Flame Cultivating Patents (Class 47/1.44)
  • Publication number: 20150075067
    Abstract: An apparatus and methods are provided for removing unwanted plants or weeds from an area such as an agricultural plot or lawn. The apparatus includes a three-dimensional imager configured to capture plant images and locate plants; an image processor configured to distinguish between wanted and unwanted plants based upon the captured plant images; at least one removal device configured to damage a target on the unwanted plants; a guidance system configured to direct at least one laser beam toward the unwanted plant; a stabilization system configured to provide feedback compensation to one or both of the three-dimensional imager and the guidance system; and a chassis configured to support the three-dimensional imager, the laser device, the guidance system, and the stabilization system. The chassis is configured to be moved across the area.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 13, 2013
    Publication date: March 19, 2015
    Inventors: Timothy David Stowe, Patrick Yasuo Maeda, Tim Curley
  • Patent number: 8872136
    Abstract: Non soil-invasive four-parameter rapid unnatural dual component selective illumination protocol (UDCIP) for plant eradication using a process time under one minute. Application of a relatively low level of non-mutating UV-A optical energy to root crowns and/or soil grades allows below-ground UV-A penetration into soil to illuminate root crowns, and when preceded by or coincident with an above ground near-IR defoliation and root crown illumination step, results in an unexpected rise in lethality. Very high lethality, including 100 percent, is obtained using low deposited energy. UV-A optical energy can be delivered to root crowns and adjacent soil via a UV-transmissive knive blade.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 19, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 28, 2014
    Assignee: Global Neighbor, Inc.
    Inventors: Jonathan A. Jackson, Patrick A. Jackson
  • Patent number: 8627596
    Abstract: A method is provided for inhibiting plant growth by inducing hypothermia by applying a treating substance to summer annual weeds and grasses. Susceptible undesirable plants will be killed by this treatment, while non-susceptible desirable plants will not be adversely affected by this treatment. Compressed carbon dioxide may be applied to other summer grasses to cause the grasses to become dormant. An apparatus is provided for inducing hypothermia in undesirable plants by applying a treating substance. A canister capable of housing gas may be provided. A valve may be provided to control the amount and pressure of gas dispensed from the canister.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 11, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 14, 2014
    Assignee: Artic, Inc.
    Inventors: Robby James Howerton, Gina Marie Stewart, Steven Lee Worm, Michael Alan Batalia
  • Patent number: 8567115
    Abstract: An apparatus for controlling or eradicating nematodes or other soil-borne pests having a heated metal roller having surface-mounted blades to heat the soil to a desired temperature and depth sufficient to effect control of the relevant species in the soil under the roller. The roller is heated with one or more burners firing across the surface of the roller. The apparatus further includes a heat exchanger through which the combustion products generated by the burner or burners are exhausted and in which the combustion air is preheated. In accordance with one embodiment, the heat exchanger condenses water vapor in the combustion products which water vapor, together with any water that evaporates from the soil during heating, may be captured and returned to the soil.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2011
    Date of Patent: October 29, 2013
    Assignee: Gas Technology Institute
    Inventors: Martin Brendan Linck, Neil Patrick Leslie
  • Patent number: 8365464
    Abstract: Plant eradication using by inflicting upon a plant root (R) unnatural hot wound mechanical and thermal trauma delivered from a hot stab knife (V) which produces a stab gash (K) sufficiently deep to traverse plant cortex (C) and penetrate to plant xylem (X), simultaneous with or followed by heating the damaged area to a temperature of higher than 70 C, preferably 200 C for a sufficient time to cause cellular damage to the plant root. The root and hot stab knife may be shrouded to increase the temperature adjacent the stab gash. Preferably, the stab knife is formed to be sufficiently acuate and flat so as to allow a surface/volume ratio for the stab knife to be at least twice that of a cone of similar size and extent. Unhealable damage results, believed to caused by role conversion of organisms in the rhizosphere from sybiosis to antagonism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 17, 2010
    Date of Patent: February 5, 2013
    Assignee: Global Neighbor, Inc.
    Inventor: Jonathan A Jackson
  • Patent number: 8141292
    Abstract: Plant eradication using by inflicting upon a plant root (R) unnatural hot wound mechanical and thermal trauma delivered from a hot stab knife (V) which produces a stab gash (K) sufficiently deep to traverse plant cortex (C) and penetrate to plant xylem (X), simultaneous with or followed by heating the damaged area to a temperature of higher than 70 C, preferably 200 C for a sufficient time to cause cellular damage to the plant root. The root and hot stab knife may be shrouded to increase the temperature adjacent the stab gash. Preferably, the stab knife is formed to be sufficiently acuate and flat so as to allow a surface/volume ratio for the stab knife to be at least twice that of a cone of similar size and extent. Unhealable damage results, believed to caused by role conversion of organisms in the rhizosphere from sybiosis to antagonism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 17, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2012
    Assignee: Global Neighbor, Inc.
    Inventor: Jonathan A Jackson
  • Patent number: 7954276
    Abstract: Plant eradication using by inflicting upon a plant root (R) unnatural hot wound mechanical and thermal trauma delivered from a hot stab knife (V) which produces a stab gash (K) sufficiently deep to traverse plant cortex (C) and penetrate to plant xylem (X), simultaneous with or followed by heating the damaged area to a temperature of higher than 70 C, preferably 200 C for a sufficient time to cause cellular damage to the plant root. The root and hot stab knife may be shrouded to increase the temperature adjacent the stab gash. Preferably, the stab knife is formed to be sufficiently acuate and flat so as to allow a surface/volume ratio for the stab knife to be at least twice that of a cone of similar size and extent. Unhealable damage results, believed to caused by role conversion of organisms in the rhizosphere from symbiosis to antagonism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 29, 2007
    Date of Patent: June 7, 2011
    Assignee: Global Neighbor, Inc.
    Inventor: Jonathan A. Jackson
  • Patent number: 7833476
    Abstract: A flamer may be used to sterilize poultry litter, soil, concrete, etc. The stationary or mobile flamer disclosed comprises a hood to contain the heat, an external frame, and burners. A fuel tank may be carried on the flamer or on a tractor. An additional embodiment provides for mounting the flamer on wheels, permitting the unit to be towed by a truck, four-wheeler, tractor, etc. The burners are adjustable as to angle, and fueling rate. A pressure in the fuel system is controlled by selectively switching between the liquid and vaporous components of the fuel. By limiting how low the pressure may fall, the flow of fuel from the tank to the torches is more consistent.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 31, 2006
    Date of Patent: November 16, 2010
    Inventor: Ralph M. Pivonka
  • Publication number: 20100024291
    Abstract: The invention concerns a weed control apparatus and a method for thermal weed control, wherein the weed control apparatus has a heating area to which is supplied secondary air, where the secondary air is preheated before introducing it to the heating area, where preheating of the secondary air is preferably effected by conducting it through a preheating area, where the preheating area includes one or more ducts which are preferably only separated from the heat exposure area by a heat conducting material, e.g. an iron sheet. The preheating of the secondary air with heat from the heat exposure area firstly contributes to recycling of the heat that otherwise would radiate off the top side of the apparatus. Secondly, the preheating of the secondary air, which includes combustion of gas or liquid, provides enhanced efficiency to heating means, as the amount of heat supplied via the secondary air reduces the need for combusting gas or liquid while simultaneously contributing to a complete combustion.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 29, 2008
    Publication date: February 4, 2010
    Applicant: ENVO-DAN ApS
    Inventor: Ole Bo Jensen
  • Patent number: 7470395
    Abstract: A transportable flamer, mounted on a tractor or similar, may be used to sterilize poultry litter, soil, concrete, etc. The flamer disclosed comprises a hood to contain the heat, an external frame, and burners. A fuel tank may be carried on the flamer or on a tractor or trailer in front of, or behind the flamer. An additional embodiment provides for mounting the flamer on wheels, permitting the unit to be towed by a truck, four-wheeler, tractor, etc. The burners are adjustable as to angle, and fueling rate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 17, 2003
    Date of Patent: December 30, 2008
    Assignee: Flame Engineering, Inc.
    Inventor: Ralph M. Pivonka
  • Publication number: 20080072479
    Abstract: A flamer may be used to sterilize poultry litter, soil, concrete, etc. The stationary or mobile flamer disclosed comprises a hood to contain the heat, an external frame, and burners. A fuel tank may be carried on the flamer or on a tractor. An additional embodiment provides for mounting the flamer on wheels, permitting the unit to be towed by a truck, four-wheeler, tractor, etc. The burners are adjustable as to angle, and fueling rate. A pressure in the fuel system is controlled by selectively switching between the liquid and vaporous components of the fuel. By limiting how low the pressure may fall, the flow of fuel from the tank to the torches is more consistent.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 31, 2006
    Publication date: March 27, 2008
    Inventor: Ralph M. Pivonka
  • Patent number: 7134239
    Abstract: A method for thermal pest control in fruit production and agriculture involves projecting at least one stream of hot air to a crop from a movable vehicle which moves in a direction substantially parallel to rows of the crop. The stream of hot air can be projected substantially parallel to, substantially transverse to, or substantially oblique to the rows of the crop.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 26, 2002
    Date of Patent: November 14, 2006
    Inventor: Florencio Lazo Barra
  • Patent number: 7100540
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to an apparatus for directing steam, hot water or hot water vapor and hot air onto a target area, the apparatus comprising a water container and a fuel container connected and supplying water and fuel to an applicator wand with an applicator head which generates steam and heat for application adjacent to the target area of application to the unwanted vegetation. Steam is generated immediately adjacent to the target area within the applicator head and combined with surplus heat from the steam generation process to produce heated steam and water vapor for application to the target area. In a preferred embodiment of the invention, the applicator wand is hand held, the applicator head having an inlet, an outlet and a body therebetween, the water and fuel being supplied to a steam generator and burner within the body of the applicator head which generates steam and hot air adjacent to the target area for application through the outlet to the target area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 8, 2005
    Date of Patent: September 5, 2006
    Assignee: Hot Water Holdings LTD
    Inventor: Steven Vaughan
  • Patent number: 6505437
    Abstract: A method of destroying or controlling unwanted vegetation and agricultural pests is disclosed. The method produces a jet stream of treatment fluid, being mixed combustion gas and superheated or dry steam for application to thermally destroy unwanted vegetation and posts. The method involves the use of a hydrocarbon burner and a water source.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 1, 2000
    Date of Patent: January 14, 2003
    Assignee: Origin Energy LPG Limited
    Inventors: Ian Johnstone, Robert Smith
  • Patent number: 6363654
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for thermally killing weeds and other unwanted vegetation from areas where their presence is undesirable. The method and apparatus are especially useful for killing weeds located adjacent auto or rail roadways or airport runways. The method of killing weeds involves first spraying the weeds with an amount of water sufficient to cover a substantial portion of the exposed outer parts of the weeds, and then subjecting the water covered weeds to an elevated temperature sufficient for the time of exposure to kill them. The apparatus for thermally killing weeds by this method includes a water sprayer unit and a heater enclosure or box, the water sprayer unit being located in front of the heater box. The heater box has burners located at the forward end thereof that impact a heatable element capable of generating infra-red radiation. A porous apron extends between the bottom of the heater box and the ground to allow exhausting of combustion products and water vapor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 8, 2000
    Date of Patent: April 2, 2002
    Inventor: Gregory G. Prull
  • Publication number: 20010000554
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for thermally killing weeds and other unwanted vegetation from areas where their presence is undesirable. The method and apparatus are especially useful for killing weeds located adjacent auto or rail roadways or airport runways. The method of killing weeds involves first spraying the weeds with an amount of water sufficient to cover a substantial portion of the exposed outer parts of the weeds, and then subjecting the water covered weeds to an elevated temperature sufficient for the time of exposure to kill them. The apparatus for thermally killing weeds by this method includes a water sprayer unit and a heater enclosure or box, the water sprayer unit being located in front of the heater box. The heater box has burners located at the forward end thereof that impact a heatable element capable of generating infra-red radiation. A porous apron extends between the bottom of the heater box and the ground to allow exhausting of combustion products and water vapor.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 8, 2000
    Publication date: May 3, 2001
    Inventor: Gregory G. Prull
  • Patent number: RE38857
    Abstract: Methods for treating plants and fields in agricultural applications are provided by selective delivery of superheated steam. Particularly preferred applications include delivery adjacent to grape vine leaves in order to defoliate basal leaves and to kill localized insect pests, and by injecting superheated steam in strawberry beds prior to planting to kill nematodes. The superheated steam is delivered at temperatures in excess of about 250° F.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 15, 2000
    Date of Patent: November 1, 2005
    Inventor: Claude Brown
  • Patent number: RE39636
    Abstract: Methods for treating plants and fields in agricultural applications are provided by selective delivery of superheated steam. Particularly preferred applications include delivery adjacent to grape vine leaves in order to defoliate basal leaves and to kill localized insect pests, and by injecting superheated steam in strawberry beds prior to planting to kill nematodes. The superheated steam is delivered at temperatures in excess of about 250° F.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 15, 2000
    Date of Patent: May 22, 2007
    Inventor: Claude Brown