West Virginia Patent of the Month – August 2022

Conveyor systems are an overlooked but crucial component to the manufacturing, mining, and bulk material handling industries. The proper design can be the difference between efficiency and failure. Richwood Industries, Inc. has been a trusted partner in creating these efficiencies for over four decades, delivering long term operating cost reductions as a result of their innovative engineering solutions.

With a history like this, it’s no surprise that the company has recently been awarded a patent for their dual-tube core scraper blade design. Scraper blades are not new to the conveyor world, and are meant to remove the material at the head pulley and keep the material moving properly through transfer points. Unfortunately, while ubiquitous in the industry, these blades are often limited by their weight. This weight and the torque from operation causes the tube of the blade to separate from the elastomeric material around it.

Richwood’s design stops this separation from ever starting. The dual tube design adds resistance to torque loading, improving upon the standard single round tube. In addition, the dual tube core improves structural integrity, allowing the use of thinner-walled tubing and therefore creating a weight reduction. In order to support the dual-tube design, spacers are positioned along the circumference of the tubes, securing them relative to each other. This simple, but innovative design could revolutionize the use of scraper blades, extending their lifespan and preventing the need for constant maintenance. 

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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