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Publication numberUS2240567 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 6, 1941
Filing dateOct 18, 1939
Priority dateOct 18, 1939
Publication numberUS 2240567 A, US 2240567A, US-A-2240567, US2240567 A, US2240567A
InventorsMerle R Meacham, Lessing Otto
Original AssigneeStandard Oil Dev Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
US 2240567 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

y 1941- I M. R.MEACHAM ETAL 3 COFFERDAM filed 001;;- 18, 1939 2 Sheets-Sheet l May 6, 1941. M. R. MEACHAM ETAL COFFERDAM Filed Oct. 18 1939 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Patented May 6, 1941 *C'OFFERDAM Merle It. Meacham and Otto Lessing, Elizabeth, N. J., assignors to Standard Oil Development Company, a corporation of Delaware Application OctoberlS, 1939, Serial No. 299,918

2 Claims.

The present invention relates to a method and means for preventing the pollution of watersurrounding tank ships, barges and the like, caused by leakage from the vessel or container. More particularly, the invention relates to a means for confining such leakage to a restricted water surface area from which it may be substantially and readily removed as required. Specifically, the invention is embodied in a floating, segmental cofferdam, the ends of which may be attached to the hull of a barge or tank vessel, to provide an enclosed collection area from which the leakage of materials such as oil may be removed from the surface in any convenient manner.

The invention may be fully understood from the following specification when read in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which Fig. 1 is a plan view showing in reduced scale a cofierdam applied to a ship or barge;

Fig. 2 is a side elevation of the cofferdam with parts broken away;

Fig. 3 is an end elevation of the cofferdam with parts broken away;

Fig. 4 is a vertical section taken along the line IV-IV of Fig. 3, and

Fig. 5 is a horizontal section taken along the line V--V of Fig. 3.

As shown in Fig. 1, the cofferdam is formed of four separable sections including end sections and side sections, which are secured to the ship's hull in any convenient manner, as by magnets. As shown, the cofferdam structure provides an enclosed area A adjacent a point of leakage X.

In Fig. 2 the construction of the side section elements I of the cofferdam indicated in Fig. l are more clearly illustrated. Each section includes a rectangular curtain 2 of canvas or another suitable material, having a loop 2a at its upper edge, forming a compartment adapted to receive an inflatable or self-buoyant float member 3. The float member which may be permanently or removably secured in the loop or compartment 2a is preferably an inflatable tube of rubber or a like material having a valve 30. for which suitable provision is made in the loop 2a. At the lower edge of the curtain 2, a rope 4 is secured, in loops, to the material of the curtain, the several loops supporting a plurality of stabilizer weights 5 which are of such number and size as to maintain the curtain 2 in a vertical position, buoyantly supported by the float members 3. Incidentally, the float members 3 should provide a buoyant eifect suflicient to maintain the upper surface of the loop 20; a few inches higher than the surface of the water on either side. Along each vertical edge of the curta in 2, a means, such as slide fastener-elements 6, is provided for a substantiallyliquid tight joint between side sections and the endsections I.

As shown in Figs. 3, 4 and 5, the end section I is quite similar to the side section elements I. It is composed of the same sort of curtain member 2, a float member 3 and the rope supported stabilizer weights 5. The section I difiers from a section I, however, in that it is equipped with a fastener element 6 on only one vertical edge, the other edge being secured between two vertical plate members 8. The plate members 8 are preferable formed of a resilient metallic material having one straight, longitudinal edge and a curved, flanged portion 9 at the other edge. At intervals along the outer surface provided by the adjacent flanges 9, magnets I0 are secured in fixed relation to the flange surfaces, while at either side of the magnets, flexible and resilient sealing members II are secured to the portion of the flanges 9 which extends sideward beyond the magnets. It is intended that the sealing members I I normally shall extend slightly beyond the outer faces of the magnets In so that when the magnets are drawn against a flat but substantially uneven surface, the sealing members may be sufficiently compressed and distorted to provide a liquid seal therewith, preventing the escape of collected leakage between the curtain and the vessel side. The resilient flanges 9 aid in the sealing action. The magnets I0 may be energized in any suitable fashion as through the wire I2.

Although the flanges 9 have been shown as extending the entire length of each of plates 8, and the sealing members II have been shown in a similar fashion, it should be obvious that for the purpose intended, the flanges 9 may be reduced to suitably spaced ears adapted to receive the magnet members III, and the sealing members shortened to an extent that they merely provide a seal for a short distance above and below the water line. In such instance, the uppermost ear or flange portions would be extended to provide the required resilient seal support. Furthermore, the sealing members I I may be inflated tubes, resilient cylinders or of any other suitable nature.

In operation of the device described, after a leak has been located, in even an approximate fashion, a suitable number of side section elements I are fastened together, and an end element 1 attached to each end. The assembled cofferdam is then lowered into the water and If for any reason the cofierdam It is not intended that the invention shall i be limited by such specific description as set forth for the purpose of illustration, but only by the appended claims.

We claim:

1. An apparatus of the character described, comprising a canvas curtain including a center portion and end portions spaced thereby, a reverse loop in the upper edge of each curtain portion, an inflatable float member disposed within each loop, weight means secured to the lower edge of each portion, a plate member secured to each end portion at its outer edge, resilient wing members, integral with said plate, and extending laterally therefrom, a plurality of magnets disposed in spaced relation along the vertical edge of each plate member between said wings, and inflatable tube, sealing members secured to said wing elements laterally of the plates and magnets, said sealing members protruding slightly beyond the magnets, when inflated.

2. An apparatus for segregating leakage into water, of a material of lower specific gravity, from a container therefor partially immersed in said water, comprising a curtain of a flexible material, electro-magnetic means for supporting said curtain vertically against the container in substantially liquid-tight relation at the opposite end portions of said curtain, a plurality of hollow compartments substantially integral with the upper edge of said curtain and in spaced relation thereon, a plurality of buoyant members insertable in said compartments, maintaining the upper edge of the curtain slightly above water level, and stabilizer weight means secured to the lower edge of said curtain.


r s-rev.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2682151 *Oct 2, 1950Jun 29, 1954Simpson James MurrayBoom for confining material floating on water
US2968928 *Mar 22, 1955Jan 24, 1961Wicklander Anders EmanuelFloating barrier
US3092066 *Jan 30, 1961Jun 4, 1963Jonsson AlfredMethod of heating ship walls and a device for carrying out the method
US3146598 *May 10, 1963Sep 1, 1964Neirad Ind IncApparatus for confining floating material
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U.S. Classification405/65, 405/72, 114/229, 405/70
International ClassificationB63B25/08, E02B15/04
Cooperative ClassificationE02B15/0864, E02B15/08, E02B15/0814, B63B25/082, E02B15/0828
European ClassificationE02B15/08, E02B15/08J2, E02B15/08E, E02B15/08C, B63B25/08L