Inflatable Drive Transport System
Original Publication Date: 1983-Dec-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-08
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.