Patent application title: DEVICE CONFIGURED TO HOLD OBJECTS IN AN APPLIANCE
David Scott Dunn (Louisville, KY, US)
Jerrod Aaron Kappler (Louisville, KY, US)
Jerrod Aaron Kappler (Louisville, KY, US)
Austin Vinoth Sargunum (Jeetimetla Village, IN)
Mohan Rao Ponnaganti (Kukatpally, IN)
Manikandan Balasubramaniam (Muthulakshminagar, IN)
IPC8 Class: AD06F2304FI
Class name: With liquid extractor centrifugal extractor (e.g., centrifuge) including additional fluid handling means actuated by rotation of centrifuge
Publication date: 2013-01-31
Patent application number: 20130025328
An appliance comprises a wash tub and a wash basket in which clothes to
be washed are positioned. In one embodiment, the wash basket has a first
region that is permeable to the washing fluid and a second region in
which washing fluid is retained. The wash basket comprises a first wall
that forms an outer shell and in which is disposed a second wall that
tapers towards the center axis from the first region to the bottom of the
outer shell. The second wall forms an inner or first compartment and an
outer or second compartment, which is adjacent to and in flow connection
with the first compartment proximate the first region. When implemented
in an appliance such as a washing machine, the second wall is configured
so that the washing fluid moves from the second region to the first
region in response to rotation of the wash basket.
1. A wash basket, comprising: a first region in which a first wall is
permeable to a washing fluid; and a second region below the first region
and in Which is disposed a second wall forming a first compartment and a
second compartment adjacent to the first compartment, wherein the second
wall forms an inner boundary of the second compartment and the first wall
forms an outer boundary of the second compartment, and wherein, proximate
the first region, the second compartment is in flow connection with the
2. A wash basket according to claim 1, wherein the second wall is tapered at an angle from the first wall towards a center axis of said wash basket.
3. A wash basket according to claim 2, wherein the angle is from about 4'' to about 12''.
4. A wash basket according to claim 1, wherein the second wall comprises a an inner member and an outer member separated by a gap.
5. A wash basket according to claim 4, wherein the outer member is offset from the first wall at the end, and wherein one or more spaces are formed by the offset and through which the washing fluid can flow between the outer member and the first wall.
6. A wash basket according to claim 4, wherein the inner member comprises openings that permit the washing fluid to flow into the gap.
7. A wash basket according to claim 6, wherein the outer member is configured to retain the washing fluid therein.
8. A wash basket according to claim 1, wherein the second compartment comprises a drain feature that is configured to permit flow of washing fluid out of the second compartment.
9. A wash basket according to claim 8, wherein the drain feature is positioned at a low point of a trough.
10. A wash basket, comprising: a first wall forming an outer shell having a cylindrical shape and having a center axis; and a second wall disposed in the outer shell, the second wall having a first end proximate a bottom section of the first wall and tapering at an angle from the first end away from the center axis to a second end proximate an upright section of the first wall, wherein the outer shell has a first region configured to be permeable to liquids and a second region in which the first wall and the second wall are configured to form a first compartment and a second compartment, wherein the second wall forms an inner boundary of the second compartment and the first wall forms an outer boundary of the second compartment, and wherein, proximate the first region, the second compartment is in flow connection with the first compartment.
11. A wash basket according to claim 10, further comprising an access feature disposed in the bottom section.
12. A wash basket according to claim 10, wherein the second compartment comprises a trough with a drain feature disposed therein.
13. A wash basket according to claim 10, wherein the second wall comprises an inner member and an outer member spaced apart from the inner member, and wherein the inner member is permeable to the washing fluid.
14. A wash basket according to claim 13, wherein the inner member comprises grooves that are disposed longitudinally about the inner member.
15. A wash basket according to claim 10, wherein, at the second end, the second wall is offset from the upright section of the first wall.
16. An appliance, comprising: a wash basket comprising an first region with a plurality of perforations disposed in a first wall and a second region with a first compartment and a second compartment separated by a second wall; and a wash tub surrounding and in spaced relation to the wash basket to form an annulus therebetween, wherein the first compartment is configured to retain a washing fluid therein, wherein the second wall comprises an inner member and an outer member separated from the inner member by a gap, and wherein the inner member comprises openings that permit the washing fluid to flow into the gap.
17. An appliance according to claim 16, wherein the second wall is configured so that rotation of the wash basket causes an upward flow of the washing fluid from the second region toward the first region.
18. An appliance according to claim 16, wherein proximate the first region the second compartment is in flow connection with the first compartment.
19. An appliance according to claim 16, wherein the annulus is less than about 25 mm.
20. An appliance according to claim 16, wherein the first compartment is configured to hold 15 gal or less of the washing fluid.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
 1. Field of the Invention
 The subject matter disclosed herein relates generally to appliances and, more particularly, in one embodiment to a washing machine with a wash basket configured to retain a washing fluid therein, thereby reducing the volume of the washing fluid required to operate the washing machine.
 2. Description of Related Art
 It is known that appliances such as household washing machines include a cabinet that houses a wash tub for containing wash water and rinse water, a perforated wash basket within the tub, and an agitator within the wash basket. A drive and motor assembly is mounted underneath the stationary outer tub to rotate the basket and the agitator relative to one another. A pump assembly is also supplied to pump water from the tub to a drain to complete execution of a wash cycle.
 The wash basket is utilized to execute centrifugal extraction of the wash and rinse water from the clothing items during spin cycles. The wash basket is rotated at a relatively high rate of rotation in order to cause centrifugal outward movement of the water from the wash basket into the outer tub. After being collected in the outer tub, the water is drained in preparation to initiation of another cycle.
 During a wash cycle, water is dispensed into the wash basket. Perforations in the wash basket permit the water to flow into the wash tub. Therefore, to fill the wash basket to a level for washing to occur, enough water must be dispensed to fill wash tub. However, because the wash basket is typically smaller than the wash tub, the amount of water that is dispensed during the wash cycle is more than would be required to fill only the wash basket. On the other hand, operation of the washing machine such as to extract sufficient water from the objects, requires that the perforations cover a majority of the wash basket.
 There is a need, therefore, for an appliance such as a washing machine that uses less water but that is configured for effective operation including extraction of water from objects as provided during the spin cycle.
BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
 Embodiments of an appliance, e.g., a household washing machine, reduce the amount of washing fluid (e.g., water) that is required during operation. These embodiments comprise a wash basket, which is an element in which objects (e.g., articles of clothes) can be positioned to he washed. Examples of the wash basket are configured to submerge the objects in the washing fluid, while using less water than is normally required to fill not only the wash basket but also portions of a wash tub in which the wash basket is disposed.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF TUE DRAWINGS
 Reference is now made briefly to the accompanying drawings, in which:
 FIG. 1 is a schematic representation of an exemplary embodiment of a washing system;
 FIG. 2 is a top view of the wash system of FIG. 1;
 FIG. 3 is a side, cross-section view of an example of a wash basket for use in appliances such as the appliance of FIG. 1;
 FIG. 4 is a side, cross-section, detail view of a portion of the wash basket of FIG. 3;
 FIG. 5 is a side, cross-section, detail view of another portion of the wash basket of FIG. 3;
 FIG. 6 is a top, perspective view of another exemplary embodiment of washing system; and
 FIG. 7 is a side, schematic view of the washing system of FIG. 7.
 Where applicable like reference characters designate identical or corresponding components and units throughout the several views, which are not to scale unless otherwise indicated.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
 FIG. 1 depicts a schematic representation of a wash basket 100, shown in one implementation in a wash system 102 in the form of an appliance 104. The appliance 104 comprises a wash tub 106 with a center axis 108 on which the wash basket 100 is aligned. The wash basket 100 is sized to fit in spaced relation with the wash tub 106, thereby forming an annulus 110 and permitting the wash basket 100 to rotate on the center axis 108, as generally indicated by the numeral 112. In one embodiment, the appliance 104 includes a drive element such as a motor (not shown), which is coupled to the wash basket 100. Operation of the motor causes rotation 112, and more particularly the appliance 104 is configured to operate the drive element to rotate the wash basket 100 at a spin rate, which can be fixed or variable as defined by selected operational cycle(s) for the appliance 104.
 The wash basket 100 has a first region 114 (or "upper region 114") and a second region 116 (or "lower region 116"), the designation of which is useful for purposes of the discussion that follows below. The wash basket 100 comprises a first wall 118 (or "outer wall 118") that is perforated or otherwise permeable to liquid in the first region 114. In the second region 116, the wash basket 100 comprises a second wall 120 (or "inner wall 120") that forms an inner or first compartment 122, which is closed, at a first end 124 (or "bottom end 124"). The closed bottom end 124 retains a washing fluid 126 at a fluid level 128. The second wall 120 tapers toward the center axis 108. This taper is defined by an angle 130, which is about 6'' but can vary from at least about 4'' to about 12'' based, in part, on the construction of the wash basket 100 and/or the wash tub 106.
 Also in the second region 116, the wash basket 100 comprises an outer or second compartment 132 that forms a voided area 134 in flow connection with the first compartment 122, as generally denoted by the arrow and demarcated by FC. The voided area 134 is also in flow connection with the wash tub 106 via a drain feature 136 located along the bottom edge or surface of the voided area 134. The drain feature 136 can comprise one or more holes, perforations, or apertures. In alternative constructions the drain feature 136 may comprise a series of gaps 138 between the second wall 120 and the end of a protruding lip or shelf 140 that extends from the first wall 118.
 The voided area 134 is a hollow, substantially hollow, and/or collection of hollow areas located about the periphery of the wash basket 100. In one example, the voided area 134 has as its inner boundary the second wall 120 and as its outer boundary the first wall 118. The inner boundary may also comprise other structures formed integrally with or otherwise secured to the first wall 118. The size of the voided area 134 can vary as a result of changes in, for example, the angle 130 as well as the general arrangement of the elements of the second region 116 (e.g., the first wall 118 and the second wall 120).
 As best depicted in FIG. 2, the second wall 120 is offset from the first wall 118 thereby forming one or more spaces 142 separated by structural features 144. The spaces 142 are shown as open, elongated regions, but can also comprise other features such as apertures and/or slots (and combinations thereof). In one example, the spaces 142 result from gaps between the inner surface of the first wall 118 and the second wall 120. These gaps may occur as features in the first wall 118 such as pleats or folds that occur during manufacturing.
 These features place the first compartment 122 (FIG. 1) in flow connection with the voided area 134 (FIG. 1). In one example, in addition to or in lieu of the spaces 142, a region 146 of the second wall 120 is perforated or otherwise permeable to liquid and places the voided area 134 (FIG. 1) in flow connection with the first compartment 122. In one construction the region 146 is located at or above the fluid level 128 (FIG. 1).
 Referring to both FIGS. 1 and 2, when implemented in the appliance 104, rotation 112 of the wash basket 100 induces an upward flow or movement of the washing fluid 126 from the second region 116 to the first region 114. This upward flow may occur in the spin cycle during operation of the appliance 104. In one exemplary operation the wash basket 100 rotates at a spin rate that causes centripetal forces and induces this movement of the washing fluid 126. Spin rates from about 120 RPM to about 175 RPM are usually sufficient. However, these values can vary higher or lower depending on, for example, construction of the elements of the appliance 104. In one example, the spin rate reaches a maximum value of at least about 150 RPM.
 Additionally, variability and control of the spin rate may be necessary to avoid uncontrolled movement and dispersal of the washing fluid 126. Thus, in one embodiment of the washing system 102, the spin rate is controlled during the spin cycle to increase and decrease the spin rate. This control is implemented, for example, by way of periodically implemented increments of, e.g., about 2 RPM to about 5 RPM, or by way of a spin rate profile that defines the desired changes in the spin rate over time (e.g., time for the spin cycle to occur). Artisans skilled in the appliance arts will recognize the implementation of necessary structure for control and variation of the speed of rotation, therefore details are not necessary.
 The moving fluid (e.g., the washing fluid 126) is ejected from the wash basket 100 via the perforated area(s) of the first wall 118. The ejected fluid flows into the annulus 110 where it is captured in the wash tub 106 such as below the wash basket 100. In one embodiment, the openings in the second region 116 the spaces 142 and/or perforations in the region 146) permit fluid into the voided area 134. This fluid is captured in the second compartment 132, and more particularly, is maintained in the second compartment 132 during the spin cycle due to the centripetal forces. The inventors discovered that the volume of fluid that is captured acts to balance the wash basket 100 during rotation 112, forming in one example a passive balance ring. The passive balance ring reduces and/or dampens the amplitude of motion that can result when the objects are out-of-balance or are asymmetrically dispersed within the wash basket 100.
 The wash basket 100 is further configured so that the washing fluid 126 in the voided area 134 can drain into the wash tub 106 such as after rotation 112 is stopped. To facilitate draining, the shelf 140 may taper downwardly towards the bottom of the wash tub 106, thereby permitting flow of substantially all washing fluid from the voided area 134. In one embodiment, a plurality of apertures (including holes and slots) penetrate the shelf 140 and provide flow connection of the voided area 134 and the bottom of the wash tub 106. These apertures can be used in addition to or in lieu of the gaps 138. In one example, the shelf 140 contacts the second wall 120 and may be formed integrally with or secured to the first wall 118 so as to direct washing fluid through the apertures and out of the voided area 134.
 Configurations of the wash basket 100 reduce the amount of the washing fluid 126 that is necessary to wash objects in the appliance 104. These configurations require little if any washing fluid 126 to be dispersed or otherwise dispensed into the annulus 110 when the wash basket 100 is filled. In one example, all of the washing fluid 126 is retained in the first compartment 122 until the appliance 104 executes a spin cycle. Moreover, by reducing or effectively eliminating the need for the annulus 110, the size of the annulus 110 is reduced. In one embodiment, the annulus 110 as measured between the sides of the wash tub 106 and the wash basket 100 is less that about 25 mm, and in a more particular construction the annulus 110 measures from about 5 mm to about 15 mm.
 The first compartment 122 generally retains all or most of the washing fluid 126 that is dispensed by the appliance 104. In one embodiment, the first compartment 122 holds and retains an amount of the washing fluid that is suitable to execute one or more wash cycles for the appliance 104. This amount may submerse the objects. However, the amount may vary in connection with construction of the first compartment 122. In one example, the first compartment 122 is configured to hold at least about 75 liters. In other examples, the first compartment holds from about 55 liters to about 70 liters. This amount can be scaled-up and scaled-down as necessary to accommodate, e.g., the size, capacity, and configurations of appliances such as the appliance 104. Moreover, the form of the first compartment 122 can also vary based on the amount the second wall 120 tapers.
 Openings of various sizes, shapes, and configurations are useful to construct the perforated areas of the first wall 118 and the second wall 120. Exemplary openings can be circular, while others can be oblong, elliptical, slotted, airfoil-shaped, square, rectangular, and other derivations and combinations thereof. Such openings can be found throughout the first wall 118, although in one embodiment openings are only found in the portions of the first wall 118 that are above the fluid level 128. In one example, the openings in the first wall 118 are found only in the first region 114.
 One or more of the spaces 142 and openings in the second wall 120 such as in the region 146 are configured to pass particulates (e.g., soils and materials) into the voided area 134 during the spin cycle. Washing and/or agitating may disengage such particles from objects in the first compartment 122. While such particulates often float to the top of the washing fluid 126 (i.e., proximate the fluid level 128) during the wash cycle, these particulates are sometimes too heavy to move out of the second region 116 to the first region 114 under centripetal forces. In one embodiment, centripetal action causes the particulates to travel into the voided area 134 to evacuate the particulates from the immediate vicinity of the objects being washed. Completion of the spin cycle (e.g., rotation 112 is stopped) will cause the remaining particulates to be flushed from the voided area 134 and into the wash tub 106 along with any washing fluid, in the voided area 134. In one example, the residual washing fluid, which flows through the drain feature 136 as discussed above, will carry the particulates into the bottom of the wash tub 106.
 Various materials are compatible with construction of the wash basket 100 and are selected to provide the general configuration and arrangement of the features disclosed herein. The first wall 118 and the second wall 120 are amenable to materials such as metals, plastics, and composites, and more particularly to those materials that are typically related to consumer goods and devices. Therefore selection is often dictated by factors such as cost, size, shape, and reliability. The first wall 118 can be a single unitary structure, wherein the various features found in the first region 114 and the second region 116 are formed monolithically. On the other hand, it is further contemplated that the wash basket 100 can be constructed as an assembly with separate pieces affixed together to form the various features and functional aspects of the wash basket 100. Examples of the wash basket 100 are proposed wherein the first wall 118 forms an outer shell in which is disposed, inserted, and/or affixed one or more separate elements to form, e.g., the second wall 120.
 A structure with multiple components is illustrated by way of example in FIGS. 3, 4, and 5. There is depicted a cross-section view of an embodiment of a wash basket 200. Like numerals are used to identify like components except that the numerals are increased by 100 in FIGS. 3, 4, and 5. For example, the wash basket 200 has a center axis 208, a first region 214 (or "upper region 214"), and a second region 216 (or "lower region 216"). The wash basket 200 also comprises a first wall 218 (or "outer wall 218") and a second wall 220 (or "inner wall 220"), which together form a first compartment 222, a second compartment 232 with a voided area 234, and a drain feature 236.
 The first wall 218 has a bottom section 248 and an upright section 250, which together form an outer shell 252 of generally cylindrical shape. Openings 254 perforate the first region 214, thereby permitting the flow of washing fluid therethrough. The openings 254 are arranged in an array 256 with rows and columns spaced about the center axis 208. The rows and columns can be arranged uniformly. Other arrangements are contemplated which are more randomly oriented and/or with openings of various sizes, shapes, and orientations. In one example, perforations such as the openings 254 are arranged with a density in the first region 214 of about 2 perforations/cm.
 In the second region 216, the bottom section 248 comprises an access feature 258 for ingress of e.g., drive components (not shown) for an agitation device (not shown). The bottom section 248 forms the bottom of the first compartment 222, extending from the access feature 258 to a downwardly extensible portion 260 that sweeps in a curvilinear profile 262 to form a trough 264. The second wall 220 has a first end 266 disposed in the trough 264 and a second end 268 disposed near the upright section 250 and proximate the first region 214.
 In one embodiment, the second wall 220 has a layered or multi-member structure. This structure comprises an outer member 270 and an inner member 272 separated by a gap or space 273. The outer member 270 is attached to, or formed integrally with, an interior surface of the outer shell 252. In one example, one or more ribs 274 project from either the interior surface of the outer shell 252 and/or the outer member 270 of the second wall 220. The ribs 274 support the second wall 220, spacing the second wall 220 from the outer shell 252 to form the voided area 234. The second wall 220 also comprises a perforated region 276, in which one or more grooves 278 and openings 280 are formed. The latter, i.e., the openings 280, place the first compartment 222 in flow connection with the second compartment 232, as discussed above.
 More details of the perforated region 276 are discussed next with reference to FIG. 4. In FIG. 4, the grooves 278 are disposed in and/or incorporated as part of the second wall 220. Each of grooves 278 have a groove cross-section 282 with and/or defined by dimensions such as a depth D and width W. The groove cross-section 282 and dimensions are selected so that the grooves 278 can receive therein particulate, shown generally as item 284, which may he dislodged from objects during the wash and spin cycles. The gap 273 is also clearly shown in FIG. 4. In embodiments of the wash basket (e.g., the wash basket 100 and 200), the size of the gap is much smaller than the drain feature 236. For example, the size of the gap 273 can vary from about 2 mm to about 5 mm, although these dimensions can further vary as necessary to accommodate different size of particles 284.
 Features such as the grooves 278 traverse the periphery of the second wall 220 to facilitate removal of the particulates 284. These features can be formed annularly and continuously in the second wall 220, as illustrated in the present examples where the grooves 278 are essentially revolved around the center axis 208 (FIG. 3). While shown in a substantially horizontal orientation (relative to, e.g., the section 250 (FIG. 3)), other examples of the grooves 278 can be pitched such as would occur when the grooves 278 wind in spiral configuration about the center axis 208 (FIG. 3). Still other examples are also contemplated wherein the grooves 278 traverse the second wall 220 longitudinally in a direction along, for example, the center axis 208 (FIG. 3).
 The openings 280 can be circular, but any configuration is contemplated that will permit particulates to pass therethrough. For circular features, the diameter can be at least about 5 mm. Of course, sizes of the openings 254 can vary, with larger and smaller diameters selected as desired. Features such as the openings 280 are positioned at least within the grooves 278 and dispersed about the second wall 220 in a manner that will facilitate passage of the particulates 284. In one example, the particulates will fall into the grooves 278 and migrate into the second compartment 232 via the openings 280 due, at least in part, to the centripetal forces caused during the spin cycle.
 FIG. 5 shows the drain feature 236 formed in the trough 264, and particular to this example, the drain feature 236 is positioned at or near a low point of the trough 264. This position facilitates evacuation of washing fluid and particulates from the second compartment 232 as noted herein. Features for use as the drain feature include holes of varying size, shape, configuration, and distribution about the trough 264. In one embodiment, the washing fluid that enters the second compartment 232 will be sufficient to flush particulates out of the second compartment 232. Moreover, successive use of, e.g., the appliances 104 (FIG. 1), will provide sufficient amount of the washing fluid into the second compartment 232 to remove particulates therefrom.
 Referring now to FIGS. 6 and 7, there is depicted a perspective view (FIG. 6) and a cross-sectional view (FIG. 7), taken along line A-A', of an exemplary embodiment of a wash basket 300, as implemented in a wash system 302 and more particularly a vertical-axis washing machine 304. It is contemplated, however, that at least some of the benefits of the concepts recited herein can be realized in other types of appliances, such as horizontal-axis washing machines. These concepts are therefore not intended to be limited to any particular type or configuration of the wash system 302, such as the configuration and features of the vertical-axis washing machine 304.
 In FIG. 6, the vertical axis-washing machine 304 includes a wash tub 306 with a center axis 308, and in which the wash basket 300 is located. In one embodiment, the vertical-axis washing machine 304 also includes a cabinet 310 and a cover 312. A backsplash 314 extends from the cover 312. The wash basket 300 includes a plurality of perforations 316 and a variety of control input selectors 318 are coupled to the backsplash 314. The control input selectors 318 form a user interface 320 for operator selection of machine cycles and features.
 A wash zone 322 is formed inside of the wash tub 306 and more particularly is defined by the wash basket 300, which is movably disposed and rotatably mounted in the wash tub 306 in a spaced apart relationship from wash tub 306. An agitation device 324 (or impeller or oscillatory basket mechanism) is rotatably positioned in the wash basket 300 on a vertical axis (not shown), which is substantially aligned, and coincident with the center axis 308 of the wash basket 300. In one example, the agitation device 324 is configured to impart oscillatory motion to objects (not shown) in the wash basket 300. The vertical-axis washing machine 304 also includes a spray device 326, which is mounted within the cabinet 310 and through which washing fluid is dispensed into the wash zone 322.
 In FIG. 7, the wash basket 300 is filled with washing fluid, as discussed above. The vertical-axis washing machine 304 comprises a first valve 328 and a second valve 330 deliver fluid, such as water, to the spray device 326 through a respective first hose 332 and a second hose 334. Liquid valves 328, 330 and liquid hoses 332, 334 together form a liquid supply connection for the vertical-axis washing machine 304 and, when connected to a building plumbing system (not shown), provide a water supply for use in the vertical-axis washing machine 304. Liquid valves 328, 330 and liquid hoses 332, 334 are connected to a basket inlet tube 336 and fluid is dispersed from the basket inlet tube 336 through the spray device 326 into the wash zone 322.
 A pump assembly 338 is located beneath the wash tub 306 and the wash basket 300 for gravity assisted flow when draining the wash tub 306. The pump assembly 338 includes a pump 340 and in an exemplary embodiment a motor fan (not shown). A pump inlet hose 342 extends from the wash tub 306 to the pump/motor 340 and a pump outlet hose 344 extends from the pump 340 to a drain outlet 346 and ultimately to a building plumbing system discharge line (not shown) in flow communication with the drain outlet 346. In operation, pump assembly 338 can be selectively activated to remove liquid from the wash tub 306 and the wash basket 300 through drain outlet 346 during appropriate points in washing cycles as the vertical-axis washing machine 304 is used.
 The wash basket 300 and the agitation device 324 are driven by a drive element 348 such as a motor through a transmission clutch system 350. A transmission belt 352 is coupled to the motor 348 and the transmission clutch system 350 such as through respective pulleys and shafts. Transmission clutch system 350 facilitates driving engagement of the wash basket 300 and the agitation device 324 through a shaft 354 for rotatable movement within the wash tub 306, and transmission clutch system 350 facilitates relative rotation of the wash basket 300 and the agitation device 324 for selected portions of wash cycles. Motor 348, transmission clutch system 350, and transmission belt 352 can collectively be referred to as a machine drive system, the machine drive system being connected to the wash basket 300 and the agitation device 324 for rotating the wash basket 300 and/or the agitation device 324.
 Operation of the vertical-axis washing machine 304 can be controlled by a controller 356 For example, the controller 356 is operatively connected to the user interface input (e.g., the user interface 320 (FIG. 6)) located on the backsplash (e.g., the backsplash 314 (FIG. 6)) for user manipulation to select washing machine cycles and features. In response to user manipulation of the user interface input, the controller 356 operates the various components of the vertical-axis washing machine 304 to execute selective machine cycles and features. The controller 356 is also operatively coupled to the inlet valves (e.g., the hot liquid valve 328 and the cold liquid valve 330), and machine drive system (e.g., the motor 348 and the transmission clutch system 350).
 In the present example, the wash basket 300 comprises a first wall 358 and a second wall 360, which is configured to form a first compartment 362 in which a washing fluid 364 is disposed. The construction of the wash basket 300 permits all, or substantially all, of the washing fluid 364 to be retained in or otherwise held in the first compartment 362 during the washing and agitating cycles. This configuration reduces the amount of fluid, e.g., the washing fluid 364, that would normally be required to complete a wash cycle.
 Where applicable it is contemplated that numerical values, as well as other values that are recited herein are modified by the term "about", whether expressly stated or inherently derived by the discussion of the present disclosure. As used herein, the term "about" defines the numerical boundaries of the modified values so as to include, but not be limited to, tolerances and values up to, and including the numerical value so modified. That is, numerical values can include the actual value that is expressly stated, as well as other values that are, or can be, the decimal, fractional, or other multiple of the actual value indicated, and/or described in the disclosure.
 This written description uses examples to disclose embodiments of the invention, including the best mode, and also to enable any person skilled in the art to practice the invention, including making and using any devices or systems and performing any incorporated methods. The patentable scope of the invention is defied by the claims, and may include other examples that occur to those skilled in the art. Such other examples are intended to be within the scope of the claims if they have structural elements that do not differ from the literal language of the claims, or if they include equivalent structural elements with insubstantial differences from the literal language of the claims.
Patent applications by David Scott Dunn, Louisville, KY US
Patent applications by Jerrod Aaron Kappler, Louisville, KY US