Patents by Inventor Daniel J. Theis

Daniel J. Theis 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: 8794150
    Abstract: An apparatus and a method for micro-contact printing on a substrate. A roll having very low drag is supported for rotation by air bearings and has a micro-contact printing stamp mounted to its outer surface. Contact between the substrate and the micro-contact printing stamp drives the roll and repeatedly imprints the pattern onto the web. In convenient embodiments, the roll is a sleeve positioned over a core with the sleeve supported for rotation by a layer of air between the sleeve and the core.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 25, 2012
    Date of Patent: August 5, 2014
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Daniel J. Theis, Jonathan J. O'Hare, Mikhail L. Pekurovsky, Daniel P. Meehan
  • Publication number: 20140161511
    Abstract: A web-handling machine frame, at least partially built from reconfigurable interconnected blocks having precision alignment points. From such blocks, modular equipment web-handling lines for web-handling operations can be constructed ad hoc with their shaft mounted web-contacting devices in tram without the need for separate alignment procedures.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 29, 2012
    Publication date: June 12, 2014
    Applicant: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: James N. Dobbs, Ronald P. Swanson, Daniel H. Carlson, Larry D. Humlicek, John T. Strand, Daniel J. Theis
  • Patent number: 8720052
    Abstract: A method of applying a conductive pattern of metal onto a web of indefinite length material. This method includes applying a metal containing composition onto the web in a predefined pattern, providing a roll having a very low thermal mass, and conveying the patterned web around the roll while simultaneously applying heat energy to the metal containing composition thereby converting the metal to a conductive pattern. This allows for flexible circuitry to be fabricated in an inexpensive roll-to-roll process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 20, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 13, 2014
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Daniel J. Theis, Brian K. Nelson, James N. Dobbs, Samuel Kidane, Ronald P. Swanson, Daniel H. Carlson, Grant F. Tiefenbruck, Karl K. Stensvad
  • Publication number: 20140102327
    Abstract: An apparatus and a method for micro-contact printing on a substrate. A roll having very low drag is supported for rotation by air bearings and has a micro-contact printing stamp mounted to its outer surface. Contact between the substrate and the micro-contact printing stamp drives the roll and repeatedly imprints the pattern onto the web. In convenient embodiments, the roll is a sleeve positioned over a core with the sleeve supported for rotation by a layer of air between the sleeve and the core.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 25, 2012
    Publication date: April 17, 2014
    Applicant: 3M INNOVATIVE PROPERTIES COMPANY
    Inventors: Daniel J. Theis, Jonathan J. O'Hare, Mikhail L. Pekurovsky, Daniel P. Meehan
  • Publication number: 20130286367
    Abstract: A system for making flexible circuit films includes an inelastic conveyor, a web handling apparatus configured to pass a flexible substrate around the inelastic conveyor, an image acquisition apparatus configured to measure positions of a first set of alignment marks on the flexible substrate at a first conveyor location, an exposure apparatus configured to patternwise expose a photosensitive material on the flexible substrate at a second conveyor location, and an image processor configured to receive the measured positions of the first set of alignment marks, and to compare the measured positions with reference positions of the first set of alignment marks. The exposure apparatus is configured to patternwise expose the photosensitive material based on the comparison between the measured positions and the reference positions.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 27, 2013
    Publication date: October 31, 2013
    Inventors: Michael A. Haase, Jeffrey H. Tokie, Daniel J. Theis, Brian K. Nelson
  • Publication number: 20130251945
    Abstract: An article having a first major surface with at least first and second regions, the first region comprising a plurality of first structures having a first surface roughness, the second region comprising a plurality of second structures having a second surface roughness, wherein at least a portion of the at least first and second regions have a surface roughness difference between them that together exhibit at least a portion of a first image. Exemplary uses of the articles include tool-less macro-patterning of transflectors, customized appearance for retroreflective sheeting, incorporation of security features, decorative patterns for lighting diffusers, images or logos in medical films without inks or contamination.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 1, 2011
    Publication date: September 26, 2013
    Applicant: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Randy S. Bay, James A. Docken, JR., Brian K. Nelson, Mikhail L. Pekurovsky, Ilyess H. Romdhane, Daniel J. Theis, Olester Benson, JR.
  • Patent number: 8486593
    Abstract: Methods of making flexible circuit films include providing a polymer film or other flexible substrate having a plurality of alignment marks and a photosensitive material thereon. The substrate passes around a suitable roller, belt, or other inelastic conveyor such that the substrate and the conveyor move together at least from a first location to a second location. Positions of a first set of the alignment marks on a first portion of the substrate are measured when such portion is at the first location, and the measured positions can be used to calculate a distortion of the substrate. The photosensitive material is then patternwise exposed when the first portion of the substrate has moved to the second location. The patternwise exposing is based on the measured positions of the first set of alignment marks, and may include exposing the web with a distortion-adjusted pattern. Related systems and articles are also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 17, 2009
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2013
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Michael A. Haase, Jeffrey H. Tokie, Daniel J. Theis, Brian K. Nelson
  • Patent number: 8339573
    Abstract: A method includes providing a substrate having a layer of photosensitive material thereon and a mask having contiguous first, second, and third portions; and sequentially: i) scanning the first portion with a light beam at a first rate and subsequently impinges on the photosensitive material at an exposure zone; ii) fixing the scanning within the second portion; and iii) resuming scanning through the third portion. Throughout the process the substrate moves through the exposure zone. An apparatus for carrying out the process includes a light beam source, a mask mount, a mask stage, a conveyor assembly, and at least one optical element for manipulating the light beam into a rectangular light beam.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 27, 2009
    Date of Patent: December 25, 2012
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Daniel J. Theis, Levent Biyikli, Jeffrey H. Tokie, David L. Hofeldt
  • Publication number: 20110257779
    Abstract: Approaches for enhancing web position determination involve phase locking a web movement encoder signal to a sensed web fiducial signal. Fiducials disposed along a longitudinal axis of a substrate are sensed and corresponding sensor signals are generated. An estimated web position is provided by one or more encoder signals. The phase difference between the sensor signals and the encoder signals is calculated and the web position error is determined based on the phase difference. The web position error signal can be fed back to adjust the encoder signals which improves the accuracy of the web position determination.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 7, 2009
    Publication date: October 20, 2011
    Inventors: Daniel J. Theis, Daniel H. Carlson, Brian K. Nelson
  • Publication number: 20110253425
    Abstract: Methods of making flexible circuit films include providing a polymer film or other flexible substrate having a plurality of alignment marks and a photosensitive material thereon. The substrate passes around a suitable roller, belt, or other inelastic conveyor such that the substrate and the conveyor move together at least from a first location to a second location. Positions of a first set of the alignment marks on a first portion of the substrate are measured when such portion is at the first location, and the measured positions can be used to calculate a distortion of the substrate. The photosensitive material is then patternwise exposed when the first portion of the substrate has moved to the second location. The patternwise exposing is based on the measured positions of the first set of alignment marks, and may include exposing the web with a distortion-adjusted pattern. Related systems and articles are also disclosed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 17, 2009
    Publication date: October 20, 2011
    Inventors: Michael A. Haase, Jeffrey H. Tokie, Daniel J. Theis, Brian K. Nelson
  • Publication number: 20110247511
    Abstract: Fiducials having substantially continuous portions made on a substrate allow the position of the substrate to be determined. An approach for making fiducials involves moving first and second fiducial devices together back and forth across the substrate along a trajectory having a component along the lateral axis of the substrate while the substrate and the first and second fiducial devices are in relative motion along the longitudinal axis of the substrate. The first fiducial device operates to make one fiducial on the substrate during the movement along the trajectory and the relative motion. The second fiducial device operates to make another fiducial on the substrate during the movement along the trajectory and the relative motion. The fiducials may be formed so that they have a constant spatial frequency with the first fiducial being out of phase with respect to the second fiducial.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 9, 2009
    Publication date: October 13, 2011
    Applicant: 3M INNOVATIVE PROPERTIES COMPANY
    Inventors: Daniel H. Carlson, Daniel J. Theis, Brian K. Nelson
  • Publication number: 20110067234
    Abstract: A method of applying a conductive pattern of metal onto a web of indefinite length material. This method includes applying a metal containing composition onto the web in a predefined pattern, providing a roll having a very low thermal mass, and conveying the patterned web around the roll while simultaneously applying heat energy to the metal containing composition thereby converting the metal to a conductive pattern. This allows for flexible circuitry to be fabricated in an inexpensive roll-to-roll process.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 20, 2009
    Publication date: March 24, 2011
    Inventors: Daniel J. Theis, Brian K. Nelson, James N. Dobbs, Samuel Kidane, Ronald P. Awanson, Daniel H. Carlson, Grant F. Tiefenbruck, Karl K. Stensvad
  • Publication number: 20100304309
    Abstract: A method includes providing a substrate having a layer of photosensitive material thereon and a mask having contiguous first, second, and third portions; and sequentially: i) scanning the first portion with a light beam at a first rate and subsequently impinges on the photosensitive material at an exposure zone; ii) fixing the scanning within the second portion; and iii) resuming scanning through the third portion. Throughout the process the substrate moves through the exposure zone. An apparatus for carrying out the process includes a light beam source, a mask mount, a mask stage, a conveyor assembly, and at least one optical element for manipulating the light beam into a rectangular light beam.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 27, 2009
    Publication date: December 2, 2010
    Inventors: Daniel J. Theis, Levent Biyikli, Jeffrey H. Tokie, David L. Hofeldt
  • Publication number: 20100119730
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for fabricating electronic devices on a polymeric substrate provide for positionally constraining a polymer substrate on a platen, and heating the constrained polymer substrate to at least a glass transition temperature of the polymer substrate. A heat processable ink is applied to the constrained polymer substrate to form at least a portion of a layer of an electronic device thereon.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 5, 2008
    Publication date: May 13, 2010
    Inventors: Brian K. Nelson, David L. Philips, Donald J. McClure, Daniel H. Carlson, James N. Dobbs, Scott M. Schnobrich, Daniel J. Theis