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Browse Prior Art Database

Inflatable Drive Transport System

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000047829D
Original Publication Date: 1983-Dec-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-08
Document File: 2 page(s) / 76K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Baan, RL: AUTHOR [+3]

Abstract

This article concerns apparatus for changing the direction of travel of various items, for example, a semiconductor wafer on a belt transport system. The apparatus features use of inflatable and deflatable wheels whose axes of rotation are arranged parallel to the direction of the transport belt. The wheels are located so that when deflated they are below the plane of the belt out of the wafer's path, and when inflated in the plane of the transport belt to intercept and redirect the wafer's movement. The apparatus also includes means for controlling the inflation and deflation of the wheels in response to the wafer's redirection signal.

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Inflatable Drive Transport System

This article concerns apparatus for changing the direction of travel of various items, for example, a semiconductor wafer on a belt transport system. The apparatus features use of inflatable and deflatable wheels whose axes of rotation are arranged parallel to the direction of the transport belt. The wheels are located so that when deflated they are below the plane of the belt out of the wafer's path, and when inflated in the plane of the transport belt to intercept and redirect the wafer's movement. The apparatus also includes means for controlling the inflation and deflation of the wheels in response to the wafer's redirection signal. Additionally, the apparatus includes means for varying the angle of the wheels' axes of rotation relative to the direction of the main transport belt so that the wafers can be redirected from the transport belt at varying angles. The apparatus in accordance with this article is shown in Figs. 1 and 2. Fig. 1 is a side section view of the apparatus 10. Shown in Fig. 1 is a belt transport 12 upon which a semiconductor wafer 14 is being transported. As seen, apparatus 10 is located below the plane of the transport for belt 12. Apparatus 10 is seen to include multiple wheels 16 rotatably mounted on a drive shaft 18. At the circumference of wheels 16, inflatable tires 20 are shown sealably mounted and retained by keepers 22. Air conduits 24 and 26 respectively located in wheel 16 and drive shaft 18 are...