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Publication numberUS3779033 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 18, 1973
Filing dateApr 17, 1972
Priority dateApr 17, 1972
Publication numberUS 3779033 A, US 3779033A, US-A-3779033, US3779033 A, US3779033A
InventorsD Swanson
Original AssigneeWhirlpool Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Harvest auger for ice maker
US 3779033 A
Abstract
An upright ice maker of the type having a combined auger and press, has means for increasing the capacity of the ice maker. The harvest auger is provided with non-parallel flights having a variable pitch angle with respect to the vertical axis of the auger which is greater at the top than at the bottom of the harvest auger. A series of scavenging vanes are mounted on top of the harvest auger and arranged to rotate with the harvest auger for moving the ice products radially inwardly from the wall of the freezing chamber through a mechanical transfer means to the compression auger.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [1 1 Swanson HARVEST AUGER FOR lCE MAKER Inventor: Donald F. Swanson, St. Paul, Minn.

Assignee: Whirlpool Corporation, Benton Harbor, Mich.

Apr. 17, 1972 Filed:

Appl. No.:

[521 US. Cl 62/354, 100/145, 222/241,

259/191, 425/208, 425/376 lnt. C1. F25d 1/14 Field of Search 62/354, 320' [56] References Cited UNlTED STATES PATENTS 3/1972 Lyman 62/354 1/1965 Jones 2/1972 Turner..... 8/1972 Lyman 62/354 Dec. 18, 1973 3,702,543 11/1972 Lyman 62/354 3,678,702 7/1972 Turner et a1... 3,704,599 12/1972 Darby et a1.v 62/354 Primary Examiner-William E. Wayner Assistant Examiner-Wi11iam E. Tapolcai, Jr. Attorney.lames S. Nettleton et .al.

[ 5 7 ABSTRACT a mechanical transfer means to the compression au ger.

7 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures HARVEST AUGER FOR ICE MAKER BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention The present invention relates generally to ice makers and more particularly to means for increasing the capacity of upright ice makers utilizing a combined auger and press.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PRIOR ART In an upright auger-type ice maker there is a harvest auger which is rotatably mounted in an evaporator chamber and removes the ice products from the walls of the chamber andtransfers them through mechanical transfer passageways to a compression auger. The compression auger forms the ice products into a column of solid hard ice and moves it out the discharge end of the ice maker.

In view ofthe already proven efficiency of an upright auger-type ice maker and the need for large capacity ice makers, it is highly desirable to have a large capacity auger-type ice maker of the same efficiency as some of the existing auger-type ice makers.

An efficient auger-type ice maker is exemplified by co-pending U.S. Pat. application Ser. No. 39,774, filed May 22, 1970, and now U.S. Pat. No. 3,643,454 and assigned to the assignee of this application.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION An upright auger-type ice making apparatus pro duces a finished ice product from ice formed on the inner wall of a freezing chamber and removed therefrom by a rotating harvest auger, the harvest auger removing the ice products from the wall in the form ofice flakes or slush and advancing the ice products axially upwardly through a transfer zone into a compression nozzle where a rotating compression auger compresses and forms the ice products into a solid column of hard ice which emerges from the top of the ice maker. In an auger-type ice maker constructed in accordance with the present invention, the harvest auger has a series of non-parallel flights having a variable pitch angle with in accordance with the principles of the present invention; 1

FIG. 2 is a sectional view taken along line II-II of FIG. 1, illustrating the relation of the scavenger vanes and the cover of the freezing chamber of the ice making apparatus;

FIG. 3 is a sectional view taken along lineIII-III of FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is an enlarged, partial flat development view of the non-parallel flights of the harvest auger of the ice making apparatus illustrated in FIG. I; and

FIG. 5 is a partial sectional view taken substantially along line VV of FIG. 1, illustrating the path of the ice flakes.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring to the drawings, there is shown an ice maker embodying the harvest auger and scavenging vanes mounted thereon according to the present invention. As shown, the ice maker generally indicated at 10, includes an evaporator unit 12 having an internal bore forming a cylindrical wall 14 defining a freezing chamber 9. An integrally formed evaporator passageway 15 in evaporator unit 12 has a refrigerant or coolant expanded thereinto by a refrigeration system through an expansion valve pressure reducing means. Evaporator unit 12 is provided with arefrigerant inlet 17 and a refrigerant outlet 59. Water is introduced into the freezing chamber 9 internally of the wall 14 through an inlet respect to the vertical axis of the auger which is greater at the top end than at the lower end of the harvest auger. I

In order to more effectively move the ice products in the large capacity ice maker of the present invention from the harvest auger through a transfer zone into a compression zone, a series of rotatable scavenging vanes are mounted on top of the harvest auger. The scavenging vanes are rotated on the harvest auger so as to intersect transfer passages in the freezing chamber cover and are arranged to move the ice products from the harvest auger generallyradially, i.e., inwardly through the passages to the compression zone where the ice product is acted upon by a compression auger.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS Other objects. features and advantages of the invention, its construction and operation will be best understood from the following detailed description of the embodiments thereof taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. I is an elevational view with portions broken awayto'illustrate details of an ice making apparatus utilizing a'harvest auger andscavenging vanes constructed conduit 8 disposed near the base of the unit 12. The water tends to freeze on the wall 14 in the form of a thin film of ice. A series of helical flights 16 formed or carried on a rotating harvesting auger l8 cooperate with the wall 14, which, in effect, forms a freezing surface 20, whereby films of ice formed on the freezing surface 20 will continuously be harvested. The auger l8 progressively advances the harvested ice flakes or particles 22 axially upwardly in the unit 12 toward a collection chamber 24 superjacent the evaporating unit 12.

Suitable fastening means, such as bolts 25, attach a radially outwardly extending support 26 formed on the evaporator unit 12 to a drive housing 28. A shaft 30 is disposed centrally of the evaporator unit 12 and has a lower end portion supported within a axially spaced bearing means in the drive housing 28. Gear reduction means are driven by a prime mover such as an electric motor M. The shaft 30 is disposed coaxially of the evaporator bore and has a driven connection with the gear reduction means. Water is prevented from entering the drive housing 28 by seal means including a shaft seal 32 engaging the shaft 30.

The harvesting auger 18 includes a central hub portion 36 having a throughbore. A threaded portion 38 of I the bore receives an upward threaded end portion 40 of the shaft 30 to support the harvesting auger 18 for corotation with the driven shaft 30. A somewhat cylindrical or slightly conical portion 42 formed on the har- The collection chamber 24 is formed by a generally circular or inverted cup-shaped cap means generally indicated at 44 which is the cover for the unit 12. The cover 44, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, has passages or channels 46 receiving the ice flake products 22 from the harvesting auger 18. Each of the channels 46 extends in a generally spiral path of increasing cross section for conducting the flaked ice product discharged from the evaporating unit 12 upwardly into a central passageway 48 leading into an internal bore 49 of a compression and forming nozzle 52. The nozzle 52 has a generally outwardly extending flange 53 secured to cap means 44 by suitable fasteners such as nut and bolt assemblies as at 55 and the cover 44 and flange 53 are secured by a plurality of circumferentially spaced bolts 57 to a radially outwardly extending flange 58 on the evaporator. Thus, the drive housing 28, the evaporator 12, the cap means 44, and the compression nozzle 52 are detachably secured in a stacked relationship by the fastening means 25, 55 and 57.

In compressing the flaked ice product harvested from the refrigerating freezing surface into a solid ice product a compression auger 60 mounted for corotation with the harvesting auger 18 receives the flake ice product from the collection chamber 24 and squeezes the ice particles through the nozzle bore 49 to remove excess water and form an emergent solid column of ice at the upper end 51 of the nozzle 52. The excess water from the collection chamber 24 is passed through an outlet 7 into a drain or reservoir (not shown). The compression auger 60 has a depending threaded stud 61 engaged into the threaded bore 63 of the harvesting auger.

In accordance with the principles of the present invention, the helical flights 16 of the harvesting auger 18, as illustrated in FIG. 4, are non-parallel. The pitch angle of the flights with respect to the vertical axis of the auger is variable and increases as the flights 16 rise vertically in a spiral effect around the harvesting auger 18. The auger flights 16 are pitched at a greater angle at the upper end of the harvesting auger 18 to provide a larger space and area at the top of the auger 18 for the ice products removed from the wall 14 of the evaporator 12 by the harvesting auger 18. The greater area for the harvested ice products between flights at the upper end of the auger 18 provides a larger area for the ice at the entrance of the evaporator cover passageways 46 leading to the compression auger 60.

As indicated in FIG. 4, the space or distance between the flights 16 is increased atthe top of the auger where the pitch angle is largest. For example, in an average size auger constructed according to the present invention, where the pitch angle of the flight increases from (angle A) at the bottom to about 36 (angle B) at the top of the auger, the space 62 between the flights accordingly is increased from about 2 inches at the bottom to about 3 inches at the top. With the flights pitch angle being larger at the top of the harvesting auger, there is little likelihood of there being any jamming of ice product at the entrance of the passageways 46 in the cover 44 of the evaporator unit 12. Accordingly, a larger amount of ice can be efficiently produced by the present auger-type ice makihg apparatus.

In another aspect of the present invention for providing an efficient large capacity auger-type ice maker, a series of inclined scavenging vanes 64 are rotatably mounted on the harvest auger 18 as shown in FIG. 1.

As indicated in FIG. 1, and shown in detail in FIG. 2, the vanes 64 are mounted generally radially in an inclined position on a drive plate 65 rotatably mounted on the shaft 30 and on top of the harvesting auger 18 to corotate with the auger. The drive plate 65 and vanes are positioned in the evaporator unit 12 near the cover 44 of the evaporator and adjacent the compression auger 60. The vanes 64 are arranged to traverse the passageways or channels 46 of the cover 44 during rotation.

The series of six scavenging vanes 64 are equally spaced from each other and secured in slots 66 in the drive plate 65 (see FIG. 2). The vanes 64 are arranged at an angle to each other near the periphery of the drive plate 65. The vanes 64 can generally be mounted on the drive plate 65 at an angle of 60 to each of the vanes positioned on either side of them. The vanes 64 are arranged to rotate in a path 69 concentrically spaced from the central opening 48. The vanes 64 which are extended generally radially are preferably arranged so that the outer end 71 of the vanes 64 leads the inner end 73 in the direction of rotation of drive plate 65. Accordingly, the vanes 64 are arranged so the outer ends 71 and inner ends 73 correspond respectively to the outside 77 and inside 79 of the path 69 of rotation of the vanes.

In FIG. 2 the drive plate 65 and vanes 64 are shown in relation to the evaporator cover 44. As indicated, the vanes 64 are arranged in their rotation in path 69 to traverse the passageways 46 in the cover 44 leading to the central opening 48 to the orbit or circumferential edges 67 of the compression auger 60 disposed in the compression nozzle 52.

In the evaporator unit cover 44 there are circumferentially spaced flanges 74 with partial circumferentially extending channels 68 therebetween. The channels 68 correspond in size and position to the passageways formed by the evaporator wall 14 and auger 18. The channels have an inner first end 75 and extend slightly outward to form a finger-like second end 78 projecting in a direction opposite to that of the rotation of the drive plate 65 and vanes 64. The channels 68 extend partially circumferentially along the outside 77 of the path 69 of rotation of the vanes 64.

As shown in FIG. 1, the channels 68 are arranged to receive the ice products and flakes 22 from the harvesting auger. As illustrated in FIG. 3, the rotating vanes 64 contact the ice flakes 22 at a point P in channel 68 near the outside 77 of the path 69 and force the ice flakes to move laterally inwardly across a location or gap 72 in path 69 into channel 46 and then into the center opening 48 to the centrally positioned compression auger 60 which compresses and forms the ice flakes into a solid column.

As shown in FIGS. 2 and 5, the cover 44 has a plurality of curb projections 76 extending vertically downward in the path 69 of rotation of the vanes 64. The curb projections 76 are arranged in circumferentially spaced relation in three places and are disposed to force the ice flakes 22 to stop rotating in channels 68 and to turn radially inwardly into the passageways 46 toward and into the center opening to the compression auger 60.

Although those versed in the art may suggest various minor modifications, 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 folauger being arranged for removing ice products from the wall of the chamber and advancing the ice products axially upwardly,

a cover for the freezing chamber having transfer passages for receiving the upwardly advanced ice products and for directing the same into an upright extrusion passage superjacent the freezing chamher, and a compression auger being disposed in said extrusion passage to compress and form the ice products into a column of hard ice, the improvement of means for increasing the effective capacity of the ice maker comprising: a series of inclined scavenging vanes mounted on top of the harvest auger and radially outwardly of said compression auger and projecting upwardly into said transfer passages, the scavenging vanes being arranged to corotate with the harvest auger and said compression auger and traversing the corresponding transfer passages of the cover of the freezing chamher,

said vanes being operatively associated with said harvest auger for moving the ice products from the harvest auger radially inwardly through the transfer passages to the compression auger.

2. In an ice maker according to claim 1, wherein the scavenging vanes are mounted generally radially on a drive plate rotatably mounted in said freezing chamber on top of said harvest auger.

3. In an ice maker including an upright rotatable har vesting auger in a freezing chamber, the harvesting auger being arranged for removing ice products from the wall of the chamber and advancing the ice products axially upwardly through transfer passages in the cover of the freezing chamber into an upright extrusion passage superjacent the freezing chamber, and a compression auger being disposed in said extrusion passage to compress and form the ice products into a column of hard ice, means for increasing the effective capacity of the ice maker comprising:

a series of inclined scavenging vanes mounted on top of the harvest augerfthe scavenging vanes being arranged to corotate with the harvest auger and traverse the corresponding transfer passages of the cover ofthe freezing chamber, said vanes being operatively associated with said harvest auger for moving the ice products from the harvest auger radially inwardly through the transfer passages to the compression auger, wherein the scavenging vanes are mounted generally radially on a drive plate rotatably mounted in said freezing chamber on top of said harvest auger, and wherein said scavenging vanes are equally spaced from each other on said drive plate and arranged at an angle of 60 to each of the vanes positioned on either side of them.

4. In an ice maker according to claim 3, wherein the scavenging vanes are arranged on said drive plate so that the outer end of the vanes leads the inner end in the direction of rotation of said drive plate.

5. In an ice maker including an upright rotatable harvesting auger in a freezing chamber, the harvesting auger being arranged for removing ice products from the wall of the chamber and advancing the ice products axially upwardly through transfer passages in the cover of the freezing chamber into an upright extrusion passage superjacent the freezing chamber, and a compression auger being disposed in said extrusion passage to compress and form the ice products into a column of hard ice, means for increasing the effective capacity of the ice maker comprising: i i

a series of inclined scavenging vanes mounted on top of the harvest auger, the scavenging vanes being arranged to corotate with the harvest auger and traverse the corresponding transfer passages of the cover of the freezing chamber, said vanes being operatively associated with said harvest auger for moving the ice products from the harvest auger radially inwardly through the transfer passages to the compression auger,

a series of non-parallel flights extending from the bottom to the top of said harvest auger, said flights having a variable pitch angle with respect to the vertical axis of the harvest auger which is greater at the top than at the bottom of the harvest auger.

6. In an ice maker according to claim 5, wherein the pitch angle of the harvest auger flights increases from about 30 at the bottom to about 36 at the top of the harvest auger.

7. In an ice maker including an upright rotatable harvesting auger in a freezing chamber, the harvesting augerbeing arranged for removing ice products from the wall of the chamber and advancing the ice products axially upwardly through transfer passages in the cover of the freezing chamber intoan upright extrusion passage superjacent the freezing chamber, and a compression auger being disposed in said extrusion passage to compress and form the ice products into a column of hard ice, means for increasing the effective capacity of the ice maker comprising:

a series of inclined scavenging vanes mounted on top of the harvest auger, the scavenging vanes being arranged to corotate with the harvest auger and traverse the corresponding transfer passages of the cover of the freezing chamber, said vanes being operatively associated with said harvest auger for moving the ice products from the harvest auger radially inwardly through the transfer passages to the compression auger, said cover of the freezing chamber having curb projections disposed to stop the rotation of the ice products in said transfer passages and turn the ice products radially inwardly to the compression auger.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3165904 *Dec 22, 1961Jan 19, 1965Jones Glen DApparatus for making crushed ice
US3643454 *May 22, 1970Feb 22, 1972Whirlpool CoWater system for an icemaking apparatus
US3648462 *May 22, 1970Mar 14, 1972Whirlpool CoEvaporator cover construction for an ice making apparatus
US3678702 *May 22, 1970Jul 25, 1972Whirlpool CoNozzle construction for ice maker
US3686890 *Jun 30, 1971Aug 29, 1972Whirlpool CoMethod and apparatus for forming a clear ice product
US3702543 *May 22, 1970Nov 14, 1972Whirlpool CoIce making apparatus
US3704599 *Oct 17, 1969Dec 5, 1972Whirlpool CoCompression means for flake ice water
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3912231 *Jan 17, 1974Oct 14, 1975Gustafson IncApparatus for treating and mixing particles
US4211164 *Jan 10, 1979Jul 8, 1980Industrie-Werke Karlsruhe-Augsburg AktiengesellschaftRotary drum-type collecting vessel with a raking and pressing screw
US4392344 *Jun 30, 1981Jul 12, 1983Central Safety Equipment CompanyChain-link cable carrier
US4395131 *Sep 30, 1980Jul 26, 1983O. A. Newton & Son CompanyApparatus for agitating, conveying and weighing particulate material
US4533310 *Jul 28, 1982Aug 6, 1985King-Seeley Thermos Co.Ice making apparatus
US5931578 *Jun 23, 1998Aug 3, 1999Spirex CorporationExtruder and extrusion screw therefor
US7810346Dec 15, 2006Oct 12, 2010Lg Electronics Inc.Icemaker and method for controlling the same
Classifications
U.S. Classification62/354, 366/89, 425/208, 425/376.1, 100/145, 222/241
International ClassificationF25C1/14
Cooperative ClassificationF25C2500/02, F25C1/147
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