Browse Prior Art Database

Removal Mechanism and Card Slot Design for Personal Computer Cards

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000016601D
Original Publication Date: 2003-Jul-02
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jul-02
Document File: 3 page(s) / 166K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Described is an integrated removal mechanism for future PC cards developed per the PCI Express architecture (aka NEWCARD) that saves space in the system enclosure, fits within the small confines of the card, and provides an easy to use and reliable finger grip that does not protrude excessively past the external surface of the device and is strong enough to withstand foreseeable stresses. In addition, a new slot design for future PC cards is presented that accommodates all three card types (single-wide, double-wide, and double-wide adapter) while providing enough tactile cues and physical constraints to allow easy and safe insertion of all card types into the card slot.

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Removal Mechanism and Card Slot Design for Personal Computer Cards

       PC cards on notebook and other computers are currently removed from the computer by a spring-loaded camming device that pushes the card out approximately 15mm so that it can be grabbed and removed by the user. These complicated mechanisms are prone to failure and add cost, size, and weight to the basic computer design, which is particularly undesirable for users who do not need PC cards. Current eject mechanisms are placed next to the card and take up an additional 9 to 10mm in width. As notebooks get thinner and smaller in size, it is important that the PC cards and associated eject mechanisms take up minimal space. This disclosure describes a removal mechanism for future PC cards that is integrated within the card to save space in the system design. Due to the small size of future PC cards and certain volumetric constraints created by other requirements for the cards, an integrated card removal mechanism poses significant challenges in terms of creating a removal mechanism that will work within the small (5mm high) confines of the card, be easy to use, does not protrude too far beyond the external surface of the device, and will be strong enough to withstand foreseeable stresses (intentional or accidental). The solution described here addresses these problems by creating a spring-loaded tab on the upper portion of the card or end of the card, or by means of a simple hinged mechanism without a spring. The spring-loaded concepts (A, B, and C) are shown in figures 1-3. The hinged mechanism method (D) is shown in figure 4.

     To remove cards with spring-loaded tabs, the user first pushes in on the tab. This pops the tab out about 15mm so that it can be easily grabbed by the fingers and pulled out of the computer. Three different tab shapes have been devised each with different space requirements. Concept A is 25mm wide and is curved on the front. When popped out, it creates a loop that is the easiest of the described concepts to grab and pull (see figure 1). Concept B (figure 2) has the design advantage of being smaller, thereby providing more room for interior card components. Functionally, concept B and C work the same way as concept A in that they require a push-pull operation to extract the card. The tip of the tab is sculpted in to provide a finger perch for push action. The top and bottom of the tab on concept B has horizontal ridges to provide grip and aid in the pull action. Concept C (figure 3) is the smallest tab. It is located at the very end of the card and is 4.25mm square in section. The sides of the tab have grooves to provide for a better grip. The initial push action of concepts A, B and C is very similar to the initial push required to engage the camming eject mechanism utilized on many ejection mechanisms for current cards. So there would be a transfer of knowledge in terms of the initial action...