Canadian Patents Database / Patent 2933735 Summary

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(12) Patent: (11) CA 2933735
(54) English Title: AUTOMATED PLANTER FOR PLANTING SEEDLINGS IN OBSTACLE-STREWN AND/OR UNEVEN TERRAIN
(54) French Title: PLANTEUSE AUTOMATISEE SERVANT A PLANTER DES PLANTULES EN TERRAIN ACCIDENTE OU INEGAL
(51) International Patent Classification (IPC):
  • A01C 11/02 (2006.01)
(72) Inventors (Country):
  • VAN HORLICK, TIMOTHY C. (Canada)
(73) Owners (Country):
  • TIM C. VAN HORLICK FORESTRY INC. (Canada)
(71) Applicants (Country):
  • TIM C. VAN HORLICK FORESTRY INC. (Canada)
(74) Agent: GOWLING WLG (CANADA) LLP
(45) Issued: 2018-01-09
(22) Filed Date: 2016-06-20
(41) Open to Public Inspection: 2017-05-09
Examination requested: 2016-06-20
(30) Availability of licence: N/A
(30) Language of filing: English

English Abstract

An automated planter device for planting seedlings in an obstacle-strewn and/or uneven terrain. A laterally extendable boom is provided at the end of a vertically-moveable arm, which arm may also be swung from side to side. The boom has a plurality of spaced- apart seedling injectors thereon for planting seedlings. Advantageously, due to variably adjustable positioning of the seedling injectors on the boom, obstacles encountered such as tree stumps or medium sized rocks capable of being traversed but which otherwise create an obstacle to a typical seedling planter, may be avoided. The seedling injectors are each coupled via vacuum hoses to a bin mounted on the planter, which vacuum hoses supply seedlings from the bin to the injectors. A powered gantry at the rear of the planter unloads the bin from the planter when empty, and engages and lifts a re-stocked bin containing additional seedlings onto the rear of the device.


French Abstract

Une planteuse automatisée sert à planter des plantules dans un terrain accidenté ou inégal. Un mât extensible latéral est présent à une extrémité du bras mobile verticalement, lequel bras peut également être basculé latéralement. Le mât comporte une pluralité dinjecteurs de plantule espacés intégrés servant à planter les plantules. De manière avantageuse, en raison du positionnement ajustable de manière variable des injecteurs de plantules, les obstacles rencontrés, comme les souches ou les roches de taille moyenne, qui peuvent être franchis, mais qui autrement créent un obstacle à une planteuse de plantule type peuvent être évités. Les injecteurs de plantule sont chacun couplés par des tuyaux daspiration à un bac installé sur la planteuse, lesquels tuyaux daspiration fournissent les plantules du bac aux injecteurs. Un support mobile alimenté à larrière de la planteuse décharge le bac de la planteuse lorsque vide et engage et soulève un bac réapprovisionné contenant des plantules supplémentaires à larrière de lappareil.


Note: Claims are shown in the official language in which they were submitted.

CLAIMS
1. An automated seedling planter (10) for planting seedlings (42) in ground
(11),
comprising:
a powered vehicle (12) configured to traverse said ground (11), having a cab
(16)
thereon for an operator;
an elongate, powered, articulated moveable arm (20), a proximal end of which
is
pivotably securred to said vehicle and a distal end (22) of which is
extendable outwardly
from said vehicle;
an elongate boom member (24), mounted at said distal end (22) of said moveable

arm (20), at least portions of which are disposed parallel to said ground;
a plurality of seedling injectors (28) for planting seedlings in said ground
(11),
mounted in spaced relation along a length of said elongate boom member (24),
said
plurality of seedling injectors (28) comprising at least a pair (28a, 28b) of
seedling injectors
(28) mounted on mutually opposite ends (29a, 29b) of said boom member (24);
said seedling injectors (28) each comprising soil-engaging members (30a, 30b)
for
piercing and/or tilling the ground (11) when injecting said seedlings in said
ground;
a bin (40), configured to contain said seedlings; (42) and
a plurality of flexible hoses (44) extending from said bin (40) to
respectively each of
said seedling injectors (28), for successively supplying individual of said
seedlings (42) from
said bin (40) to each of said seedling injectors (28) for planting in said
ground (11).
2. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 1, wherein ends of said boom member are longitudinally extendable and
retractable.
3. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 1, further having powered means for extending and retracting mutually-
opposite ends
of said boom member so as to thereby alter a distance separating said pair of
seedling
injectors which are respectively situated at said mutually opposite ends of
said boom
member.
- 20 -

4. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 1, said boom member further having powered means thereon for altering a
distance
separating two or more seedling injectors on said boom member from each other,
and
wherein said powered means may be actuated and controlled by said operator
from said
cab.
5. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 1, further having powered means situated on said boom member for
altering a
distance separating one seedling injector (28a) from another(28b) of said
plurality of
seedling injectors (28a, 28b ) on said boom member (24).
6. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 1, each seedling injector (28) mounted on said boom member (24) further
having a
position adjustment mechanism (50a, 50b) to allow altering or varying relative
spacing of
seedling injectors along said boom member. .
7. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 1, wherein said boom member (24) is comprised of two half-members (25a,
25b)
extending perpendicularly outwardly of respective mutually opposite sides
(26a, 26b) of said
distal end (22) of said moveable arm (20), each of said half-members (26a,
26b) having a
pivotable wrist member (27a, 27b) pivotably mounted at an outboard end (29a,
29b) of each
of said half-members (26a, 26b), said pivotable wrist members (27a, 27b) each
respectively
coupled to a respective hydraulic cylinder (96a, 96b) to allow powered
pivotable folding of
each wrist member (27a, 27b) on a respective half-member (26a, 26b) when the
respective
hydraulic cylinder (96a, 96b) is actuated by said operator.
8. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in ground as
claimed in claim
1, further comprising boom-rotating means (70) at said distal end (22) of said
moveable arm
(20) for rotating said boom member (24) about said distal end (22) of said
movable arm
(20) and within a plane parallel to said ground (11).
9. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in ground as
claimed in claim
8, wherein said boom-rotating means (70) is powered to allow said operator to
rotate said
boom member (24) about an azimuth in said plane parallel to said ground and
remotely
from said cab.
- 21 -

10. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in ground as
claimed in claim
1, further comprising a powered gantry (80) for lifting said bin (40) onto
said vehicle (12), and
for demounting said bin (40) from said vehicle (12) when supply of seedlings
(42) therein is
exhausted.
11. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 10, wherein said powered gantry (80) further possesses bin-engaging
apparatus (90)
for releasibly engaging said bin (40) to allow said powered gantry (80) to
lift said bin (40)
onto said vehicle (12) and to demount said bin (40) from said vehicle.
12. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in ground as
claimed in claim
1, wherein said moveable arm (20) may further be pivoted from side to side of
the vehicle
(12) when desired by said operator.
13. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 1, wherein said flexible hoses are vacuum hoses and said supply of
seedlings (42) to
each of said seedling injectors (28) is achieved by said seedling injectors
withdrawing air
from an associated of said hoses extending to said bin.
14. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 1, each of said seedling injectors further comprising soil tillage means
(30a, 30b)
protruding from a ventral position thereof, such soil tillage means (30a, 30b)
adapted to be
reciprocated in a back and forth manner at a time of injection of a seedling
in said ground by
a respective seedling injector.
15. An automated seedling planter (10) for planting seedlings (42) in
ground (11),
comprising:
a modified earth excavator (12) having tracks (14) for" propelling said
modified earth
excavator (12) over said ground (11), having :
(i) a cab (16) thereon for an operator to control said seedling planter;
(ii) an elongate, powered moveable arm (20), a distal end (22) of which is
vertically-
positionable and extendable outwardly from said modified earth excavator (12);
(iii) an elongate boom member (24) mounted at said distal end (22) of said
moveable
- 22 -


arm (20) and replacing a normally-situated excavator bucket at said distal end
of said
moveable arm (20), said elongate boom member (24) extending parallel to said
ground (11);
(iv) a plurality of seedling injectors (28) mounted along a length (29) of
said elongate
boom member (24), said plurality of seedling injectors (28) comprising at
least a pair
(28a, 28h) of seedling injectors mounted on mutually opposite ends (29a, 29b)
of said
boom member;
(v) said seedling injectors (28) each containing soil-engaging members (30a,
30b) for
piercing and/or tilling the ground when injecting said seedlings (42) in said
ground;
(vi) a bin(40), configured to contain said seedlings (42); and
(vii) a plurality of flexible (44) hoses extending from said bin (40) to
respectively each
of said seedling injectors (28), for supplying individual seedlings (42) from
said bin
(40) to each of said seedling injectors .(28).
16. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in ground as
claimed in claim
15, wherein said flexible hoses (44) are vacuum hoses, and said supply of
seedlings (42) to
each of said seedling injectors is achieved by said seedling injectors (28)
withdrawing air
from an associated of said vacuum hoses extending to said bin, to thereby
withdraw
seedlings (42) therethrough to a respective seedling injector.
17. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in ground as
claimed in claim
15, wherein respectively mutually-opposite ends (29a, 29b) of said elongate
boom member
(24) are extendable and retractable.
18. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in ground as
claimed in claim
15, further having powered means (50a, 50b) for extending and retracting
mutually opposite
ends (29a, 29b) of said boom member (24) so as to thereby alter a distance 'd'
separating
said pair of seedling injectors situated at said mutually opposite ends of
said boom member
(24), and wherein said powered means (50a, 50b) may be controlled by said
operator from
said cab (16).
19. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 15, further having powered means to alter a distance separating one or
more of said
- 23 -


plurality of seedling injectors on said boom member from another, and wherein
said powered
means (50a, 50b) may be controlled by said operator from said cab.
20. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in ground as
claimed in claim
15, further comprising powered means (50a, 50b) for extending or retracting
ends of said
boom member (24), and wherein said powered means is coupled to and controlled
by
hydraulic pressure lines which otherwise would have been used by said operator
to control
said otherwise normally-situated excavator bucket on said moveable arm.
21. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 15, further comprising boom-rotating means (70) situated at said distal
end (26) of said
moveable arm (20), for rotating said boom member (24) about said distal end
(26) of said
moveable arm (20) in a plane parallel to said ground.
22. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 21, wherein said boom-rotating means (70) is powered to allow said
operator to rotate
said boom member (24) about said plane remotely from said cab.
23. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 22, wherein said boom-rotating means (70) is coupled to hydraulic
pressure lines (75)
which otherwise would have been used by said operator to control said normally-
situated
excavator bucket on said moveable arm:
24. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 15, further comprising a powered gantry (80) for lifting said bin (40)
onto said seedling
planter, and for demounting said bin from said seedling planter when supply of
seedlings
therein is exhausted.
25. The automated seedling planter for planting seedlings in said ground as
claimed in
claim 24, wherein said powered gantry (40) further possesses bin-engaging (90)
apparatus
for releasibly engaging said bin to allow said powered gantry (80) to lift
said bin onto said
tracked vehicle and to demount said bin from said tracked vehicle.
- 24 -


A single figure which represents the drawing illustrating the invention.

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Admin Status

Title Date
(22) Filed 2016-06-20
Examination Requested 2016-06-20
(41) Open to Public Inspection 2017-05-09
(45) Issued 2018-01-09

Maintenance Fee

Description Date Amount
Next Payment if small entity fee 2018-06-20 $50.00
Next Payment if standard fee 2018-06-20 $100.00

Note : If the full payment has not been received on or before the date indicated, a further fee may be required which may be one of the following

  • the reinstatement fee set out in Item 7 of Schedule II of the Patent Rules;
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  • the additional fee for late payment set out in Items 31 and 32 of Schedule II of the Patent Rules.

Payment History

Fee Type Anniversary Year Due Date Amount Paid Paid Date
Request for Examination $800.00 2016-06-20
Registration of Documents $100.00 2016-06-20
Filing $400.00 2016-06-20
Final $300.00 2017-11-22

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Abstract 2016-06-20 1 21
Description 2016-06-20 19 875
Claims 2016-06-20 5 227
Drawings 2016-06-20 12 5,777
New Application 2016-06-20 10 367
Special Order 2017-03-06 5 143
Early Lay-Open Request 2017-03-06 4 109
Office Letter 2017-03-14 1 39
Representative Drawing 2017-04-05 1 125
Cover Page 2017-04-05 2 196
R30(2) Examiner Requisition 2017-04-10 3 191
Amendment 2017-05-18 17 508
Drawings 2017-05-18 12 324
Special Order - Green Granted 2017-06-15 1 46
Final Fee 2017-11-22 4 125
Cover Page 2017-12-22 1 53