US 3905272 A
A container for the placement of discarded and defective explosive items. Upon placement, the defective items drop through a baffle arrangement and come to rest on electrically charged plates. The charged plates detonate the items causing them to disintegrate and fall harmlessly to the base of the container.
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 11 1 1111 3,905,272
Johnson Sept. 16, 1975 MUNITION DESTRUCT APPARATUS 2,404,441 7/1946 Hopkins 89/1 R 3,793,101 2/1974 Mullarkey 86/1 R [751 Inventor :30bby Dean Johnson Buflmgtonr 3,820,435 6/1974 Rogers et a1. 89/1 R owa  Assignee: The United States of America as Primary ExaminerSamuel Feinberg represented by the Secretary of the Assistant ExaminerC. T. Jordan Army, Washington, DC. Attorney, Agent, or FirmNathan Edelberg; Robert P. 22 Filed: Mar. 15, 1974 Glbson; Pemhem  Appl. No.: 451,403 ABSTRACT A container for the placement of discarded and defec- (g1 2 8:501; five explosive items. p placement the defective  Fie'ld 1 86/] R items drop through a baffle arrangement and come to rest on electrically charged plates. The charged plates References Cited detonate the items causing them to disintegrate and fall harmlessly to the base of the container. UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,315,800 4/1943 Rochester et a1. 89/1 R 5 Claims, 1 Drawing Figure H g 22 4a 4 44 MUNITION DESTRUCT APPARATUS GOVERNMENTAL INTEREST The invention described herein may be manufactured, used and licensed by or for the Government for governmental purposes without the payment to me of any royalty thereon.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION:
This invention relates to an apparatus for placement of discarded and defective explosive items and, more particularly, for rendering such items harmless after placement. While the structure of the present invention is useful in numerous types of shielding applications, its advantages are most evident as a safety device in the field of ammunition manufacture.
In the production of munitions, it is frequently desired to dispose of various types of explosive items because of inherent defects, rejection or missing parts in an item. The procedure has been to drop the discarded items into a container of water. Periodically, an explosive handler would remove the contents of the container and move the items to a demolition area for purposes of destruction. It is not uncommon for containers to have fragile, delicate and unstable explosive components placed therein. It is therefore essential that the discarded items be treated gently and deactivated as quickly as possible when a defect is determined without moving them to another area or to have it accumulate in a storage area.
The aforementioned disposal method is known to be disadvantageous since it is a dangerous, unreliable and cumbersome method to handle defective explosives. For example, it is not uncommon for containers which are being moved containing defective munitions to det onate because the water in the container did not neutralize the explosive. Another disadvantage commonly encountered is that defective munitions stored near a work area tend to detonate for unknown reasons causing multiple explosions.
Another example of hazards presently encountered for carriers containing unstable components is that detonation may be caused by a shock imparted by a jarring or an accidental drop. Therefore great danger is experienced when explosives are moved from the assembly line to the demolition area. In fact, the accumulation of explosives in a container is of pronounced danger to the entire assembly area because explosives are in a different stage of inactivation. In addition, the mere storing of defective munitions is perilous since it creates a hazardous condition in an otherwise safe surrounding.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION These deficiencies of the prior art are overcome by the instant invention by inactivating the defective explosives right at the assembly line, causing no accumulation or movement of munitions in the assembly area. Furthermore, it provides a destruct device which obviates the major difficulties afflicting munition loading by permitting in-place disposal which eliminates handling defective munitions.
It is therefore an object of this invention to provide an apparatus which will insure that defective explosive items are properly isolated.
It is another object to provide an apparatus capable of detonating unexploded munitions.
Another object is to provide an apparatus where defective munitions can be inactivated at the assembly line, thereby permitting personnel to continue to work by removing inherent hazards fromthe work area.
It is still another object to provide a simple method of munition destruction, with control and dependability, to reduce hazards.
Other objects and advantages of the invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art from the following detailed description.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING The single FIGURE of the drawing is a crosssectional front view of an apparatus incorporating the present invention.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT With reference to the drawing, there is shown, by way of illustration only, one form of munition destruct apparatus 12. The apparatus 12 comprises an axiallyelongated rectangular outer housing 14 containing an axially-elongated centrally-located inner housing l6.
The drawing is a vertical sectional view of the.munition destruct apparatus 12. The housing 14 is formed by an outer casing 18 of wood supported by angle irons 20. Thick sound insulating material 22 is attached to the interior of the housing 14 to contain and muffle internal noises. The inner housing 16 made of case iron or steel and attached to the housing 14 at its base.
The housing 14 at its upper end is provided with an opening 24 in which is disposed a first chute 26. The chute 26 preferably extends through the opening 24 at an angle as indicated in the drawing. The bottom end of the chute 26 is open at 28 and directed toward a first hopper 30. Mounted on top of the housing 14 is a second hopper 34 the base of which is attached to chute 26. The hopper 34 is supported by brackets 36 and is enclosed by a cover 32 attached to the housing 14. Hopper 30 is attached to the top of the inner housing 16. Attached to the base of the hopper 30 is a second chute 38 leading into the inner housing 16. The interior of the inner housing 16 forms an intercellular cavity with sectional baffle plates 40. These baffle plates 40, which are vertical and inclined, lead downwardly from the chute 38. The baffle plates 40 have a dual purpose, to direct the defective munition by gravity down into the labyrinth of the inner housing 16, and to minimize explosive and concussion forces from beneath the plates 40. Secured within the lower end of the inner housing 16, below the baffle plates 40, are two opposing transverse inclined metallic plates 42 attached to the wall 44 of the inner housing 16 by electrical insulating blocks 46. The plates 42 are electrically charged and separated from each other by a gap 48 in order to act as a circuit breaker.
Above the transverse plates 42 is a square baffle 50 extending between the walls of the inner housing 16 and centrally located. The baffle plates 40 extend between the walls of the inner housing 16 and are attached thereto by welding, or in any other desired manner.
In operation, the munition destruct apparatus 12 is placed near an assembly line dealing with explosive items. This permits in-place disposal by the assembler negating additional handling of defective munitions.
Upon the discovery of a defective detonator cap or booster, the assembler drops the defective item into the apparatus 12 by placing it in hopper 34. The hopper 34 and the attached chute 26 do not allow large amounts of detonators and boosters to be fed in at once. The item deposited in the hopper 34 falls down to the inclined planes formed by the baffle plates 40 and comes to rest on the transverse plates 42. The insulated transverse plates 42 are spaced less than the diameter of the item deposited. An AC voltage is applied across the plates. When an item falls to the transverse plates 42 and is in contact with both plates, an electrical current is drawn producing heat and arcs, which causes the item to be detonated. The residual portions of the item fall through the gap 48 between the plates 42 down to the base of the inner housing 16.
I wish it to be understood that I do not desire to be limited to the exact details of construction shown and described for obvious modifications will occur to a person skilled in the art.
What is claimed is:
l. A munition destruct apparatus comprising:
a heat and sound insulating partition in said housing;
an inner housing fixed within said housing;
a chute in said housing and said inner housing permitting communication;
baffle plates within said inner housing to convey items downward in a guided fashion;
transverse plates, within said inner housing and forming an apex below said baffle plates, spaced and electrically insulated from each other and adapted to be electrically charged to act as a circuit breaker; whereby a munition placed in said chute of said housing will fall by gravity past said baffle plates on to the apex of said transverse plates closing the electrical circuit causing the munition to detonate.
2. The apparatus as recited in claim 1, wherein an outer hopper is mounted on said chute and attached to said housing.
3. The apparatus as recited in claim 1, wherein an inner hopper is placed between said housing and said inner housing to guide the falling munition.
4. The apparatus as recited in claim I, wherein said bafile plates form a series of independent explosivecontaining compartments in the upper portion of said inner housing thus dividing said inner housing into an upper section and a lower section.
5. The apparatus as recited in claim 4, wherein said transverse plates are canted downward to provide said apex and arranged within said lower section and form a longitudinal series of partitions arranged within the opposite sides of said inner housing cooperating with each other to provide a circuit breaker.