Inflatable air cushion
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An inflatable air cushion is a bag of fabric or plastic that can be inflated to provide cushioning. Unlike Bubble Wrap, inflatable air cushions have a check valve to allow the cushion to be inflated or sometimes deflated.
Before 2002, inflatable air cushions used a single check valve as show in USA Pharo patent. However if one part of the cushion was punctured then this packaging would completely deflate. In 2002, several types of continuously independent one way air valve films were introduced. (Japan's kashiwara patent, Taiwan's Camery Patent, and Taiwan Chien-Hao Liao patent. These patents incorporate a one way air valve film, which can be produced continuously and independently. If one air tube is punctured, the other air tubes will still remain inflated. This invention had brought the second revolution of inflatable air cushioning.
- A modern cushion is made out of two layers of PE films with air valve film in between, and heat pressed with high temperature mold to melt them together and create air tubes and shapes, so inflatable air cushions can have a variety of syles and types.
- The cushion can be shipped flat and inflated as needed. Once inflated the continuous check valve seals each tube from the others.
- The air pressure inside each of the inflated air cushions is greater than the atmosphere pressure, providing strong compressive strength and flexibility.
- Protective and void filling materials
- Shipping container cushioning
- Thunder stick/ Cheering bat
- Water resistance seat cushion
- Inflatable trash bag(can)
A variety of patents have been filed and issued in several countries for many years. A few recent examples include;
- Hue-Zau Li had filed report against Japan's Kashiwara Packing and USA's Air-Paq's Taiwan Patent (No. 092113574): "sealed air's air valve installing device and its making device". in 10/3/2008 Taiwan Intellectual Property Office had determined that this patent is no longer valid. (Report number: 05026 of 09720529000)
- Japan's kashiwara's patent (10/610,501) has been rejected by USA patent office, therefore this patent is no longer valid.
- It is now the fifth year that Japan's Kashiwara Packing waiting for heir China patent "Fluid container's structure and its making method and device" to be approved. (Patent apply No. 200480018289.4 is the same as their USA patent no. 10/610,501)
- Hue-Zau Li had filed report against Japan's Kashiwara Packing and USA's Air-Paq's Taiwan Patent (No. 92119158), and Taiwan Intellectual Property Office had determined that this patent articles number 1 to 15, 17 to 20 did not qualify as part of patent, and should be delete or change/reduce patent's cover range.
- Chien-Hua Liao's patent of "Continuously inflation of sealed air and its making method" had been approved by Taiwan, and many other countries.
- Yam, K. L., "Encyclopedia of Packaging Technology", John Wiley & Sons, 2009, ISBN 978-0-470-08704-6
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