|Publication number||US20060179794 A1|
|Application number||US 11/379,064|
|Publication date||Aug 17, 2006|
|Filing date||Apr 18, 2006|
|Priority date||Apr 26, 2000|
|Also published as||US20050085780, US20050085781|
|Publication number||11379064, 379064, US 2006/0179794 A1, US 2006/179794 A1, US 20060179794 A1, US 20060179794A1, US 2006179794 A1, US 2006179794A1, US-A1-20060179794, US-A1-2006179794, US2006/0179794A1, US2006/179794A1, US20060179794 A1, US20060179794A1, US2006179794 A1, US2006179794A1|
|Original Assignee||Diaperoos, Llc|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Referenced by (7), Classifications (11)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
This application is a continuation of, and claims priority under 35 U.S.C. § 120 to, U.S. application Ser. No. 09/560,246 filed Apr. 26, 2000, pending, which is incorporated herein by reference.
1. Field of the Present Invention
The present invention relates to absorbent articles such as diapers and sanitary napkins. More particularly, the present invention relates to absorbent articles that are packaged at reduced volume to become ultra-compact and highly portable.
2. Description of the Related Art
One of the drawbacks of disposable diapers is portability, particularly during travel, either long-distance travel or simply to the neighborhood store. Parents need to pack a sufficient number of diapers in a diaper bag to last the duration of the trip. However, while not necessarily heavy, disposable diapers are bulky and occupy a large amount of space. Accordingly, a diaper bag in tow with traveling parents is cumbersome and a nuisance. Indeed, a single disposable diaper may not fit into most purses or a jacket breast pocket even for short trips.
In view of the foregoing, there remains a need in the art for absorbent articles that are compact and portable.
According to one aspect of the invention, a set of compact absorbent articles includes a plurality of absorbent articles and a packaging. Each of the absorbent articles, such as a diaper or a sanitary napkin, is reconfigurable from a normal condition to a compressed condition. The packaging includes a plurality of compartments each for receiving one of the absorbent articles in the compressed condition. Each of the absorbent articles has three dimensions, at least one of which is reduced when the absorbent article is in the compressed condition, with each of the absorbent articles being retained by the packaging when in the compressed condition.
According to various aspects of the invention, the packaging may have release seams disposed between the compartments, so that a user can remove an individual article in its compartment from the other articles in the packaging. Also, each of the absorbent articles may be vacuumed sealed at negative pressure in the packaging. In addition, the dimension that is reduced may be reduced by at least 30% when the absorbent articles are in the compressed condition. Further, each of the absorbent articles may be reconfigured from the normal condition to the compressed condition by negative pressure, physical force, rolling, or folding.
Regarding advantages, the individually packaged compressed absorbent articles are highly compact and, accordingly, readily portable. In addition, a packaged absorbent article can be easily carried in a purse or a breast pocket of a blazer. In a multipack packaging embodiment, the multipack may be conveniently carried in, e.g., a bag, with individual absorbent articles removed from the multipack as needed.
Additional aspects, features, and advantages of the present invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art from a consideration of the following detailed description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings.
Referring more particularly to the drawings, an absorbent article is shown in
For example, the absorbent article 10 is shown in
The absorbent article 10 is illustrated schematically in the drawings but may be configured as any type of absorbent article as known in the art, for example, a diaper, either infant or adult, a feminine sanitary napkin, and so on. The absorbent article 10 is made from resilient and compressible material that is able to retain fluid. Examples of diapers are disclosed in U.S. Statutory Invention Registration No. H1674 and U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,520,674; 5,522,810; 5,855,574; 5,876,393; and 5,980,500. Examples of feminine sanitary napkins are disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,490,847; 5,653,702; 5,792,131; 5,797,894; and 6,015,934. The disclosure of each of these patents is incorporated herein by reference.
Being made from resilient absorptive material, exemplary article 10 is compressible in at least one dimension. However, to minimize the amount of compressed volume Vc, it is preferable for the absorbent article 10 to be compressible in three dimensions, as mentioned above. More specifically, as shown in
To compress, the absorbent article 10 may be subject to compressive force, thereby forcing air out of the inter-fiber spaces 14 and compressing the absorptive material 12. Alternatively, the absorbent article 10 may be subject to vacuum, thereby drawing air out of the inter-fiber spaces 14 and compressing the absorptive material 12. Once compressed, the absorbent article 10 is retained to maintain the compact and highly portable configuration, for example, by shrink-wrap thermoplastic packaging at a vacuum or negative pressure, which will be discussed in more detail below. To use, the retaining packaging is disengaged or opened, allowing the absorbent article 10 to expand and return to its normal condition under the resiliency and elasticity of the absorptive material 12, which is also discussed in more detail below.
As mentioned above, the absorbent article 10 is shown in a normal condition in
After being placed in a reconfigured condition, the absorbent article 10 may then be compressed as discussed above, thereby placing the article in a compressed condition. If reconfigured by rolling, as shown in
After being compressed, the absorbent article 10 may then be retained to maintain the compressed condition, for example, with packaging 16 as shown in
Those skilled in the art will understand that the preceding exemplary embodiments of the present invention provide the foundation for numerous alternatives and modifications thereto. These and other modifications are also within the scope of the present invention. Accordingly, the present invention is not limited to that precisely as shown and described above but by the scope of the appended claims.
|Citing Patent||Filing date||Publication date||Applicant||Title|
|US7178312 *||Mar 31, 2005||Feb 20, 2007||Diaperoos, Llc||Pressing and vacuum-packing diaper|
|US7181893 *||Mar 31, 2005||Feb 27, 2007||Diaperoos, Llc||Vacuum-packing diaper and pressing encasement|
|US7181894 *||Mar 31, 2005||Feb 27, 2007||Diaperoos, Llc||Pressing and vacuum-sealing diaper in vacuum chamber|
|US20050143704 *||Mar 8, 2005||Jun 30, 2005||Diaperoos, Llc||Vacuum-packed diaper kit|
|US20050155875 *||Mar 31, 2005||Jul 21, 2005||Diaperoos, Llc||Toy container for volumetrically reduced diaper|
|US20050155894 *||Mar 31, 2005||Jul 21, 2005||Diaperoos, Llc||Pressing and vacuum-packing diaper|
|US20050155899 *||Mar 31, 2005||Jul 21, 2005||Diaperoos, Llc||Disguisedly packaged absorbent article|
|U.S. Classification||53/429, 53/432, 53/438, 53/430|
|International Classification||A61F13/20, A61F13/15, B65B63/04, B65B63/02, B65B31/04|