AUTOMATED CRUCIBLE LOADING SYSTEM FOR ALLOY PHOTORECEPTOR PELLETS
Original Publication Date: 1991-Feb-28
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2004-Apr-05
Xerox Disclosure Journal
An automated crucible loading system for alloy pellets in photoreceptor manufacture is disclosed. An empty container is robotically placed onto a weighing station where it is tared. Alloy pellets are fed into the container until a preset weight is obtained. The pellet feed is stopped, and the container is removed and sealed. A second empty container is placed onto the weighing station and the above process is repeated. The sealed container may be sent directly to a coating station for evaporative deposition or the container may be sent to storage for future use. The container may be a plastic bag having an aluminized exterior or a glass bottle. The plastic bags may be either vacuum heat sealed or closed with a pressed seal. The bags may be aluminized to prevent light from contacting selenium contained in the pellets. The loading system may be either a hopper or a feed belt. An alternative bag loading method comprises discrete counting of individual pellets instead of weighing the pellets with a photosensor. When a specified count is achieved, the filled container is automatically removed and sealed. The loading system provides for reduced variability in the coating composition and film thickness of finished photoreceptors.