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Publication numberUS3302655 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 7, 1967
Filing dateDec 23, 1964
Priority dateDec 30, 1963
Also published asDE1432375A1
Publication numberUS 3302655 A, US 3302655A, US-A-3302655, US3302655 A, US3302655A
InventorsMakio Mishima, Noburo Sasaki, Yasuo Sugai
Original AssigneeNibon Seikosho Kk, Zh Sekitan Sogo Kenkyusho
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Apparatus for spraying and ultrasonic washing of bottles
US 3302655 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

1967 NOBURO SASAKI ETAL 3,

APPARATUS FOR SPRAYING AND ULTRASONIC WASHING OF BOTTLES Filed Dec. 23, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 @M A/W/ xa/ ul /gifirwi 1967 NOBURO SASAKI ETAL 3,302,655

APPARATUS FOR SPRAYING AND ULTRASONIC WASHING OF BOTTLES 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Dec. 25, 1964 HG. 3h

United States Patent 3 302,655 APPARATUS FGR SiZiAYlNG AND ULTRASONEC WASHING BGTTLES Noburo Sasaki, hllalrio Mishima, and Yasuo Sugai, all of T oiryo, Japan, assignors to Kabushiki-Kaisha Nihon Seikosho and Zaidanhojin Sehitan Sogo Keniiyusho, Tokyo, Japan Filed Dec. 23, 1964, Ser. No. 420,755 Claims priority, application Japan, Dec. 39, 1963, 38/ 71,648 2 Claims. ((11. 13479) This invention relates to an apparatus for automatically washing bottles and the like by the utilization of ultrasonic waves.

Heretofore, bottle washing apparatus utilizing the conventional shower brushing system have been widely used to clean bottles such as milk bottles. Such apparatus, however, is ineffective for cleaning the bottles extremely contaminated with paint compositions, tobacco ashes, clays, cement materials. The extremely contaminated bottles have been presently cleaned by subjecting the same to swelling process for a long period of the time followed by a manually brushing process. In most cases, however, this measure has been dimcult to perform a satisfactorily cleaning operation.

A general object of the invention is to provide an improved apparatus for automatically washing bottles and the like which eliminates the above mentioned diificulty.

An object of the invention is to provide an improved apparatus for automatically washing bottles and the like by utilizing both the conventional shower washing and the ultrasonic washing.

With the aforesaid objects in view, the invention re sides in an apparatus for automatically washing bottles and the like, comprising a cylindrical enclosure whose axis is substantially horizontal, a rotatory circular disklike holder member mounted within said cylindrical enclosure for rotation about the horizontal axis and including a plurality of radial partition walls disposed at predetermined, angularly equal intervals on the entire peripheral zone of one face of said circular disk-like holder member to form a plurality of compartments for receiving bottles to be washed, a retaining annulus surrounding internally the innermost edges of said radial partition walls to support bottles held in said compartments on said rotatory circular disk-like holder member, a drive for driving said rotatory disk-like holder member about its horizontal axis, nozzle means disposed so as to spray a warm washing solution into those portions of said-compartments traveling in the upper portion of said cylindrical enclosure, an amount of warm washing solution accumulated in the bottom portion of said encloslure, and means for generating an ultrasonic wave and transmitting the same in said amount of warm washing solution, said bottles held in said compartments being exposed to alternate said jets of warm washing solution and said ultrasonic wave in said amount of washing solution.

In a preferred embodiment of the invention, a predetermined number of bottles to be washed is automatically forced, at a time, in the direction of the horizontal axis of the cross section of the cylindrical enclosure into dilferent one of the compartments on the rotating disklike holder member as successively reaching an inlet port of the enclosure. Then the bottles are completely cleaned through at least one cycle consisting of alternate shower brushing for washing the exterior and interial wall surfaces of the bottles and ultrasonic washing. Thereafter, the bottles thus cleaned are successively ejected from the rotating holder member through an outlet port diametrically opposing to the inlet port.

'ice

The invention will become more readily apparent from the following detailed description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 shows an elevational view of an apparatus constructed in accordance with the teachings of the invention and a diagrammatic view of the associated mechanisms;

FIG. 2 shows a section taken along the line IIII of FIG. 1; and

FIGS. 3a and 3!) show diagrams illustrating the washing steps according to the teachings of the invention.

Referring now to the drawings and more particularly to FIGS. 1 and 2, there is illustrated an apparatus for automatically washing bottles and the like according to the principle of the invention. An arrangement illustrated comprises a rotatory circular disk-like holder member generally designated by the reference numeral 10 and having the axis thereof horizontally disposed. The circular disk-like holder member 10 is provided with a plurality of radial partition walls 12 disposed at predetermined, angularly equal intervals on the entire peripheral zone of one face thereof to form a plurality of compartments 14 for receiving bottles to be washed. To this end, each of the compartments 14 should have its circumferential width somewhat greater than a diameter of a bottle to be washed or cleaned. Also the radial length of the compartment 14 and hence of the partition wall 12 should be substantially equal to the length of the bottle but the height of the partition wall measured from the one face of the disk 10 depends upon the number of the bottles accommodated in one compartment 14. For example, two or more of the bottles may be put in stacked relationship in each compartment. In this case a barrier strip 18 is preferably disposed between each pair of the adjacent bottles stacked in one compartment.

As more clearly shown in FIG. 2, the disk-like holder member 10 is rotatably mounted within a cylindrical enclosure 20 whose axis is substantially horizontal and has a rotatory shaft 22 rigidly secured to the other face thereof at the center and loosely extending through the adjacent side surface of the enclosure. The shaft 22 is adapted to be driven by a drive as will be described hereinafter. The enclosure 20 is provided on the relatively upper portion of that side surface thereof facing the compartrnents 14 with an opening 24 for purpose of access, normally closed by any suitable cover (not shown).

The outer, cylindrical peripheral surface 26 of the enclosure 20 has a plurality of holes 28, in this case, two holes formed on the upper portion, a hole 30 formed at the lowermost position and a plurality of holes 32 in this case two holes formed on the lower portion on both sides of the hole 30 for the reasons as will be apparent hereinafter. The holes 28 and 32 may be preferably disposed symmetrically with respect to the Vertical diameter of the disk-like holder member 16.

The hole 28 is operatively coupled to a shower nozzle N for spraying a warm washing solution into different ones of the compartments 14 as having faced the nozzle through the hole 28. In order for the spouted water from the nozzle N to scatter externally, a hood 28 is provided for enclosing the region of the nozzle and the hole 23. To spray a warm washing solution into the compartments 14 from their inside, a plurality of shower nozzles n are disposed within the cylindrical enclosure 2%) adjacent the opening 24. The lowermost hole 3-0 communicates with a reservoir T for washing solution attached to the lowermost portion of the outer peripheral surface 26 of the enclosure. The hole 32 is operatively connected to an ultrasonic transducer UT.

In order for the bottles B to be forced into and removed from the disk-like holder member Ill, a pair of inlet and outlet portions 34 and 36 respectively are provided on the outer peripheral surface 22 of the cylindrical en- ClOsure 29 on the horizontal diameter of its cross section as shown in FIG. 1. I

For the purpose of fixedly holding bottles to be washed in position within the respective compartments 14 of the rotating holder member it), a retaining annulus 38 surrounds internally the innermost edges of the partition walls 12 at its position where the same abuts against the mouth edge of each of the bottles accommodated in the respective compartments and also a semi-circular ring 40 is mounted on the lower half of the internal peripheral surface of the enclosure 20 so as to support the bottoms of the bottles B accommodated in the respective compartments 14.

A drive generally designated by the reference numeral 50 includes an electrical motor 52, a reduction gearing 54 coupled to the motor 51 and a pulley or a sprocket wheel 56 operatively connected to the output shaft of the gearing 52. The pulley or sprocket wheel 56 is operatively coupled through an endless belt or chain designated by a dot-and-dash line 58 to a pulley or a sprocket wheel 60 mounted on the shaft 22 of the disk-like holder member 10. Thus it will be appreciated that when energized, the motor a is driven to drive the holder member about the horizontal axis in the direction of the arrow shown in FIG. 1 through the components 5-'l60.

In order to load bottles to be washed on the disk-like holder member 10, a thrusting mechanism shown as lever means 62 is disposed externally of the enclosure 16 and operatively coupled to the inlet port 34 on the enclosure 16 normally closed by a cover 34. The thrusting mechanism 34 is adapted to move from its position illustrated at dot-and-dash line in FIG. 1 to its position illustrated at solid line thereby to force at least one bottle which has been suitably fed in its position B from a supply station (not shown), into an empty one of the compartments 14- of the rotating holder member 10 as having reached its position facing the inlet port 34 through the now opened port 34. Then the mechanism is returned back to its original position and the port 34 is closed by the cover 34.

For the purpose of discharging from the rotating holder member 19 one or more of the bottles B having been subject to washing treatment which will be in detail described hereinafter in the associated compartment 14, an ejector mechanism shown in FIG. 1 as lever means 64 similar to the lever means 62 is disposed within the enclosure 16 and operatively coupled to the discharge port 36 on the enclosure normally closed by a cover 36. The ejector mechanism 64 is adapted to move from its position illustrated at solid line to its position illustrated at dot-and-dash line in FIG. 1 whereupon the thrusting end thereof enters one of the compartments 14 facing the same while keeping clear of the adjacent portion of the retaining annulus 33. This results in the bottle or bottles washed within the associated compartment being ejected externally of the enclosure 16 through the now opened port 36. Then the ejector mechanism and the cover 36 are returned back to their original positions.

It is to be noted that the lever means 62 and 64 are operated in synchronization with the rotational movement of the disk-like holder member 10 to successively force a detenmined number of bottles to be washed, at

a time, into different ones of the empty compartments 14, in the one hand and to successively discharge the predetermined number of the bottles having been subject to washing treatment, at a time, from the associated compartments.

As shown in FIG. 1, the reservoir T is connected through a line 66 to a strainer 68 which, in turn, is connected through a conduit 7%) to a circulating pump 72 adapted to be driven by an electric motor 74. The circu lating pump 72 has its output connected to the shower nozzles N and 11 through conduct means 76.

In order for a washing solution to be exhausted from or replenished in the reservoir T a valve 77 may be connected to the same.

The ultrasonic transducers UT operatively coupled to the ultrasonic holes 32 are electrically connected to an ultrasonic generator 78. The transducers UT and the generator 78 may be of a conventional construction and need not be described here.

As shown in FTG. 1, a washing solution WS is preferably accummulated in the bottom portion of the en closure 16 up to a level 11 higher than the level at which the ultrasonic transducer UT is mounted to the enclosure but lower than the position of the center thereof. This measure results in a great increase in the effect of the ultrasonic wave radiated by the transducers UT upon the bottles B to be cleaned.

The apparatus thus far described is operated as follows: The motor 52 is energized to rotate the disk-like holder member 19 about the horizontal axis in the direction of the arrow shown in FIG. 1 and the motor 52 also is energized to drive the circulating pump 72 thereby to suppiy any suitable warm washing solution from the reservoir T through the strainer 63 where the solution is filtered, and the pump 72 to the shower nozzles N and n. Then these nozzles spray the warm washing solution therethrough into the compartments 14 on moving past the same. At the same time, the ultrasonic generator 78 is energized to drive the ultrasonic transducers UT thereby to transmit the ultrasonic wave in the washing solution WS within the enclosure resulting in the generation of a cavitation in the solution.

The thrusting mechanism 62 is operated in synchronization with the rotational movement of the holder member 10 in the maner as previously described to successively force a predetermined number of bottles to be washed, at a time, into different one of empty compartments 14. The bottles B thus disposed in the associated compartments 14 travel along the upper half of their path with their mouth edges supported by the adjacent portions of the retaining annulus 38. Therefore, the bottles B traveling along the upper half of the path are prevented from falling. The traveling bottles B are first subject to a jet of warm washing solution or a shower spouted from the lefthand nozzle N as viewed in FIG. 1 to wash the external wall surfaces of the bottles and then subject to a shower sprayed from the nozzles 11 to wash the internal wall surfaces of the bottles. Thereafter the external surfaces of the bottles are again washed with a shower spouted from the righthand nozzle N. These washing operations causes foreign matters cohering to the external and internal surface of the bottles to swell.

As the holder member 10 further rotates, the bottles with the swelled foreign matters travel along the lower half of their path and be submerged in the washing solution WS within the enclosure 16. After having washed the bottles, the showers spouted from the associated nozzles fall upon the solution WS to form a part thereof while at the same time a portion of the washing solution WS is supplied frOm the reservoir T through the hole 30 and thence through the strainer 68 and the pump 72 back to the nozzles.

As previously described, the washing solution WS includes the cavitation due to the ultrasonic wave transmitted in the same. Therefore both an impulsive pressure resulting from the vibration of the washing solution and a force of penetration due to the amplitude of the ultrasonic wave are effective for dissolving the foreign matters cohering to the external and internal wall surfaces of the bottles into the solution to strip them off from the wall surfaces.

The bottles from which the foreign matters have been stripped off travel again along the upper half of their path to be again subject to the shower brushing in the same manner as above described with the result that the bottles are completely cleaned. At each time the bottles thus cleaned and hence the associated compartment 14 reach the discharge port 36, its cover 36' is opened and the ejector mechanism is operated to discharge the bottles, at a time, from the associated compartment to their discharge position illustrated by dot-and-dash bottle B in FIG. 1 in the manner as previously described. The discharged bottles may be fed in the utilization station for succeeding treatment.

The empty compartments 14 successively pass through the washing solution WS until they reach the inlet port 34 in succession after a rotational movement of 180 degrees. At that time, the cover 34' is opened and the thrusting mechanism 62 is operated to successively force the predetermined number of the new bottles to be washed, at a time, into the associated compartments in the manner as previously described. Then the washing process as above described is repeated.

From the foregoing it will be appreciated that, after the bottles to be washed have been loaded on the rotating disk-like holder member through the inlet port 34 they effect a rotational movement of one and half complete revolutions while they are subject to shower washing, ultrasonic washing and shower washing in the named order until the cleaned bottles are ejected from the rotating holder member 10 through the discharge port 36. This Washing process is illustrated in FIG. 3 wherein the reference characters I and D designate the inlet and outlet ports respectively and solid line represents the shower washing process while dot-and-dash line the ultrasonic washing process.

Where the bottles to be washed where too contaminated to be cleaned through one cycle consisting of alternate shower washing and ultrasonic washing effected during one and half complete revolutions of the holder, or where they had foreign matters cohering thereto capable of being hardly removed therefrom through such one cycle, the said cycle of washing process as above described may be repeated a number as desired. For example, the washing process may terminate after two and a half complete revolutions of the holder member as shown in FIG. 4. In other words, such bottles may be subject to three shower washing treatments and two ultrasonic washing treatments.

As an example, milk bottles contaminated with a mixture of tobacco-ashes and the remaining milk cohering to the external and internal wall surfaces thereof could be completely cleaned by an apparatus such as previously described in conjunction with FIGS. 1 and 2 and including the disk-like holder member 10 rotating at one revolution per 100 seconds, a washing solution of 2% caustic soda at 50 C., and an ultrasonic transducer having an output of 5 watts per square centimeter at a frequency of 30 kilocycles per second. In this case a holder was required only to effect two and a half complete revolutions.

The invention has several advantages. For example, milk bottles contaminated with clays, cement materials, paint compositions and/or mixtures of tobacco-ashes and the remaining milk cohering thereto can be completely cleaned because they are repeatedly subject to alternate shower and ultrasonic washings. Because stocks of bottles to be washed can be accommodated on the rotating disklike holder member in radial arrangement, a multiplicity of bottles are possible to be washed, at a time, resulting in a small-sized apparatus. In addition, an amount of washing solution is recirculated through the washing apparatus resulting in a reduction in amount of the soluti n u ed- While the invention has been described in conjunction with a few embodiments thereof it is to be understood that various changes in the detail of construction and the combination and arrangement of parts may be resorted to without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.

What we claim is:

1. In an apparatus for automatically washing bottles and the like, the combination of a cylindrical enclosure whose axis is substantially horizontal, a rotatory circular disk-like holder member mounted within said cylindrical enclosure for rotation about the horizontal axis and including a plurality of radial partition walls disposed at predetermined, angularly equal intervals on the entire peripheral zone of one face of said circular disk-like holder member to form a plurality of compartments for receiving bottles to be washed, a retaining annulus surrounding internally the innermost edges of said radial partition walls to support bottles in said compartments on said rotatary circular disk-like holder member, a drive for driving said rotatory circular disk-like holder member about its horizontal axis, nozzle means disposed so as to spray a warm washing solution into those portions of said compartments traveling in the upper portion of said enclosure, said nozzle means including at least one nozzle for spraying a jet of warm washing solution into said portions of said compartments from a position radially outwardly of the compartments to wash the exterior surfaces of the bottles, and at least one nozzle for spraying a jet of warm washing solution into said portions of said compartments from a position radially inwardly of the compartments to wash the interior surfaces of the bottles, said warm washing solution used to wash the bottle falling into an amount of warm washing solution being accumulated in the bottom portion of said enclosure, means for generating an ultrasonic wave and transmitting the same into said amount of warm washing solution, said bottles held in said compartments being exposed alternately to said jets of warm washing solution and said ultrasonic wave in said amount of Washing solution, a reservoir attached to the bottom portion of said enclosure externally thereof and communicating with the interior of said enclosure, means for recirculating the warm washing solution from said reservoir to said nozzle means, and a barrier strip less in radial length than the partition wall being disposed between the two bottles of each pair of adjacent bottles in order to accommodate a predetermined number of bottles in stacked state in each of said compartments.

2. An apparatus for automatically washing bottles and the like, as claimed in claim 1, wherein said cylindrical enclosure is provided on the lower half of the internal surface with a semi-circular ring member having a width less than the compartment width for supporting the bottoms of the bottles accommodated in said compartments.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,675,011 4/1954 Maddaford 134152 X FOREIGN PATENTS 758,607 1/ 1934 France. 1,075,401 2/ 1960 Germany.

6,814 10/ 1913 Great Britain. 120,135 11/ 1958 U.S.S.R. 135,192 3/1960 U.S.S.R.

CHARLES A. WILLMUTH, Primary Examiner,

R. L. BLEUTGE, Assistant Examiner,

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Classifications
U.S. Classification134/79, 134/152, 134/142, 134/134, 134/1, 134/170
International ClassificationB08B9/42, B08B9/32, B08B3/12
Cooperative ClassificationB08B3/126, B08B9/42, B08B9/32
European ClassificationB08B9/42, B08B9/32, B08B3/12B2