Sensing Or Detecting Malfunction In Cigar Or Cigarette Maker Patents (Class 131/910)
  • Patent number: 10179668
    Abstract: A method and machine for packaging smoking articles or other tobacco industry products in which the products and packaging may be transported from selected product supply systems and packaging material supply systems selectively along a plurality of alternative transport routes through the machine through a series of workstations arranged to incorporate batches of smoking products selectively in different packaging materials according to the transport route selected.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 16, 2008
    Date of Patent: January 15, 2019
    Inventors: Anthony Bray, Gary Fallon, Roger Beck
  • Patent number: 9389165
    Abstract: A first embodiment of a system for measuring and analyzing a machine property includes a detector with a vibration sensor, power source, a data transmitter, a first data processor configured and adapted to obtain sensed vibration data from the sensor and convert it into digital data to be transmitted through the data transmitter, and a system server operatively in communication with the detector. The system server has software that can process and analyze data such as the sensed vibration data received via the data receiver. In a second embodiment, the system includes a vibration sensor, a terminal comprising a user interface unit and a first data processor that can obtain sensed vibration data from the sensor and convert it into digital data to be transmitted through the first data transceiver. In this embodiment, data may be presented visually on the user display area and user input received input from the user input area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 14, 2012
    Date of Patent: July 12, 2016
    Assignee: VIRTJOULE, INC.
    Inventors: Craig A. Fulghum, Randall R. Cox, Landon J. Cox
  • Patent number: 7784469
    Abstract: An automatic machine for processing articles in the tobacco industry, and relative control method; the automatic machine has a production line along which a number of materials are processed to produce the articles; a number of operating members located along the production line; a control unit for controlling data relating to operation of the automatic machine; and a user interface device connected to the control unit and having a memory device which stores data belonging to the following classes: error messages resulting in automatic stoppage of the automatic machine; report messages; operator-intervention-request messages; production counters; values of analog and digital internal control variables; position/speed signals; format-change requests; end-of-shift requests; and operating parameters of the automatic machine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 20, 2006
    Date of Patent: August 31, 2010
    Assignee: G.D Societa per Azioni
    Inventors: Gaetano De Pietra, Verter Cesari
  • Patent number: 7117872
    Abstract: The supply of consumables and other materials to production machines in a system for the manufacture of tobacco products is managed using a method whereby, once a nominal target number of products has been programmed at a master control unit, a tally is kept of the number of products emerging from the machine located farthest downstream, and a corresponding signal relayed back to the master control unit, together with a signal indicating the consumption of the various types of material. On the basis of the information received, the master control unit will process an output message indicating the requirement for at least one given type of consumable or wrapping or other auxiliary material to be supplied, whereupon the message is sent to an operator entrusted with the task of replacing the depleted material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 20, 2003
    Date of Patent: October 10, 2006
    Assignee: G.D S.p.A.
    Inventors: Fiorenzo Draghetti, Stefano Romagnoli, Danilo Berti, Gaetano De Pietra, Cristina Pareschi
  • Patent number: 7079912
    Abstract: The present invention provides a system and method for high speed control and rejection of out-of-specification products, such as cigarettes, in a manufacturing process. Sensors are placed at strategic locations along a production line, with the signals from the sensors being directed to a high speed processor, with multiple sensor inputs and controlled by software algorithms to process the sensor signals and to direct control signals to the production line equipment. Control signals can both eject non-conforming products and also modify machine settings to produce a product in closer compliance with specifications.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 25, 2002
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2006
    Assignee: Philip Morris USA Inc.
    Inventors: James Stack, Herbert C. Longest, Jr., Nathaniel Frampton
  • Patent number: 6446632
    Abstract: A process and an apparatus for detecting and eliminating, defective and/or incorrectly positioned, in particular transversely located, cigarettes in the cigarette magazine of a cigarette-production and/or a cigarette-packaging machine. Thus, the avoidance of disruptions in the cigarette magazine is improved. For detection using an optical checking element, an image of the cigarettes located in the cigarette magazine is scanned, the image is evaluated by an image-processing device and, if, during the evaluation, the scanned image is established as deviating from a reference image and/or reference value, an error signal is produced. For eliminating defective cigarettes, an ejecting unit arranged in the region of the magazine is actuated in order to eject a plurality of cigarettes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 1, 2000
    Date of Patent: September 10, 2002
    Assignee: Focke & Co. (GmbH & Co.)
    Inventor: Heinz Focke
  • Patent number: 6173716
    Abstract: A density inspection apparatus and method. The apparatus is disposed downstream of a wrapping section of a cigarette manufacturing machine. In accordance with pulse output signals generated by a rotary encoder in synchronism with the travel of a cigarette rod, a zone of the rod is subjected to density inspection. An actual density signal indicating the tobacco shred filling density in the inspected zone is intermittently supplied from a density detector, and a group of reference density signals indicative of a change in density of a low-density portion of a dummy cigarette is supplied from a storage device. A difference between each actual density signal and a corresponding reference density signal is calculated, and the square sum of the signal differences in respect of all the density signals is calculated to determine a nonconformity degree between the actual and reference density signals.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 25, 1998
    Date of Patent: January 16, 2001
    Assignee: Japan Tobacco, Inc.
    Inventor: Yutaka Okumoto
  • Patent number: 6065358
    Abstract: An arrangement determines the height of a multilayer stream of articles such as the rod-shaped cigarettes of the tobacco industry. The arrangement includes a flexible elongate member connected to move up and down with the uppermost articles in the multilayer stream as the height thereof varies. The flexible elongate member has a first end fixed in place and an opposite end connected to a weight which moves in a vertical direction as the flexible elongate member moves up and down in response to the height of the multilayer stream of articles. The flexible elongate member is trained around an idler roller, and a sensor is spaced directly below the weight for determining the elevation thereof. Such elevation is directly related to the height of the multilayer stream of articles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 1, 1998
    Date of Patent: May 23, 2000
    Assignee: Philip Morris Incorporated
    Inventor: Larry Wayne Shepherd
  • Patent number: 6062226
    Abstract: When tobacco shreds continuously supplied while the supply amount thereof is controlled are wrapped continuously with an elongated cigarette paper to form a tobacco rod and the tobacco rod is cut to predetermined lengths to manufacture cigarettes, the filling amount (filling density) of tobacco shreds at every portion in the lengthwise direction of tobacco rod is continuously measured in connection with the wrapping operation of the tobacco rod. The filling amount (momentary value) at every portion of the tobacco rod is compared with threshold values set in advance to detect a local excess filling portion and/or deficient filling portion of the tobacco shreds. This detection result is output in synchronization with the conveying timing of a cigarette having a predetermined length continuously cut from the tobacco rod, by which a cigarette including the local excess filling portion or deficient filling portion of tobacco shreds can be rejected surely.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 13, 1998
    Date of Patent: May 16, 2000
    Assignee: Japan Tobacco Inc.
    Inventor: Shinzo Kida
  • Patent number: 6021782
    Abstract: A method of and system for detecting glue skips on tipping paper used to secure filters to cigarette tobacco rods and the rejection of defective cigarettes based thereon in which a particle radiation sensor is used to monitor the amount of glue applied to the tipping paper and a laser edge detector is used to monitor for proper alignment of the tipping paper during cigarette tipping operations in a typical cigarette manufacturing machine. The signals output from the particle radiation sensor are fed to a skip detection system which produces an output signal upon detecting a glue skip or a loss of glue.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 3, 1997
    Date of Patent: February 8, 2000
    Assignee: R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company
    Inventors: Sydney Keith Seymour, Balager Ademe, Gary Lee Wood, Ford Mitchell Shore
  • Patent number: 5284164
    Abstract: The present invention comprises a method for improving the quality of products produced in a cigarette manufacturing process. Selected machine operating parameters for at least one machine are monitored, as well as the product being produced. Samples of the product being produced are automatically obtained and tested for quality parameters. Machine operators are notified when to manually test samples of the product for quality parameters. The machine operators can request a test of a quality parameter. The actual test measurements of the quality parameters for either the automatically obtained samples or the manually tested samples are compared against expected values and alarms are presented and the testing is resequenced when the measured quality parameters fail to meet the expected values. Also, employee solution procedures are presented to aid in problem resolution. The time periods and downtime reason when each machine is inoperative is recorded.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 7, 1991
    Date of Patent: February 8, 1994
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation
    Inventors: Evelyn M. Andrews, Gregory J. Bricker, Ernest E. Collins, John N. Jewell, Dennis L. Sinksen, Darrel R. Stephens, Charles H. Wysowski
  • Patent number: 5092349
    Abstract: The quality of finished cigarettes is assured by incorporating an individual, predetermined lubricant at predetermined locations in the cigarette manufacturing process. When a cigarette spotted or stained by a lubricant deposit is obtained, the lubricant deposit is analyzed using high performance liquid chromatography techniques to identify the flavoring agent. As such, the cigarette manufacturer can identify the source of the lubricant which is staining, and hence lowering the quality of the appearance of its cigarettes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 14, 1991
    Date of Patent: March 3, 1992
    Assignee: R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company
    Inventors: Donald H. Smith, Susan V. Parsons, Ann R. Treadway
  • Patent number: 5044379
    Abstract: In a cigarette making machine, each of a number of quality parameters of the product (individual cigarettes and/or packaged cigarettes) is monitored and a quality value for each parameter is continuously calculated in accordance with predetermined criteira; certain machine operating trends (including causes of stoppages) are monitored; and control devices are automatically operated under the control of a programmable control unit (computer) responsive to all these inputs so as optimize the total of the quality parameters and also the machine operating characteristics.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 23, 1989
    Date of Patent: September 3, 1991
    Assignee: Molins PLC
    Inventors: Michael J. Cahill, Paul R. Wiese
  • Patent number: 5002072
    Abstract: A cigarette making machine includes one or more conveyor bands (12,14,28) or other parts of non-metallic material from which pieces can break off and become entrained in the tobacco, including means (30,42) for detecting such pieces in the tobacco by directing a radiation beam towards the tobacco, and including means 40 for ejecting tobacco or finished cigarettes including such detected pieces, the parts in question being made of a material, or having a material incorporated in then or coated on them, which is either opaque or partially opaque to the detection beam, or which produces a detectable secondary emission detected by the detecting means.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 1, 1989
    Date of Patent: March 26, 1991
    Assignee: Molins PLC
    Inventor: John Dawson
  • Patent number: 4762138
    Abstract: For monitoring the end dropout of cigarettes in the course of the cigarette production beneath a point at which the cigarettes rotate about their longitudinal axis a mass transducer for the dropping tobacco particles is disposed; an evaluating device determines from the mass of the tobacco particles on the one hand and the number of cigarettes passing through on the other the average end dropout. The mass transducer includes a vertically movably resiliently mounted pushrod which is held in its desired position by an electromagnetic return system. The magnitude of the current supplied to an electromagnetic return system represents a measure of the mass of the collected tobacco particles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 12, 1986
    Date of Patent: August 9, 1988
    Assignee: B.A.T. Cigarettenfabriken GmbH
    Inventors: Kuhne Manfred, Theodor Gast, Karl-Ulrich Kramm, Karl Nolte
  • Patent number: 4724429
    Abstract: A system for monitoring each of multiplicity of variables in the operation of a filter rod making machine includes sensors located at various points on the machine. These sensors measure the value of such variable parameters as the width of the tow, the alignment of the wrapping paper, the speed of the rollers and the level of plasticizer. Each measured value is compared against preset limit values in a microprocessor. If a variable is detected to be outside a range of acceptable values, an indication of this fact is displayed on a monitor. In response to this indication, an operator can decide whether to override the limit value or take corrective action. If corrective action is to be taken, the microprocessor causes a diagnostic chart to be displayed. This chart provides the operator with a sequence of troubleshooting steps that can be taken to isolate the source of a possible problem and perhaps correct it before there is a need to arrest the operation of the machine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 7, 1986
    Date of Patent: February 9, 1988
    Assignee: Celanese Corporation
    Inventors: William L. Millen, John L. Allen, Jr.
  • Patent number: 4677993
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for inspecting cigarette paper of eventual cigarette bar unit, which permit further improvement of the precision of inspection, is provided. According to the method and the apparatus, the mean, variance and standard deviation are obtained statistically through a detected pressure signal, then transformation of their normal distribution into a standard normal distribution of N(0,1) where the mean with respect to the probability density function .PHI.(t) is 0 and variance with respect to thereto is 1, is obtained. And the estimation of population standard deviation with setting of a significance level is done with the value of t with respect to the probability determined solely by determining the probability in the normal distribution, thereby effecting a decision as to whether the inspected product is non-defective or defective.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 25, 1984
    Date of Patent: July 7, 1987
    Assignee: Japan Tobacco Inc.
    Inventors: Yukio Kato, Mikio Komori, Tadao Yonai
  • Patent number: 4671299
    Abstract: A tobacco manufacturing machine including a cover which covers the whole of the machine, a plurality of openable doors disposed in positions corresponding to various portions of the machine which require a manual correction by an operator, power sources for opening and closing those doors, a plurality of sensors attached to various portions of the machine for detecting states which require such a correction and a door opening and producing signals, and control means for logically processing the signals provided from those sensors and producing an operating signal for operating the power source corresponding to the door to be opened. Since the whole of the machine is covered, it is possible to greatly reduce noise during high-speed operation. Because the doors corresponding to various portions of the machine are opened automatically, the troublesome work involved in manual operation is eliminated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 27, 1984
    Date of Patent: June 9, 1987
    Assignee: Japan Tobacco, Inc.
    Inventors: Yutaka Okumoto, Takao Furukawa, Mikio Komori
  • Patent number: 4619277
    Abstract: A tobacco filter tip attaching apparatus including a filter tip attaching portion for rolling and pasting a tip paper onto both one end portion of a cigarette and a filter tip disposed adjacent thereto, a filter tip feed portion disposed in the vicinity of the filter tip attaching portion for feeding filter tips to the filter tip attaching portion, a tip paper feed portion disposed in the vicinity of the filter tip attaching portion for feeding a tip paper from a tip paper roll to the filter tip attaching portion, a filter tip sensor for detecting that the feed of filter tip from the filter tip feed portion to the filter tip attaching portion is discontinued, a tip paper cutting sensor for detecting a cutting accident of the tip paper during feed from the tip paper feed portion to the filter tip attaching portion, and a roll diameter sensor for detecting that the diameter of the tip paper roll in the tip paper feed portion has become smaller than a predetermined value. The whole of the apparatus is covered.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 27, 1984
    Date of Patent: October 28, 1986
    Assignee: The Japan Tobacco & Salt Public Corporation
    Inventors: Yutaka Okumoto, Toshiyuki Ozaki, Mikio Komori
  • Patent number: 4503868
    Abstract: Apparatus for controlling the timing of control signals concerning operations on conveyed cigarettes or other articles of the cigarette industry comprising means for generating a first control signal; means for measuring the speed of transport of the cigarettes; processing means arranged to receive a signal representing the measured speed of transport, to receive the first control signal and to generate a second control signal which is transmitted to an operating device after a delay dependent upon the signal representing the measured speed of transport and upon the characteristics and position of the operating device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 17, 1982
    Date of Patent: March 12, 1985
    Assignee: Molins PLC
    Inventor: Raymond G. Coyte
  • Patent number: 4417934
    Abstract: Method of monitoring a line of adhesive deposited on a travelling paper web to check for accidental omission of adhesive wherein the adhesive has a distinguishing relative permittivity and is sensed by a capacitive proximity sensor. The web may be plugwrap material for cigarette filter rod, the adhesive being provided to anchor filter tow in position when the plugwrap is wrapped around it. The method avoids various disadvantages associated with other automatic monitoring devices such as optical devices and infra-red devices.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 16, 1981
    Date of Patent: November 29, 1983
    Assignee: Imperial Group plc
    Inventor: Roger Vaughan
  • Patent number: 4373188
    Abstract: Cigarette-rod weight monitoring system in which the signals from a scanner, e.g. a nucleonic device such as Molins "MODIC", are processed and stored in a memory in a digitized form, and the memory contents are used to drive an analog display device. These signals, which represent the individual cigarettes, or short lengths, are accumulated in the memory over a period which is sufficiently long for a statistically significant distribution pattern to be achieved, so that the shape of the distribution curve can be observed to determine whether it is "normal" or whether any skews or other irregularities are present. In addition the accomulated signals can be analyzed in various ways to provide quantitative measurements of overall standard deviation, or effective standard deviation either side of the mean to show whether any "skews" exist. S.D. can be calculated for whole cigarettes or short lengths for different diagnostic purposes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 9, 1979
    Date of Patent: February 8, 1983
    Assignee: Molins Limited
    Inventors: John G. Dowding, Peter R. Turner, Robert J. Hudson
  • Patent number: 4350170
    Abstract: An apparatus for monitoring the exterior of a cigarette rod which moves lengthwise through an annular housing has a ring-shaped light-conducting prism which is mounted in the housing and is surrounded by an annulus of discrete light sources to direct testing light toward the exterior of a rod which moves therethrough. The prism directs light at an acute angle to the axis of the moving rod, and the light which is reflected by the exterior of the moving rod passes through an annulus of light conducting fibers each of which directs reflected light against a discrete photoelectronic transducer. The transducers form part of a circuit which evaluates the intensity of reflected light to thereby detect defects which cause an intensification or a weakening of reflected light. The prism has a triangular cross sectional outline with an apex of the outline adjacent to the path of the rod and a side which is located opposite the apex and extends at right angles to the direction of incident light.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 29, 1980
    Date of Patent: September 21, 1982
    Assignee: Hauni-Werke Korber & Co. K.G.
    Inventor: Anton Baier
  • Patent number: RE32861
    Abstract: An automatic volatility computer is described as well as a method for automatically determining weight changes in substances containing volatile material. In particular, there is described an apparatus which automatically determines the percentage of volatiles in a substance which contains unknown quantities of polar volatiles such as water or moisture, solvents, plasticizers and the like. The apparatus provides rapid automatic analysis without operator assistance other than the placing of a sample on the automatic balance. In the preferred embodiment, a digital panel meter provides rapid readout coupled with the ability to recall the original weight and the weight obtained after removal of the volatiles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 21, 1980
    Date of Patent: February 7, 1989
    Assignee: CEM Corporation
    Inventors: Michael J. Collins, Bernard W. Cruse, Jr., Ronald J. Goetchius