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Mechanism for the Accurate Registration and Alignment of Automatically Collated, Multi-Layered Stacks

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000039216D
Original Publication Date: 1987-May-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-01
Document File: 3 page(s) / 47K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Fink, OJ: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

The lamination process of multi-layered circuit boards requires that sheets of FIBERGLAS* cloth substrate be collated with copper-clad laminates. The collated stacks are then layed-up according to a specified sequence prior to entering the lamination press. The automation of this (LAY-UP) process necessitates the accurate registration and alignment of the automatically collated stacks. Moreover, repeatability, reliability, and availability are essential in any automated system. The mechanism shown in the figure uses concepts of gravity, friction, and spring forces for the accurate positioning and alignment of the collated packages.

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Mechanism for the Accurate Registration and Alignment of Automatically Collated, Multi-Layered Stacks

The lamination process of multi-layered circuit boards requires that sheets of FIBERGLAS* cloth substrate be collated with copper-clad laminates. The collated stacks are then layed-up according to a specified sequence prior to entering the lamination press. The automation of this (LAY-UP) process necessitates the accurate registration and alignment of the automatically collated stacks. Moreover, repeatability, reliability, and availability are essential in any automated system. The mechanism shown in the figure uses concepts of gravity, friction, and spring forces for the accurate positioning and alignment of the collated packages. This technique exhibits advantages over other methods such as "Tilted Shake Tables" and "Cylinder-Actuated Grippers" and provides a low-cost and accurate mechanism that lends itself to automation with negligible impact to the availability of the cycle time of the total operation. Moreover, its direct linking to the main collator drive ensures a synchronous and effective operation. With each collator cycle, the registration/alignment mechanism shown in the figure will undergo one cycle that comprises the following three phases: 1. Loading phase: Main lift-table 14 drops down to

the same level as the collator feed conveyor.

Simultaneously, top plate 10 assumes a

compound-angle configuration. While in this

position a collated stack is fed onto the top

plate.

2. Dwell phase: Top plate 10 dwells in the

compound-angle configuration for a short period

of time. This allows for the downslide, and hence

the registration and alignment of the fed package.

3. Unload phase: The tilt table lifts and assumes a

horizontal position. Simultaneously, the top

plate assumes a horizontal configuration with the

registered/aligned packa...