US 3840907 A
A compost toilet comprising at least one grate provided at an excrement collecting compartment for depositing thereon a mat intended to form a bacteria nutritive substratum, a blower located in the collecting compartment for positively circulating air, and air guide means for directing the circulated air against the mat.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1 1 Sundberg 1 Oct. 15, 1974 COMPOST TOILET 3.136.608 6/1964 Lindstrom 4 133 3,522,613 8/1970 7 Botsford 4/131  lnvemorl Hardy M' Smdberg, 3,523,012 8/1970 Pierson 23 2591 Waldhe1mstrasse, 6314 Unterageri, 3,633,220 1/1972 Switzerland 3,683,426 8/1972 3,727,241 4/1973  sept- 7 3,756,784 9 1973 Pittwood 23/2591  Appl. No.: 286,708
Primary Examiner-John W. Huckert Assistant Examiner-Stuart S. Levy  Forelgn Application Pnomy Dam Attorney, Agent, or F irm-Waters, Roditi, Schwartz &
Sept. 9, 1971 Switzerland 13220/71 Nissen  1.1.8. C1 4/133, 4/111, 23/259.l T 51 1111. c1. A47k 11/02, c051 3/04  S B  Field 61 Search 4/9, 10,89, 111, 93, 115, A Compost tollet compflsmaat least one grate P 41/116, 118, 131433, 135 136 141, 142 v1ded at an excrement collectmg compartment for de- 221; 1 10/9; 23/2591; 71/21, 261/122 positing thereon a mat intended to form a bacteria nutritive substratum, a blower located in the collecting  References Cited compartment for positively circulating air, and air UNITED STATES PATENTS 2321c means for d1rectmg the c1rculated air agalnst the 2,520,657 8/1950 Reid 4 133 2,700,775 2/1955 Martin 4 133 6 Claims, 5 a i g F g r s PATENI am 1 5 1974 3 a saw 2 or 2 FIG. 3
L I 11 T COMPOST TOILET BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The present invention relates to the art of sanitation equipment and, more particularly, concerns a new and improved construction of compost toilet.
Such type compost toilets have been found to be useful, for example, in situations where there is not available any sewer system and where for instance it is not desired to work with a soakage or drainage pit owing to the danger of contaminating the underground water. Such compost toilets are therefore extremely suitable for use, for instance, in vacation residences and other temporary or remotely located places.
In a known construction of compost toilet a toilet bowl opens into a relatively large collecting compartment having a markedly inclined floor or bottom. This collecting compartment is penetrated by a number of air channels. Prior to operation of the toilet the floor of the collecting compartment is covered with an earth layer which is extensively penetrated by bacteria. This nutritious earth can be obtained for instance at a sewage purification plant. In any case this bacteria nutritive substratum must be introduced into the collecting compartment and in most cases initially transported over great distances. Hence, prior-art compost toilets cannot be delivered by the manufacturer in an operationally ready state.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION It should he therefore apparent from what has been discussed above that there is a real need in the art for a compost toilet which is not associated with the aforementioned drawbacks and limitations of the prior-art proposals. Thus it is a primary object of the present invention to provide a new and improved construction of compost toilet which effectively and reliably fulfills the existing need in the art.
Another and more specific object of the present invention relates to an improved construction of compost toilet which is not associated with the aforementioned drawbacks and limitations.
Still a further object of the invention is directed at the provision of a new and improved construction of compost toilet which is extremely reliable in operation, relatively simple in construction, economical to manufacture, and can be delivered in an operationally ready condition from the manufacturer to the user.
Now, in order to implement these and still further objects of the invention, which will become more readily apparent as the description proceeds, the inventive compost toilet is manifested by the features that there is provided at least one grate at an excrement collecting compartment, this grate serving for receiving thereon a mat intended to form a bacteria nutritive substratum or floor. Additionally, there are provided a blower at the collecting compartment for positively circulating air, and air guide means for directing the circulated air against the mat.
By virtue of these measures the compost toilet now can be delivered by the manufacturer in a condition ready for use. It is not necessary to introduce any bacteria containing earth into the collecting compartment. By means of the grate, the mat and the positively circulated air, the bacteria nutritive substratum necessary 2 for composting can be grown (cultivated) at the place of use of the toilet.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS The invention will be better understood and objects, other than those set forth above, will become apparent when consideration is given to the following detailed description thereof. Such description makes reference to the annexed drawings wherein:
FIG. I is a longitudinal sectional view of a compost toilet designed according to the teachings of the present invention:
FIG. 2 is a horizontal cross-sectional view of the compost toilet depicted in FIG. 1, taken substantially along the line II--II thereof:
FIG. 3 is another horizontal cross-sectional view of the compost toilet depicted in FIG. 1, taken substantially along the line III-III thereof:
FIG. 4 is yet another horizontal crosssectional view of the compost toilet depicted in FIG. 1, taken substantially along the line IVIV thereof: and
FIG. 5 is a vertical cross-sectional view of the compost tiolet depicted in FIG. 1, taken substantially along the line VV' thereof.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Describing now the drawings, the illustrated exemplary embodiment of compost toilet possesses" for in-- stance a toilet housing 1 formed of a suitable plastic in which there is mounted a toilet bowl 2. This bowl is closed by means of a pivotably mounted cover 3 hinged to the body of the toilet bowl at location 3a. In the raised position ofthe cover 3 it bears against in inclined stop or wall surface 4. Furthermore, within the toilet housing 1, there is located an excrement collecting compartment or chamber 5. Internally of the housing 1 there are also provided air guide walls 6 and 7.
Housing 1 is equipped with an air discharge or outlet opening 8 and an air throughpassage channel 9. In the collecting compartment 5 there is located a support member, preferably in the form of a grate 10 beneath which are located three collecting bowls 11 for the compost. These bowls 11 can be withdrawn from the housing 1 through a front access opening 12.
Now the grate 10 consists of a number of parallel, adjacently arranged angled profile members 10a, the legs 10b of which depend downwardly. As best seen by referring to FIG. 5 the apex or tip preferably of each profile member 10a is thus located at the top. A mat 13 formed of cellulose is supported upon grate 10. This mat 13 can possess a cross-section for instance of the type found in standard babys throwaway diapers. Mat 13 extends over the entire surface of the grate '10.
Furthermore, the mat 13 can be formed of one piece, but it can also consist of a number of adjacently arranged strips. As will be explained more fully hereinafter mat 13 serves as a nutritive substratum or base 40 for the build-up or formation of a bacteria culture.
Now at the air throughpassage 9 there is arranged and impeller or propeller 14 of a blower 30 driven by means of an electric motor 15. Air guides or channels 16, 17 and 18 are formed by the housing 1 and the internally situated guide walls 6, 7, and by the basins or bowls 11 disposed at the floor of the toilet housing 1.. By means of the driven impeller 14 of theblower 30 the air is thus positively circulated within the housing 1 in the direction of the illustrated arrows. The interior of the housing 1 and therefore the excrement collecting compartment 5 is in flow communication with the ambient atmosphere via the opening 8. The positively circulated air flows about the electric motor 15 and thus can be slightly heated. The circulated air flows via the air guide 18 from below against the mat 13.
Now a rotatable shaft 19 of an agitator or stirrer mechanism '20 is situated parallel to the axis of rotation of the impeller 14. The agitator 20 is driven by means of an electric motor 21. The agitator 20, the grate with the mat 1-3 and the collecting bowls 11 are located essentially in parallelism with one another and substantially horizontally.
The toilet illustrated schematically in F IG. 1 together with the cellulose mat 13 is place as such on the market. in order to install the toilet it is only necessary to connect any suitable air withdrawal pipe or conduit with the opening 8 of the housing 1. This air withdrawal conduit can be directed upwardly within a building and for instance conducted past the shaft of a chimney towards the top. The thus installed toilet is now in a condition ready for use. During the entire time when an individual is residing at for instance a vacation home in which such toilet is mounted the electric motor 15 for the blower arrangement 30 can stay continuously switched on. This electric motor 15 only drives the impeller 14 and therefore need only possess a very small output. As a result, air is continuously circulated within the toilet housing 1 in the direction of the arrows. The
air thus flows from below against the mat l3 and partially penetrates therethrough. The agitator or stirrer is located in the position shown in full lines in FIG. 3.
During use of the toilet the cover 3 is flipped open and bears against the impact or stop wall 4. Consequently, a non-illustrated electrical switch is activated which upon removal of the cover from the stop wall 4 then places the drive motor 21 for the agitator or stirrer 20 into operation. Hence, upon opening of the cover member 3 there does not yet occur any switching on of the drive motor 21.
Upon closing of the cover member 3 the previously mentioned electrical switch or contact is again actuated, whereupon the drive motor 21 is placed into operation. The agitator 20 rotates through almost 360 into the position indicated by reference character 20 of FIG. 3 The mat 13 is penetrated by urine, and the faeces or solid wastes repose upon the mat 13'. The imbued mat 13 provides an ideal nutritive substratum or floor for the bacteria culture.
Owing to the revolving impeller 14 air is continuously conducted past this mat 13 which is imbued with urine. This air thus also takes up moisture from the mat 13, so that the air circulating internally of the housing 1 has a greater moisture content than the ambient atmosphere. Owing to the fact that the circulated air is slightly heated by the electric motor 15 which simultaneously functions as a heating element or source, the air further takes up moisture in more intensified manner. lt is also extremely advantageous for the aeration of the bacteria culture that the air be slightly heated. if the air circulated in the housing 1 is brought to approximately C then this constitutes an ideal temperature for the bacteria culture. The saturated aircan continuously flow towards the outside through the outlet or withdrawal opening 8.
If the solid waste has coliected to a greater degree upon the mat 13 then such arrives at the operable region of the agitator or stirrer 20 which then uniformly distributes such solid waste over the surface of the mat 13. If the mat 13 is-then covered by a considerable layer of solid waste then the latter itself constitutes the nutritive substrate for the newly arriving excrement. The mat 13 has thus fulfilled its actual function and is also decomposed in the meantime, so that now the precomposted portion of the nutritive substrate, disposed upon the grate 10, falls through the same into the collecting basins or bowls 11. If the bowls 11 are filled then they can be withdrawn through the access opening 12 and emptied.
In the event that the development of heat by the electric motor 15 is not sufficient for adequately heating the air that circulates in the housing 1 then of course it .would be possible to also provide an additional source of heat for the circulating air.
If, for instance, the vacation home in which the toilet is installed is not intended to be lived in over a longer period of time then the electric motor 15 for the blower 30 is also shut off. The bacteria culture is then no longer positively aerated and does not operate inter.- sively. if the vacation home or otherwise is again occupied the electric motor 15 is immediately switched on so that the bacteria culture upon the grate 10 is again activated. in the event that the bacteria culture has become destroyed owing, for instance, to chemical action, then, a new bacteria culture can be built up by placing a new mat13 upon'the grate l0.
The blower unit or arrangement 30can also function in the other direction of rotation, so that the air will be circulated in the system of FIG. 1 in clockwise direction. The grate 10 can of course also possess a different configuration, and instead of being formed of angled profile members can be formed for instance of upright flat iron members. i
While there is shown and described present preferred embodiments of the'invention, it is to be distinctly understood that the invention is not limited thereto but may be otherwise variously embodied and practiced.
What isclaimed is:
1. A compost toilet comprising, in combination, means defining an excrement collecting compartment, at least one support arranged in said collecting compartment, a mat carried by said support for building up a bacteria nutritive substratum, blower means located in said collecting compartment for positively circulating airtherein, and air guide means for directing the circulated air against said mat, an air withdrawal pipe being in flow communication with said collecting compartment via air channels defined by said air guide means, said pipe being directed upwardly to the ambient atmosphere like a chimney, with a heating source in said air guide means for the circulated air, which source is so arranged that it is free from contact with said mat and therefore also with the excrements.
2. The compost toilet as defined in claim 1, further comprising an electric motor for said blower means, means defining a channel for the circulated air, said electric motor being located in said channel and serving as said heating source for the circulated air.
3. The compost toilet as defined in claim 1, wherein said mat is formed of cellulose.
4. The compost toilet as defined in claim 1, wherein said support comprises a grate.
basin, an actuating arm provided at said agitator shaft for tipping said collecting basin, a toilet bowl within said collecting compartment, said bowl having a floor portion, said collecting basin bearing against said floor portion of the bowl and being tiltable towards and away from said collecting compartment.