Patents Examined by Frank Spear
  • Patent number: 5772890
    Abstract: A method is provided for removing an anion from an aqueous liquid, such as a fermentation broth. The aqueous broth is contacted with a water-immiscible ion exchange liquid to extract the anion from the broth. The anion exchange liquid is then back extracted with an aqueous phase, to remove the anion, preferably for other uses.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 17, 1992
    Date of Patent: June 30, 1998
    Assignee: General Atomics International Services Corporation
    Inventor: Gale L. Hubred
  • Patent number: 5766473
    Abstract: Articles having a complex geometric configuration have hydrophilicity imparted to at least a portion of surfaces of the articles while substantially retaining the complex geometric configuration. The hydrophilicity is imparted by an extremely thin, self-interlocking shell of tactic, hydrophilic poly(vinyl alcohol) enveloping the surfaces. A tactic poly(vinyl alcohol) precursor applied to surfaces of the supporting structure is reacted in situ on the surfaces with a hydrolysis reagent to prepare the tactic, hydrophilic poly(vinyl alcohol) shell. The article having the hydrophilic shell is highly resistant to solvent washout. Hydrophilicity and hydrophobicity can be reversibly provided on regio-specific surfaces of the article. Hydrophilic porous supporting structures loaded with an enzyme system which catalyzes a reaction of a substrate, oxygen, and if necessary, water or moisture to consume oxygen are also described for oxygen scavenging in packages containing oxygen sensitive products.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 1, 1995
    Date of Patent: June 16, 1998
    Assignee: Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company
    Inventors: Joan M. Strobel, David R. Gagnon
  • Patent number: 5738792
    Abstract: A process for filtration of matter from a liquid suspension through a membrane uses a rotor within a concentric shell rotating with a surface velocity which, together with the rotor-shell gap and suspension viscosity, establishes vigorous vortex cells about the rotor. At least one of the rotor and shell surfaces include a filter membrane. Tangential velocity components at the membrane surface constantly sweep the membrane surface to limit cell deposition tendencies while constantly replenishing the medium to be filtered. The vortex cells are established along the length of the membrane despite the constant extraction of filtrate and the resultant change in physical characteristics of the suspension.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 6, 1994
    Date of Patent: April 14, 1998
    Assignee: Baxter International Inc.
    Inventor: Donald W. Schoendorfer
  • Patent number: 5665237
    Abstract: A process for the separation of naphthalenesulfonate-based carbonyl condensates from water is provided. The process comprises contacting a mixture comprised of water and a naphthalenesulfonate-based carbonyl condensate (preferably a material selected from the group consisting of formaldehyde condensates of naphthalenesulfonic acids, formaldehyde condensates of lower-alkyl substituted naphthalenesulfonic acids, and mixtures of two or more of such materials) with a liquid organic phase comprised of a cationic lipophilic amine to form an aqueous phase depleted with respect to said mixture of naphthalenesulfonate-based carbonyl condensate and a liquid organic phase enriched in naphthalenesulfonate-based carbonyl condensate. The process further comprises separating said aqueous phase depleted with respect to said minute of naphthalenesulfonate-based carbonyl condensate and said liquid organic phase enriched with respect to naphthalenesulfonate-based carbonyl condensate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 28, 1995
    Date of Patent: September 9, 1997
    Assignee: Henkel Corporation
    Inventors: William G. Kozak, Dharmesh Chovatia, George A. Smith
  • Patent number: 5656167
    Abstract: A breathable membrane and a method of constructing a fabric having the membrane, wherein the membrane is resistive to transport of liquid water, has a layer of breathable material and is stabilized dimensionally against distension by a force field, such as forces which may be applied to the membrane or resulting from a hydrostatic pressure, by a reinforcing matrix of nonwoven filaments extending in plural directions along the layer of breathable material to inhibit the distension. In the matrix, the filaments are arranged in a first plurality of the filaments which intersect a second plurality of the filaments to form cells. A minimum diameter of an individual one of the cells is greater by at least approximately an order of magnitude than a diameter of one of the filaments to provide open areas of the layer of breathable material which are free from obstruction by the filaments.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 1994
    Date of Patent: August 12, 1997
    Inventor: Joel D. Martz
  • Patent number: 5647976
    Abstract: An extraction cell apparatus (10) for use in elevated pressure and temperature fluid extractions having a pressure resistant vessel (12) forming a cavity (11), and at least one shoulder portion (13) defining an opening (14) communicating with the cavity (11). An insert member (16) is provided engaging the vessel (12) proximate the shoulder portion (13), and a shoulder seal member (17) is positioned proximate the insert member (16). The seal member (17) is positioned for contact with the shoulder portion (13) upon mounting engagement of the insert member (16) with the seal member (17). An end cap (18) is formed for sliding receipt of the insert member (16) therein until an interior surface (19) of the end cap (18) contacts a backside of the seal member (17). An exterior force applied to the end cap (18) in an inwardly direction toward the shoulder portion (13) causing increasing sealing contact between the seal member (17) and the shoulder portion (13).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 3, 1995
    Date of Patent: July 15, 1997
    Assignee: Dionex Corporation
    Inventors: Norman J. Rothe, Gary L. Gleave
  • Patent number: 5645688
    Abstract: Pulp bleaching processes employing peroxides and/or oxygen are improved by using bleaching additives, preferably before the application of the peroxide and/or oxygen. The bleaching additives contain at least one alkali metal sulfamate such as a sodium sulfamate and a polyaminocarboxylic acid such as DTPA or a salt thereof, such as sodium DTPA.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 30, 1995
    Date of Patent: July 8, 1997
    Assignee: Vinings Industries, Inc.
    Inventors: James H. Payton, Nicholas M. Canaris
  • Patent number: 5643452
    Abstract: Semipermeable membranes are disclosed for purifying aqueous biological fluids. The membranes are particularly suitable for purifying extracorporeal blood via hemodialysis. The membranes, preferably configured as hollow fibers, are made from a hydrophilic polymeric material, preferably cellulose acetate. Features of the membranes include an ultrafiltration coefficient (K.sub.uF) of about 15 to about 55 mL/hr/mmHg/m.sup.2 (thus termed "high-flux" type membranes), a urea mass transfer coefficient (K.sub.oV (urea)) of at least 38.times.10.sup.-3 cm/min, and a ratio of K.sub.oV (urea)/K.sub.uF of at least 2.5.times.10.sup.-3. Hollow fibers of such membranes suitable for hemodialysis have a lumen diameter of about 175 to about 210 .mu.m and a wall thickness of about 10 to about 35 .mu.m.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 21, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 1, 1997
    Assignee: Althin Medical, Inc.
    Inventors: Anders Althin, Ben Fernandez, Raymond Elsen, Kees Ruzius, Lalith Silva, George Washington
  • Patent number: 5641539
    Abstract: Disclosed are chemically-produced specific binding, "molecular imaged" sorbents which reversibly bind a preselected macromolecule by spatially matched multipoint interactions between functional groups synthesized on the surface of the sorbent and functional groups on the surface of the macromolecule. Also disclosed are methods of producing such sorbents. The sorbents typically are high surface area solids comprising surface binding regions which have charged groups, metal coordinating groups, hydrophobic moieties, or various combination thereof anchored thereto and spaced in the mirror image of complementary interactive groups on a surface of the macromolecule.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 1, 1995
    Date of Patent: June 24, 1997
    Assignee: PerSeptive Biosystems, Inc.
    Inventors: Noubar B. Afeyan, Laszlo Varady, Fred Regnier
  • Patent number: 5641386
    Abstract: A process for the bleaching of pulp comprising the step of bleaching the pulp with hydrogen peroxide and an effective amount of at least one biodegradable 1-aminoalkane-1,1-diphosphonate chelating agent to enhance the bleaching of the pulp, is disclosed. Also disclosed is the use of a 1-aminoalkane-1,1-diphosphonate to enhance the bleaching of pulp with hydrogen peroxide, as well as the pretreatment of pulp with a 1-aminoalkane-1,1-diphosphonate prior to the step of bleaching with hydrogen peroxide. Finally, the deinking of pulp in the presence of 1-aminoalkane-1,1-diphosphonate is also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 8, 1995
    Date of Patent: June 24, 1997
    Assignee: Akzo Nobel NV
    Inventors: Eltjo Boelema, Charles Manuel Navarro, Lambertus Gerhardus Johannus Olde Hanter, Marcellinus Alexander Van Doorn
  • Patent number: 5639373
    Abstract: A vertical skein of "fibers", opposed terminal portions of which are held in headers unconfined in a modular shell, is aerated with a gas-distribution means which produces a mass of bubbles serving the function of a scrub-brash for the outer surfaces of the fibers. The membrane device is surprisingly effective with relatively little cleansing gas, the specific flux through the membranes reaching an essentially constant relatively high value because the vertical deployment of fibers allows bubbles to rise upwards along the outer surfaces of the fibers. Further, bubbles flowing along the outer surfaces of the fibers make the fibers surprisingly resistant to being fouled by build-up of deposits of inanimate particles or microorganisms in the substrate provided that the length of each fiber is only slightly greater than the direct center-to-center distance between opposed faces of the headers, preferably in the range from at least 0.1% to about 5% greater.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 11, 1995
    Date of Patent: June 17, 1997
    Assignee: Zenon Environmental Inc.
    Inventors: Mailvaganam Mahendran, Carlos Fernando F. Rodrigues, Steven Kristian Pedersen
  • Patent number: 5639375
    Abstract: Disclosed is a method for concentrating by 20 to 10,000 fold a semivolatile or essentially nonvolatile organic compound, such as a herbicide or pesticide, from a contaminated aqueous solution into a carrier fluid for simultaneous or subsequent analysis. A perstraction membrane is contacted on one surface with a large volume of an aqueous feedstream containing a low concentration of an organic compound, and an opposite surface of the same membrane is contacted with a small volume of a carrier fluid. The perstraction membrane is characterized by a nonporous layer therein which precludes convective flow and mixing between the aqueous and carrier fluid phases. The organic compound is absorbed into the nonporous skin layer from the aqueous fluid and is transferred from the nonporous skin layer into the carrier fluid by an affinity driving force, the affinity of the carrier fluid for the organic compound being greater than the affinity of water for the same compound.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 1, 1995
    Date of Patent: June 17, 1997
    Assignee: NeoMecs Incorporated
    Inventor: Nomura Hiroshi
  • Patent number: 5639348
    Abstract: Pulp bleaching processes employing peroxides and/or oxygen are improved by using stabilizing bleaching additives, preferably before the application of the peroxide and/or oxygen. The bleaching additives contain at least one sulfamic acid or sulfamate such as sodium sulfamate and gluconic acid or a soluble gluconate, or alternatively an alkali metal borate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 30, 1995
    Date of Patent: June 17, 1997
    Assignee: Vinings Industries, Inc.
    Inventors: James H. Payton, Nicholas M. Canaris
  • Patent number: 5637224
    Abstract: A vaporizable solute transfer system for transferring a vaporizable solute from an aqueous feed solution to an extractant liquid comprises a fluid tight housing, a porous membrane which divides the housing into a feed solution chamber and an extractant chamber, and a vacuum atmosphere chamber formed of a nonporous material. The housing has feed solution inlet and outlet ports which communicate with the feed solution chamber, an extraction inlet port which communicates with the extractant chamber, and a vacuum outlet port which communicates with the vacuum atmosphere chamber. The vaporizable solute transfer system also includes a pressure difference control means for maintaining a difference between a liquid pressure of a feed solution chamber and a liquid pressure of an extractant liquid in the extractant chamber substantially within a predetermined pressure range so that an interface between the feed solution and the extractant is substantially immobilized at the membrane.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 1994
    Date of Patent: June 10, 1997
    Assignee: New Jersey Institute Of Technology
    Inventors: Kamalesh K. Sirkar, Dali Yang, Sudipto Majumdar, Suphan Kovenklioglu, Amitava Sengupta
  • Patent number: 5637222
    Abstract: A process for the fractional separation of (meth)acrylic acid from a mixture containing (meth)acrylic acid, in which (meth)acrylic acid is tapped off from the rectifying column at a point above the level at which the liquid mixture containing (meth)acrylic acid enters the rectifying column, and at at least one point of the rectifying column the reflux liquid descending therein is tapped off from the rectifying column, oligomerized and/or polymerized (meth)acrylic acid present therein is separated and the reflux liquid is subsequently recycled to the rectifying column.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 11, 1996
    Date of Patent: June 10, 1997
    Assignee: BASF Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventors: Holger Herbst, Gerhard Nestler, Ulrich Hammon
  • Patent number: 5637233
    Abstract: A volume of slurry including grease, water and sediment is pumped from a grease trap into a first interior compartment of a mobile tank truck, and the sediment allowed to settle. Some of the grease and water is then transferred from above the settled sediment to a second interior compartment through a tubular conduit, using a siphoning action. Water is then drained out through a discharge pipe from the bottom of the second compartment below the transferred grease and returned to the grease trap, retaining the transferred grease in the second compartment. The process is repeated for successive volumes of pumped slurry until the second compartment's capacity for retaining grease is reached. In one embodiment, the siphon conduit has a transparent U-bend tube running outside the truck for viewing the flow of transferred slurry. An intake end of the conduit extends into an open-topped sleeve and a conical deflector keeps sediment out of the sleeve. The discharge pipe is transparent for viewing flow from the drain.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 7, 1995
    Date of Patent: June 10, 1997
    Inventor: Pat J. Earrusso
  • Patent number: 5635070
    Abstract: To pump supercritical carbon dioxide into a supercritical extractor without overpressure in the reservoir and to record the volume being delivered, the pumping speed is controlled and the volume pumped is determined from a pressure-related signal used in a feedback circuit. The feedback controls the velocity of pumping in conjunction with programmed values to avoid destructive reverse torque. A cam in the pump controls piston stroke, has a depressurization portion with an initial slope equal to but in the opposite direction of the final slope, rounded transition slopes, increasing linear velocity to the refill portion and constant velocity in the refill portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 8, 1994
    Date of Patent: June 3, 1997
    Assignee: Isco, Inc.
    Inventors: Robert W. Allington, Daniel G. Jameson, Dale A. Davison, Dale Clay, Robin R. Winter, Yoossef Tehrani
  • Patent number: 5635067
    Abstract: Anisotropic fluid separation membranes having an integral discriminating layer are formed from blends of two types of polyimides. The first type is a phenylindane containing polyimide. The second type consists of polyimides formed from the reaction of benzophenone tetracarboxylic dianhydride (BTDA) and optionally pyromellitic dianhydride (PMDA), with toluene diisocyanate (TDI) and/or 4,4'-methylene-bis-phenylisocyanate (MDI). The ratio of Type 1 polymer to Type 2 polymer is 1 or less. The blend membranes are particularly useful for gas separation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 14, 1995
    Date of Patent: June 3, 1997
    Assignee: Praxair Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: James T. Macheras
  • Patent number: 5632902
    Abstract: Filtering apparatus including two or more passages acting in parallel, each having an extended filter which passes through inlet and outlet ports preferably sealed by substantially solidified plugs of the flowable substance such as polymer being filtered. The flow of such substance through an initially open passage can be terminated so as to permit filter advance under conditions of zero pressure drop whilst flow through the other passage or passages continues. In an additional or alternative mode, flow from a common inlet into a passage is terminated and a secondary outlet conduit in that passage is opened. This creates a counterflow caused by the pressure of substance from the other passage or passages which cleans the filter. Either or any passage or conduit is sealed or valved by a substantially solidified valve plug made of the flowable substance being filtered, said plug being extrudable subsequently when the passage or conduit requires opening to flow.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 1991
    Date of Patent: May 27, 1997
    Inventor: Peter G. Kalman
  • Patent number: 5630906
    Abstract: A method is provided for delignifying and bleaching a lignocellulose material, wherein an aqueous solution of a redox catalyst and an oxidant is reacted with the material. The catalyst comprises an organometallic cation of the general formula [(1)Mno.sub.2 Mn(L)].sup.n+, wherein Mn is manganese (III) or (IV) oxide, the two Mn's of this cation may form a pair in a III-III, III-IV or IV-IV oxidative state, n is 2, 3 or 4, O is oxygen, and L is a ligand comprising 4 nitrogen atoms co-ordinating the manganese.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 1995
    Date of Patent: May 20, 1997
    Assignee: Elf Aquitaine Production
    Inventors: Jean-Fran.cedilla.ois Boe, Jean-Jacques Girerd, Claude Guignard, Jean-Louis Seris, Jean-Baptiste Verlhac