US 2618409 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Nov. 18, 1952 LIQUID CONTAINER COMPRISING A FLEXIBLE ENVELOPE Filed Sept. 7, 1949 2 SHEETS-SHEET l PEER GZLIVI .SZIDNFYHSEAEERGER INVEN TORS 1952 s. EISENBERGER "ET AL 0 LIQUID CONTAINER COMPRISING A FLEXIBLE ENVELOPE Filed Sept. 7, 1949 2 SHEETS-SHEET 2 PETER CIJ V5 SIDNEYEISENBERGER INVENTORS M M AGENT.
Patented Nov. 18, 1952 UNITED STATES TENT OFFICE LIQUID CONTAINER COMPRISING A FLEXIBLE ENVELOPE Sidney Eisenberger, Long Island City, and Peter Clive, New York, N. Y.
The present invention relates generally to liquid containers, and more particularly to flexible containers or bags fabricated of plastic material and suitable for the shipping, storing and dispensing of liquid chemicals and food products, as for example, oils, flavoring syrups, inks, greases and acids.
Corrosive liquids, such as acids of caustics, are normally carried in carboys constituted by large glass bottles enclosed in a box, or in drums formed of acid-resistant metal. Conventional liquid containers formed of glass or metal are disadvantageous in many respects both from the standpoint of cost and operating efliciency. To begin with, they are relatively heavy and expensive. Moreover, rigid metal or glass containers, when empty, occupy as much space as when filled, so that in transport the same space must be allotted in returning the emptied containers as is required for the delivery of the filled containers. In the case of glass containers, by reason of their fragility, exceptional care must be exercised in handling to avoid breakage. Difficulties are also experienced with rigid containers in dispensing the liquid contained therein.
With a view to overcoming the above mentioned drawbacks in existing liquid containers, it is the primary object of the present invention to provide a flexible plastic liquid container of sturdy but inexpensive construction which may be easily handled, whereby shipping, handling, and storage costs are reduced.
More particularly, it is an object of this invention to provide a container comprising a flexible plastic envelope which may be easily and rapidly filled or emptied. It is also an object of this invention to provide a flexible container which is resistant to impact, thereby minimizing the hazards and costs of breakage encountered with glass containers.
Yet another object of this invention is to provide a flexible plastic container which permits sterilization of its contents and protects its contents from contamination. It is a further object of this invention to provide a flexible container which when not in use may be collapsed into a flat form, whereby the space then occupied by the container is considerably less than the space taken by the filled container.
Broadly stated, a container in accordance with the invention is constituted by an enclosed flexible plastic bag or envelope incorporating a flexible siphon tube extending therein and sealed thereto. The liquid is discharged from the envelope by applying pressure thereto to actuate the siphon. In a preferred embodiment of the invention, a vent tube is also provided which is sealed to the envelope for the entrance and exit of air, and the envelope is housed within a rigid protective box including a floating cover to facilitate compression of the envelope.
For a better understanding of the invention as well as other objects and further features thereof, reference is made to the following detailed description to be read in conjunction with the accompanying drawing wherein like elements in the figures are identified by like reference numerals.
In the drawing:
Fig. 1 is a perspective view of a preferred embodiment of a liquid container in accordance with the principles of the invention,
Fig. 2 is a sectional view of the container shown in Fig. 1,
Fig. 3 is a perspective view of another preferred embodiment of the invention,
Fig. 4 is a perspective view of still another embodiment of the invention,
Fig. 5 illustrates in perspective a collapsible liquid envelope in accordance with the invention,
Fig. 6 shows in plan view the envelope of Fig. 5 as it appears when collapsed, and
Fig. 7 illustrates the pattern of the plastic material forming the envelope of Fig. 5.
Referring now to the drawing and in particular to Figures 1 and 2, there is shown a liquid container comprising an enclosed flexible bag or envelope, I0, housed within a rigid protective case ll. Envelope In is of rectangular cross-section and preferably is formed of a fiexible plastic material such as one drawn from the class of vinyl resin plastics. For the purpose of filling envelope Ill with liquid or drawing liquid therefrom, a siphon tube I2 is provided which extends downwardly into the envelope through an opening in the upper wall thereof, the siphon being hermetically sealed to the invelope. The portion of siphon tube [2 within the envelope extends to the bottom wall thereof, and the length of tube i2 without the envelope is such that the end of the tube may be positioned below the envelope so that it may be completely emptied. To allow for passage of air into and out of envelope I0, a vent tube I3 is provided which projects from the top wall of the envelope and communicates with the interior thereof, the vent tube also being hermetically sealed to the envelope.
Case I I may be made of any inexpensive material, such as cardboard, fiberboard or plywood, a corrugated carton being shown having top cover flaps lie. The carton is constructed so that it may be folded and collapsed when not in use, thereby effecting a further economy in space when the container is stored. To facilitate reuse of the carton, the top and bottom flaps thereof may be provided with cooperating locking clasps whereby the carton may be readily erected or collapsed.
Also supplied is a siphon actuator in the form of a rectangular floating cover [4 of rigid material and so dimensioned that it is movable longitudinally Within case H, the floating cover bearing against the top wall of envelope 10. For purposes of illustration, in Fig. 1 the cover I4 is shown suspended above the case. The heightof case H exceeds that of envelope l0, thereby defining a space between floating cover I4 and-the flaps of the case. This space furnishes room for expansion should the contents of the container increase in volume due to such factors as a rise in temperature. Siphon tube l2 and vent tube l3.are led through suitable apertures in floating cover-1M and when case H is closed they are coiled up on the space between the floating cover and'the flaps I la.
Vent tube l3 and siphon tube IZ'may be'opened andclosed by any suitable clamping or faucet device, of which screw clamps or spring actuated pinchiclamps are the simplest examples and generally quite satisfactory. example, a removable screw clamp l5v is fitted about siphon tube I2. Cast or moulded plastic faucets and bungs may also be used as they may be sealed to the plastic tubing by simple tech niques. In many instances, therefore, it is possible' to fabricate the flexible envelope, thesiphon vent tubes and the faucets therefor. from the same type of plastic which is selected for its resistance to the liquid to be packaged.
When filling the container, siphon tube I2 is coupled to the line delivering the liquid to be packaged, both vent tube l3 and siphon tubel2 are opened and the liquid is then fed into the envelope. To withdraw liquid from-the container, the siphon tube is first opened and pressure is applied to floating cover It until the siphon begins functioning; whereupon vent tube I3 is opened andthe sip-hon tube continues to discharge liquid until the container is empty or until the siphon fiow is arrested. The siphon flow maybe stopped at. any point by closing the clamp therefor, or by raising the end. of the siphon tube above the level of the liquid in the container, at which point it wilL-not further. discharge liquid until again actuated by pressureapplied to floating cover M.
It preferred, the vent tube may be omitted from the container, in whichcase envelope If mustbe completely defiatedbefore filling to. exhaust the air therein. In discharging liquid in the absence of a vent tube, pressure must be maintained on cover [4 to empty the'container, or otherwise the floating cover must be suitably weighted to insure. the collapse of the flexible container as it empties. It is. however expedient to incorporate the. vent tube in the container as it reduces the amount of manipulation entailed during filling and emptying.
If it is desired to pasteurize or sterilize the liquid contents of the envelope by heat, a suitableporous plug, such as cotton is placed in the mouth of the vent tube, or the-vent tube may be eliminated entirely; After'opening the vent and siphon tubes, the envelope and its contents may be-subjected tothe desired heat treatment. The length. of the flexible. siphon" tube ensures pro- In' Fig. 1, by way of be folded up and storedin a small space for return and repeated reuse.
While there has been illustrated a flexible plastic; envelope having a uniform rectangular cross section, it is to be understood that the envelope and the rigid casing therefor may be designed to assume any desired configuration. The envelopemay be prismatic, cylindrical or in truncated conical form, if desired, with the rigid case being given a corresponding form. The plastic envelope may be manufactured by any known fabrication technique.
A: preferred embodiment of an envelope It havinga-parallelepiped shape is shown inFig. 3,.the side walls of the envelope being defined by sealing; the extremities of a single, elongated, rectangular plastic" sheet along lines AE to form a sleeve- IT. The open ends of sleeve l7 are-enclosed by rectangular pieces l8 and IQ of similar material which serve respectively as the top and bottom walls of the envelope. Piece I8 is sealed to one end of sleeve I! along lines BC, CD and. DA, while piece IBissealed to the other end of, thezsleeve along line'EEFG, GH and HE. A siphon tube Zil and a vent tube 21 are sealed to the top piece I8before it is afiixed to-sleeve I 7.
Alternatively, sleeves may be cut from extruded plastic tubing in which case. the seal along line AB is. eliminated. If. it is desired to minimize the. tendency of. the unsealed vertical edges of the sleeve. to round. off'when the container. is filled, or if the pattern is too large for the available sheeting, individual pieces may be used for each vertical. wall of the envelope. In thiscase, thesleeve in Fig.- 3. would then be made by. sealing alongthe lines AE, BF, CG, and DH. Thecorners of the envelope may be reinforced by suitable corner patches of plastic material.
As shown in Fig. 4, thesame rectangular sheet which-in Fig.3 forms. the rectangular sleeve may. also be. employed to forma cylindrical sleeve by sealing. together, the. extremities of the sheet alonglines AE. The open ends-of the cylindrical sleeve 22' thus formed. are. enclosed by, circular. pieces23 and 24. of flexible plastic material which serve respectively as the top andbottom walls of. the cylindrical. envelope- Flexible, siphon. and vent tubes 25 and 26 arepre-attachedand sealed to the. top. Wall-.23 beforeit is sealed to. sleeve 22.. The. cylindricalenvelope may readily be modified to assume a barrel-like shape by rounding off the extremities of the rectangular sheet formingv the sleeve and sealing along the resulting are. This design is advantageous in envelopes. having a large liquid-capacity.
Referring now to Figs. 5, 6 and 7- there is shown. an embodiment of a collapsible flexible envelope which. when full assumes a parallelepiped shape and. hence may, be fitted neatly into. a rigid carton of the typeshown in Fig. 1. Whenthe envelope is empty and folded, it assumes a flat hexagonal shape, as shown in-Fig. 6,.so that large quantities of such liquid envelopes may be tightly stacked in azrelativelysmall spacewhen not in use.
The envelope is fabricated from a single, generally rectangular sheet ofplasticmaterial which, assbown by the patternin; Fig. 7, is corresponds The extremities of the sheet are sealed together to provide a sleeve having a rectangular cross section, and the upper and lower triangular sections of panels to 33 are folded inwardly into abutting relationship to enclose the ends of the sleeve, the contiguous edges of the triangular section being sealed together to complete the enclosure.
To afford an opening for the flexible siphon tube 34, the upper triangular sections are arcuately notched, whereby a circular aperture is created in the top wall of the envelope. Siphon tube 34 passes through and is sealed to an annular disc 35 of flexible material which encloses the aperture in the top wall of the envelope, the periphery of the disc being sealed to the wall.
To reinforce the corners of the envelope, plastic patches 36 are attached thereto, and an additional circular patch 31 is attached centrally to the bottom wall of the envelope to strengthen this wall. This envelope may be filled with liquid or discharged in the same manner described in connection with Fig. 1 in the absence of a vent tube.
Obviously, if desired, the aperture in the top wall of the envelope may be enlarged to accommodate a vent tube as well as a siphon tube.
In the manufacture of the flexible envelope of the type disclosed hereinabove, sealing ma be effected by any conventional process known in the art. These include the use of hot sealing bars, impulse heating, high-frequency dielectric heating, solvents and pressure, and adhesive. Pinch seals and lap seals may both be used. The type of seal and the method of sealing selected depends on a number of factors of which the type of plastic sheeting to be used is often the most important.
Whenever possible, the use of plastic sheeting based on polyvinyl chloride or polyvinyl acetate, or copolymers thereof is preferred. These include compositions plasticized with esters such as those manufactured by the Bakelite corporation and sold under the trade-mark Vinylite, and compositions plasticized with synthetic rubber such as those sold by the B. F. Goodrich Chemical Co. under the trade-mark Geon Polyblends. These materials are relatively low in cost, are easily fabricated, have excellent physical properties (i. e., flexibility, tensile strength, impact resistance, etc.) produce strong and reliable seals, are resistant to a wide variety of chemicals, and may be used in contact with diverse types of food products.
Polyethylene sheeting is comparable in cost of the polyvinyl plastics and is more resistant to chemical action. Its physical roperties are inferior but adequate. Fluorinated plastics and silicone plastics exhibit even greater chemical resistance but are limited in their usefulness by their relatively high cost.
Polyamides, such as those sold by E. I. du Pont de Nemours Inc. under the name of nylon have superior tensile strength and are easily fabricated. Their high softening points recommend their use in cases where it is desired to effect heat sterilization. Rubber hydrochloride, chlorinted rubbers and other types of sheeting may also be used.
It is also important to note that the interior of the flexible plastic envelope may be coated or lined with a substance which will resist a particular liquid. The material may also be laminated, or a double bag may be used, the composi- 6 tion of the inner bag being resistant to the liquid contained therein. For example, polyvinyl alcohol sheeting has satisfactory properties as a packaging medium for oils and greases but is subject to the hazard of being water soluble. However, this drawback can be obviated by placing the polyvinyl alcohol ba within another flexible bag which is unaffected by water.
While there have been shown what at present are considered preferred embodiments of the invention, it will be evident that many changes and modifications may be made therein Without departing from the essential nature of the invention. It is intended therefore in the annexed claims to cover all such changes and modifications as fall within the true spirit of the invention.
What is claimed is:
1. A package comprising a liquid container including an enclosed envelope formed of flexible plastic material, said envelope containing a liquid, a siphon tube formed of flexible plastic material, said tube extending into said envelope and being sealed hermetically thereto, the material of said envelope and said tube being resistant to the liquid to be contained and a rigid casing housing said envelope and including a floating cover movable longitudinally therein for enabling the application of pressure to said envelope whereby a monentary pressure exerted on said cover forces liquid into said siphon and causes said siphon automatically to discharge said liquid.
2. A package comprising a liquid container including an enclosed envelope formed of flexible plastic material and having a rectangular cross section, said envelope containing a liquid, a siphon tube formed of flexible plastic material, said tube extending into said envelope through the top wall thereof and being sealed hermetically thereto, the material of said envelope and said tube being resistant to the liquid to be contained, and a rigid box of rectangular shape housing said envelope and including a floating cover bearing against the top wall of said envelope and movable longitudinally within said box, said cover having an opening therein through which the portion of said tube without said envelope is extended, whereby a momentary pressure exerted on said floating cover forces liquid into said siphon and causes said siphon automatically t discharge said liquid.
3. A package as set forth in claim 2 wherein the height of said box exceeds the height of said envelope to allow for volume expansion.
4. A package comprising a liquid container including an enclosed envelope formed of flexible plastic material and having a rectangular cross section and top and bottom Walls, a liquid contained in said envelope, a siphon tube formed of the same material extending into said envelope through the top wall thereof and being sealed thereto, the portion of said siphon tube within the envelope extending to the bottom wall, a vent tube formed of the same material projecting from the top wall of said envelope and communicating with the interior of said en velope, said material being resistant to the liquid to be contained, and a rigid box of rectangular shape housing said envelope and including a floating cover bearing against the top wall of said envelop and movable longitudinally within said box, said cover having openings therein through which said tubes are led, the
7 height. of said. boxexceeding the height: of said envelope to allow for volume expansion Whereby a pressure exertedfon said cover forces liqui'd into said siphon tub and causes said siphon to discharge said liquid.
5. A package as set forth in claim 4 further including clamping devices coupled to the respective tubes.
6. A package, as set forth in claim 4, wherein the end of the portion of said siphon tubewhich extends to the. bottom wall of said envelope is disposed to one side of. said envelope.
SIDNEY EISENBERGER. PETER CLIVE.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the fileof this patent:
Number Number 8 STATES PATENTS Name Date I Haines Dec. 4-, 1888 Fulton -Mar. 8, 1904 Fulton June 14, 1904 Carter Sept. 1'7, 1912 Edgeworth Dec. 8, 1925 Powell et a1 Mar. 14, 1933 Mick Apr. 20, 1-943 Duddy July 16, 1946 FOREIGN PATENTS Country Date Germany Oct. '11, I932