Minute Transparent Spheres Patents (Class 359/536)
  • Patent number: 10338283
    Abstract: A composite glue coating device and a preparation method for a fancy reflective material using the same, which relates to the technical field of reflective material production. The composite glue coating device comprises a composite glue roller (1), a glue coating roller (2), a glue sink device (3) and a glue scrapping device (4). The composite glue roller (1) and the glue coating roller (2) are arranged as a clamping roller set and a bead planting film passing interval (L) is formed between the composite glue roller (1) and the glue coating roller (2). The glue scrapping device (4) is connected with a scraper of the glue coating roller (2). A plurality of glue moving grooves (5) are evenly distributed on the glue coating roller (2). The glue coating roller (2) is connected with the glue sink device (3) and is glue immersed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 22, 2015
    Date of Patent: July 2, 2019
    Assignee: Hangzhou Chinastars Reflective Material Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Shijie Wang, Weijiang Cha, Weican Jia, Bingnai Xie, Hai Ruan, Shanghuang Qiu, Wuewen Zhang, Xiaolin Liu, Xianwen Zhang, Guohong Cui
  • Patent number: 10239277
    Abstract: There is provided an article a binder resin layer comprising an aliphatic polyurethane polymer comprising a plurality of soft segments, and a plurality of hard segments, where the soft segments comprise poly(alkoxy) polyol, and where the poly(alkoxy) polyol is essentially free of crosslinker; and a plurality of microspheres partially embedded and adhered to a first major surface of the binder resin layer, wherein the specific chemical identities and relative amounts of the segments and moieties of the aliphatic polyurethane polymer are sufficient to impart a glass transition temperature of 10° C. or less in the article and a storage modulus in the article that changes less than 15 MPa from 25° C. to 175° C.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 13, 2015
    Date of Patent: March 26, 2019
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Alexander J. Kugel, John C. Clark, Vivek Krishnan, Christopher B. Walker, Jr.
  • Patent number: 10215894
    Abstract: Retroreflective articles include transparent microspheres (120) protruding from a bead bond layer (140), with reflective metal layers (130) coated on a portion of the transparent microspheres. Retroreflective articles with anti-staining properties have bead bond layers that contain one or more corrosion inhibiting compounds. At least a portion of the one or more corrosion inhibiting compounds migrates through the reflective metal layer to passivate the exposed metal surface of the reflective metal layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 24, 2015
    Date of Patent: February 26, 2019
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Ruby Chakraborty, Cheryl L. S. Elsbernd, Shri Niwas
  • Patent number: 9835860
    Abstract: A retroreflective screen including a first film having a surface including a plurality of microrecesses, each microrecess having a bottom substantially parallel to the mean plane of the screen and first and second lateral walls substantially orthogonal to each other and substantially orthogonal to the bottom, the first and second lateral walls and the bottom of the microrecess joining at a same point and forming a trihedron.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 18, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 5, 2017
    Assignee: Commissariat à l'Énergie Atomique et aux Énergies Alternatives
    Inventor: Christophe Martinez
  • Patent number: 9671533
    Abstract: Methods of making retroreflective articles include mixing a metal pigment with a binder material. The mixture is applied to a surface of a substrate. The surface can be a flat planar surface or be contoured or have arcuate regions. The binder material forms a binder material layer and the metal pigment forms a leafing pigment layer near a top surface of the binder material layer. Transparent microsphere lenses are embedded in the top surface of the binder material layer. The leafing metal pigment layer conforms to a rear embedded surface of the microsphere lenses to thereby form a retroreflective article. Related retroreflective articles are also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 17, 2014
    Date of Patent: June 6, 2017
    Assignee: Avery Dennison Corporation
    Inventor: Michael Hannington
  • Patent number: 9316593
    Abstract: A detection system includes a retroreflector and a layer of material over the retroreflector, the material being subject to change in transmission with respect to an optical property of radiation, e.g. wavelength or polarization, with exposure to a phenomenon. The retroreflector and layer are illuminated from a radiation source of multiple aspects of the optical property. A sensor senses radiation retroreflected back through the layer. The retroreflector may, for example, be an array of or individual prisms or an array of or individual cat's eye microspheres. The layer of material above the retroreflector can include a colorimetric dye. In an embodiment, the retroreflector and layer are on the surface of a carrier that moves through a medium, e.g. a projectile or vehicle moving through the air. In a method of detecting a phenomenon, retroreflective elements are distributed in an array, as in the atmosphere or across a region of ground.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 19, 2016
    Assignee: Massachusetts Institutes of Technology
    Inventors: Michael Switkes, Mordechai Rothschild
  • Patent number: 8888333
    Abstract: Light redirecting film is disclosed. The light redirecting film includes a first major surface that includes a plurality of first microstructures that extend along a first direction. The light redirecting film also includes a second major surface that is opposite to the first major surface and includes a plurality of second microstructures. The second major surface has an optical haze that is in a range from about 4% to about 20% and an optical clarity that is in a range from about 20% to about 60%. The light redirecting film has an average effective transmission that is not less than about 1.55.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 11, 2010
    Date of Patent: November 18, 2014
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Robert A. Yapel, Mitchell A. F. Johnson, Tri D. Pham, Joseph T. Aronson, Steven D. Solomonson, Scott R. Kaytor, Steven J. McMan, Fei Lu, Steven H. Kong, Slah Jendoubi, Gary T. Boyd
  • Patent number: 8851688
    Abstract: An exposed lens retroreflective article that includes a binder layer; a layer of spaced apart optical elements that are partially embedded in the binder layer; a penetrated colored layer that is located between the spaced apart optical elements; and a reflective layer that is located functionally behind the layer of optical elements and the penetrated colored layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 24, 2011
    Date of Patent: October 7, 2014
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Ningyong Huang, Shane M. Klundt, Huijin Li, Loretta L. Lucas, Bradley R. Ray, Rong Wu
  • Publication number: 20140247491
    Abstract: Retroreflective articles and appliqués include a first binder layer with a first major surface and a second major surface, a retroreflective layer including a plurality of retroreflective elements at least partially embedded in the first major surface of the first binder layer, a second binder layer adhered to the second major surface of the first binder layer, and a substrate layer attached to the second binder layer. The first binder layer is a non-thermoplastic crosslinked (meth)acrylate-based copolymer. The second binder layer is a moisture-cured urethane-based polymer. The first binder layer and the second binder layer include functional groups capable of co-reacting to form a chemical bond. The retroreflective appliqués can be attached to clothing articles.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 22, 2013
    Publication date: September 4, 2014
    Applicant: 3M INNOVATIVE PROPERTIES COMPANY
    Inventors: Xiwen Zhang, Ningyong Huang
  • Publication number: 20140233102
    Abstract: The present application relates to a pavement marker including a core from which extends protrusions and a cavity between adjacent protrusions. The microsphere lenses are fixed within the cavity by one of a softening material disposed in the core and an adhesive agent disposed in the cavity.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 20, 2012
    Publication date: August 21, 2014
    Inventors: Junichi Saito, Toshihiro Kasai, Yuji Hiroshige, Mayumi Yoshikawa
  • Patent number: 8801200
    Abstract: A reflective film structure is provided for being adhered and shaped on multiple processing surfaces of a preformed structural element, in which the processing surfaces form a three-dimensional shape. The reflective film structure includes a thermoplastic adhesive film and a reflective layer. The thermoplastic adhesive film has a thickness ranging from 0.01 mm to 1 mm, and has an internal surface and an external surface. The internal surface is adhered to the processing surfaces. The reflective layer is laminated on the external surface, and massive beads are distributed on an outer surface of the reflective layer. The reflective film structure has a normal direction vertical to the reflective layer. Furthermore, the reflective layer has at least a first and a second reflective region in different directions, which are respectively towards different directions other than the normal direction. The first and the second reflective region are respectively disposed with beads.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 2, 2012
    Date of Patent: August 12, 2014
    Assignee: Chaei Hsin Enterprise Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Shui-Mu Wang
  • Patent number: 8727545
    Abstract: A retroreflective sheet, which may be a beaded retroreflective sheet or a prismatic retroreflective sheet, is comprised of a substrate having a first and second surfaces with a plurality of retroreflective elements disposed on the second surface of the substrate to form the retroreflective sheet having an initial performance standard and a printed pattern disposed on the second surface, the pattern provided in an amount ranging from 30% to about 100% of an area of the second surface to change a performance level of the retroreflective sheet from the initial performance standard to a selected performance standard. A method for producing the retroreflective sheeting and a system for controlling the retroreflectivity of the retroreflective sheeting by altering a surface of the retroreflective sheeting is provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 17, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 20, 2014
    Assignee: Avery Dennison Corporation
    Inventor: Nikhil Agashe
  • Patent number: 8684544
    Abstract: An object of the present invention is to provide a retroreflective member that can improve the visibility further. The retroreflective member includes a reflective layer and transparent microscopic beads 13. The retroreflective member gives a phase difference corresponding to a visible light wavelength to at least a part of incident light and recombines, emphasizes a light component having the visible light wavelength by interference, and returns coherent light having a visible light wavelength depending on the incident angle in the traveling direction of the incident light. The reflective layer includes a light-transmissive interference layer 14, and the interference layer 14 each has an optical layer thickness of 100 to 600 nm so as to generate an interference color having a visible light wavelength depending on the incident angle of light.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 2008
    Date of Patent: April 1, 2014
    Assignee: Marujin Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Hironori Kobayashi, Shojiro Amemori
  • Patent number: 8657472
    Abstract: A light redirecting film (100) includes a first major surface (110) that includes first microstructures (150) that extend along a first direction and a second major surface (120), which may form part of a matte layer, the second major surface being opposite to the first major surface and including second microstructures (160). The second major surface has an optical haze that is not greater than about 3% and an optical clarity that is not greater than about 85%. The light redirecting film has an average effective transmission that is not less than about 1.75. The light redirecting film (100) may comprise particles. The second microstructures may have a slope distribution.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 25, 2010
    Date of Patent: February 25, 2014
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Joseph T. Aronson, Slah Jendoubi, Mitchell A. F. Johnson, Scott R. Kaytor, Tri D. Pham, Robert A. Yapel, Joseph A. Zigal, Steven J. McMan, Steven D. Solomonson, Steven H. Kong, Fei Lu, Gary T. Boyd
  • Patent number: 8622555
    Abstract: A security laminate for authenticating an article and a method for authenticating articles is disclosed. The security laminate includes a transparent binder layer and retroreflective microspheres such that the security laminate exhibits a covert switching effect when exposed to particular conditions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 7, 2014
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Vivek Krishnan, Gaurav Manik, Gajendra Rao
  • Patent number: 8591044
    Abstract: Presently described are retroreflective articles, such as pavement markings, that comprise transparent microspheres partially embedded in a binder (e.g., polymeric). Also described are microspheres (e.g., glass-ceramic), methods of making microspheres, spheres, as well as compositions of glass materials and compositions of glass-ceramic materials. The microspheres generally comprise lanthanide series oxide(s), titanium oxide (TiO2), and optionally zirconium oxide (ZrO2).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 21, 2009
    Date of Patent: November 26, 2013
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Kenton D. Budd, Matthew H. Frey, Craig W. Lindsay
  • Patent number: 8541095
    Abstract: Disclosed herein are an anti-counterfeiting film and process for preparation thereof. The anti-counterfeiting film comprises a directional retroreflective layer (1), an optical-angle-based color-changing information layer (2), a reflective layer (3) and a support layer (4) which are combined in this turn. The support layer (4) is made of a polymer resin material, the reflective layer (3) is made of a material with high reflectivity and has a thickness of nanoscale, the information layer (2) is made of an optical-angle-based color-changing chiral polymer material having a helical structure or made of an optical-angle-based color-changing cellulose material. The optical-angle-based color-changing chiral polymer material having a helical structure is a condensation product of a chiral compound and a compound with functional group. The optical-angle-based color-changing cellulose material is composed of a cellulose derivative and a polymerisable monomer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 29, 2008
    Date of Patent: September 24, 2013
    Assignee: Shanghai Techsun Anti-Counterfeiting Technology Holding Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Liangheng Xu, Kai Yang
  • Patent number: 8526092
    Abstract: The present invention is a programmable and latching retro-reflective construct suitable for use as an optical label in an optical labeling system. The invention contains retro-reflective structures such as lens beads, corner cubes or other retro-reflecting type structures. The retro-reflective construct further comprises a wavelength selective, programmable and latching reflecting structure located at the reflecting surfaces of the retro-reflective structures. The optical construct can optionally contain additional optical filtering structures. Methods for fabricating the invention are also described.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 10, 2012
    Date of Patent: September 3, 2013
    Assignee: HRL Laboratories, LLC
    Inventors: Daniel Yap, Keyvan R Sayyah, David L Persechini, Paul R Herz
  • Patent number: 8496340
    Abstract: Retroreflective elements and articles that include such elements. The retroreflective elements (100) include a solid spherical core (110) having an outer surface. A first complete concentric optical interference layer (112) overlays the outer surface of the core providing a first interface between the core and the first optical interference layer, and a second complete concentric optical interference layer (122) overlays the first optical interference layer to provide a second interface between the first optical interference layer and the second optical interference layer. In some embodiments, a third complete concentric optical interference layer overlays the second optical interference layer to provide a third interface between the second optical interference layer and the third optical interference layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 16, 2008
    Date of Patent: July 30, 2013
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Kenton D. Budd, Matthew H. Frey, Christopher K. Haas, Vivek Krishnan
  • Publication number: 20130077167
    Abstract: Disclosed are a light reflective material which shows the color and texture of a base material thereof in the daytime and acts as a light reflector at night, and a preparation method thereof. According to embodiments of the present invention, the preparation method includes preparing an extrusion base material such as plastic or synthetic wood, and supplying a light reflecting element such as glass beads on the surface of the extrusion base material and passing the extrusion base material through an extruder to form a light-reflective layer on the surface of the extrusion base material.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 8, 2011
    Publication date: March 28, 2013
    Applicant: LG HAUSYS, LTD.
    Inventors: Keun-Tae Kim, Tae-Yeon Kim, Hya-Yeon Lee
  • Patent number: 8360586
    Abstract: In one aspect, there is provided a retroreflective film, comprising a retroreflective sub-structure, and a transparent polymeric film, having a surface roughness profile where the Arithmetic Mean Deviation of the Roughness Profile (Ra) ranges from about 0.18 microns to about 1.30 microns and where the Mean Spacing of Local Peaks (R-S) in the printing direction ranges from about 10 microns to about 85 microns, located over and coupled to the retroreflective sub-structure and wherein the polymeric film as a Vicat softening point of about 90° or greater.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 29, 2013
    Assignee: Aura Optical Systems, LP
    Inventor: Drew J. Buoni
  • Patent number: 8342700
    Abstract: A laminate article preferably including two or more layers adapted to be applied to a surface of a roadway that can function as a reflective marker, such as a lane marker or road feature marker. The article includes one or more reflective compounds, preferably particles, aggregates, or clusters that are partially embedded in an exposed outer surface layer of the article. In order to increase the durability of the material, protective media compounds are also present in the outer layer and extend outward therefrom with the protective material protruding a greater distance than the reflective compounds. The articles of the present invention are weather resistant, durable and resistant to damage by vehicles and snowplows.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 11, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 1, 2013
    Assignee: Dow Global Technologies LLC
    Inventors: Hemant A. Naik, Puneet Singh, Ratanjit Sondhe
  • Patent number: 8274727
    Abstract: The present invention is a programmable and latching retro-reflective construct suitable for use as an optical label in an optical labeling system. The invention contains retro-reflective structures such as lens beads, corner cubes or other retro-reflecting type structures. The retro-reflective construct further comprises a wavelength selective, programmable and latching reflecting structure located at the reflecting surfaces of the retro-reflective structures. The optical construct can optionally contain additional optical filtering structures. Methods for fabricating the invention are also described.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 31, 2007
    Date of Patent: September 25, 2012
    Assignee: HRL Laboratories, LLC
    Inventors: Daniel Yap, Keyvan R. Sayyah, David L. Persechini, Paul R. Herz
  • Patent number: 8267533
    Abstract: In one aspect, there is provided a retroreflective film, comprising a retroreflective sub-structure, and a transparent polymeric film, having a surface roughness profile where the Arithmetic Mean Deviation of the Roughness Profile (Ra) ranges from about 0.18 microns to about 1.30 microns and where the Mean Spacing of Local Peaks (R-S) in the printing direction ranges from about 10 microns to about 85 microns, located over and coupled to the retroreflective sub-structure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 21, 2009
    Date of Patent: September 18, 2012
    Assignee: Aura Optical Systems, LP
    Inventor: Drew J. Buoni
  • Publication number: 20120229898
    Abstract: Retroreflective sheeting includes a first portion of prismatic retroreflective sheeting having a first cube corner structure that creates a first visual feature in the retroreflective sheeting and a second portion of prismatic retroreflective sheeting having a second cube corner structure that differs from the first cube structure and that creates a second visual feature in the sheeting. The second visual feature in the retroreflective sheeting forms a security mark.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 10, 2010
    Publication date: September 13, 2012
    Inventors: Paul J. Northey, Bruce D. Orensteen
  • Publication number: 20120229899
    Abstract: Presently described are retroreflective articles, such as pavement markings, that comprise transparent microspheres 0 partially embedded in a binder (e.g., polymeric). Also described are microspheres (e.g., glass-ceramic), methods of making microspheres, spheres, as well as compositions of glass materials and compositions of glass-ceramic materials. The microspheres generally comprise lanthanide series oxide(s), titanium oxide (TiO2), and optionally zirconium oxide (ZrO2).
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 21, 2009
    Publication date: September 13, 2012
    Inventors: Kenton D. Budd, Matthew H. Frey, Craig W. Lindsay
  • Publication number: 20120200709
    Abstract: The present application relates to retroreflective sheeting that is capable of use in a license plate and that can be accurately read and/or detected by an ALPR system. The retroreflective sheeting is a microsphere-based retroreflective sheeting that provides reduced retroreflectivity at high entrance angles. The retroreflective sheeting can also be a microsphere-based retroreflective sheeting that exhibits reduced retroreflectivity of incident infra-red light from high entrance angles and substantially unaffected retroreflectivity of incident visible light from entrance angles in the vicinity of the normal.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 12, 2010
    Publication date: August 9, 2012
    Inventors: Toshitaka Nakajima, Masami Yokoyama, Akira Muramoto, Bruce D. Orensteen
  • Publication number: 20120188641
    Abstract: A retroreflective sheet, which may be a beaded retroreflective sheet or a prismatic retroreflective sheet, is comprised of a substrate having a first and second surfaces with a plurality of retroreflective elements disposed on the second surface of the substrate to form the retroreflective sheet having an initial performance standard and a printed pattern disposed on the second surface, the pattern provided in an amount ranging from 30% to about 100% of an area of the second surface to change a performance level of the retroreflective sheet from the initial performance standard to a selected performance standard. A method for producing the retroreflective sheeting and a system for controlling the retroreflectivity of the retroreflective sheeting by altering a surface of the retroreflective sheeting is provided.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 17, 2012
    Publication date: July 26, 2012
    Applicant: Avery Dennison Corporation
    Inventor: Nikhil AGASHE
  • Publication number: 20110193335
    Abstract: Security laminates and articles wherein the security laminate includes a first substrate having a first major surface and a second major surface; a plurality of retroreflective elements affixed along the first major surface of the substrate, the retroreflective elements including a solid spherical core comprising an outer core surface, the outer core surface providing a first interface; a first complete concentric optical interference layer having an inner surface overlying core surface and an outer surface, the outer surface of the first complete concentric optical interference layer providing a second interface; a second complete concentric optical interference having an inner surface overlying the outer surface of the first complete concentric optical interference layer and an outer surface, the outer surface of the second complete concentric optical interference layer providing a third interface; the security laminate is retroreflective.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 4, 2008
    Publication date: August 11, 2011
    Inventors: Kenton D. Budd, Christopher K. Haas, Matthew H. Frey, Vivek Krishnan, Caroline M. Ylitalo, Lynn E. Lorimor
  • Patent number: 7964269
    Abstract: Retroreflective sheeting articles comprising a colorless thermal mass transferred image, methods of thermal mass transfer printing substrate such as polymeric films with a colorless thermal mass transferable composition, and thermal mass transfer ribbon articles comprising a colorless thermal mass transferable composition are described. The thermal mass transfer composition comprises a homogeneous unreactive thermoplastic composition comprising at least one acrylic resin and less than 3 wt-% of components that are opaque at ambient temperature.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 2006
    Date of Patent: June 21, 2011
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Jennifer L. Lee, Mark W. Leverty, Scott A. Boyd, Eugene H. Carlson, Lisa Flatt Nelson
  • Patent number: 7905611
    Abstract: A vehicle for travel on a roadway comprising a vehicle and at least one retroreflector affixed to the vehicle, at least a portion of the retroreflector having a substantially planar, substantially transparent exterior surface, the substantially planar exterior surface aligned substantially parallel to the roadway. The retroreflector is preferably mounted to an underside of the vehicle to retroreflect light from oncoming vehicles when the vehicle has tipped on a side so that an underside portion of the vehicle may be seen by an observer in the oncoming vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 17, 2006
    Date of Patent: March 15, 2011
    Inventor: Anthony J. Bourget
  • Patent number: 7784952
    Abstract: The retroreflective sheet of the present invention comprises a surface layer (1) including at least one layer, a focusing layer (2) containing glass spheres (3), and a metal reflective layer (4) on the back side of the focusing layer (2), wherein the glass spheres (3) are disposed at random locations in the thickness direction of the focusing layer (2). The external illumination system of the present invention comprises a sign having a sign face including the above-mentioned retroreflective sheet, and an external illumination source, and the distance from the illumination source to the sign face is within a range of at least 1 m and no more than 100 m. The present invention thereby provides a retroreflective sheet and an external illumination system with which wide-angle reflective performance with a wider incidence angle and observation angle can be ensured.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 2005
    Date of Patent: August 31, 2010
    Assignee: Kiwa Chemical Industry Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Shigeo Yukawa, Hideyuki Oki, Yoshitaka Ura
  • Publication number: 20100132232
    Abstract: The invention relates to a license plate for vehicles that comprises a light guide comprising a matrix of a transparent polymeric material A having distributed therein particles of a material B for scattering light within the light guide. The license plate further comprises a retroreflective sheet having a retroreflective face that faces a first side of the light guide. The invention provides for an optimized illuminated license plate, and methods of making such license plate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 28, 2008
    Publication date: June 3, 2010
    Inventor: Ruediger T. Frisch
  • Patent number: 7727617
    Abstract: Retroreflective sheeting is described comprising a viewing surface and a non-viewing surface and a thermal mass transferred image disposed in the optical path of the viewing surface wherein the thermal mass transferred image comprises a homogeneous unreactive thermoplastic composition. In one embodiment, the unreactive thermoplastic composition comprises at least one acrylic resin and at least one colorant, wherein the composition has less than 3 wt-% of components that are opaque at ambient temperature. The percent maximum diffuse luminous transmittance to total luminous transmittance of the composition is less than 50%.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 21, 2006
    Date of Patent: June 1, 2010
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Jennifer L. Lee, Mark W. Leverty, Scott A. Boyd, Eugene H. Carlson, Lisa Flatt Nelson
  • Patent number: 7723452
    Abstract: The invention relates to a method of treatment of a retroreflective sheet with a treatment composition that comprises a fluorinated compound having one or more silyl groups and an auxiliary compound selected from the group consisting of (i) one or more non-fluorinated compounds of an element M selected from Si, Ti, Zr, B, Al, Ge, V, Pb and Sn and (ii) an organic compound having a Si—H group. The invention also relates to compositions comprising (i) a fluorinated compound comprising one or more silyl groups and (ii) an auxiliary compound selected from the group consisting of organic compounds having a Si—H group.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 28, 2007
    Date of Patent: May 25, 2010
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Gert A. M. Hooftman, Dorothee B. Loosen
  • Patent number: 7695147
    Abstract: Provided are a retro-reflection product using water based resin and a fabrication method thereof. The retro-reflection product includes a glass bead layer attached on a film, an aluminum layer selectively deposited on the glass bead layer according to need, and a base layer for adhering leather, fabric, or urethane sheet. A water based color resin coating layer is primarily coated with water based polyurethane resin over a surface of the glass bead layer. A water based adhesive resin coating layer is secondarily coated with water based polyurethane resin on a surface of the water based color resin coating layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 30, 2007
    Date of Patent: April 13, 2010
    Assignee: G.B. Light Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: In Hwan Lee
  • Publication number: 20080030856
    Abstract: A retroreflective system comprising a monolayer of microsphere lenses arrayed in form of duplicative matrixes, the matrix is a group of micro graphic shapes line up in rows and columns, a matching binder layer of the above matrixes and a base layer of fabric or other substance. The reflective system will not fully covered the reflective area to allow seepage of moisture or air. The reflective system may comply with highest level in prevailing retrorflective code for safety garments.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 1, 2006
    Publication date: February 7, 2008
    Inventor: Tao-Ming Tom King
  • Patent number: 7303292
    Abstract: The hue variable retroreflective sheet of the present invention includes: a surface layer (1) composed of at least one layer; and a plurality of retroreflective elements (3, 4, 5) that are positioned beneath the surface layer, wherein the retroreflective elements (3, 4, 5) retroreflect incident light toward a light source direction, at least one layer of the surface layer (1) is an optical coherent layer that changes in color depending on a point of view, and in which an optical coherent coloring material with a core material having a surface that is covered with one or more substantially transparent coating layer is dispersed, and mirror-reflects the incident light toward a direction opposite to the light source side, at least one layer of the retroreflective sheet is a colored layer containing a coloring material that colors retroreflected light, and the retroreflected light and the mirror-reflected light provide different hues.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 22, 2005
    Date of Patent: December 4, 2007
    Assignee: Kiwa Chemical Industry Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Shigeo Yukawa, Jiro Sukoboshi
  • Patent number: 7288309
    Abstract: A method of making a polymer coating on a microstructured substrate. The method may be performed by vaporizing a liquid monomer or other pre-polymer composition and condensing the vaporized material onto a microstructured substrate, followed by curing. The resulting article may possess a coating that preserves the underlying microstructural feature profile. Such a profile-preserving polymer coating can be used to change or enhance the surface properties of the microstructured substrate while maintaining the function of the structure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 2004
    Date of Patent: October 30, 2007
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Robert J. Fleming, Joseph M. McGrath, Christopher S. Lyons
  • Patent number: 7255909
    Abstract: In one aspect, the invention provides a security laminate comprising a retroreflective layer comprising a plurality of retroreflective microbeads partially embedded in and protruding from a beadbond layer and having image receptive material disposed around the protruding microspheres. In another embodiment, the security laminate further comprises indicia patterns viewable in retroreflective light. In another embodiment, the security laminate is imaged on the image receptive material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 6, 2003
    Date of Patent: August 14, 2007
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Graeme R. Mann, Brian W. Dunne, Paul D. Graham, Thomas Junck, Mark F. Schulz
  • Patent number: 7247386
    Abstract: The invention relates to a method of treatment of a retroreflective sheet with a treatment composition that comprises a fluorinated compound having one or more silyl groups and an auxiliary compound selected from the group consisting of (i) one or more non-fluorinated compounds of an element M selected from Si, Ti, Zr, B, Al, Ge, V, Pb and Sn and (ii) an organic compound having a Si—H group. The invention also relates to compositions comprising (i) a fluorinated compound comprising one or more silyl groups and (ii) an auxiliary compound selected from the group consisting of organic compounds having a Si—H group.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 23, 2003
    Date of Patent: July 24, 2007
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Gert A. M. Hooftman, Dorothee B. Loosen
  • Patent number: 7198377
    Abstract: A method of producing a retro-reflective heat transfer film includes heat-joining a PET release film and a transparent TPU sheet; forming a sticky-adhesive layer or a hot melt adhesive layer on the surface of the transparent TPU sheet; fixing glass beads made of beads with a refractive index of 2.2 to the semi-finished sheet; coating a thin film of transparent resin on the surface of the glass beads, and then forming an aluminum vacuum-coating layer on the coated thin film and forming a reflective resin layer transparent, colored or with graphics on the surface of the aluminum vacuum-coating layer and then producing a transfer sheet by forming a transparent hot melt resin layer on the surface of the reflective resin layer of the semi-finished sheet subject.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 21, 2005
    Date of Patent: April 3, 2007
    Inventor: In-Hwan Lee
  • Patent number: 7168815
    Abstract: The present invention relates to retroreflective elements and retroreflective articles such as pavement markings comprising retroreflective elements, methods of making retroreflective elements, and laminates.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 21, 2004
    Date of Patent: January 30, 2007
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Rebecca A. Shipman, Craig S. Chamberlain, James D. Heininger, Thomas P. Hedblom, Douglas E. Weiss, Gerald S. Deeb
  • Patent number: 7164536
    Abstract: A brightness enhancing structure for a reflective display. A plurality of transparent hemi-beads form a film substantially covering and protruding inwardly from the structure's inward surface. A corresponding plurality of microstructured toroidal lenses are provided on the structure's outward side. Each lens is optically coupled to an adjacent one of the hemi-beads to redirect incident light rays toward the adjacent hemi-bead, such that the redirected light is totally internally reflected by the hemi-bead and reflected back in a direction approximately opposite that of the incident rays. This substantially reduces undesirable dark, non-reflective circular regions of each hemi-bead which would otherwise exist in the absence of this invention.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 16, 2005
    Date of Patent: January 16, 2007
    Assignee: The University of British Columbia
    Inventor: Lorne A. Whitehead
  • Patent number: 7152984
    Abstract: The invention is a coded cat's eye retro-reflector array fabricated using data-driven, ink jet micro-dispensing technology. Specifically the invention claims the apparatus, the method of fabricating the apparatus, and the method of using the apparatus. The function of the apparatus is the identification of objects, materials and gasses from a distance using light beams. The apparatus is based upon the cat's eye retro-reflector device that is well known to one skilled in the art.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 11, 2004
    Date of Patent: December 26, 2006
    Assignee: MicroFab Technologies Inc.
    Inventor: Donald James Hayes
  • Patent number: 7140741
    Abstract: Color shifting retroreflective articles can provide features such as decorative effects, evidence of tampering, security authentication or positional information. In some embodiments, the color shifting retroreflective article includes a layer of microspheres, and a reflective coating that is disposed in optical association with the layer of microspheres. The reflective coating includes a spacer layer disposed between a semitransparent first reflective layer and a second reflective layer. The first reflective layer includes a reflective layer disposed adjacent the layer of microspheres. At least one layer of the reflective coating includes a non-uniform thickness associated with each of a plurality of microspheres such that light incident on the article from a first direction is retroreflected at a first color and light incident on the article from a second direction is retroreflected at a second color visibly different from the first color.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 28, 2004
    Date of Patent: November 28, 2006
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Robert J. Fleming, Christopher S. Lyons, Joseph M. McGrath, Jesus Ramos, Mark A. Roehrig, Clark I. Bright
  • Patent number: 7137712
    Abstract: The invention relates to a reflector system for positioning a medical instrument or of body parts of a patient or for any determination of position, which is characterized by reflectors (3, 4, 5) that are configured as transparent retroreflective spheres and may consist of a material with a refractive index of preferably 1.9.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 2000
    Date of Patent: November 21, 2006
    Assignee: Northern Digital Inc.
    Inventors: Georg Brunner, Manfred Schmid
  • Patent number: 7111949
    Abstract: A process for manufacturing retroreflective printed material, the process comprising a) providing a composite comprising a temporary support sheet with a layer of microspheres partially embedded in the temporary support sheet such that the surfaces of the microspheres are partially exposed; b) applying a reflecting layer on the microspheres; c) applying a priming layer either on the partially exposed surfaces of the microspheres or on the reflecting layer; d) transferring a printed design layer from a transfer medium with the printed design on the primer layer and separating the transfer medium without the printed design from the printed design layer; e) applying a binder layer on the printed design layer; f) applying a base fabric on the binder layer and separating the temporary support sheet from the layer of microspheres, thereby creating the retroreflective printed material. A retroreflective printed material made according to the process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 19, 2003
    Date of Patent: September 26, 2006
    Assignee: Industria Bergamasca Rifrangenti S.r.l.
    Inventors: Agostino Parisi, Cesare Bartoli
  • Patent number: 7036944
    Abstract: Retrochromic articles have a retrochromic pattern comprising first and second viewable retroreflective regions, wherein at least one viewable retroreflective region comprises a plurality of intrinsically retrochromic beads. Methods for making such articles are also provided. Articles according to the present invention have covert security features, and may be used, for example, to authenticate security articles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 11, 2002
    Date of Patent: May 2, 2006
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Kenton D. Budd, Matthew H. Frey
  • Patent number: 7029135
    Abstract: Sign band (1) for day and night road signs, comprising a band-shaped support (6) having a first and second outer surface (6a) and 6b), a reflecting substance (7) arranged in a portion of at least one of said outer surfaces (6a) and (6b), a transparent gluing substance spread onto said reflecting substrace (7), and a plurality of transparent microspheres (9) anchored within said gluing substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 30, 2001
    Date of Patent: April 18, 2006
    Inventor: Graziano Fabiani