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Title:
PERSONAL RECHARGEABLE PORTABLE IONIC AIR PURIFIER
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/173257
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A portable rechargeable personal ionic air purifier energizing a persona! airspace and cleaning particulate pollutants therefrom provides removable attachment of ion emitter and housing subassemblies by magnetic attraction, provides an electrically grounded conductive member external to tie housing that releasably clips a lanyard or article of clothing, includes a decorative surround and provides an external ground plate for use with a desktop mount, armband or other accessory.

Inventors:
GENEREUX, Philippe, J. (2675 Norberry Crescent, Ottawa Ontario, K1V 6N3, 6N3, CA)
VANDENBELT, Rudy, A. (308 Billings Ave, Ottawa Ontario, K1H 5L3, 5L3, CA)
CLARKE, Adam, T. (2696 Marie Street, Ottawa Ontario, K2B 7E4, 7E4, CA)
Application Number:
US2019/020637
Publication Date:
September 12, 2019
Filing Date:
March 05, 2019
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
HEADWATERS INC. (134 Pleasant Street, Marlblehead, MA, 01945, US)
International Classes:
A61L9/22; B03C3/41; H01T23/00
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
DURIGON, Albert, Peter (20 Eustis St, Cambridge, MA, 02140, US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
WHAT IS CLAIMED IS:

I . A personal air space cleaner, comprising: a wearable housing having external surfaces and of such dimension and weight as to fee comfortable when worn; an electronic circuit that is powered by battery power and that pi o\ ides both a. ground potential and an excitation potential; an ion emitter connected to said electronic circuit that is excited to emit ions when it is energized at said excitation potential; a conducti ve lanyard; and a conductive member electrically connected to said ground potential and

mechanically connected to said wearable housing that extends externally to said external surfaces thereof and is adapted to recei ve the lanyard and to removably attach it to said wearable housing to which said conductive member is mechanically connected, thereby electrically grounding foe lanyard by contact with said conductive member electrically connected to said ground potential when said lanyard is received thereby.

2 The personal air space cleaner of claim 1 wherein said conductive member is a resiliently biased law attached to the housing that Is adapted to resiliently open so as to receive the lanyard between it and foe confronting surface of the housing and to resiliently close so as to capture it between the jaw and the confronting surface of the housing, thereby electrically grounding the wearer’s body when the wearable housing is supported about the neck by said lanyard captured by said jaw provided by said conductive member that is electrically connected to said ground potential.

3. The personal air space cleaner of claim 1„ wherein said conductive member is a resiliently biased jaw attached to the housing that is adapted to removably receive an article of clothing between it and the confronting surface of the housing and adapted to contact the body portion confronting the article of clothing, thereby electrically grounding the body when said wearable housing is mounted to said article of clothing by said jaw and said jaw is in contact with the body portion confronting the article of clothing.

4. The personal air space cleaner o f c la im 1 , wherein said electronic circuit Is .mounted within sard housing.

5. The personal air space cleaner of claim I , further including a second conductive member electrically connected to said ground potential and mounted to an external surface of said housing.

(>. The personal air space cleaner of claim 5, further including an armband adapted to mount the housing to an amt of a user with said second conductive membefr confronting said arm thereby electrically grounding the arm by contact with said second conductive member electrically connected to said ground potential when said wearable housing is worn on said an» by said armband.

7. A personal air space cleaner, comprising: a wearable housing subassembly of such dimension and weight as to be comfortable when worn having external surfaces and an electronic circuit that is powered by battery power that provides an excitation potential; a first member mounted to one of said surfaces of said wearable housing; an ion emi tter subassembly having external surfaces and an ion emitter that is excited to emit ions when it is energized at said excitation potential; a second member mounted to one of said surfaces of said ion emitter subassembly; wherein at least one of said first and second members magnetically attracts the other of said first and second members; and wherein said second member mounted to one of said surfaces of said ion emitter subassembly cooperates with said first member mounted to one of said surfaces o f said wearable housing subassembly to removably mount said ion emitter subassembly to said wearable housing subassembly by action of magnetic attraction of the first and second members.

8. The personal air space cleaner of claim 7, wherein said fi rst and said second members are of conductive material, wherein said first member of conductive material is connected to receive said excitation potential provided by said electronic circuit, wherein said second member of conductive material is connected to said ion emitter, and wherein said first and second conductive members supply said ionization potential to said ion emitter by conduction through said first and second members when said ion emitter subassembly is mounted to said wearable housing subassembly by action of magnetic attraction of the first and second members. 9 The personal air space cleaner of claim 7, wherein said surfaces of said housing subassembly include opposing Iron! and back sides, said back side thereof adapted to seat on the confronting surface of a person wearing the wearable housing subassembly, said front side including a recess defined by a peripheral wall adapted to recei ve said ion emitter subassembly, and wherein said first member is mounted in said recess.

10. A personai sir space cleaner, comprising: a wearable first housing that is light in weight and comfortable when worn; an ion emitter mounted to said wearable first housing; an energization circuit mounted to said wearable first housing for energizing said ion emitter at potential to emit ions and defining ground potential; a conductive lanyard adapted to suspend the wearable first housing about the neck of a person wearing the same that is connected to said ground potential for grounding the body of a person wearing the wearable first housing by contact with the conductive lanyard to pro vide a potential difference between the ion emitter and the body of the person wearing the wearable first housing that draws to the body at ground potential the ions emitted by said ion emitter when energized at said ionization -potential through the personal air space entraining particulates and thereby cleaning the air being breathed by the person wearing the wearable first housing; and a second housing having first wall portions defining decorative or informational features and second wall portions adapted to removably receive said wearable first housing.

1 1. The personal airspace cleaner of claim 10, wherein said second wall portions define a central opening adapted to receive and removably retain said wearable first housing within said central opening and wherein said first wall portions of said second housing defining decorative or informational features surround said central opening.

12. The personal airspace cleaner of claim 10, wherein said ion emiter is removably mounted to said wearable first housing and includes an exposed front surface adapted to bate graphics or text.

Description:
PERSONAL RECHARGEABLE PORTABLE IONIC AIR PURIFIER

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED INVENTIONS

This application is related to United States patent 9,737,895 entitled Personal Rechargeable Portable Ionic Air Purifier, issued August 22, 2017 to Genereux et el; to United States patent 7,215,526 entitled Ion Generator with Open Emitter and Safety Feature, issued May 8, 2007 to Joannou; and to United States patent 6,919,053 entitled Portable Ion Generator and Dust Collector, issued July 19, 2005 to Joannou, each incorporated herein by reference.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to ion generators, and more particularly, to batery- operated portable ion generators for personal use and for air purification.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Portable ionic air purifiers are called upon to conirollably provide ions to energize and to clean a polluted personal airspace such as that of a taxicab or airplane cabin or other environ of viruses, pollen, smoke, mold, dust mites, and other particulate pollutants while posing little or no personal shock risk, and among other things to exhibit a long battery life and to be manufacturable at low cost. Genereux et al. United States patent 9,737,895, entitled Personal Rechargeable Portable ionic Air Purifier, discloses a high-efficiency ionization circuit, lanyards that plug-in to portable housing to establish them at ground potential, and different protectable ion emitter embodiments Joannou, United States patent 7,215,526, entitled Ion Generator with Open Emitter and Safety Feature, discloses an ion emitter, a safety circuit and an analog ionization circuit, and Joannou, United States patent 6,919,053, entitled Portable Ion Generator and Dust Collector, discloses, among other things, a pendant pin emitter on a housing and an energization circuit.

The plug-in lany ards of Genereux etal include plugs that at each of its ends plug into mating receptacles provided therefor on the portable housing thereof by means of which the lanyard is removably attached to the housing and electrically grounded. The plugs carried by the lanyard, and/or their mating receptacles, however, are subject to soiling and/or deformation from handling and use which may result in poor connectivity or failure to achieve the requisite mechanical attachment or to establish the lanyard at ground potential. In addition, the specialized plug and receptacle hardware not only adds to material costs but also precludes the use of any lanyards except specialized lanyards having plug ends.

The protectable ion emitter embodiments of Genereux et at allow the replacement of ion emitters that are consumed in use and include different movable cover and slide embodiments to protect the ion emitter when not in use to prevent unwanted contact with the ion emitter that may result in damage and/or impaired operability. The different movable cover and slide embodiments disclosed therein, however, are subject to defoliation from handling and use which may result in sticking or other loss of functionality with the result of poor or failed ion emitter protection. In addition, the movable cover and slide embodiments disclosed therein add to material and manufacturing costs undesirably increasing overall product costs.

SUMMARY OB THE INVENTION

One object of the present invention is to disclose a personal rechargeable portable Ionic air purifier having a lanyard by which it is worn that is plug-less and not subject to soiling and/or deformation induced mechanical attachment or electrical grounding failure.

In accord therewith, the personal air space cleaner of the present invention includes a wearable housing having external surfaces and of such dimension and weight as to be comfortable when worn; an electronic circuit that is powered by battery power and that provides both a ground potential and an excitation potential; an ion emitter connected to said electronic circuit that is excited to emit ions when it is energized at said excitation potential; a conductive lanyard; and a conductive member electrically connected to said ground potential and mechanically connected to said wearable housing that extends externally to said external surfaces thereof and is adapted to receive the lanyard and to removably attach it to said wearable housing to which said conductive member is mechanically connected, thereby electrically grounding the lanyard by contact with said conductive member electrically connected to said ground potential when said lanyard is received: thereby.

In one presently preferred embodiment, the conduct ive member is a resiliently biased jaw attached to the housing that is adapted to resiliently open so as to receive the lanyard between it and the confronting surface of the housing and to resiliently close so as to capture it between the jaw and the confronting surface of the housing thereby electrically grounding the wearer’s body when the wearable housing is supported about (he neck by said lanyard captured by said jaw provided by said conducti ve member electrically connected to said ground potential.

The jaw of the presently preferred embodiment of the conductive member external to said wearable housing may also be used to atach to an article of clothing.

Any conductive member geometry so long as it captures and electrically grounds the lanyard externally of the housing and supports the housing about the head and neck and/or provides for housing attachment to articles of clothing and the like may be employed.

Another object of the present invention is to disclose a personal rechargeable portable ionic air purifier that provides for ion emitter protection when not in use and ion emitter replacement without requiring movable covers or slides or other moving parts and that is not subject to deformation or sticking.

I» accord therewith, the personal air space cleaner of the present invention includes a wearable bousi ng subassembly of such di mensi on and weight as to be comfortable when worn having external surfaces and including an electronic circuit that is powered by battery- power that provides an exci tation potential; a first member mounted to one of said surfaces of said wearable housing; anion emitter subassembly having external surfaces and an ion emiter that is excited to emit ions when it is energized at said excitation potential; a second member mounted to one of said surfaces of said ion emitter subassembly; wherein at least one of said first and second members magnetically attracts the other of said first and second members; and wherein said second member mounted to one of said surfaces of said ion emiter subassembly cooperates with said first member mounted to one of said surfaces of said wearable housing subassembly to removably mount said ion emitter subassembly to said wearable housing subassembly by action of magnetic atraction of the first and second members. In one presently preferred embodiment, said first and said second members are of conductive material, said first member of conductive material is connected to receive sard excitation potential provided by said electronic circuit, said second member of conductive material is connected to said ion emitter, and said first and second conductive members supply said ionization potential to said ion emi tter by conduction through said first and second members when said ion emitter subassembly is mounted to sard wearable housing subassembly by action of magnetic attraction of the first and second conductive members.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

These and other objects, ad vantages features and inventive aspects of the present invention will become apparent as the invention becomes better understood by reference to the folio wing detailed description of the presently preferred embodiments thereof, and to the drawings, wherein :

FIGURE I is a front pictorial view of a portable rechargeable persona! ionic air purifier in accord with fee present invention;

FIGURE 2 is an exploded sectional view of the portable rechargeable personal ionic air puri tier in accord with the present invention taken along fee lines 2-2 of FIGURE 1 ;

FIGURE 3 back pictorial view of a portable rechargeable personal ionic air purifier in accord with the present inven tion; and

FIGURE 4 shows in the FIGURES 4A and 4B thereof front and rear pictorial views of the portable rechargeable personal ionic air purifier wife an exemplary decorative surround in accord wife the present invention. DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PRESENTLY PREFERRED

EMBODIMENTS

It is to be understood that the invention is not limited in its application to the details of construction or to the arrangements of the components set forth in the following description or illustrated in the drawings. The invention is capable of other embodiments and of being practiced and carried out in various ways. Also, it is to be understood that the phraseology and terminology employed h erein are for the purpose of the description and should not be regarded as limiting.

Turning now descriptively to the drawings, in FIGURE 1 illustrated generally at 10 is the portable, rechargeable, personal ionic air purifier 10 of the present invention. The purifier 10 includes a wearable housing subassembly generally designated 12 of material, weight, construction and dimension adapted to be comfortably worn and/or personally carried withou t any noticeable burden . An ion emitter subassembly generally designated 14 is removably mounted in a manner to be described to the wearable housing subassembly 12.

The ion emitter subassembly 14 includes a carbon brush 16. The user hangs the purifier 30 around their neck «sing a conductive cord or lanyard 18 mounted in a manner to be described to the wearable housing subassembly 12 and turns the purifier K)“on” using a switch, not shown. A cloud of ions, also not shown, is thereby' produced off of carbon brush 16 or other ion emitter directed towards the facial area, not shown, to energize the personal airspace with ions and remove particulates therefrom. These ions attract opposite charged particles in the air and are then attracted together towards the nearest ground source. The conductive cord 18 ensures that the ground source is the body of the user and not the breathable air stream, thus effecti vely cleaning the breathable air stream of contaminants in the air and/or producing negative ions. The purifier Ϊ0 cleans the air, typically about a: three-foot sphere about the head when the purifier is worn about the neck using the lanyard 18, of viruses, pollen, smoke, mold, dust mites and other particulate-pollutants. The purifier can also he placed, for example, on a night stand, so that die air around the pillow area is purified of pollutants, or located nearby on a table, seat or anywhere else energization by negative ions and/or purification may be desired or necessary. An armband, wristband and the like may be used to mount the device 10 to the body in lien of the lanyard in a manner to he described. it is known from United States patent 6,919.053 that a grounded surface in proximity of a high voltage ion source increases the production of ions. Ideally an electrical connection is formed between the ground terminal of the high voltage source and the surface in question in the case of a personal air purifier, this connection can be achieved through a conductive fabric lanyard which is in contact with the user’s skin. The fabric is ideally composed of ordinary fabric with conductive elements interweaved. The conductive elements produce an electrical connection between the user and one side of a high voltage power circuit output providing an energi/anon signal at ionization potential. The conductivity of the fabric can be achieved using a multitude of methods, some of which will desirably provide a more comfortable user experience than others. As appears more fully below, the purifier 10 of the instant invention may also employ an otherwise ordinary metal necklace such as of gold or sil ver in a manner to he described.

The conductive grounding neck strap allows for the de vice to use the body of the person wearing the purifier as a ground source. This has the effect of providing a large- ground plane and a significant increase in ion output from the purifier. The strap is generally of cotton construction with interwoven layers of conductive materials. It is connected directly to the floating ground in the device and concurrently to the individual user while hanging around the neck and/or in contact with bare skin.

The ground cord may be constructed of any type of conductive materials. A ground plate in contact with the body of the user to be described may he used in a desk mount or a bedstead, arm or wrist band or other mounting embodiments. Other grounding means may also be employed.

Referring now to FIGURE 2, generally designated at 30 is an exploded sectional view of the portable rechargeable personal ionic air purifier in accord with the present invention taken along the lines 2-2 of FIGU RE 1 The wearable housing subassembly 12 includes a battery 32 and printed circuit board 34 mounted tberewithhi The battery 32 supplies the electrical circuitry carried by the circuit hoard 34 with power. The circuitry defines electrical ground and provides an output signal at ionization potential. Any suitable electrical circuitry to convert the tottery power to ionization potential such as the safe, and high-efficiency, electrical circuitry shown and described in USP 9,737,895, incorporated herein by reference, may be employed to controliably energize the ion emitter 16 to safely emit ions at ionization potential. Non-reehargeable battery sources may also be used for operation of this purifier.

The wearable bousing subassembly 12 includes a .front surface generally designated 36 having a peripheral wall 38 (best seen in FIGURE I) defining a recess generally designated 40 and a hish-voltage magnet 42 mounted to the housing 12 flush with the recessed surface 40 thereof- A high-voltage wire connector 44 connects the signal at ionization potential produced by the high-voltage circuitry 34 to the high-voltage magnet 42. A magnet 46 is mounted to the housing 12 flush with the recessed surface 40 in spaced-apart relation to the magnet 42. A ground plate 48 is mounted to the rear surface generally designated SO of the wearable housing subassembly 12.

The ground plate 48 is of conductive material and is electrically connected to ground potential. The ground plate 48 preferably protrudes such that ground is readily accessible when the housing 12 is received in an armband or wristband or other accessory to holdit in contact with the body. It is also an efficient way to transfer ground to other accessories such as desk or bed mounts. Referring now to FIGURES 1 and 2, the ion emitter subassembly 14 includes a generally fiat cover member 52 dimensioned to fit into the recess 40 of the wearable housing subassembly 12 An elongated carbon brush wire 54 is mounted to the cover member 52 such that brush 16 is exposed at its distal end at the top of the cover member 52. The proximate end of the elongated carbon brush wire 54 is mechanically and electrically connected to a magnetic material conductive contact plate 56 by solder or weld 58. The magnetic material conductive contact plate 56 is itself adhesively or otherwise fastened to the inside surface of the cover member 52.

When the subassembly 14 is inserted in the recess 40 provided therefor in the wearable housing subassembly 12, the conductive magnetic members 42, 46 contact the conductive magnetic member 56 As will be readily appreciated by those of skill in the art, on the one hand, the ion emitter subassembly 14 is thereby removably attached to the wearable housing subassembly 12, by action of the magnetic atraction that subsists therebetween, and on the other hand, the ion emiter 16 is energized at ionization potential, by completion of an electrical circuit defined between the brash 16, crimp 58, conductive magnetic plate 56, and conductive magnet 42 connected via the high voltage wire connector 44 to ionization potential at the high-voltage output of the ion energization circuit carried by the printed circuit board 34.

Whenever the carbon brush 16 becomes consumed, the ion emitter subassembly 14 may be replaced by a replacement subassembly by the simple expedient of removal of One ion emiter subassembly 14 and replacement wi th another by magnetic action: of catch and release. The carbon brush 16 is protected within the recess 40 from damage due to handling and/or Storage.

Although a recess receiving the ion emiter subassembly is presently preferred, other means may be employed to provide the intended alignment of the carbon brush. For example, the placement of the magnets could provide alignment, or, to take another exemplary embodiment, a round plate on a round body, not shown, may be employed to point the carbon brush emitter in any desired direction.

In the presently preferred embodiment, the ion emitter and wearable housing subassemblies 12, 14 each include magnetic conductive members to provide both removable attachment and foe completion of foe elec trical circuit be tween the c arbon brush emitter and the ionization circuit. In alternati ve embodiments in accord with the present in vention, an electrical plug and receptacle or other connection arrangement, not shown, may be provided, separate from the magnetic members, to complete the electrical circuit in alternative embodiments in accord with foe present invention, a different number and arrangement of magnetically conductive and/or magnetic members may be provided by any arrangement suitable to removably attach the ion emitter and wearable housing subassemblies by magnetic action.

Referring now to FIGURE 3, generally designated at 70 is a back pictorial view of the portable rechargeable personal ionic air purifier in accord with the present invention. An elongated conductive member 72 is attached to the back surface 38 of the wearable housing subassembly 12 and electrically connected to electrical ground. In the presently preferred embodiment, the elongated conductive member 72 is shaped to provide a resilient conductive jaw external to the housing 12 ai ground potential, although it could be differently configured without departing from the inventive concepts. The lanyard 18 is captured by the conductive member 72, which, because the conducti ve member is electrically grounded, is alsoelectrically grounded, and which, when the lanyard 18 is worn about the neck establishes the body of the user, not shown, at the same potential as the ground potential. The lanyard 18 is as easily removed as it is inserted into the resilient jaw.

Since no specialised plug ends and mating plugs are required, the lanyard 1 K may be a simple loop of conductive material. The lanyard 1.8 may also he, for example, the user 's own sil ver and/or gold neckwear. The resilient jaw provided by conducti ve member 72 of the presently preferred embodiment is capable of receiving an article of clothing between it and the confronting surface 50 of the wearable bousing 12, which permits the mounting of the portable wearable housing 12 on an article of clothing, such as a T-shirt or sleeve or other article of clothing not shown. When the article of clothing of whatever variety is removably recei ved by the resilient jaw provided by the conducti ve member 72, the ground plate 48 contacts the confronting portion of the surface of the body of the user which establishes the body of the user, not sho wn, at the same potential as the ground potential . The article ofclothing Is as easily removed as it Is inserted ink) the resilient jaw provided by the conductive member 72 The conducti ve member may be variously configured to releasably grasp the lanyard and/or an article of clothing without departing from the inventive concepts.

The ground plate 48 in alternative embodiments may be employed to transfer ground to a desk mount, or a bed stand, or may even be used with a wristband, or armband, or other device for attaching the wearable bousing to an intended body part, all not shown.

Referring now to FIGURE 4A, generally designated al 90 is a front pictorial view of the portable rechargeable personal ionic air purifier 10 with an exemplary decorative surround generally designated 92 of silicone or other pliable or other material in accord wi th the present invention. The decorative surround 92 can be made colorful and can be shaped to resemble a bear, as shown, or any desired shape, or to define a logo, or to bear a pattern or graphics or to have textual features. A colorful, aesthetically shaped silicone or other surround makes the device more appealing to various populations,, such as children » and the surround may also serve as a marketing tool.

The decorative surround 90 has open front and back sides generally designated 94, and 96 (best seen in FIGURE 48). The open front 94 allows to access the removable emitter brash subassembly 14. The open back 96 does not interfere with the external ground provided by the clip 72, lanyard 18 or ground plate 48.

As will be readily appreciated, tire combination of text and graphics on the front of the cover member 52 of the ion emitter subassembly 14 and the shape and color and informational content o.f the decorative surround 92 can be integrated and cooperative, or independent, without departing from the inventive concepts. M any modifications of the presently disc losed embodiment will become apparent to those of skill in the art without departing from the inventive concepts.