Patent 4344138 Issued on August 10, 1982. Estimated Expiration Date: November 5, 2000. Estimated Expiration Date is calculated based on simple USPTO term provisions. It does not account for terminal disclaimers, term adjustments, failure to pay maintenance fees, or other factors which might affect the term of a patent.
A microcomputer-operated air brake control system for controlling the air brakes of a railroad car in a train is disclosed. The system includes a plurality of pressure sensors pneumatically connected to various points in the air brake system of the car and electrically connected to the input of the microcomputer. An ultrasonic height sensor for load compensation and detection of railroad derailments may also be connected to the input of the microcomputer. The output of the microcomputer is electrically connected to a plurality of electropneumatic valves for controlling the flow of compressed air to the brake cylinder of the car. The system also includes a radio transceiver electrically connected to the microcomputer for both receiving braking commands from a central control unit in the locomotive and transmitting feedback information from the air brake system back to the central control unit. The microcomputer is programmed to execute braking commands received either by the radio from the central control unit in the locomotive, or pneumatically through the train air line. While cars equipped with the system of the invention are preferably used exclusively with other railroad cars so equipped, they may also be used in any proportion in the same train with railroad cars utilizing conventional air brake equipment. The microcomputer on each car so equipped is individually powered by its own air driven power supply.