With Detachably Associated Auxiliary Carrier For Transporting Device During Portion Of Its Horizontal Travel Patents (Class 414/284)
  • Patent number: 10865043
    Abstract: In one embodiment, a trolley for an inventory storage module has a trolley frame and first and second track engagement features on opposed sides of the trolley frame that engage first and second rails of a track, respectively, such that the trolley frame is translatable along the track. The trolley has a power collector that is supported by the trolley frame, and that electrically couples to an electrical rail that is disposed above the trolley frame so as to collect power from the electrical rail as the trolley frame is translated along the track. The trolley has a robotic manipulator having a robotic arm and an end effector. The robotic arm extends below the trolley frame with respect to the vertical direction, and the end effector removeably couples inventory items to the robotic arm.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 6, 2018
    Date of Patent: December 15, 2020
    Assignee: Amazon Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Benjamin Douglas Garcia, Martin Peter Aalund, Jon Stuart Battles, William Kalm
  • Patent number: 9809391
    Abstract: In a method for conveying laden or unladen load carriers, the load carriers are conveyed by a first conveying system and a second conveying system which differ from one another in conveying terms. At least one load carrier is picked up and conveyed, at least temporarily, by in each case one conveying device of the first conveying system independently of the second conveying system. The second conveying system at least temporarily conveys a conveying device or an assembly which is formed by a conveying device and at least one load carrier brought together with the latter. A unit for this purpose is also specified.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 30, 2014
    Date of Patent: November 7, 2017
    Assignee: EISENMANN SE
    Inventors: Ralf Weiland, Klaus Gawelczyk
  • Patent number: 8961095
    Abstract: A traveling body of a stacker crane is separable into a lower traveling portion and an upper traveling portion by separating a post into a lower post portion and an upper post portion, in which the lower traveling portion in a separated state separated from the upper traveling portion and supporting a lift body is moved in a width direction with its traveling posture being maintained to be taken in or out between a moving space and a take-in/out space.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 17, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Daifuku Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Fumio Takahara, Shinsuke Kawamura
  • Patent number: 8851818
    Abstract: An automatic warehouse includes a rack including vertically arranged shelves and traveling vehicles each of which is provided to a corresponding one of the shelves. The automatic warehouse includes stations receiving an article to be stored on and an article unloaded from the rack, elevators each mediating traffic of articles between the corresponding station and at least one of the traveling vehicles, and a shelf assigning unit assigning, to each of the stations, one or more of the shelves to which the station has priority of use over the rest of the stations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 7, 2011
    Date of Patent: October 7, 2014
    Assignee: Murata Machinery, Ltd.
    Inventor: Kazuhiko Ogawa
  • Publication number: 20140219751
    Abstract: A storage structure (10) according to the invention comprises a plurality of pallets (14) that is each configured to carry a load such as a car (16), a vertical conveyor (12) including a number of endless chains (26), a support structure (24) that defines storage bays (18) in which the pallets (14) and cars (16) can be stored, a number of brackets (30) on each chain (26), and a sliding mechanism (44,46) on each level, for sliding the pallets (14) between the bays (18) and a position in which the pallet (14) is supported on some of the brackets (30) on the chains (26). The bays (18) are provided on opposing sides of the vertical conveyor (12) and are spaced apart vertically on multiple levels, with equal vertical spacing between the levels.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 30, 2012
    Publication date: August 7, 2014
    Inventor: Maurice Segal
  • Publication number: 20140079515
    Abstract: A robotic device movable in a vertical direction and in prescribed horizontal directions along rails arranged in the prescribed horizontal directions in multiple rows provided at various levels with respect to ground. The robotic device has a frame, wheels coupled to the frame and configured for moving the frame along the rails, and support handles for lifting the frame in the vertical direction from first rails arranged in a first row of the rails to second rails arranged in a second row of the rails. The support handles are configured for providing engagement with the second rails to lift the robotic device in the vertical direction, and for turning the frame into a desired horizontal direction by pushing against the second rails on an intersection between the second rails and third rails arranged in the same row as the second rails.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 18, 2012
    Publication date: March 20, 2014
    Inventor: Sergey N. RAZUMOV
  • Publication number: 20140064889
    Abstract: A loading/unloading apparatus includes a cage configured to accommodate an electric appliance stored or to be stored in one of storage compartments provided within a cubicle; and a hoist configured to vertically move and hang the cage. The hoist includes a boom arranged on the cubicle to extend above the storage compartments and a hoisting winch attached to the boom. The cage includes a frame body provided with a seat for supporting the electric appliance, and a connector unit connected to the hoisting winch.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 23, 2013
    Publication date: March 6, 2014
    Inventors: Mitsutaka ONO, Mineyasu MORIMOTO, Kazuhiro UMEO, Eiji MASUDA
  • Patent number: 8550763
    Abstract: A carriage with a cell carrier engages and retains a vertically driven cell so that the cell and its contents, such as a data storage cartridge, may be moved laterally from one linear library to another. A portal engagement device of the cell carrier includes a movable rack so that a pinion of the cell may move up or down the rack, and has pins that, when the device is down, engage a library vertical portal having a fixed rack. A cam state machine of the cell carrier guides a spring loaded cam follower hook of the cell in a pattern to lock the hook in position and, when hooked, attempted downward movement of the vertically driven cell moves the portal engagement device upward to disengage the pins of the portal engagement device from the vertical portal. The carriage may then transport the cell to another vertical portal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 2010
    Date of Patent: October 8, 2013
    Assignee: International Business Machines Corporation
    Inventors: Shawn Michael Nave, Raymond Yardy
  • Patent number: 8554643
    Abstract: A method and equipment to stack palletless and as to their size variable packages (1) on warehouse rack (15) and to retrieve them from the rack and to control the logistics of packages, in which the warehouse rack is furnished with an automatic packages stacking and retrieving robot, and in which the control of warehouse data and logistics takes place by a data system. Equipment (5) receives package (1), for instance, onto conveyor belt (2), equipment (5) carries out weighing of package (1), determination for the necessary space requirement, reading of remote code connected to package (1), as RFID code (20) in order to choose the rack space determined for it on basis of previous functions, and package (1) is retrieved from the rack steered either by the order of the user or of the data system, and the data from above mentioned stacking and retrieving functions are transmitted to the data system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 2011
    Date of Patent: October 8, 2013
    Assignee: Suomen Teollisuusosa Oy
    Inventor: Sami Kortelainen
  • Patent number: 8465693
    Abstract: An apparatus for automatically depositing, preserving and retrieving biological material test tubes is described, including a refrigerated storage with movable horizontal shelves and a conveyor interface, adapted to automatically transport biological material test tubes, a device adapted to handle the test tubes between the interface and the containers of a sorted plurality of test tubes, the containers having toothed guides and being able to be placed on the lanes of a bench, a handling device of the containers between the bench and an access area of the storage, slidingly mounted to the bench and including motorized toothed members adapted to couple with the toothed guides of the containers for horizontally moving the latter between the access area of the storage and the bench, and a control unit adapted to coordinate the devices during the loading/unloading operations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 12, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 18, 2013
    Assignee: Inpeco Holding Ltd.
    Inventor: Gianandrea Pedrazzini
  • Patent number: 8238099
    Abstract: A disk drive testing system includes one or more test racks, and one or more test slots housed by the one or more test racks, each test slot being configured to receive and support a disk drive transporter carrying a disk drive for testing. The disk drive testing system also includes a transfer station for supplying disk drives to be tested. The one or more test racks and the transfer station at least partially define an operating area. The disk drive testing system can also include automated machinery that is disposed within the operating area and is configured to transfer disk drives between the transfer station and the one or more test slots, and a cover at least partially enclosing the operating area, thereby at least partially inhibiting air exchange between the operating area and an environment surrounding the test racks.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 17, 2008
    Date of Patent: August 7, 2012
    Assignee: Teradyne, Inc.
    Inventor: Brian S. Merrow
  • Patent number: 8183829
    Abstract: A system employing wheeled vehicles, such as strollers. A plurality of the wheeled vehicles is provided, each having a docking element. A vehicle station has a docking port for each of at least some of the wheeled vehicles. Each docking port has a charging device and is shaped to engage a docking element of an engaged wheeled vehicle. At least two display screens are provided on the wheeled vehicle, one for an occupant and one for an operator. One or more screen drivers is provided for the display screens.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 22, 2012
    Assignee: Nelson Wittaker
    Inventor: Jay A. Maher
  • Patent number: 8157498
    Abstract: A storage rack having a shelf with storage spaces, arranged over top of each other, for pallets that are horizontally removed sideways. A rack operating device moves the pallets from the spaces, and a station cart forms a lowermost space for a pallet, and can be horizontally moved from the rack on first rails. An upper cart is located above the station cart and forms another one of the spaces to receive a pallet and is horizontally movable on second rails that have a wider track than the first rails and also lead out of the rack. The upper cart has a greater clearance in an area of the station cart which is larger than a length of the pallet, and runs on the second rails, and parts of the upper cart not related to the support structure thereof can be inserted between the vertical rack supports of the rack.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 2008
    Date of Patent: April 17, 2012
    Assignee: KEURO Besitz GmbH & Co. EDV-Dienstleistungs KG
    Inventors: Armin Stolzer, Bernhard Huber
  • Patent number: 7991505
    Abstract: Methods and apparatus for selecting and combining packages in an outbound container by employing autonomous transfer and transport vehicles which move on a network of roadways to carry a plurality of individual cases each containing the same kind of product from a loading station and to a destination station where individual packages are combined in the outbound container. The travel of each vehicle through the roadway network is computer controlled, and each vehicle includes means for automatically loading and unloading packages from predetermined locations on the network.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 14, 2007
    Date of Patent: August 2, 2011
    Assignee: CasePick Systems, LLC
    Inventors: John G. Lert, Jr., Foster D. Hinshaw
  • Publication number: 20090191033
    Abstract: A trailer 10 includes a frame (12) having a central axis (14) spaced between rear wheels. A plurality of storage supports (20) are supported on the trailer frame, with each storage support supporting a plurality of objects thereon. A carousel assembly (24) rotates the plurality of storage supports, and may be raised and lowered. A locking mechanism (180) is provided for engaging the carousel to prevent the carousel from inadvertently moving to the lowered position. A tire support mechanism (210) includes an elongate restraint engaging an upright tire when a ratchet mechanism renders a flexible member taut.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 6, 2009
    Publication date: July 30, 2009
    Inventor: Mark Cook
  • Patent number: 7547173
    Abstract: A method for storing and transferring containers comprises the steps of a container information-receiving step for receiving information of the containers transmitted from a loading/unloading unit while the containers stacked in the container ship are unloaded by means of the loading/unloading unit, a transferring unit-moving step for moving a transferring unit to the loading/unloading unit having transmitted the information of the containers so that the containers are loaded onto the transferring unit, a storage-determining step for analyzing the received information of the containers to determine whether the containers placed on the transferring unit are to be moved to a stacking unit so that the containers can be stored or are to be moved to a taking-in/taking-out unit so that the containers can be removed from a container terminal, and a container-transferring step for moving the transferring unit to a position selected on the basis of the determination as to whether the containers are to be stored or not
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 15, 2004
    Date of Patent: June 16, 2009
    Inventor: Kyong-Ja Jung
  • Publication number: 20080080960
    Abstract: An adaptor pole for use with an ISO marine container. The marine container is characterized as having a top, bottom and connecting sidewalls and further having at least one corner casting characterized as having openings in its top and at least one side thereof. The adaptor pole is made up of an elongated cylindrical member having a proximal end and a distal end, an abbreviated cylindrical member joined substantially perpendicularly to the elongated cylindrical member proximate the proximal end thereof, a stabilizer plate located proximate and parallel to the abbreviated cylindrical member and a barrier plate bridging the stabilizer plate and abbreviated cylindrical member. The adaptor pole is sized to enable the proximal end of the elongated cylindrical member and abbreviated cylindrical member to be removably secured within the corner casting while the stabilizer plate resides thereon to maintain the orientation of the elongated cylindrical member with respect to the ISO marine container.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 15, 2006
    Publication date: April 3, 2008
    Inventors: Stephen Lynn Zeller, Billy Joel Adams
  • Patent number: 6929440
    Abstract: The invention relates to a particularly effective method for loading and unloading loads in a rack storage facility with several rack bays and aisles which are located between the rack bays. According to the method, a load is transported to a front end of a rack bay and at the front end of the rack bay, is moved in a vertical direction to a target level. The load is then moved into the aisle in a horizontal direction, at the target level. The load is moved in the aisle to a target location at the corresponding target level and then finally out of the aisle and into the rack in a horizontal direction. The invention also relates to a storage loading system for carrying out the inventive method. According to this method, several guiding elements corresponding to the individual levels of the rack bays are provided in the aisles. Moveable transport devices for receiving loads are provided on the guiding elements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 15, 1999
    Date of Patent: August 16, 2005
    Inventor: Johann Walter Grond
  • Publication number: 20040126209
    Abstract: An apparatus for transporting and an apparatus for conveying microplates between two locations are provided. The transport includes a pair of rails, a microplate transport carriage for moving along the rails, a rotary platter for loading and unloading microplates on the carriage, a controller for generating signals for controlling the position of the carriage on the rails and the rotation of the platter on the carriage, and a servo for moving the carriage or rotating the platter in response to a control signal. The transport moves microplates along the rails in accord with any of several methods for performing different tasks. The conveyor includes an extendable support frame, a pair of oppositely disposed tensioning elements arranged within the frame, a conveyor belt which wound around the elements and extends as the support frame is extended, and a motor for driving the conveyor belt.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 15, 2003
    Publication date: July 1, 2004
    Inventors: Julian D. Warhurst, Andrew F. Zaayenga, Paul Quitzau
  • Patent number: 6663334
    Abstract: An apparatus for random access storage and retrieval of a plurality of microplates is provided. The apparatus includes a plurality of microplate racks arranged in a stack. Each of the racks is mechanically engaged with a plurality of support columns and each of the columns has a plurality of locking devices corresponding to the plurality of racks. The apparatus also includes a lift, coupled to the support columns, for moving the stack or a portion thereof, and a controller, coupled to the lift and the locking devices. The controller is responsive to a signal to access a desired rack or microplate to cause actuation of one or more of the locking devices corresponding to the rack adjacent to the desired rack or microplate, followed by actuation of the lift, thereby moving a portion of the stack a sufficient distance to allow access to the desired rack or microplate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 2002
    Date of Patent: December 16, 2003
    Assignee: TekCel Inc.
    Inventors: Julian D. Warhurst, Andrew F. Zaayenga, Paul Quitzau
  • Patent number: 6652213
    Abstract: An automated warehouse system for a building has elevators for automatically accepting incoming material on pallets. A rotating forklift mounted inside the elevator extends its forks to reach out and bring in the pallets. Once inside, the rotating forklift spins around to face inside warehouse doors. When the elevator car arrives at a designated level, the rotating forklift deposits the material on the pallet on a temporary shelf just outside the elevator. Each level has an aisle cart that moves along an aisleway for both a loading elevator and an unloading elevator. Each aisleway is intersected by several row rails that are right angles to the aisleway. The aisle cart carries a battery powered row cart that can run back and forth along the rows. The aisle cart is positioned at the appropriate row along the aisleway, and the row cart carries, deposits, and picks up material on pallets. Storage positions are provided along each row, front to rear.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 2000
    Date of Patent: November 25, 2003
    Assignee: California Natural Products
    Inventors: Pat R. Mitchell, Kevin A. Haslebasher
  • Patent number: 6257879
    Abstract: Equipment for the reduction of metal oxides with carbonaceous reductants includes a pair of straight moving hearth furnaces each having a charging end and a discharging end. Each furnace has a train of detachable hearth sections to enable each hearth section to be removed at the discharging end of one furnace and attached at the charging end of the other furnace.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 2000
    Date of Patent: July 10, 2001
    Inventors: Wei-Kao Lu, Dianbing Huang
  • Patent number: 6060992
    Abstract: A mobile WIP parts tracking system useful in semi-conductor fabrication operations, includes an identifying tag fixed to each of a plurality of parts containers, and a tag reader mounted on the head of a robotic carrier which delivers the containers to and removes the containers from any or a plurality of storage bin containers within a storage facility. A control system coordinates the movements of the robotic carrier and received information from the tag reader in order to provide positive, continuous tracking of the storage bin location of each of the containers within the facility. In addition to generating continuous tracking information, the robotic carrier may be used to scan each of the storage bin locations in order to search for a desired container.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 28, 1998
    Date of Patent: May 9, 2000
    Assignee: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Cheng Yi Huang, Kuo Hung Liao
  • Patent number: 6042321
    Abstract: An automated storage system for receiving, storing and returning dairy cases stored without pallets. Specifically, the automated storage system comprises an article transporter which includes a shuttle that deposits and retrieves dairy cases stored in storage lanes of a storage rack and a rail system for supporting the shuttle and dairy cases stored thereon. One or more shuttles may be used in the automated storage and retrieval system and are coupled via a shuttle bridge. The rail system includes two or more outer support rails and two or more inner support rails for supporting the shuttle and dairy cases. The rail system also supports normal Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) pallets or other special slave pallets. The bottom flange of the rail system has a "drip pan" style to contain leakage from the dairy cases. This "drip pan" design allows personnel to walk inside the storage lanes safely.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 10, 1998
    Date of Patent: March 28, 2000
    Assignee: Westafalia Technologies, Inc.
    Inventor: Daniel Labell
  • Patent number: 5967728
    Abstract: A rail system and transfer vehicle for a storage retrieval system. The rails are fabricated to include a vehicle support surface that supports a transfer vehicle, a load support surface that supports the skid, tote, vessel, or pallet to be stored, a spacing surface that defines the distance between the load support surface and the vehicle support surface. Attached to the load support surface is an alignment surface that extends upwardly at an angle between 40 and 80 from the horizontal. When a misaligned pallet is lowered, it first contacts the alignment surface and as it continues to be lowered, interaction between the alignment surface and the misaligned pallet causes the pallet to move into alignment with the rail system before coming to rest on the load support surface. The rail system can be used in conjunction with a high weight capacity transfer vehicle. Load lift is provided by a plurality of interconnected screw jacks.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 26, 1997
    Date of Patent: October 19, 1999
    Assignee: Emtrol, Inc.
    Inventors: Charles C. Gales, Mark A. Killian, Colin T. McShane, Richard T. Nornhold, Jr.
  • Patent number: 5768125
    Abstract: An apparatus for transferring a substantially circular article from a first unloading position to a second loading position compensates for misalignment of the article on a support arm. During movement of the support arm the periphery of the circular article is detected, and a correction of the movement of the support arm is generated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 8, 1995
    Date of Patent: June 16, 1998
    Assignee: ASM International N.V.
    Inventors: Jan Zinger, Kornelius Haanstra, Rudi Schimmel
  • Patent number: 5540532
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for handling and storing marine containers transports containers from below using a shuttle that is movable sideways from an elevating cradle in an elevating transfer vehicle. The shuttle has four lifting devices that engage ISO fittings in the container from below. The shuttle can lift a container and travel into a bay of a large storage rack. The lifting devices then lower the container onto supporting brackets that share the ISO fitting with the lifting devices. The shuttle can move the containers within the storage rack, or to a portal where it can be temporarily stored or picked up immediately by a ground vehicle. The system also includes a dock crane buffer and an automated guided vehicle system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 12, 1993
    Date of Patent: July 30, 1996
    Assignee: Transact International, Inc.
    Inventors: Frank B. Carder, Herman G. Wolffenbuttel, P. Robert Breuer
  • Patent number: 5388955
    Abstract: For the storing of paper rolls in high-shelf system stores and for the gunce of paper roll transporting cars, tracks disposed in pairs are provided which, for the accommodation of great weights, possess an approximately U-shaped cross-sectional configuration with a lower chord, an upper chord (180) and a web interconnecting both chords, which, proceeding devoid of any bends linearily and, with the aid of connections (183), is connected to a plurality of vertical supporting girders (184) disposed at a distance from each other and connected to the crossgirder (12) of the framework structure of the store, wherein the lower chord is formed by a leg (187) with a horizontally proceeding section forming the support for the paper roll transporting car and a section adjoining the latter which proceeds vertically and parallelly to the web, wherein the horizontal leg section is supported on and the vertical leg is supported against an angle section (188) connected to the vertical supporting girder (184) and the crossgir
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 12, 1992
    Date of Patent: February 14, 1995
    Assignee: Copla Forder-und Lagertechnik Gesellschaft fur Anlagenbau mbH
    Inventor: Niels Schroder
  • Patent number: 5370492
    Abstract: Automated stores comprising a plurality of superimposed levels (1a, 1b, 1c. .), subdivided into parallel corridors (2a, 2b, 2c. .) on either side of which are arranged rows of racks or cells forming storage zones (3) for the products which are handled by means of autonomous trucks (4) brought to a predetermined level by at least one lift unit (5). Each storage level (1a, 1b, 1c. .) includes a set of rails forming a plurality of networks (6) pointing along the longitudinal X axis of the stores inside each inter-column space (2a, 2b, 2c) and one network (7) pointing along the transverse Y axis perpendicular to and at the end of the inter-column spaces. The autonomous trucks (4) include two-way forks on which the product to be handled rests.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 30, 1993
    Date of Patent: December 6, 1994
    Assignee: Societe d'Etude en Mecanisation et Automation (CIMAT)
    Inventors: Jean Gleyze, Frederic Zoller
  • Patent number: 5286157
    Abstract: A method and device for storing paper rolls in a storage area where the rolls are delivered and stored one above the other in recumbent fashion, and from where they are retrieved for further processing. The storage device includes a separate transport carriage for moving the paper rolls from a storing device into corridors in the storage shelving and back from storage to the storing device. To obviate the need for pallets, the paper rolls are stored in a recumbent position on a carrier surface which, supported on each side by a high supporting wall forming part of the running track of the transport carriage, adapts to the form of the circumference of the paper roll thereby allowing easily handling of the paper rolls.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 11, 1991
    Date of Patent: February 15, 1994
    Inventors: Frans Vainio, Walther Hilber
  • Patent number: 5067871
    Abstract: A procedure to avoid permanent flattening of the roundness of paper rolls. The procedure involves a transport carriage provided with two rotatable supporting shafts and the rolls being rotated through one or more predetermined angles at predetermined intervals of time and then stored further in such new rotational position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 18, 1989
    Date of Patent: November 26, 1991
    Assignee: Kone Oy
    Inventor: Walter Hilber
  • Patent number: 5054986
    Abstract: Heavy articles such as metal coils are transferred to and from storage locations in a storage area by a system of tracks and carriages including non-powered carriages which transport the articles directly and self-propelled carriages which move perpendicularly to the direction of movement of the non-powered carriages. The non-powered carriages are moved off and onto the self-propelled carriages by feeders carried by the self-propelled carriages. In one form of the invention, the above-mentioned self-propelled carriages are transferred to and from tracks in a parallel track array by an additional self-propelled carriage movable along a track extending perpendicular to the tracks of the parallel track array.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 23, 1990
    Date of Patent: October 8, 1991
    Assignee: Tsubakimoto Chain Co.
    Inventors: Tadao Hirano, Hiroshi Yanagase
  • Patent number: 5000646
    Abstract: A device to facilitate the luggages' loading into and the unloading out of aircraft holds consisting of a movable truck which is located in the aircraft hold and receives in succession from the conventional belt elevator the luggages or packages to be conveyed to the operators within the aircraft hold, whereupon the movable truck is returned to the starting point to receive another luggage and so on until the loading operation is completed. The luggages' unloading operation is performed in the reverse direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 1989
    Date of Patent: March 19, 1991
    Assignee: Sefind S.r.l.
    Inventor: Paolo Pietropaoli
  • Patent number: 4993905
    Abstract: An apparatus for depositing long pieces of material, such as pipes, rods, etc., in a shelf unit that has a number of receiving spaces for the long pieces of material. The apparatus includes a movable tray-like receptacle that is open at its ends and conveys the long pieces of material. A drive mechanism is provided for introducing one of the ends of the receptacle into the receiving spaces. The receptacle is equipped with CATERPILLARS that are guided over chain wheels provided at the ends of the receptacle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 28, 1989
    Date of Patent: February 19, 1991
    Assignee: Tepora Transportsysteme Entwicklungs GmbH
    Inventor: Tomislav Potocnjak
  • Patent number: 4975012
    Abstract: A mechanized storage facility according to the present invention has a size which enables it to be moved from one place to another. The storage facility includes a box-shaped casing, an elevator device coupled to the casing, a plurality of storage units accommodated in the casing, a conveying car that travels within the casing to convey the storage unit between the casing and the elevator device, and a control device for controlling the operation of the conveying car and that of the elevator device. The interior of the storage unit is divided into a plurality of stages so as to form a plurality of accommodating portions each of which accommodates a storage box such as a strongbox. The elevator device includes an elevator tower and a lift provided in the elevator tower in such a manner that it can rise and fall. The elevator tower has an opening having a size equivalent to that of one of the plurality of accommodating portions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 20, 1989
    Date of Patent: December 4, 1990
    Assignee: Motoda Electronics Co. Ltd.
    Inventor: Kenro Motoda
  • Patent number: 4971508
    Abstract: In a storage facility for heavy coils or the like, coils are transported to and from stationary rests by a first carriage which include a hydraulic lift. The first carriage is carried by a second carriage which moves perpendicularly to the path of the first carriage and which has its own heavy article-supporting rest. Transfer of heavy articles from rest to rest takes place by operation of the hydraulic lift in conjunction with lateral movement of the first carriage. The second carriage is self-propelled, and also carries a hydraulic pump unit for powering the lift through a flexible coupling which allows limited movement of the first carriage away from the second carriage. A third carriage, which is self-propelled and movable perpendicularly to the path of the second carriage, receives the second carriage to carry the second carriage, with a first carriage on it, to and away from the storage facility. The second and third carriages are movable independently of each other.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 20, 1990
    Date of Patent: November 20, 1990
    Assignee: Tsubakimoto Chain Co.
    Inventors: JPX, Shoji Miyahara, Hiroshi Yanagase, Fusao Sonehara
  • Patent number: 4971507
    Abstract: Storage system for pallets, which is constructed from columns connected to one another by longitudinal and transverse girders. Channels for the storage of pallets are obtained in each compartment at different supporting levels. Mounted on the transverse girders in the longitudinal direction of each channel are rails on which a driven carriage can be moved through the channel in the longitudinal direction. The rails are mounted such that the wheel tracks are outside the dimension of the pallets. The carriage is equipped with wheel carrying arms at locations corresponding to the rail tracks and outside the pallet width and with a fork at such a height that the prongs can be inserted into the insertion orifices of the pallets.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 29, 1988
    Date of Patent: November 20, 1990
    Assignee: Magcon Beheer B.V.
    Inventor: Franciscus G. A. Weggelaar
  • Patent number: 4850783
    Abstract: A palletizing method for articles by a robot wherein a final stacking pallet is moved as a hand portion of the robot moves, and when an article is loaded on the pallet, the final stacking pallet is made to assume a position in the neighborhood of a position where the article is gripped up by the robot hand to transfer the article.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 27, 1985
    Date of Patent: July 25, 1989
    Assignee: Murata Kikai Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Hiroshi Maekawa
  • Patent number: 4671728
    Abstract: A hydraulic system for a mobile vehicle that supports and positions a load relative to a docking structure, such as a patient relative to a medical diagnostic apparatus. The mobile vehicle includes a wheeled base, a carriage on the base, a hydraulic cylinder for raising and lowering the carriage relative to the base, a load supporting cradle slidably mounted on the carriage for movement in a longitudinal direction between an operative extended position and an inoperative retracted position on the carriage, and a hydraulic system for controlling the operation of the vehicle and its components. The vehicle includes co-operating members on the base and on the docking structure for properly aligning and positioning the vehicle with respect to the docking structure. The movement of the carriage may be accomplished either manually through a foot pump or through a hydraulic power interlock between the vehicle base and docking structure which is engageable upon docking.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 11, 1985
    Date of Patent: June 9, 1987
    Assignee: Applied Power, Inc.
    Inventors: Ray Clark, Frank M. Schmer, Jr.
  • Patent number: 4505630
    Abstract: Apparatus and methods for transferring articles, such as concrete blocks, from a conveyor to a curing kiln and return comprise a carriage movable along a path leading from the block conveyor to any selected one of a number of curing kilns. The carriage supports a rotary turntable on which is mounted a transfer vehicle provided with article supporting forks that are vertically movable so as to shift articles off and onto the block conveyor, deposit the articles within the kiln, and retrieve the articles from the kiln. the transfer vehicle is movable horizontally relatively to the turntable to enable the article supporting forks to overlie the block conveyor, and the transfer vehicle also is movable horizontally relatively to the turntable and carriage into and out of the selected kiln.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 5, 1983
    Date of Patent: March 19, 1985
    Assignee: Besser Company
    Inventors: William C. Kaschner, Elroy Bobolts, Jr.
  • Patent number: 4466765
    Abstract: A mechanized store includes a plurality of cells for storing containers, disposed side by side in horizontal and vertical rows along at least one passage and open on their sides facing the passage, a transporter-elevator device including a first support structure movable horizontally along the passage, a second support structure movable vertically on the first support structure, and a moving device carried by the second support structure and arranged to insert articles into, or take up articles from, the storage cells. A transfer station for articles which is located outside the passage and can be accessed by the transporter-elevator device to allow the loading onto the latter of each article intended to be placed in a corresponding storage cell, and the discharge from the transporter-elevator device of each article intended to be sent to the exit of the store.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 5, 1982
    Date of Patent: August 21, 1984
    Assignee: Comau S.p.A.
    Inventor: Sergio Mautino
  • Patent number: 4459078
    Abstract: Conveyor device for a storage plant, comprising a lower truck 23, which in order to receive and store load units is equipped with at least two translation platforms 27, 28 that are operable independently of one another.The lower trucks 23, which are carried through the "hucke-pack" system by a respective bearing truck 24, are movable away from and to the bearing trucks 24 on sliding rails 25, 26 in the storage shelves 4 and positioned directly below the load units. A respective bearing truck 24 and lower truck 23 carried thereby form all together a horizontal conveyor unit which in any case with a load unit from the hoist or elevator 8 is transported between the floors 3 and transfer station 9 and is freely movable independently of the same in such floors 3.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 24, 1982
    Date of Patent: July 10, 1984
    Assignees: C.M.F. Costruzioni Metalliche Finsider S.p.A., FATA European Group S.p.A.
    Inventors: Giovanni Chiantella, Renato Lissoni, Christoph Gloor, Franco Biesuz
  • Patent number: 4395181
    Abstract: A vehicle is disclosed for automatically transporting loaded pallets within a plurality of tracks forming a storage rack. The vehicle comprises a main body having a plurality of wheels extending out of the sides thereof. A lift mechanism is mounted on the main body and is extendable therefrom for raising or lowering a loaded pallet above or onto the support surface of the tracks. Each lift mechanism comprises a pair of support bars, with each bar being connected to a pair of lifters or support elements. Each pair of lifters is jointly raised and lowered by flexible chains which extend over fixed supports and a double eccentric drive mechanism located therebetween. A horizontally positioned guide wheel also extends out of each corner of the carriage to contact the track rails and center the carriage at all times on the track. The carriage and lift mechanisms are respectively driven by a pair of drive motors located on the carriage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 13, 1980
    Date of Patent: July 26, 1983
    Assignee: Litton Systems, Inc.
    Inventor: Weston R. Loomer
  • Patent number: 4286911
    Abstract: A semi-automated warehousing system for unitized loads, such as load carrying pallets, which are retained in storage racks arranged in a multiple lane, multiple tier array, is disclosed. The system employs a man operated stacker crane that travels upon a fixed rail and serves as a host vehicle for a radio controlled transfer vehicle which is powered by a rechargable battery. An elevator, which forms part of the crane, is mounted between masts of the crane and a man carrying cab is secured to the elevator. The transfer vehicle can move laterally away from the crane, in either direction, in response to radio command signals controlled by the operator in the cab. The transfer vehicle rides on support rails in the storage rack and, upon command, deposits or picks up a pallet. The battery which powers the transfer vehicle is recharged each time the vehicle returns to the elevator portion of the crane.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 6, 1979
    Date of Patent: September 1, 1981
    Assignee: Litton Systems, Inc.
    Inventor: John W. Benjamin
  • Patent number: 4273494
    Abstract: A storage rack entry vehicle for transporting loads of substantial weight in a warehousing system includes a plurality of wheels spaced from each other in the direction of both the length and the width of the vehicle and which support the vehicle for movement upon rails. The vehicle also includes an elevatable platform which supports the loads on the vehicle and distributes the load weight to locations adjacent each of the wheels. A rigid plate connects both the wheels and the load supports. However, this rigid plate is sufficiently flexible such that the plate flexes to maintain all of the wheels in continuous contact with the rails where one of the rails may vary in elevation such that at least one of the wheels might otherwise move out of contact with the rail surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 27, 1978
    Date of Patent: June 16, 1981
    Assignee: Interlake, Inc.
    Inventors: James C. Swain, John D. Dickson, Larry E. Schluer
  • Patent number: 4265583
    Abstract: A lift truck for transporting a movable switchgear unit into a position wherein the unit can be inserted horizontally into an upper-level space within a metal-clad switchgear cubicle comprises horizontally-extending rails along which said unit can be rolled during insertion into said cubicle. Means is provided for blocking insertion motion of the switchgear unit on said rails until the truck rails have been locked to rails in the cubicle in a position of substantial axial alignment between the truck rails and the cubicle rails.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 15, 1978
    Date of Patent: May 5, 1981
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Leslie L. Baird, Gary M. Stolz
  • Patent number: 4252217
    Abstract: A semi-automated warehousing system for unitized loads, such as load carrying pallets, which are retained in storage racks arranged in a multiple lane, multiple tier array is provided. The system employs a man operated stacker crane that travels upon a fixed rail and serves as a host vehicle for a ratio controlled transfer vehicle which is powered by a rechargeable battery. An elevator, which forms part of the crane is mounted between masts of the crane and a man carrying cab is secured to the elevator. The transfer vehicle can move laterally away from the crane, in either direction, in response to radio command signals controlled by the operator in the cab. The transfer vehicle rides on support rails in the storage racks and, upon command, deposits or picks up a pallet. The battery which powers the transfer vehicle is recharged each time the vehicle returns to the elevator portion of the crane.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 28, 1978
    Date of Patent: February 24, 1981
    Assignee: Litton Systems, Inc.
    Inventor: John W. Benjamin
  • Patent number: 4229135
    Abstract: In a storage system, a plurality of storage racks are provided, the racks being movable to enable selection of passageways therebetween. A carriage is conveyable along the ends of the racks by individual conveyors supported at the rack ends, the carriage being movable into passageways formed between the racks. The racks or carriages supporting the racks are provided with rails mounted to support the movable carriage when it is positioned in any selected passageway. A fork lift device is provided on the carriage to enable selection of a vertical position in the racks.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 21, 1978
    Date of Patent: October 21, 1980
    Assignee: Aktiebolaget Electrolux
    Inventor: Carl-Henrik B. S. Malmros