US 2893444 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
July .7, 1959 R. S. WADDINGTON ETAL FLUID HANDLING DEVICE 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Feb. 28, 1957 Br WMiimfid Atlorney 5 FiledFeb. 28. 1957 y 7, 9 R. s. WADDINGTON ET AL 2,893,444
FLUID HANDLING DEVICE 2 Sheeizs-Sheet 2 823: w Inventors Bruce Duval y WM,XM6 Attorneys United States Patent O 2,893,444 p FLUn) HANDLING DEVICE 7 Roger Strange Waddington, Epsom, and Bruce Duval, 1 p Ewell, England Application February 28, 1957, Serial N. 643,129
40mins. (01. 141-89 V v The present invention relates to devices for filling containers with liquids. An object of the present invention is to provide a device for filling a container with a liquid, with whichdevice any tendency of the liquid to foam as it is'filled into the container. may be minimised or sub-.
stantially eliminated. .Various types of container-filling devices are known in the flu'idpacking industry and many of these devices are capable of filling containers at very highspeed. Their use at high speed is normally however restricted to use 'with liquids whose foaming properties are negligible. i
. According to the present invention there is provided a device for filling a container with a liquid, which device comprises a liquid delivery tube provided with a liquid exitopening at or near one of its ends and a closure operable to open and close the opening by movement relative' thereto, the arrangement being such that the closure may be moved relative to the opening while the tube is positioned protruding through the mouth of a container with its said one end the opening located within the container.
With the said tube positioned through the mouth of a container of such size that the liquid exit opening is located within the container at a position near the bottom,
thereof and lying under the surface of liquid already pres ent in the bottom of thecontainer, further liquid may be forced rapidly through the tube and out of the liquid-exit opening to emerge as a rapid stream withinthe body of liquidalready present without coming into turbulent contact'with the air being displaced. Any tendency for it to foam is thus minimised or substantially eliminated. This state of affairs is of course obtained at its best, if the tube is completely filled with the liquid at the beginning of the forcing of the further liquid. Even the amount of foam produced by a small quantityof air can be troublesome if the container is required to be filled completely or nearly so.
' The quantity of liquid required to cover the liquid exit before rapid forcing is begun, is preferably placed in position by flowing it slowly through the tube i.e. the container is preferably filled in a two stage cycle comprising a low speed phase followed by a high speed phase. When the requisite amount of fluid has been filled into the container, the device may be withdrawn without air entering the tube by operating thesaid closure to close the opening while the said opening is still below the surface of the liquid, closure of the opening in this manner having the additional advantages of preventing the residual content of the tube draining in the container when the liquid exit opening is raised above the surface of the liquid thus facilitating the supply of a precise quantity of liquid, eliminating the effects of a prolonged dripping of liquid from the inner wall of the tube, and leaving the tube completely full of liquid in preparation for the next filling cycle.
It will be apparent that the length of the tube should be such that it will reach to when the bottom of the containers of common commercial sizes. The actual z liquid-exit. opening is opened when the tube is raised and ICC length of the tube will of course dependon the type or types of containers with which it is intended to he used. If any but the very smallest commercial containers are to be used the tube should be at least 6" in length: preferably the tube is given a length of much more than 6" e.g. a length of from 18" to 30 or even longer e.g. 40" so that it could be employed with a wide variety of commercial containers such for example as the common onegallon, two-gallon and five-gallon necked-cans commonly used for packing petroleum products such as motor spirit and synthetic detergents, or for other liquids such as disinfectants, insecticides and the like many of which, as now sold, have a pronounced tendency to foam. Cans of this type usually have the neck displaced to one side; consequently the tube, when inserted through the neck places the liquid-exit opening near the wall of the can. It is found that the highest rates of filling can be obtained with the present device only when the said liquid-exit opening is formed to give emergent liquid a direction have a major component perpendicular to the axis of the tube. With this arrangement the emergent liquid fans out horizontally near the bottom of the can and sets up a circulation which is substantially non-turbulent at the surface. On the other hand if the opening is formed to direct the liquid at the bottom of the can, it is found that a strong stream rises vertically up the wall of the can adjacent to the tube and tends either to shoot out of the neck or the container 1 or at least to produce turbulance and foaming. In either event the rate of feed has to be limited to a valve, which although high, is nevertheless significantly lower than that permissible when the opening is formed in the preferred manner.
According to a preferred feature of the invention, the closure is provided in the form of a sleeve reciprocable over the outside of the tube. This arrangement is found not only to be particularly convenient mechanically but also, especially if the end of the sleeve remote from the said one end of the tube is enlarged to provide a cup, to prevent liquid which has adhered to the outside of the tube dripping back into the container when the tube is withdrawn, best results being obtained when the sleeve and the liquid-exit opening of the tube are so arranged that the sleeve can open and close the opening without having itself to enter the liquid to any substantial extent and therefore remaining substantially dry on its outer surface. In a convenient arrangement the tube is provided in the form of a pipe which carries at its end a sleeve-closure adapted in one position of the sleeve to provide an abutment for the sleeve and to seal the bore of the sleeve, the fluid-exit opening being constituted by a clearance between the sleeve-closure and the end of the pipe. The sleeve closure and the sleeve may for exam ple be formed with complementary seating surfaces, the
sleeve-closure being mounted upon one end of a stem the other end of which is pivotally secured Within the pipe. It is found that this arrangement, when using complementary frusto-conical seating surfaces, wherein the pivotal connection of the sleeve-closure with the remainder of the tube provides the sleeve-closure with a floating action, which facilitates the seating of the sleeve-closure at the end of the sleeve, is highly satisfactory in use, practical tests having shown that prolonged repeated operation equivalent to that encountered over a long period of commercial packing on a large scale fails to produce any observable degree of failure of the sealing action.
Whatever arrangement of tube and closure are adopted the device is preferably mounted for automatic operation vertical motion, means being provided for moving the closure relative to the fluid-exit opening whereby the closed when it is lowered. The means for moving the closure may take any convenient form; for example a closure operable by rotation may be mounted at the end ofa sleeve whichisautomatically rot-ated'by an appropriatecam-or keyway asthe tube. israised'and lowered. With a reciprocable' sleevehaving; a loose fit upon the tube. and abutment means. serving-'to prevent withdrawal.
of the. lower endofthetu'befromthe sleeve it is convenient to provide a. stationary' abutmentfor limiting; downward travel of the sleeve and thereby causing'thet fluid-exit opening. to be pushed away from the sleeve as the tube is lowered.
Although the rapidity with 'whichcontainers may be filled using, any convenient device as provided by the present invention. is inherently so great as to render the device acceptable even when the fluid supply has to be regulated manually i.e. to. give asmall rate of flow until the fiuid exit opening is covered and then a rapid rate of: flow, it. is convenient toprovide the tube with a; fiuid supply apparatus adapted: to'regulate the rate of fluid In. one convenient arrangement the flow automatically; fluid supply apparatus. incorporates a boost pump of the impeller type. A small rate of flow may be obtained by passing liquid through the pump-in the inoperable state eg from a gravity tank and the required high rate of flow subsequently obtained by bringing the pump into action. This arrangement provides a very rapid change over from the low rate to the high rate.
For purposes of illustration there is given the following description of a filling machine incorporating a preferred form of the device in which description reference is made to the accompanying drawings.
In the drawings- Figure 1 illustrates diagrammatically the delivery tube and sleeve of the present invention disposed in the feed position;
Figure 2 is a similar diagrammatic view illustrating the position of the delivery tube at the point of withdrawal;
Figure 3 is similar to Figure 2 and illustrates the delivery tube withdrawn fromthe container, and
Figure 4 is a perspective view illustrating the complete filling apparatus.
Referring to Figure 1 of the accompanying drawings, the device shown therein consists of a cylindrical sleeve 1 enlarged in diameter at its upper end to provide a cup 2 and formed at its lower end 3 with a female frustoconical seating surface. An apertured bracket 4 which isadjustable in height, fits loosely round the sleeve 1 and supports the sleeve by the underside of the cup 2. Through the sleeve 1 passes a loosely fitting pipe 5 cut diagonally at end 6 just below which is supported from an internal cross member 7, by means of a stem 8 pivotally secured to said cross member, a sleeve closure 9 in the form of a disc formed at its periphery with a male frustoconical seating surface 10 complementary to the female frusto-conical seating surface 3. The top end of the pipe is connected with a fluid-supply apparatus generally indicated by the symbol S in Figures 1 and 2, the nature of which apparatus will be clear from Figure 4. As shown in Figure 4 the pipe 5 is adapted to be supplied via a solenoid-operated valve 11 with liquid arriving from storage e.g. in a gravity tank via a pipe 12, thence through a centrifugal pump 13 provided with a three-phase electric driving motor 14, a pipe 15, a close-down valve 16, a filter 17, a flexible connector 18, a three-way valve 19 and a flexible connector 20. A pipe 21 enables, when valve 19 is appropriately placed, liquid to be circulated through the liquid supply apparatus (other than the valve 11) and back to storage so that the fluid-supply apparatus may be cleared of air without passing liquid through the pipe 5.
The electrical circuit of the motor 14 incorporates a starter relay 22 the control circuit of which incorporates a delay switch 23, a manually operable switch 24, a plunger switch 24a positioned to be actuated by a pro;
jection 24b, and a mercury switch. (not shown) associated with beam 28 of a balance, the platform 29 of which is located at an appropriate distance below the bracket 4 to enable a desired container 30 to be positioned as shown in Figures 1 to 3. The action of placing a container under pipe 1 rotates the crank 25 and thus activates the safety switch.
To provide forraising and lowering thepipe 5 together with valves 11 and 19 the said pipe and valve are carried by a bracket 31 adapted-to be-clamped in appropriate position upon a rack 32 manuallyoperable by a hand wheel and pinion 33 the upper end ofv which rack carries projcction 24b. An adjustable rubber buffer 34 serves to limit the upward travelof bracket31.
A stop 25a carried by a crank 25, which also carries a drip-funnel 26 drained by a waste-pipe 27, serves to prevent operation of the machine before a container is placed inzposition'.
In order to. prepare themachine for filling a series of containers such asthe container 30; (Figures 1 to 3), to level L L the height of the bracket 4 is adjusted so that the lower end of'thesleeve 1 can descend to or just below said level, the height of bracket 31 is adjusted so that thesleeve closure9 will lie near the bottom of the container when the tube. (i.e; pipe.5 together with sleeve closure 9 is fully lowered, buffer 34 is set so the sleeve. and tubeclear the mouth of' the container when raised and weight 28', on beam 28 is set as will be shown hereinafter. The. liquid supply apparatus is then filled with liquid. With the tube raised so that closure 9 is raised clear of the mouth- 35' of the. neck of the can, the can is placed in a position on the platform 29 and the tube:
lowered'by means. of the hand wheel 33. As the tube is lowered the sleeve: falls with it until the cup 2. engages the bracket 4 Further downward movement of the tubebrings-the components into. therelative. positions shown in Figure 1. Projection 24b. operates the plunger switch 24a, the solenoid valve 11 opens and delay switch 23 begins to operate. Initially, liquid flows slowly through the pump-13, the filter 17, the valve 11 and down the pipe 5 to enter the container through the liquid-exit opening bounded by the diagonally cut end of tube 5. and the sleeve closure 9. Liquid continues to flow slowly into the containeruntil the liquid-exit aperture is covered, the. tube by this time having become filled with liquid. The delay switch isso timed that, very shortly after the aperture has been closed, it completes the control circuit of the motor which consequently begins to actuate pump 13 to provide a rapid filling phase. for the container, during which the diagonal form of the end of pipe 5 ensures that the direction of the gush of liquid has a large horizontal: component. When the surfaceof the liquid has risen to just above levelL L the mercury switch opens, stops the motor and closes the solenoid valve 11. The tube is then raised by' means of handwheel 33. The plunger switch 24a opens. Then the components. reach the relative position shown in Figure 2 the. two frusto-conical seatings. engage one another so that the liquid-exit aperture closes. The tube is then of course open to the interior of the: sleeve but'as no air can enter via. the cup none of the liquid in the sleeve. can drain away. During the raising of the tube into the position in which it is shown in Figure 2 the'liquid level in the container falls slightly to level'L L. Further raising the tube carries the sleeve upwards to the position shown in Figure 3, enabling the filled container to be. withdrawn. The liquid which adheres to the underside of the closure 9 and the lower end part of the sleeve dn'ps quickly into the container but is too insignificant in quantity to. matter. The only other exposed part of the apparatus which has contacted the liquid is the outer surface of pipe 5' and liquid 36.
which has adhered to this surface collects in the cup from which it drains into. the next container to be filled.
The slide 28"on the balance beam allows the weight to which themercuryswitch reacts to be adjusted, taking into account the weight of the liquid required in the container, the weight of the container and buoyancy.
The removal of a filled container allows the mercury switch to close in preparation for the next filling cycle.
The delay switch may instead of being arranged to bring into action a pump such as pump 13, be arranged to bring into action a high pressure liquid supply provided separately from the lower pressure supply used in the first-phase of the filling cycle or to operate a throttle-valve arranged to give two separate rates of delivery from a high pressure supply.
It will be appreciated that various departures may be made from the specific embodiments of the invention described herein without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.
1. A device for filling a container with a liquid comprising a liquid delivery tube formed with a liquid-exit opening at its lowermost end, a sleeve mounted to surround said delivery tube and to be reciprocable axially relatively thereto, a stem pivotally mounted within said delivery tube, a sleeve-closure member mounted upon the lower end of said stem below the liquid-exit opening and adapted to engage with and seal the sleeve at the lower end thereof on relative movement between said sleeve and said delivery tube to position the lowermost end thereof within said sleeve, means for moving said delivery tube to extend beyond said sleeve and into a container, and means for controlling the delivery of liquid through said delivery tube.
2. A device for filling a container with a liquid comprising comprising a liquid delivery tube formed with a liquidexit opening at its lowermost end, a sleeve mounted to surround said delivery tube and to be reciprocable axially relatively thereto, the upper end of said sleeve being enlarged to provide a cup to catch and retain liquid draining from the exterior of the delivery tube, a sleeve-closure member mounted upon said delivery tube below the liquid-exit opening and adapted to engage with and seal 6 the sleeve at the lower end thereof on relative movement between said sleeve and said delivery tube to position the lowermost end thereof within said sleeve, means for moving said delivery tube to extend beyond said sleeve and into a container, and means for controlling the delivery of liquid through said delivery tube.
3. A device according to claim 2 wherein said means for moving said delivery tube into a container is associated with an apertured bracket adapted to engage with the enlarged upper end of said sleeve to prevent further downward movement thereof during downward movement of said delivery tube.
4. A device for filling a container with a liquid comprising a liquid delivery tube formed with a liquid-exit opening at its lowermost end, a sleeve mounted to surround said delivery tube and to be reciprocable axially relatively thereto, a sleeve-closure member mounted upon said delivery tube below the liquid-exit opening and adapted to engage with and seal the sleeve at the lower end thereof on relative movement between said sleeve and said delivery tube to position the lowermost end thereof within said sleeve, means for moving said delivery tube to extend beyond said sleeve and into a container, and means for controlling the delivery of liquid through said delivery tube comprising a delay switch associated with an impeller pump located within a liquid supply line connected between said delivery tube and a gravity feed tank to provide an initial low rate of liquid flow followed by a period of a high rate of liquid flow through said delivery tube.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 288,859 Rigney Nov. 20, 1883 781,038 Warren Jan. 31, 1905 2,436,812 Kerr Nov. 2, 1948 2,812,919 Guerard Nov. 12, 1957