Patents Examined by David M. Gray
  • Patent number: 10613473
    Abstract: An image heating apparatus includes a frame having first and second side plates. A cylindrical film is provided between the side plates, and a heater contacts an inner surface of the film. A roller forms a nip in cooperation with the heater through the film, and an image, formed on a recording material, is heated by heat of the heater, while moving in the nip. A holder holds the heater, and is provided in an inside space of the film. With respect to a longitudinal direction, a length of the holder is greater than a distance between the side plates. In addition, a stay, formed of metal, reinforces the holder, and is provided in the inside space of the film. A length of the stay is greater than the distance between the side plates, and a position of the stay with respect to the longitudinal direction is determined by the holder.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 26, 2019
    Date of Patent: April 7, 2020
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Noriaki Tanaka, Yoshinori Hashimoto
  • Patent number: 10613464
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes a photoreceptor, a measurer that measures the number of rotations of the photoreceptor, and a hardware processor. The hardware processor predicts a film scraping amount of the photoreceptor on the basis of a measurement result of the measurer and determines a service life of the photoreceptor on the basis of a prediction result of the hardware processor. The hardware processor calculates the film scraping amount by multiplying the number of rotations of the photoreceptor per predetermined time by a predetermined coefficient, and integrates the calculated film scraping amount for each predetermined time. The predetermined coefficient is set to a different value according to the number of rotations of the photoreceptor per predetermined time.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 5, 2018
    Date of Patent: April 7, 2020
    Assignee: KONICA MINOLTA, INC.
    Inventor: Hideo Yamaki
  • Patent number: 10613456
    Abstract: A fixing device includes a heating member, a pressing member, and a guide portion. The heating member heats a toner image and includes an elastic body. The pressing member presses a recording medium against the heating member. The guide portion does not contact with the heating member, and guides the recording medium ejected from a nip of the heating member and the pressing member. The distance from an exit of the contact portion to an end portion of the guide portion adjacent the contact portion differs in accordance with the position in the longitudinal direction of the heating member. The distance at a position at which the pressure between the heating member and the pressing member is low is longer than the distance at a position at which the pressure between the heating member and the pressing member is high.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 17, 2018
    Date of Patent: April 7, 2020
    Assignee: FUJI XEROX CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Kyogo Soshi
  • Patent number: 10613046
    Abstract: A system and method for accurately measuring the real-time valid dew-point value of a material and determining the total moisture content of the material within the valid dew-point value by using an algorithm during the material drying process. The algorithm estimates the valid dew-point value of the material and the total moisture content of the material by analyzing the sensor data received on a server. The algorithm determines a valid dew-point value by estimating an inflection point for the material, and the total moisture content of the material is determined within the valid dew-point value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 21, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 7, 2020
    Assignee: MachineSense, LLC
    Inventor: Biplab Pal
  • Patent number: 10606202
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes a photoconductor, a charging roller to charge the photoconductor, a power source to apply a charging bias to the charging roller, a current sensor to generate a feedback signal representing an output current flowing from the charging roller to the photoconductor, a memory, and circuitry. The circuitry calculates film thicknesses of a photoconductor film of the photoconductor at a plurality of points of time based on a voltage of the charging bias and the output current, calculates travel distances of the photoconductor charged at the plurality of points of time, associates the film thicknesses with the travel distances, stores the film thicknesses and the travel distances in the memory, calculates a present estimated film thickness based on the film thicknesses and the travel distances, and calculates an estimated film thickness range corresponding to a present travel distance based on the present estimated film thickness.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 8, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2020
    Assignee: RICOH COMPANY, LTD.
    Inventors: Yasuhide Matsuno, Takahiro Yoshimi, Shinji Minami
  • Patent number: 10606194
    Abstract: A fixing device includes a heating body, a pressurizing body, a separation claw, and a supporting member. The heating body heats a medium where a toner image is formed while the heating body rotates around a shaft. The pressurizing body forms a nip with the heating body and applies pressure to the medium that passes through the nip while the pressurizing body rotates around a shaft. The separation claw includes a protrusion that contacts the medium after having passed through the nip and separates the medium from the heating body. The supporting member supports the separation claw in state of causing the separation claw into contact with the heating body. The supporting member supports the separation claw while the supporting member causes the separation claw to slide in a direction separating from the heating body when the medium is brought into contact with the protrusion to press the protrusion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 16, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2020
    Assignee: KYOCERA Document Solutions Inc.
    Inventor: Toshiyuki Hamada
  • Patent number: 10606198
    Abstract: A fixing apparatus will be described for fixing a toner image on a recording medium. The apparatus includes a heater that is in contact with an inner surface of a film, a restricting member that restricts movement of the film in a longitudinal direction of the film, a connector that is connected electrically to the heater for supplying electric power to the heater, and a lock member that maintains a position of the restricting member and a position of the connector relative to each other.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 3, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2020
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Taku Nishikawa, Motoyasu Muramatsu, Satoshi Murasaki
  • Patent number: 10606192
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus calculates a post exposure potential after exposure by an exposure device based on a first charge voltage, a second charge voltage, a charge current in a first change characteristic when a transfer voltage is the first charge voltage, a charge current in a second change characteristic when the charge voltage is the first charge voltage, a charge current in the first change characteristic when the charge voltage is the second charge voltage, and a charge current in the second change characteristic when the charge voltage is the second charge voltage, and makes a determination as to life of an image carrier based on the post exposure potential.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 15, 2019
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2020
    Assignee: KONICA MINOLTA, INC.
    Inventor: Kazuki Odagiri
  • Patent number: 10606185
    Abstract: A developing device includes: a developer carrying member (sleeve); a regulating portion including an edge portion at a closest position to a surface of the sleeve or a flat portion tilted, at the closest position, by an angle of 2 degrees or less relative to a contact flat plane contacting the surface of the sleeve; and a rectifying portion connected with the edge or flat portion. The rectifying portion has a concavely curved surface such that a rate of a decrease in gap between the rectifying portion and the contact flat plane increases toward a downstream side of the developer feeding direction and is formed by smoothly connecting rectilinear or curved lines each of 0.2 mm or less except for the edge portion so that the gap between the rectifying portion and the contact flat plane is monotonically decreases toward the downstream side of the developer feeding direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 10, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2020
    Assignee: CANON KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Takeshi Yasumoto, Dai Kanai, Koichi Watanabe
  • Patent number: 10606193
    Abstract: A fixing device includes an endless belt; a pressing unit that is in contact with an outer peripheral surface of the belt and that rotates the belt; a first unit that is provided on an inner peripheral surface of the belt and that retains the belt in contact with the pressing unit; a second unit provided on the inner peripheral surface of the belt and located downstream of the first unit in a rotation direction of the belt, the second unit applying tension to the belt and including a portion that is in contact with a central portion of the belt in a width direction of the belt and that is farther in a direction toward the outer peripheral surface of the belt than both ends of the belt in the width direction of the belt; and a third unit provided on the inner peripheral surface of the belt and located downstream of the second unit in the rotation direction of the belt, the third unit applying tension to the belt and including a portion that is in contact with the central portion of the belt in the width direct
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 23, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2020
    Assignee: FUJI XEROX CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Motoyuki Yagi, Noriaki Kishi
  • Patent number: 10599064
    Abstract: A powder-amount detection device includes a first electrode, a second electrode, a third electrode and a voltage detector with the second electrode adjacent to the first electrode on the powder container and have a smaller surface area than a surface area of the first electrode. The third electrode is on a side opposite to the second electrode with the powder container interposed between the third electrode and each of the first electrode and the second electrode. The voltage detector detects voltages of the first electrode and the second electrode by detecting charging and discharging behaviors of the first electrode and the second electrode when a voltage is applied between the third electrode and each of the first electrode and the second electrode for a short time, and detects the amount of powder in the powder container based on the voltages of the first electrode and the second electrode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 21, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 24, 2020
    Assignee: Ricoh Company, Ltd.
    Inventors: Masahide Yamashita, Taku Kumiya, Yohei Kushida, Takuya Murata, Keita Maejima
  • Patent number: 10598516
    Abstract: A gripping state detection device includes a steering state determination ECU that determines the gripping state of a driver with respect to the steering wheel of a vehicle. The steering state determination ECU determines which of a first steering state, a second steering state, and a hands-off state has occurred based on the electrostatic capacitance. The steering state determination ECU outputs a first determination result indicating that the steering wheel is gripped by the driver in a case where the determined state is the first steering state or the second steering state, and outputs a second determination result indicating that the steering wheel is not gripped by the driver in a case where the determined state is the hands-off state.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 19, 2017
    Date of Patent: March 24, 2020
    Assignee: TOYOTA JIDSOSHA KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventor: Takeshi Matsumura
  • Patent number: 10591857
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus according to one embodiment includes a transport unit, an image forming unit, a heating member, a first pressurizing member, a second pressurizing member, and a processor. The transport unit is configured to transport a print medium. The image forming unit is configured to form a toner image on the print medium by a first toner. The first pressurizing member is configured to form a fixing nip for fixing with the heating member. The second pressurizing member is configured to form a decolorizing nip for decolorizing with the heating member. The processor is configured to control the heating member to the first temperature, allows the print medium on which the toner image is formed by the first toner to pass through the fixing nip, and allows the print medium on which an image is formed by a second toner, to pass through the decolorizing nip.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 18, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 17, 2020
    Assignee: TOSHIBA TEC KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventor: Yuuichi Akiyama
  • Patent number: 10585381
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes a developing unit, a transfer unit, a power source unit configured to supply a developing bias voltage to the developing unit and a transfer bias voltage to the transfer unit, and an input device to receive an image density evaluation. A processor adjusts the developing bias voltage when an evaluation input indicating a defect in the image density is received. If, after the first adjustment, another evaluation input indicating a defect in image density is received, the processor adjusts one of the developing bias voltage, the transfer bias voltage, or the toner density in the developing unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 27, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 10, 2020
    Assignee: TOSHIBA TEC KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventor: Sunao Takenaka
  • Patent number: 10585373
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes: a casing; a toner cartridge; a drum cartridge; a main electrode; a first reading portion; and a controller. The toner cartridge is attachable to the drum cartridge and includes: a developing roller; and a developing electrode electrically connected to the developing roller. The drum cartridge is attachable to the casing and includes: a photosensitive drum; a pressing member; and a drum memory. The pressing member presses the toner cartridge toward the photosensitive drum so that an outer circumferential surface of the developing roller contacts an outer circumferential surface of the photosensitive drum. The drum memory stores a pressing force value indicating a pressing force to be applied by the pressing member. The controller is configured to perform: reading, through the first reading portion, the pressing force value from the drum memory; and applying a voltage to the main electrode based on the pressing force value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 28, 2019
    Date of Patent: March 10, 2020
    Assignee: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Toshiyuki Sano, Nao Itabashi
  • Patent number: 10585366
    Abstract: Provided is an image forming apparatus including an image bearer capable of bearing a toner image, where a latent image is formed on the image bearer, a developing unit configured to develop the latent image formed on the image bearer with a toner, and a cleaning unit including a blade-shaped elastic body, where the elastic body is brought into contact with a surface of the image bearer, wherein a friction coefficient Ft/Fn between the image bearer and the elastic body is 0.85 or greater but 1.1 or less, and self-excited vibration WRFt(LMH) of shear force of the elastic body in a LMH band is 1.5 gf or greater but 3.5 gf or less.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 4, 2019
    Date of Patent: March 10, 2020
    Assignee: Ricoh Company, Ltd.
    Inventors: Hidetoshi Kami, Hiroki Orii, Ryohta Takahashi
  • Patent number: 10578996
    Abstract: An intermediate transfer unit includes an intermediate transfer belt, a plurality of transfer rollers, a housing, and a filter unit. The intermediate transfer belt is mounted around a drive roller and a driven roller and capable of traveling in an endless path around the rollers. The housing holds the intermediate transfer belt and the transfer rollers. The filter unit includes: a suction portion; an exhaust portion; and a rectangular chassis provided internally with an upstream filter and a downstream filter both capable of collecting powder particles. The filter unit is disposed inside of the intermediate transfer belt so that a direction of length of the chassis is oriented parallel to a direction of width of the intermediate transfer belt perpendicular to a direction of travel of the intermediate transfer belt, and the filter unit is fixed to the housing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 3, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 3, 2020
    Assignee: KYOCERA Document Solutions, Inc.
    Inventor: Takashi Morita
  • Patent number: 10571858
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus including a cartridge and an apparatus main body to which the cartridge is detachably attachable is disclosed. The apparatus main body includes a driving force transmitting member, an output member, and a biasing member disposed between the output member and the driving force transmitting member. The driving force transmitting member is caused to rotate relative to the output member in the predetermined rotation by the biasing member, when an engagement between the driving force transmitting member and the driving force receiving member is released by a detachment of the cartridge from the apparatus main body.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 2018
    Date of Patent: February 25, 2020
    Assignee: CANON KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Tomofumi Kawamura, Shoichi Zensai, Takamichi Matsuo
  • Patent number: 10564224
    Abstract: A method for predicting a lifespan of a secondary battery within a short time in a more accurate and effective way is provided. The method for assessing a lifespan of a secondary battery includes primarily aging a prepared secondary battery for a predetermined time, initially charging the primarily aged secondary battery to a predetermined SOC and secondarily aging the initially charged secondary battery for a duration greater than the primary aging. Additionally, degassing removes gas in the secondarily aged secondary battery. Further, the method includes charging the secondary battery with a primary low-current at C-rate of 1/15 C or less, after the degassing step, discharging the secondary battery with a primary low-current at C-rate of 1/15 C or less, after the primary low-current charging step and determining a lifespan of the secondary battery by using a difference of voltages measured at different time points.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 14, 2017
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2020
    Assignee: LG Chem, Ltd.
    Inventors: Ji-Yoon Kwon, Young-Geun Choi, Song-Taek Oh
  • Patent number: 10564562
    Abstract: Described herein is a method for priming a print substrate for subsequently receiving a liquid electrophotographic (LEP) inkin which a surface of a print substrate is coated with a first primer using an analogue printing technique and a second primer is digitally printed to the surface of the print substrate coated with the first primer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 11, 2015
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2020
    Assignee: HP Indigo B.V.
    Inventors: Hannoch Ron, Yaron Hershman, Gleb Romantcov, Peter Nedelin, Guy Nesher