US3638717A - Refrigerator-freezer with meat keeper - Google Patents

Refrigerator-freezer with meat keeper Download PDF

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US3638717A
US3638717A US3638717DA US3638717A US 3638717 A US3638717 A US 3638717A US 3638717D A US3638717D A US 3638717DA US 3638717 A US3638717 A US 3638717A
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Prior art keywords
freezer
space
means
meat
refrigerator
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Philip F Harbour
Anthony J Swaneck
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Westinghouse Electric Corp
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Westinghouse Electric Corp
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    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25DREFRIGERATORS; COLD ROOMS; ICE-BOXES; COOLING OR FREEZING APPARATUS NOT COVERED BY ANY OTHER SUBCLASS
    • F25D17/00Arrangements for circulating cooling fluids; Arrangements for circulating gas, e.g. air, within refrigerated spaces
    • F25D17/04Arrangements for circulating cooling fluids; Arrangements for circulating gas, e.g. air, within refrigerated spaces for circulating air, e.g. by convection
    • F25D17/06Arrangements for circulating cooling fluids; Arrangements for circulating gas, e.g. air, within refrigerated spaces for circulating air, e.g. by convection by forced circulation
    • F25D17/062Arrangements for circulating cooling fluids; Arrangements for circulating gas, e.g. air, within refrigerated spaces for circulating air, e.g. by convection by forced circulation in household refrigerators
    • F25D17/065Arrangements for circulating cooling fluids; Arrangements for circulating gas, e.g. air, within refrigerated spaces for circulating air, e.g. by convection by forced circulation in household refrigerators with compartments at different temperatures
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25DREFRIGERATORS; COLD ROOMS; ICE-BOXES; COOLING OR FREEZING APPARATUS NOT COVERED BY ANY OTHER SUBCLASS
    • F25D17/00Arrangements for circulating cooling fluids; Arrangements for circulating gas, e.g. air, within refrigerated spaces
    • F25D17/04Arrangements for circulating cooling fluids; Arrangements for circulating gas, e.g. air, within refrigerated spaces for circulating air, e.g. by convection
    • F25D17/042Air treating means within refrigerated spaces
    • F25D17/045Air flow control arrangements
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25DREFRIGERATORS; COLD ROOMS; ICE-BOXES; COOLING OR FREEZING APPARATUS NOT COVERED BY ANY OTHER SUBCLASS
    • F25D23/00General constructional features
    • F25D23/06Walls
    • F25D23/069Cooling space dividing partitions
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25DREFRIGERATORS; COLD ROOMS; ICE-BOXES; COOLING OR FREEZING APPARATUS NOT COVERED BY ANY OTHER SUBCLASS
    • F25D25/00Charging, supporting, and discharging the articles to be cooled
    • F25D25/02Charging, supporting, and discharging the articles to be cooled by shelves
    • F25D25/024Slidable shelves
    • F25D25/025Drawers
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25DREFRIGERATORS; COLD ROOMS; ICE-BOXES; COOLING OR FREEZING APPARATUS NOT COVERED BY ANY OTHER SUBCLASS
    • F25D2317/00Details or arrangements for circulating cooling fluids; Details or arrangements for circulating gas, e.g. air, within refrigerated spaces, not provided for in other groups of this subclass
    • F25D2317/06Details or arrangements for circulating cooling fluids; Details or arrangements for circulating gas, e.g. air, within refrigerated spaces, not provided for in other groups of this subclass with forced air circulation
    • F25D2317/061Details or arrangements for circulating cooling fluids; Details or arrangements for circulating gas, e.g. air, within refrigerated spaces, not provided for in other groups of this subclass with forced air circulation through special compartments
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25DREFRIGERATORS; COLD ROOMS; ICE-BOXES; COOLING OR FREEZING APPARATUS NOT COVERED BY ANY OTHER SUBCLASS
    • F25D2400/00General features of, or devices for refrigerators, cold rooms, ice-boxes, or for cooling or freezing apparatus not covered by any other subclass
    • F25D2400/06Refrigerators with a vertical mullion
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25DREFRIGERATORS; COLD ROOMS; ICE-BOXES; COOLING OR FREEZING APPARATUS NOT COVERED BY ANY OTHER SUBCLASS
    • F25D2400/00General features of, or devices for refrigerators, cold rooms, ice-boxes, or for cooling or freezing apparatus not covered by any other subclass
    • F25D2400/16Convertible refrigerators

Abstract

A side-by-side refrigerator-freezer having a meat keeper compartment located at the bottom of the freezer section in a space substantially isolated from the main freezer section by insulated partitions in a first position, the partitions being movable to a second position to change the airflow path so that the meat keeper compartment space is converted to supplemental freezing space.

Description

nit Katee atet 1 1 3963g97l7 Harbour et a1. 1 1 Feb. 1, 1972 [54] REFRIGERATOR-FREEZER WITH 2,737,782 3/1956 Antico ..62/329 MEAT KEEPER 3,377,941 4/1968 .laremus ..99/271 3,403,533 10/1968 Bollenbacher. ..62/408 1 Immoral Philip Harbour; 5 Swaneck 3,478,818 11/1969 Kohya et a1 ..l65/30 both of Columbus, Ohio [73] Assignee: Westinghouse Electric Corporation, Pitt- Examiner-William sburgh, Pa. Assistant ExaminerP. D. Ferguson A H d E. 1221 il g- 2s, 1 ,lfffiifI???V 7 5 Am 5 [21] Appl, No.: 852,628

Related US. Application Data STRA [63] Continuation of Ser. No. 725,853, May 1, 1968, aban- [57] AB CT cloned. A side-by-side refrigerator-freezer having a meat keeper compartment located at the bottom of the freezer section in a [52] US. Cl ..165/30, 62/187, 62/329, space substantially isolated from the main freezer section by 2/ 2/ 2/4 insulated partitions in a first position, the partitions being [51] Int. Ci ..F25b 29/00 movable to a second position to change the airflow path so Fled 0: Search that the meat keeper compartment space is converted to up.

449, l65/30 plemental freezing space.

L 7 a n .7 References CM Wm igeq i flfieii sfiwn.

UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,790,532 1/1955 Schaefer PATENTEU FEB 1 E272 sum 1 OF 3 FIG.3.

FIG.2.

REFRIGERATOR-FREEZER WITH MEAT KEEPER This application is a continuation of the copending application of Philip F. Harbour and Anthony J. Swaneck, Ser. No. 725,853 filed May 1, I968, now abandoned.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention The invention pertains to the art of refrigerated storage spaces, and in particular to that portion of the art relating to the provision of refrigerated storage chambers maintained at near-freezing temperatures.

2. Description of the Prior Art U.S. Pats. Nos. 2,327,672 and 2,737,782 are illustrative of the application of the concept of providing a meat keeper or similar near-freezing temperature compartment in the freezer section of a combination refrigerator-freezer. While these patents teach the broad concept of the provision of a meat keeper in a freezer section, the described arrangements are embodied in refrigerator-freezer structures of a character which may be considered primitive by modern standards. That is, individual evaporators are provided for the refrigerator section and the freezer section, and no forced air circulating system is provided in which chilled air is passed from a common evaporator into both compartments and is then returned to the common evaporator for the removal of moisture from the air.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Our invention is incorporated in a side-by-side refrigeratorfreezer which includes a freezer space and a refrigerator space on opposite sides of an insulated vertical wall. Partition means are provided for substantially isolating, from the remainder of the freezer space, a space at the top or bottom of the freezer section for the purpose of storing meat and similar products at a temperature close to freezing. Usually it will be necessary to provide means for supplying sufi'icient heat to the meat keeping space to maintain the close to freezing temperature. While the meat keeping space will normally be substantially isolated from the remainder of the freezer section when used for keeping meat, the partition means separating the meat keeping space from the rest of the freezer section may conveniently be arranged to be moved to a position in which the meat keeping space is in substantially open communication with the rest of the freezer section for converting the meat keeping space to supplement freezer space.

DRAWING DESCRIPTION FIG. 1 is a face view of a typical side-by-side refrigeratorfreezer incorporating our invention, and shown with open doors;

FIG. 2 is a partly diagrammatic, vertical sectional view corresponding to one taken along a line II-Il of FIG. 1, but with the freezer section door in a closed position;

FIG. 3 is a view similar to FIG. 2, but illustrating the partition means repositioned to convert the meat keeper space to supplemental freezer space;

FIG. 4 is an isometric view of the lower left interior portion of the freezer section illustrating the mounting means for the left side of the partitions and meat keeper pan;

FIG. 5 is an isometric view of the lower right portion of the freezer section illustrating the mounting means for the right side of the partitions and meat keeper pan;

FIG. 6 is an isometric view of a portion of a horizontal insulating partition installed in a position in which the meat keeper space is substantially isolated from the remainder of the freezer space;

FIG. 7 is a schematic diagram of a currently preferred control arrangement for the heating means for the meat keeper space; and

FIGS. 8-10 are vertical sectional views of a modified arrangement of the partition means separating the meat keeper space from the rest of the freezer space.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS The side-by-side refrigerator-freezer of FIG. 1 includes a refrigerator section 10, and a freezer section 12, on opposite sides of an intermediate vertical insulated wall 14. Each section is provided with the usual complement of shelves in the main storage spaces, as well as the separate doors I6 and 18 provided with arrays of shelves 20 on their interior sides. The hollow wall spaces defined between the inner liner and the outer shell of the cabinet, as well as the hollow wall space defined between the inner and outer surfaces of each of the doors, are filled with the usual thermal insulation. The meat keeper arrangement illustrated and preferred in accordance with the invention is located in the lower portion of the freezer section 12 nd is identified by the numeral 22. It will be appreciated from FIG. 1 that this location of the meat keeper 22 in the lower part of the freezer section 12 provides a degree of symmetry and a balanced appearance with the usual vegetable crisper 24 provided in the lower portion of the refrigerator section 10.

The general arrangement according to the invention is best shown in the diagrammatic views of FIGS. 2 and 3. As there shown, the meat keeper space 22 is substantially isolated from the airflow through the remainder of the freezer section 12. The meat keeper space utilizes as its bottom wall the insulated hollow bottom wall 26 of the freezer section above the machine compartment 28. Partition means are provided comprising a first horizontally disposed insulated panel 30 forming the top of space 22, and a vertically disposed insulated panel 32 closing the rear of space 22. The panel 32 is spaced forwardly from the rear wall 34 of the freezer section to provide an airflow passage therebetween. A generally conventional meat pan 36 with a cover 38 is supported in the meat keeper space 22. Heating means 40, preferably in the form of electrical resistance elements, is secured to the hidden face of the sloped wall portion 42 of the bottom wall of the freezer section liner.

With the arrangement of partitions as illustrated in FIG. 2 in the freezer section, the airflow throughout the freezer section is as indicated by the directional arrows during operation of the refrigerant system. In the commercial apparatus in which our invention is embodied, a frost-free system for the freezer section and refrigeration section is provided by means of a generally conventional refrigerant system having a single refrigerant evaporator 44 in the vertical airflow passage 46 immediately behind the rear wall 34 of the freezer section liner. Blower means diagrammatically illustrated at 50 draws air from both the refrigerator and freezer sections. The air from the refrigerator section is drawn from near the bottom thereof through duct work behind the liners and into passage 52 below the evaporator. The air from the freezer section is drawn directly into the open bottom end 52 of the passage. The air admitted to the passage is drawn upwardly through the evaporator 44. The major portion of the chilled air is directed back into the freezer section through openings 54 (FIG. 1) near the top of the freezer section, while a minor portion of the air is directed behind the liner wall 48 through more duct work (not shown) back into the refrigerator section near the top end thereof and discharged.

To insure distribution of the chilled air to the articles stored on the door shelves 20 in the freezer section, a baffle shelf 56 is located as shown in the freezer section. The descending air in the freezer section is prevented from entering the meat keeper space 22 to any substantial degree by the gasket 58 carried by the lower door shelf 20 which closes most of the gap between that door shelf and the forward edge of the panel 30. Thus air entering the open bottom end 52 of the passage 46 must pass rearwardly and through the openwork wire grill 60 and then down behind the panel 32 to reach the open bottom end of the passage.

When the meat keeper space 22 is to be converted into supplemental freezer space, the insulated panels 32 and 30 are rearranged to their second position illustrated in FIG. 3. To accomplish this, the panel 30 is slipped forwardly until the vertical panel 32 may be lifted upwardly and removed from its FIG. 2- location. The wire grill 60, which is pivotally held at its top rear edge, is swung up during this manipulation and the horizontal panel 30 is then slid back to a position where its rear edge abuts the rear wall 34 of the freezer section liner. The panel 32 is then placed in its illustrated position behind the wire grill 60, which is then dropped back down to rest upon the mounting means for horizontal panel 30. The change in air flow in the lower part of the freezer section during refrigeration is illustrated by the directional arrows in FIG. 3. As may be observed, the air descending in the freezer section passes through the gap defined by the gasket 58 and the forward edge of the panel 30 and down past the front of the meat pan 36, over its cover 38, and along the sides, if the pan is left in place. All of the freezer section air then flows into the open end 52 of the passage 46 in which the evaporator 44 is located. The heating means 40 is of course deenergized when the meat keeper space 22 is converted to supplemental freezer space.

Details relating to the currently preferred mounting means and panel structure for carrying out the invention in production refrigerator-freezers are illustrated in FIGS. 4-6. The panel mounting and supporting structure shown in FIG. 4 is secured to the exposed face of the freezer liner left wall 62. The upper, horizontal channel 64L of the mounting means serves as track means slidably receiving the left marginal edge of the horizontal panel 30 (not shown in FIGS. 4 and and the vertically disposed channel 66L at the rear of the mounting means serves as track means slidably receiving the vertical panel 32. The lower flange 68L provides support for the left edge of the meat pan 36. The upper flange of the channel 641. is provided with a forward notch 70L and another notch 72L spaced rearwardly therefrom.

The mounting means for the right-hand edges of the insulated panels and meat pan is illustrated in FIG. 5 in its secured relation to the right side liner wall 74 of the freezer section, and the parts which are arranged in mirror image to those identified in FIG. 4 are given identical numerals with the letter designation R. It is noted that the right-hand mounting means of FIG. 5 includes a hollow box section 76 having the meat keeper space, heat control switch knob 78 at the front end. The box serves as the wiring raceway from the switch back to the rear and then downwardly to connect with the heating means. It will be appreciated that the control switch could be located otherwise, but it has been found convenient to provide this arrangement in which the raceway is molded integrally with the mounting means. No disadvantage results from the channel 64R being spaced apart from the liner wall 74 on the right side more than the channel 64L is spaced from the liner wall 62 on the left side.

The panels and 32 may be constructed as hollow plastic shells with thermal insulation cores. The intersecting edges of the two panels in their FIG. 2 positions may be of rabbeted form. The forward edge of the horizontal baffle has secured thereto a generally channel-shaped plastic trim member 80 (FIG. 6) having the rear edge of the top leg of the channel carrying a perpendicular flange 82. The depending portion of the flange seats, at its side margins, in the notches 70 or 72 depending upon the positioning of the bafile 30 its forward position as shown in FIG. 2, or in its rearward position as shown in FIG. 3. Only the bottom leg of the member 80 is fixed to the panel so that the top leg may be snapped into and out of the notches when it is desired to change the position of the baffle.

While the meat keeper space 22 is characterized as substantially isolated from the rest of the freezer section, it is noted that this does not mean that there is no air exchange between the meat keeper space and the remainder of the freezer space in the currently preferred embodiment. To this end, the rear baffle 32 is provided, as indicated in FIG. 2, with a small opening 84 of about 1 square inch with a baffle plate 86 spaced slightly fgrwardly of the aperture 84. The closure provided by the gasket 58 carried by the freezer door shelf is also designed to permit limited air flow to enter the meat keeper space 22 adjacent the ends of the gasket. It is considered preferable to permit this small quantity of air exchange to occur so that the cold dry air admitted to the meat keeper space 22 prevents a stagnant air condition, removes excess moisture from the space, and prevents undue ice formation.

Reference should now be had to FIG. 7 which illustrates one way in which the heating means 40 may be connected into the refrigeration electrical circuit. The refrigerant compressor 88 and the motor for the air flow fan 50 are connected in parallel to one side of the line, with the other side of these elements being connected in series with another parallel circuit including the heating means and the unit thermostat 90. In this elementary arrangement, when the thermostat 90 calls for cooling, the compressor and fan motor are energized to provide chilled air to the freezer and the refrigerator. When thermostat 90 is satisfied, the individual heaters 92 and 94 comprising the heating means 40 for the meat keeping space 22 are susceptible to being energized as will appear.

The control switch 96 for the heating means has four positions indicated in the schematic by the broken lines A to D. In position A, the switch opens the circuit so that no heating is provided, this position being used when the space 22 is to be converted to supplemental freezer space. In position B, both heaters are in series to produce low heat. In position C, the heater 94 is alone in the circuit and produces medium heat. In position D, heater 92 is alone in the circuit and produces high heat. As one example of heater size in one commercial refrigerator in which the invention is embodied, the heater 92 produces about 14 watts when energized, the heater 94 produces about l0 watts when energized, and when the heaters are in series they produce a total of about 6 watts. It will be appreciated that the adjustable switch is desirable to compensate for various ambient temperatures in which the refrigerator-freezer is operating, as well as to compensate for differences in heat leakage of different refrigerator-freezers arising from manufacturing tolerances. The control of the heating means, it will also be appreciated, could be effected by the use of a switch having fewer or more switch positions, or one which has a so-called infinite number of positions.

It will be noticed that the heating means is connected in parallel with the unit control or thermostat 90. Thus to the extent that the heating means is energized, it is only energized during the off time of the unit (that is, when the unit is not providing refrigeration). This automatically compensates for the differences in heat flow from the ambient temperature space about the refrigerator-freezer into the meat keeping space 22. Thus, while a lower outside ambient temperature produces a lower rate of heat flow through the freezer section bottom wall, less refrigerating operation occurs and therefore the heating means is energized for longer periods.

It has been determined by test that in side-by-side refrigerator-freezers of about the 22 cubic foot size, provided with foamed-in place insulation, that when the freezer temperature is maintained in a range from about -3 to +5 F., the variations in wattage produced at the different settings permits the meat keeper temperature to be maintained at selected temperature levels between about 28 and 36 F. with a 90 F. ambient temperature about the refrigerator-freezer.

With the same refrigerator-freezer, and a 70 F. ambient temperature, the meat keeper space temperature may be maintained between about 26 to 34 F., while the freezer temperature is maintained between about 2 and 5".

FIGS. 8 to 10 illustrate one modification of the panel arrangement for the meat keeper space, and the mounting means therefor, which eliminates the need for removing the rear panel and allows the customer to make the compartment conversion by simply sliding the top panel forward or backward. This arrangement also permits adjustment of the panels to intermediate positions which vary the amount of air which passes through the meat keeper space. The top horizontal panel 30A is integrally connected at its extreme rear top edge by a flexible plastic hinge 31 to the rear panel 32A. The

top leg of the horizontal channel 64L for top panel 30A extends all the way to the rear wall 34 of the freezer section liner. The rear leg of the vertical channel 66L for the rear panel is omitted so that as the top panel is pushed rearwardly, the connection at the hinge location 31 perrnitsthe rear panel to be drawn rearwardly and moved into an inclined intermediate and final positions as shown in FIGS. Q and 10. To guide the lower portion of the rear panel in its movement, a pin 98 is positioned to project inwardly in each of the opposite vertical channels 66L and 66R (not shown), each pin being received in a slot 100 extending along the side edge of the panel 32A.

We claim as our invention:

1. A side-by-side refrigerator-freezer including:

a freezer space and a refrigerator space on opposite sides of an insulated vertical wall;

a fan-forced airflow system for circulating air between said freezer space and a 'refrigerant evaporator which is located outside of said freezer space;

partition means having a position substantially isolating, from the remainder of said freezer space, a space within the said freezer space as a whole and adjacent one of the vertically spaced ends of said freezer space for keeping meat and similar food products at a temperature close to freezing; and

means for supplying heat to said meat keeping space at a rate controlled to maintain said close-to-freezing temperature.

2. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 1 wherein:

said meat keeping space is located at the bottom end of said freezer section.

3. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 1 including:

means mounting said partition means for movement to a second position substantially eliminating said isolation from said remainder of said freezer space to convert said meat keeping space to a frozen food storage space; and

means for terminating said heating.

4. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 3 wherein:

said partition means comprises a first, generally horizontally disposed, insulated panel carried by said mounting means to form the top wall of said meat keeping space, and a second, generally vertically disposed, insulated panel carried by said mounting means to form the rear wall of said meat keeping space.

5. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 4 wherein:

said refrigerator-freezer includes a door for said freezer space carrying gasket means disposed to engage with the forward edge of said first insulated panel for substantially restricting communication at said front edge between said meat keeping space and said remainder of said freezer space.

6. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 5 wherein:

said mounting means includes horizontally disposed track means for said first panel and vertically disposed track means for said second panel, said second panel being removable from said vertically disposed track means, and said first panel being displaceable rearwardly from said first position to said second position to provide an opening between said door gasket means and said front edge of said first panel.

7. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 6 wherein:

said horizontally disposed track means includes detent means for locating said first panel in said first position and alternately in said second position.

8. A refrigerator'freezer according to claim 4 wherein:

said first and second panels are joined in hinged relationship at their intersection to permit said first panel to be displaced rearwardly and draw said second panel rearwardly therewith and into an inclined position to provide generally open communication between said meat keeping space and said remainder of said freezer space.

9. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 1 including:

an electrically energized refrigeration-producing system 0 erativel connected to said evaporator;

sai means or supplying heat to said meat keeping space comprises electrically energized heating means; and

means for energizing said refrigeration-producing system in accordance with the demand for cooling in said second, generally vertically disposed, insulated panel carried by said mounting means to form the rear wall of said meat keeping space.

10. A side-by-side refrigerator-freezer including:

a freezer space and a refrigerator space on opposite sides of an insulated vertical wall;

a fan-forced airflow system for circulating air between said freezer space and a refrigerant evaporator which is located outside of said freezer space;

a convertible compartment at the bottom of said freezer space for use selectively to store food products such as meat at near freezing temperatures, such compartment being defined in part at least by thermally insulated partition means highly restricting the interchange of air between said compartment and the remainder of the space in said freezer space in one position of said partition means, said partition means being movable to a second position placing said compartment in sufficiently open communication with the remainder of the space in said freezer space to obtain substantially the same well below freezing temperatures as said remainder of the space in said freezer space; and

means for supplying heat to said convertible compartment at a rate controlled to maintain a close-to-freezing temperature when said partition means is in said one position.

11. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 10 wherein:

said convertible compartment and freezer space have a common, insulated bottom wall.

12. A refrigerator-freezer including: a freezer space and a refrigerator space on opposite sides of an insulated wall, and

having a fan-forced airflow system for circulating air between said freezer space and a refrigerant evaporator which is located outside of said freezer space;

means defining a separate compartment in said freezer space for keeping meat and similar food products at a temperature close to freezing;

means for supplying heat to said meat keeping space at a rate controlled to maintain said close-to-freezing temperature;

an electrically energized refrigeration-producing system operatively connected to said evaporator;

means for energizing said refrigeration-producing system in accordance with the demand for cooling in said refrigerator-freezer, and for energizing said heat supplying means for said meat keeping space only when said refrigerationproducing system is not energized.

13. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 12 wherein:

said means for energizing said refrigeration-producing system includes temperature responsive switch means; and

said heat supplying means comprises electrically energized heating means in parallel with said temperature responsive switch means so that said heating means is shunted by said switch means when said switch means is in a closed position to energize said refrigeration-producing system.

14. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 13 wherein:

said electrically energized heating means comprises a plurality of electrical heaters; and

switch means is provided for controlling the connection of said heaters to selectively change the heat output thereof.

a a a a: a:

Claims (14)

1. A side-by-side refrigerator-freezer including: a freezer space and a refrigerator space on opposite sides of an insulated vertical wall; a fan-forced airflow system for circulating air between said freezer space and a refrigerant evaporator which is located outside of said freezer space; partition means having a position substantially isolating, from the remainder of said freezer space, a space within the said freezer space as a whole and adjacent one of the vertically spaced ends of said freezer space for keeping meat and similar food products at a temperature close to freezing; and means for supplying heat to said meat keeping space at a rate controlled to maintain said close-to-freezing temperature.
2. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 1 wherein: said meat keeping space is located at the bottom end of said freezer section.
3. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 1 including: means mounting said partition means for movement to a second position substantially eliminating said isolation from said remainder of said freezer space to convert said meat keeping space to a frozen food storage space; and means for terminating said heating.
4. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 3 wherein: said partition means comprises a first, generallY horizontally disposed, insulated panel carried by said mounting means to form the top wall of said meat keeping space, and a second, generally vertically disposed, insulated panel carried by said mounting means to form the rear wall of said meat keeping space.
5. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 4 wherein: said refrigerator-freezer includes a door for said freezer space carrying gasket means disposed to engage with the forward edge of said first insulated panel for substantially restricting communication at said front edge between said meat keeping space and said remainder of said freezer space.
6. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 5 wherein: said mounting means includes horizontally disposed track means for said first panel and vertically disposed track means for said second panel, said second panel being removable from said vertically disposed track means, and said first panel being displaceable rearwardly from said first position to said second position to provide an opening between said door gasket means and said front edge of said first panel.
7. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 6 wherein: said horizontally disposed track means includes detent means for locating said first panel in said first position and alternately in said second position.
8. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 4 wherein: said first and second panels are joined in hinged relationship at their intersection to permit said first panel to be displaced rearwardly and draw said second panel rearwardly therewith and into an inclined position to provide generally open communication between said meat keeping space and said remainder of said freezer space.
9. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 1 including: an electrically energized refrigeration-producing system operatively connected to said evaporator; said means for supplying heat to said meat keeping space comprises electrically energized heating means; and means for energizing said refrigeration-producing system in accordance with the demand for cooling in said second, generally vertically disposed, insulated panel carried by said mounting means to form the rear wall of said meat keeping space.
10. A side-by-side refrigerator-freezer including: a freezer space and a refrigerator space on opposite sides of an insulated vertical wall; a fan-forced airflow system for circulating air between said freezer space and a refrigerant evaporator which is located outside of said freezer space; a convertible compartment at the bottom of said freezer space for use selectively to store food products such as meat at near freezing temperatures, such compartment being defined in part at least by thermally insulated partition means highly restricting the interchange of air between said compartment and the remainder of the space in said freezer space in one position of said partition means, said partition means being movable to a second position placing said compartment in sufficiently open communication with the remainder of the space in said freezer space to obtain substantially the same well below freezing temperatures as said remainder of the space in said freezer space; and means for supplying heat to said convertible compartment at a rate controlled to maintain a close-to-freezing temperature when said partition means is in said one position.
11. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 10 wherein: said convertible compartment and freezer space have a common, insulated bottom wall.
12. A refrigerator-freezer including: a freezer space and a refrigerator space on opposite sides of an insulated wall, and having a fan-forced airflow system for circulating air between said freezer space and a refrigerant evaporator which is located outside of said freezer space; means defining a separate compartment in said freezer space for keeping meat and similar food products at a temperature close to freezing; means for supplying heat to said meaT keeping space at a rate controlled to maintain said close-to-freezing temperature; an electrically energized refrigeration-producing system operatively connected to said evaporator; means for energizing said refrigeration-producing system in accordance with the demand for cooling in said refrigerator-freezer, and for energizing said heat supplying means for said meat keeping space only when said refrigeration-producing system is not energized.
13. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 12 wherein: said means for energizing said refrigeration-producing system includes temperature responsive switch means; and said heat supplying means comprises electrically energized heating means in parallel with said temperature responsive switch means so that said heating means is shunted by said switch means when said switch means is in a closed position to energize said refrigeration-producing system.
14. A refrigerator-freezer according to claim 13 wherein: said electrically energized heating means comprises a plurality of electrical heaters; and switch means is provided for controlling the connection of said heaters to selectively change the heat output thereof.
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US4002199A (en) * 1975-11-10 1977-01-11 General Motors Corporation Refrigerator food conditioning appliance
US4241589A (en) * 1979-08-30 1980-12-30 General Electric Company Household refrigerator air flow control assembly
FR2468861A1 (en) * 1979-11-05 1981-05-08 Thomson Brandt partitioning device for moving flaps refrigerator
US4358932A (en) * 1981-09-03 1982-11-16 General Electric Company Control system for refrigerator with through-the-door quick-chilling service
US4368622A (en) * 1981-05-14 1983-01-18 General Electric Company Refrigerator with through-the-door quick-chilling service
US4488412A (en) * 1983-11-14 1984-12-18 White Consolidated Industries, Inc. Adjustable air duct for a meat keeper
US4638644A (en) * 1978-04-07 1987-01-27 Edward Gidseg Circulating air refrigerator with removable divider shelf
US4722200A (en) * 1986-12-29 1988-02-02 Whirlpool Corporation Segregated air supply for an accurately temperature controlled compartment
US4732014A (en) * 1986-12-31 1988-03-22 Whirlpool Corporation Temperature controlled compartment for a refrigerator
US4775201A (en) * 1986-11-14 1988-10-04 Whirlpool Corporation Removable tilt-down bin for refrigerator
US5193356A (en) * 1991-09-09 1993-03-16 General Electric Company Household refrigerator adjustable temperature storage system
US5228499A (en) * 1990-10-15 1993-07-20 Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. Refrigerator including a fermentation and ensilage compartment, and the control method thereof
EP0553426A1 (en) * 1992-01-28 1993-08-04 Whirlpool Europe B.V. Convertable combination refrigerator
US5388427A (en) * 1992-09-23 1995-02-14 Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. Refrigerator with kimchi compartment
US5392615A (en) * 1992-09-23 1995-02-28 Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. Air conduit system in a refrigerator
US5458186A (en) * 1992-08-17 1995-10-17 Goldstar Co., Ltd. Refrigerator with kimchi seasoning and storing chamber
FR2759157A1 (en) * 1997-02-05 1998-08-07 Ouakil Thierry Freezer cabinet with emergency intercommunication between compartments
FR2788844A1 (en) * 1999-01-22 2000-07-28 Henco Freezer compartment design, has a freezer compartment separated by a retractable partition dividing this compartment into two cells or joining these cells to form a single freezer compartment at will
US6170276B1 (en) 1999-02-26 2001-01-09 Maytag Corporation High performance food storage system for a refrigerator
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US6279928B1 (en) * 1999-12-23 2001-08-28 Venor Lennox Biggs, Sr. Compartmentalized container
US6343477B1 (en) 1999-02-26 2002-02-05 Maytag Corporation Refrigerator food storage temperature control system
US6463752B2 (en) 1999-02-26 2002-10-15 Maytag Corporation Refrigerator food storage compartment with quick chill feature
US6612116B2 (en) 1999-02-26 2003-09-02 Maytag Corporation Thermoelectric temperature controlled refrigerator food storage compartment
US20040154322A1 (en) * 2000-08-23 2004-08-12 Felder Robin A. Automated storage and retrieval apparatus for freezers and related method thereof
US6865905B2 (en) * 2003-03-11 2005-03-15 General Electric Company Refrigerator methods and apparatus
US20080017348A1 (en) * 2005-01-25 2008-01-24 Lance Criscuolo Apparatus for thawing frozen food items
US20080156006A1 (en) * 2006-12-28 2008-07-03 General Electric Company Soft freeze assembly for a freezer storage compartment
US20080168792A1 (en) * 2007-01-17 2008-07-17 Sub-Zero Freezer Company, Inc. Chilled food storage area for refrigerated appliance
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Cited By (40)

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US4002199A (en) * 1975-11-10 1977-01-11 General Motors Corporation Refrigerator food conditioning appliance
US4638644A (en) * 1978-04-07 1987-01-27 Edward Gidseg Circulating air refrigerator with removable divider shelf
US4241589A (en) * 1979-08-30 1980-12-30 General Electric Company Household refrigerator air flow control assembly
EP0028559A2 (en) * 1979-11-05 1981-05-13 Selnor Societe D'electromenager Du Nord Partition device with movable panels for cooling apparatus, and refrigerator comprising such a device
FR2468861A1 (en) * 1979-11-05 1981-05-08 Thomson Brandt partitioning device for moving flaps refrigerator
EP0028559A3 (en) * 1979-11-05 1982-06-30 Thomson-Brandt Partition device with movable panels for cooling apparatus, and refrigerator comprising such a device
US4368622A (en) * 1981-05-14 1983-01-18 General Electric Company Refrigerator with through-the-door quick-chilling service
US4358932A (en) * 1981-09-03 1982-11-16 General Electric Company Control system for refrigerator with through-the-door quick-chilling service
US4488412A (en) * 1983-11-14 1984-12-18 White Consolidated Industries, Inc. Adjustable air duct for a meat keeper
US4775201A (en) * 1986-11-14 1988-10-04 Whirlpool Corporation Removable tilt-down bin for refrigerator
US4722200A (en) * 1986-12-29 1988-02-02 Whirlpool Corporation Segregated air supply for an accurately temperature controlled compartment
US4732014A (en) * 1986-12-31 1988-03-22 Whirlpool Corporation Temperature controlled compartment for a refrigerator
US5228499A (en) * 1990-10-15 1993-07-20 Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. Refrigerator including a fermentation and ensilage compartment, and the control method thereof
US5193356A (en) * 1991-09-09 1993-03-16 General Electric Company Household refrigerator adjustable temperature storage system
EP0553426A1 (en) * 1992-01-28 1993-08-04 Whirlpool Europe B.V. Convertable combination refrigerator
US5458186A (en) * 1992-08-17 1995-10-17 Goldstar Co., Ltd. Refrigerator with kimchi seasoning and storing chamber
US5388427A (en) * 1992-09-23 1995-02-14 Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. Refrigerator with kimchi compartment
US5392615A (en) * 1992-09-23 1995-02-28 Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. Air conduit system in a refrigerator
FR2759157A1 (en) * 1997-02-05 1998-08-07 Ouakil Thierry Freezer cabinet with emergency intercommunication between compartments
FR2788844A1 (en) * 1999-01-22 2000-07-28 Henco Freezer compartment design, has a freezer compartment separated by a retractable partition dividing this compartment into two cells or joining these cells to form a single freezer compartment at will
US6463752B2 (en) 1999-02-26 2002-10-15 Maytag Corporation Refrigerator food storage compartment with quick chill feature
US6223553B1 (en) 1999-02-26 2001-05-01 Maytag Corporation Air flow for refrigerator food storage system
US6612116B2 (en) 1999-02-26 2003-09-02 Maytag Corporation Thermoelectric temperature controlled refrigerator food storage compartment
US6343477B1 (en) 1999-02-26 2002-02-05 Maytag Corporation Refrigerator food storage temperature control system
US6170276B1 (en) 1999-02-26 2001-01-09 Maytag Corporation High performance food storage system for a refrigerator
US6279928B1 (en) * 1999-12-23 2001-08-28 Venor Lennox Biggs, Sr. Compartmentalized container
US20040154322A1 (en) * 2000-08-23 2004-08-12 Felder Robin A. Automated storage and retrieval apparatus for freezers and related method thereof
US6941762B2 (en) * 2000-08-23 2005-09-13 University Of Virginia Patent Foundation Automated storage and retrieval apparatus for freezers and related method thereof
US6865905B2 (en) * 2003-03-11 2005-03-15 General Electric Company Refrigerator methods and apparatus
US20050097916A1 (en) * 2003-03-11 2005-05-12 General Electric Company Refrigerator methods and apparatus
US7216493B2 (en) 2003-03-11 2007-05-15 General Electric Company Refrigerator methods and apparatus
US20080017348A1 (en) * 2005-01-25 2008-01-24 Lance Criscuolo Apparatus for thawing frozen food items
US7348522B1 (en) 2005-01-25 2008-03-25 Lance Criscuolo Apparatus for thawing frozen food items
US8434322B2 (en) * 2005-02-01 2013-05-07 Lg Electronics Inc. Refrigerator
US20100101259A1 (en) * 2005-02-01 2010-04-29 Bok Dong Lee Refrigerator
US7762102B2 (en) * 2006-12-28 2010-07-27 General Electric Company Soft freeze assembly for a freezer storage compartment
US20080156006A1 (en) * 2006-12-28 2008-07-03 General Electric Company Soft freeze assembly for a freezer storage compartment
US20080168792A1 (en) * 2007-01-17 2008-07-17 Sub-Zero Freezer Company, Inc. Chilled food storage area for refrigerated appliance
US7665327B2 (en) 2007-01-17 2010-02-23 Sub-Zero, Inc. Chilled food storage area for refrigerated appliance
WO2009127563A1 (en) * 2008-04-17 2009-10-22 BSH Bosch und Siemens Hausgeräte GmbH Cooler-freezer combination comprising an evaporator disposed in a separating wall

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