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Publication numberUS3863460 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 4, 1975
Filing dateMay 4, 1972
Priority dateMay 5, 1971
Also published asDE2122162A1, DE2122162B2, DE2150693A1, DE2150693B2
Publication numberUS 3863460 A, US 3863460A, US-A-3863460, US3863460 A, US3863460A
InventorsEming Winfried, Kolb Wolfgang, Straile Fritz
Original AssigneeLiquid Gas Anlagen Union
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Device for the storage and transport of liquified gases, liquids and the like, in particular on ships
US 3863460 A
Abstract
The storage assembly comprises a plurality of longitudinally extending containers that are rigidly fixed and independent with respect to each other and are sealed at each end thereof. An expansion vessel is interconnected commonly with all of the containers to receive expansion media from each of the containers. Means are connected commonly to all of the containers for discharging and filling each of the individual containers whereby the assembly is capable of handling a large capacity of liquified gases, liquids and the like.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Straile et al.

Filed: May 4, 1972 Appl. No.: 252,141

Assignee:

Foreign Application Priority Data May 5, 1971 Germany 2122162 Oct. 12, 1971 Germany 2150693 US. Cl 62/54, 114/74 A, 220/85 VS, 62/240 Int. Cl. Fl7c 13/08 Field of Search 62/45, 55, 240; 220/9 LG, 220/85 VS; 114/74 A; 48/190, 196

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 11/1942 Marner 220/85 VS Feb. 4, 1975 2,550,844 5/1951 Meiller et a1. 48/190 2,897,658 4/1959 Beckwith 62/55 2,948,294 8/1960 Smith 62/55 X 2,983,409 5/1961 Henry 62/55 X 3,109,294 11/1963 Messer 62/55 3,145,680 8/1964 Farkas et al. 114/74 3,159,004 12/1964 Keith 62/55 3,313,116 4/1967 Nonnecke et a1 62/55 X 3,392,537 7/1968 Woerner 62/50 3,537,416 ll/l970 Cowles 114/74 A Primary Examiner-Meyer Perlin Assistant ExaminerRonald C. Capossela Attorney, Agent, or FirmMarkva & Smith ABSTRACT 37 Claims, 29 Drawing Figures Pf-JENTEU FEB 41975 SHEET 10F 9 FIG. I

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\TlLllH/Hllll AH HIML DEVICE FOR THE STORAGE AND TRANSPORT OF LIQUIFIED GASES, LIQUIDS AND THE LIKE, IN PARTICULAR ON SHIPS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The invention relates to an assembly for the storage and transport of pressureless or pressurized liquified gases, liquids and the like. In particular, the assembly of this invention may be used on ships such as tankers and the like.

Liquid gases are stored in pressure tanks and in pressureless, so-called atmospheric, tanks. Pressurized tanks may be divided into pressure tanks at ambient temperatures and pressure tanks at temperatures below ambient temperature. The latter are referred to as semi-refrigerated tanks.

Tanks used at low temperatures are subjected to shrinkage forces up on the refrigeration thereof. Generally, the tanks disposed in a ship are subjected to a continuously varying temperature. Under these conditions, the shrinkage and expansion forces set up within the storage unit structure must be dealt with. Such forces are particularly important to counter in the case of large tanks such as are used in the prior art. These prior art tanks require complicated structures which are able to take up or compensate for the longitudinal and transverse variations occurring during normal storage and transportation of liquified gases, liquids and the like.

For economical reasons, progressively larger shipping units are being constructed in accordance with the prior art designs. Consequently, the pressure containers used in larger shipping units are much larger. Numerous difficulties are being experienced when using these larger shipping units. It is desirable to achieve full utilization of the ships capacity. This requires the step of adapting the shape of the pressure containers to the ships hull. These shapes are so complicated that it is hardly possible to satisfactorily cope with either the manufacture of the pressure containers or the stress ratios in the complicated shape of the container walls.

Furthermore, there are difficulties associated with the operation of the large pressure containers. For example, the achievement of gas free conditions which is required on changing the load is extremely difficult due to the large cross sections and the non-determinable flow behavior of the medium within the large container. Consequently, the purging of the large pressure containers takes a considerable amount of time to insure the safety of the operation.

If the large prior art pressure containers are only half filled with the medium being stored, there is an extremely large free surface against which the medium may collide during movement while the ship is at sea. To overcome this problem in these prior art tanks, it is necessary to provide correspondingly massive installed components within the tank so as to avoid impact between the movement of the liquid and the free surface and effectuate the shifting of the distribution of weight. It can be seen that the disadvantages associated with the construction of larger prior art pressure containers also involve additional cost outlay with the requirement for relative large operative and machine outlay.

While the capacities of the prior art pressure containers progressively increase, the operational pressure remains the same. Therefore greater wall thicknesses and reinforcements must be used thereby increasing the weight of the storage units excessively. lt has been found that in order to retain wall thicknesses and weights which are still acceptable, the operational pressure of these containers must no longer be allowed to exceed predetermined values. in this instance, socalled semi-refrigerated transport processes are employed. Semi-refrigerated processes, however, greatly extend the mooring times of the ship. For example. when gas is being taken on board ship, operational conditions are involved which deviate from the corresponding maximum operating conditions of the transport tank.

Prior art containers being made progressively larger also possess a relatively low degree of resilience or elasticity. Consequently, transfer of the dynamic and static forces to the ships hull involves considerable difficulty because the ships hull is resiliently deformed due to the forces acting from the exterior. lt has become necessary to develop various support systems or obtain assistance from a relatively large number of straps in an attempt to solve the problems associated with such larger storage containers.

In addition to the difficulties associated with the operating of these prior art containers, there are additional difficulties associated with the manufacture and subsequent transportation of such tanks. Uniform machining can no longer be achieved with such large containers. There are extremely strict requirements prescribed by the classification of materials and welding seams. Additionally, the transportation of such containers over relatively large distances involves considerable difficulty. It has been found that only a very few shipyards are able to build such large containers simultaneously with the building of the ship.

PURPOSE OF THE INVENTION The primary object of this invention is to provide a storage and transport assembly used for liquified gas, liquids and the like whereby large volumes of the material may be stored in pressure tanks.

It is another object of the invention to provide a storage assembly using a container construction wherein pressure may be used at the same time that the tanks are subjected to low temperatures.

It is another object of this invention to provide a storage assembly comprising containers and the like which satisfy the constructional and operational-technical requirements in a very simple manner and by using simple manufacturing techniques.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTlON A storage assembly as disclosed herein comprises a plurality of longitudinally extending containers that are rigidly fixed and independent with respect to each other. Each end of the containers is sealed. Each of the containers is connected to a common expansion vessel and to a common discharge and filling mechanism whereby the assembly is capable of handling a large capacity of liquified gases, liquids and the like to function in the same manner as the extremely large prior art containers. The widest possible range of hollow body sheets may be used to form the longitudinally extending containers. Tubular containers are advantageously employed for the storage and transport assembly made in accordance with this invention. The tubular containers may have a round or polygonal cross-section such as hexagonal tubes.

The tube ends are advantageously sealed by means of cup-shaped bottoms which are known as kloppers. The individual containers are rigidly connected together in one embodiment by means of suitable welding connections.

A particular feature of this invention is directed to the use of tubular containers located only in the shell or jacket zone of the storage unit or assembly. Such a configuration provides free storage chambers within the storage unit. The free storage chambers are to be sealed at the end faces by means of appropriate wall elements. Thus it is not absolutely necessary that the entire space available in the storage unit be filled by ju-xtaposed, tubular containers.

It is also possible to provide, within an outer zone, cavities having different sizes which, in the same manner as the tubular containers, are to be connected to the common expansion vessel and the discharge and filling mechanism. The marginal zones of such a storage unit should, as seen in cross-section, have at least as many rows of juxtaposed tubular containers as will insure that there are at least two walls between the inner chamber and the outer side of the storage unit. The size of the free inner chambers depends upon the medium to be transported and the condition thereof.

A further feature of this invention provides for the container tubes to be secured together by vertically extending hollow bodies which are directly joined to the container tubes to constitute a unitized structure. The hollow bodies provide housing for the pump and gas connections to the container tubes. In one embodiment, the hollow bodies constitute a chamber which extends transversely of the entire tube assembly.

Another feature of the invention is directed to the use of a shell which surrounds one or more tube assemblies. For example a sheath consisting of a sheet metal skin or the like may be placed around the assembly to serve as a catching trough. Such a catching trough has the advantage that the surface at the outer side of the stack of tubes is substantially diminished in the appropriate zone and, due to the spacing of the shell trough relative to the stack of tubes, the influence of fire from the exterior of the unit is diminished.

The design of the chambers may be effected in various ways. Plates may be employed for the construction of the chamber walls. The plates include apertures or passage formed therein and the container tubes are welded in place to be registered with the openings in the plates. With this arrangement, the opposite walls of the chambers are connected by anchoring stays or the like. Consequently, the chamber may be able to withstand the static loading in the longitudinal direction. The chamber walls may also be designed directly as double walls. The tubes used to form the longitudinally extending containers may be spirally welded tubes.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS Other objects of this invention will appear in the following description and appended claims, reference being made to the accompanying drawings forming a part of the specification wherein like reference characters designate corresponding parts in the several views.

FIG. 1 is a side elevational view of a storage unit made in accordance with this invention,

FIG. 2 is an elevational view taken along line IIII of FIG. 1,

FIG. 3 is an elevational view taken along line III-III of FIG. 1,

FIG. 4 is a side elevational view of another embodiment ofa storage unit made in accordance with this invention,

FIG. 5 is an elevational view taken along line VV of FIG. 4,

FIG. 6 is an elevational view taken along line VI-VI of FIG. 4,

FIG. 7 is a fragmentary longitudinal sectional view of a tanker incorporating a storage unit made in accordance with this invention,

FIG. 8 is a top plan view of the tanker shown in FIG.

FIG. 9 is a fragmentary sectional view showing a detail of the mounting of the storage unit made in accordance with this invention on the bottom of a ship,

FIG. 10 is a diagrammatical sectional view of a further embodiment of a storage unit on board a ship,

FIG. 11 is a diagrammatic sectional view of another embodiment of a storage unit mounted in a ship,

FIGS. 12 and 13 are partial sectional views taken along line XIIXII of FIG. 11 showing non-stressed and stress conditions, respectively,

FIGS. 14 through 16 are diagrammatic crosssectional views through a ships hull showing various arrangements of tubular cells with respect to each other,

FIG. 17 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view showing a storage unit installed in a tanker,

FIG. 18 is a plan view of the subject matter shown in FIG. 17,

FIG. 19 is a side elevational view of an assembly of tubular cells including vertical connecting tubes,

FIG. 20 is an elevational view taken along the line XXXX of FIG. 19,

FIGS. 21 through 24 are detailed sectional views showing welded connections between tubular cells with the wallsof transversely extending chambers,

FIG. 25 is a fragmentary end elevational view showing the construction of a chamber wall,

FIG. 26 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view taken longitudinally through the arrangement of FIG. 25,

FIG. 27 is a fragmentary, cross-sectional view showing detail of a stay anchored between chamber walls,

FIG. 28 is a fragmentary sectional view showing a detail of another stay anchored between chamber walls, and

FIG. 29 is a diagrammatic prospective view of a means for controlling stress in the tubular cells of a storage unit made in accordance with this invention.

DESCRIPTION OF SPECIFIC EMBODIMENTS More specifically, referring to FIGS. 1 to 3, a storage unit, generally designated 1, includes a plurality of Iongitudinally extending tubular containers 2. In this embodiment, the containers 2 are circular in cross-section and are stacked in fluid-tight arrangement to form an assembly. Curved end faces 3 are used to seal the ends of the containers 2 which are rigidly connected together by any suitable means such as welding.

The stack of containers 2 constitutes, in its entirety, a statically determined, rigid structural unit. Any means of connecting the tubular containers may be used so long as there is no possibility of displacemeh't of containers 2 with respect to each other.

The tubes 2 are connected along their ends thereof by vertical pipes or lines 4. The pipes 4 are located on one side of the stack of tubes 2 and are open to vent into a common expansion vessel 5. The expansion vessel 5 should be located sufficiently high above the stack of tubes 2 so that it is able to receive the gases which evolve from within the unit 1. This is particularly true when liquid gases are being stored. Thus, as is evident in the drawings, the expansion vessel 5 is interconnected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all the containers 2 to receive expansion media from each of the containers 2.

The gas collector or expansion vessel 5 may be provided which appropriate safety devices which protect the storage unit 1 against positive or negative pressure. Furthermore, the compressor or the like may be connected to the expansion vessel 5 to suck in or press in gases by way of vessel 5 during the various filling and discharging procedures.

A vertically extending pipe or tube 6 connects the containers 2 together on the other side of the assembly 1. The containers 2 located in each horizontal row are interconnected-by a collecting pipe or line 7 which is connected or opens into the vertical tube or pipe 6.

A pump 8 and any necessary metering and monitoring devices are mounted in the vertical pipe 6. A motor 9 located at the upper end of pipe 6 drives pump 8 which may be a Deepwell pump. The vertically extending pipe 6 is arranged to be somewhat deeper than the lowermost edge of the lower tubular 2 to effectuate improved emptying of the storage unit I. All of the tubular containers 2 may be emptied uniformly and independently of each other by way of the pumping device. As shown in the drawings, the pump 8 constitutes means providing a single pumping station which is connected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all the containers 2 for discharging and filling the containers 2.

Referring to FIGS. 4 through 6, a storage unit 10 corresponds substantially to the design of the storage unit 1 shown in FIGS. 1 to 3. In this embodiment, however, an expansion vessel is located on the same end of the containers 2 as the vertical pipe 6 which includes the discharge pump 8. This embodiment is usable where the ship construction does not permit the attachment of expansion line 4 and expansion vessel 5 on the side of the tube containers 2 opposite the vertical pipe 6. Suction lines 7 extend horizontally into the vertical pump 6 and the vertical expansion lines 4 are interconnected to each container 2 by way of lines 11.

Venting pipes 12 are disposed in each of the individual tubular containers 2 and extend from the connecting pipe 11 to the other end of each container 2. Therefore, the venting pipes 12 are interconnected to the vertical collector pipes 4 and the expansion vessel 5.

In FIGS. 7 and 8, storage units 10 consisting of plurality of tubular containers 2 are shown installed in a tanker. Storage units 10 are exposed in the hold 13 of the ship's hull 14 which has a double bottom 15. The storage units 10 extend along the longitudinal axis of the ship. Depending on the length of the ship, it will be possible to provide more than two of the storage units 10 which are shown in these drawings. Storage units 10 may be subdivided so that the trim of the ship may be improved.

A gas plant or valve station 16 is located on the deck of the ship and is interconnected to all of the storage units 10. With this arrangement, a different product may be transported simultaneously in each of the plurality of the storage units 10. Depending upon temperature and operating conditions, the individual storage units 10 may be connected in any manner such as one below the other.

Storage units 10 are mounted in the ships hull so that the dynamic forces set up therein are transmitted directly into the ships hull. That is, the forces due to the weight of the units may be transmitted by way of a corresponding bearing construction from the storage units 10 to the ships hull l4. Longitudinal extending beams or planks 17 or the like may be appropriately engaged in the interstices formed between the tubular containers 2. The shape of the carrier beams or plank 17 is selected so that the uniform bearing surfaces are reliably maintained despite the varying shrinkage of the individual containers 2. The free spaces between the tubular containers may be filled by cooling coils or the like (not shown). A detail of the cross section of the beam I7 and the bottom two rows of containers 2 and a storage unit 10 is shown in FIG. 9.

The embodiment of a storage unit 18 shown in FIG. 10 includes a plurality of polygonal tubular containers 2a which are hexagonal tubes. The hexagonal tubes 2a till the hold 13 of the ships hull 14. This construction provides a honeycomblike storage unit which may fill the entire hold 13 of the ships hull 14.

The embodiment shown in FIG. 11 is a pressureless, low-temperature transport-storage unit. Again tubular containers 2a have a hexagonal cross-section and are arranged in a peripheral zone so that one or more free chambers 19a and 19b are formed. Chambers 19a and 1% may also serve as storage space for the liquids. The individual profiled tubes 2a are so assembled that there are always two walls between the inner and outer sides of the storage unit 18. The individual segments may be prefabricated and are merely assembled in the ships hull itself in relatively large groups.

The hexagonally shaped tubular containers 2a are welded together in honey-comb-like manner so that shrinkage forces within a storage unit of this kind may be taken out. Expediently, the hexagonal tubes 2a are sealed, alternatingly on the inner side 20 or on the outer side 21, by single-walled or double-walled laminar elements. Due to this arrangement, the entire wall is able to take up the shrinkage forces caused by cooling, in consequence of the fact that the individual hexagonal tubes 2a fold-together on the opposite, nonwelded cross-section 22, to correspond to overall shrinkage. All pipe connections and the like extending to the exterior may be introduced from above through one of the hexagonal tubes 2a.

The embodiments shown in FIGS. 14 through 16 are illustrative of different arrangements of the cellular tubes 2 which may be used depending on the ratio of ships height to the ships width. In the embodiment of FIG. 14, the tubes 14 are disposed directly one above the other as well as being aligned horizontally. The offset arrangement shown in FIG. 15 shows the tubes to be aligned directly side-by-side horizontally and offset vertically. In FIG. 16, the tubes 2 are arranged directly one above the other in a vertical direction and offset with respect to each other in a transverse direction. There is a smaller degree of free space in the embodiments shown in FIGS. 15 and 16 than in the embodiment of FIG. 14. The offset arrangement of FIG. 15 is more advantageous where there is a wide and correspondingly low ship whereas the aligned arrangement of FIG. 16 is preferred in the case of high and narrow ships.

Various parameters are used to select the size of the tube diameter and include reference to obtaining a minimum cellular tank weight or free outer space with a corresponding maximum relative to the transport volume and filling level. The transport volume and filling level is the ratio of the ships free cross-section to the cellular tank cross-section.

In FIGS. 17 and 18, vertically extending chambers 24 and 24a are used to rigidly and firmly connect the individual tubes 2 together. It is also possible to rigidly connect tubes 2 with individual tubes 25 which extend through the containers 2 as shown in FIGS. 19 and 20. In this way, the stack of tubes 2 or the cellular tank constitutes a uniform body wherein axial forces may be taken up in an entirely satisfactory manner. The group of vertical tubes 25 or the chambers 24 and 24a provides a column-like structure serving to transfer the weight of the entire stack of tubes to the ships hull 14. In this manner, each cellular tank 10 need only be supported at the chambers 24 by the bearing members 26 attached to the bottom of the ship. The chambers 24 or the vertical tubes 25 may serve the same functions as the vertical pipe 6 or the expansion vessels used in the earlier embodiments. Pump 8 driven by motor 9 may be used for discharging and filling the chamber 24 on one hand and on the other hand the chambers 24a may be used as expansion vessels for the liquid gas and the like. The necessary metering and monitoring arrangements may also be provided in the appropriate chambers.

The chambers 24 and 24a are advantageously arranged at an intermediate location between the ends of the tubes 2. That is, they are at a position laterally displaced from the ends of the containers 2. With this arrangement, the chambers 24 and 24a are connected together by the intermediate portions of tubes 2. Communication is then established between chambers 24 and 24a. The exposed portions of the tubes 2 may readily be welded in at the externally located sides of the chamber walls. The position of the chambers 24 and 24a between the ends of the tubes 2 has the advantage that the assembly may be satisfactorily adapted to the configuration of the ships walls by means of tube ends which are free to a varying degree.

The chamber walls consist advantageously of individual plates 27 welded as flanges to the individual tubes 2. This construction is illustrated in the drawings of FIGS. 21 through 24. With this arrangement, the tubes 2 may be connected at their sides facing the chamber walls with pipe members 2, 26, 2f, 2g and 2h. Members 2f and 2h may be provided directly with flange elements 2i and 2j, respectively. Plates 27 which form the chamber wall are welded directly to the flange elements 2e, 2f, 2g and 2h. The wall of chamber 24 may also be designed as a double wall as shown in FIGS. 22 and 24. This construction makes it possible for testing the weld seam with reference to the strength and fluid tightness. The wall 28a may be provided with a pressure testing connection 29. Pressure testing may also be effected by vacuum means.

The opposite walls of the chamber 24 are connected and spaced by connecting elements 30 designed as traction or tension elements. With this arrangement, the connecting elements 30 receive the static and dynamic tension and compression forces acting on the chamber walls 27. Anchoring stays 31 surrounded by spacer sleeves 32 as shown in FIG. 28 may constitute the connecting elements 30. However, it is also possible to provide a welded construction wherein connecting tubes 33 are fixedly welded to the chamber wall 27 as shown in FIG. 27. The wall of the chamber 24 may, for example, be assembled from hexagonal plates 34 appropriately welded together at the contact faces as shown in FIG. 25.

The cellular storage tank unit 10 is subjected to extremely high stressing if it is necessary to be cooled to extremely low temperature for the purpose of receiving gas. It is not economically feasible to obtain entirely clear flow conditions in conventional large capacity tanks so that non-uniform cooling can take place.

Due to the arrangement of a spray 35 as shown in FIG. 29, and due to the rotation-symmetrical shapes of the individual tubes 2 and the non-sensitivity relative to thermal stressing, a further substantial advantage is achieved in the storage unit construction of the present invention. The spray system 35 includes a nozzle 36 which is disposed within the tubes 2. Liquid gas used for cooling the storage unit may be supplied to the nozzles 36 by a feed pipe 37. The feed pipe 37 is disposed within the vertical tubes or pipes 25 or the chamber 24. The nozzles 36 extend in such a manner that the emerging jets of cooling gas impinge peripherally on the inner wall of the tubes 2 with maximum uniformity. The cooling gas is able to escape upwardly for re-liquification at the other vertical tubes as shown in FIG. 29.

ADVANTAGES OF THE INVENTION By dividing up the storage space available into a smaller, individual transport or storage chamber adapted to handle liquid or gas medium under predetermined operational conditions, many advantages are obtained particularly for the transportation of liquified gases, liquids, and the like on board ships. Thinner wall thicknesses may be used to construct the individual and independently operating containers. This results in lower weights and a higher degree of resiliency with respect to the assembly itself. Stressing conditions are to be taken into account separately for each individual smaller container and are therefore simply determined. It is possible to effect tests for fluid-tightness and strength in a simpler manner. The assembly of the individual containers may be made either at the shipyard or directly in the ship itself. Therefore handling and transportation is greatly simplified with the assembly being placed on board ship with a smaller economic outlayf Pressureless containers may be made quicly and simply. At the same time, a double wall construction is provided which offers a considerably fair amount of protection in the event of a collision of the ship than there would be in conjunction with a large capacity container. Known prior art pressureless containers require complicated isolating structures to avoid varying material stressing due to considerable temperature differences occurring therein. On the other hand, the use of small individual components which are independently fixed with respect to each other eliminates large problems associated with varying material stressing due to considerable temperature differences.

Substantial advantages are also achieved from a standpoint of operating technique. The flow behavior of liquified gases, liquids and the like is defined and controllable in the smaller component containers. It is very simple to render the total assembly gas free since each individual container is being separately treated and is easier to purge than the larger prior art pressureless tanks. There are not restrictions with respect to the application of operational pressures in an assembly made in accordance with this invention. The same fact also applied to the stressing due to low temperatures. It has been found that partially filled assemblies made in accordance with this invention are easier to transport than partially filled prior art pressureless containers.

It is possible to optimize the use of the individual tube diameters in an assembly made in accordance with this invention. Thus it becomes possible to achieve the accommodation of the same transport volume which may be effectuated when using a large container requiring the same amount of space. Due to the use of hexagonal tubes and other similar profiles, the transport volume is actually greatly improved and may be as much as percent larger than prior art larger container storage devices. 4

The problem of force-transmission into the ships hull may be solved in a very simple manner by using the storage unit of this invention. Cooling devices may be provided between the tubular containers of the storage unit. This is possible particularly in the case of tubes having circular cross-sections. The tubular storage units may bear expediently on longitudinally extending beams or planks located in the bottom of the ships hull. In this way, the forces are transmitted directly to the ships hull over the entire length of the storage unit. Furthermore, there is obtained a large support surface which is not available with the known large capacity prior art containers. Even with the most violent movement of the ships hull, a steady and firm mounting is achieved for the storage unit made in accordance with this invention.

Movement of the storage unit in the direction of the central axis may be compensated for by employing honeycomb-shaped bottoms.

The design of the storage unit according to the invention is especially suitable for use on boats intended for liquified gases and the like. When profiled tubes are used, the unit may be considered to constitute a double walled tank. lf the components are employed for the construction of land tanks, there are then obtained highly resilient tanks which may be considered to be of double-walled design. These tanks afford an exceptionally high degree of safety against earthquakes and other mechanical damage.

A substantial source of stressing of the storage units for liquids, liquid gas and the like results from the axial accelerations to which the component parts of a ship are subjected upon the movement on the sea. Such stresses are also due to possible mishap or collision. The hollow bodies used in one embodiment of the invention provide a mechanism for taking up these axial forces. At the same time, the hollow bodies provide functional necessities with respect to the operation of the cellular tank. Additionally, hollow bodies may become the bearer and mounting elements of the entire tube assembly. In particular, these conditions are promoted by the hollow chambers provided in the stack of tubes in extending in the transverse direction relative to the stack of tubes. The hollow bodies constitute the static skeleton for the stack of tubes. The construction is natural to provide support for the elements on the bottom of the ships hull. Not only is the strength of the stack of tubes improved in its entirety but an advantageous transfer of the weight of the stack of tubes to the ships bottom is also achieved. In this way, the construction of the storage assembly counters any transmission of forces occurring between the flexing of the ship and the transfer of the load from the ship to the stack of tubes.

The construction of the hollow body chambers enables the precise calculation for the mounting of the assembly on two bearings or support arrangements with respect to the loading forces. In the case of relatively large and relatively long ships, it is possible to provide a large number of supports or bearing arrangements which may be necessary because of the corresponding flexing movements of the ships hull.

The use ofa plurality oflongitudinally extending containers to make up an assembly in accordance with this invention enables the assembly to be easily adapted to various shaped ships. That is, the aligned arrangements of the tubes in the assembly improves space utilization. Oscillations or vibrations are set up within the ship due to the operation of its engines. The individual tubes of a cellular tank also tend to oscillate due to their symmetry. This is especially true in connection with dynamic stressing. The oscillation behavior of the individual tubes may be so influenced that actual frequencies of the tubes may be effectuated that are actually safe from the exciter frequency. That is, by filling the interstices between the individual tubes with a filler compound such as foamed material, the oscillation behavior of the individual tubes may set up actual frequencies of the tubes which are adequately safe from the exciter frequency. Furthermore, the filling of the interstices with a filler compound has the result of protecting the surface of the tube containers from fire hazard.

The filler substance operates simultaneously against corrosion. Furthermore, any friction which may be set up in the case of badly assembled tubes is avoided. The filling of the free spaces between the tubes has also the further advantage that, in the event of small leakages, the passage of heat through the insulation means is sufficient to vaporize small quantities of escaping liquid gases so that they may be discharged in a controlled manner.

The chambers holding the tubes of the stack together may project entirely or partially above the ships deck and be sealed at the upper side by some type of a cover. In this way, excellent accessibility of the cellular assembly is achieved and an optimum possibility for the arrangement of pipelines, pumps, etc. which need to be connected into the system.

The hollow chambers may be sub-divided by at least one transverse wall. In this way, it becomes possible to provide varying liquid levels in the divided-off compartments of the cellular tank thereby enabling a trimming of the ship. In the case of wide ships, it is expedient to provide two independent cellular tank units in a side-by-side arrangement to achieve the desired trim- While the device for the storage and transport of liquified gases, liquids and the like, in particular, on ships, has been shown and described in detail, it is obvious that this invention is not to be considered as being limited to the exact form disclosed, and that changes in detail and construction may be made within the scope of the invention, without departing from the spirit thereof.

Having thus set forth and disclosed the nature of this invention, what is claimed is:

l. A storage assembly comprising:

a. a plurality of longitudinally extending containers,

b. the said containers being rigidly fixed and independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

c. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all the containers to receive expansion media from each of the containers, and

d. means providing a single pumping station which is connected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all of the containers for discharging and filling each of the containers whereby the assembly is capable of handling a large capacity of liquified gases, liquids and the like,

c. said discharge and filling means including a vertically extending pipe and horizontally extending collector pipe interconnected to each of the containers so that the vertically extending pipe is in common communication with all of the containers,

f. the bottom of said vertically extending pipe being disposed at a level lower than the undermost edge of the container located at the bottom of the as sembly.

2. A storage assembly comprising:

a. a plurality of longitudinally extending tubular containers,

b. said containers being rigidly fixed and independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

c. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all the containers to receive expansion media from each of the containers, and

d. means providing a single pumping station which is connected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all of the containers for discharging and filling each of the containers whereby the assembly is capable of handling a large capacity of liquified gases, liquids and the like,

e. said discharging and filling means including a vertically extending hollow body configuration constituting a chamber that extends transversely of the plurality of containers,

f. said discharging and filling chamber being subdivided by at least one longitudinal wall into liquidtight and gas-tight compartments.

3. A storage assembly comprising:

a. a plurality of longitudinally extending tubular containers,

b. said containers being rigidly fixed and independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

c. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all the containers to receive expansion media from each of the containers, and

d. means providing a single pumping station which is connected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all of the containers for discharging and filling each of the containers whereby the assembly is capable of handling a large capacity of liquified gases, liquids and the like,

c. said discharging and filling means including a vertically extending hollow body configuration constituting a chamber that extends transversely of the plurality of containers,

f. the said discharging and filling chamber including walls consisting of plate means having apertures in which the tubular containers are directly welded.

4. A storage assembly comprising:

a. a plurality of longitudinally extending tubular containers,

b. said containers being rigidly fixed and independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

c. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all the containers, to receive expansion media from each of the containers, and

d. means providing a single pumping station which is connected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all of the containers for discharging and filling each of the containers whereby the assembly is capable of handling a large capacity of liquified gases, liquids and the like,

e. said discharging and filling means including a vertically extending hollow body configuration constituting a chamber that extends transversely of the plurality of containers,

f. said hollow body configuration including flange tube pieces fixedly attached to the containers for connecting the containers into the discharging and filling chamber.

5. A storage assembly comprising:

a. a plurality of longitudinally extending tubular containers,

b. said containers being rigidly fixed and independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

c. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all the containers to receive expansion media from each of the containers, and

d. means providing a single pumping station which is connected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all of the containers for discharging and filling each of the containers whereby the assembly is capable of handling a large capacity of liquified gases, liquids and the like,

e. said discharging and filling means including a vertically extending hollow body configuration constituting a chamber that extends transversely of the plurality of containers,

f. said vertically extending hollow body configuration including oppositely disposed walls vertically extending transversely of all the containers,

g. said walls being connected together by tension elements.

6. An assembly as defined in claim 5 wherein said tension elements include anchoring stays and spacer sleeves.

7. A storage assembly comprising:

a. a plurality of longitudinally extending tubular con-- tainers,

b. said containers being rigidly fixed and independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

c. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all the containers to receive expansion media from each of the containers, and

d. means providing a single pumping station which is connected commonly and directly in parallel connecton to each of all of the containers for discharging and filling each of the containers whereby the assembly is capable of handling a large capacity of liquified gases, liquids and the like,

e. said discharging and filling means including a vertically extending hollow body configuration constituting a chamber that extends transversely of the plurality of containers,

f. said chamber including a double wall configuration.

8. A storage assembly comprising:

a. a plurality of longitudinally extending tubular containers,

b. said containers being rigidly fixed and independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

c. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all the containers to receive expansion media from each of the containers, and

d. means providing a single pumping station which is connected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all of the containers for discharging and filling each of the containers whereby the assembly is capable of handling a large capacity of liquified gases, liquids and the like,

e. said discharging and filling means including a vertically extending hollow body configuration constituting a chamber that extends transversely of the plurality of containers,

f. said hollow body configuration including vertically disposed tubes which extend through the tubular containers and transversely extending hollow crossbeams which connect the vertically disposed tubes above and below the rigidly fixed plurality of containers.

9. A storage assembly comprising:

. a plurality of longitudinally extending tubular containers,

b. said containers being rigidly fixed and independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

c. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all the containers to receive expansion media from each of the containers, and

d. means providing a single pumping station which is connected commonly and directly in parallel con-' f. said hollow body configuration including means to support the weight of the assembly disposed on the bottom of a ship, and

g. at least two bearing members being located at the bottom of said hollow body.

10. A storage assembly for transporting pressureless liquids or liquids under pressure such as liquified gases within vessels such as ships, tankers and the like, comprising: I

a. a plurality of longitudinally extending containers,

b. said containers being independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

0. transversely extending chambers directly and rigidly interconnecting said containers to form a transportable rigid structural unit,

. said chambers including a vertically extending pipe and horizontally extending collector pipes interconnected to each of the containers so that the vertically extending pipe is in common communication with all of the containers,

e. the bottom of said vertically extending pipe being disposed at a level lower than the undermost edge of the container located at the bottom of the assembly,

f. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly with all the containers in said unit, and

g. means for discharging and filling each of the containers in said unit.

11. A storage assembly comprising:

a. a plurality of horizontally disposed longitudinally extending containers that are substantially parallel with respect to each other,

b. said containers being rigidly fixed and independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

c. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all. the containers to receive expansion media from each of the containers,

d. a compressor coupled to the expansion vessel,

e. a single pumping station, and

f. means connected to each of all the containers commonly and directly in parallel connection to the pumping station for discharging and filling each of the containers whereby the assembly is capable of handling a large capacity of liquified gases, liquids and the like,

g. said discharging and filling means including a plurality of connecting lines wherein one of said lines connects each containers directly to the pumping station.

12. A storage assembly for transporting pressureless liquids or liquids under pressure such as liquified gases within vessels such as ships, tankers and the like, comprising:

a. a plurality of horizontally disposed longitudinally extending tubular containers that are rigidly fixed with respect to each other,

b. said containers being independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

c. transversely extending chambers directly and rigidly interconnecting said containers to form a transportable rigid structural unit,

d. cooling coils disposed between the tubular containers,

e. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly with all the containers in said unit, and

f. means for discharging and filling each of the containers in said unit.

13. A storage assembly for transporting pressureless liquids or liquids under pressure such as liquified gases within vessels such as ships, tankers and the like, comprising:

a. a plurality of horizontally disposed longitudinally extending tubular containers having interstices formed therebetween,

b. a filler compound such as insulating foam material disposed within the interstices,

c. said containers being independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

d. transversely extending chambers directly and rigidly interconnecting said containers to form a transportable rigid structural unit,

e. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly with all the containers in said unit, and

f. means for discharging and filling each of the containers in said unit.

14. A storage assembly for transporting pressureless liquids or liquids under pressure such as liquified gases within vessels such as ships, tankers and the like, comprising:

a. a plurality of horizontally disposed longitudinally extending containers,

b. said containers being independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

0. transversely extending chambers directly and rigidly interconnecting said containers to form a transportable rigid structural unit,

d. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly with all the containers in said unit,

e. means for discharging and filling each of the containers in said unit, and

f. a spray system disposed within the containers for supplying liquid gas to cool the containers before use thereof.

15. A storage assembly for transporting pressureless liquids or liquids under pressure such as liquified gases within vessels such as ships, tankers and the like, comprising:

a. a plurality of horizontally disposed longitudinally extending containers,

b. said containers being independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

c. transversely extending chambers directly and rigidly interconnecting said containers to form a transportable rigid structural unit,

d. said chambers including a vertically extending chamber having walls consisting of plate means with apertures in which the containers are directly welded,

e. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly with all the containers in said unit,

f. means for discharging and filling each of the containers in said unit.

16. A storage assembly for transporting pressureless liquids or liquids under pressure such as liquified gases within vessels such as ships, tankers and the like, comprising:

a. a plurality of horizontally disposed longitudinally extending containers,

b. said containers being independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

c. transversely extending chambers directly and rigidly interconnecting said containers to form a transportable rigid structural unit,

d. said chambers including flanged tube pieces fixedly attached to the containers for connecting the containers into said chambers,

e. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly with all the containers in said unit, and

f. means for discharging and filling each of the containers in said unit.

17. A storage assembly for transporting pressureless liquids or liquids under pressure such as iiquified gases within vessels such as ships, tankers and the like, comprising:

a. a plurality of horizontally disposed longitudinally extending containers,

b. said containers being independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof, c. transversely extending chambers directly and rigidly interconnecting said containers to form a transportable rigid structural unit,

d. said chambers including vertically extending chambers having oppositely disposed walls vertically extending transversely of all the containers,

e. said walls being connected together by tension elements,

f. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly with all the containers in said unit, and

g. means for discharging and filling each of the containers in said unit.

18. An assembly as defined in claim 17 wherein said tension elements include anchoring stays and spacer sleeves.

19. A storage assembly for transporting pressureless liquids or liquids under pressure such as liquified gases within vessels such as ships, tankers and the like, comprising:

a. a plurality of horizontally disposed longitudinally extending tubular containers,

b. said containers being independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof, c. transversely extending chambers directly and rigidly interconnecting said containers to form a transportable rigid structural unit,

d. said chambers including vertically disposed tubes which extend through the tubular containers and transversely extending hollow cross beams which connect the vertically disposed tubes above and below the rigidly fixed plurality of containers,

e. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly with all the containers in said unit, and

f. means for discharging and filling each of the containers in said unit.

20. A storage assembly comprising:

a. a plurality of horizontally disposed longitudinally extending containers that are substantially parallel with respect to each other,

b. said containers being rigidly fixed and independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof,

c. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly and directly in parallel connection to each of all the containers to receive expansion media from each of the containers,

d. a single pumping station, and

e. means connected to each of all the containers commonly and directly in parallel connection to the pumping station for discharging and filling each of the containers whereby the assembly is capable of handling a large capacity of liquified gases, liquids and the like,

f. said discharging and filling means including a plurality of connecting lines wherein one of said lines connects each container directly to the pumping station and is effective to provide a substantially complete evacuation of each container.

21. An assembly as defined in claim 20 wherein the expansion vessel is located at one end of the assembly and the discharging and filling means is disposed at the other end of the assembly.

22. An assembly as defined in claim 20 wherein the expansion vessel and the discharging and filling means are disposed at the same side of the assembly.

23. An assembly as defined in claim 20 wherein the expansion vessel includes vertically extending hollow body configuration that is joined directly to the containers and the discharging and filling means include vertically extending hollow body configuration that is joined directly to the containers at a location laterally displaced from the expansion vessel.

24. An assembly as defined in claim 20 wherein rows of containers are sealed longitudinally with respect to each other in a peripheral configuration to form free storage chambers therewithin,

said free storage chambers being sealed at the end face and having at least two walls of the containers being disposed between the inner and outer sides of the storage assembly.

25. An assembly as defined in claim 20 wherein said containers have a tubular configuration, and

the discharging and filling means includes a vertically extending hollow body configuration constituting a chamber that extends transversely of the plurality of containers.

26. An assembly as defined in claim wherein said discharging and filling chamber is disposed at a location intermediate the ends of the tube assem- 27 I); storage vessel for transporting pressureless liquids or liquids under pressure such as liquified gases within vessels such as ships, tankers and the like, comprising:

a. a plurality of horizontally disposed longitudinally extending containers,

b. said containers being independent with respect to each other and being sealed at each end thereof, c. transversely extending chambers directly and rigidly interconnecting said chambers to form a transportable rigid structural unit,

d. an expansion vessel interconnected commonly with all the containers in said unit, and

e. means for discharging and filling each of the containers in said unit,

f. said discharging and filling means including a plurality of connecting lines wherein one of said lines connects each container directly to the pumping station and is effective to provide a substantially complete evacuation of each container.

28. An assembly as defined in claim 27 wherein the bottom of the structural unit has an arrangement of containers with respect to each other adapted so that the assembly may bear on longitudinally extending members disposed on the bottom of the hold of a ship.

29. An assembly as defined in claim 27 wherein a shell configuration is disposed around the plurality of containers to serve as a catching trough.

30. An assembly as defined in claim 27 wherein the free portions of the longitudinally extending containers are of varying length to correspond to the shape of a ship in which the assembly is to be disposed.

31. An assembly as defined in claim 27 wherein the longitudinally extending containers comprise spiral seam-welded tubes.

32. An assembly as defined in claim 27 wherein the expansion vessel is interconnected directly in parallel connection to each of all the containers to receive expansion media from each of the containers,

said chambers being connected directly in parallel connection with each of all the containers.

33. An assembly as defined in claim 27 wherein said chambers are connected directly in large surface open parallel communication with the containers,

said discharging and filling means being connected commonly to all of the containers in said unit.

34. An assembly as defined in claim 27 wherein said chambers include a discharging and filling chamber extending vertically and transversely to the structural unit of the containers.

35. An assembly as defined in claim 27 wherein said transversely extending chambers constitute the only support points for the containers in said unit.

36. An assembly as defined in claim 27 wherein said chambers include vertically extending tubes which penetrate directly into all the containers of the structural unit so that the containers are in open and direct communication with respect to each other.

37. An assembly as defined in claim 36 wherein said discharging and filling chamber is disposed at a location intermediate the ends of the structural Lmlt.

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