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Title:
PLANT FOR THE PROCESSING OF CERAMIC ARTICLES OR OBJECTS OR NATURAL STONES
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2021/074817
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A plant (1) for processing for processing heads (5), for example by means of grinding, lapping, polishing or similar, of ceramic products (9), or natural stones, comprising at least one processing head (5), provided with a plurality of tools (10), and extraction means (40, 140) interposed between the processing heads (5), said extraction means (40, 140) comprising a containment component (41, 141) and a brushing component (4, 104) in the shape of a rotating tool.

Inventors:
AVANZI MARCO (IT)
Application Number:
PCT/IB2020/059653
Publication Date:
April 22, 2021
Filing Date:
October 14, 2020
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
ANCORA SPA (IT)
International Classes:
B24B7/22; B24B29/00; B24B41/047; B24B55/02; B24B55/06
Domestic Patent References:
WO2019123134A12019-06-27
Foreign References:
EP2495074A22012-09-05
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
ZOLI, Filippo (IT)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1) Plant (1) for processing ceramic products (9), or natural stones, comprising a supporting frame (2), said frame (2) comprising holding and forward movement means (2a) according to a certain direction of forward movement (A) of ceramic products (9) or stones, said holding and forward movement means (2a) defining a resting surface (8) for the ceramic products, said plant (1) also comprising at least one processing head (5) rotating around a substantially vertical first axis (20), said at least one head (5) being provided with a plurality of tools (10) for the processing of the surfaces (11) of said ceramic products (9), said tools (10) defining a processing area for said ceramic products (9), said plant (1) also comprising extraction means (40, 140) to extract the dusts generated by the processing of said ceramic products by said plurality of tools (10), characterized by the fact that it comprises at least one brushing component (4, 104) of said ceramic products (9), mounted rotating on said frame (2) or on said at least one head (5) around a second axis of rotation (21) substantially horizontal or substantially parallel to said resting surface (8), said brushing component (4, 104) defining a processing area on the surfaces (11) of said ceramic products (9).

2) Plant (1) according to claim 1, wherein said extraction means (40, 140) are intended to perform their action at the point where the processing area of said brushing component (4, 104) is located, or at the point where an external surface of said brushing component (4, 104) is located.

3) Plant (1) according to claim 1 or 2, comprising at least one containment component (41, 141) or casing of said at least one brushing component (4, 104) adapted to partly wrap said at least one brushing component (4, 104) in such a way that the latter protrudes lower than said containment component (41, 141) for the engagement of said ceramic products, said extraction means (40, 140) being in fluidic communication with the area delimited by said at least one containment component (41, 141) so as to extract the dust dragged by said at least one brushing component (4, 104) inside said at least one containment component (41, 141). 4) Plant (1) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said at least one brushing component (4, 104) has a main body (42) as well as a series of bristles (43a, 43b) extending with respect to said main body (42) and unwinding along a direction, e.g. in a spiral pattern, around said external cylindrical surface (42). 5) Plant (1) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein two or more first series of bristles (43a) extend from one end of said at least one brushing component (4, 104) along the direction of the second axis of rotation (21) towards the centerline with counterclockwise or left-handed or clockwise or right-handed pattern, while two or more second series of bristles (43b) extend from the other end of the brushing component (4, 104) towards the centerline with opposite pattern with respect to the first series of bristles (43a).

6) Plant (1) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein at least two processing heads (5) are provided and wherein at least one brushing component (4, 104) is placed between two processing heads (5) or rather between the respective processing areas, so as to operate on ceramic products that have already been processed by the tools of a first head (5) and that still have to be processed by the tools of a second head (5).

7) Plant (1) according to any of the preceding claims when dependent from claim 3, wherein said extraction means (40, 140) have an extraction collector (45, 145) located above the containment component (41, 141) and wherein said containment component (41, 141) delimits an extraction slot (44) for the connection and passage of the fluid and then of the extracted dust from the conveying area or space (G) delimited between a brushing component (4, 104) and a respective containment component (41, 141) to the passage area (PZ) defined by the extraction collector (45, 145).

8) Plant (1) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said at least one containment component (41, 141) has an engagement component (46, 146) intended to engage and bend the bristles (43 a, 43b) of said at least one brushing component (4, 104) so as to move the dust inside them. 9) Plant (1) according to claim 8, wherein said engagement component (46,

146) is provided in the proximity of the extraction slot (44). 10) Plant (1) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said at least one brushing component (4, 104) is driven in rotation around a respective axis of rotation (21) by means of a special motor (48, 148).

11) Plant (1) according to any of the preceding claims when dependent from claim 3, wherein said extraction means (40, 140) have, outside the containment component (41, 141), tubular elements (51) intended to blow air or inert and/or noble gas in the proximity of said containment component (41, 141) or of the processing area of the brushing component (4, 104).

12) Plant (1) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said at least one brushing component (4, 104) is pivoted or mounted movable on said frame (2) and wherein said plant comprises trim adjustment means to adjust the trim of said at least one brushing component (4, 104), so that it is possible to bring said at least one brushing component (4, 104) closer to/away from the holding and forward movement means (2a), thus varying the pressure given by said at least one brushing component (4, 104) on the surfaces (11) of the ceramic products (9).

13) Plant (1) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said frame (2) has a beam (6) that can be moved perpendicularly to the direction of forward movement (A), said at least one brushing component (4, 104) being locked together with said beam (6) so that it can be displaced therewith perpendicularly to the direction of forward movement (A).

14) Plant (1) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said at least one brushing component (4, 104) has a length L substantially equivalent to the width of a head (5) or rather to the width of the area of action or intervention of the tools of a head (5) upstream of the brushing component (4, 104).

15) Plant (1) according to any of the preceding claims 1 to 12, wherein said brushing component (104) is fastened to said frame (2) by means of a connection component or upright (164).

16) Assembly for a plant (1) for processing ceramic products (9) or natural stones that can be mounted on a frame (2), on a beam or on a head (5) of said plant, said assembly comprising a brushing component (4, 104) as well as a containment component (41, 141) or casing of said at least one brushing component (4), 104) adapted to partly wrap at least one brushing component (4, 104) in such a way that the latter protrudes lower than said containment component (41, 141) for the engagement of said ceramic products, said brushing component (41, 141) being mountable rotating around a second axis of rotation (21) in said containment component (41, 141) or casing.

17) Assembly according to claim 16, comprising extraction means (40, 140) in fluidic communication with the area delimited by said at least one containment component (41, 141) so as to extract the dust dragged by said at least one brushing component (4, 104) inside said at least one containment component (41, 141), said extraction means (40, 140) being intended to perform their extraction action at the point where the processing area of said brushing component (4, 104) is located, or at the point where an external surface of said brushing component (4, 104) is located. 18) Assembly according to claim 16 or 17, wherein said at least one brushing component (4, 104) has a main body with an external cylindrical surface (42) as well as a series of bristles (43a, 43b) extending with respect to said main body and unwinding along a direction, e.g. in a spiral pattern, around said external cylindrical surface (42). 19) Assembly according to any of claims 16 to 18, wherein said at least one containment component (41, 141) has an engagement component (46, 146), eventually in the proximity of the extraction slot, intended to engage and bend the bristles (43a, 43b) of said at least one brushing component (4, 104) so as to move the dust inside them. 20) Assembly according to any of claims 16 to 19, wherein said at least one brushing component (4, 104) is driven in rotation around said second axis of rotation (21) by means of a special motor (48,148).

Description:
PLANT FOR THE PROCESSING OF CERAMIC ARTICLES OR OBJECTS OR NATURAL STONES

Technical Field

The present invention relates to a plant for processing ceramic products, natural stones or similar, comprising at least one grinding head.

Background Art

With particular reference to the sector of ceramic industry for the processing of surfaces of ceramic products such as tiles, slabs or natural stones, processes are known to be carried out such as grinding, lapping or polishing in order to improve the surface finish thereof.

These processes, in particular grinding, are generally carried out by means of plants that provide for the use of specific static or rotating processing heads around a relevant axis and supporting a plurality of tools adapted to the processing of surfaces of ceramic products or natural stones.

In order to operate effectively, the grinding heads need removal means for removing the material taken off during processing. In many known solutions these tasks are entrusted to a fluid, in almost all cases water. In such cases, the material removed during processing is in the form of sludge.

A first drawback is then related to the need to dispose of the relevant sludge that involves bureaucratic burdens and management costs.

Other solutions, on the contrary, use air as a dust extraction means.

In this regard, the international application published under the number WO2017168366A1 presents a machine that uses air instead of water as a tool cooling means and then a dust extraction means is provided for extracting dust removed from the manufactured products being processed.

This international application teaches a machine provided with a plurality of heads, as well as with first main cooling and extraction means arranged around each polishing head (inside the hoods), with second auxiliary cooling and extraction means arranged downstream of the processing area of the ceramic products and third cooling means arranged in the center and/or inside each polishing head. Even with the use of such cooling and extraction means it is not always possible to prevent the dust produced from accumulating underneath the tools being processed, making them ineffective.

This is a very damaging problem for the quality of the processing because the presence of dust on the surface may cause scratches and irregularities in the finish.

For example, when the surface of a material is processed using a grinding process, such as crest lapping, dust is difficult to be removed only by the airflow of known extraction means and is deposited in surface depressions.

A further problem is the dispersion of dust and processing residues inside the working environment, which may be very dangerous and harmful to the operators’ health.

Description of the Invention

The main object of the present invention is to improve the state of the art in the field of the plants for processing ceramic products or natural stones.

As part of this aim, one object of the present invention is to provide a plant for processing the grinding heads that allows the heads to work under optimum conditions, eliminating or drastically reducing the presence of dust on objects or manufactured products.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a processing plant as indicated above, wherein it is possible to eliminate dust on the manufactured products without running the risk of damaging them.

These and other objects of the present invention are achieved by a plant for processing for grinding heads according to claim 1.

Dependent claims relate to preferred and advantageous embodiments of the invention.

Brief Description of the Drawings

Further characteristics and advantages of the present invention will be more evident from the detailed description of a non-exclusive embodiment, of a processing plant for grinding heads according to the present invention, illustrated by way of an indicative, yet non-limiting example, in the attached tables of drawings wherein:

Figure 1 is a monometric axonometric view of a plant for processing ceramic products, natural stones or similar, comprising at least one grinding head according to the present invention;

Figure 2 is an isometric axonometric view of two heads with the relevant extraction means in Figure 1;

Figure 3 is an isometric axonometric view of the exterior of an extraction means of the processing plant shown in the figures above;

Figure 4 is a side sectional view of an extraction means of the processing plant shown in the figures above;

Figure 5 is an isometric axonometric view of a brushing component of the processing plant shown in the figures above;

Figure 6 is a front view of a brushing component of the processing plant shown in the figures above; and

Figure 7 is an isometric axonometric view of the exterior of an extraction means in a different example of embodiment of the processing plant shown in the figures above.

Fmbodiments of the Invention

With reference to the attached figures, reference numeral 1 globally indicates a plant for processing ceramic products 9, natural stones or similar.

The plant 1 comprises a supporting frame 2, which in turn comprises holding and forward movement means 2a, in a certain direction A, of the ceramic products 9; these means 2a serve as a means of transport for the forward movement of the ceramic products 9, or the natural stones, along the direction of forward movement A.

The means 2a also define a resting surface 8 where the ceramic products 9 are positioned. The means 2a may comprise a conveyor belt and may be operated by a motor 2b. Of course, another type of conveyor can also be provided, e.g. a chain conveyor. The plant 1 then comprises one or a series of heads 5 for processing, e.g. by grinding or lapping of the ceramic products 9, or natural stones; the heads 5 are arranged in succession with each other along the direction of forward movement A and above the resting surface 8. The heads 5 are operated by motorized means 12 and may be supported by at least one or two beams 6 of the plant, which beam(s) is/are swinging by means of a respective motor according to a transverse direction 7, perpendicular to the direction of forward movement A. Each processing head 5 has an axis, eventually a substantially vertical axis of symmetry 20 and is rotating around this axis. The heads 5 are provided with a plurality of tools 10 for the processing of the ceramic products 9 or of the natural stones. The tools may be different depending on the processing operation to be carried out on the ceramic products 9.

The tools 10 define a processing area for the upper, in use, surfaces 11 of the ceramic products 9. The parts of the plant 1 are partly described in more detail below, although they are known in the industry.

According to the present invention, the plant 1 comprises auxiliary extraction means 40, which are useful for extracting the dust generated by the processing of the ceramic products 9, on the processing areas, by means of the plurality of tools 10. The auxiliary extraction means 40 comprise or can be connected to a component, such as a vacuum pump (not shown in the figures) or a similar component.

In addition to these auxiliary extraction means 40, additional main extraction means 30 could be provided in the plant operating inside the processing heads 5, which will also be discussed later.

The main extraction means 30, if any, comprise a component, such as a vacuum pump or a similar component, eventually also the same of the auxiliary extraction means 40.

These main extraction means, if any, are the first to intervene in the extraction of the dust generated by the tools in the processing area of the heads 5 or rather of a respective head 5. In addition, the main extraction means 30 can be, in use, substantially resting or very close to the surface 11 of the ceramic products 9 to confine the processing area so that the generated dust is not dispersed into the surrounding environment.

The auxiliary extraction means 40 (if main extraction means 30 are provided) operate afterwards on the area after the operation of the main extraction means, by removing any dust that has not yet been removed by the latter.

The plant 1 then comprises at least one brushing component 4, such as a brush in the shape of a rotating tool, mounted rotating on the frame 2 or on the head 5 around a second axis of rotation 21 substantially horizontal or parallel to the resting surface 8, i.e. lying on a plane parallel to the resting surface 8. The brushing component 4 defines a processing area on the surfaces 11 of the ceramic products 9.

The extraction means 40 preferably perform their extraction action at the point where the processing area is located or at the point where the external surface of the brushing component 4 is located which component is rotatable around the axis 21.

For this type of plant, a containment component or casing 41 of the brushing component 4 can also be provided which is adapted to partly wrap the brushing component 4 in such a way that the latter protrudes lower than the containment component 41 for the engagement of the ceramic products.

In this regard, if several brushing components 4 are provided, each may be mounted inside a respective containment component 41.

The containment components 41 are enclosures or casings of the brushing components 4. Eventually, the extraction means 40 are in fluidic communication with the area delimited by the containment component 41 so as to extract the dust dragged or moved by the brushing component 4 inside the containment component 41. Substantially, therefore, in this case the extraction means 40 are built, in fact, in the brushing components or in the respective containment component 41. At least one containment component 41 has a lateral wall 41a of cylindrical configuration with a lower, in use, part which is eventually removed by a stretch between approx. 20° and approx 45°. This lateral wall 41a may have an axis of symmetry substantially coincident with the axis of rotation 21 of the brushing component 4. Of course, the containment component 41 may also have two lateral walls 41b in which the brushing component 4 is mounted and pivoted. Clearly, between the brushing component 4 and the lateral wall 41a of the containment component 41, a conveying area or space G remains delimited, which, preferably, has a substantially constant width throughout its entire extension.

Moreover, a brushing component 4 may have a main body with an external cylindrical surface 42 as well as a series of bristles 43 a, 43b extending with respect to the main body and unwinding along a direction, e.g. in a spiral pattern, around this cylindrical surface 42, as shown in Figure 5.

According to the example of non-exhaustive embodiment illustrated in figures, there are more, e.g. two, three, four series of bristles extending spirally, duly staggered to each other, around the main body.

Advantageously, two or more first bristles 43a extend from one end of the brushing component 4 along the direction of the second axis of rotation 21 towards the centerline with counterclockwise or left-handed or clockwise or right-handed pattern, while two or more second bristles 43b extend from the other end of the brushing component 4 towards the centerline with opposite pattern, right-handed or left-handed with respect to the first bristle(s) 43a. Eventually, one or more of the first bristles 43a joins or is connected to or is in contact at the centerline or an intermediate portion (with reference to the extension along the axis 21) of the brushing component to a respective second bristle 43b, thus forming cusps 50.

The bristles 43 a, 43b may be formed by rigid filaments of a certain material which must be resistant to the rotating motion of the brushing component 4. Downstream of one or each head 5 or of the processing area of the respective tools, a brushing component 4 may be provided in order to operate on ceramic products that have already been processed by the tools of such a head 5. Clearly, in the present description, the word “downstream” relates to the direction of forward movement A, so a second component “downstream” of a first one is a component in charge of processing the ceramic products or objects after the first component. Moreover, in this case one or each brushing component 4 is preferably placed between two processing heads 5 or rather between the respective processing areas, so as to operate on the ceramic products that have already been processed by the tools of a first head 5 and that still have to be processed by the tools of a second head 5. The height of the brushing component 4 or rather the distance of the lower, in use, end of the latter and the holding and forward movement means 2a is preferably established or adjusted so that the lower end, in use or from time to time, of the bristles 43a, 43b is substantially at the same level as the lower, in use, end of the tools 10 of the heads 5 or at least of one head adjacent and upstream of the respective brushing component 4.

In the event of the extraction means 40 being in fluidic communication with the area delimited by the containment component 41, the extraction means 40 may have an extraction collector 45 located above the containment component 41, which serves as a passage duct for the flow of dust moved by the brushing component 4 and extracted by the extraction means 40.

According to an example of non-limiting embodiment, the collector 45 has a prismatic shape.

Preferably, the collector 45 delimits a dust passage area PZ which is slightly tapered when approaching the containment component 41 along a direction from top to bottom. Thus, for example, the passage area PZ can increase between about 1/4 and about 1/2 from bottom to top.

In this regard, the lower base 45a of the collector 45, which is constrained, e.g., welded to the containment component 41, eventually at the top thereof, may have a main extension configuration in the direction of the second axis of rotation 21. With reference to this aspect, according to the non-limiting example shown in the figures, the base 45a of the collector 45 has a rectangular area with the sides parallel to the second axis 21 much larger than the other. The top 45b, on the other hand, may be configured as a square or rectangle with the four sides of similar dimensions and considerably smaller than the larger sides of the lower base 45a, but larger than the smaller sides of the lower base 45a. The inside corners of the collector 45 are preferably rounded so that there is no accumulation of dust inside which could obstruct the flow of the dust itself.

The collector 45 then has connecting walls 45c of the base 45a and of the top 45b, which can be curved or straight, i.e. each substantially lying entirely on a respective plane.

Of course, the collector 45, if any, could also have bases with different configuration.

The extraction means 30 may also have a tubular element 47, connected to the top 45b of the collector 45 and in fluidic communication with the passage area PZ delimited by it, which tubular element is intended to connect the collector 45 to an extraction source, such as a vacuum pump.

One or each of the containment components 41 delimits, preferably at the top, an extraction slot 44 for the connection and passage of fluid and then of the extracted dust from the conveying area or space G to the passage area PZ defined by the extraction collector 45, to continue the dust extraction flow from the ceramic products to the vacuum pump. This extraction slot 44 can be any shape, eventually square, rectangular, circular, clearly with the same dimensions and shape as the lower base 45a of the extraction collector 45. As shown in Figure 4, the containment component 41 has, eventually in the proximity of the extraction slot 44, eventually constrained or welded to the internal surface of the lateral wall 41a of the containment component 41, an engagement component 46 intended to engage and bend the bristles 43 a, 43b of the brushing component 4, during the rotation thereof so as to move the dust inside them and increase the removal thereof by the extraction means 40. The engagement component 46 may be shaped as a thin, elongated element, such as e.g. a knife or bar element, and is preferably positioned so as to operate as an obstacle for the motion of the bristles banging against it just before passing under the extraction slot 44; this way the dust dragged, caught and stuck between the bristles 43a, 43b is freed and can be extracted more easily. In addition, the engagement component 46 is preferably arranged with the main lying plane parallel to the axis of rotation 21.

The brushing component 4 is preferably driven in rotation around the axis of rotation 21 by means of a special motor 48. The motor 48 is, preferably, an electric motor. Such motor 48 can be positioned around a respective containment component 41, eventually above it. The motor 48 is e.g. locked together or contained inside a casing 49, eventually together with a mechanical transmission member or an internal belt intended to transfer the rotating motion from the motor 48 to the brushing component 4. Dispensing or blowing means 51 may be provided of air or of an inert and/or noble gas, e.g. neon, argon, krypton, xenon, nitrogen, or mixtures of these inert and/or noble gases with each other or with the addition of air, in the proximity of the brushing component 4 or of the processing area, so that the air or the gaseous medium comes into contact with the dust on the ceramic products or objects thus causing the movement thereof. Clearly, the moved dust is easier to move and extract.

The dispensing or blowing means 51 may comprise one or more tubes 51 provided on the outside of the containment components 41, eventually in the proximity of the lateral wall 41a of the latter. The tubes 51 may have a main stretch 51a substantially parallel to the axis of rotation 21.

The tubes 51 may then comprise a nozzle 51b at the end thereof, which is adjustable and swivelable (by rotating it) with respect to the main stretch 51a.

The combination of blown air and extracted air (with dust) thus generates a continuous extraction flow of the dust itself. A supporting assembly 53, 54, 55 may also be provided intended to support a respective brushing component 4 and, if any, a containment component 41.

This supporting assembly may comprise brackets 53, 54, each at one side of the brushing component 4 as well as a connecting upper component or plate 55, eventually bridging the brackets 53, 54 and connecting the latter to the beam 6 or to ahead 5.

The upper component or plate 55 may be connected by means of any suitable means to the brackets 53, eventually with respective strips 56, 57 that allow the brackets 53, 54 to be connected in a stable and rigid manner to the upper component 55.

The several above mentioned means can be connected by means of special removable fastening means, such as e.g. screws, bolts, rivets, glue or the like. The supporting assembly or the respective upper component or plate 55 may be fastened by any suitable means to a beam 6 in order to swing with it, displacing parallel to the axis 21 and perpendicularly to the direction of forward movement A. The supporting assembly 53, 54, 55 or rather, the upper component or plate 55 can also be fastened by any suitable means directly to a respective head 5 and not to the beam 6.

According to the example of non-limiting embodiment shown in detail in Figure 3, adjustment means are provided for adjusting the trim of the brushing component 4 and, if any, of the containment component 41.

In this regard, the brushing component 4 or rather the respective supporting assembly 55 can be pivoted or mounted movable on the frame 2 of the plant, eventually by means of one or more special pins around a third axis of rotation 21b, preferably parallel to the second axis of rotation 21.

The trim adjustment means may comprise a threaded bar 58 in meshing engagement with a block component 60 delimiting a special threaded seat, which block component 60 is locked together or fastened by any suitable method, e.g. welding, glue, screws, to the containment component 41. Then a slab or supporting medium 61 is provided fastened by any suitable method, e.g. welding, glue, screws to the first bracket 53, which supporting means 61 delimits a hole through which the threaded bar 58 is mounted sliding. The threaded bar 58 can have a control hand- wheel at its distal end from the containment component 41, eventually with lobes 59 that allows controlling the rotation of the threaded bar 58 and the screwing with the block component 60, thus adjusting accordingly the inclination of the brushing component 4 and of the containment component 41 making them rotate around the third axis of rotation 21b. Clearly, remote operation of the trim adjustment means or, if any, of the threaded bar 58 may be provided.

A nut 62 may be provided above the or in engagement on the supporting medium 61 and a lock nut 63 above the or in engagement on the supporting medium-61. In this respect, the connection between the bar 58 and the respective seat is subject to variable vibrations, so that the threaded bar could rotate independently or without being controlled in this regard; therefore, devices such as nut 62 and lock nut 63 are used, which prevent this undesired rotation phenomenon from occurring. As it will be understood, by varying the inclination of the supporting assembly 55, e.g. by means of the components described above and therefore of the brushing component 4 around the third axis 21b, it is possible to bring the brushing component 4 closer to/away from the holding and forward movement means 2a, thus varying the pressure given by the brushing component 4 on the surfaces 11 of the ceramic products 9. The pressure can be varied depending on the type of dust to be removed, the type of ceramic products or the heads upstream or downstream of the brushing component 4.

Advantageously, the brushing component 4 located downstream of a head or between two adjacent and successive heads has a length L substantially equivalent to the width of a head 5 or rather to the width of the area of action or operation of the tools of a head 5 upstream of the brushing component 4. According now to another example of embodiment shown in Figure 7, another example of manufacturing of a brushing component 104 has been shown.

The components described in relation to the previous example of embodiment will be indicated with the same reference numbers increased by one hundred. In this example of embodiment of the invention, the brushing component 104 has a longer length LL and substantially equivalent to the maximum width of the surface 11 of the ceramic product 9 being processed or in any case substantially corresponding to the width of the holding means 2a.

In addition, in this version, the brushing component 104 is fastened to the frame 2 of the plant by means of a connection upright or component 164.

In this case, the brushing component 104 does not swing with the beam 6, and the supporting assembly or a respective upper component 155 is not connected or rather not rigidly constrained or fastened to the beam 6, but to the frame 2 of the plant. The threaded bar 158, if any, eventually appropriately controlled by the hand- wheel 159, can, on the other hand, be connected directly to an upper component 155. In this case, it is possible to adjust the pressure on the surface 11 of the ceramic products 9 by simultaneously lowering and lifting in a substantially vertical manner the brushing component 104 and, if any, the containment component 141.

According to this example of embodiment, the supporting assembly comprises one or more extendable- shortenable holding means 153 and 154 that allow supporting the brushing component 104 and, if any, the containment component 141. Eventually, the extendable- shortenable holding means comprise one or more actuators, eventually electrical, as well as, eventually, one or more telescopic elements. Alternatively, the holding means may comprise extendable retractable elements (e.g. manually) and blockable in multiple operating positions. Clearly, by controlling the extension or shortening of the holding means 153, the pressure may be adjusted on the surfaces 11 of the ceramic products 9 as indicated above. Also for this example of embodiment a tubular element 147 is provided, as well as an engagement component 146, as well as a motor 148.

It is worth noting that a plant according to the present invention is intended for the grinding or lapping of slab-shaped elements, e.g. tiles, eventually, ceramic tiles, by means of processing heads 5, preferably dry.

As regards in particular the word “dry”, it indicates that the plant does not comprise cooling means for cooling the head(s) intended to deliver a liquid, such as water on the head(s) and on the surface of the tiles.

As far as each head 5 is concerned, it comprises a main framework having a first fixed part and a second movable part mounted rotating at or on the first part around an axis of rotation 20, in use, vertical.

More specifically, the first part is, in use, upper and is intended to be connected to a respective component of the plant, such as the beam 6.

Even more specifically, the first part comprises an attachment portion, e.g. a canopy, which can be bolted or otherwise constrained to the beam 6 of the plant. The second movable part is instead lower and may comprise an annular wall, eventually cylindrical that wraps or is wrapped by and connected to, eventually by snapping or by means of screws or bolts, a stretch of the first part, e.g. by a lower, in use, end than the canopy portion. Inside the area defined by the first and by the second part a first shaft or duct (not shown in the figures) may be placed that is locked together with the second part and is driven by a motor 12, eventually electric or other type and properly connected to a source of energy, eventually electric, which motor 12 is arranged in an upper position to the head 5 and kinematically connected, e.g. by means of a respective shaft rising inside the head, to the second part.

The configuration of the first part and of the second part of the head may be, e.g., as described in the above-mentioned international applications issued under W02017081617A1 and WO2017168366A1, to which reference should be made for a more detailed description of the inside of the head or heads. The head may also comprise a series of supporting components or plinths mounted on the framework, as well as tools or brushes mounted, e.g. by means of screws or bolts, bayonet engagement, snap engagement, forced insertion or by means of removable engagement means on the supporting component or on the respective plinth component.

The supporting components or plinths may be mounted, e.g. pivoted to the movable part of the respective head, e.g. around a pivoting axis, eventually radial or incident the axis 20.

In this case, one or more drive motor(s) may or may not be provided for operating the plinth components intended to swing these components and therefore the tools or brushes around the respective pivoting axis, particularly when the second part is rotated around the axis 20.

Alternatively, one or more heads according to the present invention with grinding or lapping tools could also have so-called satellite tools, so that they can be rotated around axes of rotation substantially parallel to the axis 20 of rotation of the head. These tools could then be driven in rotation together with the head and each around a respective vertical axis of rotation.

Such a head could be structured, e.g., as taught in the international application issued under W00170458A1 or W02008031463A1.

The or each head 5 may comprise two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight or more tools or brushes, preferably equally angularly staggered around the axis of rotation 20.

The head 5 may also comprise dispensing means of a gaseous fluid, e.g. compressed, eventually for cooling purposes, towards slab-shaped elements or tiles to be processed and/or towards the tools, e.g. for cooling these components. This gaseous fluid might comprise air, or inert and/or noble gases, e.g. neon, argon, krypton, xenon, nitrogen, or mixtures of these inert and/or noble gases with each other or with the addition of air.

These dispensing means may be provided internally or externally to the framework.

Moreover, the dispensing means could also be provided inside the tool holders, particularly with regard to the machines with satellite tools. In this case, as partly indicated above, containment means of the processing heads 5 and of the processing area on the surface 11 of the ceramic products 9 may be provided.

The containment means are substantially shaped like a hood 30 or a bell, in turn comprising a lateral wall 31.

According to one version of the present invention, each hood 30 is fastened to the respective processing head 5 and is lowered and raised therewith; when the vertical position of the head 5 is adjusted, the hood 30 moves accordingly with the respective head 5.

According to another version of the present invention, each hood is independently fastened to the same beam 6 that supports the head 5; during the processing each hood 3 swings with the beam 6 itself, is not subject to the vertical adjustment of the respective head 5 and the adjustment of the vertical position of the hood 3 is made independently from the vertical adjustment of the respective head 5.

The lateral wall 31 of each hood 3 has a convex perimeter and a substantially circular, or oval, or elliptical, or polygonal shape with rounded edges.

As it will be ascertained, with a plant according to the present invention it is possible to brush the ceramic products properly after their processing, in order to move the dust deposited on the ceramic products after their processing.

In this regard, this is achieved in particular thanks to the specific configuration of the brushing components as well as to the specific mounting of the brushing components, which ensures the rotation of the brushing components during the forward movement of the objects or products, depending on which an optimal agitation of the treated surface of the ceramic products and therefore of the dust thereon is achieved.

In addition, the action of the auxiliary extraction means makes it possible to increase the action of the brushing components, in particular if the extraction means are in fact built with the brushing components or with the respective containment component. Modifications and variations of the invention are possible within the scope of protection defined by the claims.