By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Journal of Engineering -- A patent by the inventors Muto, Tetsuya (Tokyo, JP); Akatsu, Shinichi (Kanagawa, JP); Yoshida, Akira (Tokyo, JP); Gotoh, Keita (Kanagawa, JP); Uematsu, Yuuichiroh (Kanagawa, JP), filed on October 9, 2015, was published online on February 7, 2017, according to news reporting originating from Alexandria, Virginia, by VerticalNews correspondents.
Patent number 9565319 is assigned to RICOH COMPANY, LTD. (Tokyo, JP).
The following quote was obtained by the news editors from the background information supplied by the inventors: "Technical Field
"Example embodiments generally relate to an image forming apparatus and an image forming method, and more particularly, to an image forming apparatus for forming a toner image on a recording medium and an image forming method performed by the image forming apparatus.
"Related-art image forming apparatuses, such as copiers, facsimile machines, printers, or multifunction printers having two or more of copying, printing, scanning, facsimile, plotter, and other functions, typically form an image on a recording medium according to image data. Thus, for example, a charger uniformly charges a surface of a photoconductor; an optical writer emits a light beam onto the charged surface of the photoconductor to form an electrostatic latent image on the photoconductor according to the image data; a developing device supplies toner to the electrostatic latent image formed on the photoconductor to render the electrostatic latent image visible as a toner image; the toner image is directly transferred from the photoconductor onto a recording medium or is indirectly transferred from the photoconductor onto a recording medium via an intermediate transfer belt; finally, a fixing device applies heat and pressure to the recording medium bearing the toner image to fix the toner image on the recording medium, thus forming the image on the recording medium.
"Such developing device may form the toner image with a two-component developer containing toner and carrier particles. Accordingly, the image forming apparatus may suffer from change in image density caused by change in toner density of the developer, a charging amount of toner, and the like."
In addition to the background information obtained for this patent, VerticalNews journalists also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent: "At least one embodiment provides a novel image forming apparatus that includes an exposure device to form an electrostatic latent image under an increased exposure amount and a developing device to visualize the electrostatic latent image as a black toner image under an increased developing bias. A rotatable image bearer bears a black toner pattern formed with the black toner image. A first optical sensor is disposed opposite the image bearer to detect an amount of reflection light reflected by the black toner pattern on the image bearer. The first optical sensor includes a light-emitting element to emit light toward the black toner pattern on the image bearer and a light-receiving element to receive the reflection light reflected by the black toner pattern on the image bearer. A toner adhesion amount converter is operatively connected to the exposure device, the developing device, and the first optical sensor to convert the amount of the reflection light detected by the first optical sensor into a toner adhesion amount of toner adhered to the image bearer and adjust an image density according to the toner adhesion amount.
"At least one embodiment provides a novel image forming method that includes detecting an amount of specular reflection light reflected by a background of an image bearer; determining that the amount of the specular reflection light is not in a given range; adjusting an amount of light emitted onto the image bearer; forming a black toner patch on the image bearer with an increased amount of toner adhered to the image bearer; detecting an amount of specular reflection light reflected by the black toner patch on the image bearer; forming a plurality of toner patterns having different toner densities, respectively, on the image bearer; detecting a latent image potential of each of the plurality of toner patterns; detecting an amount of toner of each of the plurality of toner patterns adhered to the image bearer; calculating a developing potential; calculating the amount of toner of each of the plurality of toner patterns adhered to the image bearer; calculating a developing performance based on a relation between the developing potential and the calculated amount of toner adhered to the image bearer; and determining an image forming condition based on the developing performance.
"Additional features and advantages of example embodiments will be more fully apparent from the following detailed description, the accompanying drawings, and the associated claims."
URL and more information on this patent, see: Muto, Tetsuya; Akatsu, Shinichi; Yoshida, Akira; Gotoh, Keita; Uematsu, Yuuichiroh. Image Forming Apparatus Having an Optical Sensor for Converting a Toner Adhesion Amount and Image Forming Method. U.S. Patent Number 9565319, filed October 9, 2015, and published online on February 7, 2017. Patent URL: http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PALL&p=1&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsrchnum.htm&r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=9565319.PN.&OS=PN/9565319RS=PN/9565319
Keywords for this news article include: RICOH COMPANY LTD.
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