Multiple Station Assembly Or Disassembly Apparatus Patents (Class 29/711)
  • Patent number: 9943964
    Abstract: A method for characterizing the environment of a robot, the robot having a flexible arm having a plurality of joints, a datum carried by the arm, a plurality of drivers arranged to drive the joints to move and a plurality of position sensors for sensing the position of each of the joints, the method comprising: contacting the datum carried by the arm with a first datum on a second robot in the environment of the first robot, wherein the second robot has a flexible arm having a plurality of joints, and a plurality of drivers arranged to drive those joints to move; calculating in dependence on the outputs of the position sensors a distance between a reference location defined in a frame of reference local to the robot and the first datum; and controlling the drivers to reconfigure the first arm in dependence on at least the calculated distance.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 27, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 17, 2018
    Assignee: CMR SURGICAL LIMITED
    Inventor: Luke David Ronald Hares
  • Patent number: 9574979
    Abstract: In order to test battery plate packs (12, 13), the battery plate packs are transported between conveyor belts (5, 6) while compressed to a specified thickness, and the force required for the compression is detected by measuring cells (14) while the battery plate packs are being transported, which measuring cells are associated with a pressing plate (11) associated with one of the conveyor belts (5). If the force deviates from a specified value, the battery plate pack is evaluated as faulty and is ejected.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 24, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 21, 2017
    Assignee: ROSENDAHL NEXTROM GMBH
    Inventors: Franz Albert Jansky, Rainer Prokop, Christian Arzt
  • Patent number: 9222239
    Abstract: A self-contained, on-board diagnostic system integrated with a control system and method of using the same. Various control system coefficients and parameter settings may be set and edited with the on-board system, without the use of external hardware. In certain embodiments, an operator panel display may be used as a display for the on-board system. A menu navigation scheme can be employed to access a plurality of screens in an organized, efficient manner. The on-board system can be adapted for use with a tracked trencher and/or other mobile equipment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 11, 2007
    Date of Patent: December 29, 2015
    Assignee: Vermeer Manufacturing Company
    Inventor: Ty Hartwick
  • Patent number: 9102060
    Abstract: In a method and device to control a multiple-machine arrangement with at least one first controller and one second controller, specific data packages for the controllers are generated, these specific data packages are transferred to the controllers, the transferred data packages are selectively activated, and downloading of the data packages is implemented in the controllers as a result of an activation, in particular installation of at least one program and/or one configuration file.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 25, 2010
    Date of Patent: August 11, 2015
    Assignee: Kuka Roboter GmbH
    Inventors: Christian Tarragona, Eiko Allmann
  • Patent number: 8955207
    Abstract: The present disclosure relates to a method for disassembling a flat display device including a panel that includes a pair of glass substrates each having display materials formed on a surface thereof, the glass substrates being arranged so as to face each other. In the disassembling method, rotation body (10) which has recesses and projections (10a) inside thereof and rotates at a non-constant speed is used. The panel is disassembled so as to be separated into glass substrates (1a) and (1b) to thereby expose the display materials, glass substrates (1a) and (1b) each having the display materials formed on the surface thereof are then put into rotation body (10), and rotation body (10) is then rotated to perform a process for removing the display materials from the surface of each of glass substrates (1a) and (1b).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 4, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 17, 2015
    Assignee: Panasonic Intellectual Property Management Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Norie Araki
  • Patent number: 8935842
    Abstract: Methods and systems for use in releasing tubing sleeves coupled to one or more bandoliers are disclosed. In one example, an apparatus for use in releasing tubing sleeves coupled to a bandolier includes a feed system and a dislodge system. The feed system is configured to engage a bandolier and selectively position the bandolier in the apparatus. The dislodge system is configured to dislodge tubing sleeves from an initial position on a bandolier propelled by the feed system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 2011
    Date of Patent: January 20, 2015
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Richard R. Fengler, Mark A. Schmier, II
  • Publication number: 20140259615
    Abstract: A production system includes: a plurality of production robots configured to share and perform processing works on a workpiece; a controller configured to control the processing works by the plurality of production robots; and a conveying member configured to convey the workpiece between the plurality of production robots. The controller is configured to: acquire work-delay information on a first production robot in which a processing work is delayed compared with a predetermined processing time; acquire work-ready information on a second production robot that can substitutively perform the processing work being performed by the first production robot; and convey the workpiece from the first production robot to the second production robot using the conveying member based on a result of cross-checking the work-delay information and the work-ready information.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 18, 2014
    Publication date: September 18, 2014
    Applicant: KABUSHIKI KAISHA YASKAWA DENKI
    Inventors: Takuya FUKUDA, Shingo ANDO
  • Patent number: 8720026
    Abstract: A method of making elongated spacer frame members prevents a first spacer frame member in a series of spacer frame members from being scrapped. A supply of thin relatively narrow sheet metal stock is provided. The stock is fed endwise to a stamping station. The stock is passed through the stamping station that stamps the stock to define a scrap length of stock followed by a connected first spacer frame defining length of stock. The scrap length of stock and the connected first spacer frame defining length of stock are fed to a roll forming station. The scrap length of stock and the connected first spacer frame defining length of stock are formed into a rigid linearly extending scrap element having opposite side walls and a base wall and a connected rigid linearly extending first spacer frame element having opposite side walls and a base wall. A connection between the scrap element and the first spacer frame element is then severed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 26, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 13, 2014
    Assignee: GED Integrated Solutions, Inc.
    Inventor: Timothy B. McGlinchy
  • Patent number: 8651358
    Abstract: A palletized framing system for a motor vehicle body assembly system in which the pallet with a body structure positioned thereon is positioned at the framing station on balls to establish the vertical Z dimension with the pallet free to float on the balls in longitudinal X and lateral Y dimensions, whereafter positioners carried by one of the gates of the framing station engage and lock onto the pallet to precisely position the pallet and the body structure at the framing station at X and Y dimensions corresponding to the precisely attainable X and Y positioning of the gate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 31, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2014
    Assignee: Comau, Inc.
    Inventor: Velibor Kilibarda
  • Patent number: 8561290
    Abstract: Work line module comprises a plurality of machines (103-106) having a plurality of working functions and non-work facility (107, 108) such as a conveying machine can cooperate so as to produce a necessary amount even if the necessary amount is varied. A plurality of work machines (103-106) for mechanically working a workpiece (124) and non-work facility (107, 108) for processing the workpiece (124). One work machine (106) is a multifunction furnishing machine having a function of measuring the workpiece (124) in addition to a function of mechanically working the workpiece (124). A conveying machine (109) having robots (185-187) for conveying the workpiece (124) between the work machines (103-106), and between the work machines (103-106) and the non-work facility (107, 108).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 15, 2009
    Date of Patent: October 22, 2013
    Assignee: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd.
    Inventors: Tsugumaru Yamashita, Noritaka Fujimura, Kenichiro Hirao
  • Patent number: 8555487
    Abstract: Provided are an imaging device production system, an imaging device inspection system, and an imaging device inspection method. The imaging device production system includes a assembling process for assembling each components constituting an imaging device, an inspection process in which the imaging device assembled in he assembling process is continuously transferred without being stopped except for emergency when two inspection tasks adjacent to and different from each other are performed, and a packaging for packaging the imaging device which passes through the inspection tasks to confirm quality of the imaging device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 12, 2009
    Date of Patent: October 15, 2013
    Assignee: LG Electronics Inc.
    Inventors: Myeong-Woo Kim, Jin-Sang Ah, Jae-Hyun Kim
  • Patent number: 8499437
    Abstract: A device for aligning a LCD panel having circuit elements with driver circuit card assemblies, consisting of retractable pins located around a central platform. The retractable pins extend in order to receive the LCD panel and circuit element assembly and hold it in place as the circuit elements are aligned with driver circuit card assemblies. Once aligned, the drivers and LCD panel can be bonded together. Once bonded, the pins are retracted and the LCD panel and driver assembly is released. The present invention also relates to a method of aligning LCD panels and drivers using retractable pin tools.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 27, 2008
    Date of Patent: August 6, 2013
    Assignee: American Panel Corporation
    Inventor: Ware Bedell
  • Patent number: 8474682
    Abstract: A palletized framing system for a motor vehicle body assembly system in which the pallet with a body structure positioned thereon is positioned at the framing station on balls to establish the vertical Z dimension with the pallet free to float on the balls in longitudinal X and lateral Y dimensions, whereafter positioners carried by one of the gates of the framing station engage and lock onto the pallet to precisely position the pallet and the body structure at the framing station at X and Y dimensions corresponding to the precisely attainable X and Y positioning of the gate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 24, 2008
    Date of Patent: July 2, 2013
    Assignee: Comau, Inc.
    Inventor: Velibor Kilibarda
  • Patent number: 8397376
    Abstract: A smart card processing system for processing a plurality of smart card portions on a smart card panel substantially simultaneously. The system may include a transfer member for moving card panels. Smart card panels may be loaded into an input magazine capable of elevating the panels with respect to a processing station. A transfer member may transport smart card panels from the input magazine to the processing station wherein one or more pre-personalization operations may be conducted. The transfer member may also be operative to move the smart card panels from the processing station to a marking station such that defective smart portions may be marked. The transfer may also move panels from the marking station to an output magazine. The output magazine may lower the smart card panels with respect to the marking station to accommodate more initiated smart card panels.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 26, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 19, 2013
    Assignee: CPI Card Group—Colorado, Inc.
    Inventors: Guy S. Meeker, Francisco Pezzuti, Bryan Kingston
  • Patent number: 8397375
    Abstract: A modular transfer system for workpieces. Workpiece carriers are positioned in a manufacturing module with the same CNC (x-y) axis systems and the same servo drives the workpiece carrier and transfers such between modules. A separate conveyor belt is thus not required for the transfer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 2005
    Date of Patent: March 19, 2013
    Assignee: Continental Teves AG & Co. oHG
    Inventors: Karl-Heinz Mertens, Peter Meier, Detlef Gockel
  • Patent number: 8371024
    Abstract: Process for industrially filling differently structured cavities in building blocks with moldings, having the following features: a) the moldings are cut in the form of differently configured mineral-wool pads (1, 2) from mineral-wool boards supplied, b) the mineral-wool pads (1, 2) are then distributed in layers on at least two levels, c) the mineral-wool pads (1, 2) distributed in this way are respectively separated, arranged in rows and moved into a vertical position in order to be transported further, d) the vertically positioned mineral-wool pads (1, 2) are pushed off laterally in layers and distributed on at least two levels in a supply unit (A 170), wherein, for example, one level has large mineral-wool pads (1) and the other level has small mineral-wool pads (2) and the levels are arranged in accordance with the construction of the cavities of the building block; e) in a further position of the distributing unit (A 180), the mineral-wool pads (1, 2) are pushed into sheet-metal channels, moved up to th
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 7, 2008
    Date of Patent: February 12, 2013
    Assignee: Grenzebach Maschinenbau GmbH
    Inventor: Karl Hertle
  • Patent number: 8356412
    Abstract: This patent relates to a machine that automatically assembles, inspects, and packages disposable prophylaxis angles. The machine includes a movable table including a plurality of fixtures on which angle components are assembled and the assembled angles are inspected. The movable table is surrounded by a number of stations, each of which performs a different operation of the assembly and inspection procedure. Feeders automatically supply the angle components to their respective stations for assembly. Angles that are incorrectly assembled are automatically rejected. Properly assembled angles are automatically sealed in individual bags. Individually bagged angles are counted into batches by the machine and automatically sealed into cartons.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 28, 2011
    Date of Patent: January 22, 2013
    Inventor: David G. Kraenzle
  • Patent number: 8245385
    Abstract: Protective shoe covers have been widely used in health care setting and some industry environment that require clean room condition. To strip off the disposed shoe covers in a hand-free and automated fashion is very desirable to the users, which provide physical convenience, time saving and economic merits. This disclosed invention provides methods and an automatic system for stripping of disposable shoe cover from user's foot/feet that includes the electro-mechanical complex, a micro control unit and its embedded software programs, control algorithm to guide the execution of the stripping functions in automated and hand-free fashion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 16, 2008
    Date of Patent: August 21, 2012
    Inventors: Liam Minhai He, Yi Wang, Qiuhong Wang
  • Patent number: 8141236
    Abstract: An apparatus for removal of retentive mechanisms retaining a cover of a component device. The apparatus includes a structure. The apparatus also includes a component device positioner coupled to the structure. The apparatus additionally includes a plurality of retentive mechanism removers coupled with the structure. Each of the plurality of retentive mechanism removers are configured for interoperability with each retention mechanism retaining a cover of a component device having a plurality of retention mechanisms disposed therein. The apparatus further includes a drive mechanism that is coupled with the structure. The drive mechanism is for rotation of each of the plurality of retentive mechanism removers, causing removal of each retention mechanism retaining the cover of the component device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 2007
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2012
    Assignee: Hitachi Global Storage Technologies, Netherlands B.V.
    Inventors: Khaled M. Fawzi, Chandrasekaran Nagappan
  • Patent number: 8108989
    Abstract: A manufacturing cell has a plurality of stations arranged in two rows having a main aisle therebetween. Each of the plurality of stations has a station-aisle interface that provides an interaction area to the main aisle. The manufacturing cell also comprises a plurality of storage units that are located within the cell along the main aisle and a guided forklift truck that traverses the main aisle without requiring steering control of a stock handler operating the forklift truck within the main aisle to relocate containers from the storage units to designated station-aisle interfaces and to remove containers from the designated station-aisle interfaces when work is completed at the corresponding stations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 28, 2007
    Date of Patent: February 7, 2012
    Assignee: Crown Equipment Corporation
    Inventors: Rick J. Muhlenkamp, David G. Schaefer, Todd A. Thomas, Stephen E. Wagner, Joel E. Zacharias
  • Patent number: 8087140
    Abstract: A processing speed of each mechanisms in a cutting section is controlled such that all polarizing films housed in a container in advance are used in a joining process and simultaneously a new container with polarizing films housed therein that are cut by a size of a liquid crystal panel is loaded from the cutting section. Here, a fracture included in the polarizing film is cut and removed in the cutting section while a delayed time due to this process is shortened by controlling at least a processing speed in a processing mechanism in a cutting mechanism among mechanisms provided in the cutting section and the joining section.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 6, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 3, 2012
    Assignee: Nitto Denko Corporation
    Inventors: Satoru Koshio, Kazuo Kitada, Tomokazu Yura, Takuya Nakazono
  • Patent number: 8061018
    Abstract: A machine is provided for making a fluid level sender assembly having a first mounting member with a flange and a fluid level sender including a second mounting member that telescopically connects with the first mounting member. The machine has a base, a holding member to support the first mounting member, a head member having an outer ring configured to rotate the flange, the head member moving between a first and second position to allow placing the first mounting member on the holding member and a second position to allow the outer ring to rotate the flange and a sensor receiving member to engage the fluid level sender. The sensor receiving member may move with respect to the holding member to telescopically position the fluid level sender and the plurality of different longitudinal positions such that a plurality of differently sized fluid level sender assemblies can be constructed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 2007
    Date of Patent: November 22, 2011
    Assignee: Medallion Instrumentation Systems LLC
    Inventors: Gregory Philip Stepanek, Nicholas Frank DeVille
  • Patent number: 8033010
    Abstract: A clutching jig used to disassemble a lens socket and a lens component which has a lens base glued on a printed circuit board (PCB) and is fixed in the lens socket by a plurality of buckling pieces of the lens socket abutting on the lens component has a substantially rectangular base. The base defines two opposite first lateral surfaces, a bottom surface, and a slot passing through the first lateral surfaces and the bottom surface to divide the base into a first holding portion and a second holding portion. The bottom surface has a receiving recess communicating with the slot. When the receiving recess receives the lens component, a plurality of resisting slices attached to a periphery of the base inserts into a gap between the lens component and the lens socket for pressing the buckling pieces away from the lens component.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 7, 2009
    Date of Patent: October 11, 2011
    Assignee: Cheng UEI Precision Industry Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Chin-Chou Wang, Yi-Chang Yang
  • Publication number: 20110179619
    Abstract: An apparatus and a method for automatically joining components of photovoltaic elements are disclosed. The apparatus includes: a) at least two manufacturing lines and at least two assembly bridges for joining the substrates, films and glass panes, b) a stacking device for film feeding and a conveyor belt for feeding the glass panes, c) devices for centering and suctioning the films and the glass plates, d) devices for transporting and fixing the film transport frame and the glass transport frame e) devices for lowering the films and the glass plates from the respective transport frames, and f) devices for further transport.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 18, 2009
    Publication date: July 28, 2011
    Applicant: Grenzebach Maschinenbau GmbH
    Inventor: Helmut Weigl
  • Patent number: 7946030
    Abstract: An assembly-target-object-and-assembly-component carrier pallet carries thereon a target object (semi-finished product) 2 and a plurality of assembly components arranged, as viewed in plane, on a straight line which passes through a predetermined attachment position on the target object where the predetermined assembly component is to be attached. This allows a minimum of moving parts in the attaching device which attaches the assembly components to the assembly target object. Therefore, the structure of an assembling apparatus is simplified and mechanical errors and assembly time are reduced, thereby improving assembling accuracy.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 26, 2005
    Date of Patent: May 24, 2011
    Assignee: Hirata Corporation
    Inventors: Toshiharu Tanaka, Yoshitaka Taniguchi
  • Patent number: 7784183
    Abstract: A manufacturing system and manufacturing method for adjusting the performance of manufacturing operations or steps in manufacturing components having three-dimensional external structural characteristics. An embodiment of the system broadly comprises: (a) a plurality of manufacturing operations for processing a component having three-dimensional external structural characteristics; (b) at least one analytical device for analyzing at least one characteristic of the component after the performance of one or more manufacturing operations to generate a component data set; (c) at least one data storage device for storing the generated component data sets and for providing at least a relevant portion of accumulated component data; and (d) a communication mechanism for transmitting at least a relevant portion of accumulated component data to one or more manufacturing operations so that the performance thereof can be adjusted in response to the transmitted portion of accumulated component data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 9, 2005
    Date of Patent: August 31, 2010
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Todd Jay Rockstroh, James Joseph Hoffman
  • Patent number: 7676900
    Abstract: The invention relates to an apparatus for processing electronic components mounted on a carrier, comprising at least two engaging elements which co-act when engaging on a carrier. The invention also relates to a processing element for processing electronic components mounted on a carrier, which processing element can be coupled interchangeably to an apparatus according to the invention. The invention furthermore relates to a method for product-related adjustment of such an apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 15, 2004
    Date of Patent: March 16, 2010
    Assignee: Fico B.V.
    Inventor: Wilhelmus Hendrikus Johannes Harmsen
  • Patent number: 7657996
    Abstract: A tube connecting apparatus capable of stably and reliably connecting tubes in which liquid is contained and sealed is provided. A tube connecting apparatus 1 equips a first tube-holding assembly 2 and a second tube-holding assembly 3, each holding tube 8, 9 in which blood is contained and sealed in a parallel state. A first clamp 6 and a second clamp 7, each pressing the tubes to a flat state, is provided at the first tube-holding assembly 2 and the second tube-holding assembly 3. A tube-pushing member 10 which presses the tubes to a flat state is disposed movably to and integrally with the first clamp 6 at a side of the second clamp 7. The tube connecting apparatus 1 has a cutting mechanism 4, disposed between the first clamp 6 and the second clamp 7, for melting and cutting the tubes, and has a movement mechanism which moves the first tube-holding assembly 2 and the second tube-holding assembly 3 such that end portions to be connected contact closely each other.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 29, 2003
    Date of Patent: February 9, 2010
    Assignee: Terumo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Hiroaki Sano, Masaru Nagashimada, Shinji Ishida, Satoshi Yamanushi, Hideya Fujihara, Osamu Sumiya
  • Publication number: 20080289167
    Abstract: A method for operating one or more electronic device manufacturing systems is provided, including the steps 1) performing a series of electronic device manufacturing process steps with a process tool, wherein the process tool produces effluent as a byproduct of performing the series of process steps; 2) abating the effluent with an abatement tool; 3) supplying an abatement resource to the abatement tool from a first abatement resource supply; 4) changing an abatement resource supply from the first abatement resource supply to a second abatement resource supply, wherein changing the abatement resource supply comprises: i) interrupting a flow of the abatement resource from the first abatement resource supply; and ii) beginning a flow of the abatement resource from the second abatement resource supply; and 5) continuing to perform the series of process steps with the process tool, while changing, and after changing, the abatement resource supply.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 25, 2008
    Publication date: November 27, 2008
    Applicant: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Phil Chandler, Daniel O. Clark, Robbert M. Vermeulen, Jay J. Jung, Roger M. Johnson, Youssef A. Loldj, James L. Smith
  • Patent number: 7313859
    Abstract: An optimization apparatus capable of efficiently placing an electronic component. An optimization unit (203) determines a first assignment to the placement apparatus and calculates a first placement time required for placing all the electronic components assigned to the placement apparatus by the first assignment onto a circuit board by the placement apparatus. The optimization unit selects two placement apparatuses among a plurality of placement apparatuses, selects a type of an electronic component assigned for the selected placement apparatus, determines a second assignment by interchanging two selected times assigned, calculates a second placement time required for placing all the electronic components assigned to the placement apparatus by the second assignment onto the circuit board by the placement apparatus, and employs the one of the first assignment and the second assignment which has a smaller placement time.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 2002
    Date of Patent: January 1, 2008
    Assignee: Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Yasuhiro Maenishi, Ikuo Yoshida, Satoshi Masuda, Akihito Yamasaki
  • Patent number: 7165304
    Abstract: A block attacher for attaching blocks to slats as stringers for pallets includes a slat dispenser disposed to dispense individual slats to a slat driver, the slat driver being selectively positionable. A first block dispenser dispenses a block to an assembly station where a position fixture is disposed to operatively cooperate with the slat driver and the block dispenser to position the dispensed block abutting the individual slat when the slat driver is in a first selected position. At least one other position fixture is disposed to operatively cooperate with the slat driver to position a second dispensed block abutting the individual slat when the slat driver is in a second selected position. The subsequent blocks may be dispensed by the same block dispenser as the first block, or by different dispensers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 2, 2004
    Date of Patent: January 23, 2007
    Assignee: L&P Property Management Company
    Inventors: Dustin W. Smith, Dale De'Crescenzo
  • Patent number: 7100271
    Abstract: A vehicle framing system for framing an automotive vehicle body from a plurality of separate body components wherein the body components each include a reference surface. The system includes an assembly station having spaced-apart frame members positioned so that, when a vehicle carrier supporting the vehicle body components is positioned at the assembly station, the frame members extend along opposite sides of the vehicle carrier. At least two docking stations are secured to each frame member at predetermined locations. A robot mounts its associated tool arm with a docking station. At least one set of reference block and framing clamp is secured to each tool arm and these framing clamps maintain the reference surfaces of the vehicle body components against the reference blocks to hold the vehicle components at a predetermined position relative to each other.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 2003
    Date of Patent: September 5, 2006
    Assignee: Valiant Corporation
    Inventor: Dominique Baulier
  • Patent number: 7089653
    Abstract: A sunroof is automatically and precisely positioned to a mounting position by an apparatus including a floating plate movably mounted to a base member. A secondary lift structure is mounted to the floating plate and a centering cylinder unit is disposed between the secondary lift structure and the floating plate such that the centering cylinder unit aligns the floating plate to the sunroof mounting position on the vehicle body.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 31, 2003
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2006
    Assignee: Hyundai Motor Company
    Inventor: Young Chol Kim
  • Patent number: 7000664
    Abstract: A sheet supply section disposed along a transport way of a substrate feeds a sheet wound in a roll shape. A sheet cutting section cuts a sealing sheet to be set on the substrate from a fed portion of the sheet. A sheet set section including a transfer head of a vacuum suction type with a plurality of suction holes disposed therein reciprocates/moves the transfer head over a sheet receiving position in the sheet cutting section and a sheet covering position in the transport way. The sheet set section lowers the transfer head in the sheet receiving position, raises the transfer head at the sheet covering position. The transfer head attracts the sheet at the sheet-receiving position and does not attract the sheet at the sheet covering position the sheet covers the substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 21, 2001
    Date of Patent: February 21, 2006
    Assignee: Kaneka Corporation
    Inventor: Yuzuru Kondoh
  • Patent number: 6983532
    Abstract: An in-line programming (ILP) system and method for programming and testing programmable integrated circuit devices (PICs) and performing the assembly of printed circuit board assemblies (PCBAs). Printed circuit boards enter and leave the ILP system on a conveyor system. PICs are loaded into the ILP system, and the ILP system automatically programs and tests the PICs and places them onto the PCBs as the PCBs arrive on the conveyor. The programming and testing operations are performed by the same piece of equipment that performs the PCBA assembly operation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 2, 2004
    Date of Patent: January 10, 2006
    Assignee: BP Microsystems
    Inventor: William H. White
  • Patent number: 6944940
    Abstract: Automated method and machinery for fabricating a wrought-iron fence panel. The machinery includes (a) automated programmable machinery for welding vertical pickets to horizontal runners to form a fence panel; (b) automated programmable machinery for straightening the fence panel; (c) automated programmable machinery for washing the fence panel; (d) automated programmable machinery for drying the fence panel; (e) automated programmable machinery for painting the fence panel; and (f) automated programmable conveyor machinery for conveying the vertical pickets, the horizontal runners, and the fence panel from station to station.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 6, 2004
    Date of Patent: September 20, 2005
    Inventors: Patrick C. Pigott, Woodruff J. Kozlow, Davis E. Warren
  • Patent number: 6917854
    Abstract: A method for recognition, determination and localization of at least one arbitrary object or space and the picking up of said object, by at least on robot, in particular, a service robot, which operates independently on the base surface. The method is achieved, whereby the robot is oriented within at least one room by room co-ordinates and/or co-ordinates of arbitrary objects in the room, transmitted to the robot by at least one sensor element, in particular, a transponder or transmitter.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 9, 2000
    Date of Patent: July 12, 2005
    Assignee: Wittenstein GmbH & Co. KG
    Inventor: Thomas Bayer
  • Patent number: 6912774
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for assembling motorcycle frames includes a conveyor defining a path of travel and at least one pallet movable along the conveyor through at least one workstation. The pallet supports at least one rotatable frame for receiving individual components and/or sub-assemblies in fixed relationship with respect to one another in a geometry fixture. The angular position of the rotatable frame and supported geometry fixture can be reoriented about an axis of rotation by engagement with a drive motor. The rotatable frame is normally locked in an angular orientation with respect to the pallet. When the movable section of the conveyor and supported pallet are moved, the movable section of the conveyor is guided between raised and lowered positions with respect to the workstation, and the support pallet is accurately and repeatably positioned with respect to the workstation for automated processing operations at the workstation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 15, 2002
    Date of Patent: July 5, 2005
    Assignee: Progressive Tool & Industries Co.
    Inventors: Velibor Kilabarda, Michael R. Dugas, Peter C. Kekic
  • Patent number: 6865800
    Abstract: A billet of veneer sheets is constructed using parallel sheet conveying conveyors for simultaneous building of partial fans that are combined and transferred to the trailing end of the billet. Encoders, detectors and computer controls control the conveyors for precise placement of the sheets in building a fan and precision placement of the fan to the trailing end of the billet.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 29, 2003
    Date of Patent: March 15, 2005
    Assignee: Corvallis Tool Co.
    Inventors: Martin J. Utecht, Michael S. Dahrens, Jason A. Holbert, John C. Holbert
  • Patent number: 6841728
    Abstract: A machine for the automated assembly of wafers such as solar cells into strings, comprising a control system, a cell loader with wafer inspection station, a cell tab loader, a string assembly station, and a platen with adjacent pairs of individual cell, opposing edge grippers having multiple sets of vertically operable pincer action fingers for holding cells in string alignment during soldering. The string assembly station has a cooperating cell support and tab tail support mechanism providing for a tab tail hand off from one to the other with a platen indexing movements of cell pitch distance. The platen moves from the string assembly station through a soldering station consisting of a preheat, soldering, and cooling zones spaced a cell pitch distance apart. A string unloader moves completed strings through a string inspection station placing strings in a good or bad string holding area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 18, 2002
    Date of Patent: January 11, 2005
    Assignee: G.T. Equipment Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Bernard D. Jones, Eric de Rivera, Alleppey V. Hariharan, Steven T. Slavsky, Thomas S. McGee, David W. Lackey, Thomas N. Kirchner
  • Patent number: 6804880
    Abstract: An assembly apparatus that may easily conform to increase in production volume and change in specifications of parts, and exhibits high production efficiency is provided. The assembly apparatus 1 includes a part-supplying station 2 in which an operator 8 supplies parts to a conveyor pallet 5, a part-assembling station 3 in which assembly robots R1, R2 assemble the parts in the conveyor pallet 5, and a conveyor means 4 that conveys the conveyor pallet 5 from the part-supplying station 2 to the part-assembling station 3. After the assembly robots R1 have finished assembling the parts on one conveyor pallet 5 in a work area A1, the conveyor means 4 conveys the one conveyor pallet 5 from the work area A1, and concurrently conveys the next conveyor pallet 5 following the one conveyor pallet 5 in the work area A1.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 22, 2002
    Date of Patent: October 19, 2004
    Assignee: Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Hidetoshi Yamamoto
  • Patent number: 6732416
    Abstract: A system and method for recycling materials from appliances, such as refrigerators and freezers, including a conveyor system having a number of stations to remove material from the appliance, and a band saw to cut the appliance into at least two pieces. The cut pieces of the appliance are taken apart to separate a metal shell and plastic interior from polyurethane foam. The polyurethane foam is placed in sealed bags, palletized, shrink-wrapped and shipped to an incinerator for burning to eliminate outgassing of CFC-11 to the atmosphere.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 19, 2002
    Date of Patent: May 11, 2004
    Assignee: Jaco Environmental, Inc.
    Inventors: Terry Jacobsen, Michael Dunham
  • Patent number: 6732005
    Abstract: A method and system (10) for reducing errors in a vehicle manufacturing process is provided. The system is a non-segmented network that includes a plurality of servers (30, 40, 46, 48) for storing build data and transmitting the data to a tracking controller (20). The tracking controller (20) identifies the assembly (18) entering a manufacturing zone (14) and generates positioning information related to the assembly as it passes through the zone (14). The tracking controller (20) is electronically coupled to a series of local I/O interfaces (32) for transmitting the identity, the position information, and the build data of the assembly (18) thereto. Each local I/O interface (32) has one or more I/O manufacturing tools (34, 36) coupled thereto for allowing an operator to perform an assembly task pursuant to the build data. In addition, the I/O manufacturing tools (34, 36) detect whether a successful build condition or an unsuccessful build condition results from performance of the assembly task.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 19, 2003
    Date of Patent: May 4, 2004
    Assignee: Ford Motor Company
    Inventors: Aaron Bobkin, David Odett, Saeid Soleimani, Donald Edward Fetterman, Gavin Haag, Jim Mathew Nicholson, Mike Palo
  • Publication number: 20040068853
    Abstract: A system including an apparatus and method for assembling an insert and a cutter bar into a subassembly for use in dental floss dispensers. The insert includes a body portion defining an arbor for rotatably supporting a spool of dental floss and a superstructure contiguous with the body portion. The superstructure includes cutter bar receiving structure adapted to be grippingly engaged by a cutter bar having a cutting blade portion. The apparatus includes a rotatable assembly wheel having multiple pockets for receiving inserts, which wheel is rotatable into a plurality of positions corresponding to a plurality of assembly stations. An insert is inserted into a wheel pocket in a first direction at a first assembly station, a cutter bar is pushed onto the insert's cutter bar receiving structure at a second assembly station and the subassembly is discharged in a direction opposite to the direction of insertion at a third assembly station.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 25, 2003
    Publication date: April 15, 2004
    Inventor: Gary A. Benner
  • Publication number: 20040055147
    Abstract: A process line for fabricating an assembly from a plurality of subassemblies generated from various workpieces is provided, which includes a plurality of standardized task stations for performing a work process on a workpiece, at least first and second templates, with each of the templates comprising a defined set of standardized task stations, and with each of the sets including a predetermined arrangement of the standardized task stations and being operative to perform a work process on a workpiece, and a combination of templates including at least the first and second templates arranged in predetermined alignment to form the process line.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 24, 2002
    Publication date: March 25, 2004
    Inventors: Abid Ghuman, James Wayne Lowe, Marsha J. Rosso, Kirk E. Sanborn
  • Patent number: 6711469
    Abstract: An authenticating pattern is disposed on a cover and an authenticating device is disposed in a robot apparatus for authenticating the cover on the basis of the authenticating pattern of the fitted cover. An information holding device for holding inherent information is disposed in the cover and a reading device for reading out the inherent information from the information holding device is disposed in the robot apparatus. A function of detecting an amount of influence due to the cover and changing manifesting patterns of motions as occasion demands on the basis of the detection result is disposed in the robot apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 26, 2002
    Date of Patent: March 23, 2004
    Assignee: Sony Corporation
    Inventors: Takayuki Sakamoto, Masahiro Fujita, Seiichi Takamura, Yu Hirono, Hironari Hoshino, Nobuhiko Ohguchi
  • Patent number: 6701608
    Abstract: Automated method and machinery for fabricating a wrought-iron fence panel. The machinery includes (a) automated programmable machinery for welding vertical pickets to horizontal runners to form a fence panel; (b) automated programmable machinery for straightening the fence panel; (c) automated programmable machinery for washing the fence panel; (d) automated programmable machinery for drying the fence panel; (e) automated programmable machinery for painting the fence panel; and (f) automated programmable conveyor machinery for conveying the vertical pickets, the horizontal runners, and the fence panel from station to station.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 2002
    Date of Patent: March 9, 2004
    Inventors: Patrick C. Pigott, Woodruff J. Kozlow, Davis E. Warren
  • Patent number: 6687986
    Abstract: An in-line programming (ILP) system and method for programming and testing programmable integrated circuit devices (PICs) and performing the assembly of printed circuit board assemblies (PCBAs). Printed circuit boards enter and leave the ILP system on a conveyor system. PICs are loaded into the ILP system, and the ILP system automatically programs and tests the PICs and places them onto the PCBs as the PCBs arrive on the conveyor. The programming and testing operations are performed by the same piece of equipment that performs the PCBA assembly operation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 1, 2001
    Date of Patent: February 10, 2004
    Assignee: BP Microsystems
    Inventor: William H. White
  • Patent number: 6687982
    Abstract: An exemplary embodiment of the invention concerns a process for forming an elongated strip for use in making two tone muntin bars. An elongated strip of muntin bar material is provided that has been treated on at least a portion of one side to define an exposed surface of a completed muntin bar fabricated from the muntin bar material. An elongated strip of covering material is also provided for controlled application onto a specified portion of a surface of the muntin bar material. The elongated strip of covering material includes an adhesive for adhering the covering material to the muntin bar material. The muntin bar material and the covering material are brought into contact with each other thereby causing the covering material to overlie and adhere to the muntin bar material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 12, 2001
    Date of Patent: February 10, 2004
    Assignee: Glass Equipment Development, Inc.
    Inventor: Timothy Bryan McGlinchy
  • Patent number: 6684488
    Abstract: A line of manufacturing units for carrying out a sequence of machining operations on a set of workpieces, which are fed in, in succession, at one loading end of the line and proceed along the line up to an unloading end of the line, comprises means for transfer of the workpieces along the line, the said means including a fixture made up of a plurality of horizontal supporting and guide beams, which are set in a superelevated position and which extend one on the prolongation of the other in the longitudinal direction of the line. Each superelevated beam carries a first mobile slide on top of it, upon which is in turn mounted a vertical upright (or a second mobile slide, which can move vertically), at the bottom end of which there is mounted a pick-up device, which can be oriented about a vertical axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 14, 2002
    Date of Patent: February 3, 2004
    Assignee: Comau SpA
    Inventor: Danilo Menzio