Self-propelled cleaning robot operable in a cordless mode and a cord mode

  • US 5,534,762 A
  • Filed: 09/27/1994
  • Issued: 07/09/1996
  • Est. Priority Date: 09/27/1993
  • Status: Expired due to Fees
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First Claim
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1. A cleaning robot, comprising:

  • a control mechanism;

    a power supply cord adapted for supplying electrical power to the control mechanism from an external power supply disposed in a region to be cleaned, the power supply cord being stored on the robot and adapted to be payed-out and drawn in during movement of the robot;

    a battery connected to the control mechanism for supplying electrical power thereto independently of the external power supply;

    a cleaning device connected to the control mechanism to be powered by the external power supply during a cleaning operation;

    a motor-driven propulsion mechanism connected to the control mechanism for being powered solely by the external power supply during the cleaning operation, and powered solely by the battery during travel of the robot to the next region to be cleaned, the propulsion mechanism including a steerable ground support structure for being steered in response to signals received from the control mechanism, to establish a direction of travel of the robot;

    a battery charging mechanism powered by the external power supply for recharging the battery during a cleaning operation;

    a travel distance detecting mechanism for detecting a distance traveled by the robot;

    a travel direction detecting mechanism for detecting changes in a travel direction of the robot;

    an obstacle sensing mechanism for sensing a presence of an obstacle and a distance from the robot to the obstacle;

    the travel distance detecting mechanism, the travel direction detecting mechanism, and the obstacle sensing mechanism being connected to the control mechanism to supply respective signals thereto for steering the steerable ground support structure and thereby establish a direction of travel of the robot;

    the motor-driven propulsion mechanism, the travel distance detecting mechanism, the travel direction detecting mechanism, and the obstacle sensing mechanism all being operable by power supplied from an external power supply and by power supply from the battery.

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