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Publication numberUS2322236 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 22, 1943
Filing dateNov 7, 1939
Priority dateNov 7, 1939
Publication numberUS 2322236 A, US 2322236A, US-A-2322236, US2322236 A, US2322236A
InventorsHarry Ingram
Original AssigneeHarry Ingram
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Valved can closure
US 2322236 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

`une 22, 1943. H. lNGRAM vALvED CAN cLosURE Filed Nov. 7, 1959 2 Sheets-Sheet l lNvaN'roR am p 947m M f Dm /ws ATTORNEYS June 22, 1943. H. INGRAM 2,322,236

vALvED CAN cLosURE l Filed Nov.. '7, 1959 2 Sheets-sheet 2 INVENTOR MQ/"DML, Q/m M f Ifw: ATTQRNEYS ,Patented June 22, 1943 UNITED STATE-S PATENTl GFFICE VALVED CAN CLOSUBE Harry Ingram, Wheeling, W. Va. Application Novemberl 7, 1939, Serial No.- 303,174 v d Claims.

This invention relates to valved container closures and more particularly concerns an improved closure having an opening therein controlled by an improved form of mechanically operated check valve for permitting controlled egress and ingress of air and other gases and fluids.

It is. frequently desirable to remove air or other gases or fluids from a can or other container .l

after the cover or closure has been applied thereto. This procedure is particularly advantageous `in the canning or preserving of foods, beverages and other perishable products where the flavor, color, consistency and keeping qualities of the g product may be enhanced by removal of air or oxygen from the container.

It has heretofore been proposed to employ container closures provided with a vent hole or opening controlled by a check valve which is automatically opened by excess fluid pressure within the can or container, thus permitting venting or withdrawal of fluid, the valve closing automatically when the diierence between the external and internal pressures drops below a predetermined value. One example of a'valved closure of this type is disclosed in my Patent No. 1,576,763'l 4Such valved closures permit the cans to be subjected to' a vacuum after the closure is applied, whereby air can be withdrawn fromy the head space.

In certain canning operations, after vacuum removal of air .from the "head space, the closed cans are subjected to a cooking operation, usually in a pressure retort. With certain food products, this cooking heats the can contents to such a high temperature that considerable fluidv expansion occurs. When cans having automaticv check valve closures of the type described above are subjected to such an operation, fluid expansion sometimes forces the check valvel open and some spilling and wastage. of the canned product may result. Also, when the cans are cooled after such loss of contents,'the contraction of the product leaves an undesirably. large head space which gives the ultimate consumer the mistaken impression that the can was not completely filled by the manufacturer.

It is the object of (the vide a closure for cans and other containers having a ventcont'rolling valvemechanism capable l of withstanding without leakage the highest internal pressure imposed in canning, cooking and sterilizing operations, and 4at the same time, being readily operable by simple mechanical means to permit the withdrawal of air or other gases and the introduction of inert gas or other fluid prior present .invention to pro- I used for food products and beverages.

, as the description progresses.

to cooking or at any other time during the canning operatlon. Other objects of the invention include the provision of a valved closure incorporating an improved valve gasket and seat construction, improved strainingmeans for preventing the escape of solid or semi-solid matter during withdrawal of air and gases, and other advantageous and novel features which will be apparent 4fled form;

` Figure 5 is a sectional view similar to Figure l of a modified form of closure embodying the invention; and A v Figure 6 is a sectional view of a can provided with a closure embodying the invention and a diagrammatic representation of means for utilizing the improved closure valve mechanism in a canning operation.

Referring to the drawings, the embodiment of the invention there disclosed comprises a closure for an ordinary metallic can of the type generally The closure comprises generally a unitary structure containing two major parts, acap member C and a generally disk-shaped valve operating member or diaphragm D ysecured to yand beneath the cap member asjhereinaftery described.

The cap member C is shown circular although v other forms may be used if desired, and is preferably stamped or otherwise formed from a single piece of sheet metal such as tin plated steel. The cap member C, as well as the other parts of the device, can be formed of various other materials -such as a molded phenolic condensation product,

Celluloid, etc. The outer edge of the cap member C is provided with askirted A shape for use in securing the cap to a can, Mason jar Ior other glass or metallic container. In the embodiments shown in Figures 1,' 2 and 3, the rim 'l is of a type which may be secured and sealed to the top edge of a metalliccan by a seaming operation,\I as generally shown, for example, in Figure 6. s

rim 'l of am] suitableA A central vent opening II is provided in thel plate 9. In a preferred embodiment of the invention, a perforate valve gasket or washer I2 surrounds the openinglII and is secured to the plate 9 by ysuitable means. As shown, this may be accomplished by providing an eyelet I3 integral with the plate 9 and extending downwardly from the opening II through the central opening of the gasket I2, the lower end of the eyelet being bent outwardly to engage the lower surl face of the gasket I2 adjacent its central opening.

A substantially disk-shaped flexible resilient diaphragm D, which acts as the valve operating member," is disposed beneath and covers the lower surface of the valve supporting plate 9. 'The diaphragm D is so constructed as to have a strong upward bias at its central portion whereby the valve parts that control the flow of uid through the opening II may be firmly interengaged to provide a iiuid-tight seal. The bias of the diaphragm D may be produced in various ways. As illustrated .in the drawings, a circular bead Il is formed within the marginal edge portion I5 of the diaphragm andthe metal of the central portion I6 of the diaphragm is so drawn or otherwise worked or treated that it normally springs upwardly, as shown in Figure 2, when not confined by the' plate 9 within the recess R.

A suitable seat for engaging the gasket I2 is preferably formed at the center of the diaphragm tending corrugations I9'in the-marginal edge portion I5 of the diaphragm D. 'I'his forms restricted passages which permit the iiow of fluid while preventing the passage of solid or semi-solid food products out of the container or into the space between the valve parts. As shown in Figures l and l5, a clearance is provided between the edge of the diaphragms D and D' and the recessed walls 8 and 8', so that air and other gases can flow between these parts. In place of the corrugations I9 at the diaphragm edge, similar radial corrugations I9 may be formed atl the edge portion of the plate 9' where the marginal edge portion I5' of the diaphragm D is in contact therewith. This arrangement is shown in Figures 4 and 5, wherein the closure construction is otherwise similar to that of Figures 1, 2 and 3 and wherein corresponding parts are designated by like reference characters with distinctive exponents.

The improved vented closure of the invention v is useful in performing various operations inci- D. In the disclosed embodiments, this seat takes y the form of a circular upstanding ridge I1 disposed in alignment with the gasket I2 and of a size to engage the gasket outside of the eyelet I3, as shown in Figure 1. The valve seat ridge I1 is preferably formed integral with the diaphragm D by a stamping or equivalent operation.

The degree of resilient upward bias of the diaphragm D is preferably such that it cannot be forced inwardly by excess external fiuid pressure acting on the area within the ridge I'l, whereby the valve parts cannot be opened due to a vac- D also moves upwardly and the valve parts are.

maintained in engagement. A diaphragm which imposes a pressure of 5 to 10 pounds on the valve parts has been found to give satisfactory results, but the invention is not limited to any/` particular value of resilient upward bias.

'I'he diaphragm D may be secured within the. recess R by various means. As shown in Figures land 3, the marginal edge portion I5 of the diaphragm is held in surface contact with the underside of the plate 9 by deforming the metal wall 8 inwardly to form aplurality of lugs I8 at points spaced around the wall, these lugs overlying the edge of the diaphragm. As an alternative to this means of attachment, the wall 8 mayl be continuously deformed inwardly beneath the dent to the canning of foods, beverages and other products. As illustrative of a typical operation .in which the closure is useful, vthe food or other product may be deaerated and filled into cans, and the closures embodying the invention may then be secured thereto. Thereafter, a relatively high .vacuum is imposed on the can contents to suddenly boil the liquid therein whereby water vapor is generated in the'can and withdrawn, and air and oxygen are swept out of the head space. This operation may be accomplished by mechanically opening the valve mechanism in the closure, the vent opening II givingaccess to the diaphragm D whereby the diaphragm may be pushed downwardly by mechanical force to disengage the valve parts.

. Suitable apparatus for mechanically operating the valvel during evacuation or introduction of gas has be'en illustrated in Figure 6 which shows a closure engaging head 20 having a' rubber or other sealing pad or gasket 2| on its lower surface. A central opening 22 is provided in the head 20 and a closed upstandingJ tube 23 is securechto the head 2|) at this .opening as shown. Valve controlled ducts 24 and 25v for withdrawing fluid from and admitting fluid to the can communicate with the tube 23. A pin or plunger 26 is disposed in the tube 23 and extendstfroin the upper end thereof through a packedgland 21. An operating knob 28 is secured to the upper end of the pin 26 as-shown.

In operation, the head 20 is lowered'over a can 29 and the pad 2|` is firmly pressed against the can closure around the vent opening II as shown in Figure 6, thus placing the opening in fluid tight communication with the tube 23. The valve in the duct 24 is then opened, and the space within the tube 23, as well as that beneath the head 20, is evacuated by a suitable pump or other evacuating device,` as shown, connected to the duct, 24. The pin 26 .is then depressed so that closure to atmosphere, after which the head 20 may be removed.. If desired, an inert gas such as carbon dioxide, nitrogen or hydrogen may be'introduced to the can through the duct 25 after vacuumization while the valve mechanism is held open by the pin 26 as explained.

The above described operation may be followed by cooking or sterilization of the product. -In this operation, a number of the closed cans are customarily placed in a retort and subjected to heat and steam pressure such as to produce a temperature which may be in the neighborhood of 240 to 250 F. Such temperatures cause appreciable expansion of the liquid can contents and also generate some steam within the can with the result that the can ends, including the closure of the invention, are distended. Such bulging of the improved closure does not hcwever, cause the valve mechanism to open, because the resilient upward bias of the diaphragm D, aided by the excess 'internal pressure, causesl the valve seat I1 en the diaphragm to follow any upward movement of the cap plate 9, and so maintain the valve parts in sealing engagement.

When the can andits contents cool following the cooking operation, the steam condenses within the can and a vacuum may be produced in the head space. The magnitude of the resilient upward bias on the diaphragm D prevents downward movement of this diaphragm by the excess external pressure, and the can remains sealed.

It will be apparent that my improved closure permits vacuum withdrawal of air and other gases from the cans, and at the same time, pre- A.

vents loss of the can contents during a subsequent cooking or sterilization operation, with the result that the can reaches `the customer with as present when the can little head space as was waslled.

I claim:

1. A valved closure for sealing cans and like containers comprising a cap member including a substantially rigid plate portion having a central opening therethrough, a flexible resilient upwardly biased diaphragm secured adjacent its edge to said cap'beneath and covering said plate portion, valvemeans disposed between said diaphragm and said plate portion for normally sealing said opening, said diaphragm having a sunlcient upward bias to prevent opening of said valve means by excess external atmospheric pressure and said opening giving access to said dia- 2. A valved container closure comprising a cap member including a substantially rigid circular valve supporting plate having a central opening therethrough, a substantially disk-shaped flexible resilient diaphragm disposed beneath said plate with its marginal edge portion secured in contact with said plate, interengaging valve means between said plate and said diaphragm surrounding said opening for preventing fluid ow through said opening when said diaphragm moves toward said plate, said diaphragm having an upward bias of suflicient magnitude to prevent opening of said valve means by excess external atmospheric pressure, and means forming passages for the flow of fluid between the marginal edge portions of said diaphragm and said plate, said opening giving access to said diaphragm whereby said diaphragm may be moved downwardly by mechanical force to disengage said valve means and permit the flow of fluid through said opening.

\ 3. A valved container ,closure comprising a cap member including a substantially rigid circular valve supporting plate having a central opening therethrough, a substantially disk-shaped flexible resilient diaphragm disposed beneath said plate with its marginal edge portionsecured in contact with said plate, a valve gasket secured to the undersurface of said plate'and surrounding said opening, a circular valve seat on said diaphragm aligned with said gasket and engageablel therewith upon upward movement of said diaphragm to prevent fluid flow through said opening, said diaphragm having an upward bias of suilcient magnitude to prevent opening of said valve by excess external atmospheric" pressure y. and means forming passages forthe flow of fluid phragm whereby said diaphragm may be moved i downwardly by mechanical force to permit the flow of fluid through said opening.

between the marginal edge portions of said diaphragm and said plate, .said opening giving access to-said diaphragm whereby said diaphragm may be moved downwardly by a mechanical force to disengage saidvalve seat from said gasket and' permit the flow of fluid through said opening.

4. In a vented container closure, in combination, a cap member including an upwardly ex- .tending circular recess comprising an upwardly extending circular wall and a circular substantially rigid Valve supporting plate with a central opening therethrough, a substantially circular resiliently upwardly biased disk within said recess having marginal edge portions in surface engagement with the inner surface of said valve supporting. plate adjacent its edge, said upwardly extending wal1 of said recess `being deformed inwardly -at at least some points to underlie the edges of said disk whereby .said disk is secured within said recess, a plurality of radial corrugations in the marginal edge portion of said disk providing restricted passages between said disk .and said valve supporting plate, and means disposed between said disk and said plate and oper:4-

able by relative movement of said disk and said plate for controlling the flow of fluid through said opening.

HARRY INGRAM.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2425609 *Jan 2, 1945Aug 12, 1947Continental Can CoSheet metal container with vent opening
US2429984 *Aug 23, 1944Nov 4, 1947American Can CoValve closed container
US2576322 *Jul 5, 1947Nov 27, 1951Waters Harry FBag with vacuum sealed valve closure
US2630936 *Jun 30, 1949Mar 10, 1953Kidde Mfg Co IncWelded container and cap
US2907491 *Sep 12, 1956Oct 6, 1959Loma Plastics IncGarbage can
US2908297 *Oct 12, 1954Oct 13, 1959Alvar CarlssonLiquid sprayers
US3193130 *Apr 10, 1961Jul 6, 1965Continental Can CoNon-spill vented closure for hot cups
US3283941 *Feb 11, 1964Nov 8, 1966Gen Foods CorpContainer for hydratable products
US6220470Oct 20, 1997Apr 24, 2001American National Can CompanyResealable closure for open end of container
US6626314Mar 13, 2001Sep 30, 2003Rexam Beverage Can CompanyResealable closure for beverage container
US7003928Feb 21, 2003Feb 28, 2006Jcs/Thg, LlcAppliance for vacuum sealing food containers
US7076929Sep 30, 2003Jul 18, 2006Jcs/Thg, LlcAppliance for vacuum sealing food containers
US7131250Oct 14, 2004Nov 7, 2006Jcs/Thg, LlpAppliance for vacuum sealing food containers
US7231753Jul 17, 2006Jun 19, 2007Sunbeam Products, Inc.Appliance for vacuum sealing food containers
US7401452Nov 6, 2006Jul 22, 2008Sunbeam Products, Inc.Appliance for vacuum sealing food containers
US7454884May 4, 2007Nov 25, 2008Sunbeam Products, Inc.Appliance for vacuum sealing food containers
DE1018740B *Nov 4, 1952Oct 31, 1957Jacques Nicolas WiserKonservenbuechse
Classifications
U.S. Classification220/231
International ClassificationB65D51/16
Cooperative ClassificationB65D51/1644
European ClassificationB65D51/16D2