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Patent Searching and Data


Title:
DISPLAY UNIT WITH SLIDING PANELS
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2020/161665
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
The display unit with movable panels subject of this disclosure is structured in such a way as to be able to store heavy objects in movable panels on rails, revealing to a stationary user the contents of two panels at a time arranged side by side to the right and to the left of the user's view. It has a substantially circular frame with a mechanism for rotating the panels around a common geometrical rotation axis at the centre of the display unit, as well as two pairs of radial sliding rails directed radially one on the extension of the other so that a panel can slide along a diameter of the display unit passing from one rail to the other of the same pair of rails.

Inventors:
CONFALONIERI FABRIZIO GERARDO (IT)
Application Number:
IB2020/050959
Publication Date:
August 13, 2020
Filing Date:
February 06, 2020
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
CONFALONIERI FABRIZIO GERARDO (IT)
International Classes:
A47F7/00; A47F5/02; A47F5/025; A47F5/05; A47F7/14; A47F11/00; G06Q30/06
Foreign References:
JPS5874865U1983-05-20
DE2440577A11976-03-11
US1717246A1929-06-11
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
AUTUORI, Angelo (IT)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1. A display unit with movable panels, comprising:

- a frame (1);

- an inner circular guide (2a) and an outer circular guide (2b) supported by said frame (1) so as to be concentric and lying on a same plane;

- a plurality of radial support rails (5) supported - at opposite ends - between said inner circular guide (2a) and said outer circular guide (2b), oriented radially towards a central geometric axis of the display unit and configured to rotate around said central geometric axis with said opposite ends guided by the inner circular guide (2a) and by the outer circular guide (2b);

- a plurality of flat panels (3), maintained substantially vertical by said radial support rails (5) and sliding - in the longitudinal direction - along said radial support rails (5);

said radial support rails (5) being arranged in a first subset and in a second subset of said plurality so that at least one radial support rail (5) of the first subset is aligned - in a longitudinal direction - to a corresponding radial support rail (5), of the second subset, opposite with respect to said central geometric axis;

- a motor-driven mechanism configured:

- to slide one panel at a time, of said plurality of flat panels (3), from a respective radial support rail (5) of the first/second subset to the corresponding radial support rail (5) of the second/first subset aligned thereto in the longitudinal direction;

- to rotate - by an angle - said radial support rails (5) of the first subset around said central geometric axis in a first direction of rotation;

- to rotate said radial support rails (5) of the second subset by said angle around said central geometric axis in a second direction of rotation opposite to the first direction of rotation.

2. The display unit according to claim 1, wherein said motor-driven mechanism further comprises:

- two pairs of radial sliding rails (6) fixed to said frame (1) so that a radial sliding rail (6) is aligned - in the longitudinal direction - with a corresponding radial sliding rail (6) of the same pair, each pair of said radial sliding rails (6) being configured to guide a radial sliding of a panel at a time of said plurality of flat panels (3); - two pairs of radial sliding motors (8a, 8b; 9a, 9b), each one of said radial sliding motors being connected to a respective slider (14) of a respective radial sliding rail (6) and being configured to push/pull, with a forward and backward movement of the respective slider (14), a panel of said plurality of flat panels (3) at contact with the respective radial sliding rail (6).

3. The display unit according to claim 2, wherein each panel of said flat panels (3) has runners (7) on opposite faces, said runners (7) being positioned to engage one of said radial sliding rails (6) and to be gripped by the respective slider (14).

4. The display unit according to claim 2 or 3, wherein said motor-driven mechanism further comprises:

- two pairs of radial sliding motors (8a-8b, 9a-9b), each pair of said pairs of radial sliding motors (8a-8b, 9a-9b) being associated with a respective pair of radial sliding rails (6), configured for radially displacing a panel at a time of said plurality of flat panels (3) along a respective pair of said radial sliding rails (6);

- two rotary motors (10a, 10b) associated respectively with the first subset and with the second subset of said plurality of radial support rails (5), each rotary motor (10a, 10b) being configured to rotate by said angle the radial support rails (5) of the respective subset.

5. The display unit according to claim 4, wherein said rotary motors (10a, 10b) are variable pitch electric motors.

6. The display unit according to claim 4 or 5, comprising a timer functionally connected to the radial sliding motors (8a-8b, 9a-9b) and to the rotary motors (10a, 10b) for controlling - at fixed time intervals - a radial sliding of a panel at a time of said plurality of flat panels (3) and a rotation by said angle of the radial support rails (5) of the first subset and of the second subset around said central geometric axis.

7. The display unit according to one of the preceding claims, comprising an outer casing (13) which defines:

- a side wall of the display unit which shields the sides of said panels (3) from view;

- two view stations (01, 02) diametrically opposite with respect to said central geometric axis of the display unit and arranged between said first subset of radial support rails (5) and said second subset of radial support rails (5).

Description:
DISPLAY UNIT WITH SLIDING PANELS

DESCRIPTION

Technical field

The present disclosure regards storage units for the storage of substantially flat or low-thickness objects, and more particularly a substantially circular display unit with sliding panels.

Technological background

In certain facilities, such as in museums, there arises a need to store objects of relatively low thickness, such as paintings or prints.

Display units with movable panels for storing and displaying large prints in shops, so that the user can view them, are known. Typically, such display units have panels of low thickness hinged to a common rotation axis and suspended from the ground, so as to be "browsed" by a user at the height of the face such as pages of a newspaper standing still in front of the common rotation axis. This solution is suitable for storing and displaying the prints, but it is unsuitable for objects that are not very light. As a matter of fact, if heavier objects are introduced into such display units, the common axis on which the panels are hinged would inevitably be too stressed with a considerable static moment and would end up being irreparably damaged.

For the heavier objects to be stored and displayed, such as floor tiles in a cladding shop, display units with panels which slide parallel to each other are used. Each panel slides on rails of the display unit by means of respective wheels, discharging the considerable weight of the panel and its contents to the ground.

Such display units with parallel panels can be viewed by pulling one panel at a time. This solution is less convenient to use because it allows the public to view the contents of one panel at a time. Furthermore, although suitable for storing small paintings or objects in museum stores, these display units seem unsuitable for the direct view of works of art in an exhibition, since each panel pulled out must always be placed back before another panel can be viewed.

It would be desirable to have a display unit with movable panels suitable for storing objects of relatively large weight and allowing to view the objects stored in two panels side by side, in such a way that the user can enjoy the contents thereof with a general view looking at them side by side to the right and to the left of the vision thereof.

Summary

A circular display unit structured in such a way as to be able to store heavy objects in movable panels on rails, revealing to a stationary user the contents of two panels at a time arranged side by side to the right and to the left of the user's view was found and is subject of this disclosure.

This result is achieved by means of a display unit with movable panels as defined in claim 1.

The display unit with movable panels subject of this disclosure has a substantially circular frame with a mechanism for rotating the panels around a common geometrical rotation axis at the centre of the display unit, as well as two pairs of radial sliding rails directed radially one on the extension of the other so that a panel can slide along a diameter of the display unit passing from one rail to the other of the same pair of rails.

The claims as filed are an integral part of this description and they are herein incorporated for explicit reference.

Brief description of the drawings

Figure 1 is a view of the frame of a display unit subject of this disclosure with panels arranged in a radial manner.

Figure 2 is a detailed view of the two pairs of radial sliding rails for displacing the panels of the display unit of figure 1 along a diameter.

Figure 3 shows panels of the display unit of figure 1 with runners suitable for engaging the radial sliding rails.

Figures 4a to 4g show - in succession - the displacement of the panels carried out using the display unit subject of this disclosure.

Figure 5 shows the frame of the display unit of figure 1 with motor-driven mechanisms for sliding the panels radially and circularly.

Figure 6 is a detailed view of the motor-driven mechanisms for sliding the panels of the display unit of figure 5.

Figure 7 shows the display unit of figure 5 complete with an outer covering casing.

Figure 8 shows a room of a store with three display units subject of this disclosure.

Detailed description The frame 1 of a circular display unit with panels subject of this disclosure is shown in figure 1. It is rigid, it is substantially circular-shaped and it rests stably on the floor. Fixed to the frame 1 are an inner circular guide 2a and an outer circular guide 2b designed to support several panels 3 and to allow to rotate them with respect to a central axis of the display unit. The panels 3 are fixed to the objects 4, in the illustrated case of the paintings 4, to be stored and displayed to the public.

Radial support rails 5 directed toward the same central geometric axis of the display unit are suspended on the circular guides 2a and 2b. The radial support rails 5 keep the panels 3 vertical allowing them to slide radially passing from one support rail 5 to another diametrically aligned. Furthermore, the radial support rails 5 can rotate with respect to the central geometric axis of the display unit sliding on the inner 2a and outer 2b circular guides. In order to displace the panels 3 in a radial direction, the display unit has two pairs of radial sliding rails 6, highlighted in figure 2, directed one on the extension of the other so that a panel can slide along a diameter of the display unit passing from one rail 6 to the other of the same pair. Unlike the radial support rails 5 which can rotate around the central geometric axis of the display unit, the radial sliding rails 6 are fixed to the frame 1 and their function is to displace the panels 3 radially.

The display unit has two pairs of radial sliding motors 8a-8b and 9a-9b, each configured so as to remove a panel 3 from a first radial support rail 5 and insert it in a second radial support rail 5 diametrically aligned with the first.

Figure 1 also shows two rotary motors 10a and 10b, which have the function of displacing - circularly and in the opposite direction respectively - the support rails 5 of the two sets of rails to the right and to the left of a viewer located at the view point 01 between the displayed paintings 4. As will be clearly apparent from the description of the figures that follow, the illustrated display unit also allows to have a second view point 02 diametrically opposite to the first view point 01.

The panels 3, more clearly visible in figure 3, have - on both sides - runners 7 configured to engage the radial sliding rails 6. When a panel 3 is driven in rotation around the geometric axis of the display unit by the rotary motor 10a or 10b, it arrives at the station of a radial sliding rail 6 and the runners 7 thereof engage a slider 14 which slides thereon. In this configuration, one of the two pairs of radial sliding motors 8a-8b and 9a-9b of the display unit moves the slider 14 and slides the panel 3 from a first radial support rail 5 and inserts it into a second radial support rail 5 diametrically aligned with the first one, thus allowing to see another panel 3 that was previously hidden from view.

The display unit subject of this disclosure allows to store a large number of objects in a relatively small space and at the same time it allows to view them in cyclic succession displayed on vertical panels 3. The cyclic succession of the displacement of the panels 3 carried out with the display unit subject of this disclosure is illustrated in the sequence of stylised images of figures 4a to 4g which represent - from above - the display unit and the panels 3.

In the example of figure 4a, there are eleven panels 3 to the right and ten panels 3 to the left of the view point 01, all supported by respective radial support rails 5 and each having objects 4 to be stored and displayed, such as a painting, on each face of the panel 3. The positions of the radial sliding rails 6, not shown, are arranged so as to displace the panels through the cross-like corridor A-A and B-B which passes through the central geometric axis of the structure. In the configuration shown in figure 4a, a first viewer in position 01 can view the paintings 4a and 4b, arranged substantially side by side, and a second viewer in position 02 on the diametrically opposite side can view the paintings 4e and 4f. The panels which are aligned with the corridors A-A and B-B engage the respective radial sliding rails 6 with their runners 7, located on both sides of each panel. In the configuration of figure 4a there is a vacant rail 6 and the panel 3a can slide radially along the corridor B-B.

Thanks to the radial sliding motors 8a-8b, the panel 3a is displaced (figure 4b) from one radial sliding rail 6 to the diametrically opposite one along the direction B-B (figure 4c) so that paintings 4a and 4c will be viewed at the first view point 01 and paintings 4g and 4f will be viewed at the second view point 02.

The rotary motor 10a rotates all the panels to the right in figure 4c by one pitch counter clockwise (figure 4d) releasing the panel 3d from the respective radial sliding rail 6 along the corridor A-A and coupling the panel 3c to the respective radial sliding rail 6 along the corridor B-B. In this configuration, a rail 6 has been released and the panel 3b can slide radially along the corridor A-A.

Thanks to the radial sliding motors 9a-9b, the panel 3b is displaced (figure 4e) from a radial sliding rail 6 to the diametrically opposite one along the direction A-A (figure 4f), so that paintings 4d and 4e will be viewed at the first view point 01 and paintings 4g and 4h will be viewed at the second view point 02.

Lastly, the rotary motor 10b will rotate all the panels to the left in figure 4f clockwise (figure 4g) releasing the panel 3a from the respective radial sliding rail 6 along the corridor B- B and coupling the panel 3e to the respective radial sliding rail 6 along the corridor A-A, returning to the configuration of figure 4a with the viewers at points 01 and 02 facing a different pair of paintings.

The display unit subject of the present disclosure may contain objects 4 to be displayed on both sides of each panel 3 and it allows two viewers at points 01 and 02 to see each one half of the stored collection of objects 4.

The three-quarter perspective top view of figure 5 shows the frame of the display unit with the ceiling divided into two right 11a and left lib sectors, in which each sector 11a and lib supports the radial support rails 5 of the respective right and left set, respectively. In order to allow a full view of the collection of objects 4 fixed on the panels 3, the radial support rails 5 of each right and left set are equal to (or greater than) the number of panels 3 to be stored. With this solution, all the panels 3 of the right set can be transferred to the rails 5 of the left set and vice versa.

As shown in figure 6, the ceiling of the display unit has grooves 12 which the rotary motors 10a and 10b engage by moving the respective sector 11a and lib, so as to facilitate the circular movement of the rails 5. According to an aspect, the rotary motors 10a and 10b are configured to move by one fixed-amplitude pitch at a time. According to an alternative aspect, the rotary motors 10a and 10b are of the variable pitch type so as to allow the user to decide how many panels 3 to install and in what order, leaving rails 5 empty.

In order to protect the panels 3 which are not exposed and to conceal the frame 1 from view, an outer casing 13 will be conveniently installed, so as to confer the display unit the appearance shown in figure 7.

Several display units subject of this disclosure can be installed in the same room to store together and display in succession a large number of paintings or other objects, even if the room is not sufficiently large to display them all at the same time next to each other on the walls of the room. A display unit subject of this disclosure can have a substantially circular overall dimension having a diameter smaller than three times the width of a panel, so that the panels can pass from one radial sliding rail 6 to another, but the overall vertical space of the display unit is equal to the total of the two surfaces of each panel multiplied by the number of panels of each display unit. Thus, one can stow away and at the same time display - smartly and in a manner perfectly viewable by the public - a large number of objects, installed on both juxtaposed faces of the panels 3, even in a small room.

Figure 8 shows a room of a store with three display units subject of this disclosure, which contain many more paintings than those that could be hung on the walls of the room.

However, display units subject of this disclosure confer the room the appearance of an exhibition hall and not a storage room, and the public is in a position to view all stored works in succession. Furthermore, the outer cover 13 of each display unit provides a useful surface which can bear information for the public on the exhibition in general and/or on the objects that are displayed each time.

The radial displacement of the exposed panels 3 can be determined by a timer which controls the radial sliding motors 8a-8b, 9a-9b and the rotary motors lOa-lOb. Alternatively, an electrical control could be installed to slide the panels only when desired.

Another advantage of the display unit subject of this disclosure is the reduction of the costs related to lighting the objects subject of display, since only two surfaces at a time of the two panels arranged side by side will be usable for each view point. In addition, the objects, such as paintings, are not displayed statically with the public having to move around the room to see them, but dynamically with the public standing still at a view point until they have seen all the objects they could see, before moving to another view point of the same or another display unit.