Patents by Inventor Natsuko Minegishi

Natsuko Minegishi 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).

  • Publication number: 20200394783
    Abstract: An evaluation device evaluates an image clarity of a print image. The evaluation device includes: an object that is projected onto a measurement surface of a recording medium; an illuminator that makes the object projected onto the measurement surface; an imager that images the measurement surface on which the object has been projected to obtain image data; and a hardware processor that, based on a distribution of parameters related to a brightness of the image data, quantifies a degree of the image clarity into a numerical value and defines the numerical value as an evaluation value of the image clarity.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 11, 2020
    Publication date: December 17, 2020
    Applicant: Konica Minolta, Inc.
    Inventors: Natsuko Minegishi, Yoshiki Nakane, Takenobu Kimura, Hiroshi Morimoto, Kei Okamura, Takashi Akazawa
  • Patent number: 10795306
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes a cleaning member formed by an elastic body, and a member to be cleaned in which toner added with an external additive adheres to a surface, and the toner is to be cleaned by the cleaning member being in contact with the surface, wherein the cleaning member has a protrusion disposed on a cleaning surface extending from a contact part with the member to be cleaned, and facing a side where the toner is to be cleaned, of the member to be cleaned.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 16, 2019
    Date of Patent: October 6, 2020
    Assignee: Konica Minolta, Inc.
    Inventors: Yoshiki Nakane, Takenobu Kimura, Kei Okamura, Hiroshi Morimoto, Natsuko Minegishi
  • Publication number: 20200301318
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus including: an image carrier that carries a toner image; a cleaner that contacts a surface of the image carrier and removes a toner, the cleaner being located at a first position during stop of rotation of the image carrier and located at a second position during rotation of the image carrier; a moving mechanism that moves the cleaner between the first position and the second position by moving the cleaner in a direction parallel to a rotation shaft of the image carrier while maintaining a contact state between the cleaner and the image carrier; and a hardware processor, in which the hardware processor starts to move the cleaner from the first position to the second position with the moving mechanism during stop of the rotation of the image carrier, and the hardware processor starts to rotate the image carrier during movement of the cleaner.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 20, 2020
    Publication date: September 24, 2020
    Inventors: Yoshiki NAKANE, Kei OKAMURA, Hiroshi MORIMOTO, Natsuko MINEGISHI, Takenobu KIMURA
  • Patent number: 10642554
    Abstract: A control apparatus includes: a communicator that communicates with an image forming apparatus capable of executing a print job; and a hardware processor that obtains, for each of the image forming apparatuses in communication with the communicator, a degree of variations in remaining endurance of each of a plurality of units included in the image forming apparatus, wherein the hardware processor assigns a print job to the image forming apparatus having the smallest degree of variations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 14, 2019
    Date of Patent: May 5, 2020
    Assignee: Konica Minolta, Inc.
    Inventors: Kei Yuasa, Natsuko Minegishi, Tetsuya Ishikawa, Hiroki Shibata
  • Publication number: 20200125026
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes a cleaning member formed by an elastic body, and a member to be cleaned in which toner added with an external additive adheres to a surface, and the toner is to be cleaned by the cleaning member being in contact with the surface, wherein the cleaning member has a protrusion disposed on a cleaning surface extending from a contact part with the member to be cleaned, and facing a side where the toner is to be cleaned, of the member to be cleaned.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 16, 2019
    Publication date: April 23, 2020
    Inventors: YOSHIKI NAKANE, TAKENOBU KIMURA, KEI OKAMURA, HIROSHI MORIMOTO, NATSUKO MINEGISHI
  • Publication number: 20190364156
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes an output device and a hardware processor. The hardware processor obtains estimated deterioration information on an estimated degree of deterioration of image quality of an image. Based on the obtained estimated deterioration information, the hardware processor generates, from arbitrary image data, image data of a future image having a predicted image quality. Based on the generated image data of the future image, the hardware processor causes the output device to output the future image.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 15, 2019
    Publication date: November 28, 2019
    Inventors: Tetsuya ISHIKAWA, Natsuko MINEGISHI, Kei YUASA, Hiroki SHIBATA
  • Publication number: 20190294396
    Abstract: A control apparatus includes: a communicator that communicates with an image forming apparatus capable of executing a print job; and a hardware processor that obtains, for each of the image forming apparatuses in communication with the communicator, a degree of variations in remaining endurance of each of a plurality of units included in the image forming apparatus, wherein the hardware processor assigns a print job to the image forming apparatus having the smallest degree of variations.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 14, 2019
    Publication date: September 26, 2019
    Applicant: KONICA MINOLTA, INC.
    Inventors: Kei Yuasa, Natsuko Minegishi, Tetsuya Ishikawa, Hiroki Shibata
  • Patent number: 10375254
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes a plurality of image formers each capable of forming, on a sheet, an overlap image and a non-overlap image, a fixer that fixes, on the sheet, a whole image composed of the overlap images and the non-overlap images, and a hardware processor that controls each of the plurality of image formers such that a difference in image at a boundary between the overlap image and the non-overlap image is reduced in the whole image.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 16, 2017
    Date of Patent: August 6, 2019
    Assignee: KONICA MINOLTA, INC.
    Inventors: Natsuko Minegishi, Wataru Watanabe, Hiroshi Morimoto, Keiki Katsumata, Kazuhiro Saito, Hiroki Shibata, Daiki Watanabe
  • Publication number: 20180115653
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes a plurality of image formers each capable of forming, on a sheet, an overlap image and a non-overlap image, a fixer that fixes, on the sheet, a whole image composed of the overlap images and the non-overlap images, and a hardware processor that controls each of the plurality of image formers such that a difference in image at a boundary between the overlap image and the non-overlap image is reduced in the whole image.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 16, 2017
    Publication date: April 26, 2018
    Inventors: Natsuko MINEGISHI, Wataru WATANABE, Hiroshi MORIMOTO, Keiki KATSUMATA, Kazuhiro SAITO, Hiroki SHIBATA, Daiki WATANABE
  • Patent number: 9164415
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes: an image forming section including a light exposure section configured to expose an image bearing member to light to form an electrostatic latent image, the image forming section being configured to form a toner image on the image bearing member, and to form an image on a recording sheet by transferring the toner image onto the recording sheet; an estimation section configured to estimate a density lowering position on the basis of image data of an image formed by the image forming section, the density lowering position being a position where decrease in image density relative to a predetermined image density is caused in the image; and a control section configured to increase a light exposure amount at the density lowering position estimated by the estimation section on the image bearing member to an amount greater than a predetermined light exposure amount.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 1, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 20, 2015
    Assignee: KONICA MINOLTA, INC.
    Inventors: Natsuko Minegishi, Hideaki Tanaka, Tetsuya Ishikawa, Ryoei Ikari, Shintaro Sone
  • Publication number: 20140348525
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes: an image forming section including a light exposure section configured to expose an image bearing member to light to form an electrostatic latent image, the image forming section being configured to form a toner image on the image bearing member, and to form an image on a recording sheet by transferring the toner image onto the recording sheet; an estimation section configured to estimate a density lowering position on the basis of image data of an image formed by the image forming section, the density lowering position being a position where decrease in image density relative to a predetermined image density is caused in the image; and a control section configured to increase a light exposure amount at the density lowering position estimated by the estimation section on the image bearing member to an amount greater than a predetermined light exposure amount.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 1, 2014
    Publication date: November 27, 2014
    Applicant: Konica Minolta, Inc.
    Inventors: Natsuko MINEGISHI, Hideaki TANAKA, Tetsuya ISHIKAWA, Ryoei IKARI, Shintaro SONE
  • Patent number: 8811832
    Abstract: In an image forming apparatus including an image carrier, a developing device which uses a developer including a toner and a carrier and to develop the electrostatic latent image and forms a visible toner image, plural toner supplying devices each of which supplies the toner in which mass ratio of an additive against the toner is different, and a control section which controls a ratio of a toner supplying amount to be supplied from each of the plural toner supplying devices, under a condition that toner consumption per a single print is low, the control section is configured to increase the toner supplying ratio of the toner including a high ratio of the additive, and under a condition that the toner consumption per the single print is high, the control section is configured to decrease the toner supplying ratio of the toner including a high ratio of the additive.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 12, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 19, 2014
    Assignee: Konica Minolta Business Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Seiko Itagaki, Natsuko Minegishi, Hiroyuki Saito
  • Patent number: 8682229
    Abstract: A developing device, includes a developer agitating member, an upstream side developing roller, and a downstream side developing roller; wherein a toner in a developer handed over from the upstream side developing roller to the downstream side developing roller has a volume average particle size larger than a volume average particle size of the toner in the developer conveyed by the upstream side developing roller to the facing position between the upstream side developing roller and a photoreceptor drum.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 27, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 25, 2014
    Assignee: Konica Minolta Business Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Natsuko Minegishi, Naoki Tajima, Seiko Itagaki, Hiroyuki Saito
  • Patent number: 8666294
    Abstract: A carrier removing apparatus, including: an electrode, having a plurality of openings through which a carrier passes, disposed to oppose an image carrier, and a power source to apply a voltage onto the electrode so as to separate the carrier on the image carrier from the image carrier, wherein the electrode has a surface along a surface of the image carrier.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 13, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 4, 2014
    Assignee: Konica Minolta Business Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Natsuko Minegishi, Naoki Tajima, Seiko Itagaki, Hiroyuki Saito
  • Patent number: 8503901
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes: an image carrier; a latent image forming device; a developing device; an electrode which faces to the image carrier; an electric power source, a toner contamination detecting device for detecting toner contamination onto the electrode; an electrode cleaning device for cleaning the electrode; and a controlling section. The control section controls the electric power source to apply at least an alternating current voltage to the electrode so that toner image is rearranged by reciprocally moving toner of the toner image between the image carrier and the electrode control section and allows the electrode cleaning device to clean the electrode when the toner contamination detecting device detects toner contamination on the electrode, and performs the toner rearrangement by the electrode from which the toner contamination is removed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 2010
    Date of Patent: August 6, 2013
    Assignee: Konica Minolta Business Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Hiroshi Akita, Seiko Itagaki, Natsuko Minegishi, Hiroyuki Saito
  • Patent number: 8401439
    Abstract: The present invention realizes an image forming apparatus which is equipped with a carrier recovery section of simple configuration and for which maintenance is not required, the apparatus includes: a photoconductive drum; a developing device to develop a latent image formed on the photoconductive drum by a two-component developer containing a toner and a magnetic carrier, and a carrier recovery section which is equipped with a recovery roller, wherein the carrier recovery roller includes a rotatable sleeve, and a magnet roller that is installed inside the sleeve and provided with a plurality of fixed magnetic poles including a main pole to recover the magnetic carrier adhered onto the photoconductive drum and a separating pole to separate the magnetic carrier from the recovery roller, wherein a separating member is disposed at such a position that is opposite to the sleeve at a prescribed distance in a non-contact state.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 8, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 19, 2013
    Assignee: Konica Minolta Business Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Hiroyuki Saito, Naoki Tajima, Seiko Itagaki, Natsuko Minegishi
  • Patent number: 8369750
    Abstract: Provided is a developing device which can prevent the occurrence of a phenomenon of an excessive increase of a developer quantity in a developer standby space, thereby acquiring a stable image. The developing device comprises a developer agitation-transfer unit, a developer roller, a developer feeding roller, a developer guide member and a space forming member. The developing device is characterized in that the developer feeding roller rotates to transfer the developer transferred by the agitation-transfer means, upward from the clearance between the developer feeding roller and the developer guide member, and in that, when the developer standby space formed in the device is filled with the developer transferred by the developer feeding roller, the developer feeding roller is rotated to carry the developer, which overflows from the developer standby space, and to move the same in the direction away from the developer roller, so that the developer is once discharged from the developer standby space.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 17, 2009
    Date of Patent: February 5, 2013
    Assignee: Konica Minolta Business Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Seiko Itagaki, Hiroshi Akita, Natsuko Minegishi
  • Patent number: 8244164
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes: a supplying section for supplying developer; a first developing roller including plural magnetic poles and a first sleeve arranged rotatable to the first developing roller; a second developing roller including plural magnetic poles and a second sleeve arranged rotatable to the second developing roller, the second developing roller arranged adjacent to the first developing roller and parallel to the same; an electrode arranged between the first and second developing rollers; and a voltage applying unit for applying bias voltages each having different electric potential corresponding to the first developing roller, the second developing roller and the electrode, wherein an absolute value of the bias voltage to be applied to the electrode is larger than that of the bias voltage to be applied to the first developing roller and smaller than that of the bias voltage to be applied to the second developing roller.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 7, 2009
    Date of Patent: August 14, 2012
    Assignee: Konica Minolta Business Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Hiroyuki Saito, Seiko Itagaki, Hiroshi Akita, Natsuko Minegishi
  • Publication number: 20120141178
    Abstract: A lubricant supplying device that supplies a lubricant to the surface of an image carrier has a cloud generating section that generates a cloud in which particles of the lubricant are mixed with air and a conveying section that classifies the particles of the lubricant present in the cloud generated by the cloud generating section into small particles with sizes smaller than a prescribed size and large particles with sizes larger than or equal to the prescribed size, and conveys the classified small particles toward the image carrier, and has a lubricant supplying member that holds a lubricant, a contacting member that contacts the lubricant supplying member and causes the lubricant carried by the lubricant supplying member to fly off in the direction of the image carrier, and a leveling member that contacts the image carrier and levels the adhered lubricant.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 23, 2011
    Publication date: June 7, 2012
    Applicant: KONICA MINOLTA BUSINESS TECHNOLOGIES, INC.
    Inventors: Natsuko MINEGISHI, Hisayoshi NAGASE, Takashi AKAZAWA
  • Publication number: 20120093527
    Abstract: In an image forming apparatus including an image carrier, a developing device which uses a developer including a toner and a carrier and to develop the electrostatic latent image and forms a visible toner image, plural toner supplying devices each of which supplies the toner in which mass ratio of an additive against the toner is different, and a control section which controls a ratio of a toner supplying amount to be supplied from each of the plural toner supplying devices, under a condition that toner consumption per a single print is low, the control section is configured to increase the toner supplying ratio of the toner including a high ratio of the additive, and under a condition that the toner consumption per the single print is high, the control section is configured to decrease the toner supplying ratio of the toner including a high ratio of the additive.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 12, 2011
    Publication date: April 19, 2012
    Applicant: KONICA MINOLTA BUSINESS TECHNOLOGIES, INC.
    Inventors: Seiko ITAGAKI, Natsuko MINEGISHI, Hiroyuki SAITO