Patents by Inventor Bryant G. Ragan

Bryant G. Ragan has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Patent number: 11993396
    Abstract: A package delivery drone comprises at least one propeller for generating lift and an article containment area for containing an article to be carried by the drone. The floor of the article containment area comprises a dynamic support surface for supporting the article and allowing the article to move into, out of and through the article containment area. The package delivery drone interfaces with a docking station having a shelf for exchanging packages with the drone.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 11, 2019
    Date of Patent: May 28, 2024
    Assignee: Laitram, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Bryant G. Ragan, Mark Costanzo, Matthew A. Lignieres
  • Patent number: 11958694
    Abstract: Exemplary embodiments provide a sorting system using the principles of linear motors to move a magnetized mat in multiple directions. The sorting system uses a series of stator coils in particular patterns to direct the magnetized mat along predefined looping pathways such that the magnetized mat can move articles in a desired direction. Embodiments include the use of multiple magnetized mats to improve package sorting rates. The magnetized mat is comprised of a plurality of magnetized and non-magnetized tiles which are connected using flexible tabs that form a living hinge. The living hinge flexes and allows the mat to travel along the predefined looping pathways. The sorting system may be used as a node in a larger grid sorting system and may be connected to conveyors, chutes, or other means for moving articles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 11, 2022
    Date of Patent: April 16, 2024
    Assignee: Laitram, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Bryant G. Ragan, Matthew L Fourney
  • Publication number: 20240059505
    Abstract: A hinged magnetic mover for conveying product comprises a plurality of hingedly connected modules including magnets. The magnets form an array of X magnets alternating with Y magnets. A carryway for the hinged magnetic mover forms a stator comprising XY coils with Hall sensors for interacting with the magnets to induce a motive force on the mover.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 7, 2022
    Publication date: February 22, 2024
    Inventors: Matthew L. Fourney, Bryant G. Ragan
  • Publication number: 20240051709
    Abstract: A sorting conveyor system sorting parcels into volume-adjustable containers with movable floors and an associated method for adjusting the depth of the container's interior volume. The containers are mounted on carts and have movable floors that are raised and lowered to decrease and increase the depth of the container's interior volume below an upper rim as a function of the load of parcels in the container.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 9, 2021
    Publication date: February 15, 2024
    Inventors: Mark Costanzo, Bryant G. Ragan, Christopher Alan Brupbacher, Destin Jacob Bailey
  • Publication number: 20240034572
    Abstract: A transfer conveyor for transferring products from the end of a first product conveyor onto a second product conveyor comprises transfer conveyor belts including movable flaps for lifting and carrying the product over a transfer gap between the first product conveyor and the second product conveyor. A frame guides the transfer conveyor belts and moves the flaps between a deployed and retracted position.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 10, 2022
    Publication date: February 1, 2024
    Inventor: Bryant G. Ragan
  • Publication number: 20240017938
    Abstract: A transfer system comprising a carrier attached by fastening structure to a linear-motor shuttle driven by a linear-motor stator along a track. Tray packs or other conveyed objects are transferred between the carriers and infeed and outfeed conveyors by the carriers at transfer segments as the carriers advance along the track.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 19, 2021
    Publication date: January 18, 2024
    Inventors: Benson Hall, Mitchell G. Pansano, Jr., Geoffrey Nicholas Bennett, Wayne A. Pertuit, Jr., Bryant G. Ragan
  • Patent number: 11873171
    Abstract: A conveyor-rail cleaner for cleansing, scrubbing, and rinsing the rails of a cleanable conveyor system. The cleaner includes cleaning units pivotably connected to allow it to negotiate turns in the track. Position-adjustable scrub brushes accommodate transitions between one-rail conveyor segments and two-rail segments at switch segments between separate adjacent conveyor tracks. The conveyor system includes a filling station for filling the cleaning units with cleansing and rinsing agents and recharging batteries powering scrub-brush motors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 14, 2020
    Date of Patent: January 16, 2024
    Assignee: Laitram, L.L.C.
    Inventor: Bryant G. Ragan
  • Publication number: 20230286756
    Abstract: Exemplary embodiments provide a sorting system using the principles of linear motors to move a magnetized mat in multiple directions. The sorting system uses a series of stator coils in particular patterns to direct the magnetized mat along predefined looping pathways such that the magnetized mat can move articles in a desired direction. Embodiments include the use of multiple magnetized mats to improve package sorting rates. The magnetized mat is comprised of a plurality of magnetized and non-magnetized tiles which are connected using flexible tabs that form a living hinge. The living hinge flexes and allows the mat to travel along the predefined looping pathways. The sorting system may be used as a node in a larger grid sorting system and may be connected to conveyors, chutes, or other means for moving articles.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 11, 2022
    Publication date: September 14, 2023
    Inventors: Bryant G. Ragan, Matthew L. Fourney
  • Patent number: 11745949
    Abstract: Conveyor belt modules having rodless hook hinges and modular conveyor belts constructed of those modules. Hooks on opposite ends of belt modules hook into complementary hooks on adjacent modules to interconnect the modules at hinge joints into an endless belt. The geometry of the modules enables them to be manufactured by extrusion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 4, 2020
    Date of Patent: September 5, 2023
    Assignee: Laitram, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Bryant G. Ragan, John de St. Germain, Adam E. Bannerman
  • Patent number: 11724884
    Abstract: A slat conveyor belt includes connected drive modules that can be easily disassembled and assembled. Each drive module comprises a slat portion connected to a drive portion forming a drive chain. A conveyor frame for the conveyor belt includes a dust cover for the drive chain and a separator for selectively separating a slat portion from an associated drive portion. A magazine automatically removes and stores separated slats.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 27, 2020
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2023
    Assignee: Laitram, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Bryant G. Ragan, David W. Bogle, John de St. Germain
  • Publication number: 20230227264
    Abstract: A magnetic tray for a tray conveyor has a permanent-magnet array producing a magnetic field that interacts with an electromagnetic flux wave produced by a linear-motor stator to propel the tray in a conveying direction. The tray includes a top conveying platform supported on a mover housing the permanent-magnet array and a tray-clearing tool that removes conveyed articles or debris from the platform. The tray-clearing tool is powered by the stator.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 17, 2021
    Publication date: July 20, 2023
    Inventor: Bryant G. Ragan
  • Publication number: 20230219771
    Abstract: A tray shuttle and a tray conveyor using the tray shuttle to route magnetic conveyor trays from one conveyor section to another. The trays and the shuttles are propelled by linear-motor stators that produce electromagnetic flux waves that interact with the magnetic fields of permanent-magnet arrays in movers in each tray. Each shuttle has a main holder mover and one or more other movers connected to a linkage that operates one or more pushers that push trays off a tray holder on the shuttles.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 14, 2021
    Publication date: July 13, 2023
    Inventor: Bryant G. Ragan
  • Publication number: 20230211960
    Abstract: A sorting system having a buffer interposable between a discharge, such as a chute, supplying packages and multiple destination receptacles, such as wheeled bins. The buffer temporarily accumulates packages to ensure correct package delivery to assigned destination receptacles during overflow conditions. The buffer may be realized in various ways that operate in horizontal, vertical, or inclined planes.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 15, 2021
    Publication date: July 6, 2023
    Inventors: Mark Costanzo, Matthew L. Fourney, Bryant G. Ragan
  • Publication number: 20230159203
    Abstract: A sorting conveyor and bagging device for selectively depositing packages in bags through collapsible openings in the bags themselves or in sleeves protruding from the mouths of bags. Sliders are positioned between the bags at the ends of chutes. Actuators slide the sliders along the slide tracks to selectively open and position the opening to one bag to receive packages from the chute while the opening to the other bag is closed and positioned out of the way.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 13, 2021
    Publication date: May 25, 2023
    Inventors: Matthew L. Fourney, Bryant G. Ragan, Mark Costanzo, Destin Jacob Bailey, Christopher Alan Brupbacher
  • Patent number: 11565893
    Abstract: A tray conveyor comprising ice-coated magnetic trays driven by a linear-motor stator along a rail track. The ice coating is applied to the trays to provide a product-bearing ice surface. After the product is processed and transferred off the tray, the top layer of the contaminated ice coating is removed and the tray with the remaining ice coating reused.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 15, 2019
    Date of Patent: January 31, 2023
    Assignee: Laitram, L.L.C.
    Inventor: Bryant G. Ragan
  • Publication number: 20230011655
    Abstract: A conveyor-rail cleaner for cleansing, scrubbing, and rinsing the rails of a cleanable conveyor system. The cleaner includes cleaning units pivotably connected to allow it to negotiate turns in the track. Position-adjustable scrub brushes accommodate transitions between one-rail conveyor segments and two-rail segments at switch segments between separate adjacent conveyor tracks. The conveyor system includes a filling station for filling the cleaning units with cleansing and rinsing agents and recharging batteries powering scrub-brush motors.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 14, 2020
    Publication date: January 12, 2023
    Inventor: Bryant G. Ragan
  • Patent number: 11505409
    Abstract: A two-axis modular belt comprising two orthogonal belt loops intersecting at a union on a carryway. The belt is constructed of rectangular belt modules arranged in rows and columns. The modules are interconnected by hinge elements that allow columns of an advancing belt loop to translate relative to the rows of the other stationary belt loop.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 29, 2020
    Date of Patent: November 22, 2022
    Assignee: Laitram, L.L.C.
    Inventor: Bryant G. Ragan
  • Patent number: 11485582
    Abstract: A multi-angle sorter having an omnidirectionally endless conveyor belt surrounding a polygonal frame to form a belt-frame assembly supported atop a roller drive including multiple pairs of diagonally opposite roller sets. Each pair of roller sets is arranged to drive the belt in a corresponding angular direction. A grid sorter comprises a grid of intersecting conveyor lines composed of multi-angle sorters at the intersections in line with conventional bidirectional conveyors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 16, 2019
    Date of Patent: November 1, 2022
    Assignee: Laitram, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Bryant G. Ragan, Matthew L. Fourney
  • Patent number: 11472642
    Abstract: An article-unloading apparatus comprising a bin assembly including a bag inside a bin. The bin assembly is raised and lowered by a lift and tilted, when raised, to dump articles onto a decline conveyor, such as a ramp. A winch attached to the bag moves the bottom of the bag through the bin to help push articles from the tilted bin assembly. A camera takes a video image of the articles entering the ramp to detect clumps. Stops on the ramp are selectively actuated to block the bottom-most articles in a clump to help separate articles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 15, 2019
    Date of Patent: October 18, 2022
    Assignee: Laitram, L.L.C.
    Inventors: Matthew L. Fourney, Bryant G. Ragan
  • Publication number: 20220304544
    Abstract: An overhead tray conveyor system conveying tray movers holding trays carrying products to a workstation area for processing. Soiled trays are transferred from the tray movers to a wash system. Once sanitized, the trays are returned from the wash system to the tray movers advancing around a track circuit.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 22, 2020
    Publication date: September 29, 2022
    Inventor: Bryant G. Ragan