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Publication numberUS3882315 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 6, 1975
Filing dateApr 12, 1973
Priority dateApr 12, 1973
Publication numberUS 3882315 A, US 3882315A, US-A-3882315, US3882315 A, US3882315A
InventorsSoldan Donald W
Original AssigneeMallinckrodt Chemical Works
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Shipping container for a bottle of radioactive material
US 3882315 A
Abstract
A shipping container for a bottle of radioactive material comprises a can having a safe therein for receiving the bottle, a screw cap for the can and the safe, and an annular bottle retainer extending downwardly in the safe from its upper end having an outwardly extending flange at its upper end clamped between the cap and the upper end of the safe and an inwardly extending flange at its lower end receiving the neck of the bottle. The cap carries a sponge to absorb spillage from the bottle.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Soldan May 6, 1975 3,531,644 9/1970 Koster 250/507 Primary ExaminerHarold A. Dixon [75] Inventor: Donald W. Soldan, St. Louis, Mo. I

Attorney, Agent, or F1rmKoen1g, Senmger, Powers [73] Assignee: Mallinckrodt Chemical Works, St. d L m Louis, Mo.

[22] Filed: Apr. 12, 1973 57 ABSTRACT PP N01 350,402 A shipping container for a bottle of radioactive material comprises a can having a safe therein for receiving U S' CL I I I I I u 7; the bottle, a screw f! the C13 and the safe, an 51 Int. Cl. GZlf /00 annular 9 K dowrward'y W [58] Field of Search H 250/432, 433 496 506, safe from its upper end having an outwardly extending 250/507; 220/17 flange at its upper end clamped between the cap and the upper end of the safe and an inwardly extending [56] References Cited flange at its lower end recetivingt'thebneclilof tll e bottLe. UNITED STATES PATENTS boteilgap carries a sponge 0 a sor sp1 age rom e 3,256,441 6/l966 Grasty 220/17 3,347,403 /196" Lehrman 220/17 9 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures 57 4s 6s a 5; /7 f l I? x r\ me e /7 l l r i l 2 l l l i 1 ll 2 2 ill 1 1 1 l 1 f SHEEIIUF 4 FIG.

PATENTEDMAY 5x915 SIEEIZBF 4 FIG.2

SHIPPING CONTAINER FOR A BOTTLE OF RADIOACTIVE MATERIAL BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to shipping containers, and more particularly to such a container for a bottle containing a radioactive material such as a radioactive pharmaceutical product.

The invention is in the same field as the container shown in the coassigned US. Pat. No. 3,531,644.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Among the several objects of this invention may be noted the provision of an improved shipping container having a safe therein for the safe transport and storage of a bottle containing a radioactive material, such as a radioactive pharmaceutical, which, while adapted to retain the bottle in the safe when the safe is inverted for suctioning out the bottle contents via a needle, also enables withdrawal of the bottle from the safe for reading the label on the bottle without undue danger from radiation; the provision of such a container wherein part of the bottle retainer is also utilized to provide a seal between the closure of the container and the safe; and the provision of such a container with means enabling removal of the screw cap of a screw-cap bottle while the bottle remains in the safe.

In general, a shipping container of this invention comprises an outer container having an open top and a receptacle constituting a safe within the outer container, the safe being open at the top for receiving a bottle. A closure is removably secured to said outer container for closing the top of the safe, and a bottle retainer is removably mounted in the safe extending downwardly in the safe from the upper end of the latter having an upper end portion disposed between the closure and the upper end of the safe and a lower end portion formed relatively closely to receive the neck of a bottle in the safe.

Other objects and features will be in part apparent and in part pointed out hereinafter.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. I is a vertical section of a shipping container embodying the present invention;

FIG. 2 and FIG. 3 are horizontal sections on lines 22 and 3-3, respectively, of FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is a vertical section similar to FIG. 1 showing a modification;

FIG. 5 illustrates the use of a cap-removing tool in conjunction with the FIG. 4 modification; and

FIG. 6 is a partial right-side view of a tool illustrated in FIG. 5.

Corresponding reference characters indicate corresponding parts throughout the several views of the drawings.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring to FIGS. 1-3, there is generally indicated at l a shipping container of this invention for holding a bottle indicated in phantom at 3, the bottle containing a radioactive material. The shipping container 1 comprises an outer container 5 having an open top or upper and indicated at 7, and a receptacle 9 constituting a safe within the outer container, the safe being open at its upper end 11 to receive the bottle 3. A closure 13 is removably secured to the outer container 5 for closing the top of the safe 9 (and container 5), and a bottle retainer 15 is removably mounted in the safe 9, extending downwardly in the safe from the upper end thereof. The bottle retainer 15 has an upper end portion 17 disposed between the closure 13 and the upper end 11 of the safe 9 and a lower end portion 19 formed relatively closely to receive the neck of the bottle 3 in the safe.

The outer container 5 is constituted simply by a can having a cylindrical body 21 of fibreboard or any other suitable material (it need not be radiation-shielding) having a sheet metal bottom 23. The closure 13 is a screw cap type of closure and the body of the can is exteriorly screw-threaded at the top as indicated at 25 for screwing on the closure. The safe 9 has a lower cylindrical portion 27 of smaller outside diameter than the inside diameter of container 5, a raised bottom 29 (which may be formed integrally with portion 27), and an enlarged upper portion 31 including an upper cylindrical rim 33 having a relatively close fit in the can and flaring transitions 35 and 37 from the upper end of the lower portion 27 to the lower end of the upper cylindrical rim 33. The height of the safe corresponds generally to the height of the can 5 so that the upper edge I] of the rim is generally at the same level as the upper edge of the can body 21. The lower portion 27 of the safe is of slightly greater diameter than the bottle, and of such height that the shouldered portion 39 and the neck 41 of the bottle project up out of the lower portion 27.

For holding bottles containing relatively highly radioactive material, the safe may be made of lead or other suitable radiation shielding material. For holding bottles containing materials of relatively low radioactivity, the safe may be molded of polyethylene or other suitable plastic material.

Generally, for shipment of a bottle of a given radioactive material, a selection will be made of a lead safe of appropriate thickness, or a polyethylene safe, whichever will meet the requirements of the US. Department of Transportation's regulations for shipment of hazardous materials, and whichever is the most economical to use. Lead safes may be supplied in two thicknesses, for example, one-eighth or one-quarter inch.

The closure 13 comprises a sheet metal screw cap having a circular screw-threaded rim 43 adapted to be screwed down on the upper end of the can 5. For use with a lead safe in the can, there is provided on the inside of the cap 13 (Le, on its bottom) a shield constituted by a disk 45 of lead or other suitable radiationshielding material. In conjunction with the use of a polyethylene safe holding a bottle containing a material of relatively low radioactivity, this disk may be omitted. There is also provided on the bottom of the cap (below the disk 45) a sponge 47 composed of suitable plastic sponge material, for example, for absorbing spillage from the bottle 3. The lead shield or disk 45 and the sponge 47 are held captive to the cap by a retainer 49, which may be molded of polyethylene or other suitable plastic, secured at its upper end to the cap and having an annular skirt 5] of inverted frustoconical form extending downwardly on the outside of the sponge 47 with an inwardly extending annular flange 53 at the lower end of the skirt holding up the sponge. The retainer has an outwardly extending annular flange 55 at the upper end of the skirt 51 and an upwardly extending rim 57 at the periphery of flange 55 extending around the disk and fitting in and suitably secured (as by having a snap fit) in the rim 43 of the cap above the threads of the rim 43. The disk 45 has an annular flange 59 extending downwardly on the inside of the skirt 51 of the retainer 49 for shielding against radially outwardly directed radiation.

The sponge 47 has a recess 61 in its lower end for reception of the upper end of the bottle 3, the central opening 63 defined by the bottom flange 53 of the retainer 49 having its diameter corresponding generally to that of the recess 61 for passage of the upper end of the bottle. The sponge, as illustrated, is conveniently formed in two parts, an upper solid circular part 65 and a lower ring 67, the opening in the latter providing the recess 61.

The bottle retainer 15, which is preferably molded of polyethylene or other suitable plastic, has an annular skirt 69 extending downwardly in the upper part 31 of the safe 9, this skirt having an upper cylindric portion 71 having a relatively tight fit in the upper cylindric rim portion 33 of the safe, and below that, a portion 73 of inverted frustoconical form fitting in portion 37 of the safe. The skirt 69 has an outwardly extending annular flange at its upper end constituting the stated upper end portion 17 of retainer 15, and a bottom wall constituting its stated lower end portion 19. The latter has an opening 75 having a hexagonal central portion 77 for receiving the neck of the bottle, and slits 79 extending radially outwardly from the central portion forming resilient tongues 81 adapted to grip the neck 41 of the bottle.

The bottle 3 illustrated in FIG. 1 is of a type referred to as an intravenous bottle having a rubber stopper adapted to be pierced by a tubular needle for withdrawal of its contents, the plug being covered by a cap of metallic foil which is crimped under the usual lip or finish" at the mouth of the bottle. As shown in FIG. 1, the bottle is received in the safe 9 with its neck extending up into the enlarged upper end portion 31 of the safe. The bottle retainer 15 is fitted in the safe, the neck of the bottle entering the opening 75 via bending of the tongues 81, the retainer 15 being pushed down to the point where its upper end flange 17 engages the upper end 11 of the safe 9 (and the upper end of the can The cap 13, along with shielding disk 45 and sponge 47 held captive thereto by retainer 49, is screwed down on the can to the point where flange 17 is compressed downwardly by flange 55 against the upper end of the safe to provide a seal. The upper end of the bottle is received in the recess 61 in the sponge 47.

As will be apparent, the bottle retainer functions generally resiliently to hold the bottle centered in the safe, and with appropriate dimensioning such that tongues 81 engage the upper end of the shoulder (or lower on the shoulder), it also functions generally resiliently to hold the bottle down against the bottom 29 of the safe for safe shipment. Further, it enables relatively safe removal of the bottle from the safe to read the label on the bottle. For this purpose, upon the removal of the cap 13, the clinician may place his thumbnail, or a tool (not shown) if preferred, under the flange 17 of the bottle retainer 15 and pry or lift the bottle retainer in order to interrupt the gripping engagement between the upper portion 71 of the bottle retainer and the rim portion 33 of the safe 9. When the retainer 15 is loosened, the clinician may then grasp the bottle retainer flange l7 and lift the bottle retainer 15 thereby to lift the bottle out of the safe 9 so that he may read the labeling information on the bottle. When the clinician effects the concerted displacement movement of the bottle 3 and retainer 15, it should be noted that the clinicians fingers are gripping the retainer flange 17, which is a substantial distance above the bottle; thus the clinician is relatively safe from the radiations of the radioactive material in the bottle. The clinician may thereafter return the bottle 3 and retainer 15 toward their original positions in the safe 9 and apply a downward force on the retainer grippingly to reengage its upper portion with the rim portion 33 of the safe.

When the clinician desires to extract radioactive material from the bottle 3, the can 5 may be inverted to invert the bottle, while maintaining safe 9 in the can 5. inversion of the bottle may be desirable to avoid extraction of air along with the radioactive material via the usual tubular needle pierced through the bottle stopper (not shown). When the can 5 and safe 9 are inverted, the retainer end wall 19 functions to hold up the bottle, and also to resist the retraction force of the needle being withdrawn from the stopper of the bottle.

Referring now to FIGS. 4-6, a shipping container 101 is shown having substantially the same component parts and functioning in the same manner as the previously described shipping container 1 with the following exceptions:

Container 101 is particularly adapted to hold a socalled oral solution bottle, indicated in phantom at 103 having a screw cap 105. The neck of the bottle is grippingly engaged by the bottle retainer lower end flange 19. The base portion of the bottle is received in a recess 107 in a resilient insert or bottle socket 109 (made of rubber, for example) which has a tight fit in the lower portion 27 of the safe. With the bottle 103 so positioned in the insert in the safe 9, the sponge 47 is engaged with the bottle cap and exerts some pressure on the bottle resiliently to hold it against heightwise movement in the safe. For unscrewing the cap 105 from the bottle 103, there is provided a tool 111 in the form of a wrench having a socket 113 provided with a resilient insert 115 (made of rubber, for example) having a recess 117 therein. The socket is placed over the cap 105 to enter the cap in the recess 117 and the clinician then applies a slight downwardly directed force on the wrench to urge the insert into gripping engagement with the cap and also urge the bottle 103 into gripping engagement with the safe insert 107. Then, the clinician turns the wrench while maintaining the downwardly directed force in order to unscrew the cap 105 from the bottle 103 while the bottle remains in the safe 9. The resilient gripping engagement between the bottle and safe insert 107 prevents rotation of the bottle relative to the safe 9, and the resilient gripping engagement between the wrench insert 111 and the cap 105 effects unscrewing of the cap from the bottle.

In view of the above, it will be seen that the several objects of the invention are achieved and other advantageous results attained.

As various changes could be made in the above constructions without departing from the scope of the invention, it is intended that all matter contained in the above description or shown in the accompanying drawings shall be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.

What is claimed is:

l. A shipping container for a bottle which contains a radioactive material, the bottle having a neck, said container comprising an outer container having an open top,

a receptacle constituting a safe within the outer container, said safe being open at the top for receiving a bottle,

a closure removably secured to said outer container for closing the top of the safe,

and a bottle retainer removably mounted in the safe extending downwardly in the safe from the upper end of the latter having an upper end portion disposed between the closure and the upper end of the safe and a lower end portion formed relatively closely to receive the neck of a bottle in the safe, said closure, when secured to said outer container positively holding said safe and said retainer in position within the outer container, said closure havin g means on the bottom thereof for absorbing spillage from the bottle, said absorbing means comprising sponge means held captive to the closure and having a recess in its lower end for reception of the upper end of the bottle.

2. A shipping container as set forth in claim 1 wherein the safe is formed of radiation-shielding material and the closure comprises a cap fitting on the upper end of the outer container, a disk of radiation-shielding material in the cap, the sponge means extending down from the disk, and having a retainer for holding the disk in the cap with the sponge means extending down from the disk.

3. A shipping container as set forth in claim 2 wherein the retainer for the disk and sponge means has an annular skirt extending downwardly on the outside of the sponge means, the upper end of the skirt being secured to the cap, the skirt having an inwardly extending annular flange at its lower end holding the sponge means, the latter flange defining an opening for reception of the upper end of the bottle.

4. A shipping container as set forth in claim 3 wherein said bottle retainer has an annular skirt extending downwardly in the safe, the skirt having an outwardly extending annular flange at its upper end constituting said upper end portion disposed between the closure and the upper end of the safe, and a bottom wall constituting said lower end portion having an opening adapted relatively closely to receive the neck of the bottle, and the skirt of the retainer for the disk and sponge means has an outwardly extending annular flange at its upper end engaging the bottom margin of the disk and sealing downwardly against the flange of the bottle retainer.

5. A shipping container as set forth in claim 4 wherein the disk has a downwardly extending flange on the inside of the skirt of the retainer for the disk and sponge means.

6. A shipping container as set forth in claim 5 wherein the outer container is cylindrical, and the safe has a lower portion of smaller diameter than the outer container for relative close fit of a bottle therein, and an enlarged upper portion accommodating said retainers and sponge means.

7. A shipping container for a bottle which contains a radioactive material, the bottle having a neck, said container comprising an outer container having an open top,

a receptacle constituting a safe within the outer container, said safe being open at the top for receiving a bottle,

a closure removably secured to said outer container for closing the top of the safe,

and a bottle retainer removably mounted in the safe extending downwardly in the safe from the upper end of the latter having an upper end portion disposed between the closure and the upper end of the safe and a lower end portion formed relatively closely to receive the neck of a bottle in the safe, wherein the closure comprises a cap fitting on the upper end of the outer container, sponge means for absorbing spillage from the bottle extending down from the cap, and a retainer for holding the sponge means captive to the closure,

and wherein the retainer for the sponge means has an annular skirt extending downwardly on the outside of the sponge means, the upper end of the skirt being secured to the cap, the skirt having an inwardly extending annular flange at its lower end holding the sponge means, the latter flange defining an opening for reception of the upper end of the bottle.

8. A shipping container as set forth in claim 7 wherein said bottle retainer has an annular skirt extending downwardly in the safe, the skirt having an outwardly extending annular flange at its upper end constituting said upper end portion disposed between the closure and the upper end of the safe, and a bottom wall constituting said lower end portion having an opening adapted relatively closely to receive the neck of the bottle, and the skirt of the retainer for the sponge means has an outwardly extending annular flange at its upper end engaging the bottom margin of the disk and sealing downwardly against the flange of the bottle retainer.

9. A shipping container as set forth in claim 8 wherein the outer container is cylindrical, and the safe has a lower portion of smaller diameter than the outer container for relative close fit of a bottle therein, and an enlarged upper portion accommodating said retainers and sponge means.

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Classifications
U.S. Classification250/506.1, 206/204, 976/DIG.343, 250/432.00R, 220/23.83
International ClassificationG21F5/005
Cooperative ClassificationG21F5/005
European ClassificationG21F5/005
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Mar 11, 1991ASAssignment
Owner name: MALLINCKRODT MEDICAL, INC., 675 MCDONNELL BOULEVAR
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:MALLINCKRODT, INC., A CORP. OF DE;REEL/FRAME:005635/0379
Effective date: 19910227
Feb 14, 1986ASAssignment
Owner name: MALLINCKRODT, INC.
Free format text: CHANGE OF NAME;ASSIGNOR:MALCO, INC.;REEL/FRAME:004572/0403
Effective date: 19860101