|Publication number||US2822672 A|
|Publication date||Feb 11, 1958|
|Filing date||Mar 12, 1956|
|Priority date||Mar 12, 1956|
|Publication number||US 2822672 A, US 2822672A, US-A-2822672, US2822672 A, US2822672A|
|Inventors||Dickson Edgar V, Weber Theodore E|
|Original Assignee||Hussmann Refrigerator Co|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (3), Referenced by (31), Classifications (10)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
Feb. 1l, 1958 E. v. DlcKsoN ETAL. 2,822,672
DISPLAY CASE WITH ADJUSTABLE REFRIGERATED SHELVES Filed March 12, 1956 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 FIGI Feb. 1l, 1958 E. v. DlcKsoN x-:TAL
DISPLAY CASE WITH ADJUSTABLE REFRIGERATED SHELVES Filed March 12, 1956 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 i.. .1 Afl FIGB.
United StatesPatent O DISPLAY CASE WITH ADJUSTABLE REFRIGERATED SHELVES Edgar V. Dickson, Ladue, and Theodore E. Weber, Alfton, Mo., assgnors to Hussmann Refrigerator Co., St. Louis, Mo., a corporation of Delaware Application March 12, 1956, Serial No. 571,085
7 Claims. (Cl. 629-895) The invention relates generally to the refrigeration art, and more particularly to a display case having adjustable refrigerated shelves.
In the past, many refrigerated display cases having forced air circulation in the display area thereof have been devised, but none of them has been entirely satisfactory. A disadvantage of the prior art cases has been the use of abnormally high barriers above the front wall air return for retaining the refrigerated air within the cases, the barriers decreasing the accessibility of the items within the cases and often obstructing the view thereof. Another disadvantage of the prior art cases is the absence of a convenient mutli-deck shelving arrangement for refrigerated items, although multi-deck shelving has long been recognized as the most attractive and efiicient manner of displaying items of merchandise. The difficulties generally encountered in refrigerated cases having multi-deck shelving are uneven stratified temperatures, which fail to properly cool the items or to exclude room temperature air from the case, and air retaining barriers at the front of each shelf making them unaccessible or impractical for self-service retail stores. Furthermore, the shelving that has been provided has not been vertically adjustable so that items of varying sizes could be easily accommodated within the display cases.
The principal object of the present invention is to provide a refrigerated display case. having predetermined refrigerated air currents in the display area, the air currents moving substantially directlyto the front wall air return ilue wherebyV the necessity for a barriensuch as a glass plate, extending above the front wall is obviated.
Another principal object is to provide a refrigerated display case having verticallyvspaced shelves,`which are substantially uniformly cooled.
Another object is to provide a display case having adjustable refrigerated shelvessubsta'ntially evenly cooled by predetermined refrigerated air currents, the shelvesv having vanes for controlling the air currents to assure substantially complete return and recircul-ation of the refrigerated air without appreciable intake of unrefrigerated air and without requiring the use of yair retaining barriers extending above the front wall.
Still another object is to provide directly accessible refrigerated shelving having greater display area for articles than has been provided heretofore, the shelving being directly and indirectly cooled by forcedair circulation including a curtain of air passing in front `of the shelving.
These and other objects and advantages will become apparent hereinafter.
Briey, the invention comprises a refrigerated display case having air circulation ues and air outlet and return openings adapted to provide predetermined air currents in the display area of the case, and ,vertically adjustable shelves having vanes adapted to direct the Aair currents toward the air return opening whereby loss of4 refrigerated air and intake of unrefrigerated air are substantially eliminated;
2,822,672 iat-tentatiprei. 1,1, 195s F ICC The invention also consists in the parts and in thearrangements and combinations of parts hereinafter described and claimed. In the accompanying drawingsv which form a part of this specification and wherein like numerals refer to like parts whereverthey occur:
Fig. 1 is a perspective view, partly broken away, of a refrigerated display case embodying the present invention,
Fig. 2 is a vertical transverse sectional view of the case shown in Fig. 1, and Y Fig. 3 is an exploded fragmentary perspective view of adjustable shelving for the case.
Referring now to the drawings, it will be seen that a refrigerated display case embodying the present invention includes an insulated longitudinal outer cabinet 10Y having a base 11, a low front wall 12, a high rear wall- 13, a top wall 14 extending forwardly from the rear wall 13, and end walls 15. The display case also includes:
an inner cabinet 16 defining a display area in which ar- The inner cabinetzfA 16 extends longitudinally between the end walls 15 and. includes a bottom panel 1'7 spaced above the base 11 to.. provide a refrigeration chamber 18 therebetween, a front ticles are positioned for refrigeration.
panel 19 spaced fromthe front wall 12 to provide a.Y
front flue or cold air return duct 20 in communication"l with the refrigeration Ychamber 18, and a rear panel 21 spaced from the rear wall 13 to provide a rear ue or cold air delivery duct 22 also in communication with the refrigeration chamber 18.
The front wall 12 extends a short distance above the bottom panel 17 to provide a well 23 in the lower portion of the display area, an adjustable shelf or rack 24 being provided in the well 23 on which articles may be positioned. The front panel 19 defines the front of the well 23 and is connected to the front wall 12 by spacers 25 or the like. The upper portion of the front panel 19 curves forwardly and has its upper edge 26 secured immediately adjacent to the top of the front wall 12 in any suitable manner. A plurality of perforations or openings 27 are formed in the front panel 19 adjacent to the upper edges 26 so that the front flue 20.is in communication with the display area defined by the inner' cabinet 16. The bottom panel 17 is supported on anges 28 and 29 or thelike secured to the lower edges of the front and rear panels 19 and 21, respectively.
The rear panel 21 is secured to the rear wall 13 'by' t spaced vertically extending members 30, which may have'` curved front edges 31 and flanges 32 secured adjacent to. the front edges 31. substantially U-shaped, as shown best in Fig. 3. De pending on the length of the display case, a plurality of these vertical members 30 maybe provided whereby the:
rear ilue 22 is divided into two or more longitudinal sec- The front'edges 31` of Vth'efvertical members 30v are each provided with a plurality of evenly spaced elongated slots 33 forming a locking means to which shelf' supporting bracketl members- 34 are secured to position shelf means in the display area of' the inner cabinet 16 at a point intermediate the top wall 14 and the front wall 212.' For purposes of disclosure, the shelf means includes upper and lower shelves 35 and 36 which together with the shelf Vsupporting bracket members 34, are vertically adjustable on the vertical bracket supportingfmembers 30. The adjustability i will'bediscussed more fully hereinafter.
The vertical members 30 may be:v
of the shelf means j The llower portion of the rear panel 21 may also be supported in'V spaced relation with the rear wall 13 by bathe elements 39, which divide the lower portion of the rear flue 22 into a plurality of vertical passages between the end walls or longitudinally of the display case. The upper end of the rear panel 21 is spaced below the top Wall 14 and a forwardly extending longitudinal channel 40 defined bylvertical and horizontal longitudinal panels 41 and 42 is formed as a portion of the rear llue 22. The vertical panel 41 is provided with a vplurality of openings or perforations 43 forming primary or upper passage means so that the rear ue 22 isin communication with the display area of the inner cabinet 16. As seen best in Fig. 2, the vertical panel 4I is preferably positioned forwardly of the rear panel 21 so that a substantially rectilinear path may be provided between the primary openings 43 in the vertical panel 41 and the openings 27 in the front panel 19, as will become apparent hereinafter.
plurality of secondary or lower passage means 44, 45, 46 and 47 in predetermined vertically spaced relation, each series of the secondary openings having a predetermined area providing an outlet for refrigerated air from the rear liue 22 onto the shelves 35, 36 and 24 in the 7 ue 22, the refrigeration compartment 18 being divided longitudinally between the evaporator 50 and the fan 51 by a partition 52 having an opening 53 in which the blade 54 of the fan 51 is mounted for horizontal rotation. Accordingly, the rear flue 22 is only in communication with the evaporator 5t) through thefan blade 'Y opening v53 in the partition 52'. Of course,V a plurality of longitudinally spaced fans 51 may be provided, if desired.
In operation, the fan 51 develops a negative pressure in the front flue and the refrigeration compartment 18 vadjacent thereto, whereby air is drawn through the openings 27-in' the front panel 19 and past the evaporator`5@ to the fan 51. `The refrigerated air is then forced downwardly and dispersed longitudinally to the rear ilue 22. by the horizontally rotating fan blade 54. As
the refrigerated air enters the rear flue 22, it passes through the vertical passages defined by the baffles 39, which straighten vthe air movement into a substantially vertical path. Thus, refrigerated air is moved'upwardly in the 'rearue 22 to the outlet openings in the rear panel 21 under substantially even pressure. i
Therear flue 22 is alsoiprovidedwith slotted baffle elements 57 and 58, which slope'angularly upwardly between therear wall 13 and the rear panel 21 and extend longitudinally between each of. the'vertical members 30. The lower bale element 58V is cooperably associated with the lower secondary openings 46 and 47 to provide a relatively higher air pressure in the rear flue l22 at the openings 46 and 47 so that aportionof the refrigerated air is expelled or deflected therethrough into the display area for cooling articles positionedon the shelf'24 in the well 23. As shown in Fig. l, the combined area of the'openings 46 and 47 is larger than the other secondaryopenings 44`andr45 Vso that a proportionately larger volume ofiefrigerated air willpassvtherethrough. Due to volume and pressure, the air will pass through the openings substantially normal vto the rear panel 21. The bafe element 57 issimilarly larrangedV with the intermediate secondary openings 45 .so that a vrelativelylarger'portion of refrigerated air willpasfs the openings'45fto the The rear panel 21 is also provided with openings or perforations forming a shelf 36 than will pass through the openings 44 to the shelf 35."
Still another baille 59 is provided for the uppermost series of secondary openings 44, the baffle 59 being in the form of an angle piece mounted on the rear wall 13 and projecting forwardly therefrom in position to deflect a portion of air through the upper secondary openings 44 onto the upper shelf 35 without electing a pressure drop across the baflle59. The remainder of the refrigerate-d air is deflected by the bafe 59 into the chamber at a low velocity and isV expelled through the primary openings '43 in the vertical panel 41 to the display area. Each of the baiiies 58, 57 and 59 are effective to deflect a portion of refrigerated air from the rear ue 22 through the series'of-openings in the rear panel 21 onto the shelves 24, 36 and 35, respectively. Each portion of air is move-d onto the shelves in a path substantially normal to the rear panel 21, the portion of air for each shelf being determined by the area of the openings in the rear panel 21 andthe effective pressure in the rear iiue 22 at the openings. The angular position of the baffles 58, 57 and 59 also assists in deliecting the air movement from a vertical path in the rear flue 22 to a substantially horizontal path over the shelves.
Itis now apparent that each of the shelves 35, 36 and 24 isy cooled directly by refrigerated air passing through the secondary openings 44, 45, 46 and 47 from the rear ue 22. The air is circulated forwardly across the shelves and to the front ue return openings 27 whereby the refrigerated air is returned to the refrigerated` chamber 18 for re-cooling and recirculation. The display area is also Vcooled by a curtain of air moving from the openings 43 in the, rear panel 21 to the return openings 27 in the front panel 19, aswill be presently described.
An important feature of the present invention is the provision of means for directionalizing the flow of air from the display area to the front flue return openings In'Figs. 2 and 3 it will be seen that the front of each of the shelves 35 and 36 is formed into an angularly extending lip or wall 60 to which an angularly positioned vane 61 is secured by longitudinally spaced pins 62 or the like, the Wall 60 and vane 61 being in spaced relation to provide a ue or passage 63 therebetween. If desired, the front or forward face of each of the vanes 61 may also be vusedy as price tag mouldings for identifying the cost of articles being displayed.
AThe vanes 61 are provided to deflect and guide the flow of're'frigera'ted air in the display area into a downwardly and'ferwardlyl moving current toward the front due returnopenings/27. vAn abutment 64 is provided at the front of earch shelf 35 and 36 intermediate the wall 60 and the shelf so that articlesA placed on the shelf will be spaced from theue63. The upper edge of each of the lvanesfl projects y,slightly above the upper edge of this abutment 64Vv so that air moving forwardly across the shelf fronithe rear iiue22v or dropping downwardly from the topsof the articles will more easily be directed into the flue 63 betweenl Vthe vanes 61 and the wall 60. Thus, the'air from the shelves 35 and 36 is deflected angularly downwardly from the front of the shelves to the front ue return openings 27 ,thereby forming a wall of refrigerated airacross the front of thek shelves. The refrigerated air expelled through theA primary openings 43 moves downwardly Aand is merged with the refrigerated air from the shelves 35 and 36, rwhereby a curtain of refrigerated air is formed between the top wall 14 and the front wall 12. Thiscurtain (shown by arrows in Fig. 2) defines the fr ont o f the display area and substantially excludes unrefrigerated'l air therefrom, the refrigerated air being drawn into; the openings 27 behind the front wall 12 whereby loss of refrigerated air by spilling over the front wall 12 is. substantially eliminated.
Inasmueli as the shelves 35 and 36 are vertically adjustablethe vanes`61y may be positioned at various elevationsbetwen the top wail 14 and the front wall 12.
The effect of adjusting the shelves 35 and 36 is to shift the direction of the air current so that the return of all the refrigerated air to the front ue 20 is assured. For instance, the angle of the vane 61 on the lower shelf 36 is predetermined so that when the shelf 36 is positioned at its upper limit (as determined by the depth of the shelf 36), the air ow will be directed toward the uppermost perforations 27 in the front panel 19. When the lower shelf 36 is adjusted downwardly, the air movement will be shifted toward the lower perforations 27 or rearwardly from the front wall 12. As clearly shown in Fig. 2, the front surface or price tag support of the vane 61 is positioned in a plane that extends to a point below the front flue perforations 27 so that the ow of return air passing in front of the vane 61 will be returned to the perforations 27, as just pointed out. It is now apparent that the refrigerated air is circulated through the display area over the articles displayed on the shelves, and returned to the refrigeration compartment 18 without spilling over the front wall 12. Therefore, the necessity foremploying glass barriers or the like above the front wall 12 to retain cold air in the case is obviated even though the front flue return openings 27 are on substantially the same horizontal plane as the top of the front wall 12. Thus, without barriers extending above the front wall 12 or the front of the shelves 35 and 36, articles positioned on the shelves are directly accessible.
The top wall 14 forms an unrefrigerated shelf above the case, and may be provided with a longitudinal extension 66 housing a lamp fixture 67 for illuminating the display area of the display case. Of course, the upper shelf 35 would cast a shadow on the rearward portion of the lower shelf 36. Accordingly, the forward portion of the shelf 35 is perforated longitudinally to provide light ports 68, which permit illumination of articles at the rear of the shelf 36 as articles from the front of the shelf 35 are removed. Inasmuch as articles are generally removed from the yfront of each of the shelves in the course of trade, the area of illumination is increased on the shelf 36 as` required. These ports 68 also permit the downward passage of refrigerated air from the shelf 35 as articles areremoved therefrom. Another lamp 69 is mounted below vthe shelf 36 in position to illuminate the shelf 24.
The adjustable features of the shelves 35, 36 and 24 will now be described in detail. The shelf 24 in the well 23 may be formed as an integral unit having suitably spaced supporting rods 70 extending transversely of the case and mounted in -openings 71 in the front and rear panels 19 and 21; or the shelf may be divided into a plurality of racks (Fig. l), each of which is provided with a pair of the rods 70. The openings 7l are arranged in longitudinally and vertically spaced alignment so that the rods 70 may be positioned in diiferent openings 71 so that the shelf 24 is adjustable relative to the bottom panel 17 whereby articles of different sizes may be positioned within the well 23 below the top of the front wall 12.
Referring to Figs. 2 and 3, the upper and lower shelves 35 and 36 may also be divided in sections, the length of which is determined by the distance between the bracket supporting members 30. The shelves 35 and 36 are each mounted on the bracket members 34, which are releasably secured to the bracket supporting members 30. More specifically, a pair of spaced bayonet-type locking tabs 72 are formed on the rear vertical edge of each of the bracket members 34, the tabs 72 being adapted to coact with the evenly spaced slots or openings 33 in the front edges 31 of the bracket supporting members 30. The slots 33 are provided between the bottom panel 17 and the horizontal panel 42 adjacent to the upper wall 14 so that the bracket members 34 may be vertically adjusted and secured to any pair of the slots 33. It is now apparent that the bracket members 34 form cantilevers projecting forwardly from the bracket supporting members 30, each of the bracket members 34 having an upper edge 73 to which the shelves 35 and 36 are secured.
Although the shelves 35 and 36 may be lixedly secured to the bracket members 34, they are preferably removable the rear panel 21 forwardly into the display area of the inner cabinet 16. v
=It is now apparent that a refrigerated display case has been provided including an adjustable cantilever-type multi-deck shelving arrangement having air directionalizing means associated therewith for controlling the movement of refrigerated air currents through the display area for cooling articles positioned on the shelves and excluding room temperature air from the display area. `Substantially all of the air is re-cooled and recirculated through the display area for maximum cooling eiiciency, the air being moved directly to the cold air return duct 20 by the air directionalizing means to obviate the need for cold air retaining baffles extending above the return duct 20. The display case is also provided with air controlling batlles 59, 57 and 58 and apertures 44, 45, 46 and 47 for directing predetermined portions of the refrigerated air from the delivery duct 22 to the shelves 3S, 36 and 24 whereby substantially uniform temperatures are provided on each of them. The front of the display area is defined by the w=all or curtain of refrigerated air moving angularly downwardly and forwardly from the upper openings 43 in the vertical panel 41 to the return duct openings 27, this wall of air moving in front of the shelves 35 and 36 and being directed in a substantially rectilinear path by the air directionalizing means controlling the movement of air from the shelves 35 and 36.
yIt is to be understood that the Iforegoing description and the accompanying drawings have been given only by way of illustration and example, andthat changes and alterations in the present disclosure, which will be readily apparent to all skilled in the art, are contemplated as within the scope of the present invention, which is limited only by the claims which follow.
What we claim is:
, l. A refrigerated display case comprising an outer cabinet including a base, rear wall, end walls, and a relatively low front wall; inner cabinet means defining a display area and including a bottom panel spaced above said base to provide a refrigeration compartment, a rear panel spaced from said rear Wall to provide a rear flue in communication with said refrigeration compartment, and a front panel spaced from said front wall to provide a front ue in communication with said refrigeration compartment, said rear and front panels having perforations adjacent to the upper edges thereof; air cooling means in said refrigeration compartment; air circulating means in said refrigeration compartment; said air circulating means being adapted to provide air movement in said rear and front ilues, said refrigeration compartment and between said rear and front panels through the perforations therein; and means for directionalizing the air movement between the perforations in said rear and front panels to form an air curtain substantially excluding unrefrigerated air from said display area.
2. The display case according to claim l wherein a shelf is mounted on said rear wall at a point intermediate the vertical position of said perforations in said rear and front panels, said air directionalizing means being associated with said shelf.
3. The display case according to claim 2 wherein said shelf is vertically adjustable whereby said air directionalizngmeans is. adjusted to Shftthedrestionot themen: ment of air between said perforations in saidV rear and frontpanels toV assure thereturn of substantially all of the air to said front ue.
4. A refrigerated display case comprising auk outer cabinet including a bottomV wall, rear wall, endrwalls, and a relatively low front wall; inner cabinet means delining a display area andincluding bottom,k front and rear panels spaced from said bottom, front and rear walls, respectively, to provide a refrigerationV compartment and front and rear tlues in communication therewith, said rear and front panels being perforated adjacent to the upper edges thereof to providevoutlet and return openings vso,
that said display area is in vcommunication with said rear and front fines; air cooling means in said compartment adjacent to said front ilu'e; means adjacent to said rear flue for circulating air from said front hue past said air cooling means in'said compartment through said rear line and back to said front ue; bale means lin said rear flue for controlling air flow therein; and means for directionalzing the movement of airbetween said outlet and return openings to form an air curtain substantially excluding unrefrigerated air, from saidldisplay area` 5. A refrigerated display case comprising an outer cabinet includingY a base and front, rear and ends walls; an inner cabinet including a bottom panel spaced above said base to provide a compartment, front and rear panels spaced from said front and rear walls, respectively, to provide front and rear ues in communication with said compartment, saidfront panel having van opening therein substantially level with the top of said front wall, said rear panel havingan opening adjacent to its upper end and another opening spaced below said rst opening; means for circulating air through said compartment and ues and through the openings in said front and rear panels; refrigerating means for cooling the air in said compartment; said air circulating means forming an air current ow between said rst opening in said rear panel and said front panel opening and another air current ow between said other opening in said rearpanel andV said front panel opening; adjustable shelf means removably positioned on said rear panel belowA said otherV opening, said shelf means having a front edge with an angularly positioned vane secured Vinl spacedrelation ltherewith, said;y vane forrningdan lair directionalizing means deecting the: other air current flow into a substantially rectilinearpath;
to; said front panel opening.
6, Inl-combination with a refrigerateddisplay case havinga base andfront, rear and endwallsfdeninga relation with its front,edgelto'directinalize the refrig-l erated air movement between the rearandfront walls of the display case.
V7. Inv combination with a refrigeratedfdisplay casehav- 'A ing av-base and front, rear and end wallsdefiningfa disi play area in which refrigerated air moves downwardly and forwardly between the rear and front walls; shelfl means. comprising spacedbracket members having bay-` onet-type tabs therein, vertical bracket supporting members secured` to `the reary wall; and having a plurality of spaced openings adapted to` receive said bayonet-,type
tabs therein toV removably and adjustably lock said bracket; members to saidbracket supporting members, and ashelfkr supportedon said bracket members and adjustable there..-l
with, said shelfY being positionedin the display varea of:A the display case and having a.vane mountedyon'its fronL edge, said vane having a vprice tag supporting surfacev positioned in. a plane extending towardfa poin'tfzbehind,
the front wall .of the display case.
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|U.S. Classification||62/125, 62/251, 62/329, 62/256, 62/418|
|Cooperative Classification||A47F3/0447, A47F3/0486|
|European Classification||A47F3/04B1A, A47F3/04D1|