US 3296777 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Jan* 10, 1967 c. E. JAKsoN ETAL 3,296,777
COMBINATION VACUUM SWEEPER AND LIQUID VAPORIZER Svp/Ey 6. THoeA/BUQV ATTORNEY Jan l0, 1967 c. E. JAcKsoN ETAL 3,296,777
COMBINATION VACUUM SWEEPER AND LIQUID VAPORIZER Filed Aug. e, 1964 s sheets-sheet 2;
5l ing (Lanz/.f E. Jqc/csQN Svp/wey G. THOR/#Buey INVENTORS ATTO @N E Y Jan- 10, 1967 c. E. JACKSON ETAL 3,296,777
COMBINATION VACUUM SWEEPER AND LIQUID VAPORIZER Filed Aug. 6, 1964 5 Sheetsheet 3 H4 le@ :e7 95 Q2 '70 leaf- :e4 r 3 I T172 Laan E. Jpc/ 5014 SYDNEY G. THozNeuQY INVENTORS ATTO ZNEY United States Patent C) W 3,296,777 CQMBINA'HN VACUUM SWEEPER AND LIQUID VAPGRHZER Clark E. Jackson and Sydney G. Thornbury, Rolling Hills,
alif., assignors to Purex Corporation, Ltd., Lakewood,
Calif., a corporation of California Filed Aug. 6, 1964i, Ser. No. 387,743 11 Claims. (Cl. 55-2l6) This invention relates to a vaporizing system, and is particularly concerned with an accessory in the form of a liquid vaporizer designed for attachment to blowers and particularly to vacuum cleaners, and capable of filling or saturating an enclosed space or room with a fine concentrated mist or vapor of a liquid or disinfectant at a concentration which will rapidly and effectively humidify such space or kill air-borne bacteria and organisms.
Various types of humidifier and vaporizer attachments for vacuum cleaners are known. Thus, for example, U.S. Patent 2,642,637 discloses a vaporizing attachment for vacuum cleaners which is provided with .a housing having a fluid reservoir therein made of a highly absorbant material such as a sponge contained in a fiber envelope, the sponge being impregnated with a germicidal liquid such as triethylene glycol. The accessory is attached to the exhaust outlet of the vacuum cleaner and the air Hows through and around the reservoir causing the triethylene glycol to evaporate. The vapor laden air is discharged into a room. However, the vapors of the germicidal liquid produced in this device are not sulficiently concentrated to effectively disinfect a room, and particularly a large room in a short period of time.
U.S. Patent 2,345,658 discloses a humidifying attachment for vacuum cleaners which also is designed to be connected to the exhaust outlet of the blower. In this device humidifying liquid in the attachment is pressurized to cause the liquid to be projected upwardly through a nozzle in a stream which strikes a fine mesh screen and is diffused thereby into a vapor which is discharged with the air into the surrounding atmosphere. The use of such device including a screen tends to restrict the flow of air and places an undue burden on the blower motor,
In US. Patent 2,304,868, an attachment for a vacuum cleaner is described in which a liquid mist is aspirated into the dust-laden air exhaust stream of the blower and then is blown into a dust collecting bag before the rnist laden air stream is discharged to the atmosphere. In this device the accessory unit is inserted between the blower outlet and the dust collecting bag, and under the circumstances the liquid mist must permeate the dirt load and the filter member .before being discharged to the atmosphere, thus, greatly reducing the concentration of the liquid mist in such discharged air.
It is a particular object of the invention to provide `a vaporizer system for use in combination with a blower and particularly as an attachment to a vacuum cleaner, to obtain a finer and more concentrated mist of the treating liquid in the air discharged from the 'blower or vacuum cleaner into a room. Another important object is to provide a vaporizer device in combination with a Iblower and particularly with a vacuum cleaner, in which the site for injection of the treating liquid to be vaporized is particularly selected so as to provide a maximum and concentrated dispersal of liquid droplets in the air passing through the blower or vacuum cleaner so that the exhaust stream containing the aerosol droplets permeates the surrounding atmosphere, to provide a concentrated mist of the treating liquid.
Another object is to provide a novel vaporizer apparatus, and preferably including in combination, means for mounting and maintaining 4a container of liquid to he vaporized in an inverted position.
3,296,777 Patented Jan. 10, 1967 ICC Another object of the invention is the provision of a vaporizer attachment for a vacuum cleaner which will function to provide a concentrated mist of a vaporized liquid in the surrounding atmosphere simultaneously with the vacuuming operation.
Yet another object of the invention is the provision of a vaporizer attachment for a blower and particularly a vacuum cleaner, designed to maintain a container in an inverted position together with auxiliary equipment for introducing the treating liquid at a desired ow rate into a site within the vacuum cleaner which provides maximum dispersal of the liquid droplets with the air passing through the vacuum cleaner, including means for regulating the pressure within the container to control the rate of flow -of the treating liquid into the vaporizing site of the vacuum cleaner, valve means for controlling the flow of treating liquid from the vaporizer, in response to the air velocity at the site of injection of the liquid into the vacuum cleaner, and bracket means permitting easy and rapid installation of the container of treating liquid in a supported inverted position for flow of treating liquid to the vacuum cleaner, and for firmly supporting the container in position on the vacuum cleaner, and including means for introduction of a suction tube into the inverted top of the container for flow of uid therefrom when the container is placed in the inverted position, and means for venting or pressurizing the upper portion of the bottle above the liquid level when such container is placed in the inverted position, and including means embodied in the container for providing liquid seals around lthe suction tube outlet in the inverted top of the bottle and at the vent opening in the upper portion of the bottle, particularly when the upper portion of the container is pressurized.
`Other objects and advantages of the invention will be apparent hereinafter.
It has now been found that if the liquid vaporizer attachment is designed so that the treating liquid, e.g., humidifying or disinfectant liquid, is introduced directly into the blower or volute chamber of the blower of the Vacuum cleaner, that is, into the suction side of the blower, the liquid droplets injected with the air into the blower chamber are subjected to vigorous agitation therein, and are thus dispersed in the form of a tine mist or vapor in the air within the volute chamber so that when the resulting mist-laden air is discharged from the blower directly into the atmosphere of a room, ksuch concentrated mist-laden lair `is capable of saturating or nearly saturating the air within such room in a very few minutes. Also, utilizing the lheat of compression of the air and liquid mixture in the volute chamber facilitates volatilization and mist formation of the treating liquid prior to final expansion thereof to atmospheric pressure when such mixture is discharged from the vacuum cleaner. In preferred embodiment the exhaust outlet of the lblower of the vacuum cleaner is designed so as to direct a substantially vertical aerosol fountain into the surrounding atmosphere. This insures evaporation of the droplets of treating liquid in the form of a ne mist throughout the space being humidied or disinfected.
The novel attachment or accessory according to the invention comprises lbracket means which grasps the cap of a container housing the treating liquid as the container is inverted and snaps over the bottom of the bottle tohold it in position on the bracket. The container or bottle is preferably constructed of a relatively stiff pierceable material. When the container or bottle is inverted a hollow pointed tube pierces the seal in the mouth of the bottle to permit the drawing off of the container liquid while at the same time a venting hollow needle pierces the upper portion of the bottle wall so as to pressurize the container contents above the pressure of the liquid outlet nozzle during operation.
The hollow draw-off tube introduced into the inverted bottle communicates with a suction tube having at its outer end a discharge nozzle. Such nozzle is located in the chamber adjacent the inlet to the volute or 'blower chamber, or if desired, the apparatus can be designed so that the nozzle projects directly into the blower chamber.
A cut-olf valve means is provided to interrupt the fiow of treating liquid through the discharge nozzle, in response to the Iair velocity in the inlet port to the blower. According to a preferred embodiment a resilient member mounted on the draw-off tube is biased against the outlet nozzle, such that when the blower is in operation the pressure of the air passing from the blower inlet into the blower chamber maintains the valve open and when the blower motor is cut off the resilient member is biased into contact with the nozzle outlet to interrupt flow of the treating liquid.
The venting needle which punctures the upper end of the inverted bottle when in position on the bracket means may be open to the atmosphere or such venting needle may communicate via a conduit with a pressurized zone within the blower volute chamber. Such pressure may be regulated to maintain a constant pressure differential across the metering orifice or -the discharge nozzle, and hence permit a constant flow rate.
If desired, according to another embodiment, the aspiration rate of the treating liquid can be increased by incorporating a venturi in the inlet port of the blower and by placing the outlet nozzle in the high velocity center of the venturi.
The instant vaporizer attachment is preferably applicable for incorporation on vacuum cleaners having the dust separating means located in advance of the blower inlet. Thus, 'by introducing the liquid to be vaporized into the inlet side of the blower following passage of the air through the dust collecting means, the mist of treating liquid in aerosol form in the carrier air is not required to permeate a dirt load and the filter member, and hence the invention structure facilitates the production of a concentrated fine mist of the vaporized liquid in the air discharged from the blower and into the surrounding atmosphere.
The invention will be more clearly understood by reference to the description below of certain illustrative embodiments of the invention taken in connection with the accompanying drawings wherein:
FIG. 1 is a view in elevation of a vacuum cleaner incorporating the vaporizer attachment of the invention, partly broken away to show certain of the structural details;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged view of the liquid draw-off tube and outlet nozzle, including the biased cut-off valve mounted on such tube;
FIG. 3 is an enlarged detail of a portion of the cut-off valve, taken on line 3 3 of FIG. 2;
FIG. 4 shows an enlarged detail in section of the top of the container mounted in inverted position on the bracket, and the hollow draw-off tube inserted through the cap of the bottle into the inverted upper end thereof for removal of the liquid contents;
FIG. 5 is a detail taken o'n line 5-5 of FIG. 4, showing the cap of the inverted container disposed against the bottle insertion guide of the bracket;
FIG. 6 is a view taken on line 6-6 of FIG. 1, showing one of the rotors of the blower unit;
FIG. 7 shows a modification which permits pressurizing of the container contents by connection of the vent tube with the volute chamber of the vacuum cleaner.
FIG. 8 illustrates another modification wherein a venturi throat is provided at the inlet to the blower with the outlet nozzle of the liquid draw-off tube positioned centrally of the venturi;
FIG. 9 is a plan view taken on line 9-9 of FIG. 8;
FIG. 10 is a perspective view Iof the cut-off valve em ployed in the modification of FIG. 8; and
FIG. 1l illustrates a still further modification showing an elbow mounted on the exhaust outlet of the vacuum cleaner and designed to discharge the mixture of air containing the vaporized liquid mist vertically into the surrounding atmosphere.
Referring particularly to FIG. 1 of the drawing, numeral 10 represents a vaporizer according to the invention which is mounted on a vacuum cleaner indicated by the numeral 12, such vacuum cleaner being of a conventional industrial design.
The vacuum cleaner 12 comprises a drum 14 within which yis mounted a filter bag 16 for removal of dust in the air swept into the vacuum cleaner, the filter bag 16 being supported against a screen 18 during operation of the blower. The blower 2t) is mounted in a blower or volute chamber 22 mounted over the top of the drum, and a motor 24 is positioned above the blower chamber for operation of the blower.
A suction hose 26 is mounted on an air Iinlet 28 at the side of the drum and an air defiector 30 affixed to the drum `wall by bolts 32 functions to divert the incoming air downward and around the filter bag 16. The filter bag 16 is supported on a depending filter support rim 34 mounted at the upper end of drum 14, the filter bag 16 being supported from the filter support rim in depending position, by a wire 36 which snugly holds the upper periphery of the filter bag against the outer surface of the rim 34.
The filter bag supporting screen 18 is supported in depending position within the drum 14 from a frame member 38 extending across the top of the drum 14 and connected to an inwardly extending shoulder portion 39 of the outer case.
The screen 18 is firmly supported from its lower end by a pan 46 held against the lower edge of the screen by means of depending studs or -pins 40 which are threaded at their upper ends 42 into the frame member 38 and are provided with nuts 44 threadably engaged at their lower ends to tighten the pan 46 against the bottom of the screen 18.
An air discharge aperture 48 is provided in the center of the frame member 38. A hollow buoyant ball 50 is positioned within the screen 18 and normally rests on a ange 52 struck up from the pan 46, as seen in FIG. 1. The ball 50 remains in the position shown in FIG. l in normal vacuum sweeping operations but during wet sweeping operations where water may enter the drum 14, when the water in the drum reaches a predetermined height the ball 50 rises and seats against the aperture 48 to shut off further fiow of water into the drum and prevent any danger of water entering the blower chamber 22.
The blower housing 54 is mounted on gaskets 56 and 58 supported against frame members 38 and 60 centrally above the drum 14. The motor housing 62 is supported above the blower housing 54, the units 54 and 62 being fixed to the frame member 38 by means of studs 66 threaded at their lower ends 68 into the frame member 38 and provided with nuts 70 at their upper end, clamping the depending flange 64 of the motor housing 62 and the adjacent frame member 60 together, in fixed position with respect to frame member 38.
Mounted on the depending motor shaft 72 are a pair of spaced rotors 74 and 76 of light construction and similar design, and having side walls 82 connected by spirally shaped blades 79, as indicated in FIG. 6. Each of such rotors has a central opening 77 in the front face thereof to permit passage of air into the rotors. A stator 78 is positioned between the rotors 74 and 76, and is connected at 80 to the wall of the blower housing 54. The wall of the blower housing 54 above rotor 76 is provided with a series of peripherally disposed louvers 84 for discharge of air from the blower housing. An exhaust outlet 86 is connected to the outer casing 83 which encloses the blower housing 54.
The vacuum sweeper 12 is mounted on a base 90 which in turn is supported on wheels 92 for portability of the device.
When the blower 2t)l is turned on for operation of the vacuum sweeper, air containing dust particles is swept through the air inlet 28 into the drum and passes through the lter bag 16 and the screen 18, with the lter bag supported against the sc-reen as indicated in dotted lines in FIG. l. The filtered air then passes upwardly through the interior of the `screen and through the air discharge outlet 48 and then upwardly through the chamber 94 between the drum and the blower housing 54, as indicated by the arrows. The suction produced by the blower then causes the air to pass through an opening 96 in the bottom of the blower housing, yand then consecutively through rotor '74, stator 78, rotor 76 and through the louvers 84 out of the blower housing 54, then into the annular space between the blower housing and the case 88, and the air Iis finally discharged through the exhaust outlet 86, such ilow of the air being indicated by the arrows in FIG. l. i
Dirt and soil iiltered from the incoming air by the bag 16 collects in the bottom of the drum 14, from which it can be removed periodically.
The vaporizer attachment of the invention is mounted on the side 39 of the vacuum cleaner outer casing above the drum 14. The vaporizer comprises a bottle holding bracket 98 and a draw-off or suction tube 1110 which is connected as by brazing at 104 to the bottom portion or strap 124 of the bracket 93. The lower strap 124 of the bracket 98 rests on the shoulder portion 39 of the sweeper casing and is connected thereto by means of bolts 102 to hold the bracket 98 in vertical bottle holding position on the sweeper casing.
The suction -tube 100 is positioned in a substantially horizontal plane as shown in FIG. l, and passes through member 39 and the frame member 38 into the chamber 94 above the screen 18 and ball check Sil, and below the blower housing 54. Seals 106 and 108 are provided around the tube and members 39 and 3S respectively.
As seen in FIG. 4, suction tube 100 has an upwardly bent sharpened end portion 111D which is adapted to puncture the seal in the top of a bottle containing liquid to be vaporized, as described in greater detail below, and carries at its opposite inner end within the chamber 94 a tube portion 112 of smaller diameter than tube 100. Tube 112 has an upwardly directed end portion which terminates in a restricted opening or nozzle 114, as best seen in FIG. 2.
The bottle `holding bracket 98 comprises a vertical portion 116 which is bent outwardly at its upper end to form a bottle holder bracket 118, such `bracket 118 having a notch 120 therein, the function of which will be described in detail lbelow. The lower portion of the bracket 98 is bent outwardly and downwardly to form the strap portion 124, the latter being bent upwardly and lback to form a bottle holder bracket 126 which terminates in an arcuately shaped bottle insertion guide member 128 as seen in FIG. 5. At the upper end of the vertical portion 116 of the bracket is positioned a sharpened vent tube 122.
In a preferred embodiment of this invention there is mounted near the inner end of tube 100 a hinge bracket 130 to which is hinged at 132 a metal strap or arm 134 carrying at its outer end a weight 136. Arm 134` `is disposed over the nozzle or orifice 114, and positioned above the orifice on the arm 134 is a steel washer 138 having a centrally mounted rubber disc 149 thereon, as seen more clearly in FIG. 2. When the 'blower is not on and the vacuum sweeper is not in operation, the weighted arm 134 is biased against the orice 114 so that the rubber disk 140 thereon makes contact with and closes 01T orifice 114, preventing ow of liquid through the tube 190. When the blower is turned on and air passes upwardly through chamber 94, as result of the suction produced therein, arm 134 with the Valve 140 thereon moves upward, unseating valve 141i from the orilice 114 and permitting flow of liquid through the tube and out of the orifice 114 as described in greater detail below.
The container for the liquid to be vaporized, `for eX- ample, for humidifying or disinfecting purposes, such as an aqueous triethylene glycol solution, is preferably in the form of a translucent ilexible plastic bottle 142, preferably a polyethylene bottle, having a plastic cap 144 threadably engaging the top of the bottle, with a central hole 146 in the cap. Between the inner surface of the cap and the top of the bottle is a two layer seal or liner, the inner layer being composed of a stit pierceable material such as polyethylene as indicated at 150, and the outer layer adjacent the cap being an effective thickness of puncture sealing material such as rubber, as indicated at 143. The reason for using such a dual layer is that eX- cept for small sharp needles, polyethylene does not form a leak-proof seal around the needle, and while rubber alone is satisfactory, `when employing sharp needles, it tends to stretch over a dull tube or needle without puncturing. The yhigh density polyethylene back-up disc 150 prevents this from occurring. The bottle 142 can be graduated (not shown) to permit ldisplay of the liquid level therein against such calibrated scale, and thereby estimate the ilow rate of the liquid from the bottle.
To mount the plastic bottle of liquid such as triethy'lene glycol solution on the bracket 98, the bottle is inverted, as seen in FIGS. l and 4, `with the cap 144 placed within the arcuate bottle insertion guide 128, and the bottle is rotated to and clamped in a vertical inverted position as shown in FIG. 1 with the side of the bottlev against the vertical bracket portion 116. lDuring lthe bottle inverting operation the sharpened vertical end portion of the tube 1119 pierces th-e rubber disc 14S and the polyethylene `disc 159 and enters the neck of the bottle as seen in FIG. 4, w'hereby the liquid, eg., glycol, contents o'f the 'bottle are drawn off through the tube 10u. Also, just before the bottle 142 approaches the vertical portion 116 of bracket 98, the notch 121) in the bottle holder bracket 118 snaps over the ridge 152 around the bottom of the bottle and applies just suicient pressure against the bottom of the bottle to hold it firmly in the inverted position as shown in FIG. l. As the bottle makes contact with the vertical -portion 116 of the bracket the sharpened vent tube 122 pierces the bottle wall of a point above the liquid level so as to place the interior of the bottle at atmospheric pressure and thus pressurize the contents of the bottle above the pressure at the nozzle outlet 114 during operation. When the bottle is in a fully inverted position it is supported at its lower end on the bottle holder bracket 126, at its upper end by the bracket 118 and along rits side by the vertical bracket portion 116.
It is accordingly seen that the design of the bracket 98 for holding the bottle is suc-h that it performs a number of functions. Thus, for example, the bottle holder bracket 126 =with the bottle insertion guide 128 therein protects the sharpened suction tube end portion 11d, provides a base support for the bottle and positions the bottle cap for puncture. The top concave portion of the notch 1211 of the bottle holder bracket 118 serves as a linger notch for snapping in the bottle and the bottom convex portion of the notch serves as a guard for the sharpened tip of the vent tube 122 and fits the base ridge in the bottom, slightly compressing it and holding the bottle rigid to the vertical bracket portion 116.
In operation, when the blower is turned on and the vacuuming process takes place, a small vacuum is produced in the chamber 94 adjacent to the air inlet 96 to the blower housing 54. Thus, for example, a 91/2 inch water column vacuum can be produced in chamber 94. Such a vacuum causes a yilow of liquid from the bottle 142 through the tube 19t) and the liquid is aspirated at the nozzle 114 and is carried with the air as previously described through the opening 96 and into the interior of the blower 'housing 54. During the passage of the air carrying the vaporized mist of liquid through the volute chamber of t-he blower housing, the air is highly agitated therein as a result of the action of the rotors 74 and 76, mec-hanically whipping the dispersed liquid droplets and air together. The mixture of air and liquid vapors passing through the Iblower chamber described above is subjected to cycles of expansion, compression, expansion, compression and expansion. Thus, as such expanded aspirated mixture passes from the center of the first rotor 74 outwardly to the periphery of the rotor, the gas mixture is compressed, during passage of the mixture from the outer periphery of the stator 78 to the center thereof, the 4gas mixture is expanded, and during passage of the mixture from the center of the second rotor 76 to the outer perpihery thereof, the gas mixture is again compressed and upon exhausting to the atmosphere it is expanded. This causes a complete and homogeneous distrib-ution of the liquid vapor mist in the carrier air. The ydispersal of the liquid droplets in the form of vapor or mist in the air within the volute chamber is further aided by the generated heat of compression of the mixture in the volute chamber as well as some heat which is provided from the blower motor above. Thus, by the time the mixture of air and vaporized liquid is discharged through the exhaust outlet 86 the air so discharged carries a fine concentrated mist of finely atomized droplets of treating liquid which are dispersed into the ambient atmosphere, saturating the surrounding room or atmosphere with such liquid vapors in a relatively short period.
Thus, it has been found that the vaporizer of the invention is capable of saturating or nearly saturating the air within a hospital room or a public place with the mist or vapor of a glycol such as triethylene glycol at a concentration which will effectively kill air-borne organisms in a period of minutes. The glycol vapor concentration for this purpose is preferably within 50% to 100% of its saturation concentration which for triethylene glycol at 70 F. is 0.8 gram per 1,000 cubic feet, or 0.5 vapor volume per million air volumes. Thus, for example, the device of the instant invention is capable of supersaturating the air in a room about 125 sq. ft. floor area in a few minutes or even less, if desired, by appropriately adjusting the size of the metering orifice 114 and the pressure differential across the orifice.
The head of liquid 143 in the bottle 142 decreases as the bottle empties, tending to reduce the flow rate of the liquid through the tube 100 and into the volute chamber. FIG. 7 of the drawing shows another feature of the invention for regulating and adjusting the rate of flow of liquid from the bottle so as to obtain a relatively uniform flow of liquid and uniform rate of aspiration from the nozzle 114. In the modification of FIG. 7, the pressure above the liquid in the bottle is pressurized above atmospheric pressure. For this purpose the outside surface of the bottle is provided with a spot overlay of an effective thickness of puncture sealing material such -as rubber, indicated at 154, so that when the hollow needle 122 pierces the bottle wall through such spot overlay of rubber, a pressure seal will be formed. The venting needle 122 is now connected to a conduit 156 which is connected through the blower housing 54 with a pressurized zone 158 within the volute chamber, for example, a zone adjacent the rotor 76. Pressure regulating means of any conventional type indicated generally at 160 can be provided in conduit 156, which is adjustable to control the rate of flow of the fluid from the bottle through tube 100. The pressure differential across orifice 114, increased in this manner is less sensitive to the effect of the decreased head of liquid in the bottle as it empties and can be regulated to maintain a constant pressure differential across the metering orifice and hence a constant ow rate therefrom. This technique can also be employed to compensate the blower suction increase as accumulated dirt progressively restricts the air fiow through the filter bag 16.
As a further feature of the invention the aspiration rate of the liquid through the nozzle 114 can be increased by providing a venturi adjacent the inlet port 96 of the blower and by placing the discharge nozzle outlet 114 in the center of the throat restriction of such venturi. This technique further increases the vacuum in the discharge zone of the liquid from the nozzle 114 and constitutes an alternative or supplementary means to the pressurizing means described and shown in FIG. 7 above for augmenting the pressure drop across the liquid ow restricting orifice.
This feature of the invention is shown in FIGS. 8 to 10 of the drawing. As seen particularly in FIG. 8, a venturi 162 is mounted centrally of the blower inlet opening 96 by means of a strap 164 spanning such blower inlet and connected by bolts 166 to the bottom 167 of the blower housing 54. The nozzle tip 114, which is positioned on the central axis of the venturi extends upwardly therein to the point of minimum throat cross-section. In this embodiment of the invention the cutoff valve for the nozzle 114 is modified as shown in FIG. 8 to accommodate the nozzle 114 in the venturi. According to this modification an aperture 168 is provided in the hinged arm 134 through which the end portion of tube 112 and the nozzle 114 protrude as clearly seen in FIG. 10, thus permitting free oscillatory motion of arm 134 with respect to the fixed nozzle 114. A bridge 170 connected to arm 134 extends over the aperture 168 above the nozzle 114, such bridge carrying a centrally positioned disc 172 which carries on its lower surface a rubber disc 174 of smaller diameter, which is designed to seat against the nozzle 114 when the blower is not in operation, but is urged away from the nozzle 114 during operation of the blower to permit discharge and atomization of fluid from the nozzle 114 into the upwardly directed air stream through the venturi.
According to a still further feature of the invention as shown in FIG. 11, an elbow 176 can be snapped on to the exhaust outlet 86 of the sweeper by simple suitable means such as a ball and detent fastener indicated generally at 178, the outer end of the elbow being directed upward. When the discharged air containing a mist of the vaporized liquid 143 passes through elbow 178, such exhaust stream is directed vertically upward to form an aerosol fountain for improved mixing with the air in the surrounding space or room.
In the embodiments of the invention illustrated in the `drawings and described above, the outlet nozzle 114 also constitutes a metering orifice. However, if desired, a separate metering orifice can be provided at any point along the liquid outlet tube 100. Further, although the liquid cutoff valve in the embodiments shown in the drawing and described above is positioned at the outlet nozzle 114 and thus constitutes a convenient arrangement, it will be understood that a cutoff valve for the liquid flow from the bottle 142 can be provided anywhere along the liquid outlet tube 100.
Further, where the bottle 142 is mounted so that the level of the liquid therein is always below the nozzle outlet 114, valve or 174 can be omitted, and aspiration of fiuid from nozzle 114 will cease automatically when the blower is turned off.
From the foregoing, it is seen that the invention provides a versatile relatively simple vaporizer which can be readily mounted on any conventional vacuum sweeper of the general type noted above, for humidifying, or disinfecting a room by providing a mist of the liquid treating material in the air discharged from the sweeper so as to provide a concentrated aerosol of a type desired while simultaneously vacuuming an area or room. From the above it will be understood that the invention concept and device are particularly applicable to vacuum cleaners or sweepers having the dust separating means,
eg., the lter bag 16, ahead of the blower inlet, eg., 96. For those vacuum sweepers designed with the blower in advance of the dust separating means, as typified by the so-called upright vacuum cleaners, the liquid, e.g., glycol, mist would have to permeate the dirt load and the ilter member, and would decrease the efiicien-cy of the device for vapor saturation of a room within a reasonably short period of time.
It will be understood that the vaporizer apparatus of the invention can be employed in conjunction with vacuum cleaners other than that described above and shown in the drawings. Further, although the vaporizer hereof is particularly suited for use and operation with a vacuum cleaner or sweeper, the vaporizer principles and vaporizer structure of the invention can be applied to machines including a blower, other than v-acuum clean* ers, such, for example, as hand driers, wherein a disinfectant -or perfumed liquid can be vaporized by aspiration from a nozzle into the blower chamber, and the discharged drying air containing fa mist of the disinfectant or perfumed liquid perfonms the dual function of hand drying, and disinfecting or providing a perfumed odor.
While we have described particular embodiments of our invention for the purpose of illustration, it will be understood that the invention is not to be taken as limited except by the scope of the appended claims.
1. In combination with a vacuum sweeper comprising an outer case, a blower, means in Said case forming a blower chamber, an air inlet to said blower chamber, filter means in advance of said inlet, an air discharge outlet from said blower chamber, bracket means, fastener means mounting said bracket means on said outer case, said bracket means comprising a vertically disposed bracket, a bent strap portion connected to the lower end portion of said bracket, means on said strap portion form-- ing a container support, a container, guide means on said strap portion to receive the inverted upper end of the container, means carried on the upper end portion of said bracket for engaging the bottom of the inverted con tainer, a tube for drawing ott liquid from said container, said tube extending from the lower end of said bracket means, into the interior of said case to a location therein adjacent the inlet to said blower chamber, and a nozzle connected to the inner end of said tube adjacent said inlet, for aspirating liquid withdrawn `#from said container via said tube.
2. A combination vacuum sweeper and liquid vaporizer comprising a vacuum sweeper including an outer case, a dust filter and a blower chamber in said case, said dust filter being positioned in advance of said blower chamber, a blower including a rotor system mounted within said blower chamber, a motor for operation of said r-otor system, and providing vigorous agitation of the air passing through said blower chamber during operation of the blower, an intermediate low pressure chamber between said dust filter and said blower chamber, located adjacent the suction side of said blower, an outlet in the suction side of said blower from said intermediate charnber to said blower chamber, an air discharge outlet from said blower chamber, vertically disposed bracket means, fastener means mounting said bracket means lon the outer case of said vacuum sweeper adjacent the intermediate chamber therein, means cariied on the lower end portion of s-aid bracket forming a container support to receive the inverted upper end of a container, means carried on the upper end portion of the said bracket for engaging the bottom of an inverted container, a container supported on the bracket, a tube for drawing off liquid from said container, said tube extending from the lower end of said bracket means into said intermediate chamber of said vacuum sweeper to a location therein adjacent the inlet to said -blower chamber, a sharpened vent tube mounted on said bracket for piercing the wall of an inverted container, a sharpened tip portion -at the outer end of said liquid draweoii tube for insertion into the mouth of an inverted container, a nozzle connected to the inner end of said liquid draw-off tube adjacent said inlet, ttor aspirating liquid withdrawn from said container via said tube, and valve means associated with said last mentioned tube for controlling the flow of the liquid therethrough.
3. The combination comprising a vacuum sweeper including a housing having an air inlet and an outlet, filter means in a lower space within the housing to receive and iilter air from said inlet, a motor driven blower within the housing spaced from the filter means and operating to induce and discharge filtered air to said outlet, means carried by the housing for replaceably mounting a container of room air conditioning liquid, and a conduit leading from said mounting means to the space between the blower and filter means and within which exists a partial vacuum by reason of the blower induction, said conduit including means for attachment to a container held by said mounting means to enable the conduit to deliver container liquid openly into said space for atomized induction through the blower.
4. Combination as claimed in claim 3 in which said vacuum sweeper housing includes an upstanding portion and said mounting means is carried alongside such portion.
S. Combination as claimed in claim 3 in which said conduit is a separately formed tube passing into the housing from said mounting means to said blower.
6. Combination as claimed in claim 3 in which said mounting means includes a bracket adapted to engage and press said container against said attachment means.
7. Combination as claimed in claim 3 in combination with a container comprising a bottle, held in inverted position by said mounting means.
8. Combination as claimed in claim 7 in which said conduit comprises a tube having a puncture tip adapted to pierce said bottle.
9. Combination as claimed in claim 8 in which said mounting means includes a bracket adapted to engage and press said bottle against said tube puncture tip and also including means to vent said bottle for liquid delivery.
10. Combination -as claimed in claim 9 in which said blower is spaced above said lilter and in which water is collectable in said lower space within the housing and check means between said air inlet and said partial vacuum space to close said space against entry of water so collected.
11. Combination as claimed in claim 10 in which the check means includes a float adapted to close the entry to said space when collected water reaches a predetermined level in said lower space.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 941,676 11/1909 Green 55-260 X 1,915,938 6/1933 Leftwich 261-29 2,013,328 9/ 1935 Wiswell 222-86 2,078,203 4/1937 Manning 261-91 X 2,087,075 7/ 1937 Velos 55--225 2,102,353 12/1937 Brock.
2,184,731 12/ 1939 Brewer 55-225 2,189,021 2/ 1940 Schury 55-230 2,190,459 2/ 1940 Schnebelen 222-86 X 2,590,342 3/1952 Niehaus et -al 55-230 2,920,777 1/1960 Cole 21S-1 3,004,403 10/ 1961 Laporte 261--28 X 3,198,367 8/1965 Stickney 21S-1 3,229,450 1/1966 Stern 55-230 X ROBERT F. BU RNE'IT, Primary Examiner.