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Title:
DRINKING VESSEL DRY ICE FILLING APPARATUS AND METHOD
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2008/045802
Kind Code:
A3
Abstract:
The Invention is an apparatus and method for charging a dry ice drinking vessel with dry ice. A dry ice drinking vessel has a dry ice chamber communicating with an interior of the dry ice drinking vessel through perforations. A body selectably holds a filter in engagement with a perforation of the dry ice chamber. Liquid carbon dioxide is discharged from a pressure vessel through a valve and flashes into carbon dioxide gas, a portion of which freezes to dry ice. The carbon dioxide gas and dry ice flow through an orifice into the dry ice chamber. The dry ice is prevented from leaving the dry ice chamber by the filter.

Inventors:
NIELSEN, Peter (7327 N. McKinley Ave, Kansas City, MO, 64158, US)
Application Number:
US2007/080608
Publication Date:
November 06, 2008
Filing Date:
October 05, 2007
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
NIELSEN, Peter (7327 N. McKinley Ave, Kansas City, MO, 64158, US)
International Classes:
F25D3/12; B65D6/00; B65D8/04; B65D8/18; B65D90/02; F25D3/02; F25D3/08; F25J1/00
Foreign References:
US20070074359A12007-04-05
US7275395B12007-10-02
US7228793B22007-06-12
US5331822A1994-07-26
US6868694B22005-03-22
US20050039484A12005-02-24
Other References:
See also references of EP 2074359A4
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
YARBROUGH, Robert, J. (Attorney at Law, 201 North Jackson St.Media, PA, 19063, US)
Download PDF:
Claims:

I CLAIM 1. An apparatus for charging a dry ice drinking vessel with dry ice where the dry ice drinking vessel includes a dry ice chamber and an interior and where the dry ice drinking vessel further includes a primary perforation and a secondary perforation communicating between said interior and said dry ice chamber, the interior having a predetermined shape, the apparatus comprising: a. a body, said body conforming generally to the predetermined shape of the interior of the dry ice drinking vessel for selectable engagement with the interior of the dry ice drinking vessel; c. an orifice, said orifice being aligned with the primary perforation of the dry ice drinking vessel when the interior of the dry ice drinking vessel is in engagement with said body; d. a pressure vessel containing carbon dioxide; e. means to selectably discharge said carbon dioxide through said orifice. 2. The apparatus of claim 1 , the apparatus further comprising: a filter, said body defining an opening, said opening being aligned with the secondary perforation when said body and the interior of the dry ice drinking vessel are in engagement, said filter being supported by said body and interposed between the secondary perforation and said opening when the interior of the dry ice drinking vessel and said body are in engagement. 3. The apparatus of claim 2 wherein said filter has a pore size, said pore size being selected substantially to stop the dry ice from passing through said filter.

4. The apparatus of claim 3 wherein said body defines a body longitudinal axis and the interior of the dry ice drinking vessel defines a dry ice drinking vessel longitudinal axis, said body longitudinal axis and said dry ice drinking vessel longitudinal axis being generally coincident when the interior of said dry ice drinking vessel is in engagement with said body, said orifice being located on said body longitudinal axis and said primary perforation being located on said dry ice drinking vessel longitudinal axis, whereby said orifice and said primary perforation are aligned when said dry ice drinking vessel is in engagement with said body. 5. The apparatus of claim 4 wherein said body is generally cylindrical and has a free end, said orifice is located at said free end of said body and said filter and said opening are located at said free end of said body, said opening and said filter being annularly arranged about said orifice. 6. The apparatus of claim 5 wherein said pressure vessel contains liquid carbon dioxide and said means to selectably discharge carbon dioxide comprising an electrically operated valve. 7. The apparatus of claim 6, the apparatus further comprising: a. a base, said base containing said electrically operated valve; b. a dry ice drinking vessel containment attached to said base, said dry ice drinking vessel containment containing said body, said dry ice drinking vessel containment further containing said dry ice drinking vessel when said interior of the dry ice drinking vessel is in engagement with said body; c. a lid selectably closing said dry ice drinking vessel containment. 8. An apparatus for serving a beverage, the apparatus comprising:

a. a dry ice drinking vessel having a dry ice chamber, an interior, a primary perforation and a secondary perforation, said primary and said secondary perforations communicating between said dry ice chamber and said interior, said interior of said dry ice drinking vessel having a predetermined shape: b. a body, said body conforming generally to said predetermined shape of said interior of said dry ice drinking vessel for selectable engagement with said interior of the dry ice drinking vessel; c an orifice, said orifice being aligned with said primary perforation of said dry ice drinking vessel when said interior of said dry ice drinking vessel is in engagement with said body; d. a pressure vessel containing carbon dioxide; e. means to selectably discharge said carbon dioxide through said orifice. 9. The apparatus of claim 8, the apparatus further comprising: a filter, said body defining an opening, said opening being aligned with said secondary perforation when said body and said interior of said dry ice drinking vessel are in engagement, said filter being supported by said body and interposed between said secondary perforation and said opening when said interior of said dry ice drinking vessel and said body are in engagement. 10. The apparatus of claim 9 wherein said filter has a pore size, said pore size being selected substantially to stop said a solid dry ice from passing through said filter.

11. The apparatus of claim 10 wherein said body defines a body longitudinal axis and said interior of said dry ice drinking vessel defines a dry ice drinking vessel longitudinal axis, said body longitudinal axis and said dry ice drinking vessel longitudinal axis being generally coincident when said interior of said dry ice drinking vessel is in engagement with said body, said orifice being located on said body longitudinal axis and said primary perforation being located on said dry ice drinking vessel longitudinal axis, whereby said orifice and said primary perforation are aligned when said dry ice drinking vessel is in engagement with said body. 12. The apparatus of claim 11 wherein said body is generally cylindrical, said orifice is located at a free end of said body and said filter and said opening are located at said free end of said body, said opening and said filter being annularly arranged about said orifice. 13. The apparatus of claim 12 wherein said pressure vessel contains liquid carbon dioxide and said means to selectably discharge said liquid carbon dioxide comprising an electrically operated valve. 14. The apparatus of claim 13, the apparatus further comprising: a. a base, said base containing said electrically operated valve; b. a dry ice drinking vessel containment attached to said base, said dry ice drinking vessel containment containing said body, said dry ice drinking vessel containment containing said dry ice drinking vessel when said interior is in engagement with said body; c. a lid selectably closing said dry ice drinking vessel containment.

15. A method for charging a dry ice drinking vessel with a dry ice, the method comprising: a. placing the dry ice drinking vessel in engagement with a charging station, said charging station having a body, the dry ice drinking vessel having a dry ice chamber and an interior, said interior and said dry ice chamber having a primary perforation and a secondary perforation communicating between said interior and said dry ice chamber, said placing of the dry ice drinking vessel in engagement with said charging station comprising placing said interior of the dry ice drinking vessel in engagement with said body, said body including an orifice, said orifice being aligned with said primary perforation when said body is in engagement with said interior of the dry ice drinking vessel; b. opening a valve, said valve selectably controlling a flow of carbon dioxide from a pressure vessel, said flow of carbon dioxide discharging through said orifice; c. receiving said carbon dioxide by said dry ice chamber through said primary perforation; d. collecting the dry ice within said dry ice chamber and releasing a carbon dioxide gas from said dry ice chamber through said secondary perforation; e. removing said interior of the dry ice drinking vessel from engagement with said body. 16. The method of claim 15, the steps of collecting the dry ice in said dry ice chamber and releasing said carbon dioxide gas further comprising:

a. providing a filter, said filter being in engagement with said secondary perforation when said interior of the dry ice drinking vessel is in engagement with said body, said filter being supported by said body, said body defining an opening communicating from an exterior to an interior of said body, said opening being aligned with said secondary perforation when said interior of the dry ice drinking vessel is in engagement with said body, said filter being interposed between said secondary perforation and said opening when said interior of the dry ice drinking vessel is in engagement with said body; b. separating the dry ice from said carbon dioxide gas by passing said carbon dioxide gas through said filter and through said opening and by excluding the dry ice from passing through said filter and said opening. 17. The method of claim 16 wherein said interior of the dry ice drinking vessel defines a drinking vessel longitudinal axis, said body defines a body longitudinal axis, said drinking vessel longitudinal axis and said body longitudinal axis being generally coincident when said interior of the dry ice drinking vessel is in engagement with said body. 18. The method of claim 17 wherein said primary perforation is located on said drinking vessel longitudinal axis and said orifice is located on said body longitudinal axis. 19. The method of claim 18 wherein said body is generally cylindrical, said orifice is located at a free end of said body, said opening is defined by said free end of said body, said opening and said filter being annularly disposed about said orifice.

20. The method of claim 19 wherein said step of placing the dry ice drinking vessel in engagement with said body further comprises: a. removing a lid, said charging station defining a containment selectably closed by said lid, said body being contained within said containment; b. placing said interior of the dry ice drinking vessel in engagement with said body; c. replacing said lid on said charging station containment to close said containment, the dry ice drinking vessel being enclosed within said containment when said interior is in engagement with said body and said lid is replaced, said charging station including a base, said electrically operated valve being contained within said base.

Description:

DRINKING VESSEL DRY ICE FILLING APPARATUS AND METHOD

I. Related Applications

This application is entitled to priority from provisional application number 60/850,002 by Peter Nielsen filed October 6, 2006. This application incorporates the following patents and patent applications by reference: U.S. Patent number 6,868,694 by Peter Nielsen, issued March 22, 2005; U.S. Patent application 10/645,019 by Peter Nielsen, filed October 4, 2004; U.S. Provisional Patent application number 60/634,765 by Peter Nielsen, filed December 9, 2004; and U.S. Patent application number 11 /295,871 by Peter Nielsen, filed December 7, 2005;

II. Background of the Invention A. Field of the Invention

The Invention is an apparatus and method to load solid phase carbon dioxide, or dry ice, into a dry ice drinking vessel. The Invention also is a beverage serving system including the dry ice drinking vessel. The Invention is particularly useful to load dry ice into a perforated dry ice chamber within a dry ice drinking vessel to allow the carbon dioxide to be exposed to a beverage subsequently placed within the drinking vessel to cause a smoking and boiling visual effect and to chill the beverage. B. Description of the Related Art

A dry ice drinking vessel is described in U.S. Patent 6,868,694, issued March 22, 2005 to the inventor of the present Invention and in other pending patent applications described above. The issued patent and pending applications teach a drinking vessel having an interior volume that is equipped

with a dry ice chamber communicating with the interior volume through perforations. When dry ice is loaded into the chamber and a beverage is introduced into the drinking vessel, the beverage flows through the perforations and contacts the dry ice. The heat from the beverage causes the dry ice to sublimate, creating a smoking and bubbling effect in the beverage and also chilling the beverage.

The dry ice drinking vessel of U.S. Patent 6,868,694 is equipped with a water-tight door in the bottom of the dry ice drinking vessel to allow dry ice pellets to be loaded into the dry ice chamber. The process of charging the dry ice drinking vessel of U.S. Patent 6,868,694 includes opening the water-tight door, placing dry ice pellets into the dry ice chamber, and then closing the water tight door.

The prior art does not disclose the apparatus and method of the present Invention for loading dry ice into the dry ice chamber of the dry ice drinking vessel.

III. Summary of the Invention

The Invention is an apparatus and method for loading dry ice into a perforated dry ice chamber defined by a dry ice drinking vessel. The dry ice drinking vessel has an interior communicating with the dry ice chamber by at least a primary and a secondary perforation. To load solid dry ice into the dry ice chamber, liquid carbon dioxide is allowed to expand from the liquid to the gaseous phase and is simultaneously introduced into the dry ice chamber of the dry ice drinking vessel. The liquid carbon dioxide flashes into gas because of the sudden drop in pressure. The sudden change is state of the carbon dioxide

causes a sudden drop in temperature of the carbon dioxide and causes a portion of the carbon dioxide gas to freeze into dry ice. The dry ice is trapped in the dry ice chamber by a filter, charging the dry ice chamber of the drinking vessel. The carbon dioxide is maintained in liquid form under high pressure at room temperature in a pressure vessel. A valve and piping controls the flow of the liquid carbon dioxide from the pressure vessel. The apparatus has a body that is configured to selectably engage the interior of the dry ice drinking vessel. The body includes an orifice. The orifice is plumbed to receive carbon dioxide from the pressure vessel by way of the valve. When the interior of the dry ice drinking vessel is placed in engagement with the body, the orifice is aligned with a central perforation of the chamber. The carbon dioxide is propelled from the orifice through the primary perforation and into the dry ice chamber when the valve is opened.

The liquid carbon dioxide from the pressure vessel may flash into carbon dioxide gas and then into dry ice upon exiting the orifice. Alternatively, the change of state may begin upstream of the orifice at an expansion valve located within the system piping.

The frozen dry ice takes the form of a powder. Air in the dry ice chamber and the portion of the gaseous carbon dioxide that does not freeze are expelled by the pressure of the incoming carbon dioxide from the dry ice chamber through one or more secondary perforations. An opening in the body is aligned with the one or more secondary perforations when the interior of the dry ice drinking vessel is in engagement with the body. The frozen carbon dioxide is prevented from being expelled from the chamber by a filter. The

filter is mounted to the body and is interposed between the one or more secondary perforations and the opening defined by the body. The portion of the carbon dioxide gas that does not freeze passes through the filter, while the filter substantially prevents the dry ice powder from exiting through the secondary perforations in the dry ice chamber.

The interior of the dry ice drinking vessel and the body may be placed in selectable engagement. The interior defines an interior longitudinal axis and the body defines a body longitudinal axis. The interior and the body longitudinal axes are coincident when the body and interior are in engagement. The orifice appears on the body longitudinal axis at a free end of the body and the primary perforation appears at a corresponding location on the interior longitudinal axis, which provides for the alignment of the orifice and primary perforation.

The filter and the opening in the body are annularly arranged about the orifice on the cylindrical body. The one or more secondary perforations are arranged to align with the opening and the filter when the body and interior are in engagement. The body holds the filter in position against the secondary perforations when the body and interior are in engagement.

The body is hollow. The shape of the body corresponds to the shape of the drinking vessel. If the drinking vessel interior is cylindrical, the body also will be cylindrical. The filter is attached to the free end of the body and the periphery of the filter is bonded to and supported by the free end of the body. The filter may be circular to conform to the cylindrical interior of the dry ice drinking vessel. The filter is selected to allow the passage of carbon dioxide

gas in the quantities that are discharged by the apparatus while preventing escape of dry ice powder.

The cylindrical body and the circular filter engage the inside surface of the interior of the drinking vessel when the body is placed into engagement with the drinking vessel. The cylindrical body holds the circular filter in place against the secondary perforations of the chamber, thus filtering the carbon dioxide powder from the escaping carbon dioxide gas and air, when the apparatus is engaged with a drinking vessel and liquid carbon dioxide is being discharged into the chamber. The filter also serves to restrict bypassing of the primary perforation by dry ice flowing from the orifice.

In use, the drinking vessel is placed in engagement with the body, with the body engaging the interior of the drinking vessel, the orifice is aligned with the primary perforation and the filter is in engagement with the secondary perforations. The valve is opened and liquid carbon dioxide is injected into the chamber. Alternatively, the liquid carbon dioxide flashes into carbon dioxide gas upstream of the orifice. Expelled air and carbon dioxide gas pass through the secondary perforations of the chamber and through the filter. Frozen carbon dioxide powder is filtered from the gas stream by the filter and is retained in the dry ice chamber. When the chamber contains an adequate amount of carbon dioxide powder, the flow of liquid carbon dioxide gas is stopped and the drinking vessel removed from the apparatus.

A beverage is dispensed into the drinking vessel and a portion of the beverage freezes into a composite solid with the carbon dioxide powder. The carbon dioxide in the resulting dry ice/beverage composite then sublimates,

causing a boiling, smoking effect of the beverage. The creation of the dry ice/beverage composite has the benefit of extending the visual effect compared with charging the dry ice drinking vessel with dry ice pellets because the dry ice in the composite sublimates slower than the dry ice alone. The creation of the dry ice using liquid carbon dioxide to create the dry ice also is a benefit because the liquid carbon dioxide may be easily transported and stored indefinitely at room temperature, unlike dry ice pellets.

The apparatus may include a pressure relief valve to prevent application of excessive pressure to the apparatus. The apparatus may include a fixture to hold the drinking vessel in the correct position when the drinking vessel is being charged with dry ice. The fixture may comprise a dry ice charging station having a base containing the pressure vessel and the valve. The dry ice charging station may include a dry ice drinking vessel containment to enclose the dry ice drinking vessel during charging. The apparatus may include an electrically operated valve to control the flow of liquid carbon dioxide. IV. Brief description of the Drawings Fig. 1 is a schematic view of the apparatus.

Fig. 2 is a partial cutaway detail perspective view of the apparatus of the invention. Fig. 3 is a detail cross section of an alternative embodiment of the apparatus. Fig. 4 is a cross section side view of the apparatus in operation to charge a dry ice drinking vessel with dry ice. Fig. 5 is an illustration of formation of the dry ice/beverage composite.

Fig. 6 is a perspective view of a charging station for use in a restaurant or nightclub.

Fig. 7 is a partial cross section view of the charging station for use in a restaurant or nightclub. V. Description of an Embodiment

The invention is an apparatus and method for charging a dry ice drinking vessel with dry ice. Figs. 1 through 4 illustrate the apparatus of the Invention. Fig. 5 shows a charged dry ice drinking vessel in use. Fig. 6 shows a charging station incorporating the Invention. From Fig. 1 , a charging system 2 comprises a body 4 to a pressure vessel

6 containing liquid carbon dioxide 8. Pressure vessel 6 is equipped with a straw 10 so that liquid carbon dioxide 8 is drawn from the bottom of the pressure vessel 6. Body 4 is plumbed to pressure vessel 6 by piping 12. A manual valve 14 allows the pressure vessel 6 to be manually shut off. As shown by Fig. 1, the manual valve 14 is plumbed to an electrically- operated valve 16. Electrically-operated valve 16 is connected to a switch 20 and to a power supply 18. Upon activation of switch 20 by a user, valve 16 opens, allowing liquid carbon dioxide 8 to flow from pressure vessel 6. Valve 16 may be timed to allow liquid carbon dioxide 8 to flow for a predetermined time, for example, two seconds. The predetermined time is selected to provide an adequate charge of dry ice 56 to drinking vessel 28. Applicant believes that remote bottle opener part number 1809 by Nitrous Direct is suitable for valve 16. Applicant believes that a push button switch is suitable for switch 20.

1 T' connector 22 joins body 4 and pressure relief valve 24 to piping 12. Pressure relief valve 24 is conventional and prevents over-pressuring of the charging system 2 by the carbon dioxide 8. Pressure relief valve part number WMV 4-50 from Nitrous Direct, 516 River Highway D169, MooresvŌčle, NC 28117, is suitable for pressure relief valve 24.

Fig. 2 is a cutaway detail perspective view of the body 4 of the charging system 2 of the Invention. Fig. 3 is detail partial cross section of a side view of an alternative embodiment of charging system 2. From Figs. 2, coupling 30 is plumbed to the T coupling 22 illustrated by Fig. 1. Expansion valve 32 is retained in position by coupling 30 and receives liquid carbon dioxide 8 from T- coupling 22. Expansion valve 32 is selected to meter a suitable flow of liquid carbon dioxide 8. Alternatively, liquid carbon dioxide 8 may be metered by valve 16, shown by Fig. 1.

Fitting 34 engages expansion valve 32 by a female thread portion 36. As the liquid carbon dioxide 8 passes through expansion valve 32, the liquid carbon dioxide flashes into carbon dioxide gas with an accompanying drop in temperature. A portion of the carbon dioxide gas freezes to dry ice powder. Fitting 34 receives metered carbon dioxide from expansion valve 32 while the carbon dioxide is flashing to vapor and freezing. Fitting 34 conveys carbon dioxide to orifice 38. In use, a quick release connector, Lincoln air nipple Vt male, model 11659, for use with air tools has proved suitable for fitting 34, but any suitable fitting 34 may be used.

Body 4 is a hollow cylinder. PVC plumbing pipe has proven suitable for body 4 in practice, but any suitable material may be used. Pop rivet 40 rigidly

connects body 4 to female thread portion 36 of fitting 34. Body 4 has a free end 42. Free end 42 is bonded to a filter 44 at a periphery 46 of filter 44. Filter 44 covers the otherwise open free end 42 of body 4. Fitting 34 penetrates filter 44 and orifice 38 is coplanar with filter 44. Fitting 34 is bonded to filter 44. Any filter 44 suitable for allowing passage of carbon dioxide gas and air while having a pore size small enough to trap frozen carbon dioxide powder is suitable for filter 44. A filter 44 manufactured by Porex Corporation, 500 Bohannon Road, Fairbum, GA, 30213 has proven suitable in practice, but any suitable filter 44 may be used. The preferred filter 44 is ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene 1 /8 inches thick coarse, Porex model PE 90-130U.

Fig. 3 illustrates an alternative embodiment of charging system 2. From Fig. 3, a union 64 joins expansion valve 32 and fitting 34. Rivet 16 connects body 4 to union 64. A Western BF 4 HP coupler, VA NPT female has proven suitable for union 64. Expansion valve 32 may be dispensed with and metering tasks handled by manual valve 14 or by electrically-operated valve 16.

Fig. 4 is a cross section of the charging system 2 in use. A dry ice drinking vessel 28 (as illustrated by Fig. 5) is placed in an inverted position and in engagement with free end body 4. Drinking vessel 28 defines a dry ice chamber 48. The dry ice chamber 48 features a primary perforation 50 and secondary perforations 52. Primary and secondary perforations 50, 52 communicate between dry ice chamber 48 and an interior 26 of dry ice drinking vessel 28.

When the apparatus 2 is in engagement with the interior 26 of drinking vessel 28, orifice 38 is held in alignment with primary perforation 50. Filter 44 is supported by fitting 34 and body 4 and is held by fitting 34 and body 4 so that filter 44 covers secondary perforation 52. Alignment of the primary perforation 50 and the orifice 38 is achieved by providing the body 4 with a body longitudinal axis 53 and providing the interior 26 with an interior longitudinal axis 55. The orifice 38 falls on the body longitudinal axis 53 and the primary perforation 50 falls on the interior longitudinal axis 55. The body 4 and interior 26 are configured so that the body and interior longitudinal axes 53, 55 fall substantially on the same line when the interior 26 is placed in engagement with the body 4. The longitudinal axes 53, 55 will fall substantially on the same line if the shape of the body 4 is selected to conform to the shape of the interior 26 - if the interior 26 is cylindrical, the body 4 also will be cylindrical. Body 4 is illustrated by Figs. 2 and 6 as cylindrical in shape, but the body 4 may be any shape that will engage with the interior 26 of the dry ice drinking vessel 28.

In use, liquid carbon dioxide 8 is supplied through coupling 30. The liquid carbon dioxide 8 is metered by expansion valve 32 and discharged into fitting 34. Carbon dioxide (indicated by arrow 54) passing through fitting 34 is in the process of flashing into vapor and freezing. Carbon dioxide shown by arrow 54 is discharged through primary perforation 50 into dry ice chamber 48. The carbon dioxide entering the dry ice chamber 48 comprises a mixture of carbon dioxide vapor and dry ice powder 56. Carbon dioxide vapor that is not frozen (indicated by arrows 58) exits chamber 48 through secondary perforation

52. The carbon dioxide vapor indicated by arrows 58 flows through body 4 and exits from body 4. Dry ice powder 56 is prevented from exiting the dry ice chamber 48 by the filter 44. When sufficient dry ice powder 56 has accumulated in chamber 48, the electrically-operated valve 16 is closed and the flow of liquid carbon dioxide 8 stopped.

As shown by the cross section view of Fig. 5, upon charging dry ice drinking vessel 28 with dry ice powder 56, drinking vessel 28 may be placed in an upright position and a beverage 58 dispensed into drinking vessel 28. Beverage 58 flows through primary and secondary perforations 50, 52 into dry ice chamber 48. Beverage 58 contacts dry ice powder 56. A portion of beverage 58 immediately freezes around dry ice powder 56, forming a solid dry ice/beverage composite 60. The dry ice powder 56 in the dry ice/beverage composite 60 immediately begins to sublimate, releasing carbon dioxide vapor as bubbles 62. Bubbles 62 cause a boiling, bubbling effect within beverage 58. Dry ice/beverage composite 60 is too large to pass through perforations

28, 30. As a result, dry ice 36 poses no danger to a person drinking from dry ice drinking vessel 28.

Figs. 6 and 7 illustrate a preferred dry ice charging station 66 according to the Invention that is useful for charging dry ice drinking vessels 28 in a commercial setting. As shown by Fig. 6, base 68 and dry ice drinking vessel holding portion 70 are provided. The dry ice drinking vessel holding portion 70 may be composed of a substantially transparent material, indicated by lines 72. Any suitable substantially transparent material, such as acrylic plastic, may be used for the dry ice drinking vessel holding portion 70 to allow a server or a

customer to observe the dry ice charging station 66 in operation. A removable lid 74 protects a server and a customer from inadvertent discharge of carbon dioxide 8. Lid 74 may be equipped with interlocks to prevent operation of electrically operated valve 16 with the lid 74 in the open position. As shown by Fig. 7, a base 68 contains an electrically operated valve16, piping 12, T-coupling 22 and pressure relief valve 24. Push button electrical switch 20 to operate electrically operated valve 16 is mounted on a front side of the dry ice charging station 66. Power supply 18 (not shown on Fig. 7) is provided by wall current. Piping 12 connects the charging station 66 to a manual valve 14 and pressure vessel 6. The charging station 66 therefore receives liquid carbon dioxide 8 from an external pressure vessel 6 through manual valve 14.

In the preferred embodiment illustrated by Figs. 6 and 7, no expansion valve 32 is provided and fitting 34 is a straight piece of !4 inch diameter tubing. Fitting 34 defines orifice 38. In the preferred embodiment, rivet 40 is omitted and fitting 34 and body 4 are supported by base 68 using any conventional means, such as an adhesive, a coupling or a compression fitting. In the preferred embodiment of Figs. 6 and 7, Body 4 is a composed of PVC plumbing pipe. In use, an operator will remove the lid 74, exposing the free end 42 of body 4. The operator will invert the dry ice drinking vessel 28 and place the dry ice drinking vessel 28 into engagement with the body 4 as illustrated by Fig. 4 and described above relating to that figure. The operator will replace the lid 74 and depress push button electrical switch 20. Push button electrical switch

20 causes electrical valve 16, shown by Fig. 1 , to open, releasing liquid carbon dioxide 8. The liquid carbon dioxide 8 exiting the electrically operated valve 16 flashes into vapor, a portion of which freezes into dry ice 56. The dry ice 56 and carbon dioxide vapor 58 are propelled within fitting 34 through orifice 38 and into dry ice chamber 48, as described above relating to Fig. 4. Carbon dioxide gas 38 that does not freeze into dry ice 56 escapes through filter 44 into body 4 while dry ice 56 is prevented from escaping the dry ice chamber 48 by filter 44. Carbon dioxide gas escapes from body 4 through holes 76.

When the dry ice chamber 48 is adequately charged with dry ice 56, the operator releases switch 20, stopping the flow of liquid carbon dioxide 8 through electrically operated valve 16. The operator opens lid 74 and removes the dry ice drinking vessel 28 from engagement with the body 4. The operator adds a beverage 58 to the interior 26 of the dry ice drinking vessel 28, as described above relating to Fig. 5. In describing the above embodiments of the invention, specific terminology was selected for the sake of clarity. However, the invention is not intended to be limited to the specific terms so selected, and it is to be understood that each specific term includes all technical equivalents that operate in a similar manner to accomplish a similar purpose.