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Title:
PORTABLE WASTE COLLECTION AND CLEANING DEVICE
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2017/004364
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A portable cleaning assembly is provided. The assembly comprises a body or chassis portion supported by wheels. The body portion comprises a first portion for selectively receiving a waste container or barrel, as well as a housing member for storing various features of the assembly as well as additional cleaning products and devices. The housing at least partially contains a vacuum, a motor, and a rechargeable battery for powering the motor.

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Inventors:
PYNE, Scott (200 West Stanford Avenue, Englewood, CO, 80110, US)
BEARUP, Adam (9770 W. Ohio Avenue, Lakewood, CO, 80226, US)
MCCULLOUGH, Mark (1845 Rosemary Drive, Castle Rock, CO, 80109, US)
RELPH, Lynn (4722 S. Clay Street, Englewood, CO, 80110, US)
RASMUSSEN, Michael (530 E. 20th Avenue, #5309Denver, CO, 80205, US)
GESCHWENTNER, Scott (4555 Airport Way, Denver, CO, 80239, US)
BERNATH, Jeff (4555 Airport Way, Denver, CO, 80239, US)
Application Number:
US2016/040371
Publication Date:
January 05, 2017
Filing Date:
June 30, 2016
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
KARCHER NORTH AMERICA, INC. (4555 Airport Way, Denver, CO, 80239, US)
International Classes:
A47L9/14; A47L9/28; B62B3/02; B62B3/10
Foreign References:
US20140375004A12014-12-25
US7472456B22009-01-06
Other References:
"GoCartVac®", PROTEAM, February 2015 (2015-02-01), Retrieved from the Internet [retrieved on 20160908]
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BURKE, James, M. (Sheridan Ross P.C, 1560 BroadwaySuite 120, Denver CO, 80202, US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1 . A portable cleaning assembly comprising:

a main body portion comprising a substantially horizontally extending platform for receivi g at least one waste container, and a housing comprisi g a plurality of sidewalls, at least some of said sidewalls extending perpendicularly to the horizontally extending platform;

a plurality of wheels provided on a lower portion of the main body portion to enable movement of the assembly,

a vacuum unit comprising a motor, the vacuum unit at least partially disposed within the housing,

a collection device in fluid communication with the motor for collecting materials; at least one rechargeable battery provided within the housing and electrically connected to the motor for supplying electrical power to the motor; and

wherein at least one sidewall of the housing comprises an attachment member on an exterior portion of the sidewall for selectively receiving and securing a waste container.

2. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 1, wherein the waste container comprises a plastic barrel,

3. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 1, wherein the collection device compri ses a vacuum canister in fluid communication with the motor.

4. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 1, wherein the vacuum unit comprises a lid provided proximal to an upper portion of the housing.

5. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 1, wherein the housing comprises an access panel operable to provide access to an interior of the housing.

6. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 5, wherein the access panel comprises a rear panel of the main body portion provided on an opposing side of the housing relative to the platform.

7. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 1 , further comprising an electronic control unit in communication with the rechargeable batten', and wherein the battery is operable to receive power from an external source and wherein the batter)'- is configured to power the motor and be simultaneously charged by the external source.

8. A portable cleaning assembly comprising:

a main body portion comprising a horizontally extending platform for receiving at least one waste container, and a housing comprising a plurality of sidewalls, at least some of said sidewalls extending perpendicularly to the horizontally extending platform, the housing comprising an at least partially enclosed volume;

a plurality of wheels provided on a lower portion of the main body portion to enable movement of the assembly,

a vacuum unit comprising a motor and a vacuum canister;

the motor provided within the housing;

at least one source for power provided within the housing for supplying electrical power to the vacuum unit; and

wherein the vacuum unit comprises an exhaust hose, the exhaust hose in fluid communication with the vacuum motor and an outlet of the housing.

9. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 8, wherein the source for power is a rechargeable battery.

10. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 8, wherein the source for power comprises a power cord connected to at least the motor.

11. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 8, wherein the vacuum canister is in fluid communication with the motor.

12. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 8, wherein the vacuum unit comprises a lid provided proximal to an upper portion of the housing.

13. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 8, wherein the housing comprises an access panel operable to provide access to an interior of the housing, wherein the access panel comprises a rear panel of the main body portion provided on an opposing side of the housing relative to the platform.

14. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 8, wherein the at least one source for power comprises a rechargeable batten,', and wherein the rechargeable battery is operable to receive a charge from an external power source and concurrently provide power to the motor.

15. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 8, further comprising at least one of a clip, a strap, and a cord to selectively secure the collection device to the assembly.

16. A portable cleaning assembly comprising:

a main body portion comprising a forwardly extending platform operable to receive at least one waste container, and a housing comprising a plurality of sidewalls, at least some of the sidewalls extending perpendicularly to the platform, the housing comprising an at least partially enclosed volume; a plurality of wheels provided on a lower portion of the main body portion to enable movement of the assembly;

a vacuum unit comprising a motor and a vacuum canister;

the motor provided substantially within the at least partially enclosed volume; at least one rechargeable battery provided within the housing for supplying electrical power to the vacuum unit; and

wherein the vacuum unit comprises an exhaust hose, the exhaust hose irs fluid communication with the vacuum motor and an outlet of the housing.

17. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 16, further comprising an electronic control unit provided within the housing, the electronic control unit operable to control at least one of charging the battery and operating the vacuum unit.

18. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 16, wherein the vacuum canister comprises a removable canister that operable to be removed for emptying contents of the vacuum canister.

19. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 16, further comprising at least one of a clip, a strap, and a cord to selectively secure the collection device to the assembly.

20. The portable cleaning assembly of claim 17, wherein the electronic control unit is configured to simultaneously charge the battery and provide power from the battery to the motor such that the batter}' is rechargeable in a state of use.

Description:
PORTABLE WASTE COLLECTION AND CLEANING DEVICE

This U.S. Non-Provisional Patent Application claims the benefit of priority from U.S. Provisional Patent Application Serial No. 62/186,666, filed June 30, 2015, the entire disclosure of which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety.

FIELD

The present disclosure generally relates to systems and devices for collecting waste and debris, and cleaning areas or surfaces. More specifically, embodiments of the present disclosure relate to a portable device comprising a vacuum unit and additional components for receiving waste and storing related articles.

BACKGROUND

Various known devices provide a vacuum unit in combination with a waste container, such as a trash barrel or similar feature. For example, U.S. Patent 6,058,560, which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety, discloses an assembly having a vacuum attached to a waste container. The vacuum has an inlet for attachment to a hose to allow the vacuum to be utilized in an area without having to move the assembly. U.S. Patent 6, 199,714, which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety, also discloses an assembly having a waste container housing a vacuum unit. The vacuum unit has an inlet in the bottom of the waste container for collecting swept debris and for cleaning off dustpans. These devices, however, fail to disclosure various novel features of the present disclosure. For example, in various embodiments, the present disclosure provides systems and devices comprising features for receiving and transporting a waste container, and an at least partially enclosed housing for receiving and containing a vacuum unit, a battery, and one or more control features for operation of the batten,.' and/or vacuum unit.

U.S. Patents 6,732,403, 7,979,954, 7,472,456, 2007/0186371, and 2009/0113664 to Moore et al., which are hereby incorporated by reference in their entireties, disclose various waste barrels supported by or connected to a vacuum unit, but fail to disclose various novel features of devices of the present disclosure. For example, in various embodiments, the present disclosure provides systems and devices comprising a portable system for receiving a waste container, and an at least partially enclosed portion for receiving a vacuum unit and associated features in a manner that is aesthetically pleasing and reduces or isolates noise emissions from a vacuum unit. SUMMARY

It is an object of the present disclosure to provide a mobile cleaning and waste collection device with integrated vacuum features. It is a further object of the present disclosure to provide a device comprising portable vacuum features with a power source (e.g. power cord or rechargeable batteiy), and wherein vacuum and batteiy features are at least partially contained within a housing member of the device, and wherein access and control features are provided such that they are accessible to a user. Devices and features in furtherance of these objects are shown and described herein.

In one embodiment, a cleaning assembly is provided, the cleaning assembly comprising a main body portion with a horizontally extending platform for receiving at least one waste container, and a housing compri sing a plurality of sidewalls, at least some of the sidewalls extending perpendicularly to the horizontally extending platform. A plurality of wheels is provided on a lower portion of the main body portion to enable movement of the assembly. A vacuum unit comprising a motor is also provided, the vacuum unit at least partially disposed within the housing. A collection device is provided in fluid communication with the motor for collecting materials. At least one rechargeable batteiy is provided within the housing and electrically connected to the motor for supplying electrical power to the motor. At least one sidewall of the housing comprises an attachment member for selectively receiving and securing a waste container. In certain embodiments, a power cord i s provided in addition to or in lieu of the rechargeable batteiy. Although certain embodiments contemplate either or both of a rechargeable and a disposable battery as providing power to various device features, it is also contemplated that the device may be powered directly by current from an external source (e.g. power grid). In such embodiments, a power cord is provided that may be selectively plugged into a current source (e.g. wall outlet). It is al so contemplated that embodiments comprising a rechargeable batteiy are provided with a cord for at least one of charging the batteiy and running the device and motor on current directly from an external source. Power cords of the present disclosure are contemplated as including, but are not limited to, extending cords that may selectively extend from the device and be stored substantially within the device when not in use.

In preferred embodiments, portable cleaning assemblies of the present disclosure are configured such that at least one rechargeable battery of the assembly is operable to run in a "hybrid" charging mode. For example, in certain embodiments, at least one of the battery and an electronic control unit in communication with the battery are operable to receive a charge from an external power source and charge the rechargeable battery while also being provided in a mode of use. Specifically, in certain embodiments, the batten, ' is capable of providing power to the motor while also being charged. Accordingly, devices of the present disclosure comprise vacuum units including a motor that are powered by a rechargeable battery and wherein the motor is powered by any one or more of: a battery comprising a charge that is not connected to an external power source, a batter} ' comprising a charge that is connected to an external power source, and a battery that is devoid of a charge and is connected to an external power source.

In certain embodiments, vacuum units of the present disclosure comprise at least one of a canister and a bag for receiving contents collected by the vacuum. Embodiments of the present disclosure contemplate that a fill-level indicator of a canister or bag is provided to indicate to a user or operator when the canister or bag requires emptying, in preferred embodiments, the fill-level indicator comprises a temperature sensor and a user- interface (e.g. a light or indicia). When the temperature sensor detects that a temperature of the motor exceeds a predetermined value, a user is alerted to this condition by the user- interface. The predetermined temperature value corresponds to an increase in motor temperature due to increased load on the motor that has been caused by the canister or bag reaching or exceeding a desired fill level. In alternative embodiments, a mechanical or electrical pressure switch is provided to indicate a fill-level or condition. Such switch(es) may be provided in addition to or in lieu of the temperature sensor and user-interface.

In various embodiments, devices of the present disclosure contemplate reduced machine sound levels such that the devices may be used in indoor settings with minimal impact on users and occupants (for example). In certain embodiments, a vacuum unit and an associated motor are at least partially provided within an external housing and wherein the housing provides a sound baffle to reduce noise associated with the motor and/or vacuum chamber. It is also contemplated that embodiments of the present disclosure comprise integrated sound reduction devices (e.g. muffler) within the housing. In certain embodiments, at least a portion of the housing comprise baffling, such as foam provided between sidewalls of the housing to reduce noise output. It is also contemplated that sound-conductive elements and materials of the motor known to conduct or transmit sound are isolated from additional components. Existing vacuum devices teach away from the provision of such sound-reducing and dampening features, as a critical feature of vacuum devices relates to an ability to vent heat and exhaust from the device. Embodiments of the present disclosure contemplate providing a specific exhaust path as shown and described herein, wherein a vacuum exhaust is directed from the housing. This exhaust path of various embodiments provides the ability to shield or shroud noise-producing components of the device without the negative impacts of trapping vacuum heat and exhaust, and provides for an efficient device which is also quieter than existing technologies.

In one embodiment, a portable cleaning assembly is provided that comprises a main body portion comprising a horizontally extending platform for receiving at least one waste container, and a housing comprising a plurality of sidewalls, at least some of the sidewalls extending perpendicularly to the horizontally extending platform. A plurality of wheels are provided on a lower portion of the main body portion to enable movement of the assembly. A vacuum unit comprises a motor, the vacuum unit being at least partially disposed within the housing. A collection device is in fluid communication with the motor for collecting materials. At least one rechargeable battery is provided within the housing and electrically connected to the motor for supplying electrical power to the motor, and at least one sidewali of the housing comprises an attachment member on an exterior portion of the sidewali for selectively receiving and securing a waste container.

In one embodiment, a portable cleaning assembly is provided, the assembly comprises a main body portion with a horizontally extending platform for receiving at least one waste container, and a housing comprising a plurality of sidewalls, at least some of said sidewalls extending perpendicularly to the horizontally extending platform, the housing comprising an at least partially enclosed volume, A plurality of wheels are provided on a lower portion of the main body portion to enable movement of the assembly. A vacuum unit is provided that comprises a motor and a vacuum canister. The motor is provided within the housing. At least one rechargeable battery is provided within the housing for supplying electrical power to the vacuum unit. The vacuum unit comprises an exhaust hose, the exhaust hose in fluid communication with the vacuum motor and an outlet of the housing. In various embodiments, the exhaust hose comprises a stretch or stretchable hose that does not comprise a fixed length but may expand and contract as needed for use and/or storage. In certain embodiments, on-board storage for at least one of a hose, a wand, and cleaning accessories is integrated into the device housing.

In one embodiment, a portable cleaning assembly is provided, the assembly comprising a main body portion having a forwardly extending platform operable to receive at least one waste container, and a housing comprising a plurality of sidewalls, at least some of the sidewalls extending perpendicularly to the platform, the housing comprising an at least partially enclosed volume, A plurality of wheels is provided on a lower portion of the main body portion to enable movement of the assembly. A vacuum unit is provided that comprises a motor and a vacuum canister. The motor is provided substantially within the at least partially enclosed volume. At least one rechargeable battery is provided within the housing for supplying electrical power to the vacuum unit, and the vacuum unit comprises an exhaust hose in fluid communication with the vacuum motor and an outlet of the housing.

The Summary is neither intended nor should it be construed as being representative of the full extent and scope of the present disclosure. The present disclosure is set forth in various levels of detail in the Summary as well as in the attached drawings and the Detailed Description and no limitation as to the scope of the present disclosure is intended by either the inclusion or non-inclusion of elements, components, etc. in this Summary. Additional aspects of the present disclosure will become more readily apparent from the Detailed Description, particularly when taken together with the drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The accompanying drawings, which are incorporated in and constitute a part of the specification, illustrate embodiments of the disclosed system and together with the general description of the disclosure given above and the detailed description of the drawings given below, serve to explain the principles of the disclosed system(s) and device(s).

Fig. 1 is a front perspective view of a portable waste collection device according to one embodiment of the present disclosure.

Fig. 2 is a front perspective view of the portable waste collection device of Fig. 1.

Fig. 3 is a front elevation view of the portable waste collection device of Fig. 1.

Fig. 4 is a cross-sectional side elevation view of the portable waste collection of Fig. 3, and taken about line A-A of Fig. 3.

Fig. 5 is a top plan view of a portable waste collection device according to one embodiment of the present disclosure.

Fig. 6 is a front perspective view of the portable waste collection device according to the embodiment of Fig. 5.

Fig. 7 is a rear elevation view of the portable waste collection device according to the embodiment of Fig. 5.

Fig. 8 is front perspective view of the portable waste collection device according to the embodiment of Fig. 5.

It should be understood that the drawings are not necessarily to scale. In certain instances, details that are not necessary for an understanding of the disclosure or that render other details difficult to perceive may have been omitted. It should be understood, of course, that the disclosure is not necessarily limited to the particular embodiments illustrated herein.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Fig. 1 is a front perspective view of a portable waste collection device 2 according to one embodiment of the present disclosure. As shown, the device 2 comprises a body portion 4. The body portion 4 may be formed with various materials and combinations of materials. In one embodiment, it is contemplated that the body portion 4 comprises a rotomolded plastic structure for ease of manufacturing and to provide a lightweight, portable, and durable device. The body portion 4 and various associated components are translatable and portable along a ground or floor surface at least in part due to the provision of a plurality of wheels 6 provided on or proximal to a base of the body portion 4. The body portion 4 comprises a platform 8 extending forwardly of a primary housing 10. Although the embodiment of Fig. 1 contemplates a platform 8 provided forward of the primary housing 10, at least with respect to a preferred direction of travel, the present disclosure and its various embodiments are not limited to such arrangements. Indeed, it is contemplated that the platform 8 and primary housing 10 may be provided in any number of relative spatial relationships including wherein the platform is rearward of or adjacent to a primary housing 10 with respect to a preferred direction of travel.

The platform 8 of the embodiment of Fig. 1 is provided to receive and transport a waste collection device (not shown in Fig. 1), such as a waste barrel, and wherein the waste barrel may be selectively removed from the device 2 and/or secured to the device 2. The embodiment of Fig. 1 further comprises a cradle 12 to preferably receive and at least partially secure a waste collection device in a preferred position and to prevent unintended removal or tipping of the waste collection device. Although the embodiment of Fig. 1 is shown as comprising a cradle 12 in the form of a hook or curved support, alternative embodiments of the present disclosure contemplate various features and devices for receiving and retaining a waste collection device or waste barrel. For example, in one embodiment, it is contemplated that one or more straps are provided in connection with the primary housing 10, and wherein the strap(s) may extend around and selectively secure a waste barrel. In additional embodiments, it is contemplated that the primary housing 10 comprises any one or more of hook-and-loop securing members, an adhesive device (e.g. a sticky mat), a magnet, a clamp, and an elastic securing member (e.g. bungee cord) to selectively secure a waste barrel to the primary housing 10 and/or the platform 8. In certain embodiments, at least one resilient or flexible clip is provided to secure features to the device 2.

The primary housing 10 comprises vertically extending sidewalls and an at least partially enclosed internal volume, the internal volume at least partially comprising and containing a vacuum unit 14 including a vacuum lid 16 and a vacuum chamber 18. An upper portion of the primary housing 10 further comprises at least one storage area 20 for receiving and transporting various devices including, but not limited to, cleaning supplies and tools. Preferably, at least one handle member 22 is provided proximal a rear or user end of the device 2. A vacuum wand 24 is provided and shown in a storage position wherein the wand 24 is stored for transport on the device 2. The wand 24 may be provided in fluid communication with the vacuum unit 14 via at least one hose (not shown in Fig. 1).

As further shown in Fig. 1, the device 2 comprises at least one removable panel 26 in a sidewall of the primary housing 10, and wherein at least one removable panel 26 may be removed to allow for a vacuum unit 14 to convey or supply waste or debris directly to a waste barrel provided on the platform 8. In preferred embodiments, the vacuum unit 14 and contents collected by the vacuum unit 14 are received and stored in an interior volume of the primary housing 10 and wherein the waste container is provided as a separate device that is not in communication with the vacuum unit 14 or the interior volume of the primary housing 10.

Fig. 2 is a rear perspective view of the device 2 of the embodiment shown in Fig. 1. As shown, the device 2 comprises various features as shown and described with respect to Fig. 1. Fig. 2 further depicts a waste container 28 provided in connection with the device 2, the waste container 28 comprising a plastic barrel or similar device for receiving and storing various contents. As further shown in Fig. 2, a rearward portion of the primary housing 10 comprises a plug or cord 30 extending from and in electrical communication with at least one rechargeable battery disposed within the primary housing 10. The cord 30 preferably extends from at least one outlet 31 in the rear panel of the housing 10. The cord 30 is contemplated as comprising a coiled and/or stretchable power cord for enhanced storage and cord management, particularly when the device is in use. The device 2 further comprises at least one control feature or switch 32, which comprises an on/off switch and/or any number of control features to modify power settings and other device functionality as known in the art. In certain embodiments, a removable panel 34 is provided on a rear portion of the primary housing 10 to allow for selective access to an internal volume of the primary housing 10. In certain embodiments, the removable panel 34 comprises an access point for emptying vacuum contents, servicing vacuum components, replacing a battery, and other operations that may need to be conducted within the internal volume of the primary housing 10.

In various embodiments, the panel 34 comprises a removable panel wherein an entirety of the panel 34 is removable to access features provided within the primary housing 10. In certain embodiments, the panel 34 comprises a plurality of knock-out features or smaller panels to allow selective access to particular internal features, and the ability to customize the rear panel 34 based on the particular components provided within the housing 10 and the layout thereof. Additionally, embodiments of the present disclosure provide for various vacuum exhaust flow paths wherein vacuum exhaust may be directed to any number of features of the device or simply vented outside of the device. In certain embodiments, an exhaust hose (e.g. 44 in Fig. 4) and/or vacuum exhaust flow path is directed to at least one of a battery, a circuit board, and a control feature of the device that may provide cooling.

Fig. 3 is a front elevation view of one embodiment of the present disclosure. As shown, a waste collection device 2 is provided, the device 2 comprises a plurality of wheels 6, a platform 8, a primary housing 10, a vacuum assembly 14, a wand 24 and a waste container 28 provided on the platform 8. Although Figs. 1-3 generally depict a waste container 28 of a given size and given proportions, it will be expressly recognized that the present disclosure is not limited to a waste container 28 of any particular size or arrangement. Various waste containers and other containers are contemplated for use in embodiments of the present disclosure. For example, in certain embodiments, it is contemplated that the waste container 28 comprises a water-tight container or bin adapted to receive and store various types of solids and liquids. Additionally, it is contemplated that a container may be provided for purposes other than storing or collecting waste. In certain embodiments, it is contemplated that the container 28 comprises a bin or receptacle for various items including, but not limited, cleaning tools, device, and products.

Fig. 4 is a cross-sectional elevation view taken at line A-A of Fig. 3, and showing various internal components of the depicted embodiment. As shown in Fig. 4, the device 2 comprises a primary housing 10 with an internal volume. The internal volume houses at least a portion of a vacuum unit 14 and wherein a lid 16 of the vacuum portion extends above the interior volume or is otherwise easily accessible to a user. The lid 16 preferably comprises a port for connecting to and/or receiving a vacuum hose (not shown in Fig. 4). The vacuum unit 14 comprises a chamber or canister 17 for collecting materials, the canister 17 may be provided with a removable and disposable vacuum bag, or be provided as a removable chamber for emptying contents. A vacuum motor 36 is provided, and is preferably positioned vertically below and in axial alignment with the canister 17. The motor 36 may be provided in various positions in order to accommodate space and sizing restrictions of various housing members 10. An exhaust hose 44 is provided to expel airflow from the device 2 preferably through a baffle system built into the base of the device 2 and useful for muffling sound made by the motor. A battery 42 is provided within the primary housing 10 to provide power to at least the vacuum unit 14. In preferred embodiments, the battery 42 comprises a rechargeable battery. The battery 42 is preferably connected to or provided with a cord or cable that extends or is selectively extendable from a rear panel of the device 2. The device is provided with a control board or electronic control unit 40 for controlling working functions of the device including, but not limited to, vacuum power, exhaust features, etc. A control switch 32 is provided for controlling and/or activating and deactivating power to the vacuum. A built-in charger 38 is provided for charging the battery 42. In various embodiments, at least one of the charger 38 and an electronic control unit 40 are configured to charge the battery 42 by conveying current from an external source (AC power from a wall outlet, for example) while the battery is providing electrical power to the motor 36 of the vacuum unit. Accordingly, the charger 38 and/or the control unit 40 are operable to charge the battery and/or to run the battery and motor while the battery is charging. When the battery 42 comprises a sufficient charge, the battery is operable to run the vacuum unit without the device 2 being connecting to any other power source. When the battery 42 does not comprise a sufficient charge to run the vacuum and/or when it is desirable to have the device 2 connected to an external power source, the rechargeable battery may receive a charge from an external source and wherein the battery is still operable to power the motor 36.

A rear panel 34 is provided to allow for at least partial access to system components provided within the interior volume of the primary housing 10. In various embodiments, the rear panel 34 comprises a removable panel or a door to allow for a user to access features contained within the internal volume of the primary housing 10. In alternative embodiments, the rear panel 34 comprises at least one aperture or port for accessing features within the internal volume. In the embodiment shown in Fig. 4, a vacuum arrangement is provided wherein a vacuum motor 36 is provided vertically below the vacuum canister 17 and wherein the vacuum motor 36 is operable to draw a vacuum and create a suction from an external environment into the upper portion of the canister 17 and preferably via a hose attachment on a vacuum lid 16. The vacuum motor 36 is connected to an exhaust hose 44 to convey or vent air from the vacuum motor to an exterior environment. Debris and materials drawn into the vacuum canister 17 by the vacuum force are trapped within the vacuum canister. Preferably, the vacuum canister 17 comprises at least one filter element to trap or collect debris, particulates, dust, etc. and prevent such material from simply being passed through the system and expelled through the exhaust hose 44. The filter element is preferably provided in a lower portion of the vacuum canister 17 in the embodiment provided in Fig. 4. Various known vacuum filters including, but not limited to, various FIEPA filters, bag filters, foam filters, cone filters, cartridge filters, foam sleeve filters, pleated paper filters, and various similar devices are contemplated for use within devices of the present disclosure.

As shown in Fig. 4, the exhaust hose 44 is provided between the vacuum motor 36 and a lower portion of the primary housing 10. The exhaust hose 44 is preferably connected to a port or louver in the lower portion of the primary housing 10 and is operable to expel or exhaust air from the vacuum motor 36 to an exterior environment. In alternative embodiments, the exhaust hose 44 may be connected to a side or rear portion of the primary housing 10. It is also contemplated that the exhaust hose 44 may be removed or positioned such that vented or exhausted air from the vacuum motor 36 is directed toward one or more of the battery 42, electronic control unit 40, and the charger 38 to provide cooling for on-board components of the device 2.

Fig. 5 is a top plan view of a waste collection device 2 of one embodiment of the present discourse. As shown, the device 2 comprises a waste container 28 provided on a platform or chassis. A primary housing 10 is provided rearward (with respect to a direction of travel) of the waste container 28. A vacuum unit 14 is provided in combination with the primary housing, the vacuum unit 14 comprising a wand 24 connected to a hose 25 for performing vacuum operations and transferring materials to the vacuum canister 17. In Fig. 5, a recessed storage area 20 is provided that at least partially surrounds the vacuum unit 14. The recessed storage area 20 comprises a storage area for various articles including, but not limited to, cleaning devices and tools. Handle members 22 are also provided on a user-proximal side of the device 2. The handle members 22 are contemplated as comprising a recessed area or internal volume that is further capable of storing items.

Fig. 6 is a front perspective view of a waste collection device 2. As shown in Fig. 6, the device comprises a main body portion 10 with a platform 8 extending forwardly therefrom. The platform 8 is provided with a waste collection device 28, which may comprise a known or preexisting garbage can. As shown in Fig. 6, the platform 8 preferably comprises a lip 9 extending around at least a portion of a perimeter of the platform 8. The platform 8 is also contemplated as comprising ridges, recesses, and/or raised features for receiving and at least partially securing a waste container 28 and preventing or minimizing unwanted movement and dislocation of the waste container 28.

Fig. 7 is a rear elevation view of a waste collection device 2. As shown, the device 2 comprises a vacuum wand 24 interconnected to a vacuum unit 14 by a vacuum hose 25. The vacuum wand 24 may comprise a vacuum head 50, which preferably comprises a removable device that is interchangeable between a plurality of vacuum heads 50 suitable for different cleaning operations and surfaces. A rear portion of the main body portion 10 comprises cradle 52 or similar receiving portion for the vacuum wand 24 such that the vacuum wand 24 may be stored in a position of non-use. A rear panel 34 is provided. The rear panel 34 comprises an aperture 31 from which a power cord or other connection(s) may extend. The rear panel 34 further comprises at least one control feature or switch 32, which comprises an on/off switch and/or any number of control features to modify power settings and other device functionality. In various embodiments, the rear panel 34 comprises a removable panel member. Specifically, it is contemplated that the rear panel 34 is secured to the main body portion 10 by at least one removable fastener which could include any number of known quick connect/disconnect fasteners. The at least one removable fastener comprises at least one of a screw, a bolt, a latch, a rotatable clip, and a magnet. In preferred embodiments, the panel 34 is selectively removable and allows for ease of access to internal components of the main body portion 10 as shown and described herein.

Fig. 8 is a front perspective view of a waste collection and cleaning device 2 according to one embodiment of the present disclosure. As shown, the device 2 comprises a main body portion 10 with a forwardly-extending platform 8. The platform 8 comprises a plurality of channels 11. The channels 11 are adapted to receive extensions provided on a waste collection device (not shown in Fig. 8) and at least partially secure or stabilize the waste collection device. When the platform 8 is not used to support a waste collection device, the platform 8 is adapted to operate as a general storage area or cart device for transporting various items. As shown in Fig. 8, the device 2 comprises an extension 13 provided on the platform 8. In certain embodiments, the extension 13 is adjustable or moveable to accommodate and selectively secure a plurality of waste collection devices of different shapes and sizes. A cradle 12 is provided to selectively receive a lip or handle portion of a waste collection device. Additional securing members 15 are provided and adapted to receive at least one of a waste collection device and a securing member for a waste collection device. Securing members for waste collection devices include, but are not limited to, straps, elastic cords, etc.

While various embodiments of the system have been described in detail, it is apparent that modifications and alterations of those embodiments will occur to those skilled in the art. It is to be expressly understood that such modifications and alterations are within the scope and spirit of the present disclosure. Further, it is to be understood that the phraseology and terminology used herein is for the purposes of description and should not be regarded as limiting. The use of "including," "comprising," or "having" and variations thereof herein are meant to encompass the items listed thereafter and equivalents thereof, as well as, additional items.