|Publication number||US2671742 A|
|Publication date||Mar 9, 1954|
|Filing date||Jul 26, 1949|
|Priority date||Jul 26, 1949|
|Publication number||US 2671742 A, US 2671742A, US-A-2671742, US2671742 A, US2671742A|
|Inventors||Cozzoli Frank J|
|Original Assignee||Cozzoli Frank J|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (12), Referenced by (19), Classifications (15)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
March 9, F J. COZZOLI METHOD OF HANDLING FOR PROCESSING AMPOULES IN BULK LOTS Filed July 26, 1949 FIG.5.
IN VEN TOR.
Z7 Q ATTORNEY FIG. 4.
i & I, H 1 V Patented Mar. 9, 1954 UNITED STATES PATENT orrlce METHOD OF HANDLING FOR PROCESSING AMPOULES IN BULK LOTS Frank J. Co zzoli, Plainfleld, N. J.
Application July 20, 1949, Serial No. 108,903
1 Claim. 1
This invention relates to improvements in the manner of handling small containers, such as glass ampuls, and is concerned more especially with an improved method of removing the ampuls from their original cartons and the positioning thereof, in carton size lots, in operative relation with ampul washing or processing instrumentalities whereby to avoid individual handling and expeditiously to effect the processing operation.
Ampuls used in the pharmaceutical trade are,
customarily manufactured with relatively long and slender necks and must be thoroughly washed and sterilized before the filling thereof with medicinal preparations. numerous problems have arisen in the handling and washing which are not found in or exist in the handling or washing of large mouth containers such as soda bottles or milk bottles. To wash ampuls a slender tube must be inserted into the body portion through the restricted throat or neck and after insertion, a processing fluid is injected. In addition, ampuls are frequently packed by the manufacturer in cartons or boxes containing a gross of one size. Usually the ampuls are packed in rows of sixteen each and nine rows across with spacers between the rows. Heretofore it has been customary to empty the shipping box onto a table or tray, remove the spacers, and then sort and arrange them individually, by hand, in operative position for processing.
The present invention now proposes a method.
of handling ampuls that essentially is one of starting with an original box or carton of ampuls, emptying same and simultaneously positioning the slender necks thereof in uniformly spaced relation and each in substantial concentricity with the washing needles.
During the box unloading operation the ampuls are inverted and they are then brought into registry with conical holes formed in a needle guide plate. The perforations in th needle plate are cone shaped only at their upper sides and are cylindrical at their lower sides and serve to guide the slender necks of the inverted ampuls and simultaneously the ends of the washing needles individually into concentric relation. When that has been attained, the inverted ampuls are then caused to telescope the needles so that when telescoped the processing agents may be injected to the interiors thereof. Prior to the turning on of the processing medium, a hold-down plate is positioned a short distance away from the bottoms of the ampuls which plate is adapted to function as a spray head in addition to preventing the In consequence,
ampuls from being blown off the needles by the force of the processing medium entering the ampuls through the needles. If desired, the group of ampuls to be processed may be covered or enclosed in a suitable housing before the processing agent is turned on. The washing operation is subject to individual preference and may, by way of example, include first anair blast to remove dry dust etc., then a cold water wash followed by a hot water wash, steam, detergent, etc., and finally by an air blast to remove the water. Between, or concurrently with, the different'interior washes, a spray or rinsing of the outsides of the lot of ampuls may also be given.
The annexed drawing depicts the several operational steps evolved in processing box lots of ampuls starting with the original shipping box, the different figures being numbered in sequence in correspondence with the sequence of operations. Fig. 1, illustrates a box of ampuls, as received, with cover removed; Fig. 1A is an enlargement of a portion thereof.
Fig. 2 is a view of a perforated box locating I plate (perforations not illustrated). Fig. 3 is a view of the box plate (partly in section to illustrate the cone shaped openings) placed over a box of ampuls. Fig. 4 is a view of the box plate and box of ampuls in inverted position and resting upon spacer blocks so that the ampul neck portions may project from the underside and in which position the box and spacers are removed as indicated in dotted lines.
Fig. 5 is a view of the box-plate, carrying'the inverted ampuls, about to be lowered into the cones of a second plate. The second plate also guides the slender processing needles. Fig. 6 is a view illustrating the ampuls and needles in telescoped relation with the plates superposed upon one another. Fig. 7 is a view of the ampuls in position to be washed and provided with a holddown plate spaced from their bottom ends. Fig. 8 is a partial view of the ampuls, needles, plates, and hold-down spray head in operative position, the ampul at the left, being in the position assumed while washing or rinsing the exteriors, and the ampul at the right being in the position assumed while washing the interiors.
The apparatus illustrated in the drawings is representative of the kind that may be employed in practising this method of bulk handling and processing and which may, of course, assume a variety of forms as will be understood. With reference more particularly to Figs. 1, 2, and 8, the numeral It indicates a plate having a series of box locating devices, such as pins II, projectsition the ampuls, guided by the cone openings in the plate, fall partially out of the box and through the plate and the stem and neck project from the under side.
While the ampuls are so held and confined, the box and box-spacers are removed from the ampuls after which the plate III, with its confined ampuls, is placed above and in registry with another plate IS. The plate [5 functions as a needle guide plate and an ampul guide plate and may be constructed as illustrated in Figs. 5 and 8, for example with upwardly flaring cone recesses l6 that merge into cylindrical needle guiding holes I'I.
Preferably also, a third plate is employed which supports a group of washing needles 2|. For convenience the plate 20 may form a cover plate of a processing manifold 22, to the interior 23 of which all the needles 2| communicate. In
- the present disclosure the washing needles are hollow tubes and may be as small as 15 or 16 gauge. If desired also, the manifold 22 may be mounted for rotation on a valve disc 24 having a number of processing fluid connections 25 (but one shown) A port 25 in the manifold plate may thus be caused to come intermittently in registry with any one of the processing connections 25 so that the fluid thereof may pass into the manifold and through the needles for as long or as short a time as the user considers expedient. In Fig. 6 of the drawings a catch basin 21 is illustrated for receiving the used processing fluid and which has .a drain pipe connection 28, illustrated in Fig. 7.
After the box plate ill and its confined inverted ampuls is positioned over the needle guide plate l5, it is gradually lowered so as to bring the inverted ends of the ampuls within the cones I6. Continued lowering of the box plate brings each ampul regardless of minor variations in diameter into concentric relation with its respective needle. Thereafter the box plate, together with the needle guide plate, is lowered whereby to cause the individual ampuls to telescope their respective needles. Needle plate raising and lowering means is indicated as links and levers 29 in Figs. 5 and 6, but may obviously assume varied forms or be accomplished by hand. When the ampuls and needles are in processing relation, a holddown plate 30 may be positioned a short distance from the bottoms of the ampuls as indicated in Fig. '7. If desired, the hold-down plate may be part of a removable cover member 3|. The holddown plate may also be provided with a conduit 32 and connection 32a for an outside-wash washing agent, and drilled at its underside, as at 33, to provide spray for the outside surfaces of the ampuls.
When a box of ampuls has been emptied and loaded upon the needles, and the hold-down and cover in place, the processing agents may be turned on, by either hand valve manipulation, or as in the case of a movable carrier, by the carrier serving as a valve in opening and shutting of the processing fluidline or lines. Power 4 or hand movement of the carrier may be provided at the election of the user.
'As above indicated, the processing method preferably comprehends the operation of washing of the interiors and exteriors of a box lot of ampuls and in practising the method, exceptional results can be achieved by directing the cleansing agents alternately to the insides of the ampuls and to the outer sides. By alternately opening the respective valves, the group of ampuls are caused to be lifted and lowered in succession durin which the needles serve as guides, and a good cleansing and flushing of the inner and outer sides of each ampul in the entire lot is obtained. At the conclusion of the washing process, the valves are closed and the cover 3| removed and with it the combined hold-down plate and spray head 30. The plate I0 is thenelevated relative to the needle until the ampuls are again pocketed within the cones thereof, and further movement axially of the needles withdraws the needles from the necks of the ampuls. The plate and the lot of washed ampuls may then be set aside on suitable spacers, as in Fig. 4, to await subsequent treatment. v
The needle centering plate I5 is also elevated to the position indicated in Fig. 5 wherein the tips of the needles are still'guided in th holes 11, and the cones 18 empty and in readiness for the centering operation on the next box or lot of ampuls.
The box plate I, needle guide plate I5, and needle carrying plate 20 are constructed, insofar as needle spacing and number of aligned apertures is concerned, to suit the spacing of the various sizes of ampuls in box lots, as will be understood.
Without further analysis, the foregoing will so fully reveal the gist of this invention that others can, by applying current knowledge, readily adapt it for various utilizations by retaining one or more of the features that, from the standpoint of the prior art, fairly constitute essential characteristics of either the generic or specific aspects of this invention and, therefore, such adaptations should be, and are intended to be, comprehended within the meaning and range of equivalency of the following claim:
Having thus revealed this invention, I claim as new and desire to secure the following combinations and elements, or equivalents thereof, by Letters Patent of the United States:
The method of handling ampuls for processing in box lots comprising placing a perforated holder upon an opened box of ampuls with the perforations in the holder in substantial registry with the ends of the ampuls, the said holder having perforations smaller than the body size of the ampuls and larger than the stem ends of the ampuls, then inverting the box of ampuls and the holder together simultaneously so that the ampuls in falling from the box pass into the apertures in the holder and are therein and thereby confined in loosely spaced relation with the slender stem ends of the ampuls projecting ranged open ends of the respective ampuls and into the body portions thereof, and directing a processing agent to the exteriors of the ampuls and in alternation to the interiors thereof through the said needles after the ampuls have been removed from the box and arranged upon the processing needles.
FRANK J. COZZOLI.
References Gited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Number Name Date Weymar Feb. 5, 1907 Wakefield Feb. 20, 1912 Burnham Dec. 20, 1921 Lattin May 6, 1941 Brewer Sept. 23, 1941 Cozzoli Dec. 2, 1947 Hoskin June 29, 1948 Christina Mar. 27, 1951 Price Nov. 3, 1953 FOREIGN PATENTS Country Date Great Britain May 13, 1946
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|U.S. Classification||134/22.11, 134/22.15, 134/34, 134/171, 414/405, 134/25.4, 134/170, 414/810|
|International Classification||B08B9/20, B08B9/34, B08B9/28|
|Cooperative Classification||B08B9/34, B08B9/28|
|European Classification||B08B9/28, B08B9/34|