US 3547409 A
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United States Patent Inventor Frank Jacuzzi Berkeley, Calif.
Appl. No. 731,555
Filed May 23,1968
Patented Dec. 15, 1970 Assignee Jacuzzi Bros., Incorporated a corporation of California ASSEMBLY FOR PRODUCING DETERGENT FOAM 10 Claims, 2 Drawing Figs.
259/151 Int. Cl B0lfl5/00 Field of Search 259/4, 151,
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,526,179 2/1925 Parr 259/18 3,123,362 3/1964 Elvers 259/151 3,207,485 9/1965 Warren 259/151 3,236,419 2/1966 Remer 259/7X Primary Examiner-Robert W. Jenkins Attorney-Edward Brosler ABSTRACT: A detergent foam-producing assembly in which a nozzle-venturi assembly in a main flow line has the foam ingredients introduced, preferably under pressure, in the region of reduced pressure between the nozzle and venturi. Gas under pressure may be added to create a more economical and effective foam by introducing same adjacent the venturi. A valve-controlled bypass around the nozzle-venturi assembly enables full main flow without incorporating foam-producing ingredients.
1 ASSEMBLY FOR PRODUCING DETERGENT FOAM My invention relates to a foam-producing assembly, and more particularly to such an assembly adaptable primarily for use with detergent in the washing down of structures such as aircraft, tunnels, machinery..... etc., though also capable of use in the fighting of fires.
The washing down of aircraft in particular has become a time-consuming and costly operation involving as it does, considerable manual labor. And with the ever growing increase in size of aircraft, the operation becomes more and more complex and difficult, due to the increasing height of the structures involved.
Among the objects of my invention are:
i. To 'provide a novel and improved assembly adapted for use in apparatus for the washing of structures of substantial size and height;
2. To provide a novel and improved assembly capable of producing a detergent foam for dispensing by hose;
3. To provide a novel and improved assembly capable of selectively dispensing either detergent foam .or clear liquid.
4. To provide a novel and improved assembly capable of creating and dispensing a substantially dry foam.
Additional objects of my invention will be brought out in the following description of a preferred embodiment of the same, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings wherein:
H6. 1 is a view depicting the components entering into the assembly constituting the present invention; and
FIG. 2 is a view depicting a modification of the assembly of FIG. 1.
Referring to the drawings for details of my invention in its preferred form, the same involves a nozzle-venturi combination 1 including a housing 3 open at each end and adapted at each end for couplingthereto of either a pipe or hose. Within the housing are a nozzle 9 and a venturi ll, the noule being disposed in feeding relationship to the venturi in a conventional manner. I
Provision is made for introducing ingredients into the housing at a point intermediate the nozzle and the venturi, the means for accomplishing this including a flow connection to the housing by means of a pipe 13 connected thereto at a point intermediate the nozzle and the venturi.
In the discharge path from the venturi, may be disposed a screen 17 of suitable noncorrosive material such as plastic or stainless steel, the screen preferably being formed by rolling a strip of perforated or slotted material to substantially a diameter approaching that of the housing, whereby the same may be inserted into the pertinent end of the housing facing the venturi and permitted to expand. The screen is desirable where viscous ingredients are used.
The nozzle end of the housing will in all likelihood, when placed in use, be coupled to a pressure source (not shown) of water by a pipe or hose 23 while the other end will in all likelihood be connected to a hose line 25 which terminates in a discharge nozzle 27.
inasmuch as a region of reduced pressure is created at the nozzle by the flow of water therethrough, ingredients may be introduced at pressure less than the .water pressure at the source of water supply.
The means for introducing ingredients into the housing at the location intermediate the nozzle and venturi may be coupled through a metering means 31 to a supply 33 of liquid ingredients, which in the present instance, willinvolve a pair of tanks 35, 37, one adapted to hold a foam-producing chemical; 39 while the other is adapted to hold a supply of detergent 4L} Each tank is adapted to feed its contents'to the metering means by way of a branch pipe connection, the tank 35;
70 A pipe connection 99 from the compressor to the nozzle through pipe connection 43, and tank 37 through pipe connection 45. Each such pipe connection includes a control valve 49, with a removable plug 51 in each line to permit replenishing the associated tank when the supply runs low.
The metering means involves a composite housing 55 open at one end 57 for inflow of liquid to be metered, and having an intermediate discharge opening 59 for connection by the pipe 13 to the nozzle-venturi housing intermediate the nozzle and venturi. I
In the flow passage from the intake opening to the discharge opening, there is a valve seat 61 against which a tapered valve 63 is adapted to seat. A valve stem 67 passing longitudinally through the valve, is retained by a crosspin 69and extends in both directions from the valve. Toward the intake end of the housing, the valve stem passes through a spider 71, while, in the opposite direction, the valve step mounts a sleeve 73, with both the valve stem and sleeve extending through the opposite end of the housing, where the valve stem is threaded to receive a nut 75 to hold the sleeve against longitudinal movement on the valve stem.
A valve spring 77 surrounds the sleeve within the housing and serves to bias the valve 63 to its seating position against the valve seat 61. i
The threaded end of the valve stem also carries an indicator in the form of a disc 81 which will move with excursions of the valve. A housing extension 83 of transparent material, added to the housing to enclose the threaded end of the valve stem, may be calibrated to register movements of the indicator, to thereby designate the prevailing metering rate of the metering means.
The tapered valve gradually enlarges the valve passage in response to increase in liquid pressure, to thereby increase the capacity of the metering means. This metering means, by its very construction, may be installed in any position, without impairing its ability to function. 5
In the absence of other provisions and with the lines open from both tanks to the metering means, the discharging contents from both tanks will mix and pass through the metering means and into the nozzle-venturi housing in response to a flow of water under pressure through the nozzle, the ratio of mixing being controlled by the valves 49. I
The nozzle-venturi assembly has been found to be quite advantageous for this purpose for not only is the region of reduced pressure created about the nozzle to encourage in- 0 flow'of ingredients at this point, but the nozzle reduces the volume intake of water to a value conducive to better foam production, and by converting the intake water pressure to high velocity, a thorough mixing of the ingredients with water takes place in the venturi, where velocity isconverted back to pressure.
The resulting detergent foam mixture of water and ingredients will have to pass through the screen to enter the hose line, in the process of which the foam will be thoroughly broken up and agitated to increase the quality of the foam entering the hose line.
In the absence of any desire to mix the ingredients from both tanks, either tank may be completely cut out of the system by its associated valve 49, leaving the remaining tank as the sole source of supply to the metering means.
I have further discovered that a better and even more effective foam may be produced by flowing the ingredients into the nozzle-venturi housing under increased pressure, and with this in mind, I provide a compressor 87 with a line connection 89 leading to branch lines 91, 93 for introducing air under pressure into both tanks,- to develop an air pressure cushion in each to maintain the contents of these tanks under a continual pressure. Each branch line includes a control valve 95, 97 respectively, whereby either tank may be shut off at this point. When employing a pressure medium, such as air, I can include a bladder within each tank to hold the liquid, such bladder thus functioning to isolate its contents from the pressure medium, which under the circumstances, could be water under pressure, instead of air.
venturi housing, at the location of the venturi, will, with the compressor pressure exceeding that at the venturi, force air into the foam. mixture, which, upon being driven through the screen, will create an expanded dry" foam of greater effectiveness for its intended purposes. A control valve 103 in this line, will permit of adjustment of air feed to the nozzle-venturi housing, whereby one may not only adjust the character of the foam, but also the distance to which it may be discharged under prevailing water pressure conditions.
Since the air pressure in the tanks is apt to be greater than that needed at the venturi, l contemplate satisfying this difference in pressure by installation of a suitably calibrated spring loaded valve or pressure regulator 100 in the air line to the venturi housing.
The assembly as described, is capable of producing an excellent detergent foam which may be sprayed over the structure to be cleaned and to which it will effectively adhere. Following a short time period to permit the detergent foam to effectively perform its function, the same may then be hosed off with clear water, and provision is made for utilizing the same equipment for performing this operation.
Toward this end, I provide a bypass line 107 around the nozzle and venturi, such bypass including a control valve 111. By closing off those valves 49 and 103 controlling flow of ingredients into the nozzle-venturi housing, and opening the control valve 111 in the bypass line, water flowing to the nozzle can then find a low resistance path through the bypass line, whereby full capacity flow of clear water through the hose line for hosing-off purposes may be realized.
While the assembly described above is designed primarily for washing of large structures, it may be utilized in fighting fires, both those calling for use of foam as well as those merely requiring water alone. The detergent, not being required under the circumstances, the tank which holds the detergent may be effectively cut out of the system by closing off valve 97 and the valve 49 associated therewith.
For fire fighting purposes in particular, I would prefer to substitute carbon dioxide (CO gas in lieu of air, for being heavier than air and incapable of supporting combustion, the resulting foam will not only travel further, but will offer increased resistance to air currents and accordingly will more effectively blanket an area. And the bursting of any gas bubble making'up the foam, will merely release its carbon dioxide content, which, by itself, will stay put and contribute to the blanket of foam, its effectiveness in smothering flre.
By utilizing solenoid-type control valves throughout the system, they may then be controlled from a remote station and in such combination and sequences as the operator may desire.
In the modified form of the assembly as depicted in H6. 2, the discharge from each tank is capable of being metered separately, and accordingly a separate metering means 31 is installed in the discharge line from each tank, and in each such line there is a manual valve 49 for adjusting the discharge to a desired rate as will be indicated on the associated metering means. If the discharge is to be initiated or stopped from a remote station, a solenoid controlled valve 115 will also be installed in each line. Such arrangement of valves would also be applicable in the assembly of F l6. 1.
ln the modification, the valves 103 andlll of FIG. 1, have been replaced by solenoid-controlled valves 119 and 121 respectively, it being understood that such solenoid-controlled valves could also be used in the corresponding locations in the system of FIG. 1.
From the foregoing, it will be apparent that the invention fulfills all the objects attributed thereto, and while I have illustrated and described my invention in its preferred form and in considerable detail, I do not desire to be limited in my protection to the specific details illustrated and described except as may be necessitated by the appendant claims.
lclaim: 1. An assembly for use in producing chemical foam, comprising a nozzle-venturi combination including a housing open at each end and adapted at each end for the coupling thereto zle and said venturi.
2. An assembly in accordance with claim 1, characterized by means for also introducing additional ingredients into said housing beyond the intake end of said venturi for mixing with the discharge from said venturi.
3. An assembly in accordance with claim 1, characterized by means for metering such ingredients.
4. An assembly in accordance with claim 3, characterized by a container for afoam-producing ingredient, a container for a detergent ingredient, and means for mixing said formproducing and detergent ingredients in a desired manner and feeding same to said metering means.
5. An assembly in accordance with claim 4 characterized by each of said containers including a closed tank, and means for establishing a gas pressure cushion in each of said tanks.
6. An assembly in accordance with claim 5 characterized by a flow line bypassing said venturi and nozzle, a shutoff valve in said bypass line, and means for flowing a gas ingredient under pressure into said housing at a location toward the discharge end of said venturi.
7. An assembly in accordance with cal claim 6 characterized by said means for establishing said gas pressure cushions and said means for flowing a gas ingredient under pressure into said housing having in common, a gas compressor.
8. An assembly for use in producing chemical foam, comprising a nozzle-venturi combination including a housing open at each end and adapted at each end for the coupling thereto of a pipe or hose, a venturi and nozzle in said housing with said nozzle feeding into said venturi, means for introducing ingredients into said housing intermediate said nozzle and said venturi, a flow line bypassing said venturi and nozzle, and a shutoff valve in said bypass line.
9. An assembly for use in producing chemical foam, comprising anozzle-venturi combination including a housing open at each end and adapted at each end for the coupling thereto of a pipe or hose, a venturi and nozzle in said housing with said nozzle feeding into said venturi, means for introducing ingredients into said housing intermediate said nozzle and said venturi, and a screen in the discharge flow path from said venturi.
10. An assembly for use in producing chemical foam, comprising a nozzle-venturi combination including a housing open at each end and adapted at each end for the coupling thereto of a pipe or hose, a venturi and nozzle in said housing with said nozzle feeding into said venturi, means for introducing ingredients into said housing intermediate said nozzle and said venturi, said means including a container for a foam-producing ingredient, a container for a detergent ingredient, means for mixing said'foam-producing and detergent ingredients in a desiredm anner, and metering means intermediate said mixing means and said nozzle-venturi combination for metering said mixed ingredients to said nozzle-venturi combination.