Title:
FREE FLOWING BOTTLE
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A glass bottle with improved pouring characteristics. In some embodiments the bottle can hold pressurized liquid. The bottle includes a neck with a non-circular cross section. The cross sectional shape of the neck is adapted and configured to provide less turbulence in the liquid being poured out of the bottle, and further to assist in separating the in flow of single phase liquid from the turbulent mixed flow of two phase, gas-liquid substances.



Inventors:
Martin, Steven W. (Ridgeville, IN, US)
Application Number:
12/637445
Publication Date:
07/22/2010
Filing Date:
12/14/2009
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
215/384
International Classes:
B65D23/10; B65D1/02
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
MAI, TRI M
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
DENTONS BINGHAM GREENEBAUM LLP (INDIANAPOLIS, IN, US)
Claims:
1. A container, comprising: a glass bottle defining an interior for holding a quantity of a pourable substance consumable by humans, said bottle including: a lip defining a cylindrical bore for pouring the substance out of said bottle, the bore being cylindrical about a centerline; a body with a generally cylindrical base, the base being cylindrical about the centerline; said body including a portion of the interior, the interior having a plane of symmetry passing through the centerline; a shoulder integral with said body and opposite of said base, said shoulder having two ends with one end blending into said body, said shoulder including an external molded recess for receiving the fingertip of a user, the recess being centered in the plane of symmetry; and a neck having two ends with a narrow end integrally connecting to said lip and the other wider end integrally connecting to the other end of said shoulder, said neck defining a non-circular internal flow channel, the flow channel having an internal width in the plane of symmetry that is wider than the internal width orthogonal to the plane of symmetry.

2. The container of claim 1 wherein the internal flow channel of the neck has a first internal surface conically shaped at a first taper angle relative to the centerline, the first internal surface merging smoothly with a second internal surface conically shaped at a second taper angle relative to the centerline, the first angle being greater than the second angle.

3. The container of claim 3 wherein the first angle is about twice the second angle.

4. The container of claim 2 wherein the first angle is more than about ten degrees and less than about twelve degrees.

5. The container of claim 2 wherein the first internal surface has a circumferential angular span of less than one hundred and eighty degrees.

6. The container of claim 2 wherein the molded recess is adapted and configured for a human thumb and the recess is molded into the external surface of said bottle within the circumferential span of the first internal surface.

7. The container of claim 2 wherein the recess is a first recess and which further comprises a second molded recess adapted and configured for the tip of a human index finger, the second recess being centered in the plane of symmetry on a side of the bottle opposite of the first recess.

8. The container of claim 1 wherein the plane is a first plane and the interior has a second plane of symmetry passing through the centerline and transverse to the first plane.

9. The container of claim 1 wherein the molded recess is a first molded recess, and which further comprises a second external molded recess for receiving the fingertip of a user, the first and second recesses being on opposite sides of said bottle, the first and second recesses being at different axial distances from the topmost surface of said lip.

10. The container of claim 1 wherein the bottle is an industry standard longneck bottle.

11. The container of claim 1 wherein the non-circular flow channel has an oval shape.

12. The container of claim 1 wherein the non-circular flow channel has a figure-8 shape.

13. A container, comprising: a glass bottle defining an interior for holding a quantity of a pourable substance consumable by humans, said bottle including: a lip defining a cylindrical bore for pouring the substance out of said bottle, the bore being cylindrical about a centerline; a body with a generally cylindrical base, the base being cylindrical about the centerline; said body including a portion the interior; a shoulder integral with said body and opposite of said base, said shoulder having two ends with one end blending into said body, said shoulder including an external molded recess for receiving the fingertip of a user; and a neck having two ends with a narrow end integrally connecting to said lip and the other wider end integrally connecting to the other end of said shoulder, one internal surface of said neck spanning a first circumferential range of said neck and being conically tapered at a first shallower angle relative to the centerline, the opposing internal surface spanning the remaining circumferential range of said neck and being conically tapered at a second steeper angle relative to the centerline, the molded recess being circumferentially located centrally within either the span of the first range or the span of the remaining range.

14. The container of claim 13 wherein the first circumferential range is greater than 180 degrees and the second circumferential range is less than 180 degrees.

15. The container of claim 13 wherein the second angle is from about ten degrees to about twelve degrees.

16. The container of claim 13 wherein the molded recess is adapted and configured for a human thumb and the recess is centrally located within the span of the first range.

17. The container of claim 13 wherein the molded recess is adapted and configured for a human index finger and the recess is centrally located within the span of the second range.

18. The container of claim 13 wherein said bottle is adapted and configured to contain pressurized liquid.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

This application claims the benefit of priority to U.S. Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 61/122,128, filed Dec. 12, 2009, entitled BOTTLE 1, incorporated herein by reference.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present inventions pertain to a container for liquid, and in particular to a glass bottle for a beverage.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The glass bottle industry has accepted and implemented a standard size bottle known as a “long neck.” This standard was developed for improved marketing and consumer convenience.

Some versions of the bottle include features that address the need to accommodate the pressure of carbonation that brings with it stresses in the bottle walls. In particular, the length of the neck provides for a long cushion of air to absorb the carbonation pressure and manage the stress levels.

However, a drawback of the long, slender neck has been the turbulence created when the internal contents are poured out. There can be excessive, turbulent mixing of air (trying to get into the bottle) and liquid (trying to get out of the bottle). With more viscous liquids, the release and flow rate of the liquids is slowed as the pressure differential across the exit bore of the bottle is equilibrated. Often, the consumer is dissatisfied with the result, which can include blockage (especially for thicker liquids such as catsup) or frothiness and subsequent decrease in carbonation (such as for carbonated beverages).

Various embodiments of the present invention address some or all of these drawbacks in novel and unobvious ways.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

One aspect of some embodiments of the present invention pertains to a glass bottle that permits pouring of the internal contents with less turbulence. In yet other embodiments, the bottle further permits faster pouring.

One aspect of the present invention pertains to a glass bottle defining an interior for holding a quantity of a pourable substance, a lip defining a cylindrical bore for pouring the substance out of a bottle, and a body with a generally cylindrical base. The bottle further includes a shoulder integral with a body and a neck with a narrow end integrally connecting to the lip and a wider end integrally connecting to the other end of a shoulder. Preferably, the bore is cylindrical about a centerline, and the interior of the body has a plane of symmetry passing through the centerline. The neck defines a non-circular internal flow channel, the cross sectional shape of the flow channel being adapted and configured for efficient intake of air and reduced turbulence in the contents being poured out.

Another aspect of the present invention pertains to a glass bottle defining an interior. The bottle further includes a lip defining a cylindrical bore for pouring the substance and a body with a generally cylindrical base, the base being cylindrical about the centerline. The bottle further includes a neck having two ends with a narrow end integrally connecting to a lip and the other wider end integrally connecting to the other end of a shoulder, one internal surface spanning a first circumferential range of a neck and being conically tapered at a first shallower angle relative to the centerline, the opposing internal surface spanning the remaining circumferential range of a neck and being conically tapered at a second steeper angle relative to the centerline, the molded recess being circumferentially located centrally within either the span of the first range or the span of the remaining range.

It will be appreciated that the various apparatus and methods described in this summary section, as well as elsewhere in this application, can be expressed as a large number of different combinations and subcombinations. All such useful, novel, and inventive combinations and subcombinations are contemplated herein, it being recognized that the explicit expression of each of these combinations is excessive and unnecessary.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a left side and top perspective solid surface view of a bottle according to one embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a right side and bottom perspective solid surface view of the bottle of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a right side elevational view of the bottle of FIG. 1.

FIG. 4A is a front elevational view of the bottle of FIG. 1.

FIG. 4B is a cross sectional view of the bottle of FIG. 4A as taken along plane 25a and looking inward at the interior.

FIG. 4C is a cross sectional view of the bottle of FIG. 4A as taken along plane 25C of FIG. 4B and with the secondary flow channel oriented above the primary flow channel.

FIG. 5A is a left side elevational view of the bottle of FIG. 1.

FIG. 5B is a top plan view of the bottle of FIG. 5A as taken along line 5B-5B of FIG. 5A with the secondary flow channel oriented above the primary flow channel.

FIG. 6 is a top plan view of the apparatus of FIG. 7.

FIG. 7 is a side elevational view of a portion of the neck of FIG. 4A.

FIG. 7A is a cross sectional view of a portion of the neck of the apparatus of FIG. 7 as viewed through section 7A-7A of FIG. 7.

FIG. 8 is a front elevational view of a bottle according to another embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 9 is a front elevational view of a bottle according to another embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 10 is a top view of a portion of the neck of the apparatus of FIG. 9 and similar to the view of FIG. 7.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

For the purposes of promoting an understanding of the principles of the invention, reference will now be made to the embodiments illustrated in the drawings and specific language will be used to describe the same. It will nevertheless be understood that no limitation of the scope of the invention is thereby intended, such alterations and further modifications in the illustrated device, and such further applications of the principles of the invention as illustrated therein being contemplated as would normally occur to one skilled in the art to which the invention relates. At least one embodiment of the present invention will be described and shown, and this application may show and/or describe other embodiments of the present invention. It is understood that any reference to “the invention” is a reference to an embodiment of a family of inventions, with no single embodiment including an apparatus, process, or composition that must be included in all embodiments, unless otherwise stated.

The use of an N-series prefix for an element number (NXX.XX) refers to an element that is the same as the non-prefixed element (XX.XX), except as shown and described thereafter. As an example, an element 1020.1 would be the same as element 20.1, except for those different features of element 1020.1 shown and described. Further, common elements and common features of related elements are drawn in the same manner in different figures, and/or use the same symbology in different figures. As such, it is not necessary to describe the features of 1020.1 and 20.1 that are the same, since these common features are apparent to a person of ordinary skill in the related field of technology. Although various specific quantities (spatial dimensions, temperatures, pressures, times, force, resistance, current, voltage, concentrations, wavelengths, frequencies, heat transfer coefficients, dimensionless parameters, etc.) may be stated herein, such specific quantities are presented as examples only. Further, with discussion pertaining to a specific composition of matter, that description is by example only, and does not limit the applicability of other species of that composition, nor does it limit the applicability of other compositions unrelated to the cited composition.

One embodiment of the present invention pertains to glass bottles which have an improved capability to draw air into the bottle as the contents are poured out. In one embodiment, the neck of the bottle includes a larger, secondary flow chamber that is located alongside, and substantially parallel to, a smaller primary flow chamber. The deeper, secondary flow chamber is adapted and configured for handling of two-phase flow (air and liquid). The primary and shallower flow chamber is adapted and configured for transport of liquids, including liquids of any viscosity or surface tension, including water, catsup, and alcoholic beverages. Generally, a glass bottle according to the present invention provides a structure and interior for any type of liquid, including the storage of liquids under pressures higher than ambient pressure.

It has been found that if the bottle is oriented such that the larger flow chamber is above the smaller flow chamber when the bottle is tipped over for pouring the contents, then the contents come out more smoothly with less interruption of flow due to pressure imbalance between the interior of the bottle and ambient conditions. The pressure imbalance that results from pouring of the contents is smoothly relieved by introduction of air into the wider flow channel, provided that the wider flow channel is placed about the narrower flow channel. Further, in some embodiments, this orientation of differing flow channels also results in a faster pour of the contents, and in one embodiment a liquid such as water can be poured from an inventive bottle in a time period reduced by several tenths of a second.

As can be seen in all of the figures, the various features, both internal and external, of bottle 20 are adapted and configured to account for internal stresses within the glass walls that arise from changes in geometry. As one example, the neck of a bottle according to some embodiments of the present invention includes smooth internal and external transitions from the secondary flow chamber to the primary flow chamber. It is believed that for a bottle as shown in FIGS. 1-7, the thickness of the glass wall can be 0.050 inches or more, and still conform to industry standards for pressurized bottles. The figures showing bottle 20 are scaled figures, with the overall length of the bottle from the top of the lip to the bottom of the base being nominally 9.000 inches and the outermost diameter of the collar being nominally 1.000 inches.

It has been found that the placement of a deeper flow chamber above a shallower flow chamber results in less turbulence to the liquid flowing out of the bottle when the bottle is horizontal, and especially when it is inclined at an angle sufficient to fill the bore of the lip with existing liquid. As used herein, the terms “deeper” and “shallower” refer to depth measured from the centerline of the bottle to a surface of the corresponding flow channel when the bottle is oriented horizontally for pouring. It has also been found that flow is improved by keeping any hand grips (such as fingertip recesses, finger recesses, and ridges) away from the neck and instead located on the shoulder or body of the bottle. In addition, it has been found that it is preferable to minimize the extent of flow interruptions within the interior of the bottle, such as by having molded recesses for the tips of the fingers, as opposed to having ridges intended for placement of a longer portion of the finger. Further, as it is used herein, “fingertip” refers to tips of any of the four fingers or the thumb of a human, unless otherwise specified.

FIGS. 1-8 show various views of a glass bottle 20 according to one embodiment of the present invention. In one embodiment, glass bottle 20 includes a finish 28, neck 30, shoulder 46, body 48, and base 50, all preferably integrally molded in a narrow neck press and blow process. Some embodiments of the present invention pertain to modifications to an industry standard bottle (ISB) referred to as a “long neck.” However, yet other embodiments of the present invention pertain to glass bottles fabricated from any type of glass molding process, and further to glass bottles other than ISB long necks, including, for example, wine bottles.

Referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, it can be seen that the finish 28 of bottle 20 preferably includes a threaded lip 24 and a collar 26. The external threads on lip 24 are adapted and configured for coupling to a pressure tight seal, although other embodiments contemplate coupling to any kind of seal or cap. A generally cylindrical internal bore 21 is defined by lip 24.

Bottle 20 includes a neck 30 that has a primary or main flow channel 32, and a lateral, vertically oriented auxiliary flow chamber 40 for improving the flow of a liquid from bottle 20. In one embodiment, primary flow channel 32 is generally circular about centerline 22 at the opening 21 of bottle 20. Auxiliary flow channel 40 preferably begins below the opening 21 and extends along neck 30 until it reaches base 50. In one embodiment, flow channel 40 is located along one side of bottle 20, as best seen in FIGS. 1, 4, and 5. However, the present invention also contemplates those embodiments in which a second auxiliary flow channel is located on the opposite side of bottle 20.

In some embodiments, flow channels 32 and 40 are adapted and configured to provide reduced turbulence of outpouring liquid, and without the constraint that the neck 30 remain symmetrical about centerline 22. As shown in bottle 20, neck 30 is symmetric only about plane 25a. In this plane, secondary flow channel 40 is deeper than flow channel 32. Therefore, when bottle 20 is oriented horizontally for pouring (and especially angled such that base 50 is at or above lip 24) the additional deepness of flow channel 40 encourages separation of incoming air from outgoing liquid.

Referring to FIGS. 5B and 7, it can be seen that primary flow channel 32 has a circumferential or angular span 35 that is greater than 180 degrees. Preferably, secondary flow channel 40 has a circumferential or angular span 45 that is complementary to the span 35 of channel 32. Further, as can be seen in FIGS. 4A, 4B, 4C, and 7, the inner surfaces of primary flow channel 32 and secondary flow channel 40 are substantially conical in shape. As shown in FIG. 7, the taper angle 41 of the cone of flow channel 40 is preferably more than about 10 degrees, and preferably less than about 12 degrees. However, this range of taper angles is presented by way of example only, and is not intended to be limiting on the range of angles. Referring to FIGS. 4A and 4B, it can be seen that channel 40 of bottle 20 extends axially along the length of centerline 22 for a long distance than channel 32. This increased length assists in the smooth outflowing of contents by providing additional top space for collection of inflowing gas when the bottle is tipped past the horizontal for pouring.

The base 50 of bottle 20 includes gripping features 60 that, in one embodiment, include a thumb recess or indentation 62 oriented generally opposite to finger indentations 64, 66, and 68. In one embodiment, the forward-most recess or indentation 64 extends partly into the exterior of the rearward-most portion of auxiliary flow chamber 40. In one embodiment, thumb indentation 62 is located generally between finger indentation 64 and 66.

Auxiliary flow chamber 40 is generally integral with the main flow chamber 32 that starts at the threaded top of bottle 20. As best seen in FIG. 7, auxiliary flow chamber 40 and main flow chamber 32 are symmetric about a plane 25a that intersects centerline 22.

In some embodiments, finger indentations 64, 66, and 68 are oriented so that the user will instinctively maintain auxiliary flow chamber 40 substantially vertically above centerline 22 when drinking or pouring from the bottle. In one embodiment, finger indentations 64, 66, and 68, as well as thumb indentation 62, are centered along plane PL.

FIG. 8 shows a bottle 120 according to another embodiment of the present invention. The right side view of bottle 120 would be substantially similar to that of FIG. 3. The left side view of bottle 120 would be substantially similar to that shown in FIG. 5A, except with ridges 49 removed. Bottle 120 is similar to bottle 20, except that neck 130 includes first and second flow channels 132 and 140, respectively, integrated into an oval shape. Preferably, the primary and secondary flow channels are of different curvature, with the primary flow channel being shallower than the secondary flow channel. However, the present invention also contemplates those embodiments in which the oval shape is elliptical, such as by a plane cutting through a circular cone at an angle nonperpendicular to the centerline of a cone. In some embodiments bottle 120 does not include the external blending ridge 49 that can be seen on the exterior of channel 40 of bottle 20. Therefore, in some embodiments, bottle 120 can have different transitional stress in the glass wall in this region. Further, although the fingertip indentations 162, 164, 166, and 168 are generally centered within plane of symmetry 125a, it is appreciated that the specific side-to-side orientation of recess 162 is arbitrary, and can be on either side, since the neck 130 is now symmetrical about plane 125a.

FIGS. 9 and 10 present two views, similar in orientation to FIGS. 4A and 6, respectively, of a bottle 220 according to another embodiment of the present invention. Bottle 220 includes primary and secondary flow channels 232 and 240 that are mirror images of one another, and equally spaced apart circumferentially from a middle section 249. The exterior of each channel 232 and 240 blend smoothly at transitions 239 to the middle section 249. It can be seen that bottle 220 now has symmetry about plane 225b, as well as symmetry about plane 225a. In bottle 220, the central portion 249 between first and second flow channels 232 and 240 provides an internal flow separator, which may assist in maintaining liquid flow within whichever flow chamber is oriented toward the bottom during pouring. A cross section taken through the neck would show that the neck has somewhat of a figure-8 shape, with a narrower midsection separating two conical inner surfaces. As with bottle 120, the orientation of the single thumb recess can be on either side of bottle 220 because of the symmetry in the two opposing flow channels.

One embodiment of the present invention pertains to a bottle fabricated from glass, and adapted and configured to hold a pressurized liquid. However, other embodiments of the present invention include bottles fabricated from any kind of material, and holding any kind of liquid, including liquids not intended for human consumption. Further, although a plurality of finger indentations and a thumb indentation are shown, the present invention includes other ways of gripping the bottle, including individual ridges for one or more fingers, small ridges, a knurled surface, and other manners of tactilely indicating to a user where the user should hold the bottle, such that subsequent pouring of the bottle by the user results in a smoother flow of the liquid out of the bottle.

While the inventions have been illustrated and described in detail in the drawings and foregoing description, the same is to be considered as illustrative and not restrictive in character, it being understood that only certain embodiments have been shown and described and that all changes and modifications that come within the spirit of the invention are desired to be protected.