US 3839145 A
Apparatus for and method of forming a fiber suspension for the production of non-woven materials in which the fiber stock is supplied to papermaking waste water through a shorter supply line in order to prevent an entanglement and/or flocculation of the fibers. For this purpose the fiber stock is mixed with the waste water immediately as the mixture enters a part of the distributor.
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Bueckle [111 3,839,145 51 Oct. 1, 1974 APPARATUS FOR AND METHOD OF FORMING A FIBER SUSPENSION AND FOR DELIVERING IT TO THE WIRE OF A MACHINE FOR MANUFACTURING NON-WOVEN MATERIALS Inventor: Karl Eugen Bueckle,74l0
Reutlingen, Germany Filed: Aug. 24, 1973 Appl. No.: 391,075
Related US. Application Data Continuation'in-part of Ser. No. 172,786, Aug. 18, 1971, abandoned.
Foreign Application Priority Data Sept. 17, 1970 Germany 2045920 US. Cl 162/190, 162/264, 162/338,
162/343 Int. Cl D2lf 1/66, D2lf 1/06 Field of Search 162/338, 343, 190, 264
 References'Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,347,717 5/1944 Staege.. 162/338 X 2,347,850 5/1944 Staege. 162/338 X 2,589,639 3/1952 Staege 162/338 Primary ExaminerS. Leon Bashore Assistant Examiner-Richard V. Fisher Attorney, Agent, or FirmArthur O. Klein 5 7 ABSTRACT Apparatus for and method of forming a fiber suspension for the production of non-woven materials in which the fiber stock is supplied to papermaking waste water through a shorter supply line in order to prevent an entanglement and/or flocculation of the fibers. For this purpose the fiber stock is mixed with the waste water immediately as the mixture enters a part of the distributor.
6 Claims, 2 Drawing Figures APPARATUS FOR AND METHOD OF FORMING A FIBER SUSPENSION AND FOR DELIVERING IT TO THE WIRE OF A MACHINE FOR MANUFACTURING NON-WOVEN MATERIALS This application is a continuation-in-part of application Ser. No. 172,786, filed Aug. 18, 1971, now abandoned.
The present invention relates to an apparatus for and a method of forming a fiber suspension for the production of long fiber stock and for delivering the suspension to the wire of a machine for manufacturing nonwoven materials. This apparatus is provided with a line for supplying a diluent a stock delivery line, and an approach or distributing system which is connected to the two lines and transforms the pipe-line flow of the mixture of fiber stock and diluent into a current extending across the entire width of the wire.
In the production of long fiber stock there is always the danger of a flocculation of the fibers which is due to their relatively great length and the high dilution of the suspension. Furthermore, the long fibers of such a suspension have an extremely high tendency to become entangled with each other. Therefore, the supply of the fibers to the diluent which normally consists of papermaking waste water cannot be carried out in the usual manner in front of the pump which pumps the mixture of the diluent and the fibers into the headbox.
Although it has already been proposed to pass the fibers into a pipe line between the pump and the following distributing or approach system, this can only reduce but not eliminate the danger of an entanglement and/or flocculation of the fibers.
It is an object of the present invention to provide an apparatus of the type as first mentioned above which is designed so as to permit the use and treatment of relatively long fibers as required for manufacturing long fiber stock without any danger of flocculation or entanglement of the fibers.
vlt is a further object of the invention to provide a method which overcomes the above-outlined difficulties of prior methods.
For attaining these objects, it is the concept of the invention to utilize the turbulence of the diluent in the distributing or approach system by connecting the ends of the stock supply line directly to the distributor.
Since the distributing system transforms the mixture of fiber stock and diluent which is supplied through pipe lines into a current which extends across the entire width of the wire, the inventive manner of adding the fiber stock to the diluent produces in this system not only a thorough mixture of the fibers with the diluent but also a uniform distribution of the fibers which prevents the entanglement of the fibers and also a flocculation thereof since the suspension passes from the distributor directly upon the wire.
If the distributor has certain areas in which the turbulence of the diluent is especially strong, it is advisable to connect the stock supply line to the distributor adjacent to such an area..Such a strong turbulence may be attained, for example, by providing a deflector surface against which the flow of liquid is directed. According to a preferred embodiment of the invention, such, deflectors may simply consist of T-joints which are built into the supply line through which the diluent flows to the distributor.
The final part 'of the distributing or approach system consists of a cross-flow distributor. Aside from preventing an entanglement and flocculation of the fibers, such a distributor has the additional advantage of effecting a simple equalization of the basic weight profile of the non-woven material to be produced.
A very advantageous feature of the invention consists in connecting the cross-flow distributor to a pipe system which consists of two equal branches which are disposed symmetrically to the central plane of the distributor. This pipe system is, in turn, connected to the supply line of the diluent which extends within the central vertical plane of the cross-flow distributor and underneath the latter and consists of vertical or obliquely inclined pipe sections. The stock supply line is preferably likewise divided into at least two branches which are disposed symmetrically to the central plane of the distributor and consist of vertical or obliquely inclined and horizontal pipe sections and lead away from a common pipe which extends underneath the cross-flow distributor within the central vertical plane thereof. By providing a valve in each of these branch lines, it is easily possible by a suitable adjustment of these valves to control the basic weight profile of the non-woven material so as to be uniform.
According to a preferred embodiment of the invention, each of the branches of the stock supply line terminates into one of the two horizontal supply pipes of the cross-flow distributor between the latter and a T- pipe section, and the end portions of the branches are made of smaller diameter than these supply pipes and extend within the longitudinal axis of the latter.
The features and advantages of the present invention will become further apparent from the following detailed description thereof which is to be read with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 shows a diagrammatic section of the apparatus according to the invention which is taken within the vertical plane extending transversely to the wire; while FIG. 2 shows a section which is taken along the line H II of FIG. 1.
These drawings illustrate an approach or distributing system 1 of a machine for producing non-woven long fiber stock. Toward and through this system 1 papermaking waste water is pumped by means of a rotary pump 2 through a line 3, 9, and by means of this system the pipe-line flow of waste water is transferred into a uniform current which extends across the width of a wire ofa machine for the manufacture of non-woven materials by the wet process in which also the fiber suspension is produced.
The final section of the approach or distributing system 1 consists of a cross-flow distributor 4 which forms a part of the head box the remainder of which is not shown. The distributor 4 as seen from above has a rectangular cross section and its longitudinal sides extend across the entire width of the wire. From the bottom of the distributor a diagonal partition 5 extends vertically upwards but it terminates below the liquid level in the distributor and has, for example, one half of the height of the liquid level. As illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2, this diagonal partition 5 is mounted so as to leave a free gap between its opposite lateral ends and the inner wall of the housing of the distributor 4.
Directly adjacent to the bottom of each of the two lateral ends of the cross-flow distributor a horizontally extending inlet pipe socket 6 is provided. As shown in FIG. 2, these inlet pipe sockets 6 are offset relative to each other, as seen in the longitudinal direction of the distributor.
Approximately centrally between each side wall of the distributor housing and the flange 6 on the outer end of each of these equally shaped inlet pipe sockets 6 a pipe section 7 terminates into the latter which extends vertically or at an oblique angle upwards toward the respective inlet pipe socket 6 so as to form a T-joint with the latter. The two pipe sections 7 which are disposed symmetrically to the central plane of the distributor 4 connect the inlet pipe sockets 6 to a pipe 8 which extends substantially within a horizontal plane below and at a relatively small distance from the bottom of the distributor 4. The flanges 8 at the outer ends of this pipe 8 are tightly closed and the pipe sections 7 are connected at a certain distance from these end flanges 8 to the pipe 8 and at a right angle to the latter so as to form T-joints. The pipe sections 7 may, however, also be connected by elbow joints to the pipe 8. A supply line 3, 9 for the waste water terminates into this pipe 8 at the center thereof and it extends vertically upwards from a rotary pump 2 within the central plane of the distributor 4. This supply line 9 may have, for example, a length equal to approximately ten times its diameter. If the delivery capacity of pump 2 is not variable, an adjustable valve (Not shown) should be in serted into line 9 between the pump and the connection of this line to the pipe 8.
The supply line 10 of the stock which contains fibers of a relatively great length also: lies underneath the cross-flow distributor 4 and within the central vertical plane thereof and it also extends vertically or obliquely upwards. This supply line 10 is divided into two symmetrical branches ll each of which extends at first outwardly in a substantially horizontal direction and then via an elbow into a section which extends vertically or obliquely upwards. Into this section a control valve 12 is inserted which preferably cannot be completely closed. The end portion 11 of each of these two branch lines 11 again extends horizontally and centrally into the free end of the respective inlet pipe socket 6 in the manner as shown in FIG. 2. Therefore, the open end of each of these end portions 11 which has a smaller diameter than the inlet pipe socket 6 is located between the T-joint of the pipe section 7 and the point of insertion of this end portion into the inlet pipe socket 6 of the distributor housing. The end portions 11 may, however, also terminate at the outer ends of the pipe sockets 6 or project into the area of the openings of the pipe sections 7.
By feeding the stock into the inlet pipe sockets 6 between their points of connection to these pipe sockets and the T-joints of the pipe sections 7, the fibers will be passed at each side into a turbulent current of papermaking waste water which insures a thorough intermixture of the fibers with the water Since immediately after this intermixture takes place, the suspension passes into the cross-flow distributor 4 in which the larger amount of the suspension current is deflected upwardly by the partition 5 and is thereby further whirled around, the fibers and the waste water will continue to be thoroughly intermixed without the occurrence of any entanglement or flocculation of the flbers. By means of the two central valves 12 it is possible to adjust the fiber content of the two branch currents independently of each other and thus also to influence the basic weight profile in a very simple manner.
It will be seen from the above that each of the elements 6 constitute a substantially horizontal inlet pipe socket, each of the elements 7 and 8 constitutes branch pipes for the diluent, such branch pipes 7 being connected to a respective one of the pipe sockets 6 intermediate the ends of such socket, that the elements 10, 11, and 11' constitute a pipe line for fiber stock having at least two substantially horizontal inlet ends 11 connected substantially to the axial center of the outer ends of said sockets 6. It will also be seen that the ends 11 of the fiber stock branch pipes 11, 11' extend for a certain distance into said pipe socket 6, and that the pipe line 10, l l, 11 for the fiber stock comprises a pipe 10 underneath said distributor 4 and extending upwardly substantially within said central plane and then likewise branching off into two branch pipes l 1, 11' extending symmetrically to said plane at first in opposite substantially horizontal directions underneath said distributor 4, then upwardly, and finally horizontally to said socket 6. The element 12 is a regulating valve which is inserted into each of said fiber stock branches pipes 11, 11. Each of said diluent branch pipes 7, 8 which is connected to one of said pipe sockets forms a T-joint together with said pipe sockets 6.
Although my invention has been illustrated and described with reference to the preferred embodiment thereof, it should be understood that it is in no way limited to the details of such embodiment but is capable of numerous modifications within the scope of the appended claims.
What is claimed is:
l. A method of forming a fiber suspension for producing a long fiber stock and for supplying the suspension in a wide stream to the forming wire of a machine for the manufacture of non-woven materials by the wet process, the method comprising feeding a diluent for the long fiber stock directly to a distributor through a pipe line, feeding the long fiber stock directly to the distributor through another pipe line, the pipe line for the diluent terminating in a distributor socket portion intermediate the ends of the socket and the pipe line for the long fiber stock extending into the axial center of the outer end of the socket, deflecting the flow of the diluent through its pipe line to produce a high turbulence of the diluent at said socket portion, thoroughly intermixing the long fiber stock with the turbulent diluent at said socket portion, and transforming this thorough intermixture within the distributor proper into a current extending across the entire width of the forming wire.
2. An apparatus for forming a fiber suspension for producing a long fiber stock and for supplying the suspension to the wire of a machine for the manufacture of non-woven materials by the wet process, said apparatus comprising a cross-flow distributor for transforming a pipe line flow of fiber stock and of a diluent in a thorough intermixture into a current extending across the entire width of the wire, a pipe line for feeding the diluent to the distributor, a pipe line for feeding the fiber stock directly to the distributor for thoroughly intermixing it in a part thereof with the diluent, said pipe line for said fiber stock terminating into at least one part of said distributor in which said diluent is subjected to high turbulence, flow deflecting means for producing said turbulence of said diluent, said flow deflecting means comprising at least one T-joint in said pipe line for said diluent which is connected to said distributor, said pipe line for said diluent comprising a supply pipe extending to said distributor, and two branch pipes connected to one end of said supply pipe and extending to opposite lateral sides of said distributor, said distributor being provided on each of its opposite lateral sides near its bottom with a substantially horizontal inlet pipe socket, each of said branch pipes for said diluent being connected to and terminating into one of said sockets intermediate its ends, said pipe line for said fiber stock having at least two substantially horizontal inlet ends connected substantially to the axial center of the outer ends of said sockets and having a diameter smaller than said sockets.
3. An apparatus as defined in claim 2, in which said pipe line for said diluent comprises a supply pipe underneath said distributor and extending upwardly substantially within the central vertical plane of said distributor, two equal branch pipes connected to the upper end of said supply pipe and extending at first in opposite substantially horizontal directions from said end underneath said distributor and then upwardly to opposite lateral sides of said distributor.
4. An apparatus as defined in claim 3, in which said ends of said fiber stock branch pipes extend for a certain distance into said sockets.
5. An apparatus as defined in claim 3, in which said pipe line for said fiber stock comprises a pipe underneath said distributor and extending upwardly substantially within said central plane and then likewise branching off into two branch pipes extending symmetrically to said plane at first in opposite substantially horizontal directions underneath said distributor, then upwardly, and finally horizontally to said sockets.
6. An apparatus as defined in claim 5, further comprising a regulating valve inserted into each of said fiber stock branch pipes.