rotation of a respective rotor.

“17. A toy aerial vehicle comprising a rotor having one or more propeller blades and a propeller guard surrounding the rotor, the propeller guard comprising: a main guard surrounding the one or more propeller blades; and a movable guard vertically displaced from the main guard and supported by a linkage connected to a body of the toy aerial vehicle, the movable guard being movable from a default position to an engaged position by temporarily deforming at least one of the movable guard and linkage such that the movable guard contacts and obstructs rotation of the one or more propeller blades; wherein the default position of the movable guard allows the one or more propeller blades to rotate and the movable guard remains in the default position when not in the engaged position.

“18. The toy aerial vehicle of claim 17 further comprising an ancillary guard vertically displaced from the main guard and positioned on a side of the main guard opposite from the position of the movable guard.

“19. The toy aerial vehicle of claim 18, wherein the main guard, movable guard, and ancillary guard are concentric sections of ring structures.

“20. A method of protecting a user from contact with a rotating propeller blade, the method comprising: providing an unmanned aerial vehicle comprising a rotor having one or more propeller blades; and providing a propeller guard surrounding the rotor, the propeller guard comprising: a main guard surrounding the one or more propeller blades; and a movable guard vertically displaced from the main guard and supported by a linkage connected to a body of the unmanned aerial vehicle, the movable guard being movable from a default position to an engaged position by temporarily deforming at least one of the movable guard and linkage; wherein the one or more propeller blades freely rotate when the movable guard is in the default position and the movable guard contacts and obstructs rotation of the one or more propeller blades when in the engaged position.”

For more information, see this patent application: KIDAKARN, Mac. Unmanned Aerial Vehicle With Propeller Guard. Filed January 22, 2018 and posted July 25, 2019. Patent URL: http://appft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PG01&p=1&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsrchnum.html&r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=%2220190225327%22.PGNR.&OS=DN/20190225327&RS=DN/20190225327

(Our reports deliver fact-based news of research and discoveries from around the world.)

Copyright © 2019 NewsRx LLC, Entertainment Business Daily, source Leisure, Travel & Entertainment Newsletters

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