Patents Represented by Attorney, Agent or Law Firm D. Brent Lambert
  • Patent number: 6666449
    Abstract: A star wheel manufacturing process, and a star wheel manufactured thereby, suitable for an ink jet printer. Metal is formed by chemical milling, subtractive etching or the like, into the desired star wheel configuration, including a plurality of radially extending projections having tips. At least a portion of each tip has an electropolished surface. A coating of fluorinated polymer or the like may be applied to at least a portion of the electrolpolished surface on each tip.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 15, 2001
    Date of Patent: December 23, 2003
    Inventors: Stephen Francis DeFosse, Edward Lawrence Kiely, Sean David Smith
  • Patent number: 6624911
    Abstract: A printer that stores a minimal number of unadjusted stochastic threshold arrays in non-volatile memory, in which the unadjusted threshold arrays are used to generate adjusted threshold arrays at run time by use of Transfer Function Tables (TFT's). The unadjusted array for a particular color is stored in the printer's ROM and preferably is stored in a packed configuration to save memory space. The TFT's are used to convert the unadjusted threshold data into adjusted threshold data for each color and type of print media. In a preferred embodiment, the unadjusted threshold array comprises a 128 row by 128 column sized array, and each element of this array comprises a 10-bit number. When the TFT is applied to this unadjusted array, the resulting numeric values for the adjusted array elements are produced as 8-bit numeric values. The greater precision in the originating unadjusted array provides more perceptual levels of intensity (i.e.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 17, 1999
    Date of Patent: September 23, 2003
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Brian Edward Cooper, Brian Wesley Damon, Shaun Timothy Love
  • Patent number: 6450611
    Abstract: A method of positioning an ink jet printhead in a printer includes dividing a bitmap into a plurality of rows of tiles. A subset of the rows of tiles to be printed in a next pass of the printhead is identified. Printable ones of the tiles in the subset of rows are identified. The printable tiles contain printable data. Within each printable tile, a top most location of the printable data and at least one of a left most location of the printable data and a right most location of the printable data are identified. A print medium is advanced in a feed direction until a portion of the print medium corresponding with the top most location of the printable data of at least one printable tile is substantially aligned with a top nozzle of the printhead.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 14, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 17, 2002
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Martin Joseph Brown, Jr., Cuong Manh Hoang, David Brian Langer, David William Murphy, Gary Scott Overall, Martin Geoffrey Rivers, Ronald Todd Sellers, Bryan Scott Willett
  • Patent number: 6412894
    Abstract: An ink cartridge carrying a supply of ink includes a base assembly forming an ink reservoir. A first ink tank is provided having a foam core for carrying the ink, the foam core being coupled in fluid communication with the ink reservoir. A second ink tank is provided having a bladder for carrying the ink, the bladder being coupled in fluid communication with the ink reservoir and coupled in fluid communication with the first ink tank via said ink reservoir.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 19, 2001
    Date of Patent: July 2, 2002
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Benjamin Alan Askren, William Paul Cook
  • Patent number: 6402299
    Abstract: An ink jet cartridge assembly for use in an ink jet printer has a body with at least one inner ink chamber. A printhead is carried by the body and has a plurality of ink jetting orifices in fluid communication with the ink chamber. A tape automated bonding circuit carried by the body includes a flexible tape and a plurality of electrical traces. The flexible tape includes a chip window with a peripheral edge. The printhead is disposed within the chip window at a distance from the peripheral edge. Each electrical trace has a bottom side adjacent the body, a substrate held portion carried by the flexible tape, a free trace portion extending between the peripheral edge of the chip window and the printhead, and a printhead held portion connected with the printhead. The tape automated bonding circuit further includes a photoimagable coating which covers the bottom side of each electrical trace on all of the substrate held portion and the free trace portion, but does not cover the printhead held portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 22, 1999
    Date of Patent: June 11, 2002
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Jan Richard DeMeerleer, Brian Christopher Hart, James Michael Mrvos, Gary Raymond Williams
  • Patent number: 6398346
    Abstract: An ink jet print head is controllable based at least in part on q number of first control signals and p number of second control signals. The print head includes a print head integrated circuit chip having ink-heating resistors for generating heat when activated. The print head chip also has a switching circuit for receiving the first and second control signals, and for selectively activating the resistors by allowing electrical current to flow through selected resistors based at least in part on the first and second control signals. The switching circuit is operable in either a first operating mode or a second operating mode, where q is equivalent to q1 in the first operating mode, and is equivalent to q2 in the second operating mode, and where q1 is twice q2. In the first operating mode, p is equivalent to p1, and in the second operating mode, p is equivalent to p2, where p2 is twice p1. The product of q1 multiplied by p1 is equivalent to the product of q2 multiplied by p2.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 2000
    Date of Patent: June 4, 2002
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Frank Edward Anderson, George Keith Parish
  • Patent number: 6394503
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a system and a method for securing tubing which includes a reservoir, preferably being a printer cartridge, having a rigid wall with interior and exterior surfaces, a rigid restraining member for a tube, and the restraining member further having a passage therethrough. In one embodiment, the invention includes at least one locking lever with top and bottom ends, the locking lever having at least one notch proximate to the top end and the bottom end is pivotably attached to the interior surface of the reservoir wall, and the restraining member is alternately attached to the top end of the locking lever. In another embodiment, the locking lever is rigidly attached to the interior surface of the reservoir and the restraining member is alternately attached to the reservoir. In a further embodiment, the restraining member is attached to interior of the reservoir wall by at least two locking arms.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 23, 2000
    Date of Patent: May 28, 2002
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Stephen Francis DeFosse, Curtis Ray Droege
  • Patent number: 6386681
    Abstract: The printhead unit is for an imaging apparatus having a guide member. The printhead unit is configured to be positioned in a carrier assembly within the imaging apparatus and is configured for movement within the imaging apparatus via the carrier assembly. The printhead unit includes a housing a printhead and at least one bearing. The housing has at least a first side member. The printhead is attached at least to the first side member of the housing. Further, the at least one bearing has at least one bearing surface, the at least one bearing being coupled to the first side member of the housing and positioned to engage the guide member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 1, 2000
    Date of Patent: May 14, 2002
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Benjamin Alan Askren, John Edward Borsuk, Larry Steven Foster, Frank Marion Hughes, Darren Wayne Tosh
  • Patent number: 6375304
    Abstract: An ink mist controller for a maintenance station including spit louvers and a spit wheel which serve as accumulating surfaces. A flow of air directs ink mist through the louvers and around the spit wheel. Mist that is not attracted to a surface is carried to a manifold which filters, then exhausts, air to the environment, thereby preventing contamination of articles surrounding the printer. Color ink droplets are ejected onto the spit louvers. Low pressure is created between and below the louvers, which increases air and mist velocity over the entire spit zone. An unrestricted air curtain occurs on three sides of the color printhead to further control the location of mist deposit. Black ink is ejected onto the spit wheel which holds the mist deposit during evaporation. At defined intervals, the spit wheel rotates a fraction of a revolution. A scraper removes the non-volatile residue from the wheel during rotation. An air curtain is created on all four sides of the spit wheel to direct mist to this surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 17, 2000
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2002
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Charles Stanley Aldrich, Benjamin Alan Askren, John Edward Borsuk, Donn Duane Bryant, Curtis Ray Droege, Laura Leigh Garcia, Edward Lawrence Kiely, Robert Flynt Strean
  • Patent number: 6371597
    Abstract: A flexible circuit on an ink jet print head cartridge provides electrical connection between a control circuit in an ink jet printer and electrical contacts on a print head integrated circuit. During operation of printer, the contacts and the flexible circuit are exposed to a corrosive ink contained in the cartridge. The flexible circuit includes a first conductor for electrically connecting to a contact on the print head integrated circuit. The first conductor carries a first voltage when the flexible circuit is connected to the control circuit. A second conductor is disposed adjacent the first conductor for electrically connecting to another contact on the print head integrated circuit. When the flexible circuit is connected to the control circuit the second conductor carries a second voltage which is different from the first voltage. Thus, a voltage difference exists between the first conductor and the second conductor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 20, 2000
    Date of Patent: April 16, 2002
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Jan Richard DeMeerleer, Jeffrey Louis Sangalli
  • Patent number: 6357853
    Abstract: A process of, and apparatus for controlling waste ink from an ink jet printer printhead, transfers waste ink to an absorptive diaper, and at least intermittently forces air across the absorptive diaper to promote evaporation of certain volatile ink components from the transferred ink. Waste ink may be received and temporarily retained on a plurality of spaced apart inclined louvers located above the absorptive diaper, and air conveyed across and between the louvers to promote evaporation of certain volatile components from the received ink.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 14, 2000
    Date of Patent: March 19, 2002
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Benjamin Alan Askren, John Edward Borsuk, Donn Duane Bryant, Curtis Ray Droege, Laura Leigh Garcia, Edward Lawrence Kiely, Robert Flynt Strean
  • Patent number: 6357870
    Abstract: A method of printing uses a liquid applicator to apply a coating solution ontaining polyvinyl pyrrolidone or a polyvinyl pyrrolidone copolymer to an intermediate transfer medium. An image is printed onto the intermediate transfer medium using an ink jet printing device. The coating solution contains an organic solvent, which is preferably a glycol solvent or a diol solvent. Suitable solvents include trimethylene glycol, diethylene glycol, propylene glycol, di propylene glycol, tri propylene glycol, 1,2 butane diol, 2 pyrrolidone, gamma butyrolactone and glycerol. The coating solution is applied in an amount of 0.01 to 10 mg/cm2. The coating solution may contain 0.01 to 20 wt. % of polyvinyl pyrrolidone or a polyvinyl pyrrolidone copolymer, 5-95 wt. % of an organic solvent and 5-95 wt. % water. More preferably, the coating solution contains 0.01 to 15 wt. % of polyvinyl pyrrolidone or a polyvinyl pyrrolidone copolymer, 5-95 wt. % of an organic solvent and 5-95 wt. % water.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 10, 2000
    Date of Patent: March 19, 2002
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Bradley Leonard Beach, David Starling MacMillan, Jean Marie Massie, Ronald Lloyd Roe
  • Patent number: 6357863
    Abstract: An ink jet print head includes a nozzle plate having a substantially linear array of ink jet nozzles through which ink droplets are ejected toward a print medium. An integrated circuit chip, which is disposed adjacent the nozzle plate on the print head, includes a semiconductor substrate, a source voltage conductor connected to a source voltage, and a ground return conductor. A substantially linear array of ink heating resistors are disposed on the substrate substantially parallel to the length of the chip, each associated with a corresponding one of the ink jet nozzles. The chip also includes a plurality of substrate heater resistors disposed on the substrate in a substantially linear arrangement and aligned substantially parallel with the nozzles. The substrate heater resistors are electrically connected in parallel, with one node of each being connected to the source voltage conductor and another node of each being connected to the ground return conductor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 2, 1999
    Date of Patent: March 19, 2002
    Assignee: Lexmark International Inc.
    Inventors: Frank Edward Anderson, Shirish Padmakar Mulay, George Keith Parish
  • Patent number: 6358354
    Abstract: The invention provides an adhesive formulation for tacking and holding a nozzle plate in alignment on a semiconductor chip for an ink jet pen of an ink jet printer. The adhesive formulation includes a multifunctional epoxy material, a difunctional epoxy material, a fumed silica viscosity control agent, an imidazole-based thermal initiator and a mixed aryl sulfonium salt photoinitiator. Use of the adhesive formulation enables a nozzle plate to be assembled to a semiconductor chip with while substantially maintaining critical alignment between the nozzle plate and semiconductor chip.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 5, 2000
    Date of Patent: March 19, 2002
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventor: Girish Shivaji Patil
  • Patent number: 6357864
    Abstract: The invention provides a printhead cartridge body contained within an inkjet printer which contains a tape automated bonding (TAB) circuit, having a unique architecture, electrically connected to a printhead heater chip and a printed circuit board (PCB). Moreover, the TAB circuit architecture is readily sealable by a variety of methods. The TAB circuit includes elongate apertures which have a length axis aligned perpendicular to electrical traces which run through the apertures. Each trace has a first end running through the apertures and being connected to a PCB by means of a hot bar soldering technique and the second end of the traces being connected to a printhead heater chip. An encapsulant layer substantially encloses the rectangular apertures and electrical connections preventing ink mist from contacting the connections. The TAB circuit design provides improvement in the manufacturing process and enables rework of connections without destroying the TAB circuit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 16, 1999
    Date of Patent: March 19, 2002
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Carl Edmond Sullivan, Frank Edward Anderson, Paul Timothy Spivey, Kris Ann Reeves, Gary Raymond Williams, Jeanne Marie Saldanha Singh
  • Patent number: 6356363
    Abstract: A dispersed-dot stochastic dither array is provided for rendering halftone images having excellent visual quality. For color printing, a separate threshold array is generated for each of the color planes, however, the stochastic screens are interlocked so that the threshold arrays are generated while considering the other color threshold arrays. In this manner, a blue noise distribution may be produced by the individual arrays as well as by any combination of the individual arrays. When generating a single threshold array for a color plane, a particular criterion is used to determine where the next threshold value should be located, and the selection of a threshold location in each array considers the criterion for all the threshold arrays being generated. By using the interlocked threshold arrays approach, the overall visual affect will be improved for both individual threshold arrays and for a combination of more than one of the threshold arrays.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 31, 2000
    Date of Patent: March 12, 2002
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Brian Edward Cooper, Shaun Timothy Love
  • Patent number: 6293143
    Abstract: The invention relates to an ink level sensing apparatus including an ink cartridge having an ink chamber containing ink and having at least one substantially transparent side panel adjacent the ink chamber. A fluorescent material is disposed in the ink chamber, the fluorescent material being substantially insoluble in the ink and having a specific gravity which is sufficiently lower than the ink to provide an interface between the ink and the fluorescent material. A relatively narrow band light source for emitting light at a first wavelength along a light path through the substantially transparent side panel of the ink cartridge is provided for exciting the fluorescent material. A photosensor for receiving light emitted from a fluorescent material at a second wavelength when the excited fluorescent material crosses the light path is provided, wherein the first and second wavelengths are substantially different.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 23, 2000
    Date of Patent: September 25, 2001
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Gary Allen Denton, Wilson Morgan Routt, Jr.
  • Patent number: 6278438
    Abstract: A method of displaying a visual image includes scaling at least one monochrome digital photograph, scaling at least one non-monochrome icon, and assembling a digital composite display of the at least one scaled monochrome digital photograph and the at least one scaled non-monochrome icon. The digital composite display includes a plurality of monochrome pixel values corresponding to the at least one scaled monochrome digital photograph, and at least one non-monochrome pixel value corresponding to the at least one scaled non-monochrome icon. A composite bitmap is created including a color table having a plurality of color values. Each color value has a plurality of color component intensity values. Each color value corresponds to a respective monochrome pixel value. Selected color values are reserved for non-monochrome colors. Each selected color value is provided with color component intensity values corresponding to a selected non-monochrome pixel value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 8, 1999
    Date of Patent: August 21, 2001
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventor: Ronald David Parrott
  • Patent number: 6255960
    Abstract: A system and method for allowing a user to program characteristics of at least one light emitting diode (LED) in order to convey information about the operational status of an appliance, such as a printer. The user of the printer selects one of a plurality of display mode options for the LED for a particular operational status condition of the printer. For each display mode option, there is a range of parameters that can be programmed by the user. Display mode setting information for the particular operational status condition (and chosen parameters) is stored based on a selected display mode option. The display mode option may be tested for a particular set of parameters to allow the user to adjust the parameters to his/her liking. Moreover, a combination of display mode options may be programmed for an operational status condition.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 19, 2000
    Date of Patent: July 3, 2001
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Adam Jude Ahne, Mark Joseph Edwards
  • Patent number: 6247088
    Abstract: An improved computing system is provided that includes an embedded PCI device without the use of a PCI bridge to isolate the PCI device from the CPU and the system memory devices. This is accomplished by use of synchronous dynamic RAM (SDRAM) as the main memory device for the CPU, and by providing a PCI/SDRAM logic circuit to control the interfacing of the data and control signals between the PCI device, CPU, and SDRAM device. A combined PCI/Host data bus is provided that connects all of the major system components, including the SDRAM device, the CPU, the PCI device(s), and the PCI/SDRAM logic circuit, thereby eliminating the use of two separate buses found in conventional personal computers. By use of the synchronous DRAM, the present invention provides a much more efficient memory system for interfacing with PCI devices, and thereby dramatically increases the memory bandwidth as compared to conventional computing systems that use asynchronous DRAM.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 8, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2001
    Assignee: Lexmark International, Inc.
    Inventors: Toshio Seo, Jason Eric Waldeck