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Патент USA US2404942

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My 3Q, 195-
A. v. BEDFORD
2,404,942
STEERING DEVICE
Filed Nov. 6, 1940
PROJECTOR POSITIONS
3 Sheets-Sheet l
.15
716
30MB
5
3nventor
?lda V Bedford
and.
an s.
9;0
\L-j}
//
July 30, 194%.
A_ v_ BEDFQRD
2,494,942
STEERING DEVICE
Filed Nov. 6, 1940 ‘
3 Sheets-Sheet 2
3nventor
Hlda VBedfod
v
E
-
»- '
/
ttorneg
2,404,942
Patented July 30, 1946
UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE
2,404,942
STEERING DEVICE
Aida V. Bedford, Collingswood, N. J ., assignor to
Radio Corporation of" timer-lea, a corporation
of Delaware
Application November 6, 1940, Serial No. 364,483
16 Claims. (Cl. 102——3)
1
This invention relates to direction control de
vices which are useful in controlling the path
followed by moving objects, such as aerial bombs,
and the like, and has for its principal object
the provision of an improved apparatus and
method of operation whereby a beam of radiant
energy is used to control the path of the bomb,
the operator in the airplane being required only
2
bomb is at any instant, so as to return the bomb
to the center of the beam. By reducing the angle
between the radiated beam and the line of sight
to zero in the time required for the bomb to
fall from the airplane to the target, it will be
appreciated that the bomb will be controlled
throughout its entire ?ight and will be directed
to the target.
This invention will be better understood from
to sight the target with a conventional optical
following description when considered in
sighting device, the system then automatically 10 the
connection with the accompanying drawings in
correcting the path of the falling bomb so as to
insure a direct hit on the target.
Modern technique for aerial bombing depends
upon releasing the bomb from the airplane when
which Figure 1 is a view illustrating the general
operation of this invention; Figures 2 and 3 are
cross-sectional views showing the modulation of
the controlling beam; Figure 4 is a view partly
it is in such a position and moving at such a 15 in section of an aerial bomb; Figures 5 and 6
velocity with respect to the target on the ground,
are sectional views of a beam projector; Figure
or on the water, that the natural trajectory of
7 is a schematic view of the beam angle control
the bomb along its approximately parabolic path
mechanism; Figure 8 is a circuit diagram of a
will cause it to strike the target. While rea
receiver and mechanism for operating the control
sonable accuracy under certain conditions is at 20 vanes of the bomb; Figure 9 is an alternative
tained by present methods, the uncertainties of
the wind at different altitudes and at different
form of beam projector utilizing radio frequency
energy; Figure 10 is a view of an aerial bomb
equipped with an antenna; Figure 11 is a re
ceiver for controlling the bomb by means of a
range of anti-aircraft guns, between 15,000 to 25 radio beam; and Figure 12 shows enlarged views
times makes it quite di?icult to score a direct
hit on a small target from altitudes above the
20,000 feet, for example. The present invention
is to be used in conjunction with the present
systems which should be used in accordance with
existing practice or perhaps in a less re?ned
form, the control system of the present invention 30
being an auxiliary or vernier control for guiding
of the imaging apertures and modulating holes
in the four quadrants of the beam projector.
Principle of operation
The general principle of operation of the pres
ent invention will ?rst be described in connec
tion with a control beam of visible light, al
curacy.
though it is to be understood that other forms
Brie?y, the present invention contemplates
of radiant energy may be employed such as the
radiating downwardly from a special projector in 35 invisible or infra-red rays, radio, and the like.
the airplane a beam of energy a cross-section of
Referring to Fig. 1, an airplane I3 is ?ying
which is represented by four quadrants of a
along a substantially straight course at an as
the bomb after its release so as to assure ac
circle, each quadrant being differently char
acteriz‘ed by a distinct modulation.
The beam
projector is geared to the optical sighting de
sumed altitude of approximately 20,000 feet and
releases a bomb l5 at the time T1 to strike a
target 19. Assuming, for example, that by the
conventional practice the bomb is unintentionally
released slightly too soon, it then normally fol
lows the trajectory 2| and falls short of the tar
of sight between the airplane and the target as
get IS. The present control system is so designed
determined by the sighting device. The control 45 that the bomb is deflected from its unguided
mechanism is such that the projected beam al
path only enough to secure a hit on the target.
ways includes the bomb in its downward ?ight.
Thus, it is possible to use easily manipulated
The bomb is provided with suitable ?ns which
control vanes on the bomb and a light-control
cause its longitudinal axis to line up with its
apparatus. The dotted lines 231 to 235 represent
50
path of fall and a gyroscopic compass which
the line of sight between the airplane and the
prevents rotation about that axis. A receiver for
target at successive time intervals T1 to T5, it
the radiant energy‘ and a control mechanism are
being understood that, after releasing the bomb
mounted within the bomb to operate the steer
at the time T1, the pilot continues to fly a
ing ?ns in accordance with the modulation fre
straight course and to sight the optical sight
quency of the quadrant of the beam in which the 55
vice, which may be the conventional bomb sight,
and is provlded with means for automatically
varying the angle between the beam and the line
Ti)
2,404,942
" “ I
.
J
*
0
ing device on the target until the bomb has hit.
will be unde?ected. = At any event, it will be ap
Due to the effect of wind resistance, the bomb
preciated that the modulation frequencies of the
falls slightly behind the airplane and at the suc
various quadrants so operate the control mech
cessive intervals illustrated the angles B1 to B5
anism as to cause the bomb to approach the cen
represent the angles between the lines of sight "A ter
of the beam.
231 to 235 and lines 241 to 2&5 drawn from the
Fig. 3 illustrates the cross-section of a beam
airplane to the bomb at the successive inter
modulated with overlapping sectors whereby two
vals, the latter lines being the directions in which
guiding vanes may be de?ected at the same time
the control beam is directed at any time. It will
by the presence of two signals of different fre
be noted that at the instant T1, when the bomb, 10 quencies which tend to divert the bomb towards
is released, the angle B1 is the greatest, and that
the center of the beam. If, for example, the bomb
the angle successively decreases until at the in
is in the north sector, as illustrated, and is sub
stant T5, when the bomb strikes the target, the
‘ject to modulation frequencies of both 100 and
angle B5 between the line of sight and the control
120 cycles per second, it will be appreciated that
beam is zero.
'
15 vanes 25 and 21 will both be operated in such
As indicated above, the bomb is controlled by
a direction as to cause the bomb to move along
a beam of radiant energy whose, axis is directed
a radius of the cross-section directly toward the
downwardly from the airplane. 'In order to es
center of the beam. In the adjacent sectors, only
tablish control over the ?ight of the bomb at the
-a single control frequency will be received, but
instant it is released, the beam must be directed 20 it will be seen that thebomb will then also move
towards the bomb, and it must also be ‘contin
almost directly toward the ‘center of the beam,
uously focused on the bomb throughout its entire
as. desired. Fig. 4 is a general View of ‘the bomb
?ight. To accomplish this without having to'ac
. i5 showing a photoelectric tube 29 mounted in its
rear, the control vanes 25 are operated'from a
tually see the bomb during its ?ight, it is herein
proposed to automatically vary the angle between
motor M within the bomb through a‘ worm gear
the radiant beam and the line of sight through
out the known period. required for the bomb to
fall from the aircraft to the target so that the
mechanism 3| against-a spring bias’32, which
tends to return the vanes to their normal posi
beamcontinuously intersects the normal trajec
trol vanes 21 are mounted in- a- plane at right
tions when the motor is not actuated. ' The con
tory of the bomb.
This angle is gradually re
angles to the vanes 25 and do not appear in the
duced to zero and reaches alignment with the V30 sectional drawing. It is to be iunderstod that
optical line of sight at or near the end. of this
a gyroscopic motor is also included within the
interval. Since thev time required _.for a bomb
bomb to prevent its rotation about its axis; ~'
to fall from a known altitude is independent of
Beam' projector
the wind and the plane speed, it is possible to .
calculate in advance the rate of change of this
angle so that the bomb will at all times remain
within the beam even though the operator is
unable to follow its actual ?ight. . .
The beam control system
" 40
Although there are‘many different ways of
maintaining a falling objectrwithin a beam of
' radiant energy,’ a preferred embodiment utilizing
a modulated light source.- is illustrated in‘ the
drawings. “Figure-2 represents a 'crossesection of
‘the control beam which is seen to be divided into
four quadrants or sectors, each quadrant con
taining light modulated at a di?erent frequency,
A projector for producing a light beam of the
type illustrated in Fig. 2 is shown in Figs. 5 and 6
to which reference is now made. A simple me
chanical light projector. comprises a. rotating
chopper disc 33 having four groups of apertures
therein, a, b, c and d, spaceduniformly around
the entire circumference of four circles of differ
ent radii, although only the apertures in each
quadrant are shown. The number of the aper
tures and the speed of rotation of the disc, as
determined by the motor 35, is chosen so as .to
produce the desired separate modulation frequen
cies. The motor and disc. are mounted within
a cylindrical chamber 31 inthe upper portion of
say 100, 120, 140 and 170, cycles per second, al 50 .which four light sources are provided,ionly two
though it will be appreciated that color ?lters
of which appear in thesectional View of Fig‘. 5.
may be used to differentiate the various quad
Beneath the rotating chopper disc 33 four tubular
rants. The bomb I5 is shown in the l20-cycle
quadrant near its outer edge. The relative
channels are arranged whose cross-sections may
be square, round or any desired shape. "The ?rst
orientation of the bomb vanes and the modula 55 channel 5| in quadrant A has a small imaging
tion quadrants is at a 45-degree angle, as illus
aperture 52 in its upper end which is aligned‘ with
trated. By means of a mechanism which will
and slightly smaller than the inner apertures a
be described hereinaftenthe bomb receives light
in the rotating disc so that light from the bulb
modulated at the given frequency which causes
the proper vane 25 to be operated so that the 60 £5 concentrated by the lens 41 will pass through
the disc 33 and intensely illuminate this‘aperture.
bomb tends to move in such a direction that it
The shape of the imaging aperture 52 is similar
will approach the center of the beam. It may,
to a 90-degree sector of a circle having its apex
however, come into the quadrant modulated at
?lled, and is illustratedin enlarged section in
100 cycles per second. This modulation fre
quency is then selected in the receiver and utilized 65 Fig. 12. The point 0, located at'the center of the
circle of which the aperture is a' sector, is also
to control another vane-operating motor which
operates the vane 21 to move the bomb in a di
rection at right angles to the original direction
the optical axis of a lens 54 which images the
illuminated aperture 54 at a great distance‘. ‘
The second, third and fourth channels in quad~
so that it moves towards the center again. 'The
bomb may move back into the l20-cycle region, 70 rant B; C and D are constructed similarly, the
imaging apertures being in corresponding quad
butvit will again be steered towardthe center of
rants, as shown in‘ Fig. 12, and being aligned with
the beam. The center portion of the beam is
the correspondingly marked holes '12, c and‘d in
preferably unmodulated so that, when traversing
its normal course, if properly directed, it will re
main in the center of the beam and its course 75
the chopper disc.’ As a result, a beam ‘is pro
duced which comprises essentially'fo'ur QO-degree
sectors‘ of" di?z‘erently modulated 'light' arranged
2,404,942
5
in substantially circular cross-section, and hav
ing an unmodulated central portion about its
axis. The projected image on the ground may
be of the order of several hundred yards in diam
eter when the airplane is flying at a great altitude.
A similar channel having a similar aperture
is located in the second quadrant. The third and
fourth quadrants C and D are provided with sim
ilar channels likewise. This projector produces
'6
able bias means, closing only when a current of
the corresponding frequency is applied by the
ampli?er 85.
Relay 95 closes the circuit between a battery
I03 and a reversible motor N35 to cause the mo
tor to rotate in a given direction.
Relay 9?.
closes the circuit between the same battery I83
and the reversible motor I85 so as to cause the
motor to rotate in the opposite direction. Re
lays 99 and IEH similarly connect the battery I33
a light beam having four equal sectors modu 10 with a second reversible motor I09 to cause its
lated at different modulating frequencies as re
rotation in respective directions. Each motor is
quired. The light is directed in a beam of in
geared to a control vane for the bomb through
creasing cross~section so that the beam is large
a suitable worm gear mechanism. The motors
enough to always include the bomb in its ?ight
and vanes are returned to their normal positions
when the airplane is operating at high altitudes. 15
Beam angle control system
by bias springs I00 and'IBZ. Thus, motor I95
controls the orientation of the vane 25 while the
The apparatus for properly directing the pro
jector is illustrated in Fig. 7. The projector 31
motor I69 controls the orientation of the vane 21.
angle B between the sight 55 and the projector
motors, as, for example, by limiting the gear
It will be appreciated that the bomb at any
instant will normally be responsive only to a
is mounted on a pivot 39 of a gimbal support, not 20 single modulation frequency, and that only one
shown, which allows the projector to be swung
vane will be operated at any given time. If the
forward or backward, right or left, with respect
overlapping modulation system of Fig. 3 is used,
to the direction in which the airplane is travel“
however, both motors may be operated together
ing. A telescopic sight 55 is pivoted at a bear
in the manner described above. Suitable stops
ing 51 to the projector 3'! in such a way that the 25 may be provided for limiting the rotation of the
31 is controlled by a worm rack 59 and worm gear
El. A reversible motor 63 drives a lever 65 about
a pivot 61 by means of a Worm 69 and sector ‘II.
A roller ‘I3 mounted on the end of the lever drives
a gear ‘I5 through a cam 11. Gear ‘I5 in turn
drives the worm 6| by means of a gear ‘I9 and a
sector, or in any other convenient manner.
For obvious reasons, the use of a light beam to
control the trajectory of the bomb has certain
disadvantages. Such a beam is subject to inter
ruption by smoke or clouds, and, in addition, may
be observed easily by anti-aircraft batteries on
?exible shaft 8 I.
the ground. To overcome this disadvantage, the
In operation, the angle B is ?rst adjusted to
principle of operation may be applied to a sys
angle
31
of
Fig.
1
by
running
the
re.
equal the
tem utilizing a beam of radio energy in the man
versible motor to the proper position. As clearly
ner illustrated in Fig. 9. In this ?gure, the op
indicated by Fig. 1. the angle B1 is that between a
tical bomb sight 55 is used as before. It is
vertical line and a line extending from the ob
similarly mounted on and used in conjunction
server to the target. Motor 63 is a reversible mo
with a radio frequency beam projector l I I which
tor and its direction of rotation may be controlled 40 includes within it, for example, an ultra high ire
by a switch 60. At the instant the bomb is
quency radio transmitter H3, and a parabolic
dropped, the switch‘ 62, coupled to the bomb re
re?ector H5. Modulation in the four quadrants
lease lever, starts the motor running in such a
may be accomplished in the manner described in
direction that the angle B is gradually reduced to
a patent issued on June 1, 1937, to Irving Wol?,
zero in a calculated time equal to that required
No. 2,682,042. Brie?y, this is done by means of
for the bomb to drop from the airplane to the
four gas modulator elements which are connected
ground. At the same time, the operator main
to four sources of modulation frequency, I II, I I9,
tains the sight 55 on the target at all times. The
HI and I23. The resultant radio frequency beam
shape of the cam TI is such that the projector
approaches alignment with the sight as indicated 50 then corresponds to the light beam produced by
the light beam projector illustrated in Figs. 5
by the successive angles B1, B2, B3, etc, in Fig. 1.
and 6 and is operated in a similar manner.
For slight variations in the altitude of the air
In order to receive the radio frequency energy,
plane from the calculated altitude for which the
the bomb is equipped with a small antenna IE5
cam was designed, it is probable that suitable
as illustrated in Fig. 10. A receiver for controlling
changes in the motor speed and changes in the
the flight of the bomb is illustrated in Fig. 11.
starting point on the cam will provide adequate
compensation. However, for large variations, the
use of a different cam surface is desirable. A plu
rality of such cams may be provided correspond
ing to different altitudes, and the proper one se
lected before setting the mechanism in operation.
Receiver
Such a receiver includes a detector I21, an audio
frequency ampli?er I29 the output of which is
serially connected through the four frequency re
sponsive relays 8?, 89, 9i and 83 as illustrated
60 in Fig. 8. These relays are utilized in the same
manner to control the reversible motors I85 and
IE9 and thereby the vanes 25 and 21.
A particular advantage of the system in ac
Fig. 8 is a circuit diagram of a receiver for
use within the aerial bomb for controlling its path 65 cordance with this invention is that control of
of flight. The receiver includes the photoelectric
the bomb is e?e-cted without the necessity of 0b
tube 29 which is connected to the input of a
serving the bomb during its ?ight. In addition, if
high gain ampli?er 85. The ampli?er output is
the control is interrupted for a short period, as by
connected in series through four frequency se
an intervening cloud or smoke, the control appa
lective relays $1, 89, QI and Q3 which respond
ratus automatically follows the calculated path
respectively ‘to the four modulation frequencies 70 of the bomb so that control may be reestablished
assumed to be 100, 140, 120 and 170 cycles per
as soon as the beam again reaches the falling
second, respectively. These frequency responsive
bomb. In fact, it may be desirable to establish
relays actuate associated double-pole single
control only after the bomb has fallen for a con
throw switches 95, 97, 99 and IBI, the switches
siderable distance. At such a time, the angle be
75
being maintained in anopen position by any suit
2,404,942
‘tween the path of the bomb and the control beam
.ducing means and initiated with the release of
is minimized so that the bomb is following a path
more nearly parallel to the axis of the beam. In
said object for automatically decreasing the angle
between said beam and said line of sight as a
function of the time required for said object to
such a case, a more accurate control is established
and slight errors in the cam mechanism tending
to point the beam in a slightly incorrect direction
at any given instant are not so apt to focus the
.fall to ground so that said beam continuously in
beam entirely away from the bomb. Further
more, although it is desirable to maintain the
airplane in a straight path after releasing the 10
bomb, at great altitudes slight variations in its
position do not seriously affect the angle, of the
beam for maintaining said object Within said
beam whereby said object is automatically direct
tersects the calculated instantaneous position of
beam so that control is not lost nor is the beam
moved so far as to de?ect the bomb too far from
its normal trajectory. The radio control system I
said‘ object as it falls toward said target, and re
ceiving means on said object responsive to said
ed to said target.
'
4. In a system for directing an object falling
from an airplane to a target on the ground, the
combination including beam-producing means for
radiating downwardly from said airplane a beam
of radiant energy, sighting means for establishing
is, of course, unaffected by intervening clouds, al
though it will be appreciated that the e?iciency
of the bomb sight itself may be somewhat affect
a line of sight between said airplane and said tar
get, said sighting means being adjustably mount
ed. Since the present invention is a corrector or
ed in said airplane so that an observer may main
tain a sight on said target, means for establish
ing an initial angle between said beam and said
line of Sight, means initiated with the release of
Vernier for present bombing methods, it follows
that the result can be no worse than those
achieved by present methods even if, through
some unforeseen circumstance, control is never
established on the bomb. On the other hand, the
system can operate to control the. ?ight of the
bomb to greatly increase the accuracy and to pro
duce a larger number of direct hits.
I claim as my invention:
1. In a system for directing an object falling
said object for automatically decreasing the angle
between said beam and said line of sight as a
function of ‘the time required for'said object to
fall to ground so that said beam continuously in
tersects the calculated instantaneous position of
from an airplane to a target on the ground, the
said object as it falls toward said target, and re
ceiving means on said object responsive to said
combination including beam-producing means for
radiating downwardly from said airplane a beam
beam whereby said object is automatically direct
beam for maintaining said object within said
ed to said target.
of radiant energy, sighting means angularly ad
justable with respect to said radiating means for
establishing a line of sight between said airplane ,»
and said target, means connected to said sighting
means and said beam-producing means and initi
ated with the release of said object for automatie
cally decreasing the angle between said beam and
'
'
I
5. In a system for directing an object falling
from an airplane to a target on the ground, the
combination including beam-producing means for
radiating downwardly from said airplane a beam
of radiant energy,
sighting‘ means for 7 establishing ,
a line of sight between said airplane and said tar
said line of sight as a function of the time re 40 get, means for establishing an initial angle be
tween said beam and said line of sight, means ini
quired for said object to fall to ground so that
tiated with the release of said object for auto
said beam continuously intersects the calculated
matically decreasing the angle between said beam
instantaneous position of said object as it falls
toward said target, and receiving means on said
object responsive to said beam for maintaining -
and said line of sight so that said beam continu
ously intersects the calculated instantaneous po
sition of said object as it falls toward said target,
said object within said beam whereby said object
is automatically directed to said target.
receiving means‘on said object responsive to said '
beam for maintaining said object within said
beam whereby said object is automatically di
2. In a system for directing an object falling
from an airplane to a target on the ground, the
combination including beam-producing means for 5.0
radiating downwardly from said airplane a beam
of light, sighting means angularly adjustable with
respect to said radiating means for establishing
a line of sight between said airplane and said
target, means connected to said sighting means
and said beam-producing means and initiated
with the release of said object for automatically
decreasing the angle between said beam and said
rected to said target.
.
6. In a system for directing an object falling
from an airplanerto a target on the ground, the
combination including beam-producing means
for radiating downwardly from said airplane a
beam of radiant energy, means for differently
755 characterizing di?erent portions of said beam,
means for establishing a line of sight between said
airplane and said target, means for establishing
an initial angle between said beam and said line
line of sight as a function of the time required for
said object to fall to ground so that said beam 60 of sight, means initiated with the release of said
object for automatically decreasing the angle be,
continuously intersects the calculated instantane
tween said beam and said line of sight so that
ous position of said object as it falls toward said
target, and receiving means on said object re
said beam continuously intersects the calculated
from an airplane to a target on the ground, the
operable in response to the reception .of energy
instantaneous position of said object as it falls
sponsive to said beam for maintaining said object
within said beam whereby said object is auto 65 toward said target, receiving means on said ob
ject responsive to said beam, an output circuit
matically directed to said target.
7
for said receiving means including control, means
3. In a system for directing an objectfalling
combination including beam-producing means
characterized according to saiddifferent portions
of said beam, respectively, and steering means for
for radiating downwardly from said airplane a
beam of radio frequency energy, sighting means 70 said object under control of said control means
for maintaining said object within said beam.
angularly adjustable with respect to said radiat
7.’ In a“ system for directing'an object falling
ing means for establishing a line of sight be
from an airplane to a target on the ground, the
tween» said airplaneiand said target, means con
nected to saidsighting means and said beam-pro 75 combination including ' beam-producing means
for radiating'downwardiy from said airplane a
2,404,942
9,
10
beam of radiant energy, modulating means for
radiating downwardly from said airplane a beam
differently characterizing different portions of
said beam, sighting means for establishing a line
terizing different portions of said beam, means
of sight between said airplane and said target,
said sighting means being adjustably mounted in
plane and said target, said sighting means being
of radiant energy, means for di?erently charac
for establishing a line of sight between said air
adjustably mounted in said airplane so that an
observer may maintain a sight on said target,
means
for establishing an initial angle between
initial angle between said beam and said line of
said beam and said line of sight, means including
sight, said means comprising a cam-controlled
link mechanism interconnecting said sighting 10 a cam-controlled link mechanism interconnecting
said sighting means and said beam-producing
means and said beam-producing means, means
means for automatically decreasing the angle be
initiated wtih the release of said object for an
tween said beam and said line of sight upon the
tomatically decreasing the angle between said
said airplane so that an observer may maintain a
sight on said target, means for establishing an
beam and said line of sight so that said beam con
release of said object as a function of the time
said beam, an output circuit for said receiving
toward said target, said angle reaching zero in a
according to said diiTerent portions of said beam,
respectively, and steering means for said object
object responsive to said beam, an output circuit
tinuously intersects the calculated instantaneous 15 required for said object to fall to ground so that
said beam continuously intersects the calculated
position of said object as it falls toward said tar
instantaneous position of said object as it falls
get, receiving means on said object responsive to
period of time equal to the time required for said
means including control means operable in re
sponse to the reception of energy characterized 20 object to fall to ground, receiving means on said
under control of said control means for main
taining said object within said beam.
for said receiving means including control means
operable in response to the reception of energy
characterized according to said different portions
8. In a system for directing an object falling 25 of said beam, respectively, and steering means for
said. object under control of said control means
from an airplane to a target on the ground, the
for maintaining said object within said beam
combination including beam-producing means for
whereby said object is automatically directed to
radiating downwardly from said airplane a beam
said target,
"
of radiant energy, sighting means for establish
11. In a system for directing an object falling
ing a line of sight between said airplane and said 30
from an airplane to a target on the ground, the
target, means for establishing an initial angle
combination including beam-producing means
between said beam and said line of sight, means
for radiating downwardly from said airplane a
initiated with the release of said object for an
beam of radiant energy, modulating means for
tomatically decreasing the angle between said
beam and said line of sight so that said beam con 35 differently characterizing said beam in four
quadrants, each quadrant being modulated at a
tinuously intersects the calculated instantaneous
di?erent frequency, sighting means for estab
position on said object as it falls toward said tar
lishing a line of sight between said airplane and
get, said means comprising a cam-controlled link
said target, means connected to said sighting
mechanism interconnecting said sighting means
and said beam-producing means, and receiving 40 means and said beam-producing means and in
itiated with the release of said object for auto
means on said object responsive to said beam for
matically
decreasing the angle’between said beam
maintaining said object within said beam where
and said line of sight as a function of the time
by said object is automatically directed to said
required for said object to fall to ground so that
target.
9. In a system for directing an object falling 45 said beam continuously intersects the calculated
instantaneous position of said object as it falls
from an airplane to a target on the ground, the
toward said target, receiving means on said ob
combination including beam-producing means for
ject responsive to said beam, and an output cir
radiating downwardly from said airplane a beam
cuit for said receiving means including frequency
of radiant energy, sighting means for establishing 50 responsive relays operable to control the trajec
a line of sight between said airplane and said tar
tory of said object in response to the reception
get, said sighting means being adjustably mount
of energy characterized according to the mod
ed in said airplane so that an observer may main
ulation of said quadrants, whereby said object
tain a sight on said target, means for establishing
is automatically directed to said target.
an initial angle between the axis of said beam and 55
12. The method of controlling the trajectory
said line of sight, means comprising a cam-con
of an object falling from an aircraft to a target
trolled link mechanism interconnecting said
sighting means and said beam-producing means,
whose operation is initiated with the release of
said object for automatically decreasing the angle
between said beam and said line of sight as a
function of the instantaneous relative positions
of said object, said airplane and said target, so
that said beam continuously intersects the cal
on the ground including the steps of generating
a beam of radiant energy, directing said beam
downwardly from said aircraft, establishing and
60 maintaining a line of sight between said aircraft
and said target, varying the angle between said
beam and said line of sight throughout a period
coinciding with the time required for said ob
ject to fall from said aircraft to said target, re
ceiving said radiant energy at said object, and
utilizing said received energy to maintain said
object in said beam so that said object is directed
‘(/0 said target.
13. The method of controlling the trajectory
culated instantaneous position of said object as
it falls toward said target, said angle reaching
zero in a period of time equal to the time required
for said object to fall to ground, receiving means
on said object responsive to said radiant energy
for modifying the normal trajectory of said object
so as to maintain said object within said beam, 70 of an object falling from an aircraft to a target
on the ground including the steps of generating a
whereby said object is automatically directed to
beam of radiant energy, directing said beam
said target.
downwardly from said aircraft, establishing and
10. In a system for directing an object falling
maintaining a line of sight between said air
from an airplane to a target on the ground, the
craft and said target, establishing an initial
combination including beam-producing means for
2,404,942
111
12
angle between said beam' and said line of sight,
varying the angle between said beam'randrsaid
from said aircraft,‘ di?erentially characterizing
di?erent quadrants of said beam in accordance
‘with different modulating voltages, receivingsaid
line of_ sight throughout a period coinciding with
the time required" for said object to fall from
said aircraft to said target, receiving said ‘ta;
diant energy at said object,’ and utilizing'said
radiant energy at said object, demodulating said
received energy, separating currents character
ized according to the respective modulation fre
quency of the quadrant of said beam impinging
on said object, and utilizing said separated our
received energy to maintain said object‘ insaid
beam so that said object is directed to said’ tar
get.
'
'
'
'
14. The method of controlling the trajectory
of 'an'object falling from an aircraft to a‘target
, on the ground including the steps of'generating
a beam of vradiant energy,'directing said beam,
downwardly from said aircraft, modulating said
beam, establishing and maintaining a ‘line of
sight between said aircraft and said target, vary
ing the angle between said beam and said line
“of sight throughout ‘a period coinciding with the
time required for said object to fall from said
aircraft to said target, receiving said radiant
energy at said object, demodulating said received
energlh'and utilizing said demodulated energy to
vary the trajectory ofv said object to thereb
maintain said object in said beam.
-
r '15. The method of controlling the trajectory
of an object falling from an aircraft to attarget
on the ground’including the steps ‘of generating
av beam of radiant energy of generally circular
cross-section, directing said beam downwardly
, rents to control the trajectory of ‘said object and
10
maintain it Within'said beam.
‘
16. The method of controlling the trajectory
of an object falling from an aircraft to a target
on the ground including the steps of generating
a beam of radiant energy, establishing and main
taining a line of sight between said aircraft and
said target, establishing an initial angle between
the axis of said beam and said line of sight, vary
ing said angle between said initial value and zero
in a period coinciding with the falling of said ob
ject, controlling said variation so that said beam
continuously intersects the calculated instanta
neous position of said object, said beam and said
line of sight reaching parallelism at the conclu
sion of said period, receiving said radiant energy
at said object, and utilizing said received energy
to maintain said object in said beam so that said
object is directed to said target.
ALDA v. BEDFORD.
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