Invented by Jae-Yoon Lee, Hewlett Packard Development Co LP
The Hewlett Packard Development Co LP invention works as followsThe invention provides an image-forming apparatus that includes a consumable with a memory built in, a power unit for driving the memory with power, and a controller to control the unit and provide power and access to the storage when a need to access memory occurs, as well as to control the unit and cut off power when the process is complete.
Background for Image forming apparatus comprising consumable unit and method for controlling power supply thereto
The present invention relates to a power supply for the consumable unit that has a built-in storage, as well as a power supply method.
As computers became more popular, peripheral devices also spread. Image forming devices such as scanners, printers, multifunctional printers and facsimiles are typical examples of peripherals.
Image-forming apparatuses print images on paper using ink or toner.” The ink or toner used for image-forming operations can be exhausted over a certain period of time. Ink or toner must be replaced if it is exhausted. Consumable units and replaceable units are parts or components that can be replaced in an image-forming apparatus.
The following units may need to replace because they are malfunctioning, have poor performance, are of low quality, are deteriorating in quality or are unable to perform or maintain quality over a certain period of time, or even earlier than their lifetime. Consumable units may include parts such as a belt transferring unit other than the developer unit.
Specifically, the laser imaging forming device includes a charge, transfer, and fusing units. Each unit has different types of rollers and belts, which can wear out or degenerate when used beyond a certain lifespan. The quality of the image can be greatly affected. “A user must replace all consumables, or component units at the appropriate time to ensure that an image can be printed well.
To manage consumable units each consumable unit has a memory that exchanges information with the main body of an image-forming apparatus. The memory can store information such as the number of printed pages, dot counts, and expiration so that the consumable unit can be replaced at a certain time. In general, the memory attached to the consumable is called a CRUM (Customer Replaceable Memory) memory. However, it can be referred as another term.
A consumable unit with a built-in memory is electrically attached to the image forming device through a contact, and it is supplied with power. The control unit in the main body can access the consumable to read or write data. The consumable unit is powered at all times, even if the image forming device is turned off.
However, the power supply has not been efficient because reading or writing data by using the consumable unit is possible in a short period of time, as opposed to power delivery.
The consumable unit can be easily attached or detached from the main body of an image-forming apparatus.” In the event that the user attempts to remove the consumable while it is still attached to the main body, and the power is being supplied, the image forming device or consumable will be damaged.
The general inventive concept provides a power supply system for one or more consumable devices that is both effective and safe, as well as a method to control the consumables and provide power supply.
The description will include additional aspects and utility of the general inventive idea. In part, these will be evident from the description or can be learned through the practice of this general inventive idea.
The following aspects and utility of the general inventive concept can be achieved: An image forming device with a consumable with a built in memory. A power supply unit electrically attached to the unit that provides power to drive the storage, a memory controller to determine if an event occurs which requires access to memory. A power management unit controls the power supply unit so as to supply power to memory when an event occurs.
The consumable unit can include multiple consumable units. The memory control unit checks if there is another memory to be accessed after an operation has been completed with regard to a mounted memory on one of the plurality of consumable units. If it is determined there is another memory to be accessed, the determination module may decide to open the cover of the consumable unit where the other memory has been mounted. When there is no memory to be accessed, the power control unit can control the power unit to shut off the power.
The method may include determining whether an event that requires access to the memory occurs, providing power supply to the memory when it is determined that the event occurred, determining a cover movably attached to a main body of image forming apparatus is opened in order for consumable unit detachment from image forming device. Displaying an error message when a cover movably attached on a main body of image forming apparatus opens. The method can include determining an event that requires access to the memory, providing power to the memory if it is determined that event occurred, determining that a cover that is movably attached on a main body to the image-forming apparatus has been opened to separate the consumable from the image-forming apparatus, displaying a message of error when the cover was opened, performing data reading and writing when the cover was closed, determining that there are other memories to access when they exist, and cutting off power when there are no other
The foregoing or other aspects and utility of the present inventive concept can also be achieved with an image-forming apparatus that includes a consumable unit equipped with a memory built in, a power unit that provides power to drive the storage, and a controller unit which, upon an event requiring access to the stored data, controls the power unit to supply power to memory to allow access to memory and, after an operation relating to memory is completed, controls the power unit to shut off power to memory.
The image-forming apparatus can include an additional determination unit that determines whether the consumable is detachable, and an output unit that outputs an error message if the consumable is found to be detached while power is being supplied to the memory.
The control unit can include an I/O unit that performs a read/write on the memory. A power unit controls the power supply. Memory control units manage the I/O unit and power unit.
The image-forming apparatus can include a determination unit that determines whether the consumable is removable. The control unit can control the power supply to stop powering the memory when it is determined that the consumable unit has a detached state. When the event occurs and the consumable unit has a detached state, the control unit can control the power unit to not provide power to memory. If the control unit determines that one of a number of consumable units is detachable when power is being supplied to the unit, it may command the power supply to stop providing power to the unit after the process for the unit has been completed.
The determination unit detects whether the cover of an image-forming apparatus attached to the main body is opened. When the cover opens, it can be determined that the consumable is detachable. If the cover closes, the consumable is determined not to be removable.Click here to view the patent on Google Patents.