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Publication numberUS3450127 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 17, 1969
Filing dateFeb 26, 1968
Priority dateFeb 26, 1968
Publication numberUS 3450127 A, US 3450127A, US-A-3450127, US3450127 A, US3450127A
InventorsHarwood Ness Jr Van
Original AssigneeAro Of Buffalo Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Chemical packheater for diver's suit
US 3450127 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 1969 VAN NESS HARWOOD, JR 3,450,127

' CHEMICAL FACKHLA IICR 'r'O DIVER-'3 SUT'I Filed Feb. 26, 1968 INVENTOR. VonNess Horwood, Jr.

ATTORNEYS United States Patent US. Cl. 126-204 7 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE Water as a heat exchange fluid is recirculated in a closed circuit in heat exchange relation alternately with the divers body and with the subject heating apparatus. The apparatus has a tubular hollow container divided into a first compartment for a first reactant, such as sulfuric acid and a second compartment for a second reactant, sodium hydroxide, the compartments being separated by a rolling diaphragm, that is a tubular flexible membrane connected at one end to a transverse diaphragm and at its other end to the interior of the container at one end thereof so that as the transverse diaphragm moves along the container one compartment increases in size while the other compartment decreases in size. The first reactant, under control, is fed into the second reactant compartment to generate heat without substantially changing the buoyancy of the apparatus. The rolling diaphragm is biased toward one compartment. While sulfuric acid and sodium hydroxide have been selected as exemplary reactants, the invention is not limited to any particular reactants, other than they must react exothermically to provide the required heat.

In the drawings, FIG. 1 is a simplified diagrammatic representation of the undergarment and outer gear of a divers suit and showing a general arrangement of tubes for recirculating heat exchange water alternately through the chemical pack of the present invention and then in heat exchange relation with the body of the diver. FIG. 2 is an enlarged section through these tubes and the undergarment to which they are attached and through the outer wet suit of the diver. FIG. 3 illustrates the components of the chemical pack which heats the recirculating water supplied to the divers suit.

Diver's suit and its heat exchange system The diver is clothed in a cloth undergarment having hood, torso, arm, leg and foot portions 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, respectively, this undergarment being shown by dotted lines in FIG. 1 and in enlarged cloth section in FIG. 2. The outer garment 16 is shown as being in the form of separable hood, jacket, pants, boot and glove sections 18, 19, 20, 2 1, 22, respectively, these outer garments being loosely and removably joined together so that water 23 can enter the suit and come in contact with the body of the diver.

A system of flexible heat exchange tubes is built into the undergarment 10 for heating the body of the diver. Water as a heat exchange liquid, is recirculated from a chemical pack via a line 30 through a disconnect 31 to a line 32 leading to a main supply manifold 34 suitably attached to the middle portion of the divers undergarment 10. From this manifold a series of flexible heat exchange tubes 35 extend in spaced relation to one another along the leg and foot portions 14, of the divers undergarment to a manifold 36 attached to these foot portions. As best shown in FIG. 2, these tubes are preferably stitched to the exterior of the cloth forming the undergarment 10 on the exterior side thereof so as to be immersed in the water 23 between the body of the diver and the outer garment 16 so that the heat of the liquid passing through these tubes is transmitted through this 3,450,127 Patented June 17, 1969 water to the body of the diver. A return line 38 receives the warm liquid from each boot manifold 36 and conducts it to a pair of manifolds 39 attached to the hood portion 11 of the undergarment 10. Flexible heat exchange tubes 40 stitched in spaced relation to the exterior of the hood portion 11 of the divers undergarment 10 conduct this warm liquid in heat exchange relation to the divers head to an outlet manifold 41. The outlet line 42 from this manifold 41 is attached by a quick disconnect 43 to the return line 44 to the chemical pack.

To heat the torso, arms and hands of the diver, a plurality of flexible heat exchange tubes 45 are stitched in spaced relation to one another to the exterior of the torso portion 12 of the divers undergarment and these tubes continue along the two sleeve portions 13 and glove portions 22. The inlet ends of these tubes are connected with the supply manifold 34 and their outlet ends discharge into a glove outlet manifold 46 connected by a flexible line 48 in each sleeve portion 13 of the divers undergarment to the return line 38.

Chemical heating pack The chemical heating pack is designated at 50 and is shown as comprising an outer jacket 51, preferably thermally insulated from the cold sea water, and having at one end an inlet nipple 52 connected to and receiving heat exchange water from the line 44 from the suit and discharging this heat exchange water into the enclosed interior chamber 53 of this jacket. At its opposite end the jacket 51 is provided with an outlet nipple 54 connected with the inlet of a pump 55 which discharges into the line 30 returning the heated water or other heat exchange medium to the divers suit. The pump is shown as driven by a motor 56 from batteries 57 under control of a switch 58 which is designated diagrammatically.

It will be seen that the pump 55 withdraws the water or other heat exchange medium from the suit outlet manifold 41 through the line 42, disconnect 43, line 44 and interior chamber 53 of the jacket 51 and discharges it .via return line 30, disconnect 31 and line 32 into the inlet manifold 34 of the divers suit.

The present invention is directed to the chemical reaction heater, indicated generally at 60, within the chamber 53 and which is shown as comprising a container 61 having a vertical tubular side wall 62, having good heat transfer characteristics, such as metal, and upper and lower end heads 63, 64, also having good heat transfer characteristics, forming a closed internal chamber 65 divided into an upper compartment 65a for a first reactant, designated as exothermic reactant A, an example being strong sulfuric acid and a lower compartment 65b for a second reactant, designated as exothermic reactant B, an example being a strong base, such as sodium hydroxide by a movable partition indicated generally at 66. This movable partition is shown as comprising a transverse diaphragm 68 which is shown as being made of an elastomer, such as polytetrafluoroethylene, and as having an inverted cylindrical cup-shaped metal part 69 secured to its underside and providing a bottom disk for the diaphragm 68 as well as a housing for a helical compression spring 70 in the compartment 65b and which biases the diaphragm upwardly, the opposite end of this spring being seated on the lower end head 64. The movable partition 66 is completed by a tubular flexible or elastomeric membrane 71 having one end integrally connected to the margin of the diaphragm 68 and its other end 72 suitably sealed to the inside of the side wall 62 in a plane which is at the horizontal center of the compartment 65a when the diaphragm 68 is in its lowermost position with the compartment 65a of maximum size and the compartment 65b of minimu size. It will be seen that the diaphragm 68 and the tubular flexible membrane 3 71 to which it is connected constitutes a so-called rolling diaphragm within the chamber 65 which permits relative increase in size of the compartment 65b, with decrease in size of the compartment 65a, and vice versa.

The compartment 65a can be filled with the reactant A via a fill line 74 containing a valve 75. The compartment 65b can be filled with the reactant B, and also waste can be removed from this compartment, by removal of a plug 78 at the bottom of the pack, the pack being inverted, of course, during such refilling.

For the purpose of generating heat the reactant A from the compartment 65a is permitted to escape via a line 80 into the chamber 65b, this line discharging from an injector 81, such as a cylindrical porous body, which dis charges the reactant A into the reactant B so as to produce an exothermic reaction. This injector 81 is designed to distribute the two reactants so that reaction occurs over a large area or volume and temperatures high enough to form gas are not gene-rated. This allows noiseless operation.

The heat so developed is transmitted through the side wall and end heads of the sheet metal container 61 to the water or other heat exchange fluid being recirculated through the space in the chamber 53 surrounding this container. Preferably a thermostatic valve 82 is respon-.

sive to the temperature of-this water or other heat exchange medium and contorls the flow of acid through the line .80 so as to maitnain the heat exchange medium at any desired level. Desirably the setting of this valve is under control of a manually operable valve stem 83 which projects exteriorly of the jacket 51 so that the 'diver can conveniently increase or decrease the temperature of the water or heating medium being recirculated through his suit.

A similarly available manually operable on-olf valve 84 is also provided in the line 80 supplying the reactant A to the reactant B, and desirably a check valve 85 is also provided in this line to prevent backflow of the reactant B through this line.

Operation Preparatory to being connected with the dive-rs suit the chemical pack has its compartment 65a filled with the exothermic reactant A, such 95% sulfuric acid, so as to expand this chamber to its maximum extent in which the rolling diaphragm 68, 71 is in its full line lowermost position shown in FIG. 3. This filling is through the fill line 74, and the pack is then inverted, the plug 78 removed, and the compartment filled with the exothermic reactant B, such as 50% sodium hydroxide, the plug 78 thereupon being replaced.

The chemical pack 50 is carried by the diverclothed in the undergarment and outer garment 16 in the form of the separable hood, jacket, pants, boot and glove sections 18, 19, 20, 21, and 22, respectively. This pack can be carried as a backpack so as to leave the divers arms free for all activity and the disconnect 31 is joined to connect the outlet line 30 from the chemical pack 50 with the inlet line 32 to the suit and the disconnect 43 is joined to connect the outlet line 42 of the suit to the inlet line 44 of the chemical pack.

The diver starts the recirculation of water or other heat exchange medium through his suit and through the chemical heating pack 50 by closing the switch 58 which serves to energize the motor 56 and drive the pump 55. This draws the water, warmed as hereinafter described, from the chamber 53 of the chemical heat pack and discharges it through the line 32, FIG. 1, to the inlet manifold 34 where it is distributed to the various flexible heat exchange tubes 35 stitched to the leg and boot por tions 14, of the undergarment 10 thereby to heat the water 23 surrounding the legs and feet of the diver. In each boot portion of the divers suit this water from these tubes 35 enters the manifold 36 and is conducted via the corresponding line 38 to the inlet manifold 39' for the flexible heat exchange tubes 40 which are stitched to the helmet portion 11 of the undergarment 10. The liquid from these heat exchange tubes 40 is discharged into the outlet header 41 and thence via the line 42 into the return line 44 to the chemical pack 50.

Another part of the heated liquid so forced into the inlet header 34, FIG. 1, passes through the flexible heat exchange tubes 45 stitched to the torso and arm and glove portions 12, 13 and 22 of the divers suit so as to warm the water 23 surrounding the upper part of the body and the arms and hands of the diver. This liquid enters the outlet manifold 46 of each glove and flows via the lines 48 into the cor-responding line 38 to join the liquid being supplied to the hood portion 11 of the divers undergarment as previously described.

The diver then opens the on-oit valve 84 which permits the first reactant A to flow from the compartment 65a via line through the check valve and injector 81 into the compartment 65b containing the second reactant B. The first reactant A so escaping from the porous injector 81 reacts exothermically with the second reactant B and this heats the side walls 62 and end heads 63, 64 of the container 61 so as to heat the liquid or other heat exchange medium so passing through the chamber 53 around the exterior of this container 61. The porous body of the injector 81 distributes the reacting chemicals over a large enough space to avoid local overheating with possible resultant production of gas and noise.

Should the heat be insufficient, the diver can turn the hand control 83 to adjust the setting of the thermostatic valve 82 to a cor-responding setting.

It will be noted that the heating pack is extremely compact, having its compartments 65a, 65b fully filled at all times, the movable partition 68 ,71 permitting the change in the relative capacity of these chambers as the interaction of their reactants A and B proceeds. In addition to such compactness, there is no buoyancy problem created by a marked change in weight of the pack. Also by the use of a high strength reactant, prolonged or higher temperature activity can be achieved in a small pack which is easily carried by the diver in such manner as to not only leave his arms and legs free, but also to leave him freely maneuverable and free from interference from umbilical cords from a remote heat source. Also only water is recirculated through this suit so that if a rupture occurs his skin will not be adversely affected regardless of any allergies which he may have. i

I claim:

1. Apparatus including a suit for heating a diver imme-rsed in cold water, wherein the improvement comprises means providing a first compartment adapted to contain a first reactant and a second compartment adapted to contain a second reactant, at least said first compartment having a collapsible wall movable to reduce the volume thereof, means transferring said first reactant from said first compartment into said second compartment to generate heat and to decrease the size of said first compartment without substantial change in the buoyancy of the container, and means moving a heat exchange fluid in a closed circuit back and forth alternately in heat exchange relation with said means providing said second compartment and into said suit and in heat exchange relation with the body of the diver.

2. Apparatus as set forth in claim 1 wherein said first and second compartments have rigid walls and said collapsible wall is in the form of a flexible diaphragm forming a common membrane between said compartments and wherein the movement of said flexible diaphragm to so decrease the size of said one compartment effects a corresponding increase in the size of said second compartment.

3. Apparatus as set forth in claim 1 wherein said first and second compartments have rigid tubular Walls connected together at their adjacent ends and said rigid tubular walls having end heads at their remote ends and said collapsible wall comprises a transverse diaphragm movable along the interior of said tubular walls of said '5 first compartment, and a tubular flexible sleeve connecting the rim of said diaphragm to said rigid tubular side walls adjacent their connection and rolling upon itself as said diaphragm moves to decrease the size of said first compartment and to increase the size of said second compartment and vice versa.

4. Apparatus as set forth in claim 3 additionally including means biasing said diaphragm toward said end head of said first compartment.

5. Apparatus as set forth in claim 1 wherein said first reactant is a liquid and said transferring means comprises a transfer line communicating with both of said compartments and containing a check valve preventing back How of the contents of said second compartment to said first compartment.

6. Apparatus as set forth in claim 5 additionally including a thermostatic valve controlling the flow through said transfer line and responsive to the temperature of said heat exchange medium flowing in said closed circuit.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2/1968 Carter 126204 5/1968 Jones ,126204 FREDERICK L. MATTESON, JR., Primaly Examiner. EDWARD G. FAVORS, Assistant Examiner.

US. 01. X.R. 2-2.1; 165--46

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3367319 *Nov 9, 1966Feb 6, 1968Firewel Company IncApparatus for heating a diver clothed in a suit and immersed in cold water
US3385286 *Jan 25, 1967May 28, 1968Westinghouse Electric CorpHydrogen-oxygen catalytic heater
Referenced by
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US3563226 *Apr 24, 1969Feb 16, 1971United Aircraft CorpChemically fueled heater
US3583386 *May 29, 1969Jun 8, 1971Slack Don SHeating units
US3598103 *May 19, 1969Aug 10, 1971Litton Systems IncUnderwater heating system
US3599625 *May 19, 1969Aug 17, 1971Litton Systems IncDeep submergence heating system
US3651797 *Sep 24, 1969Mar 28, 1972Philips CorpHeating system
US3662739 *Sep 24, 1969May 16, 1972Philips CorpHeater system
US3662740 *Sep 25, 1969May 16, 1972Philips CorpHeater system
US3670716 *Dec 21, 1970Jun 20, 1972Us NavySelf-heated protective garment
US3688762 *Mar 2, 1971Sep 5, 1972Westinghouse Electric CorpThermal control garment
US3831594 *Mar 5, 1973Aug 27, 1974Us NavyLife support system
US3884216 *Sep 19, 1974May 20, 1975Us NavyElectrochemical energy source for diver suit heating
US4167932 *Aug 3, 1977Sep 18, 1979Energy Systems CorporationDiver heater system
US4186746 *Jan 16, 1978Feb 5, 1980William H. Byler and Thelma T. Byler, Trustees of William H. Byler Revocable TrustBody warming device
US5282740 *May 21, 1992Feb 1, 1994Kenji OkayasuPortable heat conducting apparatus
US6698510Apr 24, 2001Mar 2, 2004Mide Technology CorporationArticle and method for temperature regulation using a thermosensitive reactive hydrogel material
US20040026567 *Aug 9, 2002Feb 12, 2004Sam EmmerlingFluid delivery system for heat exchange garments
US20040131838 *Dec 8, 2003Jul 8, 2004Mide Technology CorporationArticle and method for temperature regulation using a thermosensitive reactive hydrogel material
EP0030573A1 *Nov 6, 1979Jun 24, 1981Alan KrasbergMethod and apparatus for the heating of underwater equipment
U.S. Classification126/204, 165/46, 219/211
International ClassificationB63C11/02, B63C11/28
Cooperative ClassificationB63C11/28
European ClassificationB63C11/28