United States Patent 3601136

A tank-washing apparatus for use in tanker ships has a first part which is fixed in the tank and includes a rotatable turret with a swinging nozzle and a water turbine driven by the wash water supplied to the nozzle and a second part which is transferable from one first part to another and contains the transmission gear for driving the turret and nozzle from the turbine.

Application Number:
Publication Date:
Filing Date:
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
134/181, 239/227
International Classes:
B05B3/04; B05B3/16; B08B9/093; (IPC1-7): B08B9/08
Field of Search:
134/167,168,177,180,181 239
View Patent Images:
US Patent References:
3472451TANK WASHING APPARATUS1969-10-14Orem et al.
3444869JET CLEANING DEVICE1969-05-20Guignon et al.
2661241Device for washing oil tanks with water and the like devices1953-12-01Veneziano
2109075Device for cleaning tanks and the like1938-02-22Ruth
2105458Apparatus for cleaning containers1938-01-11Johnson
2082330Hydraulic gun1937-06-01Frede et al.

Primary Examiner:
Bleutge, Robert L.
I claim

1. In tank-washing apparatus having a turret rotatable about a first axis, at least one nozzle carried by the turret and swingable about a second axis at an angle to the first, and a turbine driven by the wash water and coupled to drive the turret and nozzle, the improvement comprising:

2. Apparatus as claimed in claim 1 including a reciprocating rod mounted in said first part and coupled to said nozzle to effect swinging movement thereof, said transmission gear comprising means for converting rotary motion of said turbine into reciprocating motion of said rod.

3. Apparatus as claimed in claim 2 in which said converting means comprise a threaded member, a captive nut member cooperating with said threaded member to effect longitudinal movement thereof, a reversing clutch coupling said captive nut member to said turbine and means for reversing said reversing clutch at the limits of longitudinal movement of the threaded member.

4. Apparatus as claimed in claim 2 comprising a rack on said reciprocating rod and a toothed gear member coupled to said nozzle and engaging the rack for the transmission of drive to the nozzle.

5. Apparatus as claimed in claim 2, comprising a tube surrounding the reciprocating rod, said turret being attached to said tube at one end thereof and the other end thereof being coupled to the turbine for rotation thereby.

6. Apparatus as claimed in claim 1 wherein said second part comprises further transmission gear for rotation of the turret by the turbine.

7. Apparatus as claimed in claim 1 wherein said first part comprises a fixed casing, said turret being rotatably mounted on the inner end of said casing, a passage within said casing for the flow of wash water from the turbine to the nozzle, and drive means for said turret and said nozzle passing through said casing.

8. Apparatus as claimed in claim 7 including hydrostatic pad bearing means rotatably supporting said turret on said casing and means for feeding wash water under pressure to said bearing means.

9. Apparatus as claimed in claim 7 wherein said drive means comprise a tube extending through said passage, the turret being attached to the inner end of the tube, and a reciprocating rod within said tube, said rod carrying a rack and said nozzle having a toothed gear element engaging said rack, and wherein said transmission gear comprises a reversible clutch and screw means coupling said turbine to said reciprocating rod.

The present apparatus relates to an apparatus for use in washing the interiors of tanks, for example, tanks used for the transport or storage of oil and other materials and more specifically the tanks of oil tanker ships.

Tank-cleaning apparatus is known and in use comprising a rotary turret which is suspended within the tank at the lower end of a wash water supply hose and is driven in rotation about a generally vertical axis, the turret carrying one or a number of nozzles mounted for rotation about a generally horizontal axis and delivering the wash water in a jet or jets in a continually changing direction against the internal surface of the tank and in some cases the pressure of the wash water has been used to drive a turbine for effecting rotation of the turret and nozzles.

It has been a common practice to construct such apparatus as a transportable unit which can be extracted from one tank after use and transferred as a whole and inserted in another tank of a series requiring to be washed, but the adjustments to the various depths of suspension and other transference operations have involved much heavy and time-consuming labor particularly in the case of modern tanker ships embodying a considerable number of large-capacity tanks.

It has also been proposed to provide a tank-washing apparatus which is permanently installed and has a drive shaft extending through the wall of the tank which is driven by a motor on the deck and drives the turret and the nozzles through gearing, but for a vessel with several tanks it would be very expensive to provide a separate washing apparatus and driving motor for each tank.

To overcome these difficulties and provide for a convenient and economical washing of several tanks the invention provides a tank-washing apparatus having a turret rotatable about a first axis and at least one nozzle carried by the turret and swingable about a second axis at an angle to the first, and a turbine driven by the wash water and coupled to drive the turret and nozzle, characterized in that the turret and the turbine are in a first part of the apparatus constructed for sealed mounting in the wall of a tank with the turret within the tank and the turbine outside the tank and in that transmission gear between the turbine and the nozzle is contained in a removable second part of the apparatus which can be mounted on the first part outside the tank.

The first part of the apparatus may be permanently mounted in an opening in the roof of a tank and connected to a pressure wash water main through a stopcock and each tank can be provided with one or more of such first parts. The removable second part of the apparatus can conveniently be moved around and attached to a first part for washing any selected tank. The structure of the first part is kept as simple as possible since it has to be provided in each tank and more complex and expensive transmission gear is contained in the second part, of which there need only be one for use with a number of permanently installed first parts.

The invention is illustrated by way of example in the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a diagrammatic perspective view showing a complete apparatus as installed for use,

FIG. 2 is a view in elevation showing the upper end of the first part of the apparatus as installed and the separable second part applied in position on the first part,

FIG. 3 is a view in sectional elevation and on a larger scale of the upper end of the first part of the apparatus,

FIG. 4 is a view in sectional elevation of the separable second part of the apparatus.

FIG. 5 is a view in sectional elevation of the lower end of the first part of the apparatus including the nozzle mounted thereon,

FIGS. 6 and 7 are detail views in sectional elevation and plan respectively of a clutch mechanism embodied in the separable second part of the apparatus, FIG. 6 being taken on the line VI--VI of FIG. 7, and

FIG. 8 is a view in sectional elevation of the lower end of the first part of the apparatus in a direction generally perpendicular to that of FIG. 5, showing a modification of the turret mounting.

Referring to the drawings the apparatus comprises a first part consisting of an elongated hollow casing 10 closed at both ends and provided near to but spaced from one end with an external flange 11 for anchoring the casing 10 with a sealed junction in hole 12 in the tank roof or deck 13.

The closure at the lower end of part 10 is formed by a hollow turret 14 rotatable in a bearing about the vertical axis of the part 10, said turret having a jet nozzle 15 mounted thereon for rotational or rocking movement about a horizontal axis.

The turret 14 is fixedly connected with the lower end of a tube 16 hereinafter termed the torque tube extending through the casing 10 with its upper end accessible through the closure at the upper end of casing 10.

An inlet 17 for wash water under pressure is provided above the flange 11 leading into the interior of the first casing 10 and a water turbine 18 is located in the first part 10, FIG. 3, so as to be traversed by all the entering water, this turbine being utilized to drive all the moving parts of the apparatus.

The water leaving the turbine 18 is directed through the casing of the first part 10 to the turret 14 and the nozzle 15 at the lower end thereof.

The turbine shaft 19 carries a worm 20 meshing with a worm wheel 21 the shaft of which carries a worm 22 meshing with a worm wheel 23.

The worm wheel 23 is keyed to a vertically disposed drive shaft 24 (FIG. 3) mounted in bearings in first part 10 with the upper end accessible from the exterior at the upper end of part 10. The upper end of the drive shaft 24 is slotted or forked as shown at 25 FIG. 3.

The geared coupling between the turbine 18 and the shaft 24 is such as to provide a large speed reduction e.g. 2,700 r.p.m. to 11/2 r.p.m.

The second part of the apparatus comprises a further hollow casing 26 (FIGS. 1,2 and 4)) closed at its upper end and of a form for sealed application in fixed position against the upper end of first part 10, clamping devices 27 being provided for retention of the second part in this position.

An input shaft 28 is mounted in a position for axial alignment with the drive shaft 24 of part 10, driving engagement being effected by engagement of a spade or dog 29 at the lower end of input shaft 28 in the end slot 25 of drive shaft 24.

Rotation of the input shaft 28 is transmitted through a train of gears 30, 31, and 32 to rotate a vertical sleeve 33 having dogs 34 at its lower end making driving engagement with dogs at the upper accessible end of the torque tube 16 in part 10 whereby the tube 16, the turret 14 and the nozzle 15 are rotated unidirectionally about a longitudinal vertical axis in the part 10.

The jet nozzle 15 is required to rock to-and-fro through a predetermined angle about a horizontal axis on the rotating turret 14.

The means for effecting this movement of the nozzle 15 comprises a vertically reciprocating rod 35 extending through the torque tube 16 and into the turret 14, the lower end of the rod 35 being coupled with a rack 36 with teeth encircling the rod, the rack teeth engaging a pinion 37 fast on the axis spindle in the turret carrying the nozzle 15 so that with reciprocation of rod 35 continuous to and fro movement can be imparted to the nozzle 15 as the turret 14 is rotated unidirectionally.

Up and down movement is imparted to the rod 35 by a member 38 mounted for up and down movement in the second part 26 of the apparatus in axial alignment with the rod 35, connection between the member 38 and the rod 35 when the second part 26 is mounted in position being effected by means of a long screw stud 66 extending through a bore in the member 38 and having a screwed free and engageable in the upper end of the rod 35 when the latter is received in a recess 67 at the lower end of the member 28.

The member 38 is in the form of an externally screw-threaded bar incapable of rotation and carrying an internally screw-threaded sleeve 39 mounted so as to be incapable of axial movement and having two spaced pinions 40 and 41 affixed thereto constituting parts of a reversing clutch mechanism.

By virtue of the screw engagement between the bar 38 and the sleeve 39 the bar is caused to rise or fall according to the direction of rotation of the sleeve 39.

The pinion 31 of the gear train in the second part of the apparatus is utilized to drive a clutch shaft 42 carrying loosely mounted dog clutch pinions 43 and 44 (FIG. 6) and a keyed sliding dog clutch element 45 operated by a rockable lever 46 operable in turn automatically.

In one position of the lever 46 the clutch engagement is such that the pinion 41 is driven directly from the pinion 44 and the sleeve 39 rotated in one direction and in the other position of the clutch lever the pinion 40 is driven indirectly from the pinion 43 through an idler 47 so that the sleeve 39 is rotated in the reverse direction.

Means are provided to vary the timing of the automatic clutch operation to vary the amplitude and the location of the arc swept by the jet nozzle 15.

In the second part 26 of the apparatus is mounted a slideable vertical rod 48 having rack teeth 49 in a part of its length and its upper end projecting above the upper wall of the part 26.

On the projecting end of the rod 48 are mounted a pair of spaced and adjustable stops 50 and 51 for engagement by an abutment member 52 affixed to the upper end of the rising and falling bar 38 externally of the second part 26 as the bar 38 approaches the limit of its upward or downward movement, whereby an upward or downward movement is imparted to the rod 48.

The clutch operating lever 46 is provided with a link pinion 55 engaging with the rack teeth 45 in rod 48 whereby the clutch lever 46 is rocked when the desired limit of movement of the bar 38 is reached in either direction to operate the reversing clutch.

In the case shown in FIGS. 6 and 7 the clutch lever 46 is a two-armed member moveable about a pivot 65 and the link pinion 55 is pivoted at 54 between the arms of the clutch lever 46.

The other end of the link pinion 55 is forked to embrace a pin 56 slideable against compression springs 57 on a pair of pins 58 carried by a pivot pin 59 capable of movement with play in a slot 60 in the free end of the clutch lever 46.

This construction constitutes a spring-loaded `over dead center` device ensuring changeover of the reversing clutch with snap action.

The input shaft 28 in the second part of the apparatus is capable of upward yield against a compression spring 61 to facilitate engagement of the spade 29 in the end slot 35 in the drive shaft 24 in the first part, whilst also permitting interruption of rotation of the turret 14 and of rocking of the nozzle 15 at any time by lifting the input shaft 28 by means of a knob 62 accessible from above the second part 26.

The extent and location of the arc traversed by the jet nozzle 15 may be varied as desired by adjustment of the positions of the stops 50 and 51 on the vertically movable post 48, and rotation of the torque tube 16 and the turret 14 may be arrested without interruption of the rocking of the jet nozzle by movement of a bobbin 63 movable in the axial direction upon the sleeve 33 by means of a control member (not shown) together with pins 64 extending through a flange 65 on the sleeve 33 and into the pinion 32, such axial movement withdrawing the pins from the pinion 32 and thus temporarily disengaging the pinion 32 from the sleeve 33.

In the construction shown in FIG. 8 the jet nozzle 15 emerges radially from a domed cover 66 secured by bolts 67 to a flange of spindle 68. The spindle 68 is rotatable in bearings 69 and 70 in the turret 14 and the pinion 37 is splined to the spindle 68. The bearings 69 and 70 and the pinion 37 are enclosed in a casing sealed against the entry of wash water which flows to the nozzle 15 from the casing 10.

In this modified construction the turret 14 is rotatably supported from the bottom end of the casing 10 by a hydrostatic pad bearing. The casing 10 has a flange 71 to which are bolted a spacing ring 72 and a retaining ring 73. The spacing ring 72 has a central sleeve 74 which provides radial location of a bearing member 75 bolted to the turret. The bearing member 75 carries a bearing sleeve 76 which surrounds the sleeve 74 and the wash water under pressure flows between the two sleeves. It then flows through radial passages 77 in the bearing member to an annular space 78 and thence between the bearing member 75 and a bearing plate 79 attached to the retaining ring 73. The turret is thus lifted and supported on the bearing plate 79 by the wash water pressure. Sealing rings 80 normally limits the lifting of the turret and prevent the escape of wash water over the top of the bearing member 75.