Title:
Ice bin lighting
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A first embodiment of this new invention is a portable free standing after market lighting fixture for installation into ice bins to illuminate the stored ice therein. The super bright solid state light emitting diodes, (LEDs), emit colored illumination that is reflected by all of the random reflecting and refracting surfaces of the stored ice pieces in the bin. The super bright LEDs provide abundant colored light with little heat to dissipate, therefore loss of ice due to fixture heat is negligible. A second embodiment of this invention relates to the installation of LEDs into original equipment manufacturing of ice bins. Colored illumination of ice in an ice bin creates a very pleasing effect appreciated by most viewers.



Inventors:
Currie, Joseph Edward (Webster, NH, US)
Application Number:
11/318951
Publication Date:
06/28/2007
Filing Date:
12/27/2005
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
62/347
International Classes:
F25D23/00; F25C1/00
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
TON, ANABEL
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
JOSEPH E. CURRIE (WEBSTER, NH, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A portable free standing lighting fixture designed to stand within the ice storage area of an ice bin and to illuminate the inside of an ice bin with colored light; comprising: a means to generate colored light; a means to supply electrical power to the colored light generation; a means to adjust the height and orientation of the colored light generation within the ice bin storage area; a means to assure that the portable fixture remains in a freestanding and upright position.

2. Installation of super bright colored LEDs between the double walls of an ice bin during manufacturing of the ice bin, so that colored illumination from the LEDs illuminates the ice storage area of the bin, either directly through openings in the inner wall of the ice bin, or through one or more transparent or opaque water proof windows installed into an inner wall of the ice bin.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

(Not Applicable)

STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT

(Not Applicable)

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates to ice bins for the storage of ice cubes of various shapes and sizes, and more specifically to the lighting of the internal volume of the bins where ice is stored. At the present time there are no light fixtures designed specifically for installation in the inside of an ice bin. The present invention seeks to present a state of the art lighting fixture, as an after market accessory for installation in an ice bin, that uses colored solid state lighting, (herein after LEDs) and to present methods of installing LED lighting in original equipment manufacturing of an ice bin.

    • 01) U.S. Pat. No. 4,200,346 issued to Belokin, Jr.; Paul, on Apr. 29,1980 discloses portable, stackable, insulated storage bins fabricated of insulating material and set upon a removable ring assembly of rolling casters.
    • 02) In U.S. Pat. No. 5,165,255 issued Nov. 24, 1992 to Alvarez, et al., disclosure is made of a two stage ice making and dispensing system with an ice storage compartment located above an ice dispensing compartment in a vertical alignment, and an ice making machine mounted above the ice storage compartment.
    • 03) Kidd, Robert P., in U.S. Pat. No. 5,350,085 issued on Sep. 27, 1994, discloses a beverage dispenser with an ice bin that is divided into a front section and a rear section. The front section has a built in cold plate and the rear section is capable of being partitioned in order to reduce the overall capacity.

None of the above inventions and patents, taken either singly or in combination, is seen to describe this instant invention.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Restaurants and bars that serve liquid refreshments in glasses to patrons generally maintain a supply of ice cubes in a storage bin located where it is visible to customers. This supply of ice, most often illuminated by dim indirect area lighting and advertising sign lighting, does nothing to enhance the mood atmosphere in this area of the establishment. The first embodiment of this present invention seeks to overcome the negative aspect of an unlit ice bin by providing a new, portable lighting fixture, designed to free stand in, and illuminate the ice contents of an ice storage bin with colored illumination that creates an aesthetically pleasing effect.

The first embodiment of the present invention is a new portable ice bin lighting fixture comprised of an all aluminum and stainless steel frame with welded components. Aluminum angle or other stock is used to construct the feet and legs of this freestanding unit. The one-inch square light emitting diode substrates are aluminum riveted to a flat surface of the lighting fixture back plane. The electrical conductors that supply low voltage dc electrical power to the LEDs are permanently soldered to the electrical connection pads of the LEDs because the LEDs have a nominal life expectancy of 10,000 hours. The simple open construction of the unit makes it possible to unplug the unit electrical supply cable from the adapter that supplies the low dc voltage to the LEDs and wash it in a dishwasher or sink in order to maintain adequate cleanliness of the comestible ice container.

The second embodiment of the present invention is the permanent installation of one or more super bright colored LEDs between the double walls of an ice bin during manufacturing of the ice bin; so that the optic covers and lenses of the LEDs are passing through the inside wall of the bin through water proof grommets, or by directing light from colored LEDs mounted against the inner surface of the outside wall of the ice bin into the ice bin storage area through one or more transparent or opaque water proof windows installed into the inside wall of the ice bin, proximate the LEDs.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING

FIG. 1 is a diagram of a freestanding portable ice bin lighting fixture.

FIG. 2A is a diagram of that depicts LEDs mounted through the inner wall of a double walled ice bin.

FIG. 2B is a diagram that depicts LEDs mounted on the inner surface of the outside wall of a double walled ice bin.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS OF THE INVENTION

FIG. 1 is diagram that depicts a portable freestanding ice bin light fixture. Super bright LEDs 12 were aluminum riveted to lighting fixture back plane 11. Lighting fixture back plane 11 is held above fixture feet 14 by fixture legs 13. Electrical supply cable 10 is connected to LEDs 12.

FIG. 2A depicts a double sidewall of an ice bin with an outside wall 17 and an inner wall 24. No. 16 depicts the inner surface of inner wall 24 with super bright LEDs 19 shown protruding through watertight grommets 18 mounted through inner wall 24.

FIG. 2B depicts the installation of super bright LEDs 21 mounted between an ice bin outer wall 23 and inner wall 22, and positioned to direct illumination through transparent or opaque window 20 mounted into ice bin inner wall 22.