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Title:
HOUSEHOLD APPLIANCE EXTERNAL COMPONENT AS WELL AS HOUSEHOLD APPLIANCE WITH SUCH A HOUSEHOLD APPLIANCE EXTERNAL COMPONENT
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2017/212373
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
The invention relates to the control panel (5) and the front cladding (7) of a household appliance, whereby said control panel (5) and said front cladding (7) comprise, respectively an external surface (5a) and an external surface (7a), which in the built-in state of said control panel (5) and said front cladding (7) are arranged on the viewing side and, whereby said control panel (5) and said front cladding (7) are at least partially configured from a shape memory material; the invention also relates to a household appliance (1) comprising at least one of said said control panel (5) and said front cladding (7).

Inventors:
ANADÓN BAYO ANDRÉS (ES)
ARTAL LAHOZ MARIA CARMEN (ES)
BUNUEL MAGDALENA MIGUEL ANGEL (ES)
DIAZ BENITO BELEN (DE)
ESTER SOLA FRANCISCO JAVIER (ES)
PLANAS LAYUNTA FERNANDO (ES)
SOLER COSTA JUAN RAMÓN (ES)
TUR GIL ALEJANDRO JUAN (ES)
VILLATE ROBLES ANDER (ES)
Application Number:
PCT/IB2017/053225
Publication Date:
December 14, 2017
Filing Date:
June 01, 2017
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
BSH HAUSGERÄTE GMBH (DE)
International Classes:
D06F39/12; A47L15/42; D06F39/00
Foreign References:
US20110168217A12011-07-14
EP1006230A12000-06-07
JPH05340665A1993-12-21
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Claims:
CLAIMS

1. Household appliance external component (5, 7) comprising an outer surface (5a, 7a), which in the built-in state of the household appliance external component (5, 7) is arranged on the viewing side, characterized in that the household appliance external component (5, 7) at least partially is configured from a shape memory material.

2. Household appliance external component (5, 7) according to claim 1 , characterized in that the shape memory material comprises at least one shape memory polymer. 3. Household appliance external component (5, 7) according to claim 1 or 2, characterized in that the shape memory material comprises a shape memory

polyurethane.

4. Household appliance external component (5, 7) according to any one of the preceding claims, characterized in that the shape memory material comprises a cross- linked polycyclooctene with dicumyl peroxide (DCP).

5. Household appliance external component (5, 7) according to any one of the preceding claims, characterized in that the shape memory material comprises a shape memory alloy.

6. Household appliance external component (5, 7) according to claim 5, characterized in that the shape memory alloy comprises nitinol. 7. Household appliance external component (5, 7) according to any one of the preceding claims, characterized in that the shape memory material comprises a gamma- ray-irradiated polymer material.

8. Household appliance external component (5, 7) according to any one of the preceding claims, characterized in that it is a control panel (5) or a front cladding (7).

9. Household appliance (1) comprising at least one household appliance external component (5, 7) according to any one of the preceding claims.

10. Household appliance (1) according to claim 9, characterized in that it comprises at least one first directing device, by which thermal energy of a component (8) of the household appliance (1) is capable of being conducted to the household appliance external component (5, 7) and/or it comprises at least one second directing device, by which electric energy of a component (9) of the household appliance (1) is capable of being conducted to the household appliance external component (5, 7).

Description:
HOUSEHOLD APPLIANCE EXTERNAL COMPONENT AS WELL AS HOUSEHOLD APPLIANCE WITH SUCH A HOUSEHOLD APPLIANCE EXTERNAL COMPONENT

The invention relates to a household appliance external component with an external surface, which in the built-in state of the household appliance external component is arranged on the viewing side on the household appliance.

In the case of household appliances, such as it is for instance the case with a household appliance for laundry care, for instance a washing machine or a laundry dryer or a washer- dryer, or a household appliance for preparing food items, such as for instance a baking oven, or for instance a household appliance for storing and preserving food items, such as for instance a refrigerator or a freezer or a fridge-freezer combination device, therein components as household appliance external component which are positioned on the front side and thus facing a user when the household appliance is installed as intended are known. These may be control panels or other cladding parts.

In this connection it is known for instance also in the case of dishwashers that such external components are made of plastic or of stainless steel or comprise a combination of metal and a plastic, in particular a polymer material. As known plastics here for instance PP (polypropylene) or else also ABS (acrylnitrile butadiene styrene) is known.

In the case of known household appliance external components these known material compositions, however, occurring signs of wear, such as for instance scratches or indentations remain existent. Thereby the optical overall impression of such a household appliance external component and thus also of the entire household appliance is permanently impaired.

It is the task of the present invention to create a household appliance external component as well as also a corresponding household appliance, in which signs of wear are reduced.

This task is solved by a household appliance external component as well as a household appliance according to the independent claims. A household appliance external component according to the invention has an external surface, which in the built-in state of the household appliance external component is arranged on a household appliance on the viewing side. An essential idea of the invention is to be seen in that the household appliance external component at least partially is configured from a shape memory material. By such a design it is then possible that occurring signs of wear, such as for instance scratching or an indentation, can be remedied and at least partially compensated for. Due to the properties of a shape memory material by thermal energy and/or electric energy it can be acted upon same and by this energy effect the original shape of this household appliance external component can be automatically restored again.

The household appliance external component therefor also in the case of a possibly occurring property of wear by this very specific material design is virtually reparable independently again and these signs of wear can be recompensated for or removed. Thereby, a household appliance external component has permanently high functionality and also an optically high-quality appearance.

In particular it is envisaged that the shape memory material at least has a shape memory polymer. In the very case of embodiments of the household appliance external component at least partially from plastic then occurring signs of wear can easily be remedied again.

In particular it is envisaged that the shape memory material comprises a shape memory polyurethane. It can moreover or instead be envisaged that the shape material memory comprises a cross-linked polycyclooctene with dicumyl peroxide (DCP).

In a further embodiment additionally or instead it can be envisaged that the shape memory material comprises a shape memory alloy. In the very case of metallic household appliance external components then here, too, the corresponding advantage of the remedy of an occurring sign of wear is facilitated.

In particular it is envisaged that the shape memory alloy comprises nitinol. In a further advantageous embodiment additionally or instead it may be envisaged that the shape memory material comprises a polymer material irradiated with gamma rays.

The shape memory material can for instance also comprise ionomers, for instance an Na or Zn. Not only these materials then also contribute to a raised stability of the household appliance external component and raise the rupture safety. Also other materials can then be added to the household appliance external component, in order to then fulfil specific further functionalities of the household appliance external component, for instance to individually adapt the robustness and/or the optical appearance. Also here then surfaces can be created that are generally harder and thus also have a given scratch protection surface.

Particularly advantageously, it is envisaged that occurring heat in a household appliance that is generated in operation is capable of being directed in the household appliance directly to specific positions of a household appliance external component. For this purpose in the household appliance specific directing, for instance directing ducts may be provided. Through these then thermal energy is specifically directed to the household appliance external component. Thereby quasi independently and regularly a thermal energy input upon the household appliance external component is effected so that a permanent continuous process is formed, in order to be able to then reduce possibly occurring wear sign features independently and automatically again or compensate them fully. The household appliance in such an embodiment is then quasi configured to be self- repairing and the energy required in each case for acting upon the shape memory material is then generated by the household appliance itself. This is a particularly advantageous embodiment, since in this connection no energy must be added from outside, nor need any explicit repair cycles, which are performable by an assembly operator, be performed.

In an advantageous way, this can be effected correspondingly with the addition of electrical energy to the household appliance external component. Here, too, for instance electrical energy from an energy source of the household appliance or electrical energy from electrical components of the household appliance can be directed or guided specifically also to the shape memory material of the household appliance external component so that also additionally or instead a self-repair of the household appliance external component can occur. Preferably, the household appliance external component is a control panel or a front cladding for a household appliance. The invention moreover relates to a household appliance with at least one household appliance external component according to the invention or an advantageous embodiment thereof. In particular the household appliance is a dishwasher or a device for the care of laundry or a device for preparing food or a household cooling device. Embodiments of the invention are explained in more detail in the following by reference to a schematic drawing.

The only figure shows a household appliance 1 , which for instance can be configured for the care of laundry items. The household appliance, however, can for instance also be a dishwasher. It can also be a household appliance for storing and preserving food items. Equally as well it can be a household appliance for preparing food.

In the case of embodiment as household appliance 1 for the care of laundry pieces same comprises a housing 2, in which a barrel 3 is arranged, into which pieces of washing can be put for cleaning. Moreover, the household appliance 1 comprises a door 4, which is configured for closing a front side opening of the barrel 3. The door 4 is arranged pivotably on the housing 2.

The household appliance 1 moreover comprises a control panel 5, on which an operating device 6 is formed. The control panel 5 represents a household appliance external component. Moreover it may also be envisaged that a front cladding 7 is present, which equally represents a household appliance external component. The control panel 5 and the front cladding 7 are front side components, which face a user on the front side in the case of correct and intended use or when the household appliance 1 is correspondingly installed.

The control panel 5 at least partially is configured from a shape memory material. The shape memory material comprises at least one shape memory polymer. The shape memory material can comprise a shape memory polyurethane. It may additionally or instead also comprise a cross-linked polycyclooctene, in particular with dicumyl peroxide (DCP).

If the control panel 5 is configured fully of plastic at these corresponding external surfaces, this design of the shape memory material, as it is set out by reference to examples in the above, is possible. Here also the most varied variants with regard to this shape memory material can then be envisaged.

It can also be envisaged that the household appliance external component in the form of the control panel 5, in particular on its external surface, is then at least partially configured from metal. In the case of such a design then the shape memory material additionally or instead can also comprise a shape memory alloy, for instance also nitinol.

In the case of a further alternative embodiment additionally or instead then the shape memory material can also comprise a polymer material irradiated with gamma rays.

The control panel 5 thus with regard to its material composition can be of the most varied design, however, in each case at least partially comprises a shape memory material. The same in analogy applies to the front cladding 7, which equally can be a shape memory material and can be configured according to the concrete embodiments, as they have been set out as to the control panel 5.

The household appliance has in particular a component 8, which emits thermal energy in operation, which preferably is capable of being directed by a directing device specifically to the control panel 5 and/or to the front cladding 7 so that the thermal energy acts upon the shape memory material there. Additionally or instead at least one electronic component 9 is provided, which generates in particular electrical energy, which is capable of being directed by a preferably present directing device to the control panel 5 and/or the front panel 7, so that the electrical energy acts upon the shape memory material there.

Also in the case of the initially named other types of household appliances such household appliance external components arranged on the viewing side and the front side are provided, which then each are correspondingly configured from a shape memory material or also, as can also be the case with the embodiment in the shown figure, can be configured completely from a shape memory material.

LIST OF REFERENCES household appliance

housing

barrel

door

control panel

a outer surface

operating device

front cladding

a outer surface

component

component