P&G issued US patent for reusable outer cover for an absorbent article such as diapers, incontinence briefs, sanitary napkins

ALEXANDRIA, Virginia , March 20, 2014 () – The Procter & Gamble Company (Cincinnati, OH) has been issued patent number 8669409, according to news reporting originating out of Alexandria, Virginia, by VerticalNews editors.

The patent's inventor is Roe, Donald Carroll (West Chester, OH).

This patent was filed on January 14, 2010 and was published online on March 11, 2014.

From the background information supplied by the inventors, news correspondents obtained the following quote: "Absorbent articles, such as conventional taped diapers, pull-on diapers, training pants, incontinence briefs, sanitary napkins, and the like, offer the benefit of receiving and containing urine and/or other bodily exudates. Absorbent articles may be reusable. That is, the articles may be intended to be laundered or otherwise restored for multiple uses. In some instances, portions of an absorbent article may be reusable and other portions may be disposable. For example, an absorbent article may comprise a reusable outer cover and a disposable insert which is discarded after soiling.

"Ideally, an absorbent article should maintain skin condition and provide sizing for a range of wearer shapes and sizes, ease of application, conforming fit, and sustained fit. Achieving combinations of these characteristics has been difficult in reusable absorbent articles. While progress has been made in providing breathable, stretchable disposable absorbent articles, many of the materials and methods used to manufacture disposable absorbent articles are ill-suited for adaptation to reusable absorbent articles. For example, breathability may reduce over-hydration and associated 'diaper rash' and erythema commonly associated with regular use of an absorbent article. In disposable absorbent articles, good breathability can be achieved using microporous films or films which are apertured over small areas to permit water vapor transmission across the films, without concurrent passage of liquids, such as urine. However, microporous films do not provide the stretch required for sizing, ease of application, conforming fit, and sustained fit in a reusable outer cover for an absorbent article. Similarly, the extension of aperturing to large areas of the outer cover may lead to increased leakage of liquids, such as urine, or the liquid components of other exudates such as feces and menses.

"In light of the difficulty in balancing the competing, desirable attributes in a reusable outer cover for an absorbent article, many reusable outer covers perform only basic functions, such as exudate containment. For example, a reusable outer cover for an absorbent article may use a relatively thick polymeric film to reduce leakage, at the expense of sizing, fit, and breathability.

"There remains a need for a reusable outer cover for an absorbent article which provides acceptable performance in more than one aspect maintaining skin condition and providing sizing for a range of wearer shapes and sizes, ease of application, conforming fit, and sustained fit."

Supplementing the background information on this patent, VerticalNews reporters also obtained the inventor's summary information for this patent: "What is claimed is a reusable outer cover for an absorbent article having a front region, a back region, and a crotch region disposed longitudinally between the front region and the back region, and a wearer-facing surface disposed opposite a garment-facing surface. The reusable outer cover may comprise an inner layer defining the wearer-facing surface of the outer cover and an outer layer defining the garment-facing surface of the outer cover; a first longitudinally extending edge and a second longitudinally extending edge laterally spaced from the first longitudinally extending edge; a first elastic leg band adjacent the first longitudinally extending edge; a second elastic leg band adjacent the second longitudinally extending edge; a first laterally extending edge and a second laterally extending edge longitudinally spaced from the first laterally extending edge; a first elastic waist band adjacent the first lateral end edge; a second elastic waist band adjacent the second lateral end edge; a first side panel having a distal end portion extending laterally outward from the first longitudinally extending edge; a second side panel having a distal end portion extending laterally outward from the second longitudinally extending edge; and an anchoring band attached to at least one of the inner layer and the outer layer at two or more attachment points between the first and second side panels proximate a laterally extending edge corresponding to the back region of the absorbent article, wherein the anchoring band is free to move relative to the inner and outer layers between the attachment points. The outer cover may have a WVTR of at least 1200 g/m.sup.2/24 hr and a Whole Product Back Extension of at least 15% under an applied force of 5N.

"The inner layer and the outer layer may be apertured. The inner layer may have a higher modulus of elasticity than the outer layer. The inner layer may be hydrophobic. The outer layer may be hydrophobic, and the inner layer may be more hydrophobic than the outer layer.

"The outer layer may be a woven fabric. The outer layer may be made from a material selected from the group consisting of cotton, wool, bamboo, hemp, silk, rayon, polyester, nylon, Lycra, Spandex, breathable waterproof materials with microscopic pores smaller than a water droplet but larger than a water vapor molecule, fabrics comprising microencapsulated phase-change polymer materials, fiber-based moisture wicking systems, and combinations thereof. The outer layer may have a basis weight from 0.09-0.15 gram/in.sup.2.

"A reusable outer cover for an absorbent article may have a WVTR of at least 1200 g/m.sup.2/24 hr, or 3000 g/m.sup.2/24 hr, and a Whole Product Back Extension of at least 15% under an applied force of 5N. The outer cover may have a WVTR of less than 15,000 g/m.sup.2/24 hr, or 10,000 g/m.sup.2/24 hr. The outer cover may a Whole Product Back Extension of less than 150 mm, or 100 mm, under an applied force of 5N. The outer cover may have an unload force of at least 1.0N, or 2.0 N, at 25% extension in the Whole Product Back Extension test.

"A reusable outer cover for an absorbent article may have a Whole Product Back Extension of at least 15% under an applied force of 5N and an Outer Cover Extension Force at 25% extension of less than 10N, or 5N. The outer cover may have an Outer Cover Extension Force at 50% extension of less than 10N, or 5N."

For the URL and additional information on this patent, see: Roe, Donald Carroll. Reusable Outer Cover for an Absorbent Article. U.S. Patent Number 8669409, filed January 14, 2010, and published online on March 11, 2014. Patent URL: http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO2&Sect2=HITOFF&p=47&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsearch-bool.html&r=2317&f=G&l=50&co1=AND&d=PTXT&s1=20140311.PD.&OS=ISD/20140311&RS=ISD/20140311

Keywords for this news article include: The Procter & Gamble Company.

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