US20080308518A1 - Container having an automatic identification device for identifying the contents therein - Google Patents

Container having an automatic identification device for identifying the contents therein Download PDF

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Publication number
US20080308518A1
US20080308518A1 US12139870 US13987008A US2008308518A1 US 20080308518 A1 US20080308518 A1 US 20080308518A1 US 12139870 US12139870 US 12139870 US 13987008 A US13987008 A US 13987008A US 2008308518 A1 US2008308518 A1 US 2008308518A1
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Patent type
Prior art keywords
container
neck
flange
bottom
capsule
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
Application number
US12139870
Inventor
Gregory Sprishen
Current Assignee (The listed assignees may be inaccurate. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy of the list.)
DRUG PLASTICS AND GLASS CO Inc
Original Assignee
DRUG PLASTICS AND GLASS CO Inc
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Classifications

    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65DCONTAINERS FOR STORAGE OR TRANSPORT OF ARTICLES OR MATERIALS, e.g. BAGS, BARRELS, BOTTLES, BOXES, CANS, CARTONS, CRATES, DRUMS, JARS, TANKS, HOPPERS, FORWARDING CONTAINERS; ACCESSORIES, CLOSURES, OR FITTINGS THEREFOR; PACKAGING ELEMENTS; PACKAGES
    • B65D50/00Closures with means for discouraging unauthorised opening or removal thereof, with or without indicating means, e.g. child-proof closures
    • B65D50/02Closures with means for discouraging unauthorised opening or removal thereof, with or without indicating means, e.g. child-proof closures openable or removable by the combination of plural actions
    • B65D50/04Closures with means for discouraging unauthorised opening or removal thereof, with or without indicating means, e.g. child-proof closures openable or removable by the combination of plural actions requiring the combination of simultaneous actions, e.g. depressing and turning, lifting and turning, maintaining a part and turning another one
    • B65D50/043Closures with means for discouraging unauthorised opening or removal thereof, with or without indicating means, e.g. child-proof closures openable or removable by the combination of plural actions requiring the combination of simultaneous actions, e.g. depressing and turning, lifting and turning, maintaining a part and turning another one the closure comprising a screw cap whose threads are shaped to accommodate blocking elements and the closure is removed after first applying axial force to unblock it and allow it to be unscrewed
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65DCONTAINERS FOR STORAGE OR TRANSPORT OF ARTICLES OR MATERIALS, e.g. BAGS, BARRELS, BOTTLES, BOXES, CANS, CARTONS, CRATES, DRUMS, JARS, TANKS, HOPPERS, FORWARDING CONTAINERS; ACCESSORIES, CLOSURES, OR FITTINGS THEREFOR; PACKAGING ELEMENTS; PACKAGES
    • B65D51/00Closures not otherwise provided for
    • B65D51/18Arrangements of closures with protective outer cap-like covers or of two or more co-operating closures
    • B65D51/20Caps, lids, or covers co-operating with an inner closure arranged to be opened by piercing, cutting, or tearing
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65DCONTAINERS FOR STORAGE OR TRANSPORT OF ARTICLES OR MATERIALS, e.g. BAGS, BARRELS, BOTTLES, BOXES, CANS, CARTONS, CRATES, DRUMS, JARS, TANKS, HOPPERS, FORWARDING CONTAINERS; ACCESSORIES, CLOSURES, OR FITTINGS THEREFOR; PACKAGING ELEMENTS; PACKAGES
    • B65D2203/00Decoration means, markings, information elements, contents indicators
    • B65D2203/10Transponders
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65DCONTAINERS FOR STORAGE OR TRANSPORT OF ARTICLES OR MATERIALS, e.g. BAGS, BARRELS, BOTTLES, BOXES, CANS, CARTONS, CRATES, DRUMS, JARS, TANKS, HOPPERS, FORWARDING CONTAINERS; ACCESSORIES, CLOSURES, OR FITTINGS THEREFOR; PACKAGING ELEMENTS; PACKAGES
    • B65D2251/00Details relating to container closures
    • B65D2251/0003Two or more closures
    • B65D2251/0006Upper closure
    • B65D2251/0015Upper closure of the 41-type
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65DCONTAINERS FOR STORAGE OR TRANSPORT OF ARTICLES OR MATERIALS, e.g. BAGS, BARRELS, BOTTLES, BOXES, CANS, CARTONS, CRATES, DRUMS, JARS, TANKS, HOPPERS, FORWARDING CONTAINERS; ACCESSORIES, CLOSURES, OR FITTINGS THEREFOR; PACKAGING ELEMENTS; PACKAGES
    • B65D2251/00Details relating to container closures
    • B65D2251/0003Two or more closures
    • B65D2251/0068Lower closure
    • B65D2251/0093Membrane

Abstract

A container that has an automatic identification device for identifying the contents therein includes a bottom that has an outer periphery and a neck that defines an opening at a top portion thereof for receiving a product and a shoulder proximate a bottom portion thereof. The neck has a radially inwardly extending flange on an inner surface thereof. The flange is located at a predetermined distance away from the top portion of the neck. The container further includes a sidewall that extend generally upwardly from the periphery of the bottom to the shoulder of the neck. A cap is removably engageable to the neck and an automatic identification device is removably mountable on the flange of the neck.

Description

    CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
  • The present application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 60/944,001, filed Jun. 14, 2007 and entitled “Automatic Identification Device Inserted into a Bottle,” the entire subject matter of which is hereby incorporated by reference.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • The present invention relates to the incorporation of an automatic identification device within a package or container for quickly and efficiently identifying the contents of the package or container. More specifically, the present invention relates to a container enclosing an automatic identification device for identifying the contents therein.
  • Pharmaceutical or medical containers for storing, transporting or selling pharmaceutical or medical products are generally well-known. Such containers, bottles or packages are preferably formed of a high strength, lightweight material and are sized and shaped to be easily transported either individually or in a larger container. Such containers typically include a removable cap. Generally, the caps are removed from the container by a twisting motion. Further, certain containers include child-resistant caps that require a specific twisting function to remove the cap from the top of the container.
  • The process of preparing containers of medicaments for shipment to an end user typically includes steps of: (1) filling the container with a medicament, (2) sealing the end of the container with the cap, and (3) paper labeling the container with the contents of the container and other information related to the manufacturing history.
  • These containers are typically included in a larger package to transport the containers and are then individually placed on a shelf in a retail store for selling the product. Although the containers can contain a plurality of different types of pharmaceutical or medical products, the general appearance of the containers is often similar. Due to such similarity, it may be difficult to identify the contents of the container without opening the container to find out what is inside.
  • It is of the utmost importance that the information on the paper labeling of each container corresponds to the actual contents of the container and include such information that allows for traceability to the history of manufacture. Thus, information should ideally be associated with each filled container from near the moment that the container is filled.
  • Presently, however, it is not possible to include with each container at the time of filling, all of the required information on container contents and manufacturing, since paper labeling applied to the container at the time of filling does not always survive the manufacturing and shipping process, and there is sometimes insufficient room on the label to include all of the required information. Further, the destination for each filled container is not known at the time the container is filled. Since the minimum information to be applied to a paper label is generally prescribed by law, and such laws vary from country to country, the paper labeling of containers can not be done until the destination of a particular lot of containers is determined. Such determination may not be made until after a specific lot of the containers has been shelved for a period of time. In order to establish traceability of the containers in a lot that has been shelved, back to the time that the containers were filled, samples from each lot must be taken from the shelved lot prior to paper labeling, and the contents of the samples determined analytically. Such a procedure is time consuming and expensive.
  • A further problem associated with labeling of the containers is one of counterfeiting. Such counterfeiting may utilize packaging and paper labeling identical to the legitimate articles such that even an experienced end user pharmacist or medical practitioner can not distinguish the counterfeit article from the legitimate article.
  • Automatic identification technology, which increases business efficiency, reduces data-entry errors and frees-up staff to perform other functions, is generally well-known. Automatic identification is a broad term given to a host of technologies that are used to help machines identify objects. These technologies include bar codes, smart cards, voice recognition, biometric technology, optical character recognition and radio frequency identification (RFID). Specifically, RFID technology uses radio waves to automatically identify objects. By storing product information on a microchip that is attached to an antenna, RFID tags allow a reader to easily and efficiently identify an object and allow for the addition or deletion of information at any time.
  • Various prior art devices have incorporated RFID tags within pharmaceutical containers to avoid the problems described above. Previously, individuals have attempted to mold RFID tags within the containers. However, problem arises when a manufacturer, seller or user attempts to mold the RFID tag into the plastic container because the high temperatures achieved during the molding process often destroy the RFID tag.
  • Therefore, it would be desirable to add an automatic identification device to pharmaceutical or medical packages or containers at or near the time of filling such that a user or manufacturer can quickly and efficiently identify the contents of a packaging or container without inspecting the contents of each package or container. Specifically, it would be desirable to include an RFID tag within a pharmaceutical or medical package or container without having to mold the RFID tag to the container such that a user could quickly scan the container and accurately identify the product within the container. This combination would allow for an accurate knowledge of the inventory level by eliminating the discrepancy between inventory record and physical inventory and also prevent destruction of the RFID tag. Further, the sources of error of recordation can be prevented or reduced.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • Briefly stated, a preferred embodiment of the present invention is directed to a container enclosing an automatic identification device for identifying the contents therein. The container includes a bottom having an outer periphery and a neck defining an opening at a top portion thereof for receiving a product and a shoulder proximate a bottom portion thereof. The neck has a radially inwardly extending flange on an inner surface thereof. The flange is located at a predetermined distance away from the top portion of the neck. The container further includes a sidewall extending generally upwardly from the periphery of the bottom to the shoulder of the neck. A cap is removably engageable to the neck and an automatic identification device is removably mountable on the flange of the neck.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWINGS
  • The following detailed description of the invention will be better understood when read in conjunction with the appended drawings. For the purpose of illustrating the invention, there is shown in the drawings an embodiment which is presently preferred. It should be understood, however, that the invention is not limited to the precise arrangements and instrumentalities shown.
  • In the drawings:
  • FIG. 1 is a front perspective view of a preferred embodiment of an automatic identification device inserted into a bottle in accordance with the present invention;
  • FIG. 2 is a front elevation view of the bottle shown in FIG. 1;
  • FIG. 2A is a cross-sectional view of the automatic identification device inserted into a bottle shown in FIG. 2, taken along line A-A of FIG. 2;
  • FIG. 3 is front perspective view of an automatic identification device capsule of the present invention;
  • FIG. 3A is a front elevation view of the capsule shown in FIG. 3;
  • FIG. 4 is a top plan view of the automatic identification device capsule shown in FIG. 3 with a top portion of the automatic identification device capsule removed to show the top of an RFID tag; and
  • FIG. 5 is a front perspective view of the automatic identification device inserted into the bottle with a cap removed for clarity.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
  • Certain terminology is used in the following description for convenience only and is not limiting. The words “right,” “left,” “lower” and “upper” designate directions in the drawings to which reference is made. The words “inwardly” and “outwardly” refer to directions toward and away from, respectively, the geometric center of the bottle in accordance with the present invention, and designated parts thereof. The terminology includes the words noted above, derivatives thereof and words of similar import.
  • FIGS. 1-2A and 5 depict a container, generally designated 10, for storing, transporting or selling a product, such as a pharmaceutical or medical product. The container 10 encloses an automatic identification device 62, such as an RFID tag or transponder. The container 10 comprises a container bottom 14 having an outer periphery 16 and a container wall or sidewall 18 extending generally upward from the periphery 16. It is preferred that the container bottom 14 be generally planar, although the bottom 14 may be concave (as shown in FIGS. 2A).
  • The periphery 16 of the container bottom 14 may be slightly rounded to eliminate any sharpe edges from the container 10. Preferably, the container bottom 14 and the container wall 18 define an outer container 10 which is generally annular in cross-section, although the outer container 10 may be of any shape, such as a generally rectangular in cross-section, as one of ordinary skill in the art would understand. Further, it is understood by those skilled in the art that the form and shape of the container 10 can be modified without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. For example, the outer container 10 can be in the form of virtually any shape, such as a vial, vase or any other such packaging or container, without departing from the spirit and the scope of the invention. The outer container 10 is preferably formed of a polymeric material, but it is understood by those skilled in the art that the outer container 10 may be formed of virtually any high-strength, lightweight material, such as a glass on metallic material, without departing from the spirit and the scope of the invention.
  • As shown in FIGS. 1-2A and 5, the container wall 18 comprises a neck 22 defining an opening for receiving the product. Preferably, the opening in the neck 22 is generally circular in cross-section and has an inner diameter which is smaller than the inner diameter of the container wall 18. The neck 22 includes a transition surface, or shoulder 25, between the neck 22 and the container wall 18. The shoulder 25 is preferably curved to eliminate any sharp edges and increase structural integrity.
  • The neck 22 includes threads 32 on the outer surface for receiving a cap 40 and a flange 56 extending radially inwardly from the inner surface of the neck 22. The flange 56 is located at a predetermined distance away from or below a top or upper portion of the neck 22. One skilled in the art would understand that other means besides threads 32 may be used to accommodate the cap 40, such as a friction fit or a child-proof fastener (not shown). The cap 40, which is generally described in U.S. Pat. No. 6,206,216 (the '216 patent) and hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety, comprises an outer cap 42 removably secured to an inner cap 44. The outer cap 42 preferably includes gripping ridges 42 a on an exterior surface of the outer cap 42 and may include instructions (FIG. 1) for how to remove the cap 40 from the container. The inner cap 44 includes a liner 46 to properly seal the cap 40 to the container 10. It is understood by those skilled in the art that the present invention does not require all of the particulars of the cap 40 as described above. For example, it is within the spirit and scope of the invention that the cap 40 can be constructed of one integral piece instead of the outer and inner caps 42, 44 and that the cap 40 can be virtually any size and shape that can properly enclose the outer container 10 and securely attach to the neck 22 and at the same time provide safe storage for an RFID tag as described below.
  • In reference to FIGS. 3-5, the automatic identification device 62, such as an RFID tag or transponder, is shown within a capsule 60. RFID tags 62 are generally well known in the art as a method of identification by storing and remotely retrieving data. In the preferred embodiment, the RFID tag 60 contains a silicone chip (not shown) and an antenna (not shown). However, it is understood by those skilled in the art that any form of automatic identification can be used in the present invention without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. The capsule 60 is generally flat and disk-like and is made of a polymeric material. The capsule 60 includes a top portion 60 a and a bottom portion 60 b to securely enclose the RFID tag 62. The top 60 a is preferably friction-fitted to the bottom portion 60 b, but it is understood by those skilled in the art that the top 60 a and bottom portions 60 b can be secured by virtually any method, such as adhesive bonding or riveting, without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. As is understood by those skilled in art, the top portion 60 a may be removably mounted to the bottom portion 60 b or permanently mounted to bottom portion 60 b. The inner portion of the neck 22 at least proximate to the flange 56 is preferably slightly larger than a diameter of the capsule 60. Further, a length of the flange 56 measured radially from the inner portion of said neck 22 to an end of said flange 56 is approximately one millimeter. However, it is understood by those skilled in the art that the length of the flange 56 can be modified without departing from the broad inventive concept of the present invention.
  • In operation, a manufacturer, distributor or consumer places a desired amount of the product into the outer container 10. An automatic identification device, such as the RFID tag capsule 60, may then be placed onto the flange 56 within the neck 22 of the container 10. Next, the cap 40 is removably attached to the neck 22 of the container 10 to enclose the product and the capsule 60 within the container 10. When the manufacturer, distributor or consumer desires to know the contents of the container 10, a scanner (not shown) is placed within the general vicinity of the container 10 to read the information stored in the RFID tag 62. The RFID tag 62 is generally well protected when securely located within the container 10 and capsule 60, as taught by the present invention. A user or manufacturer will also generally know the exact location of the RFID tag 62 when attempting to identify the contents of the outer container 10. Further, the capsule 60 may be removed by either the manufacturer, distributor or consumer before the product within the container 10 is used or inspected after the cap 40 is removed from the neck 22 of the container 10 (FIG. 5).
  • It will be appreciated by those skilled in the art that changes could be made to the embodiments described above without departing from the broad inventive concept thereof. It is understood, therefore, that this invention is not limited to the particular embodiment disclosed but it is intended to cover modifications within the spirit and scope of the present invention as defined by the drawings and specification.

Claims (7)

  1. 1. A container having an automatic identification device for identifying the contents therein, said container comprising:
    a bottom having an outer periphery:
    a neck defining an opening at a top portion thereof for receiving a product and a shoulder proximate a bottom portion thereof, said neck having a radially inwardly extending flange on an inner surface thereof; said flange being located at a predetermined distance away from said top portion of said neck;
    a sidewall extending generally upwardly from said periphery of said bottom to said shoulder of said neck;
    a cap removably engageable to said neck; and
    an automatic identification device removably mountable on said flange of said neck.
  2. 2. The container according to claim 1, wherein said automatic identification device includes a capsule and an RFID transponder enclosed within said capsule.
  3. 3. The container of claim 2, wherein said capsule includes a top portion and a bottom portion.
  4. 4. The container according to claim 3, wherein said top and bottom portions of said capsule are removably engageable.
  5. 5. The container according to claim 3, wherein said top and bottom portions of said capsule are permanently engaged.
  6. 6. The container according to claim 1, wherein a diameter of said inner portion of said neck is slightly larger than a diameter of said capsule.
  7. 7. The container according to claim 1, wherein a length of said flange measured radially from said inner portion of said neck to an end of said flange is approximately one millimeter.
US12139870 2007-06-14 2008-06-16 Container having an automatic identification device for identifying the contents therein Abandoned US20080308518A1 (en)

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Cited By (10)

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US8049627B1 (en) * 2008-09-05 2011-11-01 Walgreen Co. Container with removable data storage mechanism
CN103544518A (en) * 2012-07-10 2014-01-29 黄胜昌 Wireless radio frequency identification in-mould formed structure
CN104424500A (en) * 2013-09-04 2015-03-18 黄胜昌 Self-adhesive wireless radio frequency anti-counterfeit anti-recovery label
USD756234S1 (en) 2014-09-10 2016-05-17 Celgene Corporation Bottle with cap
USD756776S1 (en) 2014-09-10 2016-05-24 Celgene Corporation Bottle cap
USD767405S1 (en) 2015-09-21 2016-09-27 Celgene Corporation Bottle with cap
USD778160S1 (en) 2015-09-21 2017-02-07 Celgene Corporation Bottle cap
US20170050774A1 (en) * 2015-08-17 2017-02-23 Csp Technologies, Inc. Container orifice reducer with tamper evident seal
USD781151S1 (en) 2016-06-08 2017-03-14 eBottles.com Jar
USD832106S1 (en) * 2016-12-12 2018-10-30 OnMyWhey, LLC Bottle

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