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Publication numberUS3900302 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 19, 1975
Filing dateMay 7, 1974
Priority dateAug 10, 1972
Publication numberUS 3900302 A, US 3900302A, US-A-3900302, US3900302 A, US3900302A
InventorsLanglois Roland E, Roberson Cletis L
Original AssigneeOwens Corning Fiberglass Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Method for producing glass fiber bulk product
US 3900302 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 1 1 Langlois et al.

[451 Aug. 19, 1975 METHOD FOR PRODUCING GLASS FIBER BULK PRODUCT [75] Inventors: Roland E. Langlois; Cletis L.

Roberson, both of Newark, Ohio [73] Assignee: Owens-Corning Fiberglas Corporation, Toledo, Ohio [22] Filed: May 7, 1974 [21] Appl. No.: 467,705

Related US. Application Data [62] Division of Ser. No. 279.575, Aug. 10, 1972, Pat. No,

[52] US. Cl 65/8; 19/150; 28/1 SM; 57/34 CF; 65/2; 65/11 R; 65/11 W; 226/95 [51] Int. Cl C03b 37/04 [58] Field of Search 65/2, 11 R, 11 W, 5, 6, 65/8, 9, 14-16; 226/95; 28/1 SM; 19/150;

[ 56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 10/1938 Slayter et al. 65/9 X 2,909,827 10/1959 Waugh 65/9 X 3,132,702 10/1938 Simpson". 65/9 X 3,161,920 12/1964 Stalego 19/150 3,314,122 4/1967 Bundy 28/] SM 3,372,013 3/1968 Porter 65/14 X 3,448,501) 6/1969 Benson 28/72 Primary Examiner-Robert L. Lindsay, Jr. Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Carl G. Staelin; John W. Overman; Ronald C. l-ludgens [5 7] ABSTRACT 9 Claims, 9 Drawing Figures P T AUB1 9 1975 3.. 900,302

SHZET 1 BF 3 PATENTEB AUG 1 91975 SHEET 3 UF 3 METHOD FOR PRODUCING GLASS FIBER BULK PRODUCT This is a division of application Ser. No. 279,575, filed Aug. 10, I972 now US. Pat. No. 3832840 BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Textile yarn made of continuous synthetic filaments are dense-and are artificial feeling. Hence, there has been a need to produce synthetic fiber textile yarns that look and feel like natural fiber yarns.

Yarn texturing is one conventional commercial way to produce a more natural appearance and feel to continuous synthetic fiber yarn. Here continuous filament yarn is processed in one of several conventional ways. For example, the yarn can be processed by false-twist, knit-de-knit or air bulking apparatus. Such apparatus produces essentially bulky continuous filament yarn that meets some textile needs.

Another conventional commercial approach produces what is known as spun yarn. Continuous filaments are formed into a heavy weight bundle called a tow that is subsequently crimped and at times chopped into short lengths. These chopped fibers, called staple fibers, are then processed through modified spinning apparatus into spun yarn. This yarn has a soft bulky feel and an appearance different from continuous filament yarn.

Each of these basic conventional methods starts with the manufacture of a continuous filament yarn that must undergo secondary processing to avoid its hard characteristics. The conventional approaches, such as those mentioned and their many variations, require one or more secondary processes; these are expensive and in many cases difficult to control. Hence, there is a need for a fresh approach in producing natural feeling and appearing yarn of synthetic filaments.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION An object of the invention is an improved sliver-like product of discontinuous synthetic fibers that is processable into a yarn and apparatus for and method of producing such a product.

Another object of the invention is an improved sliverlike product including discontinuous fibers that has bulk, softness and non-uniform or thick and thin characteristics as formed and that is ready for twisting into a yarn without secondary processing and apparatus for and method of producing the product that can con trol the degree of product non-uniformity and hence the nonuniformity of a yarn produced from it.

Still another object of the invention is apparatus for and method of producing a non-uniform bulk sliver like fibrous product that can vary the degree of nonuniform bulk in formation of the product to any desired degree of non-uniform bulk down to a substantially uniform but yet soft and bulky textured yarn.

Yet another object is an improved non-uniform bulky sliver-like product of discontinuous glass fibers and apparatus for and method of producing such product by condensing a coherent web of such fibers in a fiber forming operation.

Another object is an improved bulky yarn of discontinuous synthetic fibers such glass.

Other objects and advantages will become apparent as the invention is more fully described in connection with the following drawings.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a photograph of a fibrous glass product according to the principles of the invention. Transmitted light was used to project an image of the product. The photograph is of the projected image.

FIG. 2 is another photograph of the fibrous glass product shown in the photograph of FIG. I. The product is shown supported at spaced locations along its length and is under the influence of a small amount of tension. Like the photograph of FIG. 1, FIG. 2 isa photograph of a projected image of the product.

FIG. 3 is a side elevational view of apparatus for producing a fibrous glass product like that shown in the photographs of FIGS. 1 and 2.. The apparatus includes a rotary fiber forming means, a rotatably driven fiber collection and condensing wheel and associated flow directing apparatus.

FIG. 4 is a front elevation view of the apparatus shown in FIG. 3 together with a collection container arrangement.

FIG. 5 is an enlarged front view of the fiber collecting and condensing wheel and the flow directing apparatus shown in FIG. 4.

FIG. 6 is an exploded perspective view of the fiber collecting and condensing wheel assembly shown in FIGS. 35.

FIG. 7 is an enlarged showing of an air nozzle within the collecting and condensing wheel.

FIG. 8 is a representation of three web formations in the fiber collection or deposition region on the circumference of the fiber collecting and condensing wheel. FIG. 8a illustrates a web having a substantially uniform fiber distribution across its width. FIG. 8b illustrates a web having a substantially uniform increased fiber accumulation along a marginal region of the web. FIG. 8c illustrates a web having a marginal region of increased fiber concentration where the fiber accumulation varies along the length of the marginal region.

FIG. 9 is a view in elevation of apparatus for twisting a fibrous product like the product shown in the photographs of FIGS. 1 and 2.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS The improved fibrous product of the invention can be made of any organic or inorganic discontinuous synthetic fibers. But discontinuous glass fibers are particularly adapted for forming the fibrous product of the invention; however, the fibrous product can be made of discontinuous organic fibers such as nylon, polyesters, and the like. Thus, it is to be understood that the term synthetic fiber as used in the specification and claims refers to both organic and inorganic synthetic fibers.

The fibrous product of the invention shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 is not a yarn, but it has enough integrity to make it capable of being twisted or formed into a yarn. Hence, the product shown is an intermediate product that is processable into a yarn. The product can be sized to enhance its coherency for processing.

FIGS. 1 and 2 are photographs that show a novel fibrous product according to the invention, denoted by the reference numeral 10, comprising discontinuous glass fibers. These discontinuous glass fibers are effectively frictionally interengaged into a relatively loosely associated and essentially no twist longitudinal coherent wispy sliver-like grouping of fibers. At least a portion of the linear grouping of fibers at each increment of length of the product are interengaged into a continuous system of fibers throughout the length of the product. And this system has enough coherency to give the product dimensional stability, particularly axial or longitudinal dimensional stability.

The fibrous product 10 is a non-uniform bulky product. Randomly along the length of the product some of the discontinuous glass fibers are separated into a coherent secondary system or coherent secondary grouping of fibers; for example, see the coherent grouping of fibers in the regions denoted by the reference numeral 12 in FIGS. 1 and 2. These secondary fiber systems extend along devious or more lengthy paths laterally of the fibers of the continuous portion or system of the product. The continuous system is readily seen in the regions of the product 10 denoted by the reference numeral 14 in FIGS. 1 and 2. Normally, the fibers separate into only one secondary coherent system at any region of the product; however, at some locations more than one secondary system occurs. For instance, see the region indicated by the reference numeral 16 in the photograph of FIG. 1. The secondary systems of fibers occur and remerge with the remainder of the fibers at spaced regions along the length of the product. In these merged regions, for example see the regions indicated by the reference numeral 18, substantially all the fibers of the grouping form the continuous system. The sec ondary systems establish regions of larger cross sectional area or bulk along the length of the product. And the random occurrence of these secondary systems imparts a non-patterned bulk to the product 10.

In a sense, it is possible to consider the product 10 a single system or continuum of fibers that includes regions where random groups of the fibers of the system intermittently separate into coherent secondary fiber sub-systems. These random coherent secondary or subsystems of fibers exist in varying degrees of bulk and densities. They provide to the fibrous product regions along its length of low weight and high density as well as regions of high weight and high bulk. And their paths are myriad in configuration.

The secondary systems as shown occur in a nonpatterned or randomed fashion along the length of the product 10. It is possible to produce the product of the invention with secondary systems that occur periodically or regularly along its length. Hence, in a broad sense, the fibrous product of the invention includes products having intermittently occurring secondary fiber systems.

Normally the length of the discontinuous glass fibers of the product 10 are in a range of from 2 to 12 inches in length. And in practice excellent fibrous products according to the invention have been made with discontinuous glass fibers having an average diameter of from to 75 hundred thousandths of an inch. Accordingly, the fibers of the fibrous product of the invention have a large length to diameter ratio.

The discontinuous glass fibers of the product are wavy. But fibrous products according to the invention can be made employing straight synthetic fibers, e.g. straight glass fibers.

Also, it has been found in practice that the average weight of a fibrous glass product like the product 10 in regions including a secondary system is on an average in the range of from slightly greater than 1 to 2.5 times the weight of the regions of the product without a secondary system. But it has been found that in some regions of the product having a secondary system or systems the weight can be as high as 5 times the weight of the product without a secondary system.

Normally, the cross sectional area of the fibrous product of the invention in regions including a secondary system of fibers is in a range of from 2 to 5 times larger than the cross sectional area of the product in re gions without a secondary system. But it has been found that the cross sectional area in some of the regions of the product including a secondary system can be up to 30 times larger in cross section than regions along the length of the product without a secondary system.

A secondary system of a fibrous product of the invention can comprise from 10 to percent of the fibers in the fiber grouping or systems at any incremental length of the product.

Essentially no twist fibrous glass products according to the principles of the invention have been made that have a tensile strength as low as 0.15 grams per denier and as high as 0.3 grams per denier when pulled lengthwise from locations spaced 10 inches apart. Generally speaking, the tensile strength of the product decreases in product forms having a higher degree of bulk.

Thus, the fibrous product of the invention is a linear product of discontinuous synthetic fibers effectively interengaged into a relatively loosely associated longitudinal sliver-like grouping. At least a portion of the grouping of fibers at each increment of length of the product is interengaged into a continuous system or continuum of fibers having coherency sufficient to establish dimensional stability. Other fibers of the grouping are interengaged intermittently along the length of the product into a coherent secondary system or grouping bending outwardly of the continuous system between locations along the length of the product to impart the non-uniform bulk to the product.

The apparatus of the invention operates to produce a fibrous product according to the principles of the invention by first grouping individual synthetic fibers, such as glass fibers, in sufficient interengaging relation in a collection region to form a thin coherent web or network. The fibers of the web are laterally condensed or gathered together into the relatively loosely associated linear wispy sliver-like grouping like the product 10 shown in the photographs of FIGS. 1 and 2. The fibers are gathered so that at least a portion of the fibers at each increment of length of the product is interengaged to form a continuous system of fibers possessing coherency sufficient to establish dimensional stability, especially longitudinal dimensional stability; apparatus selectively condenses some of the fibers of the web to provide the product with coherent secondary systems of fibers intermittently bending outwardly from the continuous system and back again between spaced locations along the length of the product.

In practice, it has been useful to produce the fibrous product of the invention directly in a fiber forming operation.

FIGS. 3 and 4 show a preferred embodiment of apparatus for producing a fibrous glass product according to the principles of the invention directly in a glass fiber forming operation. A rotary fiber forming means or instrumentally 20 supplies individual discontinuous glass fibers of sufficient length that the fibers can be interengaged into a coherent web or network. Blasts of fiber attenuating gases from the instrumentality carry the individual fibers to and deposit them on a moving porous circumferential surface 21 of a rotating hollow wheel 22 in sufficient number and such interengaging relation to form a coherent web or network. Discontinuous fibers from other sources might be used to supply the fibers or mixed with the fibers from the instrumentality 20 to effect a blend of the same or different fibers, e.g. organic and inorganic synthetic fibers.

A web condensing arrangement including means defining a stationary opening of progressively reducing size communicating with the circumferential surface 21 and means for establishing a reduced pressure zone within the wheel 22 to draw a fluid such as air into the opening through the fibers of the web. The moving fluid selectively laterally condenses the web of fibers into a fibrous product according to the invention.

Means within the wheel 22 clears or releases the product from the surface of the rotating wheel 22. And the tangential energy imparted to the product by the wheel 22 is sufficient to project the product tangentially away from the wheel 22. Normally, the product is released from the wheel for tangential projection downwardly to form a mat or other non-woven product on a collection surface. FIG. 4 shows the product being collected in a rotating container 24. A winder can be used to collect the product as a wound package. It is important to collect the product under conditions that sustain its bulk.

In the embodiment illustrated a feeder supplies a stream of molten glass 32 from a tubular outlet 34 downwardly to the interior of an inclined hollow centrifuging spinner or rotor 36. The feeder 30 can connect to a forehearth that supplies molten glass from a furnace or can connect to other means for supplying molten glass in a conventional manner. Other heat softened fiber forming material can be supplied to the spinner through the feeder 30.

FIG. 3 illustrates a partial cross section components of the fiber forming assembly or instrumentality 20, which includes the hollow spinner or rotor 36 fixed on the end of a rotatable shaft or quill 38, a burner 40 that provides a heated environment for primary filaments or centrifuged streams of glass from the spinner 36 and a blower 42 for delivering a gaseous blast into engagement with the primary fibers or small streams of glass to attenuate them into discontinuous glass fibers.

The assembly 30 is shown in an inclined disposition. In practice an inclination of 45 from the horizontal has given good results.

An electric motor 44 drives the quill 38, and hence the spinner 36, in high speed rotation. The quill 38 is shown disposed in an inclined position extending through a housing 46. Bearings within the housing 46 journally support the quill 38 for rotation.

The spinner 36 as shown is a one piece hollow disclike member including a circular solid bottom wall 48; a cylindrical circumferential side wall 50 having rows of glass outlet openings or passageways 52 communicating with the interior of the spinner 36; and an in wardly extending circular flange 54 defining an opening 56 at the upper region of the spinner.

The glass stream 32 moves downwardly along a path through the opening 56 to the inclined bottom wall 48. As the motor 44 rotates the spinner 36, the molten glass of the stream moves outwardly along the interior of the circumferential wall 50 and leaves the rotating spinner 36 through the openings 52 as primary fibers or streams.

In practice, the spinner 3 is normally from 4 to 8 inches in diameter and normally includes from 1 .000 to 4.000 glass outlet openings. The spinner is normally rotated at an angular speed of from 3,000 to 7,500 rpms to produce a fibrous glass product like that shown in the photographs of FIGS. 1 and 2.

The burner 40 includes an annular shape mixing and distribution chamber 58 with an inlet tube 60. The tube 60 connects at one end with a supply of fuel and air mixture and delivers the mixture to the burner 40. A valve 62 is disposed along the length of the tube 60 to control delivery of the combustible mixture into the annular chamber 58. v

The burner 40 provides a variously sized annular discharge passageway 64. The combustible mixture from the chamber 58 is burned in the region of a screen 66 in the passageway 64. Flames or hot gases of combustion from the region of the screen 66 leave the passageway 64 to provide a heated environment for the primary filaments or small streams centifuged from the openings 52 in the circumferential wall of the rotating spinner 50.

The blower 42 includes a member providing an annular chamber 70 having an air outlet nozzle 72 including circumferentially spaced slots or orifices.

The chamber 70 is supplied with gaseous fluid under pressure, such as compressed air, from a supply through an inlet tube 74. The compressed gas is delivered through the slots of the nozzle 72 as a high velocity gaseous fiber-attenuating blast. A valve 76 is along the tube 74 to regulate the admission of gas to the chamber 70 and hence the velocity of the fiber attenuating blast.

In operation the high velocity products of combustion discharged from the burner 40 flow over the circumferential moving surface of the spinner 36 to engage the primary fibers or streams leaving the openings 52 of the circumferential wall 50. Thereafter the fibers are further engaged by the gaseous blast from the blower 42. Hence, the attenuated fibers are moved by an envelope or body of moving gaseous media; a body 80 of gases and fibers is produced.

The body 80 is, in a sense, an. envelope or body of gas and glass fibers moving with generally reducing cross section away from the rotating spinner 36 as more fully explained hereinafter. In practice, the transverse cross sectional shape of the body 80 is generally circular. And in practice, a 3% inch width wheel 22 (width of the surface 21) has given good results.

Rotation of the spinner 36 imparts a considerable component of angular velocity to the primary glass fbers in a plane substantially perpendicular to the axis of the quill 38. However, the moving blasts of gaseous fluids from the burner 40 and blower 42 modify this initially spinner imparted velocity until the major compobrings the fibers together into what can be considered an inchoate or incipient network of gas borne but interconnected fibers. And the wheel 22 is located with its circumferential surface 21 in this region of the body 80. It has been a practice to make the width of the wheel (width of the surface 21) 22 substantially the same size as the diameter of the body 80 in the fiber depositing region.

The fibers are continuously deposited on the moving porous circumferential surface 21 of the hollow wheel 22 in sufficient number and in such interengaging relation that a thin coherent web or network of fibers is continuously formed at a circumferential collection region on the wheel. Fibers of the network are continuously removed from the zone of deposition by the advancing surface 21 and are progressively laterally condensed into a fibrous product according to the invention. The deposition of the fibers as they are deposited and the combiningto action effected by the movement of the surface 21 work together to orient the fibers generally parallel to the circumferential axis of the surface 21.

Referring to FIGS. 3-6 the web processing apparatus of the wheel 22 and associated apparatus can be seen to be a rotary assembly 84 and a stationary flow directing assembly 86.

In the embodiment shown the rotary assembly 84 includes a stationary portion and a rotary portion. The rotary portion comprises the wheel 22, which is a one piece bowl shaped member, having a porous circular peripheral wall 88 defining the circumferential surface 21. The surface 21 has a groove 90 fashioned at one edge; the groove 90 extends around the entire circumference of the wheel 22 to form a circular groove and is generally U-shaped in cross-section. As shown the groove 90 is at the open end of the bowl shaped wheel 22 and extends in the direction parallel to the circumferential axis of the wheel 22.

Normally the wall 88 of the wheel 22 is somewhat tapered towards the closed end of the wheel. The angle of taper, shown as angle B in FIGS. 5 and 6, is normally a small angle of from 5 to The inclined surface 21 promotes an orientation of the fibers in a direction parallel to the circumferential axis of the surface 21 during a lateral gathering or condensing of the fibers of the web towards the groove 90 during rotation of the wheel 22.

The wheel 22 is fixed on the end of shaft 92, which is generally held horizontally for rotation in bearing member 94. The bearing member 94 forms part of the stationary portion of the rotary assembly 84. A motor rotates the wheel 22 through the rotation of the shaft 92.

It is possible to use other means providing a fiber deposition or collection surface. For example, it is possible to use a hollow disc or a hoop such as a wheel rim with a fiat surface. Also, it is possible to use a continuous belt. But the wheel 22 is preferred form.

Referring more specifically to FIG. 5, the stationary assembly includes a circular mounting plate 100, the bearing member 94 and means defining three chambers, viz. chambers 102, 104. and 106. i

In the embodiment shown. an enclosure 108 and a partition 110 within the enclosure defines the compartments 104 and 106. The enclosure 108 includes a side wall 112, end walls 114 and 116 and a curved top wall 118. The shape of the top wall 118 and of the top of the partition 110 conform to the interior shape of the circumferential wall 88 of the wheel 22. The top wall 118 includes a circumferential opening 120 of progressively narrowing dimension. The partition 110 within the en closure 108 divides its interior into the compartments 104 and 106. One or more compartments can be used.

A partition 122 and the end wall 116, together with the closed end of the wheel 22, form the compartment 102.

A pressure deferential, conventionally accomplished by suction, is maintained across the opening'l20.

Each of the compartments communicates with a reduced pressure zone, which can be established in a conventional manner. Tubes 124, 126 and 128 each communicate at one end, through an opening in the plate 100, with compartments 102, 104 and 106 respectively. The other end of each of these tubes communicates with an individual reduced pressure zone. Hence, a fluid media such as air can be sucked through the porous wall 88 into each of the compartments. In practice, the tubes 126 and 128 connect the compartments 104 and 106 with zones of unequal reduced pressure to effect a substantially uniform flow of air into the narrowing opening 120 along its entire length. In practice, the suction applied to the chamber 104 is normally in a range of from 520 inches of water; the suction applied to the chamber 106 is normally in a range of from 1520 inches of water.

In practice, the chamber 102 is below the fiber deposition zone of the circumferential surface 21 of the wheel 22. The reduced pressure established in the chamber 102 draws attenuating gases of the body through the porous wall 88 of the wheel 22. Further, the suction traps or holds glass fibers of the body 80 on the moving circumferential surface 21. Normally the suction is sufficient to draw the gases of attenuation into the chamber 102 at a rate that overcomes blow back of these gases from the surface 21. Such blowback tends to disrupt fiber deposition on the surface 21. A suction in the range of from 5-8 inches of water is normally used.

Further, the motor 98 rotates the wheel 22 sufficiently fast to withdraw the coherent fiber web from the deposition zone at a rate substantially equal to the rate of web formation. However, the speed of the pulling wheel 22 may be varied to change the thickness of the coherent fiber web.

The moving surface 21 advances the web across the top of the enclosure 108 to the opening 120 for condensing. The largest width of the opening 120 is normally substantially the width of the opening of the compartment 102 at the surface 21. As shown the largest width of the opening is somewhat smaller than the width of the compartment 102. The width of the opening 120 can progressively reduce along its entire length, or, as shown, can include a narrowing portion 120a and a substantially constant width portion 12012. The portion 12012 is generally under the groove into which the product is moved.

In practice air drawn into the opening moves the fibers of the web laterally into the groove 90 as the linear fibrous product of the invention.

Porosity of the circumferential wall 88 is important. The porosity of the wall 88 must be sufiicient to permit fluid flow into the interior of the wheel 22 with sufficient energy to withdraw the gases of fiber attenuation and hold the web onto the advancing surface 21 at the region of fiber deposition. Further, the porosity of the wall 88 must permit sufficient air to flow across the fibers of the web into the opening 120 to progressively condense the web as the web moves across the opening 120. Yet, the openings in the surface 21 should not be so large that fibers become trapped in them. In practice good results have obtained using a wall 88 with openings having a diameter of 0.070 inches. In such an arrangement these holes are aligned in 24 rows, each hav ing 336 equally spaced openings where the wheel 22 is 14 inches in diameter (smallest diameter).

The stationary assembly includes means for releasing the product from the rotating wheel 22. As more clearly shown in FIGS. 6 and 7, an air tube immediately below the enclosure 108 discharges a stream of air through the porous circumferential wall of the wheel 22. This stream or blast of air directed outwardly through the porous wall 88 wheel 22 effects disengage ment of the sliver-like product from the moving wheel. The tube 130 is connected to any supply of suitable gas, e.g. air, under pressure.

The assembly 86 is at the upper side of the wheel 22. And as shown the assembly 86 includes two spaced apart opposing stationary curvilinear wall members or flow director elements 140 and 142 oriented traverse to the axis of the wheel 22 and at the edge regions of the wheels circumferential surface 22. These members promote reduction in the cross section of the body of gas and fibers 80. The members reduce induced air flow into the body. This keeps the fluid energy of the body 80 high, which effects a contraction of the body 80. The pressure rise of the gaseous fluid of the body 80 must be kept low enough for substantially uniform flow towards the collection surface 21. A steep pressure gradient can cause disturbed fluid flow of the gases.

The wall members 140 and 142 include flow director or control surfaces 140s and 142s, which are inclined to the circumferential surface 21 of the wheel 22. The member 142 is adjacent to the groove 90; as shown the member 142 is at the other edge of the surface 22 and located to intercept a portion of the outer region of the body of gas and fibers 80 rushing to the circumferential surface 21 of the wheel 22 from the fiber forming zone. The zone of impingement of the gases and fibers against the surface 140s is adjacent the deposition zone and is generally indicated by the dashed line region denoted A in FIGS. 3 and 5.

Impingement of the body 80 against the surface 140s creates a complex flow disturbance in the region of impingement. In practice, it has been observed that the inclined disposition of the surface 140s operates to disturb the flow of the body 80 to somewhat condense the fibers. Fibers in the impingement region move down the surface 140s to deposit a higher fiber concentration or accumulation of fibers per unit width in the portion of the web formed adjacent to the wall 140 than the web portion formed by the fibers deposited by the un disturbed portion of the body of gas and fibers 80.

The surface 140s and the outer portion of the body 80 forms an angle C, generally indicated in FIG. 5. In practice the surface 140s and the outer portion of the body 80 may be substantially parallel. Hence, the angle C can be very small.

At small angles C the surface 140s only disturbs the flow of the body 80 by diverting the path of the gas and fibers. Hence, at smaller angles of impingement a subtill stantially uniform increased accumulation of fibers is deposited in the marginal rib of the web having a higher accumulation of fibers. Such a web arrangement is represented in Fibure 8b. But at larger angles C the fluid flow becomes changed and more complex; randon flow perturbations or disturbances begin to occur. These flow disturbances effect a varying rate of discharge of fibers from the surface 140s. The result is an erratic deposition of fibers onto the deposition surface 21. The flow perturbations or disturbances tend to increase with an increase in angle C. Such a fiber disposition in a resulting web is represented in FIG. 8c; in a marginal rib region has a higher accumulation of fibers that varies in concentration along its length.

It is possible to include means for varying the inclined position of the surface 140s during operation to somewhat control the accumulation of fibers deposited in the marginal web region of higher fiber accumulation. Further, it is possible to include a flow surface arrangement that uses means such as a member to intermittently, e.g. periodically, protrude above an impingement surface such as the surface 140s in the Zone of impingement by the body 80. Such a member, during times of projection, would tend to impede fiber travel to the collecting surface (surface 21). The result is a variation in the accumulation of fibers in the marginal web portion of higher fiber accumulation; moreover, the variations tend to follow movement of the member. Also, it is possible to include means for disturbing a flow director durface like 140s such as a pulse generator effecting distortion of the surface on a regular basis. Moreover, it is possible to use a fluidic pulse generator to create periodically a flow disturbance in an outer portion of the body to effect a marginal mat region as represented in FIG. 8c.

It is possible and at times desirable to position the elements 140 and 142 to only shape the body gases and fibers 80. In such an arrangement, the location of the wall 140 would locate the surface 140s out of intercepting relation with the body of air and fibers 80. A web of substantially uniform fiber concentration results as represented in FIG. 8a. Also, it is possible to adjust the amount of suction within the wheel 22 to effect a con densing of all the fibers of the web. This is especially true for a uniform web as shown in FIG. 8a.

The fibers of the web are laterally condensed or gathered as the surface 21 of the wheel 22 moves the web across the stationary opening of progressively decreasing or narrowing dimension. Air is moved, e.g. drawn, into the compartments 104 and 106 along the surface 21 through the fibers of the web and the porous surface 21 with sufficient energy to progressively laterally move the fibers of the web to condense or gather them as they are moved towards the groove 90. Fiber condensing progressively occurs generally in accordance with the diminishing width of the opening 120.

In the condensing region the energy of the moving air and the fiber distribution of the web cooperate to product a fibrous product according to the invention. The energy of air drawn into the opening is sufficient to ef feet a condensing of fibers. But the energy of the air drawn into the opening 120 is also sufficiently weak to randomly permit at least a portion of the fibers in the higher fiber accumulation marginal region of the web to escape from the condensing influence of the moving air. This is especially true when the region of higher fiber accumulation is uniform as represented in FIG. 8b.

Generally it is heavier regions of the web that escape from the condensing influence of air moving into the opening. Hence, random variation of fiber accumulation in the marginal region of the web contributes to random occurrence of secondary fiber systems along the length of the fibrous product. Similarly, an orderly variation in accumulation of fibers in the region of higher fiber accumulation tends to influence a more orderly occurrence of the secondary fiber systems along the length of the fibrous product. It is believed portions of the web that escape or successfully resist the condensing influence of air moving into the opening 120 develop the secondary system of fibers and that this development takes place generally as depicted in FIG. 5. This Figure illustrates a product according to the invention during development. A web is formed with a marginal region of substantially uniform increased fiber accumulation (like the representation in FIG. 8b) The point identified by a shows the location along the web that was not condensed by air moving into the opening 120. The region identified by a shows a grouping of fibers that continued along the length of the opening 120 without being appreciably condensed. The location identified by b represents a location where the marginal region again is being condensed with other fibers of the web. The location identified by indicates the point where air moving into the opening 120 begins to laterally condense fibers of the web. The reference letter d indicates a dispersed fiber region wherein a few fibers provide connecting continuity between the continuous fiber system along a'b and the secondary system extending along a'ab.

By modifying conditions such as controlling the width of the web formed from the disturbed region of the body 80 along the member 140 (for example by increasing the area or angle of impingement), modifying the suction applied to the compartments 104 and 106 and controlling the variations in fiber concentration in the marginal region of the web, it is possible to influence the frequency and size of the secondary systems produced along the length of a fibrous product according to the principles of the invention.

Normally the reduced pressure zones for both the compartments 104 and 106 are adjusted to effect a uniform drawing of air into them through the fibers of the web along the entire length of the opening 120.

A tube 150 directs a jet of air against the fibrous product as it leaves the condensing region. And this final jet of air tends to accentuate the effect of the condensing zone of the web. The jet tends to draft the secondary systems along the length of the fibrous product to provide a greater catenary form to the secondary systems and hence bulk to the product.

The jet of air from the nozzle 130 Within the wheel 22 effects a release of the product from the product delivery groove 90 as the product leaves the compaction or condensing region.

The tangential energy imparted to the product by the rotating wheel 22 projects the product outwardly along a path tangential to the wheel 22.

In FIG. 4 the rotating wheel 22 projects the product downwardly into the container 24. A rotatably driven platform 154 supports the container 24. In other embodiments the product is released more horizontally for collection.

The product is a light wispy and fragile grouping of fibers. Hence. the collection apparatus includes means for drawing air into the open upper end of the container 24 to assist product collection. As shown, the container 24 has a porous bottom wall and the support 154 includes a porous support portion 156. A tubular member 158 is immediately below the container 24; at its remote end the member 158 communicates with a zone of reduced pressure.

The sliver-like fibrous product of the invention is capable of being further processed.

FIG. 9 shows apparatus for twisting a fibrous product of the invention. As illustrated a pair of rotatably driven product engaging rollers 160 and 162 advance the product from the container 24 to a conventional textile twisting station 164 including a rotatably driven strand 166, a ring rail 168 and a traveler 170 on the ring rail 168. The twisted product collects as a thick and thin type of yarn on a vertically disposed bobbin. The product travels upwardly to turn on a pigtail 174. Thence, the produce moves horizontally to turn on a pigtail 176 and thereafter the rollers 160 and 162 pull the product across a sizing applicator 178 and provide the sized product to the twisting station 164 through a guide 180.

The fibrous product of the invention can be combined with other multifilament linear material such as yarns of other synthetic fibers. For example, the fibrous glass product 10 of FIGS. 1 and 2 might be twisted and then plied together with organic yarn such as a nylon or polyester. Hence, a variety of composite yarns can be produced. Also, twisted fibrous products of the invention can be combined (e.g. plied) with themselves.

We claim:

1. The method of producing a bulky sliver-like fibrous glass product comprising:

depositing individual discontinuous glass fibers on a perforated surface in sufficient number and degree of interengaging relation to form a coherent web having a marginal region of higher fiber concentration;

advancing the perforated surface with the web thereon across a progressively narrowing opening; and

moving gas through the advancing perforated surface into the opening so as to effect lateral gathering of the fibers of the web together to form a relatively loosely associated longitudinal sliver-like fibrous product having at least a portion of the fibers at each increment of length of the product interengaged into a continuous system of fibers possessing sufficient coherency to establish longitudinal dimensional stability and having fibers of the marginal web region intermittently along the length of the sliver-like product interengaged into a secondary system of fibers bending outwardly of the continuous system between spaced locations along the length of the continuous system to provide nonuniform bulk to the sliver-like product.

2. The method of producing a bulky sliver-like fibrous glass textile product comprising:

supplying a plurality of discontinuous glass fibers of sufficient length to interengage themselves into a coherent network;

conveying the fibers in a body of moving gaseous fluid to an advancing perforated surface and depositing them on such surface in sufficient interengaging relation to form a coherent network; creating a flow disturbance in a portion of the body of moving gaseous fluid and fibers effective to cause the fibers to be deposited on the perforated surface as a coherent network having a marginal region of higher concentration of fibers;

separating the moving gaseous fluid from the fibers as the fibers are deposited:

advancing the perforated surface with the coherent network thereon across a progressively narrowing opening; and

drawing air through the perforated surface into the narrowing opening with energy sufficient to progressively laterally'gath'er the fibers of the advancing network into a relatively loosely associated longitudinal sliver-like fibrous product having at each increment of its length fibers interengaged into a continuous system of fibers possessing coherency sufficient to establish longitudinal stability and having fibers of the higher concentration margin region intemittently along the length of the sliver-like fibrous product interengaged into a coherent secondary system of fibers bending outwardly of the continuous system between spaced locations along the length of such systems to provide non-uniform bulk to the sliverlike product.

3. The method of claim 2 further including establishing a zone of reduced pressure effective to draw air through the porous surface in the region of fiber desposition to hold the fibers onto the advancing perforated surface as they are deposited thereon.

4. The method of claim 2 in which the flow disturbance is created by impinging a portion of the moving body of gaseous fluid and fibers against a surface disposed in inclined relationship to the perforated surface.

5. The method of claim 2 in which the flow disturbance is created by impinging a portion of the moving body of gaseous fluid and fibers against a stationary surface disposed in inclined relationship to the perforated surface.

6. The method of claim 2 including creating a flow disturbance causing a varying accumulation of fibers in the region of higher fiber concentration.

7. The method of producing a bulky sliver-like fibrous glass textile product comprising:

supplying a plurality of discontinuous glass fibers from a rotating spinner;

transporting the fibers in a body of moving gas to the advancing circumferential porous surface of a rotating hollow wheel; depositing the fibers onto the advancing porous surface in sufficient interengaging relationship to form a longitudinal coherent web;

impinging a portion of the outer region of the body of moving gas and fibers against a stationary surface in inclined relation to the porous collection surface to disturb flow in such region to effectively deposit a higher concentration of fibers at one side of the longitudinal coherent web than the portion of the web formed by fibers deposited by the undis turbed portion of the body of gas and fibers;

drawing the moving gas through the openings in the porous surface in the region of fiber deposition to separate such gas from the fibers;

advancing the porous surface the web of fibers across a stationary opening having a progressively reducing dimension in the direction of the advancement of the surface;

drawing air across the fibers of the web and through the advancing porous surface into the stationary opening with sufficient energy to progressively gather the fibers of the moving web in a direction lateral to the advancement of the surface into a relatively loosely associated sliver-like longitudinal fibrous product including at each increment length of the product at least a portion of the fibers thereof interengaged into a continuous system of fibers possessing coherency sufficient to establish dimensional stability, the energy of the air drawn into the zone across the fibers being insufficient to always completely laterally condense the fibers in the region of increased fiber concentration and thereby forming a secondary coherent system of fibers extending laterally of the continuous system between spaced locations therealong to impart a non-uniform bulky character to the longitudinal fibrous product; and

advancing such non-uniform bulky product from the surface under tension insufficient to remove its bulky appearance from the intermittent secondary coherent fiber system.

8. The method of forming a non-uniform bulky fbrous glass textile product comprising:

forming a plurality of discontinuous glass fibers of sufficient length to interengage themselves;

conveying the fibers so formed in a body of moving gaseous media and depositing them in a collection region on a moving porous circumferential surface of a rotating wheel in sufficient interengaging relation to form a coherent web with the fibers oriented in a direction generally parallel to the circumferential axis of the collecting surface;

impinging an outer portion of the body of moving gaseous fluid and glass fibers against a surface oriented transverse to the axis of rotation of the wheel and inclined to the moving porous circumferential surface to deposit a higher concentration of fibers along a marginal region of the web;

establishing a zone of reduced pressure within the wheel to effectively draw gaseous media through the porous circumferential surface and hold the fibers on such surface;

advancing the porous circumferential surface with the web thereon over an opening having a reducing size in the direction of surface advancement;

establishing a zone of reduced pressure within the wheel to draw air across the fibers of the advancing web into the opening to progressively laterally condense the fibers of the network into a relatively loosely associated longitudinal sliver-like grouping having at each increment of length fibers interengaged into a continuous system of fibers possessing coherency sufficient to establish longitudinal stability and other of the fibers of the grouping with fibers of the higher concentration region intermittently along the length of the sliver-like grouping interengaged into a coherent secondary system of fibers bending outwardly of the continuous system between spaced locations along the length thereof to provide non-uniform bulk to the product;

releasing the non-uniform bulky product from the circumferential surface;

rotating the wheel with sufficient angular speed to project the removed product tangentially away from the circumferential surface of the wheel; and

collecting the projected product without removing its non-uniform bulk.

9. The method of forming a non-uniform bulky fibrous glass textile product comprising:

forming from a rotating spinner a plurality of discontinuous glass fibers of sufficient length to interengage themselves;

conveying the fibers so formed in a body of moving gaseous media and depositing them in a region on a moving porous circumferential surface of a rotating hollow wheel in sufficient interengaging relation to form a coherent web with the fibers oriented in a direction generally parallel to the circumferential axis of the collecting surface;

impinging an outer portion of the body of moving gaseous fluid and glass fibers immediately adjacent the web forming region against a stationary fiber disturbing surface oriented traverse to the axis of rotation of the wheel and inclined to the moving porous circumferential surface to cause a higher concentration of fibers to be deposited along a marginal region of the web;

establishing reduced pressure within the wheel along the web forming region to effectively draw the fiber conveying gaseous media through the porous circumferential surface and hold the fibers of the web on such surface;

advancing the porous circumferential surface with the web thereon over a solid surface defining a longitudinal opening having a reducing size in the direction of surface advancement such that the side of the opening mearest the stationary fiber disturbing surface extends in a direction oblique to the circumferential axis of the porous surface and the other side of the opening extends in a direction parallel to such axis;

establishing reduced pressure within the wheel effective to draw air across the fibers of the advancing web into the opening to progressively laterally condense the fibers of the web into a relatively loosely associated longitudinal sliver-like fibrous product having at each increment of product length fibers interengaged into a continuous system of fibers possessing coherency sufficient to establish longitudinal stability and having fibers of the higher concentration marginal region intermittently along the length of the sliver-like product interengaged into a coherent secondary system of fibers bending outwardly of the continuous system between spaced locations along the length of the continuous system to provide non-uniform bulk to the product;

releasing the non-uniform bulky product from the circumferential surface;

removing the bulky product from the circumferential surface with the wheel rotating with sufficient angular speed to project the removed bulky product tangentially away from the circumferential surface of the wheel; and

collecting the projected bulky product without removing its non-uniform bulk.

Patent Citations
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4005505 *May 27, 1975Feb 1, 1977Owens-Corning Fiberglas CorporationMethod of producing a sliver-like fibrous element
US4070731 *Sep 7, 1976Jan 31, 1978Owens-Corning Fiberglas CorporationMethod of and apparatus for packaging a linear fibrous element
US4085881 *Jun 25, 1976Apr 25, 1978Owens-Corning Fiberglas CorporationApparatus for advancing a linear fibrous element
US4174799 *Jul 1, 1977Nov 20, 1979Officine Savio S.P.A.System for the temporary storage of yarn
US4509968 *Sep 27, 1982Apr 9, 1985Thomson - CsfDevice for providing a drawn fiber-like object with a helical structure
US4737180 *May 21, 1986Apr 12, 1988Glaswerk Schuller GmbhProcess and mechanism for the production of glass fiber products for example fleeces, mats, yarns and rovings
US4824456 *Jan 13, 1988Apr 25, 1989Glaswerk Schuller GmbhProcess and mechanism for the production of glass fiber products for example fleece, mats, yarns and rovings
US5143810 *May 29, 1990Sep 1, 1992Canon Kabushiki KaishaMagnetic toner for developing electrostatic image
US5620497 *Jun 5, 1995Apr 15, 1997Owens Corning Fiberglas Technology Inc.Wool pack forming apparatus using high speed rotating drums and low frequency sound distribution
US5646908 *Jun 5, 1995Jul 8, 1997Owens-Corning Fiberglas Technology, Inc.Web lapping device using low frequency sound
US5679126 *Nov 15, 1995Oct 21, 1997Owens-Corning Fiberglas Technology, Inc.Method for collecting fibers from rotary fiberizer
US5688301 *Jun 7, 1995Nov 18, 1997Owens-Corning Fiberglas Technology IncMethod for producing non-woven material from irregularly shaped glass fibers
US5885390 *Sep 21, 1994Mar 23, 1999Owens-Corning Fiberglas Technology Inc.Processing methods and products for irregularly shaped bicomponent glass fibers
US5980680 *Feb 27, 1998Nov 9, 1999Owens Corning Fiberglas Technology, Inc.Method of forming an insulation product
US5998021 *Oct 17, 1997Dec 7, 1999Owens Corning Fiberglas Technology, Inc.Method for collecting fibers from a rotary fiberizer
Classifications
U.S. Classification65/470, 65/521, 226/95, 57/350, 19/150, 28/281, 65/478
International ClassificationD02G3/34, C03B37/04
Cooperative ClassificationC03B37/048, D02G3/34
European ClassificationC03B37/04F, D02G3/34
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Mar 16, 1992ASAssignment
Owner name: OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS TECHNOLOGY INC., ILLINOIS
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS CORPORATION, A CORP. OF DE;REEL/FRAME:006041/0175
Effective date: 19911205
Jul 31, 1987ASAssignment
Owner name: OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS CORPORATION, FIBERGLAS TOW
Free format text: TERMINATION OF SECURITY AGREEMENT RECORDED NOV. 13, 1986. REEL 4652 FRAMES 351-420;ASSIGNORS:WILMINGTON TRUST COMPANY, A DE. BANKING CORPORATION;WADE, WILLIAM J. (TRUSTEES);REEL/FRAME:004903/0501
Effective date: 19870730
Owner name: OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS CORPORATION, A CORP. OF DE
Free format text: TERMINATION OF SECURITY AGREEMENT RECORDED NOV. 13, 1986. REEL 4652 FRAMES 351-420;ASSIGNORS:WILMINGTON TRUST COMPANY, A DE. BANKING CORPORATION;WADE, WILLIAM J. (TRUSTEES);REEL/FRAME:4903/501
Nov 13, 1986ASAssignment
Owner name: WADE, WILLIAM, J., ONE RODNEY SQUARE NORTH, WILMIN
Owner name: WILMINGTON TRUST COMPANY, ONE RODNEY SQUARE NORTH,
Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS CORPORATION;REEL/FRAME:004652/0351
Effective date: 19861103
Owner name: WADE, WILLIAM, J.,DELAWARE
Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS CORPORATION;REEL/FRAME:4652/351
Owner name: WILMINGTON TRUST COMPANY,DELAWARE
Owner name: WADE, WILLIAM, J., DELAWARE
Owner name: WILMINGTON TRUST COMPANY, DELAWARE