Suspended Patents (Class 414/626)
  • Patent number: 10964571
    Abstract: A conveyance system for conveying a workpiece to each of a plurality of processing apparatuses includes a conveyance passage, an automated conveying vehicle for travelling on the conveyance passage, the automated conveying vehicle including a workpiece storage member, travelling mechanisms, and a receiver, a stock unit including a storage member holding base and a receiver, and a storage member conveying unit for conveying the workpiece storage member between a region of the conveyance passage above the stock unit and the storage member holding base or between a region of the conveyance passage above the processing apparatus and the inside of the processing apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 9, 2020
    Date of Patent: March 30, 2021
    Inventor: Kazuma Sekiya
  • Patent number: 10625428
    Abstract: Implementations of an end effector and an associated method of grasping an item are disclosed. The end effector comprises an interface system comprising a mounting plate having at least a first portion movable relative to at least a second portion. For example, the first portion and/or second portion are configured to pivot about at least a first pivot axis. The interface system further comprises a pliable body member attached to the mounting plate and at least partially defining an inner recess. The end effector further comprises a pair of actuators operably connected to the plate and each configured to apply a force to the plate so as to pivot a portion of the mounting plate and deform the pliable body member. The end effector further comprises a vacuum port in fluid communication with the inner recess.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 26, 2018
    Date of Patent: April 21, 2020
    Assignee: Amazon Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Gregory Coleman, Beth A. Marcus
  • Patent number: 10453028
    Abstract: A store of an embodiment includes a shelf, a conveyor, an elevator mechanism, a robot hand, and a robot mechanism. In the shelf, products can be displayed. The conveyor is arranged along the shelf. The conveyor is configured to convey a container in which the product is placed. The elevator mechanism is configured to move the container up and down. The robot hand is capable of griping the product. The robot mechanism is configured to perform positioning of the robot hand. The robot mechanism is configured to overlap at least a part of the conveyor in a top view.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 20, 2018
    Date of Patent: October 22, 2019
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Toshiba
    Inventors: Atsushi Sugahara, Kazuma Komoda, Daisuke Yamamoto, Takafumi Sonoura, Haruna Eto, Akihito Ogawa, Junya Tanaka, Hideichi Nakamoto
  • Patent number: 10421544
    Abstract: Systems and methods for operating a hoist and hook assembly may determine a position of a target using a position sensor. A hook assembly may be positioned in response to the position of the target as detected by the position sensor. Positioning the hook assembly may include articulating a boom coupled to a hoist, using one or more local thrust sources on the hook assembly, and/or moving an airframe relative to the position of the target.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 2017
    Date of Patent: September 24, 2019
    Inventors: William A. Veronesi, Alan Matthew Finn, Zohaib T. Mian, Stephen E. Tongue
  • Patent number: 10364133
    Abstract: A cabinet includes a crane including an attachment board secured to the cabinet; a receptacle on the attachment board and including threaded holes; a hollow member on the attachment board; an outrigger on bottom of the attachment board and including a slot, a rear sliding tube, a caster mounted to a bottom of a rear end of the sliding tube, and a rod releasably secured to the sliding tube and in the slot; a boom having one end pivotably secured to the hollow member and including threaded holes, an extension extending from the other end and threadedly secured to the boom, a chain at an end of the extension, and two guard members a front portion of the boom; and an adjustable boom hoist having one end releasably secured to the threaded hole of the boom and the other end releasably secured to the threaded hole of the receptacle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 20, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 30, 2019
    Assignee: E-MAKE CO., LTD
    Inventors: Kung-Cheng Chen, Lung-Chuan Huang
  • Patent number: 10118805
    Abstract: Battery gripper (12), for attracting by suction and handling starter batteries (26) of, in particular, motor vehicles, having a housing (56), in which a vacuum chamber which can be loaded with vacuum is provided and which has suction openings (84, 84) on the suction side thereof (54) which faces the starter battery to be attracted by suction, wherein the suction side is assigned a flexible lining (82) for contact with the starter battery, wherein the housing has a T-shaped cross section which runs parallel to the suction side, wherein the cross section has a bar section (64) and a web section (66) which extends transversely from the bar section, in such a way that the web section extends between the battery poles (68, 70) of the starter battery when the starter battery is attracted by suction to the battery gripper.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 13, 2014
    Date of Patent: November 6, 2018
    Assignee: J. Schmalz GmbH
    Inventors: Benedikt Mueller, Andreas Steinbach, Norman Paul
  • Patent number: 10052728
    Abstract: An assembling apparatus configured to mount a first part on a second part having an engaged part extending in a first direction includes a holding part configured to hold the first part, an engaging part extending in the first direction and being configured to engage with the engaged part, a support part configured to support the holding part and the engaging part, a first mechanism configured to displace the support part in the first direction, and a second mechanism configured to allow a displacement of the support part in a plane intersecting with the first direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 24, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 21, 2018
    Inventors: Dai Iwasaki, Yasuo Tachibana, Hiroyuki Yamauchi
  • Patent number: 9937846
    Abstract: An exemplary method for installing at an installation site a photovoltaic module including a panel and support legs includes disposing the photovoltaic module over a support surface such that the support legs are in a stowed position; lifting the photovoltaic module from a support surface while engaging a magnetic field with the support legs so as to maintain the support legs in the stowed position; disengaging the magnetic field from the support legs of the lifted photovoltaic module so as to release the support legs from the stowed position to an installation position in which the support legs are rotated downwards relative to the stowed position; and lowering the photovoltaic module to the installation site with the support legs in the installation position so as to install the photovoltaic module at the installation site, the support legs supporting the panel at the installation site.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 23, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2018
    Assignee: Alion Energy, Inc.
    Inventors: Adam French, Timothy Wheeler, Kevin Hennessy, Jess Crowe, Luis Francisco Castro-Hernandez
  • Patent number: 9832938
    Abstract: The present invention relates to an apparatus for mass cultivation of plants, which enables plants to be cultivated in the entire area of a greenhouse when the plants are cultivated in the greenhouse, thus enabling mass production of plants.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 11, 2013
    Date of Patent: December 5, 2017
    Inventor: Yeong Hwan Park
  • Patent number: 9682822
    Abstract: A system and method suitable for storing multiple product lines in an automated warehouse environment are disclosed. The storage system includes a frame containing a plurality of stacks of containers, a first handling device capable of lifting a plurality of containers from a stack in a single operation, and a second independently moveable handling device capable of lifting a single container and moving the container laterally. The first and second handling devices can work together to remove a target container quickly and with minimum use of resources.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 2013
    Date of Patent: June 20, 2017
    Inventors: Lars Sverker Ture Lindbo, Robert Rolf Stadie, Christopher Richard James Brett, Matthew Robert Whelan
  • Patent number: 9592959
    Abstract: An intermediate transfer device is located upwardly of an article delivering and receiving portion and downwardly of a ceiling transport vehicle. A transfer device grip is provided such that the intermediate transfer device is in vertical alignment with the ceiling transport vehicle and the article delivering and receiving portion and is capable of traveling, while guided and supported by a guiding support, to and among a transfer position for the delivering and receiving portion, a transfer position for the intermediate rack, a transfer-time retracted position, and a temporary-storage-time retracted. The guiding support is configured to form a space through which the grip portion and an article can pass in the vertical direction when the ceiling transport vehicle transfers the article.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 5, 2015
    Date of Patent: March 14, 2017
    Assignee: Daifuku Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Tomotaka Kinugawa, Suguru Shibata, Daisuke Ogawa
  • Patent number: 9561557
    Abstract: Systems and methods for producing dowel baskets from dowel side frames and transverse dowel rods. The dowel side frames are introduced at a top location of the production system, where there is initially introduced a first dowel rod and subsequently, with successive stepwise advancements, the remaining dowel rods are introduced. The dowel side frames with the dowel rods advance on guides that may rotate the dowel side frames relative to the axes of the longitudinal wires so as to impart a desired inclination angle ? relative to the rods. In following, with continuous stepwise advancements, the dowel rods are alternately welded, each to one of the opposed dowel side frames. Transverse wires are welded on the longitudinal wires to impart rigidity to the dowel basket. Subsequently, mass-produced dowel baskets may be stacked in groups.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 28, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 7, 2017
    Inventor: Antonios Anagnostopoulos
  • Patent number: 9517602
    Abstract: An unloading device includes a pair of support bodies which supports side surfaces of a vulcanized tire vulcanized by a tire vulcanizer from the lower portion in a vertical direction, and a movement portion which moves the support bodies. The movement portion includes a horizontal movement mechanism which moves the support bodies in a horizontal direction from a position at which the vulcanized tire can be extracted from the tire vulcanizer to a position at which the vulcanized tire can be held by a PCI device for cooling the vulcanized tire, and a transport mechanism which transports the vulcanized tire, which is received from the PCI device by the support bodies, to a carrying-out destination.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 22, 2014
    Date of Patent: December 13, 2016
    Inventors: Hiroki Tatemi, Keisuke Yusa
  • Patent number: 9511555
    Abstract: The tire vulcanizer is provided with an unloading device. The unloading device removes a vulcanized tire that has been vulcanized in the main body of the vulcanizer and conveys same to a cooling position at which the vulcanized tire is cooled, and conveys the vulcanized tire that has been cooled at the cooling position to a discharge position for transfer to an exporting device for discharging the vulcanized tire. The unloading device is provided with a support section capable of supporting the vulcanized tire, a rotational movement section for rotating the support section in a plane, and a linear movement section for moving the support section linearly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 17, 2013
    Date of Patent: December 6, 2016
    Inventors: Shinji Okada, Mitsuru Morita, Shinya Goto, Keiichi Tohmoto, Jiro Agawa
  • Patent number: 9387998
    Abstract: A method of transferring pipes from a carrier vessel to a laying vessel includes gripping the pipes in the hold of the carrier vessel and releasing the pipes, in a given position, inside a transfer station on the carrier vessel by means of a manipulator mounted on the carrier vessel. The method also includes guiding a gripping device, connected to a crane, into said given position at the transfer station.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 29, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 12, 2016
    Assignee: SAIPEM S.p.A.
    Inventors: Kimon Ardavanis, Edoardo Rolla
  • Patent number: 9099515
    Abstract: An apparatus includes a robot arm, and a plurality of guide pins mounted on the robot arm. Each of the plurality of guide pins includes a plurality of wafer supports at different levels, with each of the plurality of wafer supports configured to support and center a wafer having a size different from wafers configured to be supported and centered by remaining ones of the plurality of wafer supports.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 22, 2013
    Date of Patent: August 4, 2015
    Assignee: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, Ltd.
    Inventors: Hsin Chang, Hsin-Yu Chen, Fang Wen Tsai, Jing-Cheng Lin, Wen-Chih Chiou, Shin-Puu Jeng, Chen-Hua Yu
  • Patent number: 9027735
    Abstract: A transport device includes a traveling holding member which can travel while holding a storage container, and a move out prevention mechanism which prevents substrates from moving out of an opening of the storage container. The move out prevention mechanism is configured to include a contacting member which can be moved between a contact position at which the contacting member is in contact with side faces of the substrates, and a spaced apart position at which the contacting member is spaced apart from the side faces of the substrates. The contact position is set such that the contacting member is located between an opening side end portion and a central portion of the substrates in a direction along which the substrates are inserted and removed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2011
    Date of Patent: May 12, 2015
    Assignee: Daifuku Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Masayuki Nakagawa
  • Publication number: 20150071751
    Abstract: It is common to store decayed radioactive waste in waste packages, lowered into vertical concrete cylindrical storage containers called tile holes. These containers of these packages decay over time and may become fragile, making it difficult to remove them using conventional methods. A retrieval tool has been developed, comprising a cylinder that fits between the tile hole internal diameter and the outside diameter of the waste package inside the tile hole. Inflatable air wedges are equally spaced inside the cylinder. The air wedges are inflated to a low pressure (2.1 psig) to provide uniform grip to the outside of the packages, minimizing the risk of damage to the decayed containers. A back-up system uses horizontal safety bars at the bottom of the cylinder, which may be rotated to form a partial platform under the waste package, preventing the package from falling in the event of a failure.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 28, 2013
    Publication date: March 12, 2015
    Inventors: Michel Gaudet, Neil Briden, Malcolm Clough
  • Patent number: 8973768
    Abstract: A gantry robot system includes a bridge assembly and a carriage assembly. The bridge assembly and/or a mounting plate supported by the carriage assembly can be rotationally skewed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 8, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 10, 2015
    Assignee: PaR Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Thomas E. Jung, Thomas E. Marrinan, Come Rene-Bazin De Jouy
  • Patent number: 8870253
    Abstract: An improved apparatus and/or method for safely lifting a load along a lift axis are provided, through utilization of an automatic lockout arrangement operatively connected between the point of application of a lifting force and a motorized clamping arrangement for grasping the load. The automatic lockout arrangement precludes electrical power from being applied to open the system when the lifting force being applied to the automatic lockout arrangement has reached a predetermined lockout value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 26, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 28, 2014
    Assignee: The Caldwell Group, Inc.
    Inventors: Dan Eugene Mongan, Skyler D. Halcom
  • Patent number: 8855805
    Abstract: A conveyance vehicle system that achieves an increased efficiency of loading an article from a conveyance vehicle into a loading opening of an automated warehouse, includes a stocker, a conveyance vehicle, and a conveyance vehicle controller. The stocker includes racks, a loading port, and a stocker controller. The conveyance vehicle loads an article into the loading port of the stocker. The conveyance vehicle controller assigns the conveyance vehicle with an article conveyance command to convey the article to the stocker. The stocker controller receives a predicted conveyance command before the article is loaded from the conveyance vehicle into the stocker. The predicted conveyance command includes ID information of the article and information indicating whether or not the article is to be loaded into a rack.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 28, 2010
    Date of Patent: October 7, 2014
    Assignee: Murata Machinery, Ltd.
    Inventor: Kazunori Shimamura
  • Patent number: 8840355
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for handling cargo. A cargo handling system may be positioned relative to the cargo. The cargo handling system may comprise a frame structure and an engagement system. The frame structure may be configured to change in a number of dimensions to encompass the cargo. The engagement system may be configured to engage the cargo. The number of dimensions of the frame structure may be adjusted to encompass the cargo. The cargo may be engaged with the engagement system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 16, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 23, 2014
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventor: Richard L. Kulesha
  • Patent number: 8702365
    Abstract: A substrate processing apparatus includes a main load unit, a buffer load unit, and a transfer unit. Containers each accommodating substrates are placed on the main load unit and the buffer load unit. The buffer load unit is disposed above the main load unit and movable into and outward from a process module. Therefore, more containers can be placed in the substrate processing apparatus without increasing the footprint of the substrate processing apparatus, and thus it is possible to reduce equipment idle time during which standby substrates wait before being processed, thereby improving productivity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 20, 2009
    Date of Patent: April 22, 2014
    Assignee: Semes Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Sun Yong Park, Choon Sik Kim, Jeong Yong Bae
  • Publication number: 20140017052
    Abstract: The objective of the invention is to create an overhead robot system that reduces the movements of the system's gripper when it is desired to pick up an individual object from the middle of a stack of objects. The number of movements is reduced as the gripper can be driven to above the desired stack of objects and does not need to be subsequently moved to another location above the warehouse area in order to pick up and move a single object. The invention comprises a separate arrangement for moving a single picked-up object to the edge of the warehouse area. The gripper can move more quickly to the next object to be picked up.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 12, 2012
    Publication date: January 16, 2014
    Applicant: CIMCORP OY
    Inventors: Jarno Honkanen, Kari Miikkulainen
  • Patent number: 8591161
    Abstract: A maneuvering autonomous rotorcraft cargo attachment system for engaging two mating elements of a coupling mechanism includes a first system on a ship deck to position a first coupling mechanism element in response to positioning commands and a second system attached to a rotorcraft hoist cable to position the second coupling mechanism element in response to positioning commands. A controller calculates and issues the positioning commands to the first and second positioning systems thereby effecting engagement of the two coupling elements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 4, 2011
    Date of Patent: November 26, 2013
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventor: Roger D. Bernhardt
  • Patent number: 8550517
    Abstract: A telescopic barrel lifting attachment device which includes a parallelepiped body, a plate member disposed perpendicularly thereto on each end of the body, a pair of slide bars disposed on each side of the body having a channel therebetween through which the body slides, a concave clamp assembly disposed on a bottom end of each plate member, and a cable having external ends attached to the plate members. As the cable is raised and alternately is lowered by a hoist, the cable pulls the clamp assemblies inwardly toward and alternately allows the clamp assemblies to move away from each other to secure and move and alternately release a barrel in a desired location.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2011
    Date of Patent: October 8, 2013
    Inventor: Albert Richard Bates
  • Patent number: 8480349
    Abstract: A device for longitudinal adjustment of a spreader relative to the yoke beam with a sled for lateral adjustment of the spreader between the supports of a straddle carrier for picking up and transporting containers includes a base frame and mountings for support bolts firmly connected with it, a traverse with openings for support bolts and an attachment for a displacement cylinder, support bolts between the mountings and the traverse, and displacement cylinders between the base frame and the traverse.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 13, 2008
    Date of Patent: July 9, 2013
    Assignee: Noell Mobile Systems GmbH
    Inventor: Roman Hiltscher
  • Patent number: 8382417
    Abstract: An article transport facility includes an article transporting mobile body; an article support for storing an article, the article support being configured to be moved between an article transfer position and an article storage position; an operating device provided on the mobile body for shifting the article support between the article storage position and article transfer position; an operated element supported to be movable in a direction of access between a proximate position adjacent the mobile body standing still in an article transfer location and a remote position away from the mobile body standing still in the article transfer location, the operated element being operable, in the proximate position, to place the article support in the article storage position, and in the remote position, to place the article support in the article transfer position; and a guide device for guiding the operating device in a fore and aft direction to a proper operative position relative to the operated element when the
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 9, 2007
    Date of Patent: February 26, 2013
    Assignee: Daifuku Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Mitsuru Yoshida, Yoshitaka Inui
  • Patent number: 8348588
    Abstract: An article transport facility includes an article transporting mobile body configured to move along a path and having an article holder; an article support for storing an article, the article support is configured to be moved between an article transfer position and an article storage position; a lock device provided on the article support to be switchable between a locking state for locking the article support in the article storage position, and an unlocking position for releasing the locking state; and an operating device provided on the mobile body for moving the article support and switching the lock device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 9, 2007
    Date of Patent: January 8, 2013
    Assignee: Daifuku Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Mitsuru Yoshida, Yoshitaka Inui
  • Patent number: 8321051
    Abstract: A workpiece pickup apparatus is provided. The workpiece pickup apparatus includes: a gripping unit which sucks a workpiece so as to lift up the workpiece; a lowering unit which lowers the gripping unit from a waiting position towards the workpiece; a detecting unit which detects a physical amount which corresponds to a force with which the gripping unit presses the workpiece; a comparison unit which compares the detected physical amount with a reference physical amount; and a controller which controls a movement of the gripping unit based on a comparison result of the detected physical amount and the reference physical amount.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 2010
    Date of Patent: November 27, 2012
    Assignee: Honda Motor Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Shinji Ago, Yoshiaki Nakagawa
  • Patent number: 8308418
    Abstract: A high-efficiency buffer stocker is disclosed. The buffer stocker includes an overhead transport track for supporting overhead transport vehicles carrying wafer containers and at least one conveyor system or conveyor belt provided beneath the overhead transport track for receiving the wafer containers from the overhead transport vehicles on the overhead transport track. The buffer stocker is capable of absorbing the excessive flow of wafer containers between a processing tool and a stocker, for example, to facilitate the orderly and efficient flow of wafers between sequential process tools in a semiconductor fabrication facility, for example.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 9, 2006
    Date of Patent: November 13, 2012
    Assignee: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Veen Ma, Chih-Hung Huang, Wen-Chung Chiang, Goldie Hsieh, Fiona Lee
  • Patent number: 8298474
    Abstract: The invention relates to a device for loading and unloading a heat treatment furnace and to a corresponding method. Heat treatment furnaces are normally loaded and unloaded by means of a so-called elevator. During unloading, a removed workpiece is usually lowered by means of the elevator into an oil bath, in which it is then removed from the elevator. Oil is then transferred into the furnace chamber via the oil-covered elevator. Such an application of oil is avoided by means of a device comprising a frame rack having a first and a second level, which are disposed parallel above each other, and are connected to each other by means of a plurality of frame braces, wherein the first and the second levels have a plurality of openings and the frame braces have guide means.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 28, 2008
    Date of Patent: October 30, 2012
    Assignee: LOI Thermprocess GmbH
    Inventors: Friedhelm Kühn, Horst Barth, Wolfgang Schalberger
  • Patent number: 8254516
    Abstract: An outer filter removal tool for a boiling water reactor control rod drive that uses a mechanical advantage obtained through the use of lead screw threads to pull the outer filter off of the control rod drive. Fingers on the tool are closed around the upper flange of the outer filter by sliding a collar over the outwardly biased fingers. A shaft extending through the tool is rotated which in turn extends a push plate against the control rod drive index tube causing the fingers to pull against the upper flange on the outer filter until the filter is freed from the control rod drive. The tool will hold the filter in place until affirmatively released for proper disposal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 22, 2009
    Date of Patent: August 28, 2012
    Assignee: Westinghouse Electric Company LLC
    Inventors: David P. Ketcham, Stafford L. Turner, Robert T. Fells
  • Patent number: 8231324
    Abstract: The article storage facility comprises an article transporter configured to move along a path via an article transfer location with respect to an article storage rack; an article loader for bringing articles into and taking articles out of the article storage rack, provided to the article storage rack so as to project and retract between a protruding position for article receipt that projects to an outside of the article storage rack, and a retracted position for retracting toward the article storage rack; and a protrusion and retraction operating device provided to the article transporter, for causing the article loader to protrude and retract between the protruding position and the retracted position when the article transporter is at the article transfer location.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 4, 2008
    Date of Patent: July 31, 2012
    Assignee: Daifuku Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Mitsuru Yoshida, Yoshitaka Inui
  • Publication number: 20120177469
    Abstract: One transport device for media rolls used with grand format printers includes a base having opposed ends, means for coupling the base to a forklift tine, and two arms respectively adjacent the base ends. Each arm is coupled to the base for rotatable and lateral movement. A first hook extends from a first cable having an upper end coupled to one arm's distal end. The first hook has a receiving area configured to receive a shaft extending generally along the media roll's center axis, and position the shaft along a generally vertical line extending through the first cable upper end. A second hook extends from a second cable having an upper end coupled to the other arm's distal end. The second hook has a receiving area configured to receive the mounting shaft and position the mounting shaft along a generally vertical line extending through the second cable upper end.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 12, 2011
    Publication date: July 12, 2012
    Inventors: Dave Robbins, Paul Browning, Steve Russell, Steve Shiew, Mike Graves, David Totten
  • Patent number: 8206077
    Abstract: An overhead shuttle is controlled to support a bottom of an article while traveling. A transfer apparatus is controlled to hold the article from above the article, move the article between a position above the overhead shuttle and a position above stations provided on a side of a travel rail, and elevate and lower the article to transfer the article between the transfer apparatus and the station.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 16, 2010
    Date of Patent: June 26, 2012
    Assignee: Murata Machinery, Ltd.
    Inventor: Kazuhiro Ishikawa
  • Publication number: 20120133371
    Abstract: A test fixture for testing a plurality of longitudinal battery cells includes: a base plate; a plurality of holding structures for holding the battery cells, the holding structures being mounted on the base plate and configured to hold the battery cells with their longitudinal axes being perpendicular with respect to the base plate; and a plurality of contacts arranged on the base plate to electrically contact positive and negative terminals of each of the battery cells.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 19, 2011
    Publication date: May 31, 2012
    Inventors: Erik Toomre, Karsten Rueter, Guido Hofer
  • Patent number: 8181799
    Abstract: An actuation system includes a bridge crane, a trolley, and an end effector and is configured for moving a payload. A first actuator is operatively connected to the bridge crane. The bridge crane is configured for moving along an X axis in response to the first actuator being actuated. The trolley extends from the bridge crane. A second actuator is operatively connected to the trolley. The trolley is configured for moving along a Y axis in response to the second actuator being actuated. The end effector extends from the trolley and is configured for supporting a payload. A third actuator is operatively connected to the end effector. The end effector is configured for rotating about the Z axis in response to the third actuator being actuated to rotate the end effector. Each actuator is disposed in spaced relationship to the bridge crane, the trolley, and the end effector.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 22, 2012
    Assignees: GM Global Technology Operations LLC, Universite Laval
    Inventors: Thierry Laliberte, Clement Gosselin, Simon Foucault, Boris Mayer-St-Onge, Dalong Gao, Robert J. Scheuerman
  • Patent number: 8123456
    Abstract: A container changing system able to prevent deterioration in the working rate of substrate processing apparatuses and deterioration in the amount of production of semiconductor devices. A second mounting portion is arranged between a carrier of a container conveying unit and a first mounting portion of a substrate processing apparatus with respect to a lifting direction of a container. The second mounting portion is configured to freely advance and withdraw to/from a lifting path of the container. A container lifting unit is arranged between the carrier and the second mounting portion with respect to the lifting direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 12, 2008
    Date of Patent: February 28, 2012
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventor: Shinji Wakabayashi
  • Patent number: 8083096
    Abstract: An automatic supply apparatus for an elongate supply target member having elasticity and including both end portions includes a stock mechanism wherein a plurality of supply target members are stocked such that the plurality of supply target members are suspended in an inverted U shape and top portions of the plurality of supply target members are arranged side by side in a row direction, and an extraction mechanism to operate the top portions of the supply target members to extract one supply target member from the plurality of supply target members stocked in the stock mechanism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 28, 2008
    Date of Patent: December 27, 2011
    Assignee: Olympus Medical Systems Corp.
    Inventors: Hiroshi Ichiyama, Kiminobu Numata, Hiroshi Kimura
  • Patent number: 8079799
    Abstract: A lifting apparatus is adapted for use in lifting a container having a pair of channels, each of the channels having a pair of open ends. The lifting apparatus includes an elongated support bar and a hook assembly mounted on each end of the support bar. Each of the hook assemblies includes a pair of hooks and a hydraulic cylinder and piston for rotating the hooks between open and closed positions. The container is lifted by lowering the support bar with the hooks in the open position until the hooks can be rotated into the open ends of the two channels. The hooks are then rotated to the closed position so that the hooks extend into the channels. The lifting apparatus is then raised to lift the container.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 9, 2007
    Date of Patent: December 20, 2011
    Assignee: Petersen Industries, Inc
    Inventors: Lee F. Rathbun, David H. Osburn
  • Patent number: 8075238
    Abstract: The invention relates to a device and method for running a warehouse in which objects are stored in a number of stacks in a storage area. The device comprises a collecting device (101) with an intermediate storage (102) and a gripping device (103), which can be displaced as desired over the storage area. The intermediate storage (102) can, in separate receiving steps, be successfully filled from different stacks. The gripping device (103) is formed by two vertically displaceable bars (104, 105) that are situated opposite one another and serves to lift one or more objects from one of the stacks. An improved utilization of the available storage space results by virtue of the fact that only the bars (104, 105) are displaced into the stack space.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 14, 2004
    Date of Patent: December 13, 2011
    Assignee: Gudel Group AG
    Inventors: Herbert Wirz, Rudolf Güdel, Walter Zulauf
  • Publication number: 20110286827
    Abstract: In a first aspect, the invention is directed to a load handling system that includes a load movement assembly, a lift cylinder, a load holding member, a release control member, a load movement assembly control device and a load sensing device. The load movement assembly is movable between a raised position and a lowered position. The load holding member is connected to the load movement assembly and controllable to hold a load and to release the load. The lift cylinder is operatively connected to the load movement assembly and movable to raise and lower the load. The release control member is operatively connected to the load holding member to control release of the load. The load movement assembly control device is actuatable between a first state wherein the load movement assembly control device connects the lift cylinder to a source of fluid at a first pressure, and a second state wherein the load movement assembly control device connects the lift cylinder to a source of fluid at a second pressure.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 18, 2011
    Publication date: November 24, 2011
    Inventor: Ray Givens
  • Patent number: 7972104
    Abstract: A lower buffer 6 is placed under a traveling rail for an overhead traveling vehicle 16, and a side buffer 8 is provided on a side of the traveling rail. The overhead traveling vehicle 16 has a hoisting frame 30, and a lateral feeding unit 24 for laterally feeding the hoisting frame 30.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 30, 2006
    Date of Patent: July 5, 2011
    Assignee: Murata Kikai Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Tamotsu Shiwaku, Takashi Nakao
  • Publication number: 20110048736
    Abstract: Method, crane system and crane for moving a component of a device. The crane includes a supporting mechanism configured to be fixedly attached to the device, an arm mechanism connected to the supporting mechanism and configured to move in a horizontal plane, a sliding mechanism connected to the arm mechanism and configured to move substantially perpendicular to the horizontal plane, and a grabbing mechanism configured to be removably attached to the sliding mechanism and configured to grab the component of the device.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 3, 2009
    Publication date: March 3, 2011
    Inventors: Leonard Childers, John Millican
  • Patent number: 7780392
    Abstract: The present invention comprises a stocker. The stocker comprises multiple container storage locations arranged in a horizontal array. The horizontal array of storage locations may be suspended from the facility ceiling or supported by the facility floor. The stocker may include one or more stocker robots for transporting a workpiece container within the stocker and/or to a material transport system. The stocker may also include features such as container elevators and conveyor loops.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 27, 2006
    Date of Patent: August 24, 2010
    Assignee: Muratec Automation Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Theodore W. Rogers, Norma Riley
  • Patent number: 7758293
    Abstract: The invention relates to a device for loading and/or unloading a transport cargo hold, in particular on a good vehicle, comprising at least one transport unit, by means of which goods units, particularly several thereof, may be simultaneously transported. According to the invention, the costs of said device may be reduced and the flexibility increased, whereby the transport unit may at least partly be introduced into the transport cargo hold.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 27, 2003
    Date of Patent: July 20, 2010
    Assignee: BSH Bosch und Siemens Hausgeraete GmbH
    Inventors: Egbert Classen, Klaus Sohn
  • Patent number: 7753639
    Abstract: An automatic warehouse 8 is provided parallel to a running rail 4 for an overhead travelling carriage 6. Open shelves 16 each of which is open on its side are provided in a rack 10. According to the present invention, articles can be transferred directly to and from a shelf in the automatic warehouse.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 9, 2005
    Date of Patent: July 13, 2010
    Assignee: Murata Kikai Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Kenji Hoshino
  • Patent number: 7708514
    Abstract: A system and method for automated handling, transferring and storing conventional cargo storage containers on a cargo ship wherein the containers are stored in a multi-tier cell system and are manipulated by powered transfer units which are selectively moveable along an intersecting overhead track system such that containers may be simultaneously retrieved from, moved or placed within any of the cells of the ship. The transfer units are equipped both with hoists, which control spreader beams which are selectively secured to the cargo containers, and guide stabilizers, which prevent undesirable movement of the cargo containers when they are elevated above the cell structures such that the containers may be manipulated even during rough sea conditions such that the system is essentially continuously operable as a floating supply distribution system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 31, 2004
    Date of Patent: May 4, 2010
    Assignee: BEC Companies, Inc.
    Inventors: Charles E. Benedict, Brian G. Pfeifer, Christian A. Yates, Scott K. Bladen
  • Patent number: 7677860
    Abstract: The invention relates to a method for transferring heavy loads, such as sheet-like objects, particularly anodes and cathodes, in electrolysis, the transfer apparatus comprising a lifting device (1) to which a stationary control housing (3) is attached; along the slide surfaces (6) of said control housing (3), there moves a control frame (5), and in said control frame there are arranged control shafts (7) along which a gripping element (8) is movable by the control surfaces (16) of said gripping element (8), so that the stationary control housing (3) is suspended from the lifting device (1) by means of at least three fastening elements (2) articulated at both ends.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 29, 2002
    Date of Patent: March 16, 2010
    Assignee: Outotec Oyj
    Inventors: Tuomo Kivistö, Tom Marttila