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Title:
MULTI DIRECTIONAL INERTIA LOCK MECHANISM
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2018/037297
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
The disclosure relates to a multi directional inertia locking mechanism to avoid unintentional opening of an assembly. The assembly includes a spherical member placed in spherical surface contact between a locking pin and a casket. a resilient member to maintain a position of the locking pin, said spherical member and resilient member capable of actuating the locking pin through the casing to prevent the opening of the assembly when impact from any direction actuates the spherical member. According to the invention, the locking mechanism generates a positive locking movement of the assembly in an opening direction.

Inventors:
K, Nidhin (155 Harlem AvenueGlenview, IL 5, 600025, US)
PAYANNAVAR, Virupaxi S (155 Harlem AvenueGlenview, IL, 60025, US)
DESAI, Ravindra S (155 Harlem AvenueGlenview, IL, 60025, US)
Application Number:
IB2017/054234
Publication Date:
March 01, 2018
Filing Date:
July 13, 2017
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
ILLINOIS TOOL WORKS INC. (155 Harlem Avenue, Glenview, IL, 60025, US)
International Classes:
E05B77/06
Foreign References:
DE102014005015A12014-11-06
US20060261603A12006-11-23
DE19858415A12000-06-21
US20060237973A12006-10-26
US8833810B22014-09-16
Other References:
None
Download PDF:
Claims:
WE CLAIM

1. A multi directional inertia locking mechanism to avoid unintentional opening of an assembly, said mechanism including:

a casing (12);

a casket (11);

a spherical member (14) placed in spherical surface contact between a locking pin (13) and the casket (11);

a resilient member (15) to maintain a position of the locking pin (13), said spherical member (14) and resilient member (15) capable of actuating the locking pin through the casing (12) to prevent the opening of the assembly when impact from any direction actuates the spherical member (14).

2. The locking mechanism according to Claim 1, wherein said mechanism is constructed as a modular unit.

3. The locking mechanism according to Claim 2, wherein the casing (12) is fitted with the casket (11) using snap elements (122).

4. The locking mechanism according to Claim 1, wherein said resilient member is a conical compression spring.

5. The locking mechanism according to Claim 1, wherein upon actuation, a pin member (134) of the locking pin (13) achieves a predetermined stroke length (S) sufficient to engage with a corresponding engagement member (202) of the assembly (20).

6. The locking mechanism according to Claim 1, wherein said casing and casket includes snaps and/or locators for fitment in an appropriate position in the assembly. The locking mechanism according to Claim 1, wherein the assembly is a door handle assembly.

A door handle assembly including the multi directional inertia locking mechanism according to any one of the preceding claims.

Description:
M U LT I D I RE CT I O NAL I N T E RT IA LO C K M EC HAN I S M

Field of Invention

The invention relates to a lock mechanism, preferably a multi directional inertia lock mechanism that enhances safety against lateral mechanical shocks. Such mechanism could be used in a vehicle door handle assembly for providing safety against lateral mechanical shocks which may occur during vehicle collision.

Background of the Invention

In the event of an impact from any direction against a vehicle, resulting for example from a crash, it is required that unintentional opening of the door handle assembly should be prevented to reduce/avoid injury to the occupants of the vehicle . This is, in general, not a problem when the assembly is in locked position. If not in locked position, as is most typically the case in a running vehicle, side impact can easily result in the door opening by inertial movement, which may result in the unbuckled vehicle passenger(s) to be thrown out from the vehicle.

Presently available mechanisms are capable of acting in only a single direction. Therefore, in a collision situation, where the impact is multidirectional, such single direction actuatable mechanisms may fail to protect the occupants of the vehicle. Moreover, in such mechanisms, there will be a casting part, typically known as a counterweight, which acts as an inertia lock. The counterweight, which is usually assembled on the frame, will increase the weight of the assembly, which has the further disadvantage of making a bulky design.

Summary of the Invention

The present invention relates to a multi directional inertia locking mechanism to avoid unintentional opening of an assembly that will overcome the deficiencies of the existing mechanisms.

Moreover, the locking mechanism of the present invention can be constructed as a modular unit which can be placed in various locations based on the available space, with optimized weight and compact design.

The locking mechanism to avoid unintentional opening of an assembly includes a spherical member placed in spherical surface contact between a locking pin and a casket, a resilient member to maintain a position of the locking pin, said spherical member and resilient member capable of actuating the locking pin through the casing to prevent the opening of the assembly when impact from any direction actuates the spherical member. According to the invention, the locking mechanism generates a positive locking movement of the assembly in an opening direction.

The locking mechanism, in a preferred embodiment, is constructed as a modular unit. In a preferred embodiment, the resilient mechanism of the locking mechanism is a conical compression spring. The locking mechanism in a preferred embodiment includes snaps and locators on the casing and the casket for fitment in the appropriate positions in the assembly.

Another aspect of the invention is a door handle assembly including the multi directional inertia locking mechanism to avoid unintentional opening of a door due to external impact.

Brief Description of the Drawings

Referring now to the drawings wherein the showings are for the purpose of illustrating a possible embodiment of the invention only, and not for the purpose of limiting the same,

Figure 1A shows the assembled view of the multi directional locking mechanism of the present invention,

Figure IB shows the exploded view of the multi directional locking mechanism of the present invention,

Figure 2 shows the cross sectional view of the locking mechanism according to the present invention, Figure 3A shows the partial cross sectional view of the locking mechanism in normal position,

Figure 3B shows the partial cross sectional view of the locking mechanism in actuated position,

Figure 4 shows the multi directional movement structure of the spherical ball of the locking mechanism according to the invention,

Figure 5 shows the multi directional locking mechanism assembled with a door handle assembly,

Figure 6A shows the door handle assembly including the multi directional locking mechanism in the home position,

Figure 6B shows the door handle assembly including the multi directional locking mechanism in the actuated position, and

Figure 7 shows the comparison between the initial position and the actuated position of the locking mechanism.

Detailed Description of the Invention

The multidirectional inertia lock mechanism (10) is a modularly constructed unit as depicted in Figure 1A. The locking mechanism (10) can be fitted together with any assembly where unintentional opening of the assembly should be prevented. As illustrated in Figure IB, the lock mechanism (10) includes a casing (12) that is capable of being fitted with a casket (11), preferably by snap elements (122) and corresponding slots (112). A locking pin (13) having a spherical cavity (132) at its top surface is capable of being located within the casket (11). A spherical member (14) is housed within the spherical cavity (132) of the locking pin (13), such that the spherical member (14) is retained between the locking pin (13) and the casket (11) as illustrated in Figure 2.

A resilient member (15) is placed around the pin member (134) of the locking pin (13) such that the resilient member (15) retains the position of the locking pin (13). Under the impact of an external force from any direction, the spherical member (14) placed in the cavity (132) of the locking pin (13) is capable of actuating the resilient member (15), and thereby pushing the locking pin (13) outwardly through the casing (12). Upon extending outwardly, the pin member (134) of the locking pin (13) interfaces with an element of the assembly to prevent the unintentional opening of the assembly under the impact of an external force. Due to the spherical geometry of the member (14), impact caused from any direction can actuate the locking mechanism, thereby enabling the assembly from being opened unintentionally.

In a preferred embodiment, the resilient member (15) is a compression spring, preferably a conical compression spring, for achieving maximum stroke in a minimum available space due to the reduced diameter of its coils. Figure 3A shows the partial cross sectional view of the locking mechanism in normal position. The resilient member (15) is in an uncompressed position. Figure 3B shows the partial cross sectional view of the locking mechanism in actuated position, where the pin member (134) of the locking pin (13) is shown to be extended outward of the casing (12).

The spherical member (14) is capable of moving in any direction due to its spherical contact surface with respect to both the casket (11) and the locking pin (13) as shown in Figure 4.

An exemplary embodiment of the invention is illustrated in Figure 5 where the locking mechanism (10) is integrated in a door handle assembly (20) of a vehicle. The lock mechanism (10) is integrated, preferably in the reinforcement assembly (30) of the door handle assembly (20), by means of snaps and locaters provided both on the lock mechanism and the door handle assembly. The locking mechanism (10) according to the invention prevents unintentional opening of the door handle assembly (20) to provide safety during a crash situation and prevent unbuckled vehicle passenger(s) to be thrown out from the vehicle. The operation of the locking mechanism (10) with respect to the door handle assembly (20) will be explained below with respect to Figure 6A and 6B. In the normal condition, the locking mechanism remains in its initial position with respect to the door handle assembly (20). Upon experiencing impact of external force from any direction, say for instance during a vehicle collision, the locking mechanism is actuated by the spherical ball placed in the cavity of the locking pin. The locking pin, consequently, actuates the resilient member, thereby pushing the pin member (134) of the locking pin outwardly through the casing (12). The pin member (134) engages with a corresponding engagement member (202) of the door handle assembly (20) thereby preventing the actuation of the handle and consequent opening of the vehicle. To bring the locking mechanism back to its initial position, the casing (12) and the casket (11) can be pried open and the locking pin can be retracted to its original position. Otherwise, the entire modular unit can be removed from the door handle assembly and replaced with another unit.

Since the locking mechanism is a simple modular construction with reduced weight, it is possible to reduce the overall weight of the door handle assembly. In a non- limiting embodiment, the casket (11) and the casing (12) is a thermoplastic component having high strength and stiffness, preferably polyoxym ethylene (POM) . The locking pin (13) is a glass-fiber reinforced plastic, preferably PA6 GF30. The spherical member (14) and the resilient member (15) are made from high grade stainless steel.

The actuated position of the lock mechanism, compared to the initial position, is clearly shown in Figure 7. Upon impact, the spherical member (14) actuates the locking pin (13) by the aid of the resilient member (15) such that the pin member (134) achieves a predetermined stroke length S sufficient to engage with the corresponding engagement member of the assembly. The pin member (134) has a diameter (P D ) that is slightly lesser than the diameter (C D ) of the opening in the casing (12) through which the pin member extends.

The invention has been explained with reference to a door handle assembly of a vehicle. However, it is to be understood that such explanation is merely exemplary and not restricted to only such a use. The locking mechanism of the present invention is capable of being used in any assembly which requires a safety feature to prevent unintentional opening of the assembly due to external force from any direction.