US 3106321 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Oct. 8, 1963 w. G. GORMAN 3,106,321
MINIATURE AEROSOL UNIT Filed May 2, 1961 FIG. 5 0 l6 l8 910E1 1;
INVENTOR WILLIAM G.GORMAN ATTORNEY United States Patent Office 3,106,321 Patented Oct. 8, 1963 3,106,321 MINIATURE AEROSOL UNIT William G. Gorman, Albany, N.Y., assignor to Sterling gill'rueg Inc., New York, N.Y., a corporation of Dela- Filed May 2, 1961, Ser. No. 107,144
1 Claim. (U. 222-394) The principal object of the present invention resides in the provision of an inexpensive simplified miniature disposable aerosol unit which can be used to provide a oneshot dose or metered amounts of spray liquid or foam if desired. The new unit utilizes a container, a valve, and
a separate actuator, the valve comprising an apertured Y opening the apertures through the gasket, whereby the,
contents of the container flow as for instance under pressure in the containerthrough the now-open gasket and the actuator to the point of application.
A further object of the invention includes the provision of guide means on the ferrule for the actuator stem to locate the latter relative to the gasket, the stem having a sliding friction fit in the guide means preventing leakage past the stem and insuring that the charge passes through the stem to the desired point of application.
By the use of this invention, actuation is accomplished without the use of any kind of piercing needle, screw device, or relatively expensive valve mechanism, but on the other hand the device is actuated simply by the use of a one-piece actuator having a passage through it for the application of the container contents; no piercing or cormg problems are encountered, the device may be used as a sterile unit which is not possible with reusable units presently available, and all of the parts including the contamer itself may be made so inexpensively as to be disposable. I
The invention further relates to arrangements and combinations of parts which will be hereinafter described and more particularly set forth in the appended claim.
Reference is to be had to the accompanying drawings, in which FIG. 1 is a cross sectional view of the container illustrating the device with the valve in closed condition;
FIG. 2 is a cross sectional view of the applicator;
FIG. 3 is a cross sectional view illustrating the applicator in use and the valve open, part being broken away;
FIG. 4 is a plan view of the gasket;
FIG. 5 is a cross sectional view thereof, taken on line 5-5 of FIG. 4;
FIG. 6 is a plan view, looking in the direction of arrow 6in FIG. 1, and
FIG. 7 is a bottom plan view, looking in the direction of arrow 7 in FIG. 2. In carrying out the present invention, there is provided in the first place a container which may be a metal tube,
a glass vial for instance such as existing vials currently used for injectables, or a plastic tube which may be of nylon, Delrin, linear polyethylene, etc., and is preferably molded as by injection molding.
In the present case, this container is generally indicated by the reference numeral 10 and it is shown as a glass vial having a reduced neck portion 12 and a relatively enlarged and thickened annular rib 14.
A gasket is provided as generally indicated by the reference numeral 16 and it has an annular thickened peripheral rib 18, a relatively thinner annular web portion 20 which is apertured preferably one or more times as at 22, and a relatively thickened center portion 24.
This gasket is held permanently in position on the rim of the container by means of a crimped ferrule generally indicated at 26 which iscrimped as for instance at 28 or otherwise to hold the parts in position.
The ferrule 26 extends upwardly along the lip of the container and has a portion at 3% conforming to the enlarged rim 18 of the gasket as clearly shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, and then the ferrule extends inwardly along a flat area at 32 having a downwardly disposed guide member 34 located centrally thereof in the form of an open cylinder, it being understood that the entire ferrule is all one formed piece of material.
The inner end 36 of the guide'34 is like an annular rim which extends down below the rim 14 of the container, and impinges upon the enlarged central portion 24 of the gasket depressing it. This maintains the gasket in the slightly st-retched condition of FIG. 1. By this means the guide 34 is closed off from any communication with the interior of the container.
The actuator device may be of plastic or a similar material, and it may take any desired shape or construction suitable for the purpose but essentially it comprises a simple one-piece molded member generally indicated by the reference numeral 38. It has an annular flange 40, a tip or applicator portion 42 which may be of any shape desired as for spray, liquid, foam, etc.; and an actuator stem 44 extending oppositely with respect to the tip 42.
The device is provided with a through passage 46 from the extreme end of the actuator stem 44 through the applicator tip 42. It is to be particularly noted that the wall at the extreme end of the actuator stem 44 is providcd with slots 48.
The use of the device is illustrated in FIG. 3 wherein the simplified actuator device 38 is positioned with its stem 44 extending down through the guide member 34 in the ferrule 26 and the inner slotted end of the stem impinges upon the enlarged central portion 24 of the gasket. Continued inward pressure on the applicator 38 causes separation of this portion of the gasket from the inner end 36 of the guide 34, whereupon instantly communica tion is provided from the interior of container 10 through apertures 22, slots 43, to the passage 46 and the contents of the container 10 are therefore distributed or directed as desired. A close fit of stem 44 to guide 34 prevents leakage past the stem. Merely upon releasing the actuator device, the resilient characteristics of the gasket may cause the valve to immediately close, or the actuator can be removed manually for this purpose. The device can be reused if desired, but on the other hand the vial may contain a prescribed dosage which is to be used for the purpose which may be indicated or desired, and once used, the entire apparatus can be thrown away.
It will be seen that this invention provides an extremely simplified, easy to use device which is particularly adapted for the dispensing of relatively small quantities of material. It can be used as a one-shot application or the contents may be used by multiple dose application, and it can be used with spray, liquid or foam and may be made and used as a sterile unit which is not possible with the reusable units presently available. It can be cold or pressure filled and the actuation is accomplished without any complicated valve mechanisms, tanks or similar built-in actuators, and it obviates the need of piercing needles, screw devices, etc. by the use of the simple one-piece plastic actuator which of course is very inexpensive to make as is also the container with gasket and ferrule attached. The device of the present inven- 3 tion is found to be so inexpensive that it may be utilized as a small one-shot disposable unit which has not been heretofore practicable due to costs.
Having thus described my invention and the advantages thereof, 1 do not wish to be limited to the details herein disclosed, otherwise than as set forth in the claim, but what I claim is:
A pressurized unit comprising a container having an opening and a rim about the opening, said rim providing an edge located substantially transversely with respect to the axis of said container, said container having an inwardly necked portion of lesser diameter than the rim immediately below the rim forming an exterior shoulder;
a gasket having an edge portion disposed on the rim and extending across the opening, said gasket being of stretchable compressible material and including an imperforate central portion together with apertures located between the central portion and the rim; said central portion and edge portion of the gasket being disposed in coplanar relationship when the gasket is unassembled;
a ferrule securing the gasket to the container, said ferrule having an inwardly directed terminal portion conforming to the exterior shoulder of the container and underlying the same, an adjacent exterior cylindrical portion extending from said inwardly directed portion over and past the rim of the container, the ferrule then extending inwardly over and past the edge of the gasket being closely associated with the gasket, holding the same firmly to the edge of the rim of the container, said ferrule then extending further inwardly and including a generally central elongated inwardly directed depending cylindrical portion open from end-to-end thereof, said portion forming a guide and having its inner end located inwardly with respect to the edge of the rim about the opening of the container, the inner end of the guide impinging upon the central imperforate portion of the gasket, stretching and distending the gasket inwardly with respect to said container opening, thereby maintaining the gasket under tension and the container completely closed, said ferrule being otherwise imperforate except for the guide;
a separate one-piece digitally manipulated actuator device including an elongated actuator stem with an exterior diameter of a dimension to slide in the guide, said actuator stem having an open-ended passage therethrough and an aperture therein and being adapted to enter the guide to impinge upon the gasket in the central imperforate area thereof and being of a length sufiicient to further stretch the same and to move it beyond the said inner end of said cylindrical guide, thereby providing communication from the interior of the container through the apertures in the gasket through the aperture in the stem of the actuator and the passage, said actuator device being completely separable from the container.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 289,447 Rich Dec. 4, 1883 2,677,373 Barradas May 4, 1954 2,681,752 Jarrett et al June 22, 1954 2,773,722 Abplanalp Dec. 11, 1956 2,774,520 Laundry Dec. 18, 1956 2,863,699 Elser Dec. 9, 1958 2,886,217 Thiel May 12, 1959 2,913,749 Ayres Nov. 24, 1959