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Патент USA US3064595

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Nov. 20, 1962
Filed Sept. 14, 1960
2 Sheets-Sheet 1
E5 .1.
vNov. 20, 1962-
Filed Sept. 14, 1960
2 Sheets-Sheet 2
153 179;54
United States Patent O?tice
Patented Nov. 20, 196.2
FIG. 12 is a schematic view of a hydraulic system
which is used in stabilizing the monorail cars against un
Robert W. Ewing, 51"., 4%5 Greenmount Road,
Wilmington 3, Del.
Filed Sept. 14, 1%9, Ser. No. ‘56,059
6 Claims. (Ci. 1ll4—93)
. desirable sway transversely of the track.
to assemblies shown in FIGS. 1 through 12 relate to
improvements in a monorail car or train, and track.
These assemblies serve to provide greatly increased safety
and other features believed necessary for practical mod
The present application relates to a monorail transpor
tation assembly or system and more particularly relates to
ern transportation by cars suspended from an overhead
rail, and facilitate the safe operation of such cars at
monorail transportation assemblies which travel at high 10 speeds of several hundred miles per hour. Such a means
speeds up to several hundred miles per hour. Herero
of transportation opens new possibilities in dependable
fore, a great deal of work and experimentation has been
high speed transportation between centers of population,
carried out relative to monorail assemblies or systems.
independent of weather, and without the need of sec
Some of these systems are actually in ope-ration for
ondary transportation to reach outlying airports. By us
demonstration purposes, amusement park devices and for 15 ing one-way tracks with switches only at terminals, and
local transportation purposes. All of these systems are
elevating the rails above any possible crossing traf?c, col
designed generally for low speed operation and are
lisions between the monorail trains and any other ‘vehi
generally intended for local transportation only.
cles are entirely eliminated. The monorail system can
To date, no satisfactory monorail system for high speed
be established along existing railroad right-of-ways with
operation over great distances has yet been constructed 20 out interference wtih normal railroad operation.
or devised.
Essentially the monorail assembly consists of cars sus
It is therefore one object of my invention to provide
pended below the supporting rail by wheel assemblies
a novel and improved monorail assembly or system which
having load carrying wheels running on a lower ?ange of
will travel in satisfactory and safe manner at high speeds
the rail on opposite sides of a rail web member or mem
up to several hundred miles per hour.
25 bers. The assembly includes stabilizing wheels which
A further object of my invention is to provide a novel
contact the rail above the load-carrying wheels and limit
and improved monorail system or assembly which may
the sideward swing of the wheel assembly and cars. The
be used for high-speed transportation purposes over long
lower load carrying ?ange of the rail is completely cap
distances such as from Boston to Philadelphia.
tive within the wheel assembly yoke, precluding the pos—
Another object of my invention is to provide a novel
sibility of the wheels running off the rail.
and improved monorail system or assembly which is ex
The invention will now be described in detail.
tremely stable and will not be adversely affected by strong
As seen in FIGS. 1 and 2, my monorail system in
cross winds or other disturbing factors during its travel.
cludes a rail generally identi?ed as 1 suspended from an
Still a further object of my invention is to provide a
overhead supporting frame 2 with the legs 2’ of the
novel and improved monorail system or assembly with 35 frame 2 anchored in the ground or other supporting ele
means of regulating and controlling any tendency for the
ments 3 which are in turn anchored in the ground. With
‘monorail cars to deviate or swing on" of its normal posi
this arrangement, the rail 1 is supported high above the
tion below the center line of the track supporting the
ground level whereby it may easily be installed over exist
car, except when rounding a curve.
ing railroad right-of-ways. Supported by the rail 1 and
Other objects and advantages of my invention will be 40 adapted to travel therealong is a series of cars 4. As
come apparent from the following description and at
seen in FIG. 1 the car 4 includes an entrance-exit door
tached drawings wherein:
FIG. 1 is a general side view of my monorail as
5, seats 6 and windows ‘7. The lead car is shown in FIG.
1 and this car includes a control o?ice or engineer sta
tion 8 at the front end thereof from which the opera
FIG. 2 is an end view of the same assembly;
45 tion of the train of cars is controlled.
FIG. 3 is an end view of the assembly of FIG. 1 as it
appears along curved sections of the monorail track;
FIG. 4 is a view on enlarged scale and partially in
section of one embodiment of a portion of the monorail
assembly shown in FIGS. 1-3;
5 is a view on enlarged scale and partially in
of another embodiment of a portion of the as
shown in FIGS. 1-3 ;
6 is a detail of a portion of the embodiment
shown in FIG. 4 of the drawing;
Cars 4 are con
nected together through ?exible passages and coupling as
semblies 9 and car connecting bars 1%.
The car con
necting bars 10 are attached to the cars through ball and
socket joints 11.
As further seen in FIG. 1 the cars 4 are supported
from the rail 1 by drive wheel assemblies or trucks
generally designated as 12 to which the cars 4 are at
As further shown in FIG. 2, the assembly of
55 FIG. 1 also includes hydraulic cylinder assemblies 14,
14’ connected with the cars and wheel assemblies which
FIG. 7 is a detail partially in section showing an em
serve to limit or control any transverse sway in the cars
bodiment of the rail which supports the monorail car;
as they travel along the rail 1.
FIGS. 8 and 9 are views on enlarged scale and partially
in section which relate to embodiments of a stabilizer
FIG. 3 shows the frame 2 as it is constructed for
wheel structure which runs along the rail;
60 curved portions of the rail. As seen herein, the top arm
FIG. 10 is a side view on enlarged scale relating to
15 of the frame 2 is tilted, and the rail 1 lies at an angle
still a further embodiment of the wheel assembly which
m from the vertical. This construction of the frame 2
runs along the track;
is called for on curves having a radius about a point
FIG. 11 is a perspective of a device relied upon for
to the left in the direction q from the rail 1 as shown in
explanatory purposes; and
FIG. 3.
The center line of the car forms an angle n
with a vertical line and the wheel assembly 12 is tilted
the web portion 17 and control swaying of the wheel as
at an angle 12 plus p to the vertical.
Angle m is a track design angle and is arrived at as
be explained.
A speed of V1 feet per second (l.46><m.p.h.) is as
sumed, and the radius of curvature, r1, of the track is
known. The car will, except for transverse wind forces
which cannot be forecast, swing out at an angle In from
the vertical, where
semblies and cars around the rail center line as will now
Cylinder 26, FIG. 6 may be connected in parallel with
cylinder 14’ of FIG.‘ 4.
If it is desirable to resist a
counter-clockwise rotation of 4 and 12 about i,- hydraulic
pressure is increased in the closed end'of these cylinders,
producing a thrust between frame 23 and rail web 17
which produces a clockwise moment about the lower rail
?ange, thus resisting this counter-clockwise rotation.
Sirnultaneously~ the pressure would be relieved in the
rod end of these cylinders, and converse changes in the
pressure applied to cylinders on the opposite side of the
truck. These hydraulic pressure changes would be
achieved through manually or mechanically controlled
means described hereinafter.
As further seen in FIG. 4 a curved and outwardly ex;
In practice, the car runs at V2 feet per sec., where
V2>V1. At this speed, the car must assume an angle
panding section 27 is formed in the upper portion of the
web portion 17 on either side thereof at the point where
the web portion terminates in the upper ?ange 16. With
the passengers’ weight is directed toward the seat, where
this arrangement, the curved section 27 exerts a general
n=the angle whose tangent is
downwardly extending force upon the stabilizer wheels 22
should they come in contact with the curved portion 27
through transverse sway of, the truck 12 and cars 4 which
25 force serves to urge the wheels 21 against the curved
Where n>m.
?ange 18, while also tending to resist rotation of truck
If a wind is blowing from left to right, a corrective
E2 about rail 1.
force in the form of a thrust on 14' and pull on 14 is
Cars 11; are supported from the longitudinal members
applied to bring the angle of the car back to n from the
19 of the truck 12 by means of a hollow shaft 27 (FIG.
4-) which is spring mounted by springs 28 and 29 in ball
‘ The result of forcing the car to rotate sl‘ghtly clocsi
socket 3d. The upper curved periphery of the ball socket
wise against the wind pressure will usually be to rotate
3%? is supported by inwardly curved members 1% of the
the truck 12 slightly counter-clockwise, so that truck 12
longitudinal members 19. The center line of the ball
assumes an angle n+p from the vertical, and the car is
socket 3t} coincides normally wtih the center of curva
assumed to be restored to angle n, which is greater than 35 ture of the ?ange 18 whereby the ball socket connection‘
the track design angle by an angle 11 where n-—m=u,
permits angular movement of the truck 12 relative to the
or in other words, the angle between the track center
car 4 in any direction.
line and the car center line is u.
As seen further in FIG. 4, hydraulic or other suitable
FIG. 4 is vertical section taken through the rail 1, the
cylinder assemblies (as mentioned above) 14 connect the
truck 12 and a portion of the car 4i. The rail 1 which ‘ cars 4 to the longitudinal members 19. The cylinders 14!
can also be used to increase or decrease the angle of the
is secured
16 includes
to the support
a vertical
web 2section
at its upper
17 which
end extends
cars 4 relative to the truck 12. The cylinders 26 (FIG. 6)
downwardly from the ?ange 16. The upper ?ange 16
used with the stabilizing wheels 22 can also be connected
includes thickened areas 16’ at the ?ange extremities to
with this hydraulic or other suitable system which con-.
n from the vertical to achieve a comfortable angle where ~
strengthen the rail laterally. Extending from the lower
trols cylinders 14 so as to act with them or they may be
end of the web section 17 to both sides thereof is a curved
controlled by a separate but similar hydraulic system.
Some or all of the traction wheels 21 are driven by
?ange 18. The ?ange it; extends outwardly for a sub
stantially equal distance to either side of the vertical
web 17.
The truck 12 (see FIG. 1 also) includes longitudinal '
members 19 to which are secured upwardly and inwardly
extending arms 2% which form a yolk con?guration. At
the free end of each arm 29, there is mounted a traction
electric, pneumatic, hydraulic or other suitable type of
motor 32 connected with the wheels 21. The motive
power for the cars 4 or train can be provided by diesel
electric power from one or more of the car driving motors
32, by an atomic or other power generator or any other
conventional or otherwise power source located within-the
train. This source can drive a propeller or supply elec
wheel 21 which wheels contact and ride along the curved
?ange 18. The wheels 21 are so mounted that they lie
tric-hydraulic or other type of power to the motors 32.
at a right angle to the surface of the flange 13. In other
In addition to the above, the monorail assembly can be
words, their center line plane of rotation is always at
driven by an air propeller or jet power.
right angles to and in contact with the curved flange upper
Other than above, trolley wires 33 as seen in FIG. 4
a run along the lower side of the ?ange 18 or at any other
Stabilizer wheels 22 are also supported on the trucks 60 convenient location. These wires are insulated from the
12. To describe the stabilizer wheel mounting, reference
rail 1 by non-conductive mounts 34. Current is picked
is also made to FIG. 1 wherein it is seen that each truck
up by shoes 35 mounted on spring load trolley arms 36
12 includes a pair of spaced apart above-mentioned trac
and the current then carried through leads 37 through
tion wheels 21 on each side of the web 17. Each pair of ' the hollow shaft 37’ to a control panel (not shown) in
traction wheels is connected by a tie bar 23 secured to
the train or car 4 and thence to the motors 32.
each pair of wheel supporting arms 2%. This tie bar
The assembly shown in FIG. 5 is similar to that of
illustrated in FIG. 6 shows in detail the manner in which
FIG. 4 except that the traction wheels 21 are ‘closely held
the stabilizer wheels 22 are mounted. The stabilizer
in captive manner in their angular position with respect
wheels 22 are mounted on arms 23’ which are in turn piv~
otally mounted to the tie bars 23 at point 24-. The stabi 70 to the ?ange 18'. Here, the upper surfaces of the ?ange
are straight or slightly concave and the treads of the;
lizer wheels are urged toward the web portion 17 of the
wheels 21 are cylindrical or slightly convex. The stabi
rail 1 by spring member 25 and hydraulic cylinder or
lizing wheels 22 are at all times spring loaded with limited
shock absorbing means 25 which are connected with the
movement or even rigidly ?xed in close proximity tothe
tie bar 23 and the arm 23’. With this arrangement, the
straight line expanded portions 27 of the vertical'web
stabilizer wheels are constantly urged into contact with
portion 17' of rail 1. The ?ange 18', the stabilizer wheels
22 and the straight line expanded portions 27 of the web
(depending on their moment of inertia provided) and
tend to nullify the gyroscopic precession of the load
‘bearing wheels, etc. To illustrate, if at high speed, a
traction wheel, 21, represented by wheel 75 in FIG. 11
17’ cooperate here to substantially lock the wheel assem
bly in place on the rail 18’. With this arrangement, any
angular movement of the car relative to the track is by 5 was subjected to forces P tending to rotate the axle
76 downward about x——x when traveling in direction
means of rotation about pivot connection point 40 at
T, the gyroscopic eifect would tend to rotate the wheels
which point a ball socket joint as previously described or
to the left (direction R about y-y). The presence
a universal type joint is centered to attach the cars to
of wheels 50 rotating at the same speed in the opposite
the wheel assembly.
direction would, if its moment of inertia equals that of
The type rail 1 shown and described so far in FIGS. 4
the wheel 21 and the rotor of 32, exert an equal force
and 5 can be satisfactorily used with wheel assemblies
in the direction S, thus neutralizing the e?ect.
and wheel angles designed to suit. These rails are capable
FIG. 12 is a schematic representation of a hydraulic
of withstanding vertical, horizontal and torsional loads im
system which can be used with the present invention to
posed by its own weight and by the cars over long under
stabilize the car ‘against undesirable transverse sway due
supported spans. The track section shown in FiG. 7,
to transverse winds or other causes. Pendulum 80
however, possess greater lateral and torsional stiffness and
mounted on axle 82 is shown in a position it would
would be advantageous in some instances. The embodi
ment shown in H6. 7 differs in that the rail 1 has a
assume if the car were rounding a curve to the left.
substantially triangular shape. The edges of the element
In this respect, angle K equals A which will be here
17 are reinforced and extend from a web area 41 thereby
inafter de?ned with further reference to FIG. 3 of the
providing additional strength across the entire width of
the rail 1.
FlG. 8 illustrates a method for mounting the wheels
drawing. The swing of pendulum 80 is dampened by
mounting attached to it, and a third angle gear 53
mounted on the ?y wheel 56. The ?y wheel as rotates
angle K.
an oil-dash pct 83 mounted on axle 82 (on axis x—x).
The dash pot 83 is held in a vertical position at all
times by a gyroscopic stabilizer 84-. This stabilizer is
21 on roller or ball bearings 45 and 46. The bearings
similar to that used in gyroscopic-compasses and need
are supported on a hollow shaft '47. A drive shaft 48
not be further described here. In view of a transverse
extends through the hollow shaft 47 and is secured to
wind from the right, the car has not swung through
an end plate 49 in turn secured to the face of the wheel
correct angle K but has assumed an angle I. Contact
21 for driving wheel 21. Also shown in this ?gure is an
bar 85 of the pendulum therefore engages contact 86
internal counter-rotating ?y wheel 50 having a moment
of inertia about its axis comparable to that of the wheel 30 attached to a car 4-. This action shifts a solenoid switch
87 to supply oil under pressure to chambers 83 and 89
21 and the rotor of motor 32 combined. The ?y wheel
of cylinders 14, 14’ as previously seen in FIGS. 2—5 of the
50 is counterrotated by means of an angle gear 51 at
drawing, lalso relieving the pressure in chamber 90 and
tached to the inner surface of the face of wheel 21, a
chamber 91, thus rotating the car-4 outward about its
gear or gears 52 rotatably mounted with their axis held
wheel assemblies until I is increased to the correct
rigidly with respect to the hollow shaft 47 by suitable
Hydraulic ?uid is supplied under pressure by a con
ventional motor, pump, reservoir, and pressure control
system M (FIG. 12) energized by power source 93, and
also provided is an electric power source 92 for energiz
ing solenoid switch 87, by which means the oil is di
on its own bearings 55 mounted on the hollow shaft
47. The purpose of the ?y wheel as will be described
further in conjunction with FIG. 11.
FIG. 9 shows, additionally, two features which may
verted to chambers 88, 39 or 90, 91 as needed.
By means of switch 94, valve 87 may be controlled
be combined as shown or used with any other combina
tion disclosed herein. Here, Wheel 21 has a metal rim
60 mounted on rubber or other suitable elastomeric
material 61. The rubber 61 is vulcanized or otherwise
attached to the periphery of the wheel 21 so that the
metal rim 60 may move slightly relative to the wheel 21'.
manually through switch 95 instead of by pendulum Sit
if desired.
Electrical dynamic braking can be used to de-accel
erate the cars. Mechanical, pneumatic or hydraulic
brake systems similar to those used in automobiles or
With this arrangement minor shocks brought about by
trucks could also be used singly or additionally. Since
the wheel assemblies passing over track joints, etc., we
absorbed. The other feature shown in FIG. 9 is the 50 these devices ‘are well known commercially, they will not
be further described here.
inclusion of an electric motor 63 within the wheel 21
When traveling on a straight section of track, the most
itself. The ?eld 64 is supplied with power through
comfortable position for the passengers is when the car
leads 65 and 66. The armature 67 drives the wheel 23.
hangs straight down below the center line of the track
Another embodiment of the ?y wheel feature is shown
in FIG. 10. Here the ?y wheel 56 is positioned ex 55 as shown in FIG. 2. When the car is rounding a curved
portion of the track as in FIG. 3, the most comfortable
ternally of the wheels 21. The ?y wheel is mounted
position for passengers is when the car assumes an angle
A with the vertical so that the passengers feel no tend
ency to slide sideways on their seat.
between traction wheels 21 on tie bar 23 so as not to
. contact rail 1 and is driven by motor 70 in a direction
counter to that of the rail wheel 21 as shown by the
arrows in the drawing.
FIG. 11 shows a ?y wheel or gyroscope 75 rotating
with an angular velocity V about a horizontal axis z——z
and is now referred to in order to explain fully the
purpose of the ?y wheels described above. The plane
of rotation is x—x, y—y. If the force P is applied
tending to rotate the axle 76 downward about x-x,
the gyroscopic action of the rotating wheel Will resist
A equals the angle whose tangent is
where V equals velocity of the car in ‘feet per second, r
equals radius of curvature of the track in feet, and g
equals the gravitational constant (approximately by 32.2
ft. per secondz).
this rotation and instead tend to rotate in direction R
about axis y—y. If the rotation V were in the op
posite direction, force P would tend to produce a rota
tion about y-y in the direction S.
It is conceivable that at speeds of several hundred
miles per hour the gyroscopic effect of the wheels 21
about its axis of suspension must at times be controlled.
Obviously many modi?cations and variations of the
present invention are possible in the light of the above
might interfere with proper tracking. Hence the fly
teachings. It is, therefore, to be understood that within
However, winds may cause the car to sway and there
may be some tendency of the car to swing back and
forth after rounding a curve, hence rotation of the car
wheels 50 are provided to partially or fully compensate 75 the scope of the appended claims the invention may be
practiced otherwise than
as speci?cally described.
What is claimed is:
1. A monorail transportation- assembly comprising an
overhead support, a rail secured’ to said support, a con
tinuous lower ?ange onv the rail, the upper surface of
said lower ?ange being curved at a ?xed radius about a
line on the rail center line extended below the rail,
yoke type trucks which, ride along the upper surfaces
of the lower rail ?anges, the traction wheels of said
hollow shaft and is connected with the Wheel at its in
ternal end, and a drive motor. is. connected with the free
end of said drive shaft.
4. The monorail system of claim 1- wherein at least
some of the traction wheels which travel along the
supporting rail are substantially hollow, an internal drive
motors for said wheels are supported within the hollow
portion of the wheels.
5. The monorail assembly of claim 1 wherein the
trucks being located at an angle in such a way that 10 stabilizer wheels are pivotally mounted on the wheel as
semblies, and means are connected with the stabilizer
their planes of rotation intersect. along the line about
which the surface of ‘the lower track ?ange is curved
thus providing for continuous rail contact along the center
line of the traction wheel tread while the angle of the
trucks may vary relative to the track axis of symmetry,
cars suspended from the trucks in such a manner that
the cars hang below the rail, stabilizer wheels connected
with the trucks, and means ‘for urging said stabilizer
wheels into contact, with both sides of the rail along
areas above the lower ?anges to facilitate control and 20
provide limits to the rotation of the trucks and cars
Wheels for urging them inwardly toward the web portion
of the nail.
6. The monorail system of claim 1. wherein the trac
tion Wheels include cushioning means, and an outer tread‘
secured to the cushioning, means which tread contacts the
supporting rail.
References €ited in the ?le of this patent
Birkin' ______________ __ May 22, 1906"
Cole _______________ __ Apr. 16, 1907'
Parr ________________ __ July 9, 1907
‘to the cars, trucks and‘ stabilizing wheels for controlling 25
rotation of the truck and car about the longitudinal axis
of the track, and means are provided for controlling
the swing of the car relative to the truck, said latter
means including a pendulum With a gyroscopically stab
ilized dashpot assemblyconnected to the rotation con
Vogt _______________ __ Apr. 20, 1909~
Peters ______________ __ July 28, 1914r
Smith ________________ __ June‘ 8, 1915
Naud et al. __________ __ Feb. 26, 1929
trol means to operate said control means.
Leisner et al. _________ __ Oct. 6, 1936‘
3. The monorail assembly of claim 1 wherein at
least some of the traction wheels are rotatably mounted
on ?xed hollow shafts, adrive shaft extends through said
Schoepf et al. ________ __ July 27, 1937
Hanna etal ___________ __ Sept. 19, 1950
Fraser ______________ __ Dec. 30, 1952
relative to the rail.
2. The monorail assembly of claim 1 wherein the cars
are pivotally attached to the trucks, means are connected
Frank et al. ______ __>____July 9, 1935
Frank et al. _________ _.'._ Oct. 22, .1935
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