US 2395802 A
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` I BRAMs'oN FUEL SUPPLY TANK March 5, m46.
` 4 sheets-sheet 1 Filed Feb. 18, 1942 |||a|||||||||||hf OOG.)
March 5,1946. kML. BRAMSON y i 2,395,802
FUELk sPPLY-TANK Filed Feb. 18, 1942 4 sheets-sheet 2 k l y .ihren/2n' ffl/ MOGENS Louls BRAMSON March 5, 1946. M- BAMSON y' 2,395,802
FUELv SUPPLY TANK Filed Feb', 18, 1942 4 sheets-sheet 5 l vf/yeva/a/n MOGE NS LOUIS BRAMSON /@Mw' fm Marcl'fgs, 1946. M, BRAMSON 2,395,802
FUEL SUPPLY TANK Filed Feb. 1s, 1942 4 sheets-sheet 4 fac/uu Il aI/frenn MENS LOULS` BRAMSON Patented Mar. 5, 1946 UNITEU 'STATES PATENT Orr-lice Application February 18, 1942, Serial No. 431,415v
In Great Britain October 23, 1940 23 Claims.
vide a tank from which the possibility of leak` age and loss of large quantities-of fuel due to damage by projectiles is largely avoided.
The invention consists in a liquid supply tank comprising a container enclosing a plurality of inner compartments each with its own outlet separate from the outlet from the container, nonreturn valves being provided to prevent reverse flow intoeach inner compartment. l
In order that it may be clearly understood and more readily carried into effect, the invention is hereinafter described with reference to the accompanying diagrammatic drawings, of which:
Figure 1 is an elevation (mainly in section) of a typical fuel tank according to the present invention arranged for installation in an aircraft wing; Figure 2- is a plan view looking down on the top of the fuel tank as shown in Figure 1,l the top ofthe'ta'nk and a part of the internal assembly of tubular compartments being broken away to reveal the interior fittings;
Figure 3 is a fragmentary perspective view illustrating the method' of suspending the indi `v vidual compartments of the honeycomb of inner compartments from the top of the tank;
Figure 4 is an enlarged fragmentary detail of a collector box sectioned to show the construction of one of the non-return valves provided in the outlets from the individual compartments of a honeycomb of inner compartments provided within the fuel tank;
Figure 5 is a very diagrammatic View illustrating a typical fuel supply system embodying a fuel tank according to the invention;
Figure 6`r is a side elevation in section of a combined junction box and jettison valve embodied in the system according to the present invention;
` Figure 7 is a plan view corresponding to Figure 6, partly broken away; and Figure 8 is an elevation partly in section showing an electricallydriven fuel pump which operates to ensure preferential feed from the outer compartment of the container at all times when liquid isv available there.
Referring first to Figures 1, 2 and 3 -of the accompanying diagrammatic drawings, the fuel tank 5 is hollow and isk closed by the top cover lplate" I0, which may form a .detachable panel of the wing structure. A honeycomb structure vided laterally with upstanding lug portions'` I2? which are eyeletted, as indicated particularly clearly at I3 in Figure 3. Wires I4.- pass through the eyelets'l., and thus each wire I4I suspends a. row of the individual compartments H. The wires I4 in their turn are supported onthe intersecting wiresl, which are carried by .the angle sectionsfl secured to theztop' cover plate I0 in any convenient: manner, as for example. by riveting It will be noted from Figure 3f that the intersecting wire .t5 illustrated therein is turned over at its end, as indicated at l5a, which arrangement provides a convenient manner of lof-1 v(rating the wire I'B'ag-ainst endwise displacement',
and the ends of the wires I:4 are located' by the girders I'I (see Figure 2) in the saine way as the wires Mlare'located by the girders I6; which support means however do not appear in the drawings. r
It is apparent that each honeycomb cell or in dividual compartment II is openV at the top and. is' thus capable of7 being filled with liquid'fuel At the bottom ioffeach compartment Ilvv there provided for each. compartment an outlet pipe connection i8., which leads to the interior of a collector box I9 by engagement with' the plate 20 (see Figure 4i. Each outlet pipe connection I8 has at its outer or lower end within the col-A lector box I9 a non-returnvalve, the purpose of which willfbecome apparent from they ensuing description. The collector boxes i9 ar'efed from grouped pipe connections f8, and from each col-'- lector box a fuel, supply conduit 22v runs to the junction box" 23.
YIt will be noted. that the-honeycomb` structure' of individuall compartments Il" is' spaced from the tank wallsand fromthe bottom of' ther ciontainer. When'liquid fuel is introduced into the' tan-k 9 through the'` filler orifice 24 tlie liquid 'fuel fills up thev honeycomb of individual coinpartments II. A baille plate y25 is` provided .all round the periphery of the tank` to prevent the passage of liquid fuel into theoutercompartment constituted by the space in the tan-k 9 surroundingthe honeycomb structure. Y
ures 1 and 3 is a. netting of wire mesh, the meshes of which fit the individualcompartments I I, and the meshes themselves being located to lie at spaced intervals each fitting as a framework within the tank 9. rIfheI purpose of. the mesh is Indicated by thereference numeral` 26Y in Fi-g-l f to prevent excessive swaying of the assembly o1 inner compartments II. A.
There are two features which occur in Figure 2 resulting from the fact that the tank illustrated isY one which has been adapted to replace an ex-v isting tank in an aircraft wing. The first of those features consists in the displacement of the outlet ilow pipe from the junction box 23; The outlet flow pipe ,21, inside the tank, runs from the junction box and outthrough a sump, indicated in dotted lines at 23. vIhe'pipe 21 merely extends to a pipe fitting in the sump, and from the sump 2,395,802 .I Q `j charged to the engine along the main fuel supply conduit 42. If at any time liquid collects in the Ytank 9 below the assembly of inner compartments runs the external pipe 21. Such an adaptation makes it possible to instal the tank without mak?" ing any alteration to the existing main fuel supply piping. The sump 28 is open to the interior of the tank, as is also the pipe 29V through which any liquid collecting in the tank 9 below the as- Sembly of inner compartments III and above the sump can flow away, as will later be described.
The second feature which has` beeriintroducedr in the itank shown is the inclusion of the pillar 3U. Inactual fact, there will generally be more thanlone pillar providedbut only one is shown in the drawings. The necessityfor the pillar 3 9 arises from the fact that in the machine for which the tank has beenv adapted the Wing is stressed toftake the. weight of thetank on a bottom platform. In a tank Vaccording to the present invention the whole of the interior mechanism is suspendedfrom the top of thetank and a pillar 3U merely serves to. transmit the load therefrom to the bottom ofthe tank. Where a pillar or pillars 39- isorare provided, it isA convenient to utilise l them to assist in locating the netting 2S, which mayengage'the pillar as well as all of the inner compartments I I,.and which may at its periphery engage the locating Vchannels 32 at the outer wall ofthe tank.l j
`i Referring now to Figure 4, eachoutlet pipe I8 is provided at its end remote from its'associated inner compartment I I with a nipple 33 which leads through the top plate ct the collector box I9, andinternally of the collector box the nipple 33 fis engaged by the cage35 within which there is' a-buoyant `float 36. iThe cage Sfhas radial ports 31 disposed atcr about the level of the outletjfrom the nipple 33 intothe Yconnector box, and theend wall of thecage 35 is ported, as indicated at38.. vThe arrangement is such that so long as there is any'flow from the outletpipe I8 the Vfloat 361s pressed down towards the lip 39 of the cage l35 andliquid thusmilows outof vthe ports 31, as indicated by theI arrows, into the collector box, 'from the interior of 'which the pipe 22' leads away to the junction box. .If vthe flow from any one compartment I! should cease in the event of a compartmentY I I or pipev I8 becoming damaged, for example by aV projectile, and 'discharging the liquidinto the tank 9, thefloat '36 being buoyant inv the Yliquid in the collector box and being no longer urged downwardlyby the flow from the associated pipe ,I8,li fts to close off the seat 49 at the endiof the nipple andtherebyrprevents reverse ilow,*such as might permit liquid to flow back into the damaged compartment and continue to leak out intoA the tank9; Y V Y f Figure `5 illustrates in a very diagrammatic form a fuel supply-system according to the present invention embodying two tanks 9. Under all normal circumstances there is'no liquid'in the part of the tank below or surrounding the assembly of inner'. compartments lII,` described with reference toFigures l'and 3, 'and fueltherefore is drawn along .the pipe 2l by the fuel pump 4I landdis- H, the fuel collected in the tank 9 then ows along the conduit 29 to the float chamber 43 of an electric fuel pump 44. The fuel pump 44 includes the float-actuated switch 45 and is driven by the battery, indicated at 46. The arrangement is such that when thefloat is raised under the influence of iluid delivered to the iioat chamber from the part of the tank 9 below.` the assembly of inner compartments l I, the switch is actuated to drive the pump, which then discharges along the conduit 4l and through the non-return valve l0 to the main engine supply pipe 42. The pump 44 is chosen to be capable of delivering a pressure slightly greater than the delivery pressure of the main fuel pump 4l, and there is provided between the conduit 41 and the main fuel pump 4l a nonn return valve 48 which is closed when fuel is being delivered along the conduit 41 from thepump 44. The arrangement thusfe'nsures preferential feeding of fuel from that part ofthe tank 9 below.the
assembly of inner compartments II at all times when liquid nds its way into the'tank below the inner compartments. f
It Willnow be realised that if any Vof the inner compartments II become damaged, for instance by a projectle, all that happens is that each damaged compartment discharges liquid down to the level of the fracture, and the discharged liquid is collected in the tank 9 below the'compartments I I. Provided the projectile does netpass through the tank 9 at a point at or fairly near the bottom, the petrol discharged from the damaged compartment or compartments willmerely collect in the part of the tank 9 below the compartments and willpreierentially be used up. As external leakage is likely to occur only if Vthe tank 9 is penetrated at or-near the bottom, there is in the case of fuel tanks provided over the botto-m and for a few inches up the side wall a covering layer of fuel leak-sealing materials 49 (see Figures 1, 2, 4 and 5) of one of the already well known types.
To recapitulate, normal flow isfrom a group of individual cells Il via eachoutlow tube I8 and past each individual float valve 36 to their common collector box I9; from'the group of collector boxes i9 via each individual outflow tube 22 to the common junction box 23; and Vthence tothe normal fuel pump 4I via'pipe 2l, sump 28 and pipe 21. While all this flow, to the junction with the sump, is within the tank 9, the flow passages described are independent of. the tank and of the latters drain conduit 29, and the tank may be considered only as a receiver to collect overflow in the event of rupture of any such cell or now passage. Should rupture of any cell Il or tube l8- oc cur, only the fuel above the rupture in this par` or tubes, of small capacity relative to the whole,
will be sealed olf. As'the general liquid level in the cells is lowered to that of -each damaged cell, determined by its lowest leak, it will againcontribute its normal flow to that from the 'undamaged cells. i Y
whereof is open to said chamber, a plurality of outlet tubes, one from each compartment, communicating with the other outow pipe, for normal ow, nonreturn valve means interposed between the latter outow pipe and each compartment to prevent reverse flow back through each outlet tube, means normally operative to draw off fluid through said tubes and past said nonreturn valve means, and thence through the second outow pipe, and means responsive to presence of liquid within said chamber or first outflow pipe to induce draw-oft from said chamber through said first outflow pipeA in preference to outflow through said second outow pipe.
4. A liquid supply system comprising a tank having within it a plurality of compartments each open at its top but closed at its bottom, the bottoms of such compartments being spaced above the tanks bottom to form in the tank beneath the comp'artments a collection chamber, v
ment, communicating with the other outflow pipe,
for normal flow, non-return valve means interposed between the latter outflow pipe and eachl compartment to prevent reverse llow back through each outlet tube, means normally oper'- ative to draw o fluid through said tubes and past said non-return valve means, and thence through the ysecond outflow pipe, means responsive to presence of liquid within said chamber or first outow pipe to induce draw-oli from said chamber through said first outflow pipe in preference to outow through said second outflow pipe, a normally-closed J'ettison valve disposed at the entrance to the second outflow pipe, and means operable at will to open said jettison valve, to drain all said compartments.
l5. A tank as delined in Vclaim l, wherein the compartments are tubular in form, and means suspending the compartments substantially versubstantially vertically, the bottom of each compartment being closed, and spaced above the bottom of the container.
7. A tank as dened in claim 1, wherein the compartments are tubular inform, extending 1' substantially vertically, the bottom of each compartment being closed, and spaced above the bottom of the container, and a leak-sealing material coating the bottom of th'e container and the lower portion of each side of the container up to a level at least as high as the bottoms of thecompartments operable to retain within the lower portion of the container liquid leaked from a ruptured compartment.
8. A tank as dened in claim 1, including a removable top, the compartment-forming means being suspended from said top.
9. A tank as defined in claim l, wherein the compartments are each complete, and disposed contiguously to other such compartments to occupy the major portion of the space within the container.
1D. A tank as dened in claim 1, wherein the compartment-forming means consists primarily of flexible material. Y
11. A tank as defined inV claim 1 including a plurality of receivers, the compartments being grouped intoY a like number of groups, .and the outlet tubes oi'each' group leading to its appro- `priate receiver, common to al1 compartments of vthe group, and discharge means leading from each receiver.
Y 12. A tank as defined in claim 1 including a plurality 'of receivers, the compartments being grouped into a like number of groups, and the outlet tubes of each group leading to its appropriate receiver, common to all compartments of the group, and discharge means leading from each receiver, a junction box to which the several discharge means lead, and an outflow pipe leading from said junction box.
13. A tank as deiined in claim 1 including a plurality of receivers, the compartments being grouped into a like number of groups, and the outlet tubes of each group leading to its appropriate receiver, common to all compartments of the group, and discharge means leading from each receiver, a junction box to which the several discharge means lead, an outflow pipe leading from said junction box, and additional n onreturn valve means governing each such discharge means, at the junction box, to prevent reverse flow through said discharge means to the receivers.
14. A liquid supply tank comprising an outer container, a plurality of independent cells within said container, means to drain` each cell, including a valve within the container and associated with each' cell, arranged to open by outflow from its cell and to close by ilotation upon liquid collected Within the container, to regulate ilow of liquid from each cell for maintaining the level of liquid in all said cells at the same height, and draw-oil means connected to all the individual cells past their individual valves.
15. A liquid supply tank comprising an outer container, a plurality of independent cells contained therein, drain means connected to each cell, a receiver to which all said drain means are connected in common, a drain leading from the receiver, a separate means to drain the container, non-return valve means operable under the influence of liquid collected within the receiver to prevent reverse flow into the cells, and means automatically operable under the influence -of liquid collected withinthe container to effect drainage therefrom in preference to withdrawal from the receiver and thence from the individual cells.
.16. A liquid supply system comprising a cluster of separate compartments, a receiver, a plurality of outlets, each connecting the lower end of a different compartment with a chamber in the receiver common to all said outlets, and an individual non-return valve controlling flow through each outlet, movable to open position by gravity pressure ofliquid in such outlet and its compartment for flow of liquid therefrom to said receiver, and closable by superior hydrostatic pressure of liquid imsaid receiver to regulate iiow Vof liquid from each compartment outlet for maintaining the level of liquid in al1 said compartments at the same height.
17. A liquid supply tank comprising a container, means therein subdividing its interior space into a plurality of compartments all open at the top to the interior of the container, a receiver common toV all said compartments, each compartment having an individual outlet leading from its bottom to said common receiver, and buoyant non-return valve means governing each outlet, movable to open position by` pressure of liquid in such outlet and its compartment, and closable by the buoying action of liquid in said common receiver upon cessation of such now to prevent reverse ow into the bottom of such compartment from said common receiver.
18. A liquid supply tank comprising a container, honeycomb partitions therein subdividing its interior space into a plurality of compartments, all open only at the top to the interior of the container, and a common collection chamber for receiving liquid leaking from such compartments, an outlet sump in the bottom of the common co1- lection chamber, a plurality of tubes leading from said compartments and communicating with said sump, for flow of liquid from the compartments to the sump, an outlet from said sump, and nonreturn valve means controlling flow of liquid through said tubes to prevent reverse iiow through any of said tubes into the common collection chamber from any other of said tubes.
19. A liquid supply tank comprising an outer container, a plurality of independent cells contained therein, said container defining a common collection chamber for receiving liquid leading from such compartments, drain means connected to each cell, a receiver to which all said drain means are connected in commoma drain leading fromthe receiver, a separate drain leading from the common collection chamber of the container, and non-return valve means operable automatically during removal through said sepa-- rate drain of liquid leaked into the common col-- lection chamber to prevent iiow of liquid from the cells through said rst drain.
20. An airplane fuel supply system or the like, comprising a tank having within it a plurality of compartments each open at its top but closed at its bottom, and elevated above the tanks bottom to define beneath them a collection chamber, two outow pipes leading from the bottom of the tank, one whereof is open to said chamber, a sump whence the second leads, a plurality of tubes leading from said compartments and communicating with the sump, for normal iiow of liquid from the compartments to the sump, non-return valve means controlling flow of liquid through said tubes to prevent reverse ilow therethrough back from the sump to the compartments, means normally operative to draw off fuel through the tubes and sump, past the non-return valve means, and thence through the connected outflow pipe, and alternative means responsive to presence of fuel within said collection chamber or the outflow pipe open therefrom, to withdraw liquid from such chamber through its outflow in pipe in preference to outow from said sump through its outflow pipe.
21. An airplane fuel supply tank or the like, comprising a, container having within it a plurality of compartments each open at its top but closed at its bottom, a sump located at a level below the bottoms of the compartments, an out'- ilow pipe leading from the sump, a plurality of receivers, a plurality of outlet tubes, each connected to one of said receivers and leading from a different compartment, a plurality of receiver tubes each connected to a diiierent receiver and communicating with the sump, for normal ilow of liquid from said compartments to the sump, a
non-return valve controlling flow through each` outlet tube operableto prevent reverse flow of liquid back to its compartment from the receiver to which -it is connected, and a non-return valve controlling flow through each receiver tube operable to prevent reverse flow of liquid back to its receiver from the sump.
22. An airplane fuel supply tank or the like, comprising a container having within it a plurality of compartments each open at its top but closed at its bottom, a junction chamber located at a level below the bottoms of the compartments, an outflow pipe leading from the junction chamber, a plurality of tubes connected to said junction chamber and leading from said compartments for normal iiow of liquid therefrom to the junction chamber, a non-return valve controlling flow of liquid through eachV tube to prevent reverse flow therethrough back from the junction chamber to the compartments, a normally-closed jettison valve associated with the junction chamber, interposed between the non-return valves and the outflow pipe, and means operabie at will to open said jettison valve, to drain all said compartments.
23. nA tank for containing liquid, comprising a container, a multitude of compartments housed within said container and spaced above the bottom thereof to leave a normally empty collection chamber therebelow within the container, for receiving leakage from said compartments, common outlet means interconnecting said compartments, a drain leading from'the normally empty collection chamber of said container separate from said common outlet means, and means automatically operable under the influence of liquid collected in such collection chamber to eiect drainage therefrom in preference to withdrawal of liquid from said common outlet means and thence from the individual compartments.
MOGENS LOUIS BRAMSON.