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Title:
HANDRAIL CLEANING APPARATUS AND METHOD
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/222068
Kind Code:
A9
Abstract:
The disclosed preferred embodiment of the handrail cleaning device comprises a flexible bar which uses spring resilience force to press one or more reusable or disposable cleaning pads against the moving handrail of an escalator and a travelator. The apparatus provides a lightweight, low cost apparatus that is simple to set-up and use and requires no external power. Additionally, the device is capable of cleaning and treating the handrails of common escalators and travelators during operation of the escalator and travelator. The device utilizes the motion of the escalator and travelator to perform the cleaning action. The simplicity of the device allows for multiple devices to be used simultaneously by a single operator.

Inventors:
ROSENBAUM ORI (US)
Application Number:
US2019/031904
Publication Date:
December 12, 2019
Filing Date:
May 12, 2019
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
ROSENBAUM ORI (US)
International Classes:
B66B31/02; A47L25/00; B65G45/22
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
COHEN, Lawrence, S. (US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1. A device for cleaning a handrail at an exit newel of an escalator and a travelator during operation of the escalator and the travelator comprising:

a spring arm;

one or more cleaning pads;

wherein the one or more cleaning pads are removably affixed to the spring arm, wherein the cleaning pads are deformable and shaped to firmly mate with a rubber portion of the handrail, wherein the spring arm has a flat portion which is placed on the floor adjacent the exit newel, wherein the spring arm maintains pressure on the one or more cleaning pads against the handrail during operation of the escalator and the travelator.

2. The device as in Claim 1 wherein the cleaning pads are covered in a microfiber cleaning material.

3. The device as in Claim 1 wherein the cleaning pads are removably affixed to the spring arm by hook and loop fastener components affixed to the cleaning pad and to the spring arm.

4. The device as in Claim 1 wherein the spring arm is configured to have two bend points which provide a deformable configuration which may be depressed for mounting on the escalator and the travelator and providing a resiliency upon placement of the cleaning pads on the handrail.

5. The device of Claim 1 wherein the cleaning pads are disposable.

6. The device of Claim 1 wherein the cleaning pads have a tapered opening to facilitate mounting on the handrail.

21

7. The device as in Claim 1 wherein the spring arm has a vertical positioning portion and a radial positioning portion which function independently and together allow the spring arm to have the cleaning pads in pressure when applied to the handrail.

8. A method for cleaning an escalator and a travelator handrail comprising:

providing a cleaning apparatus to an escalator handrail comprising:

a spring arm;

one or more cleaning pads; wherein the one or more cleaning pads are

removably affixed to the spring arm, wherein the cleaning pads are deformable and shaped to firmly mate with the rubber portion of the handrail, wherein the spring arm comprises at least a vertical positioning portion and a radial positioning portion;

placing the cleaning apparatus in a position relative to the handrail at an exit newel of the escalator and the travelator that both of the vertical positioning portion and the radial positioning portion are in a flexed posture adjacent to the handrail such that the cleaning pads can be adjusted;

adjusting the cleaning pads for optimal fit on the handrail;

placing the cleaning pads into position on the moving handrail; and releasing flexure on the spring arm such that resiliency of the spring arm is transmitted to the cleaning pad assemblies to have cleaning pressure on the handrail.

9. The method of claim 8 wherein there are two cleaning pads spaced apart on the spring arm.

10. The method of Claim 9 wherein the cleaning pads are covered in a microfiber cleaning material defining cleaning pad assemblies.

11. The method of Claim 10 wherein the cleaning pad assemblies are removably affixed to the spring arm by hook and loop fastener components affixed to the cleaning pad assemblies and to a spring arm location for receiving them, the spring arm location having a curvature defining a rocker seat at which one component of the hook and loop fastener is attached and the cleaning pad assemblies have a curved bottom that match the curve of the rocker seat and has the other

22 component of the hook and loop fastener on the curved bottom, whereby angular adjustment of the cleaning pad assemblies relative to the handrail can be done to provide optimal fit of the cleaning pad assemblies to the handrail for cleaning effect.

12. The method of Claim 8 wherein the spring arm is configured to have two bend points which provide a deformable configuration which may be flexed for mounting on the escalator and the travelator and providing an upward force of the cleaning pads on the handrail.

13. The method of Claim 8 wherein the cleaning pads are disposable.

14. The method of Claim 8 wherein the cleaning pads have a tapered opening to facilitate mounting on the handrail.

15. The method of Claim 8 wherein the cleaning pads are covered in a disposable pre- moistened cloth material.

16. An escalator and a travelator cleaning apparatus that has a self-adjustable spring arm operable to enable at least one cleaning pad to contact the handrail of the escalator and the travelator that have different constructions of the exit newel as the handrail curves from its upward facing position around a curved reversing portion comprising:

a spring arm of a single continuous length made of a flexible resilient

material having;

a floor resting length which is substantially flat adapted to be oriented on a floor adjacent to the handrail to be cleaned and having a length extending away from the handrail to a distal end;

a vertical position adjusting curve merging at the distal end of the floor resting length and curved to a substantially opposite direction where it merges to a vertical adjusting arm which is adapted to extend toward the handrail to a proximal end the proximal end having allowed vertical movement substantially by flexing of the vertical position adjusting curve and a radial adjusting curve merging from the proximal end of the vertical adjusting arm and an upper arm defining a merging from the radial adjusting curve and extending distally upwardly to

23 a distal termination and the upper arm having at least one mounting position for mounting a cleaning pad and a cleaning pad mounted on the at least one mounting position;

whereby flexing of the spring arm by a downward force at the distal termination provides flexing of both the vertical adjusting curve and the radial adjusting curve such that the upper arm will self-adjust upon release of the downward force to bring the cleaning pad into cleaning position at the handrail.

17. The escalator and the travelator cleaning apparatus of claim 16 wherein the upper arm has at least two cleaning pads which are spaced apart on the upper arm.

18. The escalator and the travelator cleaning apparatus of claim 17 wherein the at least two pads are mounted on the upper arm with an adjustable fastening apparatus that will allow angular adjustment of the cleaning pads with respect to the upper arm.

19. A method of cleaning the moving handrail of an escalator and a travelator wherein the handrail moves at an exit newel from a substantially upward facing position around a curve to a substantially downward facing position comprising:

providing a handrail cleaning device comprising:

a spring arm of a single continuous length made of a flexible resilient material having;

a floor plate length which is substantially flat adapted to be oriented on a floor adjacent to the handrail to be cleaned and having a length extending away from the handrail to a distal end;

a vertical position adjusting curve commencing at the distal end of the floor resting length and curved to a substantially opposite direction where it is attached to a vertical adjusting arm which extends toward the handrail to a proximal end the proximal end allowed vertical movement substantially by flexing of the vertical position adjusting curve and a radial adjusting curve commencing at the proximal end of the vertical adjusting arm and an upper arm curving upwardly away from the handrail a selected degree of curvature to a distal termination the upper arm having at least one mounting position for mounting a cleaning pad;

a cleaning pad mounted on the at least one mounting position;

24 placing the spring arm in a position relative to the handrail wherein flexing of the vertical adjusting curve and the radial adjusting curve results in the at least one handrail cleaning pad being in cleaning contact position to the handrail;

maintaining the cleaning pad in the cleaning contact position as the handrail operates to pass by the cleaning pad to effect cleaning contact of the cleaning pad to the moving handrail.

20. The method of claim 19 wherein the cleaning pad is a cleaning pad assembly having a cleaning pad structural member that is a polymer foam material and having a fabric cover on the structural member wherein the fabric cover has a cleaning contact portion located for cleaning contact with the handrail, and the cleaning contact portion has an exterior microfiber fabric.

21. The method of claim 20 wherein there are two cleaning pad assemblies mounted spaced apart on the upper arm.

22. The method of claim 21 wherein the upper arm has two spaced apart rocker seats each having an angularly adjustable fastener for fastening the cleaning pad assemblies in an angularly adjustable position and the cleaning pad assemblies are mounted on the angularly adjustable fastener whereby angular adjustment can be implemented in order to have the cleaning pad assemblies be in optimal cleaning contact with the handrail.

23. The method of claim 19 further wherein the upper arm provides flexing of its curvature.

24. The device of Claim 1 wherein the cleaning pads are covered in a disposable pre- moistened cloth material.

25. A device for cleaning a handrail at an exit newel of an escalator and a travelator during operation of the escalator and the travelator comprising:

a spring arm of flexible resilient material having one or more pad mounting locations said one or more pad mounting locations having a slot therein extending along the spring arm in a direction of travel of the handrail;

25 one or more cleaning pads having a top portion adapted for handrail cleaning contact and a bottom portion adapted for positioning and fixing the cleaning pad on the spring arm;

wherein the one or more cleaning pads are removably fixed to the spring arm at the one or more pad mounting locations by a fastener that extends from the bottom portion of the one or more cleaning pads and through the slot at a selected location along the slot therein and a securing member fitted to the fastener for fixing of the cleaning pad to the spring arm at the selected location along the slot;

wherein the cleaning pads are deformable and shaped to mate with a rubber portion of the handrail;

wherein the spring arm has a flat portion defining a floor plate which is placed on the floor adjacent the exit newel, wherein the spring arm maintains pressure on the one or more cleaning pads against the handrail during operation of the escalator and the travelator to effect cleaning of the handrail.

26. The device as in claim 25 wherein the one or more cleaning pads are covered in a microfiber surfaced cleaning material in the top portion that comes into contact with the handrail for cleaning the handrail.

27. The device of as in claim 25 further wherein:

the one or more pad mounting locations are each defined by a curved pad rocker seat comprising a curvature in the spring arm which is concave facing toward the handrail to which the device is to be used;

the cleaning pad bottom portion having a bottom surface that is curved to commonly match the curvature of the curved pad rocker seat and being thereby adapted to allow the cleaning pad to be adjustable angularly fitted to the curvature of the curved pad rocker seat by the fastener of each cleaning pad passing through the slot at the selected location and being fixed in place;

whereby the cleaning pad is mounted on the curved pad rocker seat at a selected angle for presentation of the top portion to the handrail for cleaning contact.

26

28. The device as in claim 27 wherein;

the spring arm having two curved pad rocker seats which are spaced apart on the spring arm and the device having two cleaning pads wherein each cleaning pad is fixed to one of the two curved pad rocker seats.

29. The device as in claim 27 further wherein:

the fastener of each cleaning pad extends from the curved bottom portion of the cleaning pad at an angle defined as angled distally from a vertical center line of the cleaning pad of from about 10 degrees to about 25 degrees.

30. The device as in claim 28 wherein the slot in each of the two curved pad rocker seats extends at least in a portion of the curve of the two curved pad rocker seats that extends in a rear (distal) portion of the curve.

31. The device as in claim 28 wherein the spring arm has a vertical elevation member extending from the distal end of the floor plate upwardly where it merges to a vertical adjusting arm which is adapted to extend toward the handrail to a proximal end the proximal end having allowed vertical resilient movement substantially by flexing of the vertical adjusting arm and a radial adjusting curve merging from the proximal end of the vertical adjusting arm and an upper arm defining a merging from the radial adjusting curve and extending distally upwardly to a distal termination and the radial adjusting curve providing radial adjustment to the upper arm and wherein the curved pad rocker seats are on the upper arm.

32. The device as in claim 29 wherein the vertical elevation member is a flexible first curvature which is rendered inflexible by a strut fixed to it and fixed to the floor resting plate.

33. The device as in claim 25 wherein the cleaning pads are made of a polyurethane foam having an ILD in the range of about 70-90.

34. The device as in claim 25 wherein the cleaning pads have a tapered opening to facilitate mounting on the handrail.

27

35. The device as in claim 25 wherein the pressure of the cleaning pads when applied to the handrail is in the range from about 2 pounds to 10 pounds.

36. The device as in claim 34 wherein the pressure is in the range of about 4 pounds to about 8 pounds.

37. The device as in claim 35 wherein the pressure is about 5 pounds.

38. A method of cleaning the moving handrail of an escalator and a travelator wherein the handrail moves at an exit newel from a substantially upward facing position around a curve to a substantially downward facing position comprising:

providing a handrail cleaning device comprising

a spring arm, the spring arm having portions that provide flexing, the portions that provide flexing being at least a vertical adjusting arm and a radial adjusting curve;

a floor resting plate which is substantially flat adapted to be oriented on a floor adjacent to the handrail to be cleaned and having a length extending away from the handrail to a distal end;

a vertical positioning portion commencing at the distal end of the floor resting plate and extending upwardly a vertical distance where it is attached to the vertical adjusting arm which extends above the floor resting plate toward the handrail to a proximal end the proximal end allowed vertical movement substantially by flexing of the vertical adjusting arm, and the radial adjusting curve commencing at the proximal end of the vertical adjusting arm and an upper arm extending upwardly to a distal termination; the upper arm having at least one mounting position for mounting a cleaning pad whereby the vertical adjusting arm and the radial adjusting curve provide vertical and angular adjustment to the upper arm;

a cleaning pad mounted on the at least one mounting position;

placing the spring arm in a position relative to the handrail wherein flexing of the vertical adjusting arm and the radial adjusting curve results in the at least one handrail cleaning pad being in cleaning contact position to the handrail;

28 maintaining the cleaning pad in the cleaning contact position as the handrail operates to pass by the cleaning pad to effect cleaning contact of the cleaning pad to the moving handrail.

39. The method of claim 38 wherein the spring arm is a single continuous length made of flexible resilient material and the vertical positioning portion is curved commencing at the distal end of the floor resting plate and curved to a substantially opposite direction where it is attached to the vertical adjusting arm and is rendered rigid by applying a stiffening appliance to it.

40. The method of claim 39 wherein the stiffening appliance is a strut fixed to the vertical positioning portion and to the floor resting plate whereby flexing of the vertical positioning portion is disabled.

41. The method of claim 39 wherein there are two cleaning pads, spaced apart on the upper arm and each cleaning pad has a curved bottom which matches a curve of a curved pad rocker seat for each cleaning pad and each curved pad rocker seat has an axially centrally extending slot and the cleaning pads are fixed to the respective curved pad rocker seat by a fastener extending from the curved bottom thereof through the slot and is fixed into position with a fastening member on the fastener to render the cleaning pads immovable in position on the curved pad rocker seat.

42. The method of claim 38 wherein the cleaning pad is a cleaning pad assembly having a cleaning pad structural member that is a polymer foam material and having a fabric cover on the structural member wherein the fabric cover has a cleaning contact portion located for cleaning contact with the handrail, and the cleaning contact portion has an exterior microfiber fabric.

43. The method of claim 40 wherein the curved pad rocker seats have a rear (distal) curved portion and the slot extends substantially in the rear (distal) curved portion and the bolt extends from the bottom of the pad at a distal angle; whereby the distal portion of the pad is firmly fixed against movement away from the curved pad rocker seat.

29

44. A method of cleaning the moving handrail of an escalator and a travelator wherein the handrail moves at an exit newel from a substantially upward facing position around a curve to a substantially downward facing position comprising:

providing a handrail cleaning device comprising;

a spring arm, the spring arm having flexible portions that provide flexing and having a floor resting plate which is substantially flat adapted to be oriented on a floor adjacent to the handrail to be cleaned and having a length extending away from the handrail to a distal end and having an upper arm for mounting one or more cleaning pads on one or more curved pad rocker seats of the upper arm;

wherein the cleaning pad is a cleaning pad assembly having a cleaning pad structural member that is a polymer foam material that has a curved bottom surface which matches the curve of a curved pad rocker seat of the upper arm for each cleaning pad to be attached, thereby to allow angular positioning of the cleaning pad to the pad rocker seat and having a fabric cover on the structural member wherein the fabric cover has a cleaning contact portion located for cleaning contact with the handrail;

placing the spring arm in a position relative to the handrail wherein flexing of the flexible portions results in the one or more cleaning pads being in cleaning contact position to the handrail;

maintaining the one or more cleaning pads in the cleaning contact position as the handrail operates to pass by the cleaning pad to effect cleaning contact of the cleaning pad to the moving handrail.

45. The method of claim 44 wherein there are two cleaning pads, spaced apart on the upper arm and each cleaning pad has a curved bottom which matches the curve of a curved pad rocker seat and each curved pad rocker seat has an axially centrally extending slot and the cleaning pads are fixed to the respective curved pad rocker seat by a fastener extending from the curved bottom of the cleaning pad through the slot and is fixed into position with a fastening member on the fastener to render the cleaning pads immovable in position on the curved pad rocker seat and thereby to resist force imposed upon the cleaning pad by the moving handrail.

30

46. The method of claim 45 wherein the curved pad rocker seats have a rear (distal) curved portion and the slot extends substantially in the rear (distal) curved portion and the bolt extends from the bottom of the pad at a distal angle; whereby the distal portion of the pad is firmly fixed against movement away from the curved pad rocker seat.

31

Description:
IN THE UNITED STATES PATENT AND TRADEMARK OFFICE

PCT PATENT APPLICATION

TITLE: HANDRAIL CLEANING APPARATUS AND METHOD

INVENTOR: Ori Rosenbaum

TECHNICAL FIELD

[0001] The present invention relates to cleaning of escalators and travelators.

BACKGROUND

[0002] Escalators and travelators are designed to transport high volumes of passengers. Their handrails, which are synchronized to move with the foot treads, are a safety feature intended to provide balance and support when entering, exiting and riding an escalator or travelator.

Escalator and travelator handrails are constructed of flexible rubber materials which, due to the high levels of passenger traffic they endure, accumulate dirt and sludge, which has been discovered to include blood, feces, saliva, food and numerous disease-causing pathogens.

Devices for cleaning the rails are of two categories. A first category provides an installed device that stays in place and operates to clean the rail. A second category provides a device that is separate from the escalator or travelator and can be moved into place for cleaning the rail. Examples of the second category are US Patents 9856115 and 9856116, the entire content of which are incorporated into this application by reference.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0003] Figure 1 is an isometric view an embodiment of the handrail cleaning assembly.

[0004] Figure 2 is a side view of the handrail cleaning assembly of Fig. 1.

[0005] Figure 3 is a side view of the spring arm with exemplary dimension

[0006] Figure 4 is a view of the embodiment of Figs. 1 and 2 in a flexed posture.

[0007] Figure 5 is an isometric view of an embodiment of a cleaning pad. [0008] Figure 6 is an elevation view of the cleaning pad of Fig. 5.

[0009] Figure 7 is a sectional view of a cleaning pad assembly with a handrail in attachment position.

[00010] Figure 8 is a side view of the cleaning pad assembly.

[00011] Figure 9 is a front view of the cleaning pad assembly

[00012] Figure 10 is a rear view of the cleaning pad assembly

[00013] Figure 11 is a time progressive view of the steps for placing the rail cleaning assembly into position.

[00014] Figures 12A, 12B and 12C are exemplary alternative configurations of escalator and travelator newel constructions showing the varying flexed positions of the rail cleaning assembly as required.

[00015] Figure 13 A is an alternative embodiment of the rail cleaning assembly.

[00016] Figure 13B is an alternative embodiment of the rail cleaning assembly.

[00017] Figure 14 is a side view of a handrail cleaning assembly spring arm showing further embodiments

[00018] Figure 15 is a perspective view from above and looking distally of a handrail cleaning assembly showing further embodiments.

[00019] Figure 16 is a perspective view from above and looking distally of a handrail cleaning assembly spring arm and showing further embodiments.

[00020] Figure 17 is a perspective view from below and looking distally of a handrail cleaning assembly spring arm and showing further embodiments.

[00021] Figure 18 is a side view of a handrail cleaning assembly with pads in a position for assembly.

[00022] Figure 19 is a side view of a handrail cleaning assembly with pads attached.

[00023] Figure 20 is a perspective view from the rear of a pad body.

[00024] Figure 21 is a rear view of a pad body.

[00025] Figure 22 is a side view of a pad body.

[00026] Figure 23 is a rear view of a pad with a cleaning cloth installed in position for use.

[00027] Figure 24 is a front view of a pad with a cleaning cloth in position for use. [00028] Figure 25 is a view in section of a pad with a cleaning cloth in position showing a microfiber surface and showing a handrail in general orientation for the pad to be moved into cleaning position.

[00029] Fig 26 is a time progressive view of the steps for placing the rail cleaning assembly into position.

[00030] Figures 27, 28 and 29 are exemplary alternative configurations of escalator and travelator newel constructions showing the varying flexed positions of the rail cleaning assembly as required.

[00031] Figure 30 is a front view of an embodiment.

[00032] Figure 31 is a perspective view from below of an embodiment.

[00033] Figure 32 is a perspective view from above of an embodiment.

[00034] Figure 33 is an overlay of alternative configurations of the spring arm.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[00035] The following description relates to both escalators and travelators and therefore the term“ an/the escalator(s) and a/the travelator(s)” is used to refer separately to each of them. While they are referenced together as one and the other, the meaning to be read is to each of them separately. If for any reason one of them is an incorrect reference, the other is retained. If there is any occurrence that only one of an escalator or travelator is intended to be referred to, then that one will be stated alone or can be understood from the context. Also, any content taken from an outside reference that may refer to one or the other of an escalator or travelator will be stated as in the source.

[00036] The parts of the escalator and the travelator that are relevant to this description have some level of inexact common meaning or complexity, such as the words“newel” and “balustrade” which describe parts of the apparatus at each end of an escalator and a travelator .

[00037] For example, in the MITSUBISHI ELECTRIC Glossary at:

hitp://www. itsubishi electric com/d e vaior/ovemew/e m walks/ glossary .him! the terms are defined as:

3 Balustrade: The side of an escalator (moving walk) extending above the Steps (Pallets), which includes Skirt Guard, Interior Panel, Deck Board and Moving Handrails.

Newel: Extensions of the Balustrade at each end of the escalator (moving walk) that assist passengers when boarding and landing.

As will be understood in the following description, the embodiments of the invention as described herein are all implemented preferably to function at the exit end of an escalator and a travelator . This implementation contributes to having the cleaning pads be in an enhanced contact with the handrail, by being drawn in by the handrail in addition to restoration of the flexure of the device. Therefore, for purposes of this description, the handrail and the use of the rail cleaning assembly are at the exit newel of an escalator and a travelator . The subject apparatus of the escalator and the travelator at the exit end will have a moving handrail which in the exit configuration transitions from a substantially straight line of movement into in a curved movement from an upper arriving position (upward facing posture) curving down into a lower return position (downward facing posture). The embodiments of the invention as described herein engage in contact with the handrail at a point at which it has entered into the curved movement. The description of the invention embodiments herein uses the terms resilience and resiliency to describe the restoring force of members of the rail cleaner assembly that are flexed when it is put into position for use on a handrail. That resilience/resiliency allows the rail cleaner assembly to be located and self-adjust to numerous handrail configurations, applying such pressure through the cleaning pads as to accomplish effective cleaning. The terms self-adjust and self-adjusting refers to the functional feature accomplished by the available interactive flexure of a plurality of members of the rail cleaner assembly.

[00038] The description of the handrail cleaning device comprises in one embodiment a continuous flexible resilient bar called a spring arm having a plurality of self-adjusting flexible members which are each put into a flexed condition in use and which uses the restoring resiliency to provide a resulting self-alignment to press one or more reusable or disposable cleaning pads against the moving handrail of an escalator and a travelator . In one embodiment, there are two such cleaning pads. The embodiments described herein provide a lightweight, low cost apparatus that is easy to transport by hand, simple to set-up and use and requires no external power. Additionally, the device is capable of cleaning and treating the handrails of common

4 escalators and travelators during operation of the escalator and the travelator . The device utilizes the motion of the escalator and the travelator to perform the cleaning action in concert with the one or more cleaning pads. The simplicity and small size of the device allows for multiple devices to be used simultaneously by a single operator. The device can be hand carried so as to be conveniently moved for example, from a storage place, or being brought into the location. The lightweight and small size also allow very convenient usage arrangements. It can be easily carried to its position for use at the escalator and the travelator . It does not need a carrying apparatus to be moved around and positioned. It is of such size that two of them can be used, one on each side of an escalator and a travelator at the same time, or by moving a single device into alternative positions. The size is sufficiently small that an adjoining apparatus for cleaning the treads can also be placed in operating position, with the present rail cleaning device on one or both sides of the escalator and the travelator .

[00039] The configuration of the spring arm allows by self-alignment consistent contact of cleaning pads to the handrail by the plurality of self-adjusting flexible parts of the handrail cleaning device. In addition, it is the case that escalators and travelators are not made in an exact uniform configuration. Although they have the common general feature at the exit assembly (also for information, the entrance assembly) at which the moving handrail goes from an upward facing posture around a curve to a substantially downward facing posture; the exact path of travel between those two postures varies, that is the curvature and return path of the handrail varies from one installation to another. One variation that is commonly seen, at least in illustrations, is in which the transfer from upward facing posture to downward facing posture is a 180 degree circle, but that is not uniformly the way these devices are made. Thus, as will be understood the present invention provides for cleaning handrails of different travel paths due to the self-adjustment that it provides so that, in the exemplary embodiments, two spaced apart cleaning pads have angular position and sufficient pressure to each function for cleaning effect on the handrail as it passes by them.

[00040] The embodiments now to be described provide at least two and up to three members of the spring arm to provide the flexing and consequent resiliency. Those at least two and up to three separate flexures operate by their separate self-adjustment together to accomplish

5 the self-alignment and pressure of the cleaning pads on the handrail. In addition, the cleaning pads can be manually angularly adjusted for optimal cleaning contact with the handrail.

[00041] As will be described, there are two primary flexing portions. One, called a vertical flexing portion causes the cleaning pads to move substantially vertically down and up. The second, called the radial flexing portion causes the cleaning pads to move substantially in a radial direction. The step of flexing the device causes both of these flexing movements in mutual conjunction. A third flexing portion having a smaller amount of flexure available is a curve adjustment flexing portion, and this portion may not flex in all cases. Finally, for the final fitting of the cleaning pads to the handrail, the cleaning pads are adjustably attached to the spring arm which adjustment is done at the point either or both just before or just after the spring arm is released to have its final cleaning posture in contact with the handrail.

[00042] Figs. 1 and 2 show an exemplary embodiment of the rail cleaning assembly 1 which for convenience is given a designated proximal direction P (also regarded as front) and distal direction D (also regarded as rear) in which the proximal direction P refers the rail cleaning assembly facing to (proximate) the escalator and the travelator and the distal direction D refers to a direction facing away (distal) from the escalator and the travelator . The embodiment of the rail cleaning assembly now described comprises a spring arm 3 made of one continuous piece of flexible resilient material and a pair of cleaning pads, which are an upper cleaning pad 6A and a lower cleaning pad 6B. The cleaning pads 6 A and 6B and their adjustable attachment to the spring arm 3 will be later described in implemented detail.

[00043] As will be understood the point of joinder from one part to the next part of the spring arm 3 are termed points of merger or continuity of the single piece comprising the spring arm 3. The spring arm 3 has a floor plate 5 having a proximal end 7 and a distal end at a point of merger 9. Also in Figs 1 and 2 there is shown a bumper 7A defining the proximal end of the floor plate 5, the bumper being considered an optional feature. From the point of merger 9 of the distal end of floor plate 5, extends a first curvature 8 defining a vertical position adjusting curve, curving upward from the point of merger 9. terminating facing generally proximally, at an upper

6 point of merger 11 to an upper plate 13 defining a vertical adjusting arm, extending proximally from the upper point of merger 11 to a proximal end 15. From the proximal end 15 of the vertical adjusting arm 13 extends a second curvature 17 defining a radial adjusting curve, curving upwardly and distally to a point of merger 21 to an upper arm 23 defining a handrail curve adjusting arm that extends in a wide curve both upwardly and distally to an upper termination 25. The handrail curve adjusting arm 23 has a pair of spaced apart pad rocker seats, an upper pad rocker seat 27A and a lower pad rocker seat 27 B which are curved along a length axis A-A of the upper arm 23 so as to facilitate angular adjustment of cleaning pads 6A and 6B fitted to them. Mounted on the handrail curve adjusting arm 23 on the pad rocker seats 27A and 27B are the cleaning pads 6 A and 6B. The clean pads 6 A and 6B have curved bottom surfaces of common curvature with the pad rocker seats to facilitate angular adjustment. The angular adjustment is affected by a hook and loop fastener in which one component 29A and 29B is one the respective cleaning pads 6A and 6B, and the other component 31 A and 31B is on the respective rocker arms 27A and 27B. A set of arrows shows how the cleaning pads are placed on and adjusted to the rocker arms.

[00044] The vertical position adjusting curve 8 and the vertical adjusting arm 13 comprise the vertical flexing portion which has a flexing path as shown by arrow V in Fig. 2. The radial curve 17 and the upper arm 23 comprise the radial flexing portion which has a flexing path as shown by arrow R in Fig. 2.

[00045] In use of the illustrated embodiment the flexing and resulting resiliency is provided at least by two of the spring arm portions operating in conjunction; the vertical position adjusting curve 8 and the radial adjusting curve 17 in which the vertical adjusting curve 8 flexes to vertically tilt the vertical adjusting arm 13 to a vertically lower position taking with it the rest of the spring arm structure and the radial adjusting curve 17 flexes to tilt the upper arm 23 downward. It is also helpful, but not essential that the upper arm 23 be able to flex, or at least be available to flex, thereby providing a third flexing portion of the spring arm 3 to operate in conjunction. Such flexing of the upper arm 23 is designated by the dotted arrow U in Figs. 2 and 4. It is then appreciated that upon being flexed to a fitting posture to facilitate positioning to a

7 handrail and then released, the resilience of the remaining degree of flexure will operate to provide pressing of the cleaning pads against the handrail for effective cleaning action.

[00046] Although this embodiment has a spring arm of a single continuous piece, it is understood that it can be made of separate pieces and in such case the flexing and resilience of the pieces can be selected for action to accomplish the flexing in which case a supply of varied pieces can be made to make the system more exactly measured to engage a particular escalator and travelator newel. Also, the cleaning pads can be adjustably fitted to the spring arm by other means such as mechanical fasteners.

[00047] Fig. 3 shows construction of the spring arm 3 in its relaxed, unflexed shape with exemplary dimensions for fitting to a wide range of current escalators and travelators . The dimensions are approximate and can vary in a range such as 2 to 3 inches for working on a variety of escalators and travelators newel configurations. The spring arm 3 as constructed in its unstressed shape can be said to have a double reversed shape. In this it is meant that the floor plate 5 extends in a first direction from the bumper 7 distally to the first curvature 8 which reverses the direction so that the upper plate 13 extends proximally which defines a first reversed shape structure, and then the second curvature 17 reverses the direction again so that the upper arm extends distally and upwardly defining a second reversed shape structure. These are not exact reversals as can be seen, but the flexing in conjunction by the first curvature 8 and the second curvature 17, changing the directional extension makes available changes in the shape of the rail cleaning assembly 1 so as to effect positioning and adjustment of the positioning of the cleaning pads when applied to an escalator and a travelator exit assembly for cleaning the rail. In addition to the embodiment of two flexing members in which flexure is provided by the first curvature 8 and the second curvature 17, in a further embodiment having three flexing members, the upper arm 23 is itself curved in a manner to allow it to flex so that the spaced apart cleaning pads will be positioned equally to the handrail. Each embodiment also allows the cleaning pads to be angularly adjusted in the rocker seats using the hook and loop fasteners to make the adjustment so as to best match the handrail. The cleaning pad shape, construction and cleaning surface is designed to absorb liquid cleaning solutions such that the pad will provide effective

8 cleaning. The pads may thus also be used to apply treatments to the handrails such as disinfectants or protective treatments to maintain the appearance and durability of the handrails.

[00048] Fig. 4 shows the rail cleaning assembly 1 in a flexed posture exemplary of the flexing action by each of the flexing members in preparation for movement into position at a handrail. This is demonstrated by a force F pushing down on the curve adjusting arm 23 which rotates the curve adjusting arm 23 downward about the radial adjusting curve 17 (arrow R).

Also the vertical position adjusting curve 8 has been flexed downwardly (dotted arrow D) to adjust downward the vertical position adjusting arm 13 (dotted arrow V). Also, in this illustration, the upper arm 23 is considered as having flexed to a straighter posture (dotted arrow S) It will be appreciated below that in putting the rail cleaning assembly 1 into position, it is flexed so as to allow it to be put into an overly flexed posture, and then released to allow the resiliency to make the fit of the cleaning pads to the handrail with a desired amount of pressure to the handrail for effective cleaning.

[00049] In summary it can be appreciated that the spring arm allows at least two and up to three resilient flexing adjustments that function together and then with the added adjustment of the angle of the cleaning pads, to allow the spring arm assembly to adjust to the various shapes presented by the moving handrails of different construction with the residue resilience providing the force needed to press the cleaning pads into position on the handrail.

[00050] In various embodiments, the cleaning pads are an assembly that have a structural member that is shaped to fit on the handrail to be cleaned. There are in the industry different handrail dimensions, but within a fairly limited set of common variations from manufacturers. Therefore, the structural member can be made in a variety of dimensions to fit the various common handrail dimension, thereby allowing universal use by selecting the pad made for the particular handrail. The cleaning pad structural member is a semi-rigid flexible resilient material which allows it to deform when being positioned on a moving escalator and travelator handrail so as to match the cross-sectional shape of the handrail thereby giving effectively full cleaning contact to the handrail. Exemplary of such embodiment is a foam construction. The sponge-like deformability of such cleaning pads gives them the ability to distort as being installed at the

9 handrail and to reform around the handrails after installation to effectively surround the handrail portion to be cleaned. As described below, in an exemplary embodiment a covering assembly is applied to the structural member which has a cleaning surface that effects the cleaning contact to the handrail. The cleaning surface of the pads thus remains in contact on all sides of the handrail during cleaning operation, in particular, including the surfaces touched by escalator and travelator users. As the dirt is cleaned from the hand rail and transferred to the cleaning pad, the hand rail is cleaned. The cleaning pads may be removed, cleaned and reused by reattaching them to the spring arm.

The cleaning pad structure, material and shape are chosen so that the pad provides enough pressure on the sides to clean them, while the spring arm provides pressure for cleaning the flat or top portion of the hand rail.

[00051] Figs 5 and 6 show the cleaning pad structural member 41 along with exemplary dimensions intended for indicating the relative size of 5 inches wide, 5 inches long and 4 3/16 inches high. Viewed from the front or back as in Fig. 6 it presents a rectangular configuration, while the side view shape can be seen in Fig. 5. The top 43 of the cleaning pad structural member 41 has a pair of opposing entry slopes 45 A and 45B presenting an opening 47. Below the opening 47 is a wider cavity 49 shaped to receive the hand rail. At the bottom (actually the top of the handrail) of the cavity 49 is a bump 51 of selected height, such as 1/8 inch. The bump 51 provides for added cleaning pressure on the top of the handrail. The sides of the cavity 49 have a curvature to match the curvature of handrails. There is a sloped bottom 53

[00052] Referring to Figs. 7, 8, 9, 10 and 11 the cleaning pad assembly is shown. Fig. 7 shows in section the cleaning pad assembly 55 along with a typical handrail configuration 57.

The cleaning pad assembly 55 has a fabric cover 59 which is wrapped around the structural member 41. Along the top and into the cavity 49 there is a three layered cleaning action portion 61. It has an outer layer 63 of microfiber, a middle layer 65 of sponge material and a lower layer 67 of a cover material such as nylon. This triple layering will provide for good cleaning contact on the handrail and good control of cleaning liquid. Referring to Fig. 8. the fabric cover 59 has side members 71 that can have elastic ends for allowing putting it on and taking it off conveniently. The hook and loop component 29A and 29B is integrally made part of the fabric cover, curving around the bottom of the cleaning pad assembly.

10 [00053] As shown in Fig. 9, a front fabric face 73 extends down from the cleaning action portion 61 and slopes around the bottom carrying the hook and loop component 29A/29B that is used to fit onto the mating hook and loop component on the rocker seat 27A/27B.

[00054] As shown in Fig. 10, at the rear of the cleaning pad assembly, front fabric face 73 terminates and is held in place by a set of hook and loop components 75 and 77.

[00055] Also, it can be seen in Figs 9 and 10 that the cleaning action portion 61 is fitted to be sufficiently loose to allow the engagement with the handrail for good contact for cleaning.

[00056] Figs. 9 and 10 show cleaning action portion 59 loosely fitted to the shape of the structural member 41 and in the cavity so as to readily conform to the shape of the handrail.

[00057] Fig 11 shows the process of installing an embodiment of the handrail cleaning apparatus onto an escalator and a travelator in a step-by-step diagram. In first, step 47A the cleaning pad assemblies 6A and 6B are placed on the curved rocker seats 27A and 27B at a best estimated angle for engagement with the handrail of the escalator and the travelator exit newel 80. This is basically has shown in Figs. 1 and 2. In the second step 47B the spring arm is flexed downward, thereby implementing the vertical movement of vertical flexing portion and the radial movement of the radial flexing portion as explained above, to a position sufficiently lowered to be moved into position at the handrail. This is basically as shown in Fig. 4. Also, at this point the cleaning pad assemblies can be angularly adjusted. In the third step 47C the spring arm is allowed with a controlled release to have the cleaning pad assemblies be at a position closely adjacent to the handrail 57 so as to observe the angular positioning of the cleaning pad assemblies, and then if needed to further adjust them. Finally, the cleaning pads are pressed into full engagement of the handrail inside the cleaning pd space.

[00058] Figs 12 A, 12B and 12C are exemplary of different configurations of the escalator and the travelator exit assembly such that the travel of the handrail 57 takes different paths, and

11 therefore requires a different final fitted flexed configuration of the spring arm 3 of the handrail cleaning assembly 1. These different handrail paths demonstrate the how the plurality of different flexing paths cooperate to allow fitting to numerous if not every possible reasonably designed handrail path.

[00059] A full cycle or rotation of a single-story escalator typically takes about one minute. Most escalator handrails, however, will require multiple cleaning rotation cycles. During use of the apparatus, an initial restorative cleaning may require multiple cleaning cycles and multiple cleaning pads for effective cleaning of accumulated dirt. After cleaning by the apparatus, a conditioning solution can be applied with the device cleaning pads to improve the handrails aesthetics, and to protect them against UV light degradation or oxidation. The apparatus may also be used to apply a disinfectant, antibacterial or sterilization solution to the hand rail to reduce bacteria, germs, viruses and other potential pathogens.

[00060] In various embodiments, a variety of cleaning, conditioning and disinfection solutions may be offered and utilized with the device, some with potential long term

antimicrobial additives for longer term benefits. Virtually any liquid solution can be used or applied with this device.

[00061] In alternate embodiments, the spring arm may be constructed of plastic, spring metal, fiberglass or a mechanical spring. Alternative embodiments are shown in Figure 13 and 14 with a single and triple bend of in the spring arm. Various configurations are possible that can hold one or more cleaning pads against the moving handrails with an appropriate amount of pressure while the handrails move through the cleaning pads.

[00062] Various embodiments are available for removably attaching the cleaning pads to the spring arm. For example, mounting prongs may be formed directly of the spring arm or attached to it that allow the cleaning pads to mount to the spring arm by sliding between the mounting prongs. Various mounting configurations may be utilized without the bent spring arm system that still allow for angle adjustability.

12 [00063] In alternative embodiments, the cleaning pads may have incorporated angles in their structure which allow for angle adjustability. Alternatively, the pads may be provided with accessory separate and removable wedge components of various wedge angles which provide a foam base that allows for the cleaning pads to flex or compress into better alignment with the handrail.

[00064] In alternative embodiments, the cleaning pads may be provided in the apparatus with various configurations. In one configuration, a single piece design is provided which includes a permanently mounted cleaning surface, such as a microfiber surface. In another version, the cleaning surface material in wrapped or slid onto the cleaning pad in a sock-like configuration, where the cleaning material may be removed for cleaning and reuse.

[00065] In alternative embodiments, the cleaning pads may be constructed of just sponge material without the addition of a microfiber cover or integrated surface. The use of sponge alone is a simpler configuration and may also effectively clean the handrails.

[00066] In alternative embodiments, newly developed cleaning materials may be utilized instead of the microfiber material.

[00067] In an alternate embodiment, a paper based, disposable, or pre-saturated removable cleaning cloth or material may be mounted onto the cleaning pads. A pre-moistened product similar to“wet-naps” may be provided which are retrieved individually from a container which includes the cleaning solution. The cleaning surfaces are thus conveniently disposable and pre- conditioned with cleaner.

[00068] In alternative embodiments, the rocker mounting structure may be configured according to the other mounting methods discussed above. The cleaning pad may also utilize a hard base, such as plastic to mount to the spring arm mechanically. In these embodiments, the cleaning pads may use a mechanical link such as an adjustable snap-lock, channel, track, hinge or glide system. Each of these alternative mechanical connection methods allow the cleaning pad to pivot into alignment with the handrail.

13 [00069] In various embodiments, the number of cleaning pads is variable. In various alternative embodiments, a single larger of several smaller cleaning pads may be utilized in conjunction with the spring arm.

[00070] In an alternate embodiment, the cleaning pad construction may be molded from a flexible plastic or foam materials.

[00071] In various configurations, the system and apparatus may be used as just a cleaning device, as a conditioning device, or as a disinfectant apparatus.

[00072] Further alternative embodiments address points for improved functioning in the evolution of this technology. Those further embodiments are now described with reference to Figs 14-33.

[00073] One of the alternative embodiments is in the configuration for the vertical positioning. In that respect as described above the vertical positioning is considered to be largely derived from flexing of the first curvature 8 defined as a vertical position adjusting curve. That allows the upper plate 13, defined as a vertical adjusting arm to be tilted downward, mostly because of the flexing of the first curvature 8. However it is now found desirable to lower the upper plate 13 by reducing the height that the first curvature 8 takes. In addition it has been found desirable to increase the size of the radial adjusting curve 17. These changes allow the rail cleaning assembly 1 to have wider range of adjustability with less variation in the forces exerted and also to allow better fit to lower handrails.

[00074] It has also been found that in some configurations of the fit of the cleaning pads to the handrail a vibration occurs which is focused on a vibration of the first curvature 8. The alternative embodiment adopted for relieving this malfunction is to fix a strut in place on the first curvature 8 and the floor plate 5. This then mediates flexing of the first curvature 8 rendering it rigid rather than flexible. Thus in this embodiment the first curvature no longer functions as an adjusting curve to cause the upper plate (upper plate 13) to dip downwards. Instead as the device

14 is pushed into its action position of the pads into cleaning contact with the handrail, the vertical downward flexing of the upper plate brings about the vertical adjustment of the spring arm.

[00075] Another alternative embodiment in improving the technology resides in how the pads are designed and how they are made adjustable and how they are fixed in place for resolving forces upon them from the handrail movement and for improved cleaning action. That new technology resides in a first instance, in how the pads are fixed to the handrail adjusting arm. The new embodiment uses a slot in the handrail adjusting arm through which a bolt extends from the bottom of the pad and is then tightened into position by a tightening nut; a tapped star knob is convenient for this. This feature gives convenient adjustment and rigid holding.

[00076] A further adjustment of how the pads are held in place comes from observing that the forces on the pads from engagement with the handrail tends to provide a force that pulls the pad toward the direction of movement of the handrail which can result in a lifting or rotational force on the rear of the pad away from the arm. To overcome this the pad mounting adjustment is to have the bolt extending from the bottom of the pad a selected angle relative to a center line of the pad so as to exit the bottom of the pad behind the center line. The slot then has a rearward extent in the curvature of the rocker arm seat so that the bolt can be fixed in that location of the rocker arm seat. That then has the pad firmly held in place by the bolt against any force that tends to pull it away from the arm. This then secures the pad against any lifting or rotation of the pad away from the arm because the bolt toward the rear of the pad prevents that. Thus the pads are held in place firmly notwithstanding uneven forces imposed by the handrail.

[00077] The alternative embodiments are now described with reference to Figures 14-33. In the following explanation numbers are selected (e.g. 1 and 100, and 3 and 103) to allow ready comparison of the alternative embodiments with parts in Figs. 1-13, but not necessarily having the same configuration and/or function. In some cases the description of a part differs from its otherwise corresponding part due to a change in configuration and/or a change in its function. This is particularly the case for the newly described alternative embodiments. In some cases the name of the corresponding part is the same and in some cases the name is different.

[00078] Fig. 14 shows an exemplary structure of an alternative embodiment of the spring arm 103, with exemplary dimensions. It is noted that while the dimensions are in decimal form, it is not intended that decimal precision or tolerance be understood or applied.

15 [00079] Figs. 14 and 15 shows an alternative embodiment of a rail cleaning assembly 100 comprising a spring arm 103, a strut 200 and an upper or distal cleaning pad 106A and a lower or proximal cleaning pad 106B. The spring arm 103 is comprised of a floor plate 105 (also referred to as a floor resting plate) having a proximal end 107 and a distal end 109 at a point of merger to a first curvature 108. From the distal end 109 of the floor plate 105 extends the first curvature 108 curving upward and concave toward the proximal direction where it merges at 111 with a vertical adjusting arm 113 which extends proximally and angled upwardly which ' serves to provide resilient flexing for vertical positioning of its proximal end 115 where it merges with a second curvature 117 defining a radial adjusting curve 117, curving upwardly and concave toward the distal direction to a point of merger 121 to an upper arm 123 defining a handrail adjusting arm that extends both distally and angled upwardly to a distal upper termination 125. Cleaning pads 106 A and 106B are mounted spaced apart on the upper arm 123 and angled, adjustably to each fit on the handrail to be cleaned. Thus the positioning of the pads 106A and 106B is accomplished by the flexing of the vertical adjusting arm 113 and the radial adjusting curve 117 working, each independently but together providing positioning of the pads onto the handrail and with the resilient flexing providing a force pushing them into cleaning pressure of the handrail. It is also understood that the upper arm 123 can contribute flexing for the fit of the pads to the handrail.

[00080] For purposes of mediating vibration of the first curvature 108 that curvature is rendered rigid, that is, unable to flex, by rendering it inflexible. This can be done in a number of ways by applying to the curve a stiffening appliance that will keep it from flexing. One exemplary stiff appliance is a strut 200 fitted and fixed in place against the concave side of the first curvature 108 and also on the floor plate 105. The exemplary fixing is by screws 202 (countersunk) as seen in Fig. 17. However alternative structure can be adopted to the same result which is to render the first curvature 108 rigid and not able to flex, so as to prevent it from vibrating, by a flex blocking element. In such structure the item 108 does not have to be curved but rather any selected shape serves to provide vertical elevation to the flexible vertical adjusting arm, therefore it will be generically called a vertical elevation member.

[00081] Now reference is called to Figs. 14, 16, 17, 18 and 19. The handrail adjusting arm 123 has one or more pad mounting locations to which are removably fixed a cleaning pad. In the exemplary embodiment, there are two pad mounting locations defined by spaced apart pad

16 rocker seats which have a curvature which is concave and facing proximally (toward the handrail). As shown, the exemplary embodiment has a pair of spaced apart pad rocker seats, an upper (or distal) pad rocker seat 127A and a lower (or proximal) pad rocker seat 127B which are curved along a length axis A-A of the upper arm 123 (also called the handrail adjusting arm) so as to facilitate angular adjustment of cleaning pads 106A and 106B when being fitted to them. Mounted on the handrail adjusting arm 123 on the rocker seats 127A and 127B are the cleaning pads 106 A and 1066B. The cleaning pads 106 A and 106B have curved bottom surfaces of common curvature with the pad rocker seats to facilitate angular adjustment. The cleaning pads will be further described below.

[00082] The angular adjustment of the cleaning pads on the handrail adjusting arm is facilitated by a fastener 130 (see Figs 18 - 24)that extends from the bottom of the cleaning pads and extends through a slot in the pad rocker seats to be held tightly in place by a threaded retaining piece. This will be further detailed below.

[00083] Each of the pad rocker seats 127 A and 127B has a slot 129 A and 129B

respectively, extending along the length axis A-A. The slots then accept the fastener 130 extending from the bottom of the cleaning pads and through the slots, when they will be mounted on the pad rocker seats. Angular positioning of the cleaning pad is allowed to a selected angle by fixing the fastener 130 at a selected angular location in the slot, in order to have the cleaning pad set at a correct angle to engage the handrail. As seen in Figs. 14 - 18 the extent of the slots allows for a range of angular positioning AP of about 50 degrees when the slot is configured to commence at about the bottom of the curvature, designated C, of the pad rocker seats and to end at E proximate to the upper end of the curvature, designated R. Nevertheless, while this is considered a controlling angular positioning to accomplish the purpose of obviating pulling or rotational force on the pads, it can be understood that the slots could extend well or completely into the lower curvature of the pad rocker seat because it is in the control of the user to select the appropriate angle. Thus the more limited extend provides a control against incorrect angular fixing of the bolt through the pad rocker seats

[00084] The structure of the pad rocker seats and the pads is made so as to accomplish two results. First, to correctly align the cleaning pad for effective cleaning contact with handrail and second to mediate against movement of the handrail across the pad from imposing any unbalanced force on the pad such as pulling it away from the pad rocker seat in the upper part of

17 the pad. In this second respect it is now appreciated that the dragging effect of the handrail on the cleaning pad can impose a rotation on the cleaning pad which causes the rear of the cleaning pad to be pulled up from its installed position at the pad rocker seat. These purposes are

accomplished by having the slots 129A and 129B in each pad rocker seat 127A and 127B respectively, extend from an inner end 130A and 130B to an outer end 132A and 132B along the axis A-A. In this it is considered that the pad rocker seat curves from its center C to a forward (proximal) curvature portion designated F and a rear (distal) curvature portion designated R each curvature portion extending in an upward curve from the center C as the bottom of the curvature. As shown, in the exemplary embodiment, the slots 129 A and 129B occupy the upper curvature portion R. The starting point of the slots can be at the center C of the curvature of the pad rocker seat; this location is not understood as being highly precise, it could start about 1/4 to 1/2 inch forward (proximally) of the center. It can be understood, that the slots can also extend fully forwardly of the center because the desired effect of the mounting is in the selected position of the fastener through the slot. It is considered that it should not start much short of the center line, about 1/4 inch tolerance. The slot then proceeds along the rocker seat in the upper (distal) direction and to an end point at E, having a length of about 2 to 2 1/2 inches. In an alternative way of measuring it assuming the pad rocker seat curvature is circular, as comprehending an angle from its forward starting point F of about 50 degrees to its upper end point R plus or minus about 10 degrees.

[00085] Referring to Figs. 18 and 19 there is shown how the cleaning pads 106A and 106B are installed and Fig. 15 shows the final full assembly of the handrail cleaning assembly 100. In Fig. 18 the spring arm is in the unflexed ready to use status, showing the available vertical flexing at V of vertical adjusting arm 113 and the available radial flexing at R for the radial adjusting curve 117. Also shown are the slots 129A and 129B. Also shown is the angle off vertical (OV) of the fastener 130 relative to a vertical axis VA of pads 106A and 106B, which in this exemplary illustration is about 20 degrees; the tightening nut 205 threaded to the bolt 130 is as exemplary, a knob nut such as a tapped star nut of commonly known form.

[00086] Fig. 19 shows the vertical adjusting arm 113 having flexed downward along the line V indicating how vertical positioning occurs and the radial adjusting curve 117 showing its line of flexing R thereby showing each in a flexed resilient position which will then ready the handrail cleaning assembly 100 for being put into place. As will be understood, the readying

18 flexed position is of greater flexing than will be in effect when the handrail cleaning assembly is in cleaning position on a handrail. In that readying flexed position, the assembly is moved into a readying adjustment position in which the pads are not yet pushed into cleaning contact with the handrail. At that position any needed adjustment of the pads for correct orientation to the handrail is effected; and then the assembly is released and if needed pushed into position in which the pads are in cleaning position on the handrail,

[00087] Figs 20-22 show the cleaning pad 106 (shown as 106A and 106B) detail. The cleaning pad structural member 141 along with exemplary dimension intended for indicating the relative size of (while dimensions are shown in decimal form, it is not intended to define them in decimal precision or tolerance) 5.50 inches wide, 5 inches long and 4.40 inches high. Although it is made of one piece, for convenience there is designated an upper portion 202 and a lower or bottom portion 204. The upper portion 202 is configured to engage the handrail. It has a pair of opposing entry slopes 145A and 145B presenting an opening 147. Below the opening 147 is a wider cavity 149 shaped to receive the handrail. The sides of the cavity 149 have a curvature to match the curvature of the handrails with contact to effect cleaning

[00088] . The bottom portion 204 has a curved bottom 151, the curvature matching the curvature of the pad rocker seats 129 A, 129B, the curves being circular so as to permit angular adjustment of the pads on the pad rocker seats. On each side of the bottom portion 204 there is a lip 153 (best seen on Fig. 21). The lips 153 establish and maintain orientation of the pads in alignment to the axis A-A. The fastener 130 is shown extending at an angle OV (out of vertical), in the range of about 20 degrees.

[00089] Figs. 23 - 24 show the cleaning pads 106 fully assembled with a removable, discardable/reusable cleaning cloth 155. In Fig. 23, the cleaning cloth 155 is shown in section installed over the cleaning pad structural member 141. Fig 25 shows the cleaning pad 106 in section with the structural member 141 and the cleaning cloth 155, and in a relative position for engagement to a handrail 160 in section. An exemplary cleaning cloth 155 will have a microfiber surface 156.

[00090] Fig 26 shows the process of installing an embodiment of the handrail cleaning apparatus onto an escalator and a travelator in a step-by-step diagram. In first step-l50A, the cleaning pad assemblies 106 A and 1066B are placed on the curved rocker seats 127 A and 127B at a best estimated angle for engagement with the handrail of the escalator and the travelator exit

19 newel 180. This is basically shown in Fig. 18. In the second step 150B the spring arm 113 is flexed downward, thereby implementing the vertical movement of vertical flexing portion 123 and the radial movement of the radial flexing portion 117 as explained above, to a position sufficiently lowered and angularly adjusted to be moved into position at the handrail 157. This is basically as shown in Fig. 19. Also, at this point the cleaning pad assemblies can be angularly adjusted for the optimal coordinated fit to the handrail 157. In the third step 150C the spring arm is placed into applied engagement with the handrail to commence cleaning. This is allowed with a controlled release of the spring arm and if needed a pushing action such that the cleaning pads are pressed into full engagement of the handrail inside the cleaning pad space 149 (see Fig. 20).

[00091] While Fig. 26 shows an exemplary newel configuration, there are other configurations, and it is appreciated that the spring arm is configured to fit to engage for cleaning such other newel configurations. In that respect, Figs 27, 28 and 29 are illustrative of the handrail cleaning assembly actively applied to different newel configurations.

[00092] Fig. 30 is a front view of the spring arm 103. Fig. 31 is a perspective view looking from the bottom, forwardly, of the spring arm 103. Fig. 32 is perspective, view looking from the top, rearwardly, of the spring arm 103.

[00093] Fig. 33 is an overlay view of the spring arm 3 and the spring 103 as each being described above.

[00094] What has been described herein is considered merely illustrative of the principles of this invention. Accordingly, it is well within the purview of one skilled in the art to provide other and different embodiments within the spirit and scope of the invention.

20