Article Adhering Or Gripping Type Patents (Class 221/210)
  • Patent number: 10087049
    Abstract: There is disclosed a method of testing an optical door sensor 100 having an emitter 102 for emitting a light signal 104 and a receiver 106 for detecting the light signal 104, the optical door sensor 100 having at least one sensor operating parameter and further having a baseline state in which the receiver 102 can detect a light signal from the emitter 106. The method comprises setting the optical door sensor in an offset state 204, 304, in which a sensor operating parameter is offset from a baseline setting by an offset amount, the baseline setting corresponding to the baseline state of the optical door sensor; conducting a signal test 206 with the optical door sensor in the offset state; and generating an alert 216 when the signal test result is negative for the offset state and the offset amount is less than or equal to a limit margin. The signal test comprises: emitting a light signal from the emitter 208 and determining whether the light signal is detected by the receiver 210.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 1, 2015
    Date of Patent: October 2, 2018
    Assignee: Ensota Limited
    Inventors: Peter Collins, John Curzon
  • Patent number: 10040194
    Abstract: A method and mechanism for picking at least one item is provided. The method includes providing at least one container, the container at least containing a plurality of substantially the same items randomly arranged within the container, providing at least one mechanism for collecting at least one item from the container, enabling the mechanism to roughly determine the position of the mechanism with respect to the items in the container utilizing the least amount of power, moving the mechanism so that it is at least in close proximity to the items in the container, collecting at least one item in the container with the mechanism, moving the mechanism and the collected at least one item at least a predetermined distance away from the remaining non-collected items in the container and determining the number of items collected by the mechanism utilizing the least amount of power.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 29, 2015
    Date of Patent: August 7, 2018
    Assignee: VECNA TECHNOLOGIES, INC.
    Inventor: Daniel Theobald
  • Patent number: 9414721
    Abstract: The present invention refers to a rigid container for dispensing wet wipes that has a stack of non-intertwined wet wipes inside, and has an opening on its top surface covered by a lid coupled to said container. In this invention, the lid has at least one fastening device on its inner surface. Said fastening device has a first end permanently attached to the inner surface of the lid and has a mechanical element in a second end distant to the first end designed to be attached to the top wet wipe of the stack. Thus, the present invention provides a rigid container with a system for dispensing non-intertwined wet wipes contained therein, wherein only the top wet wipe of the stack contained inside the container is dispensed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 20, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 16, 2016
    Assignee: GRUPO P.I. MABE, S.A. DE C.V.
    Inventors: Manuel de Jesus Marin-Quintero, Bernardo Fajardo-Eslava, Juan Miguel Martini-Merlo, Lucia del Carmen Sanchez-Fernandez, Carlos Canales-Espinosa De Los Monteros
  • Patent number: 9381068
    Abstract: A sensor storage container includes: a lid configured to cover in an openable and closable manner an opening of an open-topped main body case that stores an elongated plate-like sensor lying flat; and a sensor ejecting tool configured to take the sensor out of the main body case. The sensor ejecting tool is elongated, and includes two ends, one end being linked to one of end sides of an opening portion of the main body case, and the other end being rotatable in a vertical direction between a bottom portion of the main body case and a position above the opening portion. A sensor adhesive portion at the other end of the sensor ejecting tool is provided with an adhesive face on a side of the sensor adhesive portion facing a bottom face of the main body case.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 29, 2012
    Date of Patent: July 5, 2016
    Assignee: PANASONIC HEALTHCARE HOLDINGS CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Yuta Konishi
  • Publication number: 20150129606
    Abstract: The proposed vending machine is comprised of a cooling chamber with a sectional cover with flaps, a gripping device with fingers mounted in the head, an extension arm touching sensor, a “stop” sensor with an on-off switch, a shutdown switch, a guiding holder and a fixing plate. All of the elements are mounted axially on the telescopic extension arm and its housing. The sectional cover of the cooling chamber is comprised of at least two flaps that can rotate along one of the sides of the sectional cover (open and close) and that are built into the frame of the sectional cover of the cooling chamber. Each flap is precisely situated over the row of products in the cooling chamber and is equipped with an independent drive.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 10, 2014
    Publication date: May 14, 2015
    Inventor: Marek Bronowski
  • Patent number: 8998032
    Abstract: A dispensing mechanism is adapted to eject a test sensor from a cartridge opening formed in a cartridge containing test sensors. The dispensing mechanism comprises a gear rack, a gear, and a wheel. The gear rack includes a first portion and a second portion located generally parallel to one another. The second portion of the gear rack includes a first plurality of teeth. The gear includes a second plurality of teeth that are adapted to be engaged by the first plurality of teeth upon movement of the gear rack. The wheel is operatively engaged by the gear and is adapted to dispense the test sensor from the cartridge opening and to seal the cartridge opening. The movement of the gear rack in a first direction causes the gear to rotate causing the wheel to rotate. The rotation of the wheel dispenses the test sensor through the cartridge opening.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 20, 2009
    Date of Patent: April 7, 2015
    Assignee: Bayer Healthcare LLC
    Inventors: Rex J. Kuriger, Tieming Ruan
  • Patent number: 8967989
    Abstract: The present invention provides an apparatus and process for making softgel capsules having incorporated therein other solid dosage forms selected from the group consisting of pellets, smaller capsules, smaller tablets, sustained release solid dosage forms, immediate release solid dosage forms, extended release solid dosage forms and zero order release solid dosage forms, said apparatus comprising: (a) two spreader boxes; (b) two casting drums; (c) a pair of rotary dies having means for suction; (d) a liquid fill system; (e) a wedge for heating gelatine ribbons and feeding said fill; and (f) two lateral dispensing devices said lateral dispensing devices including hoppers having said solid dosage forms, channelguides for transporting said solid dosage forms and a grasping claw for dispensing said solid dosage form into the softgel pocket formed in the rotary dies.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 18, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 3, 2015
    Assignee: Procaps SAS
    Inventors: Carlos Salazar Altamar, Gustavo Anaya, Braulio Teran, Newman Aguas Navarro, Willmer Herrera
  • Publication number: 20140353326
    Abstract: A method and a system for dispensing shoe covers are disclosed. The shoe cover dispensing method comprises the following steps: propping a shoe cover open; inverting; determining if relay has been reset and if not then repeating the determining; opening; relaying; waiting for use; completing usage; resetting the relay; determining if the inverting has been completed and if not then repeating the determining; jumping to the opening step. The shoe cover dispensing system comprises a shoe cover storage module (100), an extracting module (200), an opening module (300), and a relay module (400). Compared with the prior art, the method and system for dispensing shoe covers of the present invention are convenient for pre-storing shoe covers with more pre-stored shoe covers contained at one time, the pre-storing is convenient, the accuracy requirements for pre-storing the shoe covers are low, the occupied space is saved, and the operating efficiency is high.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 12, 2012
    Publication date: December 4, 2014
    Inventor: Zhen Shi
  • Patent number: 8875942
    Abstract: A side-grip method of grasping and moving textile items in a vending machine from the storage area to the dispensing chute that does not require the textile item to be packaged comprising: (a) providing a stack of folded and unwrapped textile items; (b) providing an article selection mechanism configured with a gripping element; (c) vertically displacing said gripping element until said gripping element reaches a level of a top textile item in said stack; and (d) closing said gripping element solely on said textile item. Disclosed also is a vending machine configured to implement such a method.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 14, 2012
    Date of Patent: November 4, 2014
    Assignee: Polytex Technologies Ltd.
    Inventor: Tomer Poliner
  • Publication number: 20140316562
    Abstract: Identification card (ID) dispenser comprising an ID card storage module (20) for receiving and coupling with one or more ID card containers (30) with a plurality of positions for receiving an ID card; an ID card extractor (60) for picking ID cards from the ID card containers (30); wherein the ID card extractor (60) has access to the individual ID card positions of the ID card containers (30); and the ID card containers (30) are removable from the dispenser and suitable for uncoupling from the ID card storage module (20); optionally comprising a confirmation slip printer, a touch screen, a bank note reader and respective opening, and a card reader (4) and respective opening, in a user interaction module; optionally comprising a biometric module (40). Therefore, the present invention is useful for applications in the areas of ID card production, transport and management, and final user dispensing.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 23, 2011
    Publication date: October 23, 2014
    Applicant: VISION BOX-SOLUCOES DE VISAO POR COMPUTADOR
    Inventors: Miguel Guilherme Leitmann, Bento Antonio Brazio Correia
  • Patent number: 8747782
    Abstract: Embodiments of the invention provide an efficient and effective technique for storing and dispensing reagent beads. In one embodiment, an apparatus is provided for dispensing reagent beads contained in a bead storage device which includes a bead carrier having a plurality of wells; a plurality of reagent beads disposed in the wells; and a cover tape releasably attached to the bead carrier to cover the wells and retain the reagent beads in the wells. The apparatus comprises a channel in which to place the bead storage device with the bead carrier facing a support wall of the channel and the cover tape facing a stripping wall of the channel. The stripping wall includes a stripping gap disposed between a stripping edge and an opposite edge, and a dispense opening provided adjacent the opposite edge on a side of the stripping wall opposite from the stripping edge.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 25, 2013
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2014
    Assignee: Cepheid
    Inventors: Ronald Chang, Douglas B. Dority, Steven Montgomery
  • Patent number: 8727337
    Abstract: A vending machine system for stackable goods such as vehicle air fresheners includes a hopper and a reciprocating arm. The hopper is configured to hold a stack of the stackable goods. The hopper has an aperture formed in a base of the hopper for dispensing the stackable goods from the hopper. The reciprocating arm is disposed adjacent the aperture. The reciprocating arm is linearly movable between a retracted position and an extended position. One of the stackable goods is received by the reciprocating arm when the reciprocating arm is in the retracted position, and is pushed from the stack of stackable goods by the reciprocating arm when the reciprocating arm is in the extended position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 8, 2011
    Date of Patent: May 20, 2014
    Inventor: Kenneth F. Flower
  • Patent number: 8706293
    Abstract: Embodiments of a vending machine are disclosed that can comprise one or more horizontally oriented shelves for supporting products to be vended, a plurality of vertically oriented dividers coupled to the shelves, a plurality of location markers located on the dividers and/or on the shelves, and an optical recognition module configured to optically recognize the location markers and to determine positions of the location markers and products relative to the shelves. In some embodiments, the optical recognition module can recognize the products by comparing images of the products to stored product images.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 29, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 22, 2014
    Assignee: Cereson Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Pin Lu
  • Patent number: 8678231
    Abstract: A medicine dispensing device capable of appropriately dispensing medicines independent of their form and having a compact structure. The medicine dispensing device has a device body (1) and a medicine conveyance member (3) for conveying, on one by one basis, medicines (D) arranged in rows in the device body (1). The medicine conveyance member (3) has a medicine holding member (40) reciprocatingly moving in the horizontal and vertical directions. The medicine holding member (40) has a support member (42), a forwardly/backwardly moving member (43) reciprocatingly moving in the forward and backward direction of the device body (1) while being supported by the support member (42), and a holding member (44) supported by the forwardly/backwardly moving member (43) so as to swing between a vertical position and a horizontal position and having a pair of holding sections (54) capable of holding a medicine (D).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 9, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 25, 2014
    Assignee: Yuyama Mfg. Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Shoji Yuyama, Yasuhiro Shigeyama, Takayuki Fujikawa, Hiroyuki Kanda, Shigeyuki Sakai
  • Patent number: 8651321
    Abstract: A gumball machine includes a gumball container that contains a plurality of gumballs, and a neck portion coupled to the gumball container. The gumball machine has an elongated transparent housing having an upper end coupled to the neck portion, and a base coupled to the lower end of the elongated housing. A speaker is positioned inside the base and is electrically coupled to a switch, a plurality of lighting elements are arranged inside the transparent housing and electrically coupled to the switch, and a power supply is housed inside the base and electrically coupled to the switch, the speaker and the lighting elements. When an actuator is actuated, the actuator turns on the switch to cause the lighting elements to flash, the speaker to broadcast sound and/or music, and a gumball to be dispensed from the gumball container.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 23, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2014
    Assignee: Sweet N Fun, Ltd.
    Inventor: Hoi Wai Fu
  • Patent number: 8651325
    Abstract: The present invention aims to provide a dispensing apparatus for dispensing individual tissue cassettes from a stack of cassettes, the apparatus includes a hopper for receiving a stack of tissue cassettes, the hopper having an aperture through which cassettes are dispensable; ejection means for ejecting a cassette through the aperture; and retention means for retaining all but one of the cassettes in the stack as an individual cassette is ejected.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 15, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2014
    Assignee: Thermo Shandon Ltd.
    Inventors: Ian Kerrod, Richard Clarkson, Basil Gaynor
  • Patent number: 8651322
    Abstract: An article dispensing apparatus has a housing defining a first chamber and a second chamber that are divided by a dividing wall, a lid covering the second chamber and a cover covering the first chamber, with the first chamber holding a plurality of articles, and an opening provided in the dividing wall to allow an article to pass through to the second chamber. A figure is retained inside the second chamber, the figure having a pair of arms that are normally positioned adjacent the opening in the dividing wall to receive an article that is transferred from the first chamber via the opening in the dividing wall. An actuator is coupled to the figure to push the figure upwardly through the lid so that the figure, and the article held in the arms of the figure, are delivered outside the housing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 3, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2014
    Assignee: Sweet N Fun, Ltd.
    Inventor: Candona Y. S. Fung
  • Patent number: 8646652
    Abstract: A card extracting device for use with a plurality of cards may include a card storage, a gate through which the cards pass toward an outside of the card storage, an extracting tab to engage with and extract one of the cards, a tab-moving mechanism to move the extracting tab, an extracting roller outside the card storage to further forward the extracted card, a motor to drive the tab-moving mechanism and the extracting roller, a card-extraction detecting section to detect that card extraction is completed, and a control section to control the motor. An engaging section may be formed in the extracting tab to abut a rear end portion of the card and extract the card. The control section may drive the motor forward to extract the card or drive the motor in reverse based on a detection result from the card extraction detecting section.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 21, 2010
    Date of Patent: February 11, 2014
    Assignee: Nidec Sankyo Corporation
    Inventors: Keiji Ohta, Yasuhiro Kitazawa
  • Patent number: 8608171
    Abstract: A game machine includes a cabinet, a shutter, a sensor and a drive mechanism. The cabinet has a chute for guiding items therein to a hatch accessible to a user. The shutter is normally disposed in a closed position in the cabinet to cover the chute in order to prevent the item from entering the hatch. The sensor is provided for detecting whether an item is deposited on the shutter, and if yes, sending out a signal. Upon reception of the signal, the drive mechanism is activated to cause the shutter to move to an opening position uncovering the chute to allow entry of the detected item into the hatch.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 17, 2013
    Assignee: Youal-Jifh Enterprise Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Chih-Chieh Wang
  • Publication number: 20130228587
    Abstract: A gravity feed dispenser including a dispensing opening that exposes part of a front face and part of a bottom face of a stack of interfolded napkins. Interference tabs restrict the dispensing opening at the front face of the stack of napkins. A stack of interfolded napkins is seated on a bottom wall of the dispenser. The bottom wall is set back from a front wall in a front to rear direction to provide a dispensing gap. A leading flap of the stack of napkins hangs through the dispensing gap while a leading fold of the stack of napkins is pressed against a bottom end of the front wall. When the leading flap is pushed back, the leading fold passes beneath a bottom edge of the front wall to be grasped by a user for dispensing napkins at least two at a time.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 2, 2012
    Publication date: September 5, 2013
    Applicant: SCA HYGIENE PRODUCTS AB
    Inventor: John S. FORMON
  • Patent number: 8521327
    Abstract: The present invention provides a random access and random load dispensing unit including a housing, at least one support located in the housing and defining a first axis, a plurality of platforms movable along the support along the first axis, a plurality of bins supported on the platforms, the bins being movable with the platforms, and a shuttle assembly movable along the first axis and further movable along a second axis substantially perpendicular to the first axis between the plurality of platforms to access and retrieve products stored in the bins.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 6, 2012
    Date of Patent: August 27, 2013
    Assignee: Asteres, Inc.
    Inventors: Linda J. Pinney, John A. Beane, Angus R. Colson, David R. Williams, Keith Kopitzke, Keith W. Reynolds, Erik Howard Barnes
  • Patent number: 8418881
    Abstract: The present invention aims to provide a dispensing apparatus for dispensing individual tissue cassettes from a stack of cassettes, the apparatus includes a hopper for receiving a stack of tissue cassettes, the hopper having an aperture through which cassettes are dispensable; ejection means for ejecting a cassette through the aperture; and retention means for retaining all but one of the cassettes in the stack as an individual cassette is ejected.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 19, 2008
    Date of Patent: April 16, 2013
    Assignee: Thermo Shandon Ltd.
    Inventors: Ian Kerrod, Richard Clarkson, Basil Gaynor
  • Patent number: 8409530
    Abstract: Embodiments of the invention provide an efficient and effective technique for storing and dispensing reagent beads. In some embodiments, an apparatus is provided for dispensing reagent beads contained in a bead storage device which includes a bead carrier having a plurality of wells; a plurality of reagent beads disposed in the wells; and a cover tape releasably attached to the bead carrier to cover the wells and retain the reagent beads in the wells. The apparatus comprises a channel in which to place the bead storage device with the bead carrier facing a support wall of the channel and the cover tape facing a stripping wall of the channel. The stripping wall includes a stripping gap disposed between a stripping edge and an opposite edge, and a dispense opening provided adjacent the opposite edge on a side of the stripping wall opposite from the stripping edge.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 30, 2009
    Date of Patent: April 2, 2013
    Assignee: Cepheid
    Inventors: Ronald Chang, Douglas B. Dority, Steve Montgomery
  • Patent number: 8409531
    Abstract: Embodiments of the invention provide an efficient and effective technique for storing and dispensing reagent beads. In some embodiments, an apparatus is provided for dispensing reagent beads contained in a bead storage device which includes a bead carrier having a plurality of wells; a plurality of reagent beads disposed in the wells; and a cover tape releasably attached to the bead carrier to cover the wells and retain the reagent beads in the wells. The apparatus comprises a channel in which to place the bead storage device with the bead carrier facing a support wall of the channel and the cover tape facing a stripping wall of the channel. The stripping wall includes a stripping gap disposed between a stripping edge and an opposite edge, and a dispense opening provided adjacent the opposite edge on a side of the stripping wall opposite from the stripping edge.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 30, 2009
    Date of Patent: April 2, 2013
    Assignee: Cepheid
    Inventors: Ronald Chang, Douglas B. Dority, Steve Montgomery
  • Publication number: 20120234853
    Abstract: A side-grip method of grasping and moving textile items in a vending machine from the storage area to the dispensing chute that does not require the textile item to be packaged comprising: (a) providing a stack of folded and unwrapped textile items; (b) providing an article selection mechanism configured with a gripping element; (c) vertically displacing said gripping element until said gripping element reaches a level of a top textile item in said stack; and (d) closing said gripping element solely on said textile item. Disclosed also is a vending machine configured to implement such a method.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 14, 2012
    Publication date: September 20, 2012
    Applicant: Polytex Technologies Ltd.
    Inventor: Tomer Poliner
  • Patent number: 8186541
    Abstract: A dispenser for dispensing interfolded disposable sheets is disclosed. The dispenser includes a removable panel that is attached to the first sheet in the stack contained in the container. When the removable panel is pulled off the container, the first sheet in the stack is partially or completely withdrawn from the container. The removable panel may be adhered to the first sheet using an adhesive material. The adhesive material may be contained in a recess formed in the removable panel. The recess is designed to protect the adhesive material during manufacture of the product and/or to prevent the adhesive material to adhering to other portions of the product. In one embodiment, after the stack of sheets are loaded into the dispenser, the recess is inverted forming a protrusion that contacts the first sheet in the stack and forms a bond between the removable panel and the first sheet.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2005
    Date of Patent: May 29, 2012
    Assignee: Kimberly-Clark Worldwide, Inc.
    Inventors: Krzysztof Andrzej Szymonski, Daphne Lynn VanBuren, Sara Marie Etheridge
  • Patent number: 8162174
    Abstract: This is an improved retrieval mechanism for vending machines that includes a sophisticated positioning system, gripper and trays for improved efficiency in product retrieval and delivery. Following product selection, the positioning system quickly transports the gripper through the X-Y plane to the front of a tray queue containing the selected product. The gripper is extended in the Z-direction, and its fingers grasp the foremost product container in the queue. The gripper is raised in order to clear a retaining lip in the queue and then retracts, and the positioning system transports the gripper carrying the product container to a delivery port. The gripper then releases the product which slides down a chute into a delivery port for customer pick up. Unique product storage trays are provided which work in conjunction with the gripper to allow only the foremost product to be removed from a tray queue. Related methods are also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 30, 2007
    Date of Patent: April 24, 2012
    Assignee: SandenVendo America, Inc.
    Inventors: Larry Hieb, Daniel Carter
  • Publication number: 20120052118
    Abstract: The present invention provides an apparatus and process for making softgel capsules having incorporated therein other solid dosage forms selected from the group consisting of pellets, smaller capsules, smaller tablets, sustained release solid dosage forms, immediate release solid dosage forms, extended release solid dosage forms and zero order release solid dosage forms, said apparatus comprising: (a) two spreader boxes; (b) two casting drums; (c) a pair of rotary dies having means for suction; (d) a liquid fill system; (e) a wedge for heating gelatine ribbons and feeding said fill; and (f) two lateral dispensing devices said lateral dispensing devices including hoppers having said solid dosage forms, channelguides for transporting said solid dosage forms and a grasping claw for dispensing said solid dosage form into the softgel pocket formed in the rotary dies.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 18, 2011
    Publication date: March 1, 2012
    Inventors: Carlos Salazar Altamar, Gustavo Anaya, Braulio Teran, Newman Aguas Navarro, Willmer Herrera
  • Patent number: 8121727
    Abstract: The invention is an article vending machine comprising a plurality of article storage compartments covered by displaceable thermal barriers that are opened by an opener. The invention further comprises a cooling unit, an article extractor for extracting selected articles from the storage compartments, and a control center. Each article storage compartment has a displaceable thermal barrier that is opened and closed by an opener. Each displaceable thermal barrier is capable of being opened and closed independently of all other displaceable thermal barriers. During the vending cycle, only the displaceable thermal barrier covering the storage compartment accessed by the article extractor is opened, which prevents ambient air from mixing with cooled air in storage compartments not accessed by the article extractor. If a displaceable thermal barrier cannot be opened because it has frozen shut or the opener has broken, the remaining displaceable thermal barriers with functioning openers still can be opened.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 29, 2008
    Date of Patent: February 21, 2012
    Inventor: Thomas R. Mosey
  • Publication number: 20120031815
    Abstract: A pill sorting system to sort, channel, and discharge a plurality of pills. The system includes a sorting tray having a sorting region to receive the plurality of pills and a discharge region including a spout configured to discharge pills from the tray. The system also includes a stylus tool having a body with a first and second end. The first end includes adhesive to pick up a pill and the second end is adapted to sort and move pills within the tray and through the spout.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 5, 2010
    Publication date: February 9, 2012
    Applicant: Len Walter Enterprises, LLC
    Inventor: Leonard Jay WALTER
  • Patent number: 8097210
    Abstract: This invention relates to a test sensor cartridge assembly that dispenses test sensors individually while shortening the distance of the lateral movement required to eject the sensor. A stationary gear rack is affixed to a surface with a moveable gear rack positioned parallel to the stationary gear rack. The moveable gear rack is adapted to engage the test sensor. A gear is positioned between and contacts the stationary gear rack and the moveable gear rack. The lateral movement of the gear in a first direction generates rotational movement by the gear. Both the lateral and rotational movement move the moveable gear rack laterally in the first direction. The lateral movement of the gear rack in the first direction ejects a test sensor from a test sensor cartridge.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 16, 2005
    Date of Patent: January 17, 2012
    Assignee: Bayer HealthCare LLC
    Inventor: Tieming Ruan
  • Patent number: 8083096
    Abstract: An automatic supply apparatus for an elongate supply target member having elasticity and including both end portions includes a stock mechanism wherein a plurality of supply target members are stocked such that the plurality of supply target members are suspended in an inverted U shape and top portions of the plurality of supply target members are arranged side by side in a row direction, and an extraction mechanism to operate the top portions of the supply target members to extract one supply target member from the plurality of supply target members stocked in the stock mechanism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 28, 2008
    Date of Patent: December 27, 2011
    Assignee: Olympus Medical Systems Corp.
    Inventors: Hiroshi Ichiyama, Kiminobu Numata, Hiroshi Kimura
  • Patent number: 8038016
    Abstract: To reliably bias drugs to a rotor side without upsizing a device, with little layout limitations, and without damaging the drugs. Biasing means that biases drugs stored in a cassette 3 to a rotor 23 side to arrange the drugs includes: a casing 35; a constant load spring 36 provided in the casing 35 and having a spring part 41 fixed to the rotor 23 side of the cassette 3 at its tip; a locking plate 42 provided in the casing 35 and having a gear part 46 that engaged with and disengaged from a locking rack 26 formed in the cassette 3; and a pressing block 43 projected so as to be pressed from the contact surface of the casing 35 in contact with the drugs and rotating the locking plate 42 by pressing to release the gear part 46 from the locking rack 26.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 12, 2005
    Date of Patent: October 18, 2011
    Assignee: Yuyama Mfg. Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Shoji Yuyama, Akira Taniguchi
  • Patent number: 7992744
    Abstract: A dispenser, and associated method for producing such dispenser, for interfolded disposable sheets includes a dispensing container defining an interior volume sufficient for receipt of a clip of interfolded disposable sheets, the container including a first wall with a dispensing opening defined by a removable panel. At least a portion of an adhesive material is disposed at a location on the removable panel such that the adhesive is not exposed to the interior volume of the container in an adhesive state. A clip of interfolded disposable sheets is inserted into the interior volume of the container. After insertion of the clip, the adhesive material is exposed in an adhesive state to the interior volume of the container and contact is made between the adhesive and the uppermost sheet of the clip of interfolded sheets such that the removable panel is attached to the uppermost sheet.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 29, 2009
    Date of Patent: August 9, 2011
    Assignee: Kimberly-Clark Worldwide, Inc.
    Inventors: Krzysztof A. Szymonski, Herb Velazquez
  • Patent number: 7980420
    Abstract: A card dispensing apparatus having a compact configuration has a housing to support a stack of cards on a fixed base. Openings in the base member can permit surfaces from a conveying member to extend into the housing and contact a surface of the lowest card. The conveyer member can move horizontal to a release point and retract beneath the base member to return to an initial position. A movement unit provides a cyclic looping movement of the conveyer member into and out of the housing for transporting cards. A feed unit positioned at the dispensing point of the cards can grasp and release the cards from the card dispensing apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 30, 2007
    Date of Patent: July 19, 2011
    Assignee: Asahi Seiko Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Takahito Yamamiya
  • Patent number: 7934597
    Abstract: In order to improve the reliability of cleanly dispensing the first tissue in a pop-up dispensing tissue container, a relatively high strength sacrificial top sheet is interfolded with the tissue clip. The sacrificial top sheet is adhered to the underside of a removable surfboard in the top of the container, such that when the surfboard is removed to access the tissues, the sacrificial sheet is simultaneously removed, which causes the first tissue to pop up into a ready position for subsequent dispensing by the user.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 28, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 3, 2011
    Assignee: Kimberly-Clark Worldwide, Inc.
    Inventors: Kenneth John Zwick, Mark Anthony Barnes, Dennis Edward Fryer, Cynthia Watts Henderson, Leslie Thomas Long, Paul Kerner Pauling, Bart John Rabas, Stephanie Marie Stoddart
  • Patent number: 7912582
    Abstract: A self-contained, fully automated system for dispensing medicants into vials. Prescriptions are entered using a built-in workstation. Vials of several sizes are each contained in preloaded cassettes. Upon command from a computer, a vial is released and labeled with the prescription information. A robotic system moves the labeled vial to the output chute of one of many automated dispensing units that has previously been commanded to count a predetermined number of tablets, pills, or capsules. The filled vial is robotically moved to an optional capping station where a cap is applied if needed. The vial is then moved to an output region where it is sorted with other prescriptions for a customer. The prescription may be checked using the built-in computer workstation. Optionally, the automated dispensing system may be linked to pharmacy control software.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 18, 2007
    Date of Patent: March 22, 2011
    Assignee: Innovation Associates, Inc.
    Inventors: Bruce E. Holtje, James McGonigal
  • Patent number: 7904199
    Abstract: This invention is a vending machine and components parts that include a sophisticated positioning system, gripper and trays for improved efficiency in product retrieval and delivery. A unique initialization and calibration system is implemented at start up to determine the positions of shelves and trays of product containers in the machine, and may be implemented at other times if trays or shelves are added or removed, or if tray or shelf positions change. These positions are then used by the positioning and gripping systems to accurately and efficiently retrieve products from the trays. Related methods are also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 30, 2007
    Date of Patent: March 8, 2011
    Assignee: Sanden Vendo America, Inc.
    Inventors: Daniel S Carter, Christopher R. Craven, Walid H. El-Aouar, Craig R Greiner, Larry E Hieb, Dean W James, Sandra L Southard, Rolando S. Williams
  • Publication number: 20110054668
    Abstract: A pharmaceutical storage and retrieval system and a method of storing and retrieving pharmaceutical containers from the system. The system includes a pharmaceutical storage and retrieval and a controller operatively coupled to the device to control storage and retrieval functions of the device. The device includes a gantry assembly, a shelving assembly, a user access assembly, and a user authorization system that function in a coordinated manner to carry out the storage and retrieval functions of the device.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 27, 2010
    Publication date: March 3, 2011
    Inventors: William K. Holmes, Michael James, Thomas F. Gaasch
  • Patent number: 7850042
    Abstract: A vending machine apparatus comprising a housing defining an internal cavity and an article storage compartment positioned inside the cavity. An air barrier arrangement having a plurality of moveable barriers separates the article storage compartment from an article extracting device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 9, 2007
    Date of Patent: December 14, 2010
    Inventor: Munroe Chirnomas
  • Patent number: 7837059
    Abstract: This invention is a vending machine and components parts that include a sophisticated positioning system, catcher and trays for improved efficiency in product retrieval and delivery. Following product selection, the positioning system quickly transports the catcher through the X-Y plane to the front of a tray queue containing the selected product. The catcher is extended in the Z-direction, and lifts the foremost product container from the queue, moving one or more gates out of the way. The catcher then retracts, closing the gate, and the positioning system transports the catcher carrying the product container to a delivery port. The catcher then releases the product container which slides into a delivery port for customer pick up. Unique product storage trays are provided which work in conjunction with the catcher to allow only the foremost product to be removed from a tray queue. Related methods are also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 30, 2007
    Date of Patent: November 23, 2010
    Inventors: Larry Hieb, Daniel Carter
  • Patent number: 7831334
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for filling vials comprises a shelving unit defining an array of storage locations. The shelving unit may be an array in an XY plane or one or more carousels. A plurality of storage containers are provided, each removably carried by one of the storage locations. A counting and dispensing unit, a source of vials, a label printer and application unit or units, and an output device are also provided. A computer controlled engagement device provides motion in a Z direction. The engagement device may be comprised of a first stage for engaging the storage containers and a second stage for engaging the vials. A computer controlled system carries the engagement device and moves the engagement device in XY directions among the plurality of storage locations, counting and dispensing unit, source of vials, label printer and application unit, and output device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 26, 2007
    Date of Patent: November 9, 2010
    Assignee: McKesson Automation Systems Inc.
    Inventors: Jamie Vollm, Manoj Wangu, Robert Eckert, Shawn Greyshock, Anthony Self
  • Patent number: 7823750
    Abstract: This invention is a vending machine and components parts that include a sophisticated product retrieval and delivery system. Following product selection, the positioning system quickly transports a retrieval device to the front of a tray queue where a product container is retrieved. The positioning system transports the gripper carrying the product container to a delivery port. The product is released and slides down a specially designed chute into a specially designed delivery bucket that is then tilted outward for customer pick up. Sensors associated with the bucket detect the delivery and removal of the product container. Related methods are also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 30, 2007
    Date of Patent: November 2, 2010
    Inventors: Daniel S. Carter, Christopher R. Craven, Walid H. El-Aouar, Craig R Greiner, Larry E Hieb, Dean W James, Sandra L Southard, Rolando S. Williams
  • Patent number: 7802698
    Abstract: An apparatus (15) to aid in locating articles in bags produced by a packaging machine (10). The apparatus (15) includes a reservoir (40) to which the articles are delivered, with a plurality of discharge locations being located at angular spaced positions about the reservoir (40). Each of the discharge locations (24) includes an upwardly facing aperture (25) through which the articles are delivered to a central chute (27) from where the articles are located in the bags being formed. Adjacent each discharge location (24) is a conveyor device (29) that moves angularly so as to take articles from the reservoir (40) to the associated aperture (25).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 16, 2006
    Date of Patent: September 28, 2010
    Assignee: TNA Australia Pty Limited
    Inventors: Alfred A. Taylor, Darren K. Alchin
  • Patent number: 7797078
    Abstract: There is provided a sticky note supply device that separates an uppermost sticky note from a stacks of sticky note one by one so as to discharge to the outside of the device from a discharge section. The sticky note supply device includes a transport unit that separates the sticky note to discharge the sticky note to the outside of the device from the discharge section, a control unit that controls the drive of the transport unit, and a detecting unit that is provided in the discharge section so as to detect whether the sticky note is present or not. When a next sticky note starts to be transported after the sticky note is completely transported by the transport unit and the detecting unit detects the presence, the control unit prohibits the transport unit from being driven.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 2, 2007
    Date of Patent: September 14, 2010
    Assignee: Seiko Epson Corporation
    Inventor: Hideki Sakano
  • Publication number: 20100198398
    Abstract: A medicine dispensing device capable of appropriately dispensing medicines independent of their form and having a compact structure. The medicine dispensing device has a device body (1) and a medicine conveyance member (3) for conveying, on one by one basis, medicines (D) arranged in rows in the device body (1). The medicine conveyance member (3) has a medicine holding member (40) reciprocatingly moving in the horizontal and vertical directions. The medicine holding member (40) has a support member (42), a forwardly/backwardly moving member (43) reciprocatingly moving in the forward and backward direction of the device body (1) while being supported by the support member (42), and a holding member (44) supported by the forwardly/backwardly moving member (43) so as to swing between a vertical position and a horizontal position and having a pair of holding sections (54) capable of holding a medicine (D).
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 9, 2010
    Publication date: August 5, 2010
    Applicant: YUYAMA MFG. CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Shoji YUYAMA, Yasuhiro SHIGEYAMA, Takayuki FUJIKAWA, Hiroyuki KANDA, Shigeyuki SAKAI
  • Patent number: 7744297
    Abstract: In a sticky note printer, a sticky note is peeled off and fed one by one from a bundle of notes set in position. In empty-feed motion, the sticky note is fed in a normal direction from a peel-off position through a sticky note ejecting slot to a pull-out position in which the sticky note protrudes outside the sticky note printer. In feed-back motion, the sticky note is fed in a reverse direction from the pull-out position to a retracted position in which printing can be performed. In feed-again motion, the sticky note is fed in the normal direction from the retracted position to the pull-out position. The empty-feed motion is made when the sticky note has been pulled away from the pull-out position. The feed-back motion or the feed-again motion is made, when an instruction for printing is given, in a manner synchronized with the printing operation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 10, 2007
    Date of Patent: June 29, 2010
    Assignee: Seiko Epson Corporation
    Inventor: Kenichi Nakajima
  • Patent number: 7686184
    Abstract: A medicine dispensing device capable of appropriately dispensing medicines independent of their form and having a compact structure. The medicine dispensing device has a device body (1) and a medicine conveyance member (3) for conveying, on one by one basis, medicines (D) arranged in rows in the device body (1). The medicine conveyance member (3) has a medicine holding member (40) reciprocatingly moving in the horizontal and vertical directions. The medicine holding member (40) has a support member (42), a forwardly/backwardly moving member (43) reciprocatingly moving in the forward and backward direction of the device body (1) while being supported by the support member(42), and a holding member (44) supported by the forwardly/backwardly moving member (43) so as to swing between a vertical position and a horizontal position and having a pair of holding sections (54) capable of holding a medicine (D).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 18, 2005
    Date of Patent: March 30, 2010
    Assignee: Yuyama MFG. Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Shoji Yuyama, Yasuhiro Shigeyama, Takayuki Fujikawa, Hiroyuki Kanda, Shigeyuki Sakai
  • Patent number: 7677410
    Abstract: An apparatus for discharging tissue that is folded several times and stacked is provided. The apparatus includes a cartridge that holds stacked tissue and has a through hole at one end, and a holding member that is disposed adjacent to the through hole of the cartridge and pivots on an axis to grasp and remove tissues one at a time from the top of the stack through an arm. The inventive apparatus allows a user to easily replace tissue and check the amount of tissue used and the amount left to use through visual means. The apparatus virtually eliminates the problem of tissue dispensing failure, and has increased precision and reliability and reduced dispensing time over conventional apparatuses.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 2005
    Date of Patent: March 16, 2010
    Assignee: Elix Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Jin Yong Lee
  • Patent number: 7661555
    Abstract: Moving a lid dispenses single thin films from a container. A pad coated with TPE, rubber or silicone rotates downward and contacts the top thin film strip. The pad moves the strip toward a front opening. When the lid is fully opened, the strip has been ejected far enough for the user to remove it. A sliding top and lever dispense a strip. The user slides back the top of the container, causing lever with a living hinges and links to flex downward. A pad rotates downward towards the top strip and outward towards an opening exposed in the front of the container and the strip is ejected out this opening. The pad is connected to a lever on a gear. Sliding the top of the container rotates the gear. The pad contacts the strip and moves the strip through the uncovered front dispensing opening.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 15, 2003
    Date of Patent: February 16, 2010
    Assignee: Union Street Brand Packaging
    Inventors: Christopher T. Evans, Christopher Gieda