Swinging Or Rotating Pusher Feeding Item Patents (Class 209/918)
  • Patent number: 6685030
    Abstract: A method and system for collating groups of flats mail items for a plurality of carrier routes into carrier walk order sequence (CWS) using a Flats Bundle Collator (FBC) system which is capable of pre-staging carrier route subsets in one or more staging towers, or immediately collating a group into CWS for a group being fed into the system. The pre-staged subsets can be collated by the staging towers on demand. A U-shaped footprint for the FBC facilitates loading and unloading by the same operator. Additional input feeders may be added to the modular FBC, as well as random sequence towers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 4, 2001
    Date of Patent: February 3, 2004
    Assignee: Northrop Grumman Corporation
    Inventor: Daryl S. Mileaf
  • Patent number: 6640681
    Abstract: The invention relates to a method and to a device that allows portions of similar slices to be obtained even if the product that is sliced is changed. To this end, the slice surface is monitored. Incomplete portions are transferred to a park position subject to the slice surface monitoring. The incomplete portions are transported in a positionally accurate manner from the park position back to the collecting zone if the slice surface monitoring element detects that slices are available that match the portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 2002
    Date of Patent: November 4, 2003
    Assignee: Weber Maschinenbau GmbH Co. KG
    Inventor: G√ľnther Weber
  • Patent number: 6484886
    Abstract: In one embodiment, an article sorting system includes successive coarse and fine singulators and a recirculating loop for processing a disordered stream of items including three-dimensional non-flat articles. A coarse singulator includes cascaded ramped conveyors, preferably operating at progressively greater speeds. A detection system, such as a vision system, for monitoring the stream of articles and identifying and/or tracking individual items passing through the system is used in conjunction with a fine singulator such as a chevron, hold-and-release or strip conveyor downstream from the coarse singulator. A control system is utilized in connection with the vision system to regulate the flow of articles through the system by, for example, diverting doubles or clusters for separations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 7, 2000
    Date of Patent: November 26, 2002
    Assignee: Siemens Dematic Postal Automation, L.P.
    Inventors: Gerald A. Isaacs, James M. Pippin, Stephen T. Kugle, George M. Mondie, M. Wayne Neff
  • Patent number: 6443311
    Abstract: A method and an apparatus for collating a plurality of groups of mail items, such as flats mail, each group being pre-sequenced according to prioritized delivery addresses, into a final sequenced set of the mail items from the groups, utilizing the prioritized delivery addresses. Each bundle of mail items is formed into a single input stream of the individual mail items. The mail items are transported along a conveyor system from the input stream to a staging station. The mail items are sorted at the staging station into a plurality of subsets of mail items re-sequenced as an intermediate step to achieving the final sequenced sets. The mail items are then collated and merged into a single output stream from the respective subsets of mail items in the final sequenced set. Portions of the output stream from the staging station are collected in batches which maintain the sequence consistent with the prioritized delivery order sequence of the mail for a given carrier route.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 9, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 3, 2002
    Assignee: Northrop Grumman Corporation
    Inventors: David Brian Hendrickson, Daryl Mileaf, William P. McConnell, David Jerome Tilles
  • Publication number: 20020074268
    Abstract: A method and an apparatus for collating a plurality of groups of mail items, such as flats mail, each group being pre-sequenced according to prioritized delivery addresses, into a final sequenced set of the mail items from the groups, utilizing the prioritized delivery addresses. Each bundle of mail items is formed into a single input stream of the individual mail items. The mail items are transported along a conveyor system from the input stream to a staging station. The mail items are sorted at the staging station into a plurality of subsets of mail items re-sequenced as an intermediate step to achieving the final sequenced sets. The mail items are then collated and merged into a single output stream from the respective subsets of mail items in the final sequenced set. Portions of the output stream from the staging station are collected in batches which maintain the sequence consistent with the prioritized delivery order sequence of the mail for a given carrier route.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 22, 2002
    Publication date: June 20, 2002
    Applicant: Northrop Grumman Corporation
    Inventors: David Brian Hendrickson, Daryl Mileaf, William P. McConnell, David Jerome Tilles
  • Publication number: 20020023861
    Abstract: A method and system for re-sequencing mail prepared in enhanced carrier route line of travel (ECR-LOT) format into carrier walk sequence (CWS) format within a flat bundle collator (FBC) system. The mail items in LOT are separated into subsets, one subset being in the same order as CWS, and another subset being in reverse order to CWS. All items from all groups are then merged into a stream of items in CWS for delivery by mail carriers.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 16, 2001
    Publication date: February 28, 2002
    Inventors: Daryl S. Mileaf, Robert W. Laybourn
  • Publication number: 20020011433
    Abstract: An allocating mechanism of a weighing apparatus that temporarily stores objects and allocates the objects to a plurality of hoppers disposed below is provided to reduce the amount of objects that remain without being allocated. The allocating mechanism 21 is included in the weighing apparatus. The allocating mechanism 21 is a mechanism that temporarily stores objects, and allocates the objects to hoppers 24 and 25 disposed below. The allocating mechanism 21 includes a tubular member 61, a bottom plate 62, a driving motor, and a controller. The bottom plate 62 can, together with the tubular member 61, form a storage space S, in which the objects are stored. The driving motor rotates the tubular member 61 and the bottom plate 62. The controller controls the driving motor to rotate the tubular member 61 and the bottom plate 62, such that the objects are dropped in one of the hoppers 24 and 25.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 16, 2001
    Publication date: January 31, 2002
    Inventor: Shingo Yamamoto
  • Patent number: 6323452
    Abstract: A feeding system and method for placing a plurality of objects within a single designated destination area of a sorting system to increase the throughput rate of the system. The disclosed sorting system includes a plurality of carriages movable under the control of a programmable controller between the loading and unloading stations of the sorting system, each carriage carrying a tilt tray. The geographic destination of each of the objects to be placed on a tray, as well as a dimension of each of the objects to be placed on a tray, is determined by an optical scanner and a measuring device. The controller uses the dimension information to determine whether more than one object having the same geographic destination may be placed on the same tray. The invention is adaptable for use with other types of sorting systems.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 5, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 27, 2001
    Assignee: United Parcel Service of America, Inc.
    Inventor: Henri Bonnet
  • Patent number: 6241099
    Abstract: A method and an apparatus for collating a plurality of groups of mail items, such as flats mail, each group being pre-sequenced according to prioritized delivery addresses, into a final sequenced set of the mail items from the groups, utilizing the prioritized delivery addresses, each bundle of mail items is formed into a single input stream of the individual mail items. The mail items are transported along a conveyor system from the input stream to a staging station. The mail items are sorted at the staging station into a plurality of subsets of mail items re-sequenced as an intermediate step to achieving the final sequenced sets. The mail items are then collated and merged into a single output stream from the respective subsets of mail items in the final sequenced set. Portions of the output stream from the staging station are collected in batches which maintain the sequence consistent with the prioritized delivery order sequence of the mail for a given carrier route.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 12, 1999
    Date of Patent: June 5, 2001
    Assignee: Northrop Grumman Corporation
    Inventors: David Brian Hendrickson, Daryl Mileaf, William P. McConnell, David Jerome Tilles
  • Patent number: 6152309
    Abstract: A conveying arrangement includes a path selector including a selector slide that is selectively positionable at first and second positions, thereby connecting a first conveyor path with a first further conveyor path or a second further conveyor path. The selector slide is actuated by a guide arm that moves the slide from the first position to the second position, and vice versa. The selector slide is locked firmly in at least one of the positions by a locking arm that is moved to and from a locking position by the guide arm. The selector slide may have a fixed pin that interacts with a first recess or aperture formed in the locking arm, and the recess may have first and second pin-receiving end positions corresponding to the first and second positions of the selector slide. The guide arm may be pivotally mounted and have a second recess or aperture that actuates the fixed pin and a locking-arm actuating guide pin that interacts with a camming surface on the locking arm.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 9, 1998
    Date of Patent: November 28, 2000
    Assignee: De La Rue Cash Systems AB
    Inventors: John Gerwyn Price, Lars Svensson
  • Patent number: 6123202
    Abstract: A method of handling of cut lengths and short lengths to be transported to a collecting equipment and transportation equipment for bundling equipment and saw devices in merchant bar finishing lines, with the method including the steps of providing a common transporter for transporting the cut lengths and the short lengths to the collecting equipment and the transportation equipment; and device for effecting the method.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 8, 1999
    Date of Patent: September 26, 2000
    Assignee: SMS Schloemann-Siemag Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventor: Rainer Hellenbradt
  • Patent number: 5992609
    Abstract: An apparatus for sorting individual pieces includes a plurality of conveying elements which are guided along a closed track and are coupled to each other to form an endless conveying chain. The conveying elements have an at least approximately horizontal support plane configured to place the individual items thereon. For feeding the conveying elements, they travel along the track past at least one feeding station and they travel past several target stations for emptying the conveying elements. Each target station is provided with a sweeping or deflecting device which travels alongside of the conveying elements and pushes the individual piece from the conveying elements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 27, 1998
    Date of Patent: November 30, 1999
    Assignee: Grapha-Holding AG
    Inventor: Wilhelm Maier
  • Patent number: 5950842
    Abstract: A line connector apparatus has at least one table receiving items to be conveyed from at least one feeder conveyor. At least one guide mechanism is rotatably mounted on the table for selectively guiding items into two different directions, one direction leading into a transport path, and the other direction leading away from the transport path and into a discard container for defective items.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 20, 1996
    Date of Patent: September 14, 1999
    Assignee: Natec, Reich, Summer GmbH & Co. KG
    Inventor: Wilhelm Baur
  • Patent number: 4569445
    Abstract: An apparatus (10) for automatically feeding and measuring circular discs (12) includes a gauging station (15). The latter includes a pair of opposed capacitive displacement measuring probes (27 and 28). The probes are connected to a thickness measuring test set (66), adapted to provide a capacitance-derived measurement of the thickness of each advancing disc (12) at either one or a plurality of spaced measurement points (142) extending across the major surfaces thereof. Precise control must be maintained over the speed at which each disc is passed between the capacitive probes (27, 28) in a non-contacting manner. This is accomplished through the use of a controllably driven drive wheel (98), and a cooperative arcuate feed channel section (74), which includes an outer arcuate sidewall ramp insert (92).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 19, 1983
    Date of Patent: February 11, 1986
    Assignee: AT&T Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: William S. Kovats, Charles T. Pratt
  • Patent number: 4564326
    Abstract: This invention provides a feed arrangement for chips in a pick-and-place machine in which a vertical magazine feeds chips into a groove in a vibrating table, with the chips being advanced toward a pick station by a gravity actuated lever which will be stopped in the event the groove is full of chips rather than causing the machine to jam or cause damage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 25, 1983
    Date of Patent: January 14, 1986
    Assignee: Excellon Industries
    Inventors: William E. Roberts, Milo Cripps
  • Patent number: 4549662
    Abstract: Transport apparatus is disclosed for moving a stream of objects along a substantially continuous path between a source and a collection station and past a viewing station. A stream of successive, spatially separated objects is moved into end-to-end abutment to form successive stacks of objects. Each stack is spiraled past the viewing station with minimal vibration to expose the complete surface of each object to inspection. Subsequently each stack is rearranged into spatially separated objects which are rapidly sorted by diverting those objects from the continuous path which do not conform to predetermined criteria upon inspection. The transport apparatus achieves high throughput without compromising the accuracy of the inspection process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 25, 1982
    Date of Patent: October 29, 1985
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Frederick C. Schoenig, Jr., J. David Landry, Edward S. Walker, Ching C. Lai
  • Patent number: 4239116
    Abstract: Apparatus and method for diverting articles being moved by a conveyor in a line extending along a predetermined path to at least one additional conveyor moving along at least one additional path extending from a diverting station located adjacent to the first path. A different diverting signal corresponding to each additional path can be generated, causing a diverter to switch a given article to a selected additional path. The diverters includes a plurality of engaging devices supported in spaced relation and driven in a closed path that is adjacent to the conveyor at the diverting station. The engaging devices are programmed in response to corresponding diverting signals to divert specific articles on the conveyor by enabling assemblies at an enabling station located along the closed path ahead of the diverting station. The diverting signals may be generated as each article passes a sensing station located along the predetermined path ahead of the diverting station.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 27, 1978
    Date of Patent: December 16, 1980
    Assignee: Solbern Corp.
    Inventors: Bernard C. Eisenberg, John C. Walz