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.


  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS3291087 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 13, 1966
Filing dateJun 29, 1965
Priority dateJun 29, 1965
Publication numberUS 3291087 A, US 3291087A, US-A-3291087, US3291087 A, US3291087A
InventorsPauline Kransnick
Original AssigneePauline Kransnick
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Life saving rescue capsule
US 3291087 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)


32910s7 LIFE SAVING RESCUE CAPSULE Pauline Kransnick, 1705 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, Md. Filed June 29, 1965, Set. No. 467,883 6 Claims. (Cl. 11416.7)

This invention relates to life saving capsules or buoys for use on the high seas in rescue and escape from sunken submarines 01 from sinking surface craft, or disabled aircraft or other storm-wrecked structures at sea.

Many lives are lost at sea, as a result of wrecks of air, surface and submarine craft as well as underwater support structures, because of the lack of adequate life saving equpment, or prolonged exposure or drowning of the victims, before rescue ships are able to pick up the sur- The object of the present invention is to provide life saving capsules that will withstand the Water pressure at great depthg for escape of crew members fr-om sunken submarines, and will provide means for sustaining life for long periods of time before they may be found by rescue crews.

Another object is to provide means for stabilizing the capsule in rough weather so as to reduce rolling to a minimum.

A further object is to provide breather means in the top of the capsule which will have some open vents to the air above the surface of the water at all times, even in the roughest sea, no matter what position of roll the capsule may be in.

A further object is to use a substantially ellipsoidal form of capsule requiring minimum wall thickness for greatest strength against the external water pressure, and an additinal air belt near the top of the capsule to provide more buoyancy in the upper portions of the capsule. A further object is to use a weight in the bottom of the capsule and a floor spaced above said weight to provide a space therebetween, for battery, fresh water, food and other storage compartments such as for flares, paddles, etc. having access doors in the floor, and a waste sump and disposal pump operated by a handle extending upwardly from the floor.

A further object is to provide at least one hinged seat that may be turned up and folded against the side of the capsule, and has a seat belt for use when the seat is down.

Other and more specfic objects will become apparent in the following detailed description of a preferred form of the nvention as illustratecl in the accompanying drawings, wherein:

FIG. 1 is a vertical sectional view through the capsule showing the arrangement of parts inside,

FIG. 2 is a sectional view through a portion of a submarine showing the escape chamber, from which the cap sules are released one at a time through a hatch door on top,

FIG. 3 is an enlarged detail sectional view of one of the check valves in the air vent tubes, and

FIG. 4 is a horizontal sectional view taken on the line 4-4 of FIG. 1.

The capsule as illustrated in the drawing consists of the main body portion 12 and a domed cover portion 14, forming a continuous ellipsoidal chamber wall when the domed portion is secured in place by clamp bolts 18, which are fastened by means of wing nuts 16 under the rim flange 20 extending internally from the beveled sea]- ing surface 22 to provide an air tight seal.

The main body portion 12 has an annular air belt 24 formed by a wall 26 extending outwardly from the bevelled surface 22 toapproximately the diameter of the widest dimension of the body portion 12 and then curving down into a cylindrical porton of the wall 26 which runs United States Patent C) 3,291,087 Patentecl Dec. 13, 1966 into the ellipsoidal chamber wall at its widest point. This air belt provides additional -buoyancy in the upper part of main body portion to reduce its rolling tendency due to wave action.

A ballast weight 28 is provided in the bottom of the main body portion 12 to add stability in a turbulent sea. A floor 30 spaced above this ballast weight provides space for a fresh water tank 32, and storage chambers 34 and 36 for food and ether supplies 38 and for the battery 40, respectively. A sump 42 covered by a grate 44 substantially in the middle of the floor, drains into the rear end of purnp cylindr 46, which is normally closed at it outer and lower end by a normally closed check valve 48 in the wall of the main body portion 12. The pump pston 50 has a rigidly fixed connector rod 52 pivoted to the lower end of lever 54 in the sump. Lever 54 is pivoted at the door 30 and has an upwardly extending arm 56 with a handle 58 for operation by the occupant survivor(s) whenever it is desired to eliminate the sump contents by discharging them through the check valve 48. A lower segmental portion of the substantially flat piston 50 may be hinged to provide an inlet valve into the pump chamber 52 by opening during the inward stroke of the piston and closing during the outward stroke to force the pump chamber contents out through the check valve 48. Pump arm 56 may be made removable, so as to prevent injury to oceupants in a rough sea, by removing it when not in use.

The water tank may be provided with a hand pump 53 for drawing water out of it into a drinking cup or ladle 55, and trap doors 59 and 60 in the floor may be providecl over the storage and battery compartments respectively. Hinged seats 62 may be provided -on opposite sides for use either to sit on or a supports for a platform 64 to stand on when the domed cover portion is removed in calm waters, so as to enable the -cccupant(s) to fish or paddle the capsule to safety if necessary. The platform may be a pallet normally used on the floor 30 to distribute the weight of the oceupant(s) inore widely over floor 30.

The domed cover portion has Windows 66 for observation in all directions While it is secured in place for protection against the elements, as well as against excessive pressures during the escape journey from great depths. During this deep water journey, sea water which might leek through the breather valve in the ends of tubes 63, is prevented from entering the capsule through these tubes which open into the breathing chamber 70 in the top of the domed cover, by the check valve 72 in the floor of the breathing chamber '70. However, after the capsule reaches the surface of the water, valve 72 opens automatically in response to any excess pressure inside the capsule resultng from the use of oxygen released at a desired rate from an oxygen tank '74 mounted on the floor in the main body portion. Valve 72 may be manually locked in open position if desired to permit normal breathing operation of the tubes, as caused by fresh air entering the tubes extending into the wind and leaving the tubes which happen to be turned away from the wind, causing a flow in chamber 70 between the tubes. As the fresh air passes over the open valve 72 on its way between the tubes, some of it is deflected into the capsule on one side of the valve, causing some of the stale air to flow out of the capsule into chamber 70 on the other side of the valve. When the capsule is tossed around in a rough sea, the tube ends 75 which are dipped into the water are automatically closed by the breather valve '76 in each tube, since valves 76 are made of material which is lighter than water. which is splashed into the air and strikes the ends of tubes above the surface of the water will not pass the valve but will merely fioat t into closed position. While only four Even water breather tubes 68 are illustrated, any other number may be used in the same way to maintain ventilation at all times because at least some of the ends will be above water no matter how great the turbulence of the Water and the rolling and tossing of the capsule.

A smooth cap 78 is mounted over the tops of the breather tubes 68 for streamlinng purposes so that in the escape journey from the bottom of the sea, the tubes do not get tangled in any foliage or other obstacles in the water, but will glide through any obstructions that it might otherwise be impossble to get through.

Cap 48 may have a lens 80 built in for projecting a beam of light produced by an electric light bulb 82 operated from the battery 40. A switch and key may be used in the light circuit to produce a constant light beam or to make it flash, so as to ad search parties to readily find and rescue the victims in the capsules, after a storm has subsided suficiently. One or more flags 85, may be carried inside the capsule and may be mounted in sockets 87 provided for them in the rim flange 20, when the cover portion is opened.

These life saving capsules may be designed for deep sea submarine rescue, when the submariue has a special chamber for launching or releasing the capsules such as illustrated, for example, in FIG. 4. The release chamber 79 below the deck 81 of the submarine has one or more capsules stowed away for use in the event the submarine is disabled. The crew enters this chamber through the bulk head door 83 and boards their respective capsules, the cover portions 14 being swung open into the space 84. The covers are then closed and locked in place from the inside before the hatch or hatches 86 are opened to allow the capsules to be floated therethrough, and the crew is safely brought to the top of water, and if the weather permits and the crew desres to paddle their capsule, cover portion 14 may be opened and will float alongside the capsule, as shown partially in broken lines in FIG. l, because the hinge comprises a pair of loose interlooped rings 88 and 90 in planes substantially perpendicular to each other, one ring 88 being firmly fixed to the top of the air belt and the other 90 to the cover portion 14. The bevelled surfaces of the opposed sealing ring edges of the main body portion 12 and the cover portion 14, at 22 may be conical or spherical, the latter being preferred because they will provide a good seal even f the parts are slightly cocked out of alignment.

When the cover portion 14 is opened and floatng alongside the capsule, the platform 64 may be placed over the seats 62 to provide a rased floor for the crew enabling it to navigate toward land or safety by the use of paddles 92 over the sides of the capsule. The lght 94 inside the cover portion is connected to the battery 40 for inside lighting or for flashing if desired when the cover portion is opened. One or more hanger straps 96 may be provided inside the cover portion for the occupants use to steady themselves against being tossed about during heavy seas. Seat straps 98 may also be provided for this purpose, and a suitable cushion lining 100 may be used on the inside of the capsule main body portion 12, to prevent accidental injuries to the upper parts of the body of the occupant who sits on one of the seats or attempts to stand up in the capsule in a heavy sea.

For addtional electrical power supply or in the event of failure of the battery a manually operated magnetemotor may be mounted in the battery compartment alongside the battery for operation by a foot pedal, and may be switched into the battery circuit when desired.

It will be noted that the pressure in the capsule need never be much more than atmospheric even when tnaking an underwater escape at great depth, because the struc ture is such that it will stand a great pressure dilferential and the sump pump discharge valve will normally release any excess pressure in the capsule upon surfacing, so that no decompression will be necessary and the occupants need not be subject to the bends upon reaching the surface.

In the event that the capsule should get stuck under some obstruction such as heavy undersea foliage or debris, and some time elapses before surfacing of the capsule, the oxygen supply may be turned on from the tank 74 at a suitable rate and the sump pump may be used to eject any excess pressure inside the capsule. Also a supply of powdered dye may be stored in the capsule for such emergencies and released through the sump pump t0 fioat to the surface of the sea and help rescue crews to locate the capsule in distress.

Many ether obvious modificatons in details and arrangement of parts may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the present invention, as defined in the appended claims.

What is claimed is:

1. A life saving escape capsule for victms of a sunken vessel or structure at sea, comprising an ellipsoidal body large enough to accommodate at least one person, composed of a main body portion and a domed cover portion, said main body portion having an air belt around its upper end,

the domed cover portion forming the top of the capsule and beng seated on a concally bevelled seat on the upper edge of the main body portion inside said air belt, and

breathing tubes extending upwardly from said domed cover portion and having outwardly and downwardly curved ends provided with normally opened check valves of water buoyant material, causing them to close inwardly upon movement of any water into the end of the tube,

a ballast weight in the lower end of the capsule to improve its upright stablity while moving through or floatng on the surface of the water, and

a floor spaced over the top of said ballast weight pro viding compartments under the floor for fresh water, f-ood and equipment storage, and a battery, the battery and water compartments being on opposite sides of the vertical axis of the capsule to maintain substantial balance in this addition mass supplementing the ballast weight,

a sump substantially in the mddle of the floor leadng drectly into the rear end of a pump cylnder which is nclined outwardly to the side of the capsule body where it is normally closed by a one way outlet check valve, and

a piston operated manually in said cylnder and having a substantially flat head with a hnged segment in its lower portion serving as a trap valve normally closed when the pston is moved outwardly on its pressure stroke t0 eject the contents of the cylnder through said trap valve in the side of the capsule body, and opened by the suction pr-oduced in the cylnder when the piston is moved inwardly, to allow the matter in the sump to enter the cylnder for ejection during the pressure stroke.

2. An escape capsule as defined in claim I,

said domed cover portion being loosely hinged to the top of said main body portion so that when opened in a calm sea, it may be turned over to floatng position alongside the main body portion,

mounting sockets being provided in the top of said main body portion to hold flags andother signal levices that may be placed therein.

3. An escape capsule as defined in claim 1, and

a loose platform normally placed on the floor fordistributing the weight of the occupant(s) over the floor,

a pair of hinged seats on opposite walls of said capsule,

said platform being adapted for placing over said seats to provide a place to stand on when the domed cover has been removed, to enable the occupant(s) to navia cushon pad around the wall of the capsule to prevent gate and fish when desired. injuries to the head of a seated occupant in a heavy 4. An escape capsule as defined in claim 1, sea. said fresh water compartment being provided with a References Cited by the Examiner hand fpump and spgot f0r Withdrawng drinking water 5 UNITED STATES PATENTS the1e rom.

1019356 3/1912 Pontiere 114-16.7

5. An escape capsule as defined 1n cla1m 1, 1,257014 2/1918 Niemiec 114 16l7 X a pump handle extendng upwardly from the floor and connected to operate said fiat-headed pston, sad

handle being removable to elimnate a hazard when 10 FERGUS S. MIDDLETON, prmary Examner the iston is not operated. 6. An escape capsule as defined in claim 3, MILTON BUCHLER Exammer' a seat belt being provided for each seat, and T. M. BLIX, Assistant Examner.

2780,224 2/1957 Wallace 128-145

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1019356 *Dec 6, 1910Mar 5, 1912Stanley PontiereSubmarine life-saving and observation tender.
US1257014 *Apr 28, 1917Feb 19, 1918Jan TrendelLife-saving suit.
US2780224 *Mar 16, 1953Feb 5, 1957Wallace JamesMask for learning to swim above and under water
U.S. Classification114/324, 114/334, 114/330
International ClassificationB63G8/00, B63G8/41
Cooperative ClassificationB63G8/41
European ClassificationB63G8/41