US 2213868 A
Abstract available in
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Sept 3 1940- A. N. LuclAN 2,213,868
Filed May 7, 1938 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVENTOR. Afsene N Lu am ATTORNEYS,
Patented Sept. 3, 1940 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE Claims.
'I'his invention relates to improvements in sign or display devices and other illuminants, employing an ultraviolet exciting source.
An object of this invention is to provide in the 5 from of a simple device a luminescent light source energized by an ultraviolet light source.
The various detailed objects of this invention will be apparent from the following description of one `form of the device when taken in connecl0 tion with the attached drawings.
' This invention resides substantially in the combination, construction, arrangement and re1- ative location of parts as set forth below.
In the accompanying drawings,
Figure l is a cross-sectional view on line l-I of Figure 2 of a device in accordance with this invention;
Figure 2 is a iront elevational view thereof;
Figure 3 is a diagrammatic view, in perspective, of the plate elements forming the closure for the front of the device.
Figure 4 is a vertical, central, cross-sectional View of a modified form of device in accordance with this invention, illustrating it as adapted particularly but not necessarily as a light source.
Figure 5 is a cross-sectional View taken on the line 5--5 of Figure 4.
In a broader sense, the invention is concerned with light sources including a display or sign device by means of which house numbers, room numbers, doctors, dentists and tourists signs and advertising displays may be produced employing as a primary source of energization a low wattage ultraviolet lamp. In front thereof is placed a transparent or translucent screen having a luminescent coating thereon of any one of a large number of well known materials of this nature so as to be rendered luminescent under the excitation o the ultraviolet rays from the light source.
In front of this plate is an opaque stencil plate having indicia to be displayed cut out of it,
thereby exposing an area of the luminescent` coating similar to the cut-outs. Placed over the stencil to protect it, especially for outdoor use,
is a transparent plate. The colors of the stencil and the coating, when luminescent under excitation, may be in complementary or contrasting colors to make the sign clearly visible at a considerable distance and especially in the dark. As shown in the drawings, the device may take the form of a box l of any suitable material such as metal, formed with side, end and bottom walls integral. The edges of the side and end walls which define the open front may be formed, for
example, as shown at 2- to provide a reentrant flange having a seat 3 lying in a plane in back of the front edge. In the recess thus formed are placed plates which consist of a transparent or translucent plate 4, an opaque stencil plate 5, l and a transparent cover plate 6. The plates 4 and 6 may be made of glass, Celluloid or other suitable materials, while the plate 5 may be made of metal, cardboard, Bakelite and similar materials. l0
On the rear face of the plate 4 is a coating da of any suitable material, of which there is a wide variety, which when excited by ultraviolet rays becomes luminescent. This coating may be applied in any suitable manner, as by brushing l5 thereon, spraying or the like. The stencil plate 5 may have a cut-out of any desired outline, as for example an arrow, as indicated at 5a in Fig. 2. The three plates set in the recess formed by the reentrant ilange against the seat 3 and are held 20 in place by means of a suitably shaped frame 1 which ts on the end of the casing and is secured thereto in any suitable manner.
In back of the plates is a suitably shaped reflector 8. In the form illustrated in Figure 1, 25 this reilector 8 is simply a strip of metal longitudinally curved, as shown, so as to have no top or bottom. As a modication, it is apparent that 4this reiiector may be built into and become a part of the boxl. In other words, the box may be constructed so that the reector is an integral part thereof. It is also within the purview of this invention to construct the reflector so that it is the box itselfthus simplifying the structure and reducing the cost thereof. Of course the re- 35 flector could be completed by providing reflecting top and bottom sides and it could be made in the form of a parabolic reflector or in any other suitable form. In back of the reflector is a socket of any suitable form to receive a small ultraviolet glow lamp i0, the stem of which projects through a properly placed opening in the reflector 8. This Ylamp has a pair of electrodes ll, in accordance 'with well known practice, which through the base of the lamp are connected to the circuit wires IZ-and i3. When desired a variable resistance I4 may be included in the circuit to vary the intensity of the light source.
When the ultraviolet light source I0 is energized, the rays produc-ed thereby are directed by 50 the reflector 8 substantially uniformly over the rear surface of the plate 4 rendering the coating 4a thereof f luminescent. That portion of the coating exposed by the stencil, when luminescent,
win be deariy visible. The visibnity of the exu i posed portion of the coating may be somewhat lincreased by the color of the solid portion of the stencil. 'I'hese two colors may be made to contrast so as to make the sign clearly visible. 'I'he particular coating selected can be in part determined by the conditions under which the device will be used so that it is, for example, of a nature to be more readily visible in the daylight or in the dark, depending upon the intended use thereof.
As illustrated in Figure 1, the portion of the bottom la of the box, and if desired the top, opposite the open sides of the reflector 8, could be made of transparent material such as glass, and coated with a luminescent material as indicated by the stippling at Ib. Thus the coated area of the bottom of the box, when excited by the ul, traviolet light In, would itself become a source of light which would illuminate the area below the device when in place.` Thus, in the case of a house number sign, it could beso placed that in addition to displaying the house number, it would illuminate the steps for the safety and convenience of visitors.
In raddition to the high visibility of a sign-of this type at considerable distances, it has the advantage of being quite inexpensive to operate. This results mainlyfrom the fact that coatings of this type require little energy for substantial excitation, with the result that the ultraviolet light source may be so small as to require but for example one watt of power to operate it. Thus a sign of this type may be turned on and left burning day and night since its cost of operation is almost negligible.
A modified form of device, in accordance with this invention, is illustrated in Figures 4 and 5. In this form the device is more particularly adapted as a source of illumination of low intensity,` such as a night light, a sickroom light, and the like. It is shown comprising a suitably shaped transparent vessel which, for example, can be made of glass. This vessel is shown as substantially circular in cross-section, with contracted open ends. The upper end is clcsed'by a plate .2| which may be secured to the vessel in any suitable manner, as for example by cement. Mounted on this plate is a suitable receptacle 23 in which is secured the ultraviolet light source 24, similar to that previously described. Attached to the end plate 2l, in any suitable manner, and surrounding the exciting lamp 24, is a reflector 22 of any suitable metal as before, such as for example aluminum or a chromium plated metal. 'I'he lower contracted end of the vessel is closed by means of a cone-shaped reflector 26 arranged so that it Will, in conjunction with the reflector 22, distribute the ultraviolet light from the source 24 substantially uniformly over the inner surface of the vessel 20. The reflector 26 is provided with a flanged seat 21 by means of whichit is secured to the vessel, as for example by cement. The eX- posed inner surface of the vessel 20 is coated with any one of a'number of well known luminescent coatings, as indicated at 25, depending upon the color and other visible characteristics desired of the device as a light source. Such a light source Will be exceedingly inexpensive to operate and at the same time will provide sufficient illumination for many purposes. The device can, of course, be easily adapted to display purposes by the use of stencils, in conjunction with the coating 25, or by the use of several different coating materials applied in suitable designs.
As those skilled inthe art will readily appreciate, the structural characteristics of these devices may be widely varied without departing from the novel subject matter thereof. Thus, for
example, more than one side of the box may be provided with the plates 4, 5 and 6 when desired. In some cases, especially where the sign is to be used indoors, the plate 6 may be dispensed with and when it is to be used outdoors, special precautions can readily be taken to make the container watertight.
I do not, therefore, deire to be strictly limited to the description as given for purposes of illustration, but rather to the scope of the appended claims. What I seek to secure by United States Letters Patent is: l n
1. In a device of the type described the combination including a reector, an ultraviolet light light source in front thereof, alight transmitting plate infront of the reflector having a coatingl on the surface of said plate facing the light source which is rendered luminescent by the light source, an opaque stencil mounted in front of said plate, and a transparent cover plate in frontl of said stencil.
2. In a device of the type described the combination including a container having an open front, a cover for said container Aincluding a transparent plate having a coating on the inner face thereof which becomes luminescent when excited by ultraviolet rays, and an opaque stencil superposed thereover, a reector in said container and an ultraviolet light source between the reflector and said cover.
3. A sign of the type described comprising a box having an open side and formed at the opening with a seat, a plurality of plates held in said seat including a pair of light transmitting plates and an opaque stencil interposed therebetween, one of said plates having a coating thereon rendered luminescent under ultraviolet light excita- A tion, and a source of ultraviolet light in said container.
4. A sign of the type' described comprising a.
box having an open side and formed at the opening with a seat, a plurality of plates held in said seat including a pair of light transmitting plates and an opaque stencil interposed therebetween, one of said plates having a coating thereon rendered luminescent under ultraviolet light excitation, a source of ultraviolet light in said container and a reflector in said container for directing the rays from the source onto said coating.
5. Aisign of the type described comprising a box having an open side and formed at the opening with a seat, a plurality of plates held in said seat including a pair of light transmitting plates and an opaque stencil interposed therebetween, one of said plates having a coating thereon rendered luminescent under ultraviolet light excitation, a source of ultraviolet light in said container, a rei-lector in said container for directing the rays from the source onto said coating, and circuit connections for said source including an adjustable resistance. 1
ARSENE N. LUCIAN.