PATENTED SNAP FIT GREEN HOUSING TECHNOLOGY
On March 19, 2013, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office awarded a Patent for snap fit green housing technology, a flexible system of shelter construction using composite materials and natural fibers which includes five claims.
On December 10, 2013, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issued a Certificate of Correction identifying the inventors of the March 19, 2013, patent as Dr. Raymond Browning and W. Brandt Goldsworthy (deceased) and Lois Goldsworthy, legal representative.
These shelters are assembled on site from sections of snap-lock panels - flooring, wall and roofing - to form a complete housing, office, or storage unit. Shelters formed using the technology are strong, fast to assemble and are very protective from environmental extremes. The construction is frameless and needs only a footing or simple grading. The shelter system can be made completely livable with built-in utilities and pre-decorated surfaces.
Snap fit green housing technology is a refined method of housing construction that incorporates the advantages of composite materials with the pultrusion process for manufacturing the panels and the innovative snap-lock (fastenerless) joint system. Composite materials provide structural superiority, better thermal dynamics, no rotting and protection from pest problems. Snap-lock joints allow for easy assembly and structural integrity not found in conventional building methods and materials. Once construction is complete, structures are suitable for emergency dwellings, factory tilt-ups and high quality custom housing.
The world of fiber composites makes snap fit green housing technology an attractive alternative to composite applications by glass fiber-reinforced plastics and by carbon fiber composites. The natural fibers include wood fiber, flax, hemp, abaca and many others. Current natural fiber composite products are either extruded or pressed and it is therefore possible to adapt them to pultrusion.
The recent shift upward in petroleum costs favors natural fiber composites as they are only 50% thermoplastic and therefore less sensitive to price increases. There is ample evidence that natural fibers could be used as a direct replacement for glass fiber in the snap fit green housing technology by straightforward modifications of the current pultrusion techniques. This opens the possibility of significant cost reductions in raw materials and the transfer of production operations to areas of the world where manufacturing labor costs would be lower.
We envision opportunities in hybrids of glass and natural fibers, or the use of natural fiber, as the core of a structural sandwich surrounded by glass fiber composite in snap fit green housing fabrication technology.
The present application is a continuation of U.S. Utility patent application Ser. No. 11/547,882, filed Oct. 4, 2006 which application was submitted under 35 U.S.C. 371 based on PCT/US2005/11859, filed Apr. 8, 2005 which, in turn, claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 60/561,001, filed Apr. 8, 2004 and further claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 60/577,435 filed Jun. 4, 2004 each of which application is incorporated in its entirety by reference herein.
The March 19, 2013, United States Patent 8,397,461 resulted from utility patent application No. 11/547,882, filed October 4, 2006, for an invention that relates generally to structural materials, and more particularly to prefabricated structural members, and still more particularly to snap fit pultrusion housing elements for joining structurally insulated panels suitable for housing and shelter construction. A December 10, 2013, Certificate of Correction lists the inventorship in Dr. Raymond Browning and W. Brandt Goldsworthy (deceased) and Lois Goldsworthy, legal representative.
THE BASIC PULTRUSION PROCESS
The pultrusion process invented by W. Brandt Goldsworthy in the 1950s is an efficient means of pulling fiber reinforcements through a bath of polyester resin to create lineals, in this case housing panels. Pre-measured, indexed and identified parts are made of commodity materials and are ready for assembly on site.