United States Patent 3643941

There is disclosed a relaxation chamber including a room in which there is a mass of very light, very white, small spheroidal particles, typically composed of expanded polystyrene such as is used in making Styrofoam. The occupants of the room can lie down, sit or move in the mass. The movement gives a sensation similar to that of moving in a swimming pool. The room typically has translucent walls and/or ceiling and colored lights, whose colors may change, are projected on the particles producing a pleasing color effect. The mass may be fluidized by blowing air through it from the base of the room.

Application Number:
Publication Date:
Filing Date:
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
273/DIG.2, 600/28, 601/158
International Classes:
A61M21/00; A61N5/06; (IPC1-7): A63G31/00
Field of Search:
272/2,8,3,15,26,56.5,59,60,1 128
View Patent Images:
US Patent References:
2848976Animal bed1958-08-26Combs
2832406Animal entrance or porthole1958-04-29Turenne
2748854Dog door1956-06-05Lynch
2695608Adjustable closure device for special purpose chambers1954-11-30Gibbon
2543606Apparatus for producing simulated snowstorms1951-02-27Solomon et al.

Foreign References:
Other References:

Popular Mechanics, June, 1939. Page 901. "Gate" .
Universal Zonolite Insulation Co., Chicago, Ill. July 25, 1944 "Sani-Flor" .
Popular Science, Nov., 1957. Page 153. "Porthole for Pets.".
Primary Examiner:
Oechsle, Anton O.
Assistant Examiner:
Kramer, Arnold W.
I claim as my invention

1. A relaxation chamber having walls and a base and having deposited on said base a mass of pellets of density substantially lower than that of water, permitting substantially free movement of a person within said chamber through said pellets, said chamber having a translucent top and including means for projecting light on said pellets through said top.

2. A relaxation chamber having translucent walls and a base and having deposited on said base a mass of pellets of density substantially lower than that of water, permitting substantially free movement of a person within said chamber through said pellets, said chamber including means for projecting light on said pellets through said walls.


This invention relates to the art of entertaining or inducing a state of well-being or relaxation in people and has particular relationship to the achievement of such well-being or relaxation by providing for the people a relaxing environment and atmosphere.

It is an object of this invention to provide such apparatus, and specifically to provide a relaxation chamber.


In accordance with this invention a relaxation chamber is provided in which the subject is relaxed by lying, sitting or moving in a mass of very light particles. Typical of such particles are the expanded polystyrene spheroidal particles used in making styrofoam. These particles are very light having a density of about 1 pound per cubic foot, that is, about one sixty-second the density of water. The particles also have a low coefficient of friction, so that movement in the particles is as easy or easier than movement in water, and are white (but may be colored) and highly light reflecting. The relaxation effect is increased by reflecting white or colored light, whose colors may change, from the particles. Music may be added and the particles may be fluidized.


For a better understanding of this invention, both as to its organization and as to its method of operation, together with additional objects and advantages thereof, reference is made to the following description, taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a view in isometric of a chamber in accordance with this invention;

FIG. 2 is a section taken along line II--II of FIG. 3;

FIG. 3 is an elevational view partially in section of the chamber shown in FIGS. 1 and 2;

FIG. 4 is a view in elevation of another embodiment of this invention;

FIG. 5 is a plan view of the embodiment shown in FIG. 4;

FIG. 6 is a view in elevation of an entrance for the chamber other than that included in the embodiments of FIGS. 1 through 5, showing the entrance closed;

FIG. 7 is a view in elevation showing the entrance open to admit a subject;

FIG. 8 is a view in isometric of a further embodiment of this invention; and

FIG. 9 is a plan view of the chamber shown in FIG. 8.


The apparatus shown in FIGS. 1 through 3 is a relaxation chamber 11 of generally rectangular or square form. The chamber 11 has a base 12 from which double walls 13 and 15 extend. The outer wall 15 is closed by a top 17 on which there is sound or music-producing equipment 18. The inner wall 13 smoothly merges into a top 20.

The outer wall 15 is opaque and the inner wall 13 is translucent. Typically the inner wall 13 may be composed of a white translucent plastic. Loudspeakers 22 connected to the outlet of equipment 18 may be mounted on the top 20 so as to project the sound into the chamber 11.

Within the inner enclosure 14 formed by wall 13 there is a mass 24 of small, very white, very light, spheroidal pellets or particles extending to a convenient height above the base 12. Typically the pellets should be between about one-eighth inch and one-half inch in diameter. Between the inner walls 13 and outer walls 15, typically, colored lighting units 26, whose colors may change periodically, are mounted. The light emitted by the units 26 impinges on the particles 24 and produce a pleasing and relaxing effect.

The wall 13 has openings 19 of generally ellipsoidal or circular form. Each opening 19 is closed by an iris of leaves or strips 31 of a flexible material such as rubber. The openings 19 terminate above or near the top of the mass 24. The walls 15 have openings 30 displaced horizontally from the openings 19. A person desiring to use the apparatus enters the chamber 11 through openings 30, then presses back the strips 31 and enters enclosure 14 through the opening 19. The strips 31 spring back into place after the entrance. On entrance of the person substantially no particles are ejected from the chamber. Subjects in the enclosure 14 relax in the particles lying, kneeling, sitting or moving. The chamber 11 may be a theater or a night club or the like. A platform above the level of the bottom of the openings may be associated with the enclosure 14. The enclosure may, in this case, be entered from a ramp or steps from the platform connected to the opening 19.

A typical chamber 11 may be square and may have an outer side of about 10 to 12 feet in length and an inner side of 6 to 8 feet, and a height of about 12 feet. The particle mass 24 may have a height of 2 feet to 28 inches above the base 12.

The apparatus shown in FIGS. 4 and 5 is a generally semispheroidal housing or chamber 41 having a cylindrical base 42. The chamber 41 may be composed of a translucent plastic material or may be of a specularly reflecting material. For the latter purpose the inside of chamber 41 may be lined with mirrors. The chamber contains a mass of pellets similar to the chamber of FIGS. 1 through 3. A lighting unit 43 is suspended from the top of the chamber projecting light which may be colored on the pellets. The chamber 41 is provided with openings 45 similar to those of the embodiment shown in FIGS. 1 through 3.

In FIG. 6 another closure 51 for the openings 52 in the chamber 54 is shown. This closure 51 includes a plurality of flexible rods 53 which extend from the base 55 of the chamber 54 and are threaded through a supporting bar 57 and extend above the bar 57 across the opening 52 in the chamber 54. Expanded polystyrene spheroids or beads 59 are stacked on the rods 53. To enter the chamber 54 the rods above the bar 57 are separated as shown in FIG. 7 permitting access to the opening 52.

In FIGS. 8 and 9 a generally rectangular chamber 61 is shown. The chamber has a bay front 63 with openings 65 and planar side and backwalls 67 and 69. The top 71 of the chamber 61 is translucent so that it admits daylight. The walls 67 and 69 are of a white opaque material.

While preferred embodiments of this invention have been disclosed herein, many modifications thereof are feasible. This invention is not to be restricted except insofar as is necessitated by the spirit of the prior art.