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1. (WO2010125384) A DISPLAY ARRANGEMENT
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Title: A Display Arrangement

Description of Invention

THIS INVENTION relates to a display arrangement, and in particular concerns a pop-up collapsible display arrangement.

Pop-up collapsible display arrangements have recently become very popular. Such arrangements normally comprise a roll of a flexible material, such as fabric or vinyl, which is wound around a spool and contained within a housing. A free end of the roll protrudes from the housing and may be pulled so as to unroll the material and extend it from the housing.

The free end of the roll may then be held vertically above the housing, for instance by means of a strut or other support, so that the material presents a substantially vertical, planar display surface. Images, text or any other information may be printed on the material for display.

Pop-up displays of this type are popular because they are light and may be moved and transported easily.

Displays of this type suffer from drawbacks, however. One is that the information that is presented on the material is fixed, and cannot be altered or rearranged. A second disadvantage is that it is difficult or impossible to re-use these displays once the information printed on the material becomes obsolete. The material must be removed from the housing and discarded, to be replaced with a new roll of material. This is considered by many to be expensive and environmentally unsound.

It is an object of the present invention to seek to ameliorate some or all of the above difficulties.

Accordingly, one aspect of the present invention provides a display, comprising: a display arrangement comprising first and second rigid display elements, each having a generally planar, substantially smooth presentation surface, the display elements being hingedly attached to one another so that, in a stowed configuration, the display elements lie substantially parallel with and adjacent to one another, and in a display configuration the presentation surfaces of the display elements are substantially coplanar with one another to form a generally planar composite presentation surface, wherein the first and second display elements each have a plurality of first magnets, each of which has a first polarity, provided beneath the display surface thereof; and a support arrangement operable to support the display arrangement, in its display configuration, so that one of the display elements is above the other of the display elements, so that the composite presentation surface is substantially vertically-oriented.

Advantageously, the display arrangement comprises three or more display elements which may collapse in concertina fashion to place the display arrangement in the stowed configuration.

Preferably, when the display arrangement is in the display configuration, the display elements are arranged so that each of the display elements, apart from a lowermost display element, is substantially directly above another of the display elements.

Conveniently, the display further comprises one or more display panels, each having opposed major surfaces, one of which is a substantially planar display surface and the other of which is a generally planar, substantially smooth attachment surface having a plurality of second magnets, each having a second polarity which is opposite to the first polarity, provided beneath the attachment surface.

Advantageously, the display arrangement is in its display configuration, the one or more display panels may be placed against the presentation surface and be retained in place by the attractive forces exerted between the first and second magnets.

Preferably, the coefficient of friction between the presentation surface and the attachment surface of a display panel is sufficiently low that, if the attachment surface of a display panel is placed against the presentation surface so that the second magnets of the display panel are mis-aligned by a small amount with respect to first magnets of the presentation surface, the display panel will be pulled across the presentation surface by the attractive forces between the first and second magnets until each of the first magnets is in close proximity to a respective one of the second magnets.

Conveniently, the first and second magnets are arranged in substantially the same pattern.

Advantageously, the pattern is a regular grid.

Preferably, one of the display panels may be placed across the hinged attachment between two adjacent display elements, with at least some of the second magnets of the display panel being in close proximity to respective first magnets of one of the display elements, and at least some further second magnets of the display panel being in close proximity to respective first magnets of the other of the display elements.

Conveniently, the support arrangement comprises at least one support strut.

Advantageously, the display arrangement further comprises a support strip which may be placed against a front or rear surface of at least two of the display elements when the display arrangement is in the display configuration, and which will be held in place by the first magnets of the at least two display elements.

In order that the present invention may be more read ily understood , embodiments thereof will now be described, by way of example, with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:

Figure 1 shows a display arrangement for use with a display embodying the present invention;

Figure 2 shows the display arrangement of figure 1 in a stowed configuration;

Figure 3 shows the display arrangement of figure 2 in a display configuration; and

Figure 4 shows a display embodying the present invention.

Referring firstly to figure 1 , a display arrangement 1 comprises a plurality of rigid display elements 2, each of which is a generally rectangular sheet or board of material. The material from which the display elements 2 is formed is preferably a relatively tough, non-conducting material such as a plastics material.

A first display element 2a is attached to a second display element 2b by a hinged connection 3 which extends along corresponding edges 4 of the first and second display elements 2a,2b. The edge 5 of the first display element 2a that is opposite the edge 4 thereof to which the second display element 2b is attached is a "free" edge.

At the edge 6 of the second display element 2b which is opposite the edge 4 thereof which is attached to the first display element 2a, the second display element 2b is hingedly attached to a third display element 2c. The third display element 2c is, in turn, hingedly attached to a fourth display element 2d.

The display elements 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d are therefore attached to one another sequentially, so that they may fold hingedly with respect to one another in a "concertina"-fashion.

The hinged connections may be formed by securely attaching a strip of a flexible material or tape across the join between adjacent edges. However, any other suitable method of forming hinged joints may be used.

Figure 2 shows the display arrangement 1 when collapsed into a stowed configuration. In the stowed configuration, the display elements 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d are collapsed so as to lie parallel with and adjacent one another, so that together they occupy the same space as a single display element having a depth which is four times greater than any one of the individual display elements 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d.

Figure 3 shows the display arrangement 1 in a display configuration. In this configuration, the display elements 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d are unfolded with respect to one another, so that they are substantially coplanar. Each of the display elements 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d has a presentation surface 7 and an opposite rear surface 10, and when the display arrangement 1 is in the display configuration, the respective presentation surfaces 7 are substantially coplanar with one another and form a generally planar composite presentation surface.

A support arrangement is provided to hold the display arrangement 1 in a generally vertical orientation which in the display configuration, as shown in figure 3.

Elongate attachment strips 8 are attached to the uppermost free edge of the uppermost display element (the first display element 2a, in the arrangement shown in figure 3) and to the lowermost edge of the lowermost display element (the fourth display element 2d, in the arrangement shown in figure 3). Each of the attachment strip preferably extends along substantially the entire length of the edge to which it is attached, and one surface of each attachment strip 8 contains two generally parallel, side-by-side troughs or channels 9. The appropriate edge of the display element 2a, 2d is fitted snugly into a first one of the channels 9 of one of the attachment strips 8, so that second channels 9 of each of the support strips 8 lie adjacent the rear surfaces 10 of the first and fourth display elements 2a, 2d respectively.

A support bracket 1 1 comprises an elongate main body 12. An attachment element 13 is attached to, or provided integrally with, a first end of the main body 12. The attachment element 13 comprises a protruding tongue 14 which may be snugly received in the second channel 9 of the attachment strip 8 which is attached to the lowermost edge of the lowermost display element 2d, so the main body 12 extends substantially directly away from the attachment strip 8. At the opposite end of the support bracket 11 an indentation 15 is provided. The arrangement is such that, if the protruding tongue 14 oriented to protrude downwardly to be received in the upward-facing second channel 9 of the lower attachment strip 8, the indentation 15 is presented facing generally upwardly.

A rigid support strut 16 is also provided. At one end of the support strut 17 an engagement element 17 is fitted, the engagement element 17 comprises a protruding ridge 18 that may be snugly received in the second channel 9 of the upper attachment strip 8.

To support and maintain the display arrangement 1 in its display configuration, the tongue 14 of the support bracket 1 1 may be inserted into the upward-facing second channel 9 of the lower attachment strip 8. A lower end of the support strut 16 may then be placed in the indentation 15 of the support bracket 1 1 , and the engagement element 17, which is provided on an upper end of the support strut 16, may be inserted into the downward-facing second channel 9 of the upward attachment strip 8. It will be appreciated that, in this arrangement (which is shown in figure 3) the display arrangement 1 is held securely in the display configuration, with the composite presentation surface being substantially vertical.

It will be appreciated from the above that, when in the stowed configuration, the display arrangement 1 may easily be transported from one location to another. The support strut 16 may be telescopic or otherwise collapsible, and so the display arrangement 1 , attachment strips 8, support bracket 1 1 and support strut 16 may together be transported easily as a lightweight, convenient unit.

It will also be appreciated that the display arrangement 1 may easily be placed in the display configuration and held in this configuration for display purposes.

Figure 4 shows the display arrangement 1 in the display configuration, although the attachment strips, support bracket and support strut are not shown for the purposes of clarity.

Beneath the presentation surfaces 7 of each of the display elements 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d, a plurality of first magnets 19 are provided. Although the positions of the first magnets 19 are shown for the first display element 2a in figure 4, it should be understood that the first magnets 19 are provided below the presentation surface of each of the display elements 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d, and preferably not be visible to some one viewing display surfaces 7.

The first magnets 19 are preferably all of the same polarity, and are preferably provided in a regular grid arrangement (which may be a square gird, a rectangular grid, or any other suitable type of grid arrangement, e.g. a hexagonal grid arrangement).

In preferred embodiments of the invention, the first magnets 19 are embedded entirely within the material forming the display elements 2a, 2b, 2c 2d. The display surfaces 7 of the display elements 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d are preferably substantially smooth.

Display panels 20 are provided for attachment to the presentation surfaces 7 of the display elements 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d. The display panels 20 are generally planar, having opposing display surfaces and attachment surfaces. Second magnets (not shown) are embedded within the display panels 20, so that the display panels 20 have substantially smooth, planar attachment surfaces.

The second magnets are preferably arranged within the display panels 20 in substantially the same grid arrangement as the first magnets 19 are arranged within the display panels 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d. The polarity of the second magnets is opposite to that of the first magnets 19. The display panels 20 may be provided in a variety of shapes and/or sizes.

In figure 4, no display panels are provided on the first display element 2a.

One large display panel and two smaller display panels 20 are attached to the second display element 2b.

In addition to some smaller display panels, a single large display panel 20 extends across the hinge between the third and fourth display elements 2c, 2d. If the display panels 20 are formed from a sufficiently rigid material, it will be appreciated that placing a display panel 20 over the hinge between two display elements may increase the rigidity of the overall display.

It will be appreciated that a display panel 20 may be placed against one (or more) of the display elements 2a, 2b, 2c 2d, with the second magnets of display panel 20 being approximately aligned with the first magnets 19 of the display element 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d. There will be an attractive force between the first and second magnets 19, due to their opposite polarity. This attractive force will hold the display panel 20 against the display element 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d, and will also pull the display panel 20 across the presentation surface 7 of the display element 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d so that the first and second magnets 19 are aligned. Preferably, the coefficient of friction between the rear surface of the display panel 20 and the presentation surface 7 of the display element 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d is relatively low, so that the display panel 20 may slide relatively easily across the presentation surface 7.

It will therefore be appreciated that display panels 20 may be placed on the composite presentation surface, in positions which are approximate to the correct positions, and the display panels 20 will simply "snap" into the correct positions, as a result of the attractive forces acting between the first and second magnets 19, so that each of the second magnets is in close proximity to a respective one of the first magnets 19, to create an aesthetically pleasing display.

If additional rigidity is required for the display, an elongate strip (not shown) of a magnetic material may be provided, and this strip may be placed against the rear surfaces 10 of the display elements 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d when the display arrangement 1 is in the display configuration. The strip will be attracted to the first magnets 19 in each of the display elements 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d, thus helping to hold the display elements 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d in the correct alignment and providing additional strength and rigidity to the display as a whole. The strip could also be placed against the presentation surfaces 7 of the display elements 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d to perform the same function, although it is expected that this will be less preferred.

It will be appreciate that displays embodying the present invention will display increased flexibility when compared to conventional pop-up displays, as the display panels 20 may be easily rearranged on the composite presentation surface, so that the elements of the display may be changed easily and frequently.

In addition, if any of the element s of the display need to be changed entirely, only the individual display panels 20 need be discarded, and replaced with new display panels, while the display elements may remain. This means that it wou ld be more cost effective and environmentally friendly to change displays.

In the above example the display arrangement comprises four display elements. However, the invention is not limited to this number, and any suitable number of display elements may be used.

When used in this specification and claims, the terms "comprises" and "comprising" and variations thereof mean that the specified features, steps or integers are included. The terms are not to be interpreted to exclude the presence of other features, steps or components.

The features disclosed in the foregoing description, or the following claims, or the accompanying drawings, expressed in their specific forms or in terms of a means for performing the disclosed function, or a method or process for attaining the disclosed result, as appropriate, may, separately, or in any combination of such features, be utilised for realising the invention in diverse forms thereof.