Apparatus for inspecting a group of containers and method of using same

Patent Number: 8,126,596
Issued: 2/28/2012
Official Filing: View the Complete Patent
Abstract: An apparatus and method for inspecting a plurality of containers are provided. Each container has an outer surface for housing at least one material therein. The techniques provided involve at least one inspection vehicle and at least one detector. Each inspection vehicle has a plurality of wheels for movably positioning about the plurality of containers. The wheels may have at least one magnet for selectively adhering to the outer surface of at least one of the containers whereby the inspection vehicle traverses the container(s). The detector is positionable proximate at least one of the containers. The detector may be deployable from the inspection vehicle to a position adjacent the container(s). The detector has at least one sensor for measuring at least one characteristic of the plurality of containers. At least one base station may be provided for communicating with the inspection vehicle(s) and/or detector(s).
Filed: 1/6/2009
Application Number: 12/348,926
Government Interests: STATEMENT OF GOVERNMENT INTEREST This invention was made with Government support under Contract No. DE-NA0003525 awarded by the United States Department of Energy/National Nuclear Security Administration. The Government has certain rights in the invention.