Patent Number: 6,293,076

Title: Method and apparatus for automatically positioning a pneumatic envelopeopener

Abstract: An apparatus and method for automatically positioning a plurality ofsuction devices over the throat of envelope to lift the throat. Theapparatus includes: a base section pivotably mounted on a pivot shaft; acarriage movably mounted on the base section; a pair of pivot arms,wherein one end of each pivot arm is pivotably mounted on the carriage,and the other end extends out of the carriage for mounting an innersuction device; two outer arms movably mounted on the pivot shaft onopposite sides of the base section for mounting two outer suction devices;and means for rotating the pivot arms in order to adjust the distancebetween the two inner suction devices, moving the carriage in order toadjust the distance between the inner suction devices and the pivot shaft,and transporting the outer arms in opposite directions relative to thebase station to adjust the distance between the outer suction devices soas to position the suction devices over the throat of the envelopeaccording to width and the throat profile of the envelope. The apparatusfurther includes means for entering information regarding the width andthroat profile; means for computing the locations of the suction devices;means for conveying the computed locations to the suction device placingmechanisms and means for pitching the outer arms and the base sectionabout the pivot shaft to cause the suction devices to contact the throatof the envelope.

Inventors: Miller; John (Shelton, CT), Riley; William B. (Alexandria, VA)


International Classification:

Expiration Date: 09/25/2013