US 2187859 A
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R. KlLLiNGsTAD Filed June 27, 193e PROCESS AND APPARATUS FOR CONDITIONING COMMODITIES Jan. 23, 1940.
Patented Jan. 23, 1940 APafrelvrv OFFICE.
PROCESS APPARATUS FOR CONDITION- ING COMMODITIES Ralph Killingstad, New Smyrna, Fla., assignor, by
mesne assignments, to General American Precooling Corporation, of Delaware I Chicago, Ill., a corporation Application June 27, 1938, serial No. 87,798
6 claims. (ci. ca -s) This invention relates tothe treatment of commodities, and more particularly `has reference to the conditioning of commodities in a chamber.
While .theinvention will be described with respect to the conditioning of the load of freight cars, it will of course be appreciated that it is in no wise restricted thereto.
The present application is an improvement on application Serial No. 78,498, filed May7, 1936,
This is particularly true kwhen the commodities are treated after loading in a car, and when the conditioning device is located outside of the car, for in such event there are problems which are peculiar thereto.
One of the objects of lthisinvention is to provide a process and apparatus for the conditioning of commodities.
Another object of this invention is to provide a process and apparatus for insuring'uniform distribution and passage of conditioned air throughout the entire contents of a freight car. y
To accomplish Athe above and other important objects, this invention in general embraces .the idea of introducing air of the desired characteristics into a chamber containing the commodities to be treated, directing its path through such commodities, and withdrawing the 'air from the chamber so that the commodities will be effectively conditioned. In the preferred form, a substantially air-impervious cover is placed over the commodities, the ends of such cover resting upon the commodities, and the central portion being raised above the top of the commodities. It is also preferable that the discharge opening for the air after passage through the commodities be located adjacent the central portion of the cover.
There is shown in the accompanying drawing one specific arrangement for carrying out thel invention, but it will of course be understood that various modifications may be made therein without exceeding the scope of the inventive concept.
In the drawing, in which corresponding numerals refer to the same parts:
Figure 1 is a top plan view of a loaded freight car with a portion of the top of the car broken away. i
Figure 2 is a sectional view taken along the line 2-2 of Figure 1. i.
'I'his invention applies generally to the conditioning of goods located in a chamber, but it finds particular application in the conditioning of pro- .to shipping.
In the drawing I have shown my invention as applied to the conditioning of the load of a freight duce that is located in a freight car preparatory car as mentioned above, and the numeral I indicates generally a freight car. either of the refrigerator type or of the plain box car type. In the drawing I have shown a conventional refrigerator car comprising a storage chamber 2 and ice bunkers 3. The bunker walls 4 may be of solid construction and provided with an upper opening 5 and lower'opening 8, or they may be ofthe screen type.
Drain racks 1 may be provided in the bunkers to support the ice. f
The invention may be practiced in a car that has been pre-iced, or not. Furthermore, the conditioning which will be hereinafter described, particularly if it is a cooling process, may be supplemented by filling the bunkers with ice prior This car may be to shipment, and likewise a top icing of the lading `r maybe effected prior or subsequent to the conditioning. v n
The commodities that are to be shipped may be packed in baskets, lugs, boxes, crates, or other -suitable containenrdepending of course upon the nature of the commodity. Such containers are shown diagrammatically in the drawing, and are indicated by the numeral 8. The lading is supported by racks 9, and is preferably so arranged as to provide longitudinal channels II. In the drawing I have shown a normal loading of the products, and it will be appreciated of course that a greater or lesser load may be placed in the car.l
The usual doors I2l are provided in the center of the car, and in practicing the invention the doors on one side of the car are opened and there is inserted in the doorway a false door I3. best shown in Figure 1, the sides of the car I 4 `are considerably thicker than the false door I3, and
the false door is so arranged in the doorway that is provided with an opening I5 in its top portion,
and with an'opening I6 near its-base. As kbest shown in Figure 2, with the normal loading of a freight car,I the opening I5 will be above the top of the cover, to be later described, while the lower opening I5 is below the cover as well as below the top of the load. i
As indicated above, one of the problems in the conditioning of produce has been the neceity of securing and maintaining a proper distribution of the conditioned air throughout the mass of produce. To insure such adequate circulation and distribution, this invention embraces the use of a cover I'I which is preferably air-impervious. The size of this cover may vary according to the particular type of operation, but it is usually desirable that it extend at least approximately onethird of the length of the lading, and, under most circumstances it is preferable, with a fully loaded car, to carry the cover to within nve or six feet of the bunker walls of a refrigerator car or the ends of a box car. As best shown in Figure 1, it is usually preferable to have the cover extend the full width of the car, although under certain operating conditions this may be departed from. A lip Il may be provided on the cover which extends into a duct 25, later to be described.
The principal feature of this invention resides in the speciilc arrangement of the cover I1. As best shown in Figure 2, the ends of the cover rest upon the top of the load 8, and may be secured thereto by means of tacks I9. The central portion of the cover, however, is raised above the top of the load, and is supported in such raised position by means of a box, crate or other suitable support 2|. Preferably two boxes 2I are provided, one on each side of the top of the lading. It will therefore be seen that an air space is provided between the top of the load and the cover which may serve as a channel for the passage of air. Also, when the conditioning is a cooling operation, the cover Il will serve as a cooling surface.
While the invention may be practiced with various types of apparatus for conditioning the air introduced into the car, it finds particular application in combination with aportable conditioning unit which may be mounted upon an automobile truck and provided with the necessary compressors, pumps and exhaust apparatus located in the section 22 ofthe chassis. Condensing elements 23 are mounted upon the truck which provide coils or other cooling elements in a diifusing element 24. The diffuser is provided with a mouth which supports a duct 26 extending to and secured in the opening I5 of the false door. A similar duct (not shown) extends from the lower part of the diffuser to the opening I6 of the false door. Both of the ducts are preferably flexible and airtight. One of the ducts serves to convey air from the car to the diffuser 2l, while the other duct serves to convey the air so conditioned in the diffuser back to the car.
Ot course, it would be possible to introduce the air through either one of the openings I5 or I6 of the false door and withdraw it from the other opening, but it is decidedly preferable to introduce the air through the opening I5 and withdraw air from the car through opening I6. By such a process the air is withdrawn through opening I8 and its corresponding duct, then passes through the diifuser 24 where it is conditioned and then such conditioned air is passed through the duct 2l and opening I5 into the interior of the car. By "conditioning is meant cooling, heating, hydrating, dehydrating, cleaning, or any other desired treatment.
The presence of the cover I1 of course prevents the entrance of the air immediately into the top of the load adjacent the door. and also prevents the passage of such air immediately into the channel I3'. In other words, the cover Il prevents short circuiting and permits the incoming air to enter the produce 'only adjacent the ends of the car. It is also to be noted that the stream of incoming air strikes the opposite side of the car or rather the closed door on the opposite side, and thus facilitates a uniform and substantially equal passage of the air toward the opposite ends.
When the air reaches that portion of the load over which the cover I1 does not extend, it passes downwardly into the load, as indicated by the arrows 21. The longitudinal channels II between the commodity containers aiord a particularly eiective passageway for the air as it passes toward the center of the car and thence to the discharge opening I5. The major portion of the air travels an appreciable distance through the commodity and through the, channels II, but some of the air begins to ascend from the lchannels as soon as it passes underneath the cover I1, as indicated by the arrows. When the air, both within the commodity and channels, and also the air intermediate the cover and top of the commodity, reaches the center of the car, it passes transversely toward the false door, and thence downwardly through the channel I3' between the false door and the commodity containers to th discharge opening I6. Y
It is obvious that the channels II facilitate the passage of the air lengthwise of the car, and, while most forms of containers 8 are so constructed as to permit the passage of air transversely therethrough, the space between the cover I'I and the top of the commodity affords a ready transverse channel for said air as can not pass transversely through the containers.
The advantages of this invention are believed to be apparent. The air is usually introduced at about the rate of twelve thousand cubic feet a minute, and the incoming stream, immediately after admission to the car, is broken up by impacting the opposite car side. There is of course no impedance to the uniform distribution of air in the space above the load and above the cover, and consequently substantially equal amounts of air pass to the respective ends of the car. In order to enter the load, the air must pass into the commodities at the ends of the car and especially into the longitudinal channel II. The major part of the air passes through the channels and commodity to the center of the car, at which point it passes upwardly into the space between the raised cover and the load. It will be seen that in this way an effective cooling of the entire contents is possible, and furthermore the egress of air from the car is facilitated by the air space between the raised cover and the load and also the channel I3' formed between the false door and the load.
While there is shown and described the preferred embodiment of this invention, it is to be understood that this is exemplary merely, and that the inventive concept is to be determined solely by the scope of the appended claims.
1. A method of conditioning the contents of a chamber comprising introducing a stream of conditioned air at a point in the chamber above the contents, directing such stream into the contents at a point remote from its entrance into the chamber while preventing its contacting the contents when passing from the first to the second point, then passing the air through the contents, 1|
'and exhausting the air from the chamber by causing the stream to pass upwardly out of the point, then passing the air through theco'ntents,l
and exhaustingthe air from the chamber by causing the stream to pass upwardly out of the contents and rthence to a discharge opening fromj the chamber immediately below the point of admission to the chamber. and below the top of the contents. c v c 3 A method of conditioning the contents of a chamber comprising introducing a stream of conditioned air into the chamber at a point intermediate the ends thereof, directing such air to.-
wards the ends of the chamber and `out of contact;I
- with the contents, theny introducing thevair 'to the contents in the vicinity of the ends and passingr it'toward the center of the chamber, and t exhausting the air from the chamber by causing vthe stream to pass upwardl'yout of the contents and thence to a discharge opening from the Y chamber. f
4. A method of conditioning the load of a freight car comprising withdrawing air from the center of vthe carat a point beneath the `load level, conditioning the air exterior of the car,
introducing the conditioned air to the center of the car through one side thereof and above the load level, directing the air against the opposite side of the car, passing the air into 'the top of the load adjacent the ends of the car only, then passing the air throughthe' load, and withdrawing the air by causing the same to pass upwardly aisasso charge'from the chamber.
5. In an air-conditioning apparatus for the load of a freight car, a door at the center of the car provided with an aperature above the normal load level and an aperture belowthe normal load out oi' the load and thence to the point of dislevel, a'member extending longitudinally from vthe center of the car and coveringat least approximately one-third of the load, ythe ends of said member being secured to the top-of` the load vand the central portion thereof being raised kabove the load, said member adapted to substantiallyV kprevent, the passage Aof air there-` through, an air-cooling unit located exteriorly of 4theicar, means tokconvey cooled air from the unit through the upper aperture of lthe door above the said member, and means to convey air Y from the car to the unit, isaid last mentioned means extending from the lower Aaperture in the door below said member. y
- 6. An apparatus for conditioningthe load of a freight car comprising a door at the centerqfthe car provided with an aperture above the normal loadlevel and an aperture below the normal load level, said fdoor being of a thickness less than that of the car wall and having its outersurface ilush with the outer surface of the car wall, a
ymember extending longitudinally from the center of the car and covering at least approximately one-third of the load, the ends of said` member being secured to the top of the load and the central portion being raised above the'topof the load, said member adapted to substantiallyipreventthe passage of air therethrough, anfair-y coolingv unit located exteriorly of the car, means,
to convey cooled air from kthe unitv through-the upper aperture of the door4 above the said member, and means rto convey air from the car to the unit, said last mentioned means extending from the lower aperture in the door below said mem- RALPH mLLmGsTAD. v