With Cart Accommodation Or Handling Patents (Class 186/62)
  • Patent number: 10913476
    Abstract: The smart shopping cart is a cart for storing and transporting groceries or other articles, having a hanger pole rising from the basket for hanging bags and the like. The smart shopping cart includes a basket and a plurality of wheels secured to a lower surface of a lower wall of the basket. A lower end of a hanger pole is mounted to an upper surface of the lower wall of the basket, and the hanger pole extends upwardly. At least one article hanger is mounted on the hanger pole. A lower end of a support is mounted to a rear end of the basket, and a first display panel is mounted on the upper end of the support. A second display panel is mounted on a front end of the basket, and a handle for pushing the smart shopping cart is attached to the upper end of the support.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 27, 2020
    Date of Patent: February 9, 2021
    Inventor: Reem Amam Alyaqout
  • Patent number: 10351154
    Abstract: A shopping cart deflection measurement system and associated methods are described. The shopping cart deflection measurement system includes a shopping cart, a sensor, and a processing device equipped with a processor. The shopping cart includes a frame, a basket portion pivotably mounted to the frame so as to enable deflection of at least one edge of the basket portion downward in the direction of gravity following a weight being placed in the basket portion, and a lower rack portion mounted to the frame and disposed below the basket portion. The processing device can be configured to execute instructions to measure deflection of the basket portion relative to the lower rack portion of the shopping cart using data acquired by the sensor. The measured deflection can be indicative of a fullness of the basket portion with one or more products.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 12, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2019
    Assignee: Walmart Apollo, LLC
    Inventors: Nicholaus Adam Jones, Robert James Taylor, Aaron Vasgaard, Matthew Allen Jones
  • Patent number: 10229699
    Abstract: In some embodiments, provide apparatuses and methods to track item containers. Some of these embodiments include systems to track item containers, comprising: an audio detector positioned relative to a parking lot associated with a shopping facility and configured to capture audio signals generated at one or more predefined locations; an audio evaluation circuit to: receive the audio signals; and identify when one or more audio signatures correspond to one or more distinct predefined audio signatures that correspond to movements of a first item container relative to the one or more predefined locations; and a control circuit configured to estimate a quantity of item containers at the one or more predefined locations as a function of identifying that one or more of the audio signals include the one or more audio signatures corresponding to the one or more predefined audio signatures.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 12, 2019
    Assignee: Walmart Apollo, LLC
    Inventors: Nicholaus A. Jones, Matthew A. Jones, Robert J. Taylor
  • Patent number: 10046783
    Abstract: A shopping cart deflection measurement system and associated methods are described. The shopping cart deflection measurement system includes a shopping cart, a sensor, and a processing device equipped with a processor. The shopping cart includes a frame, a basket portion pivotably mounted to the frame so as to enable deflection of at least one edge of the basket portion downward in the direction of gravity following a weight being placed in the basket portion, and a lower rack portion mounted to the frame and disposed below the basket portion. The processing device can be configured to execute instructions to measure deflection of the basket portion relative to the lower rack portion of the shopping cart using data acquired by the sensor. The measured deflection can be indicative of a fullness of the basket portion with one or more products.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 9, 2017
    Date of Patent: August 14, 2018
    Assignee: Walmart Apollo, LLC
    Inventors: Nicholaus Adam Jones, Robert James Taylor, Aaron James Vasgaard, Matthew Allen Jones
  • Patent number: 9798321
    Abstract: Described embodiments include a system, method, and apparatus. A system includes a package management system for operating a robotic vehicle configured to transport consumer items selected by a human shopper from a consumer shopping environment and placed in the robotic vehicle. The package management system includes circuitry for recognizing an individual human shopper placing a consumer item in the robotic vehicle. The package management system includes circuitry for routing the robotic vehicle along a path following the recognized individual human shopper through the consumer shopping environment. The package management system includes circuitry for suspending the shopper-following movement of the robotic vehicle in response to suspension criteria. The package management system includes circuitry for resuming the shopper-following movement of the robotic vehicle in response to resumption criteria.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 18, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 24, 2017
    Assignee: Elwha LLC
    Inventors: Alistair K. Chan, Jesse R. Cheatham, III, Hon Wah Chin, William David Duncan, Roderick A. Hyde, Lowell L. Wood, Jr.
  • Patent number: 9580096
    Abstract: A tote transport assembly that includes a base, a handle, a partition, and a lid. The base includes a plurality of wheels that facilitate vertical or tipped transportation of the ice cart through an environment. The base and the partition and the partition and the lid are shaped to facilitate a stacked and secure cooperation of multiple containers, totes, or buckets with the cart assembly. The partition and the lid movably cooperate with the handle to facilitate secure and sanitary cooperation of the containers with the cart assembly as well as convenient and expedient filling and emptying of the discrete containers. The stacked orientation of the multiple containers and alternate transport modalities provide a compact assembly for conveniently transporting loaded or unloaded containers throughout even tight quartered environments and in a manner that reduces the effort associated with such activities.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 13, 2014
    Date of Patent: February 28, 2017
    Assignee: San Jamar, Inc.
    Inventors: Aaron Beaver, Michael J. Muenstermann, Bernie Ziebart, Orlando Ochoa
  • Patent number: 9451398
    Abstract: A method and device for pushing information are provided. A common location of a user may be obtained. A distance between a central point of the common location of the user and a central point of a service providing area may be determined. Information may be pushed to an account of the user, when the distance is less than or equal to a preset threshold.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 22, 2015
    Date of Patent: September 20, 2016
    Assignee: TENCENT TECHNOLOGY (SHENZHEN) COMPANY LIMITED
    Inventors: Yuanfang Lv, Yuxiang Fan, Huaheng Fan, Qiong Wang
  • Patent number: 8972043
    Abstract: The present invention is a method and system for a network-based grocery store. The invention provides for network-based order placement, fulfillment, and delivery.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 23, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 3, 2015
    Inventors: Simon Foster, Bruce Clark, Chris Servais, Tom Zosel
  • Patent number: 8360207
    Abstract: A security method for a self-service checkout system with radio frequency identification (RFID) capability. The security method includes the steps of obtaining cart identification information from an RFID label attached to a cart by a security computer at a security station, obtaining first item identification information from a self-service computer transaction record using the cart identification information, obtaining second item identification information from a group of RFID labels attached to a group of items in the cart by the security computer, and comparing the first item identification information in the transaction record to the second item identification information to determine whether the second item identification information equals the first item identification information.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 5, 2003
    Date of Patent: January 29, 2013
    Assignee: NCR Corporation
    Inventor: John C. Goodwin, III
  • Patent number: 8037970
    Abstract: A counter base for checkout includes a basket placing table on one side thereof to be freely raised and lowered. A driving unit can drive to raise and lower the basket placing table. A first detecting unit detects that a shopping cart enters an access area closer to the basket placing table than a predetermined range. A second detecting unit detects presence or absence of the shopping cart stopped along one side of the counter base. A control unit controls to drive, when the first detecting unit detects entrance of the shopping cart into the access area, the driving unit to move the basket placing table to a lowered position and, thereafter, controls to drive, when the second detecting unit does not detect the shopping cart stopped along the counter base, the driving unit to return the basket placing table to a raised position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 21, 2009
    Date of Patent: October 18, 2011
    Assignee: Toshiba Tec Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Shigeru Sato
  • Publication number: 20090288917
    Abstract: A counter base for checkout includes a basket placing table on one side thereof to be freely raised and lowered. A driving unit can drive to raise and lower the basket placing table. A first detecting unit detects that a shopping cart enters an access area closer to the basket placing table than a predetermined range. A second detecting unit detects presence or absence of the shopping cart stopped along one side of the counter base. A control unit controls to drive, when the first detecting unit detects entrance of the shopping cart into the access area, the driving unit to move the basket placing table to a lowered position and, thereafter, controls to drive, when the second detecting unit does not detect the shopping cart stopped along the counter base, the driving unit to return the basket placing table to a raised position.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 21, 2009
    Publication date: November 26, 2009
    Applicant: TOSHIBA TEC KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventor: Shigeru Sato
  • Publication number: 20090292391
    Abstract: In a checkout counter, a first apparatus is arranged on an entrance side and a second apparatus is arranged on an exit side. Both the first apparatus and the second apparatus are basket housing rack apparatuses of the same type. The basket housing rack apparatuses drive, with driving units, racks attached to bases, which are set on a floor surface, to be freely raised and lowered and raise and lower the racks. Placing sections of the racks set the height of a shopping basket at the top to, for example, the height of a checkout counter and stackably place plural shopping baskets. Control units control to drive the driving units according to a trigger signal such as a closing signal transmitted from a POS terminal, lower the rack of the first apparatus by the height of one shopping basket, and raise the rack of the second apparatus by the height of one shopping basket.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 20, 2009
    Publication date: November 26, 2009
    Applicant: TOSHIBA TEC KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventor: Naoto Yoshizawa
  • Patent number: 7218225
    Abstract: A system and a method for detecting and rewarding the return of supermarket carts or luggage carts taken from a cart stand. Each cart is provided with a contactless, preferably optically identifiable, individual mark, by which the cart is identified when it is returned to a cart stand. In addition, the identifying mark on the cart changes when the cart is brought back to the cart stand, from an active state, in which the mark can be identified, to a passive state, in which the mark cannot be identified, or vice-versa. In addition to the presence of a returned cart, the invention enables the correct positioning of a cart in a row of nested carts to be identified in a contactless and automatic manner.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 15, 2002
    Date of Patent: May 15, 2007
    Assignee: Systec POS-Technology GmbH
    Inventors: Franz Wieth, Horst Sonnendorfer
  • Patent number: 6911908
    Abstract: A security system for protecting articles (8), the system comprising at least one Electronic Article Surveillance (EAS) loop (1) , one Emitting Unit (7) and one Detecting Unit (9) attached to each article (8) to be protected, the Detecting Unit (9) having a detector to detect electromagnetic fields emitted by the EAS loop (4) and the Emitting Unit (7) and to distinguish between them, and an alarm generator for generating an alarm if a predetermined sequence of fields is detected. The system combines existing EAS loops (4) normally present in a retail store with Emitting Units (7) and Detecting Units (9) so as to monitor movement of articles (8), especially supermarket trolleys, around the retail store.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 4, 2000
    Date of Patent: June 28, 2005
    Assignee: Activerf Limited
    Inventor: Pilgrim Beart
  • Patent number: 6866193
    Abstract: Unjust acts such as carrying out a commodity without reading a commodity code, whether it is intentional or accidental are prevented. The purchased commodity accommodating and transporting apparatus may include a commodity code reading section for reading a commodity code applied to a commodity and a transportable accommodation section for accommodating therein a commodity whose commodity code has been read. Further, elements for purchasing a commodity (such as a section for receiving a prepaid card, a credit card, a bank card or a similar card) may be fixed to said transportable accommodation section to allow a customer to perform purchasing operations during selection of a commodity when shopping.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 31, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 15, 2005
    Assignee: Fujitsu Limited
    Inventors: Chizu Shimizu, Kazuhito Sakai, Chizuo Suzuki, Kaoru Kikuchi, Kyouko Terada
  • Patent number: 6776333
    Abstract: When a shopping container put on a counter is moved on this counter, a bar code scanner reads a bar code from bar code holding means mounted on the shopping container and outputs it to a cash register.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 17, 2004
    Assignee: Toshiba Tec Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Naohiro Matsushita
  • Patent number: 6323753
    Abstract: An electronic shopping-cart handle with a hand bar and a display unit having an informational display screen for a product directory and periodic display of advertisements, the display unit having operating controls operable by a user's thumbs while maintaining a hand grip on the hand bar for displaying select user information on the display screen.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 23, 2001
    Date of Patent: November 27, 2001
    Assignee: Klever-Kart, Inc.
    Inventor: Paul G. Begum
  • Publication number: 20010042658
    Abstract: A method for increasing golf course revenues through increased sales of consumable items, comprising the steps of stocking a golf cart with a supply of consumable items prior to a golfer's use of said golf cart in a golf outing, taking inventory of said supply of consumable items contained in said golf cart at the end of said golf outing to determine what items were consumed by said golfer, charging said golfer for the cost of the consumable items consumed by said golfer during said golf outing, and restocking said golf cart with a supply of consumable items, using an apparatus comprising: a base section having insulation means, an inner and outer surface, a substantially closed bottom end, an open top end, one or more slotted flanges disposed on said outer surface of said base section for fastening said apparatus to a golf cart, and an inwardly tapered ledge disposed horizontally on said inner surface of said base section near said base section's upper edge; a removable pull-out container configured to fit w
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 5, 2001
    Publication date: November 22, 2001
    Inventor: Michael P. Allen
  • Patent number: 6179089
    Abstract: A check stand having a cantilevered scanner housing using (10) combined with a shopping cart having a cart basket bottom (16) which passes beneath the cantilevered scanner housing to create a nested check stand and cart combined system. The shopping cart having a angled drop-down front gate (20) which opens to allow the cart basket bottom (16) to pass beneath the cantilevered scanner housing (10).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 26, 1999
    Date of Patent: January 30, 2001
    Inventor: Dennis Michael Bishop
  • Patent number: 6105867
    Abstract: The invention provides a purchased commodity accommodating and transporting apparatus having a self scanning function and a POS system which prevent an unjust act such as to carry out a commodity without reading a commodity code whether it is intentional or accidental. The purchased commodity accommodating and transporting apparatus comprises a commodity code reading section for reading a commodity code applied to a commodity, an accommodation section for accommodating therein a commodity whose commodity code has been read, a weighing equipment for measuring the total weight of commodities accommodated in the accommodation section, a weight determination section for detecting the increase/decrease of the total weight of the commodities in the accommodation section, and an alarm generation section responsive to a result of the detection for generating an alarm when the total weight of the commodities has changed without reading a commodity code.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 19, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 22, 2000
    Assignee: Fujitsu Limited
    Inventors: Chizu Shimizu, Kazuhito Sakai, Chizuo Suzuki, Kaoru Kikuchi, Kyouko Terada
  • Patent number: 5910769
    Abstract: A shopping cart scanning system is disclosed comprised of first and second photoelectric devices situated in a check-out counter and respectively located at the entrance and exit portion of a scanning field. The photoelectric devices both operate in a retro-reflective mode and operatively cooperate with a reflective strip that is attached to the shopping cart. The photoelectric device, and their associated circuits, are arranged to detect the presence or absence of packages in the lower tray of the shopping cart as the shopping cart moves through a check-out counter.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 27, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 8, 1999
    Inventor: Edwin Geisler
  • Patent number: 5898158
    Abstract: The invention provides a purchased commodity accommodating and transporting apparatus having a self scanning function and a POS system which prevent an unjust act such as to carry out a commodity without reading a commodity code whether it is intentional or accidental. The purchased commodity accommodating and transporting apparatus comprises a commodity code reading section for reading a commodity code applied to a commodity, an accommodation section for accommodating therein a commodity whose commodity code has been read, a weighing equipment for measuring the total weight of commodities accommodated in the accommodation section, a weight determination section for detecting the increase/decrease of the total weight of the commodities in the accommodation section, and an alarm generation section responsive to a result of the detection for generating an alarm when the total weight of the commodities has changed without reading a commodity code.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 12, 1994
    Date of Patent: April 27, 1999
    Assignee: Fujitsu Limited
    Inventors: Chizu Shimizu, Kazuhito Sakai, Chizuo Suzuki, Kaoru Kikuchi, Kyouko Terada
  • Patent number: 5884728
    Abstract: An assembly for checking an registering purchases made by a consumer in a self-service sales point. The assembly includes a station for unloading the pruchases, a work station provided with apparatus for registering and accounting the purchases adapted to be occupied by one person, and a loading station, wherein the respective unloading and loading station being placed substantially opposite each other and on either side of work station. The loading station involves a location adapted to receive a trolley. The person faces the registering and accounting apparatus having at the person's right or left the unloading deck and at the person's left or right, respectively, the trolley. The unit includes at least two such assemblies. The sales point of the self-service type is provided with at least two such units.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 19, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 23, 1999
    Assignee: Societe Anonyme des Marches Usines-Auchan
    Inventors: Pierre d'Estaintot, Jean-Charles Detallante
  • Patent number: 5540301
    Abstract: An automatic bulk self-checkout apparatus includes several purchase items, each item being marked with a bar code containing item price information, a purchase item holder for retaining purchase items as they are gathered and transported to a checkout area of a store, a bar code scanner assembly for reading the bar codes while the items are inside the item holder and for sending information contained in the bar codes as signals, a bar code processing assembly for receiving and converting the signals into numerical price data and for totalling prices of the items within the item holder. The apparatus preferably includes a tunnel structure having an entry port, an exit port, a top wall and two opposing side walls and a floor, and sized to receive through the ports the item holder, where the scanner assembly is located within the tunnel structure and oriented to scan the bar codes on the items within the item holder.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 25, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 30, 1996
    Inventor: Charles Dumont
  • Patent number: 5360094
    Abstract: A collection, storage and dispensing system for shopping carts including an elongated tubular conduit sized to allow a shopping cart to rollably pass therethrough. The conduit includes a sloped first end section defining an entrance opening through which shopping carts enter the system, a generally horizontal mid section, and a sloping second end section which defines an exit opening through which shopping carts exit the system. The mid section is preferably buried below grade, but may also be elevated above a parking lot surface of a store for vehicles to drive beneath, A floor is provided within the conduit atop which shopping carts roll. An elongated slender guide engaging probe is connected to each shopping cart which both laterally guides the carts by slidably engagement into a guide channel longitudinally in the floor and is pullably engaged onto a chain-type conveyor in one end section which is upwardly sloped.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 1994
    Date of Patent: November 1, 1994
    Assignee: Mel Decker
    Inventors: John Adams, Mel Decker
  • Patent number: 5158310
    Abstract: A display system (299) includes a visual display unit (300) mounted on a shopping cart (12d). In one preferred embodiment, a low-intensity ultrasonic signal is emitted by a transmitter (308) positioned at a desired location within a store for reception by a transducer (306) mounted on the shopping cart. The signal from the transducer (306) is transmitted to a switching circuit (316) to activate visual indicators in the form of directional lights (320, 322) thereby to direct the shoppers attention to a particular item located adjacent the transmitter (308).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 11, 1990
    Date of Patent: October 27, 1992
    Inventors: John M. Tannehill, John B. Tannehill, Steven L. Kramer
  • Patent number: 5149947
    Abstract: A checkout system includes an optical scanning device removably mounted on the handles of oppositely positioned grocery carts to enable a operator to remove a purchased merchandise item from one of the carts and to move the item past the scanning device for deposit in the second grocery cart. An electrical cable connects the scanning device to an electrical outlet in the floor adjacent the carts. A second embodiment provides a support member removably mounted to the handle of a grocery cart containing purchased merchandise items and extending outwardly from the cart to support the scanning device adjacent the handle allowing a checkout operator to check out the purchased merchandise items located in the grocery cart utilizing the scanning device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 27, 1989
    Date of Patent: September 22, 1992
    Assignee: NCR Corporation
    Inventor: Donald A. Collins, Jr.
  • Patent number: 5027924
    Abstract: A cashier check-out station includes a counter having a platform or conveyor belt leading to a register station, the counter defining a lane along a longitudinal side of the counter. The station arrangement includes a shopping cart with a basket having a substantially isosceles trapezoidal shape viewed from above. The cart includes a chassis frame, a front pair of castors attached to the chassis frame and a rear set of castors attached to the chassis frame. The front pair of castors defines a track width which is smaller than the track width defined by the rear set of castors. The shopping basket is adapted to travel through the lane defined along the longitudinal side of the counter to an unloading end of the counter. The shopping basket includes a chute-like bottom portion inclined at an angle of at least 15 degrees from the horizontal. The bottom portion includes an upper transverse edge. A tracking arrangement is provided positioned adjacent the upper transverse edge.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 15, 1989
    Date of Patent: July 2, 1991
    Assignee: Firma Karl Gutmann KG
    Inventor: Karl Gutmann
  • Patent number: 4973952
    Abstract: A shopping cart display system includes a cart mounted display that is responsive to trigger signals provided by transmitters associated with a particular location. When the display receives a unique trigger signal, it displays advertising media associated with that location. In one embodiment, the display includes a sensor for determining whether the information is displayed in the presence of a consumer, and a memory for storing all trigger signals received during a given shopping trip. The stored data is transmitted to a polling transceiver located at a point of sale register for later analysis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 21, 1987
    Date of Patent: November 27, 1990
    Assignee: Information Resources, Inc.
    Inventors: John Malec, Joseph P. Moser
  • Patent number: 4868544
    Abstract: The shopping cart retrieval system has been designed to allow search teams to detect and recover stolen or misplaced shopping carts. It consists of two distinct units of electronic equipment integrated together to form a retrieval system. The heart of the system is a VHF "beacon " radio transmitter implanted in the handle of the shopping cart which is continuously emitting a signal when it leaves the store. A search team, assigned the task of locating and recovering shopping carts, is equipped with a VHF radio receiver with both omni-directional antenna for detection of a shoping cart at maximum range, and a directional antenna used for the close-in location process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 28, 1988
    Date of Patent: September 19, 1989
    Inventor: Rex Havens
  • Patent number: 4838383
    Abstract: An apparatus for checking out purchases which includes a commodity counter with a commodity bearing surface which is flat and elongated leftward and rightward and a commodity reader portion provided on the aforesaid commodity counter in its center leaving a passage for a basket in front of the same, the commodity reader portion being provided with a reading window made in its front face and with a control portion and a display portion disposed above the same.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 1988
    Date of Patent: June 13, 1989
    Assignee: Tokyo Electrical Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Kiyoshi Saito, Yoshiro Yamamoto, Takeo Sakuragi
  • Patent number: 4736098
    Abstract: A signalling device for detecting and signalling the presence of articles on the bottom package tray (20) of a shopping cart as the shopping cart is moved through an aisle adjacent a checkout station (72) comprises a pair of springs (40, 42) positioned at the forward end of tray (20) and operative to bias tray (20) in an upper position relative the frame of the cart. A photoelectric assembly (70) is positioned at a checkout station (72) and directs a beam of light (74) across the path of the shopping cart as the cart is moved alongside checkout station (72). A reflector (60) is mounted on bottom tray (20) proximate the rear end thereof and is oriented to reflect light directed toward one side of the cart. Reflector (60) is normally biased in an upper postion and is movable to a lowered position in the path of light beam (74) when an article is placed on tray (20).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 10, 1986
    Date of Patent: April 5, 1988
    Assignee: Rehrig International
    Inventor: Houston Rehrig
  • Patent number: 4725822
    Abstract: A system for detecting the presence of a load on the lower tray of a shopping cart comprising a shopping cart with a lower tray movable between an upper and a lower position, a signal reflector connected to the lower tray and a detection device for detecting when the lower tray is in the lower position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 28, 1984
    Date of Patent: February 16, 1988
    Inventor: Charles M. Hooley
  • Patent number: 4723118
    Abstract: A detection system for use by a checkout clerk in a checkout line to detect a load left on the lower tray of a shopping cart by the customer. The shopping cart has a lower tray pivotably mounted on a frame. The tray is movable between a first and second position when a load is placed on the tray. A field producing source such as a permanent magnet contained within a shield material is attached to the cart, and the field is actuated at a distance when the tray is moved from the first to the second position by displacing the magnet and the shield material. A detector for detecting the presence of that field as the shopping cart passes through the checkout line is coupled to a control circuit capable of signaling the checkout clerk that the load is on the lower tray.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 15, 1986
    Date of Patent: February 2, 1988
    Assignee: Retail Security Systems
    Inventors: Charles M. Hooley, Patrick J. Utecht
  • Patent number: 4576274
    Abstract: A system for the disposition of shopping carts including at least one storage area for carts, which are intended to be removed and returned from the storage area by users. Each storing area has at least one gate in an outlet passage to permit a cart to pass therethrough only if a deposit is received and a gate in an inlet passage to permit cart to pass therethrough if identified as authorized, in which event the deposit is repayed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 26, 1983
    Date of Patent: March 18, 1986
    Assignee: Cart-O-Matic Aktiebolag
    Inventor: Kjeld Thorsen
  • Patent number: 4572347
    Abstract: A storeroom for transport carts, particularly supermarket shopping carts and the like, having removal and return passage barriers, a money collection point for the opening of the passage barrier and a money return point upon the return of the transport cart into the storeroom, a data support associated with the transport cart and a reader for the data in the region of the removal and return passage barriers. Each cart carries its own data code and the reader of the removal passage barrier is coupled with the reader of the return passage barrier such that the reader of the removal passage barrier transmits the individual code of the cart which it has read to the reader of the return passage barrier. The latter releases the return of the money only upon the passage of that transport cart which is provided with that individual code.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 9, 1984
    Date of Patent: February 25, 1986
    Assignee: Schulte-Schlagbaum Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventor: Armin Eisermann
  • Patent number: 4424893
    Abstract: A method and an installation for encouraging the restitution of a vehicle such as a shopping cart in a reception area the access of which is controlled by wickets. The vehicle is twice identified at the entry of the reception area, by means counting for example the bars of a vehicle side, and causes the delivery of a ticket or the like when it has been identified and fully introduced in the reception area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 4, 1980
    Date of Patent: January 10, 1984
    Assignee: Supermarket Systems
    Inventor: Guy Gillet
  • Patent number: 4327819
    Abstract: A shopping cart wherein the positioning of an article on a lower tray is signalled to a checkout attendant. A tray is pivotally supported at one end and spring biased in an upper position at an opposite end. A reflector is positioned on the tray such that it is moved to a lower position when an object is placed on the tray. A beam of light is directed across the path of a cart as it approaches a checkout position. This beam is at an elevation to strike the reflector when the tray is deflected downward by the weight of an object. A light sensor is positoned to detect light reflected by the reflector and to initiate a signal to a checkout attendant, alerting the attendant to the fact that there is an object on the tray.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 1, 1980
    Date of Patent: May 4, 1982
    Inventor: John M. Coutta
  • Patent number: 4263986
    Abstract: Material handling system, particularly for a retail establishment having merchandise display and storage areas. The system provides equipment for handling, processing and transporting merchandise from storage to work stations and to display racks. The equipment includes a turntable attached to a flexible conveyor which abuts a conveyor table. Carts are positioned in a parking frame next to the table. Each cart is a wheeled cart having an upright end frame at one end therof, and shelves are hingedly connected to the end frame for movement between horizontal operative positions and substantially vertical storage positions. The carts are partially nestable with one another when the shelves are in their storage positions. An attachment device is releasably attachable to the cart end frame on the opposite side thereof from the shelves. The attachment device includes an adjustable shelf and a stool.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 4, 1977
    Date of Patent: April 28, 1981
    Inventor: Harold Isaacs