US 3662706 A
A device for identifying sample bottles, such as bottles containing radioactive substances, has the shape of a cap which is placed upon the regular bottle cap and the top of which carries a vertical tag-like member. The tag-like member has perforations extending therethrough and arranged to provide positive identification of the contents.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Soini 51 May 16, 1972  IDENTIFYING DEVICE FOR SPECIMEN CONTAINERS CONTAINING RADIOACTIVE SUBSTANCES  Inventor: Erkki Juhani Soini, Abo, Finland  Assignee: Wallac 0y, Abo, Finland  Filed: Jan. 17, 1969  Appl. No.1 792,026
 US. Cl ..116/114, 40/22, 73/53, 209/111], 215/7, 250/209, 250/219  Int. Cl. ..G09f 9/00 Field ofSearch ..116/114;250/209,219,223; 209/1115, 82, 83, 111.7; 215/7; 40/22; 73/53, 156, 423
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,319,414 5/1943 Leathers et a1. ..73/156 X 2,920,310 l/l960 Sallack ..73/156 X 3,266,298 8/1966 Whitehead et a1 ....73/423 2,872,590 2/1959 Leavens, Jr ..250/219 3,060,791 10/1962 Tarczy-l-lornock. .....250/223 X 3,102,203 8/1963 Mcl-laney ..250/219 X 3,176,140 3/1965 Schroth ..250/219 3,396,482 8/1968 Pradenas ..40/212 Primary Examiner-Louis J. Capozi Att0rneyRichards & Geier [5 7] ABSTRACT A device for identifying sample bottles, such as bottles containing radioactive substances, has the shape of a cap which is placed upon the regular bottle cap and the top of which carries a vertical tag-like member. The tag-like member has perforations extending therethrough and arranged to provide positive identification of the contents.
1 Claim, 2 Drawing Figures P'ATENTEMY we I! F/GJ INVENTOR: fil on ATTOR N 895 IDENTIFYING DEVICE FOR SPECIMEN CONTAINERS CONTAINING RADIOACTIVE SUBSTANCES The present invention concerns a device for identifying sample bottles and other equivalent specimen containers containing radioactive substances, comprising a tag-like element provided with a punch code system and by means of which the specimen is unambiguously identifiable.
In biological, medical and chemical research laboratories where specimens or samples containing radioactive isotopes have to be handled, automatic sample analyzers are widely used, which as a rule comprise an automatically operating sample changing arrangement which automatically introduces the sample in the analyzing device and removes it after completed measurements. The controlling of the analyzing device and recording of the results of analysis obtained is usually accomplished with the aid of a suitable data machine unit. As a rule, the radioactive samples or specimens are placed in a glass bottle and the bottle is closed with a suitable closing element, e.g. a screw cap. For identification of the specimen, the screw cap has in some instances been provided with a tag-like device provided with a punch code arrangement by the aid of which the analyzing device in the course of measurement identifies and records the specimen, whereupon the number of the specimen or some other equivalent code designation is stored, together with the results of analysis, in a data machine or other equivalent piece of equipment.
The bottles which have contained radioactive samples or specimens can mostly be reused after they have been washed, but the closing elements of the bottles and in particular the gaskets of these elements have usually been contaminated to the extent that they have to be discarded. Particularly when closing elements of the kind described are used, which comprise a punch code arrangement in their tag, the price of the closing element is of such magnitude that in the course of time the discarding of these elements after one single use constitutes a considerable expense item. The aim of the present invention has accordingly been to reduce this cost item substantially and to enable the tags provided with punch code arrangement to be continuously used.
An identifying device according to the invention is therefore mainly characterized in that the identifying device consists of a cap shaped like a bottle cap and which can be seated, by applying pressure, upon the conventional, single-use closing element, e.g. a screw cap, which is used to close the sample bottle or equivalent specimen container, the said tag-like element having been placed vertically upon the top surface of the said cap.
It is thus to be understood that within the scope of the invention for closure of the sample container conventional closing elements of previously known design are used, which, being intended for single use, may be made of some inexpensive material and which e.g. in respect of its strength characteristics is inferior to normal standard, that is nowadays usually of some plastic material. The cap comprising the taglike element, however, may be made of a superior and possibly also more expensive material because this cap can be continuously used and need not be discarded after one single use.
The invention is described in closer detail in the following with reference to the attached drawing and to one embodiment of the invention which is presented in this drawing.
HO. 1 shows a container containing a radioactive sample or specimen, in axonometric presentation, and
FIG. 2 shows in like manner the different components of the sample container.
To the sample bottle 1 belongs a conventional screw cap 2, which is screwed on the bottle after the sample has been introduced. The bottle is then fitted with a cap according to the invention 3, which can be seated on the screw cap 2 by pressure. The top of the cap has been provided with a tag-like part 4 in which there are through-drilled holes 5, by placement of which according to an appropriate binary coding system the bottle and sample can be numbered. The tag shown in the figure has 4 X 4 hole positions, with the aid of which the sample can be assigned any integer number up to 10,000. In the instance depicted in the drawing, the sample has the number 8257, each vertical row of holes being taken to represent one digit.
In the sample analyzing device, identification of the sample may be accomplished, for instance, in the manner schematically indicated in FIG. 1. Light beams emitted by a light source have been indicated with the reference numeral 6. The light beams pass through the tag at the punched positions, and the photodiodes 7 recognize those beams that have been able to pass and their configuration; this information, or in other words the working number of the bottle and sample, they feed e.g. to a data machine for storage, while simultaneously the result of analysis of the sample is stored or recorded by other channels.
A cap according to the invention is in no way structurally confined to the embodiment shown in the drawing, its design being largely determined in individual instances by the kind of sample containers used and by the kind of closing elements which are used for their closure.
1. In combination with a container for specimens containing radioactive substances and a round cap screwed upon the top of said container; an identifying device comprising another cap mounted upon the first-mentioned cap and pressure fitted thereon, and an angular plate mounted upon the top surface of the second-mentioned cap substantially in the middle thereof and extending perpendicularly to said top surface, said plate having a plurality of parallel holes extending therethrough, the number, spacing and location of said holes providing identification of the specimens in said bottle.