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Title:
PACKAGING WITH SYSTEM FOR MONITORING ITS USE
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2020/208834
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
The invention relates to a method for detecting the use of a device by: calculating a first averaged pressure value by averaging the pressure over a selected period of time; storing the averaged pressure value in a memory (80); calculating a second averaged pressure value by averaging the pressure over a second selected period of time; calculating a difference between the first averaged pressure value and the second averaged pressure value; and providing a signal if the difference reaches a pre-determined threshold value.

Inventors:
NICOLAS ALEXANDRE (JP)
VELLEMAN DAMIEN (JP)
BLAKSLEY CARL (JP)
Application Number:
PCT/JP2019/016392
Publication Date:
October 15, 2020
Filing Date:
April 10, 2019
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
OREAL (FR)
NICOLAS ALEXANDRE (JP)
VELLEMAN DAMIEN (JP)
BLAKSLEY CARL (JP)
International Classes:
G01L19/00; A45D34/04; B05B11/00; G01L19/08; G01L19/14
Foreign References:
CN208388068U2019-01-18
US8499970B22013-08-06
KR101447558B12014-10-15
CN204433340U2015-07-01
GB2511598A2014-09-10
US20190015856A12019-01-17
GB2548551A2017-09-27
US8217669B12012-07-10
CN106546313A2017-03-29
FR1656066A2016-06-29
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
MURAYAMA, Yasuhiko et al. (JP)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1. A cosmetic packaging and distribution device extending along a longitudinal axis X comprising at least:

a container (30) of cosmetic product;

a pump distribution system coupled to said container (30) and comprising an air intake hole (31) configured to allow a pressure equilibrium when the pump system is actuated,

characterized by the fact that it further comprises

a pressure sensor (105) located under the container (30) and capable of monitoring a pressure within the container (30) and providing a signal representative of the monitored pressure;

a memory (80) for storing pressure related values;

a processor (75) in operable communication with the pressure sensor (105) and the memory (80), the processor (75) being programmed to receive signals from the pressure sensor (105) , to calculate a measured pressure value from the signals received and to store the measured pressure value in the memory (80), the processor (75) being also programmed to compare the measured pressure value with a predetermined registered pressure value and to provide a signal if the difference between the measured pressure value and the predetermined registered pressure value reaches a predetermined threshold.

2. A device according to claim 1, characterized by the fact that the air intake hole (31) passes through a bottom wall (32) of the container (30), to allow a pressure equilibrium when the pump is pushed.

3. A device according to any of the preceding claim, characterized in that the processor, the memory (80) and the pressure sensor (105) are embedded on an electronic card (220) located on a cup (40) under the bottom wall (32) of the container (30).

4. A device according to any of the preceding claim, characterized in that the pressure sensor (105) is placed in front of the air intake hole (31) to capture a depression each time the pump is pushed.

5. A device according to any of the preceding claims, characterized by the fact that the processor (75) is in communication with an information system of a company (100), and the signal is communicated to the information system (100) for dissemination to at least one operational person of the company (100).

6. A device according to any of the preceding claims, characterized by the fact that it comprises a movement sensor (245) to detects movement of the distribution system, the movement sensor (245) comprising an accelerometer.

7. A method for detecting the use of a device comprising a container (30) of cosmetic product;

the device comprising a container (30) of cosmetic product;

a pump distribution system coupled to said container (30) and comprising an air intake hole (31) configured to allow a pressure equilibrium when the pump system is actuated

the method comprising:

- calculating a measured pressure value from signals received from a pressure sensor (105),

- storing the measured pressure value in a memory (80),

- comparing the measured pressure value with a predetermined registered pressure value, and

- providing a signal if the difference between the measured pressure value and the predetermined registered pressure value reaches a predetermined threshold.

8. The method of claim 7, characterized by the fact that providing the signal provides an indication that the container (30) empties.

9. The method of claim 7 or 8, characterized by the fact that it further comprises the step of synchronizing the calculated pressure with a movement of a pump mechanism (222) that causes the cosmetic product flow out of the container (30).

Description:
DESCRIPTION

PACKAGING WITH SYSTEM FOR MONITORING ITS USE

TECHNICAL FIELD

The present invention relates to a packaging with embedded electronics for monitoring its use.

More precisely, the present invention relates, among these packaging, to these which comprise a container of liquid, a liquid delivery system such as a standard airless pump packaging and a unit treatment for monitoring the use of the packaging in real life situation.

BACKGROUND ART

In US 8 217 669, it is disclosed a packaging with an environmentally sensitive product. The packaging comprises a degradation sensor that is arranged on the outer surface of a container in order to be in communication with the environmentally sensitive product, in case the packaging breaks. The degradation sensor comprises a polymeric matrix, conductive filler particles and a control agent selected to affect the rate of an environmentally affected reaction of said degradation sensor.

In CN106546313, it is disclosed a cosmetic or pharmaceutical container comprising a load cell with a load sensor located at the bottom of the container body for measuring the weight of a product within the container. A communication module connected to the load cell, for sending load information to a terminal associated with the containers, is also included in the container. The quantity of product used is related to the measured weight of remaining product in the container. When the threshold for use of the article exceeds a reference threshold, that might be determined by a doctor, an alert message information is sent to the user for warning.

FR 1656066 discloses a cosmetic device for automatically distributing a sun care product when the device is sufficiently close to the skin of a user. The device comprises a pressurized container equipped with a dispensing valve of product actuated by an actuating system of the valve, a distribution system, a sensitive sensor detecting the grip of the device, a distance sensor designed to measure the distance between the head of distribution and body surface and a treatment unit.

SUMMARYOF INVENTION

The present invention aims to monitor or record the usage of a packaging.

The invention aims to count the number of uses of the packaging, such as the number of pushes applied on the pump.

The invention aims to measure the motion of the packaging during its life.

The invention aims to track the use of a packaging.

The invention aims to follow the rest time of the packaging.

The invention is to monitor how the cosmetic product is usage in a real life context without a specific intervention from the user, knowing that the amount use and the frequency of use are essential information that can affect the product performance perceived by the user.-

According to a first of its aspects, the invention provides a cosmetic packaging and distribution device extending along a longitudinal axis X comprising at least:

a container of cosmetic product;

a pump distribution system coupled to said container and comprising an air intake hole configured to allow a pressure equilibrium when the pump system is actuated, further comprising:

a pressure sensor located under the container and in communication with the container through the air intake hole, the pressure sensor being capable of monitoring a pressure in the container and providing a signal representative of the monitored pressure; a memory for storing pressure related values;

a processor in operable communication with the pressure sensor and the memory, the processor being programmed to receive signals from the pressure sensor, to calculate a measured pressure value from the signals received and to store the measured pressure value in the memory, the processor being also programmed to compare the measured pressure value with a predetermined registered pressure value and to provide a signal if the difference between the measured pressure value and the predetermined registered pressure value reaches a predetermined threshold.

The invention is of significance during clinical study when usage of a product has an impact on the results of the study. This allows to ensure the proper usage of the product during the period of evaluation. It renders possible to control how many times a day, a week, a month or more, a person has made use of the product.

The apparatus may comprise a user interface, for example a screen as a tactile screen.

The device according to the invention is of high interest for the monitoring of clinical tests.

It is to be noted that the device according to the invention is free of dip tube.

The device according to the invention detects a pressure change as a person presses the pump. This change relates to the change of pressure inside the devise, also into the container. Of course, it is not an environmental change of pressure.

The measured pressure is compared to a registered threshold pressure.

Preferably, the frequency of data acquisition is high.

Preferably, it is not necessary to reload a battery for the device according to the invention but the size or the capacity of the battery can be chosen according the intended use.

A further advantage of the device according to the invention is that the sensor, the memory and the processor might be reusable for another device when a first device is empty or already used.

The predetermined threshold can be 0 or any other value preferably close to 0. The invention also provides according to another of its aspect a method for detecting the use of a device comprising a container of cosmetic product;

the device comprising a container of cosmetic product;

a pump distribution system coupled to said container and comprising an air intake hole configured to allow a pressure equilibrium when the pump system is actuated the method comprising:

- calculating a measured pressure value from signals received from a pressure sensor,

- storing the measured pressure value in a memory,

- comparing the measured pressure value with a predetermined registered pressure value, and

- providing a signal if the difference between the measured pressure value and the predetermined registered pressure value reaches a predetermined threshold.

The process according to the invention appeals to a simple way of controlling the use of a device, just by following the pressure variation.

Preferably, the method providing the signal provides an indication that the container empties, to inform the user.

More preferably, the method further comprises the step of synchronizing the calculated pressure with a movement of a pump mechanism that causes the cosmetic product flow out of the container. The method is even more precise.

According to an advantageous embodiment of the invention, a specific integrated electronic board which dimension is smaller than the base of the packaging can be placed under the packaging and displaced so that pressure sensor faces a hole to equilibrate the pressure in the packaging. This structure enables the processor to accurately measure the depression consecutive the push on the distribution system, such as a pump. An electronic board can be fitted with a memory to record the measurement. The data recorded can be either retrieved at proximity to the system, in the home of the user or after the study being conducted.

In accordance with preferred embodiments, the device preferably communicates with an external computer network, which may be by wired (e.g., USB) connection but preferably is wireless (WiFi, Bluetooth, etc.). In preferred embodiments, the device communicates wirelessly to an external network and also to a companion device such as a smartphone, tablet, notebook computer or other computing device.

According to further advantageous aspects of the invention, the device comprises one or several of the following features taken in isolation or in any technically possible combinations:

- The air intake hole passes through a bottom wall of the container, to allow a pressure equilibrium when the pump is pushed. Thanks to this location, the

measurements are more precise.

- The processor (CPU), the memory and the pressure sensor are embedded on an electronic card located on a cup under the bottom wall of the container.

- The pressure sensor is placed in front of the air intake hole to capture a depression each time the pump is pushed. - The processor is in communication with an information system of a company, and the signal is communicated to the information system for dissemination to at least one operational person of the company. The use of the device can be controlled remotely.

- The device comprises a movement sensor to detect movement of the distribution system, the movement sensor comprising an accelerometer. The position of the device can be registered. The device can also comprise further sensor, such as an angular sensor, a light sensor, a thermal sensor to give even more accurate information.

The invention will be understood better from reading the following detailed description of non-limiting exemplary embodiments thereof and from studying the appended drawing.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Fig. 1 is a schematic block diagram of one embodiment of a pump controller capable of being programmed to carry out the present invention.

Fig. 2 depicts a disassembled device according to the invention with a standard airless pump and an extra attachment.

Fig. 3 depicts a bottom of the container of the device of Fig. 2.

Fig. 4 depicts the extra attachment of Fig. 2.

Fig.5 depicts the inferior part of a device according to the invention.

DESCRIPTION OF EMBODIMENTS

Hereinafter, details of the embodiments are described.

Generally, as shown in Fig. 1, the device according to the invention, such as a pump device, includes a controller 70 configured or programmed to control the operation of the pump. Such controllers typically include a microprocessor 75, a memory 80 associated with the microprocessor 75, one or more inputs 85 for inputting signals to the microprocessor, and one or more outputs 90 for outputting signals from the microprocessor.

The controller 70 may also be in communication with other systems, such as an information system or other such systems using an input/output communications port 92 and a communication means 95. The input/output communications port 92 may be any port configured to send and receive data using appropriate communication protocols.

For example, the input/output communications port 92 may be a serial port, a parallel port, a USB, or other suitable port. It will also be understood that the input 85 and the output 90 may be combined in such a manner that all signals to and/or from the processor are communicated through one or more input/output ports 92, rather than through separate inputs and outputs.

The communication means 95 may be a wireless connection to another computer, a local area network, a wide area network, a telephone line to a remote server or client system, or the Internet. The communication means may include specialized connection devices for connecting to optical fiber, coaxial cable, Ethernet cabling, or other communication lines. Alternatively, wireless connections may be used, which may also include the use of suitable transmitters and receivers as is known in the art. Such wireless connectivity may include use of infrared, RF, Bluetooth 245 or WiFi communication means and the like. Additionally, the microprocessor 75 is commonly programmed using either embedded programming instructions or suitable software so that the

microprocessor can carry out the tasks desired of it.

In one embodiment of the system and method of the present invention, the microprocessor 75 is capable of receiving signals from a pressure sensor 105 through the input 85 (typically an amplifier and A/D converter). The pressure sensor 105 monitors the pressure in the container of the pump device and provides signals representative of the sensed pressure within the container to the microprocessor 75. The microprocessor 75 is programmed using appropriate software or embedded commands to analyze the signals received from the pressure sensor 105. After analysis of the received upstream pressure signals is completed, the processor may output a signal through the output 90.

The output signal may be directed to a display 120 to inform an operator of the status of the pump device. This display may also include a means of providing a visual alert, such as a flashing display, blinking light, or a change in text color on the display to alert an operator that the pump requires attention because it has been in a rest state for a too long time or because it is used too many times a day for example.

The output signal may also be directed to an alert module 125. This alert module may be a separate module of the processor 75 that is controlling the pump device. The alert module 125 may be configured to provide visual, auditory, or a combination of visual and auditory notifications to alert that attention must be given to the pump device.

The alert module 125 may also provide signals representing the progress of pump device to a database where the information is stored for later inspection and analysis.

In another embodiment, the microprocessor 75 may also be configured to receive signals from a pump sensor 110 through the input 85. In this embodiment, the processor 75 may monitor the function of the pump, collecting, analyzing, and storing information related to the use, such as, for example, the start time and completion time of the product. This information may be stored in the memory 80 for later retrieval and analysis, or the information may be communicated to another, remote, system using the communication means 95 to the information system 100.

Fig.2 illustrates a device according to the invention before the assembly of the extra attachment 250 with electronic board 220 on a standard airless pump packaging 260. The standard airless pump packaging comprises a cylindrical container 30 closed by a bottom wall 32 at its inferior end and by a pump distribution system at its superior end. An extra attachment with electronic board is mounted under the bottom of the standard airless packaging.

Fig. 3 shows the air intake hole 31 performed on the bottom of the container 30 to allow pressure equilibrium when the pump is pushed. Thanks to this hole 31, the pressure sensor 105 can detect the pressure into the container 30 although it is not displaced into the container 30. With this arrangement, the sensor is kept clean and functional.

Fig. 4 shows the extra attachment of figure 12 comprising the electronic board displaced on a cup 40. The electronic board 220 comprise a CPU, a memory 80, a blue tooth module, a pressure sensor 105 and possibly, other sensor, such as a movement sensor 245.

Fig. 5 shows the inferior part of the device according to the invention when the standard airless pump package is assembled with the extra attachment. In this

configuration, the pressure sensor 105 is placed in front of the air intake hole 31 to capture a depression created every time the pump is pushed.

Hereinafter, additional aspects of the embodiments which may be independently implemented or implemented in combination with other aspects/embodiments are described.

According to a first of additional aspects, a cosmetic packaging and distribution device extending along a longitudinal axis X is provided, and the device comprises at least:

a container of cosmetic product;

a pump distribution system coupled to said container and comprising an air intake hole configured to allow a pressure equilibrium when the pump system is actuated, further comprising:

a pressure sensor located under the container and in communication with the container through the air intake hole, the pressure sensor being capable of monitoring a pressure in the container and providing a signal representative of the monitored pressure; a memory for storing pressure related values;

a processor in operable communication with the pressure sensor and the memory, the processor being programmed to receive signals from the pressure sensor, to calculate a measured pressure value from the signals received and to store the measured pressure value in the memory, the processor being also programmed to compare the measured pressure value with a predetermined registered pressure value and to provide a signal if the difference between the measured pressure value and the predetermined registered pressure value reaches a predetermined threshold.

The additional aspect is of significance during clinical study when usage of a product has an impact on the results of the study. This allows to ensure the proper usage of the product during the period of evaluation. It renders possible to control how many times a day, a week, a month or more, a person has made use of the product.

The device may comprise a user interface, for example a screen as a tactile screen.

The device according to the additional aspects is of high interest for the monitoring of clinical tests.

It is to be noted that the device according to the additional aspects is free of dip tube.

The device according to one of the additional aspects detects a pressure change as a person presses the pump. This change relates to the change of pressure inside the devise, also into the container. Of course, it is not an environmental change of pressure. The measured pressure is compared to a registered threshold pressure.

Preferably, the frequency of data acquisition is high.

Preferably, it is not necessary to reload a battery for the device according to the additional aspects but the size or the capacity of the battery can be chosen according the intended use.

A further advantage of the device according to the additional aspects is that the sensor, the memory and the processor might be reusable for another device when a first device is empty or already used.

The predetermined threshold can be 0 or any other value preferably close to 0. One of the additional aspects also provides with a method for detecting the use of a device comprising a container of cosmetic product;

the device comprising a container of cosmetic product;

a pump distribution system coupled to said container and comprising an air intake hole configured to allow a pressure equilibrium when the pump system is actuated the method comprising:

- calculating a measured pressure value from signals received from a pressure sensor,

- storing the measured pressure value in a memory,

- comparing the measured pressure value with a predetermined registered pressure value, and

- providing a signal if the difference between the measured pressure value and the predetermined registered pressure value reaches a predetermined threshold.

The method according to the additional aspects appeals to a simple way of controlling the use of a device, just by following the pressure variation. Preferably, the process providing the signal provides an indication that the container empties, to inform the user.

More preferably, the method further comprises the step of synchronizing the calculated pressure with a movement of a pump mechanism that causes the cosmetic product flow out of the container. The method is even more precise.

According to one of additional aspects, a specific integrated electronic board which dimension is smaller than the base of the packaging can be placed under the packaging and displaced so that pressure sensor faces a hole to equilibrate the pressure in the packaging. This structure enables the processor to accurately measure the depression consecutive the push on the distribution system, such as a pump. An electronic board can be fitted with a memory to record the measurement. The data recorded can be either retrieved at proximity to the system, in the home of the user or after the study being conducted.

In accordance with one of the additional aspects, the device preferably communicates with an external computer network, which may be by wired (e.g., USB) connection but preferably is wireless (WiFi, Bluetooth, etc.). In one of additional aspects, the device communicates wirelessly to an external network and also to a companion device such as a smartphone, tablet, notebook computer or other computing device.