Patents by Inventor Tadao KYOTANI

Tadao KYOTANI 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: 11372359
    Abstract: In an image forming apparatus a toner cartridge includes a toner memory storing toner identification information. The toner cartridge is detachably attachable to a drum cartridge. The drum cartridge includes a drum memory storing drum identification information. The drum cartridge is detachably attached to the main-body casing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 12, 2020
    Date of Patent: June 28, 2022
    Assignee: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Tadao Kyotani, Keigo Nakajima
  • Publication number: 20220155725
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes an apparatus body, a toner cartridge, a replaceable part, a controller and an apparatus body memory. An operating mode of the controller is set to one of a subscription mode and a normal mode. The controller is configured to perform processes in accordance with the set operating mode. The apparatus body memory is configured to store life information indicating a remaining life of the replaceable part attached to the apparatus body. The controller is configured to switch a control between: a control for allowing an extended use of the replaceable part; and a control for restricting the extended use of the replaceable part, according to the set operating mode. The extended use is defined as use of the replaceable part even after the replaceable part exceeds the remaining life indicated by the life information stored in the apparatus body memory.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 9, 2022
    Publication date: May 19, 2022
    Applicant: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Tadao KYOTANI, Chieko MIMURA
  • Publication number: 20220146973
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes: a main body; a drum cartridge and a toner cartridge those attachable to the main body; a main memory; and a controller. The controller is configured to perform: determining a number of sheets printable using the toner cartridge attached to the main body; determining a number of sheets printable using the drum cartridge attached to the main body; determining a number of sheets printable using a new toner cartridge; and when determining that a sum of the number of sheets printable using the toner cartridge attached to the main body and the number of sheets printable using a new toner cartridge is greater than or equal to the number of sheets printable using the drum cartridge attached to the main body, transmitting to a server a signal for ordering a new drum cartridge together with a new toner cartridge.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 24, 2022
    Publication date: May 12, 2022
    Applicant: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Takashi SUZUKI, Tadao KYOTANI, Shingo FUJIWARA
  • Patent number: 11256211
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes an apparatus body, a toner cartridge, a replaceable part, a controller and an apparatus body memory. An operating mode of the controller is set to one of a subscription mode and a normal mode. The controller is configured to perform processes in accordance with the set operating mode. The apparatus body memory is configured to store life information indicating a remaining life of the replaceable part attached to the apparatus body. The controller is configured to switch a control between: a control for allowing an extended use of the replaceable part; and a control for restricting the extended use of the replaceable part, according to the set operating mode. The extended use is defined as use of the replaceable part even after the replaceable part exceeds the remaining life indicated by the life information stored in the apparatus body memory.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 27, 2021
    Date of Patent: February 22, 2022
    Assignee: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Tadao Kyotani, Chieko Mimura
  • Publication number: 20220035293
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes a photosensitive drum, a transfer unit, a voltage supply circuit, and a controller. The transfer unit is configured to transfer developer onto a printing medium from the photosensitive drum. The voltage supply circuit is configured to supply voltage to the transfer unit. The controller is electrically connected to the voltage supply circuit. The controller is configured to: calculate a cumulative voltage value, the cumulative voltage value being a total of supplied voltage to the transfer unit from the voltage supply circuit after using the transfer unit is started; and determine how long a lifetime of the transfer unit remains based on the calculated cumulative voltage value.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 28, 2021
    Publication date: February 3, 2022
    Applicant: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Tadao KYOTANI, Chieko MIMURA, Keita SUZUKI
  • Publication number: 20220019173
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes: a main frame; a developing cartridge including a casing, a storage medium having an electrical contact surface, and developing roller; a photosensitive drum contactable with the developing roller; an electrical connector contactable with the electrical contact surface; a separation mechanism; and a controller configured to communicate with the storage medium via the electrical connector. The separation mechanism is configured to move the casing relative to the main frame in a separating direction in which the developing roller separates from the photosensitive drum. The controller is configured to perform: moving, by controlling the separation mechanism, the casing relative to the main frame in the separating direction; determining, in response to performing the moving, whether communication with the storage medium is established; and outputting, when determining in the determining that the communication with the storage medium is not established, an error.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 12, 2021
    Publication date: January 20, 2022
    Applicant: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Tadao KYOTANI, Nao ITABASHI
  • Publication number: 20220019174
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes a developing cartridge, a main memory and a controller. The controller is configured to perform determining whether the developing cartridge is reached a lifetime on a basis of: at least one of s developing maximum printable number of sheets which corresponds to developing identification information, a maximum developing roller rotation number which corresponds to the developing identification information, and a maximum dot count which corresponds to the developing identification information; and at least one of a developing cumulative number of printed sheets, a cumulative developing roller rotation number and a cumulative dot count.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 27, 2021
    Publication date: January 20, 2022
    Applicant: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventor: Tadao Kyotani
  • Publication number: 20220004136
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes: a main casing; a drum cartridge; a toner cartridge; a display; and a controller. The drum cartridge is attachable to and detachable from the main casing. The drum cartridge includes a photosensitive drum and a drum memory. The toner cartridge is attachable to and detachable from the drum cartridge. The toner cartridge includes a toner memory. The controller is configured to: determine whether an error occurs in the drum cartridge through a communication with the drum memory; determine whether an error occurs in the toner cartridge through a communication with the toner memory; and when determining that an error occurs in the drum cartridge and determining that an error occurs in the toner cartridge, display on the display an error relating to the drum cartridge in preference to displaying on the display an error relating to the toner cartridge.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 21, 2021
    Publication date: January 6, 2022
    Applicant: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventor: Tadao KYOTANI
  • Publication number: 20210397125
    Abstract: An image-forming apparatus includes: a toner cartridge configured to accommodate toner; a drum cartridge for use with the toner cartridge; and a controller. The drum cartridge includes a photosensitive drum, and a drum memory storing a first type information indicating a type of the drum cartridge. The controller is configured to communicate with the drum memory. The controller is configured to perform: reading the first type information from the drum memory; and changing an operation of the image-forming apparatus based on the type indicated by the first type information.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 3, 2021
    Publication date: December 23, 2021
    Applicant: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Takashi SUZUKI, Shingo FUJIWARA, Tadao KYOTANI
  • Publication number: 20210341869
    Abstract: In an image-forming device, a drum cartridge and a developing cartridge are detachably attached to a frame. A controller is configured to perform: a drum replacement necessity determination process; and a mode switch process. The drum replacement necessity determination process determines, based on life information for the drum cartridge, whether replacement of the drum cartridge is necessary. The mode switch process switches a mode of a printing process between a normal printing mode and an extended printing mode. The normal printing mode allows the image-forming device to perform the printing process when the replacement of the drum cartridge is determined to be unnecessary. The extended printing mode allows the image-forming device to perform the printing process on a condition that the developing cartridge attached to the frame is not replaced with another developing cartridge in a state where the replacement of the developing cartridge is necessary.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 8, 2021
    Publication date: November 4, 2021
    Applicant: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Tadao KYOTANI, Takashi SUZUKI, Shingo FUJIWARA, Nao ITABASHI
  • Publication number: 20210318649
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes a drum cartridge and a controller. The drum cartridge includes a photosensitive drum, a charger and a drum cartridge memory storing a life count value and discharge history information. The controller includes a voltage applying circuit, and an abnormal discharge detection circuit. In a case where the abnormal discharge detection circuit detects an abnormal discharge, the controller does not permit printing in a case where the life count value is equal to or more than a first reference value and a number of abnormal discharges which is included in the discharge history information read from the drum cartridge memory is equal to or more than a particular threshold value, or permits printing in a case where the life count value is equal to or more than the first reference value and the number of abnormal discharges is less than the particular threshold value.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 23, 2021
    Publication date: October 14, 2021
    Applicant: Brother Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Tadao KYOTANI, Chieko MIMURA
  • Publication number: 20210302889
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes a main casing and a controller. A cartridge is to be attached to the main casing. The cartridge includes a memory stores usage status information indicating whether the cartridge is a new cartridge or an old cartridge which indicates a used product. The controller reads the usage status information stored in the memory in a case that attachment of the cartridge to the main casing is detected. The controller determines, based on the usage status information, whether the cartridge is the new cartridge or the old cartridge. The controller rewrites the usage status information to information indicating that the cartridge is the old cartridge in a case that the cartridge is determined to be the new cartridge. The rewriting is performed before the controller receives a print instruction and before the material or the part of the cartridge is consumed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 9, 2021
    Publication date: September 30, 2021
    Applicant: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventor: Tadao KYOTANI
  • Patent number: 11092920
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes a drum cartridge and a controller. The drum cartridge includes a photosensitive drum, a charger and a drum cartridge memory storing a life count value and discharge history information. The controller includes a voltage applying circuit, and an abnormal discharge detection circuit. In a case where the abnormal discharge detection circuit detects an abnormal discharge, the controller does not permit printing in a case where the life count value is equal to or more than a first reference value and a number of abnormal discharges which is included in the discharge history information read from the drum cartridge memory is equal to or more than a particular threshold value, or permits printing in a case where the life count value is equal to or more than the first reference value and the number of abnormal discharges is less than the particular threshold value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 3, 2020
    Date of Patent: August 17, 2021
    Assignee: Brother Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Tadao Kyotani, Chieko Mimura
  • Publication number: 20210240103
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes an apparatus body, a cover, a cartridge, and a controller. The cartridge includes a second memory storing lifetime information indicating lifetime of the cartridge and identification information unique to the cartridge. In a case where the lifetime information indicates the initial value for the lifetime, the controller is configured to perform setting the cartridge to be usable in the image forming apparatus. In a case where the controller determines that the lifetime information does not indicate the initial value for the lifetime of the cartridge, the controller is configured to perform judging whether the identification information stored in the second memory matches a registration identification information stored in a first memory of the apparatus body. In a case where the identification information matches the registration identification information, the controller is configured to perform determining that the cartridge is usable for the image forming apparatus.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 26, 2021
    Publication date: August 5, 2021
    Applicant: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventor: Tadao KYOTANI
  • Publication number: 20210232086
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes an apparatus body, a toner cartridge, a replaceable part, an apparatus body memory, and a controller. The replaceable part includes a replaceable part memory storing therein extended-use allowance-and-restriction information. The extended-use allowance-and-restriction information indicates one of allowance information and restriction information. The extended use is defined as use of the replaceable part even after the replaceable part exceeds the remaining life indicated by the life information stored in the apparatus body memory. The apparatus body memory stores life information indicating remaining life of the replaceable part. In a case where the controller determines that the extended-use allowance-and-restriction information indicates the restriction information, the controller is configured to restrict the extended use of the replaceable part.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 27, 2021
    Publication date: July 29, 2021
    Applicant: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Tadao KYOTANI, Chieko MIMURA
  • Publication number: 20210232060
    Abstract: A printing device, including: a cartridge storing developer; a memory provided in the cartridge; and a controller configured to execute a printing process of operating the cartridge form a developer image on a sheet by use of the developer in the cartridge, a first access process of performing access to the memory when the printing process is not being executed, and a second access process of performing access to the memory in a period in which the printing process is being executed, in response to a predetermined operation of the printing device, wherein, when an access failure occurs in the first access process, the controller notifies an error, and wherein, when an access failure occurs in the second access process, the controller continues the printing process and executes the second access process again in response to a next timing of the predetermined operation of the printing device.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 9, 2021
    Publication date: July 29, 2021
    Inventors: Takashi SUZUKI, Tadao KYOTANI
  • Publication number: 20210232089
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes an apparatus body, a toner cartridge, a replaceable part, a controller and an apparatus body memory. An operating mode of the controller is set to one of a subscription mode and a normal mode. The controller is configured to perform processes in accordance with the set operating mode. The apparatus body memory is configured to store life information indicating a remaining life of the replaceable part attached to the apparatus body. The controller is configured to switch a control between: a control for allowing an extended use of the replaceable part; and a control for restricting the extended use of the replaceable part, according to the set operating mode. The extended use is defined as use of the replaceable part even after the replaceable part exceeds the remaining life indicated by the life information stored in the apparatus body memory.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 27, 2021
    Publication date: July 29, 2021
    Applicant: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Tadao KYOTANI, Chieko MIMURA
  • Publication number: 20210191315
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes: a drum cartridge to which one of a first toner cartridge and a second toner cartridge is attachable; a frame including a first slot and a second slot; and a controller including a control memory and a processor. The drum cartridge to which the one of the first toner cartridge and the second toner cartridges is attached is attachable to one of the first slot and the second slot. The control memory stores first color information allocated to the first slot, and second color information allocated to the second slot. In a state where the drum cartridge is attached to one of the first slot and the second slot and when the drum memory does not store any color information, the processor is configured to perform: writing, into the drum memory, one of the first color information and the second color information which is appropriate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 4, 2021
    Publication date: June 24, 2021
    Applicant: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Takashi SUZUKI, Tomoyasu YABUKI, Tadao KYOTANI, Nao ITABASHI
  • Patent number: 11016412
    Abstract: A printing device, including: a cartridge storing developer; a memory provided in the cartridge; and a controller configured to execute a printing process of operating the cartridge form a developer image on a sheet by use of the developer in the cartridge, a first access process of performing access to the memory when the printing process is not being executed, and a second access process of performing access to the memory in a period in which the printing process is being executed, in response to a predetermined operation of the printing device, wherein, when an access failure occurs in the first access process, the controller notifies an error, and wherein, when an access failure occurs in the second access process, the controller continues the printing process and executes the second access process again in response to a next timing of the predetermined operation of the printing device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 29, 2020
    Date of Patent: May 25, 2021
    Assignee: Brother Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Takashi Suzuki, Tadao Kyotani
  • Publication number: 20210149331
    Abstract: In an image forming apparatus a toner cartridge includes a toner memory storing toner identification information. The toner cartridge is detachably attachable to a drum cartridge. The drum cartridge includes a drum memory storing drum identification information. The drum cartridge is detachably attached to the main-body casing.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 12, 2020
    Publication date: May 20, 2021
    Applicant: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Tadao KYOTANI, Keigo NAKAJIMA