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Publication numberUS3348022 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 17, 1967
Filing dateAug 26, 1964
Priority dateAug 26, 1964
Also published asDE1504333A1
Publication numberUS 3348022 A, US 3348022A, US-A-3348022, US3348022 A, US3348022A
InventorsHenry G Schirmer
Original AssigneeGrace W R & Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Perforating film by electrical discharge
US 3348022 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)


Grace & Co., Duncan, S.C., a corporation of Connecticut Filed Aug. 26, 1964, Ser. No. 392,168 7 Claims. (Cl. 219-384) mosphere around an electrode. The electrodes must be so spaced that the fihn surface is exposed to the corona. The electrodes may comprise a pair of flat plates positioned )parallel to one another. The electrodes may also com- .prise a drum having a stator spaced apart and concentric therewith. There may also be positioned between the electrodes a sheet of dielectric material to prevent an are-over and damage to the film being treated in the event that said film has pin holes or other weak spots therein. The dielectric covering also prevents pitting of the electrodes and helps to spread the corona over the entire width of the electrode and cause the film to be a minor portion of the total dielectric in the gap. Suitable dielectrics for ground roll coverings are glass, mylar, epoxy resins and elastomers, such as chlorosulfonated polyethylene, silicon rubber and the like, and anodized coating.

The elastomers are generally preferred since the only 'maintenance required is that it be kept free of any surface irregularities to prevent treat-through. This is a particularly vexa'tious problem when it is desired to surface 'treat only one side of the film. It has been found that .any space between the film and the dielectric cover will allow corona to form on the back of the film thus treating both surfaces.

It has now been found that this problem can become an advantage when certain conditions are applied so that a pattern of perforations is produced in the film.

Although polyolefins such as polyethylene have numerous uses as a packaging material, one of its assets, gas impermeability, is a detriment when packaging commodities which must breathe or which release a gas which must be removed from the container.

Numerous methods have been proposed for perforating 'film such as described in the patents to C. H. Schaar, US.

3,012,918 and U.S. 3,038,198. These methods involve passing the film over and in direct contact with a cooled perforated roll while subjecting the opposite film surface v to a hot flame bath.

It is an object of the invention to provide method and apparatus for perforating fihn.

Yet another object is to simultaneously perforate and corona treat film.

These and other objects of the invention will be readily apparent to those skilled in the art from the disclosure, drawings and claims.

These objects are broadly accomplished by passing film through a corona formed by an electrode which is transverse of said film, providing a substantially uniform ;space between the opposite side of said film and a second discharging electrode, applying an alternating high value electrical current across said electrodes, providing for areas of concentrated electrical energy along said electrode which are transverse said film, said areas having Patented Oct. 17, 1967 sufiicient energy to perforate said film with little or no corona in between said areas, thus providing transverse spacing for said perforations and periodically disrupting the electrical energy thus providing the longitudinal spacing for said perforations.

In one embodiment a uniform longitudinal spacing is provided by a foraminous dielectric material having transverse members which move longitudinally through the space between the film and the discharging or ground electrode thus periodically disrupting the discharge of electrons.

In another embodiment the longitudinal spacing of the perforations is provided by pulsing the electrical current supplied to the charging electrode. 7

In another embodiment the transverse spacing of the perforations is provided by electrically insulating portions of the charging electrode, the areas of concentrated corona, and thus the concentrated flow of electrons, being at the perimeter of the non-insulated portions of said electrode.

It has now been surprisingly found that a discontinuous insulative dielectric material placed between the film and the discharging electrode permits perforation of the film. Particularly suitable materials are a fiber glass screen and a polyethylene netting. The size and shape of the openings in the spacer are not limitative and must only be sufiicient to provide support for the film and to provide a substantially uniform distance between the film and the discharging or grounded electrode. Preferably, the spacing material is a dielectrical net-like structure which periodically disrupts the flow of electrons. This distance is preferably between 0.01 and 0.2 inches. It has also been found that by varying this distance the pattern of the.

perforations is variable along the charging electrode or transverse to the moving film. In general, the transverse spacing of the perforations is proportional to the gap distance between the film and discharging electrode. For example, under certain known conditions a inch thick screen results in a inch spacing, two inch screens on top of each other result in a /4 inch spacing, and three inch screens result in approximately inch spacing.

It is also possible to obtain transverse spacing of the perforations by simply employing an electrode having peaks from which the electrons are emitted. The transverse pattern Will thus depend on the arrangement of the peaks. For example, a sintered electrode is satisfactory although there will not necessarily be a hole corresponding to each peak.

Longitudinal spacing of the perforations in moving filrn is readily .attained by periodically disrupting the corona or the areas of concentrated electrical energy causing the perforations. Although the invention is not limited to any theory of this surprising phenomenon, it is believed that the use of a dielectrical spacing member having transverse members which periodically pass between the discharging the electrode and the film causes a disruption in the corona. It is believed that the discharging electrons must also follow the hole for a brief distance until the resistance is such that it is easier for the electrons to form a new hole than to cover the extending distance through the air to follow the hole. This disruption can also be achieved by simply pulsing the electric current such as by use of a distributor. In this case the spacing means need not have the transverse members but need only provide open space between the film and the discharging electrode to permit perforation.

Preferably, the frequency is in the range of 10 to 100.0

kc., more preferably to 300 kc. The voltage and curcurrents are in excess of .7 amp, preferably, 1 to 1.5 amps. The space between the two electrodes is generally less than A", preferably 1 to inch, although this depends primarily on the voltage.

Numerous shapes and types of electrodes have been employed for corona treatment. Any electrode shape or size may be employed herein which will produce a corona between the electrodes over the transverse portion of the film desired to be perforated. A suitable charging electrode is a simple piece of 18-gauge black iron about 2 inches wide and of the required length. The discharge end should be cut in a good sheet metal shear and sanded to remove burrs. Using nylon bolts to prevent stray corona, the strip is preferably bolted to a piece of electrical grade micarta and mounted at a proper distance from the grounded electrode roll. The grounded treating roll is connected to the ground on the generator terminal.

The invention is best described with reference to the drawings. FIGURE 1 represents the perspective view of a typical apparatus for perforating film by corona treatment of thermoplastic film such as polyethylene or polypropylene. In this type of apparatus, which is shown as enclosed within a framework 2, but which may employ any suitable frame structure, is a grounded steel cylindrical electrode 4 mounted on a shaft 6 driven by any suitable driving means such as motor 8. The opposite end may be mounted onto the framework by any suitable means such as a journal box 10. The exterior surface of the grounded electrode 4 is preferably, but not necessarily, covered with an insulating substance 12, such as rubber. Although the direction of rotation is not important, the grounded electrode is shown as rotating in the clockwise position looking from the motor end of the shaft. Immediately surrounding and in direct contact with the insulated grounded electrode is a spacing member 14 which preferably has transverse members at least as wide as the film and more preferably is a foraminous or net-like material, such as polyethylene netting having a substantially uniform thickness. This discontinuous material provides a uniform air space between the insulated grounded electrode and the film 16 which passes over the netting and in direct contact therewith. The film may enter the corona treating area by any suitable means such as by passing through a slot 18 in frame 2, then under a guide roller 20 mounted by any suitable means (not shown), then over the netting and under a second guide roller 22 so as to provide uniform and intimate contact between the film and the netting. Mounted directly above the grounded electrode is an area electrode, such as aluminum foil 24, which may be attached to a blade electrode shown by dotted line 26. If the aluminum foil electrode is placed at a very small distance from the film such as less than A inch, a corona will be formed in the space between the foil and the film. The aluminum foil electrode 24, or blade electrode which is attached thereto, is connected to a power source (not shown) through electrical conduit 28. The grounded electrode is grounded through conduit 30. A rubber weighting material 32 is positioned on top of the foil with an insulative plate 34 thereabove although neither of these are required since the foil is attracted to the ground roll by electrostatic forces. The passage of the film through the corona results in perforations being formed therein. This results in a uniform spacing or pattern or perforations as shown in FIGURE 2 which is an exaggerated enlargement of a section of perforated film 16. FIGURE 3 employs essentially the same equipment as shown in FIGURE 1, except for the use of a partially insulated blade electrode 36. Where there is no difference in functionality identical reference numbers have been employed for all the figures. In this illustration, the disruption of the discharging electrons is produced by pulsing of the current by passing the current from a source of power (not shown) through a distributor 38 and an electrical conduit 40 to an elongated blade electrode 36. The film 16 enters through slot 18 as hereinbefore shown but since direct contact with the partially insulated blade electrode 36 is desired in this instance there is virtually no clearance between the electrode 36 and film 16. The spacing between the film and the charging electrode, whether blade or area, is not limitative. The guide roll 42 is below the film and guide roll 46 is above the film. As best shown in FIGURE 4, which is an elevated view through 4-4 of FIGURE 3, the blade electrode 36 preferably comprises a rectangular elongated member enclosed in insulative material 48, such as electricians tape with portions of the under side, that is the side in direct contact with the film, having no insulation in specified areas to provide the desired spacing. The film 16 passes directly through the discharging electrons emanating from electrode 36 resulting in perforation of the film to cause orifices 52. The corona appears to concentrate at the edge of the non-insulated portions and thus makes two perforations for each of said portions. Towers of corona 54 result in the uniform space between the insulation 12 of the grounded electrode 4 and the film 16.

The invention is broadly applicable to perforating any film including all organic thermoplastic and thermosetting resins such as but not limited to polyolefins, including polyethylene, polypropylene, polybutene-l and the like, polyvinyls, vinylchloride copolymers, polyamides including nylon and the like. The term polymer as employed herein includes homopolymers, copolymers, terpolymers, block copolymers, laminates and the like. The film can be molecularly oriented. Film thickness which can be perforated depends on the voltage, distance, etc., but is preferably between 0.1 and 20 mils.

The invention is best illustrated by the following examples.

Example 1 Holes were produced in several different types of film by means of a concentrated high frequency-high voltage current pulsed by a distributor. The electrical energy was first concentrated by alternately masking the blade electrode of a model HFSG-Z treater with electricians tape. Taped sections were /2 inch in length and untaped sections were inch in length along the blade. When a piece of polypropylene film was held against the prepared electrode to provide an air gap of inch between the film and the rubber insulated ground roll, the concentrated electrical energy burned two holes into the film at each unmasked section of the blade. The two holes were formed in the film at the end of each unmasked section of the blade where the insulation tape provided a distinct border. Therefore, the two holes were spaced inch apart from each other every /2 inch across the film.

Example 11 The blade electrode of Example I was replaced by an area electrode 5 inches long and 18 inches wide consisting of aluminum foil. The rubber insulated ground roll was wrapped with a polyethylene netting inch thick in order to provide an air gap between the foil electrode, the contacted film and the ground roll. After conforming both the electrode and film to the shape of the wound insulated ground roll, the roll was rotated at 50 f.p.m. and the film was passed between the netting and the area electrode and through a visible purple corona. The resulting film was punctured with a myriad of tiny holes spaced approximately every /2 inch along the width of the film. The gap distance was found to affect the hole spacing. Moving the electrode nearer to the ground roll caused the holes to be spaced together and moving the electrode away from the ground roll caused the holes to be spaced further apart. The size of the hole produced in the film was also found to vary inversely to the speed of film passage through the treating area.

The table below illustrates the power settings used to produce hole in various types of film using the area electrode.

While certain examples, structures, composition and process steps have been described for purposes of illustration, the invention is not limited to these. Variations and modification within the scope of the disclosure and the claims can readily be effected by those skilled in the art.

I claim:

1. Apparatus for uniformly perforating a moving film of thermoplastic material comprising, in combination, a charging blade electrode transverse said film, a discharging electrode spaced apart from said blade electrode having a continuous surface, a source of high voltage alternating current in communication with said blade electrode so as to apply a potential across the space between said electrodes and produce a corona and distinct areas of concentrated electrical energy therebetween, means for continuously passing a dielectric film between said electrodes, an electrically insulative, discontinuous, dielectric spacing means positioned between said film and a protective continuous dielectric material disposed on the continuous surface of said discharging electrode and said spacing means having means for periodically disrupting said corona longitudinally by alternately exposing and covering said discharge electrode surface.

2. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said spacing means has members transverse said film so as to periodically disrupt said corona.

3, The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said spacing means comprises a thermoplastic netting of substantially uniform thickness.

4. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein conductive metal foil is attached to the film side of said blade electrode to form an area electrode.

5. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said means for periodically disrupting corona comprises means for pulsing said current.

6. Apparatus for perforating a film of dielectric material comprising, in combination, a pair of spaced area electrodes comprising a charging electrode and a continuous surface discharging electrode, means for applying a potential across said electrodes so as to produce a corona and distinct areas of concentrated electrical energy within the space between said electrodes, means for passing said film through said space, spacing means comprising a discontinuous electrically insulative material in contact with said film, said spacing means having means therein which alternately expose and cover the surface of the discharging electrode thereby periodically disrupting said corona longitudinally.

7. The apparatus of claim 6 wherein the spacing means comprises a net-like dielectric material having substantially uniform thickness.

References Cited FOREIGN PATENTS 1,248,092 10/1960 France.

JOHN H. MACK, Primary Examiner.

R. K. MIHALEK, Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
FR1248092A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3424895 *Dec 2, 1966Jan 28, 1969Minnesota Mining & MfgElectrical spark perforator for moving web
US3428782 *Jul 27, 1966Feb 18, 1969Philips CorpElectrode assemblies with sequentially operated,closely adjacent spark gaps
US3435190 *Jun 27, 1967Mar 25, 1969Grace W R & CoApparatus for perforating film
US3438504 *Aug 11, 1966Apr 15, 1969Gen ElectricFilter element and method of production
US3475591 *Feb 29, 1968Oct 28, 1969Fujikawa Paper Mfg Co LtdApparatus for electrically perforating cigarette papers
US3614369 *Sep 17, 1968Oct 19, 1971Wool Ind Res AssocMethod of and apparatus for cutting cloth
US3760152 *Feb 25, 1972Sep 18, 1973Canon KkCorona discharge device for removing dielectric liquid
US3890504 *Mar 15, 1974Jun 17, 1975Walco Systems IncAdjustable corona discharge electrode
US3980863 *Nov 8, 1974Sep 14, 1976Wifo Wissenschaftliches Forschungs-Institut A.G.Electrophotographic copying machines
US4029938 *Feb 2, 1976Jun 14, 1977Olin CorporationApparatus for electrically perforating moving webs
US4035611 *Jun 1, 1976Jul 12, 1977Olin CorporationApparatus for electrically perforating moving paper webs
US4253010 *Apr 23, 1979Feb 24, 1981Olin CorporationSpatially distributed electrostatic perforation of moving webs
US4295478 *Apr 11, 1979Oct 20, 1981Rjr Archer, Inc.Composite tipping structure for use on an air-ventilated cigarette and method of manufacturing same
US4314142 *Jul 22, 1980Feb 2, 1982Olin CorporationSpatially distributed electrostatic perforation of moving webs
US4334144 *Apr 7, 1980Jun 8, 1982Ezio FerrariniCorona effect surface treatment apparatus for sheet
US4447709 *Dec 21, 1979May 8, 1984Olin CorporationMethod for electrically perforating dielectric webs
US4778557 *Oct 11, 1985Oct 18, 1988W. R. Grace & Co., Cryovac Div.Multi-stage corona laminator
US4803122 *Feb 27, 1987Feb 7, 1989W. R. Grace & Co.Multilayer laminate of self supporting films
US4854999 *Dec 9, 1988Aug 8, 1989W. R. Grace & Co.Method of making a laminate via corona discharge treatment
US8650996 *May 23, 2013Feb 18, 2014Ronald S. Boyer, Jr.Film perforation method
US8758697Jun 9, 2009Jun 24, 2014Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft Zur Forderung Der Angewandten Forschung E.V.Device and method for microstructured plasma treatment
US20130247729 *May 23, 2013Sep 26, 2013Boyer Machine, Inc.Film Perforation Method
DE19926374B4 *Jun 10, 1999Aug 30, 2007Arcotec Oberflächentechnik GmbhCorona-Station zur Vorbehandlung von einer Materialbahn
WO2009149899A1 *Jun 9, 2009Dec 17, 2009Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der angewandten Forschung e.V.Device and method for microstructured plasma treatment
U.S. Classification219/384, 425/DIG.370, 250/325, 83/177, 422/186.5, 264/154
International ClassificationB26F1/24, B26F1/28
Cooperative ClassificationB26F1/24, Y10S425/037, B26F1/28
European ClassificationB26F1/24, B26F1/28