Title:
Structure for Presenting and Displaying Goods
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
Merchandise display cabinet for showing refrigerated or frozen merchandise that features a vertical opening for accessing the merchandise space, which is subdivided into shelves arranged vertically on top of each other. The front side of the merchandise space accessible to the customer can be closed with transparent, horizontally-moving doors that in each case have a vertical marginal area through which the merchandise space is lit. The lighting installation is arranged outside of the merchandise space.



Inventors:
Weiss, Albert (Osterburken, DE)
Application Number:
12/170689
Publication Date:
01/22/2009
Filing Date:
07/10/2008
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
312/223.5, 62/246
International Classes:
A47F3/04; F25D11/00; F25D27/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
GALLEGO, ANDRES F
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
DORITY & MANNING, P.A. (GREENVILLE, SC, US)
Claims:
1. Merchandise display cabinet for displaying refrigerated or frozen goods with a vertical access that opens towards the merchandise space divided into vertical compartments stacked on top of each other characterized in that the front part of the merchandise space that is accessible to the customer can be closed by horizontally-moving transparent doors (1, 2, 10, 20) that in each case have a vertical marginal area (11, 22) through which the merchandise space is lit, whereby the lighting installation (5) outside of the merchandise space has been arranged before this marginal area (11, 22) so the light emitted from it illuminates the merchandise space.

2. 2-14. (canceled)

Description:

The invention refers to a merchandise display cabinet subdivided into compartments arranged vertically on top of each other for showing refrigerated or frozen merchandise that features a vertical opening for accessing the merchandise space.

Merchandise display cabinets are known as refrigerator or freezer shelves that can be closed with shades for the night to prevent refrigeration losses. It is also known that these refrigeration cabinets are provided with swinging or sliding glass doors, but the problem with these kinds of merchandise cabinets is to illuminate them well enough for offering the goods to the customer. Generally, horizontal luminous elements are arranged on a head part that projects over the shelf front that illuminates the front part of the merchandise space. However, the lighting of the individual shelves is impeded by the intermediate bottoms and the goods placed on them, so that the lower shelf compartments in particular are not sufficiently well lit, especially when these compartments are placed a little lower. If the merchandise space has been closed with glass panes to prevent the cold from escaping, then the reflections do not allow the customer to see very well.

Furthermore, there are merchandise display cabinets with luminous elements arranged perpendicularly inside the merchandise space so that the shelf compartments stacked on top of each other are more evenly lit (EP 0 732 888 B1; U.S. Pat. No. 5,879,070). The luminous elements are arranged along the side walls of the merchandise space and opposite the subdivision walls of the refrigeration cabinet. So the goods inside the cabinet can be uniformly lit in horizontal direction, optical elements, light-guiding sheet metal strips and the like are foreseen. However, the lighting arrangement within the merchandise space has the disadvantage that the heat emitted by the lamps must be compensated by correspondingly higher refrigeration. The task of the invention is to provide good lighting without reflections of the type described above for merchandise display cabinets, even if they are made with doors to prevent the cold from escaping. Another task of the invention is to arrange the lighting installation so its emitted heat will not affect the temperature of the merchandise space.

This task is solved in accordance with the features of claim 1. Thanks to the arrangement of a lighting installation, in each case along a vertical marginal area of the doors, no merchandise space shelves have reflections, are well lit and have no glare for the observer. The arrangement of the lighting installation outside of the merchandise space prevents heat from being emitted into it. Nonetheless, the lighting installation allows the doors to be opened. In horizontal swing doors, the swing axis is arranged on the start of the vertical marginal area. The fact that the lighting installation extends over the entire marginal area of the door permits all shelf compartments to be uniformly lit. The housing that serves the function of receiving the lighting installation can extend over two adjoining marginal areas of the doors. To reinforce the lighting, the side of the housing that faces the lamp has been executed as a reflector. If the housing—independently from the door—is firmly attached to the merchandise display cabinet, then it is possible to easily run an electrical supply line unhindered. However, the housing can also be attached to the marginal area of the door so it can be moved together with it. This is especially practical when sliding doors are used. Subdivisions in the front part of the merchandise display cabinet caused by stationary supports for the lamps are therefore avoided. The frameless design of the glass door prevents the frame and glass to be unevenly heated, thus blocking the formation of condensation water.

The drawings describe the invention details further and show:

FIG. 1 a front view of the merchandise display cabinet in accordance with the invention;

FIG. 2 two sectional top views of doors lying next to each other through their swing axis;

FIG. 3 a view in accordance with FIG. 2, but with a swung out door;

FIG. 4 a sectional drawing of the lighting installation arrangement;

FIG. 5 a total view of the glass door with bearing;

FIG. 6 a detail of FIG. 5;

FIG. 7 a top view of an embodiment with sliding doors in diagrammatic representation;

FIG. 8 an embodiment with the lighting installation attached to the sliding doors;

FIG. 1 shows the merchandise display cabinet with swing doors 1 and 2 that close the merchandise space so no cold will escape. The merchandise space is subdivided into shelves by intermediate bottoms 81. On its upper part, the merchandise space is closed by the head part 8, while the bottom is formed by the foot part 9. Swing doors that rotate around a swing axis 7 have been foreseen. The swing axis 7 is not found on the lateral end of the door 1 or 2 but drawn in towards the interior, thereby creating a marginal area 11 or 22 between the swing axis 7 and the outer edge of the door 1 or 2. When the door is opened, it swings around the swing axis 7 and the marginal area 11 or 22 swings inwards towards the merchandise space, while the door leaf swings outwards. The swung-out position is shown in FIG. 3, indicated by the broken drawing of the door 2′ shown with the marginal area 22′.

A housing 4 or 4′ has been arranged in stationary fashion before the marginal area 11 or 22. The housing overlaps two marginal areas 11 and 22, while the housing 4′ overlaps only one marginal area 11 of the door 1. As can be inferred from FIGS. 2 to 4, a wide housing 4 that overlaps both marginal areas 11 and 22 has been foreseen for the place where two neighboring marginal areas of the doors 1 and 2 bump into each other. Supports 41 for the lighting installation 5 are foreseen in the housing 4, and the installation may consist of one neon lamp and LED luminous elements. To intensify the lighting, the back part 42 of the housing 4 has been executed as a reflector. The light rays travel through the transparent marginal area to reach and illuminate the merchandise space. The perpendicular arrangement of the lighting installation 5, which extends over the entire marginal area 11, 22, illuminates the compartments formed by the shelf bottoms 81 equally strong, so no shadows are thrown by the compartments lying above. Thus, the customer can see the goods without obstructions and glare regardless of whether the door is open or closed.

To prevent the door 1 or 2 from stopping at the housing 4 or 4′, bumpers 72 have been arranged on this housing 4, 4′ for supporting the opened door. This prevents damages to the door or housing.

The lighting 5 is arranged right before the marginal area 11, 22 of the door 1 or 2, but outside of the merchandise space. In this way, the lighting installation cannot emit heat to the merchandise space and in addition, the arrangement of the luminous element 5 before the marginal area 11, 22 allows the full strength of the light to illuminate the merchandise space. A reflection on the glass pane 3′ of the door 1, 2 cannot happen.

The door 1, 2 consists of a double pane of insulating glass whose panes 3 and 3′ are conventionally separated by spacers 31 and 32 for creating a hollow space fully closed in by these spacers 31, 32. The spacers 31, 32 have formed a recess in the upper and lower ends of the marginal area 11 or 22 and a wedge 33 has in each case been placed in that recess to firmly attach the axis bolt 73. The wedge 33 has been screwed in to the glass panes 3 and 3′. Therefore, the door 1 or 2 consists as such of only one frameless insulating glass pane. This has the advantage that no condensation water can form on the pane or frame due to different heating or cooling. To seal off the gap between the marginal areas 11 and 22 of both doors 1 and 2, seals 61 and 62 placed with their foot parts between the glass panes 3 and 3′ have been foreseen. The axis bolt 73 is supported by a bearing 71 in the head part 8 or foot part 9 of the merchandise display cabinet.

Needless to say, instead of the swing doors 1, 2 sliding doors can also be used. For example, FIG. 7 shows a diagrammatic top view of an embodiment with sliding doors 10 and 20. The refrigeration cabinet has been indicated by the lateral walls 82 and 83, and the shelf compartments are found between them. Both the sliding door 10 and the sliding door 20 have marginal areas (11, 22). Whereas the intermediate bottoms 81 can extend continuously between the lateral walls 82 and 83, a supporting stand 84 subdivides the openings for the doors 10 and 20 in module-like fashion. This supporting stand 84 serves as stationary support for the lighting installation and also as support for the head part 8 of the merchandise display cabinet. A luminous element 5 found in a housing 40 or 40′ has been arranged in each marginal area 11 or 22. These housings 40 and 40′ are shown in FIG. 7 with their luminous elements 5 on the lateral wall 82 or 83 arranged stationary on the supporting stand 84. The right door 20 of the left door opening shown in FIG. 7 is partially opened. The door 20 is in this opened position, while on the right side the door opening is closed, so that the marginal area 22 also covers the luminous element 5 in the housing 40′, so no heat from this lighting installation can reach the refrigerated merchandise space. It is known that a reflector and a lens or sheet metal light guides can be arranged in the housings 40 and 40′ to scatter the light emitted from the luminous element 5 mostly uniformly over the width of the merchandise space.

Whereas in the embodiment shown in FIG. 7 the housings 40 and 40′ for the luminous element 5 have been arranged in stationary fashion, in the embodiment shown in FIG. 8 the housings 40 and 40′ for the luminous elements 5 have been attached to the sliding doors 10 and 20, in each case in the marginal areas 11 and 22 so they can be moved with the sliding doors 10, 20. Handles 13 have been foreseen for moving the sliding doors 10, 20. These sliding doors 10 and 20 consist in each case of panes 30 and 30′ arranged separately from one other to create an air space, as is customary with insulating glass panes. As with the swing doors 1 and 2 and according to FIGS. 1 through 6, the sliding doors 10 and 20 have been made without frames as self-supporting insulating glass panes on which the elements needed for movement (such as the handles 13 and the sliding and supporting elements) have been attached. Sliding rails in the head part 8 and foot part 9 have been foreseen for the sliding doors 10 and 20, but are not shown in FIGS. 7 and 8.

The stationary arrangement of the lighting installation has the advantage that it is very easy to install a power supply. When attaching the lighting installation to the marginal areas 11 and 22 of the doors 10 and 20, the heat being emitted by the lighting installation is prevented from reaching the merchandise space, even if the door is opened.