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Title:
SINGLE PISTON FOUNDATION BAG-IN-BOX (BIB) PUMP
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2015/188185
Kind Code:
A2
Abstract:
A pump includes a liquid housing having a liquid chamber with a piston/diaphragm assembly arranged therein that responds to a suction stroke and draws liquid into the liquid chamber, and responds to a pressure stroke and provides liquid from the liquid chamber; and a gas housing having a slide valve assembly separating first and second gas chambers. The slide valve assembly responds to a suction-to-pressure-force at the suction stroke conclusion, changes from a suction-to-pressure stroke state, provides gas from the first to second gas chamber through the slide valve assembly, and provides the pressure stroke so liquid passes from the liquid chamber; and responds to a pressure-to-suction-force at the pressure stroke conclusion, changes from the pressure-to-suction stroke state, provides gas from the second chamber through the slide valve assembly, and provides the suction stroke so the liquid is drawn into the liquid chamber.

Inventors:
VERDUGO, Christopher H. (5342 Rutland Drive, Yorba Linda, California, 92886, US)
VILLAGOMEZ, Manuel (782 Silvestre Court, Corona, California, 92879, US)
MEZA, Humberto V. (28 Foxtail Lane, Trabuco Canyon, California, 92679, US)
Application Number:
US2015/034703
Publication Date:
December 10, 2015
Filing Date:
June 08, 2015
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
FLOW CONTROL LLC. (100 Cummings Center, Beverly, Massachusetts, 01915, US)
International Classes:
F04B9/123; F04B19/22
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BARBER, William, J. (Ware, Fressola Maguire & Barber LLP,755 Main Street, P.O. Box 22, Monroe Connecticut, 06468, US)
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Claims:
WHAT IS CLAIMED IS:

1 . A pump comprising:

a liquid housing configured with a liquid chamber having a single

piston/diaphragm assembly arranged therein to respond to a suction stroke and draw liquid into the liquid chamber, and configured to respond to a pressure stroke and provide the liquid from the liquid chamber; and

a gas housing having a slide valve assembly that fluidicly communicates with a first gas chamber and a second gas chamber, the slide valve assembly configured to respond to a suction-to-pressure stroke force at a conclusion of the suction stroke, change from a suction stroke state to a pressure stroke state, provide gas from the first gas chamber to the second gas chamber through the slide valve assembly, and provide the pressure stroke so the liquid passes from the liquid chamber, and the slide valve assembly also configured to respond to a pressure-to-suction stroke force at a corresponding conclusion of the pressure stroke, change from the pressure stroke state to the suction stroke state, provide gas from the second gas chamber to atmosphere through the slide valve assembly, and provide the suction stroke so the liquid is drawn into the liquid chamber.

2. A pump according to claim 1 , wherein

the slide valve assembly comprises a block or housing assembly and an actuator assembly;

the block or housing assembly comprises a slide valve housing configured with a cavity;

the actuator assembly comprises a slide block configured to slide in the cavity of the slide valve housing, an actuator combination having a slide spring arranged between a lower retainer and an upper retainer, and a yoke configured with an opening to contain the actuator combination under compression and also configured to couple to the slide valve housing allowing the slide valve assembly to change between the pressure stroke state and the suction stroke state in response to the suction-to-pressure force and the pressure-to-suction force.

3. A pump according to claim 2, wherein the actuator assembly is configured to slide, rotate or translate in relation to the block or housing assembly in response to the suction-to-pressure force and the pressure-to-suction force.

4. A pump according to claim 1 , wherein the first gas chamber is configured to receive the gas via a gas-in fitting in response to the suction-to-pressure force at the conclusion of the suction stroke.

5. A pump according to claim 1 , wherein the valve slide assembly is configured to provide the gas via a gas exhaust fitting to atmosphere in response to the pressure-suction force at the conclusion of the pressure stroke.

6. A pump according to claim 1 , wherein, during the pressure stroke, the valve slide assembly is positioned so that gas is routed from the first gas chamber thru the slide valve assembly to the second gas chamber. 7. A pump according to claim 1 , wherein, during the suction stroke, the valve slide assembly is positioned so that gas is routed from the second gas chamber thru the slide valve assembly to a gas exhaust fitting.

8. A pump according to claim 1 , wherein the single piston/diaphragm assembly is configured to respond to the gas filling the second gas chamber, provide the pressure stroke causing a displacement of the liquid from the liquid chamber through an outlet fitting, and cause the slide valve assembly to change from the pressure stroke state to the suction stroke state at the conclusion of the pressure stroke.

9. A pump according to claim 1 , wherein the single piston/diaphragm assembly is configured to respond to the gas being exhausted from the second chamber, provide the suction stroke, draw the liquid through a liquid inlet fitting and into the liquid chamber, and cause the slide valve assembly to change from the suction stroke state to the pressure stroke state at the conclusion of the suction stroke.

10. A pump according to claim 9, wherein the single piston/diaphragm assembly comprises a spring configured to respond to the pressure stroke, compress storing energy for the suction stroke, and provide the suction stroke at the corresponding conclusion of the pressure stroke.

1 1 . A pump according to claim 1 , wherein the single piston/diaphragm assembly is configured between the second gas chamber and the liquid chamber, to respond to the suction stroke and move so as to expand the volume of the liquid chamber drawing fluid into the liquid chamber.

12. A pump according to claim 2, wherein the slide valve assembly comprises at least one component made of ceramic.

13. A pump according to claim 12, wherein the slide block is made of ceramic.

14. A pump according to claim 1 , wherein the single piston/diaphragm assembly comprises a piston and a diaphragm, the piston being coupled to the slide valve assembly via a piston shaft/actuator slide assembly, and the diaphragm being coupled between the gas housing and the liquid housing.

Description:
SINGLE PISTON FOUNDATION BAG-IN-BOX (BIB) PUMP

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS This application claims benefit to provisional patent application serial

62/008,782 (91 1 -005.074-1 //F-FLJ-X0010), filed 6 June 2014, which is all incorporated by reference in their entirety.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1 . Field of Invention

The present invention relates to a pump; and more particularly to a pump for controlling the provisioning of syrup from a syrup bag to a fluid dispenser.

2. Description of Related Art

Pumps are known in the art that are air-driven double piston/diaphragm pumps such as the model G & N series BIB pumps that are distributed by the assignee of the present invention. Problems and shortcomings of these known pumps include that they require more parts and more space than is otherwise needed to provide the required output or pumping. For the required output (which is relatively small), these pumps are over rated and therefore not an ideal solution in terms of cost and space. Figure 1 shows an existing product offering having a spool type gas valve that has been in existence for more than 15 years.

There is a need in the industry to provide a solution to the aforementioned problem in terms of cost and space. SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provide a single piston diaphragm pump that provides a solution to the aforementioned problem in the art in terms of cost and space.

By way of example, and according to some embodiments, the present invention may include, or take the form of, apparatus such as a pump featuring a liquid housing configured with a liquid chamber in combination a gas housing configured with a gas chamber.

The liquid chamber may be configured with a single piston/diaphragm assembly arranged therein to respond to a suction stroke and draw liquid into the liquid chamber, and configured to respond to a pressure stroke and provide the liquid from the liquid chamber.

The gas housing may include a slide valve assembly that fluidicly

communicates with a first gas chamber and a second gas chamber. The slide valve assembly may be configured to respond to a suction-to-pressure stroke force at a conclusion of the suction stroke, change from a suction stroke state to a pressure stroke state, provide gas from the first gas chamber to the second gas chamber through the slide valve assembly, and provide the pressure stroke so the liquid passes from the liquid chamber. The slide valve assembly may also be configured to respond to a pressure-to-suction stroke force at a corresponding conclusion of the pressure stroke, change from the pressure stroke state to the suction stroke state, provide gas from the second gas chamber to atmosphere through the slide valve assembly, and provide the suction stroke so the liquid is drawn into the liquid chamber.

The present invention may include one or more of the following features: The slide valve assembly may include a block or housing assembly and an actuator assembly; the block or housing assembly may include a slide valve housing configured with a cavity, recess or channel; and the actuator assembly may include a slide block configured to slide in the cavity, recess or channel of the slide valve housing, an actuator combination having a slide spring arranged between a lower retainer and an upper retainer, and a yoke configured with an opening to contain the actuator combination under compression and also configured to couple to the slide valve housing allowing the slide valve assembly to change between the pressure stroke state and the suction stroke state respectively in response to the suction-to- pressure force and the pressure-to-suction force.

The actuator assembly may be configured to slide, rotate or translate in relation to the block or housing assembly in response to the suction-to-pressure force and the pressure-to-suction force.

The first gas chamber may be configured to receive the gas via a gas-in fitting in response to the suction-to-pressure force at the conclusion of the suction stroke.

The valve slide assembly may be configured to provide the gas via a gas exhaust fitting to atmosphere in response to the pressure-suction force at the conclusion of the pressure stroke.

During the pressure stroke, the valve slide assembly may be positioned so that gas is routed from the first gas chamber thru the slide valve assembly to the second gas chamber.

During the suction stroke, the valve slide assembly may be positioned so that gas is routed from the second gas chamber thru the slide valve assembly to a gas exhaust fitting, then to atmosphere. The single piston/diaphragm assembly may be configured to respond to the gas filling the second gas chamber, provide the pressure stroke causing a

displacement of the liquid from the liquid chamber through an outlet fitting, and cause the slide valve assembly to change from the pressure stroke state to the suction stroke state at the conclusion of the pressure stroke.

The single piston/diaphragm assembly may be configured to respond to the gas being exhausted from the second chamber, provide the suction stroke, draw the liquid through a liquid inlet fitting and into the liquid chamber, and cause the slide valve assembly to change from the suction stroke state to the pressure stroke state at the conclusion of the suction stroke.

The single piston/diaphragm assembly may include a spring configured to respond to the pressure stroke, compress storing energy for the suction stroke, and provide the suction stroke at the corresponding conclusion of the pressure stroke.

The single piston/diaphragm assembly may be configured between the second gas chamber and the liquid chamber to respond to the suction stroke and move so as to expand the volume of the liquid chamber drawing fluid into the liquid chamber.

The slide valve assembly may include at least one component made of ceramic. By way of example, the slide block may be made of ceramic.

The single piston/diaphragm assembly may include a piston and a diaphragm, the piston being coupled to the slide valve assembly via a piston shaft/actuator slide assembly, and the diaphragm being coupled between the gas housing and the liquid housing. Possible applications may include, e.g., bag-in-box fluid transfer, bottled water dispensers, coffee machine auto-refill, beverage dispensers, general fluid transfer, water pressure systems, or chemical spraying systems. BRI EF DESCRI PTION OF THE DRAWING

The drawing includes Figures 1 -6, which are not necessarily drawn to scale, as follows:

Figure 1 is a diagram of a single piston fountain Bag-in-Box (BIB) pump that is known in the art.

Figure 2A is diagram of a cross-section of a single piston fountain Bag-in-Box

(BIB) pump showing and identifying a major component layout, according to some embodiments of the present invention.

Figure 2B is diagram of a cross-section of a single piston fountain Bag-in-Box (BIB) pump showing and identifying porting and fluid areas, according to some embodiments of the present invention.

Figure 3 is diagram of a cross-section of a single piston fountain Bag-in-Box (BIB) pump showing and identifying fluid flow (e.g., gas and liquid flow) in relation to a pressure stroke, according to some embodiments of the present invention.

Figure 4 is diagram of a cross-section of a single piston fountain Bag-in-Box (BIB) pump showing and identifying fluid flow (e.g., gas and liquid flow) in relation to a suction stroke, according to some embodiments of the present invention.

Figure 5 includes Figs. 5A to 5D, where Fig. 5A is a top perspective view of the slide valve assembly, Fig. 5B is a bottom plan view of the slide valve assembly in Fig. 5A, Fig. 5C is a cross-section view along lines A-A of the slide valve assembly show in Fig. 5B, and Fig. 5D is a cross-section view along lines B-B of the slide valve assembly show in Fig. 5B, all according to some embodiments of the present invention.

Figure 6 includes Figs. 6A to 6C, where Fig. 6A is a top perspective view of the block or housing assembly, Fig. 6B is a bottom plan view of the block or housing assembly in Fig. 6A, and Fig. 6C is a cross-section view along lines A-A of the block or housing assembly show in Fig. 6B, all according to some embodiments of the present invention.

Fig. 7A is a top perspective view of the block or housing assembly, and Fig. 6B is a cross-sectional view of the block or housing assembly in Fig. 7A, all according to some embodiments of the present invention.

In the drawing, the Figures have reference numerals and lead lines associated with the various elements shown therein. For the sake of reducing clutter in the drawing, and also improving readability when the specification is read in conjunction with the drawing, every Figure does not include every reference numeral and lead line associated with every element shown therein. Moreover, as a person skilled in the art would appreciate, some elements that do not form part of the underlying point of novelty of the present invention are not provided with a reference numeral and lead line.

DETAILED DESCRI PTION OF BEST MODE OF THE INVENTION

Figures 2A, 2B, 3 and 4 show the present invention in the form of a pump generally indicated as 10. Figure 2A

Figure 2A shows the major component layout of the pump 10 that includes the gas housing 20 and a liquid housing 30.

By way of example, inside the gas housing 20, the following components may be arranged: a slide valve assembly 22 configured therein, a gas housing cover 24, and a piston shaft/actuator slide assembly 26. The slide valve assembly 22 may be configured with a block or housing assembly 22a and an actuator assembly 22b. The block or housing assembly 22a may include a slide valve housing 22a1 , a block plate 22a2 and a gasket block 22a3, as labeled in Figure 2A. The block or housing assembly 22a may also includes a gas opening 22a4, a gas opening 22a4', a gas openings 22a5, a gas openings 22a5', a gas opening 22a6, a gas opening 22a6', and a gas channel or passageway 22a7, a gas channel or passageway 22a7', which are all shown and labeled in relation to Figures 5 and 6.

As labeled in Figure 2A, the actuator assembly 22b may include a slide block 22b1 , a lower retainer 22b2, a slide spring 22b3, an upper retainer 22b4 and a yoke 22b5, which are all shown in further detail in Figure 5. (By way of example, reference label 22b8 (Fig. 5D) indicates where the application of a lubricant, such as a silicon lubrication, may be applied.) The gas housing 20 may also be configured with two gas chamber 21 a, 21 b, which are labeled and identified in Figure 2B. The piston/actuator slide assembly 26 may include a piston shaft coupling member 26a that slides along an actuator slide 26b as the slide valve assembly 22 slides back and forth (i.e., from left to right) when moving from the pressure stroke (Fig. 3) to the suction stroke (Fig. 4), and vice versa. The actuator slide 26b may be mounting between suitable portions of the gas housing 20, e.g., consistent with that shown in Figures 2A, 2B, 3 and 4. By way of example, inside the liquid housing 30, the following components may be arranged: a piston/diaphragm assembly 32, a piston shaft 34, a spring 36 and check valves 38a, 38b. The piston/diaphragm assembly 32 may include a piston 32a and a diaphragm 32b, as labeled in Fig. 2A. (The diaphragm 32b is shown in Figs. 2A, 2B and 3, but not shown in Fig. 4). The piston shaft 34 may be coupled on one end to the piston support member 26a, and may be coupled on the other end to the piston 32a, as shown. The diaphragm 32b may be coupled between the gas housing 20 and the liquid housing 30, as shown in Figs. 2A, 2B and 3. A slipper seal 28 may be configured between part 20a of the gas housing 20 and the piston shaft 34 between gas chambers 21 a, 21 b (e.g., see Fig. 2A).

Figure 2B

Figure 2B shows the porting and fluid areas of the pump 1 0 that includes a gas exhaust fitting 60, a gas-in fitting 62, a syrup outlet fitting 64 and a syrup suction fitting 66. Figs. 2B also shows and identifies the gas chamber 21 a (No. 1 ), the gas chamber 21 b (No. 2) and a liquid chamber 31 a.

Figure 3: The Pressure Stroke

Figure 3 shows the pump 1 0 during a pressure stroke, i.e. when gas flows into the gas chamber 20 causing liquid to flow out of the liquid chamber 31 a of the pump 10.

By way of example, Figure 3 shows steps of the pressure stroke, as follows:

1 . Gas fills the first gas chamber 21 a (no. 1 ) via the gas inlet fitting 62 (Fig. 2B).

2. Gas is then routed thru the slide valve assembly 22 (see arrows ps1 ) from the first gas chamber 21 a to the second gas chamber 21 b (no. 2). In operation, the actuator assembly 22a is positioned to allow the gas to pass from the gas chamber 21 a (no. 1 ) to the gas chamber 21 b (no. 2), e.g., via a gas housing passage or channel that may be formed into part 20b of gas housing 20 (indicated by the flow using arrow ps1 ). By way of example, when the slide valve assembly 22 slides, rotates or translates into the position shown in Figure 3, the slide block 22b1 is configured to allow gas to flow from the first gas chamber 21 a through the valve slide housing 22a1 , through the gas opening 22a5 (Figs. 7A, 7B), through the gas housing passage or channel 22a7 (Fig. 7B), out gas opening 22a6, through the gas housing passage or channel in the gas housing 20, and into the second gas chamber 21 b as indicated by arrow ps1 . In effect, when the slide block 22b1 is in the position in Fig. 3, part of the slide block 22b1 is blocking the middle gas opening 22a4', so the gas cannot flow through the gas opening 22a4' (Fig. 7A, 7B) and out via the gas opening 22a4 (Fig. 5D, 6B) to the gas exhaust fitting 60.

As gas fills the second gas chamber 21 b (no. 2), pressure acts on the piston/diaphragm 32 (Fig. 2A) causing it to travel to the right as shown (see arrow ps2).

As the piston 32a travels rightward, the liquid contents of the liquid chamber 31 a are displaced through the check valve 28a and discharged out the liquid/syrup outlet fitting 64. In addition, the spring 36 is compressed storing energy for the suction stroke shown and described in relation to Fig. 4. Figure 4: The Suction Stroke

Figure 4 shows the pump 1 0 during a suction stroke, i.e. gas flowing out from the pump 10 and liquid flowing into of the pump 10. By way of example, Figure 4 shows steps of the suction stroke, as follows:

1 . At the end of the pressure stroke, the slide valve assembly 22 slides, rotates to translates into the position shown in Fig. 4, the slide block 22b1 changes state, and the gas in the second gas chamber 21 b (no. 2) is routed back thru the gas housing passage or channel in the part 20b of the gas housing 20, through the slide valve assembly 22 (see arrow ss1 ), through the gas opening 22a4' (Figs. 7A or 7B), out the gas opening 22a4 (Figs. 5B or 6B) and out the gas exhaust fitting 60, e.g., to atmosphere (as gas flow exhaust, see arrows ss2). In effect, when the slide block 22b1 is in the position in Fig. 4, part of the slide block 22b1 is blocking the gas opening 22a5, so gas is not flowing from the second gas chamber 21 b back into the first gas chamber 21 a.

2. The pressure in the second gas chamber 21 b (no.2) drops quickly to zero and the spring 36 acts on the piston/diaphragm 32 (see arrows ss3) inducing travel leftward.

3. As the piston/diaphragm 32 travels leftwards (see arrow ss4), the liquid

chamber 31 a is expanded drawing liquid (e.g., syrup) via the syrup suction fitting 66 into the liquid chamber 31 a (see arrow ss5) thru the check valve

38b.

4. At the conclusion of the suction stroke, then the entire mechanism will change to the pressure stroke (see Fig. 3), i.e., the slide valve assembly 22 slides, rotates or translates into the position shown in Fig. 3, the slide block 22b1 changes state back to that shown in Fig. 3C. The Actuator Assembly 22b

In the actuator assembly 22b, the slide spring 22b3 is configured under compression between the lower and upper retainers 22b2 and 22b4, and in relation to the sliding block 22a1 and the yoke 22b5, e.g., when in either the position in the pressure stroke (Fig. 3) or the position in the suction stroke (Fig. 4). When the actuator assembly 22b rotates or translates from the position in the pressure stroke (Fig. 3) to the position in the suction stroke (Fig. 4), or vice versa, the slide spring 22b3 is further compressed, then relaxes once the actuator assembly 22b has fully rotated or translated back to the position in the other position. In effect, the slide spring 22b3 provides the resilience or elasticity to allow the rotation or translation back and forth between the positions in Figs. 3 and 4.

A Ceramic Slide Type Gas Valve 22b

By way of example, the slide valve assembly 22 may include one or more components made of ceramic. For example, the slide block or gas valve 22b1 may include, or take the form of, a ceramic slide type gas valve. As a person skilled in the art would appreciate, a ceramic may take the form of a product or an article of manufacture made from a nonmetallic material by firing at a high temperature, such as porcelain. In particular, porcelain may be made from, or consistent of, kaolin, quartz and/or feldspar that is fired at high temperatures. The scope of the invention is not intended to be limited to any particular type or kind of ceramic or ceramic material that is now known or later developed in the art. Figures 7 A and 7B

Figures 7 A and 7B show the gas opening 22a5', the gas opening 22a6' and the gas channel 22a7'. These openings and channel are closed off in a single pump configuration like that shown in Figures 2A, 2B 3 and 4, but and may be used in a two pump configuration. For example, in the embodiments shown in relation to Figs. 2A, 2B, 3 and 4, either the slide block 22b1 blocks the gas opening 22a5' when the slide block 22b1 is in the positions in Figs. 3 and 4, or the gas opening 22a6' is blocked off, e.g., with a cap (not shown). Applications

By way of example, possible applications may include: BIB pumping, transfer pumping, or beverage dosing.

The present invention may also be used in, or form part of, or used in conjunction with, other fluid handling applications. The scope of the invention is also not intended to be limited to being implemented in any particular type or kind of pump either now known or later developed in the future, and may include other diaphragm pumps, etc.

The Scope of the Invention

While the invention has been described with reference to an exemplary embodiment, it will be understood by those skilled in the art that various changes may be made and equivalents may be substituted for elements thereof without departing from the scope of the invention. In addition, may modifications may be made to adapt a particular situation or material to the teachings of the invention without departing from the essential scope thereof. Therefore, it is intended that the invention not be limited to the particular embodiment(s) disclosed herein as the best mode contemplated for carrying out this invention.