Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS3253762 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 31, 1966
Filing dateMar 23, 1964
Priority dateMar 25, 1963
Publication numberUS 3253762 A, US 3253762A, US-A-3253762, US3253762 A, US3253762A
InventorsNorman Gaunt Thomas
Original AssigneeIllinois Tool Works
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Trays, containers and the like
US 3253762 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

May 31, 1966 T. N. GAUNT 3,253,762

' TRAYS, CONTAINERS AND THE LIKE Filed March 25, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet l INVE NTOR: Thomas Norman Gaunt His Alf'y May 31, 1966 T. N. GAUNT TRAYS, CONTAINERS AND THE LIKE 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed March 23, 1964 INVENTOR: Thomas Norman Gaunt wmwax His A rf'v United States Patent 3,253,762 TRAYS, CONTAINERS AND THE LIKE Thomas Norman Gaunt, Leeds, England, assignor to Illinois Tool Works Inc., Chicago, 11]., a corporation of Delaware Filed Mar. 23, 1964, Ser. No. 354,514 Claims priority, application Great Britain, Mar. 25, 1963, 11,640/ 63 2 Claims. (Cl. 2292.5)

Plastic containers of relatively thin wall thickness, manufactured from such materials as polystyrene, P.V.C., polyethylene, polypropylene, etc, are finding extensive use on account of their relative inexpensiveness and other desirable characteristics.

For certain purposes, such packages, however, are unsatisfactory owing to their inherent repellancy to many liquids, which come in contact with such plastic surfaces.

It is one of the principal advantages of this present invention to provide a plastic container capable of absorbing or retaining, within its side walls and/or base, liquids which frequently separate from foodstuffs being packaged. In many cases, particularly in the packing of fresh meat, this is especially desirable to keep the product in good condition and to improve its appearance and sales appeal. Further advantages are to produce a package of improved heat insulation characteristics, air circulation within the package, and protective cushioning to prevent the occurrence of physical damage to the packaged articles in transit. A further advantage is the possibility of decreasing the moisture vapour and gas permeability characteristics of the package to desirable and controllable limits dependent upon the thinning, stretching or orientation of the material during forming. Many attempts to overcome these problems have been proposed, such as the provision of ribs in the base and side walls of packages, or by the lamination together of plastic sheets in a corrugated form before forming, and retaining some of these corrugations after forming. None of these proposals have been entirely satisfactory.

This present invention overcomes previous disadvantages through the provision of a plurality of capillary recesses, capable of holding quantities of liquids out of contact with the product being packaged even when the container is inverted. The capillaries may be arranged to minimise the surface contact of such products as meat with the plastic, and to allow the free passage of air beneath the product and to provide cushioning. The capillary recesses may be moulded or formed in the base and/ or side walls of the container by suction or pressure moulding techniques, using heated plastic sheet together with suitable moulds. The recesses may be either vertical or inclined to the plane of the base of side walls of the package. The capillary recesses may be of circular, square, polygonal or of other suitable cross-sectional shape having adequate ratio of depth to diameter or Width in order to alford sufficient capillary attraction and the total surface area covered by the said recesses should preferably be relatively greater than the area of the material forming the peaks on which peaks is intended to rest the product or article to be packaged.

The said recesses are preferably tapered in a manner whereby they are narrower at their closed ends.

The side walls, which as previously stated, may include capillary recesses, also preferably include ribs which not only serve to strengthen or reinforce the containers but also act as distance-pieces for packaged products, permit circulation of air and provide chambers for condensation of moisture.

In order that the invention may be fully and clearly Patented May 31, 1966 comprehended the same will now be described with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIGURE 1 is a top plan view of a tray constructed according to one embodiment of the invention;

FIGURE 2 is a cross-sectional view of the tray shown in FIGURE 1;

FIGURE 3 is a plan view, drawn to larger scale, of a portion of the base of the tray illustrated in FIGURES 1 and 2;

FIGURE 4 is a cross-sectional view along the line 4-4 in FIGURE 3.

It will be observed on referring to the drawings that the container or tray is of dished form of rectangular shape having a base or bottom and sides inclined outwardly at an angle to the base. The angle of inclination of the Walls is preferably about 45.

The top of the walls is outwardly disposed to form a perimetral flange 1 preferably furnished with an inverted perimetral channel or groove 2 which serves to stabilize the article.

Each Wall embraces a plurality of hollow ribs 3 of substantially semicircular cross-section, each rib merging at its upper end into the corresponding wall while the opposite end merges into the base of the article at a predetermined distance from the juncture of the wall with the base.

It must be understood that the ribs 3 may be of any other suitable cross-sectional shape and may be formed upon only two of the opposing Walls.

Formed in the container base are a plurality of capillary recesses, cavities or cells 4 comprising substantially hemispherical depressions Whose upper ends are tapered or slightly rounded to provide a reticulated or approximately honeycomb patterned series of boundary Walls 5 forming a plurality of peaks 6. These peaks minimize the areas of contact of the package or container with the contained product or article and can allow circulation of air. Furthermore, such a construction imparts a stiffening effect to the container to an extent which makes possible the successful use of relatively thin sheet material.

Circulation of air as stated becomes possible although the boundary walls 5 separate the several recesses or cells 4 because the peaks 6 on the walls ensure air spaces or connections between the recesses. In other words,.the said recesses, boundary walls and peaks are somewhat like a multiplicity of inverted pyramids or frusto pyramids arranged with one corner uppermost, on which corners rest any object being packed.

A container or tray constructed according to the invention is readily obtained by utilizing a pressure or vacuum forming machine or mould composed of expanded metal produced by stretching perforated sheet metal in two directions in well known manner. Production moulds may be made by casting in metal or other suitable materials reproductions having the same or similar reticulated effects.

It has also been found that vertical or angled capillaries of considerable depth may readily be formed from a heat resistant rubber mould which may be reinforced with fibre and which can give rise to particularly deep capillaries capable of ready withdrawal from themould.

The liquid absorption or retaining characteristics of the tray may, if desired, be varied in dilferent parts of the tray by varying the depth and/ or dimensions of the depressions or the number of cavities or cells per unit of area. Trays may contain moulded partitions (FIGURE 2), which may or may not themselves contain capillaries, to separate different products contained in the same tray.

The cavities may be moulded for example to the extent of from 4 to 64 per square inch. The number of cavities moulded may conveniently be used for accurately and progressively decreasing the gas and moisture vapour permeability of a sheet material or package to render it more ideally suitable for packaging particular commodities. Plastic materials used may, if desired, be laminated and particularly interesting effects are obtained by laminating an expanded sheet material such as expanded polystyrene sheet to unexpanded polystyrene sheet, and forming packages from such laminates.

Trays may be overwrapped, closed with heat sealable or friction fitting lids, and the lidding material may itself, if desired, contain suitable absorbing or retaining cavities.

If desirable the base of the container may slope in any direction to cause any great local concentrates to flow and be retained. The outer edge of the base of the container may, in such a case, remain flat while varying the depths of the capillaries or alternatively, by moulding feet to the package to allow it to rest fiat.

As a further example, a small percentage of the cavities may be opened towards their base, which will allow liquid exceeding the height of the capillary to escape. The open base of the capillary may be less deep than the closed capillaries to allow the container to stand readily and allow the liquid to escape. Such packages can find use for horticultural purposes. If desired, packages containing such perforated cavities may be supported in a further cardboard or plastic container.

I claim:

1. A container made of plastic material having a bottom wall and a side wall which extends upwardly therefrom to an open mouth, at least one of said bottom and side walls in at least a portion thereof provided with a plurality of discrete, closely spaced recesses capable of receiving and holding quantities of liquid out of contact with products in said container, the material portion adjacent the upper end of each recess being interconnected reticulated partitions strengthening the area in which said recesses are provided, each said material portion having peak portions between which air circulation is permitted adjacent recesses, said peak portions minimizing areas of contact between the container and its contents.

2. The container set forth in claim 1 wherein the material portion surrounding each of said recesses extends outwardly of the plane of the container wall in which said recesses are formed to aiford cushioning to products received by the container.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,073,498 3/1937 Seez u 229 X 2,077,757 4/1937 Jackson 22072 X 2,088,074 7/1937 Voight 99425 2,321,676 6/1943 Hennessy 99425 2,492,053 12/1949 Mendel et a1 99425 X 2,802,411 8/1957 Riener 2293.5 X 2,918,379 12/1959 Lurie.

3,026,209 3/ 1962 Niblack et al 99174 3,151,799 10/1964 Engles et al 2292.5 3,155,303 11/1964 Fenkel 22987 3,156,402 11/1964 Dupuis 22930 JOSEPH R. LECLAIR, Primary Examiner.

FRANKLIN T. GARRETT, D. T. MOORHEAD,

Assistant Examiners.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2073498 *Feb 25, 1936Mar 9, 1937John Seez ChristianAshtray
US2077757 *Aug 17, 1936Apr 20, 1937Katzinger Edward CoBaking pan and material
US2088074 *Feb 12, 1936Jul 27, 1937Voight August LCooking utensil
US2321676 *Jun 9, 1941Jun 15, 1943 Broiler grill
US2492053 *Jul 13, 1946Dec 20, 1949Cribben And Sexton CompanyDevice for broiling foods
US2802411 *Feb 5, 1952Aug 13, 1957Penny Plate IncPie plate
US2918379 *Aug 4, 1958Dec 22, 1959Campbell Lurie Plastics IncMeat packaging and the like
US3026209 *Apr 28, 1958Mar 20, 1962Armour & CoPackaging of fresh meat and poultry
US3151799 *Apr 4, 1962Oct 6, 1964Dow Chemical CoPackaging tray
US3155303 *Jan 31, 1962Nov 3, 1964Fred MinikesMeat packaging tray
US3156402 *Jul 3, 1961Nov 10, 1964Continental Can CoLiquid absorbing and concealing device
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3351265 *Jul 24, 1964Nov 7, 1967Scientific AtlantaContainer and closure
US3450326 *Aug 21, 1967Jun 17, 1969Diamond Int CorpFood container
US3495758 *Oct 13, 1967Feb 17, 1970Phillips Petroleum CoLabel for containers having irregular side surfaces
US3563445 *Sep 11, 1968Feb 16, 1971Mobil Oil CorpPlastic tray structures
US3700096 *Mar 30, 1970Oct 24, 1972Diamond Int CorpFood packaging tray
US3811594 *Nov 26, 1971May 21, 1974Jenos IncUnitary container for a food product
US4029822 *Dec 29, 1975Jun 14, 1977Comer Robert EBone end shield for meat cuts
US4685274 *Jul 12, 1984Aug 11, 1987Garwood Ltd.Packaging foodstuffs
US4753351 *Apr 7, 1986Jun 28, 1988Francois GuillinContainer for packaging
US4779758 *Aug 9, 1982Oct 25, 1988Societe Parisienne D'impression Et De CartonrageCardboard container with reinforcing slits lined with synthetic material
US5048716 *Apr 13, 1987Sep 17, 1991Societe Parisienne D'impression Et De CartonnageCardboard container with reinforcing slits lined with synthetic material
US5220999 *Jan 3, 1992Jun 22, 1993Mobil Oil CorporationNestable hinged container for the display and storage of consumer articles
US6019511 *Nov 22, 1993Feb 1, 2000Tredegar Industries, Inc.Protective assemblies
US6349847Oct 6, 2000Feb 26, 2002Pactiv CorporationVented container with handles and embossment
US6619501Jul 19, 2001Sep 16, 2003Pactiv CorporationBase for food containers
US6644494Sep 14, 2001Nov 11, 2003Pactiv CorporationSmoothwall hinged containers
US6845878Sep 13, 2002Jan 25, 2005Pactiv CorporationContainers
US6962263Nov 21, 2002Nov 8, 2005Sambrailo Packaging, Inc.Produce packaging system having produce containers with double-arched ventilation channels
US7100788Dec 12, 2001Sep 5, 2006Sambrailo Packaging, Inc.Method and apparatus for packing and bi-directional cooling of produce
US7228986Jul 16, 2003Jun 12, 2007Pactiv CorporationBase for food containers
US7413094Jul 5, 2006Aug 19, 2008Sambrailo Packaging, Inc.Method and apparatus for packing and bi-directional cooling of produce
US7441672Jul 7, 2005Oct 28, 2008Sambrailo Packaging, Inc.Produce packaging system having produce containers with arched bottom and raised feet to enable under container ventilation
US7472799Aug 18, 2005Jan 6, 2009Sambrailo Packaging Inc.Produce packaging system having produce containers with double-arched bottom ventilation channels
US7703628Sep 13, 2006Apr 27, 2010Sambrailo Packaging, Inc.Produce packaging system enabling improved drainage for hydrocooling
US7832585Oct 13, 2006Nov 16, 2010Sambrailo Packaging, Inc.Nine container per tray packaging configuration and method for enhanced cooling of produce
US7980414Mar 5, 2010Jul 19, 2011Sambrailo Packaging, Inc.Produce packaging system enabling improved drainage for hydrocooling
US8083085Jun 22, 2006Dec 27, 2011Sambrailo Packaging, Inc.Cooling method and nine-down packaging configuration for enhanced cooling of produce
US8104635Jun 8, 2007Jan 31, 2012Pactiv CorporationBase for food containers
US8424701Nov 18, 2011Apr 23, 2013Sambrailo Packaging, Inc.Cooling method and nine-down packaging configuration for enhanced cooling of produce
US8490809Jun 10, 2011Jul 23, 2013Sambrailo Packaging, Inc.Produce packaging system enabling improved drainage for hydrocooling
US20110281001 *May 11, 2010Nov 17, 2011Tredegar Film Products CorporationPackage for food preservation
EP0972720A2 *May 27, 1999Jan 19, 2000Linpac Plastics LimitedProduct tray
EP1647497A1 *Jul 28, 2005Apr 19, 2006Sharp Interpack LimitedContainer with liquid holding recesses
Classifications
U.S. Classification206/521.1, D09/425, 426/106, 426/129
International ClassificationB65D81/26
Cooperative ClassificationB65D81/261
European ClassificationB65D81/26C