Title:
Cap for vacuum container
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A vacuum storage device includes a can, a cap for closing the can, an inflatable seal for better sealing a gap between the can and the cap and a pump for pumping air from the can to the exterior and into the seal. The cap includes a collar and a disk formed on an internal face of the collar, thus defining an upper space in the collar above the disk for receiving the pump and a lower space in the collar under the disk for receiving the seal. The cap may include an annular rib formed on a lower side of the disk, and the seal may be installed between the collar and the annular rib. The annular rib may include an annular flange for retaining the seal in position. The pump may include a first duct and a second duct. The first duct extends through an orifice defined in the disk within the annular rib so that air can be pumped from the can through the duct when the cap is mounted on the can. The second duct extends through a second orifice defined in the disk into an orifice defined in the seal so that air can be pumped into the seal through the second duct. A cover may be mounted on the collar for shielding the pump in the upper space. A manual switch may be mounted on the cover and connected with the pump. A pressure sensitive switch may be connected with the pump and communicated with the can for detecting the pressure in the can and controls the pump based on the pressure in the can.



Inventors:
Chen, Jen-fu (Feng Yuan City, TW)
Application Number:
10/329806
Publication Date:
07/01/2004
Filing Date:
12/26/2002
Assignee:
CHEN JEN-FU
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
53/210, 141/95, 220/203.19
International Classes:
B65B31/04; (IPC1-7): B65B1/04
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20060021670Grain handling device and method of its useFebruary, 2006Baber
20090200128HYDRAULIC DISC BRAKE CALIPER WITH ONE WAY PLUMBINGAugust, 2009Takizawa et al.
20080185067Pressurized containers and methods for filling themAugust, 2008Lim et al.
20090032135Fuel Supply method and fuel supply deviceFebruary, 2009Iida et al.
20070169841Clean rapid fill water tank cap and air reliefJuly, 2007Stonich
20060075762LNG regasApril, 2006Wijngaarden et al.
20090229699Beer tenderSeptember, 2009Arcuri
20090308489IN-VEHICLE HYDROGEN STORAGE APPARATUSDecember, 2009Hirakata
20040003864Aerosol filling adapterJanuary, 2004Bloome et al.
20090044877METHOD FOR CONTROLLED FILLING OF PRESSURIZED GAS TANKSFebruary, 2009Faudou et al.
20090044878DEVICE FOR PREVENTING FILLED VESSELS FROM SPILLING DURING CONVEYING OF THE SAMEFebruary, 2009Albrecht



Primary Examiner:
MAUST, TIMOTHY LEWIS
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Alan D. Kamrath (Minneapolis, MN, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A vacuum storage device including: a can; a cap for closing the can; a seal for sealing a gap between the can and the cap, the seal being inflatable for adequate sealing; and a pump for pumping air from the can to the exterior and into the seal.

2. The vacuum storage device according to claim 1 wherein the cap includes a collar and a disk formed on an internal face of the collar, thus defining an upper space in the collar above the disk for receiving the pump and a lower space in the collar under the disk for receiving the seal.

3. The vacuum storage device according to claim 2 wherein the cap includes an annular rib formed on a lower side of the disk, and the seal is installed between the collar and the annular rib.

4. The vacuum storage device according to claim 3 wherein the annular rib includes an annular flange for retaining the seal in position.

5. The vacuum storage device according to claim 2 wherein the pump includes: a first duct extending through an orifice defined in the disk within the annular rib so that air can be pumped from the space through the duct when the cap is mounted on the can; and a second duct extending through a second orifice defined in the disk into an orifice defined in the seal so that air can be pumped into the seal through the second duct.

6. The vacuum storage device according to claim 2 including a cover mounted on the collar for shielding the pump in the upper space.

7. The vacuum storage device according to claim 6 including a manual switch mounted on the cover and connected with the pump.

8. The vacuum storage device according to claim 2 including a pressure sensitive switch connected with the pump and communicated with the can for detecting the pressure in the can and controls the pump based on the pressure in the can.

9. The vacuum storage device according to claim 8 wherein the pressure sensitive switch is received in the upper space and supported on an upper side of the disk.

10. The vacuum storage device according to claim 9 wherein the pressure sensitive switch includes a differential pressure transducer extending through a third orifice defined in the disk within the annular rib, a chip and a connector through which the pressure sensitive switch can be connected with the pump.

11. The vacuum storage device according to claim 10 wherein the differential pressure transducer includes a duct and a sensor inserted in the duct.

12. The vacuum storage device according to claim 10 wherein when the cap is mounted onto the can, the pressure sensitive switch detects an increase on the pressure and accordingly sends an ON signal to the chip, and on receiving this ON signal, the chip actuates the pump.

13. The vacuum storage device according to claim 10 wherein when the pressure in the can is reduced to a certain value, the differential pressure transducer detects this phenomenon and sends an OFF signal to the chip, and on receiving this OFF signal, the chip stops the pump.

14. The vacuum storage device according to claim 10 wherein if air enters the can so that the pressure in the can increases to a certain value, the differential pressure transducer will detect this increase on the pressure and send an ON signal to the chip, and on receiving this ON signal, the chip will actuate the pump.

15. The vacuum storage device according to claim 8 including a cover mounted on the collar for shielding the pump 6 and the pressure sensitive switch received in the upper space.

16. The vacuum storage device according to claim 15 including a manual switch mounted on the cover and connected with the pressure sensitive switch.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field Of Invention

[0002] The present invention relates to a cap for a vacuum container.

[0003] 2. Related Prior Art

[0004] Taiwanese Patent Publication No. 302897 discloses a vacuum safe including a plurality of chambers. Each chamber includes a doorframe and a door 21 equipped with a seal 22 for airtight engagement with the doorframe. After the doors 21 are opened and closed many times, the seals 22 might become deformed. When this happens, the seals 22 will provide inadequate effect of sealing, and a large force must be exerted on the doors 21 against such the doorframes for quite some time before adequate vacuum occurs in the chamber due to sufficient air pumped from the space. Forcing the doors 21 against the doorframes is however troublesome.

[0005] The present invention is therefore intended to obviate or at least alleviate the problems encountered in prior art.

SUMMARY OF INVENTION

[0006] It is the primary objective of the present invention to provide an adequate vacuum storage device.

[0007] According to the present invention, a vacuum storage device includes a can, a cap for closing the can, an inflatable seal for better sealing a gap between the can and the cap and a pump for pumping air from the can to the exterior and into the seal.

[0008] The cap includes a collar and a disk formed on an internal face of the collar, thus defining an upper space in the collar above the disk for receiving the pump and a lower space in the collar under the disk for receiving the seal. The cap may include an annular rib formed on a lower side of the disk, and the seal may be installed between the collar and the annular rib. The annular rib may include an annular flange for retaining the seal in position.

[0009] The pump may include a first duct and a second duct. The first duct extends through an orifice defined in the disk within the annular rib so that air can be pumped from the can through the duct when the cap is mounted on the can. The second duct extends through a second orifice defined in the disk into an orifice defined in the seal so that air can be pumped into the seal through the second duct.

[0010] A cover may be mounted on the collar for shielding the pump in the upper space. A manual switch may be mounted on the cover and connected with the pump.

[0011] A pressure sensitive switch may be connected with the pump and communicated with the can for detecting the pressure in the can and controls the pump based on the pressure in the can.

[0012] Other objects, advantages, and novel features of the invention will become more apparent from the following detailed description when taken in conjunction with the attached drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS

[0013] The present invention will be described through detailed illustration of embodiments referring to the attached drawings wherein:

[0014] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a vacuum storage device including a can and a cap according to the present invention;

[0015] FIG. 2 is similar to FIG. 1 but showing the cap in a cutaway view.

[0016] FIGS. 3 and 4 are cross-sectional views of the vacuum storage device shown in FIG. 1.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

[0017] Referring to FIGS. 1˜4, according to the preferred embodiment of the present invention, a vacuum storage device includes a can 2, a cap 4, a pump 6, a pressure sensitive switch 8, a power unit 9 and a seal 10.

[0018] The can 2 defines a space 21 for storing articles. The can 2 includes a closed lower end and an open upper end.

[0019] The cap 4 can be mounted on the can 2. The cap 4 includes a collar 40 and a disk 41 formed on an internal face of the collar 40. An upper space 42 is defined in the collar 40 above the disk 41, and a lower space 43 is defined in the collar 40 under the disk 41. An annular rib 44 is formed on a lower side of the disk 41. The annular rib 44 includes an annular flange.

[0020] The seal 10 is installed between the collar 40 and the annular rib 44. The seal 10 is retained in position by means of the annular flange of the annular rib 44. The seal 10 is hollow and inflatable.

[0021] The pump 6 is received in the upper space 42 and supported on an upper side of the disk 41. The pump 6 includes a first duct 61 and a second duct 62. The first duct 61 extends through an orifice defined in the disk 41 within the annular rib 44. When the cap 4 is mounted on the can 2, air can be pumped from the space 21 through the duct 61. The second duct 62 extends through a second orifice defined in the disk 41 between the collar 40 and the annular rib 44 into an orifice defined in the seal 10. Thus, air can be pumped into the seal 10 through the second duct 62.

[0022] The pressure sensitive switch 8 is received in the upper space 42 and supported on an upper side of the disk 41. The pressure sensitive switch 8 includes a differential pressure transducer 81 extending through a third orifice defined in the disk 41 within the annular rib 44, a chip 82 and a connector 83 through which the pressure sensitive switch 8 can be connected with the pump 6. The differential pressure transducer 81 includes a duct 84 and a sensor 85 inserted in the duct 84.

[0023] A cover 7 is mounted on the collar 40 for shielding the pump 6 and the pressure sensitive switch 8 received in the upper space 42. A manual switch 71 is mounted on the cover 7. The manual switch 71 is connected with the pressure sensitive switch 8 through a cable (not numbered).

[0024] The power unit 9 includes a cable 91 and a plug 92. The cable 91 extends through a hole defined in the collar 40. The cable 91 includes an end in connection with the pressure sensitive switch 8 and an opposite end at which the plug 92 is formed.

[0025] Referring to FIGS. 3 and 4, the cap 4 is mounted on the can 2. The cap 4 is moved toward the can 2. The air in the space 21 is compressed so that the pressure thereof is increased. The pressure sensitive switch 8 detects this increase on the pressure and accordingly sends an ON signal to the chip 82. On receiving this ON signal, the chip 82 actuates the pump 6 in order to suck air from the space 21 through the first duct 61. Moreover, the pump 6 blows into the seal 10 through the second duct 62. The seal 10 is inflated for better engagement with the open upper end of the can 2 regarding sealing.

[0026] When the pressure in the can 2 is reduced to a certain value, the differential pressure transducer 81 detects this phenomenon and sends an OFF signal to the chip 82. On receiving this OFF signal, the chip 82 stops the pump 6.

[0027] If air enters the can 2, the pressure in the can 2 will increase, and the differential pressure transducer 81 will detect this increase on the pressure and sends the ON signal to the chip 82. On receiving this ON signal, the chip 82 actuates the pump 6, and repeats the foregoing process.

[0028] The present invention has been described through detailed illustration of the preferred embodiment. Those skilled in the art can derive many variations from the preferred embodiment without departing from the scope of the present invention. Therefore, the preferred embodiment shall not limit the scope of the present invention. The scope of the present invention is defined in the attached claims.