Patent application title: Thermoplastic Tile Panel for Lining Buildings
Rafael Gonçalves De Souza Sorano (Cotia, BR)
IPC8 Class: AE04F1308FI
Class name: Static structures (e.g., buildings) module or panel having discrete edgewise or face-to-face connecting feature interfitted integral flange
Publication date: 2016-05-12
Patent application number: 20160130821
The present utility model relates to innovative tile panels for
architectural covering, of injected thermoplastic material, presenting
advantages and improvements in their use and in the way they fit to each
other, to cover surfaces in a practical and economical manner, respecting
1. A thermoplastic tile panel for architectural covering, wherein it
comprises bonded tiles with a spacing between them, said panel being
provided with male and female fillings formed by recesses and projection
on the sides of the panel for joining the panel.
2. The panel, according to claim 1, wherein the spacing is also maintained between the panels when associated with each other, with the aid of fittings.
3. The panel, according to claim 1, wherein the configuration of the recess and projection fittings can be the same or different from the recess and projection fittings.
4. The panel, according to claim 1, wherein said sides of the panel have at least one recess and projection fitting.
5. The panel, according to claim 1, wherein said sides of the panel have at least one recess and projection fitting.
10. The panel according to claim 1, wherein the tiles of the same panel are bonded through a portion of material that links the corners of 4 adjacent tiles.
11. The panel, according to claim 1, wherein said recess and projection fittings and/or are replaced by spacers between said panels.
12. The panel, according to claim 1, wherein said recess and projection fittings are not bonded to the tiles.
 The present utility model relates to an innovative tile panel for
architectural covering, comprised of injected thermoplastic material,
presenting advantages and improvements in its use and in the way they fit
to each other, to coat surfaces in a practical and economical manner,
respecting the environment.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
 Architectural coverings are well known, fulfilling functional and decorative functions to cover walls and floors in internal or external, dry or wet areas, for many finalities, such as visual ornamentation, mechanical protection, protection against water infiltration, swimming pool finishing, etc.
 Glass tile sheets are among known architectural coverings, as well as tiles made with other materials, such as copper and steel, stone or aggregate rock material, coconut, crystal, ceramics, etc.
 In the text below, the term glass tile sheet is representative of the existing architectural tiles mentioned above, made of various materials.
 The technique currently used in the manufacture of glass tile sheets consists of fixing the loose tiles to a paper film or canvas, so that these supports can be used to join the tiles together. Hence, without being solidarized to each other, the tiles are individually glued onto paper or canvas, and form very malleable, not solidly structured pieces. This manufacturing technique, often handmade, allows variations in the distances from one tile to the next on the same sheet or, after installed, a sheet in relation to another sheet, such defects leading to highly visible aesthetic defects when the sheets are grouted to fill the existing spaces between the tiles.
 Due to its specific characteristics, the application of the glass tile sheets requires specialized labor. And, even so, fixing the covering is a slow process: matching sheets is difficult, the sheets are malleable and heavy, since the tile material is heavy, and the sheets need to be carefully adhered to the base surface.
DESCRIPTION OF THE FIGURES
 FIG. 1--front view of a preferred embodiment of tile panel of this utility model;
 FIGS. 1A to 1D--details of the fittings between the panels of FIG. 1;
 FIG. 1E--detail of the spacing between the tiles on the panel of FIG. 1;
 FIG. 2--side view of the panel of FIG. 1;
 FIG. 3--side view of the side adjacent to the one shown in FIG. 2.
DESCRIPTION OF THE INNOVATION
 The tile panel of this utility model reduces or eliminates many of the problems found in the use of existing architectural covering panels.
 The tile panel of thermoplastic material of this utility model, being produced by a process comprising the injection of thermoplastic polymers, for example, PET (polyethylene terephthalate), into a metal mold, places all tiles onto a much more rigid and structured panel with one single injection as compared to the state of the art glass tile sheets, however, with some flexibility, thus achieving accuracy of the distances between the tiles in all injected panels and between the panels later fitted together, and assuring dimensional regularity of the tiles and the panels due to the reproducibility achieved in the industrial manufacturing process.
 An improved feature of this utility model is that individual tiles do not fall apart from the panel containing them, as do the individually-adhered tiles currently used in architectural and engineering coverings.
 In an additional improved aspect, the tile panel of the present utility model is equipped with male/female fittings on the edges of its four sides, so that they can be precisely joining other injected tile panels. That ensures, besides the uniformity of spacing between each tile, the same spacing between each panel installed upon the subjacent structure. As a result, differently from current well-known tile sheets, the injected tile panel of this utility model, after installation, maintains uniformity and visual harmony. It does not gives visual emphasis to the seams of the panels on the covered surface, that is, it cannot be noted where any of the injected tile panels begin or end since the distance between them is the same as the distance between the tiles.
 The installation of injected tile panels brings another obvious benefit, since the panels can be applied by anyone, eliminating the need for specialized professionals, known as tilers. This is made possible because the injected tile panels are fixed and rigid structure, and the tiles, bound both to each other and the panel, remain perfectly aligned even during installation, allowing its precise application regardless of the skills of the person installing them. As an example, for better understanding of the installation process, the technique enables the installation of injected tile panels in the same way as a conventional ceramic tile is installed, and this still preserves the visual aesthetics characteristic of the tiles, namely the typical size, shape and uniformity.
 The physical structure of the injected tile panels as well as the side panel fittings, are enhancements that provide increased efficiency in their use in comparison with conventional tile sheets, which are extremely malleable, less rigid, heavy, more difficult and slow to be applied.
 This utility model has the additional advantage of a fast manufacturing process in comparison with the currently known glass tile sheets.
 Although the new injected tile panel of this utility model presents certain rigidity necessary to its own structuring, individual tiles or lines of tiles can be easily detached, for example, by cutting or making a repetitive bending motion until there is a rupture between tiles, according to the convenience and need of the application. For application on curved surfaces, the panel can be bent to perfectly follow the geometry to be covered. For external covering of sharp edges, such as those of a square pillar, the injected tile panel can be bent in the same degree as the structure without loosening any tiles. The same can be done to the internal covering of corners at 90°, bending the panel in the opposite direction.
 The new injected tile panel provides considerable time reduction in the installation, therefore resulting in lower labor costs of the labor for this process when compared to the installation of tile sheets produced with the conventional technique. Those two aspects, reduction of installation time and virtually no need for specialized labor represent an economic advantage obtained by the improved injected tile panel of the present utility model.
 Injected transparent tile panels, according to the present utility model, can be colored by a screen printing process with application of paint on the rear face of the panel, of a single or more colors in mosaic-type miscellanea. Artistic motifs, large-scale photographs or graffiti can be applied to the panel using spray paint. It can also receive the application of a pre-printed adhesive film on the same rear face. All patterns, motifs or adhesives can be applied to a single panel or several panels, so as to constitute, when joined, a panel of any size that represents the art to scale.
 In accordance with the present utility model, with either solid color or translucent tile panels, pigmentation occurs by injection of a polymer already mixed with color additives within a wide range of colors and visual effects.
 The tile panel of this utility model is made by a thermoplastic injection process in a polymer injection machine with metal mold, ensuring the right and stable dimensions of the piece, the ideal weight, mechanical strength, transparency and superficial aesthetic feature of the piece.
 Another advantage achieved when using the tile panel of this utility model relates to sustainability, since the panels can be injected with material from the recycling of various thermoplastic polymers. The production of only 50 m2 of injected tile panel with recycled raw materials saves the use of 1 m3 of landfill. Besides reintegrating discarded materials, that would be thrown away, to the production chain, the new injected tile panel is obtained through a low-energy industrial process with zero-emission of pollutants to the atmosphere and zero residue in its manufacture, since all the waste resulting from the manufacturing process can be reincorporated as raw material in the injection itself of tile panels.
 As an example of the strong environmental impact generated by the tiles made with conventional materials, the ceramic and the glass used for making tiles for coverings are burnt in furnaces that operate at high temperatures, between 1,400° C. and 1,700° C., emitting a large amount of carbon in the atmosphere.
 The injected tile panel of this utility model also contributes to the broad concept of sustainability, since it is lighter than the glass or ceramic tile sheets. When compared with a glass or ceramic tile sheets, the injected tile panel weighs at least 50% less. This implies a strong reduction of pollutant emissions in transport, besides reducing costs to the customer. Being a lightweight and rigid panel, the injected tile panel can be easily applied with silicone glue over existing coverings, thus providing a clean environment reform and contributing to the reduction of construction waste. The entire life cycle of the new injected tile panel is sustainable, including the end of the cycle: once removed from the surface to which it was applied, the injected tile panel can be reused for application to another structure, since the panel can be entirely removed. And it can be further returned to the plastic industry as recycled raw material.
 The following example is a particular embodiment of the present utility model, without imposing any kind of limitation with regard to the scope of the attached claims.
 It is a tile panel (5) for architectural covering characterized by comprising bonded tiles (10) with a spacing (30) between them, said panel being provided with fittings (40, 50, 60, 70) comprising recesses and projections on the sides (1, 2, 3 and 4) of the panel (5) for joining the panels, upon any kind of surface.
 Matching fittings with recesses (50) and projections (40) are shown in FIGS. 1C and 1D. Matching fittings with recesses (60) and projections (70) are shown in FIGS. 1A and 1B.
 The tiles (10) have a spacing (30) between them, of fixed dimension, said spacing being also maintained when the panels (5) are associated with each other, with the aid of fittings (40, 50, 60, 70).
 The configuration of the fittings (40) and (50) can be equal or different from the fittings (60) and (70). When the intended combination of panels (5) is not the same in the horizontal and vertical directions, the fittings (40, 50) may be different from the fittings (60, 70).
 The sides 1 and 2 of the panel (5) have at least one fitting (40) and one fitting (50), respectively.
 The sides 3 and 4 of the panel (5) respectively have at least one fitting (60) and a fitting (70).
 In this particular example:
 the panel (5) is provided with 256 tiles (10), arranged in 16 rows and 16 columns;
 the tile dimension (10) is 22.2 mm by 22.2 mm;
 the tile thickness (10) is 2.5 mm, the distance (30) between the tiles (10) is 1.59 mm. As was already mentioned, this distance (30) is kept between the tiles (10) even if they belong to different associated panels (5).
 the solidarization of tiles (10) of the same panel (5) is implemented by means of a portion of material (20) which connects the corners of 4 adjacent tiles, as shown in FIG. 1E.
 the sides 1 and 2 of the panel (5) have only one fitting (40) and one fitting (50), respectively.
 the sides 3 and 4 of the panel (5) have only one fitting (60) and one fitting (70), respectively.
 Within the possible embodiments of this utility model, a tile panel (5) may have one or more tiles (10). Moreover, the recess and projection fittings (40, 50) and/or (60, 70) can be replaced by spacers and which are not bonded to the tiles (10).
Patent applications in class Interfitted integral flange
Patent applications in all subclasses Interfitted integral flange