Identification Code Determines Article Destination Patents (Class 700/226)
  • Patent number: 10315851
    Abstract: Provided herein are various apparatuses, systems, and methods for improving the efficiency of medication distribution within a healthcare facility. In particular, embodiments may provide for dispensing medications needed and medications anticipated to be needed to an authorized medical person for administration to a patient in a healthcare facility. Methods may include receiving an indication of one or more unit dose medications anticipated to be needed by a patient; retrieving the one or more unit dose medications from a unit storage device; loading the one or more unit dose medications onto a transport device; transporting the one or more unit dose medications from the unit storage device to a location proximate the patient; and transferring the one or more unit dose medications from the transport device to a staging area at the location proximate the patient.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 26, 2018
    Date of Patent: June 11, 2019
    Assignee: Aesynt Incorporated
    Inventor: Shawn T. Greyshock
  • Patent number: 10268938
    Abstract: A method for managing privacy of information on a shipping label associated with a shipment is provided. The method includes receiving information associated with the shipment, generating at least two decryption keys associated with at least two pieces of information from the information, generating encrypted messages by encrypting the at least two pieces of information based on the at least two decryption keys including a first and second encrypted message encrypted based on a first and second decryption key, respectively, generating a machine-readable code including the encrypted messages, generating a shipping label including machine-readable code, and providing the first and second decryption keys based on a first and second status of the shipment, respectively.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 8, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2019
    Assignee: International Business Machines Corporation
    Inventors: Jia L. Chen, Bing Fang, Gao Y. Ruan, You You
  • Patent number: 10203375
    Abstract: This method for ascertaining the state of a fixed storage battery has: (a1) a step for storing operating history data for a storage battery; (a2) a step in which the storage battery is completely discharged and the charging energy required to fully charge the storage battery is measured by a charge amount measurement device, thereby updating, at regular intervals, data on the charging energy required for the storage battery to be fully charged; and (a3) a step for estimating the electric storage capacity of the storage battery from the operating history data and the updated data on the charging energy required for the storage battery to be fully charged.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 2014
    Date of Patent: February 12, 2019
    Assignee: NEC Corporation
    Inventor: Hiroo Hongo
  • Patent number: 10198949
    Abstract: A method for distributing parking availability data via blockchain includes: storing a blockchain comprised of a plurality of blocks, each block having a block header including a timestamp; receiving spot availability notifications including a common spot identifier and availability data; generating a transaction value including the common spot identifier and availability data; generating a new block header including i) a current timestamp, ii) a reference hash value generated via hashing of the block header included in a most recent block identified via the timestamp, and iii) a transaction hash value generated via hashing of the new transaction value; generating a new block comprised of the new block header and the new transaction value; and transmitting the generated new block.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 28, 2017
    Date of Patent: February 5, 2019
    Assignee: MASTERCARD INTERNATIONAL INCORPORATED
    Inventor: William Becker
  • Patent number: 10152876
    Abstract: An apparatus, including a first controller located at a vehicle which monitors, and detects an event regarding, a system, equipment system, component, device, or equipment, of the vehicle. The vehicle is a shipping container, pallet, tote, or piece of luggage. The first controller generates and transmits a first signal, containing information regarding the event, to a second controller. The second controller is located remote from the vehicle, automatically receives the first signal, and generates and transmits a second signal, containing information regarding the event, via the Internet or World Wide Web to a communication device located remote from the second controller. The apparatus activates, de-activates, disables, re-enables, or controls an operation of, the system, equipment system, component, device, or equipment, of the vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 13, 2005
    Date of Patent: December 11, 2018
    Assignee: GTJ VENTURES, LLC
    Inventor: Raymond Anthony Joao
  • Patent number: 10035616
    Abstract: Systems and methods for an exit control mechanism indicating an incomplete packing state near an exit portion of a packing station. A control system determines a pack job and determines a pack plan for the pack job. The control system may send instructions to a pack station directing packing of the pack job in accordance with the pack plan. The control system may receive indications of packing progress, for example, electronic indications from a scanner at the pack station, and update the state of the pack job, such as incomplete or complete. The control system instructs an exit mechanism to change from indicating an incomplete pack state to indicating a completed pack state based on, for example, determinations that the steps of the pack plan have been completed correctly and that the pack job is complete.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 12, 2014
    Date of Patent: July 31, 2018
    Assignee: Amazon Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: James Lamar Hood, Charles Edward Rice, Ryan Stuart Carter, Henry Chi-Chung Yan, Michael Ellsworth Bundy
  • Patent number: 10019878
    Abstract: Methods, apparatus, and systems are provided for tracking freight. Embodiments include a tracking device for a trailer containing a load. The tracking device includes a support member, a connector, a housing and a GPS tracker configured to track the location of the load. The connector securely attaches to a container on the trailer and attaches to a seal such that the container cannot be opened without breaking the seal. The support member stabilizes the housing and protects the tracking device during transit of the load. A tracking system may implement to monitor, gather information and report on the tracking device and the load.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 22, 2014
    Date of Patent: July 10, 2018
    Assignee: Cross Road Centers, LLC
    Inventor: Ronald H. Mains, Jr.
  • Patent number: 9994115
    Abstract: Disclosed herein are a battery pack replacement system for an electric vehicle with an Energy Storage System (ESS) and a method of managing and replacing a battery pack using the same. A system equipped with a replacement system for replacing a battery pack of an electric vehicle and an ESS includes a determination unit for determining the type of battery pack of the vehicle, a replacement unit for detaching a discharged battery pack from the vehicle or mounting a battery pack on the vehicle, a charging/discharging unit for charging/discharging and storing the discharged battery pack, and a transfer unit for conveying the discharged battery pack, detached from the replacement unit, to the charging/discharging unit or conveying the battery pack, fully charged by the charging/discharging unit, to the replacement unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 2014
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2018
    Inventor: Byung Hyouk Kang
  • Patent number: 9940588
    Abstract: A luggage processing station for registering a passenger's luggage. The station includes an injector for receiving a piece of luggage associated with the passenger. A plurality of sensors are associated with the injector. A weighing machine is also associated with the injector for weighing the luggage while in the injector. The processing station also includes a user interface for receiving various inputs for confirming that a passenger has checked-in and to display information to the passenger during processing the luggage. A controller is associated with the sensors and weighing machine and the user interface. The controller is adapted to accept the luggage if the input received via the passenger's boarding pass or identification indicate that the passenger has checked-in, feedback from the sensors indicates that predetermined criteria are met, and if feedback from the weighing machine indicates that weight of luggage is within a predetermined limit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 28, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2018
    Assignee: ICM AIRPORT TECHNICS AUSTRALIA PTY LTD
    Inventors: Michael Dupre Sanderson, Rainer Rudolf Dinkelmann, Paul Craig Bellamy, Christian Riegman, Kenneth Scott Ifield
  • Patent number: 9785908
    Abstract: A method, system, and computer-readable medium for automatically determining appropriate delivery information for one or more items of an order or potential order is described. A variety of types of information can be considered when determining what delivery information is appropriate for one or more items, such as a type of the items, the particular items, relationships of the items to other items, information about the purchaser, and/or information about the recipient. In addition, the automatic determination of an appropriate address for an item being ordered or potentially ordered by a user can be made in a variety of ways, such as based on inferences from past behavior when ordering items, on inferences from information about the item and from available delivery information for the user, and/or on previous explicit indications from the user.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 6, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 10, 2017
    Assignee: Amazon Technologies, Inc.
    Inventor: Joel R. Spiegel
  • Patent number: 9743239
    Abstract: Preferred points or regions in space for performing a task at a location, e.g., the delivery of an item to the location, may be defined based on sensed positions obtained during the prior performance of tasks at the location. The sensed positions may be identified using a GPS sensor or like system. Vectors including coordinates of the sensed position, and uncertainties of such coordinates, may be clustered into groups at the location. Subsequently identified vectors including coordinates and uncertainties may further refine a cluster, or be used to generate a new cluster. A preferred point or region in space may be identified based on such location hypotheses and utilized in the performance of tasks. Some preferred points or regions may be used for routing vehicles to the location, while others may correspond to delivery points for items at the location.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 2015
    Date of Patent: August 22, 2017
    Assignee: Amazon Technologies, Inc.
    Inventor: Pragyana K. Mishra
  • Patent number: 9731909
    Abstract: Disclosed herein is a medicine package inspection apparatus for inspecting whether or not accurate medicines have been packaged in medicine packages. The medicine package inspection apparatus includes: a conveying unit conveying the medicine packages; an image reading unit photographing the medicine packages and reading states of the medicines by the photographed image; an aligning unit uniformly spreading the medicines packaged in the medicine packages unit so as not to be overlapped with each other; and a displaying means pivotably installed on a front surface of the body and displaying a work state simultaneously with controlling a work of inspecting the medicine packages. The displaying means is pivotably installed on the body through a pivoting unit and configures a portion of the body, such that an inner portion of the body is opened when the displaying means pivots.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 17, 2017
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2017
    Assignee: JVM Co., Ltd
    Inventor: Jun Ho Kim
  • Patent number: 9665846
    Abstract: Methods, systems, apparatuses, and computer program products are provided for arranging for shipping a package without the customer needing to generate or apply a shipping label, or any other information, to the package. In one embodiment, a system may comprise a carrier server and a carrier device. The carrier server may receive and store a smart code and shipping information associated with the package, which it may link together. The carrier device may capture the smart code from the package and send a request, including the smart code, to the carrier server for related shipping information. The carrier server may receive the request from the carrier device, retrieve the shipping information based on the smart code, and send the shipping information to the carrier device. The carrier device may receive the shipping information and generate a shipping label for the package based on the shipping information.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 14, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 30, 2017
    Assignee: UNITED PARCEL SERVICE OF AMERICA, INC.
    Inventors: Robert J. Gillen, Mark S. Lewis
  • Patent number: 9630776
    Abstract: Features are disclosed for using location awareness, bin capacity, and environmental cues to provide in context guidance to the associate when stowing items such as at a fulfillment center. In accordance with aspects of the present disclosure, the associate may scan an item he or she may want to stow. In response, lights on the bins in the associate's vicinity are illuminated to indicate bins in which the item can be stowed (e.g., because the item fits in the bin) without breaking stow etiquette. For example, in order to prevent mix up, stow etiquette may indicate that two types of erasers should not be stored in the same bin. As yet another example, stow etiquette may indicate that an item should not be stowed in a bin, even if it fits and there is room, so that a total weight for the bin is not exceeded.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 23, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 25, 2017
    Assignee: Amazon Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Adrian Christopher Quan, Jamie Marie Holland, Kimberly Anne Lewis, Benjamin Lee Farrow
  • Patent number: 9604257
    Abstract: A method for automatically sorting undeliverable as addressed (UAA) mail can include capturing a first image of a first UAA mail piece with a camera to create first image data, passing the first image data to a waste verification system and performing optical character recognition to produce a first character recognition data set. The method includes testing the first character recognition data set to determine whether the first UAA mail piece is a verified waste mail piece. If the first UAA mail piece is a verified waste mail piece, the method includes routing the first UAA mail piece into a first bin. If the first UAA mail piece is not a verified waste mail piece, routing the mail piece to a second bin.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 13, 2013
    Date of Patent: March 28, 2017
    Assignee: Siemens Industry, Inc.
    Inventors: Hongjian Li, Peter Parker, Asif Bilal Ahmed, Janusz Pieniadz
  • Patent number: 9527668
    Abstract: Features are disclosed for using location awareness, bin capacity, and environmental cues to provide in context guidance to the associate when stowing items such as at a fulfillment center. In accordance with aspects of the present disclosure, the associate may scan an item he or she may want to stow. In response, lights on the bins in the associate's vicinity are illuminated to indicate bins in which the item can be stowed (e.g., because the item fits in the bin) without breaking stow etiquette. For example, in order to prevent mix up, stow etiquette may indicate that two types of erasers should not be stored in the same bin. As yet another example, stow etiquette may indicate that an item should not be stowed in a bin, even if it fits and there is room, so that a total weight for the bin is not exceeded.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 13, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 27, 2016
    Assignee: AMAZON TECHNOLOGIES, INC.
    Inventors: Adrian Christopher Quan, Jamie Marie Holland, Kimberly Anne Lewis, Benjamin Lee Farrow
  • Patent number: 9511945
    Abstract: Provided herein are various apparatuses, systems, and methods for improving the efficiency of medication distribution within a healthcare facility. In particular, embodiments may provide for dispensing medications needed and medications anticipated to be needed to an authorized medical person for administration to a patient in a healthcare facility. Methods may include receiving an indication of one or more unit dose medications anticipated to be needed by a patient; retrieving the one or more unit dose medications from a unit storage device; loading the one or more unit dose medications onto a transport device; transporting the one or more unit dose medications from the unit storage device to a location proximate the patient; and transferring the one or more unit dose medications from the transport device to a staging area at the location proximate the patient.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2013
    Date of Patent: December 6, 2016
    Assignee: Aesynt Incorporated
    Inventors: Shawn T. Greyshock, James Kolozs
  • Patent number: 9382068
    Abstract: Features are disclosed for using location awareness, bin capacity, and environmental cues to provide in context guidance to the associate when stowing items such as at a fulfillment center. In accordance with aspects of the present disclosure, the associate may scan an item he or she may want to stow. In response, lights on the bins in the associate's vicinity are illuminated to indicate bins in which the item can be stowed (e.g., because the item fits in the bin) without breaking stow etiquette. For example, in order to prevent mix up, stow etiquette may indicate that two types of erasers should not be stored in the same bin. As yet another example, stow etiquette may indicate that an item should not be stowed in a bin, even if it fits and there is room, so that a total weight for the bin is not exceeded.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 29, 2015
    Date of Patent: July 5, 2016
    Assignee: Amazon Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Adrian Christopher Quan, Jamie Marie Holland, Kimberly Anne Lewis, Benjamin Lee Farrow
  • Patent number: 9377713
    Abstract: A custom color toner production system includes a toner delivery system, a cartridge sealing system, a mixing system, and a packaging system. The toner delivery system includes selectively engageable fluid delivery lines for delivering toner of particular color to a cartridge as need for producing a custom color toner in response to an electronically submitted user request. Cartridge containing the unmixed delivered toner may be sealed by a sealing system, and blended using a resonant mixer to produce a custom color toner. The cartridge containing the mixed custom color toner may be packaged using a packaging system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 30, 2012
    Date of Patent: June 28, 2016
    Assignee: Xerox Corporation
    Inventors: Santiago Faucher, Gerhard Pawelka, Majid Kasmaei Kamel, Michael S. Hawkins, Suxia Yang, Richard P. N. Veregin, Joseph Barbisan
  • Patent number: 9248966
    Abstract: A targeted product distribution system is described herein with respect to an exemplary management of product flow through a distribution center. Specifically, the system and method described herein is directed to the management and display of direct and easily-understood instructions, such that average individuals, as well as those with mental disabilities, will be able to contribute equally to the overall process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 23, 2015
    Date of Patent: February 2, 2016
    Assignee: Walgreen Co.
    Inventors: Vinayak Pandit, Brian Amend, Louie Chin, Jeffrey Elliott, Kathy Emery, Gaurav Hasija, Maureen Isidoro, Lionel Ng, Doug Peterson, Todd Steffen, Patrick Sullivan
  • Patent number: 9221079
    Abstract: A system and method by which mail sorting equipment can correct postal addresses utilizing cloud technology.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 2, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 29, 2015
    Assignee: National Presort, Inc.
    Inventors: Henry Daboub, Tom Glassman, Jeremy S. McWilliam, Tom Grauberger
  • Patent number: 9193524
    Abstract: Randomly presented physical items can be temporarily stored in a grid-based material handling system, e.g., before they are handled by a robot. The grid-based material handling system arranges the randomly presented physical items within the grid, so that they exit the grid in an ordered sequence, e.g., for pickup by the robot. Programmable modules execute sequencing logic to move the items to target locations within the grid. The modules move interfering items out of the way of other items that are in transit to their target locations, as needed. The programmable modules allow the items to exit the grid when the requirements of a departure policy are met.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 2013
    Date of Patent: November 24, 2015
    Assignee: Auburn University
    Inventors: Kevin Gue, Onur Uludag
  • Patent number: 9185998
    Abstract: A system includes a climate-controlled inventory holder, a mobile drive unit, and a management module. The climate-controlled inventory holder is configured to control a climate of one or more inventory items stored by the inventory holder. The mobile drive unit is operable to transport the climate-controlled inventory holder from a first location to a second location based at least in part upon one or more instructions received from a management module. The management module is operable to receive an order for an inventory item, determine that the inventory holder stores the inventory item, and instruct the mobile drive unit to transport the climate-controlled inventory holder from the first location to the second location.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 2015
    Date of Patent: November 17, 2015
    Assignee: Amazon Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Samvid Hariram Dwarakanath, Sean William Blakey, Bryant Richard Casteel, Bruce John Cooper
  • Patent number: 9087333
    Abstract: Disclosed is a method of monitoring food quality including (a) receiving an environmental factor value sensed during transporting by a moving sensor tag attached to a container or palette on which a plurality of food is stacked, a time value sensing the environmental factor, and food information from a distribution company server; (b) receiving an environmental factor value sensed by a fixed sale sensor tag which matches the food information stored in the moving sensor tag, a time value sensing the environmental factor, and food information from the distribution company server; (c) measuring a current quality index for each individual quality analysis item and a total quality index based on the food information sensed by the moving sensor tag and the fixed sale sensor tag, the environmental factor values, and the time values sensing the environmental factors; (d) setting price of the food based on the measured quality index for each individual quality analysis item and total quality index; and (e) transmittin
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 6, 2011
    Date of Patent: July 21, 2015
    Assignee: Korea Food Research Institute
    Inventors: Byeong Sam Kim, Ji Young Kim, Jong Hoon Kim, Ouiwoung Kim, Ki Hyun Kwon, Yong Kon Park, Yoon Sook Kim, Junemo Koo
  • Patent number: 9043013
    Abstract: Embodiments of the present invention provide systems and methods for assisting sort operators in identifying the appropriate location to sort an item. In accordance with one aspect of the invention, a system for identifying a particular bin from a plurality of bins for sorting a package is provided. The system includes a plurality of bins configured to receive sorted packages; an optical reader positioned to capture destination indicia associated with the package; a keypad comprising a plurality of keys, where in at least some of the keys are associated with individual bins of the plurality of bins and at least some of the keys include lights; and a control system. The control system is configured to: receive data from the optical reader relating to the destination indicia; identify a particular bin within the plurality of bins associated with the received data; and trigger illumination of one or more lights on the keypad.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 2, 2014
    Date of Patent: May 26, 2015
    Inventors: Louis Ragusa, James Cossey
  • Patent number: 9043014
    Abstract: Apparatus, and an associated method, for generating a trouble ticket related to an IT incident. When an IT incident occurs, a worklog is formed by a reporter that enters information associated with the incident. Successive inputs, made by appropriate personnel, are made to update the status of the incident. A table-of-contents is formed, associated with the collection of entries of information. And, each entry of information is categorized, to identify the entry by an associated category.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 23, 2007
    Date of Patent: May 26, 2015
    Assignee: Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P.
    Inventors: Dung Ngo, Grant I. Campbell, Beth McGreevy
  • Patent number: 9037288
    Abstract: A method of processing mailpieces, in which they are fed in series into a sorting machine comprising a sorting conveyor and sorting outlets, an image of each mailpiece is formed in the machine, processing is applied to the image for automatically recognizing address information for the purpose of automatically directing the mailpiece towards a determined sorting outlet, a digital model of running mailpieces or a “run” is built in a database prior to feeding the mailpieces into the machine, the model being built on the basis of an image of a mailpiece, and being defined by data characterizing the graphical appearance of the mailpiece in the image formed from an interactive acquisition terminal located remote from the machine, and the run model is associated in said database with indications usable by the recognition processing, which indications are also input from said interactive acquisition terminal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 6, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 19, 2015
    Assignee: SOLYSTIC
    Inventors: Jean-Marc Pszatka, Belkacem Benyoub, Emmanuel Piegay
  • Patent number: 9012799
    Abstract: Systems and methods using intelligent barcodes for processing mail, packages, or other items in transport are provided. Systems and methods allowing end-to-end visibility of a mail stream by identifying and tracking mail pieces are also provided. Systems and methods include the use of standardized intelligent barcodes on mail pieces, a seamless process for mail acceptance, continuous mail piece tracking, and feedback on mail quality in real time. Systems and methods can use intelligent barcodes allow a mailing service to provide enhanced acceptance, sorting, tracking, address correction, forwarding, and delivery services. Systems and methods can use intelligent barcodes allow a mailing service to identify a mail piece as undeliverable-as-addressed (UAA) and determine a final disposition for the mail piece. Systems and methods can use intelligent barcodes allow mailers more visibility into the mail stream and information on the quality of their mailings.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 21, 2015
    Assignee: United States Postal Service
    Inventors: Clayton Bonnell, Jeffrey L. Freeman, Michael Lyons, Stephen M. Dearing, Margaret Louise Choiniere, Daryl S. Hamilton, Himesh Patel, Carla Fern Sherry, David James Payne
  • Patent number: 9012798
    Abstract: Systems and methods using intelligent barcodes for processing mail, packages, or other items in transport are provided. Systems and methods allowing end-to-end visibility of a mail stream by uniquely identifying and tracking mail pieces are also provided. Systems and methods include the use of standardized intelligent barcodes on mail pieces, a seamless process for mail acceptance, continuous mail piece tracking, and feedback on mail quality in real time. In one embodiment, systems and methods using intelligent barcodes allow a mailing service to provide enhanced acceptance, sorting, tracking, address correction, forwarding, and delivery services. In another embodiment, systems and methods using intelligent barcodes allow a mailing service to identify a mail piece as undeliverable-as-addressed (UAA) and determine a final disposition for the mail piece.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 21, 2015
    Assignee: United States Postal Service
    Inventors: Clayton Bonnell, Jeffrey L. Freeman, Michael Lyons, Stephen M. Dearing, Margaret L. Choiniere, Daryl S. Hamilton, Himesh Patel, Carla Fern Sherry, David James Payne
  • Patent number: 8996157
    Abstract: There is proposed a unit including a station for preparing orders, controlled by a control system. The station has a first circuit that includes a first outward conveyor, which receives containers for storing products, and an accumulator for accumulating a predetermined quantity of storage containers received on the first outward conveyor. The accumulator includes: at least one first shaft comprising superposed mobile positions that can each receive and downwardly move at least one storage container, the at least one first shaft vertically accumulating and sequentially dispensing storage containers previously placed in the positions; and at least one first elevator moving vertically along the at least one first chute up to each of the locations of the at least one first chute.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 9, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2015
    Assignee: Savoye
    Inventor: Jean-Michel Collin
  • Patent number: 8983648
    Abstract: Two types of objects are sorted in multiple sorting passes, for instance flat mail items are precisely sorted into a delivery sequence. Objects of a first object type are fed to a sorting system from a first feeding device. Objects of a second object type are fed from a second feeding device. The sorting system sorts the objects in at least two successive sorting passes. A first sorting plan and a second sorting plan are used in each sorting pass except in the last sorting pass, where a sorting plan is used. Each first sorting plan assigns a sorting end location of a first sorting end-location region and each second sorting plan assigns a sorting end location of a second sorting end-location region. A sorting end location is selected for each object using a sorting plan in each sorting pass, and the object is transferred into the selected sorting end location.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 26, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 17, 2015
    Assignee: Siemens Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventors: Franz Kreitmeier, Wolf-Stephan Wilke
  • Patent number: 8977385
    Abstract: Processing and tracking of individual mail items processed through a document processing system such as a sorter or inserter utilize a mail item identifier that is unique with respect to each individual mail item. A mail item may have a postal authority approved code representing or containing its associated unique identifier. If not, an identifier is generated and a corresponding postal authority approved code is applied to the mail item. Processing entails associating the unique mail item identifier for each respective mail item with collected metadata for the respective mail item and storing the identifier and associated the metadata. In a sorter example, each mail item is sorted into a postal sort group, and the processing entails identifying the sort group to which each item is sorted and storing the identified sort in association with the unique mail item identifier.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 15, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 10, 2015
    Assignee: Bell and Howell, LLC
    Inventors: Brian Bowers, Steven Seburn, Steven Ksiazek, Gary Van Ermen, Walter S. Conard
  • Patent number: 8977386
    Abstract: Method and systems for sorting are described. In one embodiment, a container is released into a pocket section, with the pocket section being at a first alignment stage. The pocket section is rotated with the container away from the first alignment stage to a second alignment stage. Attributes of the container are acquired at the second alignment stage. An order to which the container belongs is identified with the acquired attributes. The pocket section with the container is rotated to a third alignment stage. The location of the third alignment stage is selected based on the identified order. The container is received to group with one or more containers in the identified order. Additional methods and systems are disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 29, 2014
    Date of Patent: March 10, 2015
    Assignee: Express Scripts, Inc.
    Inventors: Jonathan W. Joplin, Steve Hanlon
  • Publication number: 20150066201
    Abstract: A system for conducting real-time multi-dimension inspection of multiple objects, particularly for use with a conveyor belt carrying multiple boxes and packages, many of which are seemingly identical to each other. A plurality of real-time vision sensors and other sensors are positioned above the conveyor belt to observe and record data in real-time of packages and boxes as they move on the belt. The vision sensors include, but are not limited to, 3D sensors, cameras, structured light sensors, time of flight sensors, laser sensors, infrared sensors, and the like. Other sensors include, but are not limited to, multi-package bar code readers and other forms of specialized sensors.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 30, 2014
    Publication date: March 5, 2015
    Inventors: WILLIAM HOBSON WUBBENA, DI WANG
  • Patent number: 8965566
    Abstract: Objects are sorted according to predetermined groups of sorting feature values. In particular, postal items are sorted according to groups of delivery addresses. A sorting system sorts the objects into a sequence so that all objects with sorting feature values belonging to the same predetermined value group are situated one directly behind another in this sequence. The sorting system has x1 storage subregions, x2 sorting subregions and a sorting plan. The objects are apportioned to the x1 storage subregions. For each storage subregion, an apportionment step is then carried out, in which the objects from this storage subregion are apportioned to the x2 sorting subregions. The apportionment steps are performed one after the other. Each apportionment step, is followed by a sorting and output step for each sorting subregion, in which the objects from this sorting subregion are brought into a sequence in accordance with the sorting feature values and this sequence is output.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 8, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Siemens Aktiegesellschaft
    Inventor: Peter Berdelle-Hilge
  • Patent number: 8958904
    Abstract: A banknote handling apparatus includes: a first winding storage unit; a second storage unit; a transport unit; a recognition unit; and a control unit. The first storage unit stores the banknotes, while providing a mark associated with inventory amount information of the first storage unit. To perform a reconciliation process for the first storage unit, the control unit allows some of the banknotes stored in the first storage unit to be fed from the first storage unit, based on the mark, for recognition by the recognition unit, and determines an inventory amount of the first storage unit based on a result of the recognition and the inventory amount information associated with the mark.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 20, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 17, 2015
    Assignee: Glory Ltd.
    Inventors: Masao Sakamoto, Youhei Kamada, Yuya Kataoka, Masao Okamura
  • Patent number: 8942897
    Abstract: A system and method for determining a location of an unloaded unit of agricultural product and locating a desired unit of agricultural product or identifying a candidate unit of agricultural product as a function of sensing system information indicating contact of the unit with the ground or other surface onto which the unit is unloaded, global positioning system or other location system information identifying the contact or related location, and heading information, which information can then be used to discern the unit from others at the location for desired loading.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 18, 2013
    Date of Patent: January 27, 2015
    Assignee: CNH Industrial America LLC
    Inventors: Christopher A. Foster, Justin R. Ringwald
  • Publication number: 20150025675
    Abstract: A system and method provides for a pneumatic tube carrier routing and tracking system having a system control module that captures and presents tracking information associated with sending and receiving carriers. The pneumatic tube carrier tracking system comprises sending and receiving stations connected by pneumatic tubing, and which are configured to securely send carriers, with receiving users optionally being restricted from unauthorized access of carriers. The receiving station further comprises a plurality of receiving bins, each comprising a door for preventing access to the receiving bin by unauthorized users. The sending and receiving stations have identifying tag readers configured to scan identifier tags to read carrier delivery, carrier receipt and receiving user information.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 11, 2014
    Publication date: January 22, 2015
    Inventor: Fredrick M. Valerino, SR.
  • Patent number: 8930018
    Abstract: A device for controlling material flows may include at least one feeding device for feeding material of at least one type of material, at least one output device for outputting material of at least one type of material, a transport device for transporting the material, at least one sensor for determining at least one state-dependent parameter of the device, and a control device for controlling the devices, the control device being designed to process event-based signals, e.g., signals from the at least one sensor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 12, 2011
    Date of Patent: January 6, 2015
    Assignee: Siemens Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventors: Stefan Boschert, Torsten Hellmuth, Hermann Georg Mayer, Roland Rosen, Martin Schneider
  • Patent number: 8924007
    Abstract: One embodiment is a three dimensional load method for simulating loading of items into at least one container to be transported to at least one destination. The method includes receiving a list of items to be transported, determining at least one container as an optimal number and type of container to be used for transporting the items, and initializing an empty space list to include one space equal to a size of the at least one container. The method also includes initializing a placed item list and an unplaced item list, such that the placed item list includes a list of items already loaded on the at least one container and the unplaced item list includes a list of items to be loaded on the at least one container.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 16, 2011
    Date of Patent: December 30, 2014
    Assignee: Oracle International Corporation
    Inventors: Sundararajan Arunapuram, Sairajesh Mahabhashyam, Albert Drummond
  • Patent number: 8903542
    Abstract: A method of processing mailpieces for sorting mailpieces into sequence in a sorting machine depending on delivery points of delivery rounds, in which method the mailpieces are grouped together into batches associated with delivery rounds and are sorted as a function of various sorting plans each associated with a respective batch of mailpieces and defining a list of delivery points of delivery rounds, which method includes the following steps, assessing the batches of mailpieces before the machine sorting to detect those that will under-use the sorting capacities; aggregating the batches of mailpieces detected as under-using the capacity so as to constitute aggregated batches of mailpieces; computing an associated sorting plan resulting from the aggregating; feeding each aggregated batch of mailpieces into the postal sorting machine and controlling the sorting of the mailpieces as a function of the sorting plan computed for said aggregated batch of mailpieces.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 12, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 2, 2014
    Assignee: Solystic
    Inventors: Didier Tresse, Christophe Lhomme
  • Patent number: 8903544
    Abstract: A sheet handling apparatus includes pickup unit which picks up a plurality of sheets loaded in a loading unit, a first determining unit which determines a type or a state of the sheet picked up by the pickup unit, a data collecting unit which collects handling amount data for respective types of the sheets or respective states of the sheets, a second determining unit which determines a distribution destination of the sheet based on the handling amount data for the respective types or the respective states of the sheets which are determined by the first determining unit, a distributing unit which distributes the sheet based on a determination result of the distribution destination of the sheet by the second determining unit, and a stacking unit composed of a plurality of cassettes to stack the distributed sheets.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 27, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 2, 2014
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Toshiba
    Inventors: Satoko Uezono, Takahito Shinfuku
  • Patent number: 8896421
    Abstract: A wide area radio frequency identification (RFID) system includes: a first RFID cell and a second RFID cell. The first RFID cell and the second RFID cell each include a reader and tags. The readers access the tags using ultra-wide band signaling. The RFID cells each include: a communications interface operable to communicate with a network operations center, and a communications gateway which supports direct communications between RFID cells. The method includes accessing the second RFID cell from the first RFID cell, and the accessing is performed using the communications gateway that can cover a range of at least five hundred meters.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2006
    Date of Patent: November 25, 2014
    Assignee: Zebra Enterprise Solutions Corp.
    Inventor: Gideon Kaplan
  • Patent number: 8892246
    Abstract: The invention relates to a method for processing items such as pieces of meat, comprising the steps of providing a stream of items 10 by means of a primary conveyor means 4, allocating at least partly by means of a computer system 8, 20 one or more of said items 10 to one of at least two workstations 1 where said items 10 are processed, e.g. cut and/or trimmed, resulting in one or more processed items 11, registering in said computer system 8, 20 information about a return of at least one of said one or more processed items 11 to said primary conveyor means 4, and returning said at least one of said one or more processed items 11 to said primary conveyor means 4 in accordance with said information about a return. The invention further relates to a system for processing items such as pieces of meat, said system comprising the means essential to carry out the above-mentioned method.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 30, 2009
    Date of Patent: November 18, 2014
    Assignee: Marel HF
    Inventors: Brynjolfur Thorsson, Stefan Axelsson
  • Patent number: 8892240
    Abstract: Methods and apparatus for material handling in an order fulfillment center. An order fulfillment system may include inventory storage, a processing area, and a control system. The inventory storage may in some instances include two storage areas, and in some cases the processing area may be disposed between the two storage areas. The processing area may include a router module that is configured to receive inventory items that have been picked from the inventory storage. Inventory items may be received by the router module via conveyance receptacles (e.g., totes, bins) that are conveyed using a conveyor mechanism. The processing area may also include a plurality of processing modules that may be configured to receive inventory items from the router module. In some instances, the processing modules may receive the inventory items via conveyance receptacles that are conveyed using the conveyor mechanism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 24, 2011
    Date of Patent: November 18, 2014
    Assignee: Amazon Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Kevin R. Vliet, Wayne A. Kiser, Michael A. Holland, Jonathan S. Battles
  • Publication number: 20140330429
    Abstract: The disclosed method, and corresponding system, for controlling items on a production/distribution line relies on secure identification of items transported arranged according a given disposition along a transport path at different sites of the line and checking operation according to a protocol which allows reducing processing load while ensuring high reliability.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 23, 2012
    Publication date: November 6, 2014
    Applicant: SICPA HOLDING SA
    Inventors: Yvan Collombet, Daniel Cotsford, Rodrigo Lorca, Luciano Torres, Christian Fefin
  • Publication number: 20140330428
    Abstract: A system and method for tracking/controlling access to transported articles, includes a computing module in signal communication with sending and receiving stations. A first input device at the sending station receives identifying information identifying a carrier (“carrier ID”) and an item (“item ID”) placed within the locked carrier. The carrier ID and the item ID are transmitted to the computing module. A second input device at the receiving station receives the carrier ID for a carrier received at the receiving station and identifying information for an individual (“user ID”) at the receiving station provided access to the locked carrier. The carrier ID and the user ID are transmitted to the computing module, which unlocks the carrier and allows access to the item inside, and records the user ID of the individual provided access and the associated carrier ID and/or item ID to provide chain of custody information for the item.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 2, 2014
    Publication date: November 6, 2014
    Applicant: Aethon, Inc.
    Inventors: David G. Wolfe, Spencer W. Allen
  • Publication number: 20140316557
    Abstract: A system is provided for processing container-grown plants positioned in a given area. The system includes a processing station positioned in the area for processing the container-grown plants. It also includes one or more autonomous mobile container handling robots configured to: (i) travel to a source location in the area and pick up a container-grown plant, (ii) transport the container-grown plant to the processing station where a process is performed on the container-grown plant, (iii) transport the container-grown plant from the processing station to a destination location in the area, (iv) deposit the container-grown plant at the destination location, and (v) repeat (i) through (iv) for a set of container-grown plants in the source location.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 24, 2014
    Publication date: October 23, 2014
    Applicant: Harvest Automation, Inc.
    Inventors: Joseph L. Jones, Clara Vu, Paul E. Sandin, Charles M. Grinnell
  • Patent number: 8849445
    Abstract: A storage and retrieval system includes a casing having an interior storage area and a staging area, a plurality of containers positioned in the interior storage area, and a gantry assembly positioned within the casing. The gantry assembly is operable to move each of the plurality of containers between the interior storage area and the staging area. The staging area simultaneously receives and supports more than one container to allow access to the more than one container.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 18, 2012
    Date of Patent: September 30, 2014
    Assignee: RxSafe, LLC
    Inventor: William K. Holmes
  • Patent number: 8844803
    Abstract: Systems and methods of monitoring progress of delivery of a patient-specific medication are disclosed. A patient/medication identification (ID) device is provided on a package containing the medication, the patient/medication ID device comprising medication/patient information indicative of the medication and the patient. At least one location ID device is provided at a location, the at least one location ID device comprising a unique location ID associated with the location. The medication/patient information and the patient/medication ID are read. Delivery progress information indicative of a last-known read location where at least one of the medication/patient ID information and the unique location identifier was read is generated. The delivery progress information is stored in a database. The delivery progress information is accessed from the database in response to the request. A delivery status of the medication is indicated to the user.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 14, 2011
    Date of Patent: September 30, 2014
    Assignee: CareFusion 303, Inc.
    Inventors: Thomas Utech, Cynthia Yamaga