Patent application title: Container for beverages and method for filling of such container
Giovanni Zago (Sesto Al Reghena, IT)
Bocus Milziade (Aviano, IT)
IPC8 Class: AB65D4104FI
Class name: Receptacles closures removable closure guided in rotary movement (e.g., screw)
Publication date: 2009-08-06
Patent application number: 20090194537
Patent application title: Container for beverages and method for filling of such container
HEDMAN & COSTIGAN P.C.
Origin: NEW YORK, NY US
IPC8 Class: AB65D4104FI
A disposable container for beverages (6) complete with a hermetic closing
device (23), and realised in a plastic and/or thermoplastic material by
means of a mold-blowing technique; the main characteristic is that it
permits the drinking of a single portion of the beverage, whether water,
wine or some other gaseous or natural beverage, which maintains the
integral flavour and amount of gas that may be contained in said
container, in the same condition as that poured from a freshly bottle.
1. Container for beverages (6) characterised in that it is realised in a
plastic and/or thermoplastic material by means of a blow-molding process,
said container (6) being complete with a hermetic closing device (23).
2. Container for beverages (6) according to claim 1, characterised in that it can be used for natural or gaseous water, gaseous drinks, alcoholic and/or non-alcoholic beverages, and/or wine obtained through natural fermentation and/or wines with added carbon dioxide.
3. Container for beverages (6) according to claim 1, characterised in that said thermoplastic blow-molding material is PET (polyethylene terephtalate) and/or PETG (polyethylene terephtalate glycol) and/or PEN (polyethylene-naphtenate) and/or blends of one or more of the same, dosed in suitable proportions.
4. Container for beverages (6) according to claim 1, characterised in that the net contents of the drinking beverage in said container (6) is 100 cc.
5. Container for beverages (6) according to claim 1, characterised in that the net contents of the drinking beverage in said container (6) is 187.5 cc.
6. Container for beverages (6) according to claim 1, characterised in that it comprises at least one body (33), realised by means of blow-molding, and designed to include the function of a support stem, and at least a cap (23) that makes up said hermetic sealing device, comprising at least a locking ring (30) and at least a rupture joint (36).
7. Container for beverages (6) according to claim 1, characterised in that it comprises at least a body (22) realised by means of blow-molding, at least a stem (21) to support said body (22) and at least a cap (23) that makes up said hermetic closure device.
8. Container for beverages (6) according to claim 1, characterised in that said hermetic closure device is composed of a screw-on cap (23), in plastic or metal, opened and closed by means of a screw and/or torsion and/or pull-off and/or press-on action and/or having a strip or an equivalent system.
9. Container for beverages (6) according to claim 1, characterised in that said container (6) presents at least an opening (36) from which it is possible to drink, having a diameter equal to or larger than 36 mm., and presenting at least a threading (26) that is set at a distance from said opening (36) equal to or larger than 0.5 cm.
10. Container for beverages (6) according to claim 1, characterised in that said hermetic closing device (23) is equipped with a hermetic seal and that said seal is applied separately or is obtained by thermoplastic over-injection directly inside said closing device.
11. Method for filling a container for beverages (6) according to claim 1, characterised in that it comprises at least the following steps:sterilisation (14) of the containers (6);filling (34) of the containers (6);hermetic sealing of the containers (6).
12. Method for filling containers according to claim 11, characterised in that said steps are performed inside a chamber (39) maintained constantly sterile by means of the introduction of filtered air generated by a series of fans (15).
13. Method for filling containers according to claim 12, characterised in that said chamber (39) is maintained constantly sterile by means of the introduction of pressurised gas.
The present invention refers to a container for beverages and a
method for filling such container.
Containers currently used for the sale of beverages such as water, wine and other alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are mainly composed of cans, glass bottles and/or plastic bottles.
In particular, as far as wine is concerned, unlike the ancient Greeks who kept wine in earthenware amphorae, the Romans were the first to use wooden barrels and glass bottles, thus introducing over two thousand years ago, the initial concepts of wine vintage and aging.
Today, these terms have lost a great deal of their original meaning because large-scale markets demand new ideas and forms that are more versatile, lighter in weight, more attractive in appearance and more economical.
Said forms should also be far more practical to use, and should be lighter in weight when empty, in order to be advantageous for handling and transport costs.
Containers used for water and other non-alcoholic beverages are normally made from plastic; the plastic used is generally a type of polymer, known by the term PET ("polyethyleneterephtalate") whose main characteristic is the fact that it is perfectly transparent and able to resist mechanical stress of liquids containing pressurised gas.
PET belongs to the molecular category of polyesters, in other words, polymers that are initially extruded in the form of a fibre, widely used in the Seventies for manufacturing clothing of all types ranging from shirts to socks and stockings and padded jackets, etc.
PET can be used alone or associated and blended in suitable percentages with other similar and compatible polymers such as PEN ("polyethylene-naphthenate"), PETG ("polyethylene terephtalate glycol") and other similar products.
In this context, the present invention intends proposing a totally innovative product that can be manufactured with the aforesaid PET and/or PET/PEN and/or blends, similar and or various derivatives.
In particular, the object of the present invention is to realise a container for beverages having the characteristics of a recipient in the characteristic glass form, hermetically closed at the top and ready for use.
Another object of the invention is to realise a container for beverages that avoids the use of both a bottle and a glass and that permit the user to consume only the required amount of beverage at the moment it is needed.
Another object of the present invention is to realise a container for beverages that permits the user to drink directly from the container without having to gulp or swallow, but on the contrary, that permits the user to drink the contents in the same manner as when using a traditional glass tumbler.
A further object of the present invention is to realise a container for beverages that is extremely light in weight, transparent, airtight, biodegradable, impact-resistant, and whose contents remain absolutely uncontaminated.
These and other objects are achieved with a container for beverages according to the appended claim 1, as well as a filling method for the aforesaid container, according to claim 11.
Advantageously, the invention consists in a container for beverages such as mineral water, naturally fermented wine, fruit juices, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, gaseous or non-gaseous beverages, which is produced by a blow-molding technique, closed with a hermetic cap, produced by thermoplastic injection and applied to the top of the container.
The cap is completely hermetic, and for this reason it is possible to realise containers for sparkling and bubbling wines, the so-called "spumante", which already at room temperature can reach high internal pressure that varies between 1.5-2 bar to 3-3.5 bar.
The container according to the invention preferably foresees two types of preferable contents (in absence of the liquid to be drunk), i.e. 100 cc and 187.5 cc.
A container having the aforesaid characteristics is conceived to be realised using blow-molding techniques and can be constructed in a single piece, or in two pieces in the case where the stem is designed for separate production and application.
The container is realised in a plastic material, and preferably in PET, because of its specific hard-wearing, light-weight, perfectly transparent, and air-tight characteristics as well as its high level of chemical inertia towards other food products, and the fact that it can be totally recycled; PET can be transformed using a number of different techniques such as blow-molding, injection or extrusion.
Furthermore, the wide diameter of the opening, larger than that of normal bottles on the market, whether this refers to 1 litre, half-litre or quarter-litre capacity bottles, as well as single portion content, gives the container according to the invention, unique and practical characteristics never proposed before.
For example, it is easy to imagine the use of said containers in restaurants or canteens; in both contexts, the container permits the elimination of the glass tumblers, and provides an extra function, as well as a considerable economical saving since it eliminates the purchase, and management (washing, drying and replacement of broken tumblers) of glass tumblers.
A container according to the invention results as being very important for other daily uses, both in bars and at home, since it permits the user to drink a portion of water, wine or some other gaseous or natural, alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverage which is perfectly fresh exactly as when it is served from a freshly bottle.
Finally the container for beverages described in the present invention offers a wide range of advantages such as: extremely light weight; excellent biodegradability (when burnt it produces only water and carbon dioxide); perfect hygienic protection of the area in contact with the mouth; excellent transparency; mechanical suitability for containing water, wine and other gaseous beverages with high internal pressure; air-tightness; very good impact resistance; contents are absolutely uncontaminated; ergonomic opening and closing operation.
These and other advantages will be made more apparent from the following description of a preferred, exemplifying, but non-limiting embodiment of the container for beverages, which is the subject of the present invention, and of appended drawings wherein:
FIGS. 1-4 show a series of sequential steps of the production process for containers for beverages according to the present invention;
FIG. 5 shows a first embodiment of the container for beverages according to the invention;
FIG. 6 shows an opening mode of the container for beverages shown in FIG. 5 according to the present invention;
FIG. 7 shows a variant of the embodiment of the container for beverages shown in FIG. 5 according to the present invention;
FIG. 8 shows a motorised rotating installation layout for filling the containers for beverages shown in FIGS. 5 and 7 according to the present invention.
With particular reference to the FIGS. 1-4 which show a schematic layout of the production process of a body having a hollow interior (as in the case of the beverage container according to the invention) using the blow-molding technique, it can be seen that the initial step of the blow-molding process (FIG. 1) consists in the preliminary manufacturing, by means of thermoplastic injection cycle inside the mold 2, employing a dryer 10, a hopper 11, and an injection screw 12, of the initial parison 1 referred to in technical language as preformed item.
FIG. 2 illustrates the insertion by means of a blow-molding action of the preformed item 1 into the mold 2, wherein, suitable temperatures and high pressure gas inputs swell the preformed item 1, pushing it strongly against the walls 13 of the mold 2, so that it assumes the form of the internal mold shape.
FIG. 3 shows the two main parts that make up the preformed item 1: the neck 3, rigid and threaded, not destined for blow-molding, and the cylindrical body 4 destined for blow-molding.
The neck 3 is the part of the preformed item 1 which is not subject to any transformation during the blow-molding process, and on which is then applied the screw top cap 5 for closure.
The cap 5 is produced separately by means of a thermoplastic injection cycle, and is a fundamental part of the container or recipient 6 according to the invention, since it must ensure the perfect sealing of the container over a long period of time, also and above all when said recipient 6 contains a gas (carbon dioxide), as in the case of effervescent mineral waters, sparkling or "bubbly" wines or fizzy drinks.
To perform this function, the cap 5 can be produced in any form and material, and its opening and closing system can also be differed (with pull-off strip, with rotating seal-break action, with screw-opening action, etc.) in such a way to comply with the type of product contained in the container 6.
FIG. 4 shows the last step of the production cycle for blow-molding, wherein the blow mold 2 is opened and the finished container 6 is extracted.
FIG. 5 shows in particular, a container for beverages 6 according to the present invention, in a "three-part" configuration, composed of a stem 21, a blow-molded central body or cup 22, and a cap 23.
At the base of the cup 22 are the means 24 for attachment to the stem 21, while at the top, are the base 27 for the rest of the cap 23, the interference lines 25, realised to maintain the locking ring 29 of the cap 23 in position during the opening step of the cap 23, so that the cap can separate through the rupture of the rupture line 28, and the threading 26 useful for the screwing of cap 23.
FIG. 6 refers to the "three-part" configuration (FIG. 5) of container 6 according to the invention, and shows a preferred opening mode for container 6.
In particular, cap 23 includes a locking ring 30, which remains in position on container 6 during the opening action of cap 23, and an upper body 31 that can be separated along the dotted rupture line 32.
In preferred embodiments of the invention, the opening 36 of the container 6 also presents a fairly large diameter (equal to or over 36 mm) and is realised in a manner so that the distance between the opening and the threading 26 is equal to or larger than 0.5 cm, so that the mouth of the final user is not irritated by the threading 26 while drinking.
FIG. 7 shows the beverage container 6 according to the invention in a "two-part" configuration, having a body 33, realised using the blow-molding technique, representing the cup 22 and a stem 21, and a cap 23 complete with the locking ring 30 and rupture join 32.
In this case as well, the opening 36 has a fairly wide diameter (equal to or larger than 36 mm) and is realised so that the distance between the opening and the threading 26 is equal to or larger than 0.5 cm, so that the mouth of the final user is not irritated by said threading 26 while drinking.
FIG. 8 shows a motorised rotating installation for loading empty containers 6, which travel according to a circular path inside a chamber 39, comprising the washing and sterilising section 14, the filling section 34, and the sealing section 35.
The chamber 39 is filled with sterile air obtained through the filtration of atmospheric air blown by the fans 15 through diffusion filters 37, which, being equipped with cells having a diameter of 0.2 microns, are able to block even the smallest bacteria which have a diameter of 0.45 microns.
In order to guarantee the constant sterility of the environment, it is foreseen to introduce air at controlled pressure superior to that of the external atmospheric pressure.
Upon cycle completion the containers 6 are filled with the required product and sealed hermetically with the caps 23.
This description provides a clear explanation of the characteristics of the container for beverages and the process for filling said container, subject of the present invention, just as all the advantages to be gained are also made apparent.
Patent applications in class Removable closure guided in rotary movement (e.g., screw)
Patent applications in all subclasses Removable closure guided in rotary movement (e.g., screw)