Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS20050040057 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/497,765
PCT numberPCT/NL2002/000786
Publication dateFeb 24, 2005
Filing dateDec 4, 2002
Priority dateDec 6, 2001
Also published asCN1618103A, EP1456847A2, WO2003049115A2, WO2003049115A3
Publication number10497765, 497765, PCT/2002/786, PCT/NL/2/000786, PCT/NL/2/00786, PCT/NL/2002/000786, PCT/NL/2002/00786, PCT/NL2/000786, PCT/NL2/00786, PCT/NL2000786, PCT/NL2002/000786, PCT/NL2002/00786, PCT/NL2002000786, PCT/NL200200786, PCT/NL200786, US 2005/0040057 A1, US 2005/040057 A1, US 20050040057 A1, US 20050040057A1, US 2005040057 A1, US 2005040057A1, US-A1-20050040057, US-A1-2005040057, US2005/0040057A1, US2005/040057A1, US20050040057 A1, US20050040057A1, US2005040057 A1, US2005040057A1
InventorsHendricus Hoogland
Original AssigneeHoogland Hendricus Antonius
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Device and method for packaging information carriers
US 20050040057 A1
Abstract
A device for packaging information carriers, provided with a first and a second cover part, mutually pivotally connected via hinge means and arranged for forming a substantially closed box, wherein at least one of the cover parts is provided, adjacent a side thereof, with an edge part fixedly connected therewith, on which edge part the hinge means are provided, which edge part preferably has a stiffness which is slightly higher than at least one cover part connected therewith and is at least partly hollow, and wherein at least one of the cover parts is provided with relatively slight elevations for supporting the information carrier spaced from wall parts of the cover parts, for protection of the information carrier.
Images(7)
Previous page
Next page
Claims(24)
1. A device for packaging information carriers, provided with a first and a second cover part, mutually pivotally connected via hinge means and arranged for forming a substantially closed box, wherein at least one of the cover parts is provided, adjacent a side thereof, with an edge part fixedly connected therewith, on which edge part the hinge means are provided, which edge part preferably has a stiffness which is slightly higher than at least one cover part connected therewith and is at least partly hollow, and wherein at least one of the cover parts is provided with relatively slight elevations for supporting the information carrier spaced from wall parts of the cover parts, for protection of the information carrier.
2. A device according to claim 1, wherein it is manufactured in one piece, with integrated hinges formed along therewith.
3. A device according to claim 1, wherein the cover part on which said edge part is provided is somewhat trough-shaped, provided with a bottom face and upstanding walls and wherein the edge part constitutes at least a part of at least one of the walls of said trough-shaped part.
4. A device according to claim 1, wherein the cover part on which said edge part is provided comprises a closing face which links up on one side of the edge part, wherein the hinge means are provided on an opposite side of the edge part, and wherein the other cover part comprises an element bounding the hinge means, which element, in the closed position of the device, at least partly overlaps said edge part.
5. A device according to claim 4, wherein the edge part has a first side, parallel to and substantially in line with said closing face, and a second side located remote from said closing face, the hinge means being provided on an edge of said edge part substantially in said second side.
6. A device according to claim 1, wherein the cover part on which said edge part is provided comprises a closing face which links up with a side of the edge part, while the hinge means are provided in a surface remote from the closing face.
7. A device according to claim 1, wherein the device has a maximum thickness which is approximately equal to the thickness of the closing faces of the two cover parts, increased by the thickness of an information carrier to be stored therein.
8. A device according to claim 7, wherein the device has a thickness which is smaller than approximately 3.5 mm, preferably approximately 3.2 mm.
9. A device according to claim 1, wherein the cover parts, in a projection including the edge part, and with the device closed, have approximately the dimensions of a conventional CD box, in particular of the Jewel case-type, while the space in which the information carrier is to be received has an approximately square surface with sides of a length approximately corresponding to the cross section of a CD.
10. A device according to claim 1, wherein both cover parts have a closing face, wherein one of the cover parts along at least three sides is provided with an upstanding edge adjacent the longitudinal edge of the respective closing face, wherein the other cover part, at least on the side remote from said edge part, is provided with an upstanding closing edge, which, with the device closed, falls between an upstanding wall of the first cover part and at least one and preferably at least two spaced apart projections, which projections are placed at a distance from the upstanding edge placed next to them, such that said closing edge can be clamped to some degree between them for keeping the device closed.
11. A device according to claim 10, wherein the two cover parts are provided with engagement edges on the side remote from said edge part, such that through pressing against said engagement edges, the device can be opened.
12. A device according to claim 1, wherein at least one cover part comprises a closing face that is more flexible than a CD, such that a corner located opposite said edge part can be bent away under a CD laid thereon, for engaging the CD.
13. A device according to claim 1, wherein on at least one of the cover parts, on the side facing inwards when the device is closed, retention means are provided for engaging an information carrier on a side edge thereof.
14. A device according to claim 13, wherein said retention means are provided on the cover part which comprises the edge part, wherein the retention means comprise at least one relatively small undercut in at least one wall part of the respective cover part, in which undercut an edge part of an information carrier to be stored in the device can be received.
15. A device according to claim 1, wherein at least one and preferably each of the cover parts is provided with a closing face having thereon, on the side facing an information carrier during use, relatively small elevations which clamp the information carrier when the device is closed and keep the side surfaces of the information carrier at some distance from said closing face or closing faces.
16. A device according to claim 1, wherein at least one of the cover parts is provided with a recessed portion in which a second information carrier, in particular a card-shaped information carrier, can be received.
17. A device according to claim 1, wherein at least one of the cover parts is provided with printing, comprising at least information about the information carrier which has been or is to be received in the storage device.
18. A device according to claim 17, wherein the printing has been provided through in-mold labeling.
19. A method for manufacturing a storage device for an information carrier, wherein a mold having at least one suitable mold cavity is brought into a first position such that the mold cavity has a greater volume than the mold cavity to be eventually formed, in which first position the mold cavity is filled with plastic, while the mold during the filling with plastic is energized, such that the mold cavity is gradually brought into a second position, such that it is brought into the desired shape while displacing the plastic.
20. A method according to claim 19, wherein the mold cavity is brought into the desired shape while the last plastic is being pressed into the mold cavity, in particular the last 20-0%, more particularly the last 15-5%, and preferably approximately the last 10%.
21. A method according to claim 19, wherein the mold comprises at least one movable part, in particular a core, which, with the mold cavity in the first position, is at least partly retracted from the mold cavity, for increasing the volume, and for achieving the second position is brought to an extended position.
22. A method for packaging a plate-shaped information carrier in a device according to claim 1, wherein the device is opened to some extent through pivoting of the cover parts relative to each other, thereby forming an opening between the sides of the two cover parts remote from the edge part, whereafter an information carrier is brought through said opening between the cover parts, so far until it abuts against the edge part, whereafter the cover parts are closed against each other, thereby enclosing the information carrier.
23. A storage box for plate-shaped information carriers, in particular rectangular information carriers such as chips cards, SIM cards and the like, provided with two cover parts, mutually connected by at least one living hinge, while on or in at least one cover part at least two clamping edge parts are provided, located opposite each other and provided with undercuts, such that the information carrier can be slid substantially flat on the respective cover part, under the clamping edge parts and under the undercuts.
24. A storage box according to claim 23, wherein the or each respective cover part provided with the receiving means for the information carrier is provided with an upstanding edge opposite the or each living hinge, while at least one inclined surface is provided next to or against said upstanding edge, for sliding the information carrier over the edge.
Description

The invention relates to a device for packaging information carriers. More in particular, the invention relates to a device for packaging plate-shaped information carriers.

EP 0 886 863 describes a storage device for plate-shaped information carriers such as CDs, credit cards, Sim-cards or the like, wherein on a substantially flat back, pairs of resilient clamping elements in the form of fingers are arranged. An information carrier can be clamped, by a longitudinal edge thereof, between the fingers. On opposite sides of the back, a cover part is provided, pivotally connected to the back, which can be closed around the fingers and the information carrier received therebetween to enclose it.

This storage device protects the information carrier well, but is relatively thick. Moreover, it requires relatively much material, which results in relatively long cycle times, high costs and much volume.

The invention contemplates a storage device for information carriers, in particular plate-shaped information carriers, which can protect an information carrier in a suitable manner.

The invention further contemplates such a storage device which is relatively thin, in closed condition.

The invention further contemplates a storage device of the subject kind, which can be manufactured simply and fast, with relatively low material usage.

The invention furthermore contemplates a storage device according to the introduction, which both in closed and in open form has a pleasant appearance and presents, and renders accessible, the information carrier in particular in the open form in an attractive manner. With a storage device according to the invention, the information carrier is preferably simply removable.

These and further objects are achieved according to the invention with a device according to claim 1.

In a device according to the invention, a particularly thin structure can be obtained, whilst a fitting space suitable for receiving the information carrier can be offered, and the package, in at least closed condition, has sufficient stiffness, to which stiffness, moreover, a packaged information carrier can make a contribution. The device according to the invention, when used for packaging CDs, can have, for instance, a thickness such that two or even three of such devices fit next to each other in the space conventionally occupied by a Jewel case-type CD package for a single CD, which conventionally has a thickness of about 10 mm. As a result, considerable advantages can be achieved in storage and transport, while moreover less plastic needs to be used and cycle times in the manufacture can be shortened. Moreover, a storage device according to the invention has a pleasant appearance, both in closed and in open condition.

By making the edge part at least partly hollow, the differences in wall thickness within the device can be limited to a minimum, which offers important advantages in terms of material and of manufacturing technique. Naturally, the edge part can also be partly or wholly filled, for instance by plastic foaming during production, or by filling it up subsequently.

The edge part is preferably slightly stiffer than the cover part connected therewith, at least with the device open. The information carrier can then, with the storage device closed, be locked between the cover parts and, with the device open, lie on one of the cover parts, in particular on the cover part which links up with the edge part or comprises it. The information carrier can then be simply taken from the storage device by, for instance, bending the relatively flexible part, in particular remote from the edge part, while the shape of the device, after release, is maintained. Moreover, as a result, particularly simply, closing means can be provided which, through slight deformation of one or both cover parts, can be opened and/or closed. A relatively stiff edge part moreover offers the advantage that during and directly after manufacture the cover parts can be held flat better and the package is dimensionally stable.

On one or both cover parts, preferably relatively low elevations are provided against which, or between which, the information carrier, with the package closed, is enclosed, such that the outer surfaces of the information carrier, in particular parts which have been recorded, at least parts thereof which are provided with information or are otherwise susceptible to scratches, dents and the like, are held in spaced relation from the cover parts. Thus, the elevations can be arranged, for instance, as studs or profiles, in particular at such positions that they rest only against parts of those surfaces that have not been recorded, at least have not been provided with information. Thus, for instance, if the package is to be used for CDs, studs or the like can be arranged such that the CD only has an outermost edge of, for instance, 1 to 2 mm, or parts thereof, resting on the studs and/or profiles. The CD can additionally, or alternatively, rest on studs or different kinds of profiles which extend under and/or around the central opening in the CD, for instance a somewhat circular elevation. The profiles, studs or like elevations preferably have a height of, for instance, a few tenths of millimeters.

In an advantageous embodiment, one cover part is provided with the edge part and the other cover part is provided with an element which is connected via the hinge means with the edge part and, with the package closed, at least partly covers the edge part. The advantage thus achieved is that the packaging device can be simply injection molded in open position, in particular in substantially flat condition, while, with the package closed, a package of still greater dimensional stability is obtained. Moreover, as a result, the package can be opened relatively simply and widely, and additional surface is obtained for, for instance, printing.

Alternatively, the second cover part can be connected to the edge part such that the cover part in closed condition leaves the edge part clear. Thus, the edge part remains outwardly visible in closed condition of the package as well.

Preferably, a device according to the invention is provided with a closure as described in claim 10.

Such a closure is particular advantageous because it provides for a proper lock, while the device is simple to open and the closing means, with the package closed, extend within the package.

In further elaboration, a device according to the invention is characterized by the features according to claim 12.

By making at least one cover part relatively flexible, at least the closing face thereof, the CD can be simply gripped by bending away a part of said closing face, while the edge part provides for sufficient stiffness.

It is further preferred that at least one of the cover parts, on the side facing inwards when the device is closed, is provided with retention means for engagement of an information carrier on a side edge thereof. Thus, the information carrier can be simply secured within the device against, for instance, displacement. The retention means can comprise, for instance, one relatively small undercut in at least one wall part, to secure the information carrier against displacement. In at least one of the cover parts, a recessed portion can be provided for receiving a further information carrier, in particular a card-shaped information carrier. One or both cover parts can be provided with printing, comprising at least information about the information carrier which has been or is to be received in the storage device, for instance through in-mold labeling.

The invention further relates to a method for manufacturing a storage device for an information carrier, characterized by the features according to claim 19.

By the use of such a method, relatively simple molds and light injection molding machines can suffice, while moreover a greater freedom regarding the materials to be used is obtained. In particular, the advantage thus achieved is that also plastics having a relatively low melt can be used, such as PET, PC, POM, low-melt PE, and the like. Further, the advantage thus achieved is that relatively low injection pressures can suffice.

It is then preferred that the mold cavity is brought into the desired shape while the last plastic is being pressed into the mold cavity. Thus, for instance, when bringing the mold cavity into the desired shape, still between 0% and 20% of the plastic needed can be introduced, for obtaining the desired filling pressure, it having been found that approximately 10% leads to particularly good results. However, it will be directly clear that adjustment of the proper amount of plastic still to be introduced can be determined by the skilled person, in particular on the basis of, for instance, the shape of the mold, the plastic used and the like.

In further elaboration, a method according to the invention is characterized by the features according to claim 21.

The use of a movable part, in particular a core, provides the advantage that the mold can be completely closed with a volume in the mold cavity that is greater than the volume of the desired product, that subsequently the plastic can be introduced into the mold cavity and eventually the desired pressure can be obtained by displacement of said movable part, thereby reducing the volume of the mold cavity. Here, relatively low pressures can suffice for keeping the mold closed and/or moving said at least one movable part.

The invention further relates to a method for packaging a plate-shaped information carrier, characterized by the features according to claim 22.

Such a method provides the advantage that the information carriers can be introduced into the package in a particularly simple manner.

The subclaims set forth further advantageous embodiments of a device and method according to the invention.

To clarify the invention, exemplary embodiments of devices and methods according to the invention will be elucidated with reference to the drawing. In the drawing:

FIG. 1 schematically shows in perspective view a device according to the invention, in partly opened condition;

FIG. 2 shows in sectional side elevation a device according to the invention;

FIG. 3 shows in top plan view a portion of an alternative embodiment of a device according to the invention;

FIG. 4 shows, in sectional side elevation, the device according to FIG. 3, in partly opened condition;

FIG. 5 shows schematically in sectional side elevation a further alternative embodiment of a device according to the invention;

FIG. 6 shows in perspective sectional side elevation a portion of a device according to FIG. 5;

FIG. 7 shows in perspective view a fifth embodiment of a device according to the invention;

FIG. 8 shows in sectional side elevation a portion of a device according to FIG. 7, in closed condition;

FIG. 9 shows in sectional side elevation a portion of a device according to the invention, with closing and retention means;

FIG. 10 shows in sectional side elevation a portion of an alternative closure for a device according to the invention;

FIG. 11 shows in perspective view a sixth alternative embodiment of a device according to the invention;

FIG. 12 shows in rear end view a portion of a device according to FIG. 11; and

FIG. 13 shows in perspective view a sixth embodiment of a device according to the invention.

In this description, the same or corresponding parts have the same or corresponding reference numerals.

In the embodiments shown, the devices have all been injection molded in one piece with integrated hinges (living hinges). The devices according to the invention can be injection molded in the traditional manner, but for this purpose it is also possible to apply a method according to the non-prepublished Dutch patent applications NL 1019235 and NL 1019320, incorporated herein by reference. Advantageously, a device according to the invention can be manufactured, for instance, from PE, PET, POM, PC or the like. In particular when using a method according to said patent applications, effectively, low-melt plastic, such as PET, can be used, while it can yet be made of translucent design. Moreover, such a device can be manufactured relatively cheap and made strong, having the desired stiffness and/or flexibility.

Devices according to the invention are suitable for packaging information carriers, in particular plate-shaped information carriers, such as CDs, CD-ROMs, CDi's, CDr and the like (further called “CD”), Sim-cards, credit cards, memory cards and the like. In the exemplary embodiments shown, the devices are suitable for substantially circular information carriers, such as the CDs mentioned. It will be immediately clear that such devices can also be rendered suitable for, for instance, rectangular information carriers as mentioned, by adaptation of, for instance, retention means, supporting and locking means, and the like.

FIG. 1 shows in perspective view, partly opened, a package 1 according to the invention, comprising an edge part 2 having pivotally connected thereto a first cover part 4 and a second cover part 6. The cover parts 4, 6 are integrally connected with the edge part 2 through a first hinge 8 and a second hinge 10, respectively. The edge part 2 is designed to be open on the side facing down in FIG. 1, as represented in FIG. 2, and comprises a closed longitudinal wall 12 and a bottom wall 14.

The first cover part 4 comprises a substantially flat first closing face 16 on which, adjacent four corners thereof, elevations 18 are provided, having concave wall parts 20 facing towards the middle of the closing face 16. The four wall parts 20 jointly define the circumference of a circle C, represented in interrupted lines in FIG. 1, having the size of a CD. The elevations 18 can be foamed and/or be open on the side proximal to the closing face 16. As shown in FIG. 1, the elevations 18 can also be formed by thin walls. Adjacent the inscribed circle C, at least the wall parts 20, there are provided slight elevations 22 in the form of, for instance, integrally formed studs or the like, on which a CD (not shown) rests by a peripheral portion which is unrecorded, that is, not provided with information, while the further surface of the CD is held in spaced relation from the closing face 16. Optionally, further elevations 22 can be provided adjacent the middle of the closing face 16, such that the CD can also be supported around its central opening, at unrecorded surface thereof Given a suitable choice of the material, for instance relatively soft plastic, such elevations can be provided at different positions.

As appears from FIG. 1, in the bottom wall 14, on the side proximal to the cover parts 4, 6, a slotted cavity 24 is provided, in closed condition of the package between the elevations 18 located next to the edge part 2, in which, at least with the package 1 closed, a portion of the longitudinal edge of a CD can be received, as schematically indicated by the circle C. As a result, a proper lock of the information carrier is obtained.

The opening 24 can be designed such that the longitudinal edge is received therein so as to be freely movable, such that the cover part 4 with the information carrier can be pivoted. However, the opening 24 can also be made of clamping design, such that upon opening of the package, at least upon pivoting of the first cover part 4 relative to the edge part 2 the information carrier comes clear of the first cover part 4 and ends up standing upright on the edge part 2. This renders the CD still easier to grip. Between the elevations 18, on three sides, an opening 26 is left clear, into which a part of the longitudinal edge of the information carrier reaches, as indicated by the circle C and in which it is easy to grip if the information carrier, upon opening of the package, remains lying on the first cover part 4.

In the elevations 18, which are located on the side of the first cover part 4 remote from the hinges 8, 10, an opening 28 is provided, which form part of a closure as will be further explained hereinafter. Over a portion of the side of the closing face 16 remote from the hinges, a lip 30 has been formed, with which the cover part 4 can be simply gripped to open it.

The second cover part 6 comprises a second closing face 32 with an upstanding wall 34 extending along the three sides not connected with the hinge 10. Provided on the second closing face 32 are elevations 36, comparable to the elevations 22 on the first closing face 16. With these, when the package is closed, the information carrier 36 can be supported, preferably on unrecorded surfaces, to clamp it between the two closing faces and for keeping the further surface of the information carrier spaced from the second closing face 32. Adjacent the wall part 34A remote from the hinge 10, two lips 38 are provided, which upon closure of the package 1 can engage in the openings 28, preferably with a slightly clamped fit. Thus, the device can be simply kept closed. The second cover part 6 is provided with a lip 31, on the side opposite the side where the lip 30 on the first cover part 4 is provided. By pressing the two lips 30, 31 away from each other, when the package is closed, the package is simply opened.

In FIG. 2 a package according to FIG. 1 is shown in sectional side elevation, wherein, however, the elevations 18 have been designed as wall parts. The information carrier CD is shown, which pivots along with the second cover part 4. Preferably, the information carrier is somewhat clamped between the wall parts, at least the elevations 18. Optionally, engaging means can be provided for engagement of the CD in the central opening.

A package 1 according to FIGS. 1 and 2 can be manufactured as follows.

In a mold, at least one mold cavity is provided, such that the edge part 2 is molded, for instance, in the upright position shown in FIG. 2, with the two cover parts 4, 6 extending in opposite directions, approximately horizontally, like wings. A core part can then extend from the open side 40 into the edge part 2. In such a mold cavity, a device 1 can be simply injection molded. It is preferred, however, that a core (not shown) be used for forming the cavity 42 in the edge part 2. The core is movably arranged and, when plastic is injected, is slightly retracted, such that the volume of the mold cavity is greater than the volume of the product to be formed. After the plastic has at least substantially been injected into the mold cavity, the core is moved forwards, that is, in the direction of the bottom wall 14, thereby displacing plastic, so that the desired filling of the mold cavity is obtained. Alternatively, the mold cavity can also be rendered slightly greater by moving the mold parts apart to some extent or through movable mold parts, which, after introduction of substantially all plastic, for instance 80 to 90% thereof into the mold cavity, are moved towards, at least against each other, such that the desired shape of the product is obtained under simultaneous injection of the rest of the plastic for obtaining the desired filling pressure and after-pressure. Such methods are described in NL 1019235 and NL 1019320.

In FIGS. 3 and 4 a second alternative embodiment of a device 1 according to the invention is shown, comprising a first cover part 4 and a second cover part 6, mutually connected by a hinge 8. The first cover part 4 comprises, at least links up with, an edge part 2 which comprises a cavity 42 within a longitudinal wall 12, under a bottom face 14, shown in FIG. 4, top. The first closing face 16 links up with the longitudinal wall 12 on the side remote from the bottom face 14, opposite the rear side of the edge part 2 where the hinge 8 is provided for coupling the second cover part 6 with the edge part 2.

On the first closing part 16, again in four corners elevations 18 are provided in the form of relatively thin walls, with inwardly facing, concavely bent wall parts 20. Along each of said wall parts 20, a low edge 22 is provided on which the unrecorded longitudinal edge of a CD can rest. Openings 26 are provided between the elevations 18 for engagement of the information carrier. The wall parts 20 can clamp the information carrier to some extent, preferably with the aid of, for instance, slightly thickened portions 23 by which the information carrier can be clamped.

Between the side of the longitudinal wall 12 of the edge part 2 proximal to the elevations 18 and the adjacent walls 19 of the elevations 18, a space 34C is enclosed. The second cover part 6 is provided with an upstanding wall 34, which extends on four sides and is dimensioned and positioned such that, with the package closed, the longitudinal wall 34 encloses the elevations 18 with a proper fit and abuts against the first closing face 16. The wall part 34B located on the side of the hinge 8 then falls into the space 34C, preferably with a slightly clamped fit. Closing means as described earlier can be provided for further closure.

In this embodiment, between the longitudinal wall 34B and the hinge 8 an element 35 is provided, in particular a flat plate part which is parallel to the second closing face 32, which element 35 covers the edge part 2 when the package is closed. This element 35 can be made of slightly flexible design, at least more flexible than the edge part 2, so that opening the cover 6 is rendered possible in a simpler manner while slightly bending said element 35.

A device 1 according to FIGS. 3 and 4 can again be formed by injection molding or in the manner described earlier with movable mold parts, in particular cores for forming the cavity 42.

In FIG. 5, an embodiment of a device 1 according to the invention is shown, which is somewhat comparable to that as shown in FIGS. 3 and 4. The same parts again have the same reference numerals.

In this embodiment, the first cover part 4 is again made of somewhat trough-shaped design and provided with upstanding edge parts 19, comparable to those as shown in FIG. 3 with omission of the bent wall parts 20, with a part of the longitudinal wall 12A forming one of the walls of the trough-shaped part 37. The opposite part 12B of the longitudinal wall is here made of stepped design, such that the hinge 8 extends approximately centrally along said longitudinal wall part 12B, that is, at half the height of the edge part 2. The second cover part 6 comprises the second closing face 32 and along three sides an upstanding wall 34. In this embodiment, the second closing face 32 is substantially completely flat, apart from small elevations 36 arranged thereon. With the package closed, the second closing face 32 rests on the upper side of the bottom wall 14 of the edge part 2, while the wall 34 remote from the hinge 8 lies against the wall 19A of the first cover part 4 remote from the hinge 8. In said wall 19A, a number of cavities 21 are arranged, which can cooperate with bulges 23 on the inside of the wall 34, for forming a clamping closure.

On the first closing surface 16, again elevations 22 are arranged for supporting the information carrier spaced from the closing face 16, as well as the elevations 36 on the second closing face 32, whilst retention means are provided for retaining an information carrier in the trough-shaped part 37 of the first cover part 4. These retention means comprise, for instance, slightly resilient lips 40 arranged along the longitudinal edge of the information carrier and small projections 42 provided on the longitudinal wall 12A on the side proximal to the trough-shaped part 37. An information carrier (not shown) can, through a longitudinal edge thereof, be laid to some extent under said projection 42 and be pressed with a peripheral part located remote therefrom against the projections 42, whereby they deform to some extent for obtaining a desired clamping force. The information carrier can be simply taken out by pulling it from between the projections 40 and the projections 42, in particular by tilting to some extent. The projections 40 are arranged against a side of the information carrier opposite the small projections 42, viewed relative to a centerline of the information carrier parallel to the hinge 8.

In FIG. 6 a portion of a device 1 according to FIG. 5 is shown, in sectional perspective view, in slightly opened condition. Clearly shown is the stepped longitudinal wall part 12B with the integrated hinge 8 with which a wall part 34A of the second cover part 6 is connected. The wall 34 extends on opposite sides of the edge part 2, to increase the dimensional stability and stiffness of the device, in particular in closed condition.

In FIGS. 7 and 8, a further alternative embodiment of a device 1 according to the invention is shown, in which an information carrier, symbolically represented by the chain-dotted line C, can be clamped in the first cover part 4, against which first cover part 4 the second cover part 6 can be closed. The first cover part 4 comprises an edge part 2 which in the position shown in FIG. 7 is open in downward or rearward direction. In the bottom face 14 facing upwards in FIG. 7, centrally, a slotted opening 24 is provided, comparable to that as shown in FIG. 1, while against the closing face 16 next to the opening 24 an inclined surface 44 is provided which slopes in the direction of said opening 24. The surface 44 can be, for instance, open, but may also be formed by ribs or the like arranged next to each other. Remote from the opening 24, on the opposite side of the centerline M, parallel to the hinge 8, retention projections 40 are provided, against which the information carrier can be clamped after it has been set by an edge portion thereof in the slotted opening 24. The two ends of the slotted opening 24 can be provided with slightly resilient lips 46, as schematically shown in FIG. 8A, which, upon placement of the information carrier, are pressed slightly downwards, with elastic deformation, so that a still better clamping of the information carrier is obtained. When taking out the information carrier, it can be pressed further to some extent against said lips 46 to obtain sufficient space for removal.

In this embodiment, the hinge 8 is provided along the frontal-bottom side (in FIG. 7) of the edge part 2, to which the second cover part 6 is connected with second closing face 32. Along the other three sides of the closing face 32, again a wall 34 is provided, while on the second closing face 32, as on the first closing face 16, again elevations 22, 36 are provided for supporting the information carrier in spaced relation from the closing face 32. On the second cover part 6 the elevations 36 are arranged on two concentric circles, for supporting, at least clamping the information carrier on the inner and outer unrecorded longitudinal edge.

In a device according to FIGS. 7 and 8, the information carrier C, for instance the CD, can, by the longitudinal edge thereof, be slipped along the first closing face 16 and/or the inclined surface 44, into the opening 24, whilst deforming the lips 46, whereafter the information carrier can be tilted under the retention lips 40 and be released, so that it is locked by the lips 46 and the retention lips 40. Next, the second cover part 6 can be pivoted against the first cover part 4 and there be clamped, for instance in the manner described earlier.

In FIG. 9, in sectional side elevation, a portion of a device 1 according to the invention is shown, in which a CD is locked between a first and second cover part 4, 6, in particular by retention lips 40, which in this embodiment are provided on both cover parts 4, 6. Clearly, the closure, with the aid of a wall part 19 on the second cover part 6, is clamped between a wall 34 and a lip 38 arranged next to it on the second cover part 6. This figure also shows clearly that the elevations 22, 36 hold the CD in spaced relation from the insides of the first and second closing faces 16, 32.

In FIG. 10, an alternative embodiment for a closure is shown, in which the first cover part 4 is provided with an elevation 50, for instance bush-shaped, in which a pin 52 of the second cover part 6 can be received, preferably with a slightly clamped fit. In this embodiment, an elevation 22 is arranged on the first closing face 16 in the form of a circular edge 22 on which the outer longitudinal edge of an information carrier CD can rest. The second cover part 6 is provided with elevations 34 described earlier.

In FIGS. 11 and 12, a further alternative embodiment of a device 1 according to the invention is shown, in which the first cover part 2 is again provided with a closing face 16 and an edge part 2 which in this embodiment is of hollow design, open to the side facing rearwards in FIG. 11. Adjacent the corners of the closing part 16, again wall parts 19 have been placed, between which the information carrier CD can be disposed. In FIG. 11, it is shown in loose condition, but it will be clear that retention means as described earlier can be used for this purpose, as well as elevations described earlier, for supporting the information carrier CD in spaced relation from the closing face 16. In this embodiment, the second cover part 6 is connected via a hinge 8 with the edge part 2, on the longitudinal wall part 12A, next to which the CD is disposed in use. In FIG. 11, this is the longitudinal wall part facing upwards. The second cover part 6 again comprises a wall 34 along three sides thereof, and again lips 38 are provided for clamping a wall part 19 of the first cover part 4, when the package is closed. In the second cover part 6, between the elevations 34 a recessed portion 54 is provided in which a further information carrier can be received, for instance a rectangular information carrier, such as a credit card, Sim-card, chip card or the like.

FIG. 12 shows, from the side facing rearwards in FIG. 11, a portion of the edge part 2, linking up with the closing face 16. Clearly, in the cavity 42 of the edge part 2, represented by broken lines in FIG. 11, cross partitions 13 are provided for stiffening the edge part 2. Such partitions 13 can naturally be arranged in a variety of ways, for instance as crossing ribs or profiles of a different kind, so that a greater stiffness is obtained.

In a device 1 according to the invention, at least one of the cover parts 4, 6, in particular that cover part in which the information carrier rests upon opening of the device, can be made of relatively flexible design, at least the closing face thereof. In particular, that closing face can be made of more flexible design than the edge part, so that after opening of the device said closing face can be deformed to some extent, for instance by bending away a corner thereof remote from the hinge. In particular at the openings 26 a relatively great flexibility can be obtained. Thus, in a particularly simple manner, the information carrier can be released without risk of damage. Such an embodiment is possible in particular in relatively flexible plastic, such as PE or PET.

A device according to the invention can be simply made of particularly thin design, for instance having a thickness approximately equal to the thickness of the closing faces, increased by the thickness of an information carrier to be stored therein and possibly the small elevations mentioned for keeping the information carrier spaced from the closing faces. Optionally, instead of providing the elevation, a part of the two closing faces can naturally be lowered on the side proximal to the information carrier during use, such that the information carrier is supported only on a longitudinal edge and the lowered portion of the two closing faces lies adjacent the recorded surfaces of the information carrier. Preferably, a device according to the invention is designed to have a thickness D which is smaller than about 3.5 mm, in particular about 3.2 mm, so that three such devices fit within the thickness of a conventional Jewel case. The other outside dimensions of a device according to the invention can simply correspond to those of a conventional Jewel case, so that devices according to the invention can be simply included in, for instance, logistic systems therefor. However, devices according to the invention can naturally have other dimensions as well, for instance approximately square.

A device 1 according to the invention is preferably provided with a printing on one or both cover parts, which printing can be provided in a particularly advantageous manner through in-mold labeling or like technique. Preferably, the printing is related directly to the information carrier to be stored in the device, for instance through associated product information and the like.

A device 1, in particular that shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, can be filled in a particularly simple manner by opening the device to some extent, for instance as shown in FIG. 2, and then allowing the information carrier to fall, in vertical position, between the cover parts 4, 6, whereafter the device can be simply closed, thereby locking said information carrier.

The invention is not limited in any way to the exemplary embodiments shown in the description and the drawing. Many variations thereon are possible within the scope of the invention as outlined by the claims.

Thus, for instance, all possible combinations of parts of the devices as shown can be combined. Elevations on the closing faces for supporting the information carrier in spaced relation from said closing faces can be designed in any suitable manner, for instance as studs, ridges, ribs, profiles of a different kind, and the like, while, as mentioned, parts of the closing faces may be lowered to some extent. If desired, centrally on one or both closing faces, a provision can be included for engagement in the central opening of a CD. Other closures can be used, while, moreover, for instance, integrated sealing means can be provided for closing and sealing the device after it has been filled. To that end, for instance, lips 38 can be designed in such a manner that they can reach through the opposite cover part and can be secured thereto through heat treatment. Only after cutting away these ends of the lips can the device be opened, which will always be clear, so that the device is tamper-proof. In a device 1 according to the invention, the cavity 42 in an edge part 2 can also be filled up, for instance by foaming of the plastic during injection molding or by providing a filler therein. It is preferred, however, to keep the edge part hollow, enabling simpler manufacture. In a device 1 according to the invention, wall parts are preferably kept substantially equally thick, thereby achieving advantages in terms of production technique.

These and many comparable variations are understood to fall within the scope of the invention outlined by the claims.

Classifications
U.S. Classification206/308.1, G9B/33.014
International ClassificationG11B33/04, B29C45/00
Cooperative ClassificationB29C45/0081, G11B33/0444
European ClassificationG11B33/04D2B
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Sep 27, 2004ASAssignment
Owner name: FOUNTAIN TECHNOLOGIES, B.V., NETHERLANDS
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:HOOGLAND, HENDRICUS ANTONIUS;REEL/FRAME:015827/0010
Effective date: 20040729