By Pneumatic Conveyor Patents (Class 271/194)
  • Patent number: 10053323
    Abstract: A sheet handling apparatus for a printing system includes a rotary drum having an inner chamber circumferentially surrounded by an outer peripheral wall with perforations formed therein. By means of sucking an air flow through the perforations of the drum to a suction system, sheets are attracted to the peripheral wall of the drum. A stationary shutter member is positioned inside the inner chamber for blocking the flow of air through the perforations when they pass, with the rotation of the drum, through a first predetermined angular range. The shutter member includes protrusions while the rotary drum includes recesses for receiving the protrusions, such that a meandering air flow passage is formed between the shutter member and the rotary drum. As such, friction between the rotary drum and the stationary shutter member is reduced, thereby reducing the power consumption of the suction system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 25, 2017
    Date of Patent: August 21, 2018
    Assignee: OCÉ HOLDING B.V.
    Inventors: Antonius G. H. Albers, Johannes H. L. Smeyers, Albert M. Van Beek, Marcel J. H. M. Haenen, Wilhelmus H. J. Nellen
  • Patent number: 10011379
    Abstract: A method for reducing restoring forces of package sleeves in a filling machine, where flat-folded package sleeves are removed from a magazine of the filling machine, erected to form a package sleeve forming a parallelogram in cross-section and then transferred to a transport device for transporting the upright package sleeve along a transport path. In order to enable a reduction in the restoring force adapted to the particular material of the package sleeve without increasing the cycle time for the removal and unfolding of the flat-folded package sleeve, the restoring force is reduced by temporarily increasing the internal angle between the package walls at the outer fold edges to more than 90° while the upright package sleeve is located on the transport path of the transport device. The reduction of the restoring force can be accomplished during the movement or during a standstill of the package sleeve on the transport path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2013
    Date of Patent: July 3, 2018
    Assignee: ELOPAK SYSTEMS AG
    Inventors: Klaus Baltes, Andre Vetters
  • Patent number: 9896290
    Abstract: A sheet conveying system includes an upstream conveyor section having an endless first conveyor belt movable in a first conveying direction x and extending in a first lateral direction z, the first conveying direction x and the first lateral direction z defining a first conveying plane xz; and a downstream conveyor section having an endless second conveyor belt that adjoins the first conveyor belt and is movable in a second conveying direction x? and extends in a second lateral direction z?, the second conveying direction x? and the second lateral direction z? defining a second conveying plane x?z?. The conveyor sections are adapted to hold the sheets slip-free on the first and second conveyor belts. The second conveyor belt has a shear compliance in the second conveying plane x?z? that is larger than the shear compliance of the first conveyor belt in the first conveying plane xz.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 2017
    Date of Patent: February 20, 2018
    Assignee: OCÉ-TECHNOLOGIES B.V.
    Inventors: Roy H. R. Jacobs, Erik E. M. Nolting, Mark Rietbergen
  • Patent number: 9829846
    Abstract: A sheet transport apparatus includes a first transport device, a second transport device, a first guide member, and a second guide member. The first transport device transports a sheet. The second transport device is disposed downstream of the first transport device in a transport direction and transports the sheet. The first guide member is disposed between the first and second transport device such that the second transport device is closer to the first guide member than the first transport device and guides the sheet to the second transport device. The second guide member is disposed between the first and second transport device such that the first transport device is closer to the second guide member than the second transport device and guides the sheet to the first guide member while curving the sheet.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 14, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 28, 2017
    Assignee: FUJI XEROX CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Akira Shimodaira, Yukihiro Ichiki, Keita Hashimoto, Motoyuki Yagi
  • Patent number: 9687985
    Abstract: The robot hand of the present invention comprises: a first abutting part which projects from a main body part in Z-direction, and has a first abutting surface against which a first surface of the workpiece abuts; second and third abutting parts which extend from the main body part, and against which the second and third surfaces of the workpiece abut respectively; and a suction member which is attached to the main body part so as to hold by suction the first surface. The suction member is deformable into an elongated shape where the suction surface is located in front of the first abutting surface in Z-direction, and into a contracted shape where the suction surface is located in back of the first abutting surface in Z-direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 4, 2015
    Date of Patent: June 27, 2017
    Assignee: Fanuc Corporation
    Inventors: Takanobu Ueno, Takashi Itsukaichi
  • Patent number: 9278821
    Abstract: A device and a method for raising and positioning an object, for example a sheet from a sheet stack, uses a whirlwind to generate a negative pressure for generating a retaining force and uses interference air for releasing the retaining force.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 10, 2015
    Date of Patent: March 8, 2016
    Assignee: Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG
    Inventors: Manfred Haeussler, Burkhard Wolf, Andreas Mueller, Jochen Renner, Matthias Zapf
  • Patent number: 9187261
    Abstract: A device for rotating flat products, in particular sheets or stacks of sheets, moved in a first direction from a first orientation into a second orientation, by a predetermined total rotation angle, by means of a first rotating device, in which the product is rotated first by a first rotation angle, and by means of at least one second rotating device, in which the product is later rotated by a second rotation angle. The first and second rotating devices are arranged one after the other in transport direction, and each rotating device includes rotating elements, which engage with the product for the rotating process. In order to be able to process products having different formats at the highest possible throughput and as failure-free as possible, and in order to ensure as mild a treatment of the products as possible, at least the first rotating device includes switchable engagement elements by means of which the rotating elements can be engaged with or disengaged from the product at selected times.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 2013
    Date of Patent: November 17, 2015
    Assignee: BOEWE SYSTEC GMBH
    Inventor: Bernd Hoepner
  • Patent number: 9126381
    Abstract: A corrugated box making machine has a vacuum transfer mechanism for moving corrugated boards along a path of conveyance including stations having printing and die cutter mechanisms which operate on the boards. The printing mechanisms include a print and impression cylinder, the latter being mounted in a vacuum housing that also holds drive rolls for moving the boards along the path during which the boards are held against the rolls by vacuum in the housing. The latter is movable substantially above the print cylinder to provide convenient access for maintenance of the print cylinder or replacement of its printing plates.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 7, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 8, 2015
    Assignee: SUN AUTOMATION, INC.
    Inventors: James B. Babcock, Yury Polikov
  • Patent number: 8960666
    Abstract: A device for the generation of a shingled stream of flat, flexible objects along a conveyor path, wherein successive objects develop an overlap with a length, includes a first and a second suction and conveyor device having a first and second unit, respectively, and each having at least one conveyor belt. The first and second units are each configured to generate a vacuum through a whirlwind to attract at least one of the objects and are each disposed in a casing having a suction aperture. The second suction and conveyor device is disposed downstream from the first suction and conveyor device in a direction of the conveyor path with a mutual offset corresponding to the length of the overlap and is disposed at an angle relative to the direction of the conveyor path. The first and second suction are separated by a spacing in a transversal direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 30, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: BDT Media Automation GmbH
    Inventors: Patrick Enderle, Peter Kearney, Andreas Wardak
  • Patent number: 8777216
    Abstract: An image forming apparatus includes a suction fan unit, a conveyor belt, a plurality of sheet-pressing rollers, and a control unit. The conveyor belt conveys a recording sheet suctioned by the suction fan unit, to a printer part. The sheet-pressing rollers are arranged at intervals in a main scanning direction orthogonal to a conveying direction of the recording sheet by the conveyor belt, and press the recording sheet onto the conveyor belt before the recording sheet is conveyed to the printer part. When a type of the recording sheet is a type meeting a predetermined condition, the control unit controls a suction strength of a suction fan unit such that a suction strength at both end portions of the suction part in the main scanning direction is higher than a suction strength at a central portion of the suction part in the main scanning direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 25, 2013
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2014
    Assignee: Riso Kagaku Corporation
    Inventors: Shinichiro Otsuka, Masaaki Shinohara
  • Patent number: 8752831
    Abstract: Systems and methods are provided for controlling substrate flatness for sensor measurements in printing device. A flow of air may be provided from a blower to a plenum. A printed sheet of media may be transported between upper and lower transport baffles that are generally spaced apart to permit the sheet of media to pass. Located on one of transport baffles may be a sensor to measure a property of the printed sheet. Air from the plenum is provided to the back surface of the sheet to urge it toward the sensor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 6, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 17, 2014
    Assignee: Xerox Corporation
    Inventors: Francisco Zirilli, Susan Aurand, Richard A. Van Dongen, Chad Labarge, Ivan Delgado-Velazquez
  • Patent number: 8684516
    Abstract: A substrate support apparatus for a printer is described. The apparatus includes a table having a support surface for supporting a substrate during printing, the support surface including a plurality of substrate apertures. A negative pressure can be applied to the substrate apertures to hold the substrate to the table during printing. The apparatus further includes a plurality of mask apertures, and a negative pressure can be applied to the mask apertures to hold a mask to the support surface. By arranging for the pressure to be applied to the substrate apertures and mask apertures independently, the mask can be held to the table during loading and unloading of the substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 25, 2009
    Date of Patent: April 1, 2014
    Assignee: Inca Digital Printers Limited
    Inventor: William Ronald Stuart Baxter
  • Patent number: 8544842
    Abstract: The invention relates to a sheet transport device (1) comprising a first and a second opposing transport units (3, 5), each comprising at least one circulating conveyor belt (15) and one vacuum suction device (9, 11) that is in relation with the conveyor belt, said vacuum suction devices being individually actuatable so as to attract a sheet (19), located between the transport units, to the one or the other conveyor belt. Such a sheet transport device is used, for example, in a printing machine. The invention also relates to a method for transporting a sheet to this sheet transport device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 10, 2010
    Date of Patent: October 1, 2013
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventors: Detlef Schulze-Hagenest, Soenke Dehn, Eckhard Bauer
  • Patent number: 8434761
    Abstract: A sheet transportation apparatus includes at least one beltless vacuum transport (BVT) that has a plurality of adjacent rollers. Each of the rollers comprises a rounded external surface and an axis about which the external surface rotates. The external surfaces of the rollers are spaced from each other by gaps referred to as “inter-roller spaces.” A fan is positioned on a first side of the rollers. The fan draws air through the inter-roller spaces to create a vacuum force on a second side of the rollers. The vacuum force maintains the sheets of media in contact with the second side of the rollers. The external surface of each of the rollers comprises a plurality of first regions having a first diameter and a plurality of second regions having a second diameter different than the first diameter. The first regions and the second regions of the external surface are adjacent one another and alternate along the length of the external surface of each of the rollers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 4, 2011
    Date of Patent: May 7, 2013
    Assignee: Xerox Corporation
    Inventors: Erwin Ruiz, Melissa A. Monahan, Steven M. Russel
  • Patent number: 8408539
    Abstract: A media sheet transport including a belt for supporting the media thereon. The belt is operably connected to a drive mechanism for moving the belt in a process direction past an image marking unit. The belt has a plurality of openings therein. A vacuum plenum has a surface disposed below the belt and is operably connected to a vacuum source. The vacuum plenum is adapted to applying a negative pressure to the media for holding the media to the belt. An electrostatic hold down apparatus includes a first tacking roller spaced in a cross-process direction from a second tacking roller. The first and second tacking rollers are engagable with the belt. The first tacking roller is disposed to engage the inboard edge of the media, and the second tacking roller is disposed to engage the outboard edge of the media. The first and second tacking rollers impart an electrostatic charge to the edges of the media for electrostatically securing the inboard and outboard edges of the media to the belt.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 20, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 2, 2013
    Assignee: Xerox Corporation
    Inventor: Steven R. Moore
  • Patent number: 8393729
    Abstract: A continuous web printer that has an inlet for receiving a web of media from a media web roll unwinder, an outlet for delivery to a media web roll winder, an air platen frame for generating an air cushion at least partially defining a media feed path and a plurality of pagewidth inkjet printheads positioned adjacent the media feed path for printing on both sides of the web.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 20, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 12, 2013
    Assignee: Zamtec Ltd
    Inventors: Kia Silverbrook, Mark Profaca, Craig Donald Strudwicke, Jason Mark Thelander
  • Patent number: 8393730
    Abstract: A continuous web printer that has an inlet for receiving a web of media from a media web roll unwinder, an outlet for delivery to a media web roll winder, a plurality of pagewidth inkjet printhead assemblies for printing on both sides of the web; and a media feed path extending from the inlet to the outlet. The media feed path has a first print zone where one side of the web is printed and a second print zone where the other side of the web is printed. The first print zone and the second print zone are flat, and the first print zone is upstream from the second print zone with respect to a media feed direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 20, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 12, 2013
    Assignee: Zamtec Ltd
    Inventors: Kia Silverbrook, Mark Profaca, Craig Donald Strudwicke, Jason Mark Thelander
  • Patent number: 8353503
    Abstract: An edge alignment control apparatus for correcting vertical alignment of sheet members is disclosed to include two base units each having multiple first power drives controllable to reciprocate a respective horizontal reciprocating member, and adjustment units arranged between the base units, each adjustment unit having two holder blocks connected to the horizontal reciprocating members of the base units at one same elevation and movable by the respective horizontal reciprocating members horizontally, sheet-transfer rollers pivotally connected between the holder blocks, a bearing board connected between the holder blocks for receiving a sheet member from the sheet-transfer rollers and a suction hood suspending above the bearing board and defining with the bearing board a passage for the passing of a sheet member and controllable to suck up a sheet member from the bearing board for allowing adjustment of the position of the sheet member horizontally subject to the operation of the first power drive.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 14, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 15, 2013
    Inventor: Tzu-Che Lin
  • Patent number: 8322712
    Abstract: A sheet-material transporting device includes: plural first endless-belts; a driving-member around which the first endless-belts are trained to circulate; a first driven-member around which the first endless-belts are trained, being slave-rotated; a supporting-member provided at an inner-peripheral-side of the first endless-belts; a second endless-belt provided between the first endless-belts, trained around the driving-member and circulating; a second driven-member provided between the first driven-member and the driving-member, around which the second endless-belt is trained at an opening portion provided in the supporting-member, being slave-rotated; and a detecting-member detecting a sheet-material, the supporting-member including a downstream-side-supporting-member disposed at a downstream-side having a concave-portion formed in an end portion, and an upstream-side-supporting-member disposed at an upstream-side and that is set against the end portion of the downstream-side-supporting-member such that the
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 10, 2010
    Date of Patent: December 4, 2012
    Assignee: Fuji Xerox Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Masaru Funayanagi, Toshiyuki Miyata
  • Patent number: 8240661
    Abstract: A vacuum transport system includes vacuum plenum having a plenum plate as a part thereof and a belt with an array of holes that align to grooves in the plenum plate over which the belt is driven. A sliding plate on the underside of the plenum plate inside the vacuum plenum contains a series of holes and slots to progressively open or shut holes connecting the grooves to the vacuum plenum to maintain a constant air flow and vacuum pressure in the cross process direction for varying widths of media.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 4, 2009
    Date of Patent: August 14, 2012
    Assignee: Xerox Corporation
    Inventor: Henry T Bober
  • Publication number: 20120153562
    Abstract: An inserter device for a document printer and inserter system includes a first container sensor. A belt mechanism includes a flexible delivery belt receiving a printed document from a document printer. A motor rotates the delivery belt in response to an actuation signal from the first container sensor indicating the presence of a container at a document loading position proximate the delivery belt. A support shaft is rotatably connected to a support frame. The belt mechanism is fixed to the support shaft. The support shaft is rotated to achieve a desired belt drive angle and fixed to the support frame to maintain the belt drive angle. A rigid document diverter proximate the delivery belt deflects a document discharged from the delivery belt at the belt drive angle into the container. First and second belt tensioning assemblies are individually positioned in either a belt mechanism drive box or idler box.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 24, 2012
    Publication date: June 21, 2012
    Inventors: Anthony F. Morgott, Mark J. Jordan
  • Patent number: 8177231
    Abstract: A conveying body that can attract and peel-off a recording medium by a simple mechanism, and an image forming device using the conveying body are provided. One end portions of through-holes of a drum are blocked by a blocking member, and a suction member and a blowing-out member are provided at other end portions of the through-holes. Due to a suction pump being operated and suction force being generated within the through-holes via a suction port of the suction member, the suction force passes through the through-holes and acts on long grooves of an outer peripheral surface of the drum, and a sheet can be attracted reliably to the outer peripheral surface of the drum. Further, because air is blown-out from the blowing-out member by operation of the suction pump, a leading end portion of a sheet can be reliably peeled-off from the outer peripheral surface of the drum.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 27, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 15, 2012
    Assignee: Fujifilm Corporation
    Inventors: Takashi Fukui, Tatsuya Nitta
  • Patent number: 8167307
    Abstract: Disclosed is an image forming apparatus that includes an image forming unit that forms an image and a conveyance unit that conveys a medium to be recorded opposing the image forming unit. The conveyance unit includes a platen member that guides the medium to be recorded and has plural suction holes formed therein, plural air chambers that the plural suction holes formed in the platen member face, and plural suction units that suction air inside the plural air chambers through the suction holes. At least two or more of the plural air chambers are arranged in a direction crossing a conveyance direction of the medium to be recorded. One of the plural air chambers is connected to one of the plural suction units, and one or two or more of the plural air chambers is connected to at least one of the plural suction units.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 30, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 1, 2012
    Assignee: Ricoh Company, Ltd.
    Inventors: Yuichiro Maeyama, Takayuki Niihara, Masahiko Yamada, Masato Ogawa
  • Patent number: 8132883
    Abstract: An inkjet-type image forming apparatus includes a recording head configured to eject ink to form an image; a carriage where the recording head is provided, the carriage being configured to reciprocate in a direction orthogonal to a sheet transport direction; a transport unit disposed upstream of a print area in the sheet transport direction, the transport unit being configured to intermittently transport a sheet to the print area; a transport control unit configured to control the transport unit; a platen guide plate; a suction unit configured to suction the sheet onto the platen guide plate; and a control unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 5, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 13, 2012
    Assignee: Ricoh Company, Ltd.
    Inventors: Takayuki Niihara, Mamoru Yorimoto, Yuichiro Maeyama
  • Patent number: 8123222
    Abstract: A compliant conveyance system including a diverter having at least one sidewall structure defining an internal chamber in fluid communication with a pressure source. The sidewall structure includes a compliant interface surface for conveying sheet material along the feed path and a plurality of orifices effecting fluid communication between the compliant interface surface and the internal chamber. A means is provided for developing a pressure differential across the sheet material through the orifices to urge an interface surface of the sheet material against the compliant interface surface of the diverter such that the compliant interface surface conforms to the sheet material interface surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 1, 2009
    Date of Patent: February 28, 2012
    Assignee: Pitney Bowes Inc.
    Inventor: Henson C. Ong
  • Patent number: 8113515
    Abstract: In a paper sheet transporting device, in an air duct portion of a suction duct, a suction confluence opening that collects air that is sucked and allows the air to pass through is disposed in a position included in a region where suction openings whose suction force is relatively the highest of plural suction openings exist and which position is away from the inner surface side of the suction surface portion, with the air duct portion being formed in a shape where the opening cross-sectional area of an air duct becomes relatively narrower away from the suction confluence opening in the rotating axial direction of a transport belt.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 6, 2009
    Date of Patent: February 14, 2012
    Assignee: Fuji Xerox Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Tsutomu Komiyama, Kazutoshi Sugitani, Kiyotoshi Kaneyama, Katsunori Kikuchihara
  • Patent number: 8070156
    Abstract: A sheet adsorption device includes a sheet adsorbing surface, a suction hole disposed on the sheet adsorbing surface, and a flow path shifting unit that shifts between a first state and a second state of a communication flow path that is communicated with the suction hole in accordance with existence of a sheet that covers the suction hole. The cross-section area of a flow path in the second state is smaller than that in the first state and the communication flow path is not closed in the second state.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 6, 2008
    Date of Patent: December 6, 2011
    Assignee: Seiko Epson Corporation
    Inventors: Kaneo Yoda, Takato Hayashi, Yasushi Yajima, Satoru Shiohara, Satoshi Kaneta
  • Patent number: 8066282
    Abstract: An apparatus for feeding and aligning sheets which are fed to a processing machine, e.g. a printing machine, includes at least two parallel transporting belts which, on a side directed toward the sheet, subject the sheet to different retaining forces, in such a way that the retaining force in outer peripheral regions is greater than in an inner region located therebetween. The transporting belts can be activated individually in dependence on the position of the sheet, and they can therefore align the sheet in its transporting direction and obliquely thereto.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 13, 2009
    Date of Patent: November 29, 2011
    Assignee: Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG
    Inventors: Andreas Müller, Burkhard Wolf
  • Patent number: 8002266
    Abstract: A pickoff system for removal of mail pieces one at a time from the end of a stack includes a pickoff belt mechanism, a sensor positioned to determine mail piece movement speed, and a measurement device determines belt movement speed during operation of the pickoff belt mechanism. A vacuum system includes a vacuum pump and a vacuum manifold positioned to apply suction to the mail piece in a direction that tends to hold the mail piece against the belt of the pickoff belt mechanism. A controller is configured to compare the belt movement speed and the mail piece movement speed during operation, and when mail piece movement speed is slower than belt movement speed, indicating slipping of the mail piece relative to the belt of the pickoff belt mechanism, the controller temporarily increases suction force applied to a mail piece being transported by the pickoff belt mechanism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 5, 2008
    Date of Patent: August 23, 2011
    Assignee: Siemens Industry, Inc.
    Inventors: Simon Jan Krause, Bryan Stone, Edwin Bland, John Day, Uwe Maertin, Rajeev Dwivedi
  • Patent number: 7963522
    Abstract: A vacuum control assembly for use in an image production device is provided. The assembly has a plenum having a vacuum inlet; a perforated plate fluidly connected to the plenum, the perforated plate having a plurality of perforations; a baffle plate connected to an inside of the plenum such that the baffle plate can slide relative to the perforated plate and can pivot relative to the perforated plate; and a protrusion on the inside of the plenum. The baffle plate is capable of sliding relative to the perforated plate between a closed position and an open position, the closed position being where the baffle plate causes the vacuum inlet to be fluidly connected to a first plurality of the perforations, and the open position being where the baffle plate is pivoted away from the perforated plate, causing the vacuum inlet to be fluidly connected to a maximum number of the perforations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 11, 2009
    Date of Patent: June 21, 2011
    Assignee: Xerox Corporation
    Inventor: Linn C. Hoover
  • Patent number: 7938764
    Abstract: A continuous paper feeder for supplying paper to be folded to a paper folding machine is provided. The continuous paper feeder includes a conveyor, a guide, a blower for introducing air between sheets of paper to be supplied to a paper folding machine, and a sensor for controlling the output of the air. The guide includes opposing first surfaces and second surfaces and a plurality of apertures communicating between the first surface and the second surfaces. The blower is adapted to introduce air through the apertures located on the guide as an operator is loading a stack of paper to be folded onto the conveyor surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 5, 2008
    Date of Patent: May 10, 2011
    Inventor: Greg Gale
  • Patent number: 7866662
    Abstract: A vacuum belt feeder comprising a means of conveyance having a pitch, for retrieving items from a supply zone, and then distributing them at target locations in a discharge zone.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 7, 2008
    Date of Patent: January 11, 2011
    Assignee: OSI Machinerie Inc.
    Inventor: Andre Lapointe
  • Patent number: 7819519
    Abstract: An ink jet printing apparatus for printing on a moving substrate (16) is described. The apparatus comprises ink jet printheads (4) for printing on a surface of the substrate, a plurality of rollers (12, 14) arranged to move the substrate (16) relative to the printheads (4), and a pressure source (22). The pressure source (22) is arranged to apply a negative gauge pressure (32) to the substrate (16). The application of the pressure can hold the substrate flat and can reduce undesired movement of the substrate relative to the rollers (12, 14). The apparatus allows for high quality full colour images to be printed onto substrates in a single pass using an ink jet printer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 10, 2004
    Date of Patent: October 26, 2010
    Assignee: Inca Digital Printers Limited
    Inventor: Richard William Eve
  • Patent number: 7731186
    Abstract: A sheet transport method and apparatus are provided for improving the handling of sheets control in printing systems. This automatic sheet transport system and method includes transporting a sheet in the printing machine via a transport belt circulating in a direction of transport, wherein a sheet contact surface of the circulating transport belt is made of an electrically non-conducting material. The method includes placing a sheet on an area of the transport belt and sucking or holding the sheet to the circulating transport belt by a negative pressure applied through the belt and also applying electrical charges to generate electro-static holding forces between the circulating transport belt and the sheet.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 5, 2007
    Date of Patent: June 8, 2010
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventors: Hans-Otto Krause, Frank-Michael Morgenweck, Domingo Rohde
  • Patent number: 7644917
    Abstract: An apparatus for handling sheet-like products having: a truck glidable on rails, a supporting structure for an assembly for gripping a sheet, the supporting structure performing a translational motion on the truck through a lateral translational motion with respect to the direction of advancement of the truck, a grip assembly for a sheet, which is rotatably coupled to the supporting structure by way of rotation elements adapted to move it from a first raised grip configuration to a second substantially horizontal configuration, and a worktable arranged above the rails and provided with through openings that can be crossed downward from above by the grip assembly during the rotary motion from the first raised configuration to the second substantially horizontal configuration.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 1, 2007
    Date of Patent: January 12, 2010
    Inventor: Antonio Piazza
  • Patent number: 7628396
    Abstract: A high speed sheet stacker includes a plurality of vacuum transport sub-assemblies interdigitated with an adjacent sub-assembly and provided with a spatial pitch that is less than or equal to a predetermined shingle distance. The collective vacuum transport assembly can thus acquire shingled sheets and transport the shingled sheets as a set, with each sheet being offset by at least one shingle distance. As a result, speed and acceleration requirements for the vacuum transport and the sheets being transported are greatly reduced compared to conventional vacuum transports that essentially transport sheets singularly. A shingled transport zone may be provided upstream of the vacuum transport system to accommodate sheets of varying size. In various embodiments, three to five vacuum transport sub-assemblies are provided to transport three to five sheets as a set.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 21, 2007
    Date of Patent: December 8, 2009
    Assignee: Xerox Corporation
    Inventors: Steven R. Moore, Paul J. Degruchy
  • Patent number: 7597325
    Abstract: The invention relates to a device for conveying sheetlike articles, in particular printed sheets, by which conveyed sheetlike articles may optionally be fed to various conveying routes, various delivery stacks being provided in particular at the end of the conveying routes. The device includes at least one conveying module (1, 2, 3, 4) having at least one continuously revolving suction belt (11) which exerts a negative pressure on the underside of an article (200) to be conveyed, and which conveys the article (200) from the start to the end of the conveying module (1, 2, 3, 4). At least one conveying module (2) is designed as a mechanical switch point in order to reroute a conveyed sheetlike article (200) in its conveying route. The invention further relates to a method for operating such a device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 18, 2006
    Date of Patent: October 6, 2009
    Assignee: KBA-Metronic AG
    Inventors: Christian Maierhöfer, Thomas Kübert
  • Publication number: 20090218756
    Abstract: In a sheet collecting apparatus having a collecting table on which a sheet charged by a charging means is collected, a suctioning/transporting means for suctioning and transporting the sheet charged by the charging means along a charging direction and releasing the sheet above the collecting table, back stoppers for receiving the sheet transported by the suctioning/transporting means downstream of the collecting table along a transport direction of the sheet, and a back guide disposed downstream of the collecting table along the transport direction of the sheet for regulating a position along the transport direction of the sheet received by the back stoppers, the sheet collecting apparatus positions the sheet charged by the charging means at a predetermined position and stacks it in a layer state.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 19, 2009
    Publication date: September 3, 2009
    Applicant: FUJIFILM CORPORATION
    Inventor: Hironari Misu
  • Patent number: 7562871
    Abstract: A sheet supply system, for use in supplying overlapped sheets to an interfolder, includes a bed roll on which a web is cut into successive sheets. The sheets are supplied to a sheet supply passage leading to retard rolls, which overlap the sheets within the supply passage. The trailing portion of each downstream sheet bulges outwardly as the sheet is supplied to the supply passage. An air tube directs pressurized air into a volume within which the bulge in the downstream sheet is formed. The pressurized air prevents the leading portion of the upstream sheet from being drawn outwardly along with the trailing area of the downstream sheet, by counteracting a vacuum that results from outward movement of the trailing portion of the downstream sheet after it is released from the bed roll.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 7, 2006
    Date of Patent: July 21, 2009
    Assignee: Fabio Perini S.p.A.
    Inventors: Andrew L. Haasl, David J. Stubenvoll
  • Patent number: 7549636
    Abstract: In one embodiment a media ejection system is disclosed for a printer having a stationary print head and a moveable shuttle configured to hold print media via vacuum pressure while moving the print media past the print head. The media ejection system includes a vacuum release valve, actuable to release vacuum pressure in the shuttle, and a lifter, coupled to the vacuum release valve. The lifter is actuable to mechanically lift the print media from the shuttle, and to simultaneously open the vacuum release valve. In another embodiment, a method for ejecting print media from a moveable shuttle is disclosed. The method includes mechanically lifting the print media from the shuttle and simultaneously substantially equalizing pressure above and below the print media.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 31, 2007
    Date of Patent: June 23, 2009
    Assignee: Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P.
    Inventors: Geoffrey Schmid, Jonathan Olson
  • Patent number: 7464929
    Abstract: An apparatus for carrying or guiding a printing material sheet on an air cushion between a nozzle surface and the printing material sheet. The apparatus has first nozzle pairs which are arranged in a first row and second nozzle pairs which are arranged in a second row for generating the air cushion. The first nozzle pairs and the second nozzle pairs in each case have a blower nozzle and a suction nozzle, which are paired in such a way that one and the same air flow is blown out by the respective blower nozzle and is aspirated, at least predominantly, by the suction nozzle that is paired with the blower nozzle. The suction nozzles of the first nozzle pairs are arranged in such a way between the blower nozzles of the second nozzle pairs and the suction nozzles of the second nozzle pairs such that the air flows of the second nozzle pairs flow past the suction nozzles of the first nozzle pairs.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 13, 2006
    Date of Patent: December 16, 2008
    Assignee: Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG
    Inventor: Peter Hachmann
  • Patent number: 7448616
    Abstract: A method for positioning a second flat item atop a flat first item includes the steps of: providing a first conveyor for transporting the first item and rotatably mounting a hard nip roller on an axle so that the hard nip roller engages the first conveyor. A second conveyor for transporting the second item is disposed at an angle relative to the first conveyor and a discharge end of the second conveyor meets the first conveyor at the hard nip roller. First and second soft nip rollers are mounted on the axle on opposite sides of the hard nip roller and are spaced apart from one another by a distance less than a width of the second item. The hard nip roller and the first and second soft nip rollers simultaneously engage the second item and separate it from the second conveyor, depositing the second item onto the first item.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 1, 2005
    Date of Patent: November 11, 2008
    Assignee: Pitney Bowes Inc.
    Inventor: Todd C. Werner
  • Patent number: 7431290
    Abstract: A device for guiding a print carrier includes nozzles. The nozzles have tongues bounded by at least one at least approximately comb-shaped contour. A machine includes the guiding device and a method is provided for producing the guiding device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 2004
    Date of Patent: October 7, 2008
    Assignee: Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG
    Inventors: Peter Bachmeier, Sven Kerpe, Sven Lippardt, Peter Thoma
  • Patent number: 7392984
    Abstract: Guiding a printing medium that is being conveyed along a travel path in a printing machine, whereby the printing medium is not making contact along at least one edge. A stream of sucked air (9) is directed at least partially outward, with respect to at least one edge (5) of the printing medium. A printing media guide with at least one air suction mechanism (8) for sucking air out of the area of the travel path of the printing medium (1) in order to create a suction air stream (9) is directed at least partially outwards.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 9, 2004
    Date of Patent: July 1, 2008
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventors: Domingo Rohde, Lars Seimetz
  • Patent number: 7387298
    Abstract: A vacuum belt feeder comprising a means of conveyance having a pitch, for retrieving items from a supply zone, and then distributing them at target locations in a discharge zone.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 9, 2005
    Date of Patent: June 17, 2008
    Assignee: OSI Machinerie Inc.
    Inventor: Andre Lapointe
  • Patent number: 7384036
    Abstract: A sheet handling device for wide format sheets including a sheet support plate having a top surface containing suction holes which are connected to at least one suction chamber, the at least one suction chamber being divided into compartments that are connected, though an opening, to a suction device adapted to create a subatmospheric pressure in the compartments, wherein at least one internal wall between adjacent ones of the compartments defines a flow restriction orifice, and at least one of the compartments is directly connected to the suction device, and at least another one of the compartments is indirectly connected to the suction device through the orifice.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 3, 2005
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2008
    Assignee: OCE-Technologies B.V.
    Inventor: Pieter G. M. Kruijt
  • Patent number: 7384035
    Abstract: A configuration for generating blowing air or suction air, in particular a directing element in a sheet-processing machine, has a throttle path formed with vortex chambers. The vortex chambers generate vortex flows in a flow channel and they are formed by projections on just one side of the flow channel. This allows the element to be advantageously produced by molding, such as injection molding, thermo-molding, or stamping.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 2005
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2008
    Assignee: Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG
    Inventor: Andreas Detloff
  • Publication number: 20080048386
    Abstract: A sheet turning apparatus includes a vacuum source used to capture and hold a sheet onto a rotatable disc that is connected to a servo motor. Actuation of the servo motor causes rotation of the disc which in turn rotates the sheet 90°.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 22, 2006
    Publication date: February 28, 2008
    Inventor: Wayne R. Smith
  • Patent number: 7296792
    Abstract: A self-valving vacuum distribution system for a belt-driven sheet conveyor utilizes the sheets to automatically open vacuum control valves sequentially in a downstream direction as the sheet is carried on the belts. The system also automatically adjusts for varying sheet widths to automatically apply vacuum holding force only to the belt conveyor area covered by the sheet.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 19, 2004
    Date of Patent: November 20, 2007
    Assignee: Marquip, LLC
    Inventors: John J. Kondratuk, Carl R. Marschke
  • Patent number: 7219889
    Abstract: A sheet-processing machine, particularly a rotary printing press, includes a blast-air supply system and a pneumatic sheet-guiding device connected thereto. The sheet-guiding device has a sheet-guiding surface formed with air passage openings and serves for having the sheets dragged thereover in a sheet travel direction. The air passage openings serve for expelling sheet-carrying air flows during operation. The sheet-guiding device further includes flow ducts for aligning sheet-carrying air flows. The air passage openings in the sheet guiding surface form opening cross-sections of the flow ducts in the form of slots having a length which is many times greater than the width thereof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 21, 2003
    Date of Patent: May 22, 2007
    Assignee: Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG
    Inventors: Peter Hachmann, Christian Hieb, Sven Kerpe, Günter Stephan, Ralf Weiser, Thorsten Eckart, Karl-Heinz Helmstädter