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Publication numberUSH2159 H1
Publication typeGrant
Application numberUS 10/758,558
Publication dateJul 4, 2006
Filing dateJan 16, 2004
Priority dateJan 16, 2004
Publication number10758558, 758558, US H2159 H1, US H2159H1, US-H1-H2159, USH2159 H1, USH2159H1
InventorsDaniel B. McGoldrick
Original AssigneeThe United States Of America As Represented By The Secretary Of The Navy
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Guidance of treatment devices on target surfaces
US H2159 H1
A pair of vertical guide supports are slidably received in horizontally spaced rails removably mounted on a vertical target surface to be treated, such as the hull of a ship. A rack support interconnects the vertical guide supports and is vertically displaceable relative thereto with a rack plate thereby positioned in spaced relation to the target surface. A treatment device such as a pressurized paint ejector is positioned on the rack plate for selectively imposed movement therewith along linear paths to positions at which it is aligned perpendicular to the target surface to be completely treated by application or removal of paint for example.
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1. Apparatus for treatment of a target surface by coating thereof applied from an ejection device, comprising: guidance means exclusively supported on the target surface for establishing linear paths of movement in spaced relation thereto; support means on which the ejection device is positioned for ejection of the coating therefrom; and selectively controlled mounting means for positioning of the support means at different locations along said linear paths of movement on the guidance means from which said ejection of the coating onto the target surface is effected from the ejection device to perform said treatment of the target surface.
2. The apparatus as defined in claim 1, wherein said target surface is a ship hull and said ejection device is a liquid paint applicator from which paint as the coating is applied to the target surface.
3. The apparatus as defined in claim 2, wherein said guidance means includes: horizontal track rails on the target surface; and vertical guide means slidably received in the track rails for displacement of the support means along said linear paths of movement to the different locations.
4. The apparatus as defined in claim 3, wherein said support means includes: a support rack mounted by the vertical guide means in perpendicular relation to the target surface.
5. The apparatus as defined in claim 1, wherein said treatment of the target surface involves de-coating thereof by removal of the paint therefrom.
6. A method for treatment of a target surface under selective control of an ejection device, including the steps of: establishing linear guide paths along which movement of the ejection device is guided to positions in spaced relation to the target surface; and imparting vertical and horizontal movement to the ejection device in each of said positions from which said treatment is applied to the target surface.
7. The method as defined in claim 6, wherein said treatment involves application of a uniform coating of paint to the target surface by efficient transfer from the ejection device.
8. The method as defined in claim 6, wherein said treatment of the target surface involves removal of paint therefrom.

The invention described herein may be manufactured and used by or for the Government of the United States of America for governmental purposes without the payment of any royalties thereon or therefore.

The present invention relates to guided positioning of a surface treatment device in spaced relation to a target surface, such as the hull of a ship.


Ship hulls and other large surfaces are traditionally painted manually using power spray guns and involving for example scaffolding and over-spray protection during a relatively inefficient coating process. Such surfaces are also treated for removal of paint therefrom, involving discharges of grit or water under high pressures from de-paint devices attached to manipulating facilities requiring use of additional labor and materials. Patent protection was heretofore provided for surface attachable guidance apparatus and method for different devices, to the exclusion of coating of vertical surfaces such as ship hulls with paint. It is therefore an important object of the present invention to provide for efficient transfer of coatings such as paint to and from surfaces such as ship hulls.


In accordance with the present invention rail track guidance facilities are attachable to a target surface, such as a ship hull, on which it is exclusively supported to thereby establish horizontal and vertical guide paths in spaced relation to the target surface along which a guide support for a surface treatment device is displaced to plural locations at which the treatment device is positioned preferably along an ejection axis aligned perpendicular to the target surface so as to perform paint coating or de-coating operations with maximized efficiency.


A more complete appreciation of the invention and many of its attendant advantages will be readily appreciated as the same becomes better understood by reference to the following detailed description when considered in connection with the accompanying drawing wherein:

FIG. 1 is a side elevation view of a guidance support apparatus for treatment of a target surface to which the apparatus is attached;

FIG. 2 is a front view of the apparatus shown in FIG. 1 as viewed from section line 22; and

FIGS. 3, 4 and 5 are partial sections taken substantially through planes 33, 44 and 55 in FIG. 2.


Referring now to the drawing in detail, FIG. 1 illustrates a guidance assembly, generally referred to by reference numeral 10, through which movement of a surface treatment device 12 is selectively controlled in spaced relation to a vertical target surface 14 to which the guidance assembly 10 is removably attached at different locations. As shown in FIG. 1, the surface treatment device 12 is in the form of a pressurized paint spray ejection nozzle connected to a paint supply 16. A spray 18 of liquid paint is accordingly shown ejected from the ejection nozzle type treatment device 12 so as to paint the target surface 14, which may be on the exterior of a ship hull 20 on which a pair of fixed guide rails 22 of the guidance assembly 10 are attached in parallel spaced relation to each other so as to exclusively support the guidance assembly 10. A pair of vertical rail guide supports 24 are associated with the guidance assembly 10 as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2. Upper and lower arms 26 and 28 extending from the vertical supports 24 are slidably received in the guide rails 22 for guided displacement of the supports 24 relative to the vertical target surface 14 in a horizontal direction. As shown in FIGS. 2 and 5, the vertical guide supports 24 are interconnected and held in horizontally spaced relation to each other by a pair of horizontal support rails 30 having end sections 32 slidably received within vertical guide slots 34 formed in the guide supports 24.

It will be apparent from the foregoing description that the treatment ejection device 12 positioned on the rack plate 40 at each of a plurality of locations along the support rails 30 and guide slots 34 in perpendicular alignment with the target surface 14 as shown in FIGS. 1 and 4 so as to apply the spray 18 to the surface 14 between the supports 24 and the upper and lower surface guide rails 22 with maximized surface treatment. A portion of the surface 14 between the horizontal rails 22 and the vertical supports 24 may thereby be efficiently and completely treated. The vertical supports 24 may be shifted horizontally along linear paths on the surface 14 along the rails 22 to sequentially cover other portions of the surface 14 during a treatment process. The horizontal guide rails 22 removably attached to the surface 14 may be furthermore shifted to other locations on the surface 14 for treatment purposes to thereby cover the entire surface 14 to be treated.

Obviously, other modifications and variations of the present invention may be possible in light of the foregoing teachings. It is therefore to be understood that within the scope of the appended claims the invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically described.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2543348 *Dec 21, 1948Feb 27, 1951Todd Shipyards CorpScaling machine for cleaning the sides of a ship
US3863393 *Mar 13, 1972Feb 4, 1975Nelson Robert JApparatus for supporting work means on vertically disposed surface
US4048956 *Apr 7, 1976Sep 20, 1977Shell Internationale Research Maatschappij B.V.Apparatus for treating a surface
US5033710Jun 5, 1990Jul 23, 1991Michael AntoniadisApparatus for holding and operating a hand-held tool
US6285339Apr 7, 2000Sep 4, 2001L-3 Communications CorporationTwo axis positioner with zero backlash
US6431387Apr 14, 1999Aug 13, 2002Utek Umweltschutztechnologien GmbhFlat-bottomed tank and method for fitting it with a leak-proof coating
US6510795Mar 31, 1999Jan 28, 2003Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AgAccessory for a printing unit
Non-Patent Citations
1ABB i Norge IRB 5600 p. 1.
2ABB i Norge Paint robots p. 1.
3IRB 8400 Gantry Robot for load transfer from 25 to 2500kg, pp. 1-3.
4Miyazaki, Tatsuo et al., Article titled: "NC Painting Robot For Shipbuilding", pp. 1-14.
5The Maersk Mc-Kinney Moller Institute for ProductionTechnology, University of Southern Denmark, Smart Painter, pp. 1-4.
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7837410 *Oct 27, 2006Nov 23, 2010James Marine, Inc.Barge transportation system and refurbishing system and method of transporting and refurbishing barges
US7922272 *Apr 11, 2008Apr 12, 2011The Boeing CompanyMethod for application and accurate positioning of graphics on a surface
US8152260Feb 28, 2011Apr 10, 2012The Boeing CompanyApparatus for application and accurate positioning of graphics on a surface
U.S. Classification118/305, 114/222, 118/306
International ClassificationB05B13/02
Cooperative ClassificationB05B13/04, B05B13/005, B05B13/041
European ClassificationB05B13/00A
Legal Events
Feb 5, 2004ASAssignment
Effective date: 20040115