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Publication numberUS3686890 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 29, 1972
Filing dateJun 30, 1971
Priority dateJun 30, 1971
Publication numberUS 3686890 A, US 3686890A, US-A-3686890, US3686890 A, US3686890A
InventorsLyman John B
Original AssigneeWhirlpool Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Method and apparatus for forming a clear ice product
US 3686890 A
Abstract
A method and means for forming clear ice wherein impurities and vapor or trapped bubbles are removed from the water introduced into an ice maker. Impurities and bubbles may be conveniently removed from the water by providing means for circulating the inlet water during freezing of a portion thereof including a tank containing a pool of water, purging a portion of the water to remove impurities therefrom, and working the water in a manner to liberate bubbles therefrom. Purge outlet means in the tank remove settled or floating impurities such as minerals and impeller-type pump means in an inlet conduit work the inlet water to beat bubbles therefrom and deliver bubble free inlet water to the ice maker. The unfrozen water including the excess water removed from the flake ice product as the same is forced through the confined columnar path is continuously recirculated during ice maker operation.
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United States Patent Lyman 51 Aug. 29, 1972 [54] METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR FORMING A CLEAR ICE PRODUCT [72] Inventor: John B. Lyman,

Minn.

Bloomington,

[52] US. Cl. ..62/67, 6 2/348, 62/354 [51] Int. Cl. ..F25c 1/14 [58] Field of Search ..62/67, 74, 347, 348, 354

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS Muffly ..62/348 x Pichler ..62/348 x FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 603,061 9/1934 Germany. ..62/354 409,499 5/1934 Great Britain ..62/354 Primary Examiner-William E. Wayner [57] ABSTRACT A method and means for forming clear ice wherein impurities and vapor or trapped bubbles are removed from the water introduced into an ice maker. Impurities and bubbles may be conveniently removed from the water by providing means for circulating the inlet water during freezing of a portion thereof including a tank containing a pool of water, purging a portion of the water to remove impurities therefrom, and working the water in a manner to liberate bubbles therefrom. Purge outlet means in the tank remove settled or floating impurities such as minerals and im peller-type pump means in an inlet conduit work the inlet water to beat bubbles therefrom and deliver bubble free inlet water to the ice maker. The unfrozen water including the excess water removed from the flake ice product as the same is forced through the confined columnar path is continuously recirculated during ice maker operation.

22 Claims, 1 Drawing Figure PITENTEDmsze m2 INVENTOR. JW/A/ YMAA/ A'ITORNE YS Byga; WW a;

METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR FORMING A CLEAR ICE PRODUCT This application is a continuation of application Ser. No. 867,248, filed Oct. 1969 and now abandoned.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1 Field of the Invention This invention relates generally to ice makers, and more particularly refers to a method and apparatus for producing clear ice.

2. Brief Description of the Prior Art Ice flakers have been provided heretofore which produce an ice flake product by scraping side walls of a cylindrical freezing cylinder. Such ice flake product is frequently compressed into an emerging column of hard ice which may be disintegrated or fragmented to form chips of ice of desired size or sheared into discrete lengths to form ice cubes.

Prior art devices do not include means providing inlet water having desired characteristics for producing clear ice.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION A flake ice product is produced by introducing water along inner walls of a cylindrical freezing compartment, scraping a thin film of ice which forms on the inner wall to produce a mass of wet, slushy ice particles, and compressing the mass of ice particles to remove excess water therefrom and form an emerging column of hard ice which may be disintegrated or fragmented to form chips of ice or sheared into discrete lengths to form ice cubes". When the crushed ice or ice cubes produced are to be utilized for cooling beverages and similar applications, it is particularly advantageous to provide clear ice. If the water utilized for forming the flake ice produce includes suspended impurities, minerals and trapped bubbles, the ice product produced therefrom will have a cloudy appearance, and thus, not be particularly desirable for use with beverages.

The present invention provides a method and an apparatus for removing impurities and trapped bubbles from the water utilized for producing the ice flake product. Settled or floating impurities are removed from the water by providing means for recirculating the water during freezing of a portion thereof including a tank containing a pool of water, and means for purging a portion of the pool to remove the mineral impurities.

Trapped bubbles are removed from the inlet water by working a portion of the pool of the water through an impeller-type pump to liberate bubbles from the water which, being lighter than the liquid material, will rise to the top of the pool and burst at the surface thereof. The bubblefree liquid is then delivered in a column to an inlet of the freezing cylinder for a portion of the moving column of liquid to be formed into the ice flake product and compressed into an emerging column of clear hard ice. The impurities in the water remain in solution in the recirculating water until removed from the system via the purging means.

The compression means is provided with a passageway permitting excess water removed from the ice flake product to be drained into a tank surrounding the compression means for recirculation through the system. With this form of the invention, the tank includes a divider or baffle separating the tank into two portions one of which surrounds the compression means and the other of which contains an outlet to the pump means. The water in the portion of the tank surrounding the compression means is maintained at a higher level than the water in the portion which contains the pump means as will appear.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING In the accompanying drawing forming a part of this specification and in which like reference characters are employed to designate like parts. throughout the same. The FIGURE is a cross-sectional view of an ice maker apparatus utilizing the improved water handling means of the present invention for making clear ice bodies.

DESCRIPTION OF THEv PREFERRED EMBODIMENT means by a suitable motor. An auger 15 is connected to the shaft 14 and projects upwardly into the freezing cylinder 11. The auger 15 has a cylindrical portion 16 spaced inwardly of a cylindrical, refrigerated wall 17 of the cylinder 11. The cylindrical portion 16 has an outer diameter relatively larger than the diameter of the shaft 14 and carried two flights of helically disposed blades 18 and 19 having scraping edges 21 which engage against the inner wall 17, thereby to harvest a thin film of ice which forms on the refrigerated surface whenever water is circulated in the freezing cylinder 11. Rotation of the harvesting auger 15 progressively advances a mixture of ice particles, including slush and chunks, upwardly toward an upper end portion of the cylinder 1 1 and into a collecting chamber 22.

The collecting chamber 22 may comprise a generally circular or cup-shaped cap member 22a provided with channels as at 23 which define generally spiral paths of increasing cross-section for the flake ice product discharged from the freezing chamber by the flights l8 and 19, and therefore, the flake ice product is given a generally spiral, upwardly ascending motion through channels of constantly increasing cross-sectional area.

One or more helically disposed blades 24 having a diameter considerably less than the diameter of the harvesting auger 15 containing the flights 18 and 19 are provided at an uppermost end portion of the shaft 14. The helically disposed blades 24 are sized to extend through an outlet or discharge opening 26 formed in the collecting chamber 22.

The shaft 14 and helically disposed blades 24 extend upwardly through a conduit 27 forming a discharge chamber and characterized by gradually converging side walls defining a reduced diameter opening 28. Thus, the flake ice product is advanced in columnar form and passes to the discharge chamber 27 which,

due to the converging or tapered shape thereof, compresses the ice product and removes excess water from the flake ice product, thereby to form an emerging column of hard ice as at 29. The emerging column of hard ice may be sheared into discrete lengths to form ice cubes, or the column may be disintegrated to form crushed or chipped ice.

The tapered discharge chamber 27 is further characterized by a generally radially outwardly extending flange 31 formed at a lower end portion thereof and spaced from a bottom wall 32 of a compartment which may hereinafter be referred to as a tank or reservoir 33 which is supported on an uppermost surface 34 of the cap member 22a. A plurality of apertures as at 36 are formed in the flange 31 and receive suitable fastening means, such as bolts 37, which also pass through spacers 38, thereby to clamp the discharge chamber 27 into position with the flange 31 elevated above the bottom wall 32 of the tank 33. Excess water squeezed from the ice product drains into the tank 33 through the annular area formed between the flange 31 and tank bottom wall 32. I

In accordance with the principles of the present invention, suspended impurities, minerals and trapped bubbles are removed from the water utilized to form the ice product as is known, when water freezes the impurities remain in solution as long as they have a place to go. The present invention provides means for freezing ice from a moving steam of water and thus the impurities are received by, and removed in the moving steam of water. Suspended impurities are thus removed by providing means for circulating the inlet or supply water during freezing of a portion thereof including means forming a tank containing a pool of inlet water to allow floatable impurities to collect at a surface of the pool and heavier impurities to settle on a bottom of a tank containing the pool, and then, purging a portion of the pool either at the surface thereof or along the bottom of the tank. Trapped vapors and bubbles are removed from the inlet water by working a portion of the pool through an impeller-type pump to liberate the bubbles which are then permitted to escape to the atmosphere. Water is delivered from the pump, through the inlet conduit 39 and into the cylinder 11 to be formed into a thin layer of ice and harvested by the auger 15. The impurities in the water stay in solution in the unfrozen water circulating through the space defined by the cylinder 11. Furthermore, excess water removed from the ice product in the discharge conduit 27 together with impurities in solution in the water may be drained into the same tank containing the inlet water, thereby to recirculate the removed excess water.

To accomplish the desirable objectives of removing suspended impurities and trapped bubbles from the water frozen into the ice product, it is contemplated by the present invention, to provide the tank or reservoir 33 with controlled inlet means for maintaining a constant level within a portion of the tank, purge means 42, and pump means 43 for driving a moving steam of water through the freezing zone during freezing of the ice product from a portion of the water with other portions of the water being maintained in a moving state thereby to receive and remove impurities from the water for ultimate disposition via the purge means.

The inlet means 41 for the tank 33 receives water from a domestic supply source through a conduit 44 and controls ingress of water into the tank 33 through a conduit 46 by a control valve 47 secured to an upright wall 48 of the tank 33 and controlled by a float 49 thereby to maintain a constant level of water within the reservoir as will appear.

A baffle 51 extends upwardly from the bottom wall 32 of the tank 33 and has an upper terminal edge 52, thereby to divide or partition the tank 33 into two separate compartments, with one compartment 33a surrounding the discharge conduit 27 for receiving excess water removed from the axially advancing ice product, and the other compartment 33b containing the pump means 43. The terminal edge 52 defines the water level in compartment 33a which is maintained above the water level in compartment 33b via the pump means 43. Water from compartment 33a overflows in a stream into compartment 33b for recirculation through the system via pump 43 and conduit 39.

The purge means 42 may include a pipe or conduit extending into the tank 33 through an aperture 53 formed in a side wall 54 thereof and characterized by an uppermost, open end portion 55 disposed slightly beneath the liquid level maintained within the tank by the pump 43 and the upper terminal edge 52 of baffle 51. With this arrangement, the purge means 42 may be utilized to skim floatable impurities from the surface of the pool of water contained within the tank 33. If desired, the purge means 42 may also include an additional conduit 56 disposed to remove water near the bottom wall 32, thereby to remove settled impurities collected along the bottom wall of the tank. It will be recognized that either the conduit extending through aperture 53, or the conduit 56, or both of them, may be provided with suitable valve means, such as pet cocks, not shown, to facilitate control of the purge means The pump means 43 for recirculating the inlet water during ice maker operation for removing trapped bubbles and impurities from the inlet water and for moving a solid column of inlet water through the inlet conduit 39 may include a centrifugal, impeller-type pump comprising a pump casing 57 providing an internally formed volute 58, and an impeller 59. The impeller 59 is co-rotatably secured to a shaft 61 of a driving motor 62 and has a flange 63 carrying a series of curved vanes 64. The inlet to the pump means 43 may include an upwardly flared throat 66 formed within an annular member 67 secured within a flange opening 68 formed in the bottom wall 32 of the tank compartment 33b.

With pump means of the type described, as water containing trapped bubbles or vapors approaches the pump means 43, the impeller 59 beats the bubbles from the water, thereby to liberate the bubbles which, being lighter than water, float to the surface and burst. Thus, the inlet water delivered to the inlet conduit 39 by the pump means 43 is substantially free of suspended or trapped vapors and bubbles.

Summarizing, in the operation of the auger ice maker system shown in FIG. 1, the water in the compartment 33a is thus maintained at a higher level than the water in the compartment 33b through operation of the pump means 43 in conjunction with the baffle 51 separating the two compartments. Water in compartment 330 continuously overflows the baffle 51 to fall in a stream into compartment 33b for recirculation. Make-up water enters the system at compartment 33b via conduit 46 as described above. Freezing of the ice in the ice maker is accomplished from a moving stream of water with the impurities remaining in solution during the freezing and compression steps and being carried out of the freezing zone in a moving steam for recirculation. Concurrently, a portion of the water circulating through the system is drained off through the purge means 42 to carry away the impurities from the water circulating in the system.

if desired, the pump means 43 may be disposed near the inlet opening into the cylinder 11 and connected to the tank 33 by suitable conduit means. When the pump means 43 are disposed near the of the cylinder 11, vent means should be provided to permit bubbles worked from the water by the impeller to escape to the atmosphere.

From the foregoing, it will be noted that the ice maker construction of the present invention provides water circulation means whereby suspended impurities and trapped bubbles are removed from the inlet water prior to the same being frozen into ice. Furthermore, excess water removed from the mass of ice particles by the gradually tapered discharge outlet drains into water tank and is recirculated through the ice maker. Thus, the present invention forms an emerging column of clear ice having impurities and trapped bubbles removed therefrom and which may be formed into clear ice cubes or crushed ice.

Although minor modifications might be suggested by, those versed in the art, it should be understood that I wish to embody within the scope of the patent warranted hereon all such modifications as reasonably and properly come within the scope of my contribution to the art.

The embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive property or privilege is claimed are defined as follows:

1. The method of making a clear ice product which comprises the steps of:

flowing liquid in the form of a stream from a source to a first stage freezing zone, including an upright generally cylindrical, refrigerated surface, in a quantity in excess of the freezing capacity of said first stage freezing zone; freezing a portion of the liquid in the stream into thin films of ice product on said refrigerated surface in said first stage freezing zone while maintaining another portion of the stream in a liquid state, for receiving and carrying impurities rejected by the freezing process for removal of the impurities from said first stage freezing zone; continuously angering the refrigerated surface in said first stage freezing zone to remove the thin films of ice product frozen thereon and to advance the removed ice product axially upwardly in said first stage zone; collecting the removed ice product and the impurityladen liquid in a second stage collection zone;

transferring the collected ice product and the impurity-laden liquid from said second stage collection zone to a third stage compression zone having an outlet spaced above the level of said first stage zone and being of convergent cross sectional area ahead of said outlet;

compression angering the collected ice product through the third stage compression zone to remove the excess liquid and to extrude the ice product out of said outlet of said third stage compression zone in the form of a compacted hard ice column; and

draining the impurity-laden liquid state portion of the stream together with excess water removed from the ice product in said third stage compression zone through a drainage outlet located at a level near a lower part of said third stage compression zone,

thereby to ensure purging of the impurity-laden liquid state portion from the supply water to produce a substantially impurity-free clear finish ice product. 2. The method of providing inlet water from which a clear ice product is produced which includes the steps of:

providing a first pool of water; 1 driving a supply of liquid from said first pool to a freezing zone in the form of a moving stream;

working the liquid in the stream to liberate bubbles therefrom to render the stream substantially bubble-free;

directing the bubble-free liquid in the moving stream of water through a freezing zone; freezing a portion of the water in said moving stream into a clear ice product, while maintaining another portion of the moving stream in a liquid state thereby to receive and carry impurities for removal from the freezing zone; collecting the liquid state portion of the moving stream in a second pool of water provided to separate settleable and floatable impurities in the water at different levels in the second pool;

draining the impurity-laden portions of the second pool to separate and remove impurities from the second pool; and

flowing impurity-free portions of liquid from the second pool into said first pool for recycling.

3. An apparatus for making a clear ice product, comprising:

multiple chamber means including means forming a lower freezing chamber having a generally cylindrical, refrigerated surface;

an upper discharge chamber having an outlet spaced above the level of said freezing chamber and being of convergent cross sectional area ahead of said outlet to form a compression zone; and

an intermediate collection chamber shaped to direct ice product harvested in said freezing chamber into said discharge chamber;

means forming an auger rotatable in said freezing chamber and having flights positioned in operative proximity to said refrigerated surface for harvesting ice product formed thereon;

ice compression screw blade means rotatable in said discharge chamber for advancing an ice product through said compression zone to remove excess liquid and to extrude the ice product out of said outlet in the form of a compacted hard ice column; and

a water system for the ice maker, comprising means forming a source of water,

means flowing liquid in the form of a moving stream from said source to and through said freezing chamber in a quantity in excess of the freezing capacity of said freezing chamber, so that a portion of the water in the moving stream is frozen into thin films of ice product on said refrigerated surface, while another portion of the stream is maintained in a liquid state for receiving and carrying impurities for removal from said freezing chamber, and means draining the impurity-laden liquid state portion of the stream and the excess water removed from the ice product in said discharge chamber in a manner to prevent the reintroduction of the impurities into said source, whereby an impurity-free, clear ice product is produced.

4. An apparatus for making a clear ice product, comprising:

means forming a source of water; means forming a freezing zone having an inlet passageway; means flowing a supply of liquid from said source to said inlet passageway of said freezing zone in the form of a moving stream; means working the liquid in the stream to liberate bubbles therefrom for rendering the stream sub-' stantially bubble-free;

means directing the bubble-free liquid in the moving stream of water through said freezing zone, wherein a portion of the water in the moving stream is frozen into a clear ice product, while another portion of the moving stream is maintained in a liquid state for receiving and carrying impurities for removal from said freezing zone; and

means draining the impurity-laden liquid state portion of the moving stream in a manner to prevent the reintroduction of the impurities into the source, thereby to dispose of the impurities.

5. In an ice maker,

means forming a freezing chamber with an auger for harvesting ice and an inlet passageway;

means communication wit said freezing chamber for receiving and compressing the harvested ice into a column of hard ice, said receiving and compressing means including a discharge chamber having walls converging toward an outlet opening, and a rotatable shaft carrying a helical blade extending into said discharge chamber;

means comprising a tank for containing a pool of water in communication with said freezing chamber;

purge means continuously draining a portion of the pool from said tank at a selected level for removing impurities from the water; and

means for driving a moving stream of water through said ice maker during freezing of an ice product in a manner whereby impurities in the water are carried in the moving stream, said driving means being in communication with said tank and with said inlet passageway.

6. The machine of claim in which said purge means include a pipe extending through a sidewall of said tank and having an uppermost, open end portion disposed slightly below a surface of said pool of water for skimming floating impurities therefrom.

7. The machine of claim 5 in which said purge means include a pipe extending through a side wall of said tank means and disposed near a bottom wall thereof for removing settled impurities from the pool of water.

8. The machine of claim 5 nd further characterized by inlet means supplying water to said tank and including a float actuated control valve maintaining a constant liquid level within a portion of said tank means.

9. The machine of claim 5 and further characterized by:

said receiving and compressing means comprising means forming a passageway communicating with said tank means to drain excess water removed from said ice flake product by said compressing means into said tank means.

10. In an ice maker,

means forming an ice product and having an auger rotatable in a freezing chamber for harvesting the ice product and a water inlet passageway opening into said freezing chamber;

means communicating with said freezing chamber for receiving and compressing the harvested ice into a column of hard ice, said receiving and compressing means including a discharge chamber having walls converging toward an outlet opening, and

a rotatable shaft carrying a helical blade extending into said discharge chamber;

a tank forming a reservoir for containing a pool of water;

pump means receiving liquid from said pool of water for driving a moving stream of water through said freezing chamber of the ice maker for freezing ice from a moving stream of water and for working said liquid in a manner to remove trapped bubbles therefrom, thereby to drive the liquid in the form of a bubble free steam;

purge means draining a portion of said pool of water at a level and in a manner to remove suspended impurities therefrom; and

conduit means conducting said stream from said pump to said water inlet passageway for delivering bubble free water thereto.

11. The machine of claim 10 in which said pump means include an impeller-type pump receiving water from said tank and formed and arranged to liberate bubbles from said water.

12. The machine of claim 10 and further characterized by:

said receiving and compressing means comprising means forming a passageway communicating with said tank means to drain excess water removed from said ice flake product by said compressing means into said tank means.

13. An ice maker comprising:

a refrigerated cylinder having a refrigerated inner wall;

helical harvesting auger rotatable within said refrigerated cylinder and positioned with flights thereof in close proximity to said refrigerated inner wall to scrape an ice product therefrom upon rotation of said auger;

inlet means for introducing water along said refrigerated wall;

a generally vertical shaft supporting said harvesting auger for rotation;

means forming a collecting chamber receiving discharge from said harvesting auger and having a discharge aperture formed therethrough;

means forming a discharge chamber receiving the discharge through said discharge aperture;

a screw shaft rotatable within said discharge chamber and arranged to discharge an ice product from said machine to a point of utilization;

means forming a reservoir containing a pool of water;

purge means including a conduit extending into said reservoir for draining a portion of said pool of water to remove suspended impurities therefrom;

pump means receiving water from said pool for driving a moving stream of water through the freezing zone of the ice maker in a manner to remove trapped impurities and bubbles from the water forming the ice product; and

conduit means interconnecting said pump means and said inlet means for delivering the moving stream of water to said refrigerated chamber,

whereby said water forming the ice product has substantially all impurities and trapped bubbles removed therefrom, thereby to provide a clear ice product.

14. An ice maker comprising:

a refrigerated cylinder having a refrigerated inner wall;

a helical harvesting auger rotatable within said refrigerated cylinder and positioned with flights thereof in close proximity to said refrigerated inner wall to scrape an ice product therefrom upon rotation of said auger;

inlet means for introducing water along said refrigerated wall;

a generally vertical shaft supporting said harvesting auger for rotation;

means forming a collecting chamber receiving discharge from said harvesting auger and having a discharge aperture formed therethrough;

means forming a discharge chamber receiving the discharge through said discharge aperture; said discharge chamber having gradually tapered walls converging toward a discharge opening and formed to remove excess water from the ice product and provide an emerging column of hard ice;

a screw shaft rotatable within said discharge chamber and arranged to discharge an ice product from said machine to a point of utilization;

means forming a reservoir containing a pool of water; machine means forming a passageway for draining said removed, excess water from said discharge chamber and into said reservoir means;

purge means including a conduit extending into said reservoir for draining a portion of said pool of water to remove suspended impurities therefrom;

pump means receiving water from said pool for driving a moving stream of water through the freezing zone of the ice maker in a manner to remove trapped impurities and bubbles from the water forming the ice product; and

whereby said water forming the ice product has sub- 5 stantially all impurities and trapped bubbles removed therefrom, thereby to provide a clear ice product.

15. An ice maker comprising a refrigerated cylinder having a refrigerated inner wall;

a helical harvesting auger rotatable within said refrigerated cylinder and positioned with flights thereof in close proximity to said refrigerated inner wall to scrape an ice product therefrom upon rotation of said auger;

inlet means for introducing water along said refrigerated wall;

a generally vertical shaft supporting said harvesting auger for rotation;

means forming a collecting chamber receiving discharge from said harvesting auger and having discharge aperture formed therethrough;

means forming a discharge chamber receiving the discharge through said discharge aperture;

a screw shaft rotatable within said discharge chamber and arranged to discharge an ice product from said machine to a point of utilization;

means forming a reservoir containing a pool of water;

purge means including a conduit extending into said reservoir for draining a portion of said pool of water to remove suspended impurities therefrom;

pump means receiving water from said pool for driving a moving stream of water through the freezing zone of the ice maker in a manner to remove trapped impurities and bubbles from the water forming the ice product; and said pump means including an impeller-type pump constructed and arranged to liberate bubbles from said water prior to delivering the same to said inlet means;

conduit means interconnecting said pump means and said inlet means for delivering the moving stream of water to said refrigerated chamber,

whereby said water forming the ice product has substantially all impurities and trapped bubbles removed therefrom, thereby to provide a clear ice product.

16. An ice maker comprising:

a refrigerated cylinder having a refrigerated inner wall;

a helical harvesting auger rotatable within said refrigerated cylinder and positioned with flights thereof in close proximity to said refrigerated inner wall to scrape an ice product there from upon rotation of said auger;

inlet means for introducing water along said refrigerated wall;

a generally vertical shaft supporting said harvesting auger for rotation;

means forming a collecting chamber receiving discharge from said harvesting auger and having a discharge aperture formed therethrough;

mean forming a discharge chamber receiving the discharge through said discharge aperture;

a screw shaft rotatable within said discharge chamber and arranged to discharge an ice product from said machine to a point 0 utilization;

means forming a reservoir containing a pool of water; water supply means maintaining a constant level of liquid within said reservoir; purge means including a conduit extending into said reservoir for draining a portion of said pool of water to remove suspended impurities therefrom; pump means receiving water from said pool for driv ing a moving stream of water through the freezing zone of the ice maker in a manner to remove trapped impurities and bubbles from the water forming the ice product; and conduit means interconnecting said pump means and said inlet means for delivering the moving stream of water to said refrigerated chamber, whereby said water forming the ice product has substantially all impurities and trapped bubbles removed therefrom, thereby to provide a clear ice product.

17. The machine of claim l4-and further characterized by: I

said tank means having a baffle extending upwardly from a bottom wall thereof to divide said tank means into two compartments; one said compartment surrounding said discharge conduit; and another of said compartments having an outlet formed therein opening into said pump means. 18. A method of producing a clear, substantially impurity free ice product comprising the steps of:

feeding water through a freezing zone in an amount in excess of the freezing capacity of the zone and in excess of that required to produce the ice product and freezing a portion of the water fed through the zone while maintaining another portion in a liquid state, whereby impurities migrate from the frozen portion to the liquid portion; collecting the frozen and the liquid portions of the water fed through the freezing zone; compressing the collected frozen portion to remove excess liquid and to form a compressed ice product; and continuously draining and discarding the excess, im-

purity-laden liquid state portion of the feed water along with the excess water removed to form the compressed ice product in a manner to substantially prevent the reintroduction of the impurities into the water fed through the freezing zone. 19. The method of providing inlet water from which a clear ice product is produced which includes the steps of:

flowing a supply of liquid from a source to the lower portion of a freezing chamber in the form of a stream and in a quantity in excess of the freezing capacity of the freezing chamber, directing the stream through the freezing chamber in a generally upward direction, freezing a portion of the water in said stream into an ice product in said freezing chamber while maintaining another of the stream in a liquid state, thereby to receive and carry impurities rejected by the freezing process for removal from the freezing chamber, continuously harvesting the frozen ice product in the freezing chamber,

directing the harvested ice product and the liquid state portion of the stream upwardly into a zone above the level of the freezing chamber, and draining the impurity-laden liquid state portion of said stream from said zone through a drainage outlet located at a level at the lower part of said zone, thereby to insure purging of impurity-laden water from the water system.

. 20. The method of providing inlet water as defined in claim 19 and further characterized by collecting a supply of water in the form of a pool to form said source and further characterized by draining the impurity-laden liquid state portion of said stream from said zone through a drainage outlet located at a level below the level of said pool.

21. The method of providing inlet water from which a clear ice product is produced which includes the steps of:

flowing a supply of liquid from a source to the lower portion of a freezing chamber in the form of a stream and in a quantity in excess of the freezing capacity of the freezing chamber, directing the stream through the freezing chamber in a generally upward direction, freezing a portion of the water in said stream into an ice product in said freezing chamber while maintaining another portion of the steam in a liquid state, thereby to receive and carry impurities rejected by the freezing process for removal from the freezing chamber, continuously harvesting the frozen ice product in the freezing chamber, directing the harvested ice product and the liquid state portion of the stream upwardly into an ice compression and forming zone above the level of the freezing chamber, compressing the ice product in said zone into a hard ice column of ice by angering the ice product through said zone, thereby removing excess water from the ice product, and draining and discarding the impurity-laden liquid state portion of said stream together with excess water from said compression and forming zone through a drainage outlet located at a level near a lower part of said zone, thereby to insure purging of impurity-laden water from the water system to produce a substantially impurityfree finished ice product.

22. In an ice maker of the type having an upright, refrigerated freezing cylinder,

means feeding water from a source of supply to the freezing cylinder in excess of the freezing capacity thereof and including means directing the feed water into a lower portion of the cylinder and upwardly therethrough, whereby a portion of the water supplied to the freezing cylinder will be frozen into layers of ice product on the refrigerated cylinder while another portion of the water will remain in the liquid state to receive impurities rejected from the frozen portion,

a harvesting auger rotatable in the refrigerated cylinder for removing the frozen ice product and advancing the same upwardly in the cylinder;

ice compression means comprising a compression nozzle having a throughbore receiving the removed ice product and the impurity-laden liquid state portion;

compression auger means compressively advancing the ice product through said compression nozzle bore to remove excess water from the ice product; and

means forming a drain opening above the level of the refrigerated cylinder and opening to a point of

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3779033 *Apr 17, 1972Dec 18, 1973Whirlpool CoHarvest auger for ice maker
US3844134 *Dec 13, 1972Oct 29, 1974Reynolds ProductsAuger type ice cube maker
US4048815 *Oct 28, 1975Sep 20, 1977Theodore KattisFlake ice maker
US5182917 *Feb 21, 1992Feb 2, 1993Hoshizaki Denki Kabushiki KaishaFood service counter of the ice storage type
US6109055 *Oct 20, 1998Aug 29, 2000Hoshizaki Denki Kabushiki KaishaDown-flow-type ice-making machine
US7010933 *Apr 6, 2004Mar 14, 2006Hoshizaki Denki Kabushiki KaishaIce-making mechanism of ice-making machine
US9003824Aug 24, 2012Apr 14, 2015Robert AlmbladPositive air pressure ice making and dispensing system
US20040226311 *Apr 6, 2004Nov 18, 2004Hoshizaki Denki Kabushiki KaishaIce-making mechanism of ice-making machine
US20110214447 *Nov 1, 2007Sep 8, 2011Whirlpool S.A.Ice-making machine
CN100412475CFeb 22, 2005Aug 20, 2008福利特公司Ice making apparatus
CN101344352BFeb 22, 2005Jun 16, 2010福利特公司Ice making apparatus and ice blocks making method
EP1725818A2 *Feb 22, 2005Nov 29, 2006Follett CorporationIce making apparatus
WO2005086666A3 *Feb 22, 2005Mar 16, 2006Follett CorpIce making apparatus
WO2010048241A2 *Oct 21, 2009Apr 29, 2010Robert AlmbladAn ice making and dispensing system and method
WO2010048241A3 *Oct 21, 2009Sep 2, 2010Robert AlmbladAn ice making and dispensing system and method
Classifications
U.S. Classification62/67, 62/348, 62/354
International ClassificationF25C1/12, F25C1/14
Cooperative ClassificationF25C1/147
European ClassificationF25C1/14C2
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
May 9, 1983ASAssignment
Owner name: KING-SEELEY THERMOS CO., ALBERT LEA, MN A DE CORP.
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:WHIRLPOOL CORPORATION A DE CORP.;REEL/FRAME:004125/0763
Effective date: 19830314