Wyoming Machinery Company is a Caterpillar dealer that has served 16 counties in Wyoming for over 47 years. Originally established in Casper, the company has four other facilities throughout Wyoming supporting the mining, construction, oil and gas and other industries.
WMC recognized a shortcoming in the industry: that machine attachments, such as augers, brooms, excavator buckets, stump grinders, etc. were not interchangeable between work machines (tractors, skid steers, etc.). For example, it was not possible to easily attach and reliably control a Bobcat motor grader with a Caterpillar multi-terrain loader. Previously, doing so would require extensive, custom re-wiring and, if done improperly, could result in costly damage to either or both units.
The solution, which we were tasked to protect, included the development of an easily-installable conversion module that could receive control input signals from any brand of work machine and produce control output control signals in harmony with the mechanics of the attachment, while concurrently generating appropriate hydraulic flow control signals.
WMC received rights to this invention in the United States, Canada and Australia under patents entitled “Systems and Methods for Attachment Control Signal Modulation.”
A system for controlling a work machine implement, comprising:
an electronic control module configured to receive, at one or more input registers, an input control signal of a first control signal type generated by a control mechanism of said work machine corresponding to a user input, and further configured to generate a control output signal of said first control signal type or of a second, different control signal type for controlling operation of said implement according to said user input;
wherein said generating an output signal causes simultaneous or substantially simultaneous generation of a hydraulic flow output control signal for providing hydraulic power to said implement; and
wherein said control output signal and said hydraulic flow output control signal are transmitted to an output register.
The full US patent can be viewed here.