US3623416A - Processing system for photographic material - Google Patents

Processing system for photographic material Download PDF

Info

Publication number
US3623416A
US3623416A US3623416DA US3623416A US 3623416 A US3623416 A US 3623416A US 3623416D A US3623416D A US 3623416DA US 3623416 A US3623416 A US 3623416A
Authority
US
Grant status
Grant
Patent type
Prior art keywords
drum
film
water
reagent
processing
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.)
Expired - Lifetime
Application number
Inventor
Claes Johan Anderberg
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.)
CLAES JOHAN ANDERBERG
Original Assignee
CLAES JOHAN ANDERBERG
Priority date (The priority date 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 date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Grant date

Links

Images

Classifications

    • GPHYSICS
    • G03PHOTOGRAPHY; CINEMATOGRAPHY; ELECTROGRAPHY; HOLOGRAPHY
    • G03DAPPARATUS FOR PROCESSING EXPOSED PHOTOGRAPHIC MATERIALS; ACCESSORIES THEREFOR
    • G03D13/00Processing apparatus or accessories therefor, not covered by groups G11B3/00 - G11B11/00
    • G03D13/007Processing control, e.g. test strip, timing devices
    • GPHYSICS
    • G03PHOTOGRAPHY; CINEMATOGRAPHY; ELECTROGRAPHY; HOLOGRAPHY
    • G03DAPPARATUS FOR PROCESSING EXPOSED PHOTOGRAPHIC MATERIALS; ACCESSORIES THEREFOR
    • G03D13/00Processing apparatus or accessories therefor, not covered by groups G11B3/00 - G11B11/00
    • G03D13/02Containers; Holding-devices
    • G03D13/04Trays; Dishes; Tanks Drums
    • G03D13/046Drums; Films convolutely fixed on the side of the drum
    • GPHYSICS
    • G03PHOTOGRAPHY; CINEMATOGRAPHY; ELECTROGRAPHY; HOLOGRAPHY
    • G03DAPPARATUS FOR PROCESSING EXPOSED PHOTOGRAPHIC MATERIALS; ACCESSORIES THEREFOR
    • G03D3/00Liquid processing apparatus involving immersion; Washing apparatus involving immersion
    • G03D3/02Details of liquid circulation
    • GPHYSICS
    • G03PHOTOGRAPHY; CINEMATOGRAPHY; ELECTROGRAPHY; HOLOGRAPHY
    • G03DAPPARATUS FOR PROCESSING EXPOSED PHOTOGRAPHIC MATERIALS; ACCESSORIES THEREFOR
    • G03D3/00Liquid processing apparatus involving immersion; Washing apparatus involving immersion
    • G03D3/02Details of liquid circulation
    • G03D3/06Liquid supply; Liquid circulation outside tanks

Abstract

PHOTOGRAPHIC FILM IS PROCESSED IN A DRUM (INTERMITTENTLY ROTATED IN OPPOSITE DIRECTIONS) BY SUCCESSIVE REAGENTS EACH INTRODUCE IN LIMITED QUANTITY INTO THE DRUM AND RECIRCULATED THERETHROUGH IN INTERMITTENTLY REVERSED AXIAL FLOW DIRECTIONS. THE REAGENTS, DRUM CHAMBER AND RECIRCULATOR ARE TEMPERED BY TEMPERING WATER ALSO USED FOR WASHING OR RINSING THE FILM IN THE DRUM. THE REAGENTS AND WATER ARE SUPPLIED FROM STATIONARY PARTS OF THE EQUIPMENT TO THE DRUM BY CHANNELS PROVIDING GRAVITY FLOW PATHS FROM THE DRUM. A CONTROLLER UNIT IS CONTROLLED BY PROGRAMS ON CARDS INSERTED IN THE UNIT TO AUTOMATICALLY PROCESS THE FILM IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROGRAM OF THE SELECTED CARD.

Description

Nov. 30, 1971 c. J. ANDERBERG 3,623,416

PROCESSING SYSTEM FOR PHOTOGRAPHIC MATERIAL Filed June 24, 1968 3 Shee1, Sheet 1 IN Vii/v! HI? CLAES JOHAN ANDERBERG HY J/Luz/ I his ATTORNEYS 1971 c. J. ANDERBERG 3,

PROCESSING SYSTEM FOR PHOTOGRAPHIC MATERIAL Filed June 24, 1968 5 SheetsSheet 2 150 B0 7] I Bl |Z\ r j 7 7 r z lNVlzN'lllR. 27 2 I CLAES JOHAN ANDERBERG 3 liy/d humlm zzt l his ATTORNEYS PROCESSING SYSTEM FOR PHOTOGRAPHIC MATERIAL Filed June 24 1968 Nov. 30, 1971 c J. ANDERBERG 3 Sheets-Sheet 5 ILLR/ IA'VICNI'H/Q CLAES JOHAN ANDERBERG wzotcoo ET a NQ ATTORNEYS his I 1 I I I l--- I} .1 u n $2 $2 is $2 22 3Q 32 3. 2

United States Patent Clfice Int. Cl. G03d 3/08 US. Cl. 9593 22 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE Photographic film is processed in a drum (intermittently rotated in opposite directions) by successive reagents each introduced in limited quantity into the drum and recirculated therethrough in intermittently reversed axial flow directions. The reagents, drum chamber and recirculator are tempered by tempering water also used for washing or rinsing the film in the drum. The reagents and water are supplied from stationary parts of the equipment to the drum by channels providing gravity fiOW paths from the drum. A controller unit is controlled by programs on cards inserted in the unit to automatically process the film in accordance with the program on the selected card.

In processing photographic material, it is of importance that the material to be developed is developed uniformly over its entire area, for which purpose it is common practice (as, for example, in the tray development process) to rock the tray in various directions to cause the developing solution to fiow alternately longitudinally and transversely over the material being developed. In tank development systems it is often the practice nowadays to blow nitrogen gas into the bottoms of the tanks so that the rising bubbles will set the solution in motion. However, such procedure is not always sufiicient so that it is necessary to move the material at intervals manually, or mechanically in the solution. With manual manipulation, however, difficulties are often encountered in repeating the process accurately or in obtaining identical results if the development work is carried out by different persons.

It is known, e.g., from French Pat. No. 1,180,599, to facilitate the development of a photographic material by disposing said material on the internal surface of a cylindrical drum Which is in a substantially horizontal position during processing, and which is rotated around its longitudinal geometrical axis after developing solution has been introduced into the drum. The drum is provided with end walls which prevent the liquid from flowing out of the drum during the development process and with central openings through which a conduit for developing liquid extends into the drum. The drum is rotatable by being supported by means of motor driven rollers at its lower portion. During rotation of the drum, the developing liquid in the drum moves continuously over the film in the peripheral direction for the drum. The insertion and the removal of the photographic material is effected either through a central opening in the drums end walls or after the removal of developing solution from the drum is effected after the drum with its content of liquid has been lifted from its position during the development process.

An object of the present invention is to provide photographic processing apparatus which is simpler and more convenient to operate than the prior art apparatus just described.

Another object of the invention is to provide methods and apparatus for effecting accurate and uniform processing of photographic material by a processing liquid of which the quantity used may be relatively small.

3,623,416 Patented Nov. 30, 1971 Further objects of the invention are: to provide for automatic processing of photographic film in accordance with a selected processing program; to effect a uniform second exposure of photographic film and to provide methods and means permitting a long length of film strip to be simultaneously subjected over its length to the same processing operation.

These and other objects are realized according to one aspect of the invention by placing the film to be processed in a generally horizontal open ended drum operably rotated by a motor. Processing liquid for the film (i.e., photographic reagents or water) is supplied by a conduit system providing at least one passage for such liquid at a position disposed axially outwards of and opposite an open end of the drum. Transfer of the liquid between the conduit system and the drum is implemented by at least one stationary-to-rotating liquid flow coupling therebetween. Such coupling is in the form of a liquid-conducting channel extending axially from such passage to and beyond the corresponding end of the drum to overlap with the outside surface of the drum and to make with that outside surface a sealing but peripherally slippable contact which extends from the bottom of the drum part way up the sides thereof so as to engage the drum over an arc lesser in circular measure then a semicircle.

In operation, processing liquid is conducted from the conduit system through the channel to the inside of the drum to process film therein. In the course of the processing, the drum is rotated to ensure movement of the liquid over the film. At the end of a processing cycle, the drum and its processed contents may be removed by liftingthe drum off the described channel.

According to another aspect of the invention, the conduit system has at least two of such passages coupled by two of such channels to the two drum ends, and processing liquid is caused to flow axially through the drum in the course of a processing operation. Under such aspect of the invention, only a limited quantity of liquid is used for processing and that quantum of liquid is recirculated through the drum. Still under the same aspect, the directions of drum rotation and of axial liquid flow or either of them alone may be intermittently reversed to cause different directions of relative motion between the processing liquid and the film being processed.

A further aspect of the invention is to render the drum radiation transmissive and to expose film in the rotating drum to radiant energy derived from source means outside the drum so as to produce a second exposure of such film.

As a still further aspect of the invention, one or more long lengths of film strips (e.g. motion picture film) may be wound on a reel structure in the form of a plurality of axially spaced coaxial reels joined end-to-end, said structure having an outside diameter less than the inner drum diameter. The multi-reel structure with the film thereon is next placed inside the drum which is then rotated to produce a rolling of the structure around the inside of the drum at the bottom thereof while, simultaneously, the film is contacted by liquid which processes the film strip.

Yet a further aspect of the invention is to conduct a film processing cycle under the automatic control of a program selecting the sequence of operating steps which constitute the cycle.

For a better understanding of the foregoing and other aspects of the invention, reference is made to the following description of an exemplary embodiment thereof and to the accompanying drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of representative apparatus according to the invention;

FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view in front elevation of the processing section of the apparatus of FIG. 1; such front view being taken as indicated by the arrows 2-2 in FIG. 3;

FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view in side elevation of the processing section of FIG. 2; such side view being taken as indicated by the arrows 33 in FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a schematic diagram representative of the components of the apparatus of FIG. 1 and of the functional correlation of those components;

FIG. 5 is a vector diagram illustrative of the various possible relative movements between film being processed in the apparatus of FIG. 1 and a liquid which eifects that processing;

FIG. 6 is a front elevation of a multi-reel structure usable in the apparatus of FIG. 1 for the processing of film strip; and

FIG. 7 is a view of the FIG. 6 structure when positioned within a modified drum used in the FIG. 1 ap paratus.

Referring now to FIG. 1, the shown apparatus has a housing 8, is mounted on legs 9 and is divided into a reagent storage section 10, a processing section 11 and a controller section 12. To describe those sections briefly, hot and cold water is supplied to the equipment via inlets 13 and 14, respectively. The two input streams are mixed in a regulated manner by parts in the back of section 12. to form an output stream maintained at a selected temperature and serving as a tempering agent. Such output stream is circulated through sections nad 11 (to temper those sections) and is then passed to a drain. The same tempering water may also be used to wash or rinse film being processed and to flush out and clean various parts of the equipment.

Storage section 10 is comprised of nine similar opentopped stainless steel cylindrical containers for different reagents to be used in a processing cycle for a batch of film. Those containers are respectively coupled to nine corresponding level gauges 17 mounted in front of a panel 18 on which is inscribed a set of numbered, verticallyspaced horizontal marker lines 19 extending across the whole panel and collectively forming for each gauge a scale enabling the level of fluid in that gauge to be converted into the volume of fluid present in the associated container. All of the mentioned containers are seated in a tempering tank and are surrounded therein by tempering water which maintains the reagents within the containers at the selected temperature.

The nine reagent storage containers are coupled throug respective and selectively operable dump valves to a manifold which conducts any liquid therein to the processing section 11. The active parts of the latter section are enclosed within a boxlike light-tight casing 25 whose interior is accessible from the top and from the bottom by, respectively, a rearWardly-hinged top lid 26 and a rearwardlyhinged bottom panel 27. As later described in detail, it is within section 11 that the actual processing takes place of photographic film which may be of various kinds such as, say, roll film, sheet film and prints. In this connection, it is to be understood that the word film is used herein to embrace any sort of photographic film which is subject to processing by the methods and means described herein.

The FIG. 1 apparatus is a batch processor of film in the sense that each charge of film which is introduced into the system is fully processed at the same place therewithin before new film is introduced for processing. Such apparatus is thus to be distinguished from photographic processing installations wherein separate film portions are conveyed in succession to and through a series of processing stations such that each processing step on a particular film portion is carried out at a different location, and such that different film portions are simultaneously subjected to different processing steps.

Each processing cycle of the FIG. 1 system may include a preliminary tempering step, a sequence of steps wherein the film in the equipment is subjected to the action of different reagents, and a sequence of steps (interposed with the reagent processing steps) wherein the film is treated by being washed or rinsed with tempered water. In any such processing cycle, the nature, time of initiation (after zero time) and subsequent duration of each step may be determined by a program recorded on a plastic card 30 slipped into a slot 31 of an automatic electric controller mounted in section 12 on the inside of a rightwardly-hinged door panel 32 to be in front of the elements regulating the temperature of the intake of water. The operation of the equipment in accordance with a program on an inserted card is initiated by pressing of a start button 3 3. Once the equipment has thus been placed under program control, the record card 30 is automatically and progressively drawn further into slot 31 at a rate determined by the recorded program itself.

If desired, the equipment may be controlled semimanually instead of by a program. Such semi-manual control is effected through the use of a set of buttons 35 each adapted when pushed to activate a correspondingly respective one of the following operations:

(1) second exposure;

(2) tempering of the equipment by tempering water; (3) wash down of the equipment by such water; and (4) drainage of the system.

Before going on, it might be noted that the described card-programmed automatic controller is commercially available from the German firm of Otto Ramstetter and, as a self-contained unit, is not part of the present invention.

Turning now to the details of section 11 which are shown by FIGS. 2 and 3, disposed within the outer casing 25 is an inner light-tight housing 40 having end walls 41, 42 and side walls 43, 44 enclosing a rectangular space or well 45 closed at the top and bottom by, respectively, lid 26 and panel 27. The walls of housing 45 are spaced inwardly of the walls of casing 25 to provide between the casing and housing a pair of end working spaces 46, 47 and back and front working spaces 48, 49. Well 45 is divided into an upper chamber 50 and a lower chamber 51 by a light-transmissive plastic partition wall 52 forming a bottom for chamber 50 and sloping slightly from front to back.

Disposed within chamber 50 is a transparent plastic processing drum 55 formed of, say, methacrylate resin and having open ends spaced inwards of the end enclosure walls 41, 42 of the well 45. Drum 55 rests with its axis horizontal on two pairs of rolls 56 disposed at opposite ends of the drum such that the two rolls in each pair contact the drum at points on opposite sides of the drum bottom. In each pair of rolls, the front element is an idler roll and the rear element is a driver roll. Drum 55 is adapted to be rotated around its axis either clockwise or counterclockwise by a coupling 63 of the two drive rolls through their shafts 57, pulleys 58 on such shafts, belts 59 linking pulleys 58 to pulleys 60 on a shaft 61 and an electric motor 62 (FIG. 4) in working space 48, such motor being coupled to shaft 61 and being reversible in rotation by a relay-controlled reversing switch 65. To the end of improving the frictional contact between the drum and the drive rolls, the drum 55 is encircled by rubber bands 66 engaging knurled sections (not shown) extending around the drive rolls. If desired, bands 66 may ride in knurled annular grooves which are formed in the rolls, and which minimize axial wandering of the drum during its rotation.

Drum 55 has on its interior two pairs of similar horizontal rows of axially spaced film-holding hooks 70 distributed around the inside of the drum such that the two rows of books which form each pair thereof are angularly spaced from each other around the drum by less than a semicircle. Each of the hooks 70 is formed of a length of wire having opposite ends sunk into the resin of the drum and having intermediate those ends a section which is bent to form a re-entrant angle facing towards the other row of hooks in the same pair of hook rows. Sheets of photographic film 71 to be processed are held in place within drum 55 by bending the sheets into plano-arcuate shape and by then inserting the edges of the sheets at opposite ends of the are into the re-entrant angles provided by the opposite hooks in the hook rows which are paired together. The resilience of the sheets then maintains the film 71 mounted on the hooks within the drum so as to rotate therewith. In order to provide equal processing of the film on both of its sides, hooks 70 hold the edges of the sheet film away from the inside wall of the drum. The central portion of the film is held away from such wall by wire pins 72 each having one end sunk into the resin of the drum and the other end projecting radially inward from the drums interior surface.

Disposed outside drum 55 is a conduit system for film processing liquid. Such liquid is initially introduced by that system to the inside of drum 55 in a manner as follows. A manifold 80 for supplying such liquid leads from the reagent storage section (FIG. 1) through casing and to housing 40 to be coupled with the drum chamber 50 by way of a passage or port 81 extending through the end wall 41 of the housing. Liquid emerging from that port is conducted to the bottom of drum 55 by the left hand one of two channels 85 and 86 comprising a transfer means for such liquid. As shown, the channels 85 and 86 are in the form of rubber trough members mounted on the insides of, respectively, end walls 41 and 42 by screws 87 passing through relatively thick base portions 88 of such members and then into those end walls.

Each one of trough members 85 and 86 is of arcuate shape in the drums peripheral direction. In the drums axial direction, each such member extends to and beyond the corresponding one of the two opposite open ends of the drum. The forward portions of the members 85 and 86 are in the shape of resilient lips 89 underlying the bottom of the drum and extending up the sides thereof over an are which is less than a semicircle. Each such lip 89 has an upward facing surface 90 contacting the exterior surface of the drum over the whole arcuate extent of the lip. Members 85 and 86 are vertically so placed on walls 41 and 42 that, before drum 55 comes to rest on rolls 56 in the course of lowering the drum into chamber 50, the weight of the drum presses down on lips 89 and deflects those lips resiliently downward to produce a liquid-tight sealing engagement between the upward facing lip surfaces and the exterior surface of the drum. Besides being sealing engagements, the respective engagements of the drum with the lips are peripherally slippable engagements in the sense that those engagements permit rotation of the drum while maintaining a liquid-tight sealing between the drum and the trough members 85 and 86.

The described channels thus provide stationary-torotating liquid flow couplings between the stationary conduit system outside the drum and the rotating interior of the drum. Because the left hand channel 85 is below the port 81 for manifold 80, liquid supplied by that manifold is passed by that channel to the inside of the drum.

When the liquid so supplied is a reagent, it is supplied in a predetermined limited quanity rather than in a continuous stream. To assure that such limited quantity of reagent will uniformly and most effectively process the film 71, the reagent is recirculated through the drum in a closed loop path provided as follows.

A motor driven pump 95 (in left working space 46) has an impeller 96 disposed in a pumping chamber 97 between tubes 98 and 99 opening into that chamber. Tube 98 extends through end wall 41 of the drum chamber to form on the inside of that wall a port 105 above the channel 85. Tube 99 couples the pumping chamber 97 to a drain line 106 and to one end of a return pipe 107. A similar motor driven pump 110 (in right working space 47) has an impellerv 108 disposed in a pumping chamber 109 between tubes 111 and 112 opening into that chamber. Tube 111 extends through the end wall 42 of the drum chamber 50 to form on the inside of that wall a port 113 above channel 86. Tube 112 couples the pumping chamber 109 to a drain line 114 and to the other end of the return pipe 107.

Both of pumps and are selectively operable and are reversible to pump liquid either upward or downward. Both of the drain lines 106 and 114 can be selecttively opened and closed by means later described. Those two drain lines lead to a common drain pipe 115 (FIG. 3).

When the liquid in drum 55 is a quantity of reagent, such reagent is recirculated by closing both of drain lines 106, 114 and by selectively actuating pumps 95 and 110 so that one pumps upward and the other downward, If pump 95 is actuated to pump down, the reagent flows axially from right to left through drum 55 and then passes from left to right through the return pipe 107 to then pass upward through pump 110 and back into the drum. If pump 110 is actuated to pump downward, the reagent flows axially from left to right through the drum and then from right to left through the return pipe 107 to pass through the pump 95 and back into the drum.

Instead of supplying a quantum of reagent, the manifold 80 may supply to drum 55 a continuous stream of tempering water for the purposes of washing or rinsing the film 71 in the drum. In that case, pump 110 is actuated to pump downward, and pump 95 is actuated to pump upward and, also, drain lines 106 and 114 are both open. The upward pumping action of element 95 prevents the tempering water from flowing through port 105. Hence, the stream of water is drawn by the downward pumping action of pump 110 to pass axially from left to right through drum 55 and to then pass via the drain lines to the drain pipe 115.

As shown by FIGS. 2 and 3, channels 85 and 86 have upper surfaces below the level of the bottom of the interior of the drum. Also, the bottoms of ports 105 and 113 are below the bottom of the drums interior. Thus, the mentioned channels provide flow paths by which all of the liquid in the drum can flow out by gravity. T0 attain such gravity flow, the flow paths defined by the channels need not slope downwardly from the drum but could be level with the low point of the bottom of the drums interior.

To have at least one such gravity flow path from the drum is desirable not because gravity need be entirely relied on to drain the drum (actually, the draining is mostly effected by the described pumps) but because such paths permit the drain to be drained in full of any liquid therein while the drum is in place within its chamber 50. Also, the use of at least one of such gravity flow path prevents retention in the drum of a relatively stagnant pocket of liquid in the course of the flow of a reagent or water axially of the drum in the direction towards that path. The employment of two of such paths prevents such pocket from developing for either direction of axial flow.

As earlier described, the reagents stored in section 10 (FIG. 1) are tempered by heated water surrounding the containers for the reagents. It is also desirable for the drum chamber 50 and the recirculating reagent to be tempered. To that end, a stream of tempered water is supplied via a line to the inside of a jacket 121 surrounding the return pipe 107. Such water moves from right to left through that jacket to maintain at the selected temperature the reagnt passing through the return pipe. At the left hand end of the jacket, the tempered water passes upwardly through a riser pipe 122 to flow over the top surface of the light-transmissive plastic partition wall 52, the tempering medium moving downwardly over the gentle slope of that surface to a drain outlet 123 connected to the drain pipe 115. In so flowing over the bottom 52 of the drum chamber 50, the heated water tempers that chamber. Outlet 123 serves to drain from chamber 50 both the tempering water supplied by pipe 122 and any other liquid (reagent or water) which should happen to spill into the chamber by, say, overflowing the sides of the channel 85 or the channel 36.

The return pipe 107 and the jacket 121 therefor are disposed below wall 52 so as to be in the lower chamber 51 formed within housing 40 by that partition wall. Also present within that chamber is an array of four fluorescent lighting tubes 130 axially extending between tube sockets 131 mounted on the rearwardly hinged bottom panel 27. The last named panel is normally in closed position (as illustrated) and is held in such position by fastening means (not shown).

The four tubes 130 are divided into two separate pairs of tubes disposed on transversely opposite sides of jacket 121 such that each tube is in unobstructed radiation coupled relation (through the wall 52) with the drum 55. All four tubes may be simultaneously fired by the selective operation of a relay-controlled switch 132 (FIG. 4). The light output from the fired tubes passes through Wall 52 and the transparent wall of drum 55 (which is then rotating but is empty of liquid) to radiate the film 71 in the drum and thereby produce a second exposure of that film. Since the film is rotating in a closed path and the light from sources 130 falls on the film at various different angles of incidence around that path, the film receives a uniform second exposure despite any wrinkles or other lack of uniformity in the lie of the film within the drum.

FIG. 4 is a schematic diagram of the whole FIG. 1 apparatus. In that diagram, liquid, electrical and mechanical connections are represented by, respectively, solid, dash and dot-dash lines.

As shown by FIG. 4, the hot and cold water at inlets 13 and 14 is fed to a motor-adjusted mixer valve 140 to be blended therein and to emerge as a tempered water stream. That stream passes successively through a manually adjusted throttle valve 141, a solenoid actuated cutoff valve 142 and first and second thermo-controls 143- and 144. Valve 14.2 is actuated from controller 150 either by a semi-manual signal or by a program induced signal (derived from card 30) so as to open when intake of water to the equipment is desired. Controls 143 and 144 are coupled to the motor of mixer 140 by respective signal feed back paths 145 and 146. Each of those controls responds to the temperature of water passing therethrough to supply via the corresponding feed back path a signal which varies in accordance with the temperature sensed by the control to adjust mixer 140 so as to maintain the water temperature at a selected value manually set beforehand on the control. Only one of controls 143, 144 is actuated (from controller I150) at any one time to regulate the mixer action, but different ones of those two thermo-controls may be selected at different times in a processing cycle to perform that regulating function. Thus, by manually setting different selected temperatures on the two thermo-controls, it is possible to selectively provide either one of those two temperatures as the operating temperature for any selected step of a given processing cycle.

The stream of tempered water passes from the second thermo-control 144 and via a feed line 15 1 to the tempering tank 155 to fill that tank until the water therein reaches the level of the inlet of a pipe 156 upstanding from the tanks bottom. Thereafter, the water passes through that inlet down through pipe 156 and line 120 to jacket 121 from whence, as described, the water flows through riser 122 and over the top of partition wall 52 to drain from the system through outlet 123.

The inlet of pipe 156 is of a height above the bottom of tank 155 to ordinarily maintain the level of tank water just below the open tops of the mentioned nine reagent storage containers designated in FIG. 4 as containers 160a-160i. As shown, those container tops are in turn at a height less than the height of the top of the side walls 161 of the tank. If the water in the tank should ever reach the latter height, it drains out through a safety overflow 162. When at its normal level in the tank, the heated tempering water serves, as described, to temper the reagents stored within the containers seated in the tank.

The nine storage containers 160a-160i are coupled through nine respectively corresponding solenoid-actuated dump valves 165a-165i to manifold which leads as described to the drum chamber 50. Such valves are normally closed, but any one of them may be selectively actuated by an electrical signal from controller 150 to dump the entire contents of the corresponding container into the manifold and, from thence, into the interior of drum 55. An additional solenoid-actuated valve 166 is coupled between the bottom of tank 155 and the manifold. Valve 166 is normally closed, but is selectively actuated to open condition by a signal from the controller. When valve 166 is so opened, it drains tank 155 of tempering water to pass a stream of that water down through the manifold and through the drum.

A pair of solenoid-actuated valves 170 and 171 are respectively disposed in the drain lines 106 and 114 for the reagent recirculating system. Valves 170 and 171 are normally closed but may be opened by a signal from controller 150 to drain the last named system.

The drain line for jacket 121 has therein a normally closed cut-off valve 172. Since jacket 121 need not ordinarily be drained, valve 172 is shown as being a manually openable valve. If desired, however, the valve 172 may be a solenoid-actuated valve which is selectively opened by a signal from the controller 150.

Other elements of the described apparatus which are shown in FIG. 4 as being electrically controlled from the unit 150 are the pumps and 110, the reversible drum rotating motor 62 (actuated through relay-controlled reversing switch unit 65) and the fluorescent lights (actuated through relay-controlled switch 132).

The mode by which film in drum 55 is processed under program control will be better understood by further consideration of the character of plastic card 30. One side of the card is shaped to be characterized by twentyfour transversely spaced parallel raised ridges extending in the longitudinal direction (i.e., in the direction of card feed). Each of the elongated areas occupied by one of those ridges is definitive of and corresponds to a respective one of twenty-four channels of which each controls one of the functions in the FIG. 1 equipment. The long ridges are marked oil (by longitudinally-spaced transversely running guidelines inscribed in the card) into equal zones of which each represents one indexing step of the card. The plastic of each ridge may be selectively removed (by special cutters) down to the level of the ridge backing in anyof the zones into which that ridge is divided. By such selective removal of plastic in such zones, some or all of the mentioned channels are rendered in the longitudinal direction in the form of unremoved sections of ridge in certain zones alternating with the removed sections of ridge (i.e., voids) in the other zone portions of the channel. As the card 30 is fed into the controller 150 an indexing step at a time, twenty-four signalling devices (e.g., micro switches) each sense at each step the condition of the ridge of a respectively corresponding one of the twenty-four channels. If a given one of those devices senses that the corresponding ridge remains unremoved, then that device remains inactive. If, however, such device senses that the plastic of the ridge has been removed in the zone corresponding to that particular indexing step, then such device generates for the corresponding channel an electrical signal or output supplied from controller 150 to actuate in the FIG. 1 apparatus the valve or other means which is controlled by that channel.

It might be noted that two of the channels on card 30 selectively determine the rate at which the card is indexed through the controller. That is, if one of such channels is actuated, the time interval between successive card indexing movements is fifteen seconds, but, if the other channel is actuated, then such interval is sixty seconds. It might also be noted that instead of controlling the feeding of the card by a selected one of the mentioned two channels, card 30 may be advanced as far as desired into slot 31 by manual turning of an indexing wheel (not shown) so as to by-pass some of the indexing steps programmed on the card member.

Card 30 is thus a record member capable of providing thereon an almost infinite variety of programs for the processing cycles to be carried out by the FIG. 1 equipment. For example, the card may have impressed thereon (in the manner described hereinbefore) a program causing the equipment to carry out entirely automatically the well known developing processes E-2 and E-3 for Kodak Ektachrome film, such processes being described in pamphlet KP 52883 5 8-62 published by the Eastman Kodak Company, Rochester, NY. Alternatively, the card 30 may have thereon a program for an Ansco developing process.

Some methods of operating the FIG. 1 equipment will now be described.

Assume first that it is desired to develop by the equipment a batch of exposed color film. When in stand-by condition, the equipment is drained to be dry, and an empty drum 55 is stored (for convenience) in the drum chamber 50. As a preliminary to the developing process, lid 26 is opened and drum 55 is removed from its chamber by merely lifting the drum from off the resilient channels 85, 86. While the room which houses the equipment is in darkness, the drum is filled with the film to be processed by mounting such film within the drum on the rows of hooks 70 in the manner already described. The drum is then replaced in its chamber 50, lid 26 is closed (to exclude all ambient light from chamber 50'), and normal illumination is subsequently restored in the equipment room.

As another preliminary to the developing process, some or all of the containers 160a-160i are loaded with different ones of the reagents to be used in the process. By the employment of reagents of suitably adjusted relative strength, the volume of reagent in each container may be made the same. Also, the volume of reagent in each container is rendered in proportion to the area of film to be processed. The filling of each container with the proper volume of reagent is carried out by pouring the reagent into the container until the level gauge 17 therefor indicates (FIG. 1) that the desired volume of reagent is present.

The processing cycle is initiated by slipping into the slot 31 of controller 150 a card 30 which is programmed to first cause solenoid-actuated valve 142 to open (FIG. 4) to permit water from the inlets 13 and 14 to flow through the system. Throttle valve 141 is adjusted manually to provide the desired volumetric flow per minute of water. Also, mixer 140 will have been adjusted from a previous cycle to immediately yield on line 151 an output of tempering water which is fairly close in temperature to the exact temperature desired. The thermocontrols 143 and 144 are warmed up for, say, about five minutes by such initial flow. Then, an initially selected one of elements 143 and 144 is activated by the program on the card to take control of the mixer so as to maintain the output water temperature at the selected value which has been set by previous manual adjustment of the selected thermo-control.

After the temperature of the tempering water has been placed under the closed loop servo-control provided by the initially selected one of thermo-elements 143 and 144 and the signal feedback coupling of that element to the motor driven mixer 140, the tempering of the equipment continues by circulation of tempering water in the tank 155 and through the jacket 121 and over the bottom 52 of the drum chamber 50. About minutes of such flow of temperature-regulated water sufiices to bring to the selected desired value the temperature of the stored reagents as well as the temperature of the drum chamber and the temperature of the return pipe 107. Hence, about 20 minutes after the selected thermo-control has been activated, the program on card 30 causes the activation of, say, dump valve 165a to produce a fiow into the manifold of the whole volume of reagent stored in container 160a, such reagent being the first one scheduled for the programmed developing process. That quantum of reagent passes through manifold 80 and (by way of channel into the bottom of drum 50.

As soon as the entire quantum of the first reagent has been deposited in the drum, dump valve 165a is closed, and the program card operates through controller 150' to actuate motor 62 to rotate drum 55 so as to have intermittent reversals in its direction of rotation. Also, the card operates the pumps and to produce recirculation of the reagent through the drum and, in the course of such recirculation, to effect intermittent reversals in the direction of axial How of the reagent through the drum.

FIG. 5 shows by way of a vector diagram the effect of drum rotation direction and of the direction of axial flow of the reagent (through the drum) on the relative movement of the reagent over the film processed thereby. When the pumps are inactive but motor 62 is concurrently energized to drive the drum in the directions of rotation which are, respectively, clockwise and counterclockwise (viewing the drum from its left hand end), the movements of the reagent relative to the film are represented by, respectively, the vectors and 171. AS another case, when the motor 62 is inactive but the pumps are energized to provide in alternation a first pumping condition wherein pumps 95 and 110 drive the reagent up and down, respectively, and a second pumping condition wherein the pumps 95 and 110 drive the reagent down and up, respectively, the reagent responds to those first and second pumping conditions to undergo movements relative to the film which are represented in FIG. 5 by, respectively, the vector 172 and the vector 173.

When drum 50 is rotating, and, simultaneously, the pumps 95 and 110 are producing an axial flow of reagent through the drum, the movement in the drum of the reagent relative to the film is represented by a vector which is a resultant of one of the aforementioned vectors representing drum rotation alone and one of the aforementioned vectors representing axial flow alone. That is, if the drum rotation at a given time is represented by vector 171 and, in the course of that drum rotation, the axial flow of the reagent through the drum is represented first by vector 172 and then by vector 173, the movements of the reagent over the film in the course of such rotation are represented first by vector 174 and then by vector 175. If, on the other hand, the drum rotation at a given time is represented by vector 170 and, in the course of the latter rotation, the axial flow of the fluid is represented first by vector 173 and then by vector 172, the movements of the reagent over and relative to the film in the course of that rotation are represented first by vector 176 and then by vector 177.

From the foregoing, it will be apparent that the card 30 may be programmed to impart to the reagent in the drum a movement relative to the film which corresponds to any selected one of the eight different movements represented in FIG. 5 by the vectors 170177, respectively. Because, however, the relative movements produced by the combined actions of drum rotation and of axial flow of the reagent are greater in magnitude than the movements produced by drum rotation alone or by axial flow alone (such greater magnitude being represented in FIG. 5 by vectors 174177 having a greater length than vectors 170-173), it has been found more efficient in practice to employ for the most part those relative movements of the reagent and the film which are produced by the mentioned combined actions. To the end of realizing that more efiicient practice, the timing of the intermittent reversals in the direction of drum rotation are staggered in relation to the time of the intermittent reversals in the axial flow of the reagent so that one such type of reversal takes place in about the middle of the period between consecutive reversals of the other type. By such staggering in 180 time phase relation of the two type of reversals, the smaller reagent-film relative movements which are represented by vectors 170173 are limited in time to those relatively brief dead-time intervals during which the drum is changing from one direction of rotation to the other or during which the axial flow of the reagent is changing from one direction to the other. Hence, over the period allotted by the program card for the treatment of the film by the first reagent, the reagent-film movement according to the preferred practice can be considered to be constituted of a succession of cycles of relative movement in which the sequence of movements in each cycle is represented in FIG. 5 by, say, the vectors 174, 175, 176 and 177 in the order named.

Because, in the course of the processing of the film by the first reagent, that reagent is continuously recirculated through the drum and flows within the drum in different directions relative to the film, the processing of the reagent by the film is highly efiicient and uniform. Also, the described recirculation of the reagent has the advantage that it allows the film to be processed by reagent which uniformly treats the film while, nonetheless, being present only in a limited quantity so as to keep down the costs of processing. A related advantage is that the recirculatlon technique makes it economically feasible to use fresh and relatively strong reagents in each cycle of processing of a batch of film. v

After the film has been processed (as described) by the first reagent for the period allotted by the program card 30, the indexing of that card into controller 150 brings the recorded program to a point causing an opening of drain valves 170 and 171 (FIG. 4) and an actuation of pumps 95 and 110 such that both pumps drive downward. The result is a draining of the first reagent out of the drum and the associated recirculation system. During that draining step, drum 55 is not rotated.

When such drain step has been completed, the card program effects an opening of water valve 166 for a period determined by the program, drain valves 170 and 171 being concurrently maintained open. During that period, a stream of tempering water from tank 155 flows through valve 166 and into manifold SO to flush out the manifold of any trace of first reagent which may have remained therein. From the manifold, the mentioned stream flows through drum :55 and then out the drains 106 and 114 so as to produce a washing or a rinsing of the film in the drum. If pump 95 were to be actuated in the course of such water treating of the film, the pump would tend to force the water from the manifold directly to drain 106 so as to divert such water from the drum. Hence, during the washing or rinsing step, pumps 95 and 110 are continuously actuated to pump only up and only down, respectively, and the axial flow of water through the drum is only from left to right. Such unidirectional flow of water is, however, accompanied by intermittent reversals in the direction of rotation of the drum.

The washing or rinsing step is ended by closure under program control of the valve 166. Such closure is followed by another drain period during which valves 170 and 171 remain open, and pumps 95 and 110 drive downward to drain the tempering water from the manifold, drum and recirculation system. As before, drum 55 may remain stationary in the course of such draining. When the draining has been completed, the valves 170 and 171 are closed under program control, and the equipment is ready for the processing of the film in the drum by a second reagent stored in, say, the container 160]). The second reagent processing step is substantially a duplicate of the already described first reagent processing step excepting that, for the second step, it is the dump valve 165b rather than the 12 valve 165a which is selectively actuated to introduce a quantum of reagent into the drum.

From what has been said, it will be evident that the processing cycle for the film proceeds by way of a succession of subcycles which each comprises a reagent processing step followed by a drain step, a wash or rinse step and another drain step, and in each of which a different reagent is introduced into the drum. At a point midway in the cycle, and between a draining of the drum and the introduction thereinto of the next scheduled reagent, the film is subjected to a second exposure effected by firing the fluorescent lights 130 under program control to irradiate the film in drum 55 while that drum is rotating. As earlier described, the rotation of the film in a closed loop path and the concurrent falling on the film of light from sources 130 at various angles of incidence around that path are features which act in combination to impart a highly uniform second exposure to the film.

It will be understood that, all during a processing cycle, tempering water continues to circulate in tank 155 and through jacket 121 and over the bottom 52 of drum chamber 50 so as to maintain at the desired temperature the stored reagents, the recirculating reagent and the drum chamber. At one or more selected intervals in the cycle, however, the temperature of such water may be changed from one desired value to another by switching under program control the regulation of mixer 140 from one to the other of the thermo-controls 143 and 144 which are respectively set to difierent selected temperature values.

After treatment of the film by the last scheduled reagent, the film processing cycle may be conveniently terminated under program control in a manner as follows. First, the thermo-controls 143 and 144 are inactivated, and the motor for mixer 140 is de-actuated. Second, valve 142 is closed to cut-off the intake of water to the system. Third, over a prolonged period the valves 166, 170 and 171 are opened and the pumps and are both actuated to drive downward. Under those conditions, all of the tempering water in tank 155, drum 55 and the recirculation system will be caused to drain out through the drain lines 106 and 114. After drainage has been completed, valves 166 and 170, 171 are restored to closed condition and the pumps 95 and 110 are deactuated. Motor 62. is inactive during that final drain step.

When the programmed cycle has so ended, lid 26 (FIG. 1) is opened, and the now dry drum 55 with its film contents is removed from chamber 50 and placed in a suitable drying chamber (not shown). After the film has dried, it is removed from the drum which is then replaced (for convenient storage) back in the drum chamber 50. Also, the card 30 which has provided the program is removed from controller 150. With the foregoing having been accomplished, the equipment is ready to undertake a new processing cycle.

It might be noted that, while the equipment is in standby condition, water in the pipe 156, line and jacket 121 can be removed by manually turning valve 173 to open condition for a period long enough to drain off all that water.

After each daily use of the equipment, it is desirable to clean it. Such cleaning may be effected by placing a stopper (not shown) in the upper open end of pipe 156. Valve 142 is then opened to permit water to pass into tank until the water reaches a level at which it overflows the open tops of the now empty reagent containers a160i so as to fill each of those containers. Meanwhile, drain valves 170 and 171 have been opened. When all the containers have been filled with water, valve 142 is closed. Then, all of dump valves a-165i and valve 166 are opened and kept open until all water has drained out of tank 155 and out of the containers and from the drum and recirculation system and has been disposed of through drain lines 106 and 114. The flow of such large volume of water thoroughly flushes the containers and the remainder of the system of any traces of reagents left 13 behind from a previous processing cycle. Also, the large flow of water cleans the system of dirt. After all the water has drained oif, valves 16511-1651, 166 and 170', 171 are all closed.

The described cleaning procedure may be carried out either by semi-manual control of controller 150 or by insertion into the controller of a card having a special cleaning program recorded thereon. When such a cleaning card is used, the program on the card may be designed to cause, after drainage, a subsequent re-filling of containers 16011-1601 by Water flowing into them from tank 155 and left standing in the containers until dumped at a time just before the equipment is next used for processing film.

The drum 55 shown in FIGS. 2 and 3 is adapted for the processing of sheet film by the mounting of the film sheets on the described hooks 70 within that drum. Alternatively, however, the described apparatus may be adapted for the processing of roll film in a manner as follows.

Referring to FIGS. 6 and 7, lengths of roll film to be processed are wound on one or more of a plurality of reels of which three are shown in FIG. 6 and are designated as reels 180a, 18Gb and 18110, respectively. The reels are all similar. Each is comprised of a plastic arbor 181 and a pair of plastic discs 182, 183 fixedly mounted in coaxial relation on the arbor so that the two discs are axially spaced from each other with each disc being inward of the arbor end nearest thereto. The spacing between the discs is of the same dimension as the width of the lengths of film to be processed and, as shown on reel 18% such lengths 184 are wound on the central portion of the arbor which extends between the two discs.

Each reel arbor 181 has one plain end in the form of a cylinder of the same radius as the central portion of the arbor. Each arbor also has, however, an opposite end 186 which is radially enlarged to form a bulb. The bulb end of each arbor has formed therein a cylindrical socket hole 187 extending axial-1y into the arbor from an end opening for the hole. Moreover, the peripheral wall around each such socket hole is divided around the hole into a plurality of resilient fingers 188 by a plurality of equiangularly spaced slots 189 formed in the wall to extend radially therethrough and to extend axially from the end opening of the socket hole to the inner end thereof.

In each reel, the socket hole and the resilient fingers therearound are of a size and shape to accommodate with a snug fit the plain end of the arbor of another of such reels. Hence, the plurality of reels may be coupled end-to-end by inserting the plain end of the arbor of each reel (except one) into the socket hole of the arbor of an adjacent reel so as to form a firm joint between each two such coupled reels. When the reels are so coupled together, they provide the shown (FIG. 6) elongated cylindrical multi-reel structure '190 carrying rolls of film on one or more of the reels thereof.

The roll film on the cylindrical structure 190 is processed in the FIG. 1 equipment by inserting the cylinder 190 into a drum 55' (FIG. 7) absent any hook 70 or pin 72 (FIG. 3) but otherwise similar to drum '5. Cylinder 190 is of smaller outer diameter than the inner diameter of drum 55'. Hence, the rotation of the drum in the course of a processing cycle produces a rolling of cylinder 190 on the drums interior surface and at the bottom of the drum so that the cylinder progressively and cyclically immerses different angular portions of the roll film into the liquid (reagent or water) in the drum bottom. It has been found that the technique just described produces effective processing of roll film of' a length too great to be linearly stretched out within the drum.

The above described embodiments being exemplary only, it is to be understood that additions thereto, modifications thereof and omissions therefrom can be made without departing from the spirit of the invention, and

that the invention comprehends embodiments dilfering in form and/or detail from what has been specifically described. Accordingly, the invention is not to be considered as limited save as is consonant with the recitals of the following claims.

'I claim:

1. Photographic processing apparatus comprising, a rotatable drum open at both ends and adapted to contain photographic film and liquid for processing such film, means to rotate said drum, a conduit system adapted to provide said liquid from outside said drum for flow of such liquid axially through said drum between stationary passages of said system disposed axially outwards of said two drum ends, and liquid transfer means disposed adjacent said stationary passages to provide stationary-to-rotating couplings of said passages with said drum, said transfer means being comprised of two liquid-conducting channels each axially extending from one of said passages to and beyond the position for the corresponding end of said drum to be axially adapted to overlap with and be in liquid-sealing contact with the outer surface of said drum at the bottom thereof and up the sides thereof over a peripheral extent which is less than half the circumference of said drum, and said drum being separable from said channels by lifting of said drum off said channels.

2. Apparatus as in claim 1 further comprising, enclosure means providing a well for receiving said drum, said well having opposite end Walls axially spaced from each other by at least the axial separation of said ends of said drum, said end walls having ports therein providing said passages, and said channels being below said ports and being mounted by corresponding ones of said walls to project from said walls axially towards each other.

3. Apparatus as in claim 2 in which said well has a bottom and said channels are open to permit an excess of said fluid to flow over the sides of said channels and down into the bottom of said well, said apparatus further comprising a drain coupled to said well bottom to remove such excess fluid from said well.

4. Apparatus as in claim 2 in which said channels comprise a pair of axially-spaced peripherally-arcuate members comprised of resilient material.

5. Apparatus as in claim 1 in which said conduit system includes means for recirculating liquid flowing through said drum.

6. Apparatus as in claim 1 in which said conduit system includes means for intermittently reversing the direction of axial flow of said liquid through said drum.

7. Apparatus as in claim 1 in which said means to rotate said drum includes means to intermittently reverse the direction of drum rotation.

8. Apparatus as in claim '1 in which said means to rotate said drum includes means to intermittently reverse the direction of drum rotation, and in which said conduit system includes means for intermittently reversing the direction of axial flow of said liquid through said drum.

9. Apparatus as in claim 1 further comprising drain means coupled to said conduit system for draining said liquid from said drum and system while said drum is in sealing engagement with said channels so as to permit removal of liquid in said drum before a lifting of said drum off said channels.

10. Photographic processing apparatus comprising a rotatable drum adapted to contain photographic film and liquid for processing such film, means to rotate said drum, means to introduce into said drum a quantity of said liquid and for producing axial flow of said introduced liquid within said drum from one end to the other thereof in the course of rotation thereof, and means for recirculating liquid which has axially flowed through said drum to produce subsequent axial flow thereof through said drum.

11. Apparatus as in claim 10 in which said means to rotate said drum includes means to intermittently reverse the direction of rotation of said drum.

:12. Apparatus as in claim 10 in which said means to recirculate said liquid includes means to intermittently reverse the direction of axial flow of said liquid through said drum.

13. Apparatus as in claim 10 in which said means to rotate said drum includes means to intermittently reverse the direction of rotation of said drum, and in which said means to recirculate said liquid includes means to intermittently reverse the direction of axial flow of said liquid through said drum.

14. Photographic processing apparatus comprising a radiation-transmissive rotatable drum adapted to contain photographic film and liquid for processing such film, enclosure means for said drum, said enclosure means being adapted to shield the inside of said drum from extraneous film-exposing radiation, means to selectively introduce such liquid into and to remove such liquid from said drum so as to process film in said drum by successive liquid processing steps, means to rotate said drum during such processing, and radiation source means disposed outside said drum in radiation coupled relation thereto, said source means being selectively energizable at a time between ones of said liquid processing steps to transmit radiation to the inside of said drum while rotating to thereby produce a second exposure of such film.

15. Apparatus as in claim 14 in which said peripheral wall of said drum is transmissive of visible light, said enclosure means comprises a light tight housing providing an interior divided by a light transmissive partition wall into a first chamber in which said drum is disposed and a second chamber in which said source means is disposed, and in which said radiation source means comprises at least one source of visible light disposed to transmit such light through said partition wall and drum wall to the inside of said drum.

16. Photographic processing apparatus comprising, a rotatable drum adapted to contain photographic film to be processed, means to rotate said drum, a tank for tempering water, a plurality of storage receptacles for diflerent photographic reagents, said receptacles being disposed in said tank so as to render said reagents tempered in temperature by said water, first fluid flow control means to introduce into said drum and drain from said drum a quantity of reagent from each one at a time of said receptacles so as to subject film contained in said drum to a sequence of processing steps effected by said reagents, and second fluid flow control means operable between ones of said reagent processing steps to pass tempering water from said tank through the inside of said drum so as to treat said contained film with such water.

17. Apparatus as in claim 16 in which said first control means comprises a plurality of dump valves each corresponding to a respective one of said receptacles and being coupled between that receptacle and an inlet to the drum interior to pass the contents of that receptacle to said interior when the valve is opened, and in which said second control means comprises a cut-off valve coupled between said tank and said inlet and adapted when opened to pass said water to said drum interior.

18. Apparatus as in claim 17 which said dump valves and cut-oi'f valves are electrically operated, said apparatus further comprising, program-controlled electrical valve selector means coupled to said valves to operate said valves sequentially so as to process said film with reagents and treat said film with tempered water in accordance with a predetermined selectable program.

19. Photographic processing apparatus comprising, a rotatable drum adapted to contain photographic film to be processed, electrically operated motor means to rotate said drum, a plurality of sources of different reagents for processing said film, a plurality of electrically operated valve means each coupled between a respective one of said sources and the interior of said drum to control the flow of reagent from that source to the inside of said drum, program-responsive electrical controller means having a plurality of electrical outputs each coupled to a respective one of said electrically operated means and adapted when energized to effect a change in the operating condition of that means, and record means having recorded thereon a selectable program enterable into said controller means to energize said outputs in a sequence determined by said program so as to produce a corresponding sequence of treatments of film in said drum by said reagents and of accompanying controlled rotations of said drum.

20. Apparatus as in claim 19 further comprising electrically operated pump means for recirculating a quantity of reagent supplied to said drum and electrically operated drain means for removing such reagent fromv said drum,

v said pump means and drain means being controlled from corresponding outputs of said controller means.

21. Apparatus as in claim 19 further comprising source means of tempering water and electrically operated valve means coupled between such source means and said drum to pass said water to said drum interior, said last-named valve means being controlled from a corresponding output of said controller means to produce treatment of said contained film by said water in accordance with said program and between processings of such film by ones of said reagents.

22. In photographic processing apparatus in which film in a processing chamber is successively subjected to treatment by each of a plurality of different liquid re agents stored in respectively corresponding open-topped receptacles and successively supplied from said receptacles to said chamber, the improvement comprising means to pass a stream of tempered water through said apparatus, means to surround said receptacles by tempered water from said stream so as to temper by said water the reagents in said receptacles, said surrounding means comprising a tempering tank in which said receptacles are seated and having walls higher than the open tops of said receptacles, means to produce overflow of tempering water in said tank into said receptacles when the same are empty of reagents, and means to drain said water from said receptacles so as to clean the interiors of said receptacles by such water.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 733,244 7/ 1903 Mette 93 1,416,402 5/ 1922 Dye 9593 1,470,586 10/1923 Sherman 9593 1,526,603 2/1925 Lenz 9593 3,088,391 5/1963 Sigler 9589 3,099,623 7/1963 Kaufer 9589 3,187,659 6/1965 Edens et al. 9589 R 2,835,181 5/1958 Seeley 9590.5 3,000,288 9/ 1961 Winnek 9589 MISC 3,140,647 7/1964 Miller 9593 3,280,716 10/1966 Gall 9589 3,345,929 10/ 1967 Oksakovsky et al. 9596 FOREIGN PATENTS 605,391 5/1960 Italy.

JOHN M. HORAN, Primary Examiner A. MATHEWS, Assistant Examiner US. Cl. X.R. 9589, 90.5

22 33 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION Patent No. 3 3, Dated Nov. 30, 1971 Inventor) Claes Johan Anderberg It is certified that error appears in the above-identified patent and that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:

Col. 1, line 5, after "Sweden", insert --assignor to Printing Developments, Inc., New York, New York, a corporation of New York--;

Col. 2, line 50, "strips" should read -strip--; and

Col. 6, line 66, "reagnt" should read --reagent--.

Signed and sealed this 1 th day of July 1972.

(SEAL) Attest:

EDWARD M.FLETCHL'R, JR. ROBERT GOTTSCHALK Attesting Officer Commissioner of. Patents

US3623416A 1968-06-24 1968-06-24 Processing system for photographic material Expired - Lifetime US3623416A (en)

Priority Applications (1)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US73932968 true 1968-06-24 1968-06-24

Publications (1)

Publication Number Publication Date
US3623416A true US3623416A (en) 1971-11-30

Family

ID=24971796

Family Applications (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
US3623416A Expired - Lifetime US3623416A (en) 1968-06-24 1968-06-24 Processing system for photographic material

Country Status (1)

Country Link
US (1) US3623416A (en)

Cited By (29)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3727535A (en) * 1970-09-25 1973-04-17 R Streeter Photographic processing apparatus
US3792651A (en) * 1972-02-29 1974-02-19 D Banks Photographic processing apparatus
USB361604I5 (en) * 1973-05-18 1975-01-28
US3879119A (en) * 1973-02-12 1975-04-22 Monrick Holding Limited Photographic processing apparatus
US3882527A (en) * 1972-06-10 1975-05-06 Hanshin Gijutsu Kenkyusho Kk Method and apparatus for automatically developing small film
US3983934A (en) * 1975-05-15 1976-10-05 Pako Corporation Heat exchanger
US4001857A (en) * 1974-02-04 1977-01-04 Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd. Developing device
US4001856A (en) * 1975-04-04 1977-01-04 Stimson Paul B Photographic processing apparatus
US4001855A (en) * 1975-03-10 1977-01-04 Henry Gilmer Wilhelm Rapid-flow washer for photographic sheet material
US4054902A (en) * 1975-02-03 1977-10-18 Rebek Dennis C Apparatus for developing photographic prints
US4112453A (en) * 1977-03-07 1978-09-05 Eastman Kodak Company Rotary film processing apparatus
US4167320A (en) * 1977-03-07 1979-09-11 Eastman Kodak Company Vertical film processing apparatus
US4185912A (en) * 1977-06-27 1980-01-29 Theodore F. Schwartz Photographic developer and printer
US4206993A (en) * 1979-03-28 1980-06-10 Csepke Neil A Film-print processor
US4240737A (en) * 1977-08-18 1980-12-23 Vickers Limited Processing of radiation sensitive devices
US4248514A (en) * 1979-10-10 1981-02-03 Watkins James L Photographic processing apparatus
EP0037560A2 (en) * 1980-04-03 1981-10-14 E.I. Du Pont De Nemours And Company Automatic velocity and position controller for film processor
US4367940A (en) * 1980-06-16 1983-01-11 Mart Milam E Chemical application and developer apparatus for lithographic plate processor
EP0075027A1 (en) * 1981-04-04 1983-03-30 Konica Corporation Fluid circuit for treatment device
US4402590A (en) * 1981-07-13 1983-09-06 Pako Corporation Automatic replenisher control for multiprocess photographic processor
US4444480A (en) * 1981-04-11 1984-04-24 Ciba-Geigy Ag Rotating drum-containing sheet or web processing apparatus
US4453817A (en) * 1982-11-15 1984-06-12 Clark Warren P Automatic photographic processing apparatus utilizing a microcomputer
US4455077A (en) * 1982-10-05 1984-06-19 Pako Corporation Processor and method for processing photographic film discs
US4456355A (en) * 1982-10-05 1984-06-26 Pako Corporation Control apparatus for film disc processor
US4586805A (en) * 1980-06-26 1986-05-06 Jobo Labortechnik Gmbh & Co. Kg Device for developing of photo material
US4705379A (en) * 1984-04-09 1987-11-10 Konishiroku Photo Ind. Co., Ltd. Automatic processing machine for photography
US4705378A (en) * 1984-04-09 1987-11-10 Konishiroku Photo Ind. Co., Ltd. Automatic processing machine for photography
US4719173A (en) * 1985-10-07 1988-01-12 Eastman Kodak Company Process for multistage contacting
US4751541A (en) * 1986-08-06 1988-06-14 Jobo-Labortechnik Gmbh. & Co. Kg Apparatus for treating exposed photosensitive materials

Cited By (33)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3727535A (en) * 1970-09-25 1973-04-17 R Streeter Photographic processing apparatus
US3792651A (en) * 1972-02-29 1974-02-19 D Banks Photographic processing apparatus
US3882527A (en) * 1972-06-10 1975-05-06 Hanshin Gijutsu Kenkyusho Kk Method and apparatus for automatically developing small film
US3879119A (en) * 1973-02-12 1975-04-22 Monrick Holding Limited Photographic processing apparatus
US3922702A (en) * 1973-05-18 1975-11-25 Pako Corp Liquid circulating system for photographic film processing tanks
USB361604I5 (en) * 1973-05-18 1975-01-28
US4001857A (en) * 1974-02-04 1977-01-04 Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd. Developing device
US4054902A (en) * 1975-02-03 1977-10-18 Rebek Dennis C Apparatus for developing photographic prints
US4001855A (en) * 1975-03-10 1977-01-04 Henry Gilmer Wilhelm Rapid-flow washer for photographic sheet material
US4001856A (en) * 1975-04-04 1977-01-04 Stimson Paul B Photographic processing apparatus
US3983934A (en) * 1975-05-15 1976-10-05 Pako Corporation Heat exchanger
US4112453A (en) * 1977-03-07 1978-09-05 Eastman Kodak Company Rotary film processing apparatus
US4167320A (en) * 1977-03-07 1979-09-11 Eastman Kodak Company Vertical film processing apparatus
US4185912A (en) * 1977-06-27 1980-01-29 Theodore F. Schwartz Photographic developer and printer
US4240737A (en) * 1977-08-18 1980-12-23 Vickers Limited Processing of radiation sensitive devices
US4206993A (en) * 1979-03-28 1980-06-10 Csepke Neil A Film-print processor
US4248514A (en) * 1979-10-10 1981-02-03 Watkins James L Photographic processing apparatus
EP0037560A3 (en) * 1980-04-03 1981-11-25 E.I. Du Pont De Nemours And Company Automatic velocity and position controller for film processor
EP0037560A2 (en) * 1980-04-03 1981-10-14 E.I. Du Pont De Nemours And Company Automatic velocity and position controller for film processor
US4385821A (en) * 1980-04-03 1983-05-31 E. I. Du Pont De Nemours And Company Automatic velocity and position controller for a film processor
US4367940A (en) * 1980-06-16 1983-01-11 Mart Milam E Chemical application and developer apparatus for lithographic plate processor
US4586805A (en) * 1980-06-26 1986-05-06 Jobo Labortechnik Gmbh & Co. Kg Device for developing of photo material
EP0075027A1 (en) * 1981-04-04 1983-03-30 Konica Corporation Fluid circuit for treatment device
EP0075027A4 (en) * 1981-04-04 1983-08-09 Konishiroku Photo Ind Fluid circuit for treatment device.
US4444480A (en) * 1981-04-11 1984-04-24 Ciba-Geigy Ag Rotating drum-containing sheet or web processing apparatus
US4402590A (en) * 1981-07-13 1983-09-06 Pako Corporation Automatic replenisher control for multiprocess photographic processor
US4455077A (en) * 1982-10-05 1984-06-19 Pako Corporation Processor and method for processing photographic film discs
US4456355A (en) * 1982-10-05 1984-06-26 Pako Corporation Control apparatus for film disc processor
US4453817A (en) * 1982-11-15 1984-06-12 Clark Warren P Automatic photographic processing apparatus utilizing a microcomputer
US4705379A (en) * 1984-04-09 1987-11-10 Konishiroku Photo Ind. Co., Ltd. Automatic processing machine for photography
US4705378A (en) * 1984-04-09 1987-11-10 Konishiroku Photo Ind. Co., Ltd. Automatic processing machine for photography
US4719173A (en) * 1985-10-07 1988-01-12 Eastman Kodak Company Process for multistage contacting
US4751541A (en) * 1986-08-06 1988-06-14 Jobo-Labortechnik Gmbh. & Co. Kg Apparatus for treating exposed photosensitive materials

Similar Documents

Publication Publication Date Title
US3533744A (en) Method and apparatus for performing analytical operations
US4318885A (en) Liquid treating device for chemical analysis apparatus
US5179404A (en) Anti-web adhering contour surface for a photographic processing apparatus
US3607099A (en) Prothrombin time measuring apparatus
US3364833A (en) Wash ammonia development device
US3774521A (en) Photographic developing apparatus
US3620725A (en) Rapid photographic development system
US4533225A (en) Sensitive material processing apparatus
US4099194A (en) Device for the wet processing of photosensitive materials
US1960615A (en) Measuring and controlling apparatus
US3601029A (en) Photographic film and paper processing apparatus
US3696728A (en) Film processor
US2428681A (en) Apparatus for automatically processing film
US5839011A (en) Apparatus for processing photosensitive material
US4141954A (en) Reaction tube assembly for automatic analyzer
US4350429A (en) Material processing apparatus
US3680463A (en) Automatic film processing device
US2327733A (en) Film developing tank
US4035818A (en) Color print or film processor
US2631511A (en) Control for rapid film processing
US1772834A (en) Film-developing apparatus
US3511564A (en) Reader-printer with plastic transport belt
US5144474A (en) Perforated processing apparatus and method
US3000288A (en) Apparatus and method for processing photographic elements
US4269501A (en) Drum for an automatic photographic processing system