Having Fluent, Particulate Solid Filler (e.g., Beads) Patents (Class 5/702)
  • Patent number: 8671484
    Abstract: The invention is a support device for posing an infant for a photograph. The support device has a fabric case with a filling that provides a comfortable support for the infant, yet does not compress under the weight of the infant. The upper surface of the support device has a curved contour that includes a two bolsters or convex curved raised edges that are parallel to each other, with a valley between the bolsters. A newborn may be nestled in the valley or placed in various poses on the first or second bolster.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 1, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 18, 2014
    Inventor: Amanda Rachael Logiodice
  • Patent number: 8171585
    Abstract: An inexpensive, lightweight, compressible, shock absorbing, and resilient fluid for use in padding applications is presented. A fluid pad can comprise closed-cell foam beads and a surrounding fluid housed in a thin plastic bladder. The closed-cell foam beads can be exactly flooded by the fluid. Alternatively, the fluid can lubricate the closed-cell foam beads. The surrounding fluid may also comprise solid phase microballoons. The addition of the closed-cell foam beads can result in the overall fluid in the bladder being lighter in weight. The fluid pad with the closed-cell foam beads can be compressible and resilient. The fluid pad with the closed-cell foam beads can be shock absorbing with respect to impact loads or vibrations. The addition of the closed-cell foam beads can lower the cost of the fluid pad insert.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 29, 2008
    Date of Patent: May 8, 2012
    Assignee: Brock USA LLC
    Inventors: Steven Mead, Richard Runkles
  • Patent number: 8166589
    Abstract: An embodiment of the present invention discloses a mattress including an underlayer, an air chamber layer arranged above the underlayer, granular material incorporated in the air chamber layer, and adjusting devices for adjusting the amount of air in the air chamber layer between a rest position, wherein the granular material at least almost fills the whole air chamber layer, and an adjusting position wherein the air chamber layer is only partially filled with granular material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 3, 2007
    Date of Patent: May 1, 2012
    Assignee: B.V. Pijnloos
    Inventor: Bernardus Ludgerus Lubertus Hijlkema
  • Patent number: 7975337
    Abstract: A person-support apparatus comprises a frame, a container, a gas permeable cover, a rigid diffuser, a fluidizable medium, and a cushion. The container is supported on a frame and includes a base and a plurality of sides coupled to the base. The base cooperates with the sides to define an opening opposite the base. The gas permeable cover is removably coupled to the container and covers the opening to define a chamber. The rigid diffuser is positioned within the chamber proximate the base. The fluidizable medium is positioned between the rigid diffuser and the gas permeable cover. The cushion is coupled to the diffuser and positioned between the gas permeable cover and the rigid diffuser. The cushion is configured to provide cushioning support between a person supported on the gas permeable cover and the rigid diffuser.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 19, 2009
    Date of Patent: July 12, 2011
    Assignee: Hill-Rom Services, Inc.
    Inventor: Charles A. Howell
  • Patent number: 7832038
    Abstract: The invention relates to a fire resistant barrier and open flame resistant mattresses, mattress foundations, and upholstered articles having the fire resistant barrier therein for protection. The open flame resistance of the mattresses, mattress foundations, and upholstered articles is determined under a full-scale fire test of a composite article.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 19, 2007
    Date of Patent: November 16, 2010
    Assignee: Kickball Concepts, LLC
    Inventors: Harrison Robert Murphy, Juraj Michal Daniel Slavik, II
  • Patent number: 7818841
    Abstract: An antidecubital underlay pad (10) having a receiving casing with a top side of the casing and a bottom side of the casing, the casing being segmented along a plurality of segmentation axes (13) to form underlay segments (12), such that the underlay segments are provided with a molded body filling comprising a plurality of molded bodies and are bordered by segmentation lines running along the segmentation axes, wherein the segmentation lines have multiple changes in direction in their course along the segmentation axes (13) and at least the top side (16) of the casing is designed to be elastic at least in a supporting area and is prestressed by the molded body filling (20).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 24, 2006
    Date of Patent: October 26, 2010
    Assignee: Oped AG
    Inventor: Daniela Happel
  • Patent number: 7797776
    Abstract: A fluidized bed for supporting a patient has a fluid-impervious peripheral wall, a fluid-porous membrane top covering and a fluid-porous floor defining a unit volume in which a quantity of glass bead support media is confined. Several diffusers supply air through the floor to fluidize the support media and support a body on the bed top covering. Each diffuser is a laminate having a porous membrane top and a porous membrane bottom spaced by a fluid-impervious boundary wall and a plurality of fluid-impervious interior walls that create discrete cells. Each cell contains a quantity of glass bead cell media. A pair of blowers supplies pressure air through one-way valves to the cells in the diffusers and through the cells up into the unit interior volume to fluidize the support media.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 25, 2007
    Date of Patent: September 21, 2010
    Assignee: Aurora Manufacturing LLC
    Inventor: James Joy
  • Publication number: 20100031448
    Abstract: An embodiment of the present invention discloses a mattress including an underlayer, an air chamber layer arranged above the underlayer, granular material incorporated in the air chamber layer, and adjusting devices for adjusting the amount of air in the air chamber layer between a rest position, wherein the granular material at least almost fills the whole air chamber layer, and an adjusting position wherein the air chamber layer is only partially filled with granular material.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 3, 2007
    Publication date: February 11, 2010
    Inventor: Bernardus Ludgerus Lubertus Hijlkema
  • Publication number: 20080066237
    Abstract: A mattress includes a liquid impermeable layer and at least one anti-microbial layer. A support core with expanded polystyrene beads is also disclosed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 19, 2006
    Publication date: March 20, 2008
    Applicant: Boyd Flotation, Inc.
    Inventor: Dennis Boyd
  • Patent number: 7191480
    Abstract: An apparatus is configured to support at least a portion of a body thereon. The apparatus includes a base portion and a three dimensional engineered material, the three dimensional engineered material and the base cooperate to provide support for the body.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 5, 2004
    Date of Patent: March 20, 2007
    Assignee: Hill-Rom Services, Inc.
    Inventors: James J. Romano, Sohrab Soltani, Michael V. Bolden
  • Patent number: 7168116
    Abstract: An apparatus (10) for supporting a patient during a medical procedure includes a bead bag (18) that is filled with compressible beads (20) and that forms a lower layer of the apparatus (10). The apparatus (10) also includes a layer of foam material (30) that is located above the bead bag and an air cell grid (36) that has a plurality of inflatable air cells (38). The air cell grid (36) forms an upper layer of the apparatus (10) and provides a soft surface upon which the patient lies. The bead bag (18), when subjected to a vacuum, becomes rigid for supporting the air cell grid (36) against the patient for helping to maximize a surface area of contact between the patient and the apparatus (10).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 5, 2004
    Date of Patent: January 30, 2007
    Assignee: The Cleveland Clinic Foundation
    Inventors: Steven I. Reger, Richard R. Navarro
  • Patent number: 7086108
    Abstract: The sectional non-slip mattress includes a support frame defining a plurality of compartments and at least one cushion having a plurality of ball bearings received within a cushion housing. Each compartment receives a corresponding ball bearing, thus preventing horizontal movement of the cushion with respect to the support frame. The ball bearings form a first material layer and a second material layer is formed from a set of elastic beads. A third material layer is formed from a plurality of gel-filled capsules and the three material layers are all housed within a fabric cushion housing, which is permeable to air. An additional air supply may be provided for driving pre-cooled or pre-heated air through the cushion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 30, 2006
    Date of Patent: August 8, 2006
    Inventor: Vera Litvak
  • Patent number: 6996864
    Abstract: A cushion for a wheelchair, including a matrix of cushion modules, wherein each cushion module includes a cushion element that has a phase change material included in its filler material that sits above an additional cushion element of a larger volume of filler material. The cushion also typically includes a support rail located on three sides of the matrix of cushion modules to align the body of the wheelchair user when sitting in the wheelchair. In addition, the cushion typically includes a base member that is positioned beneath the matrix and provides stability for the cushion. The cushion elements are typically enclosed in a moisture resistant envelope.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 24, 2003
    Date of Patent: February 14, 2006
    Assignee: Otto Bock Healthcare, LP
    Inventor: Evan W. Call
  • Patent number: 6990701
    Abstract: The sectional non-slip mattress includes a support frame defining a plurality of compartments and at least one cushion having a plurality of ball bearings received within a cushion housing. Each compartment receives a corresponding ball bearing, thus preventing horizontal movement of the cushion with respect to the support frame. The ball bearings form a first material layer and a second material layer is formed from a set of elastic beads, each having a volume smaller than a volume of each of the ball bearings. A third material layer is formed from a plurality of gel-filled capsules and the three material layers are all housed within a fabric cushion housing, which is permeable to air. An additional air supply may be provided for driving pre-cooled or pre-heated air through the cushion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 5, 2005
    Date of Patent: January 31, 2006
    Inventor: Vera Litvak
  • Patent number: 6934990
    Abstract: A bed includes a frame supporting a non-liquid material having a density of about 0.15 of to 1 times the density of water. The material can be formed from pellets. The bed can also include a stretchable sheet disposed over the material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 20, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 30, 2005
    Inventor: Tom Rapisarda
  • Publication number: 20040226103
    Abstract: An apparatus (10) for supporting a patient during a medical procedure includes a bead bag (18) that is filled with compressible beads (20) and that forms a lower layer of the apparatus (10). The apparatus (10) also includes a layer of foam material (30) that is located above the bead bag and an air cell grid (36) that has a plurality of inflatable air cells (38). The air cell grid (36) forms an upper layer of the apparatus (10) and provides a soft surface upon which the patient lies. The bead bag (18), when subjected to a vacuum, becomes rigid for supporting the air cell grid (36) against the patient for helping to maximize a surface area of contact between the patient and the apparatus (10).
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 5, 2004
    Publication date: November 18, 2004
    Applicant: The Cleveland Clinic Foundation
    Inventors: Steven I. Reger, Richard R. Navarro
  • Publication number: 20040117911
    Abstract: A bed includes a frame supporting a non-liquid material having a density of about 0.15 of to 1 times the density of water. The material can be formed from pellets. The bed can also include a stretchable sheet disposed over the material.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 20, 2002
    Publication date: June 24, 2004
    Inventor: Tom Rapisarda
  • Patent number: 6721979
    Abstract: A therapeutic treatment bed with features to enhance the care and comfort of burn patients and others subject to extensive recuperative periods. Among the features are patient engaging fluidized bead surfaces integral with the upper surfaces of air cushions provided by an air bed. Detachable conformation of the fluidized bead surfaces is also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 17, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 20, 2004
    Assignee: KCI Licensing, Inc.
    Inventors: John H. Vrzalik, Peter A. Leininger, Ronald B. Hicks
  • Patent number: 6694555
    Abstract: A mattress for a bed is provided to support a patient. The mattress includes a plurality of air fluidized bladders. Each bladder includes a fluidized zone having fluidizable material positioned therein. Each bladder further includes a diffuser configured to provide air to the fluidized zone to fluidize the material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2001
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2004
    Assignee: Hill-Rom Services, Inc.
    Inventors: Sohrab Soltani, Timothy W. Perez, James J. Romano
  • Patent number: 6692812
    Abstract: A multilayer sheet structure (10) comprises a front sheet (11), a net-like backing sheet (12), and sewing threads (14) for partially joining the front sheet with the backing sheet so as to form bag portions (13) between the front and backing sheets. Paddings (15) such as cotton, wool or the like can be stuffed through net clearances of the backing sheet into bag portions surrounded with sewing threads to form bulges (11b) at desired locations on the front surface of the front sheet. Thus, a quilted multilayer sheet structure (17) having bulges on the front surface thereof can be easily produced.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 20, 2001
    Date of Patent: February 17, 2004
    Inventor: Kazue Watanabe
  • Publication number: 20030221260
    Abstract: The support product repeatedly moves points of maximal pressure between the product and a weight supported by the product, which is especially useful for avoiding problems such as bed sores.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 30, 2002
    Publication date: December 4, 2003
    Inventor: Rae McGrath
  • Patent number: 6574813
    Abstract: A pilot operated check valve is configured to be positioned inside a fluid supply tube connected between an air supply manifold and an air zone located on a support surface of abed. The pilot operated check valve includes a body having an air inlet and an air outlet connected by an air passageway. The pilot operated check valve also includes a valve member configured to move between an open position and a closed position to block air flow through the passageway. Additionally, the pilot operated check valve includes a push rod having a first end coupled to the valve member to unseat the valve member when the valve member is in its open position and a second end. The pilot operated check valve includes a diaphragm located in a chamber of the body adjacent the second end of the push rod. The pilot operated check valve further includes an inlet port configured to be coupled to the manifold to admit pressure against the diaphragm.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 29, 2001
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2003
    Assignee: Hill-Rom Services, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael V. Bolden, Vincent L. Babson, Daniel A. Denson
  • Patent number: 6473924
    Abstract: A sitting, sleeping or support pad (1), which on account of its special design can be used in a number of different areas of application, includes an inner bag with a fill material, disposed in an outer bag. The inner bag has an elongated, substantially rectangular shape and the outer bag consists of first and second sides (2, 3), with a I substantially similar shape to the inner bag, where between the outer bag's first and second sides (2, 3), at least in a part of the bag's length against one of the short sides of the outer bag, there is provided an intermediate piece (6) and an end portion (4) is formed on at least one short side. The end portion (4) is enlarged and provides the opportunity for the pad to be placed on the short side, as well as for all or most of the fill material to be collected in a part of the inner bag, thereby to provide co-operation between inner bag and outer bag to achieve a sitting position where the user is raised above ground level.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 25, 2001
    Date of Patent: November 5, 2002
    Assignee: Freebag AS
    Inventors: Lars Sørbø, Atle Aas
  • Patent number: 6393642
    Abstract: A supporting device (1) such as, for instance, a cushion, comprising a space (3) formed by a flexible envelope (2) and filled with a plurality of elements (4). The elements (4) in the space (3) are movable relative to each other and each consist of a gas-filled, flexible and thin-walled covering of gastight design, so that the elements are deformable for distributing a load over the supporting device. The covering of a number of elements is manufactured from at least substantially nonelastic material. These elements are each filled with the gas for 50-98 percent of their maximum volume and have a volume of from 10 cm3 to 100 cm3.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 11, 1997
    Date of Patent: May 28, 2002
    Assignee: Vicair B.V.
    Inventors: Huibert Paul Pollman, Max Paul Rogmans
  • Patent number: 6192537
    Abstract: A semi-fluid based body support system using a mass of granular material to support a user has reversible transferring means and fluidizing means to locally control the granular material. The reversible transferring means and fluidizing means are independently controlled at plural locations along a system longitudinal dimension so that each region of the user body may be independently accommodated. The reversible transferring means is used to achieve fitness for natural posture by controlling a distribution of the accumulative height of granular material, and transfers the granular material between a transverse middle portion and transverse side portions of the system reversibly. The fluidizing means is used to achieve reduced partial oppression by controlling a local fluidity of the granular material. In a preferred embodiment, rotary blade devices, placed at spaced locations along the system longitudinal dimension, implement the fluidizing and transferring means by switching between operational modes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 26, 1999
    Date of Patent: February 27, 2001
    Inventor: Sakae Miki
  • Patent number: 6145143
    Abstract: A patient support system having multiple patient support layers for reducing and preventing the development of bed sores in bedridden patients. A top patient support surface is provided by an anti-shear cover layer. The anti-shear cover layer being operable to reduce lateral shear forces experienced by a patient moving across the patient support surface. One or more fluid pouches or bladders are provided to form a fluid bladder layer for reducing normal pressures and forces experienced by the patient. The fluid bladder layer being releasably or integrally secured to the top surface of an inflatable air mattress. Means are provided operable to secure the anti-shear cover layer and fluid bladder layer in overlapping relation to the inflatable air mattress. Also provided is a means for adjusting the temperature of the fluid contained within the fluid bladder layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 3, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 14, 2000
    Assignee: Kinetic Concepts, Inc.
    Inventors: Ronald B. Hicks, John H. Vrzalik
  • Patent number: 6131214
    Abstract: A medical table includes a base. The medical table also includes a number of rollers, supported by the base, which collectively define a bed surface for supporting a patient, wherein each roller of the number of rollers (1) defines a fluid impervious bag having a void therein, and (2) contains a plurality of beads within the void of the fluid impervious bag, and further wherein the number of rollers includes a prime roller having a shaft extending therefrom. The medical table further includes a motor mechanically coupled to the shaft of the prime roller. The medical table also includes a vacuum source in fluid communication with each void of the number of rollers. A method of moving a patient from a first position to a second position is also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 6, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 17, 2000
    Inventors: Stephen P. Moenning, Donald M. Judy, Douglas B. Thatcher
  • Patent number: 6045178
    Abstract: An outdoorsman's support or chair is comprised of a substantially filled flexible container provided with shoulder straps for easy transport. The flexible container is filled with pellets and is preferably waterproof. It is adaptable to conform to the shape of a person providing comfortable support and insulation from the environment. The flexible container may be provided with a plurality of other straps which may be utilized for attaching other objects or gear to it during transport and for mounting the chair to various other structures, such as the trunk and limbs of trees. The chair is comprised of a spherical structure at one end and an elongated portion at a second end. The elongated portion at the second end may be folded over and juxtaposed to the spherical structure and secured by a folding strap for ease in transport.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 30, 1998
    Date of Patent: April 4, 2000
    Assignee: Istari, Inc.
    Inventor: Richmond Marlin Miller
  • Patent number: 6024407
    Abstract: Vibrating particle material filled furniture to allow for vibration of the furniture for the benefit and enjoyment of a user is disclosed. Various types of furniture may be utilized under the present invention. These include chairs, loungers, mattresses and pillows. Various types of materials, both natural and manufactured, may be used as the particle material. Various methods of producing the desired vibration are disclosed with examples given. These include those which rely upon manipulation of a magnetic field as well as mechanical devices. The resultant vibration may have a constant cycle rate or, more preferred, may be variable. A particularly desirable vibration method is disclosed which provides for the vibration to be synchronized with a musical composition. Such vibration in synch to the musical composition may be generated with or without audio production of the musical composition.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 10, 1998
    Date of Patent: February 15, 2000
    Assignee: Somatron Corporation
    Inventor: Byron C. Eakin
  • Patent number: 6016581
    Abstract: A semi-fluid mattress using a mass of granular material to support a user has reversible transferring means and fluidizing means to locally control the granular material. The reversible transferring and fluidizing means are independently controllable at plural locations along a longitudinal extent or dimension of the mattress, so that each region of the body can be independently cared for. The reversible transferring means is used to achieve fitness for natural posture by controlling the distribution of the accumulative height of the granular material, and transfers the granular material between a transverse middle portion and transverse side portions of the mattress. The fluidizing means is used to achieve small partial oppression by controlling local fluidity of the granular material. In a preferred embodiment, reversible rotary blade devices, placed at spaced locations along a longitudinal dimension of the mattress, are used for the above two means by changing their operational mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 28, 1998
    Date of Patent: January 25, 2000
    Inventor: Sakae Miki
  • Patent number: 5966763
    Abstract: A surface pad system for a surgical table includes a cover having an upwardly-facing patient-support surface defining an interior region of the surface pad system, and a vacuum bead bag received in the interior region. The vacuum bead bag includes a flexible cover defining an interior region containing compressible beads including a lower layer of compressible beads and an upper layer of compressible bead separated from the lower layer of compressible beads by a membrane made from a flexible material. The system also includes a bladder received in the interior region of the cover and positioned to lie beneath the vacuum bead bag. The bladder defines an interior region and is inflatable when pressurized fluid is received in the interior region of the bladder so that the vacuum bead bag conformingly engages the patient on the patient-support surface when the bladder is inflated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 2, 1996
    Date of Patent: October 19, 1999
    Assignee: Hill-Rom, Inc.
    Inventors: James Milton Cherry Thomas, Robert C. Novack, Karl Norman Caldwell, John Alan Bobey, Marla Dukes Repik
  • Patent number: 5881409
    Abstract: A bladder for containing a cushioning medium. The bladder includes open compartments which are created by welding or otherwise fastening a first bladder wall against a second bladder wall. The periphery of the bladder walls are welded or otherwise sealed together so that the bladder will contain a cushioning medium without leaking. The bladder is partially filled with cushioning medium so that it will be able to conform to the shape of a cushioned object and create a desired hammocking effect. The bladder is otherwise permanently attached to a base that is smaller than the bladder in at least one direction, resulting in a bladder which has loose skin and which has numerous random folds and creases on its skin. The base is a substantially non-stretchable fabric or other attachable non-stretch material. The cushioning medium is preferred to be lightly lubricated microspheres.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 3, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 16, 1999
    Assignee: TekSource, LL
    Inventor: Tony M. Pearce
  • Patent number: 5855207
    Abstract: A medical table assembly includes a bed frame and a mattress supported by the bed frame. The medical table assembly also includes a restrainment apparatus mounted to the bed frame, wherein the restrainment apparatus includes (1) a strap which (a) defines a fluid impervious bag having a void therein, and (b) is attached to the bed frame so that the fluid impervious bag is positioned over the mattress, and (2) a plurality of beads contained within the void of the fluid impervious bag. The medical table assembly further includes a vacuum source in fluid communication with the void of the restrainment apparatus. An associated method of immobilizing an object is also disclosed. The method includes the use of actuators which cause interior side panels of a passageway defined through a restrainment apparatus to automatically "clamp down" on an object positioned within the passageway upon evacuation of a void defined within the restrainment apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 29, 1997
    Date of Patent: January 5, 1999
    Inventors: Stephen P. Moenning, Charles Manker
  • Patent number: 5781943
    Abstract: A medical table includes a base. The medical table also includes a number of rollers, supported by the base, which collectively define a bed surface for supporting a patient, wherein each roller of the number of rollers (1) defines a fluid impervious bag having a void therein, and (2) contains a plurality of beads within the void of the fluid impervious bag, and further wherein the number of rollers includes a prime roller having a shaft extending therefrom. The medical table further includes a motor mechanically coupled to the shaft of the prime roller. The medical table also includes a vacuum source in fluid communication with each void of the number of rollers. A method of moving a patient from a first position to a second position is also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 13, 1997
    Date of Patent: July 21, 1998
    Inventors: Stephen P. Moenning, Donald M. Judy, Douglas B. Thatcher
  • Patent number: 5590430
    Abstract: This invention provides for an ultra low density gel filled deformable cushion (10) which includes a fluid impervious flexible enclosure (12) forming an internal chamber (14). Contained within the internal chamber (14) is a padding fluid composition (16) and a plurality of particulates (18) dispersed within the padding fluid composition (16). The particulates (18) are spherically contoured and have a density which is less than the density of the padding fluid composition (16) for increasing resiliency, deformability and memory of the overall composition within the cushion (10). The spherically contoured particulates are selected from the group consisting of plastic composition microspheres, ceramic composition microspheres and combinations thereof, thereby exhibiting a bounce effect in the gel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 6, 1995
    Date of Patent: January 7, 1997
    Inventor: Joel L. Sereboff