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Q: Oringinal Vortex Separator ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   0 Comments )
Subject: Oringinal Vortex Separator
Category: Science > Technology
Asked by: eric1-ga
List Price: $50.00
Posted: 03 Mar 2005 01:54 PST
Expires: 02 Apr 2005 01:54 PST
Question ID: 483896
I am researching the original industrial patent granted for the Vortex
Separator (a.k.a Cyclone Separator) invention.  I need to know the
Country (Germany or Switzerland), the original Patent Number, Year
granted and Who the inventor was.

Request for Question Clarification by pafalafa-ga on 05 Mar 2005 06:31 PST

Can you tell us what leads you to think the original patent was in
Germany or Switzerland?

And if you can provide any other historical details of the invention,
that would be helpful to your research.



Clarification of Question by eric1-ga on 07 Mar 2005 19:28 PST
My research thus far yields the sketchy information that Mr. Frederick
B. Schneider completed his experiments with the Vortex Separator
(a.k.a Cyclone Separator) in Zurich, Switzerland and then applied for
a European Patent during the 1933 to 1934 timeframe.  Mr. Schneider
may only be listed as the Inventor as opposed to the Assignee (a.k.a.
Owner) for he sold the Patent rights to a German company circa 1934 or
1935.  I am anxious to fill in the gaps of this story with (1) what
body granted the Patent, (2) the Patent Number, (3) the date it was
granted, (4) the stated "Assignee" or "Owner" of the Pantent at that
time it was grnated and if at all possible (5) the name of the German
company that bought the Patent and when (date).  Thank you for the

Request for Question Clarification by pafalafa-ga on 07 Mar 2005 20:03 PST

I'm afraid I still need to know a bit more to research your question. 
Are you primarily interested in the vortex separator, in European
develoments, or in Frederick Schneider?

If the vortex separator, I found a patent that dates back to 1928, and
describes a device for separating grain dust:

This invention relates to apparatus of the centrifugal type for
extracting dust, soot, flour particles, and, other suspended solid
matter from air and gases. The apparatus is utilizable with great
advantge in connection with grain cleaning plant, for clarifying air
which has picked up dust in passing through streams or showers of
grain which is undergoing cleaning treatment.

The apparatus consists essentially of a centrifugal fan arranged for
maintaining a circulation of air through the apparatus, a shrouded
vortex separator on the same shaft as the circulating fan, and a
closed circuit system of air passages and dust collecting hoppers. The
separator is housed in a drum casing which is slitted peripherally to
allow dust which suffers extraction by centrifugal effect in the
vortex to pass into a dust collecting hopper in which the separator
housing is enclosed. One circulating fan may serve two separators,
disposed respectively at either side of it.

Is this the type of system that is of interest to you?  If not, please
give us a bit more detail about what your interests are, and how we
can best assist you.



Clarification of Question by eric1-ga on 08 Mar 2005 03:05 PST
The focus is definitely on the original Patent(s) for the Vortex
Separator as Fred Schneider is my grandfather and I am researching his
life?s story.

I agree I have cast a fairly wide net, as I have researched several
websites that cater to Patent searches and found hundreds of patents
associated with the Vortex / Cyclone Separator, but only dating back
as far as say 1986, and then the trail goes cold.

I am still under the impression that the Patent that I am interested
in has the name of Mr. Frederick B. Schneider associated with it; that
its was focused on removing Cement Dust from the plume of a Cement
factory; and that a European patent was applied for / granted during
the 1933 to 1934 timeframe.

However, I am very interested in the information you found regarding
the grain / dust-separating device (circa 1928) as there may be
associations that add to the story.

Request for Question Clarification by pafalafa-ga on 08 Mar 2005 05:24 PST

You grandfather, Fred B Schneider, holds a US patent for an air
cleaning device that was applied for in 1944 and granted in 1947 and
assigned to General Electric.

Your grandfather's residence is given as Wesleyville, Pa...does that
jive with your understanding of where he was around this date?

I can provide details of this earliest US patent, and of another US
patent that your grandfather holds, as well as info on other patents
dealing with the vortex separator that are not associated with your
grandfather, as far as I can tell.

Unfortunately, I do not have a similar capacity to early research
European patents online, and even if I could, the language barriers
would present difficulties.

Should I post the material on the US patents as an answer to your
question?  Or will only information on European patents meet your

Let me know.

Subject: Re: Oringinal Vortex Separator
Answered By: pafalafa-ga on 08 Mar 2005 07:28 PST
Rated:5 out of 5 stars

Well I'll be...

Turns out, I'm a better researcher than I gave myself credit for,
because I did manage to find your grandfather's Swiss patent.

And your grandfather might have been a much more prolific inventor
than you ever expected!

Let's begin with the vortex separator:

Swiss patent #176353 was issued on April 15, 1935 to Fred Bruno
Schneider of Wesleyville, Pennsylvania.  The title of the patent is: 
Fliehkraft-Staubabscheider...don't ask me what it means, but there's a
lovely drawing of a vortex separator included with the patent.

You can see the entire 4-page document at this link:

Let me know if you have any difficulty in opening or viewing the file.

The link above is from the site of the European Patent Office, which
has a very handy search tool that, wonderfully enough, will find
patents not only in Europe, but in the US as well, so it is a great
tool for searching for the history of your grandfather's numerous

Searching is a bit clumsy at the site, but a search on the inventor's
name [ schneider fred ] will return many of your grandfather's
patents.  There will also be many other patents listed that happen to
have the names "Schneider" and "Fred" included but that don't belong
to your grandfather.  All told, there are about 130 search results,
and the ones that bear your grandfather's name are:

Vorrichtung zum Ausscheiden von festen Bestandteilen aus gasförmigen
MedienVorrichtung zum Ausscheiden von festen Bestandteilen aus
gasförmigen Medien
CH176351 - 1935-04-15


Vorrichtung zum Abscheiden von festen Bestandteilen aus Luft bezw.
GasVorrichtung zum Abscheiden von festen Bestandteilen aus Luft bezw.
CH176352 - 1935-04-15
Elastic fluid power plant
US2350197 - 1944-05-30

Flow control device
US2282889 - 1942-05-12

Shutter construction
US2357137 - 1944-08-29

Pressure recovery and gas cleaning device
US2424122 - 1947-07-15

Axial flow impeller
US2503072 - 1950-04-04

Ventilating device
US2713967 - 1955-07-26

Ventilating device
US2797859 - 1957-07-02

Rail vehicle
US2706453 - 1955-04-19

Vortex steam separator
US2796949 - 1957-06-25

Rail vehicle suspension cable
US2945457 - 1960-07-19

Note all the links return full documents...some only appear to have
the drawings, but not text.  Still, it's quite a great resource.

You may want to conduct some additional research of your own on terms
like [ vortex separator ].  You can access the European Patent Office
site at:

Click on the "Advanced Search" link on the left-hand side of the page
to get started.  Let me know if you need any assistance in searching
or retrieving documents.

I trust this is everything you needed, and perhaps even a bit more. 
But before rating this answer, please let me know if there's something
else I can do to assist you.  Just post a Request for Clarification,
and I'm at your service.

All the best,


search strategy:  Used bookmarked sites for patent searching.

Clarification of Answer by pafalafa-ga on 08 Mar 2005 07:29 PST
Typo alert!

I meant to say:  "NOT all the links return full documents..."

Request for Answer Clarification by eric1-ga on 09 Mar 2005 18:53 PST
What wonderful news, I was on a high all day yesterday!  Yes,
everything you found I have heard about sitting around the campfire
for years, so I cannot express how grateful I am, and how I admire
your competencies with regards to web-based research.  Thank You ? you
are awesome!

I believe we are nearly complete, but just three final questions:

(1) To shape my story I want to expand upon the history surrounding
the origins of the Vortex Separator in general, so will you please
provide me with the link to that first patent you found and described
previously as ??dates back to 1928, and describes a device for
separating grain dust?

(2) Is there any way to find out the name of the German company that
bought Fred?s Swiss patent #176353 (as issued on April 15, 1935)?

(3) Should I need further assistance in these or similar matters how
best can I reach you?

In the mean time, I will review the links that you have provided.

Best regards,

Clarification of Answer by pafalafa-ga on 10 Mar 2005 05:19 PST

There's nothing a researcher likes to hear better than that an answer
made a real difference to someone in their life.  Thanks for letting
me know (and the stars and the tip weren't bad, either!).

As for your follow-ups:

(1)  US Patent 1803462 for a Centrifugal Type Dust Separator, was
filed March 23, 1928 and granted May 5, 1931.  The US patent notes
that the same application was also filed in Australia on June 30,
1927.  The patent specifically mentions a vortex separator, as I
mentioned in the excerpt I provided earlier.

You can view the patent for yourself at the US Patent Office site:

Just enter the patent number in the search box, press enter, and then
click on the link that says "Image" to see the patent itself.

(2) I didn't see anything in the Swiss patent, or at the European
Patent Office site, that would allow one to identify where the patent
was transferred to.  However, I'm hindered by both the language
difference, and the fact that the site has been unresponsive for the
last two days, so I can't open any links there.  There are several GA
researchers who speak German.  You might want to post a new question
at Google Answers asking a German-speaking researcher to look over the
patent in more detail, and see if there are any additional clues.

(3)  I certainly hope you'll be using Google Answers again down the
road.  And when you do, you're more than welcome to direct a question
to my attention.  Just put "For pafalafa-ga" in both the subject line
and in the text of the question itself, and I'll be sure to see it.

Again, thanks for everything.

eric1-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $25.00
Incredible!  This is an excellent example of "web-synergy"; the
linking of competent people with a plethora of information yields
results greater than any one person could have achieved on their own!

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