US 3314746 A
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April 18, 1967 R. Y. MILLAR SANITARY DOOR KNOB AND THE LIKE Filed May 27, 1964 RUTHERFORD Y. MILLAR Inventor lownsend lown send United States Patent 3,314,746 SANITARY DOOR KNOB AND THE LIKE Rutherford Y. Millar, Winding River Vineyard, 1496 Greenwood Ave., Calistoga, Calif. 94515 Filed May 27, 1964, Ser. No. 370,558 3 Claims. (Cl. 21102) This invention relates to sanitary irradiated fixtures and more particularly to a door knob or handle with integral irradiating means for maintaining a relatively germ-free handle surface.
It is common experience to the users of public restrooms and like accommodations to find the door handles or knobs therein to have a feeling of uncleanliness on or about their surfaces. Similar reactions to other fixtures in such places have resulted in devices that ameliorate this feeling. Thus, various paper products as well as some ultraviolet applications are available on the market today for toilet seats and the like, but to the best of my knowledge no practical means have been developed for maintaining door knobs sanitary.
Thus it is an object of the present invention to provide an ultraviolet light generating means within a door knob or handle capable of transmitting such germicidal light and thus cause irradiation and some degree of sterilization of the door knob or handle.
A feature and an advantage of this invention is that by providing such sanitizing means the patron or user of public accommodations may maintain a certain feeling of comfort and cleanliness.
Another object of this invention is to provide the ultraviolet light transmitting door knob or handle with internal means for emitting ultraviolet light within the wave length range of 2400 to 2800 Angstrom units and mount such means within the knob so that its surface is irradiated with an intensity of not less than about .4 watt per square foot. Such irradiation is capable of reasonably disinfecting the surface that it contacts within a relatively short period of time.
Another feature and advantage of this invention is that a hollow ultraviolet light transmitting handle for attachment to a door, and a germicidal lamp located in its interior which can be energized to irradiate the handle with ultraviolet light, not only sterilizes the surface of the handle but also causes ozone to be generated in the surrounding atmosphere. The presence of ozone tends to deodorize and sterilize the air through which it circulates which is highly desirable particularly in public restrooms and the like.
Other objects, features and advantages will become apparent from a reading of the detailed specification that follows and accompanying drawing wherein similar characters of reference refer to corresponding parts in the figures of the drawing.
In the drawings:
FIGURE 1 is a fragmentary perspective view showing one embodiment of this invention in the form of a door knob.
FIGURE 2 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional elevation taken along 22 of FIGURE 1.
FIGURE 3 is a side elevation of another type of door handle embodying my invention.
In this invention a hollow door knob or handle is provided with an ultraviolet light generating means; for example, a germicidal lamp that is located inside the knob. The door handle shell is formed from a suitable material capable of passing ultraviolet light and is spaced from the ultraviolet source a distance such that the handle exterior surface is irradiated with suflicient intensity to cause sterilization there-on during the time that the light generating means is energized. In addition, the irradiation of the surface of the knob or handle, and the presence of ultraviolet light within the knob, generates a certain amount of ozone that circulates into the surrounding air thus causing some deodorization and sterilization of the surrounding air.
The invention is best understood by referring first to FIGURE 1 wherein a door knob assembly is indicated generally at 11 mounted for typical operation of door 12 having a conventional hasp assembly indicated at 13 for engagement on one side of the frame of the door, the latter element being well known and not shown in the drawing. Assembly 11 includes hollow knob 14 and germicidal lamp indicated generally at 16 to be described in greater detail below. The face of knob 14 is covered by an opaque layer 17 of metallic paint or the like which shields the emissions from lamp 16 for reasons explained later.
With reference to FIGURE 2 the assembly of the above paragraph is shown with greater detail. In the embodi ment illustrated, a separate germicidal lamp 16 with ultraviolet irradiating elements 16a are contained within glass envelope 16b and held by conventional bulb screw base 160. The germicidal lamp is normally screwed into base socket 18 which is mounted within handle shank 1-9 having working plunger 21 (only partially shown) which may be attached to door operating elements well known in the art and not shown herein. Shank 19 is held to the door by flange 22 and conventional attachments.
Extra flexible and insulated lead wire 23 and 24 are connected to terminals at base 18 for conducting electricity to lamp base with proper polarity to energize ultraviolet light generating means 16a. Conductors 23 and 24 lead away from the lamp base through hollowed out portion 26 of door 12 to the hinged side of the door, not shown, and thence through an opening to a suitably arranged ultraviolet lamp ballast. The latter makes available suitable power for energizing the ultraviolet light generating means 1642 using ordinary electrical line power. The lamp energizing means or ballast, its connection to an ordinary electrical power source, and the circuitry leading to the point where conductors 23 and 24 are shown in FIGURE 2, are known expedients in the art and not shown on the accompanying drawing.
Knob handle portion 27 is formed from a suitable material such as fused quartz or the like which passes ultraviolet light in the spectrum which includes the wave lengths of 2400 to 2800 Angstrom units. Such wave lengths are among those generated by filament 16a operating within the particular environment of envelope 16b and found to be satisfactory for the sterilization of surfaces they irradiate with an intensity not less than about .4 watt per square foot. The shell formed by knob 27 is shaped to space its exterior surface a certain distance from the source of the ultraviolet emissions. This dis tance is designed to cause the intensity of the ultraviolet irradiations at the knob surface to be not less than about .4 watt per square foot. In most instances such intensity of ultraviolet light in the wave length range recited above is satisfactory to cause reasonable germicidal disinfecting results to occur on the surface of the knob.
Knob 27 is provided with female thread 270 for engagement with male threads 19a on shaft 19, whereby the knob is removably secured to the shaft. In this way the knob portion itself may be removed for replacement and maintenance of lamp 16. In the embodiment shown, a plurality of holes 27b and 1% are placed at intervals around the periphery of knob 27 and shank 19, respectively, to permit ventilation around bulb and base 16 and release of the ozone that is formed within knob 27.
Since ultraviolet radiations may be injurious to certain tissues of the human body, shield 17 is placed on the forward portion of knob 27 to minimize the chance of such occurance to those users of the chamber within which the aforementioned knob faces. It is understood that such a shield does not reduce the effective benefits of the germicidal treatment of the surface of the knob since the shielding does not occur over that portion of the surface which is normally engaged when the knob is grasped manually by the user. However, radiation emanating from the nonshielded portions of the knob are directed to the floor, walls and ceiling immediately adjacent to the door in the areas generally not occupied by the users of the premises.
FIGURE 3 shows a fixed type door handle generally at 111. An enlongated ultraviolet lamp indicated at 116 resides in fixed socket 118 of a type similar in operation to lamp 16 described above. The handle itself is fixed at two points on door 112 and is provided with a removable protective shield 117 to facilitate maintenance and replacement of the ultraviolet source. Other details of the embodiment of FIGURE 3 such as wiring and the like, as well as the type of material from which the remainder of the handle might be fabricated for maximum utility, are the same as that described above for door knob 11 of FIGURES 1 and 2. Moreover, the effect and result of the embodiment of FIGURE 3 also is to provide a door handle which is reasonably sanitized at its surface by the irradiating effect of the ultraviolet lamp and, by producing ozone in the vinicity of the handle and through circulation vents 127b, to assist in cleaning and deodorizing the surrounding air.
Although the foregoing specification has described two satisfactory embodiments of this invention in which a separate germicidal lamp with its own independent envelope is placed within a hollow knob r handle, it is understood that the knob or handle itself may be fabricated in the form of an envelope capable of containing the ultraviolet light generating elements. However, the separate internal bulb shown has certain advantages such as case of replacement and maintenance.
It is further understood that although the foregoing specification has described in some detail one embodiment of the present invention by way of example, this has been done for purposes of explanation, and that certain modification and changes may be practiced within the spirit of the invention and scope of the appended claims.
1. In the art of sanitation, the combination comprising: an ultraviolet light generating means, a hollow door knob formed of material capable of passing ultraviolet light therethrough and housing said generating means to enable irradiation of the exterior knob surfaces from interiorly of said knob.
2. The combination in accordance with claim 1 and wherein the ultraviolet light generating means emits ultraviolet light within the wave length range of 2400 to 2800 Angstrom units, said generating means spaced from the outer surface of the knob in order to irradiate said surface with an intensity of not less than about .4 watt per square foot.
3. Improvements in the art of door handle fixtures comprising: a hollow, ultraviolet light transmitting handle for attachment to a door; a germicidal lamp located interiorly of said handle to emit ultraviolet light when said lamp is energized and to irradiate the handle; lamp energizing means in communication with said lamp to energize and cause the latter to emit said ultraviolet light whereby said handle is sterilized and ozone is generated in the surrounding atmosphere to deodorize and sterilize the air.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,841,570 1/ 1932 Burkholder 292-347 X 1,929,741 10/1933 Hall et al. -431 X 2,044,904 6/ 1936 Heisig.
2,308,844 1/ 1943 Wilshusen 292-347 X 2,527,955 10/1950 Pagel 21-61 2,989,632 6/1961 Olsen et al. 21-74 X MORRIS O. WOLK, Primary Examiner. J. ZATARGA, Assistant Examiner.