Kentucky Patent of the Month – March 2024

In the realm of conveyor systems, efficiency and reliability are paramount for smooth operations in any industry. Aegis Sortation, LLC, a pioneer in conveyor technology, has been granted a patent for their latest innovative technology. This method introduces a “smart shoe” technology that streamlines the attachment and detachment of slats to conveyor systems, promising enhanced productivity and reduced downtime.

In conveyor systems, packages placed on a sorter are placed on a sorter slat. Shoes slide across the slats, removing the packaging from the sorter into a specific destination. These shoes are prone to dislodgement from the conveyor. If this dislodgement is not detected in a reasonable time, products can be mishandled and production may need to be halted. Aegis Sortations’ Smart Shoe addresses these limitations with RFID and rapid detection technology.

The patented method devised by Aegis Sortation involves a meticulously engineered slat assembly comprising key components: a slat, a latch featuring a hook, and a controller equipped with a shaft. The process begins with the controlled movement of the shaft, directed axially into an engaged position. This action prompts the shaft to exert pressure on a segment of the hook, initiating a pivotal motion that causes the hook to securely engage with a hub of the conveyor system.

What sets this method apart is its intuitive design and seamless operation. The controller’s shaft, guided by precision engineering, ensures precise alignment and effective latching, thereby minimizing the risk of slat dislodgement during conveyor operation. Additionally, the inclusion of a spring within the controller serves to maintain tension and stability, further enhancing the reliability of the attachment process.

Moreover, the method incorporates a user-friendly feature for slat removal, simplifying maintenance and repair tasks. By rotating the shaft’s head, the tension on the spring is released, allowing the hook to disengage effortlessly from the conveyor hub. This swift and straightforward removal process facilitates prompt replacement of slats, minimizing downtime and optimizing operational efficiency.

Aegis Sortation’s inventive method for slat installation and removal enhances productivity, reduce downtime, and elevate operational efficiency across various industries. As the conveyor industry evolves, Aegis Sortation continues to lead the way with innovative solutions tailored to meet the dynamic needs of modern businesses.

Are you developing new technology for an existing application? Did you know your development work could be eligible for the R&D Tax Credit and you can receive up to 14% back on your expenses? Even if your development isn’t successful your work may still qualify for R&D credits (i.e. you don’t need to have a patent to qualify). To find out more, please contact a Swanson Reed R&D Specialist today or check out our free online eligibility test.

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