US 3010264 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Nov. 28, 1961 01; VIKAR CHRISTENSSON 3,010,
ARRANGEMENT IN CLOSING MACHINES FOR PACKAGES Filed Nov. 9, 1959 V 5 Sheets-Sheet l INVENTOR 00 10/07,? C/IRASMSO/V,
IIIIIIII ATTORNE5 Nov. 28, 1961 OD vlKAR QHRISTENSSON 3,010,264
ARRANGEMENT-IN CLOSING MACHINES FOR PACKAGES Filed Nov. 9, 1959 5 sheet's-sheet 2 1961 OD VIKARCHRISTENSSON 3,01 64 ARRANGEMENT IN CLOSING MACHINES FOR PACKAGES Filed Nov. 9, 1959 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 United States Patent 3,010,264 ARRANGEMENT IN CLOSING MACHINES FOR PACKAGES 0d Vikar Christensson, Vikavagen 5, Bromma, Sweden Filed Nov. 9, 1959, Ser. No. 851,867 Claims priority, application Sweden Mar. 10, 1959 6 Claims. (Cl. 53-95) This invention relates to the packing of certain types of products which are sensitive to atomsphere in evacuated packages, the packages being rectangular in cross-section and made of cardboard or similar material with an inner lining of a strong, air-tight plastic or the like. After the package is filled with material, the inner lining is evacuated and heat sealed in its evacuated state. The durability of the packed material will thus be increased because it is prevented from being efiected by the atmosphere.
It has been the practice in the past to enclose certain types of vacuum packages in a sheet metal box and the box then placed on a turntable arrangement. During the rotation of the turntable, the box is evacuated and often the package may cause the lining to shrink so quickly that the outer package is not free of the lining and deformation may result. Finally, the closed package must be re moved from the turntable and again damage may occur to the package at this time.
In order to avoid such damage insofar as is possible, the packages are held in place during evacuation by means of holders. The actual construction of these holders is, however, of no importance to the present invention. Each of the packages is placed on the turntable in a separate chamber, and the chamber is evacuated in such a manner that no damage to the outer package results. For this reason the different evacuation chambers are independent of each'other, so that a vacuum can be created in each one successively. Each chamber therefore has separate closing means which allow the package to be introduced or removed from the chamber when open without interfering with the normal Working of the machine, especially in the rotation thereof, and which when closed are of sufficient air-tightness to allow the required vacuum to be maintained in the chamber. v i
According to the present invention, each of the evacuation chambers is provided with a shutter on the outermost side of the chamber, that is the side toward the periphery of the turntable. The shutter is of such size that when opened the package together with the holder therefor can pass in or out of the chamber. In order to avoid interfering with the rotation of the turntable, the shutter is' rotatable about a horizontal shaft located at either the bottom or the top of the shutter.
*Further'deails of the invention will be evident from the following description of an arrangement according to the invention, but it should be understood that the invention is not limited to this specific form of execution and that many modifications may occur within the scope of the invention. The invention will be described in connection with the attached drawings, in which: 7
FIGURE 1 shows a schematicview of the turntable,
FIGURE 2 is a vertical section through a portion of the turntable, i
3,010,264 Patented Nov. 28., 1961 FIGURE 3 is a corresponding horizontal section through a portion of the turntable, and
FIGURE 4 shows'a view of a portion of the turntable carrying one of the chambers adapted to receive a package.
In FIGURE 1 the turntable is indicated at 10. It is assumed that the turntable is in continuous rotation in the direction of the arrow 11. A number of chambers or pockets are provided on the turntable so that each may be evacuated individually, although a common vacuum conduit may be used with a system of valves connecting the vacuum conduit to the chambers. The turntable is shown to contain eighteen such chambers or pockets 12. These pockets or chambers are provided with a shutter, as will be described in detail below in connection with FIGURES 2, 3 and 4. This shutter covers the front of the chamber which faces the periphery of the turntable and opens upwardly about a horizontal shaft provided at the upper edge of the shutter. However, the horizontal shaft could also be provided at the lower end of the shutter.
The packages to be evacuated are fed to the turntable by means of a feeder device 13 which receives the packages from a path 14 and transfers them to an open pocket 12 which is opposite the feeder device. Due to the fact that the shutter of this particular pocket is at this time turned upwardly into a substantially horizontal position, the working of the feeder device and the introduction of the package into the pocket is not impeded. During the continuous rotation of the turntable in the direction of the arrow 11, the shutter is closed at approximately the position indicated at 15. The shutter is then pressed against the shutter coamings by means of acam 16 so that the chamber will be sufficiently air-tight for the initial formation of a vacuum. As the chamber passes the position indicated at 17, it is connected with a vacuum conduit so that the shutter is sucked tightly onto the shutter coamings by the vacuum and the cam 16 is no longer necessary and may be removed. At the position 18, the chamber is connected to a conduit containing a higher vacuum so that the evacuation within the chamber is increased. Heat sealing of the lining of the package takes place at the position 19. At the position 20 air is introduced into the chamber so that the shutter can be opened and the heat sealed joint cooled to obtain the required strength. In the position 21 the shutter is opened and at 22 the package is removed. For removal of the package another conveyor is used and which is schematically indicated at 23. 1
For an explanation of the opening and closing movement of the shutter reference is made to FIGURE 4.. This figure shows a single chamber together with the means required for operation of its shutter. The manner in which this chamber is connected tothe turntable will be described below in connection with FIGURES 2 and 3.
-In FIGURE 4 the walls of the chamber are indicated at 24, the bottom by 25 and the shutter by 26. Shutter 26 is hinged on a first shaft 27 which is located at approximately half the height of shutter 26. This shaft, which may be regarded as a balancing shaft, is mounted in an arm 28 carrying the shutter, said arm in its turn being mounted on a horizontal shaft 29 at the upper edge of the shutter. The shaft 29 also carries a gear. 30 which is surrounded by a protective sleevei3l of sheet metal. I
In the arrangement according to FIGURE 4 the turntable is represented by a disc 32 which carries the various parts. Thus,'by means of the L-iron the disc carries the chamber 12 having a package 35 therein. The disc also carriesa ring 36 having slide bearings 37 and 38 for a bar 39, which has a rack at one. end cooperating with the gear 30. At the other 'end' of the bar39 a contact or follower wheel 40 rotates around a shaft 41 mounted in a block 42 on the end of the bar. The follower pulley 401s in condirections.
position that the shutter 26 has been lifted into a horizontal position. Thus the shutter is lifted out of the way of the means for introducing or removing a package from the chamber.
During rotation of the turntable when the chamber enters the position 15 as shown in FIGURE 1, the cam 43 is displaced outwardly and consequently the bar 39 will also be displaced to the right in FIGURE 4. This displacement may take place merely because of the weight of the shutter, but as a rule it is advantageous to provide aspring for this purpose which is not shown in the drawing. Alternatively, the cam may be arranged in the form of a groove which moves the follower pulley in both During this movement, the shutter is closed and the edge will contact the frame around the chamber 12. At this time there is no vacuum in the chamber and sealing of the chamber. 7
First of all, the shutter is not rigidly carried by the arm 28 but is attached to the arm by means of the shaft two additional steps are then taken to insure adequate 4 62. is broken off at regular intervals as will be evident from the following description.
Fora description of the operation of the machine, it is assumed that the machine has run through the Working cycles described in connection with FIGURE 1 up to the position 21, in which the shutter 26 is opened in order to remove a completed package from the machine and intro duce a new package in its place. 7
It should beborne in mind that the turntable 10 is in continuous rotation and that the turntable 51 is also in continuous rotation with a peripheral speed corresponding to the peripheral speed of the turntable 10 but rotating in the opposite direction. The catcher means 55 and 57, respectively, will therefore interact with each other in about the same manner as the teeth of a pair of gears with the addition of certain superimposed movements which will be described below.
During the continuous progress of the turntableafter the opening of the shutter 26, a setof catcher arms 55 on the auxiliary turntable 51 approach the position in which a complete package is to be removed from the main turntable 10. a In this position a'further auxiliary turntable is provided which is indicated by 23in FIGURE 1.' In all such elements it is similar to the auxiliary turntable 51 as shown in section in FIGURE 2 and a specific description is therefore not required.
27 so that it is readily adjustable. .Secondly, a further cam is provided outside the turntable as indicated in FIGURE 1 by 16. This cam cooperates with a follower pulley 44 at the end of arm 28 and forces the shutter 26 into the best possible contact with the frame of the opening of the chamber 12. 1 r
As evacuation of the'chamber is commenced, the shutter is sucked against the frame and a good. seal is obtained,
without cooperation of the above mentioned means. The j with the material to be packed takes place in the direction of the arrow 52. The turntable 51 is mounted on a continuously rotating shaft 53 carrying a disc 54. This is in turn provided with a number of catcher arms 55. In the example shownain FIGURE 2 one pair 'of such catcher arms is arranged at the same level as the upper part of the package 35, and a second pair of such'catcher arms are arranged at the same level as the lower part ofthe same package. These catcher armsare turnable around shaft 56 and are guided by means of a follower pulley and a groove in'the' auxiliary turntable '51, not shown in the drawing, so that they catcha package approachingon conveyor '50. The package is thereafter brought into the 2 position shown in-FIGURE 2 by the rotation of the auxiliary turntable. When the package is in this position it is fedinto the chamber 12 of the main turntable by the movement of additional catcher arms which are attached to the main turntable and which catch the package 35 V V 1 at the'sarne timea'sthe catcher. arms 55*lose contact with thepackage. p 7 e 7 These last mentioned catcher arms' 57 are mounted. on shaft 58 which; are in turn mounted in a catcher plate 59 and'su rr'ounded bjy ahub 60. The catcher plate'59'is 1 provided with 'two control meansjlenclosing a cam disc 62 whichlisshaped in "the form 'of an undul'atingring around .the path about which the turntable rotates. The
' hub ,60 is attached to La pu'sh'bar-fiil carrying at its end :a
79 isprovided on an} mounted on a shaft 81.
follower pulley 64 mounted onhub' 65, and this follower a pulley'6'4' enters into a grooveand agroove ring which I is fixed tothe baseof the'main turntable.-' The cam disc Further operation of the machine is as follows; The groove ring 66 is formed in such a way that, immediately after the opening of the shutter 26,'thefollower pulley '64 is displacedoutwardly. The catcher mechanism including the catcher arms 57: together with the package 35 carried by said catcher arms is also displaced outwardly. To control this movement a steering guide is provided in the form of a bar '67, which runs in slide bearings 68 Ma bore 69 in an extension 70 on the back side of the bottom 25 of the pocket 12. These details are not shown in FIGURE 4. When the catcher arms 57 together wtth the package are in their'outermostposition, the catcher arms 55 on the auxiliary turntable 23 close around the package 35 at the same time as the catcher arms 57 open'to free the package. The package is then rotated by the auxiliary turntable 23 so that it is taken out of the chamber 12 and deposited on'a conveyor 75, as shown in FIGURE 1, by which itjis removed in'the direction of the arrow 76. The chamber 12 continues to rotate until it is in a position to receive a new package which has notyet been closed from the auxiliary turntable 13 as shown in FIGURE 1. Assuming that this turntable is that shown'at 51in FIGURE 2, then a set of catchers on the auxiliary'turntableil are approaching the periphery of the main .turnta blellD with ajpackage not yet closedwithin its catcher arms. When these are opposite the chamber 12; which is now empty, the catcher arm construction on lthe main turntable engages the package which is takeninto the chamber by the catcher arm construction 57yguided by the groove ring 66 and the follower pulley'64 and guide barf67. The shutter is 'then closed in the manner described above and evacuain the manner connect-ion with the filling o f' the-packagegbefore it is conveyed to the auxiliary turntable 23. 7.
The closed mouth in a straight lying position is shown in FIGURE 2 at 77, .and thepackage 35 is in'such a position that this closed mouthwillbe brought into contact with a heat sealing-block 7.8 Qwhich is 'fixed to the wall of, the chamber 12 f A second. heat sealing block The shaft 81, as well as 'mea'ns' for "feeding-1 electrical heating current tothe h'eat sealing blocks '(not shown in the drawing) are controlled in such a way that the block 79 is turned toward the block 78 and the required current is fed to these blocks for carrying out the heat sealing of the opening 77 when the package has been evacuated, and which is completed at the position 19 in FIGURE 1. A further description of this part of the arrangement is not required as it does not form a part of the present invention.
For the same reason the evacuation conduits and the valves controlling evacuation have not been shown in the drawing. It will be sufficient to mention that they are connected to an opening 82 in the extension 70 of the chamber 12.
FIGURE 3 shows a horizontal section of the portion of the apparatus which has been described above with reference to the vertical section shown in FIGURE 2. For purposes of clairty, however, the turntables 13 and 23 have been shown schematically. A package 85 is shown on its way to the discharge position but with the shutter of its chamber still closed. In the next following position where the package 86 is located, the shutter 26 has been opened in the manner described above. The shutter is not shown in a number of following positions for the purpose of clarity. In the next following position a package 87 is shown in a position where it has just been freed from the catcher arms connected with the main turntable and is being introduced into the catcher arms connected to the auxiliary turntable 23 in order to be removed by them from the machine.
It may be seen however, that in this position the package has been displaced outwardly by the catcher arms of the turntable 10, and is in a position where it will be caught by the catcher arms of the turntable 23.
In the position 88 no package is shown because none has yet been introduced. As a matter of fact it is of some importance that air be allowed to circulate in the chambers of the turntable before the next package is introduced. At 89 a package is shown in the position where it is about to be introduced in the chamber. This package is at the same radial distance as the package 87 just mentioned, but the operating procedure of the catcher arms is the opposite. The catcher arms of the turntable which remained displaced outwardly and remained open now close about the package 89 at the same time as the catcher arms of the turntable 13 lose contact with the package.
The packages are fed to the turntable 13 in a manner which does not form a part of the present invention. A package 90 is shown in a position where it is to be introduced to the next chamber in the main turntable 10 after the package 89. The package 91 is shown in a position where it has already been inserted into a chamber of the main turntable. The shutter 26 is, however, still open in this position but during movement into the next following position where the package 92 is shown the shutter has been closed. At the same time the pulley 44 on the shutter moves inwardly under the influence of the slide rail 16, so that th shutter is kept tightly pressed onto its frame when evacuation is started. This evacuation may be assumed to start as soon as the package is in the position shown by the package 93.
The packages 92 and 93 have a difierent appearance in FIGURE 3. This is due to the fact that the chambers are shown in section along a line of a different height. While the section at the position where the package 92 is shown are at a lower level, so that they run through the package itself and show it in its cross-sectional rectangular form, the section through the position in which the package 93 is situated has been made at a higher level and above the package '93. This package is therefore seen in full so that the closed mouth 77 is visible.
The evacuation and closing of the package then continues in a manner which has already been described with reference to FIGURE 1.
It is evident from the foregoing that there are many advantages to the arrangement of the present invention. By providing each separate chamber with a separate evacuation, the packages are not subjected to so-called vacuum pushes which might otherwise cause deformation of the packages or even cause them to explode. For this reason each chamber must have a separate shutter. In order that this shutter does not interfere with the means for removing a package or feeding a new package to be closed, the shutter is opened by turning it about a horizontal shaft. In order that the shutter allows sufiicient space for the package being taken into or out of the pocket, the horizontal shaft is placed either at the lower or the upper edge of the shutter opening.
What is claimed is:
1. Apparatus for closing and evacuation of deformable packages comprising a turntable having a plurality of separate fixed chambers radially positioned thereon, said chambers having an open side facing the periphery of said turntable, means for rotating said turntable, shutter means mounted on each of said chambers and adapted to close the open side thereof, said shutter means being rotatable about a horizontal shaft disposed at one end of said chamber, means actuated by the rotation of said turntable for opening and closing said shutter means, and means for successively evacuating each of said chambers.
2. Apparatus according to claim 1 wherein each of said shutter means comprises an arm rotatably mounted on said shaft, said shaft mounted at one end of said open side of said chamber, and a shutter member rotatable about a further horizontal shaft mounted on said arm and disposed at the center of said shutter member.
3. Apparatus according to claim 1 including means for forcing said shutter means into sealing engagement with said chambers after closing thereof.
4. Apparatus for evacuation and heat sealing of easily contractable packages comprising a turntable having a plurality of fixed separate chambers radially positioned thereon, said chambers having an open side facing the periphery of said turntable, means for rotating said turntable, shutter means mounted on each of said chambers and adapted to close said open side, said shutter means being rotatable about a horizontal shaft mounted on said chamber, means for opening and closing said shutter means, and means for successively evacuating each of said chambers, said chambers adapted to heat seal said packages.
5. Apparatus according to claim 4 wherein each of said shutter means comprises an arm rotatably mounted on said shaft, said shaft mounted at one end of said open side of said chamber, and a shutter member rotatable about a further horizontal shaft mounted on said arm and disposed at the center of said shutter member.
6. Apparatus according to claim 4 wherein said means for opening and closing said shutter means comprises cam means actuated by the rotation of said turntable.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,978,522 Darling Oct. 30, 1934 2,630,955 Moses et a1 Mar. 10, 1953 2,924,922 Burnett Feb. 16, 1960 2,949,715 Tarleton et a1 Aug. 23, 1960