US 3833147 A
A closure for containers having a resilient diaphragm with a valve portion configuration that prevents material from passing through the opening and out the closure, a cap member for fitting into said container in a locked position, which cap member presses against the resilient diaphragm forming a seal therebetween and the resilient contact holds the cap member in the locked position, and by pressing the cap member against the diaphragm, the valve portion in the diaphragm is enlarged allowing material in the container to pass through the opening.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Borsum et a1. Sept. 3, 1974 [5 SAFETY DISPENSING CONTAINER 3,510,021 I 5/1970 Silver 215 44 X CLOSURE 3,604,593 9/1971 Curci 221/289 x 3,620,413 11/1971 Borsum 221/289  Inventors: Adolph W. Borsum; William K. 3,622,041 11 1971 Borsum 6181.. 221/288 x Borsum, both of 521 Pacific Ave., 3,637,109 1 1972 Stifter 222/288 x Solana Beach, Okla, 92075 3,667,636 6/1972 Landen 215/9  plied: July 1972 Primary ExaminerStanley H. To llberg  Appl. No.1 268,558 Assistant ExaminerNorman L. Stack, Jr.
, Related Us. Application Data Attorney, Agent, or FirmB rown & Martin  Continuation of Ser. No. 45,298, June 11, 1970,
abandone  ABSTRACT A closure for containers having a resilient diaphragm U-S. Cl. a valve portion configuration that prevents mate-  Int. Cl. G07f 11/20 i l f assing through the opening and out the' clo- 1 Field of Search 5 sure, a cap member for fitting into said container in a 89; 215/9, 4 locked position, which cap member presses against the resilient diaphragm forming a seal therebetween and References Cited the resilient contact holds the cap member in the UNITED STATES PATENTS locked position, and by pressing the cap member 3,004,566 10 1961 Raimo 141/18 against the diaphragm, the Valve Portion in the 3,067,787 12/1962 Salk 141/321 Phragm is enlarged allowing material in the Container 3,072,276 I/l963 Nichols 21519 to pass through the opening. 3,383,013 5/1968 Szekely 221/202 3,480,182 11/1969 Rigor 222 288 17 Chums D'awmg l O O 64 6O 70 I4 70 u PATENTED $5? 31974 snuznord IOI INVENTORS w. BORSUM K. BORSUM ADOLPH WILLIAM ATTORNEY PATENTEDSEP 31974 3.833.147
sum 20F 4 70 700 I INVENTORS ADOLPH w. BORSUM 95 WILLIAM K. BORSUM 5s 64 Fl .9
640, k 3 g KMQ-w I00 ATTORNEY SAFETY DISPENSING CONTAINER CLOSURE This is a continuation ofSer. No. 45,298 filed June 11, 1970 now abandoned.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The danger inherent in packaged medicines of accidental overdosage is well recognized. Testimony before Congress has established that over one-half of the 70,000 poisonings of children under 5 years old were caused by ingestion of pharmaceuticals. Conventional packaging invite disaster, since such packaging permits an inquisitive child or an inattentive adult to obtain the entire contents of the package readily.
Various devices have been proposed to overcome the dangerous situation now existing in this field. A first step has been taken with the introduction of the pressure release-type cap, but this device is unsatisfactory since once it is removed, the entire contents are available. The need is for a unit dose dispensing container, i.e., one that, even if opened, dispenses only one dose of medicine at a time. Such a container should have a high percentage of effectiveness in providing physical protection and yet still meet all the additional requirements for a practical closure. Chief among these additional requirements are convenience, cost, and sealing. The convenience requirement means that the closure must be easily openable by adults including the aged and infirm. Without this kind of convenience the closure will not find general acceptance and where supplied, may often be discarded by the adult, exposing the child to even greater danger. The cost requirement means that the closure must be easy to manufacture using non-exotic materials. Finally, the sealing means that the contents of the container must be protected from deterioration by an effective and long lasting seal that is formed when the closure is in its closed position.
While many devices have been proposed in an attempt to satisfy these requirements, all seem to fail to meet at least one of them. Some prior art devices have been proposed that employ diaphragms that prevent more than a unit dose from being dispensed, but these devices either distend the diaphragm so that it becomes ineffective after a period of time or they are combined with caps that are too readily removed by children. Similarly the closures that are designed with initially effective sealsoften lose their ability to seal after a short period of time due to the inability of the closure to compensate for deformation of the cooperating parts.
Thus it is advantageous to have a safety dispensing container closure that has in a single device the desirable features described above.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Embodiments of the invention provide a locking, receptacle cap member that also serves as the actuator to move a valve in a resilient and deformable diaphragm from its closed to open position. A retainer ring for being secured to a container from which the material is to be dispensed by the cap member, and the cap member may have a plug-shaped receptacle for receiving one or more tablets from the container. The retainer ring also serves to retain the diaphragm in position. The diaphragm is'located near the mouth of the container and has a valve portion configured in such a manner as to prevent the passage of any of the material,
whether in tablet, liquid or powder form, out of the container until it is actuated by the cap member. Also, the container may have a restrictive custom configured neck to serve as a funnel for channeling tablets to the diaphragm'so as to ensure positive delivery of the tablets to the diaphragm. The container may be a standard container now on the market in drugstores having a standard snap cap configuration for mating with the counter part of the retainer ring if so provided; Also in other configurations the retainer ring may be provided with threads and screwed on to the container or it may be welded thereon.
In one embodiment of the invention, the cap member includes lugs on the exterior of its receptacle portion that engage the walls of channels including recesses formed in the retainer ring. These channels permit limited up and down movement of the cap to prevent its removal except when the cap is first depressed, then rotated in the proper direction and finally withdrawn from the retainer ring. Additionally, the cap has a beveled portion at its lower end that engages and grips the diaphragm forming a seal. The diaphragm in this embodiment has a frusto-conical, shaped-valve configurated opening through its center. The shape of this opening results in a restricted opening being presented to the interior of the container and an enlarged opening being exposed to the container exterior. This embodiment is especially adapted to the dispensing of medicine in pill or tablet form. The dispensing action is accomplished by first inverting the container, which action places a tablet under the influence of gravity in contact with the restricted valve opening. However, since the diameter of the valve opening is smaller than that of the tablet, the tablet cannot pass through. Next the cap is depressed which dialates the diaphragm opening by increasing the diameter of the restricted opening and allows the pill or tablet to drop into the receptacle portion of the cap. The cap member being in the depressed condition, need only be rotated in the proper direction a fraction of a turn, whereupon it may then be removed from the container and the pill made available in the cap. When the cap is returned by reverse action to the receptacle, it sealably and resiliently engages the diaphragm which thereafter resiliently biases the cap outwards providing both sealing and the holding of the cap in the locking recess portion of th retainer ring channels.
Other embodiments of the invention employ a diaphragm that has an intersecting radial slit type valvefor dispensing liquid or powdered materials. When in the stored condition, the diaphragm hermetrically seals the container but a unit dosage of the fluid in the container is released into the cap receptacle whenthe .cap is depressed. Also useful for liquid dispensing'isan embodiment that utilizes a diaphragm with acentrally located small hole that is normally in the sealed condition but is capable of passing or dispensing liquid when the cap is repeatedly depressed to its full travel or by the action of a squeeze bottle container.
An additional embodiment of the invention incorporates a cap especially suited to liquid dispensing and having wiper projections that prevent leakage along the walls of the retainer ring. Another embodiment includes a cap with a shoulder portion and a tubeprojection that cooperates with a diaphragm having a centrally disposedhole type valve portion for dispensing liquid.
It is therefore an object of this invention to provide a new and improved safety dispensing container closure.
It is another object of this invention to provide a new and improved dispensing closure that dispenses unitdosages of a container contents for each activation.
It is another object of this invention to provide a new and improved dispensing closure that hermetically seals a containers interior both with the cap in place and removed.
It is another object of this invention to provide a new and improved dispensing closure with a cap that is locked against accidental removal.
It is another object of this invention to provide a new and improved dispensing closure that is difficult'for children to open, provides unit-dosages for safety protection of adults, that seals the contents, that is easy and inexpensive to manufacture and that has a strong construction and long life.
It is another object of this invention to provide a new and improved container closure in which the container has a restrictive neck so as to cooperate in funneling and positioning one or two tablets in alignment over the diaphragm valve portion aperture in assurance of delivery of one or two tablets when the valve portion aperture is dilated by means of the cap thus assuring maximum convenience, ease, simplicity, and speed in obtaining a unit dose.
It is another object of this invention to provide a new and improved container closure that prevents spillage of the contents of the container in obtaining pills or powder substances.
Other objects and many advantages of this invention will become more apparent upon a reading of the following detailed description and an examination of the drawings wherein like reference numerals designate like parts throughout and in which:
FIG. 1 is avertical transverse sectional view of an unassembled closurewith parts removed, incorporating the invention together with its associated container.
FIG. 2 is a vertical transverse sectional view of the closure of FIG. 1, illustrating the parts assembled and attached to the container.
FIG. 3 is a vertical transverse sectional view of the closure of FIG. 1, with parts broken away, illustrating the container inverted to place one of the tablets in a position to be dispensed.
FIG. 4 is a vertical transverse sectional view, with parts broken away, of the closure of FIG. 1 with the cap in its depressed position and a tablet in the cap receptacle.
FIG. 5 is a vertical transverse sectional view, with parts broken away, of the closure of FIG. 1 with the cap and tablet removed.
FIG. 6 is a perspective view of a portion of the retainer ring of FIG. 1 illustrating the lug receiving channels.
FIG. 7 is a vertical transverse sectional view of one embodiment of the diaphragm member of the invention illustrating the valve portion, with parts broken away.
FIG. 8 is a vertical transverse sectional view of another embodiment of the diaphragm of the invention illustrating the valve portion, with parts broken away.
FIG. 9 is a vertical transverse sectional view of an additional embodiment of the diaphragm of the invention illustrating the valve portion with parts broken away.
FIG. 10 is a vertical transverse sectional view of an additional embodiment of the closure and' container incorporating the invention.
FIG. 11 is a vertical transverse sectional view of an embodiment of the invention for dispensing liquids.
FIG. 12 is a sectional view taken along lines 12-12- of FIG. 11.
FIG. 13 is a vertical transverse sectional view of an illustrative modified embodiment of the invention for dispensing fluids.
FIG. 14 is a vertical transverse sectional view of an illustrated alternative embodiment.
FIG. 15 is a modified vertical transverse sectional view of FIG. 14.
Referring to FIG. 1, there is illustrated a closure container assembly indicated generally by numeral 10 consisting of cap member 12, retainer ring 14, diaphragm member 16, and container 18. The cap member has an annular radially extending rim 20 from which depends a plug-shaped receptacle portion 22 carrying radially extending lugs 24. The lugs 24 include a shoulder 26 and a ramp portion 28. The ramp 28 mates with the beveled end 30 of wall 22 to form a continuous ramp surface. In other closure designs, the ramp 28 may be eliminated when a change in lug configuration is indicated or desired. Cylindrical wall 22 forms a receptacle volume 32 for a purpose which will be described in detail hereinafter.
The retaining ring 14 includes a cap receiving portion 34, diaphragm retaining portion 36 and attachment portion 38. The cap receiving portion 34 includes a plurality of lug receiving elements 40, each including a lug receiving channel 42 and locking channel recess 44. The cap receiving portion and lug elements are described hereinafter in greater detail in reference to FIG. 6. The diaphragm retaining portion 36 includes a radially outwardly extending flange 46 from which depends a wedge shaped retaining projection or ring 48. The attachment portion 14 includes a downwardly extending cylindrical wall 50 that has secured to its lower extremity a V-shaped inner ring surface comprising an attachment ramp 52 securing ramp 54.
Diaphragm 16 that is made of suitable resiliently material has an upper surface 56 and a lower surface 58 forming a cylindrical member through which a frustoconical opening 60 is located forming a control valve portion. This diaphragm is mounted in the ring 14 with the wall of the opening converging toward the container. The opening 60 is formed by the restricted aperture 62 forming rim 64, the enlarged aperture 66 and its rim 68, and the sloping wall 70. It is to be noted that the diaphragm may have various central opening configurations adaptable for dispensing the contents of the container therethrough. The central opening forms a central valve portion of the resilient diaphragm. The valve portion is opened by the downward pressure movement of the lower end portion forming a lip thereon. Thus this lower end forms a valve actuator portion. A sealing and valve actuator portion is formed by the lower end of the receptacle 22. When the end is in contact with the upper surface of the diaphragm 16, the receptacle 22 does not necessarily have to enter the diaphragm opening 60 to expand the valve sufficiently to pass substances therethrough. Diaphragm l6 wider and about the same length as the width and thickness respectively of the pill to be dispensed. With such configuration the neck acts as a hopper for positively feeding one or more pills to the diaphragm 16.
Referring now to FIG. 6, there is illustrated in perspective view, the cap receiving portion 34 of the retaining ring 14 and the lug receiving elements 40. From this view, it is apparent that in its assembled condition the cap receiving portion includes four lug receiving elements 40, however this number may vary as may be suitable for given cap sizes. These lug receiving elements or portions 40 are identical and only one will be described in detail. Each element 40 includes a lug receiving channel 42 communicating with a locking channel recess 44. These channels are defined by exterior wall 84 from which depends lug ram 86 having a sloping or ramp surface 88 and are further defined by limit stop 90 which includes wall 92 facing on the lug receiving channel 42 and an opposite wall 94 facing on the locking channel recess of the adjoining lug receiving elements or portions 40. The cap receiving portion 34 forms lug receiving channels 42 to cooperate with lugs 24 on the cap member 12. The outer diameter of the lower end of cap member 12 through the lugs 24 is about the same as the diameter of the inner surface of channels 42. The phantom ramp 92a is an alternative configuration requiring that the cap be compressed and screwed to a rear locking condition before the cap may be depressed to obtain a tablet. This additional ramp provides additional safety.
Now turning to FIG. 9, there is illustrated the diaphragm member 16 and the beveled end portions including a' lip thereon. The phantom lines 97 illustrate the displaced position of the upper surface 56, sloping wall 70, and lower surface 58 when depressed by the action of cap member 12. The radially inward portion of the diaphragm 16 effectively pivots about a point 95 between gripping points corresponding to the points of contact of retaining projection 48 and retaining projection 78.
The operation of the embodiment of FIG. 1 can best be visualized by reference to FIGS. 2 5.
FIG. 2 illustrates the closure installed on a container 18 holding a plurality of tablets 100. The retaining ring 14 is mounted on the container 18 for forcing the lower end or attachment portion 38 against ramp 82. This causes attachment portion 38 to flex outward under coaction of the attachment ramp 54 with the attachment ramp 82. When the ring 14 is forced downwardly a sufficient distance, the attachment portion 38 snaps inwardly over the end of the container 18. During this operation, the diaphragm 16 is moved into ring 14 and is held in circumferential compression by circular projections 48 and 78 and is resiliently and sealably retained.
It can be observed that in this assembled condition, the resilience of the diaphragm exerts force against the ring projections 48 and 78 that tends to force the ramp surfaces 52 and 80 in opposite directions. Any movement of these ramp surfaces will be resisted by the structures of end 38 and the upper end of the container 18. Thus an equalizing of forces will occur that will position the ramp surfaces 52 and 80 with a given indentation into the diaphragm by projections 48 and 78. The
diaphragm 16 is of a resilient material that is selected to be relatively easy to flex and has creep resistance. However after some period of time, should the diaphgram become compressed, this opposing ramp arrange,- ment and the spring action and forces involved will continue to move the ring projections 48 and 78 together maintaining the seal and the resilient hold on the diaphragm. Because of the thickness of the diaphragm, the distance of possible movement of the ramp surfaces 52 and 80 and the relatively slight depression occuring in the stored condition, the diaphragm may be expected to provide a good seal for extended periods.
The cap 12 is inserted in place in the retainer ring '14 and its lower end portion is in sealing engagement with the upper surface 56 of diaphragm 16. Because of this sealing contact, diaphgram 16 is slightly depressed but not sufficiently to allow a tablet 100 to pass through the opening (see FIG. 3). As illustrated in FIG. 3 there is an annular space 101 between surface 58 of the diaphragm and the frusto-concaved surface 77 of the container. As illustrated in FIG. 4, this space is sufficient to receive the diaphragm when the cap 12 is exerted thereagainst so that the frusto-conical surface 70 of the diaphragm is straightened and transformed to surface 70a, see FIG. 9, and thus becomes substantially coex-, tensive with the internal wall of neck 74. It should be observed that when the cap 12 is placed in the retainer ring 14, it must be moved inwardly into ring 14 a sufficient distance that lugs 24 clears the surface 88 to pass into the holding locking channel recess 44. This further projects the lower end of the cap onto the diaphragm 16. However, this movement is not sufficient to allow a tablet to pass through the opening. Even if it was, the
- large thickness of the diaphragm permitted by the invention and the relatively slight depression occuring in the stored condition, the diaphragm will provide a good seal against the cap 12 for extended periods. Addition ally, since the diaphragm biases the outwardly against the exterior wall 44 of the lug receiving portion, a second seal is effected. This biasing holds the lugs 24 of cap 12 in engagement with the locking channels 44 and prevents accidental removal of the cap. Thus to remove the cap 12, the cap must be forced inwardly against'the resilience of the diaphragm 16 until the shoulder 26.0f lugs 24 clears the end 89 of surface 88. However should the cap 12 be forced too far into the diaphragm, then the frictional contact between the end of the cap 11-2 and the diaphragm 16 is sufficient to make it increas ingly difficult to twist the cap and remove the cap '12 from the retaining ring 14 and container 18. Since the biasing of the cap 12 is accomplished by the diaphragm there is no requirement that the cap 12 or retaining ring lug receiving portion 40 may be made of flexible material and these portions may therefore be made entirely from hard, strong material so as to protect the lugs and channels from breaking under pressure caused by an attempt to forceably remove the cap without following the proper procedure.
The proper method of obtaining a pill begins with inverting the container as illustrated in FIG. 3 to allow a tablet to lie in contact with the rim 64 of the diaphragms restricted aperture 62. The cap is then depressed causing the radially inner portion of the diaphragm 16 to pivot axially at the opening about its retaining projections 48 and 78, thereby enlarging the effective aperture and allowing the tablet to fall into the receptacle 32. In this connection and in reference to FIG. 9, it should be noted that the unique frustoconical configuration 70 of the diaphragm 16 permits the tablet 100 to clear the opening with less travel of the cap 12 than an ordinary cylindrical opening would require. This is because as soon as the lower edge 64 of the restricted valve opening has been sufficiently enlarged to pass the tablet, the tablet will pass without having to continue to pivot the diaphragm 16 about its upper surface until an upper rim has also enlarged sufficiently to pass a tablet. By starting with a larger upper opening edge 68, a cylindrical configuration 70a is approached as illustrated by phantom line 97, see FIG. 9, and as soon as the restricted opening edge 64 has been sufficiently enlarged to pass a tablet, as illustrated in FIGS. 4 and 9. That is to say the frusto-concaved surface 70 is resiliently transformed into a cylindrical surface 70a indirectly during the depression by lip 30 of the cap 12 against the exterior surface 56 of the diaphragm. In which case, the cap is not necessarily directly engaged and thus bound by said surface in a depressed condition. Actually the cap is constantly under a resilient, biasing, outward directional force from the diaphragm and is thus free to be forced into the combination lock-seal condition of the container opening or to assist in removal of the cap. Also, when the cap is in the depressed condition, the internal wall of the cap receptacle 32, the wall 70a of the diaphragm, and the restricted throat of the container combine to form a continuous cylindrical passage to conveniently facilitate the passage of tablets therethrough.
The final step in the removal process is illustrated in FIG. 5, wherein the cap 12 is removed after having been rotated a fraction of a turn to permit the lugs 24 to align themselves with the lug receiving channel 42 and permit withdrawal.
The embodiment of FIG. is a modification of the dispenser closure illustrated in FIGS. 1 through 5. The primary difference is that the container 118 has an annular flange 150 joining the lip 78 and the container wall 118, and the diaphragm 16 is retained over the container opening by means of a modified retainer ring or housing 154. The retainer ring 154 snugly fits outwardly against the inner wall and end of the annular flange 150 and is secured thereto by a friction fit, adhesives or the like, or by rim engaging members such as illustrated in FIG. 1. The spacing between end 156 and the diaphragm 16 assures freedom of movement of the diaphragm 16.
In this modification, the diaphragm 16 is not sealed and secured to the container, rather the diaphragm 16 is free to pivot over the rim projection 78. Sealing of the container opening is accomplished by the pressure exerted by lip 30 against the diaphragm in the latched condition. The pressure of lip 30 is extended generally downward and outward through the diaphragm causing the projection 78 to forceably engage the diaphragm and seal the container. Projection 78 may be reduced to form an edge substantially at right angles and still be effective. This modification permits the use of substantially smaller diameters for the diaphragm thus saving the material costs. The cap 12 and container 118 also are reduced in size and cost.
FIGS. 7 and 8 illustrate modifications of the diaphragm to adapt the closure of FIG. 1 to the dispensing of fluids including powders and liquids. Such a modification is illustrated in FIG. 11. FIG. 7 illustrates diaphragm 101 with radial slits 99 that correspond to the radial slits 131 of FIG. 12. These slits penetrate the diaphragm 101 between its upper surface 102 and its lower surface 104. As can be seen by the phantom lines 105, the portions of the diaphragm pivot as if about a center located at point 106 located between the upper and lower surfaces 102 and 104. Therefore there are sealing interfaces between the opposing walls of the slits 99 in the movement until the diaphragm 101 reaches the positions indicated by the phantom lines 105. At this position, the center intersection 97 of the slits 99 part at 97a to allow fluid to pass through the slit opening. This results from a partial elongation of the upper surface 102 because of the circular pressure force of the lower tip of end 30 of the cap 12. Also this force tends to compress the resilient diaphragm causing a slight inward bulging 103 of the diaphragm at the slits 99. This prevents leakage of fluid through the slits 99 until there has been a substantial inward movement of the cap 12 and end 30. Thus the cap 12 can press against the diaphragm 101 as illustrated in FIG. 7, and can be projected further into the diaphragm as required to remove the cap, without causing leakage of fluid through the slits 99. Should the container be shaken while inverted, the tendency for the diaphragm to open under pressure generated is effectively countered by the interference of the opposing walls.
The modified diaphragm 112 of FIG. 8 functions in a similar manner to that illustrated in FIG. 7, except diaphragm 112 has been cut away to create concaveconvex formed surfaces comprising generally conical sloping exterior surface 114 and generally conical sloping interior surface 116. This configuration has operational and functional characteristics described and illustrated in FIG. 7. However the slits or aperture 113 in the reduced thickness portion of the diaphragm 112 requires less movement for opening sufficiently to pass the flud, and yet retain the thickness between the ring projections 48 and 78 and the point of contact by cap end 30 for resiliency with protection against creep. The dotted lines 1 15 illustrate how the beveled end portions move only a relatively short distance to effect an opening. The sloping portions have the additional advantage in that they permit pooling of the liquid to be disposed, making dispensing of even a small remaining amount of liquid practical.
The embodiments in FIGS. 11, 12 and 13 illustrate the use of diaphragms, as described in FIGS. 7 and 8 in fluid dispensing embodiments. It is to be noted that the valve position in the illustrations of FIGS. 7, 8, 11 and 12 may be formed by intersecting radial slits 131 or by a single punctured hole such as at 127 in FIG. 12. Referring to FIG. 11, the retainer ring 122 is modified to have the lug receiving channels on the exterior surface 131 permitting a clean internal cylindrical bore 124 through the retaining ring 122. The cap 126 includes a graduated receptacle 128 and retaining lugs 130 on the cylindrical portion 132. Lugs 130 cooperate with the lug receiving channels in the same manner as in the embodiment of FIG. 1. The cylindrical base has a wiper ring 134 that functions to prevent leakage past the double seal closure. With the container inverted, the cap 126 is depressed and with each depression an amount of fluid passes through the diaphragm 123 due to gravity and the pumping action of the diaphragm caused by pressure exchange between the cap receptacle and the interior of the container. Upon upward movement of the diaphragm 123, the fluid 135 is moved upward compressing the air in space 137. This increased air pressure exerts a downward force in addition to gravitational force that drives the liquid through the slit or hole 127 when it opens. This fluid passes directly into receptacle 128 where it is held in sealed condition until the cap 126 is removed. If too much fluid is pumped into the receptacle 128, then the dispenser can be inverted and the fluid can be moved back into the container 121 by opening the hole or slits 127. In this manner the user may extract the exact amount of fluid required and then remove the cap to use the fluid.
The partial embodiment of FIG. 13 illustrates still another embodiment whereiin a modified diaphragm 136 a restrictive neck portion 188, a dependent radially positioned flange 190 at the container opening and an internal flange 192. The flanges 190 and 192 coact to resiliently bias the insert into a locked condition within the container neck. This embodiment does not employ a retainer ring per se for positioning the diaphragm in the container opening. Thus there is a reduction in the cost of the container closure.
cooperates with a modified cap 138. The'diaphragm I 136 has a punctured hole 140 therethrough. Distending this hole 140 over a portion of its total length is tubular projection 142. The cap 138 also has shoulder 144 that abuts the exterior surface 146 of diaphragm 136. The pumping action when the cap 138 is actuated permits the receptacle 148 to fill to the desired level or if the container (not shown) is made of flexible material it may be squeezed to fill the receptacle. Additionally the receptacle 148 may be of flexible material allowing convenient dispensing of the fluid from the cap after it is removed from the closure.
FIGS. 1 through 5 show a preferred container closure embodiment in which the container configuration opening, more specifically, has a frusto-concaved surface spaced to receive the resiliently deformed portion of the diaphragm when in the depressed condition. With the diaphragm in the depressed condition in the space thus formed in combination with the restrictive neck means for the passage of tablets, assures that the one or two tablets that normally line up in the throat of the container are freed from the remaining tablets that generally jamp up at the internal throat opening (see FIGS. 3 and 4) thus assuring convenience and rapidity in unit dose dispensing.
Although the features illustrated herein are unique to our invention, they are not to be construed as imposing limitations since it should be obvious that the closures are designed for adaptability to the snap cap containers now in general use. Furthermore, the retainer ring may be designed to have threads to cooperate with the threads of a screw type container in which a locking indent may be employed to secure the closure in the container opening once the bottle has been filled. Thus major changeover by industry is not mandatory nor immediate.
With reference to FIG. 14, it is to be observed in this embodiment of the invention that there is a container having a neck portion and a bayonet latching means 172; a cap 174 with a receptacle 176, a dependent skirt 178 and a bayonet latching means 180; and a cylindrical insert for fitting into the neck of the container comprising a cylindrical body 182, a dependent diaphragm 184 containing a frusto-concaved valve portion for dispensing tablets, a frusto-conical surface 186,
FIG. 15 is a modification of FIG. 14, illustrating an insert including a centrally dependent diaphragm 194 with centrally located valve portion 196 for liquid dispensing, and a snap cap type locking means for securing the insert in the throat of the container at the opening of the container. The bayonet latching means as referred to in FIGS. 14 and 15 are those illustrated in FIG. 6 except that the latching grooves are located on the external surface of the container neck.
The novel features as previously related and illustrated are in effect the same for FIGS. 14 and 15 and includ the following:
The resilient diaphragm is mounted in the top portion on the container and has a central valve portion which is capable of being resiliently opened for passage of contents within the container, for example, tablets as illustrated in FIG. 14 and liquids in FIG. 15. Also the diaphragm biases the cap outward to retain the bayonet mating means of the cap with the container. The valve portion of the diaphragm closes to the contents of the container when the cap is depressed within the limits of the bayonet connection of the cap with the container. However, when the cap receptacle is depressed within the container beyond the limits of the locking connection means, the diaphragm valve means is opened and the container contents are permitted to pass therethrough.
Having described our invention, we now claim:
1. A safety dispensing closure for attachment to containers having open neck portions for carrying contents to be dispensed through the open neck portions comprising,
a retainer ring,
a resilient diaphragm having a continuous portion including an upper surface facing outward and an inner surface facing into said container for being positioned in said retainer ring across the open neck portion and a centered restricted opening therethrough forming a normally closed control valve portion,
a cap member having a plug-shaped receptacle positionable in said retainer ring and movable inwardly, outwardly, and rotatably within said retainer ring and into contact with the upper surface only of said diaphragm when moved sufficiently inwardly,
said plug-shaped receptacle comprising a projecting end portion forming a lip thereon with a receptacle opening in the end thereof,
said retainer ring having means for securing said retainer'ring to the neck portion of the container and means for positioning and securing said diaphragm at the opening of the neck portion,
said diaphragm being resiliently depressable and in response to a sufficient inwardly directed depressable force by said receptacle end portion, with said lip acting solely against said upper continuous surface portion, said diaphragm depresses axially from a generally flat condition and radially expands said control valve portion to an open valve condition with the contents of the container being able to pass through the open control valve portion and then sequentialy into the receptacle opening of the plug-shaped receptacle, and upon release of said receptacle end portion and said depressable force said diaphragm resiliently returns to the normally flat condition and said control valve portion therein is resiliently returned to the normally closed condition,
said retainer ring and said plug-shaped receptacle portion having in combination a bayonet type looking means,
said diaphragm upon release of said depressable force resiliently biasing said plug-shaped receptacle member outwardly in said retainer ring into a locking condition in said bayonet locking means by said lip pressing solely against said continuous upper surface of said diaphragm with said diaphragm in slight depression from said normally flat condition and with said valve portion in the normally closed condition holding said receptacle member in the locking condition by the resilient biasing contact with said diaphragm that forms a seal between said receptacle member lip and said continuous upper surface of said diaphragm, theareby sealing the opening of the container in said locked condition,
said lip portion only of said receptacle in free pressing contact with said upper surface only of said diaphragm provides a freely separational contact for sealing and control of said valve portion providing a sealing condition during sequential operational working contact against said resiliency of said continuous upper surface portion of said diaphragm in the opening and closing of said valve portion, whereby binding and holding of said receptacle end portion to said diaphragm is prevented during operation,
said control valve portion being within the periphery of said lip with said receptacle portion remaining wholly exterior to said upper surface during the opening and closing of said valve portion opening thereby minimizing inward and outward movement of said receptacle,
and said control valve portion opening resiliently re.- taining in the normally closed condition the substance of the container with the cap entirely removed, whereby a tablet, powder, or fluid substance will be retained within the container when inverted and shaken or tampered with.
2. A safety dispensing container closure as claimed in claim 1 wherein,
said diaphragm comprises a flexible thick cylindrical member with a frusto-conical valve portion,
and said valve portion having the smallest aperture portion facing the open neck portion of the container, whereby the inward pressure and degree of movement of said end portion and lip of the receptacle working freely against the upper outer surface of said diaphragm is minimized in opening of the valve under which condition the frusto-conical valve surfaces deform forming a cylindrical opening through which tablets pass and upon release of inward pressure the resilient force of the thick diaphragm biases the receptacle outward and closes the valve. A
3. A safety dispensing container closure as claimed in claim 1 wherein,
said diaphragm is of generally cylindrical configuration with said valve portion being generally centrally located, and said valve portion comprises at least a pair of intersecting slits through the cylindrical width. 4. A safety dispensing container closure as claimed in claim 1 wherein,
said securing means comprising a ramp cam means for engaging a ramp cam on said container. 5. A safety dispensing container closure as claimed in claim 1 wherein,
the container and retainer ring have opposing, substantially aligned projections that contact and seal the outer periphery of said diaphragm on opposite sides. 6. A safety dispensing closure as claimed in claim 1 in which,
said diaphragm is flexible and generally cylindrical with a flat upper surface,
said lip having a continuous edge for contacting said flat side surface of said diaphragm,
and said receptacle end only contacts one side surface of said diaphragm and said control valve portion is within the contact area.
7. A safety dispensing closure as claimed'in claim 1 in which,
said diaphragm is flexible and generally cylindrical with flat sides,
said retainer ring and the container have respective opposing ring projections that are axially aligned and grip opposite sides of the outer periphery of said diaphragm therebetween,
and said projecting end portion has a projecting edge surface for pressing against the one side of said diaphragm and bending the center portion of said diaphragm axially to open said valve portion sufficiently to allow the contents to pass therethrough.
8. A safety dispensing container closure as claimed in claim 7 wherein,
said diaphragm has a thick cylindrical configuration and said valve portion comprises at least one radial slit through the diaphragm thickness confined to the boundries imposed by said lip of said receptacle, whereby sufficient inward pressure and movement of said projecting end portion of the plug-shaped receptacle opens the valve slit sufficiently to pass fluids therethrough into the receptacle and upon release of said pressure the resilient force of the diaphragm biases the slit into a normally occluded condition and seals the container and simultaneously moves the receptacle outward. 9. A safety dispensing container as claimed in claim 8 wherein,
said diaphragm having concave-convex opposing faces that slope from a point spaced from the rim to said valve portion. 10. A safety dispensing closure as claimed in claim 1 in which,
the container has a frusto-concaved surface at the opening sloping dowward and inward joining a generally cylindrical restricted neck which internally joins the body of the container,
and said frusto-concaved surface forming a space at the container neck opening to receive the depressed portion of the diaphragm in the opening condition, whereby the frusto-conical surface of said diaphragm is resiliently deformed to form :1 cylindrical opening forming in part a continuous portion of the internal neck portion of the container for the passage of tablets therethrough into the receptacle.
11. A safety dispensing container closure as claimed in claim wherein,
said diaphragm has a flexible generally cylindrical shape with a frusto-conical valve portion therein,
said valve portion having its smallest aperture facing the interior of the container,
said receptacle opening and said projecting end portion comprising a hollow open ended cylindrical projection within the lips for contacting one side of said diaphragm and pressing said diaphragm to open said valve portion,
a cylindrical internal wall surface configuration formed from the frusto-conical surface of said diaphragm in the depressed open condition,
and said cylindrical surface joining the cylindrical restricted neck configuration with the cylindrical projection of said projecting end portion for the passage of contents therethrough from the container to the receptacle opening.
12. A safety dispensing container closure as claimed in claim 1 wherein,
said plug-shaped receptacle has radially extending lug means for co-operating with channels and recesses in said locking means on said retainer ring for releasing said cap member from said retainer ring only if said cap member is movably depressed against said diaphragm and then rotated.
13. A safety dispensing container closure as claimed in claim 12 wherein,
said channels including limit stop means for preventing rotation of said lug means and said cap member beyond the amount required for locking or removal of said cap member. 14. A safety dispensing container closure as claimed in claim 1 in which,
said lips of said plug-shaped receptacle portion of said cap member includes a tubular protrusion that presses onto said valve portion. 15. A safety dispensing container closure as claimed in claim 14 wherein,
the container and said cap member plug-shaped portion are of a flexible material. 16. A safety dispensing closure as claimed in claim 1 in which,
said securing means includes aligned and mating ramp cam sufaces on said retainer ring and on the container, means for biasing said ramp cam surfaces in opposite directions, said diaphragm is generally cylindrical, said retainer ring on the container having respective opposing projections for contacting opposite sides of the outer periphery of said diaphragm therebetween, and the resilience of said diaphragm biases said projections in opposite directions and creates a biasing force in opposition to said biasing means. 17. A safety dispensing closure as claimed in claim 16 in which,
said cap member plug-shaped receptacle has radially extending lug means for co-operating with channels in said locking means on said retainer ring for releasing said cap means member from said retainer ring only if said cap member is moveably depressed inward and rotated,
and said diaphragm having sufficient thickness whereby said inward depressed and unlocking movement of said cap member is insufficient to open said valve portion sufficiently to pass material therethrough.