US 2613511 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
E. C. WALSH ICE-MAKING MACHINE Oct. 14, 1952 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed April 14, 1948 INVENTOR. EDWARD C. WALSH Patented Oct. 14, 1952 UNITED `.S'TAT ES PAT ENT O F F I C E rationof 'Delaware Application'rApril 14, 1948,A Serial No. 20,942
Thisinvention relates` to improvements in` ma,.- chines. for producing, flaled or. chipped ice or flakes of. other` similarA frozenl or congealedma.- terials of comparable consistency andother related properties..
Machines capable of4 effectivelyE producing ice in this form are-` highly, in demand,y due to the fact. tha-.t there is; a. greatrdemand for. this type of` ice and. furthermore, its manufacture in this form isconsiderably cheaper than to.14 manufacture it.A in the. formof' blocksi. due tothe lesser amount.y of` refrigeration. requirements;
invention is particularly anv improvement iny that .type of. chipped. ice manufacturing machine .wherein the iceA is f'rozenA on ,ap surface and then is causedf to be sheared from the-surface or otherwise-.freed from` thevv surface by having. the bond between the ice and the freezing surface broken.
rIlhe primary objectoff.l my, inventionis to provide zin-,improved machine of thecharacter described wherein thearrangement forshearing off the ice-, thatis,I freeing itfrom the.l freezing surface is very effective; It isan object of: the..` invention. to achieve thischaracteristicv while. at the; samel time providing avmachine whichl is positivein action throughout its operation, A.which isas. compactas possible and which haslow power requirements, especiallyd for effectingv the ice removing action'. Freeing the icefrom the freezing. surface has in: the:- past: been. one `of the` maiordifculties,sinceethe iceadheres to the; surface quite tenaciouslyp and it has been. found diflifcult to remove itwi-thout'utilization of large amount-s of power and without resorting tomechanism's; susceptible to; failure and rapid deterioration4 underv conditions of. continual; service,
Another object of4 my; invention is; to, provideV a machine ofthe. character described, which is.: of simple'y construction, making it; eas-v` to;V repair and replaceyparts..
Another object-,of ther.` invention istto: provide a machine of the class described: wherein the ice freezing surfacev is injthaforniV of: a. platea` having thercharacteristic that. it, can be, bulged or bowed out. of' a planeA inY a manner. thatJ itsv curva.- ture can be changed from concave to.- convex, the change` in. curvature of the plate being` such. as to causeica frozen, to the plate to.b.e sheared. off when it` is. bulged or buckled from one.l side of said. plane.. to the,- other..
Another object of theinvention is. toy provide. a machine as inthe foregoing. object. whereinI the plate or freezing surface is associated, with. a freezing or coolingunit. havingv a curved surface (Cl.l (i2-107) 2 cclnnorming, to the bulged surface of the freezing p a e.
Another object. of the invention is` to provide amachinev as in. the foregoing objects wherein the freezing plate` or surface forms a side wall of apressure. chamber in which the freezing unit is located with pumping means for changing the pressure in thepressure chamber to cause the freezing plate tol bevalternately dished or bulged against the freezing unit, and dished or bulged awayv from the freezing unit to cause the ice t'o beA sheared. off therefrom.
AnotherA object of' the inventionis to provide a machine as. thev foregoing wherein thefice freezing surfaceisin theformof a snap disc having.I associatedy therewith a` freezing unit having asurface shaped@ toconform to the disc` when the discis, in one. of itsover-center positions.
Another objectof the invention is to provide a-machine asfinthe foregoing object wherein a timed mechanical!` actuating device is provided for periodically` snapping the disc over center.
Another objectof the. invention is to provide a machine of. the, class described wherein thefreezingt surfaceforms one side wall of an evaporator unitfofA a refriger'ating' system and has the characteristic. of being. operable to have its shape or configuration changed" from concave to convex as a. result ofthe changes in pressure within the evaporator unit. j
Another. Object ofthe invention, is to provide a machine asl in the foregoing object wherein a connection isV providedto admit' high pressure refri'gerant, from the system into the4 evaporator to increasethe pressure therein, andi an automatic timing device` controlling` said connection so as tozperiodically change, the pressure in the evaporator in aa manner to] cause. the iceto be. freed fromthe-i freezing surface.
Further objects.- and.numerous. of: the advantages ofmy'inventionwill become apparent from the following; detailedv description and annexed drawings wherein I Figure; 1, isa cross-sectional view of a. formrof of my invention'. wherein the iceV4 freezing surfacelis a snaps. disc.
Figure 2` is1 a. sectional. View ofi along the lineH2'--2'l of Figurey 1.
Figure 3 is a cross-sectional view'of av second form of myA invention utili-zing different. typesA of freezing surfaces; Y f
Figure iL is a sectional view of' the machine of Figure 3l taken; along the` line iff-4l.
Figuref5` is` a. cross-sectional viewof a third Figure 1-; taken 3 form of my invention wherein the freezing surface forms one side wail of an evaporator unit.
Figure 6 is a sectional View taken along the line 6 6 of Figure 5.
From the foregoing it will be understood that my invention comprehends broadly the concept of freezing water or other matter, on a surface which is capable of having its shape or configuration changed so that upon the changing of such configuration after the ice has been frozen thereon, it is caused to be sheared off as a result of the changing shape. The invention comprehends broadly a freezing surface which can be buckled, deformed, or bowed outwardly from a plane and then sprung or buckled again. Refrigeration or cooling may be applied, preferably to one side of the surface in various ways and certain preferred manners of so doing will be shown. The invention comprehends the concept of providing means operative to cause the bulging, deforming, or dishing of the freezing surface necessary to cause the ice to be sheared therefrom. This operation may be performed by mechanical means or other equivalent means, such as pneumatic or hydraulic cylinders or by applying gaseous pressure to the freezing surface itself. The invention comprehends a freezing surface formed of a metal which can be duistended or` a flexible material which can be distended or expanded.
Referring more specifically to the drawings in Figure l, numeral 9 represents an insulated compartment within which is disposed the ice freezing mechanism and the compartment having doors 8 through which the accumulated ice can be removed. Numeral l2designates a snap disc which is a device known in the art and it is adapted to snap or buckle from one side to the other of a central plane, as is well known in the art. The disc I2 is mounted at its periphery in ring shaped mountings asindicated at I3 which are of slightly larger diameter to allow for the increase in circumference of the disc as it passes over its dead center position. Numeral I5 designates the evaporator or cooling unit of a refrigeration system, shown diagrammatically at I'I. The cooling unit I5 may employ vaporizable refrigerants as in a compression system orthe refrigerant may be brine cooled below vfreezing temperature. as shown and its upper surface is shaped to conform to the surface of the under side of the disc I2 and when the disc is in its lower position, it lies fiat against the unit I5. Water supply nozzles or sprays 22 are provided around the periphery of the disc from a supply not shown for providing water which drains onto the disc and which is to be frozen thereon. The disc has a group of openings arranged in a circle, as shown at 2|, to allow excess water to drain olf the disc near its central portion and this excess water is collected in the trough 2'I and drained E through a drain tube 28.
A vertical stem 23 is attached to the central portionof disc I2 by means of discs 24 and 25 on opposite sides of the disc I2, and this stem can be reciprocated as will be described, to snap the disc I2 from one of its positions to the other.
The cooling unit I is ring shaped At its lower end the stem 25 carries a disc 38 and it has a coil spring 26 surrounding it. The spring bears against this disc and against an abutment 22, normally urging the stem in a downward direction. The disc forms a follower for a cam 28 having a single dwell and Iit is driven by a motor 35. The motor 35, is controlled by an electric timer 36 which energizes the motor at periodic intervals so as to rotate the cam 29 through one revolution for moving the stem 23 and consequently the disc I2 upwardly to its opposite position and allowing it to come down again under the influence of the spring 26.
In operation, the unit I5 is at below freezing temperature and as the water flows onto the disc I2, a lm of ice is formed thereon in a short period of time. Upon energization of motor the disc I2 is snapped to its upper position as described, the change in shape and conformation of the disc necessarily causing the film of ice to be completely sheared olf the disc. The lm of ice becomes fractured in numerous places and slides off the disc around its periphery and drops to the bottom of the compartment 9 where it can be removed through the doors 8.
Various other equivalent mechanisms may be provided to actuate the disc I2 as originally described, such as a pneumatic or hydraulic cylinder or other means. The timer 36 may be of a known type, set to actuate the motor 35 at predetermined intervals to cause the ice removing action to be performed substantially as soon as the lm of ice has been frozen on the disc I2.
Various modifications are clearly within the realm of the invention. For instance, the snap disc might have a relatively large central opening with the sprays more centrally located so as to freeze the ice film with the disc in its upper position. The sheared olf ice would then be collected after passing through the central opening. While only a single disc is shown, multiple discs might be employed and they might be large or small, as desired. While a metal disc is preferred, other material might conceivably be employed.
Referring to Figure 3 of the drawings, a similar insulated compartment 31 is shown having therein an evaporator or freezer unit 38 connected by pipes 42 and 43 to a refrigerating or cooling system, designated generally at 40. The refrigerating unit 38 has a dished or concave surface as shown at 39 and a freezing surface or plate 48 is adjacent this face of the refrigerating unit and is adapted and formed to be operable to be dished or bowed so as to lie flat against the curved surface of the unit 38. The freezing surface 48 forms one side wall of a pressure chamber 45 within which the unit 38 is disposed. Surface or plate 48 is attached to the chamber 45 by having its edge portions engaging in a groove in the mounting flange 49 and it may be welded or otherwise sealed thereto. The plate 48 and chamber 45 are shown as being substantially square in Figure 4, but it is to be under- Stood that other shapes may be employed. The plate 48 may be a strip, for example, mounted only at two of its opposite sides, and bowed or capable of being bowed or bulged from one extreme position t0 another. Figure 3 shows the plate 48 lying fiat against the curved surface of unit 38 and its other position is shown in broken lmes. The curved surface 39 of the unit38 has transverse grooves or depressions 46 therein and pressure within the chamber 45 may pass into these grooves at their ends and when the pressure is sufficiently high the plate 48 will be dished or bulged in the opposite direction to cause the film of ice frozen thereon to be sheared olf as 1n the previous embodiment.
Nozzles or sprays 44 are provided to spray water on the upper part of the plate 38 to be frozen thereon in the form vof a film. The plate 48 is.
5 of cou-rse;` made of a good heat comfiuctingima'rA terialsothat `heat is readily conductedthrough tiiepla-te'andto unit 38.l y
y 'At -tlie lowerIv part of the lplate V4fandlchamber 4-5`isla trough-Mito collectthe excess water flowing down the plate 48- and` this'. water may be drained off through the tube 641;
Numeral-53Idesignates'anair pump which may beL drivenb'y any convenient means, and cone nectedthroughe pipes 551 and 55! and through .a four-way.l vali/e154 to the'. interior.` of chamber ."45.
lThe LfourewayivalveAi has a' rotor 65A as shownl having twol' positions suchl that'` the'. interior. of
the; chamberi 451 can be connectedxto eitherthe suction or. dischargeof theair.pump53` (by rotatin'glmemberlB1through190). When the interior of chambers 45fis`=connected to. the: suction of 'pump `53;` the pressure within. the chamber:v is reduced and'.t atmosphericipressure: on. the. exterior of the chamber. bows `the rplatei. 43l and urges it against the curved. face'loflthe unitI 38sso as to be in good thermal contact: therewith. When .the discharge of the pump 53fis connected to the interior ofthe chamber 45, the pressure therein is increased substantially,l above atmospheric pressure and this pressureactingwithin. the grooves 43 bows or dishes the plate 48fin1the opposite direction tozits dotted line position, and the change in shape and conformation of theplate causes the ice to be sheared off therefrom and to be fractured in numerous places.A Theice. drops down and collects in the lower partof. thecompartment 3l and may be removed throughzfthedoor. 651v The rotor of the four-way valve 541s lconnected to an automatic-periodictiming device 5I with the periodic intervals determined in advance. It yreverses .the position of valve 54f-'and accordingly,
the. connections to thepressurefchamber. 45'; so
asitoeffect'theice removal. action as described. The:valve.'5.4.iskeptinposition such that'the dischargeof pump. 53 is intdchamber 45'.` fora short interval longenough to'allow thepressure to be built up in the chamber sufciently to bow plate 48 to its outward position. Upon the position of the valve 54 being again changed, the pressure in chamber 45 is reduced and plate 48 again assumes the position shown in the drawing. The evacuation of the air from within chamber 45 serves to inhibit condensation of moisture therewithin and consequent freezing of member 48 to the surface of unit 38. The evacuation also acts as an insulating blanket for unit 38 so that the refrigerating effect is devoted entirely to cooling the member 48 and freezing the film of ice thereon.
The member 48 may be a relatively thin sheet of material capable of being bowed as described, and it is within the comprehension of the invention that other iiexible or deformable material be used such as a rubber diaphragm or sheet.
The timing device 6| may embody a motor drive for the valve 54 or there may be an electro-magnetic connection for changing the position of the valve. Such devices are well-known in the art and therefore need not be described in detail.
Referring to Figure 5 of the drawings, the insulated compartment is shown at 61, having therewithin an evaporator unit 69 forming part of a compression type refrigeration system designated generally at 13. The system comprises a compressor 'l5 driven by a motor 82, a condenser 16 having a receiver BI, all connected in refrigerant flow relationship with the evaporator unit 69 as described. An expansion valve 'Il of a conventional type is provided in the refrigerant supply line.. 84'? and.' the'. suctioniline 83? may f have: a checkzvalvethereiniasishown. .The evaporator -unit1169islV 0f.:relatively.smallldepthf and.' it` isA reo-:- tangular.I in cross' section as shown in Figuref, butitrmay havevariousv otlienshapes. The :evaporator. unit' 69y has one Iside wall 1 I formed of.' a relatively thin material capableof beingjdished orbowedrfroma"concaveposition'as shown, to a convexpas shown inbroken lines.l The. sidewall or platev'll; is attached tothe rigid' portionlof evaporator unitbyf welding., orf by rother Vmeans.` of
Water. spraysr85l are provided' as in previous embodimentsandftrough 86 Y havingV drain pipev 81 isrprovidedto. catch the'excess water draining oh.- the plate-71; Accumulated ice may bei'.` re.- moved.- through the'- removaldoor: 91
In; thepresent embodiment, a bypassline 18fis provided-fromthe .upper part ofthe condenser. 1B
`to the evaporator'unit anal-in this line. isia. solenoid valve19 controlled by an electric timingdevice 8u. The timing device 80 is set to periodically opengthavalve `'I9 at intervals so as to admit high pressure refrigerantY gas'into -the evaporator 69. This high pressure. refrigerant bowsthe plate. or side wallfll outward causingw theiceto be sheared off.` therefrom. asin previous embodiments. The valve 19iis keptopen .onlyf long enough to` effect the .ice .removal action. and normal refrigeration is.. then. resumed. The usual conventional l controis-may be. providedfor the. compressor motor 32F is desired.
'Fromthefreg-oing, those skilledin the art will observe. thatl I have provided. aVeryconvenient, simple and eifective machine for achieving; the desired purpose offreezing` a lm of ice. on a surfaceandthen causing it. to vbe sheared offand broken up into ypifecesand collected..
Various modifications. and alternatives f may. be practiced by those skilled'in theartand various eguiv'alent. devices may, be substituted for differentpartfs..l Itis ihtended'that.allsuchvarif ations andl modifications and all', proper. equivalents as to the individual parts andcombin'atins force against said material at a point spaced from its supports so as to oppositely bow said material outwardly from a plane and to thereby shear said ice off and to separate the ice from said material, said piece of material forming one side of a pressure chamber and pumping means capable of changing the pressure in said chamber from below to above atmospheric, the refrigeration applying means being Within the pressure chamber.
2. The structure of claim 1 including a timing device controlling the pumping means to effect raising of the pressure in the chamber periodically for short intervals.
3. In apparatus of the character described, in combination a member having a deformable portion adapted to be |dished, refrigeration means having a cooling portion shaped to conform to the convex side of the said dished portion, means for applying water to the concave side of the dished portion to be frozen, and means associated with the dished portion for applying a force substantially normal to the surface thereof for causing the dished portion to buckle and to be dished in the opposite direction so as to cause the ice to be freed therefrom.
4. The structure of claim 3 wherein the said member and the said cooling portion have relative conformations to permit access of fluid under pressure between them to effect the opposite dishing of the said member.
5. In the art of congealing liquids, the steps of, cooling a freezing zone, withdrawing air from lthe vicinity of said zone thereby to produce a partial vacuum condition, utilizing said partial vacuum condition to draw a freezing surface into `said freezing zone, and changing said partial vacuum condition to a pressure condition whereby said freezing surface is moved from said zone and flexed so as to remove ice from said freezing surface.
6. In ice making apparatus, the combination of, a rigid evaporator presenting a rigid refrigerated surface, a casing surrounding said evaporator and including a flexible member positioned adjacent said refrigerated surface and adapted to move to and from intimate contact therewith, and pressure changing means which is adapted to change the pressure condition along said restantially flat plane surface and forming a side wall of a pressure chamber, means for applying refrigeration to one side of said material, water circulating means arranged to spray water on said material whereby it freezes and forms ice thereon, and air pumping means connected to said chamber to change the pressure therein'ln a manner to apply a force against said material at a point spaced from its supports so as to oppositely bow said material outwardly from said plane and to thereby shear the ice free and to separate the ice from said material.
8. In apparatus of the character described, in combination, a unit having a deformable portion which is dished and has a peripheral zone and includes means supporting said deformable portion at said peripheral zone whereby said deformable portion has its central portion adapted to move from its dished position wherein it presents a concave freezing surface to a deflected position wherein said freezing surface is substantially convex, refrigeration means to cool said deformable portion and form ice thereon along the convex side of said deformable portion when it is in said dished position, means for supplying liquid to be frozen to the concave side of said deformable portion, and means associated with said dished deformable portion for applying a force substantially normal to the surface thereof causing said dished deformable portion to move outwardly from its dished position to said deflected position to remove the ice therefrom.
EDWARD C. WALSH.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 1,451,902 Field Apr. 17, 1923 1,451,903 Field Apr. 17. 1923 1,482,227 Field Jan. 29, 1924 1,878,759 Copeman Sept. 20, 1932 2,107,400 Stabbal Feb. i8, 1938 2,166,161 Kleist July 18, 1939