Patents by Inventor Kevin R. Korte

Kevin R. Korte has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Patent number: 6807969
    Abstract: A method of processing reconstituted tobacco which reduces the attrition of reconstituted tobacco and increases the capacity of a primary processing facility by bypassing several conventional primary processing steps. This improved process allows reconstituted tobacco to bypass the primary processing steps up through final cut tobacco drying by separately cutting conventional reconstituted tobacco using a tobacco cutting machine. The method also includes the steps of drying reconstituted tobacco in a pre-dryer, forming sheets of reconstituted tobacco, cutting the sheets to a pre-selected width, transferring the sheets of pre-selected width to a primary processing facility, feeding the sheets of pre-selected width to a tobacco cutting machine, the sheets being cut to a pre-selected size, and blending the pre-selected size cut reconstituted tobacco with conventional cut tobacco.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 13, 2002
    Date of Patent: October 26, 2004
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation
    Inventors: Eric W. Wessinger, Kevin R. Korte, Robin Schlinger
  • Patent number: 6062238
    Abstract: After several drying cycles in a pneumatically conveying tobacco drying apparatus, the interior of the drying apparatus becomes built-up with tobacco including casings and other additives thereby causing decreased flow of air entrained with tobacco as well as potential contamination with tobacco pieces from previously dried tobacco. Cleaning of the built-up materials is accomplished by recirculating superheated air through the tobacco drying apparatus. The air is heated to a preselected high temperature of at least 430.degree. F. at a rate, generally not to exceed 4.degree. F. per minute and circulated through the drying apparatus for a predetermined period of time. During heating and recirculating air at the preselected temperature, the tobacco materials built up on the drying apparatus are cooked and removed by continual purging with the recirculating air.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 1999
    Date of Patent: May 16, 2000
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation
    Inventors: Kevin R. Korte, Sr., Stacey Claire Braxton
  • Patent number: 5908033
    Abstract: A high humidity drying apparatus for cut tobacco is shown. The apparatus has a furnace which heats circulated air within the apparatus. The air is forced through a first arcuate elbow which has a tobacco air inlet located thereon for inserting the cut tobacco into the airstream. The tobacco is then redirected into a vertically extending drying chamber. The air entrained tobacco is then forced through a second arcuate elbow which places the tobacco into a tangential separator for removing the tobacco from the heated air. The separator has dual air exhausts, each leading to a high efficiency cyclone for further removal of the tobacco dust form the circulated air. All of the air is then passed back to the furnace for heating and then recirculated through the drying apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 19, 1997
    Date of Patent: June 1, 1999
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation
    Inventors: Kevin R. Korte, Sr., Stacey Claire Braxton, Kayyani Adiga
  • Patent number: 5755238
    Abstract: A method and apparatus is given for a low residence time redrying of strip tobacco. The apparatus thoroughly and evenly dries and cools the tobacco consistently through the entire tobacco bed as it passes through the dryer and cooler. The apparatus utilizes a plurality of individually controlled fluidized bed heating zones for drying the tobacco. An additional fluidized bed cooling zone is provided to cool the tobacco prior to reordering. A continuous conveyor extends through the heating zones and cooling zones. A steam tunnel is utilized to raise the moisture content of the dried tobacco to preselected moisture levels. A vibrating conveyor moves the tobacco through the steam tunnel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 17, 1996
    Date of Patent: May 26, 1998
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation
    Inventors: Carlton Andrew Soots, Anthony J. Riviere, Kevin R. Korte, Sr.
  • Patent number: 5720306
    Abstract: A high humidity drying apparatus for cut tobacco is shown. The apparatus has a furnace which heats circulated air within the apparatus. The air is forced through a first arcuate elbow which has a tobacco air inlet located thereon for inserting the cut tobacco into the airstream. The tobacco is then redirected into a vertically extending drying chamber. The air entrained tobacco is then forced through a second arcuate elbow which places the tobacco into a tangential separator for removing the tobacco from the heated air. The separator has dual air exhausts, each leading to a high efficiency cyclone for further removal of the tobacco dust form the circulated air. All of the air is then passed back to the furnace for heating and then recirculated through the drying apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 4, 1996
    Date of Patent: February 24, 1998
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation
    Inventors: Kevin R. Korte, Sr., Stacey Claire Braxton, Kayyani Adiga, Raymond Frank Werkmeister, Carlton Andrew Soots
  • Patent number: 4760854
    Abstract: An improved tobacco treating expansion process involving controlling the moisture content of tobacco and the pre-separator residence time thereof in a treatment of the moisture controlled tobacco under preselected pressures and temperatures so that the tobacco at exit from the drying step of the process has a moisture content in the range of approximately 9% to approximately 15% oven volatiles by weight and fill values at least equivalent to fill values of tobaccos dried to a lower moisture content not exceeding 6% oven volatiles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 2, 1985
    Date of Patent: August 2, 1988
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation
    Inventors: John N. Jewell, Kevin R. Korte
  • Patent number: 4700722
    Abstract: A method of treating tobacco with a strong acid to inhibit alkaloid loss during drying. The tobacco is then treated with weak base to neutralize the acid. The preferred strong acid is phosphoric. The preferred weak base is ammonium hydroxide. An added benefit of this treatment is burn retardation by ammonium phosphates resulting in cigarette puff number increase.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 12, 1986
    Date of Patent: October 20, 1987
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation
    Inventors: Kevin R. Korte, Elmer Litzinger, Dan T. Wu
  • Patent number: 4630619
    Abstract: An improved tobacco treating process comprising cooling tobacco in a liquid nitrogen bath, impregnating the mixture with carbon dioxide gas under preselected pressure conditions, releasing the pressure and subjecting the so treated tobacco to drying gases with temperatures at least above about 250.degree. F. with wet bulb temperatures in the range of at least about 150.degree. F. with a maximum of 212.degree. F.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 16, 1983
    Date of Patent: December 23, 1986
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp.
    Inventors: Kevin R. Korte, Dan T. Wu
  • Patent number: 4566468
    Abstract: A process and apparatus for producing a smoking tobacco having a low nitrate content includes at least one stage through which a tobacco having a relatively high nitrate content, for example burley tobacco, continuously passes for continuous nitrate removal by dissolution. In the nitrate removal stage, a solvent is added to, for example, the burley tobacco to form a slurry. The free solvent, including dissolved nitrates, is decanted from the slurry leaving saturated burley tobacco. The saturated burley tobacco is subjected to an expression pressure to remove a further amount of solvent and dissolved nitrates therefrom. After the burley tobacco leaves the nitrate removing stage, it is mixed with another tobacco, such as, for example, a flue-cured tobacco. The tobacco mixture is then expanded and dried to a moisture content suitable for use in a smoking article.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 25, 1983
    Date of Patent: January 28, 1986
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation
    Inventors: Leroy R. Sachleben, Kevin R. Korte, Daniel D. Snyder, Terry L. Allen
  • Patent number: 4528994
    Abstract: An improved tobacco treating process wherein fill value improvement can be obtained with less energy and less carbon dioxide requirements comprising mixing tobacco with finely divided solid CO.sub.2 at controlled preselected parts by weight, impregnating the mixture with carbon dioxide gas under preselected pressure conditions, releasing the pressure and subjecting the so treated tobacco to drying gases with temperatures at least above 250.degree. F. with wet bulb temperatures in the range of at least about 150.degree. F. to a maximum of 212.degree. F.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 16, 1983
    Date of Patent: July 16, 1985
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation
    Inventors: Kevin R. Korte, Dan T. Wu
  • Patent number: 4528995
    Abstract: An apparatus for treating a tobacco as it is conveyed through the apparatus includes a heater for heating the treating and conveying gas, a tobacco-gas separator device for separating the treated tobacco from the treating and conveying gas, a duct fluidity interconnecting the heater with the tobacco-gas separator device, a venturi located in the duct, and a tobacco feed device for introducing tobacco to be treated into the throat of the venturi to be entrained by the treating gas stream between the heater device and tobacco-gas separator device. The separated treating gas is returned to the heater device for reuse in treating more tobacco. The apparatus further includes a venturi which maintains a substantially zero internal atmospheric pressure at the tobacco feed device to prevent the escape of treating gas from the apparatus or entry of ambient air into the apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 13, 1983
    Date of Patent: July 16, 1985
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation
    Inventors: Kevin R. Korte, Richard D. Falter
  • Patent number: 4517992
    Abstract: A tobacco treating apparatus including an outer, rotatable, hollow drum having a tobacco inlet at one end and a tobacco outlet at the opposite end with an inner, hollow drum extending through the tobacco inlet end, generally coaxial with the outer drum and extending a distance longitudinally into the outer drum a distance less than the entire length of the outer drum. The outer and inner drums cooperate to define an annular gas flow-through passageway which is open to an exhaust chamber. Tobacco to be treated is introduced into the inner drum and flows therefrom into the outer drum while a stream of tobacco treating gas is introduced into the tobacco outlet end to flow in counter-current direction to the flow of tobacco through the outer drum so that virtually all of the tobacco is contacted and treated by the gas. The treating gas leaves the outer drum through the annular flow-through passageway and into the exhaust air chamber from which it is exhausted from the apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 1984
    Date of Patent: May 21, 1985
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation
    Inventors: Kevin R. Korte, Daniel D. Snyder
  • Patent number: 4494556
    Abstract: An apparatus for drying tobacco includes a heater for heating a drying and conveying gas to a predetermined temperature sufficient to dry the tobacco to a predetermined moisture content, a tobacco-gas separator device of the short residence type located downstream of the heater, a first duct establishing gas flow communication between the hot gas outlet from the heater and the entrance to the tobacco-gas separator device, and a tobacco feed device located substantially at the entrance to the separator device for introducing tobacco to be dried into the duct at the entrance to the separator device. In addition, an apparatus of the class described wherein the tobacco to be dried and the drying gas are separately introduced into the separator device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 24, 1982
    Date of Patent: January 22, 1985
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation
    Inventors: Dan T. Wu, Kevin R. Korte