US 1997404 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
April 1935. J. R. HAMILTON 1,997,404
CONSTANT DISCHARGE SPRINKLER HEAD Filed May 15, 19:51
INVENTOR JOHN A. HAN/LTO/V ATTORNEY 5 Patented Apr. 9, 1935 S PATENT OFFICE CONSTANT DISCHARGE SP HEAD John a. Hamilton, Cleveland Heights, Ohio, as-
aignor to Automatic Sprinkl er Company of America, Cleveland, Ohio, a corporation of Delaware Application May 13, 1931, Serial No. 536,976
r 3 Claims.
kler systems now available, and having the fire 5 extinguishing heads or outlets supplied from the same source but so disposed or located in the system as to besubjected to normal pressures from said common source of different amount tor the diflerent heads for producing the desired flow of extinguishing fluid at the outlet itself.
It is a primary object of this invention to provide a fire extinguishing system of the character indicated such that without resort to special sizes or dispositions of distributing piping or appliances the fiow at any outlet which is required to function shall take place in a degree required for the particular fire extinguishing function assigned to such outlet and in such manner that in the operation of extinguishing the fire there shall not be unnecessary or undue damage by the fire extinguishing fiuid when the outlet or outlets of any particular portion or the system come into operation for the purpose of extinguishing fire. To this end the invention consists in the provision for each outlet or group of outlets of means for automatically controlling the fiow oi fluid therefrom adjusted to produce a fiow of predetermined amount from said outlet according to the particular extent of the fire fighting or controlling function required to be exercised by the fiuid flow therefrom in the particular portion 01 the fire risk in which the same is installed said predetermined adjustment being such as to permit the requisite amount of fire extinguishing fiuid to fiow but to such amount only that excess water damage to the goods protected will be prevented. The regulation to the predetermined degree or new is preferably secured by means automatically responsive to the pressure oi the liquid supplied to the sprinkler outlet or outlets oi each particular portion of the system where the outlet is installed. One or the ways in which my invention may be carried out is by the embodiment of an automatic regulating valve directly associated with each outlet and involving what may be described as an automatic sprinkler head in'which is em-' bodied a means responsive to the pressure or fiuid supplied to and flowing through said head and a valve. operated thereby to move under such pressure and to limit the flow through the head and a part of the present invention consists in such a construction oi extinguisher outlet or head as more particularly hereinafter described and,
The above and other objects will appear more fully from the following description when considered in connection with the drawing in which:
Fig. 1 is an elevational view of a portion of a fire extinguishing system supplied with my invention.
Fig. 2 is an enlarged vertical sectional view through the sprinkler outlet or head employed.
Fig. 3 is a plan view of one of the elements employed in the sprinkler outlet.
In sprinkler systems as heretofore employed 10 there has been a constant source of difilculty in that sprinkler headssupplied from the same source have actually widely varying pressures at the sprinkler outlets, for example, in a building covering many acres of floor space or in a mul- 15 tiple story building, if outlets adjacent the source of supply and at points remote from the source of supply are both open, the pressure available at the remote outlet is only a small fraction of the pressure available adjacent the source of sup- 20 ply so that the quantity of water delivered for fire extin i hing purposes would be insuflicient for the particular location of said outlet or it said outlet be nearer the source of supply the quantity of water delivered is excessive or in other words greater than is necessary to extinguish the fire in the particular portion of the risk covered by said outlet with consequent unnecessary damage to that portion of the risk by undue or unnecessary amount of liquid delivered in the act of extinguishing the fire when the outlet is called into action. This is particularly true in case a large number of outlets supplied from the same source are all opened either through the opening of a number of normally closed outlets or where normally open outlets are employed. Under these conditions the pressure available and hence the quantity of water discharged at the remote outlets is substantially ineffective for extinguishing fires while at those outlets nearer the source of supply the amount of fluid delivered may be more than is necessary to extinguish the fire and as a consequence an unnecessary extent of water damage ensues.
If the attempt is made to cure this difilculty by providing standard outlets or sprinklers of different flow capacity adapted to the differences of pressure; difficulty frequently arises from mistakes in applying the difierent capacity outlets with the result that a low capacity outlet intended and constructed for use where the available pressure is high may be accidentally placed in a position where the available pressure is low with the effect of magnifying the difliculty at the latter point and enhancing the deficiency oi flow where the available pressure is low.
Furthermore in the case of outlets subjected to the higher pressures the amount of fluid delivered will be greater than is necessary to extinguish the fire and as a consequence excessive water damage ensues in the flre extinguishing operation. The present invention is shown as applied to a typical sprinkler system wherein a source of fire extinguishing fluid 8 is available and controlled by a main control valve i0 01 any desired type for supplying fire extinguishing fluid to the distributing pipes l2. The distributing pipes may be arranged on various floors of a building or they may be distributed horizontally over the various sections of a building comprising one or more floors. Each section protected by the system is provided with one or more sprinkler heads l6 as required.
According to the present adaptation of my invention, the sprinkler head I6 is formed with a discharge and spraying outlet portion l8, provided with any suitable difiusing device for scattering the fluid over the protected area, such devices being well known in the art. The main body of the head includes an attachment shank 26, for attachment to the distributing pipes I2, an inlet opening 22, a control chamber 24 and an outlet or discharge opening 26. The chamber 24 may be formed of sections comprising the divergent walls 24a and 24b, the former being integral with the shank 20 and the latter integral with the discharge or spraying head l8.
The flow of fluid through the passage 22, 26 is controlled by means of a stationary valve seat 28 and a movable valve member 36. The valve member 30 is formed with a central opening 32 and with a valve face 33 and spring supporting extension 34 for receiving the spring 36. The movable valve member 36 is attached to a diaphragm 38 which, in turn, is attached to the outer wall of the chamber, as by being received between the wall section 24a and 24b. The diaphragm 38 thus extends across and closes the passage from the inlet 22 to the outlet 26 ex cept for the opening 32 passing through the movable valve member. The stationary member 28 of the valve is proportioned to receive and substantially close the opening 32 when the latter is pressed toward the element 28. In order to prevent complete closure of the opening at 32,'the valve member 30 is provided with aseries of projections 39 engageable with the stationary member 28 when these members approach one another. The valve member 28 is supported upon the radial lugs or saddle 46 formed within an adjustable screw-threaded ring 42 through which the fluid for extinguishing the fire passes from the regulating valve to the outlet or discharge opening 26. This ring may be screw-threadedly supported upon the interior of the sprinkler head adiacent the outlet openin 26, as shown, the ring being formed with a spring supporting surface 43 for engagement by the upper or outer end of the spring 36. The screw-threaded support for the ring 42 permits the adjustment of the position of the element 28 and the simultaneous adjustment of the force of the spring 36.
If desired, the outlet opening 26 may be normally closed by any usual closure preferably thermostatically controlled by any desired means so as to open on the occurrence of flre and shown in the present instance as comprising a valve seat or closure 44 held against the wall of the opening 26 by means of the levers 46 engageable against the closure 44 and against the stationary lug 41 on the sprinkler head, the levers 48 being held in valve closed position as by means of the fusible link 48.
In the operation oi. the apparatus disclosed herein, when the fire extinguishing fluid has been supplied to the pipes and the closure 44 (ii employed) has been removed, the fluid tends to flow through the inlet opening 22 and through the outlet opening- 26 to be discharged and scattered by the sprinkler head. If the fluid is supplied under very low pressure, the opening between the valve elements 36 and 28 is not materially afiected since the pressure upon both walls of the diaphragm 38 is substantially the same. If, however, a relatively high pressure is available at the outlet, a substantial difference of pressure occurs between the inner iaceoi' the diaphragm 38 and the outer face thereof so that the valve member 36 is moved toward the valve closure 28, in opposition to the force of the spring 36. This movement is dependent upon and varies with the fluid pressure available at the inlet opening 22 leading to the sprinkler head. The pressure is never permitted to entirely close the opening between the valve members 32 and 28 due to the presence of the lugs 38, thus maintaining a minimum opening through the valve at all times. 8
Where a number of valves have been opened and are supplied with pressure from the same source, but are differently located with respect to the source, the pressure at the inlet opening of the various sprinkler heads may vary widely. The quantity of fluid being discharged from the outlets does not vary materially, however, regardless of the diflerence in available pressure, since the high pressures are automatically held in check by the outlet valve comprising the members 28 and 30 thus forcing a larger quantity of water to the more remote outlets and serving to distribute the available pressure over the various outlets.
The present invention also avoids the necessity for a multiplicity of sizes of outlet heads. Heretofore the heads positioned at difierent locations with respect to the source of supply were of difierent gradations in 'sizes,-in order to secure the desired amount of flow under the low available pressures at the head and in order to avoid deficiency of flow or excessive flow at the location of the head it was necessary to exercise great care in selecting the proper head for attachment in a given location. With my invention the differences in pressure are automatically taken care of and standard sized units can be installed over a wide area having considerably difierent pressure conditions.
Having now described my invention, I claim:
1. In a flre extinguishing sprinkler head, a body forming a chamber and provided with inlet and discharge openings in line with one another, a screw threaded adjustable ring supported within the body below said discharge opening and carrying a fixed member of a valve carried on an open saddle within said ring, a movable cooperating valve member having an open center in line with the inlet, a diaphragm supporting the latter and a cooperating spring supported between said ring and said movable member of the valve and adjustable by means of the screw threaded ring.
2. In a fire extinguishing system having different available pressures at difierent points for supplying fire extinguishing fluid, a. sprinkler 3. In a fire extinguishing system, a sprinkler head having a thermally releasable valve, means embodied in the sprinkler head for regulating the quantity of liquid discharge, said means controlled by the pressure at which the particular sprinkler operates in a manner to give relatively constant dischars JOHN R. HAMILTON.