US 3759291 A
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United States atent 1 1 Moore et al. Sept. 18, 1973  VALVE FITTING FOR BOTTLES 3,459,220 8/1969 Morse .1 137/588 X In entors: Cecil L- e; Roger L. McCarthy, 3,66l,l67 /1972 Hussey 137/2695 b th fD b 0 O u uque lewd Primary Examiner-Henry T. Klinksiek  Asslgnee: A. Y. McDonald Mfg. Co., Anomey Axel H f et Dubuque, Iowa  Filed: June 29, 1972  ABSTRACT  App]. No.: 267,591 A valve fitting for bottles adapted to contain pressurized liquids or gases such as refrigerants. The valve fitting includes a main, manually operated valve, an inlet  Cl 137/588 3 2 133" check valve, a pressure release valve and a pressure re- I t Cl Fl6k/4s tention valve. The latter is employed so as to maintain n. a Slight pressure in the bottle when the same has been  held of Search 137/2695, 271,588, e ti dt lud tr ffo i m teri non 137/6142 62/77 292 222/4007 402.16 496 mp e y a a r wanted gases therem pr1or to refilling of the bottle. Thls permits the bottle to be regularly refilled without ex-  References cued tended cleaning operation.
UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,226,079 12/1965 Shaw et al. 137/588 x 6 Clams 1 Draw F'gure :ri In}: a 1/2 i l iiiuul} 1 I 11M105 I VALVE FITTING FOR BOTTLES BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to valve fittings for bottles, and more particularly, to bottle valves which preclude entry of contaminants into the bottle when the bottle is empty.
The most pertinent prior art known to applicants includes the following US. Pat. Nos: 3,307,597 to Shugarman; 2,645,241 to Riede; 1,234,726 to Bruckner; 3,093,979 to Ehrens; 3,243,969 to Dirk; 2,449,119 to I-lolicer; and 3,145,733 to Shaw.
One principal difficulty in the handling of bottled liquids or gases under pressure is the necessity of cleaning and sterilizing the tanks or bottles prior to each recharging to insure that the same are free from contaminants, whether the same be in the form of particulate matter or non-wanted gases such as air. The cleaning and sterilizing of such tanks is a rather expensive process and heretofore has normally required that the tanks be returned to a central station equipped for the operation. As a result, there has been a pronounced need for means to eliminate the necessity of cleaning and sterilizing empty tanks prior to recharging to eliminate the expense of the operation and further to allow the bottles to be recharged at a substation or the like located closer to the point of use than a central station thereby minimizing transportation costs.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION nate any need for cleaning and sterilizing and shippingto a central location for such operations.
The exemplary embodiment of the invention achieves the foregoing object in a structure including a valve fitting body having an inlet port employed during recharging of the bottle to which the valve may be attached, an outlet port through which the contents of the bottle may exit the same to be conveyed to a point of use and a further port adapted to be located in fluid communication with the interior of a bottle. In addition, an additional outlet port provided with a pressure release valve may be employed for safety purposes.
The inlet port includes a check valve which will nor mally seal the same except when a liquid or a gas to be introduced to the bottle is applied under pressure to the inlet port. The inlet port may also be provided with a sealing and securing cap to preclude foreign material from entering the port when a source of a liquid or gas under pressure is not connected thereto.
The outlet port is provided with a check valve set to open at a relatively low pressure as, for example, approximately lO psig. It is provided with a sealing cap to preclude entry of foreign material into the outlet port when the same is not connected to a conduit for conveying the liquid or gas to a point of use to thereby prevent such foreign material being passed into such a conduit and which is used during a refilling operation.
The check valve in the outlet port will close at a relatively low pressure to maintain a low pressure within the bottle when its contents have been virtually fully exhausted, which pressure will preclude entry of a foreign material, generally contaminating gases such as air and finely divided particulate material carried thereby.
The three principal ports converge on a central valve space in which is located a manually operated valve member for opening or closing the port communicating with the bottle. When the valve is open, the bottle may be recharged or the contents thereof may be directed to a point of use. During recharging, it is contemplated that the outlet port will be capped, as mentioned previously, and the manual valve opened to direct the pressurized gas or liquid into the bottle to which the valve may be attached. Upon completion of the filling operation, the inlet port may be capped to prevent the entry of foreign material into the inlet port and the bottle then transported to a point of use at which time the outlet port may be uncapped and the same connected to a suitable conduit. Upon subsequent opening of the manual valve, the fluid within the bottle will be conveyed to a point of use until such time as the pressure in the bottle drops to below the value insufficient to open the check valve in the outlet port at which time the bottle may be returned for recharging.
Other objects and advantages will become apparent from the following specification taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawing.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING The FIGURE is a vertical section of a valve made according to the invention and attached to a typical bottle for containing a pressurized liquid or gas.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring to the FIGURE, there is seen a fragmentary depiction of a typical bottle, generally designated 10, which may contain a pressurized gas or liquid. Normally, the contents will be in liquid form with a portion of the liquid having vaporized and residing in the space above the liquid to pressurize the contents. Typically, the bottle 10 will be employed for containing a refrigerant for use in recharging refrigerating systems, al though the invention is not restricted to use with refrigerants.
The bottle 10 includes an upper neck 12 having internally threaded surface 14. The valve fitting of the invention includes a valve body, generally designated 16, which will ordinarily be forged of any suitable corrosion resistant material. The body 16 is generally T- shaped and the base thereof includes a threaded end 18 which is threadedly received in the neck 12 of the bottle 10. Within the base of the body 16 is a bore 20 which serves as a port in the valve body 16 through which pressurized liquids or gases may enter or exit the bottle 10.
One of the arms of the T-shaped body 16, specifically, the left-hand arm as viewed in the FIGURE, is designated 22 and includes a central bore 24 defining both a valve chamber 26 and a threaded end 28. The threaded end 28 receives a reducer 30 which includes a central bore 32, a reduced threaded end 34, an enlarged threaded end 36 threadably engaging the threaded end 28 of the arm 22, and concentrically with the bore 42 and on the large threaded end 36, an annular shoulder 40 which serves as a valve seat. The bore 32 serves as an inlet port for the structure and to minimize the possibility of foreign material accumulating therein, which could ultimately be directed into the bottle during a recharging process, a cap 42 having a threaded internal surface 44 and an internal seal 46 is provided to be threadedly received on the threads 34 of the reducer 30 in such a way that the small end thereof can seal against the internal seal 46. In normal use, the cap 42 is retained on the valve body 16 except during a recharging operation.
The chamber 26 houses an inlet check valve including a valve member 48 having an upwardly open U- shaped recess 50 on the right-hand side thereof for receipt ofa biasing spring 52. The face of the valve member 48 opposite the recess 50 includes a recess receiving a sealing disc 54 in alignment with the shoulder 40 on the reducer 30.
Formed within the body 16 and at the right-hand boundary of the chamber 26, is a small collar 56 which receives the end of the spring 52 opposite the valve member 48 so as firmly locate the spring 52 in a position to bias the valve member 48 toward the left as viewed in the FIGURE to provide check valve action.
concentrically within the collar 56 is a bore 58 which is also aligned with the bore 32 and serves as a continuation of the inlet port. The bore 58 continues to the right into a main valve chamber 60 which is also in communication with the bore 20.
The main valve chamber 60 is defined by a vertically extending, enlarged bore in the body 16 terminating in an upper internally threaded end 62 which receives an externally threaded plug 64 having an internally threaded central bore 66. A small seating surface 68 at the lowermost end of the thread 62 is provided to seat one or more metal seals 70 which may be flexed somewhat by rotating a manual valve operator, generally designated 72, within the threaded interior bore 66 of the plug 64.
The manual valve operator 72 includes a conven-.
tional handle 74 having a central hub 76. A screw 78 is adapted to secure the handle 74 and an instructional plate 79, if desired, to a threaded stub shaft 80 received in the threaded bore 66. The lowermost end of the stub shaft 81 is rounded as at 84 and bears against the upper surface of the metallic seals 70.
Immediately below the metallic seals 70 and within the chamber 60 is a valve member 82 having a rounded upper surface 84 in engagement with the metallic seals 70. The lower surface of the valve member 82 mounts a sealing disc 86 which, in turn, is surrounded by an annular recess 88 for receipt of a biasing spring 90.
Within the chamber 60 and concentric with the point of emergence of the port thereinto is an annular shoulder 92 which is aligned with the sealing disc 86 l and serves as a valve seat.
Thus, it will be appreciated that when the handle 72 is rotated in such a way as to move the stub shaft into the threaded bore 66, the same will, via the metallic seal 70, depress the valve member 82 against the bias of the springs 90 until such time as the disc 86 sealingly engages the seat defined by the shoulder 92 to completely seal the contents of the bottle 10 therewithin. Opposite rotation of the handle 74 will, of course, allow communication between the interior of the bottle 10 and the valve chamber 60. During recharging or use of the contents of the bottle, the latter condition will exist.
The right-most arm of the T, designated 94, also includes a bore 96 similar to the bore 24, a portion of which defines a valve chamber 98 and the remainder of which is threaded as at 100. The threaded portion 100 receives a reducer 102 which in all respects may be identical to the reducer 30 except that, in the case of the reducer 102, the annular shoulder 40 does not serve as a valve seat, but rather, serves as a retaining means for a valve biasing spring. The small endof the reducer 102 is also provided with a cap 104 which is in all respects identical to the cap 42 but is also employed to perform an additional function as will be seen.
Within the valve chamber 98 and specifically at the left-hand edge and concentric with a bore 106 defining a portion of an outlet port is an annular shoulder 108 similar to the annular shoulder 56 except that the same, in this instance, serves as a valve seat rather than a biasing spring retaining means. A valve member 110 is movably received within-the chamber 98 and a spring 112 within the chamber is interposed between the same and the reducer 102. The spring 112 biases the valve 110 into engagement with the seat 108. It may also be observed that the valve member 110 is in every respect identical to the valve member 48. However, the degree of bias provided by the spring 112 may be different than that provided by the corresponding spring 52. Specifically, the spring 112 is selected such that the valve member 110 will not move to an open position unless pressure is exerted against the face thereof at a greater level than a predetermined amount, normally about 10 psig. In other words, for pressures within the bottle 10 of 10 psig or less, the valve 110 will remain closed so that, even when the main valve 82 is open, there will be no fluid communication between the interior of the bottle 10 and the outlet port defined by the bore 106 and the bore within the reducer 102 thereby precluding entry of contaminants. It will be recognized by those skilled in the art that the pressure within the bottle 10 will fall to such a low level only substantially when the contents thereof have been virtually completely exhausted so that the valve 110 does not interfere with the free flow of the contents of the bottle 10 to some point of use through the outlet port as long as the bottle 10 is not virtually completely empty.
The valve fitting is completed by a bore 114 extending generally transversely to the bore 20 and in fluid communication therewith. The bore 114 extends to a valve chamber 116 and emerges therein through an annular shoulder 118. Within the chamber 116 is a valve member 120 provided with a sealing disc 122 which is adapted to sealingly engage the shoulder 118.
The valve member 120 is normally biased to a closed position against the seat by reason of a spring 124 located within the chamber interposed between a side of the valve 120 opposite the disc 122 and a plug 126 threadeclly received in a threaded end of the chamber 116. The plug 126 is provided with a vent aperture 128. The purpose of this construction is to provide a safety feature in the valve, namely, a high pressure release system. Normally, the spring 124 would be such as to bias the valve 120 to the closed position and allow the same to open only when a predetermined pressure approaching a maximum safe pressure within the bottle is reached. At such time, the valve 120 will move away from the shoulder 118 to allow pressurized gas to vent through the vent opening 128 to reduce the pressure in the bottle.
The valve fitting is used as follows. Initially, the cap 104 will be located on the reducer 102 and tightened thereon so that a seal is effected. The cap 42 may be removed and the reducer 30 connected to a source of liquid or gas under pressure. The handle 74 may then be turned to allow the main valve 82 to open at which time the pressurized fluid will open the check valve 48 and flow into the bottle. When the bottle has been refilled, the valve 82 is closed manually and the cap 42 replaced. The filled bottle may then be shipped to a point of use.
At a point of use, the cap 104 will now be removed and the reducer 102 connected to the usual conduit for conveying the contents of the-bottle to equipment requiring the same. The handle 74 may then be turned in such a way as to again open the main valve 82 whereupon the contents of the bottle may flow to the valve chamber 60. Normally, a certain amount of the liquid within the bottle will have vaporized sufficiently to raise the pressure within the bottle well above the minimum pressure required to open the valve 110. As a result, the valve 110 will open to permit the free flow of the fluid to the point of use.
At some point, as the bottle is almost completely empty, the pressure will drop to a value below the minimum pressure required to open the valve 110 and the valve 110 will close to preclude the entry of contaminants into the bottle while a pressure is maintained therein. At this point, the bottle may be disconnected from the line and the cap 104 replaced and the bottle returned for recharging.
From the foregoing, it will be seen that a valve made according to the invention virtually completely prevents any need for sterilizing and cleaning. As a result, the expense of such operations is virtually completely eliminated along with the additional transportation expense heretofore required in shipping the bottles to a central station having appropriate equipment to perform such operations.
It will also be appreciated that a valve fitting made according to the invention is relatively inexpensively constructed and may be easily serviced. In particular, the chambers in the arms of the fitting for receipt of the valve members 48 and 110 may be identically machined. in addition, the valve members 48 and 110 may be identical and therefore interchangeable, minimizing fabrication operations as well as inventory for replacement parts. Similarly, the reducers 30 and 102 as well as the caps 42 and 104 may be identical and therefore interchangeable providing the same advantage. And, finally, in many circumstances, the biasing springs 52 and 112 may be interchangeable if the system is such that is is desired that the inlet check valve open at a relatively low pressure.
1. A valve fitting for pressure bottles of the type used for storage of pressurized fluids, said valve fitting comprising: a valve body including a main valve chamber, a port extending from said chamber to the exterior of said body, said port being adapted to be placed in fluid communication with the interior of a bottle; a main valve member within said chamber and operable to close or open said port; manually operable means including a handle exterior of said body for moving said main valve to open or close said port; an inlet port in said body and in fluid communication with said main valve chamber; check valve means associated with said inlet for allowing fluid to enter said inlet port and flow to said main valve chamber while precluding fluid flow in the opposite direction; an outlet port in said main body and in fluid communication with said main valve chamber; and pressure responsive valve means associated with said outlet port for precluding flow of fluid from said chamber out of said port except when the pressure of fluid in said chamber exceeds a predetermined, relatively low value whereby a residual pressure will be maintained in a bottle to which said valve fitting is attached to preclude the entry of foreign material into said bottle.
2. A valve fitting for use with pressurized fluid containing bottles comprising: a generally T-shaped valve body having a base and oppositely extending arms; said base including a bore extending therethrough and adapted to be placed in fluid communication with the interior of a bottle; each of said arms including substantially identical bores therein, each bore having a valve chamber defining portion and a threaded portion; a pair of reducers, each being threadedly received in a threaded portion of a corresponding one of said bores, each of said reducers including a central passage in fluid communication with the associated chamber and an annular shoulder about the point of emergence of the passage into the associated bore chamber portions; said body further including a main valve chamber located intermediate said bore chamber portions and in fluid communication with said bore in said base; a main valve member within said main valve chamber; means defining a main valve seat in said main valve chamber about the point of emergence of said bore in said base into said main valve chamber; means, including a handle exterior of said body, for selectively moving said main valve member toward and away said seat; a pair of bores in said body extending oppositely from said chamber to respective ones of said bore chamber portions; an annular shoulder about the point of emergence of each of said bores into the respective ones of said bore chamber portions; and a pair of valve members, one in each of said bore chamber portions, and a pair of springs, one in each of said bore chamber portions, one of said springs and one of said valve members being located in one of said bore chamber portions so as to biasedly seat against said annular shoulder on the associated reducer, the other of said valves and said springs being located in the other of said bore chamber portions so as to biasedly seat against the annular shoulder of the associated bore, said last-named spring applying a bias to its associated valve sufficient to maintain the same seated only for relatively low pressures; and a pair of caps, one for each reducer, including sealing means for sealingly engaging the associated reducer.
3. A valve fitting according to claim 2 wherein said pair of valve members and said reducers are identically configured and interchangeable.
4. A valve fitting according to claim 2 wherein said selective moving means include diaphragm-like metallic seals bounding one portion of said main valve chamber and in engagement with said main valve member, and a rotatable element extending exteriorly of said valve body and mounting said handle and in engagement with said metallic seals.
5. A valve fitting according to claim 2 further including high pressure relief valve means in fluid communi cation with said bore in said base and including a vent to the exterior of said body for relieving excessive pressures in a bottle to which said fitting may be connected.
6. A valve fitting according to claim 2 further including a storage bottle sealingly engaging said base about the bore therein.
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