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Interlocking Tab for Tray Accumulating/Storage Equipment Disclosure Number: IPCOM000015973D
Original Publication Date: 2002-May-02
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-21

Publishing Venue



The present invention comprises 'Interlocking Tabs', which are mounted to conveyor drive chain clips, and are used to support rectangular plates for compact storage within the IBM Endicott HyperBGA Lamination conveyor line. The problem, or challenge, was to create a tab design that supports the compact machine envelope available, prevents jams, and prevents excessive wear to adjacent components within the machine. Another solution to this problem has used 2 connecting rods which span two conveyor drive chains each, versus 4 tabs (1 per chain), which requires an oversized chain with hollow rollers and a much larger pitch between rods. The entire machine must then be oversized to accomodate the larger chain (sprockets, shafts, frame, gearboxes, motors, etc.). This approach is often more expensive, and may require the machine package size to be substantially larger. The interlocking tabs provide added support for tabs along the conveyor drive chain which prevents plate jams and excessive wear of machine components, ultimately improving the reliability of the machine. This tab design also allows for a smaller tab-to-tab pitch, which results in a more compact mechanical package for the accumulator, as manufacturing floor space is often limited. Interlocking tabs are shown in Figure 1. 1