(19)
(11)EP 3 486 022 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
10.06.2020 Bulletin 2020/24

(21)Application number: 18200905.0

(22)Date of filing:  17.10.2018
(51)International Patent Classification (IPC): 
B23K 23/00(2006.01)
B23K 101/26(2006.01)

(54)

RAIL WELDING CRUCIBLE AND CAP WITH AN OXYGEN/PROPANE GAS RAIL-PREHEATING BURNER IGNITED REACTION STARTER MIX

SCHIENENSCHWEISSTIEGEL UND KAPPE MIT EINER SAUERSTOFF-/PROPANGAS-SCHIENENVORWÄRMBRENNER-GEZÜNDETEN REAKTIONSSTARTERMISCHUNG

CREUSET ET CAPUCHON DE SOUDAGE DE RAILS AVEC UN MÉLANGE DE DÉMARREUR DE RÉACTION À ALLUMAGE DU BRÛLEUR DE PRÉCHAUFFAGE DE RAILS À L'OXYGÈNE/GAZ PROPANE


(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: 17.11.2017 US 201762587692 P
16.03.2018 US 201815923325

(43)Date of publication of application:
22.05.2019 Bulletin 2019/21

(73)Proprietor: Orgo-Thermit Inc.
Manchester, New Jersey 08759 (US)

(72)Inventor:
  • Hefer, Frederick Carel
    Manchester, New Jersey 08759 (US)

(74)Representative: Loo, Chi Ching et al
Albright IP Limited County House Bayshill Road
Cheltenham, Gloucestershire GL50 3BA
Cheltenham, Gloucestershire GL50 3BA (GB)


(56)References cited: : 
WO-A1-00/77305
JP-A- 2003 236 684
US-A1- 2007 107 869
DE-U1-202017 101 491
US-A1- 2004 048 058
US-B1- 6 776 386
  
      
    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

    FIELD OF THE INVENTION



    [0001] The present invention relates generally to thermite rail welding. More particularly, the present invention relates to a system for welding two or more railroad rails that uses a reaction starter mix, which can be ignited without the use of explosive or electronically controlled ignition system.

    BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION



    [0002] Thermite welding is the welding process that incorporates the use of molten metal for the permanent connection between conductors. Thermite welding is heavily used to weld railway rails. The typical process of welding railway rails together involves the use of a crucible. Thermite with alloying metal is placed within the crucible. The rails are preheated using a standard oxygen/propane preheating burner and the thermite composition is ignited with a traditional barium nitrate igniter that allows the aluminothermic reaction to occur. Due to the thermite welding process needing a traditional ignition system, these igniters are shipped together with the other welding consumables. Shipping traditional igniters across country borders is a security/safety issue due to government regulations and HAZMAT classifications. There is an area of need for an ignition system for thermite rail welding which does not require a traditional igniter. JP 2003 236684 A and US2007107869 each disclose a conventional rail welding crucible and cap with burner-ignited reaction starter mix that has a cap, an igniter core, a crucible, the cap having a cap body, a first face, a second face, a core-receiving hole, a burner-receiving indent, a core housing and a plurality of vents, the igniter core being a mixture, the mixture having a quantity of iron oxide, a quantity of aluminum and a quantity of bonding material, the crucible having a crucible body, a reaction cavity, a tap hole, and a seal, the first face being oppositely positioned to the second face about the cap body, the core-receiving hole traversing from the first face through the cap body to the second face. DE 20 2017 101 491 U1 discloses a rail welding crucible and cap with burner-ignited reaction starter mix according to the preamble of claim 1.

    [0003] It is therefore an objective of the present invention to provide an ignition system for thermite rail welding. The present invention includes a reaction starter mixture which is incorporated into the cap of a degradable crucible. Rather than using a traditional ignition system, a standard oxygen/propane preheating burner may be used to ignite the reaction starter mixture for the thermite welding process.

    BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS



    [0004] 

    FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the present invention.

    FIG. 2 is a front view of the present invention.

    FIG. 3 is a left-side view of the present invention taken along line 3-3 in FIG. 2. In this view the igniter core and the seal are shown.

    FIG. 4 is a left-side view of the present invention taken along line 3-3 in FIG. 2. In this view the igniter core and the seal are removed.

    FIG. 5 is a perspective view of the crucible used in the present invention.

    FIG. 6 is a perspective view of the cap used in the present invention.

    FIG. 7 is a front view of the cap used in the present invention.

    FIG. 8 is a block diagram showing the compounds of the igniter core used in the present invention.


    DETAIL DESCRIPTIONS OF THE INVENTION



    [0005] All illustrations of the drawings are for the purpose of describing selected versions of the present invention and are not intended to limit the scope of the present invention.

    [0006] Referring to FIG. 1 through FIG. 8, the preferred embodiment of the present invention, the rail welding crucible and cap with burner-ignited reaction starter mix, is a rail welding device that makes use of a proprietary igniter core mixture as a reaction-starter mix. The present invention is designed to be used to form a joint between two or more sections of railroad rail. The proprietary igniter core mixture enables a user to initiate a thermite-based rail welding operation without the use of traditional explosive or electrically controlled igniters. Specifically, the proprietary igniter core used in the present invention is designed to be ignited by an open flame. Once ignited, the proprietary igniter core is used to initiate an aluminothermic reaction that causes a quantity of rail-bonding material, which is stored within the crucible, to become molten. The now molten rail-bonding material then flows through a tap hole in the crucible and is deposited onto the rails to form the joint. To achieve this functionality, the present invention comprises a cap 1, an igniter core 2, and a crucible 3. The cap 1 and the crucible 3 form a container that is used to deliver the quantity of rail-welding material to the joint between two or more sections of rail. To accomplish this, the cap 1 comprises a cap body 11, a first face 12, a second face 13, and a core-receiving hole 14. The cap body 11 is a rigid member that forms the structural foundation of the cap 1. Thus, defining the cap's 1 overall shape. Additionally, the crucible 3 comprises a crucible body 31 and a reaction cavity 32. Similar to the cap body 11, the crucible body 31 is a rigid member that forms the structural foundation of the crucible 3. Thus, defining the crucible's 3 overall shape. The first face 12 is positioned opposite to the second face 13 about the cap body 11. Accordingly, the first face 12 and the second face 13 define the surfaces of the cap 1 that enable the cap 1 to be attached to external components.

    [0007] Referring to FIG. 1 through FIG. 8, the present invention is designed to facilitate initiating and completing the aluminothermic reaction. To accomplish this, the core-receiving hole 14 traverses from the first face 12, through the cap body 11, and to the second face 13. Additionally, the igniter core 2 is mounted within the core-receiving hole 14. Consequently, the igniter core 2 can be ignited by placing an oxygen/propane gas rail-preheating burner adjacent to the first face 12. The burner ignites the igniter core 2; causing the igniter core 2 to become molten. The reaction cavity 32 traverses into the crucible body 31 so that the crucible 3 is able to act as a degradable container in which the molten igniter core 2 and the quantity of rail-bonding material perform the aluminothermic reaction. The second face 13 is mounted across an opening 38 of the reaction cavity 32. As a result, the molten igniter core 2 is funneled through the core-receiving hole 14 and deposited into the reaction cavity 32 of the crucible 3. This arrangement of components enables the user to execute a rail-welding operation by mounting the crucible 3 over the unwelded joint, depositing the quantity of rail-bonding material into the reaction cavity 32, mounting the cap 1 over the opening 38, and igniting the igniter core 2. Once ignited, the igniter core 2 melts and falls into the reaction cavity 32. The molten igniter core 2 and the quantity of rail-bonding material undergo the aluminothermic reaction within the reaction cavity 32. Once the mixture within the reaction cavity 32 is sufficiently molten, the molten mixture is deposited onto the rails to establish the joint. This entire process is able to be carried out without the use of a traditional explosive igniter or an electrically controlled igniter. To accomplish this, the igniter core 2 is composed of a mixture comprising a quantity of iron oxide 21, a quantity of aluminum 22, and a quantity of bonding material 23. Further, the bonding material 23 is preferably sodium silicate. This mixture forms a non-friable material that can be ignited when subjected to an open flame, preferably from an oxygen/propane gas rail-preheating burner.

    [0008] Referring to FIG. 3 through FIG. 6, the cap 1 of the present invention is designed to act as a mounting platform for both the igniter core 2 and the oxygen/propane gas rail-preheating burner that is used to ignite the igniter core 2. To accomplish this, the cap 1 further comprises a burner-receiving indent 15 and a core housing 16. The burner-receiving indent 15 traverses into the cap body 11 from the first face 12 to form a mounting point for the oxygen/propane gas rail-preheating burner. The core housing 16 is a hollow protrusion that retains the igniter core 2 in a position which enables the molten material of the igniter core 2 to be deposited into the reaction cavity 32. Specifically, the core housing 16 is connected adjacent to a base 151 of the burner-receiving indent 15. Additionally, the core housing 16 extends from the base 151 of the burner-receiving indent 15 to the first face 12. Further, the core-receiving hole 14 traverses through the core housing 16. Accordingly, the core-receiving housing maintains the igniter core 2 in a position that facilitates ignition by the oxygen/propane gas rail-preheating burner. For example, a rail worker may ignite the igniter core 2 by inserting the oxygen/propane gas rail-preheating burner into the burner-receiving indent 15. Because the core housing 16 extends from the base 151 of the burner-receiving indent 15, the core housing 16 maintains a portion of the igniter core 2 in a position that facilitate being ignited by the oxygen/propane gas rail-preheating burner, which is inserted into the burner-receiving indent 15.

    [0009] Referring to FIG. 3, FIG. 6, and FIG. 7, the present invention is designed to enable the aluminothermic reaction to occur in a safe and controlled manner. To achieve this the cap 1 further comprises a plurality of vents 17. The plurality of vents 17 traverses from the burner-receiving indent 15, through the cap body 11, and to the second face 13. Additionally, the plurality of vents 17 is radially distributed around the core-receiving hole 14. As a result, gasses released during the aluminothermic reaction are able to be expelled through the plurality of vents 17. Thus, preventing dangerous overpressure situations. Another control-related provision of the present invention is the use of a tapered construction for the core-receiving hole 14. Specifically, the core-receiving hole 14 tapers from the first face 12 to the second face 13. Consequently, the molten igniter core 2 is prevented from flowing out of the core-receiving hole 14 as a single dollop of material. Instead, the flow of the molten igniter core 2 is governed by the size and shape of the tapered core-receiving hole 14.

    [0010] Referring to FIG. 3 through FIG. 7, the crucible 3 is a container that is designed to hold the molten igniter core 2 and the quantity of rail-bonding material during the aluminothermic reaction, and then deposit the molten mixture onto the joint between two or more sections of railroad rail. To accomplish this, the crucible 3 further comprises a tap hole 33, a seal 34, a plurality of handles 36, and a plurality of mounting tabs 37. Preferably, the seal 34 is a plug that will melt when exposed to sufficiently high temperatures. The tap hole 33 traverses from the reaction cavity 32 through a base 35 of the crucible body 31. Consequently, the tap hole 33 functions as an outlet through which the molten mixture of material is able to exit the reaction cavity 32. The tap hole 33, however, is plugged by the seal 34. The seal 34 prevents the molten mixture from flowing through the tap hole 33, until the molten mixture has reached a sufficiently high temperature. Thus, preventing the molten mixture from being deposited onto the joint before the appropriate phase of the aluminothermic reaction is reached. The plurality of handles 36 is laterally connected to the crucible body 31. Additionally, the plurality of handles 36 is radially offset from each other around the crucible body 31. Accordingly, the user is able to reposition the crucible 3 by grasping the plurality of handles 36 and lifting the entire crucible body 31. Similarly, the plurality of mounting tabs 37 is laterally connected to the crucible body 31. Additionally, the plurality of mounting tabs 37 is radially offset from each other around the crucible body 31. Further, the plurality of mounting tabs 37 is positioned adjacent to a base 35 of the crucible body 31. Thus, positioned, the plurality of mounting tabs 37 enables the crucible 3 to be maintained in a fixed position while the present invention is being used to form the joint between the railroad rails.

    [0011] Although the invention has been explained in relation to its preferred embodiment, it is to be understood that many other possible modifications and variations can be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as hereinafter claimed.


    Claims

    1. A rail welding crucible and cap with burner-ignited reaction starter mix comprising a cap (1), an igniter core (2), a crucible (3), the cap (1) comprising a cap body (11), a first face (12), a second face (13), a core-receiving hole (14), a burner-receiving indent (15), a core housing (16) and a plurality of vents (17), the igniter core (2) being a mixture, the mixture comprising a quantity of iron oxide (21), a quantity of aluminum (22) and a quantity of bonding material (23), the crucible (3) comprising a crucible body (31), a reaction cavity (32), a tap hole (33) and a seal (34), the first face (12) being oppositely positioned to the second face (13) about the cap body (11), the core-receiving hole (14) traversing from the first face (12) through the cap body (11) to the second face (13), wherein the rail welding crucible and cap with burner-ignited reaction starter mix further comprises:

    the core-receiving hole (14) being a conical hole by gradually tapering from the first face (12) to the second face (13);

    the igniter core (2) being mounted within the core-receiving hole (14);

    the reaction cavity (32) traversing into the crucible body (31);

    the second face (13) being mounted across an opening (38) of the reaction cavity (32);

    the burner-receiving indent (15) traversing into the cap body (11) from the first face (12);

    the core housing (16) being connected to an indent base (151) of the burner-receiving indent (15);

    the core housing (16) extending from the indent base (151) to the first face (12);

    the core-receiving hole (14) traversing through the core housing (16);

    the plurality of vents (17) traversing from the burner-receiving indent (15) through the cap body (11) to the second face (13);

    the plurality of vents (17) being radially distributed around the core-receiving hole (14);

    the tap hole (33) traversing from the reaction cavity (32) through a crucible base (35) of the crucible body (31);

    the tap hole (33) being plugged by the seal (34);

    characterized in that the crucible (3) comprises a plurality of handles (36) and a plurality of mounting tabs (37), the plurality of handles (36) being laterally connected to the crucible body (31);

    the plurality of handles (36) being radially offset from each other around the crucible body (31);

    the plurality of handles (36) being adjacently positioned to the opening (38);

    the plurality of mounting tabs (37) being laterally connected to the crucible body (31);

    the plurality of mounting tabs (37) being radially offset from each other around the crucible body (31); and

    the plurality of mounting tabs (37) being adjacently positioned to the crucible base.


     
    2. The rail welding crucible and cap with burner-ignited reaction starter mix as claimed in claim 1, wherein the bonding material (23) is sodium silicate.
     


    Ansprüche

    1. Schienenschweißtiegel und Kappe mit brennergezündeter Reaktionsstartermischung, umfassend eine Kappe (1), einen Zünderkern (2), einen Tiegel (3), wobei die Kappe (1) einen Kappenkörper (11), eine erste Fläche (12), eine zweite Fläche (13), ein Kernaufnahmeloch (14), eine Brenneraufnahmevertiefung (15), ein Kerngehäuse (16) und mehrere Entlüftungsöffnungen (17) umfasst, wobei der Zünderkern (2) eine Mischung ist, wobei die Mischung eine Menge Eisenoxid (21), eine Menge Aluminium (22) und eine Menge Bindematerial (23) umfasst, wobei der Tiegel (3) einen Tiegelkörper (31), einen Reaktionshohlraum (32), ein Zapfloch (33) und eine Dichtung (34) umfasst,
    wobei die erste Fläche (12) gegenüberliegend zu der zweiten Fläche (13) um den Kappenkörper (11) herum angeordnet ist, wobei das Kernaufnahmeloch (14) von der ersten Fläche (12) durch den Kappenkörper (11) hindurch zur zweiten Fläche (13) verläuft, wobei der Schienenschweißtiegel und die Kappe mit brennergezündeter Reaktionsstartermischung ferner Folgendes umfassen:

    das Kernaufnahmeloch (14), das ein konisches Loch ist, indem es sich von der ersten Fläche (12) zu der zweiten Fläche (13) allmählich verjüngt;

    den Zünderkern (2), der innerhalb des Kernaufnahmelochs (14) angebracht wird;

    den Reaktionshohlraum (32), der in den Tiegelkörper (31) verläuft;

    die zweite Fläche (13), die über eine Öffnung (38) des Reaktionshohlraums (32) angebracht ist;

    die Brenneraufnahmevertiefung (15), die von der ersten Fläche (12) in den Kappenkörper (11) verläuft;

    das Kerngehäuse (16), das mit einem Vertiefungsboden (151) der Brenneraufnahmevertiefung (15) verbunden ist;

    das Kerngehäuse (16), das sich von dem Vertiefungsboden (151) bis zur ersten Fläche (12) erstreckt;

    das Kernaufnahmeloch (14), das durch das Kerngehäuse (16) verläuft;

    die mehreren Entlüftungsöffnungen (17), die von der Brenneraufnahmevertiefung (15) durch den Kappenkörper (11) zur zweiten Fläche (13) verlaufen;

    wobei mehrere Entlüftungsöffnungen (17) radial um das Kernaufnahmeloch (14) verteilt sind;

    das Zapfloch (33), das vom Reaktionshohlraum (32) durch einen Tiegelboden (35) des Tiegelkörpers (31) verläuft;

    wobei das Zapfloch (33) durch die Dichtung (34) verschlossen ist;

    dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass der Tiegel (3) mehrere Griffe (36) und mehrere Befestigungslaschen (37) aufweist,

    wobei die mehreren Griffe (36) seitlich mit dem Tiegelkörper (31) verbunden sind;

    wobei die mehreren Griffe (36) um den Tiegelkörper (31) herum radial gegeneinander versetzt sind;

    wobei die mehreren Griffe (36) neben der Öffnung (38) angeordnet sind;

    wobei die mehreren Befestigungslaschen (37) seitlich mit dem Tiegelkörper (31) verbunden sind;

    wobei mehrere Befestigungslaschen (37) um den Tiegelkörper (31) radial gegeneinander versetzt sind; und

    wobei die mehreren Befestigungslaschen (37) neben dem Tiegelboden angeordnet sind.


     
    2. Schienenschweißtiegel und Kappe mit brennergezündeter Reaktionsstartermischung nach Anspruch 1, wobei das Bindematerial (23) Natriumsilikat ist.
     


    Revendications

    1. Creuset de soudage de rail à capuchon doté d'un mélange de démarrage de réaction allumé par brûleur comprenant un capuchon (1), un noyau d'allumeur (2), un creuset (3), le capuchon (1) comprenant un corps de capuchon (11), un première face (12), une seconde face (13), un trou de réception de noyau (14), une empreinte de réception de brûleur (15), un logement de noyau (16) et une pluralité d'évents (17), le noyau d'allumeur (2) étant un mélange, le mélange comprenant une quantité d'oxyde de fer (21), une quantité d'aluminium (22) et une quantité de matériau de liaison (23), le creuset (3) comprenant un corps de creuset (31), une cavité de réaction (32), un trou de coulée (33) et un joint (34),
    la première face (12) étant positionnée de façon opposée à la seconde face (13) autour du corps de capuchon (11), le trou de réception de noyau (14) venant en transverse depuis la première face (12) à travers le corps de capuchon (11) jusqu'à la seconde face (13), le creuset de soudage de rail à capuchon doté d'un mélange de démarrage de réaction allumé par brûleur comprenant en outre le fait que :

    le trou de réception de noyau (14) est un trou conique se rétrécissant progressivement de la première face (12) à la seconde face (13) ;

    le noyau d'allumeur (2) est monté à l'intérieur du trou de réception de noyau (14) ;

    la cavité de réaction (32) vient en transverse dans le corps de creuset (31) ;

    la seconde face (13) est montée de part et d'autre d'un orifice (38) de la cavité de réaction (32) ;

    l'empreinte de réception de brûleur (15) vient en transverse dans le corps de capuchon (11) depuis la première face (12) ;

    le logement de noyau (16) est relié à une embase d'empreinte (151) de l'empreinte de réception de brûleur (15) ;

    le logement de noyau (16) s'étend de l'embase d'empreinte (151) à la première face (12) ;

    le trou de réception de noyau (14) vient en transverse à travers le logement de noyau (16) ;

    la pluralité d'évents (17) vient en transverse depuis l'empreinte de réception de brûleur (15) à travers le corps de capuchon (11) jusqu'à la seconde face (13) ;

    la pluralité d'évents (17) est répartie radialement autour du trou de réception de noyau (14) ;

    le trou de coulée (33) vient en transverse depuis la cavité de réaction (32) à travers une embase de creuset (35) du corps de creuset (31) ;

    le trou de coulée (33) est bouché par le joint (34) ;

    caractérisé en ce que le creuset (3) comprend une pluralité de poignées (36) et une pluralité de languettes de montage (37),

    la pluralité de poignées (36) étant reliées latéralement au corps de creuset (31) ;

    la pluralité de poignées (36) étant décalées radialement les unes des autres autour du corps de creuset (31) ;

    la pluralité de poignées (36) étant positionnées de manière adjacente à l'orifice (38) ;

    la pluralité de languettes de montage (37) étant reliées latéralement au corps de creuset (31) ;

    la pluralité de languettes de montage (37) étant décalées radialement les unes des autres autour du corps de creuset (31) ; et

    la pluralité de languettes de montage (37) étant positionnées de manière adjacente à l'embase du creuset.


     
    2. Creuset de soudage de rail à capuchon doté d'un mélange de démarrage de réaction allumé par brûleur selon la revendication 1, dans lequel le matériau de liaison (23) est du silicate de sodium.
     




    Drawing





























    Cited references

    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