Capacitive toner level detection

  • US 6,670,817 B2
  • Filed: 06/07/2001
  • Issued: 12/30/2003
  • Est. Priority Date: 06/07/2001
  • Status: Expired due to Fees
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First Claim
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1. A container, comprising:

  • a container having an electrically conductive body enclosing a cavity for receiving and holding solid particles of a material; and

    a sensor assembly disposed within said container, said sensor assembly being electrically isolated from said body, said sensor assembly configured for sensing a level of solid particles of the material within said container cavity, said sensor assembly comprising a capacitive sensor and having a first electrode plate and a second electrode plate spaced apart from said first electrode plate to present opposing surfaces to each other, said fist electrode plate configured for being electrically connected to a virtual ground and said second electrode plate configured for being connected to a voltage signal source, said opposing surfaces of the two plates coated with a non-stick coating to inhibit particles of material between the plates from adhering to surfaces of the plates wherein the plates form a capacitor having a capacitance dependent upon the level of the solid particles of material between the two plates.

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