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Publication numberUS3266669 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 16, 1966
Filing dateDec 11, 1964
Priority dateDec 11, 1964
Publication numberUS 3266669 A, US 3266669A, US-A-3266669, US3266669 A, US3266669A
InventorsDaniel Vuyosevich Nicholas
Original AssigneeAssociates Inc V
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Water pressure actuated explosively operated actuating mechanism
US 3266669 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)


mam L05 D. vu VUSEVICJV AGE/VT United States Patent 3 266,669 WATER PRESSURE ACTUATED EXPLGSIVELY OPERATED ACTUATING MECHANISM Nicholas Daniel Vuyosevich, Fair Haven, Ni, assignor to V. Associates Incorporated, Matawan, NJ. Filed Dec. 11, 1964, Ser. No. 417,552 4 (Ilaims. (Cl. 222-) The present invention relates to a water pressure actuated explosively operated actuating mechanism and more particularly to an automatic actuator mechanism for releasing a floatation device and in particular to a small explosively operated charge that is actuated in the shortest possible time in response to the increase in pressure when immersed in water.

The purpose of this invention is to provide a self-inflat in g life preserver which, when attached to the individual, will automatically inflate as quickly as possible when it is immersed in water to provide means for maintaining the person above the Water until rescued.

Existing types of automatically actuated mechanism for life preservers operate in response to a change in conditions such as immersion in an activating fluid such as water. They rely either upon a chemical reaction such as the generation of a pressurized gas by a chemical compound that is responsive to contact with an activating fluid. Consequently their operation is always with a time delay from the initial immersion before there is an inflation of the floatation equipment. Or they rely upon a pressure sensitive device and battery such as a spring biased valve means retaining the chamber closed until the device is submerged far enough below the surface to overcome the biasing of the valve and open the valve to allow the actuating fluid to activate the fluid energized battery. However with this type of triggering means, the delay between a significant change in the condition and the actual operation of the device may be unduly long. Since the immersion device utilized is in the form of a so-called squib cylinder, the valve mechanism will control the actual response to submersion in an activating fluid. Therefore the valve mechanism must provide a protection or closure under atmospheric pressure to prevent dampness or moisture from being absorbed by the battery. However the valve mechanism must be instantly responsive to a change in pressure such as the submersion of the device in water so that the water will penetrate the battery and produce immediate operation of the squib.

It is an object of the present invention to provide a compact light weight automatically actuated floatation device for ready attachment to an individual to be supported thereby.

It is a further object of this invention to provide an automatically actuated floatation device that is responsive to a pressure change greater than atmospheric pressure to provide actuation in the least possible time.

A still further object of this invention is to provide an automatically actuated floatation device that is activated by a squib and in which the squib is detonated by a fluid activated battery and in which the fluid to activate said battery is resisted by a butterfly valve that is closed under atmospheric pressure but opens under an increasing pressure such as the submersion in water.

Other objects of this invention shall be apparent by reference to the accompanying detailed description and the drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is an elevational view of the complete device,

FIG. 2 is an enlarged cross sectional view of the device,

FIG. 3 is an end view taken on the line 33 of FIG. 2,

FIG. 4 is a cross sectional View taken on the line 44 of FIG. 2,

FIG. 5 is an enlarged perspective View of the butterfly valve shown open,

3,266,669 Patented August 16, 1966 FIG. 6 is a further embodiment of the butterfly valve,

FIG. 7 is a view taken on line 7-7 of FIG. 6, and

FIG. 8 is a still further embodiment of the butterfly valve. Referring to the drawings and particularly FIG. 1 there is illustrated an automatically fluid actuated control 10 and air or gas compressed storage tank or container 11 for filling a floatation device. More particularly there is illustrated in FIG. 2 the actuating mechanism of the control 10 which comprises a housing or body portion 12 that is provided on one end with an open bore 14 to perm1t attaching the compressed gas or air container 11. The neck 15 of container 11 is threadably secured at 16 to the open bore 14 and is retained in sealed relationship with the open bore 14 by a seal 17 so that the mouth 18 of container 11 is retained in sealed relationship adjacent to a central bore 19 of the body 12. The central bore 19 is connected by a port 20 to a D shaped exit port 21. Port 21 is utilized as the connecting port for the floatation device (not shown). The central bore 19 is also connected centrally with a pair of bores 23 and 24 that open to the opposite end of the body portion 12, bore 23 being the smaller bore and bore 24 being the larger bore. Mounted in bores 23 and 24 are a piston 25 and actuating pin 26. Piston 25 may take any normal piston form, however in this embodiment the piston is formed with two enlarged portions 27 and 28 with a connecting central element 29. This permits mounting a manually actuated cam 30 so that its end 31 will bear against the under surface of portion 28 of the piston. The manually actuated cam 30 is pivotally retained by a pin 32. Cam 30 is positioned in a slot 33 in body 12. The opposite end of cam 30 is provided with an aperture 34 to permit attaching a rope 35. The actuating pin 26 may be integral with piston 25 or may be threadably secured to the end of piston 25 as illustrated in FIG. 2. Pin 26 at its opposite end is provided with a perforating point 40 and positioned in close proximity to the sealed head 18 of container 11. Thus it is apparent that for a manual operation when rope 35 is pulled, cam 30 will be pivotally moved on its pin 32 so that the opposite end of cam 30 will bear against the under surface of portion 28 of piston 25 moving piston 25 to the left, FIG. 2, advancing the actuating pin 26 until its perforating point 40 penetrates the sealed face 18 of container 11 thus releasing the compressed air or gas in container 11 to flow through port 20 and out the D shaped exit port 21 to fill the floatation device attached thereto (not shown). Since the device illustrated and described is to be automatically actuated as soon as it is submerged into water, there is provided an actuating device 50 that is threadably secured at 51 to the open end 52 of body portion 12. The actuating device 50 is comprised of a body portion 53 having an enlarged bore 54 at one end that is connected to a small bore 55 at the opposite end. Bore 55 is of an exact size to receive a squib 56. Squib 56 is an expandable explosive charge actuated by an electrical circuit. Squib 56 is provided with two electrical terminals 57 and 58. A dry battery 59 is mounted in the larger bore 54. Battery 59 in its dry condition provides no electrical energy output. However as soon as battery 59 is submerged in a fluid, battery 59 becomes energized and produces an energy output through its terminals 60 and 61. Terminals 60 and 61 are connected to the terminals 57 and 58 of the squib capsule 56. To prevent the absorption of moisture by battery 59 there is provided a moisture barrier 62 in the form of a check valve. The check valve 62 in this embodiment is comprised of a circular disc of neoprene or any composition to perform in a similar manner as illustrated in FIG. 4. To retain disc 62 in the mouth of the large bore 54 of body 53 there is provided a shoulder 63 against which the disc is mounted and a washer 64 is mounted in a groove 65 on the opposite side of disc 62 to retain the disc as illustrated in FIG. 2. Washer 64 is constructed with a circular rim portion 66 that holds disc 62 .as'shown but allows the butterfly valve to open. In the position as illustrated in FIGS. 2, 3 and 4, disc 62 is in a closed position. However disc 62 is provided with a cut or separated central portion to permit the disc to be opened inwardly or outwardly by a force greater than the pressure of atmosphere. In the one embodiment as illustrated in FIGS. 3, 4 and 5, disc 62 is cut or formed with open slots 68 and 69 which thus form four extended flaps 70. To assist flaps 70 in yielding to any pressure greater than atmospheric pressure, the disc 62 may be scored along lines 71 so that flaps 70 will yield, as illustrated in FIG. 5, under pressure entering the larger bore of mouth of body 53. There are a plurality of apertures of breather holes 67 spaced about the periphery of body 53 to permit air to escape when water enters through slots 68, 69 of disc 62. In the event the body 53 entered the water with the squib end down, the water will enter apertures 67 and force the air out flapper valve of disc 62. Thus it is apparent that the device as illustrated will prevent the absorption of moisture through the mouth or bore 54 to battery 59. However disc 62 is constructed in such a manner that an increase in pressure such as when the device is submerged in a fluid will open the flaps 70 either as illustrated in FIG. 5 or in an opposite direction to allow a free flow of fluid to battery 59 thus activating battery 59 which in turn transmits electrical energy to squib 56 releasing the charge of squib 56 so that the charge entering bore 24 will propel piston 25 to the left, FIG. 2, causing pin 26 and specifically its perforating point to rupture the sealed face 18 of container 11 thus releasing the container gas or air pressure to in turn pass through port 20 and exit port 21 to charge the floatation device.

A further embodiment of disc 62 is illustrated in FIGS. 6 and 7 in which a similar disc 62A may be utilized. Disc 62A is of the same proportions to fit in bore 54 to be retained in the same fashion except that in this embodiment there may be provided two semi-circular cuts or separations 73. To assist the two lips 74 formed in disc 62A, the lips may be scored at their base along the dotted lines 75. Thus under pressure, that is, such as with a fluid entering port 54, lips 74 will move inward as illustrated in FIG. 7 pushing the contained air out apertures 67 allowing the fluid having greater than atmospheric pressure to pass through disc 62A and to saturate battery 59 as in the previous embodiment. If the fluid enters through apertures 67 then the contained air will be expelled through disc 62 and out port 54. Discs 62 and 62A may take other forms as long as the disc is provided with areas that open under an increase in pressure greater than atmospheric pressure to allow the passage of a fluid to permit the operation of the device as described above. The degree of pressure required to open discs 62 or 62A may be predetermined by the thickness of the neoprene disc and the degree of flexibility of the disc.

A further embodiment of the use of discs 62 and 62A is illustrated in FIG. 8 in which the apertures 67 are enlarged to become ports 67. A flapper valve comprised of a disc 62 or 62A is fitted to the port 67A to function in the same manner as described.

Various changes may be made in the actuating device 50, that is, the manner of retaining washer 64 and disc 62 as long as they are held in the relationship shown, or the manner of mounting battery 59, or the shape of battery 59 without departing from the spirit of this invention and various changes may be made to the actual construction of the control device, that is, the size of bores and piston and the length of travel of the piston as long as the penetration of point 40 through the sealed face 18 is accomplished by the actuation of squib 56 without departing from the spirit of this invention and this invention shall be limited only by the appended claims.

What is claimed is:

1. A floatation device operable after immersion in water including, a pressurized container with a frangible sealed end, a piston mounted in a cylinder and said cylinder at one end attached to said frangible sealed end of said pressurized container, said piston provided with a piston rod that extends from said piston through said cylinder to a point adjacent the sealed end of said pressurized container, said piston rod having a perforating point at the point adjacent said sealed end of said pressurized container and an electrically actuated expandable squib mounted in a sealed relationship in the other end of said cylinder and a battery mounted adjacent to said squib and electrically connected thereto, said battery energized by immersion in water, said battery contained within said cylinder and protected from humidity by a moisture barrier at the open end of said cylinder opposite to said pressurized container, said moisture barrier comprised of a check valve to be opened by a fluid pressure greater than atmospheric pressure.

2. In a device according to claim 1 in which said check valve is comprised of a rubber disc that is perforated to form a plurality of flaps that are normally closed, said flaps being yieldable to a fluid pressure greater than atmospheric pressure to open.

3. In a device according to claim 1 in which said check valve is formed as a circular rubber disc provided with a center having a cross shaped perforation that is normally closed and opens under pressure greater than atmospheric pressure.

4. In a device according to claim 1 in which said check valve is formed as a circular rubber disc provided with a pair of semi-circular perforations to form a butterfly shape that is normally closed and opens under pressure greater than atmospheric pressure.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,944,268 7/1960 Fruendt 222-5 X 2,989,381 6/1961 Musser 222-5 X 3,059,814 10/1962 Poncel et a1. 222-5 FOREIGN PATENTS 1,234,160 5/1960 France.

RAPHAEL M. LUPO, Primary Examiner. NORMAN L, STACK, Assistant Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2944268 *Apr 28, 1959Jul 12, 1960Fruendt Adel JActuating mechanism for expanding an inflatable article
US2989381 *Jun 19, 1957Jun 20, 1961Walton Musser CNon-corrosive gas generator
US3059814 *Nov 9, 1959Oct 23, 1962Pauly Jacob LActuator for emergency water equipment
FR1234160A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3633596 *Jul 23, 1970Jan 11, 1972Us NavyDiaphragm valve
US3669311 *Apr 27, 1970Jun 13, 1972Us NavyUndersea pressure sensitive actuator
US3809288 *Mar 26, 1973May 7, 1974Mackal GInflation manifold
US3913604 *Jul 13, 1972Oct 21, 1975Hanson David EPiston-actuated fluid discharge device
US4223805 *Aug 4, 1978Sep 23, 1980Mackal Glenn HAutomatic inflator
US4482333 *Apr 30, 1982Nov 13, 1984Geri Engineering, Inc.Automatic inflation system
US4768128 *May 5, 1987Aug 30, 1988Conax Florida CorporationWater activated pressurized gas release device
US4887674 *Mar 22, 1988Dec 19, 1989Galosky David GCartridge operated fire extinguisher
US5413247 *Mar 29, 1994May 9, 1995Bernhardt Apparatebau Gmbh U. Co.Release adapter for pressure gas cartridge
US20140020791 *Jul 17, 2013Jan 23, 2014Conax Florida CorporationInflator Assembly Adapted for Manual or Automatic Inflation
U.S. Classification222/5, 441/94
International ClassificationF16K17/40, F16K17/00
Cooperative ClassificationB63C9/24
European ClassificationB63C9/24