News Column

Patent Issued for Safety Connection Electrical Systems and Methods

July 23, 2014



By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Electronics Newsweekly -- According to news reporting originating from Alexandria, Virginia, by VerticalNews journalists, a patent by the inventor Boncelet, Charles (Newark, DE), filed on January 18, 2011, was published online on July 8, 2014.

The assignee for this patent, patent number 8770998, is University of Delaware (Newark, DE).

Reporters obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: "Electrical connection systems provide inhabitants of modern buildings with access to a dedicated power supply. Electrical appliances and devices generally include an electrical plug, which may be selectively coupled to an electrical receptacle incorporated into the structure of the building. Coupling and uncoupling the electrical plug with the electrical receptacle creates an electrical circuit from which the appliance or device may draw power.

"Electrical connection systems may pose a danger to inhabitants in the form of electrical shock or arcing. Accordingly, safe electrical connection systems are desired."

In addition to obtaining background information on this patent, VerticalNews editors also obtained the inventor's summary information for this patent: "The present invention is embodied in electrical connection systems and methods.

"In accordance with one aspect of the present invention, an electrical receptacle system is disclosed. The electrical receptacle system comprises at least one socket, an electrical contact, a light source, a photodetector, and a microprocessor. The at least one socket is sized to receive a respective prong from an electrical plug. The electrical contact is positioned within the at least one socket. The electrical contact is selectively coupled with a power source. The light source is positioned to transmit light through the at least one socket. The photodetector is positioned to receive the light transmitted by the light source through the at least one socket. The microprocessor is programmed to selectively couple the electrical contact with the power source based on the light received by the photodetector.

"In accordance with another aspect of the present invention, an electrical connection system is disclosed. The electrical connection system comprises an electrical plug and an electrical receptacle. The electrical plug has at least one prong. The at least one prong has at least one opening. The electrical receptacle has at least one socket sized to receive the at least one prong from the electrical plug. The electrical receptacle further has an electrical contact positioned within the at least one socket. The electrical contact is selectively coupled with a power source. The electrical receptacle further has a light source positioned to transmit light through the at least one socket. The electrical receptacle further has a photodetector positioned to receive the light transmitted by the light source through the at least one socket and through the at least one opening formed in the at least one prong of the electrical plug. The electrical receptacle further has a microprocessor programmed to selectively couple the electrical contact with the power source based on the light received by the photodetector.

"In accordance with still another aspect of the present invention, an electrical connection method is disclosed. The electrical connection method comprises inserting an electrical plug into an electrical receptacle, the electrical plug having at least one prong, the at least one prong having at least one opening, the electrical receptacle having at least one socket sized to receive the at least one prong from the electrical plug, an electrical contact positioned within the at least one socket, a light source, and a photodetector. The electrical connection method also comprises transmitting light with the light source through the at least one socket. The electrical connection method also comprises receiving with the photodetector the light transmitted by the light source through the at least one socket and through the at least one opening formed in the at least one prong of the electrical plug. Finally, the electrical connection method comprises selectively coupling the electrical contact with a power source based on the light received by the photodetector."

For more information, see this patent: Boncelet, Charles. Safety Connection Electrical Systems and Methods. U.S. Patent Number 8770998, filed January 18, 2011, and published online on July 8, 2014. Patent URL: http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PALL&p=1&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsrchnum.htm&r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=8770998.PN.&OS=PN/8770998RS=PN/8770998

Keywords for this news article include: Electronics, Microprocessors, University of Delaware.

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Source: Electronics Newsweekly


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