Patent Number: 6,309,319

Title: Reconfigurable power spindle

Abstract: A reconfigurable power spindle accommodates different power requirement in an efficient design that conserves time, equipment resources, and physical space. Two or more power sources provide the inputs which can be distributed equally or unequally, as desired, by means of an inventive epicyclic-type gear train (the component gear train). When two or more such component gear trains are arranged in series so that the output of one is connected to the input of the next, the result is a gear train system with as many inputs as the number of the component gear trains plus one. In alternate embodiments, the component gear trains may be arranged in parallel or in a combination of in series and in parallel to create a compound gear train system with a plurality of inputs and one output, and which is still capable of achieving equal contribution power among all the inputs. The design of the component gear train allows for equal power contribution to two input shafts by incorporating into the traditional epicyclic gear train a second (additional) set of planetary gears between the ring gear and the first (traditional) set of planetary gears which are coupled with the sun gear.

Inventors: Moon; Yong-Mo (Ann Arbor, MI), Kota; Sridhar (Brighton, MI)

Assignee: The Regents of the University of Michigan

International Classification: F16H 37/06 (20060101); F16H 3/72 (20060101); F16H 3/44 (20060101); F16H 003/72 (); F16H 037/06 ()

Expiration Date: 10/30/2018