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Publication numberUS3392724 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 16, 1968
Filing dateApr 14, 1965
Priority dateApr 14, 1965
Also published asDE1491670A1
Publication numberUS 3392724 A, US 3392724A, US-A-3392724, US3392724 A, US3392724A
InventorsJames Cowley John
Original AssigneeTherapeutic Res Corp Ltd
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Oxygen inhalator
US 3392724 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

July 16, 1968 J. J. cowLEY CXYGEN INHALATOR 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed April 14, 1965 NVENTOR.'

JOHN JAMES COV/LEY allanag Wl'malll July 16, 1968 J. J. cowLr-:Y


JOHN JAMES COWLEY allahag g norman FIG.7

Filed April 14, 1965 United States Patent O 3,392,724 OXYGEN INHALATOR John James Cowley, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, assigner,

by mesne assignments, to Therapeutic Research Corporation Limited Filed Apr. 14, 1965, Ser. No. 448,139 11 Claims. (Cl. 12S-145.8)

ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A portable emergency oxygen inhalator incorporating its own permanently storable supply of oxygen in a tubular pressure vessel, a frangible seal for said vessel, and means for slowly releasing the gas at atmospheric pressure.

This invention relates to an individual oxygen inhalator device which is personally portable and available for instant emergency use and, in addition may be used as a short term resuscitator if assistance is available.

Various types of emergency oxygen inhalators are available, such as those used for escape from burning buildings or other unbreathable atmospheres, and also those used for escape from very high altitude aircraft. Such devices have usually centred around a cylindrical oxygen container of substantial size and volume and have incorporated regulator mechanism and a variety of different breathing devices permitting in some cases the inhalation of pure oxygen and in other cases the inhalation of a mixture of oxygen and air under pressure and in still other cases, of oxygen and atmospheric air, as available. However, while such prior devices have proved entirely satisfactory for the purposes for which they were designed, they were in general suitable for use only by trained personnel such as remen or civil defence workers or trained airmen, and were entirely unsuitable for use by civilians or by the great majority of military personnel. In addition, such prior devices were portable only in a restricted sense. Usually, they were designed to be carried on a specially designed sling or uniform attachment at the times when they might be required i.e. when tire fighting or entering a dangerous building, or as part of a parachute harness which would in any event be worn by an airman, and they were therefore in general unsuited for incorporation in a personal or individual first aid kit or, as forming part of a standard military pack as for example a gas mask package which would be worn by all military personnel in action. As a result, the distribution of such prior inhalator devices has been relatively restricted, and in a large number of emergency type situations such as may arise in civilian life and in particular in military experience, oxygen inhalators have never been available on less than at least thirty minutes notice, and in many cases, only after a very much longer delay with resultant injury or loss of life in some cases.

In addition, such prior inhalator devices have usually been designed to perform solely as inhalators that is to say as making available free oxygen for breathing by a person who was fully possessed of his faculties and capable of breathing normally, and the design of such equipment has usually proceeded on the basis that where a resuscitator action was required by a person whose ability to breathe was impaired and therefore required assistance, that other resuscitator equipment would be available and that the inhalator equipment would not be required. In actual practice, and in particular in the case of sudden heart attacks or accidental electric shocks or partial drownings, resuscitation is required first for a relatively short period after which inhalation will be suicient to cornplete the recovery. This fact is well recognized and the design of many resuscitators incorporates 'an optional inice halator function to which the equipment: can be switched over after the patient has partially recovered. However, such resuscitator apparatus as has been available in the past is extremely bulky and usually requires one or two persons to carry it and is usually only available at one or two central locations such that the delay in treating the patient renders the equipment virtually useless.

One of the principal obstacles to the production of a small compact inhalator and resuscitator has been the problem of designing a completely safe :and reliable high pressure oxygen container which can be mass produced and lled at a very low cost and yet remain completely safe from leakage or explosion under variable conditions. In addition, the design of an eicient pressure regulator for reducing the very hivh container pressures in excess of two thousand p.s.i. down to a fraction of one p.s.i. has not previously been accomplished in a manner permitting mass production at low unit cost.

In particular, the customary design of high pressure containers of large diameter cylindrical shape having domed ends is unsuitable for mass production purposes and in addition the working pressure must be maintained several times lower than the bursting pressure since the danger of rupture of such containers is very serious, resulting in a destructive explosion and shattering of the container. For these reasons, such containers are usually filled to only a fraction of their capacity with consequent increases in cost. In addition, the relatively thickv metal required for the construction of such large diameter containers results in an unequal distribution of fibre stress with consequent tendency to develop local weaknesses.

It is therefore a general objective of the invention to provide an oxygen inhalator apparatus which is of small compact design, and stores a volume of oxygen sufficient for a brief emergency period of usage and which incorporates high pressure oxygen storage means capable of standing tests several times in excess of normal working pressures and having an indefinite storage life, and which is available for instant use automatically by untrained personnel.

More particularly, it is an objective of the invention to provide an oxygen inhalator apparatus having the foregoing advantages which also combines the function of a resuscitator apparatus for short periods if desired.

More particularly, it is an objective of the in-vention to provide an oxygen breathing apparatus having the foregoing advantages comprising a small unit package wrapped land hermetically sealed for protection during storage and handling.

More particularly, it is an objective of the invention to provide an oxygen breathing apparatus having the foregoing advantages incorporating etlicient and safe pressure reduction means.

VMore particularly, it is an objective of the present invention to provide oxygen breathing apparatus :having the foregoing advantages incorporating a de-mand valve Iregulating flow of oxygen to the user to extend the useful life of the device.

More particularly, it is an yobjective of the present invention to provide an oxygen breathing apparatus having the foregoing advantages incorporating means for manually applying pressure to provide a resuscitator action if desired.

More particularly, uit is an objective lof the present invention to provide an oxygen breathing apparatus having the foregoing advantages wherein the act of opening the wrapper for the package automatically extends a face mask and simultaneously automatically breaks the seal of the oxygen pressure container and permits iiow lof oxygen therefrom.

More particularly, it is an objective of the present invention to provide a high pressure oxygen container of a novel design adapted for mass production and filling by mass production techniques, and capable of being pressure tested after manufacture and filling and before shipment to ensure complete safety of every container so manufactured and filled.

The foregoing and other advantages will become apparent from the following description of a preferred embodiment -of the invention which is here made by way of example only with reference to the following drawings in which like reference devices refer to like parts thereof throughout the various views and diagrams, and in which:

FIGURE 1 is a perspective illustration of an oxygen breathing apparatus according to the invention partially cut-away to reveal the construction;

FIGURE 2 is a sectional side elevation of the apparatus shown in FIGURE l along the line 2 2 of FIGURE 1;

FIGURE 3 is an enlarged perspective of a detail of the apparatus shown in FIGURE l exploded to reveal the construction thereof;

FIGURE 4 is a perspective illustration of the apparatus of FIGURE 1 folded and wrapped to form a single compact package;

FIGURE 5 is an enlarged sectional view of a detail of FIGURE 1;

FIGURE 6 is an enlarged sectional view of a detail of FIGURE l; and

FIGURE 7 is an enlarged sectional view of a detail of FIGURE 1;

FIGURE 8 is a sectional side elevation of a further embodiment showing an oxygen flow control valve of a design suitable for use in the invention; and

FIGURE 9 is a side elevational view of an embodiment of a pressure indicating device suitable for use in association with the invention in some cases.

From FIGURES 1 and 2 it will be seen that the pre- -ferred embodiment of the invention comprises a high pressure oxygen container consisting essentially of a length of cylindrical tubing 10 Wound upon itself in double spiral form to define a generally donut shaped structure adapted to contain oxygen under very high pressure of about 2,000 to 8,000 p.s.i. and providing endurance for ten t-o thirty minutes of normal inhalator use. Tube 10 is preferably formed of thin metallic tape spirally wound and bonded in known manner to provide tubing of the greatest strength with the thinnest possible wall stmcture. It will be noted that this tubular construction provi-des a pressure container having a very small diameter in relation to its volume hence reducing the unit hoop stress and hence reducing the Weight of metal required and in turn equalizing the fibre stress across the wall thickness. This factor is further enhanced by the tape woun-d construction of the preferred embodiment leading to a molecule distribution around the circumference of the tube instead of along its length giving increased strength. The ends of the tubing are closed in any suitable manner, the coil of tubes 10 is preferably fitted Within and contained by the generally cylindrical container 11 having a back portion 12 and an open mouth portion 13, which is in turn provided with an annular retaining tiange 14 extending therearound for en- `gagement by and with the flexible rubber or plastic face mask 15 which is shaped and adapted to t over the nose and mouth of an adult person.

Oxygen is communicated from tubes 10 to the interior of face mask 15 by means -of a simplified pressure reducing system and ow of oxygen is partially regulated by means of a demand valve which also operates to mix the oxygen with air when a person breathes inwardly. The pressure reducing mechanism consists essentially of capillary tube 16 communicating with one of tubes 10 and having a metering jet device 17 located therewithin which is dimensioned to permit only a very restricted flow of oxygen therethrough, preferably being in the region of about two to `four one thousandths of an inch in diameter. Capillary tube 16 is extended away from tube 10 and is provided with 4a closed end 18 having a neck portion 19 of reduced diameter formed therein which is weakcned and adapted to be fractured easily to permit flow of oxygen to take place. Closed end 18 and neck portion 19 are completely enclosed Within an over-size plastic sleeve 20 which is clamped firmly around tube 16 by means of clamping ring 21, the other end of tube 20 being closed. Tube 20 is preferably formed of relatively soft exble material such as to permit manipulation of end portion 18 and neck 19 on capillary tube 16 to permit the same to be readily broken. A junction tube 22 of similar plastic mate-rial connects `from tube 20 with the raised block portion 23 fastened to the back wall 12 o-f container 11. It will be understood that raised block portion 23 will in fact be of a thickness only slightly greater than the outside diameter of plastic tube 22, and is here shown greatly enlarged for the sake of clarity. Block portion 23 is provided with a central opening 24 extending therethrough from front to back and making communication with a corresponding opening 25 formed in back Wall 12. Opening 25 is surrounded by an annular flange 26 which is provided on back wall 12 for making sealing engagement with the rubber expansion bag 27 which is provided for accumulating oxygen owing from tubes 10 continuously to provide a large volume low pressure storage of sufficient oxygen to be at least sufficient for one deep breath or inhalation. Back portion 12 is also provided with a series of air entry ports 28 for admitting atmospheric air to the interior `thereof which are normally closed by the rubber yor plastic flap member 29 which is fastened to the inner side of back wall 12 and provides a simple form of yone way valve action. Mixing of atmospheric air With oxygen is achieved by means of the diaphragm member 30 extending over substantially the entire inner surface of back wall 12 being raised upwardly over the block portion 23 and provided with a stiffened central disc portion 31 corresponding substantially to the diameter of block portion 23. Disc portion 31 and diaphragm 30 are provided with a series of air and oxygen mixture passages 32 extending therethrough and on the interior of disc portion 31 there is provided the generally frusto conical valve member 33 shaped to' make sealing engagement with block portion 23 and normally closing central opening 24 thereof, the spring finger 34 or any lother suitable biasing means being provided to maintain the same in its normally closed position. It will be understood that the biasing pressure of spring ringer 34 is very slight and such as may be readily overcome by a normal adult person inhaling within the face mask 15 thereby reducing the pressure therewithin and tending to raise diaphragm 30.

In order to provide for instantaneous operation automatic means are provided for the fracturing of closed end 18 at neck portion 19. Such means comprise the extended wire arm member 35 which comprises one end of the hair spring 36 coiled around post 37 which is in turn fixed to bracket 38 which may be fastened in position by any suitable means within the interior of casing 11. The free end of arm 35 is provided with an upstanding retaining pin 39 for engagement with any suitable means such as cardboard disc 40 which may be shaped and adapted to iit within the inner diameter of retaining flange 14 of housing 11 and provided with a tag 41. Removal of cardboard disc 40 will release arm 3S and spring 36 will thereupon swing arm 35 in an anti-clockwise direction braking closed end 18 of capillary tube 16. In order to complete the package any suitable covering means such as the plastic wrapper 42 may be provided for retaining face mask 15 in a closed infolded position, substantially as shown in FIGURE 4, and also for retaining expansion bag 27 in a folded or stored position and preventing darnage thereof. Any suitable means (not shown) such as a tear strip may be provided in wrapper 42 for facilitating the removal thereof in known manner.

According to a further embodiment of the invention where the inhalator may possibly be only partially used, it may be considered desirable to provide means for terminating fiow of oxygen from tubes so as to enable the unused portion thereof to be retained therewithin against further need. A suitable valve means is shown in FIGURE 8 and may comprise an oversized sleeve portion 43 adapted to fit around the outside diameter of capillary tube 16 which may preferably be cut in two and contains within its interior a cylindrical ball bearing valve member 44 adapted to make sealing engagement with rubber O-ring 45 which abuts against an exposed end of capillary tubes 16 and which is urged into such sealing engagement by means of spring 46 which is itself retained in position within sleeve 43 by means of the other exposed end of capillary tube 16. Valve member 44 is moved ofi O-ring 45 to permit fiow of oxygen by means of operating rod 46a extending upwardly through capillary tube 16 and provided with a manually operable pressure button (not shown) for depression of member 44. In this embodiment, it may also be necessary to provide a crude form of pressure indicating means to give some indication of the volume of oxygen remaining within tubes 10. Such pressure indicating means may comprise a further capillary tube 47 communicating with the interior of tubes 10 from any suitable point therealong which is wound in the form of a spiral 48 and at its free end at the innermost point of spiral 48 is provided with a needle 49 which may indicate a position along a dial 50 if desired.

In addition, filling may be accomplished at one end of tubes 10 by means of a further capillary tube 51 the end of which is closed as by silver soldering at 52.

In operation, a user will simply tear off the wrapper 42 and pull at tag 41 thereby unfolding the face mask 15 and also releasing arm 35 which thereupon is swung violently across closed end 18 of capillary tube 16 breaking it as at neck portion 19 and permitting oxygen to flow into plastic tube 22. Such fiow of oxygen as takes place will of course be only as great as is permitted by the meteoring iet 17 fitted within capillary tube 16 and this is so arranged and designed as to correspond to about the normal rate of breathing of an adult person. Obviously, such escape of oxygen will be continuous and oxygen will flow slowly but steadily down plastic tube 22 into central opening 24 of block 23 and from there into expansion bag 27. Bag 27 will have been released and unfolded by removal of wrapper 42 and will thereupon slowly fill and expand in response to the increasing volume of oxygen fiowing thereinto, such filling and expansion taking place within relatively short space of time. The user, as soon as cardboard disc 40 has been removed and disgarded will place the face mask which is then fully extended due to inherent resiliency over his nose and mouth and commence to breathe. Inhalation within the face mask 15 will cause a reduction of pressure thereby lifting diaphragm 30 and in turn lifting valve member 33 off block portion 23 and permitting oxygen to flow from expansion bag 27 into the space between block 23 and diaphragm 30 where it will be mixed with air drawn inwardly through air openings 28 and become mixed and pass as a mixture of air and oxygen through openings 32 into face mask and into the lungs of the user. As soon as the lungs are filled, the reduction of pressure within face mask 15 will stop and the slight spring biasing action of finger 34 will reassert itself and press diaphragm downwardly thereby pressing valve member 33 onto block portion 23. When this occurs, the flow of oxygen which is continuing from plastic tube 22 will then be redirected into expansion bag 27 where it will gradually accumulate until the next breath is taken.

If it is desired to use the instant device as an emergency form of resuscitator then a second person or an assistant will be required, since in general, the patient who requires resuscitation will be incapable of assisting himself, and the assistant will go through the same steps as before for opening the package and extending the face mask 15. After this, he will place the face mask 15 firmly over the nose and mouth of the patient. and, as soon as bag 27 has become extended he may simply apply manual pressure to the same thereby forcing oxygen from bag 27 under pressure to overcome the spring biasing of finger 34 and raise diaphgram 30 and valve member 33 ofir block 23 and permit pure oxygen to flow through openings 32 into the lungs of the patient. Reverse flow of oxygen up pipe-22 and into tubes 10 will of course be impossible due to the very substantial back pressure of oxygen within tubes 10, and, outward fiow or escape of oxygen to the atmosphere through openings 28 will be prevented by fiap member 29. While this resuscitator action will obviously not be precisely engineered in the sense that the pressure of the oxygen being forced into the patients lungs may vary, relatively little experience will suffice to teach an operator approximately how much hand pressure on bag 27 is required, and, depending upon the availability of other help at the scene of the accident, such resuscitation with pure oxygen may be coupled with attempts at artificial respiration in known manner and may also be rendered at intervals, interspersed with mouth to mouth resuscitation in known manner, the precise nature and extent of the resuscitator use being dependent upon the particular circumstances and the judgment of the individuals concerned.

The foregoing is a description of a preferred embodiment of the invention which is here marde by way of example only. The invention is not to be taken as limited to the specific steps described but comprehends all such variations that come within the spirit and scope of the appended claims.

What I claim is:

1. Gas inhalator apparatus and comprising:

a pressure vessel for storage of said gas;

-a capillary tube connected to said vessel;

a closed end on said tube;

a weakened portion adjacent said closed end;

a flexible sleeve fitting loosely over said closed end and weakened portion and sealed around said tube; spring means operable to open said sealing means; retaining means normally engaging said spring means and being releasable therefrom;

-a gas accumulator communicating with said vessel for accumulating low pressure gas;

a container surrounding said pressure vessel and having an open mouth;

and conduit means connecting said accumulator means to the interior of said container.

2. Gas inhalator apparatus and comprising:

la pressure vessel for storage of said gas;

sealing means closing said vessel and. operable to permit liow of gas therefrom;

a gas accumulator communicating with said vessel for accumulating low pressure gas;

-air intake means for mixing air with. oxygen escaping from said accumulator;

a container surrounding said pressure vessel and having an open mouth;

conduit means connecting said accumulator means to the interior of said container;

a diaphragm within said container extending over said conduit means and said air intake means;

and a valve member on said diaphragm oriented to seal said conduit means.

3. Gas inhalator apparatus as claimed in claim 2, including passageways formed in said diaphragm and spring means biasing said diaphragm to maintain said valve member in sealing engagement with said conduit.

4. Gas inhalator apparatus as claimed in claim 2, including a mouth-piece connected to said container around said open mouth.

5. Gas inhalator apparatus as claimed in claim 2, including one-way air valve means restricting escape of gas through said air intake means.

6. Gas inhalator apparatus as claimed in claim 2,

7 including spring means operable to open said sealing means and retaining means normally engaging said spring means and being releasable therefrom.

v7. Gas inhalator apparatus and comprising:

a Ipressure vessel for storage of said gas;

a capillary tube connected to said vessel;

a closed end on said tube;

a weakened portion adjacent said closed end;

a flexible sleeve fitting loosely over said closed end and weakened portions and sealed around said tube;

a gas accumulator communicating with said vessel for accumulating low pressure gas;

tube means connecting said sleeve to said accumulator means;

valve means connected to said accumulator and biased to maintain same normally closed;

and air intake means for mixing air with oxygen escaping from said accumulator.

8. Gas inhalator apparatus and comprising:

a pressure vessel for storage of said gas;

a capillary tube connected to said vessel for reducing pressure of gas owing therethrough at a reduced rate;

a closed end on said tube;

a weakened portion adjacent said closed end for breaking of said tube to commence gas flow therefrom;

a container surrounding said pressure vessel and having an open mouth;

a removable cover for said open mouth;

and, means connected between said cover and said closed end of said tube for breaking same at said weakened portion thereof upon removal of said cover.

9. Gas inhalator apparatus as claimed in claim 8 wherein said pressure vessel is a tube wound upon itself in substantially toroidal shape.

10. Gas inhalator `apparatus as claimed in claim 8 including gas flow check valve means connected With said capillary tube.

11. Gas inhalator apparatus and comprising:

a tubular pressure vessel for storage of said gas wound upon itself into substantially toroidal shape and' enclosing an interior open space;

a container surrounding said pressure vessel defining one open side;'

a capillary tube connected to said vessel for reducing pressure of gas flowing therethrough at a`reduced rate;

a closed end on said tube extending from said vessel into said open space;

a weakened portion adjacent said closed end;

manually operable means for breaking said tube at said weakened portion;

means enclosing said capillary tube;

a gas accumulator communicating through said enclosing means with said vessel by means of said capillary tube for accumulating low pressure gas iiowing therefrom and incorporating outlet openings for permitting escape of gas therefrom, and

closure means for said open side of said container connected to said manually operable breaking means.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,399,643 5/1946` Kreiselman l28-145.7 2,420,223 5/1947 Brewer 222-541 2,432,627 12/1947 Margaria 12S-203 2,944,546 7/1960 Ziherl et al. 12S-203 2,970,594 2/1961 Doak 128--203 3,136,312 6/1964 Gattone 128-205 XR 3,208,449 9/1965 Bartlett 12S-145.8 2,577,045 12/1951 Stout 222--5 2,733,835 2/1956 Alfery et al. 222-5 FOREIGN PATENTS 843,586 8/1960 Great Britain.

RICHARD A. GAUDET, Primary Examinez'.

40 K. L. HOWELL, Assistant Examiner.

Patent Citations
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US2420223 *Mar 21, 1944May 6, 1947Sparklets LtdAtomizer
US2432627 *Mar 18, 1941Dec 16, 1947Rodolfo MargariaBreathing apparatus for respiration at high altitudes
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3659589 *Sep 15, 1969May 2, 1972Lambert Jack RSpirograph mouthpiece
US3677267 *Sep 25, 1967Jul 18, 1972Siebe Gorman & Co LtdClosed circuit breathing apparatus
US4552140 *Apr 29, 1983Nov 12, 1985Erie Manufacturing Co.Emergency escape device
US4657027 *Jan 24, 1985Apr 14, 1987Ferring Biotechnik GmbhMeans for taking blood samples for the diagnosis of bodily functions
US5687713 *Nov 13, 1995Nov 18, 1997Bahr; Erik W.Breathing mask
US6543450 *Feb 12, 2001Apr 8, 2003John T. FlynnSurvival mask
U.S. Classification128/204.28, 222/5, 222/541.6, 128/205.21
International ClassificationA62B18/00, A62B7/02, A62B18/10, A62B9/00, A62B9/02, A62B7/00, A61M16/06
Cooperative ClassificationA62B9/022, A61M16/06, A62B7/00, A62B7/02, A62B18/10
European ClassificationA62B18/10, A62B9/02D, A62B7/02, A62B7/00, A61M16/06