Patents Represented by Attorney, Agent or Law Firm Merchant, Gould, Smith, Edell, Welter & Schmidt, P.A.
  • Patent number: 6326458
    Abstract: A process for the continuous production of substantially purified lactide and lactide polymers from lactic acid or an ester of lactic acid including the steps of forming crude polylactic acid, preferably in the presence of a catalyst means in the case of the ester of lactic acid, to form a condensation reaction by-product and polylactic acid, and depolymerizing the polylactic acid in a lactide reactor to form crude lactide, followed by subsequent purification of the crude lactide in a distillation system. A purified lactide is then polymerized to form lactide polymers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 7, 1993
    Date of Patent: December 4, 2001
    Assignee: Cargill, Inc.
    Inventors: Patrick Richard Gruber, Eric Stanley Hall, Jeffrey John Kolstad, Matthew Lee Iwen, Richard Douglas Benson, Ronald Leo Borchardt
  • Patent number: 6222308
    Abstract: An emitter material for a CRT comprises mixed crystal or solid solution of at least two kinds of alkaline earth metal carbonate, wherein at least one alkaline earth metal carbonate is dispersed or separated in the mixed crystal or solid solution. The alkaline earth metal carbonate, which is an emitter material for the CRT, is coated onto the base metal and thermally decomposed in a vacuum to from an emitter of an alkaline earth metal. This emitter, which is proper for a larger screen size, high brightness and high resolution CRT, can be provided with enough life characteristics even under the operating condition of the emission current density of 2A/cm2.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 19, 1996
    Date of Patent: April 24, 2001
    Assignee: Matsushita Electronics Corporation
    Inventors: Tetsuro Ozawa, Yoshiki Hayashida, Hiroshi Sakurai
  • Patent number: 6204005
    Abstract: The present invention provides a method for determining qualitatively or quantitatively the presence of toxic congeners of polychlorinated biphenyl in a test sample. The method includes the steps of: providing a known quantity of antibodies to the toxic polychlorinated biphenyl congener; providing a competitor that will bind to said antibodies in competition with the toxic polychlorinated biphenyl congener and having a lower affinity to said antibodies than said antibodies have to the toxic polychlorinated biphenyl congener; incubating said antibodies and said competitor in the presence of a test sample; and detecting the presence of the toxic polychlorinated biphenyl toxic congener in the test sample.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 16, 1995
    Date of Patent: March 20, 2001
    Assignee: Ecochem Research, Inc.
    Inventors: Robert E. Carlson, Todd A. Swanson
  • Patent number: 6161806
    Abstract: An apparatus includes a support surface and a moving mechanism for automatically varying the orientation of the support surface in a predetermined manner over time to reduce or eliminate the likelihood of repetitive stress injury as a result of performing repetitive tasks on or otherwise using the support surface. By varying the orientation of the support surface, e.g., by moving and/or rotating the support surface over time, repetitive tasks performed on the support surface are modified at least subtly to reduce the repetitiveness of the individual motions performed by an operator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 17, 1997
    Date of Patent: December 19, 2000
    Assignee: Idea Development, Engineering and Service, Inc.
    Inventor: Robert J. Crosson
  • Patent number: 6125896
    Abstract: A plate joiner including a fence support, a drive, and a fence system. The fence support includes a cutter and a contact surface, which defines a cutter slot. The cutter is arranged and configured to protrude from fence support through cutter slot to make a plunge cut into a surface of a workpiece when the contact surface is pressed against the surface and the cutter is plunged into the workpiece by pushing on a rearward handle portion of the tool. The drive is arranged and configured to rotatably drive the cutter through a motor.A preferred plate joiner includes a cutter plunge system arranged and configured to provide a plurality of release positions that reduce the distance traveled in making a plunge cut for a smaller blade and to prevent a blade from protruding from the tool in a release position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 9, 1997
    Date of Patent: October 3, 2000
    Assignee: Porter-Cable Corporation
    Inventors: John C. Smith, Earl R. Clowers
  • Patent number: 6112183
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for processing health care transactions through a common interface in a distributed computing environment using specialized remote procedure calls. The distributed computing environment includes a user interface tier for collecting user inputs and presenting transaction outputs, a data access tier for data storage and retrieval of health care transaction information, a transaction logic tier for applying a predetermined set of transaction procedures to user inputs and health care transaction information resulting in transaction output, an electronic network connecting the user interface tier, data access tier and transaction logic tier to each other and a communication interface for exchanging health care transaction information among the tiers. The communication interface includes an interface definition language generating transaction-specific communication codes whereby data is exchanged through a common interface structure regardless of the origin of the data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 1997
    Date of Patent: August 29, 2000
    Assignee: United Healthcare Corporation
    Inventors: Michael L. Swanson, Denise Probst, Paul M. Roberts, Lori A. Katainen, Roberta J. Pett, Mark W. Gladding
  • Patent number: 6110713
    Abstract: A method of producing glutamic acid by culturing an amino acid auxotroph of a biologically pure strain of Bacillus methanolicus which exhibits sustained growth at 50.degree. C. using methanol as a carbon and energy source and requiring vitamin B.sub.12 and biotin is provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 22, 1997
    Date of Patent: August 29, 2000
    Assignee: Regents of the University of Minnesota
    Inventors: Richard S. Hanson, Michael C. Flickinger, Patricia Olson, Won Hur, Nuhza Al-Tahoo, Craig Bremmon
  • Patent number: 6111079
    Abstract: Metal binding polypeptides which include an amino acid sequence coding for a light chain variable region of a monoclonal antibody capable of immunoreacting with a lead cation and nucleotides which include a nucleic acid sequence coding for the variable region are provided. The invention is also directed to fusion proteins and Fab fragments which include the light chain variable region.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 4, 1996
    Date of Patent: August 29, 2000
    Assignee: Bionebraska, Inc.
    Inventors: Dwane E. Wylie, Osvaldo Lopez, Peter Joseph Murray, Peter Goebel
  • Patent number: 6108493
    Abstract: A prediction information system for use between a user and an electronic rating broker is provided. The prediction information system includes a user interface for presenting items as information to the user. An input mechanism receives data input by the user. A processor in cooperation with the user interface and the input mechanism performs an algorithm for: obtaining a particular implicit measure, generating an implicit rating as a function of the particular implicit measure, submitting the implicit rating to the rating broker, receiving prediction results for other items from the rating broker, and presenting the prediction results to the user through the user interface. In addition, a method for operating an electronic rating broker on a computer system in order to provide prediction information to a user based on implicit ratings is provided. Also, a storage device readable by a computer system for implementing this method is provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 7, 1996
    Date of Patent: August 22, 2000
    Assignee: Regents of the University of Minnesota
    Inventors: Bradley N. Miller, Joseph A. Konstan, John T. Riedl
  • Patent number: 6078675
    Abstract: Communication system for users of hearing aids in connection with the use of a mobile telephone (1), and where the hearing aid user (5) wears at least one hearing aid (4). The system comprises a headset (3) coupled to the mobile telephone, said headset comprising a microphone (6) and a tele-coil (10) for communication with the hearing aid.It is hereby avoided that electrical or electromagnetic noise from the mobile telephone penetrates the hearing aid.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 29, 1996
    Date of Patent: June 20, 2000
    Assignee: GN Netcom A/S
    Inventors: Jan Bowen-Nielsen, Ole Winberg
  • Patent number: 6076043
    Abstract: Nutrition modeling of animal, poultry and marine animals is a critical component of the respective enterprise optimization and managed environment pollution control. The optimization accuracy depends on the description of utilization efficiency of nutrients in a population of animals. The current invention demonstrates that utilization efficiency of nutrients for meat production in a population should be described based on at least three component parts of nutrient utilization, i.e., maintenance, linear gain, and non-linear gain, instead of one only. Efficiencies for maintenance and linear gain are fixed value(s), but nutrient efficiency for non-linear gain is a result of intra-population variation and efficiency of linear gain.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 7, 1995
    Date of Patent: June 13, 2000
    Assignee: American Institute of Nutrition and Management
    Inventor: Jinkui Liu
  • Patent number: 6051042
    Abstract: An air cleaner assembly having a body member and a removable cover is provided. The assembly includes a lock assembly for engagement between the cover and the body member. The preferred lock assembly is a rotation activated lock assembly movable between locked and unlocked orientations by a selected amount of relative rotational movement between the cover and the body member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 12, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 18, 2000
    Assignee: Donaldson Company, Inc.
    Inventor: Paul R. Coulonvaux
  • Patent number: 6027429
    Abstract: A variable resistane exercise device provides a variable resisting force in response to a user applied force. The variable resistance exercise device includes at least one rotating force transmitting means for inputting a user applied force as a rotational force to be resisted, and at least one force transmission member for transmitting the user applied force. The user applied force is resisted by varying the viscosity of a viscosity variable fluid which surround plates rotated by the user applied force. Thus a braking force is applied to actively resist the user applied force. In accordance with the invention, a multi-configurable multi-programmable exercise device is provided which may be used in a variety of exercise modes to provide a resistive force to a user-applied force during a range of motion of a particular exercise. In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, a variable resistance device resists a user-supplied force in one rotational direction only.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 13, 1994
    Date of Patent: February 22, 2000
    Assignee: NordicTrack, Inc.
    Inventor: John J. Daniels
  • Patent number: 6024124
    Abstract: A high flow low spill quick coupling valve assembly is used to connect to pressurized, large diameter fluid lines. The valve assembly includes a female coupling and a male coupling, each of which defines a fluid passageway. The female coupling fluid passageway is normally closed by a female coupling valve. The female coupling valve is normally biased into a close position by a female coupling spring which is isolated from the female coupling fluid passageway. The male coupling fluid passageway is normally closed by a male coupling valve. The male coupling valve is normally biased into a close position by a male coupling spring which is isolated from the male coupling fluid passageway. Both male and female coupling valves are fluid pressure balanced to minimize the connecting force and opening force. The male coupling is inserted into the female coupling and is engaged with the female coupling to open the fluid passageways.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 9, 1996
    Date of Patent: February 15, 2000
    Assignee: Colder Products Company
    Inventors: Thomas Anthony Braun, Brian J. Blenkush
  • Patent number: 6017130
    Abstract: In a line illumination device, a light source is provided at one end of a rod-like transparent light guiding member, for maintaining high and uniform illuminance, and the shape of a light scattering pattern 11 has: a first portion 11a gradually increasing in area from one end to the other end thereof; a second portion 11b continuous with the first portion 11a and increasing in area in the direction towards the other end at a higher rate than that of the first portion; and a third portion 11c continuous with the second portion 11b and extending towards the other end at a maximum width of the second portion 11b.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 25, 1997
    Date of Patent: January 25, 2000
    Assignee: Nippon Sheet Glass Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Tomihisa Saito, Takashi Kishimoto, Haruo Matsumoto
  • Patent number: 6017163
    Abstract: A liquid floor finish application applicator comprising a mobile unit and a wand unit. The mobile unit comprises a handle and wheels. In the cart is positioned one or more sources of floor finish, and a pump for delivering the floor finish to a length of liquid conduit. The wand comprises a distribution head typically a mop installation. The wand also comprises a spray head that can deliver the liquid floor finish to the floor. The conduit is in liquid communication with the wand. The spray head is configured to avoid dripping between finish application. The drip free head results from the aperture size of the spray aperture surface. The lengthy conduit between the cart and the wand permits ease of application by a two man team. A first man operates the cart while a second man operates the wand.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 1998
    Date of Patent: January 25, 2000
    Assignee: Ecolab, Inc.
    Inventors: Roger W. Keppers, James L. Copeland, James R. Johnson, James D. Decker
  • Patent number: 6014073
    Abstract: A temperature sensor element for measuring the temperature of exhaust gas from car engines comprises a metallic support having a shape of a flat board, a first electric-insulating film existing on the support, a first temperature sensitive film existing on the first electric-insulating film and having a pair of electrodes, and a second electric-insulating film existing on the temperature sensitive film. The element is superior in thermal shock resistance. The element needs no heat-resistant cap. The element is superior in heat-response since the element has a small heat capacity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 10, 1997
    Date of Patent: January 11, 2000
    Assignee: Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Hideo Torii, Takeshi Kamada, Atsushi Tomozawa, Eiji Fujii, Ryoichi Takayama, Hiroki Moriwake
  • Patent number: D422044
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 28, 2000
    Assignee: Rollerblade, Inc.
    Inventor: Randy Carl Peterson
  • Patent number: D422334
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 13, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 4, 2000
    Inventor: Horst Engelbrecht
  • Patent number: D426693
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 26, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 13, 2000
    Inventor: Claus Thomsen