Title:
Cool tan water emitter
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention is directed to a water emitter for cooling the core temperature of a body. The water emitter comprises three components, a reservoir assembly, a gravity showerhead and a flexible tubing that hydraulically couples the interior of the reservoir with the interior water chamber in the showerhead. Water flows into the showerhead at a moderate rate for dispersing water through a plurality of droplets holes in a faceplate of the showerhead as droplets rather than a mist. The flexible tubing enables the user to reposition the gravity showerhead in any location over the body needing to be cooled.



Inventors:
Bertelsen, Lovevetta (Dallas, TX, US)
Application Number:
12/587705
Publication Date:
04/22/2010
Filing Date:
10/13/2009
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47K3/022
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
SKUBINNA, CHRISTINE J
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
RUDOLPH J. BUCHEL JR., PC (DALLAS, TX, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A water emitter device for lowering a core temperature of a body, comprising: a flexible tubing with an interior channel and flexibly repositionable, cylindrically shaped sidewalls with a first open end and a second open end; a water reservoir with an interior volume for holding water in reserve, said water reservoir hydraulically coupled to said flexible tubing for communicating water from the interior volume through the first open end of said flexible tubing and into the interior channel of the flexible tubing; a showerhead with manifold cooperating with a faceplate forming temporary storage chamber for water, said faceplate perforated with a plurality of holes of sufficient diameter for gravity flow from temporary storage chamber, said showerhead hydraulically coupled to the flexible tubing for receiving water from the second open end of said flexible tubing into the temporary storage chamber.

2. A water emitter device for lowering a core temperature of a body recited in claim 1, further comprises: a pump for moving water from the water reservoir into the flexible tubing.

3. A water emitter device for lowering a core temperature of a body recited in claim 2, wherein the pump is positioned in the water reservoir for increasing a hydrostatic pressure of the water sufficient for moving water from the water reservoir into the flexible tubing.

4. A water emitter device for lowering a core temperature of a body recited in claim 3, further comprises: an electrical motor mechanically coupled to the pump for providing mechanical energy to the pump; an electrical power supply for providing electrical power to the electrical motor; an electrical switch electrically coupled between the electrical motor and the electrical power supply.

5. A water emitter device for lowering a core temperature of a body recited in claim 2, wherein the pump is positioned in the temporary storage chamber for decreasing a hydrostatic pressure of the water in the water reservoir sufficient for moving water from the water reservoir into the flexible tubing.

6. A water emitter device for lowering a core temperature of a body recited in claim 5, further comprises: an electrical motor mechanically coupled to the pump for providing mechanical energy to the pump; an electrical power supply for providing electrical power to the electrical motor; and an electrical switch electrically coupled between the electrical motor and the electrical power supply.

7. A water emitter device for lowering a core temperature of a body recited in claim 2, wherein the pump is an air pump for increasing a pressure in the water reservoir sufficient for moving water from the water reservoir into the flexible tubing.

8. A water emitter device for lowering a core temperature of a body recited in claim 2, wherein the manifold and faceplate form a generally cylindrical shape with the plurality of holes oriented in a generally downward direction.

9. A water emitter device for lowering a core temperature of a body recited in claim 2, wherein the manifold and faceplate form a generally circular shape around an opening with the plurality of holes oriented in a generally inward direction to the opening.

10. A water emitter device for lowering a core temperature of a body recited in claim 2, wherein the cylindrically shaped sidewalls of the flexible tubing are formed from a flexible and resilient material.

11. A water emitter device for lowering a core temperature of a body recited in claim 2, wherein the cylindrically shaped sidewalls of the flexible tubing are formed of polyvinylchloride.

12. A water emitter device for lowering a core temperature of a body recited in claim 2, wherein the cylindrically shaped sidewalls of the flexible tubing are formed of one of a twisted, corrugated, braided or spiral material.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application is related to and claims the benefit of priority to U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 61/193,015 filed Oct. 22, 2008, which is incorporated by reference in its entirety.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates generally to an apparatus for assisting the human body to regulate heat. More particularly, the present invention relates to a portable device for providing an amount of water sufficient to lower the internal core temperature of the human body, even while being exposed to the direct rays of the sun.

In the healthcare and sports industries, varies types of devices are available for generating a water mist for cooling the air near and surrounding a person. One such device is a personal mister such the Cobra Mister (available from Orbit Irrigation Products, Inc., Bountiful, Utah 84011). The Cobra Mister cools the temperature of the ambient air through evaporative cooling by dispersing an ultra-fine mist of water into the air. Generally, the device incorporates a flexible design that enables the user to alter the direction and height of a mist cooler which cools the ambient temperature of the surrounding air by up to 30° Fahrenheit. Essentially, Cobra Mister comprises a mister nozzle and a hose connection at either ends of a flexible PVC (polyvinylchloride) conduit. The user can configure the Cobra Mister as a freestanding mister with the misting nozzle directed into the air. Although the operation of the Cobra Mister is based on sound thermodynamic principles, it suffers from several shortcomings. Firstly, the device must be attached to a garden hose or some other pressurized water supply, hence its use is limited to areas where a water supply is readily available. Also, the device is intended to cool the ambient temperature of the air rather than the surface temperature of objects in the vicinity. The temperature of the water mist should be lower than the ambient temperature of the air for the device to generate any significant cooling. Consequently, long runs of garden hose exposed to direct sunlight may severely lower the cooling efficiency of the device. Since the cooling is subject to the evaporative effect of the mist into the air, only the air proximate to the mist has an opportunity to be cooled. Furthermore, the amount of the cooling effect is dependent on the temperature of the ambient air, the difference in temperature between the water mist and the air and the relative humidity of the air. In conditions where the temperature of the water mist and air are negligible and/or the relative humidity of the air is high, the cooling efficiency of the device will be low. Wind speed and direction may also lower the cooling in a desired area. Therefore, in applications where it is desirable to cool the core body temperature of a subject is desired, the atmospheric conditions must be optimal and the temperature of the water supply kept low.

Another type of misting device is a low volume portable device designed for personal usage, such as the Misty Mate (available from the Misty Mate Corporation, Chandler, Ariz. 85225). The Misty Mate generally comprises an air tight reservoir for holding a small volume of water (typically between one and two cups), a manual air pump for pressurizing the reservoir, a valve connected between a misting nozzle and the reservoir, somewhere along a coiled polyethylene tubing. In operation, a user pressurizes the reservoir by pumping the manual air pump. Then, the user actuates the valve to disperse an ultra fine mist of water into the air. Although the Misty Mate can also lower the temperature of the ambient air up to 30° Fahrenheit, its capacity is greatly reduced due to the volume of the reservoir, and is therefore intended for intermittent use. In spite of the short comings, the Misty Mate is highly portable, and may include a reservoir belt clip, as well as a badge clip for using the device while walking, biking or riding.

Generally, personal cooling devices known in the prior art provide a cooling affect for a volume by dispersing a fine mist into the ambient air. Although evaporative cooling can be extremely efficient under optimal condition, much of the effect is not realized by occupants of the area unless they are directly in the path of the evaporative cool air. Furthermore, because the air is cooled, the thermodynamic transfer to a surface is much less than if the same amount of water is evaporated directly on the surface. What is needed for assisting the human body to more efficiently regulate heat is a portable device that applies water directly to an exposed area.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention is directed to a water emitter for cooling the core temperature of a body. The water emitter comprises three components, a reservoir assembly, a gravity showerhead and a flexible tubing that hydraulically couples the interior of the reservoir with the interior water chamber in the showerhead. Water flows into the showerhead at a moderate rate for dispersing water through a plurality of droplet holes in a faceplate of the showerhead as droplets rather than a mist. The flexible tubing enables the user to reposition the gravity showerhead in any location over the body needing to be cooled. The water emitter is highly portable and self-standing.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWINGS

The novel features believed characteristic of the present invention are set forth in the appended claims. The invention itself, however, as well as a preferred mode of use, further objectives and advantages thereof, will be best understood by reference to the following detailed description of an illustrative embodiment when read in conjunction with the accompanying drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is a diagram of the cool tan water droplet emitter in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention;

FIG. 2 shows a gravity showerhead in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention; and

FIG. 3 shows a ring-shaped gravity showerhead in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention.

Other features of the present invention will be apparent from the accompanying drawings and from the following detailed description.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Element Reference Number Designations
100: Cool tan water emitter
110: Reservoir assembly
111: Water storage reservoir
112: Switch
114: Base
116: Pump
118: Handle
119: Connection fitting
120: Flexible tubing
130: Gravity showerhead
132: Droplet holes
134: Faceplate
136: Manifold

In the following description, reference is made to the accompanying drawings that form a part hereof, and in which is shown by way of illustration, specific embodiments in which the invention may be practiced. These embodiments are described in sufficient detail to enable those skilled in the art to practice the invention, and it is to be understood that other embodiments may be utilized. It is also to be understood that structural, procedural and system changes may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the present invention. The following description is, therefore, not to be taken in a limiting sense. For clarity of exposition, like features shown in the accompanying drawings are indicated with like reference numerals and similar features as shown in alternate embodiments in the drawings are indicated with similar reference numerals.

Two problems prevalent with people exposed to the direct rays of the sun are the burning due to the ultraviolet rays and the increase in the core body temperature due to the longer infrared rays. These problems can result in disastrous consequences for sunbathers and the like who spend long periods of time unprotected and exposed to the sun. Recently, advancements in sunblock technology for the protection of human skin by absorbing and/or reflecting ultraviolet light in both the UVA and UVB radiation spectrums have alleviated the first problem somewhat. However, light radiation in the infrared spectrum will penetrate sunscreen containing even the most robust sunblock and heat the skin at the contact point. Prolonged exposure to these infrared rays will increase the core body temperature. The problem of overheating is sometimes exacerbated by the use of sunscreen in that it does not reflect IR rays. In fact, sunscreen tends to trap the infrared rays under the application, thereby producing a multiplier heating effect. Additionally, sunscreen covers the skin's sweat pores that emit perspiration in response to overheating. Consequently, in certain instances the body's core temperature will increase at an alarming rate. The two most widely accepted preventatives for sunstroke are wearing light weight, light colored and loose fitting clothes (which is not possible when sun bathing) and keeping well hydrated.

Additionally, some bathers control overheating by the indirect or direct application of water on the areas that are exposed to the sun. For instance, through the use of misters that inject a fine mist of water in the air currents that cools that ambient temperature of the air through evaporative cooling, or by applying water directly on the skin splashed from a cup or as a mist from a trigger sprayer. The devices used in latter two solutions apply water directly to the exposed portions of the user's skin, but areas outside the user's arm reach must be applied by a companion. Furthermore, dumping water from a cup doesn't provide an even coverage over the skin causing hot spots, and, more importantly, much of the water is wasted as runoff. Misting trigger sprayers have the opposite effect in that, although the spay patterns generally have good coverage; typically the exposed areas must be sprayed repeatedly for any appreciable cooling. Moreover, since the trigger mister is manually operated handheld device that provides only a mist of water, bathers are reticent to use the device, or ask a mate for a treatment in an obscure location, sometimes resulting in an unsafe elevation in the core body temperature between treatments.

The cool tan water emitter alleviates the shortcoming of the prior art by providing a mechanism that disperses a shower of fine water droplets over exposed surfaces of a user from a repositionable, low pressure and volume, gravity showerhead. This shower of water droplets exhibits a much greater cooling effect on the human body because: the droplets have significantly more mass than in a mist, hence more cooling potential; and the droplets are applied directly to the skin and not into the air, therefore none of the cooling potential is lost. Furthermore, since significantly more water is delivered to the surface of the skin, the core body temperature can be reduced even when covered with an application of sunscreen. Additionally, the cool tan water emitter also includes a long repositionable flexible tube between the water reservoir and the showerhead, thereby enabling sunbathers to reach any portion of their body with a body cooling water shower, even while reclined in a prone position, without having to redirect their body toward the water source. The advantages of the present invention will be better understood with the description of the accompanying figure drawings.

FIG. 1 is a diagram of the cool tan water droplet emitter in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention. The cool tan water droplet emitter is portable, stable upright device without the need for attachments that may hold a substantial amount of water for emitting water droplets. Essentially, water emitter 100 comprises three components: reservoir assembly 110, gravity showerhead 130 and flexible tubing 120 that hydraulically couples the interior of reservoir 111 with the interior showerhead manifold 136. In accordance with one exemplary embodiment of the present invention, reservoir assembly 110 provides a mechanism for pumping water from reservoir 111 into flexible tubing 120 at a moderate rate, and into manifold 136 for dispersion through droplets holes 132 of faceplate 134. In accordance with another exemplary embodiment, pump 116 receives water from reservoir 111 and forces the water into flexible tubing 120. In optimal practice, pump 116 is driven a waterproof electric motor and powered by one or more replaceable batteries (not shown) and actuated by switch 112. Switch 112 may be an ON-OFF toggle switch which is actuated into one position or the other, or may instead be a normally OFF spring loaded switch which returns to the OFF position in the absence of force by the user.

In accordance with a green embodiment, reservoir 111 is pressurized by pumping a manual air prime pump within reservoir assembly 110. Water is maintained within the confines of reservoir 111 by a valve that closes the interior passage of flexible tubing 120. Whenever cooling is desired, the user actuates the valve that allows water to egress the tube and into gravity showerhead 130 as with an electric pump. The manual pump has the advantage of lower operating cost as no batteries are required, but is somewhat limited in size. Because reservoir 111 is under pressure, it should be kept relatively small for safety and because larger volumes will require thicker sidewalls, tops and bottoms to safely hold the pressure.

Alternatively, the pump may be a suction pump and located in gravity showerhead 130 with the drive mechanism. In that case, water is drawn to gravity showerhead 130 from reservoir 111.

In operation, reservoir 111 may be of virtually any portable size; however one or two gallons capacity is probably the most weight that any sunbather would carry onto a beach. Optionally, water emitter 100 may be fitted with handle 118, or similar grip hold, for toting the device.

A key to the advantages of the present invention is the operation of flexible tubing 120. Flexible tubing 120 enables a user to reposition showerhead 130 over virtually any part of their body without relocating the heavy reservoir section. Flexible tubing 120 is fabricated from a light, flexibly repositionable material such as PVC (polyvinylchloride), or a double walled, twisted, corrugated, braided or spiral material spine tubing. Flexible tubing 120 may be secured to reservoir 111 with connection fitting 119 that allows flexible tubing 120, along with gravity showerhead 130, to rotate freely. The size of the inner diameter of flexible tubing 118 is not critical, however an exemplary inner diameter of ⅛ inch or greater should to accommodate a sufficient flow rate. The tubing and inner diameter should not be so large as to over-weight and destabilize water emitter 100 from its upright position. The maximum length of flexible tubing 120 may dependent on the dimensions and weight of reservoir 111 in order to maintain the upright stability of the device, however the length of an exemplary flexible tubing 118 should be over five or six inches long in order to reach over a reclined sunbather. In any case, of flexible tubing 120 should be no longer than would cause the device to become unstable from its upright condition when the showerhead is in repositioned to the farthest distance from reservoir 111. Optimally, and exemplary length for flexible tubing 120 is in the range of 12 inches to 60 inches to be most effective in use. It should be appreciated that the dimensions and quantities recited herein are merely exemplary for the purposed of describing exemplary embodiments of the present invention are not intended to limit the scope of the present invention.

It should be appreciated that because flexible tubing 120 allows gravity showerhead 130 to be repositioned over virtually any portion of a sunbather's body, care should be taken to ensure that base 114 is of sufficient width, w, at least with respect to the height, h, of reservoir 111. Optimally, a base plate might be included to increase w and further stabilize emitter 100.

FIGS. 2 and 3 are diagrams of two exemplary showerhead designs in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention. FIG. 2 shows a traditional gravity showerhead with manifold 136A cooperating with faceplate 134A to form a temporary storage chamber for water. Faceplate 134A is populated with a plurality of holes 132A to allow the water to egress from the temporary storage chamber via the force of gravity. FIG. 3 shows another design that is useful for cooling a user's head. Here, manifold 136B and faceplate 134B cooperate in a ring geometry with an opening of at leas suffice size for accommodating the crown of a human head. Faceplate 134B is positioned on the interior of the ring and it is populated with a plurality of holes 132B to allow the water to egress from the chamber via the force of gravity, and onto the extremities of the user's head.

The exemplary embodiments described below were selected and described in order to best explain the principles of the invention and the practical application, and to enable others of ordinary skill in the art to understand the invention for various embodiments with various modifications as are suited to the particular use contemplated. The particular embodiments described below are in no way intended to limit the scope of the present invention as it may be practiced in a variety of variations and environments without departing from the scope and intent of the invention. Thus, the present invention is not intended to be limited to the embodiment shown, but is to be accorded the widest scope consistent with the principles and features described herein.

The flowchart and block diagrams in the Figures illustrate the architecture, functionality, and operation of possible implementations of systems, methods and computer program products according to various embodiments of the present invention. In this regard, each block in the flowchart or block diagrams may represent a module, segment, or portion of code, which comprises one or more executable instructions for implementing the specified logical function(s). It should also be noted that, in some alternative implementations, the functions noted in the block may occur out of the order noted in the figures. For example, two blocks shown in succession may, in fact, be executed substantially concurrently, or the blocks may sometimes be executed in the reverse order, depending upon the functionality involved. It will also be noted that each block of the block diagrams and/or flowchart illustration, and combinations of blocks in the block diagrams and/or flowchart illustration, can be implemented by special purpose hardware-based systems which perform the specified functions or acts, or combinations of special purpose hardware and computer instructions.

The terminology used herein is for the purpose of describing particular embodiments only and is not intended to be limiting of the invention. As used herein, the singular forms “a”, “an” and “the” are intended to include the plural forms as well, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise. It will be further understood that the terms “comprises” and/or “comprising,” when used in this specification, specify the presence of stated features, integers, steps, operations, elements, and/or components, but do not preclude the presence or addition of one or more other features, integers, steps, operations, elements, components, and/or groups thereof.