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Publication numberUS3240377 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMar 15, 1966
Filing dateNov 9, 1962
Priority dateDec 11, 1961
Publication numberUS 3240377 A, US 3240377A, US-A-3240377, US3240377 A, US3240377A
InventorsRalph Dixon Charles
Original AssigneeReynolds Metals Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Cryogenic tank system
US 3240377 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

March 15, 1966 c. R. DIXON 3,240,377

CRYOGENIC TANK SYSTEM Filed Nov. 9, 1962 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 FIG.I

F|G.3 FIG.2

W/ 38 W J FIG.4

cuAag f n DIXON BY a W 54, K

HIS ATTORNEYS March 15, 1966 c. R. DIXON 3,240,377

CRYOGENIC TANK SYSTEM Filed Nov. 9, 1962 2 Sheets-Sheet z FIG.8

WW r I INVENTOR CHARLES RALPH DIXON C L yg L5 5 FIG.9

HIS ATTORNEYS United Statm Patent 3,240,377 CRYOGENIC TANK-SYSTEM Charles Ralph Dixon, Henrico County, Va., assignor to Reynolds Metals Company, Richmond, Va., a corporation of Delaware Filed Nov. 9, 1962, Ser. No. 237,442 6 Claims. (Cl. 220-14) This application is a continuation-in-part of the copending patent application, Serial No. 158,392, filed December 11, 1961, and now abandoned.

This invention relates to improved cryogenic constructions and the like as well as to improved parts and methods formaking such constructions or the like.

It is well known that liquified cryogenic gases, such as liquid oxygen, nitrogen, helium and the like, have relatively low temperatures and must be stored in such a manner that the surrounding atmosphere will not tend to heat up and thereby boil the liquified cryogenic fluid.

For example, one such storage means comprises an inner metallic container carrying the liquified cryogenic fluid and an outer metallic container surrounding the inner container and spaced therefrom to define a chamber therebetween on which a vacuum is imposed and in which a suitable heat insulating means is disposed.

The liquified cryogenic fluid or the vapor therefrom is drawn as needed from the inner container by suitable piping passing from the exterior of the outer container throughthe containers into the interior of the inner container.

In such storage constructions, it has been found that such piping readily transmits heat from the outer container and surrounding atmosphere to the liquified cryogenie fluid to cause adverse boiling thereof.

However, according to the teachings of this invention, improved methods and means are provided for substantially reducing such heat transfer along the piping of the cryogenic storage means.

In particular, improved transition joints or couplings "are provided for the piping which greatly reduces the heat transfer along the pipes leading to the inner con- "tainer.

Therefore, it is an object of this invention to provide an improved cryogenicconstruction or the like.

Another object of this invention is to provide an improved method for making such a construction or the trating 'one cryogenic construction of this invention.

FIGURE 2 is an enlarged, fragmentary, cross-sectional view of the construction of FIGURE 1 and illustrates one embodiment of the transition joint of this invention.

FIGURE 3 is a view similar to FIGURE 2 and illustrates another embodiment of this invention.

FIGURE 4 is an enlarged, fragmentary, cross-sectional view illustrating one of the steps of method of this invention for securing a length of copper pipe'to a length of steel pipe.

FIGURE 5 is a view similar to FIGURE 4 and illustrates another step of the method of this invention.

FIGURE6 is a fragmentary, cross-sectional view illustrating the copper pipe of FIGURE 4 secured to the steel pipe of FIGURE 4.

FIGURE 7 is a view similar to FIGURE 4 and illustratesanother step of the method of this invention for 3,240,377 Patented Mar. 15, 1966 securing a length of aluminum pipe or the like to the pipe construction illustrated in FIGURE 6.

FIGURE 8 is a view similar to FIGURE 7 and illustrates another step in the method of this invention.

FIGURE 9 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view illustrating the lengths of pipe secured together intheir completed form.

While the various features of this invention are hereinafter described and illustrated as being particularly adaptable for use with liquified cryogenic fluids or the like, it is to be understood that the various features of this invention can be utilized singly or in any combination thereof for other purposes as desired.

Therefore, this invention is not to be limited to only the embodiments thereof illustrated in the drawings, because the drawings are merely utilized to illustrate one of the wide variety of uses of this invention.

Referring now to FIGURE 1, an improved storage means of this invention for liquified cryogenic fluids or the like is generally indicated by the reference numeral 10 and comprises an inner metallic container 11 or the like carrying a liquified cryogenic fluid 12 and being completely surrounded by an outer metallic container 13 whereby a compartment 14 is defined between the containers 11 and 13.

While the containers 11 and 13 can be formed of any suitable material and in any suitable manner, the containers 11 and 13 of the embodiment illustrated in- FIG- URES 1 and 2 are formed of aluminum-containing metallic material whereby the containers 11 and 13 each have a substantially high coefficient of thermal conductivity.

In order to insulate the liquified cryogenic fluid 12 from the heat of the atmosphere surrounding the outer container 13, a vacuum is imposed in the compartment 14 by periodically inserting a pipe 15 into the compartment 14, the pipe 15 being interconnected to a suitable suction means which imposes a vacuum on the compartment 14.

In addition, suitable insulating means can be disposed in the compartment 14. For example, an insulating material known as Perlite can be utilized.

Various other pipes must pass from the exterior of the outer container 13 into the interior of the inner container 11 for various purposes.

For example, should the cryogenic storage means 10 be utilizedfor holding liquid oxygen or the like for hospital uses, it has been found that a conduit 16 must pass from the exterior of the container 13 to the interior of the container 11 in the vapor region thereof so that oxygen in gaseous form can be drawn as needed from the storage means 10 and be conveyed to various parts of the hospital for well known uses thereof.

In addition, a conduit 17 may be provided and lead from the exterior of the container 13 to the interior of the container 11 below the liquid level thereof so that liquid oxygen can be drawn off as desired by the conduit 17 and be conveyed to various parts of the hospital for other well known uses.

Similarly, a conduit 18 can be p-rovided and leads from the exterior of the container 13 to the interior of the container 11 below the liquid level thereof so that liquid oxygen can be drawn off as needed to replenish supplies on mobile units and the like, the conduit 18 having suitable heater means therein outboard of the container 13 to change the liquid oxygen to gas, or the mobile units themselves may contain such heater means in a manner well known in the art.

Further, a suitable conduit 19 may be provided to interconnect the interior of the container 11 with an exteriorly mounted pressure indicating device 20 to determine the pressure within the container 11. Similarly, a conduit 21 may be provided and lead from a suitable exteriorly mounted relief valve to the interior of the container 11 to prevent the pressure of the gas Within the container 11 from exceeding a predetermined amount.

It may be desired to provide a liquid level gauge 22 externally of the container 13, the gauge 22 having opposed conduit legs 23 and 24 respectively extending from the exterior of the container 13 into the interior of the inner container 11.

Therefore, it can be seen that the various conduits 16, 17, 18, 19, 21, 23 and 24 are readily adapted to transmit heat from the exterior of the container 13 to the interior of the inner container 11 whereby such transferred heat tends to adversely boil the liquified cryogenic fluid 12.

Therefore, such conduits cannot normally be made of aluminum-containing metallic material or the like which has a relatively high coefficient of thermal conducivity because of the resulting heat transfer provided thereby.

However, since the containers 11 and 13 are formed of aluminum-containing metallic material, it has been found that it is relatively difficult to secure pipes thereto when the pipes are formed of material other than aluminum-containing metallic material.

However, according to the teachings of this invention, aluminum pipes and the like can be utilized to form the cryogenic storage means because transition joints of this invention are disposed in the conduits intermediate the containers 11 and 13 to substantially reduce heat transfer along the particular conduit leading to the interior of the inner container 11.

In particular, reference is made to FIGURE 2 wherein a length of aluminum pipe 25 passes from the exterior of the outer container 13 through the outer container 13 whereby an end 26 of the aluminum pipe 25 is disposed within the compartment 14, the aluminum pipe 25 being suitably secured to the aluminum outer container 13 in a manner well known in the art.

Similarly, another length of aluminum pipe 27 extends from the interior of the inner container 11 and through the same whereby an end 28 of the aluminum pipe 27 is disposed in the compartment 14, the aluminum pipe 27 being secured to the inner aluminum container 11 in a manner well known in the art.

The adjacent ends 26 and 28 of the aluminum pipes 25 and 27 are joined or coupled together by a length of stainless steel pipe 29, the pipe 29 being joined to the pipes 25 and 27 by the method of this invention in the manner hereinafter described whereby the stainless steel pipe 29 has a relatively low coefficient of thermal conducivity when compared with the coeflicients of thermal conductivity of the aluminum pipes 25 and 27 so that the tendency of the aluminum pipes 25 and 27 to conduct heat from the exterior of the container 13 to the interior of the container 11 is greatly reduced by the length of stainless steel pipe 29.

Since it is relatively diflicult to secure aluminum to stainless steel, lengths of copper pipes 30 are utilized in a manner hereinafter described to interconnect the ends 26 and 28 of the aluminum pipes 25 and 27 to the opposed ends 31 and 32 of the stainless steel pipe 29.

When the outer container 13 is formed of steel or the like in the manner illustrated in FIGURE 3, a steel pipe 33 can be utilized to interconnect the exterior of the steel container 13 with the compartment 14 disposed between the containers 11 and 13 because it is relatively easy to secure such steel pipes to the steel container 13.

However, since it is relatively diflicult to interconnect the steel pipes to the inner aluminum container 11, an aluminum pipe 34 interconnects the interior of the inner container 11 with the compartment 14 whereby adjacent ends 35 and 36 of the pipes 33 and 34 can be joined together by a length of copper pipe 37 in a manner hereinafter described so that a suitable transition joint is provided between the con ainers 11 and 13 to prevent the transfer of heat externally of the container 13 from reaching the interior of the container 11.

One method of this invention for forming the transition joint of FIGURE 2 or FIGURE 3 is illustrated schematically in FIGURES 4-9 and will now be described.

As illustrated in FIGURE 4, a length of copper pipe 38 is secured to a length of stainless steel pipe 39 by a flash welding operation whereby the pipes 38 and 39 are respectively tightly held in holding chucks 40 and 41 which respectively receive an electrical current which tends to are between the adjacent ends 42 and 43 of the pipes 38 and 39 as the same are brought closely adjacent to each other, the arcing sufliciently heating the ends 42 and 43 of the pipes 38 and 39 so that the same will fuse or weld together when the pipes 38 and 39 are brought together under pressure by the chucks 40 and 41 as illustrated in FIGURE 5.

As the ends 42 and 43 of the pipes 38 and 39 are being flash welded together in the above manner, the heated metal at the ends 42 and 43 thereof, is upset whereby the same flows inwardly and outwardly as illustrated in FIGURE 5 and must be subsequently removed to form a smooth weld.

One means for removing the upset metal at the exterior of the joined pipes 38 and 39 to utilize the holding chucks 4i) and 41 themselves as pinch-off tools. For example, the holding chucks 40 and 41 have inwardly directed beveled cutting flanges 44 which when brought together over the welded joint pinches ofl the upset metal at the exterior of the joined pipes 39 and 38 in the manner illustrated in FIGURE 5.

The upset metal at the interior of the joined pipes 38 and 39 can be removed by subsequent internal reaming devices or the like whereby the joined pipes 38 and 39 appear in the manner illustrated in FIGURE 6.

Thereafter, the copper pipe 38 is cut off to the desired length to form the transition joint of this invention.

For example, it has been found that the length of the copper pipe 38 can be approximately of an inch long to permit the same to be subsequently secured to an aluminum pipe.

After the copper pipe 38 and stainless steel pipe 3-9 have been joined together in the manner previously described, the free end 45 of the copper pipe 38 can be joined to an adjacent end 46 of an aluminum pipe 47 in the manner illustrated in FIGURES 7 and 8.

Preferably, the aluminum pipe 47 has a larger intern-a1 diameter than the copper pipe 38 for a purpose hereinafter described.

The joined stainless steel pipe 39 and copper pipe 38 are tightly held in a holding chuck 48 while the aluminum pipe 47 is tightly held in a holding chuck 49 whereby the holding chucks 48 and 49 are utilized to flash weld the ends 45 and 46 of the pipes 38 and 47 together in substantially the same manner previously described.

However, a pinch-off device 50 is disposed in the aluminum pipe 47 and has the cutting end 51thereof disposed in substantially the same plane as the cutting end '44 of the holding chuck 49.

As the electrical current is imposed on the holding chucks 48 and 49, and as the ends 45 and 46 of the pipes 38 and 47 are brought adjacent each other, the electrical arcing between the pipes 38 and 47 heats the ends 45 and 46 of the pipes 38 and 47 so that the same can be flash welded together by moving the ends 45 and 46 of the pipes 38 and 47 together under pressure whereby the pipes 38 and 47 are welded or fused together.

As the ends 45 and 46 of the pipes 38 and 47 are being flash welded together, the metal at the joined ends thereof is upset inwardly and outwardly in the manner illustrated in FIGURE 8 whereby the upset metal can be removed exteriorly of the welded joint by the pinch-off means 44 of the holding chucks 48 and 49 in the manner previously described.

The metal that is upset inwardly of the pipes 38 and 47 can be removed by moving the pinch-off device 50 toward the end 45 of the copper pipe 38 in the manner illustrated in FIGURE -8 whereby the end 45 of the copper pipe 38 acts as an anvil for the cutting edge 51 of the pinch-off device 50.

Therefore, the resulting interconnected pipes 38, 39 and 47, when joined together, appear as illustrated in FIGURE 9 whereby the same can be utilized to form the transition joint illustrated in FIGURE 3 for a cryogenic storage means having an outer steel container and an inner aluminum container, the steel pipe '39 being joined to the steel container '13 while the aluminum pipe 47 is joined to the aluminum container 11 so that the copper pipe 38 and part of the pipes 39 and 47 are disposed in the chamber 14 between theinner and outer containers 11 and 13 as illustrated in FIGURE 3.

Should it be desired to form the joint structure illustrated in FIGURE 2, wherein the inner and outer containers 11 and 13 are both formed from aluminumcontaining metallic material, the other end of the stainless steel pipe 39 can be joined to another length of aluminum by an intermediate copper pipein substantially the same manner as illustrated in FIGURES 4-9 whereby the outboard aluminum pipes will be respectively secured to the inner and outer containers 1:1 and '13 while the stainless steel pipe 49 would be disposed in the compartment 14 to provide the transition joint as illustrated in FIGURE 2.

In order to avoid brittleness in the joint between copper and aluminum it is preferable to maintain the eutectic zone bet-ween copper and aluminum very thin. It has been found that a copper-aluminum eutectic zone of 50 micro-inches or less avoids a brittle joint. Such a fine eutectic zone is achieved by using very fast upset speeds such as 12 inches per second or faster.

Further, it has been found that when oxygen-free copper is utilized for the transition joints of this invention improved flash Welding characteristics are obtained when forming the eutectic zones between the dissimilar metals of the joint, such oxygen-free copper having all traces of cuprous oxide removed therefrom where-by the oxygen-free copper flash Welds more readily and withstands higher temperatures than copper which has not been deoxidized. For example, such oxygen-free copper has been found to perform more satisfactorily than electrolytic tough pitch copper which contains 99.92% copper and a nominal oxygen content of 0.04%, the oxygen range being from 0.01% to 0.07%.

When such oxygen-free copper was utilized with 304L stainless steel to form the transition joints of this invention, a more ductile eutectic zone was produced between the metal pipes whereby it can be seen that the use of oxygen-free copper with 304L stainless steel reduces the brittleness of the euectic zone, therebetween to produce a stronger transition joint even though the eutectic zone is relatively thin.

The above oxygen-free copper is sometimes given the designation OFHC to denote oxygen-free as well as high conductive. The designation L of the above stainless steel utilized means a low carbon content which has been found to reduce the brittleness of the eutectic zone.

Therefore, it can be seen that improved cryogenic constructions are provided by this invention as well as an improved part and methods for making the same or the like.

In addition, while the particular metals, aluminum, copper and steel have been specified, it is to be understood that other metals can be utilized having different coefficients of thermal conductivity.

Further, while the terms aluminum and copper are utilized throughout, it is to be understood that such terms are intended to include such metals in the pure state or any alloys thereof.

While the form of the invention now preferred has been disclosed as required by the statutes, other forms 6 may be used, all coming within the scope of the claims which follow.

"What is claimed is:

1. In a cryogenic system having means for conveying a cryogenic fiuid'havingalow boiling point, an aluminum container, a steel container surrounding said aluminum container and being spaced therefrom to define a compartment therebetween, a length of aluminum pipe having one end thereof interconnected to said aluminum container and the other endthereof-disposed in said compartment, a length of stainless steel pipe having one .end thereof interconnected to the exterior steel container :and the other end thereof disposed insaid-compartmenhand a length of copper pipe having one end thereofflash welded to said other end of said stainless steel pipe-and the other end thereof flash welded tosaid otherlendof said aluminum pipe whereby said pipes provide-a transition joint between saidcontainers and iniwhich said-fluid can be conveyed in said system throughysaid interconnected pipes, and said copper .pipe being oxygen free to provide ductilexeutectic and transition zones :between said copper .pipe and-said aluminum and stainlesssteel ,pipes.

2. In a cryogenic system having means for conveying a cryogenic fluid having a low boiling point,an aluminum container, a steel container surrounding said aluminum container and being spaced therefrom to define a compartment therebetween, a length of aluminum pipe having one end thereof interconnected to the interior aluminum container and the other end thereof disposed in said compartment, a length of stainless steel pipe having one end thereof interconnected to the exterior steel container and the other end thereof disposed in said compartment, and a length of copper pipe having one end thereof flash welded to said other end of said stainless steel pipe and the other end thereof flash welded to said other end of said aluminum pipe whereby said pipes provide a transition joint between said containers and in which fluid can be conveyed in said system through said interconnected pipes, the flash welded interconnection between said copper pipe and said aluminum pipe having a thickness of 50 micro-inches or less whereby a ductile connection is provided between said copper pipe and said aluminum pipe.

3. A cryogenic system having means for conveying a cryogenic fluid having a low boiling point as defined in claim 2 wherein said copper pipe is oxygen free.

4. In a cryogenic system having means for conveying a cryogenic fluid having a low boiling point, a first aluminum container, a second aluminum container surrounding said first aluminum container and being spaced therefrom to define a compartment therebetween, a first length of aluminum pipe having one end thereof interconnected to said first aluminum container and the other end thereof disposed in said compartment, a second length of aluminum pipe having one end thereof interconnected to said second aluminum container and the other end thereof disposed within said compartment, a first length of copper pipe having one end thereof flash welded to said other end of said first aluminum pipe, a second length of copper pipe having one end thereof flash welded to said other end of said second aluminum pipe, and a length of stainless steel pipe having one end thereof flash welded to the other end of said first copper pipe and the other end thereof secured to the other end of said second copper pipe whereby said pipes provide a transition joint between said containers and in which said fluid can be conveyed in said system through said interconnected pipes, and said copper pipe being oxygen free to provide ductile eutectic and transition zones between said copper pipe and said aluminum and stainless steel pipes.

5. In a cryogenic system having means for conveying a cryogenic fluid having a low boiling point, a first aluminum container, a second aluminum container surrounding said first aluminum container and being spaced therefrom to define a compartment therebetween, a first length aluminum pipe having one end thereof interconnected to said first aluminum container and the other end thereof disposed in said compartment, a second length of aluminum pipe having one end thereof interconnected to said second aluminum container and the other end thereof disposed in said compartment, a first length of copper pipe having one end thereof flash welded to said other end of said first aluminum pipe, a second length of copper pipe having one end thereof flash welded to the other end of said second aluminum pipe, and a length of stainless steel pipe having one end thereof flash welded to the other end of said first copper pipe and the other end thereof flash welded to the other end of said second copper pipe whereby said pipes provide a transition joint between said container and in which said fluid can be conveyed through said interconnected pipes, the flash welded interconnection between said copper pipe and said aluminum pipe having a thickness of 50 micro-inches or less whereby a ductile connection is provided between said copper pipe and said aluminum pipe.

6. A cryogenic system having means for conveying a cryogenic fluid having a low boiling point as defined in claim 5, wherein said first and second copper pipes are oxygen free.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS Heylandt 220-15 Moyer 219-97 Long 285-173 Grenell 285-176 Yeager 220-15 Harris et al. 219-97 Bliss 220-9 Kaiser et a1. 219-97 Roovers 220-2.3 Stieglitz et al. 219-97 Haumann et al. 220-15 Brown.

Morrison et al. 29-1962 Schlumberger.

Skinner 285-173 OTHER REFERENCES Handbook of Chemistry and Physics, 37th ed., 1955,

THERON E. CONDON, Primary Examiner.

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3433384 *Aug 2, 1966Mar 18, 1969Reynolds Metals CoCryogenic constructions and methods for making the same
US5165246 *Nov 15, 1991Nov 24, 1992Praxair Technology Inc.Transport trailer for ultra-high-purity cryogenic liquids
US6185808 *Jan 29, 1999Feb 13, 2001General Electric CompanyCryostat, cryostat positioning method, and cryostat alignment set
US6367643 *May 8, 2000Apr 9, 2002General Electric CompanyCryostat, cryostat positioning method and cryostat alignment set
CN102513684A *Nov 28, 2011Jun 27, 2012左铁军Special welding fixture for copper aluminum tube and welding method and copper aluminum welded tube utilizing the same
Classifications
U.S. Classification220/560.1, 285/148.11, 62/50.1
International ClassificationF17C3/00, B23K11/16, F16L59/00, F17C3/08, B23K37/08, F16L59/14, F16L13/007, F16L13/00, F16L13/02, B23K11/18
Cooperative ClassificationB23K11/18, F16L59/141, B23K37/08, F16L13/007, F17C3/08, F16L13/02
European ClassificationF17C3/08, B23K11/18, F16L13/007, B23K37/08, F16L59/14B, F16L13/02