(19)
(11)EP 3 344 904 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
20.05.2020 Bulletin 2020/21

(21)Application number: 16763166.2

(22)Date of filing:  30.08.2016
(51)Int. Cl.: 
F16K 31/00  (2006.01)
B64D 11/04  (2006.01)
A47J 31/54  (2006.01)
G05D 23/10  (2006.01)
F24D 17/00  (2006.01)
(86)International application number:
PCT/US2016/049498
(87)International publication number:
WO 2017/040532 (09.03.2017 Gazette  2017/10)

(54)

THERMALLY-ACTUATED FLOW-RESTRICTOR DEVICE FOR AIRCRAFT BEVERAGE MAKER

WÄRMEBETÄTIGTE DURCHFLUSSBEGRENZERVORRICHTUNG FÜR EINEN GETRÄNKEBEREITER EINES FLUGZEUGS

DISPOSITIF RÉDUCTEUR DE DÉBIT À ACTIONNEMENT THERMIQUE POUR DISPOSITIF DE PRÉPARATION DE BOISSONS D'AVION


(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR

(30)Priority: 01.09.2015 US 201562213020 P

(43)Date of publication of application:
11.07.2018 Bulletin 2018/28

(73)Proprietor: B/E Aerospace, Inc.
Wellington, FL 33414 (US)

(72)Inventors:
  • DIETZ, Stuart A.
    Topeka, Kansas 66614 (US)
  • CROSSWAIT, Craig
    Belton, Missouri 64012 (US)
  • AESCHLIMAN, Dan
    Belton, Missouri 64012 (US)
  • KELLY, Luke E.
    Basehor, Kansas 66012 (US)

(74)Representative: Algemeen Octrooi- en Merkenbureau B.V. 
P.O. Box 645
5600 AP Eindhoven
5600 AP Eindhoven (NL)


(56)References cited: : 
DE-A1- 3 824 444
DE-U1- 8 714 098
US-A1- 2002 145 052
US-A1- 2014 076 171
DE-A1- 19 949 365
US-A- 4 830 277
US-A1- 2007 051 246
  
      
    Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


    Description

    BACKGROUND



    [0001] The present invention generally relates to a flow control valve, and more particularly relates to a thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device for an aircraft galley insert.

    [0002] Aircraft galley inserts or appliances that contain tanks of hot water, such as coffee or tea beverage makers, are generally installed in an aircraft galley using an open plumbing system. In this type of system, water from a potable water supply in the aircraft fills the tank of the galley insert when the water is pressurized and drains from the tank when the pressure is relieved. This type of system is intended to prevent formation of excessively high pressure inside the tank when the water in the tank is heated by the aircraft galley insert, such as when dispensing hot drinks.

    [0003] However, in an open plumbing system, the tank of the galley insert may experience a drop in pressure after the water in the tank is heated. In the case of beverage makers, where water in the tank is usually heated to 82 degrees Celsius (180 degrees Fahrenheit) or higher, any drop in pressure in the tank may result in a possible backflow of hot water into the aircraft galley's plumbing system. Consequently, crew members in the galley may be at risk of harm if they use a galley sink connected to the aircraft galley's plumbing system, since extremely hot water may unexpectedly expel from the sink faucet as a result of the backflow from the beverage maker.

    [0004] Conventional backflow prevention mechanisms or flow-restrictor devices provide inadequate solutions to this problem. For example, check valves are designed to prevent complete backflow of water, and therefore do not typically provide a sufficient outlet for relief of pressure of hot, highly pressurized water. Without a sufficient outlet for the pressure, a crew member would be at risk when he or she uses the beverage maker, since the hot, highly pressurized water would be expelled from the beverage maker at an unexpectedly high rate of speed. Additionally, other types of valves, such as thermal valves or electrically operated valves, are typically large and heavy and thus generally must be installed directly in the aircraft galley's plumbing system, which can be very costly to set up and maintain.

    [0005] Hence, there is a need for a flow-restrictor device for an aircraft galley insert that prevents excessive backflow of hot water from the galley insert into the aircraft galley's plumbing system, while also preventing the galley insert from becoming highly pressurized. There is also a need for a flow-restrictor device that is lightweight, compact, and capable of fitting within a standard aircraft galley insert without requiring external installation directly in the aircraft galley's plumbing system, and that does not require electricity for operation. The present invention meets this and other needs.

    [0006] US2002/0145052 discloses a thermally-actuated flow-restrictor according to the preamble of claim 1.

    [0007] DE8714098U discloses a thermally-actuated stop valve.

    [0008] DE3824444 discloses a thermally-actuated flow-restrictor with a shape memory alloy actuator.

    SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION



    [0009] The present invention provides a thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device for an aircraft galley insert that is sufficiently compact and lightweight to fit into the aircraft galley insert. The present invention restricts excessive backflow of hot water from an aircraft galley insert into the aircraft galley's plumbing system while providing an outlet for relief of highly pressurized water inside the aircraft galley insert. In this way, the present invention cost-effectively prevents the unanticipated expulsion of hot water from galley sink faucets connected to the aircraft galley's plumbing system and from the galley insert itself, thereby allowing for crew member safety without the need to externally install and maintain a large and heavy valve in the aircraft galley's plumbing system. Moreover, the present invention is actuated by warm temperatures, so no electricity is required for operation of the thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device.

    [0010] Accordingly, a thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device is provided for use in an aircraft galley insert such as a beverage maker. The thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device includes a housing formed by a first flanged fitting and a second flanged fitting. The second flanged fitting is detachably connected to the first flanged fitting by a fastening arrangement. The first flanged fitting includes an outlet port configured to connect in fluid communication with the aircraft galley insert, and the second flanged fitting includes an inlet port configured to connect in fluid communication with a potable water supply in the aircraft. A seal, such as an O-ring, may be contained within the housing for preventing leakage of water flowing through the thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device from the potable water supply.

    [0011] A closure element such as a bimetal disc is contained within the housing that includes one or more ports or apertures for water to flow within the housing from the inlet port to the outlet port. The closure element includes a plurality of metals having different coefficients of thermal expansion which allow the closure element to actuate in response to the temperature of water contacting the closure element. More particularly, the closure element has a surface facing the inlet port that is changeable as a result of the different coefficients of thermal expansion between a concave surface and convex surface depending upon the temperature of water contacting the closure element.

    [0012] The surface of the closure element is concave by default when the closure element is at ambient temperature, thereby allowing water to flow through the closure element from the inlet port to the outlet port. When water having a predetermined temperature, for example at least 49 degrees Celsius (120 degrees Fahrenheit), contacts the closure element, the surface of the closure element facing the inlet port becomes convex and proximal to a boss concentrically surrounding the inlet port, thereby restricting the backflow of water through the closure element from the outlet port to the inlet port. When the closure element cools back toward ambient temperature, the surface of the closure element facing the inlet port returns to being concave, thereby allowing the water to flow unrestricted again through the closure element from the inlet port to the outlet port.

    [0013] The thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device is sufficiently lightweight and compact that it can be installed in the water inlet line of the aircraft galley insert between its water inlet fitting and water tank. Alternatively, the flow-restrictor device can be directly installed in the aircraft galley insert's water inlet fitting or water tank itself.

    [0014] These and other features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent from the following detailed description of the preferred embodiment which, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, illustrate by way of example the principles of the invention.

    BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS



    [0015] 

    FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device according to a preferred embodiment of the present invention for use in an aircraft galley insert.

    FIG. 2 is an exploded view of the thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device of FIG. 1 illustrating a closure element used to restrict the flow of water through the thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device .

    FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of the thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device of FIG. 1 in which the surface of the closure element facing the inlet port is concave to allow the flow of water from the inlet port through the thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device.

    FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view of the thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device of FIG. 1 in which the surface of the closure element facing the inlet port is convex and proximal to a boss concentrically surrounding the inlet port to restrict the backflow of water from the outlet port through the thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device.


    DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS



    [0016] A preferred embodiment of the present invention provides a thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device that is lightweight and compact enough to be contained in aircraft galley inserts including beverage maker appliances. The preferred embodiment of the present invention restricts the backflow of hot water from the galley inserts into the aircraft galley's plumbing system while also allowing for the galley inserts to have a sufficient outlet for relief of pressure, thereby increasing the safety of crew members in the galley.

    [0017] Referring to FIGs. 1 and 2, according to a preferred embodiment of the present invention, a thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device 10 is provided that includes a housing 12 formed of a first flanged fitting 14 and a second flanged fitting 16. The first flanged fitting includes an outlet port 18 that is configured to be connected in fluid communication with an aircraft galley insert (not shown), for example, a beverage maker appliance, and the second flanged fitting includes an inlet port 20 that is configured to be connected in fluid communication with the aircraft's potable water supply. A closure element 22 is contained within the housing that includes one or more ports or apertures 24 through which water within the housing can flow. Moreover, to prevent water flowing through the flow-restrictor device from leaking outside the housing, the housing may also contain a seal 26 such as an O-ring. The first flanged fitting and the second flanged fitting are fastened together to form the housing via a fastener arrangement 28 using one or more bolts, screws or other conventional fasteners 40. As a result, the flow-restrictor device 10 enables the flow of potable water from the aircraft's potable water supply through inlet port 20 into the aircraft galley insert via outlet port 18.

    [0018] Referring now to FIGs. 3 and 4, to restrict the backflow of hot water from the outlet port 18 to the inlet port 20, the closure element 22 is designed in a preferred embodiment of the present invention to be bimetal, or to contain a plurality of metals in general, with each metal having a different coefficient of thermal expansion. The different coefficients of thermal expansion allow the closure element to actuate in response to changes to its temperature caused by contact with hot water backflowing from the aircraft galley insert. The closure element is pre-calibrated to actuate when hot water, for example, water having a temperature of at least 49 degrees Celsius (120 degrees Fahrenheit), contacts the closure element.

    [0019] In particular, the closure element 22 includes a surface 30 facing the inlet port that alternates between being concave (as shown in FIG. 3) or convex (as shown in FIG. 4) depending on the temperature of water contacting the closure element. In the preferred embodiment of the present invention, the surface is constructed to be concave when the closure element is at ambient temperature or in contact with ambient water supplied by the aircraft's potable water supply, as illustrated in FIG. 3. Thus, the closure element by default allows water to flow unrestricted through the housing 12 via the apertures 24 of the closure element from the inlet port 20 to the outlet port 18.

    [0020] If hot water backflows from the aircraft galley insert through the outlet port 18 into the housing 12 and contacts the closure element 22, the closure element will be exposed to the higher pre-calibrated temperature, and the surface 30 of the closure element will change or snap into being convex. As illustrated in FIG. 4, this change will cause the closure element to become proximal to a boss 32 protruding from the second flanged fitting 16 that concentrically surrounds the inlet port 20, thus restricting fluid access to the inlet port.

    [0021] Although the surface 30 of the closure element 22 restricts fluid access to the inlet port 20 while convex, it does not completely prevent access. According to the invention, the convex surface contacts the boss while leaving at least a portion of one aperture 24 aligned with the inlet port for water to flow. Therefore, pressure from hot water in the aircraft galley insert can still be alleviated even though backflow is restricted.

    [0022] As a result, the closure element 22 limits the rate of hot water flowing back into the aircraft galley's plumbing system from the aircraft galley insert through the flow-restrictor device 10 while also providing relief of pressure in the aircraft galley insert. After the backflow has ceased and the closure element cools back towards ambient temperature, the surface 30 of the closure element will change or snap back into being concave as shown in FIG. 3, thus allowing potable water to again flow unrestricted through the flow-restrictor device.

    [0023] The thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device 10 can thus be used in a method of restricting the backflow of water from aircraft galley inserts. To operate the device, the closure element 22 is positioned between the first flanged fitting 14 and second flanged fitting 16 such that the concave surface 30 of the closure element faces the inlet port 20 as shown in FIG. 3. A seal 26 such as an O-ring can be also positioned between the first flanged fitting and second flanged fitting. The first flanged fitting and second flanged fitting are afterwards attached together to form the housing 12, and the housing is installed in the water inlet line of the aircraft galley insert by connecting the outlet port 18 of the housing in fluid communication with the aircraft galley insert, and by connecting the inlet port of the housing in fluid communication with the aircraft's potable water supply. Water can thereafter flow through the thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device from the aircraft's potable water supply to the aircraft galley insert. When water of a predetermined temperature (i.e. hot water) back flowing from the aircraft galley insert through the outlet port contacts the closure element, the closure element will actuate such that its surface facing the inlet port becomes convex and proximal to the boss 32 as shown in FIG. 4, and the backflow through the thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device will thereafter be restricted. Once the closure element cools back toward ambient temperature, the closure element will actuate to its original position as shown in FIG. 3, and normal operation of the thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device will resume.

    [0024] As a result, the preferred embodiment of the present invention advantageously restricts the backflow of hot water from the water tank in the aircraft galley insert into the aircraft's plumbing system while also preventing the tank from becoming too highly pressurized so that safety of crew members is maintained. The flow-restrictor device is sufficiently lightweight and compact enough to be installed in the water inlet line of the aircraft galley insert or appliance between the appliance's water inlet fitting and water tank, or alternatively in the water inlet fitting or water tank itself. The preferred embodiment of the present invention also does not require electrical operation due to its thermally-actuated nature, thus greatly simplifying and reducing the cost of designing, installing and maintaining the thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device.

    [0025] It will be apparent from the foregoing that while particular forms of the invention have been illustrated and described, various modifications can be made without departing from the scope of the invention as defined by the appended claims. For example, although the closure element is expressly illustrated in the Figures as a disc, it should be noted that other shapes for the closure element may be used. Accordingly, it is not intended that the invention be limited, except as by the appended claims.


    Claims

    1. A thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device (10) for an aircraft galley insert, the flow-restrictor device (10) comprising:

    a housing (12) including a first flanged fitting (14) and a second flanged fitting (16), the first flanged fitting (14) including an outlet port (18) configured to connect in fluid communication with the aircraft galley insert, and the second flanged fitting (16) including an inlet port (20) configured to connect in fluid communication with an aircraft potable water supply;

    a closure element (22) contained within the housing (12), the closure element (22) including one or more apertures (24) for water to flow within the housing (12) from the inlet port (20) to the outlet port (18), the closure element (22) having a surface (30) facing the inlet port (20) that is concave when the closure element (22) is at ambient temperature to allow water to flow through the closure element (22) from the inlet port (20) to the outlet port (18);

    wherein the closure element (22) includes a plurality of metals each having a different coefficient of thermal expansion which allow the surface (30) of the closure element (22) facing the inlet port (20) to become convex when water having a predetermined temperature contacts the closure element (22) and that allow the surface (30) of the closure element (22) to return to being concave when the closure element (22) cools toward ambient temperature; characterized in that when the surface (30) of the closure element (22) is convex, the surface (30) is proximal to a boss (32) concentrically surrounding the inlet port (20) and contacts the boss (32) while leaving a portion of one aperture (24) aligned with the inlet port, thereby restricting the backflow of water in the housing (12) from the outlet port (18) to the inlet port (20).


     
    2. The thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device (10) of Claim 1, wherein the closure element (22) is bimetal.
     
    3. The thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device (10) of Claim 2, wherein the closure element (22) is a disc.
     
    4. The thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device (10) of Claim 1, further comprising a seal (26) located within the housing (12).
     
    5. The thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device (10) of Claim 4, wherein the seal (26) is an O-ring.
     
    6. The thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device (10) of Claim 1, wherein the predetermined temperature is at least 49°C (120 degrees Fahrenheit).
     
    7. The thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device (10) of Claim 1, further comprising a fastener arrangement (28) in the housing (12) for fastening the first flanged fitting (14) to the second flanged fitting (16).
     
    8. Use of a thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device (10) for an aircraft galley insert, wherein the flow-restrictor device (10) is installed in a water inlet line of the aircraft galley insert between a water inlet fitting and a water tank of the aircraft galley insert, or
    wherein the flow-restrictor device (10) is installed in one of a water inlet fitting of the aircraft galley insert and a water tank of the aircraft galley insert,
    the flow-restrictor device (10) comprising:

    a housing (12) including a first flanged fitting (14) and a second flanged fitting (16), the first flanged fitting (14) including an outlet port (18) configured to connect in fluid communication with the aircraft galley insert, and the second flanged fitting (16) including an inlet port (20) configured to connect in fluid communication with an aircraft potable water supply;

    a closure element (22) contained within the housing (12), the closure element (22) including one or more apertures (24) for water to flow within the housing (12) from the inlet port (20) to the outlet port (18), the closure element (22) having a surface (30) facing the inlet port (20) that is concave when the closure element (22) is at ambient temperature to allow water to flow through the closure element (22) from the inlet port (20) to the outlet port (18);

    wherein the closure element (22) includes a plurality of metals each having a different coefficient of thermal expansion which allow the surface (30) of the closure element (22) facing the inlet port (20) to become convex when water having a predetermined temperature contacts the closure element (22) and that allow the surface (30) of the closure element (22) to return to being concave when the closure element (22) cools toward ambient temperature; and

    wherein when the surface (30) of the closure element (22) is convex, the surface (30) is proximal to a boss (32) concentrically surrounding the inlet port (20), thereby restricting the backflow of water in the housing (12) from the outlet port (18) to the inlet port (20),

    the flow-restrictor device (10) restricting excessive backflow of hot water from the aircraft galley insert into the aircraft galley plumbing system while providing an outlet for relief of highly pressurized water inside the aircraft galley insert.


     
    9. Use of a thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device (10) according to claim 8, wherein the flow-restrictor device (10) is in accordance with any of the preceding claims 1 to 7.
     
    10. Use of the thermally-actuated flow-restrictor device (10) defined in claim 8 or 9, for an aircraft galley insert being a beverage maker.
     


    Ansprüche

    1. Wärmebetätigte Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) für einen Flugzeugbordkücheneinsatz, wobei die Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) Folgendes umfasst:

    ein Gehäuse (12), das ein erstes Flanschfitting (14) und ein zweites Flanschfitting (16) umfasst, wobei das erste Flanschfitting (14) einen Auslassstutzen (18) umfasst, der dazu ausgelegt ist, mit dem Flugzeugbordkücheneinsatz in Fluidverbindung zu stehen, und das zweite Flanschfitting (16) einen Einlassstutzen (20) umfasst, der dazu ausgelegt ist, mit einer Flugzeugtrinkwasserversorgung in Fluidverbindung zu stehen;

    ein Verschlusselement (22), das im Gehäuse (12) enthalten ist, wobei das Verschlusselement (22) eine oder mehrere Öffnungen (24) umfasst, durch die Wasser innerhalb des Gehäuses (12) vom Einlassstutzen (20) zum Auslassstutzen (18) fließen kann, wobei das Verschlusselement (22) eine dem Einlassstutzen (20) zugewandte Fläche (30) aufweist, die konkav ist, wenn das Verschlusselement (22) Raumtemperatur aufweist, um zuzulassen, dass Wasser vom Einlassstutzen (20) zum Auslassstutzen (18) durch das Verschlusselement (22) fließt;

    wobei das Verschlusselement (22) mehrere Metalle umfasst, die jeweils einen anderen Wärmeausdehnungskoeffizienten aufweisen, die zulassen, dass die dem Einlassstutzen (20) zugewandte Fläche (30) des Verschlusselements (22) konvex wird, wenn Wasser mit einer festgelegten Temperatur das Verschlusselement (22) berührt, und zulassen, dass die Fläche (30) des Verschlusselements (22) wieder konkav wird, wenn sich das Verschlusselement (22) auf Raumtemperatur abkühlt;

    dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass, wenn die Fläche (30) des Verschlusselements (22) konvex ist, sich die Fläche (30) in der Nähe einer Nabe (32) befindet, die den Einlassstutzen (20) konzentrisch umgibt, und die Nabe (32) berührt, während ein Abschnitt einer Öffnung (24) mit dem Einlassstutzen ausgerichtet bleibt, wodurch das Zurückfließen von Wasser vom Auslassstutzen (18) zum Einlassstutzen (20) in dem Gehäuse (12) eingeschränkt wird.


     
    2. Wärmebetätigte Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) nach Anspruch 1, wobei das Verschlusselement (22) ein Bimetall ist.
     
    3. Wärmebetätigte Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) nach Anspruch 2, wobei das Verschlusselement (22) eine Scheibe ist.
     
    4. Wärmebetätigte Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) nach Anspruch 1, ferner eine Dichtung (26) umfassend, die sich innerhalb des Gehäuses (12) befindet.
     
    5. Wärmebetätigte Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) nach Anspruch 4, wobei die Dichtung (26) ein O-Ring ist.
     
    6. Wärmebetätigte Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) nach Anspruch 1, wobei die festgelegte Temperatur mindestens 49 °C (120 Grad Fahrenheit) beträgt.
     
    7. Wärmebetätigte Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) nach Anspruch 1, ferner eine Befestigungsanordnung (28) im Gehäuse (12) umfassend, um das erste Flanschfitting (14) am zweiten Flanschfitting (16) zu befestigen.
     
    8. Verwenden einer wärmebetätigten Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) für einen Flugzeugbordkücheneinsatz,
    wobei die Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) in einer Wassereinlassleitung des Flugzeugbordkücheneinsatzes zwischen einem Wassereinlassfitting und einem Wassertank des Flugzeugbordkücheneinsatzes eingebaut ist, oder
    wobei die Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) in einem Wassereinlassfitting des Flugzeugbordkücheneinsatzes oder einem Wassertank des Flugzeugbordkücheneinsatzes eingebaut ist,
    wobei die Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) Folgendes umfasst:

    ein Gehäuse (12), das ein erstes Flanschfitting (14) und ein zweites Flanschfitting (16) umfasst, wobei das erste Flanschfitting (14) einen Auslassstutzen (18) umfasst, der dazu ausgelegt ist, mit dem Flugzeugbordkücheneinsatz in Fluidverbindung zu stehen, und das zweite Flanschfitting (16) einen Einlassstutzen (20) umfasst, der dazu ausgelegt ist, mit einer Flugzeugtrinkwasserversorgung in Fluidverbindung zu stehen;

    ein Verschlusselement (22), das im Gehäuse (12) enthalten ist, wobei das Verschlusselement (22) eine oder mehrere Öffnungen (24) umfasst, durch die Wasser innerhalb des Gehäuses (12) vom Einlassstutzen (20) zum Auslassstutzen (18) fließen kann, wobei das Verschlusselement (22) eine dem Einlassstutzen (20) zugewandte Fläche (30) aufweist, die konkav ist, wenn das Verschlusselement (22) Raumtemperatur aufweist, um zuzulassen, dass Wasser vom Einlassstutzen (20) zum Auslassstutzen (18) durch das Verschlusselement (22) fließt;

    wobei das Verschlusselement (22) mehrere Metalle umfasst, die jeweils einen anderen Wärmeausdehnungskoeffizienten aufweisen, die zulassen, dass die dem Einlassstutzen (20) zugewandte Fläche (30) des Verschlusselements (22) konvex wird, wenn Wasser mit einer festgelegten Temperatur das Verschlusselement (22) berührt, und zulassen, dass die Fläche (30) des Verschlusselements (22) wieder konkav wird, wenn sich das Verschlusselement (22) auf Raumtemperatur abkühlt; und

    wobei, wenn die Fläche (30) des Verschlusselements (22) konvex ist, sich die Fläche (30) in der Nähe einer Nabe (32) befindet, die den Einlassstutzen (20) konzentrisch umgibt, wodurch das Zurückfließen von Wasser vom Auslassstutzen (18) zum Einlassstutzen (20) in dem Gehäuse (12) eingeschränkt wird,

    wobei die Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) das übermäßige Zurückfließen von heißem Wasser vom Flugzeugbordkücheneinsatz in das Rohrleitungssystem der Flugzeugbordküche einschränkt, während sie einen Auslass zur Entlastung von unter Hochdruck stehendem Wasser innerhalb des Flugzeugbordkücheneinsatzes vorsieht.


     
    9. Verwendung einer wärmebetätigten Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) nach Anspruch 8, wobei die Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) einem der vorstehenden Ansprüche 1 bis 7 entspricht.
     
    10. Verwendung der in Anspruch 8 oder 9 definierten wärmebetätigten Durchflussbegrenzervorrichtung (10) für einen Flugzeugbordkücheneinsatz, die ein Getränkebereiter ist.
     


    Revendications

    1. Dispositif réducteur de débit à actionnement thermique (10) pour un insert d'office d'aéronef, le dispositif réducteur de débit (10) comprenant :

    un logement (12) comportant un premier raccord à bride (14) et un deuxième raccord à bride (16), le premier raccord à bride (14) comportant un orifice de sortie (18) configuré pour être raccordé en communication fluidique avec l'insert d'office d'aéronef, et le deuxième raccord à bride (16) comportant un orifice d'entrée (20) configuré pour être raccordé en communication fluidique avec une alimentation en eau potable d'aéronef ;

    un élément de fermeture (22) contenu dans le logement (12), l'élément de fermeture (22) comportant une ou plusieurs ouverture(s) (24) pour que l'eau s'écoule à l'intérieur du logement (12) de l'orifice d'entrée (20) vers l'orifice de sortie (18), l'élément de fermeture (22) ayant une surface (30) faisant face à l'orifice d'entrée (20) qui est concave lorsque l'élément de fermeture (22) est à température ambiante pour permettre à l'eau de s'écouler à travers l'élément de fermeture (22) de l'orifice d'entrée (20) vers l'orifice de sortie (18) ;

    dans lequel l'élément de fermeture (22) comporte une pluralité de métaux ayant chacun un coefficient de dilatation thermique différent qui permet à la surface (30) de l'élément de fermeture (22) faisant face à l'orifice d'entrée (20) de devenir convexe lorsque l'eau ayant une température prédéterminée entre en contact avec l'élément de fermeture (22) et qui permet à la surface (30) de l'élément de fermeture (22) de redevenir concave lorsque l'élément de fermeture (22) se refroidit vers la température ambiante ; caractérisé en ce que

    lorsque la surface (30) de l'élément de fermeture (22) est convexe, la surface (30) est proche d'un bossage (32) entourant de manière concentrique l'orifice d'entrée (20) et entre en contact avec le bossage (32) tout en laissant une partie d'une ouverture (24) alignée avec l'orifice d'entrée, limitant ainsi le refoulement de l'eau dans le logement (12) de l'orifice de sortie (18) vers l'orifice d'entrée (20).


     
    2. Dispositif réducteur de débit à actionnement thermique (10) de la revendication 1, dans lequel l'élément de fermeture (22) est bimétallique.
     
    3. Dispositif réducteur de débit à actionnement thermique (10) de la revendication 2, dans lequel l'élément de fermeture (22) est un disque.
     
    4. Dispositif réducteur de débit à actionnement thermique (10) de la revendication 1, comprenant en outre un joint d'étanchéité (26) situé à l'intérieur du logement (12).
     
    5. Dispositif réducteur de débit à actionnement thermique (10) de la revendication 4, dans lequel le joint d'étanchéité (26) est un joint torique.
     
    6. Dispositif réducteur de débit à actionnement thermique (10) de la revendication 1, dans lequel la température prédéterminée est d'au moins 49°C (120 degrés Fahrenheit).
     
    7. Dispositif réducteur de débit à actionnement thermique (10) de la revendication 1, comprenant en outre un agencement de fixation (28) dans le logement (12) pour fixer le premier raccord à bride (14) au deuxième raccord à bride (16).
     
    8. Utilisation d'un dispositif réducteur de débit à actionnement thermique (10) pour un insert d'office d'aéronef, dans laquelle le dispositif réducteur de débit (10) est installé dans une conduite d'entrée d'eau de l'insert d'office d'aéronef entre un raccord d'entrée d'eau et un réservoir d'eau de l'insert d'office d'aéronef,
    ou
    dans laquelle le dispositif réducteur de débit (10) est installé dans l'un d'un raccord d'entrée d'eau de l'insert d'office d'aéronef et d'un réservoir d'eau de l'insert d'office d'aéronef,
    le dispositif réducteur de débit (10) comprenant :

    un logement (12) comportant un premier raccord à bride (14) et un deuxième raccord à bride (16), le premier raccord à bride (14) comportant un orifice de sortie (18) configuré pour être raccordé en communication fluidique avec l'insert d'office d'aéronef, et le deuxième raccord à bride (16) comportant un orifice d'entrée (20) configuré pour être raccordé en communication fluidique avec une alimentation en eau potable d'aéronef ;

    un élément de fermeture (22) contenu dans le logement (12), l'élément de fermeture (22) comportant une ou plusieurs ouverture(s) (24) pour que l'eau s'écoule à l'intérieur du logement (12) de l'orifice d'entrée (20) vers l'orifice de sortie (18), l'élément de fermeture (22) ayant une surface (30) faisant face à l'orifice d'entrée (20) qui est concave lorsque l'élément de fermeture (22) est à température ambiante pour permettre à l'eau de s'écouler à travers l'élément de fermeture (22) de l'orifice d'entrée (20) vers l'orifice de sortie (18) ;

    où l'élément de fermeture (22) comporte une pluralité de métaux ayant chacun un coefficient de dilatation thermique différent qui permet à la surface (30) de l'élément de fermeture (22) faisant face à l'orifice d'entrée (20) de devenir convexe lorsque l'eau ayant une température prédéterminée entre en contact avec l'élément de fermeture (22) et qui permet à la surface (30) de l'élément de fermeture (22) de redevenir concave lorsque l'élément de fermeture (22) se refroidit vers la température ambiante ; et

    où lorsque la surface (30) de l'élément de fermeture (22) est convexe, la surface (30) est proche d'un bossage (32) entourant de manière concentrique l'orifice d'entrée (20), limitant ainsi le refoulement de l'eau dans le logement (12) de l'orifice de sortie (18) vers l'orifice d'entrée (20),

    le dispositif réducteur de débit (10) limitant le refoulement excessif de l'eau chaude à partir de l'insert d'office d'aéronef dans le système de plomberie de l'office d'aéronef tout en fournissant une sortie pour la décharge de l'eau sous haute pression à l'intérieur de l'insert d'office d'aéronef.


     
    9. Utilisation d'un dispositif réducteur de débit à actionnement thermique (10) selon la revendication 8, dans laquelle le dispositif réducteur de débit (10) est conforme à l'une des revendications précédentes 1 à 7.
     
    10. Utilisation du dispositif réducteur de débit à actionnement thermique (10) défini dans la revendication 8 ou 9, pour un insert d'office d'aéronef qui est un dispositif de fabrication de boissons.
     




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    REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



    This list of references cited by the applicant is for the reader's convenience only. It does not form part of the European patent document. Even though great care has been taken in compiling the references, errors or omissions cannot be excluded and the EPO disclaims all liability in this regard.

    Patent documents cited in the description