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Publication numberUS20050139645 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/965,037
Publication dateJun 30, 2005
Filing dateOct 14, 2004
Priority dateOct 21, 2003
Also published asWO2005042358A1
Publication number10965037, 965037, US 2005/0139645 A1, US 2005/139645 A1, US 20050139645 A1, US 20050139645A1, US 2005139645 A1, US 2005139645A1, US-A1-20050139645, US-A1-2005139645, US2005/0139645A1, US2005/139645A1, US20050139645 A1, US20050139645A1, US2005139645 A1, US2005139645A1
InventorsGary Shean, Bert-Arne Arnspong, Manfred Schmid, Eric Lemanski, Brian Kaczor
Original AssigneeTetra Laval Holdings & Finance, S.A.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Multi-sided package with easily openable lid
US 20050139645 A1
Abstract
An easily openable package defining an interior product storage region, includes first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth side panels forming an eight-sided body. Each side panel is separate from adjacent side panels by respective crease lines. The side panels define an octagonal upper periphery. A bottom wall is formed from a plurality of panels separated from the side panels by a horizontal crease line. The bottom wall has a four-sided foot print, defining four bottom wall corners. An eight-sided polymeric lid is affixed to the package at the upper periphery. The lid has an openable portion such that the interior product storage region is accessed by opening the openable portion of the lid. A method for forming the package is also disclosed.
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Claims(21)
1. An easily openable package defining an interior product storage region, comprising:
first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth side panels forming an eight-sided body, each side panel being separate from adjacent side panels by respective crease lines, the side panels defining an octagonal upper periphery, a bottom wall formed from a plurality of panels separated from the side panels by a horizontal crease line, the bottom wall having a four-sided foot print, defining four bottom wall corners; and
an eight-sided lid affixed to the package at the upper periphery, the lid having an openable portion, wherein the interior product storage region is accessed by opening the openable portion of the lid.
2. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 1 wherein the lid is formed from a polymeric material and is sealed to the package body at the upper periphery.
3. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 1 including a membrane seal disposed between the lid and the upper periphery.
4. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 2 wherein the lid includes an openable portion hingedly mounted to the lid, wherein the openable portion overlies an access opening in the lid.
5. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 1 wherein the bottom wall is formed as a linear seal of facing bottom wall panels sealed to one another to form a fin and wherein the fin is folded over onto the bottom wall to form a pair of opposing triangular panels and wherein the triangular panels are folded in toward one another.
6. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 1 wherein each of the side panels has a width and wherein the width of alternating side panel is equal and wherein the others of the alternating side panels each has a width and wherein the width of the others of the side panels is equal.
7. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 6 wherein the width of the alternating side panels is greater than the width of the other of the alternating side panels.
8. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 7 wherein the ratio of the width of the larger sides to the smaller sides is about 1.4:1.
9. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 8 wherein the width of the larger sides is about 41 mm and the width of the smaller sides is about 29 mm.
10. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 9 wherein the bottom wall has a square footprint and wherein each of the sides of the bottom wall has a length of about 70 mm.
11. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 1 wherein alternating side panels each include a transition portion aligning with and extending into a corner of the bottom wall.
12. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 11 wherein the others of the alternating side panels each include a diverging portion aligning with and extending into a side of the bottom wall.
13. An easily openable package defining an interior product storage region, comprising:
first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth side panels forming an eight-sided body, each side panel being separate from adjacent side panels by respective crease lines, the side panels defining an octagonal upper periphery, a bottom wall formed from a plurality of panels separated from the side panels by a horizontal crease line, the bottom wall having a four-sided foot print, defining four bottom wall corners, the bottom wall being formed as a linear seal of facing bottom wall panels sealed to one another to form a fin, wherein the fin is folded over onto the bottom wall to form a pair of opposing triangular panels that are folded in toward one another; and
an eight-sided lid affixed to the package at the upper periphery, the lid being formed from a polymeric material and sealed to the package body at the upper periphery, the lid having an openable portion hingedly mounted to the lid and overlying an access opening in the lid, wherein the interior product storage region is accessed by opening the openable portion of the lid.
14. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 13 including a membrane seal disposed between the lid and the upper periphery.
15. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 13 wherein each of the side panels has a width and wherein the width of alternating side panel is equal and wherein the others of the alternating side panels each has a width and wherein the width of the others of the side panels is equal, the width of the alternating side panels being greater than the width of the other of the alternating side panels.
16. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 15 wherein the ratio of the width of the larger sides to the smaller sides is about 1.4:1.
17. The readily openable package in accordance with claim 13 wherein alternating side panels each include a transition portion aligning with and extending into a corner of the bottom wall and wherein the others of the alternating side panels each include a diverging portion aligning with and extending into a side of the bottom wall.
18. A blank for forming a multi-sided, readily openable package comprising:
first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth side wall panels, the side wall panels being separated from one another by generally vertical crease lines, a seal panel adjacent the eighth wall panel and separated therefrom by a vertical crease line, wherein an upper end of the side wall panels and the seal panel are unadorned;
first, second, third and fourth bottom wall panels, the bottom wall panels separated from one another by vertical crease lines that correspond to alternating ones of the crease lines between the side wall panels, the bottom wall panels being separated from the side wall panels by a horizontal crease line; the vertical crease line separating the bottom wall panels from one another lying between vertical crease lines separating the wall panels from one another;
wherein a lower portion of the crease line separating the first side wall panel from the second side wall panel converges with a lower portion of the crease line separating the second side wall panel from the third side wall panel to meet at the horizontal crease line, and wherein a lower portion of the crease line separating the third side wall panel from the fourth side wall panel converges with a lower portion of the crease line separating the fourth side wall panel from the fifth side wall panel to meet at the horizontal crease line, and wherein a lower portion of the crease line separating the fifth side wall panel from the sixth side wall panel converges with a lower portion of the crease line separating the sixth side wall panel from the seventh side wall panel to meet at the horizontal crease line, and wherein a lower portion of the crease line separating the seventh side wall panel from the eighth side wall panel converges with a lower portion of the crease line separating the eight side wall panel from the seal panel to meet at the horizontal crease line, and
wherein the upper end of the side wall panels and the seal panel are configured for having a lid affixed thereto.
19. The blank in accordance with claim 18 wherein the first, third, fifth and seventh panels have a first width equal to one another and wherein the second, fourth, sixth and eighth panels have a second width equal to one another.
20. The blank in accordance with claim 19 wherein the first width is different from the second width.
21. The blank in accordance with claim 20 wherein the second width is greater than the first width.
Description
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The present invention is directed to a package having a unique shape and a resealable lid. More particularly, the present invention pertains to a multi-sided package having a paperboard body and an easily openable polymer lid.

Food products, including dry and liquid food products, are packaged in a wide variety of package types. These include packages ranging from the well recognized and established gable top carton to plastic (polyethylene terephthalate or PET) jugs such as those used for milk to cardboard or paperboard package for breakfast cereal, powdered foods and the like.

Although each of these package types has its advantages, each also has its disadvantages. For example, the configuration of gable top cartons is quite limited. That is, the square or rectangular footprint of the carton limits the possible carton configurations.

In addition, although it may mot be readily apparent, a rectangular cross-section is not the optimal configuration to maximize internal space (i.e., volume) for a give surface area. Rather, as a container configuration approaches a circular or spherical shape, the volume contained reaches a maximum value. Viewed another way, with a given surface area, the volume that can be contained as bound by a container having that area increases with an increase in the number of sides of the container.

Accordingly, there exists a need for a container for packaging both dry and liquid foods that is readily filled using conventional form, fill and seal packaging machine technology. Such a package combines the advantages of a traditional paperboard formed carton with the advantages of a plastic lid. More desirably, such a package is formed using a known, multi-sided carton configuration.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

An easily openable package having an interior product storage region includes first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth side panels forming an eight-sided body. Each side panel is separate from adjacent side panels by respective crease lines. The side panels define an octagonal upper periphery.

A bottom wall is formed from a plurality of panels separated from the side panels by a horizontal crease line. The bottom wall has a four-sided foot print, defining four bottom wall corners. Preferably, the bottom foot-print is square.

An eight-sided lid is affixed to the package at the upper periphery. The lid has an openable portion such that the interior product storage region is accessed by opening the openable portion of the lid. A membrane seal can be positioned between the upper periphery of the package and the lid.

These and other features and advantages of the present invention will be apparent from the following detailed description, in conjunction with the appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWINGS

The benefits and advantages of the present invention will become more readily apparent to those of ordinary skill in the relevant art after reviewing the following detailed description and accompanying drawings, wherein:

FIG. 1 is a perspective illustration of a multi-sided package with easily openable lid embodying the principles of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the tubular form of the package prior to application of the package lid;

FIG. 3 is a top view of the open top and bottom (tubular form) package;

FIG. 4 is a side view of the package;

FIG. 5 illustrates the tubular form blank and a mandrel onto which the blank is positioned;

FIG. 6 is a schematic illustration of the package as it moves along a form, fill and seal line, and illustrates the bottom forming operation;

FIG. 7 illustrates the blank is its folded form prior to erection into the tubular form and shows one location for the side seal;

FIGS. 8-10 are a schematic illustrations of the bottom forming operation in which FIG. 8 illustrates the bottom transverse seal as it is formed; FIG. 9 illustrates seal folded over onto the package bottom; and FIG. 10 shows the triangular flaps folded in to form the four-sided (square) bottom package profile;

FIG. 11 is a cross-sectional illustration of the package; and

FIG. 12 is a plan view of the package blank.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

While the present invention is susceptible of embodiment in various forms, there is shown in the drawings and will hereinafter be described a presently preferred embodiment with the understanding that the present disclosure is to be considered an exemplification of the invention and is not intended to limit the invention to the specific embodiment illustrated.

It should be further understood that the title of this section of this specification, namely, “Detailed Description Of The Invention”, relates to a requirement of the United States Patent Office, and does not imply, nor should be inferred to limit the subject matter disclosed herein.

Referring to the figures and in particular to FIG. 1 there is shown a multi-sided package 10 with a readily openable lid embodying the principles of the present invention. The package 10 includes a package body 14 and a separately formed lid 12. The body 14 is formed from a carton blank (see FIGS. 7 and 12). In a present package, the body 14 is an eight-sided or octagonal body in which the bottom wall 16 is sealed so as to have a four-sided or square profile (see FIGS. 1 and 10). That is, the bottom wall 16 has a rectangular or square foot-print while the body 14 (above the bottom wall) has an octagonal cross-section.

The lid 12 is formed from a polymer or plastic, such as high density polyethylene or the like. Such a plastic is sufficiently rigid to maintain its shape and its seal with the package body 14, but is sufficiently flexible that, when an openable portion such as a tab closure 18 is molded into the lid 12, a living hinge 20 can be formed as part of the lid 12, e.g., as an integral element. A present lid 12 includes an openable portion or tab 18 mounted by a hinge 20. The tab 18 is positioned in a channel 22 and overlies an opening 24 (see FIG. 11) in the lid 12 to access the interior portion of the package 10. The tab 18 can include a snap-type securing element or lock to secure the tab 18 in the closed position.

Optionally a membrane 26 or like seal can be disposed over the entirety of the carton body 14, at about the edge of the body, between the body 14 and the lid 12, to provide a further seal for the package contents. Such a seal 26 can also enhance the tamper evidence features of the package 10, as well as reduce the opportunity for oxygen exposure of the contents. Optionally, the membrane seal 26 can be disposed over only the lid opening 24.

It is anticipated that the package 10 will be a blank-formed package rather than a roll-formed package. That is, the package will be provided as a blank 28 having a plurality of side panels that are folded over with a seal panel (at an end of the blank 28) sealed to a first panel. This forms a flat folded configuration that is opened into a tubular shape (see FIGS. 6 and 7).

Referring now to FIGS. 1 and 10, as introduced above, the package body 14 is eight-sided whereas the bottom wall 16 is four-sided. To this end, the body 14 includes first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth side wall panels 30-44. The bottom 16 is four-sided and, as illustrated, essentially square defining four corners 54-60 and four bottom wall edges 62-68 defined by the four bottom wall panels 46-52. The bottom 16 is formed as a single elongated seal 70 (see FIGS. 6 and 8). The interior surface of opposing panels 46,52 and 48,50 are abutted to one another and sealed to one another by the application of pressure and heat. The elongated seal 70 thus forms a fin that is folded over onto the package bottom (FIG. 9) to flatten the panels, and then folded inward (FIG. 10), such that the ends 72, 74 (forming triangular shaped panels) are folded toward one another. This will be recognized as the familiar TETRA® PRISMA package, exemplary of which is that package disclosed in Anchor et al., U.S. Pat. No. 5,938,107, which patent is commonly assigned with the present application and is incorporated herein by reference. As seen in FIGS. 1 and 10, the bottom corners 54-60 are offset from the sides 30-44 of the body 14 (discussed in more detail below), such that the bottom corners 54, 56, 58 and 60 align with sides 32, 36, 40 and 44, respectively, of the body 14.

The blank 28 includes eight side wall panels 30-44 separated from adjacent side wall panels by vertical crease or score lines 76-90 (hereinafter crease lines). A ninth or seal panel 92 is adjacent the eighth panel 44 and separated from the eighth panel by vertical crease line 90. The bottom panels 46-52 are is separated from the side wall panels 30-44 by a horizontal crease line 94. The four-sided (generally square) bottom 16 configuration is provided by four crease lines 96-102 that extend from the horizontal line 94 to the bottom edge or end 104 of the blank 28.

The crease lines 76-90 that separate the panels from one another do not extend in a straight-line manner fully to the bottom horizontal crease line 94. Rather, as shown in FIG. 12, these crease lines extend to a chamfer or angled portion 76 a-90 a of the crease line that provides a transition between the eight-sided body 14 and the four-sided package bottom 16. The angled crease lines 76 a-90 a provide for a smooth transition from the eight-sided body 14 to the four-sided (or actually four-cornered 54-60) bottom 16 by extending from the side wall creases 76-90 to the bottom wall creases 96-102. Phantom lines 96 a-102 a extend from the bottom wall creases 96-102 upwardly into alternating side wall panels 32, 36, 40, 44 so as to provide crease lines for forming the bottom wall 16.

Each angled crease line 76 a-90 a meets one adjacent crease line at a point with a juncture with the bottom horizontal line 94 and a respective bottom wall crease line 96-102. In the illustrated package, the angled crease lines 76 a-90 a are formed at an angle α of about 60 degrees to the horizontal.

FIG. 2 illustrates the tubular form of the body 14, prior to the bottom wall 16 being folded and sealed. As is readily seen the bottom wall corners 54-60 correspond to the phantom lines (see FIG. 12) that extend into the package side walls 32, 36, 40, 44. FIG. 3 is a top view of the package 12 illustrating the position of the corners 54-60 relative to the body side walls 30-44 and the bottom wall panels 46-52.

It will be recognized that in the illustrated embodiment, the side wall or body panels are not all of equal width. Rather, in the illustrated package, the panels that are adjacent the chamfer panels (that is, the side wall panels 32, 36, 40, 44 above the chamfer panels) are each slightly larger than the non-chamfer panels 30, 34, 38, 42 (the non-chamfer panels are contiguous with the bottom sides or edges, whereas the chamfer panels are contiguous with the bottom corners 54-60). This unequal panel configuration is only one configuration, and equal panel configurations are also within the scope and spirit of the present invention.

In an exemplary package that uses a blank 28 configured from a 70 mm by 70 mm package, the chamfer panels are 41 mm wide and the non-chamfer (or flat) panels are 29 mm wide. The circumference of the package is thus 280 mm ((41 mm×4)+(29 mm×4)). The bottom wall panels are likewise 70 mm each (for a total circumference of 280 mm).

A portion of an exemplary forming line is shown in FIG. 6. This portion of the line schematically shows a bottom forming section 120. In that the package 10 is filled from the bottom, an upstream portion (or station) provides for forming and top sealing (i.e., applying the lid 12 and optional membrane 26 to) the body 14. Typically, the operations (and stations) involved include picking the blank 28 from a magazine in a flat folded form (FIG. 7), erecting the blank 28 into a tubular form (open top and bottom as seen in FIG. 2) and positioning the blank 28 on a multi-sided mandrel 122 (FIG. 5). The optional membrane 26 is sealed to the open top (see, for example, FIG. 11) and the plastic or polymer lid 12 is then sealed to the body 14.

The top sealed (open bottom) package 10 is then moved onto chain or like conveying device moving the package into a filling station to fill the package. After filling, the package is moved into a chute or channel 124, that is part of a bottom sealing station 120, for bottom sealing the package 10. In the bottom sealer 120, the sides of the body 14 are urged (squeezed slightly) toward one another. In a presently contemplated arrangement, a pair of walls 126 a,b define the chute 124 through which the body 14 passes.

As the package body 14 traverses through the chute 124 and the walls (of the package) are pressed toward one another, the bottom wall panels 46-52 are stretched (at the corners) so that the panels come toward one another (much like pulling a square shape to a diamond shape to bring the sides together). The seal 70 is then formed with panels 46 and 52, and 48 and 50 contacting each other (see FIG. 8). Typically, the seal 70 is formed by pressure and heat which fuses the polymer material coating layers of the package material to one another.

The seal 70 is formed having a fin-like configuration in that the sealed panels are upstanding relative to the package body 14. The fin 70 is then folded over (see FIG. 9) to lie on the bottom wall 16, which also tends to flatten the bottom wall. The ends 72, 74 of the fin 70, as folded, form triangular panels which are then infolded toward one another and sealed to the bottom wall 16, thus forming the flat, four-sided (square) bottom wall 16.

In the illustrated forming station 120, the bottom seal 70 (which forms the fin) is formed in a direction transverse to the direction of movement (indicated at 128) of the package 10 through the chute 124. This is referred to as a transverse seal. It will be appreciated that although the forming line is shown as a linear operation, the “line” can also constitute stations or positions on a circular motion machine, such as a carousel or the like.

All patents referred to herein, are hereby incorporated herein by reference, whether or not specifically do so within the text of this disclosure.

In the present disclosure, the words “a” or “an” are to be taken to include both the singular and the plural. Conversely, any reference to plural items shall, where appropriate, include the singular.

From the foregoing it will be observed that numerous modifications and variations can be effectuated without departing from the true spirit and scope of the novel concepts of the present invention. It is to be understood that no limitation with respect to the specific embodiments illustrated is intended or should be inferred. The disclosure is intended to cover by the appended claims all such modifications as fall within the scope of the claims.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US8387567Apr 22, 2011Mar 5, 2013David S. HillHummingbird feeding apparatus
US8763803Jul 6, 2012Jul 1, 2014Kohler Co.Packaging for plumbing fixtures
Classifications
U.S. Classification229/109, 229/125.17, 229/125.12, 229/184
International ClassificationB31B3/00, B31B1/28, B65D5/70, B65D5/02, B65D5/12
Cooperative ClassificationB65B1/02, B31B2201/2604, B65D5/12, B31B1/28, B31B3/00, B65D15/22, B65D5/029
European ClassificationB31B3/00, B31B1/28, B65D15/22, B65D5/12, B65D5/02K
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Mar 11, 2005ASAssignment
Owner name: TETRA LAVAL HOLDINGS & FINANCE, S.A., SWITZERLAND
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:SHEAN, GARY;ARNSPONG, BERNT-ARNE;SCHMID, MANFRED;AND OTHERS;REEL/FRAME:015767/0212;SIGNING DATES FROM 20050123 TO 20050224