(19)
(11)EP 4 095 507 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
27.09.2023 Bulletin 2023/39

(21)Application number: 20845398.5

(22)Date of filing:  29.12.2020
(51)International Patent Classification (IPC): 
G01M 17/02(2006.01)
B60C 25/00(2006.01)
(52)Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC):
G01M 17/021; G01M 17/022; G01M 17/027; B60C 25/002
(86)International application number:
PCT/ES2020/070825
(87)International publication number:
WO 2021/180986 (16.09.2021 Gazette  2021/37)

(54)

TYRE SUPPORT DEVICE

REIFENSTÜTZVORRICHTUNG

DISPOSITIF DE SUPPORT DE PNEU


(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR

(30)Priority: 12.03.2020 EP 20382185

(43)Date of publication of application:
30.11.2022 Bulletin 2022/48

(60)Divisional application:
23187430.6 / 4239309

(73)Proprietor: METADATIA TECHNOLOGIES S.L.
03203 Elche (Alicante) (ES)

(72)Inventors:
  • MARTÍNEZ ALEJO, Juan
    03680 Aspe (Alicante) (ES)
  • LLOMBART GAVALDA, Juan José
    03680 Aspe (Alicante) (ES)

(74)Representative: Carlos Hernando, Borja 
Garrigues IP, S.L.P. Hermosilla, 3
28001 Madrid
28001 Madrid (ES)


(56)References cited: : 
CN-A- 110 316 284
US-A1- 2011 188 052
DE-U1-202006 011 739
US-A1- 2011 188 052
  
      
    Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


    Description

    OBJECT OF THE INVENTION



    [0001] The invention, tyre support device, relates to a device designed for supporting a tyre and thus enabling its inspection, manually by a user or automated by means of vision systems or devices, enabling its repair, or even enabling trimming or removal of burrs (also manually or automated). The device enables the tyre to be arranged in a specific position, after adjusting to the size of the tyre while the same rotates without longitudinal movement, avoiding deformation and reducing vibration.

    [0002] The field of application of the present invention falls within the automotive industry sector, specifically focussing on the field of the industry dedicated to the manufacture of apparatuses and devices to carry out tyre manufacturing and/or repairing tasks, and more particularly to tyre inspection tasks, preferably using automated vision systems.

    BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION



    [0003] Today, as in many other industrial areas, there are tasks that have been automated in such a way that they are performed by machines and robots that are more and more specific, and with increasingly reduced or limited human participation. An example of these are the visual inspection tasks of the tyres, the importance of which is essential for the correct operation and performance of the same, the automated systems being able to provide a much higher level of precision than any human inspection, in addition to reducing errors in inspection and saving time in the same.

    [0004] In the state of the art, in addition to human tyre inspection, carried out at the end of each tyre manufacturing line, there are different automated inspection systems with vision systems. However, none of the known inspection systems enable the inspection to be carried out in a single station as they require handling and repositioning the tyre during the inspection in order to inspect all the surfaces thereof, namely: tyre tread, tyre interior and sides. The difficulties in handling and positioning the tyres to be inspected derive mainly from their geometry and composition, that is, a circular element made of a soft material, mainly rubber. In addition to the constitution of the tyres, it must be taken into account that it is necessary to inspect all the surfaces completely, hence the tyre must be handled several times to complete the thorough inspection of the same. The constitution of the tyre can cause deformations that limit the precision that said automated inspection systems can offer, thereby losing the effectiveness sought by the same and causing human inspection of the tyres to be still necessary.

    [0005] For example, document US2011188052 describes an apparatus and method for determining the geometric dimensions of the interior of a tyre and document DE202006011739 relates to a device for controlling wheels, including the wheel, the tyre and the wheel rim. Further state of the art tyre support devices are known from CN 110 316 284 B and GB 1 053 641 A.

    [0006] The objective of the present invention is, therefore, a device that enables the automated inspection of tyres by means of vision systems, without the need to handle the tyre to change its position and access all the surfaces to be inspected and also reduce human participation in the inspection of tyres to reduce possible errors due to the human factor, at the same time that the speed of the inspection is increased, which reduces the manufacturing times of tyres, increasing the quality thereof.

    [0007] Likewise, in the tyre sector there are other devices for handling tyres for other purposes, such as tyre repair or removal of burrs after manufacture.

    [0008] These uses for which the device object of the present invention can be used, may or may not require the use of other components such as vision systems or robotic arms that enable the tyre to be handled or the cameras of the vision systems or other tools such as for example blades for the removal of burrs.

    [0009] Despite knowing the existence of different solutions for automated tyre inspection, usually with vision systems, none of them relate to a support device that makes it possible to adapt to tyres of different dimensions by means of a stable fastening without vibrations and that at the same time makes possible the inspection of the tyre without handling the tyre once it has been arranged on the support device.

    DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION



    [0010] The support device for automated inspection with vision systems relates, as noted above, to a device specifically designed with the purpose of supporting a tyre and, preferably enabling its inspection, more preferably with vision systems, avoiding tyre handling and change of position thereof, mainly avoiding the longitudinal movement of the tyre, such that it remains in a single position, although with rotational movement, so as to enable, in the case of inspection thereof, said inspection to be carried out with the tyre in one position, specifically, inclined and resting on its tyre tread with a rotation movement about the tyre axis.

    [0011] Therefore, the object of the present invention is a tyre support device according to claim 1. Preferably, a tyre support device for automated inspection thereof using vision systems is provided.

    [0012] The support device preferably comprises three adjusting devices on the inclined frame and is supported on a preferably horizontal surface, such that two of the adjusting devices are located on the lower portion of said frame and the third adjusting device is located on the upper surface, all of them concentric to the tyre axis. Associated with said lower adjusting devices, the support device comprises rest or support means for the tyre, which further comprise rotation means that cause the tangential rotation of the tyre on its axis by providing traction on the tyre tread, that is, motorised support and rotation means.

    [0013] Preferably the device has the three adjusting devices located at 120° from each other, two in the lower portion and one in the upper portion, the three adjusting devices being concentric with respect to the tyre axis.

    [0014] Likewise, it is also possible that the support device comprises only two adjusting devices located in the lower portion of the frame with the support and rotation means, that is, without the upper adjusting device, so that the tyre rests directly on the frame, or on a support element, in said upper area, and because the rotation and support would be performed on the lower adjusting devices. Alternatively, an upper adjusting device could be provided without resting or support means since said upper adjusting device does not provide traction to the tyre and the main function thereof is to avoid vibrations in the event that they appear. Likewise, an upper adjusting device could be provided with the adjusting means and with the support means but without motorised rotation means.

    [0015] The frame of the support device where the adjusting devices rest has an inclined structure with a window, so that the frame has the shape of an inclined frame on a support structure of all the elements of the device. The inclination of the frame structure is between 15° and 30°, preferably 20°, with respect to an approximately vertical plane, said approximately vertical plane being preferably perpendicular to the frame support structure and therefore also perpendicular to the surface where said support structure rests, this surface therefore being the one where the whole device rests. That is, the support structure has an inclination of between 60° and 75° with respect to a horizontal surface. The axis of the tyre forms 90° with said support structure on which it rests. The aforementioned inclination of the support structure enables the swinging of the tyre when it rotates to be prevented, swinging that occurs when the tyre is supported on the tread thereof, at the same time resting on a horizontal surface.

    [0016] Each of said lower adjusting devices, and optionally the upper one, comprises as support means a shaft or roller where the tyre rests, so that the rotation of said shaft constitutes at the same time the rotation means to rotate the tyre on its axis and at the same time support the tyre that prevents deformation when it rotates, the speed of the tyre preferably being between 10 and 15 rpm.

    [0017] The upper adjusting device has, as support means, preferably two shafts or rollers, not motorised and slightly separated from each other, with the aim of preventing, by forming a stop, the tyre from coming out of the device when applying the corresponding turning speed from the shafts or rollers of the lower adjusting devices.

    [0018] The first adjusting means for adjusting to the width, the second adjusting means for adjusting to the diameter, as well as the rotation means of each adjusting device are preferably displaced and/or moved by servo motors.

    [0019] Preferably, the first adjusting means for adjusting to the width of the tyre comprise a first U-shaped support, with a fixed first end and a second end, parallel to the first end, movable by a servo motor, such that the second end can be adapted to the width of the tyre once the tyre tread is inserted into said U-shaped support.

    [0020] The second adjusting means for adjusting to the diameter of the tyre comprise a second support movable over a surface, preferably with one or two rails arranged in turn on the frame of the device or on an extension thereof, for example, on plates or flat sheets on which displacement rails are arranged. The first support is arranged on said second support with the first adjusting means for adjusting to the width of the tyre. In this way, the second adjusting means will move the second support along the rail or rails located in the frame and, in turn, will move the first adjusting means that are arranged over the second adjusting means.

    [0021] In a preferred embodiment, the adjusting means for adjusting to the diameter are arranged so as to enable the movement of the adjusting means for adjusting to the width of the tyre along shafts at 120°, maintaining equidistance between the three adjusting devices. The intersection point of said shafts is the point where the centre and axis of the tyre must be placed on the device. That is, the rails are arranged so that the first and second adjusting means, and therefore the adjusting devices, move concentrically with respect to the centre of the tyre that is arranged in the support device. This concentric movement in the upper adjusting device is preferably vertical.

    [0022] Furthermore, in an alternative construction, where the lower adjusting devices are not at the same distance from each other as the upper adjusting device, the rails on which they move are preferably arranged so that the lower adjusting devices move from one side to the other of the frame, parallel to a horizontal surface, varying the distance between them, while in the case of the upper adjusting device said rails are perpendicular to the previous ones and move from top to bottom.

    [0023] In addition to the first and second adjusting means, the support device object of the invention comprises support means and rotation means as described above. Said support and rotation means can correspond to the same means, such that the support means and the rotation means are the same drive shaft or roller, which is the case in the lower adjusting devices, where the shaft or roller is arranged preferably on the U-shaped support, between the first end, which is fixed, and the second end, which is movable. Furthermore, and as it has been mentioned, the upper adjusting device may or may not have these support means and rotation means, it may have the support means but not the rotation means, or it may have both. Preferably, as already mentioned, the upper adjusting device has two shafts or rollers as support means.

    [0024] The device object of the invention can also incorporate, to facilitate access to the interior of the tyre, specifically to the interior of the tyre tread, as well as to the interior of the sides, a mechanism for opening the tyre that is integrated in the lower adjusting devices. Said mechanism, preferably pneumatic, has claws that are inserted in the interior of the tyre from the side thereof and that when opened cause the separation of the sides of the tyre, thus facilitating access to the interior thereof, both to the interior of the tyre tread and to the interior of the sides. Said claws have rollers or cylinders at their ends that enable the tyre to rotate.

    [0025] The mechanical elements to achieve the movements and adjustments of the previous devices and means may vary, as well as the components that make them up.

    [0026] In accordance with the above, the support device object of the invention, with three adjusting devices, two lower ones and one upper one, above the previous two, operates as follows:
    • Firstly, and with the help of a preferably robotic arm, a tyre is placed in the support device, specifically supported on the rotating support shafts, rollers or cylinders of the two lower adjusting devices and being positioned between the three shafts of the three adjusting devices,
    • Next, the second adjusting means for adjusting to the diameter of each one of said adjusting devices are moved to adjust them to the diameter of the tyre,
    • Afterwards, the first adjusting means for adjusting to the width are moved until they adjust to the width of the tyre, and
    • The support and motorised rotation shafts or rollers preferably associated with the lower adjusting devices (if the upper adjusting device also has a support shaft it would also rotate, with or without motorisation) begin to rotate forcing the tyre to rotate, preferably after the actuation of the tyre opening mechanism that distances the sides thereof from each other.


    [0027] If the device includes a tyre opening mechanism, it will act before activating the rotation of the shafts or rollers of the lower adjusting devices.

    [0028] The device object of the invention is preferably used for automated tyre inspection, so it will be necessary to have vision systems or display elements, usually cameras and profilometers, to be able to inspect all parts of the tyre, namely:

    ∘ the tyre tread,

    ∘ the side resting on the support device through the window of the frame or housing,

    ∘ the side that is not resting on the device, and

    ∘ the interior of the tyre, both the interior of the tyre tread and the inner sides.



    [0029] Preferably, the vision systems will be installed, as far as possible, in the tyre support device itself and when this is not possible because either the handling of the tyre prevents it or the required angle of inclination of the vision system requires it, any necessary means will be used, mainly robotic arms that incorporate said vision systems at their ends.

    [0030] Preferably, the systems for viewing the outside of the tyre tread, as well as the outside of the sides, are arranged on the upper fastening device, in frames arranged for this purpose. Said frames could be arranged elsewhere as long as they do not interfere with the operation of the device components. For the inspection of the interior of the tyre, vision systems are inserted through the hole of the tyre to access the interior of the tyre tread and the interior of the sides. Access to the interior can be done both from one side of the frame and from the opposite side through the hollow or window made therein.

    [0031] For the inspection of a tyre with vision systems, it would be preferable to proceed as follows:
    1. a) Before placing the tyre on the support device, a reader measures the volume of the tyre to be inspected to know the dimensions thereof,
    2. b) The tyre is taken from the inside thereof by means of clamps by a robotic arm and moved to a barcode reader in order to verify that the manufacturing dimensions, included in the barcode, coincide with the volume measured in step a), and in the event that they do not coincide, the tyre inspection is ruled out,
    3. c) The tyre is placed on the support device object of the invention, such that the clamping devices thereof move to adjust to the diameter and width of the tyre.
    4. d) The tyre opening mechanism, incorporated into the lower adjusting devices, separates the sides of the tyre,
    5. e) The rollers or shafts of the support means of the lower adjusting devices begin to roll and cause the tyre to move,
    6. f) The vision systems arranged on the support device, preferably on the upper clamping device, start capturing images of the outside of the tyre tread, of one outer side of the tyre and the other outer side of the tyre, one of them through the hollow or window existing in the inclined frame of the device object of the invention,
    7. g) Vision systems arranged in robotic arms, specifically those intended to inspect the interior of the tyre, specifically one to inspect the interior of the tyre tread, another to inspect the interior of one side and another to inspect the interior of the other side, access the inside of the tyre, and
    8. h) After inspection of the different parts of the tyre, the captured images are stored, processed and compared with reference images of the inspected tyre, thus determining the viability of the inspected tyre.


    [0032] As mentioned above, in the event that the device was not used for automatic tyre inspection, but for any of the other functions indicated above, the steps related to inspection with vision systems would not be included in the method. Also, if the device did not include the tyre opening mechanism, this step will obviously not be included in the method either.

    DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS



    [0033] To complement the present description and in order to facilitate the understanding of the features of the invention, the following figures are included by way of illustration and not limitation:
    • Figure 1 shows a front perspective view of a first exemplary embodiment of the tyre support device object of the invention, where the general configuration thereof and the main parts and elements it comprises can be seen.
    • Figure 2 shows a perspective view of one of the arm structures that the three adjusting assemblies for adjusting the support device of the first example of the invention have as adjusting means for adjusting to the width of the tyre, the parts and elements it comprises being appreciated in detail.
    • Figure 3 shows a perspective view of the adjusting means for adjusting to the diameter of the tyre of the upper adjusting assembly of the support of the first example of the invention, depicted without the arm structure to facilitate the observation of the elements it comprises and the arrangement thereof.
    • Figure 4 shows a perspective view of one of the lower adjusting assemblies that the support device has, with the adjusting means for adjusting to the width and diameter of the tyre, according to the first example of the invention, the different elements it comprises and the arrangement thereof being seen.
    • Figure 5 shows a second exemplary embodiment of the device object of the invention.
    • Figure 6 shows said second exemplary embodiment with a tyre arranged on the support.
    • Figure 7A shows a view of a lower adjusting device with the different means that make it up.
    • Figure 7B shows another view of the lower adjusting device with the different means that make it up.
    • Figure 7C shows a first exploded view of the lower adjusting device of Figures 7A and 7B, where the rails for adjusting to the diameter of the tyre have been separated from the assembly.
    • Figure 7D shows a second exploded view of the same adjusting device, in which the adjusting means for adjusting to the diameter, the adjusting means for adjusting to the width and the opening mechanism of the tyre (from left to right) are observed.
    • Figure 8 shows a side view of the device object of the invention

    PREFERRED EMBODIMENT OF THE INVENTION



    [0034] In view of the aforementioned figures, a description is given below of a first nonlimiting exemplary embodiment of the support device for automated inspection of tyres, preferably by means of vision systems of the invention.

    [0035] Thus, as seen in Figure 1, the support device comprises an inclined frame (10), which can be arranged on a support structure (not shown), preferably supported on a horizontal surface, with:
    • three adjusting devices, two lower ones (50, 60) and one upper one (70), the lower ones being equidistant with the upper adjusting device, and each of the three adjusting devices comprising first adjusting means for adjusting to the width (3) of the tyre and second adjusting means for adjusting to the diameter (4) of the tyre, and
    • which incorporates support means (5) in its three adjusting devices and rotation means in the lower adjusting devices (50, 60) for supporting and rotating a tyre at a controlled speed on its axis, between 10 and 15 rpm, avoiding vibrations and deformation thereof during rotation,
    said first (3) and second (4) adjusting means of the three adjusting devices (50, 60, 70), as well as the rotation means of the lower adjusting devices (50, 60) preferably being displaced and/or moved in a controlled manner by servo motors (6).

    [0036] The frame (10) has an inclined structure with a central window or hollow (11), preferably in the shape of a housing, the inclination of the structure preferably being close to 20°, between 15° and 30°, with respect to a perpendicular to a supporting horizontal surface. On said inclined frame or structure (10) the three adjusting devices (50, 60, 70) are arranged, the two lower adjusting devices (50, 60) having first adjusting means for adjusting to the width (3), second adjusting means for adjusting to the diameter (4) of the tyre and support means (5) of the tyre that coincide with the motorised rotation means of the tyre on its axis, specifically rollers or cylinders (5).

    [0037] The upper adjusting device (70) preferably further has adjusting means (3, 4) as well as the above support means (5) present in the two lower adjusting devices (50, 60), although preferably it does not have motorised rotation means, such that the support means (5) of the upper adjusting device (70) rotate due to the traction transmitted by the rotating tyre itself due to the action of the motorised rotation means (5) of the lower adjusting devices (50, 60).

    [0038] Alternatively, the support device object of the invention may not have (not shown) any upper adjusting device (70), such that the tyre would rest directly on the upper portion of the frame (10) or on a roller or rollers arranged for this purpose on the frame (10).

    [0039] Each of the lower adjusting devices (50, 60) comprises, as support means (5) and rotation means, a shaft, roller or cylinder (5) that performs said support and rotation functions of the tyre, said shaft, roller or cylinder (5) being motorised to be able to transmit that rotation to the tyre. Said shaft, roller or cylinder (5) is perpendicular to the frame (10) and constitutes the means for supporting and rotating the tyre on its very axis since the tyre rests on said support and rotation shafts or rollers (5) of the lower adjusting devices (50, 60). In the case of the upper adjusting device (70), if the same does not exhibit rotation means, it is possible that it exhibits at least one shaft, roller or cylinder, as support means (5), which will also rotate dragged by the tyre. The shafts, rollers or cylinders of the support means (5) of the adjusting devices (50, 60, 70) are parallel to each other.

    [0040] As mentioned, preferably, said three adjusting devices (50, 60, 70) are incorporated into said frame (10) arranged in such a way that the two lower adjusting devices (50, 60) are located in the lower portion of the frame, (10) with their support and rotation shafts (5) separated and horizontally movable, and the upper adjusting device (70) is arranged on the upper portion of the frame (10) equidistant, at all times, to both lower adjusting devices (50, 60).

    [0041] Figure 2 shows the first adjusting means for adjusting to the width (3) which includes each adjusting device (50, 60, 70) and which are preferably determined by a U-shaped structure formed by two arms, one fixed (30) and one movable (31) (although they could be both movable), said structure moving on a runner (7) associated with a servomotor (6) and inserted into a rail (8) of a base plate (9), such that the movable arm (31) moves closer and further away from the fixed arm (30) to adjust to the width of the tyre.

    [0042] Furthermore, preferably, in the inner portion of each arm (30, 31), the incorporation of a series of bearings (2) is envisaged, which are attached to the lateral surface of the tyre, rolling with it when turning it so as not to cause friction.

    [0043] Also, between both arms (30, 31) there is the support and rotation shaft (5) with a roller (32) on which the tyre tread rests, as seen in Figures 1, 3 and 4.

    [0044] Furthermore, the second adjusting means for adjusting to the diameter (4), shown in Figure 3, of the adjusting devices (50, 60, 70) comprise a support plate (40) which, integrally attached to the frame (10) of the support device, is provided with rails (8) on which runners (7) move along, associated with a servomotor (6), and on which a movable plate (41) is fixed on which, in turn, the U-shaped arms structure (30, 31) of the first adjusting means (3) is coupled with the corresponding support and rotation shaft (5) of the support means (5), to move said movable plate (41) from one end to the other of said support plate (40) and adjust the position thereof to the diameter of the tyre.

    [0045] Figure 3 shows how said second adjusting means for adjusting to the diameter (4), for the upper adjusting device (70), exhibit a vertical displacement movement of the movable plate (41), the support and rotation shaft (5), which rotates freely, being fastened directly to said plate (41), there being in said plate (41) spacers (42) on which the U-shaped arm structure (30, 31) of the first adjusting means (3) rests.

    [0046] For its part, as seen in Figure 1, in the two lower adjusting devices (50, 60), the movable plate (41) exhibits a horizontal displacement movement, the support and rotation shafts (5) being drive rollers or cylinders. In an example of figure 4, the rotation system of said rollers 5 can be made up of a servo motor (123) associated with a belt (122) associated with a planetary gear reduction system (12) formed by a rotating plate (120) and a pinion (121), in order to transmit the movement from the servomotor (123) to the roller (5). Other systems could also be used.

    [0047] Figures 5 to 8 show a second exemplary embodiment of the invention. This second example shows a tyre (N) support device comprising an inclined frame (10) with a window or hollow (11) and arranged on a support structure (12). Said support device comprises:
    • three adjusting devices (50, 60, 70), two lower ones (50, 60) and an upper one (70), the three devices (50, 60, 70) being equidistant from each other and concentric to the tyre axis, located on three shafts at 120° and intersecting at the axis (n) of the tyre, which is perpendicular to the frame (10) and comprise first adjusting means (3) for adjusting to the width of the tyre and second adjusting means (4) for adjusting to the diameter of the tyre, and
    • which incorporates support means (5) in the three devices (50, 60, 70) to support the tyres and rotation means exclusively in the lower devices (50, 60) for supporting and rotating the tyre (N) at a controlled speed on its axis, preferably between 10 and 15 rpm, avoiding vibrations and deformation thereof during rotation due to the configuration of the support device,
    said first (3) and second (4) adjusting means and rotation means (5) preferably being displaced and/or moved in a controlled manner by servomotors (6).

    [0048] The main difference, among others, between this second exemplary embodiment and the first exemplary embodiment is that the adjusting devices (50, 60, 70) are arranged, as mentioned, on adjusting means for adjusting to the diameter (4) that serve to adjust the devices to the diameter of the tyre and stabilise the tyre, such that they move in parallel to axes at 120° that intersect at a point located on the axis (n) of the tyre arranged on the support device (10) object of the invention.

    [0049] Also, another difference with the first exemplary embodiment of the invention is that this second example has an opening mechanism (80) of the tyre integrated in each of the lower adjusting devices (50, 60). This mechanism (80), which could also be integrated in the first exemplary embodiment, aims to facilitate access to the interior of the tyre, specifically to the interior of the tyre tread, as well as to the interior of the sides. Said mechanism (80), preferably actuated by pneumatic means, has claws (81) that are inserted inside the tyre (N) through the side thereof and when opened cause the separation of the sides of the tyre (N), thus facilitating access to the interior of the same, both to the interior of the tyre tread and the interior of the sides. Said claws (81) have at their ends rollers or cylinders (82) that enable the tyre to rotate when the support and rotation means (5) arranged in the lower adjusting devices (50, 60) cause the rotation of the whole tyre.

    [0050] In this example, the adjusting means for adjusting to the diameter (4) of the three adjusting devices (50, 60, 70) move, as mentioned, radially with respect to the centre of the tyre, each device maintaining equidistance with respect to the others as they approach or move away from the centre of the tyre depending on the dimensions thereof. The adjusting means for adjusting to the width (3) also move on said adjusting means for adjusting to the diameter.

    [0051] Said adjusting means for adjusting to the width (3) have a configuration similar to that described for the first exemplary embodiment, wherein a first movable arm moves with respect to a second fixed arm, both arms being parallel and having bearings to facilitate the rotation of the tyre.

    [0052] Likewise, the tyre rests on two arranged shafts, rollers or cylinders that form the support means (5), said support means being motorised and activated by servomotors (123) in the case of the lower adjusting devices (50, 60). However, in the upper adjusting device (70) the support means (5) are not motorised, but have a double support system formed by two rollers that are distanced from each other, acting as a stop and preventing the tyre from coming out of the support device as a result of the rotation. Likewise, it is possible to have support rollers (51), without motorisation, in the device, between the upper adjusting device (70) and the lower adjusting devices (50, 60).

    [0053] Those elements not described in this second exemplary embodiment of Figures 5 to 8 can be considered similar or equivalent to those described for the first example of Figures 1 to 4.

    [0054] This second example further shows how the upper adjusting device (70) integrates vision systems (90) formed by a camera or profilometer and a laser. Specifically, in figure 8, although they are also seen in figures 5 and 6, there are several vision devices or systems (90), two located in the upper portion to capture and record the tyre tread and two others located on each side of the tyre, capturing the sides thereof. It can be seen how the side of the tyre located on the side of the support device (10) is inspected by a vision system (90) that accesses said side through the window or hollow (11) of the frame (10). Likewise, the light beams emitted by the necessary laser devices are observed so that the cameras or profilometers capture the surface with sufficient resolution.

    [0055] The method of inspection of a tyre with vision systems with the device object of the present invention, in particular with the second example described, would preferably proceed as follows:
    1. a) Before placing the tyre (N) in the support device (10), a reader measures the volume of the tyre (N) to be inspected to know the dimensions thereof,
    2. b) The tyre (N) is taken from the inside thereof by means of clamps by a robotic arm and moved to a barcode reader in order to verify that the manufacturing dimensions, included in the barcode, coincide with the volume measured in step a), and in the event that they do not coincide, the tyre inspection (N) is ruled out,
    3. c) The tyre (N) is placed on the support device (10) object of the invention, so that the clamping devices (50, 60, 70) thereof move to adjust to the diameter and width of the tyre (N).
    4. d) The tyre opening mechanism (80), incorporated into the lower adjusting devices (50, 60), separates the sides of the tyre (N),
    5. e) The rollers or shafts (5) of the support means of the lower adjusting devices (50, 60) begin to roll and cause the tyre (N) to move,
    6. f) The vision systems (90) arranged on the support device (10), preferably on the upper clamping device (70), begin capturing images of the outside of the tyre tread, of an outer side of the tyre (N) and the other outer side of the tyre (N), one of them through the hollow or window (11) in the inclined frame (10) of the device object of the invention,
    7. g) Vision systems arranged in robotic arms, specifically those intended to inspect the interior of the tyre (N), specifically one to inspect the interior of the tyre tread, another to inspect the interior of one side and another to inspect the inside of the other side, access the inside of the tyre (N), and
    8. h) After inspection of the different parts of the tyre (N), the captured images are stored, processed and compared with reference images of the tyre (N) inspected by means of a computer program installed in a processor that collects all the images and data, thus determining the viability of the inspected tyre.



    Claims

    1. A tyre support device, which comprises a frame that has an inclined structure (10) with a window (11), providing on said frame at least two adjusting devices for positioning the tyre (N) on the frame, each of said adjusting devices comprising:

    - Second adjusting means (4), that move on the inclined structure (10) of the frame for adapting to the diameter of the tyre (N),

    - First adjusting means (3), placed on said second adjusting means (4) to displace along the same to adapt to the width of the tyre (N), and

    - Support means (5), associated to the first adjustment means (3), for supporting the tyre (N) on its surface, driven by rotating means that make the support means (5) rotate to make the tyre (N) rotate on its axis,

    wherein the second adjusting means (4) move on the inclined structure (10) to adapt to the diameter of the tyre (N), moving at the same time the first adjusting means (3) with the support means (5) placed on said second adjusting means (4), so that the support means (5) make the tyre (N) rotate after the first adjusting means (3) adapt to the width of the tyre (N).
     
    2. The device, according to claim 1, characterised in that the frame structure is inclined between 15° and 30°, preferably 20°, with respect to a vertical plane that is perpendicular to the support surface of the frame.
     
    3. The device, according to any of the preceding claims, characterised in that the two adjusting devices are lower adjusting devices and are located in the lower portion of the frame separated from each other.
     
    4. The device, according to claim 3, characterised in that it comprises a third upper adjusting device located in the upper portion of the frame, equidistant from the two lower adjusting devices located in the lower portion.
     
    5. The device according to claim 1, characterised in that the adjusting devices are equidistant from each other arranged on shafts located at 120°.
     
    6. The device according to any of the preceding claims, characterised in that the rotation means are the support means.
     
    7. The device according to any of the preceding claims, characterised in that the support and rotation means (5) are at least one roller (50) located on a rotation axis perpendicular to the inclined structure of the frame.
     
    8. The device according to preceding claims, characterised in that the adjusting means are activated by servo motors.
     
    9. The device according to any of the preceding claims, characterised in that the first adjusting means (3) for adjusting to the width of the tyre comprise a U-shaped structure formed by two arms, one fixed (30) and one movable (31) such that the movable arm (31) moves closer and further away from the fixed arm (30) to adjust to the width of the tyre.
     
    10. The device, according to claim 9, characterised in that in the inner portion of each arm (30, 31) the incorporation of bearings (10) is envisaged that are attached to the lateral surface of the tyre, rolling with it when turning the tyre so as not to cause friction.
     
    11. The device according to any of the preceding claims, characterised in that the second adjusting means (4) for adjusting to the diameter of the tyre comprise a support plate (40) which, integrally attached to the frame (1) of the support, and on which a movable plate (41) is fastened on which, in turn, the U-shaped arms structure (30, 31) is coupled with the corresponding support (5) and rotation means, to move said movable plate (41) from one end to the other of the mentioned support plate (40) and adjust the position thereof to the diameter of the tyre.
     
    12. The device according to claim 10, characterised in that the second adjusting means (4) for adjusting to the diameter of the tyre in the upper adjusting device exhibit a vertical displacement movement of the movable plate (41).
     
    13. The device according to claim 10, characterised in that the lower adjusting means (2), the movable plate (41) exhibit a horizontal displacement movement.
     
    14. The device according to preceding claims, characterised in that the support and rotation shaft (5) of the upper adjusting device (29) rotates freely and the support and rotation shafts (5) of the lower adjusting devices (2) are drive shafts activated by servo motors.
     
    15. The device according to any of the preceding claims, characterised in that the lower fastening devices comprise a tyre opening mechanism with at least two claws that are inserted inside the tyre separating the sides of the tyre.
     


    Ansprüche

    1. Reifenstützvorrichtung, die einen Rahmen umfasst, der eine geneigte Struktur (10) mit einem Fenster (11) aufweist, wobei zum Positionieren des Reifens (N) am Rahmen am Rahmen mindestens zwei Einstellvorrichtungen bereitgestellt sind, wobei jede der Einstellvorrichtungen Folgendes umfasst:

    - ein zweites Einstellmittel (4), das sich zum Anpassen an den Durchmesser des Reifens (N) auf der geneigten Struktur (10) des Rahmens bewegt,

    - ein erstes Einstellmittel (3), das auf dem zweiten Einstellmittel (4) zum Versetzen auf demselben platziert ist, zum Anpassen an die Breite des Reifens (N) und

    - ein Stützmittel (5), das mit dem ersten Einstellmittel (3) verknüpft ist, zum Stützen des Reifens (N) auf seiner Lauffläche, angetrieben durch ein Rotationsmittel, das das Rotieren des Stützmittels (5) bewirkt, um den Reifen (N) zu veranlassen, auf seiner Achse zu rotieren,

    wobei sich das zweite Einstellmittel (4) auf der geneigten Struktur (10) bewegt, um sich an den Durchmesser des Reifens (N) anzupassen, wobei gleichzeitig das erste Einstellmittel (3) bewegt wird, wenn das Stützmittel (5) auf dem zweiten Einstellmittel (4) platziert ist, derart, dass das Stützmittel (5) den Reifen (N) veranlasst, zu rotieren, nachdem sich das erste Einstellmittel (3) an die Breite des Reifens (N) angepasst hat.
     
    2. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 1, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass die Rahmenstruktur zwischen 15° und 30°, vorzugsweise 20°, mit Bezug auf eine vertikale Ebene, die senkrecht zur Stützfläche des Rahmens verläuft, geneigt ist.
     
    3. Vorrichtung nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass die zwei Einstellvorrichtungen untere Einstellvorrichtungen sind und sich im unteren Abschnitt des Rahmens getrennt voneinander befinden.
     
    4. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 3, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass sie eine dritte obere Einstellvorrichtung umfasst, die sich im oberen Abschnitt des Rahmens befindet, äquidistant von den zwei unteren Einstellvorrichtungen, die sich im unteren Abschnitt befinden.
     
    5. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 1, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass die Einstellvorrichtungen äquidistant voneinander auf Wellen angeordnet sind, die bei 120° angebracht sind.
     
    6. Vorrichtung nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass das Rotationsmittel das Stützmittel ist.
     
    7. Vorrichtung nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass das Stütz- und Rotationsmittel (5) mindestens eine Rolle (50) ist, die sich auf einer Rotationsachse senkrecht zur geneigten Struktur des Rahmens befinden.
     
    8. Vorrichtung nach vorhergehenden Ansprüchen, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass die Einstellmittel von Servomotoren aktiviert werden.
     
    9. Vorrichtung nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass die ersten Einstellmittel (3) zum Einstellen der Breite des Reifens eine U-förmige Struktur umfassen, die von zwei Armen gebildet wird, einem festen (30) und einem bewegbaren (31), derart, dass sich der bewegbare Arm (31) näher zum und weiter weg vom festen Arm (30) bewegt, um die Breite des Reifens einzustellen.
     
    10. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 9, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass im Innenabschnitt von jedem Arm (30, 31) die Anbringung von Lagern (10) vorgesehen ist, die an der Seitenfläche des Reifens befestigt sind und mit diesem rollen, wenn der Reifen gedreht wird, um keine Reibung zu verursachen.
     
    11. Vorrichtung nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass das zweite Einstellmittel (4) zum Einstellen des Durchmessers des Reifens eine Stützplatte (40) umfasst, die integral am Rahmen (1) der Stütze befestigt ist und an der eine bewegbare Platte (41) fixiert ist, auf der wiederum die U-förmige Armstruktur (30, 31) an das entsprechende Stütz- (5) und Rotationsmittel gekoppelt ist, um die bewegbare Platte (41) von einem Ende zum anderen der genannten Stützplatte (40) zu bewegen und die Position davon auf den Durchmesser des Reifens einzustellen.
     
    12. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 10, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass das zweite Einstellmittel (4) zum Einstellen auf den Durchmesser des Reifens in der oberen Einstellvorrichtung eine vertikale Versatzbewegung der bewegbaren Platte (41) vornimmt.
     
    13. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 10, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass das untere Einstellmittel (2), die bewegbare Platte (41) eine horizontale Versatzbewegung vornehmen.
     
    14. Vorrichtung nach vorhergehenden Ansprüchen, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass die Stütz- und Rotationswelle (5) der oberen Einstellvorrichtung (29) frei rotieren und die Sttz- und Drehwellen (5) der unteren Einstellvorrichtungen (2) Antriebswellen sind, die von Servomotoren aktiviert werden.
     
    15. Vorrichtung nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass die unteren Fixierungsvorrichtungen einen Reifenöffnungsmechanismus mit mindestens zwei Klauen umfassen, die in den Reifen eingesetzt werden und die Seiten des Reifens trennen.
     


    Revendications

    1. Dispositif de support de pneu, qui comprend un cadre qui a une structure inclinée (10) avec une fenêtre (11), fournissant sur ledit cadre au moins deux dispositifs d'ajustement pour positionner le pneu (N) sur le cadre, chacun desdits dispositifs d'ajustement comprenant :

    - Des deuxièmes moyens d'ajustement (4), qui sont mobiles sur la structure inclinée (10) du cadre pour s'adapter au diamètre du pneu (N),

    - Des premiers moyens d'ajustement (3), placés sur lesdits deuxièmes moyens d'ajustement (4) pour se déplacer le long de ceux-ci afin de s'adapter à la largeur du pneu (N), et

    - Des moyens de support (5), associés aux premiers moyens d'ajustement (3), pour supporter le pneu (N) sur sa surface de bande de roulement, entraînés par des moyens rotatifs qui amènent les moyens de support (5) à entrer en rotation pour amener le pneu (N) à entrer en rotation sur son axe,

    dans lequel les deuxièmes moyens d'ajustement (4) sont mobiles sur la structure inclinée (10) pour s'adapter au diamètre du pneu (N), étant mobiles en même temps les premiers moyens d'ajustement (3) avec les moyens de support (5) placés sur lesdits deuxièmes moyens d'ajustement (4), de telle sorte que les moyens de support (5) amènent le pneu (N) à entrer en rotation après que les premiers moyens d'ajustement (3) s'adaptent à la largeur du pneu (N).
     
    2. Dispositif, selon la revendication 1, caractérisé en ce que la structure de cadre est inclinée entre 15° et 30°, de préférence 20°, par rapport à un plan vertical qui est perpendiculaire à la surface de support du cadre.
     
    3. Dispositif, selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, caractérisé en ce que les deux dispositifs d'ajustement sont des dispositifs d'ajustement inférieurs et sont situés dans la partie inférieure du cadre séparés l'un de l'autre.
     
    4. Dispositif, selon la revendication 3, caractérisé en ce qu'il comprend un troisième dispositif d'ajustement supérieur situé dans la partie supérieure du cadre, à équidistance des deux dispositifs d'ajustement inférieurs situés dans la partie inférieure.
     
    5. Dispositif selon la revendication 1, caractérisé en ce que les dispositifs d'ajustement sont à équidistance les uns des autres agencés sur des arbres situés à 120°.
     
    6. Dispositif selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, caractérisé en ce que les moyens de rotation sont les moyens de support.
     
    7. Dispositif selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, caractérisé en ce que les moyens de support et de rotation (5) sont au moins un rouleau (50) situé sur un axe de rotation perpendiculaire à la structure inclinée du cadre.
     
    8. Dispositif selon les revendications précédentes, caractérisé en ce que les moyens d'ajustement sont activés par des servomoteurs.
     
    9. Dispositif selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, caractérisé en ce que les premiers moyens d'ajustement (3) pour s'ajuster à la largeur du pneu comprennent une structure à profil en U formée par deux bras, un fixe (30) et un mobile (31) de telle sorte que le bras mobile (31) se rapproche et s'éloigne du bras fixe (30) pour s'ajuster à la largeur du pneu.
     
    10. Dispositif, selon la revendication 9, caractérisé en ce que dans la partie interne de chaque bras (30, 31) l'incorporation de roulements (10) est envisagée qui sont attachés à la surface latérale du pneu, roulant avec lui lorsque le pneu tourne afin de ne pas causer de frottement.
     
    11. Dispositif selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, caractérisé en ce que les deuxièmes moyens d'ajustement (4) pour s'ajuster au diamètre du pneu comprennent une plaque de support (40) qui, attachée intégralement au cadre (1) du support, et sur laquelle une plaque mobile (41) est fixée sur laquelle, à son tour, la structure de bras à profil en U (30, 31) est couplée avec le support (5) et les moyens de rotation correspondants, pour mouvoir ladite plaque mobile (41) depuis une extrémité vers l'autre de la plaque de support mentionnée (40) et ajuster la position de celle-ci au diamètre du pneu.
     
    12. Dispositif selon la revendication 10, caractérisé en ce que les deuxièmes moyens de réglage (4) pour s'ajuster au diamètre du pneu dans le dispositif d'ajustement supérieur présentent un mouvement de déplacement vertical de la plaque mobile (41).
     
    13. Dispositif selon la revendication 10, caractérisé en ce que les moyens d'ajustement inférieurs (2), la plaque mobile (41) présentent un mouvement de déplacement horizontal.
     
    14. Dispositif selon les revendications précédentes, caractérisé en ce que l'arbre de support et de rotation (5) du dispositif d'ajustement supérieur (29) entre en rotation librement et les arbres de support et de rotation (5) des dispositifs d'ajustement inférieurs (2) sont des arbres d'entraînement activés par des servomoteurs.
     
    15. Dispositif selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, caractérisé en ce que les dispositifs de fixation inférieurs comprennent un mécanisme d'ouverture de pneu avec au moins deux griffes qui sont insérées à l'intérieur du pneu séparant les côtés du pneu.
     




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    Cited references

    REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



    This list of references cited by the applicant is for the reader's convenience only. It does not form part of the European patent document. Even though great care has been taken in compiling the references, errors or omissions cannot be excluded and the EPO disclaims all liability in this regard.

    Patent documents cited in the description