LatchTool Group unveils hydraulic breakthrough

04/08/04

A smaller, more powerful, affordable technology

Colorado Springs, Colo. - - The LatchTool Group announced today the successful completion of testing of its patented PowerCylinderTM, a product that utilizes a new category of high-flow check valves and integrated hydraulics that could impact a host of industries.

For example, a five-inch PowerCylinderTM weighing less than 12 ounces delivers one and a half tons of force with a simple 50-pound squeeze of a handle. The size and force of a PowerCylinderTM can be scaled up or down and is capable of production at a reasonable price. Imagine tools that give a grandmother the grip of a gorilla; airfoils and ailerons controlled by an electrical wire; prosthetic limbs with bionic strength; and much more. And, all of these products will come in a much smaller package and at an affordable price.

Bill Gallentine, a 78-year-old logger and a self-taught inventor from Portland, Ore., dreamed of powerful hand tools that could be packed into the woods and used in a variety of ways that could save time and effort for the workers in the field. His dreams were of smaller, more powerful tools that would drastically increase productivity in hard-to-reach places.

LatchTool President Robert McPherson teamed the inventor with the engineer. Enter Myron Tupper, 82, an accomplished development engineer also from Portland and retired GE Fellow with nearly 40 patents to his name.

The two combined to perfect a technology which could change the way many products are designed and built. PowerCylinderTM is the power force that will simplify or replace complex hydraulic systems that now require separate pumps, reservoirs, and valve manifolds.

Countless applications could switch over to LatchTool's PowerCylinderTM where whole systems can be condensed into a single package controlled by a small motor at the end of a wire. And what new applications will emerge? The possibilities are countless, as endless as man's imagination, as product engineers and designers begin to grasp the huge possibilities of fluid power in the palm of your hand.

Hydraulics is a $30 billion industry. The capital required to establish LatchTool is nominal and the cost to integrate the PowerCylinderTM into new designs affordable. LatchTool has jumped a generation with four patents issued and more filings planned. The Company's website, www.latchtool.com, features a demonstration video of an early proof-of-concept prototype.

Dr. Josh Hoyt, Senior Vice President says the key to the success of PowerCylinderTM is the Fast Flow valve technology. "This new technology shifts from a high displacement and low force to work characterized by high force at low displacement." Hoyt adds, "The PowerCylinderTM is small and powerful and it will be well-suited to a broad range of industrial and low-cost consumer applications. An army of designers will find many uses for this truly unique device."

Dr. Hoyt earned a PhD in underwater robotics engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology/Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. He too holds patents in the field of fluid power control.

LatchTool presently is entertaining industrial licensing possibilities. The Company plans to have PowerCylinderTM available for sale this summer.

Source: Eurekalert & others

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