US 3230735 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Jan. 25, 1966 M. L. NELSON Y 3,230,735
FAUcET COOLER IN PRE-MIX MACHINE Filed Nov. 19, 1962 M4 WEJ. /f
IN VEN TOR.
Mraz/5 //efsaw United States Patent 3,230,735 FAUCET COOLER IN PRE-MIX MACHINE Marcus L. Nelson, Albert Lea, Minn., assignor to King- Seeley Thermos Co., Ann Arbor, Mich., a corporation of Michigan Filed Nov. 19, 1962, Ser. No.238,683 v Claims. (Cl. 62-309) This invention relates to dispensing apparatus and methods, and more particularly to improved apparatus and methods for cooling a material to be dispensed from faucet means or the like.
In general, the invention comprises a dispensing unit wherein a material or materials to be dispensed is delivered from a storage area to cooling means and then to faucet-type dispensing means. Hose means are provided t0 convey the material from the storage area to the cooling means and the faucet means. The faucet means are often spaced a substantial distance from the cooling means and are disassociated therefrom to an extent such that a considerable temperature differential exists therebetween. The faucet means are usually exposed to atmospheric conditions whereas the cooling means is usually supported in a casing insulated from the atmosphere. Therefore, the temperatures of the faucets are often considerably higher than the temperature of the cooling means, surrounding structure, and the material at the cooling means. In previous practice, the hose means provided to convey the material to the faucet means have been subjected to the ambient temperatures both in the faucet area where the material is dispensed and in at least portions of the hose means between the cooling means and the faucet means.
Accordingly, with previous apparatus, the material is not always dispensed in a cooled condition and is usually heated during passage to and through the faucet means after leaving the cooling means since the material tends to acquire the temperature of the hose means and faucet means. Oftentimes the material being dispensed will be delivered from the faucet at substantially room temperature. This is particularly true during the rst portions of delivery of material such as fluid or the like when the material has been stored in the hose means and the faucets in between dispensing operations. Even during relatively rapid and continuous dispensing operations, a substantial amount of heat exchange will occur so that the temperature of the material will change appreciably between the cooling means and the faucet means.
In the present invention, the material to be dispensed is maintained at lowered temperatures during delivery from the cooling means to the faucet means and during storage in the delivery hose means. To this end supplementary cooling means are provided in association with the hose means along the length of the hose means extending fiom the cooling means to the faucet means. In particular, the supplementary cooling means are integrated with a cooling chamber, forming part of the main cooling means, in a novel and improved marmer providing maximum cooling results with a minimum of change in existing structures and a minimum of expense. A circulating system is provided for circulating cooling tluid or gas such as air or the like from the cooling chamber along the hose means between the cooling chamber and the faucet means. In the preferred embodiment, the hose means carrying the medium to be dispensed are enclosed within passage means connected at one end to the cooling chamber and at the other end to circulating means for circulating cooling fluid or gas from the cooling chamber along the entire length of the hose means. In addition, cooling fluid or gas is'adapted to be continuously circulated in a closed cooling system in heat exchange Cit nce
relationship with both the hose means and the faucet means.
The objects, advantages, and details of the inventive principles are hereinafter described in detail by reference to an illustrative embodiment of the invention as shown on the accompanying drawing wherein:
FIGURE 1 is a plan view of an illustrative embodiment of the invention, `partly in section;
FIGURE 2 is a side elevational view, partly in section, of a portion of theapparatus shown in FIGURE 1; and
FIGURE 3 is an enlarged schematic illustration of the invention.
Referring now to FiGURE 1, the principles of the present invention are illustratively embodied in a dispensing unit which comprises, in general, a casing l0 separated internally into an insulated cooling chamber l2 and a dispensing chamber I4 by a central partition 1.6. Dispensing means are provided at the top of the dispensing chamber ld and take the form of, for example, a plurality of individual faucet means 18, 2i), 22, 24 which are mounted in a common dispensing head 26 above a flat support surface 28, or the like, on which cups, glasses, etc. may be placed to receive liquid or lluid material or other dispensible material, through one or more of the faucets.
In addition, motor means, pump means, material storage space, and other necessary equipment (not shown) are conventionally located in the chamber i4. None of the details of construction of the chamber 14 or the other equipment contained therein are necessary for an understanding -of the present invention. It will be readily understood by those skilled in the art to which this invention relates, that the inlet hose members 30, 32, 34, 36 shown to extend through the separating partition 16 at 38 from chamber i4, are connected to suitable supply sources of the material to be dispensed and to suitable pressure means or the like to cause flow of the material through the hoses when the faucets are opened. It should be understood that four separate dispensing hoses are shown solely for purposes of illustration and that the number of hoses may be varied as desired.
Chamber I2 is adapted to contain means to provide a cooling effect such as a supply 0f ice 40 and is suitably insulated from chamber i4 Vand the atmosphere. The back wall of the cooling chamber is provided with vertically extending spacer panel Sil in the illustrative ernbodiment which forms a pair of hose cavities or channels 52, 54 in cooperation with the back wall. The hoses 39, 32, 34, 36 extend downwardly within one of the channels 52 to a heat exchange means oil, which in the preferred embodiment, may be mounted in the bottom of the cooling chamber l2. A connecting head 62, provided with suitable coupling means 64, 66, 68, 7i), is associated with the heat exchange means and the hoses 30, 32, 34, 36 are suitably connected thereto.
As shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, the heat exchange means 60 includes a lower chamber 72 and an upper heat exchange plate '74.- in which conduit means 76 are imbedded, or otherwise associated in heat exchange relationship, to convey the material from the hoses 3th, 32, 34, 36 through the heat exchange plate 74 to a connecting head S0 having a plurality of coupling means S2, 84, 86, 88. Outlet hoses 90, 92, 94, 96 are connected to the coupling means 82, 8d, 86, 8S and extend upwardly in the chamber 54 and through the dividing partition I6 as indicated at 93 in FIGURE 1. The hoses extend from the partition to the dispensing head as shown in FIGURE l and are connected through suitable coupling means 102, 104, 106, 10S to the faucets i8, 2t?, 22 and 24.
In order lto keep the material to be dispensed cool after it leaves the heat exchange means D during transmit to the faucet means and/ or during storage in the hoses 96,
3 92, 94, 96 in between dispensing operations, a special cooling system is provided. In the preferred embodiment, the cooling system takes the form of a cold air circulating system which is integrated with the central or main cooling apparatus in the chamber 12.
To this end, the air chamber 72 is provided beneath the heat exchange plate 74 and is connected at one end by a. plurality of suitable air inlet ports 122, 124 to the chamber 12. Air outlet passage means 126 are also provided to enable air to -be circulated through the chamber 72 in, heat exchange relationship with the plate 74. The outlet passage means lmay be located opposite the inlet ports and extend upwardly through the heat exchange plate and the connecting head 89.
Hose enclosing means in the form of a boo-t 128 of rubber or plastic or the like is mounted around the connecting head Si) and extends upwardly around the lowerl ends of the hoses 90, 92, 94, 96. The boot forms a continuation of the outlet passage means 126 and terminates in a reduced portion 130. Suitable hose or conduit means 132 are connected to the end portion 130 and surround and confine the hose means 99, 92, 9d, 96 within a com mon air passage. The other end of the conduit means 132 extends through the partition 16 at 98 along with the hose means 90, 92, 94, 96 as shown in FIGURE l and is connected to a housing 138,
As shown in FIGURE 3, the housing 138 surrounds the ends of the faucet means 192, 194, 196, 198 and the ends ofthe hose means 90, 92, 94, 96. The housing is divided into an inlet chamber 140 and an outlet chamber 142 by a partition 144. Passage means 146 connect the chambers 149, 142 and an outlet pasage 148 is connected by suitable conduit means 150 to air circulating means 152 in the form of a conventional blower having integral drive motor 154. The circulating means 152 is provided with outlet or discharge conduit means 156 which extends to `and through the partition 16 to discharge air back into the cooling chamber 12.
In operation, the material to be dispensed is drawn from a `source through the inlet hoses 30, 32, 34, 36 to a central or main cooling means provided by the heat exchange means 60. The material flows through the heat exchange plate 74, is cooled, and flows through the outlet hoses 90, 92, 94, 96 to the faucets 1S, 20, 22,24 whenever one or more of the faucets are opened. The ice storage chamber 12 is periodically lled with ice or the like to cool the heat exchange plate '74 and provide for cooling of the material in the hoses as it passes through the heat exchange plate.
In order to continuously cool the material after it leaves the heat exchange apparatus and during the time when it may be stored in the outlet hoses 99, 92, 94, 96, the cold air circulating system is provided. When the blower 152 is actuated by means of the associated electric rnotor or the like, 154, air is drawn from the chamber 12 over the ice 4l) and into the air chamber 72 in the heat exchange means through the ports 122, 124. rThe air is cooled and drawn upwardly through the passage means 126 into the air conduit means surrounding the outlet hoses 90, 92, 94, 9d. The air conduit means, comprising the boot 128 and the conduit 132, concentrates and connes the circulation of cool air in and around thel outlet hoses and provides means of drawing cool air into the faucet cooling chamber 149 at the back of the faucet unit. The cool air is drawn upwardly over the end of the faucet unit through the port 146 in the separating wall 144 and loutwardly through the conduit 159 to the blower. The cooling air is returned to the cooling cha-mber through the discharge passage 156.
It will be apparent that the air will leave the cooling chamber 72 near or below the temperature of the cooled material and will substantially prevent any change in temperature of the cooled material in the hoses during passage to the faucets or storage betwen dispensing cycles. Furthermore, the faucets are also located in heat exchange relationship with the cool air. Both the hoses, heat ex change means, and faucets have a common cooling source, namely the ice in chamber 12. The supplementary `cooling means provided by the air circulation system may -be continually actuated or may be periodically actuated as desired or necessary depending upon dispensing activ ity, temperature conditions, etc.,
The inventive principles have been disclosed by reference to the presently preferred embodiment -of the invention by Way of illustration and it will be apparent to those skilled in the art to which the invention relates that the inventive principles are capable of being otherwise variously embodied and practised within the intended scope of the appended claims.
What is claimed is:
1. Dispensing apparatus comprising a casing, ice storage means provided in said casing, heat exchange means mounted in sai-d ice storage means for cooling by ice stored in said ice storage means, faucet means mounted on said casing and spaced from said heat exchange means, hose means to deliver a material to be dispensed from a remote location to said faucet means through said heat exchange means whereby the material is colled prior to delivery to said faucet means, an air conduit surrounding said hose means between said heat exchange means and said faucet means, and means to circulate cool air through said air conduit to maintain the material in a cooled con# dition during pasage through `said hose means.
2. Dispensing apparatus comprising, a plurality of product lines, a yplurality of faucet means connected to said product lines for dispensing the product, a central product cooling means spaced from said faucet means, a portion of said product lines being located downstream of said central product cooling means to deliver product to said central product cooling means for cooling, a portion of said product lines being located upstream of said cooling lmeans and being disassociated from said central product cooling means, a cooling conduit surrounding said portion of said product lines located upstream of said central product cooling means, means to `circulate coolant from said central product cooling means through said cooling conduit to maintain low product temperature during transit between said central product cooling means and said faucet means, -said central product cooling means `comprises an ice storage means, heat exchange means as sociated with said ice storage means to cool the product, air inlet means connecting one end of said cooling conduit to said central product cooling means, air outlet means connecting the other end of said cooling conduit to said central product cooling means, and said means to circulate coolant compri-sing air blower -means associated with said cooling conduit to establish a flow of cool air through said air inlet means into said cooling conduit and Ialong said product lines to sai-d air outlet means.
3. The apparatus as defined in claim 2 and wherein said eat exchange means comprises plate means associated with said product lines and forming a wall portion of said ice storage means, an air chamber formed adjacent said plate means, inlet openings connecting said air chamber to said ice storage means and outlet openings connecting said air chamber to said cooling conduit, and said air outlet means being connected to said ice storage means in spaced relationship to said inlet openings lto establish a recirculating ilo-w path of cooling air through the ice storage chamber and the air chamber and the cooling conduit.
4. A cooling system for a dispensing unit comprising an ice chamber, a heat exchanger mounted at the bottom of said ice chamber, a faucet chamber remotely located relative to said ice chamber and being mounted above said ice chamber, faucet means mounted in said faucet chamber, product dispensing hose means connected to said faucet means and extending through said heat exA changer means, air passage means provided in said heat exchanger and communicating with said ice chamber, a
first conduit means connected to said air passage means and extending to said faucet chamber, said product dispensing hose means being mounted within said conduit means, a second conduit means connecting said faucet chamber to said ice chamber, and suction fan means mounted in the upper portion of said ice chamber and connected to said second conduit means to establish ow of cooling air drawn from said ice chamber over ice in said ice chamber through said air passage means in said heat exchanger and through said first conduit means around said product dispensing hose means to sai-d faucet chamber and from said faucet chamber through said second conduit means to said ice chamber.
5. A cooling system for a dispensing unit comprising an enclosed ice chamber having bottom, side, and top Walls, heat exchanger means mounted at the bottom of said ice chamber adjacent the bottom Wall, a faucet chamber remotely located relative to said ice chamber and being mounted above said ice chamber, said faucet chamber being divided into an air inlet chamber and an air outlet chamber, connecting passage means connecting said air inlet chamber to said air outlet chamber adjacent the top of said faucet chamber, faucet means mounted adjacent said faucet chamber and extending into said air inlet chamber, product dispensing hose means connected to said faucet means in said air inlet chamber and extending through an opening in the lower portion of said faucet chamber to said ice chamber and through an opening in the upper portion of said ice chamber to said heat exchanger means, -a first conduit means surrounding said product dispensing hose means and extending from a point adjacent said heat exchanger means through said ice chamber to said air inlet chamber, air inlet passage means connecting said conduit means to the interior of said ice chamber adjacent said heat exchanger means, an
air outlet passage means connecting said rst conduit means to said air inlet chamber adjacent the bottom thereof, suction fan means mounted in said ice chamber adjacent the top Wall thereof, second conduit means connected to said air outlet chamber at one en-d and to an air inlet of said suction fan means at the other end, and said suction -fan means having an air outlet in the upper portion of said ice chamber whereby a flow of cooling air may be established from the bottom of said ice chamber through said heat exchanger means into said iirst conduit means at the point adjacent said heat exchanger means through said first conduit means and said air outlet passage means into said air inlet chamber and upwardly around said faucet means in said air inlet chamber or said faucet chamber and through said connecting passage and downwardly through said air outlet chamber to said second conduit means Iand through said second conduit means to said suction fan means and into said ice cham- -ber adjacent the top thereof through said air outlet and through said ice chamber to said heat exchanger means.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 248,646 10/ 1881 Gordon 62-396 1,661,385 3/1928 Pocock 62-425 X 1,987,810 1/1935 White 62-398 2,065,949 12/ 1936 Sandell 62-393 X 2,076,922 4/ 1937 Simard 62-393 X 2,194,319 3/ 1940 Panagopoulos 62-393 2,230,905 2/ 1941 Popky 62-393 X 2,362,104 11/ 1944 Smith 62-393 X 2,771,752 11/ 1956 Tennant 62-396 X ROBERT A. OLEARY, Primary Examiner.