Martin J. Mueller 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).
Abstract: A method and apparatus are disclosed for forming a package of alternately inverted containers, wherein an array of the containers is formed with adjacent containers relatively inverted. In accordance with the invention, a supply of containers is formed into first and second product streams, with each of the containers in the second product stream inverted. The containers are presented by an indexing mechanism to a reciprocating diverting gate mechanism, wherein the forward-most container of each product stream is diverted. In this manner, a pair of further product streams are formed, wherein the containers of each stream are alternately inverted. The containers are subsequently collated for heat-shrink packaging.
Abstract: A method and apparatus for forming tamper-evident, sealed containers are disclosed. A plurality of filled containers are respectively fitted with generally annular, heat-shrinkable seal members, with the seal members heated by passage through a heat tunnel so that they shrink into conformance with the respective containers. In order to further conform the heat-shrinkable members to the containers, the containers are passed beneath a rotatably driven, resiliently deformable foam roller assembly, which engages each seal member, and urges it downwardly into further conformance with its respective container. In the preferred form, the roller assembly is driven so that its peripheral speed is less than the speed at which the sealed containers are moved therebeneath.
Abstract: An adapter for association with a conventional grill for readily and selectively converting the grill for two-sided cooking of food products. Three different types of adjusting means are provided for varying the spacing between the platen and the grill cooking surface or compensating for warpage of the platen. With such fine adjustments, optimum cooking conditions can be achieved for all types and thicknesses of food products.
Abstract: A food product fill pump apparatus and method are disclosed which greatly facilitate accurate and efficient sequential filling of containers with food product which is flowable in nature. The fill pump is adapted for use with associated packaging machinery for placing predetermined quantities of food product in a plurality of containers which are sequentially presented for filling. The fill pump includes a reciprocating positive displacement piston pump and a rotary valve which are cyclically operable for intermittent filling of the containers with a metered quantity of food product. The fill pump further includes a novel product accumulator arrangement which is adapted to compensate for surges or other fluctuations in the supply of food product to the fill pump so that the pressure of food product received by the piston pump is generally constant.