US 20010010758 A1
It includes a housing (1) within which a resistor (3) is arranged connected to two connections (2) projecting through the bottom of the housing (1), further provided with an aluminum plate (5) serving as a radiator which is held inside at the top of the housing (1), held by strips (6) in the latter. The housing (1) and the aluminum plate (5) are provided with a hole (7) through which a wick may pass to project through the mouth of a container holding liquid product to be vaporized, by heating the wick through the resistor. A frame-like spacer element (8) is arranged on the housing (1) with fixing means to the housing (1), defining a supporting surface for a tablet (12), which tablet may be spaced to a greater or lesser extent by means of the spacer element (8) in order for said tablet (12) to be reached at all times by the appropriate heat to be full efficiently vaporized. The heating device may be used for both liquid and solid products.
1. A multipurpose heating device for vaporising active substances consisting of a housing (1) in which a resistor (3), which is preferably of the PTC type, is arranged, connected with the appropriate connections (2) projecting through the base of said housing (1), and further comprising a plate as a radiating element (5) duly fixed with strips (6) on the top inner part of the actual housing (1), the latter being in turn provided, and so is the actual plate serving as a radiator (5), with a hole (7), characterised in that the top of the housing (1) of the heating device is provided with a spacer element (8) fitted with fixing means to said housing (1), which element (8) is furnished with the means to support the tablet (12) that maintains it distanced from the heating element, being the width of these support and distancing means, between the tablet (12) and the heating element, calculated previously so as to provoke a greater or lesser distance and with that, a greater or lower calorific contribution to the tablet.
2. A multipurpose heating device for vaporising active substances, as in
3. a multipurpose heating device for vaporising active substances, as in
 The invention relates to a multipurpose heating device designed to stand as a means for vaporising active substances, such as those used as insecticides or air-fresheners. The device, which is provided with a resistor, preferably of the PTC type, as the heating means, is structured to be able to evaporate liquids, tablets and gels without distinction, and at all times with a maximum performance, whatever the type of product to be evaporated may be.
 There are electrically powered heating devices for vaporising liquids contained in diffusers, in some cases, and solids in the form of tablets in other cases, and indeed sometimes allowing tablets or liquids to be used without distinction, at will.
 Present-day known devices for vaporising these products usually consist of a resistor which upon being activated heats a ceramic plate through which the relevant substance is vaporised close to a tablet diffuser. On the other hand, the heating device may be provided with a hole in which a wick is arranged projecting to the outside of a diffuser container holding a liquid product, thereby for heating of that wick to cause the liquid substance held in the container to be vaporised.
 The power required in heating the heating device differs in the case of diffusers containing liquids and solid or tablet products, because in the first case a greater temperature is required at the mouth of the hole, whereas in the latter case the entire surface of the tablet can come into contact with the ceramic plate, whence less heat is required for sublimation to take place.
 That is why a same heating device is neither advisable nor indeed effective to be able to vaporise tablet form products and vaporise liquid products without distinction, because the optimum working temperature of the wick in the case of liquid products does not match that of the tablet in the case of solid products, and therefore two types of heating devices are normally marketed, one specific for liquids and another one which is also specific for solids or tablets.
 The heating device disclosed herein has been devised to fully overcome the above-mentioned drawbacks, i.e. it may be used without distinction and as may be required on case by case basis for liquid products or for tablet form products.
 More specifically, the first novel characteristic of the heating device subject of the invention lies in that the general body of the heating device is supplemented with a spacer element provided with fixing means to the general body of the heating device, and therefore such spacer element may in each case be arranged at a greater or lesser distance from the heat radiating plate, thus allowing the solid product to be spaced to a greater or lesser extent; i.e. said spacer element is used to adjust the spacing between the tablet and the radiating plate in order to achieve an effective operation, starting from the fact that the heating device has previously been studied and constructed with a specific extent of evaporation and temperature to work as a heating device for liquid products, i.e. to work with a wick, and therefore taking that as the starting point, when the heating device is to be used to vaporise solid products, such as tablets, the spacer element will be used to adjust the spacing between the tablet and the radiating plate.
 Another novel characteristic lies in that the heating plate at issue is not made of ceramics as is conventionally the case but consists of an aluminium plate. for an enhanced distribution of the temperature on the heater surface. and with that improvement the highest temperature reached on the surface of the aluminium radiating plate is less than in a ceramic heating device, thereby producing a lesser degradation of the insecticide active principles and of perfumes, due to an excess temperature, or in other words a better efficiency is achieved.
 Another advantage of the inventive device lies in the perfect adjustment of the temperature required for each application, whether for liquid products or for tablets, based upon the above-mentioned spacer element.
 In order to provide a fuller description and contribute to the complete understanding of the characteristics of the invention, in accordance with a preferred practical embodiment thereof, a set of drawings is attached to the specification as an integral part thereof which, while purely illustrative and not fully comprehensive, shows the following:
FIG. 1.—Is an elevation exploded view of the various components making up the multipurpose heating device subject of the invention, showing a sectional view of the sheet or plate making up the aluminium radiator.
FIG. 2.—Is a side elevation view of the fully mounted heating device.
FIG. 3.—Is a top plan view of the same heating device shown in the preceding figures, with the spacer element on which the relevant plate acting as an aluminium radiator is to be supported.
FIG. 4.—Is a sectional view along line A-A of the preceding figure, with a tablet arranged supported on the spacer element.
FIG. 5.—Is another sectional view of the same heating device, as applied on a liquid diffuser container, with a wick projecting to the outside through which the relevant vaporisation takes place.
 With reference to the above-mentioned figures, the heating device of the invention comprises a housing (1) with appropriate connections (2) passing through its base and a resistor (3) arranged between these, which connections (2) pass through appropriate windows or slots purposely provided on the base of the housing (1).
 The resistor (3) is a PTC type resistor and has an isolating film (4) arranged above it, which lies just below the appropriate radiator (5), which in this case consists of an aluminium plate or sheet, the latter being held at the top of the housing (1) by means of elastic strips (6) with which said housing (1) is purposely provided on the top edges of two of its side-walls.
 Both the housing (1) and the aluminium plate (5) constituting the radiator are provided with a hole (7).
 The heating device thus constructed is further provided, and there lies one of the main characteristics of the invention, with a spacer element (8) consisting of a sort of frame coupled on the top contour of that device, and having side strips (9) or any other conventional means to be fixed by being locked onto appropriate steps (10) purposely provided on the respective faces of the housing (1).
 This frame-like spacer element (8) has small projections (11) projecting inward from its sides, altogether forming a support for a tablet (12), as is clearly shown in FIG. 4.
 In this way, and when the heating device is applied to vaporise a liquid product held in a container (13) from which a wick (14) emerges, passing through the hole (7) of the device, heat is conveyed through the bore or said hole (7) of the aluminium radiator (5), said heat being conveyed to the wick (14) with the assistance of the ledge (14), the latter increasing the heat radiation surface to the wick, causing the liquid held in the container (13) to be volatised or evaporated.
 Clearly, and as aforesaid, the temperature supplied by the heating device will be adjusted to whatever is required for obtaining the desired evaporation speed.
 If a solid product, in the form of both an insecticide and an air-freshener tablet (12), is to be evaporated, once the temperature required for the preceding case is fixed, the size of the spacer element (8) shall be adjusted in order to achieve a suitable spacing between said tablet (12) and the aluminium radiator (5) in order thereby to obtain a proper evaporation.
 In conclusion, depending on the substances (insecticides, air-fresheners, etc.) or products to be evaporated (liquid, tablets, gels, etc.) the height of the spacer or separating element (8) shall be adjusted in each case, to achieve at all times a perfect adjustment for each case.