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Self orienting, gravity driven, captivated multi-function label Disclosure Number: IPCOM000125466D
Original Publication Date: 2005-Jun-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Jun-01
Document File: 6 page(s) / 332K

Publishing Venue



Disclosed is a method in which an element(s) of a system can be indicated and labelled when used in multiple orientations in a system. This device uses a feature that allows the indicator to be visible in the upright orientation when the element is positioned in different orientations within a system.

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Self orienting, gravity driven, captivated multi -function label

In this particular situation, a fan assembly is installed into the system in multiple locations, and in multiple orientations. Because it is desired that the identical fan is utilized in multiple locations, special provisions must be made. Figure 1 shows how the fan changes orientation in the system for multiple locations.

     The fan assembly has two LEDs that protrude through the sheet metal, visible to the service personnel to indicate the status of the fan when the system is running. A green LED indicates that power is supplied to the fan. An amber LED indicates that a fault is present in the operation. IBM human factors requires that the green LED is always on the left of the amber LED, for consistency between multiple systems. It is also a requirement that icons be placed near the LED to indicate to the service personnel what the function of the LED is. For a green LED, a lightning bolt through a circle is used. For an amber LED, an explanation mark is used.

     Since the fan is inverted when it is installed in the rear of the rack, the green LED that was on the left is now on the right. To solve that problem, a bi-color LED was used. The system software controls what color the LED lights up as. The problem of the green LED always being on the left is solved in that manner. Figures A and B show the fan tailstock, as viewed from the outside of the system.

     Figure A shows the fan in the orientation of being plugged into the front of the system. In this case, LED 1 is lit up green, and LED 2 is lit up amber. Figure B shows the fan in the orientation of being plugged into the rear of the system. In figure B, LED is lit up amber, and LED is lit up green. This introduces a labelling problem. Not only does the color of the LEDs change, but so does the relative orientation. If a standard label was implemented for the front position in the system, when the fan is installed in the rear position, it would be upside down and the symbols would be associated with the wrong LEDs.

     The self orienting, gravity driven, captivated multi-function label solves this problem by utilizing a gravity driven label. When the fan is turned in one direction, the label only shows the icons that are associated with that label in that particular orientation. When the fan is turned, gravity makes the label move, only allowing the icons to show for that particular icon in that particular orientation. The icons that are not wanted to be shown are hid behind a frame, which has a "window opening" that only allows a certain portion of the label to be shown.