Title:
HIT SCORING TARGET OPERABLE BY AN ELECTROMAGNETIC SIGNATURE DETECTOR
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A hit scoring target comprising a target panel connected to a hit scoring management unit. The hit scoring management unit comprises an electromagnetic signature sensor operatively associated with the target panel. The electromagnetic signature sensor may be a capacitance sensor, inductance sensor or magnetic field sensor. The hit scoring management unit further comprises a control unit operatively associated with the electromagnetic sensor. The control unit is arranged to count the number of detected changes in the electromagnetic signature of target panel, and invoke a predetermined action upon reaching a predefined number, wherein each change in the electromagnetic signature of the panel target is associated with a projectile passing through target panel. The action invoked may be tilting down the target panel or transmitting information relating to the hit scoring on the target panel.



Inventors:
Amitai, Peretz (Ramat Hasharon, IL)
Azulai, Refael (Netanya, IL)
Application Number:
12/023148
Publication Date:
08/06/2009
Filing Date:
01/31/2008
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
273/371
International Classes:
F41J5/044; F41J5/14
View Patent Images:
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20060249907East-West cassinoNovember, 2006Wong et al.



Primary Examiner:
GRAHAM, MARK S
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Fleit Intellectual Property Law (MIAMI, FL, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A hit scoring system for enabling shooting practice comprising: a target panel having a steady state electromagnetic signature; an electromagnetic signature sensor operatively associated with said target panel; a control unit operatively associated with said electromagnetic detector; wherein said control unit is arranged to count the number of detected changes in the electromagnetic signature of the target panel, and invoke a predetermined action upon reaching a predefined number; wherein each change in the electromagnetic signature of the panel target is associated with a projectile passing through the target panel.

2. The system of claim 1, further comprising a drive and a mechanical module operatively associated with said control unit; wherein responsive of the control unit, the drive and the mechanical module are arranged to tilt down the panel target.

3. The system of claim 1, further comprising a communication module operatively associated with said control module; wherein responsive of the control unit, the communication module is arranged to transmit information related to the hit scoring of said target panel.

4. The system of claim 1, further comprising a counter coupled between the electromagnetic sensor and the control unit; wherein the counter is arranged to count each change in the electromagnetic signature of the target panel beyond a predefined threshold.

5. The system of claim 1, wherein the electromagnetic sensor is at least one of the following sensors: capacitance sensor, inductance sensor, magnetic field sensor, combination thereof.

6. The system of claim 1, wherein the target panel is a three dimensional target.

7. The system of claim 1, further comprising a temporal manipulation module coupled between said target panel and said electromagnetic signature sensor; wherein the temporal manipulation module is arranged to manipulate the temporal parameters of the electromagnetic signature such that they are adapted to the electromagnetic sensor.

8. The system of claim 1, wherein the target panel comprises at least two conducting panels with an insulating material between them.

9. The system of claim 8, wherein each panel of the target panel comprises an extension arranged to be attached to the electromagnetic signature sensor.

10. A target panel for use in a hit scoring target based on detecting the change in the electromagnetic signature in said target panel, said target panel comprising: at least two conducting members eclectically insulated from each other by an insulating material and arranged to exhibit a measurable change in the electromagnetic signature of the target panel when a projectile passes through it.

11. The target panel of claim 10, wherein said two conducting members are formed as panels.

12. The target panel of claim 10, wherein each conducting member further comprises an extension arranged to be attached to an electromagnetic signature sensor.

13. The target panel of claim 10, wherein said insulating material is at least one of the following: polymer, plastic, rubber.

14. A method of counting the number of projectiles passing through a target panel, said method comprising: detecting a change in the electromagnetic signature of a target panel; counting the number of detected changes in the electromagnetic signature of said target panel; invoking a predefined action upon reaching a predefined number of detected changes in the electromagnetic signature of said target panel.

15. The method of claim 14, wherein the action invoked upon reaching a predefined number of detected changes is transmitting information relating to the hit scoring on said target panel.

16. The method of claim 14, wherein the action invoked upon reaching a predefined number of detected changes in the electromagnetic signature of said target panel is a mechanical action relating to the target panel.

17. The method of claim 16, wherein the mechanical action relating to the target panel comprises tilting down the target panel.

Description:

TECHNICAL FIELD

The present invention relates to hit scoring target for shooting practice, and more particularly, to such a target that is operable by detecting change in the electromagnetic signature thereof.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Hit scoring targets are used for shooting practicing purposes and are well known in the art. In some shooting practices, it is desired to arrange the hit scoring targets such that the target falls down after a predefined number of successful shots have been achieved.

Accordingly, several patents and patent applications are known to address the need to count the number of projectiles passing through the hit scoring target. Specifically, U.S. Pat. No. 6,994,347 to Tessel which is incorporated by reference herein in its entirety discloses a hit scoring target that is arranged to operate on the principle of producing a short circuit between two conductive layers whenever a projectile traverses the target.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Accordingly, embodiments of the present invention suggest an improved mechanism for counting the number of projectiles passing through a hit scoring target, overcoming problems associated with targets that operate on the principle of producing a short circuit between the two layers of the target. Such problems derive from the fact that a short circuit is a binary parameter. A circuit is either short circuited or not. Thus, any projectile that gets stuck in the target interferes with the proper operation of the target.

The present invention overcomes the problems associated with short circuit based detectors by providing a detector that is arranged to detect the changes of the electromagnetic signature of the target. Electromagnetic signature is the combination of parameters indicative of the characteristics of the electrical field and the magnetic field or the response thereto of a certain object

Specifically, such a detector is operatively associated with a target panel that has a certain electromagnetic signature in steady state. The signature temporally changes whenever a projectile passes through it. A control unit operatively associated with the detector is arranged to decide when such change in the electromagnetic signature is indicative of a passing projectile. In the event of a projectile being stuck at the target, the control unit may be arranged to assign the new electromagnetic signature as the new steady state and use it as a reference for further changes. Thus, the change in the signature is monitored and a more robust hit scoring target is achieved.

Potential electromagnetic signature detectors may be capacitance detectors, inductance detectors and magnetic field detectors but they are not limited to specific implementations. Accordingly, the target panel is an object that comprises at least two conducting members and an insulating material between them. Such a structure defines the two edges to which the electromagnetic detection refers.

In embodiments, the target panel may comprise two metallic layers with an insulating material between them. Accordingly, extensions of the metallic layers serve as coupling means for attaching the target panel to the electromagnetic signature detector. This further contributes to the physical robustness of the hit scoring target as a whole, eliminating the use of vulnerable cables.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The subject matter regarded as the invention will become more clearly understood in light of the ensuing description of embodiments herein, given by way of example and for purposes of illustrative discussion of the present invention only, with reference to the accompanying drawings (Figures, or simply “FIGS.”), wherein:

FIG. 1 is a schematic isometric diagram illustrating the hit scoring target according to some embodiments of the disclosure;

FIG. 2 is another schematic isometric diagram illustrating the hit scoring target according to some embodiments of the disclosure;

FIG. 3 is a schematic cross section diagram illustrating the attachment means between the target panel and the base of the hit scoring target according to some embodiments of the disclosure;

FIG. 4 is a schematic block diagram showing the building blocks of the hit scoring management unit according to some embodiments of the disclosure;

FIG. 5 is a high level flow chart illustrating the stages of the method according to some embodiments of the disclosure;

The drawings together with the description make apparent to those skilled in the art how the invention may be embodied in practice.

Further, where considered appropriate, reference numerals may be repeated among the figures to indicate corresponding or analogous elements.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

In the following detailed description, numerous specific details are set forth in order to provide a thorough understanding of the disclosure. However, it will be understood by those skilled in the art that the teachings of the present disclosure may be practiced without these specific details. In other instances, well-known methods, procedures, components and circuits have not been described in detail so as not to obscure the teachings of the present disclosure.

FIG. 1 and FIG. 2 show schematic isometric diagrams illustrating the hit scoring target according to some embodiments of the disclosure. The hit scoring target comprises a body target 100 enveloping a target panel (not shown). The target panel is attached to a target holder 120 that connects in turn to a target base 110. The target holder 120 comprises two attaching panels 210 and 220 that are eclectically insolated by a rod 240 that attaches to the target panel. Attaching panels 210 and 220 provide the required electrical coupling, together with cables 230, between target base 110 and the target panel.

FIG. 3 is a schematic cross section diagram illustrating the attachment means between the target panel 300 and the target base 110 according to some embodiments of the disclosure. The target panel 300 comprising a first layer of conducting material 310 and a second layer of conducting material 320 held together with an insulating material 330 between them. Advantageously, these attaching means provide further robustness eliminating the need of cables for connecting the target panel to the target holder.

FIG. 4 is a schematic block diagram showing the building blocks of the hit scoring management unit 400 according to some embodiments of the disclosure. The hit scoring system for enabling shooting practice comprises a target panel 300 (not shown here) having a steady state electromagnetic signature, an electromagnetic signature sensor 410 operatively associated with target panel 300. It further comprises a control unit 430 operatively associated with electromagnetic sensor 410. Control unit 430 is arranged to count the number of detected changes in the electromagnetic signature of target panel 300, and invoke a predetermined action upon reaching a predefined number, wherein each change in the electromagnetic signature of the panel target is associated with a projectile passing through target panel 300.

According to some embodiments of the invention, hit scoring management unit 400 further comprises a drive 460 and a mechanical module 470 operatively associated with control unit 430. Responsive to control unit 430, drive 460 and mechanical module 470 are arranged to tilt down the panel target 300.

According to some embodiments of the invention, hit scoring management unit 400 further comprises a communication module 440 operatively associated with control module 430. Responsive of control unit 430, communication module 440 is arranged to transmit information related to the hit scoring of target panel 300.

According to some embodiments of the invention, hit scoring management unit 400 further comprises a counter 420 coupled between electromagnetic sensor 410 and control unit 430. Counter 420 is arranged to count each change in the electromagnetic signature of target panel 300 beyond a predefined threshold.

According to some embodiments of the invention, electromagnetic sensor 410 may be implemented as a capacitance sensor, inductance sensor, magnetic field sensor, combination thereof and the like.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the hit scoring system further comprises a temporal manipulation module (not shown) coupled between target panel 300 and electromagnetic signature sensor 410. The temporal manipulation module is arranged to manipulate the temporal parameters of the electromagnetic signature such that they are adapted to the electromagnetic signature sensor. Such manipulation may be lag generation, signal expansion and the like.

According to some embodiments of the invention target panel 300 is a three dimensional target.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the invention comprises solely target panel 300 for use in a hit scoring target based on detecting the change in the electromagnetic signature in said target panel. Specifically, target panel 300 comprises at least two conducting members eclectically insulated from each other and arranged to exhibit a measurable change in the electromagnetic signature of the target panel when a projectile passes through it.

According to some embodiments of the invention, target panel 300, comprises two metallic members formed as panels and further comprising an extension arranged to be attached to an electromagnetic signature sensor 410.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the insulating material of target panel 300, may be any of the following: polymer, plastic, rubber and the like.

FIG. 5 is a high level flow chart illustrating the stages of the method according to some embodiments of the disclosure. The method starts with the stage of detecting a change in the electromagnetic signature of a target panel 510. It then goes on to the stage of counting the number of detected changes in the electromagnetic signature of said target panel 520. Then it goes on to the stage of invoking a predefined action 540 upon reaching a predefined number of detected changes in the electromagnetic signature of said target panel 530.

According to some embodiments, the action invoked upon reaching a predefined number of detected changes is the stage of transmitting information relating to the hit scoring on target pane 300.

According to some embodiments, wherein the action invoked upon reaching a predefined number of detected changes in the electromagnetic signature of said target panel is a mechanical action relating to the target panel.

According to some embodiments, the mechanical action relating to the target panel comprises tilting down the target panel.

According to some embodiments of the invention, hit scoring management unit 400 can be implemented in digital electronic circuitry, or in computer hardware, firmware, software, or in combinations of them. Apparatus of the invention can be implemented in a computer program product tangibly embodied in an information carrier, e.g., in a machine-readable storage device or in a propagated signal, for execution by a programmable processor; and method steps of the invention can be performed by a programmable processor executing a program of instructions to perform functions of the invention by operating on input data and generating output.

Specifically, hit scoring management unit 400 can be implemented advantageously in one or more computer programs that are executable on a programmable system including at least one programmable processor coupled to receive data and instructions from, and to transmit data and instructions to, a data storage system, at least one input device, and at least one output device. A computer program is a set of instructions that can be used, directly or indirectly, in a computer to perform a certain activity or bring about a certain result. A computer program can be written in any form of programming language, including compiled or interpreted languages, and it can be deployed in any form, including as a stand-alone program or as a module, component, subroutine, or other unit suitable for use in a computing environment.

Additionally, hit scoring management unit 400 may be implemented by and utilize processors for the execution of a program of instructions include, by way of example, both general and special purpose microprocessors, and the sole processor or one of multiple processors of any kind of computer. Generally, a processor will receive instructions and data from a read-only memory or a random access memory or both. The essential elements of a computer, such as the communication device according to the present invention are a processor for executing instructions and one or more memories for storing instructions and data.

In the above description, an embodiment is an example or implementation of the inventions. The various appearances of “one embodiment,” “an embodiment” or “some embodiments” do not necessarily all refer to the same embodiments.

Although various features of the invention may be described in the context of a single embodiment, the features may also be provided separately or in any suitable combination. Conversely, although the invention may be described herein in the context of separate embodiments for clarity, the invention may also be implemented in a single embodiment.

Reference in the specification to “some embodiments”, “an embodiment”, “one embodiment” or “other embodiments” means that a particular feature, structure, or characteristic described in connection with the embodiments is included in at least some embodiments, but not necessarily all embodiments, of the inventions.

It is understood that the phraseology and terminology employed herein is not to be construed as limiting and are for descriptive purpose only.

The principles and uses of the teachings of the present invention may be better understood with reference to the accompanying description, figures and examples.

It is to be understood that the details set forth herein do not construe a limitation to an application of the invention.

Furthermore, it is to be understood that the invention can be carried out or practiced in various ways and that the invention can be implemented in embodiments other than the ones outlined in the description above.

It is to be understood that the terms “including”, “comprising”, “consisting” and grammatical variants thereof do not preclude the addition of one or more components, features, steps, or integers or groups thereof and that the terms are to be construed as specifying components, features, steps or integers.

If the specification or claims refer to “an additional” element, that does not preclude there being more than one of the additional element.

It is to be understood that where the claims or specification refer to “a” or “an” element, such reference is not be construed that there is only one of that element.

It is to be understood that where the specification states that a component, feature, structure, or characteristic “may”, “might”, “can” or “could” be included, that particular component, feature, structure, or characteristic is not required to be included.

Where applicable, although state diagrams, flow diagrams or both may be used to describe embodiments, the invention is not limited to those diagrams or to the corresponding descriptions. For example, flow need not move through each illustrated box or state, or in exactly the same order as illustrated and described.

Methods of the present invention may be implemented by performing or completing manually, automatically, or a combination thereof, selected steps or tasks.

The term “method” may refer to manners, means, techniques and procedures for accomplishing a given task including, but not limited to, those manners, means, techniques and procedures either known to, or readily developed from known manners, means, techniques and procedures by practitioners of the art to which the invention belongs.

The descriptions, examples, methods and materials presented in the claims and the specification are not to be construed as limiting but rather as illustrative only.

Meanings of technical and scientific terms used herein are to be commonly understood as by one of ordinary skill in the art to which the invention belongs, unless otherwise defined.

The present invention can be implemented in the testing or practice with methods and materials equivalent or similar to those described herein.

Any publications, including patents, patent applications and articles, referenced or mentioned in this specification are herein incorporated in their entirety into the specification, to the same extent as if each individual publication was specifically and individually indicated to be incorporated herein. In addition, citation or identification of any reference in the description of some embodiments of the invention shall not be construed as an admission that such reference is available as prior art to the present invention.

While the invention has been described with respect to a limited number of embodiments, these should not be construed as limitations on the scope of the invention, but rather as exemplifications of some of the preferred embodiments. Those skilled in the art will envision other possible variations, modifications, and applications that are also within the scope of the invention. Accordingly, the scope of the invention should not be limited by what has thus far been described, but by the appended claims and their legal equivalents.





 
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