US 3815626 A
An apparatus for the automatic regulation of the flow of water is disclosed comprising a vertically disposed fluid intake pipe having a plurality of vertically spaced openings formed therein with a float means moveably embracing the intake pipe above the openings. The float is vertically moveable with respect to the intake pipe in response to changes in the level of the fluid surrounding the intake pipe. A ribbon-like seal means is secured to the float means and is moveable therewith to seal and open certain of the openings in the intake pipe responsive to the changes in the level of the fluid surrounding the intake pipe. As the level of fluid drops around the intake pipe, the seal means seals the uppermost openings in the intake pipe to prevent air being drawn thereinto.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1191 Bryant  APPARATUS FOR THE AUTOMATIC REGULATION OF THE FLOW OF FLUID  lnventor: Cameron C. Bryant, 8504 lzard St.,
Omaha, Nebr. 68114  Filed: Sept. 28, 1972 1211 Appl. No.: 292,986
 US. Cl 137/432, 137/625.28, 166/54  Int. Cl. Fl6k 31/18  Field of Search 137/429, 430, 431, 432,
137/433, 625.28; 25l/D1G. 2; 61/11, 13; 166/54, 74; 73/3225 1 1 June 11, 1974 Primary ExaminrWilliam R. Cline Assistant Examiner-David R. Matthews Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Zarley, McKee & Thomte 5 7] ABSTRACT An apparatus for the automatic regulation of the flow of water is disclosed comprising a vertically disposed fluid intake pipe having a plurality of vertically spaced openings formed therein with a float means moveably embracing the intake pipe above the openings. The float is vertically moveable with respect to the intake pipe in response to changes in the level of the fluid surrounding the intake pipe. A ribbon-like seal means is secured to the float means and is moveable therewith to seal and open certain of the openings in the intake pipe responsive to the changes in the level of the fluid surrounding the intake pipe. As the level of fluid drops around the intake pipe, the seal means seals the uppermost openings in the intake pipe to prevent air being drawn thereinto.
6 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures PATENTEDJUN 1 1 I974 UHIHIIIH H I! IHIIH IIIHWI APPARATUS FOR THE AUTOMATIC REGULATION OF THE FLOW OF FLUID Normally, it is necessary to dewater a construction area when construction work is being done below the ground surface. It is necessary to remove all water or other liquids from the excavation area to provide dry working conditions. One common method of dewatering an excavation area is to sink a plurality of wellpoints around the area and connect the same to a pump so that the water will be pumped from the area. This dewatering method has proven quite satisfactory but does present'certain problems. As the wellpoints lower the water table or level, the upper portion of the wellpoints tend to draw air into the system which seriously affects the operation of the pumps. This problem is reduced somewhat by elaborate valving devices, large vacuum pumps, etc. It is also necessary that an employee constantly observe the operation and tune the wellpoints, pumps, valves, etc.
Therefore, it is a principle object of this invention to provide an automatically regulated wellpoint.
A further object of this invention is to provide an apparatus for the automatic regulation of the flow of fluid.
A further object of the invention is to provide a valve means which automatically compensates for the fluctuation in the fluid level. v a
A further object of this invention is to provide an apparatus which increases the reliability of a dewatering system so-that it can be operated with less attendance.
A further object of the invention is to provide an apparatus which permits the increase in the number of wellpointswhich canbe pumped by a single pump by reducing the amount of air that a wellpoint system normally gathers.
Afurther object of the invention is to provide an apparatus for the automatic regulation of the flow of fluid whicheliminates the need for constant tuning" of wellpoint systems.
A further object of the invention is to provide an apparatus for-a dewatering' system with automatic liquid level control which eliminates the need for attention to the valving devices, large vacuum pumps, uncertain water level control, air entering the liquid stream, and surface valving devices used for regulation.
A further object of the invention is to provide an apparatus for the automatic regulation of the flow of fluid which is economical in manufacture and durable in operation.
These and other objects will be apparent to those skilled in the art.
This invention consists in theconstruction, arrangements, and combination of the various parts of the device, whereby theobjeets contemplated are attained as hereinafter more fully set forth, specifically pointed out in the claims, and illustrated in the accompanying drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view illustrating a wellpoint system utilizing the present invention:
FIG. 2 is a partial sectional view seen along lines 2-2 of FIG. 1:
FIG. 3 is a sectional view generally similar to FIG. 2 but which illustrates the sealing means in a somewhat different position;
FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the float; and
FIG. 5 is a partial perspective view of the seal means.
In the drawings, the numeral 10 refers to a conventional wellpoint pump system comprising a pump I2 which is driven by a motor 14. The pump system I0 includes a conventional priming device 16 fluidly connected to a collector manifold 18. The numeral 20 refers to the wellpoints which are connected to the riser pipes 22 which are connected to the connector manifold 18 by pipes or hoses 24.
The wellpoints 20 are introduced into the ground in conventional fashion such as by jetting or other means to a depth determined by the distance the ground water or liquid level must be lowered. In FIG. 2, the numeral 26 refers generally to the liquid level.
More specifically, wellpoint 20 comprises a core 28 having the jetting point 30 secured to the lower end thereof as illustrated in FIG. 2. Jetting point 30 includes a ball valve 32 and valve seat 34 which cooperate to seal the jetting opening 36 during pumping operations. If the wellpoint is jetted into the ground, the water pressure within core 28 will unseat the ball valve 32 to permit the 'water to jet from the jetting point 30 in conventional fashion.
The numeral 38 refers-to a sleeve which is secured to the point-30 and the core 28 as illustrated in the drawings. The sleeve 38 is provided with a plurality of slots 40 formed therein to permit the water or liquid to pass therethrough into the area generally referred to by the reference numeral 42. Core 28 is provided with a plurality of spaced apart rows of openings 44 comprised of a plurality of vertically spaced openings to provide communication between the compartment area 42 and the interior of core 28. i g
The numeral 46 refers to afloat which moveably embraces the core 28 and which is responsive to fluctuations in the fluid level. A plurality of spaced apart followers 48 are secured to the float 46 and extenddownwardly therefrom as illustrated in the drawings. The nu meral 50 refers generally to a seal means having a sleeve 52 at one end thereof which embraces the core 28 as illustrated in the drawings. A plurality of spaced apart sealing ribbons 54 extend downwardly from the sleeve 52 adjacent the exterior surface of core 28 and in alignmentwith the openings 44. The sealing ribbons 54 are secured at their other ends to the float 46 for movement therewith.
Assuming that the fluid level 26 is initially as illustrated in FIG. 3, the float .46 will be responsive to the liquid level so that the openings 44are not sealed by the sealing ribbons 54. The operation of the wellpoint system will cause the water surrounding the wellpoint to pass inwardly through the slots 40 into the compartment area 42. The fluid will be drawn into the interior of the core 28 through the exposed openings 44. As the water level 26 is lowered, the float 46 lowers accordingly which causes the sealing ribbons. 54 to progressively seal the uppermost of the openings 44 in response to such movement of the'float 46. Thus, the sealing ribbons 54 prevent the uppermost openings 44 from drawing in air into the system which would greatly reduce the efficiency of the wellpoint system. If the water level 26 should rise, the float 46 will also rise thereby causing the sealing ribbons S4 to expose more i of the openings 44 to permit the wellpoint system to draw in additional water into the interior of the core 28 and eventually to the header assembly 18.
While the float means 46 and the sealing ribbons 5 may be constructed of any suitable material, it is recommended that the float 46 be constructed of suitable styrofoam or plastic material with the sealing ribbons 54 being constructed of a neoprene synthetic rubber material.
Thus it can be seen that an apparatus has been provided for the automatic regulation of the flow of fluid. The apparatus disclosed herein is responsive to the fluctuations in the level surrounding the wellpoint so as to prevent the intake of air into the system. By eliminating the intake of air into the system, pump efficiency is maintained and it is not necessary for the system to be constantly attended by a person who otherwise would have to tune the various valves, wellpoints, etc. By reducing the air intake into the system, a higher vacuum is maintained allowing the system to have greater fluid lifting capacity. While the apparatus has been described as being particularly well suited for use with a wellpoint system, it should be noted that the apparatus could be employed in. any environment wherein liquid level control is desired. Thus it can be seen that the invention accomplishes at least all of its stated objectives.
1. An apparatus for the automatic regulation of the flow of fluid comprising, a vertically disposed fluid intake pipe having a plurality of vertically spaced openings formed therein,
a float means embracing said intake pipe above said openings and being vertically movable with respect to said intake pipe in response to changes in the level of the fluid surrounding said intake pipe,
and seal means operatively secured to said float means, said seal means being movable with said float means to sequentially seal said openings from the upper end thereof to the lower end thereof responsive to a lowering of the fluid level around said intake pipe and sequentially opening said openings from the lower end thereof to the upper end thereof responsive to a raising of the fluid level around said intake pipe.
2. The apparatus of claim I wherein a cylindrical screen means is secured to and extends around said fluid intake pipe in a spaced apart relationship with respect thereto, said float means being positioned between said intake pipe and said screen means.
3. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein a plurality of spaced apart rows of vertically spaced openings are formed in said intake pipe, said seal means comprising a plurality of sealing members positioned adjacent said plurality of spaced apart rows.
4. The apparatus of claim 3 wherein said sealing members are secured to and extend downwardly from said float means thence upwardly adjacent said spaced apart rows of openings, said sealing members being secured to said fluid intake pipe at the upper ends of their upwardly extending portions.
5. The apparatus of claim 4 wherein a plurality of spaced apart rigid members are secured at their upper ends to said float means and extend downwardly therefrom adjacent the downwardly extending portions of said sealing members.
6. The apparatus of claim 4 wherein said sealing rial.