US 3325954 A
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June 20. 1967 K. c. OLSON VENTILATING CEILING AND RESILIENT FOAM SEALING MEANS THEREFOR Filed Jan. 15, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet l 1 M 1 w ig n n m c l e 0 I w 4 w 6 w n w w 4 Y/ 7 m e 0 mm w I 2 x y 1 6 June 20, 1967 K. c. OLSON 3,325,954
VENTILATING CEILING AND RESILIENT FOAM SEALING MEANS THEREFOR Filed Jan. 13, 1964 2 Sheets-$heet 2 INVENTOR. Kern C. 025072 Attorney United States Patent Delaware Filed Jan. 13, 1964, Ser. No. 337,237 2 Claims. (Cl. 52303) The present invention relates generally to paneled ceilings, and in particular, to ventilating ceilings wherein air passes through the paneled ceiling from a plenum chamber above.
Such ceilings are commonly formed by assembling panels in a supporting grid. The conventional panels are rectangular with square edge faces at least at the exposed face of the panels. The panels are conventionally supported on rectangular ledges formed by horizontal flanges which extend from suspended vertical webs. Such webs are usually in the form of parallel runners in one direction which runners support intermediate crossing webs between adjacent runners.
Some paneled ceilings ventilate only through the panels and others only through the runners. The present invention is applicable to both types as well as to non-ventilating ceilings, since it relates only to the relationship of the peripheral edges of the panels and the grid members which support the panels.
Heretofore, it has been the practice to rest each panel on the rectangular supporting ledge. Such practice forms an imperfect closure at the panel edges, such that there is a variable air-passage from one side of the panel to the other. When the surface character of the panel is rough or irregular, as with sand-finished panels, the air passages are resultingly larger. Such air passages are disadvantageous in two major respects, especially where there is an extensive open space above the panels.
In the case where there are two rooms separated by a partition up to the paneled ceiling, both covered by the same open space, sound transmitted through the paneled ceiling from one room enters the open space and is transmitted from the open space through the paneled ceiling to the adjacent room. This transmission of sound is greatly reduced by the present invention.
When the space above the paneled ceiling is a pressurized plenum chamber, and the ceiling has ventilating openings, either in the panels or in the grid, the air passages around the edges of panels permit uncontrolled leakage of air and since its direction is over the face of the panel, there is eventually a gathering of dirt on the face of the panel adjacent the supporting flanges. The transmission of sound from room to room via open space above a paneled ceiling is independent of using air pressure in such space for ventilaiton.
It is the object of the present invention to provide space-closing sealing means against the passage of air between the edges of ceiling panels and the grid which supports them.
It is a particular object of the invention to improve the sound attenuation of paneled ceilings.
' It is a further object of the invention, in a room having a ventilating paneled ceiling, to prevent leakage of air from a pressurized plenum chamber around the edges of panels supported by a suspended grid.
Various other and ancillary objects and advantages of the invention will appear from the following description and explanation in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 represents a portion of the exposed face of a ceiling showing a ventilating panel and the related grid members which support it.
FIG. 2 is an inverted enlarged fragmentary cross-section on line 22 of FIG. 1 showing one form of spaceclosing sealing means.
FIG. 3 is a modified form of FIG. 2.
FIG. 4 is a view similar to FIGS. 2 and 3 showing a ventilating grid member and one form of space-closing seal.
FIGS. 5 and 6 are views similar to FIG. 2 with spaceclosing gaskets.
FIG. 7 is a perspective view partly in cross-section showing a preferred space-closing seal carried only by a vertical web of a grid member.
FIG. 8 represents diagrammatically in cross-section two rooms with paneled ceilings above which is a com mon open space capable of transmitting through it sound from one room to the other.
The present invention permits numerous embodiments by adding space-closing sealing means to the basic combination of panels and a supporting grid, such means being variously located at the joints between the edges of panels and the grid, and preferably being carried by the grid itself.
Although the drawings show ceilings which are ventilating ceilings, wherein the ventilation is either through the grid or through the panels, it is to be understood that the sealing means has an acoustical function when used with a non-ventilating ceiling.
In FIG. 1 the numerals 10 and 12 designate the exposed faces of two parallel inverted T-runners and the numerals 14 and 16 designate two crossing members. The dotted lines represent the locations of the vertical webs from which extend opposite horizontal flanges forming a rectangular ledge on which to lay a panel P. Panel P is shown as having ventilating openings 18, of which only a few are shown, these being illustrative only of function and not of structure. The prime numbers 10', 12', 14' and 16' represent the four flanges which support panel P.
In FIG. 2 the runner 12 has vertical web 20, suitably suspended by means not shown. It has a conventional form as a T of sheet metal deformed to provide horizontal flanges 12' and 12".
.Panel P as shown may or may not be of sound-absorbing quantity, but has openings through it for ventilating. Originally, the back 22 of the panel is covered in part at least with an air-impervious sheet 24, secured to the panel, preferably only at locations within a peripheral band around the four edges as illustrated by adhesive 26, which may be spots of adhesive or a continuous band of adhesive as shown.
The covering sheet 24 functions to block passage of air through those holes such as 28 which it covers. Sheet 24 is preferably unsecured to the back 22', over the interior thereof where the holes 18 are located, so that portions of it may be removed, as by puncturing, tearing or cutting out, to uncover holes such as 30 for a predetermined degree of opening through the panel.
Marginal portions of the sheet at the panel back serve to permit the sheet to extend beyond the panel at the four edges, a partion of such extension being designated by numeral 32 which may, if desired, be secured by adhesive 34 to the edge-face 36, although this is not necessary,
and further designated by the free terminal portion 38. As the panel P is placed on its support the free portion 32-38 is automatically positioned as shown and is held there by air pressure, indicated by arrow 40, in the plenum chamber. When the portion 32 is not adhesively secured as shown, the sheet 24 must be sufficiently flexible to yield to the air pressure for location as shown. When the portion 32 is adhesively secured to the edge-faces as shown at 34, the adhesive 26 at the back may be omitted.
FIG. 3 is a modified form of FIG. 2 in which a sheet 24 secured at 26 has extending portions 32 too narrow to seal against the flanges, but sutficiently wide when flexed to lie against a suitably wide vertical web such as 20 Sheet material 24 must be sufliciently stiff to resist the air pressure and bridge the gap as shown.
FIGS. 4, 5 and 6 represent space-closing sealing means for panels T and P carried by the grid, rather than by the panels as shown in FIGS. 1 to 3, it being immaterial to the broadest aspects of the invention whether the grid or the panel or neither, has ventilating openings.
FIG. 4 represents a runner which ventilates, such as those shown in Ericson No. 3,069,991, or other known forms. It has a vertical web 40 of two spaced walls 40' and 40". Wall 40" has openings 42 at the top for admitting air, and a valve member 44 is movable against openings 42 between the walls to control the admission of air. The walls 40' and 40" extend as an integral structure to form horizontal flanges 46 and 48. The web wall 40' and the flange 46 are comparable to the web 20 and flange 12' of FIG. 2.
As one embodiment, FIG. 4 shows a non-ventilating panel T with square edge-face 50 and ceiling face 52 forming a corner 54 resting in a fillet 56 of yielding sealing material, such as a soft rubber, closed-cell foam with or without a skin, a skin-covered open-cell foam, or skinless open-cell foam which yields to the weight of the panel sufficiently to provide a dam against the flow of air through it placed in the corner formed by web wall 40" and flange 46. Preferably, the fillet is secured to one or both of the corner walls of the runner 40, either by added adhesive or by being foamed in situ, as may be done with polyurethane and vinyl foams.
It is noted that in FIG. 4 there is a space 58 between the edgevof the flange 46 and the face 52 of panel T. To avoid forming such a space, the sealing gasket, strip may be placed at the edge of the horizontal flange as shown in FIGS. 5 and 6.
FIG. 5 shows a ventilating panel P and the runner 12 of FIG. 1 with a sealing gasket 60 secured to flange 12 at the edge thereof. FIG. 6 is a modified form of FIG. 5 in which the sealing gasket 60 covers the flange 12'. In these forms the panel merely rests on the gasket so that it is easily lifted out of its recess.
Certain panels have a rough face or fissures, such that there is chance that ceiling faces may not tightly seal on gaskets such as shown in FIGS. 4, 5 and 6. For such panels, and for all panels, a preferred seal is shown in FIG. 7.
In FIG. 7 a grid member 62 has its vertical web 64, on its panel-facing side. provided with a strip of elastomer foam 66 secured to the web. This may be a strip of opencell foam with an exterior skin or a strip of closed-cell foam with or without skin. It also may be a strip of opencell skinless foam which can yield to pressure to close passage through it, but its thickness must be properly adjusted to the width of space in which it is compressed. Such a preformed strip of polyurethane or vinyl or other foamed material may be adhesively secured to the web 64. The strip 66 may be providedby forming the foam in situ, as by depositing on the web a mixture of the ingredients of a self-foaming composition, such as those which produce polyurethane and vinyl foams. When both sides of the web are so used to foam in situ, the web may, if desired, have a series of holes 68 through it to produce foam filler as integral connections between gasket strips 66 and 66'. These strips are located close to the horizontal flanges 7t and 70, in position to face the square edgeface of a panel.
It is preferred that the strips 66 be convex in crosssection as shown so as not to provide a yielding obstruction to entry of the panel. The dimensions of the assembly are such that when the panel is in place it flattens the convex face to assure a tight seal, as shown by the contact area 68 on strip 66'. When the strips 66 are foamed in situ by conventional procedures the preferred skinsurface is normally provided, but it is to be understoodthat a skin face is not essential to a perfect seal, given the proper foam.
The various space-closing seals perform an acoustical function. Where there are two or more partitioned rooms each having a paneled ceiling each providing an underside boundary of a common open space, sound may pass through unobstructed passageways between the panels and the supporting grid. This sound entering the open space from one room can leave the space and enter the adjacent room through similar unobstructed passageways around its panels. This can be measured as set forth in the report of Geiger and Hamme Laboratories, Ann Harbor, Mich., No. AMA-l-I to Acoustical Materials Association, published April 1958.
When the gaskets and other space-closing sealing means are used as above-described the said over-passage of sound from room to room is considerably reduced, thus performing a function independent of its function in a ventilating ceiling.
FIG. 8 illustrates a conventional structure presenting the conditions described above in which such transmission of sound is minimized by practice of the present invention. Numeral 74 represents a floor and numerals 75 and 76 represent two side Walls reaching from the floor to an upper permanent ceiling 77 from which wires 78 suspend elements 79 of a grid which grid supports panels 80, thus creating a plenum chamber 81 from wall 75 to wall 76, between panels and ceiling 77. A vertical partition 82 extends from the floor 74 at least to the panels 80 and may as shown extend a short distance into the plenum chamber 81 thus defining two rooms 83 and 84. The joints indicated only for convenience by arrows 85 between the panels and the grid are closed by sealing means in one or more forms as shown in FIGS. 2 through 7. A showing of sealing means in FIG. 8 is omitted for convenience of illustration. 7
In FIG. 8 the permanent ceiling 77 frequently is concrete serving also as a floor for the story above, or' as a roof.
From the foregoing it is to be understood that the invention in its broadest aspect relates to sealing means at the edges of grid supported panels, and that while such means has an acoustic function it has an additional function in a ventilating ceiling, all as comprehended by the appended claims.
In my cofiled application Serial No. 337,210, the panel shown in FIGS. 1, 2 and 3 is described and claimed.
1. In a suspension grid for assembling ceiling panels, a grid member having a vertical web and oppositely directed coplanar horizontal flanges extending therefrom for vertically supporting said panels, said vertical web having a series of holes therethrough positioned and alined to face the edge-face of a panel when the panel is supported by a horizontal flange, said web having strips of resilient sealing means on both sides of said web and over said holes, said strips having integral connections through said holes.
2. .In a ventilating ceiling below a pressurized plenum chamber which ceiling has ventilating air passages therethrough and has a plurality of assembled rectangular ceiling panels having peripheral edge-faces, and which has a suspension grid therefor providing underlying support for the four sides of said panels and comprising grid form-. ing members having horizontal flanges for said support d Ve tical webs above said flanges slightly spaced from.
said edge-faces of the panels, the improvement in which said vertical webs have a series of holes therethrough opposite the edge-faces of said panels, and in which said Webs have strips of resilient sealing foam formed in situ on both sides of a said Web and an integral foam con- 5 nection through a said hole, said strips being in sealing contact With said edge-faces.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS m 8/1932 Dean 52-484 X 2/1957 Ericson 52-303 X 6/1958 Sabine 52-484 X 7/1961 Ericson 52-484 X 12/1961 Marshall 52-262 X 15 5/ 1962 Davidson 98-40 4/1963 Jordan 52-484 11/1963 Wulf et a1. 52-303 X 11/1963 Rees et a1. 52-484 X 11/ 1964 Campbell et a1 52-397 X 12/1964 Ericson 98-40 FOREIGN PATENTS 12/1961 France.
1/1963 France. 4/1963 France.
FRANK L. ABBOTT, Primary Examiner. M. O. WARNECKE, Assistant Examiner.