Title:
ROTARY COMPACTOR
United States Patent 3561352
Abstract:
A device for compacting refuse such as, for example, garbage, comprised of two rotatably mounted members each having first and second similarly shaped concave surfaces. The members are positioned within a housing having an upper inlet port and a lower outlet port wherein said ports are positioned at spaced, angular intervals. Refuse enters the housing through the inlet port, is swept up toward one of the rotating members which is held stationary by the remaining one of the rotating members until the members engage one another at which time the swept up refuse is compacted between the opposing concave surfaces of the rotating members. At this time both members are then rotated so as to position refuse compacted between the rotating members immediately above the outlet port where they may then be ejected by gravity, or alternatively, by an auxiliary linear-type ejection means, through the lower outlet port and into a refuse container.


Inventors:
HIRSCH JACK
Application Number:
05/018542
Publication Date:
02/09/1971
Filing Date:
03/11/1970
Assignee:
JACK HIRSCH
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
53/529, 100/215, 100/218, 100/229A, 100/233, 100/295, 425/214, 425/426
International Classes:
B30B9/30; B65F1/00; (IPC1-7): B30B15/14; B30B15/30
Field of Search:
53/124 18
View Patent Images:
Primary Examiner:
Wilhite, Billy J.
Claims:
I claim

1. Means for compacting refuse material comprising:

2. The compacting device of claim 1 wherein said first and second compactor members are each provided with first and second concave compacting surfaces on opposite sides thereof.

3. A device for compacting refuse comprising:

4. The compacting device of claim 3 wherein said first and second compactor members are each provided with first and second concave compacting surfaces on opposite sides thereof.

5. The compacting device of claim 3 wherein said driving means is comprised of a driving motor;

6. The compactor of claim 5 wherein said reversing means is further comprised of means to terminate rotation of said first and second compactor members when said member positioned beyond said outlet opening has rotated through nearly said one revolution.

7. The compactor device of claim 6 wherein said second means is further comprised of means for restraining movement of the compactor member positioned on the opposite side of said outlet opening until it is engaged by the other of said members.

8. The compactor device of claim 3 further comprising driving means for selectively rotating each of said first and second compactor members in only one direction; and

9. The compactor apparatus of claim 8 further comprising means for maintaining the compactor member positioned before the outlet opening stationary until engaged by the rotating compactor means.

10. The compactor device of claim 9 further comprising means for terminating rotation of both of said compactor members when they reverse their positions relative to said outlet opening.

Description:
The present invention relates to compactors, and more particularly to rotary-type compaction apparatus for receiving, compacting and ejecting refuse preferably into refuse containers.

The devices conventionally employed for compaction of refuse, such as garbage, are typically comprised of linear-type rams or presses. Such devices require either auxiliary ejecting rams or openings having machine controlled closures, or both, in order to eject compacted refuse upon completion of the compaction operation.

The present invention is characterized by providing a rotary-type compactor which eliminates the need for either one or both of the above-mentioned auxiliary devices while providing for rapid and efficient compaction of the refuse.

The present invention is comprised of a pair of rotatable members each provided with first and second opposing surfaces of similar concave configurations. The rotating members are mounted within a housing having an upper inlet port and a lower outlet port positioned respectively above and below the rotating members.

The upper inlet port may be provided with a chute for guiding refuse through the port and into the region of the rotating members. One of the members is held stationary and is positioned on one side of the inlet port, while the remaining rotating member is moved past the inlet opening to sweep up the refuse deposited therein and move the refuse toward the stationary member. The rotating member moves until it engages the stationary member, at which time the refuse is compacted between the confronting concave surfaces. At this time, the stationary member is released, enabling it to be rotated with the then rotating member to move the compacted refuse immediately above the outlet port, whereupon the rotation of both members is terminated. The compacted refuse may either drop through the lower outlet port by gravity or be urged therethrough by a linear ram so as to be deposited in a refuse container. Refuse containers may be positioned below the outlet port by providing a roller conveyor, conveyor belt or carrousel carrying a plurality of refuse containers so as to rapidly position an empty refuse container beneath the outlet port as soon as the last container positioned beneath the outlet port has received refuse. This arrangement eliminates the need for providing sliding door enclosures required in compactors employing linear ram devices.

It is, therefore, one primary object of the present invention to provide a rotating-type compactor.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a novel compactor for refuse, and the like, which utilizes a pair of rotating members for receiving and compacting refuse therebetween, which refuse is delivered through an inlet port and for rotating the compacted refuse over an outlet port where the compacted refuse is ejected and deposited into refuse containers.

These as well as other objects of the present invention will become apparent when reading the accompanying description and drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is an elevational view showing the rotary compactor of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a top view showing the rotary compactor members employed in the compactor apparatus of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a perspective view showing the driving means for the compactor rotary members of FIGS. 1 and 2.

FIG. 3a is a sectional view of the rotary members of FIG. 3.

FIG. 4a is a sectional view of a portion of the compactors of FIG. 3a.

FIG. 4b is a schematic of the electrical controls employed in operating the compactor.

FIG. 4c is a flattened schematic view of the cam surfaces used in conjunction with the electrical controls and is useful in explaining the operation of the compactor.

FIG. 1 shows an elevational view of the novel compactor apparatus of the present invention, which apparatus 10 is comprised of an enclosure 11 having top and bottom surfaces 12a and 12b, respectively, and having a continuous, vertically aligned side surface 13. The rotating members (not shown) in FIG. 1 are mounted for rotation within enclosure 11.

Enclosure 11 is provided with an opening 14 which functions as an inlet port and which is connected to a chute 15 for receiving refuse which may be deposited in the upper end 15a of chute 15 so as to move downwardly through the chute in the direction shown by arrow 16 so as to enter inlet port 14.

Enclosure 11 is further provided with an outlet port at 17 which is positioned immediately above a conveyor 18 comprised of two inclined conveyor sections 19 and 20, and a horizontally aligned conveyor section 21. Each of the conveyor sections are provided with a plurality of rows of free-wheeling roller members 22 for rollably supporting a plurality of refuse containers which may be moved up conveyor section 19 and along conveyor section 21 for receiving compacted refuse, and which may be removed by rolling the filled refuse containers down the inclined conveyor section 20. Obviously, if desired, the refuse containers may be moved either in the direction shown by arrow 24 or in the direction shown by arrow 25 for positioning beneath the outlet opening 17 of the refuse container.

The conveyor sections may be replaced by a conveyor belt arrangement or a carrousel or turntable arrangement, if desired, depending only upon the needs of the user.

Enclosure 11 may further be provided with an opening at 26 which is normally sealed by a plate 27 operated by piston assembly 28. Plate 27 may be circular in shape and may further be provided with an annular-shaped cutting edge 29 positioned around the periphery of the plate. As soon as the refuse is compacted and positioned over the outlet opening 17, piston assembly 28 may be operated to move plate 27 downwardly in the direction shown by arrow 30 so as to urge the compacted refuse through the outlet opening 17 and into the refuse container 23 positioned beneath the outlet opening. The annular-shaped cutting edge 29 serves to release the compacted material from the rotatable compactor members.

FIG. 2 shows a top, plan view of the rotating members mounted within the housing 11. FIG. 2 shows the enclosure 11 with the top plate removed to facilitate an understanding of the rotating compactor assembly.

Dotted line 14 in FIG. 2 represents the inlet opening which communicates with chute 15 and the interior of enclosure 11. Dotted line 17 represents the outlet opening which communicates between the interior of enclosure 11 and the refuse containers selectively positioned therebelow. The compacting members are comprised of rotatable members 31 and 32, each being rotatably mounted about a longitudinal axis (represented by point 33) in a manner to be more fully described.

The compaction apparatus operates in the following manner:

Refuse is deposited in chute 15 and enters the enclosure 11 through inlet opening 14. Actuation of a switch (to be more fully described) initially causes rotating member 31 initially located at position P1, and having concave surfaces 31 a and 31b, to rotate in the direction shown by arrow 34. As soon as the rotating member 31 reaches the dotted line position 31', concave surface 31a sweeps the refuse in the direction of rotation to move the refuse toward the concave surface 32a of rotatable member 32.

Rotating member 31 continues to rotate from the dotted line position 31' to the dotted line position 31", at which time its forwardmost edge 31c engages edge 32d of rotatable member 32. At this time, the refuse deposited into the enclosure and swept up by rotating member 31 is compacted in the hollow, cylindrical shaped region defined by concave surfaces 32a and 31a" as well as the interior surfaces of the enclosure top and bottom sides 12a and 12b, respectively. Up to this point, rotating member 32 is held stationary. However, as a soon as edges 31c and 32d engage one another, rotating member 32 is released (by means to be more fully described) so as to be permitted to rotate in the clockwise direction, as shown by arrow 34, in unison with rotating member 31. The rotation of members 32 and 31 in unison continues until member 32 occupies the position (P3) previously occupied by rotating member 31 in FIG. 2. At this time, the compacted refuse embraced between the concave surfaces 31 a and 32a is positioned immediately above outlet opening 17. In cases where the compaction ratio is not too high, the compacted refuse will drop by gravity through outlet opening 17 and into the refuse container positioned immediately beneath the opening.

In those instances where the compaction ratio is high (usually 6 to 1 or greater), ejection of the compacted refuse may be assisted by energizing piston means 28 shown in FIG. 1, to urge the compacted refuse vertically downward through outlet opening 17 so as to be ejected into a appropriately positioned refuse container.

It can be seen that the relative positions of rotating members 31 and 32 have been reversed, whereby the rotating members 31 and 32 which were initially positioned to the right and left, respectively, of outlet opening 17, are now positioned respectively to the left and right of outlet opening 17 so that concave surfaces 31a and 32a of rotating members 31 and 32 lie immediately above outlet opening 17.

In this position, the operation continues such that rotating member 32 is now rotated in the direction shown by arrow 34 to repeat substantially the identical compaction operation, except for the fact that the compacted refuse is now embraced between concave surfaces 32b and 31b, respectively.

FIG. 3 shows a perspective view of the rotating members 31 and 32 which are elongated members, each of a height H which is just slightly less than the height H1 of enclosure 11 (see FIG. 1). Rotating member 31 is fixedly secured to a pair of cylindrical shells 34 and 35, while rotating member 32 is fixedly secure to a pair of cylindrical shells 36 and 37, respectively. As best shown in FIG. 3 a, the upper end of shell 35 extends into a circular-shaped recess having a bearing 38 provided in the interior surface 12a of housing 11. The lower surface of housing 11 is provided with a circular-shaped ledge and bearing assembly 39 for receiving the lower edge of cylindrical shell 35. Cylindrical shell 36 is provided with a lower portion of reduced diameter 36a. The upper portion of cylindrical shell 35 is provided with a similar upper section (not shown) of reduced diameter. The section 36a of shell 36 is telescopingly received within the upper end of the cylindrical shell 34 so as to establish the rotational mounting for both of the rotating members 31 and 32. A bearing B is provided between shells 34 and 36 to facilitate rotation of the shells 34 and 36 independently of one another. The arrangement between shells 35 and 37 is substantially identical in arrangement and operation.

The interior surface of shell 35 is provided with gear teeth 35b around its periphery. Gear teeth similar to the gear teeth designated by the numeral 35b are similarly provided around the interior surface of shell 37.

A driving motor 40 is positioned below the opening 39a defined by ledge 39 and has an output shaft 41. A gear member 42 is rigidly mounted for rotation upon shaft 41. A pair of gears 43 and 44 engage with gear 42 and are respectively provided for selectively driving rotating members 31 and 32, respectively. Gear 43 is coupled to a gear 46 through shafts 45a and 45b and a clutch mechanism 47. Gear 44 is coupled to gear 48 by means of shafts 49a and 49b and a clutch mechanism 50. Gears 46 an 48 are further coupled to braking mechanisms 51 and 52 through shafts 53 and 54, respectively. The opposite ends of braking mechanisms 51 and 52 are coupled through stationary shafts 55 and 56, respectively, whose upper ends are rigidly secured to portion 38 of the housing top surface 12a.

The operation of the mechanism shown in FIG. 3a is as follows:

Motor 40 is energized so as to rotate output shaft 41 and gear 42 in the direction shown by arrow 57, rotating gears 43 and 44 in the direction shown by arrows 58 and 59, respectively.

Clutch mechanism 47 is operated so as to couple the rotation of gear 43 with gear 46, while clutch mechanism 50 is operated so as to disengage the rotation of gear 44 from gear 37. Simultaneously therewith, braking mechanisms 51 and 52 are controlled so as to be disengaged and engaged, respectively, thereby enabling rotatable member 31 to rotate in the clockwise direction (as in shown in FIG. 2) while maintaining rotatable member 32 stationary.

As soon as the edges (for example, the edges 31c and 32d shown in FIG. 2) of the rotatable members are engaged, braking mechanism 52 is disengaged to enable the rotating member 32 to be rotated clockwise under control of the rotating member 31. The members continue to rotate in unison until they reach the relative positions shown in solid line fashion in FIG. 2, at which time the confronting concave surfaces (for example, surfaces 31b and 32b of FIG. 2) are positioned immediately above the outlet opening 17. At this time, clutch mechanism 47 is operated so as to disengage gear 46 from gear 43 and braking mechanisms 51 and 52 are operated so as to cause the rotating members to come to an abrupt halt so that the compacted refuse embraced between the rotating members is positioned immediately above the outlet opening.

As was previously described, the rotating members are now reversed as to their positions relative to opening 17. Thus, in order to perform a subsequent compacting operation, clutch mechanism 47 disengages gear 46 from gear 43, while clutch mechanism 50 couples the rotation of gear 44 to gear 48. At this time, braking mechanism 51 holds rotating member 31 in the position occupied by the solid line rotating member designated by the numeral 32 of FIG. 2, while braking mechanism 52 is released. Rotating member 32 which has not reversed its position so as to occupy the solid line position designated by the rotating member 31 of FIG. 2, is caused to rotate clockwise in the direction shown by arrow 34 of FIG. 2 to sweep up refuse and cause the refuse to be compacted between its concave surface 32b and the concave surface 31b of rotating members 31. As soon as the edge 32c of rotating member 32 engages the edge 31d of rotating member 31, braking mechanism 51 is released to permit rotating member 31 to be driven into rotation by rotating member 32 (whose associated clutch mechanism 47 is engaged at this time). The rotating members continue to rotate in unison until their compacting surfaces 32b and 31b lie immediately above outlet opening 17, at which time both braking mechanisms 51 and 52 are engaged to abruptly halt the rotation of rotating members and at which time clutch mechanism 50 is operated to disengage gear 48 from gear 44. The compacting operations are repeated in this manner with the rotating members reversing their positions relative to outlet opening 17.

FIGS. 4a through 4c show the control circuitry for operating the mechanisms of FIG. 3a. FIG. 4a shows cylindrical shells 34 and 36 which are each provided with a pair of cam surfaces 60--61 and 60'--61', respectively, which cam surfaces cooperate with stationary mounted microswitches 62--63 and 62'--63', respectively. The cam surfaces, which are shown in straight line fashion in FIG. 4c and which will be more fully described hereinbelow, cooperate with projecting fingers 62a--63a and 62a'--63a' extending from each microswitch device. These extending fingers operate as cam followers to follow the contour of the cam surfaces in order to establish electrical circuits which are shown in FIG. 4b.

For purposes of understanding the operation of the control circuitry, let it be assumed that the rotating members 31 and 32 occupy the solid line positions as shown in FIG. 2, which positions are further identified by the designating letters P1 and P2, respectively. In order to begin a compacting operation, switch 65 is operated. Switch 65 is comprised of a pair of movable switch arms 65 a and 65b which are ganged together and which mechanical connection is represented by dotted line 66. The manner in which the movable arms 65a and 65b are mechanically linked is such as to cause movable arm 65b to become disengaged from its cooperating stationary contact 67b when movable arm 65a is moved into engagement with its cooperating stationary contact 67a. Conversely, when movable arm 65a is disengaged from its stationary contact 67a, movable arm 65b is moved into engagement with its cooperating stationary contact 67b.

With rotating member 31 in position P1 (note FIGS. 2 and 4 b), switch assembly 65 is operated so that its movable arm 65a engages stationary contact 67a, whereby movable arm 65b will be disengaged from its stationary contact 67b. In this position, electrical power is connected from the +V terminal to common terminal 68 through movable arm 65a, while power is disconnected from common terminal 69a. At this time, the cam surface 60 is raised (see P1 of FIG. 4 b), causing microswitch 62 to move to the closed position. This energizes clutch 47 to cause the rotation of gear 43, which continuously rotates, to be coupled to gear 46. Clutch 47 is mechanically (or electrically) connected to brake 51 so that brake 51 is automatically released when clutch 47 is engaged. Thus, rotating member 31 is free to rotate under control of gear 43 until it reaches the position P3, at which time the depression in cam surface 60 passes beneath the feller arm 62 a to disconnect power from clutch assembly 47 which may be provided with mechanical bias means (not shown) to move the clutch assembly to the disengaged position in the absence of electrical power and to cause brake 51 to halt movement of member 31.

During the time in which the rotating member 31 is rotating (as a result of the fact that clutch 47 is energized), the rotating member 31 moves from the position P1 to the position P2. At this time, the raised cam surface of cam member 61 passes beneath feeler arm 63 a of switch 63, causing clutch mechanism 50 to be electrically connected to the +V power so as to rotate rotatable member 32 under control of gear 44. The connection 52a between brake 52 and clutch 50 releases brake 52, enabling rotating member 32 to be moved in unison with rotating member 31.

Rotation of rotating members 31 and 32 continues until rotating member 31 occupies the position P3, at which time the depression of cam surface 60 moves beneath the feeler arm 62 a of switch 62, causing switch 62 to be opened at this time to remove power from clutch 47, causing member 31 to be abruptly halted.

As soon as the compaction operation is completed and the rotating members have reversed their positions relative to outlet opening 17, a subsequent compaction operation is performed by operating switch assembly 65 to disconnect movable arm 65a from its stationary cooperating contact 67a and to connect movable arm 65b to its cooperating stationary contact 67b. In this condition, the cam surfaces 60' and 61' operate in a fashion substantially identical to that described above for cam surfaces 60 and 61 respectively, so as to operate the associated switches 62'd 63', respectively, in a similar fashion.

Whereas the preferred embodiment described herein discloses the provision of cam surfaces in conjunction with switches to control the operation of the rotating members, it should be understood that this arrangement may be replaced by other means such as electronic or electro-optical means, if desired. For example, each of the cam surfaces may be replaced by continuous annular-shaped strips of selected light and dark areas which are illuminated by a light surface source for each strip, with the reflected light from each surface being picked up by photocells associated with each strip to provide a similar operation. Alternatively, the cam strips may be replaced by strips of conductive material selectively spaced at predetermined intervals with insulating material to complete electrical circuits with their associated switch members to perform substantially the same functions. Obviously, other alternative control techniques may be employed.

It can be seen from the foregoing description that the present invention provides a novel rotary compaction apparatus for compacting refuse such as, for example, garbage, and the like whereby refuse is inserted into the compaction housing, is compacted therein and is then moved above an outlet opening for ejection of the refuse into suitable refuse containers. Whereas the complementary concave surfaces of the rotating members form a substantially cylindrical-shaped compaction region, it should be understood that this design is specifically advantageous for use in forming compacted material having a cylindrical shape to facilitate ejection into refuse containers of a like shape. Obviously, any other configuration may be employed, if desired.

If desired, a pistonoperated sliding door 71 may be provided in chute 15 for preventing refuse deposited in chute 15 from entering into inlet opening 14 until rotating member 31 (for example) moves from position P1 to P2. The piston assembly 72 for operating sliding door 71 may be electrically coupled with switch 70 and 70' so as to move to the closed position when the rotating member has passed the downstream end of inlet opening 14. The sliding door and piston mechanism 71 and 72 may, however, be omitted since any refuse which is not capable of being swept up by the member which is rotating at any given instant will simply be deposited behind the rotating member so as to be compacted during the next compaction operation.

Also a piston operated mechanism 80 may be provided to operate a sliding door 17a to seal outlet opening 17 in instances when one of the rotatable members has partially passed inlet opening 14 to prevent uncompacted refuse from passing through outlet opening 17 until this opening is otherwise sealed or blocked by movement of one of the rotatable members to position P1.

Although this invention has been described with respect to its preferred embodiments, it should be understood that many variations and modifications will now be obvious to those skilled in the art and it is preferred, therefore, that the scope of the invention be limited not by the specific disclosure herein, but only by the appended claims.

The embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive privilege or property is claimed are defined as follows: