US 3580643 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Inventor Appl. No.
Filed Patented Assignee Priority Artur Spitzer Mosbach Baden, Germany 751,200
Aug. 8, 1968 May 25, 1971 Ludwig Spitzer Sen. KG (Kommanditgesellschaft) Mosbach/Baden, Germany Aug. 12, 1967 Germany TRANSPORT CONTAINER FOR FLOWABLE MATERIAL 9 Claims, 6 Drawing Figs.
U.S. Cl 302/53, 294/67 Int. Cl B65g 53/40 Field of Search 302/29, 17,
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,180,689 4/1965 Albert 302/52 2,660,319 11/1953 Dorland. 294/67.(4) 2,684,871 7/1954 Shields 302/53 3,080,173 3/1963 Johnson et al. 302/52 3,138,398 6/1964 Silverman 294/67.(4A) 3,402,971 9/1968 Stevens 302/52 Primary ExaminerAndres H. Nielsen AttorneySughrue, Rothwell, Mion, Zinn and Mac Peak PATENTEUHAYZSISH 3580.643
SHEET 1 0F 2 FIG 1 I 11 I I P IN VE N TOR.
ARTUR SPIT ZE R TRANSPORT CONTAINER FOR FLOWABLE MATERIAL This invention relates in general to a transport container for flowable material, and more particularly to an elongated pressure container with an intermediate or false bottom extending horizontally within the container and dividing the internal chamber into an upper filling space including airtight filling openings and a lower dead or idle space, such false bottom extending from one end of the container to the other and being in the nature of a downwardly opening funnel.
Pressure containers of this kind offer advantages in transport and storage since they can be designed in the form of a rectangular block member with maximum utilization of the block volume.
With a known pressure container, a single emptying point is provided at the longitudinal center of the container to which surfaces of the false bottom run in an inclined direction towards the ends. The resulting idle space at both ends of the container is of substantial proportions since a definite minimum inclination of the inclined surfaces must be preserved to insure the satisfactory flow of material to the emptying point. Such a minimum inclination must also be preserved even if the flow of the material is assisted by an air cushion which is formed by compressed air forced through airpermeable parts of the runoff surfaces in the known pressure containers.
The object of the invention is to construct a pressure container of the type referred to which is adaptable to standard transport container handling practices and in which a satisfactory outflow of material is insured with a minimum possible idle volume.
The invention is characterized in that the false bottom is in the form of several successive funnels at several emptying points and that a rectangularstackable pressure container frame is provided closely surrounding the pressure container including connector means for the emptying points in which the pressure container is fastened in such an angular arrangement that the funnels extend perpendicularly to one of the frame faces. With a funnellike arrangement, the idle space height is greatest at the farthest distance from the emptying point. This invention avoids extreme length dimensions of the individual funnels and thus minimizes large idle volumes. The false bottom according to the invention is composed of smaller funnels than the known pressure container and is also easier to stiffen for otherwise similar proportions due to the repeated funnel structure. The saving in filling volume obtained is of great importance because the small additional expenditure for the added emptying points is relatively insignificant.
Division walls are provided for stability of the pressure container within the individual funnels which extend perpendicularly to the longitudinal axis of the pressure container from the lower part of the container wall and extending at least as far as the false bottom.
The outflow of material in the funnels and along the inner walls of the funnels can be facilitated by air support conveyance. For this purpose air passages are preferably formed in the funnels through which compressed air can be blown from the outside so that an air cushion is formed which functions as an air supported conveyor for the flowing material. The compressed air for the funnels can be fed through a section of the idle space so that an air support is fonned at each funnel.
The air passages of the funnels may be in the form of nozzles which are distributed uniformly in the manner of a nozzle ring on the periphery of the funnels at their outflow surfaces. Such an arrangement, however, causes an irregular air supporting stream unless a large number of nozzles is used. For this reason, it is preferred to use the porosity of the inclined runoff surfaces as air flow passages. The parts of the funnel walls along which an air cushion effect is desired can be produced for this purpose completely of porous material, for example of sintered metal products or of fabrics. To assist such an air cushion conveyance, compressed air may be supplied from the outside to the idle space for which purpose compressed air feed means are required which open from the outside into the idle space.
The invention will now be further explained on the basis of the accompanying drawings in which:
FIG. 1 shows a first constructional example according to the invention in the emptying position;
FIG. 2 is a horizontal partial section on the line Il-II in FIG.
FIG. 3 is a vertical cross section of FIG. 1 on the line III-III;
FIG. 4 shows a second constructional example from one side;
FIG. 5 is a section on the line V-V of FIG. 4, and
FIG. 6 is a partial section on the line VIVI of FIG. 5 on a substantially enlarged scale.
As shown in FIG. 1, a pressure container 1 has a cylindrical tank 40 and is covered at both ends by rounded convex end members 4, 5. This pressure container 1 is surrounded by a rigid rectangular frame 6 which consists of frame members which extend along the edges of the rectangular configuration and which closely surround the pressure container 1. No parts of the pressure container project outwardly from the contour of the frame 6. The container 1 is arranged to be stacked on like containers, and for this purpose the four frame members 7 to 10 are provided at their ends with interengageable connector members or corner units 11, 12 arranged for cooperative action when such containers are stacked one upon the other. The construction of these connector members forms no part of the invention and is prescribed by lntemational Standards arrangements pertaining to container transport. The same applies to the crane connections 146, 147 at the upper ends of the frame members 7 to 10.
During stacking the frame support members 7 to 10 of one frame rest on those of the next lower frame and the lower connections, such as 12, engage the opposite upper connections of the frame beneath it, so that the stacked frames or containers are not liable to displacement one over the other. Naturally locking means may be provided at the connections.
The pressure container 1 is rigidly suspended within the frame 6 by eight support strips 24 to 31 which extend in pairs from the support frame members 7 to 10 at an acute angle symmetrically to the center of the length of the frame and merge at their free edges for example the edge 32 to the curved end members 4 or 5 and are there welded in position.
The supply and emptying of the pressure container 1 is effected in the emptying position shown in FIG. 1 in which the pressure container can also be stacked and transported. Since the pressure container can be closed for transport the container can also be stacked and transported in a different angular position. The pressure container 1 is divided by a false bottom 41 into an upper filling chamber 42 and an idle space 43 beneath it, shown in FIG. 1. The false bottom 41 extends horizontally from one end member 4 to the other end member 5 along the whole container. It is composed of twelve inclined runoff surfaces 151 to 162. Each group of four runoff surfaces, for example 151 TO 154 are inclined downwardly in the manner of a rectangular pyramid towards the associated emptying point 44. Each of the three funnels 47 to 49 formed in this way is associated with an emptying point 44 to 46. The runoff surfaces adopt a somewhat rectangular shape at the false bottom 41 so that they lie at the same level at their edges remote from the emptying point. Since the runoff surfaces must be inclined at a definite minimum angle to the horizontal in order to insure a satisfactory flow of material to the emptying point, a small total idle volume is thus obtained with several emptying points. If, for example, the center emptying point were omitted, then the two inwardly disposed runoff surfaces 153 and 159 would have to be extended to the center. Since this must be done while maintaining their angular position in order to insure reliable flow of the material, a substantial idle space would result as a consequence of this extension of the sloping walls.
An outflow connection 163 to 165 is provided at each emptying point 44 to 46 which runs outwardly from the chamber side of the false bottom 41 to the associated emptying point and, as will be seen from FIG. 3, from somewhat beneath the horizontal plane disposed at the center of the length of the container where the circular contour of the tank 40 leaves sufficient space within the rectangular frame contour for the attachment of external connections.
The pressure container 1 is divided by partition walls 133, 134 into three equal divisions 135 to 137 each associated with a funnel 47 to 49 with an emptying point.
At the upper longitudinal center three supply openings 69 to 71 are provided lying opposite to the three emptying points 44 to 46, these openings being adapted to be closed in a pressuretight manner.
For emptying, the outlet connections 163 to 165 are connected to an external pneumatic feed pipe which extracts the flowable material which collects at the emptying points. The delivery of the material from the emptying connections 163 to 165 can be facilitated by pressurizing the flowable material from above by compressed air. For this purpose, the filling chamber 42 is supplied with compressed air through compressed air feed means, not shown, opening into the filling chamber of the pressure container.
The inclined runoff surfaces 151 to 162 are porous, being for example sintered metal or air-permeable fabric under tension. For emptying, idle space 43 is subjected to air pressure by means of compressed air connections 21, 22, 23 which open into the idle space. The compressed air flows through the pores of the inclined runoff surfaces into the filling chamber and thereby produces first an air cushion support along the runoff surfaces for the flowable material which facilitates flow to the nearest emptying point, and second air flows upwardly and creates a further pressure load on the material. During its upward motion, this air functions to agitate and loosen the material to insure satisfactory flow. The pores in the runoff surfaces are so small that the flowable material cannot seep through and enter the idle space.
The pressure container 1 is intended for use as a standard transport container and has no parts which project outwardly beyond the rectangular contour defined by the frame. To facilitate handling, openings can be provided in the frame for engagement by the fork of a fork lift device.
In FIGS. 4 to 6 an elongated cylindrical pressure container is shown at 201, having three closable filling openings 202 to 204 at the top, for flowable material in the form of manholes adapted to be closed in an airtight manner by covers, not shown. Four funnels 205 to 208 are provided internally of the pressure container with downwardly facing outlets and are arranged one after the other in the longitudinal direction of the funds which, as shown in FIG. 5, extend to about half the cross section of the container and are welded at the lower part to the container wall. These division walls serve to stabilize and stiffen the pressure container.
Four dished members 214 to 217 are provided each associated with one of the funnels. The dished member 214 is welded with its upper open side to the mouth opening 218 of the funnel 205 in such manner that the edge of the mouth of the funnel 205 forms a ring-shaped projection 219 which projects into the dished member 214. The dished member 214 traverse the wall of the pressure container 201 and projects downwardly from the pressure container by about half its total height. A connecting member 220 for an external pneumatic feed pipe for flowable material is connected centrally beneath the dished member.
An inlet opening 221 of the connecting member 220 is surrounded by a flanged ring 222 to which a connecting funnel 223 is attached by a flanged connection to the edge 224 on the mouth side. The connecting funnel is arranged with its edge 225 on the entry side internally at the edge of the dished member 214 and is clamped there by means of a clamp ring which fits behind the projecting part 219. The connecting funnel is formed of porous fabrics of plastic material, for example. lt can, however, be arranged to be exchanged for a funnel of other porous material or for a funnel without air passages or pores.
A compressed air feed pipe is shown at 226 which is connected in an externally accessible way to the dished member 214 and leads into the gap 227 between the dished member and the connecting funnel 223. Compressed air is applied to the gap 227 through pipe 226 for emptying the pressure container and this compressed air traverses the pores of the connecting funnel 223 and forms an air cushion on the inner side of the connecting funnel which facilitates the flow of material into the connecting members 220 in the manner of an air support. For conveyance, the connecting members 220 are closed by a valve 228 which is opened only for emptying the container. During emptying, the filling openings 202 to 204 are closed in a pressuretight manner so that the filling chamber can be subjected to air pressure to further facilitate emptying' The filling openings are in the form of manholes so that a grown person can enter then in order to change the connecting funnels 223 from inside if necessary. The dished members 214 to 217 are correspondingly constructed and the connecting funnel for the dished member 215 is indicated at 230. A rigid stackable container frame is indicated at 240 which closely surrounds the pressure container 201 including the dished members 214 to 217 with the connecting members.
The pressure container 201 is inserted in this container frame 240 such that the funnels 205 to 208 run perpendicularly to container surface 241 on which the frame according to FIGS. 1 and 2 is rested. The container frame 2 40 consists essentially of rigid bars which extend along the twelve edges of the rectangular frame and are adapted to the International Container Standards. The pressure container 201 is secured or suspended to the container frame by means of lugs which are welded on the one hand to the container frame 240 and on the other hand externally to the pressure container 201.
What I claim is:
1. A pressurized shipping container comprising:
a. an elongated cylindrical pressure tank for flowable material having filling openings along its top adapted to be closed in an airtight manner,
b. a horizontally disposed false bottom within the tank running from one end to the other and dividing the tank into an upper filling space and a lower dead space, said false bottom comprising a plurality of funnellike members having surfaces inclined towards emptying points in the bottom of the tank,
c. a division wall between said funnel members to separate them, and
d. a rectangular frame adapted to be stacked with other such frames surrounding said tank and fully enclosing its outermost contours, said tank being rigidly secured to and positioned within said frame such that said funnel members extend substantially perpendicularly to one of the surfaces of the frame.
2. A pressurized shipping container as defined in claim ll, wherein said division wall is substantially perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of the tank and extends from the lower part of the tank wall to the false bottom.
3. A pressurized shipping container as defined in claim 1, wherein the funnel members are made of a porous material and further comprising compressed air inlet means for the dead space, whereby compressed air may be forced through the porous funnel members to provide a discharge flow assisting air cushion on their inclined surfaces.
4. A pressurized shipping container as defined in claim 3 in which each funnel member comprises four inclined runoff surfaces each forming one of the four sides of the funnel in the manner of a rectangular pyramid and occupies approximately a square portion of the false bottom.
5. A pressurized shipping container as defined in claim 1 further comprising outlet connections at each emptying point which run outwardly from the filling chamber side of the false bottom to the associated emptying point and extend through the filling chamber.
6. A pressurized shipping container as defined in claim 1 further comprising a dished member for each funnel member which faces the funnel member on its concave side and surrounds the mouth of the funnel member in an airtight manner from the under side and includes at its closed under side a connection to a pneumatic feed pipe for the fiowable material arranged externally of the pressure tank, a connecting funnel within each dished member forming an extension of the funnel member and connected at its larger end to the mouth of the funnel member.