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Title:
APPARATUS FOR PRODUCING FRESH WATER AND ELECTRICITY IN THE OCEAN
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/186294
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
The present invention introduces an apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity in the ocean comprising: an atmospheric water generator (A), wind turbines (B), and several wave barriers. The atmospheric water generator (A) draws cold water from the deep water layer of the ocean through a condensing system to condense water vapor into liquid water. This also forms a low pressure area that creates wind. This wind allows rotating wind turbines (B) to generate electricity. Wave barriers allow reducing the impact of waves hitting the wind turbines cluster, including wave damping membranes (C) and aquaculture cages (D) for absorbing waves. Thanks to the present invention, it is possible to produce abundant fresh water and electric on the ocean. This energy source is cheap, renewable and can completely replace other energy sources to meet human needs. This contributes to protecting the environment and preventing climate change.

Inventors:
NGUYEN, Van Kinh (63/8 Street No. 6, Quarter 5 Linh Tay Ward, Thu Duc Distric, Hochiminh ., 71310, VN)
Application Number:
IB2019/051693
Publication Date:
October 03, 2019
Filing Date:
March 02, 2019
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
NGUYEN, Van Kinh (63/8 Street No. 6, Quarter 5 Linh Tay Ward, Thu Duc Distric, Hochiminh ., 71310, VN)
International Classes:
F03D9/00; B01D5/00; E03B3/28; F03D5/04
Domestic Patent References:
WO2010080043A22010-07-15
Foreign References:
DE202017005225U12017-12-13
CN204802038U2015-11-25
US20100037651A12010-02-18
US20110061383A12011-03-17
US20160153430A12016-06-02
Other References:
None
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS:

1. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity in the ocean that comprises: an atmospheric water generator (A) to extract water from humid air and create a low pressure area;

wind turbines (B) to generate electricity from natural wind or air flows created by the atmospheric water generator (A); and

several wave barriers to reduce the impact of waves hitting the wind turbines cluster, including wave damping membranes C) and aquaculture cages (D) for absorbing waves, wherein wave damping membranes (C) are located in between the wind turbines cluster and the aquaculture cages (D).

2. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity as in 1, wherein the atmospheric water generator comprises:

a water tank (1) to contain condensated water; a bottom tube (2) made of hard, perforated material for extracting cold water from a few hundred to a few thousand of meters below ocean level;

a middle tube (3), connected to the bottom tube (2), is made of hard, insulated materials, with a gradually decreased density from the bottom to the top to be kept upright in the water;

a water pump (4) with inlet and outlet, wherein the inlet, connected to the bottom tube (3);

a soft water pipe (5) connected to the outlet of the water pump to conduit cold water from the pump to a condensing system;

a condensing system comprising tubes and metal cooling coils (6) and condensing plates (7) made of well heat conducting material and not corroded by oceanwater, mounted above the water tank (1) so that fresh water extracted from humid air falls into the water tank and a low pressure area is formed;

a drain pipe (8) connected to the output of the condensing system (5) to discharge used water to the depth of 50 m to 100 m below the ocean surface;

a fresh water pipe (9) for conducting fresh water from the water tank to reservoirs or water distribution systems;

3. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity as in 1 or 2, wherein the wind turbines cluster comprises:

a floating cluster (10) comprising an air compressor (11) to supply compressed air to an air tank (12) which by turn supplies air to the buoy (14) through a first group of air valves (13) when the buoy is in the trough in order to keep the buoy floating and balanced; a second group of air valves (15) discharge air from the buoy (14) so that the buoy is not lifted when the buoy is at the crest of the wave; these air valves are controlled through a control system and pressure sensors;

the rail (19) which is fixed to the floating cluster (10) through dampers (16) to minimize the impact of waves on the rail (19) when the floating cluster (10) is moved vertically/ horizontally by the waves;

the stator (static part) (20) which is fixed to the rail (19) so that it can interact with the rotor (rotating part) (23) which connected to the turbine base (22) and this turbine base rotates by sliding on a slider (21) moving on the rail (19);

round shape turbine blade bases (24) which are mounted on the turbine base (22) with adjustable blades orientation; turbine blades supports (25) are fixed to the turbine blade base (24) to support and close / open the turbine blades (27) through rotary joints (l7a) and (l7b); turbine blade supports (25) have damping parts (26); the turbine brake post (18) which is fixed to the turbine blade base (24) allowing to stop the rotating turbine blades (27); turbine blades (27) consist of vertical bars (28), highly elastic horizontal bars (29a) and (29b), and fabrics in which vertical bars (28) have hydraulic cylinders to control lifting / lowering turbine blades vertically, the top horizontal bars (29a) are mated with the first joints group (l7a), which are both rotating and sliding joints allowing to adjust the vertical extension / retraction of the turbine blades (27), and the bottom horizontal bars (29b) are mated with the second joints group (l7b) with only rotating joints for supporting the turbine blades (27); and

the rotary joints (l7a) and l7b which split the turbine blades (27) into two rotating parts (27a) and (27b), in which the first part (27a) has a larger area than the second (27b).

4. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity as in 3, wherein the floating cluster (10) has a vertical cylinder shape floating on the water surface.

5. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity as in 3 or 4, wherein the turbine blade bases (22) having towel-like shapes are made up of several separate sheets linked together through a coupling (30) so that the turbine base is flexible, and easy to be replaced when needed.

6. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity as in 1, wherein wave barriers (C) are made of light and soft material that can float on the water surface and absorb most of the wave energy.

7. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity as in 1, wherein aquaculture cages D comprise buoys (31) with surrounding net and bottom net (32).

8. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity as in any of the previous points, further an anchoring system for holding the position of the apparatus on the ocean.

Description:
APPARATUS FOR PRODUCING FRESH WATER AND ELECTRICITY IN THE

OCEAN

Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to an apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity in the ocean, in particular, by pumping cold water from the depths of the ocean through an atmospheric water generator to extract water from the humid ambient air, the condensation of water vapor then forms a low pressure area which creates air flows that turn wind turbines to generate electricity. Background Art

Due to the population boom and the increasing human demand, the Earth is facing fresh water and energy crisis, environmental pollution and climate changes. It is known that many countries have to filter oceanwater to get fresh water with high investment and operating costs. The targeted energy sources for these filtering systems are renewable energy sources such as wind power, solar energy, etc. Although these sources are clean and endless, they are very scattered, unstable. Furthermore, the exploitation of these energies is very expensive and technically difficult.

Background of the Invention The purpose of this invention is to harness the renewable and clean energy on the surface and in the ocean to produce fresh water and electricity for human needs.

To achieve this purpose, the invention proposes an apparatus comprising:

1. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity in the ocean that comprises: an atmospheric water generator to extract water from humid air and create a low pressure area; wind turbines to generate electricity from air flows created by the low pressure area; and several wave barriers to reduce the impact of waves hitting the wind turbines cluster, including wave damping membranes and aquaculture cages for absorbing waves, wherein wave damping membranes are located in between the wind turbines cluster and the aquaculture cages.

2. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity as in 1, wherein the atmospheric water generator comprises: a water tank to contain condensated water; a bottom tube made of hard, perforated material for extracting cold water from a few hundred to a few thousand of meters below ocean level; a middle tube, connected to the bottom tube, is made of hard, insulated materials, with a gradually decreased density from the bottom to the top to be kept upright in the water; a water pump with inlet and outlet, wherein the inlet is connected to the middle tube; a soft water pipe connected to the outlet of the water pump to conduit cold water from the pump to a condensing system; a condensing system comprising tubes and metal cooling coils and condensing plates made of well heat conducting material and not corroded by ocean water, mounted above the water tank so that fresh water extracted from humid air falls into the water tank and a low pressure area is formed; a drain pipe connected to the output of the condensing system to discharge used water to the depth of 50 m to 100 m below the ocean surface;

a fresh water pipe for conducting fresh water from the water tank to reservoirs or water distribution systems.

3. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity as in 1, wherein the wind turbines cluster comprises:

a floating cluster comprising an air compressor to supply compressed air to an air tank which by turn supplies air to the buoy through a first group of air valves when the buoy is in the trough in order to keep the buoy floating and balanced; a second group of air valves discharge air from the buoy so that the buoy is not lifted when the buoy is at the crest of the wave; these air valves are controlled through a control system and pressure sensors; the rail which is fixed to the floating cluster through dampers to minimize the impact of waves on the rail when the floating cluster is moved vertically/ horizontally by the waves; the stator (static part) which is fixed to the rail so that it can interact with the rotor (rotating part) which connected to the turbine base and this turbine base rotates by sliding on a slider moving on the rail; round shape turbine blade bases which are mounted on the turbine base with adjustable blades orientation; turbine blades supports are fixed to the turbine blade base to support and close / open the turbine blades through rotary joints; turbine blade supports have damping parts; the turbine brake post which is fixed to the turbine blade base allowing to stop the rotating turbine blade;

turbine blades consist of vertical bars, highly elastic horizontal bars, and fabrics in which vertical bars have hydraulic cylinders to control lifting / lowering turbine blades vertically, the top horizontal bars are mated with the first joints group, which are both rotating and sliding joints allowing to adjust the vertical extension / retraction of the turbine blades, and the bottom horizontal bars are mated with the second joints group with only rotating joints for supporting the turbine blades; and the rotary joints which split the turbine blades into two rotating parts, in which the first part has a larger area than the second.

4. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity as in 3, wherein the floating cluster has a vertical cylinder shape floating on the water surface.

5. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity as in 3 or 4, wherein the turbine blade bases having towel-like shapes are made up of several separate sheets linked together through a coupling so that the turbine base is flexible, and easy to be replaced when needed.

6. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity as in 1, wherein wave barriers are made of light and soft material that can float on the water surface and absorb most of the wave energy.

7. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity as in 1, wherein aquaculture cages comprise buoys with surrounding net and bottom net.

8. An apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity as in any of the previous points, further comprises an anchoring system for holding the position of the apparatus on the ocean. Brief Description of the Drawings

Figure 1 presents a block diagram of the apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity in the ocean according to the present invention;

Figure 2 presents a top-down view of the atmospheric water generator according to the present invention;

Figure 3 presents a sectional view of the wind turbines cluster according to the present invention;

Figure 4 presents a side view of the wind turbines cluster according to the present invention;

Figure 5 is an illustration of wave barriers and aquaculture cages according to the present invention;

Figure 6 presents a top-down view of the wind turbines cluster according to the present invention; Figure 7 is an illustration of the turbine blades, being coupled with the turbine base, in closed state to catch the wind (the turbine is in the moving cycle that follows the wind direction) according to the present invention;

Figure 8 is an illustration of the turbine blades, being coupled with the turbine base, in opened state (the turbine is in the moving cycle that againsts the wind direction) according to the present invention;

Figure 9 is presents a top-down view of the turbine blades in closed state according to the present invention;

Figure 10 presents a top-down view of the turbine blades in opened state according to the present invention;

Figure 11 is an illustration of retrieved turbine blades during a storm according to the present invention; and Figure 12 is an illustration of the turbine blades in closed state when the atmospheric water generator creates a wind turbulence according to the present invention.

Detailed Description of the Invention

The basic technical specifications as well as the benefits of the invention will be clarified through the detailed description below:

As shown in Figure 1, the apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity in the ocean comprises:

an atmospheric water generator A to extract water from humid air and create a low pressure area; wind turbines B to generate electricity from natural wind or air flows created by the atmospheric water generator A; and

several wave barriers to reduce the impact of waves hitting the wind turbines cluster, including wave damping membranes C and aquaculture cages D for absorbing waves, wherein wave damping membranes C are located in between the wind turbines cluster and the aquaculture cages D.

As shown in Figure 2, the atmospheric water generator A comprises:

a water tank 1 to contain condensated water; a bottom tube 2 made of hard, perforated material for extracting cold water from a few hundred to a few thousand of meters below ocean level; a middle tube 3, connected to the bottom tube 2, is made of hard, insulated materials, with a gradually decreased density from the bottom to the top to be kept upright in the water;

a water pump 4 with inlet and outlet, wherein the inlet, connected to the bottom tube 3; a soft water pipe 5 connected to the outlet of the water pump to conduit cold water from the pump to a condensing system; a condensing system comprising tubes and metal cooling coils 6 and condensing plates 7 made of well heat conducting material and not corroded by oceanwater, mounted above the water tank 1 so that fresh water extracted from humid air falls into the water tank and a low pressure area is formed;

a drain pipe 8 connected to the output of the condensing system 5 to discharge used water to the depth of 50 m to 100 m below the ocean surface;

a fresh water pipe 9 for conducting fresh water from the water tank to reservoirs or water distribution systems;

As shown in Figure 3, the wind turbines cluster comprises:

a floating cluster 10 comprising an air compressor 11 to supply compressed air to an air tank 12 which by turn supplies air to the buoy 14 through a first group of air valves 13 when the buoy is in the trough in order to keep the buoy floating and balanced; a second group of air valves 15 discharge air from the buoy 14 so that the buoy is not lifted when the buoy is at the crest of the wave; these air valves are controlled through a control system and pressure sensors (not illustrated in the figure); the rail 19 which is fixed to the floating cluster 10 through dampers 16 to minimize the impact of waves on the rail 19 when the floating cluster 10 is moved vertically/ horizontally by the waves; the stator (static part) 20 which is fixed to the rail 19 so that it can interact with the rotor (rotating part) 23 which connected to the turbine base 22 and this turbine base rotates by sliding on a slider 21 moving on the rail 19;

round shape turbine blade bases 24 which are mounted on the turbine base 22 with adjustable blades orientation; turbine blades supports 25 are fixed to the turbine blade base 24 to support and close / open the turbine blades 27 through rotary joints 17a and 17b; turbine blade supports 25 have damping parts 26; the turbine brake post 18 which is fixed to the turbine blade base 24 allowing to stop the rotating turbine blades 27;

turbine blades 27 consist of vertical bars 28, highly elastic horizontal bars 29a and 29b, and fabrics in which vertical bars 28 have hydraulic cylinders to control lifting / lowering turbine blades vertically (see Figure 11), the top horizontal bars 29a are mated with the first joints group l7a, which are both rotating and sliding joints allowing to adjust the vertical extension / retraction of the turbine blades 27, and the bottom horizontal bars 29b are mated with the second joints group l7b with only rotating joints for supporting the turbine blades 27; and the rotary joints l7a and l7b which split the turbine blades 27 into two rotating parts 27a and 27b, in which the first part 27a has a larger area than the second 27b.

ln a preferred embodiment, the floating cluster 10 has a vertical cylinder shape floating on the water surface. In a particular embodiment as shown in Figure 4 and Figure 6, the turbine blade bases 22 having towel-like shapes are made up of several separate sheets linked together through a coupling 30 so that the turbine base is flexible, and easy to be replaced when needed.

In a particular embodiment, wave barriers C are made of light and soft material that can float on the water surface and absorb most of the wave energy.

In a particular embodiment as shown in Figure 5, aquaculture cages D comprise buoys 31 with surrounding net and bottom net 32.

In a particular embodiment, the above mentioned apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity comprises an anchoring system for holding the position of the apparatus on the ocean. The operating principle of the apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity in the ocean according to the present invention is detailed as below:

Water pump 4 will pump cold water from the depths of the ocean through the bottom tube 2 then middle tube 3 into soft pipe 5 then the condensing system comprising tubes and metal cooling coils 6 and condensing plates 7. Water vapor in the air surrounding the condensing plates 7 will change into liquid water and flow down to the water tank 1. This water will be then conducted to reservoirs or water distribution systems through fresh water pipe 9. The changing into liquid water from water vapor will form a low pressure area which by turn will intake more air and create wind. Cold water after going through metal cooling coils 6 and condensing plates 7 will increase its temperature. This water then will go through drain pipe 8 to be discharged at the depth from 50 m to 100 m below the ocean surface to avoid changing the temperature of the surface water surrounding the apparatus and decreasing the overall performance. Furthermore, this local ocean surface water temperature change can trigger storms.

Figure 12 illustrates the operation of the wind turbines cluster. When low pressure areas create wind vortex, all turbine blades are in closed state for catching the wind. The wind 33 pushes the turbine blades 27. This makes turbine base 22 spinning by sliding on a slider 21, which moves on the rail 19. The rotation of the turbine makes the rotor 23 rotating, which generates electricity on stator 20. Damping parts 26 allows absorbing vibration shock from turbine blades 27. The performance of the system can be increase or decrease by scaling up or down the condensing system or adjusting the amount of cold water pumped through the condensing system. Turbine blades supports 25 can adjust the turbine blades 27 to have the best angle for catching wind.

In case of strong wind or storm, water pump 4 will reduce or stop supplying water to the condensing system to reduce the air flow created by low pressure areas. When the turbine blades 27 move in the same direction as the wind, turbine blades 27 will be closed to catch the wind. When turbine blades 27 move against the wind, they will be opened to reduce the resistance. These opening and closing operations are done through rotary joints l7a and l7b. Rotary joints l7a allow lowering turbine blades 27 by sliding on. When a hurricane is encountered, all 27 turbine blades are lowered thanks to the first rotary l7a sliding on the turbine blades support 25 with a hydraulic cylinder structure. This structure is mounted on vertical bar 28 (not shown in the illustration).

As shown in Figure 4, floating cluster 10 comprises air compressor 11 to supply compressed air to air tank 12 which by turn supplies air to the buoy 14. When buoy 14 is in trough 36, water withdraws from the bottom of buoy 14, air pressure decreases (shown as negative pressure area 37), air valves 13 open to supply compressed air from air tank 12 to buoy 14. This allows lifting floating cluster 10. When the buoy is at the crest of the wave 35, water in the bottom of buoy 14 rises, air pressure increases (shown as positive pressure 38), air valves 15 open to let the air escape. This allows sinking floating cluster 10. By controlling air valves 13 and 15, floating cluster 10 can be kept stable whenever it is in the trough or at the crest of the wave.

Wave barriers C allow to reduce the impact of wave on the wind turbines cluster. As shown in Figure 5, aquaculture cages D comprise buoys 31 with surrounding net and bottom net 32.

In order to achieve a good efficiency of the present apparatus for producing fresh water and electricity in the ocean, the scale of operation must be large enough in order to create enough wind. For example, the condensing system must be millions of square meters large to create the optimal wind at level 5. With this wind level the whirlwind is formed, while the ocean surface is still calm. If there is no need of produced fresh water, it can be discharged into the ocean to reduce construction costs. If only fresh water is needed but not electricity, the electric generator will not be installed. This system is a giant generator, the diameter of the generator is very large. In order to improve efficiency and longevity, the turbine blades are closed / opened flexibly to reduce wind resistance when moving in the opposite direction of the wind. With its extremely large capacity, this apparatus is prefered to be installed in areas with big temperature difference between surface water and deep water, but it should be avoided in places where storms storms occur frequently.

At a depth of 1000 m, ocean water temperature is about 5°C to 10°C. Water temperature drops drastically from the depth of 200 m to 1000 m. Thus exploiting at the depth of 1000 m below ocean level can give the highest economic efficiency.

Example: The heat generated when water vapor change into liquid water is calculated as below:

Q j = L x m j (1)

where m ! is the mass of fresh water to be obtained equaling to 1 kg; L is the latent heat of water equaling to 2300000 J/kg.

The collected heat is calculated by the formula:

Q 2 = m 2 x C x At (2)

where m 2 is the amount of cold water needed from the ocean; C is the specific heat capacity of water equaling to 4200 J/kg; At is the temperature difference, assuming At = t 2 - t = 10°C

According to the law of conservation of energy: Qi = Q2 (3)

From (1), (2) and (3) we have: m 2 = 55 kg.

Thus, producing 1 kg of fresh water needs 55 kg of cold oceanwater.

Effectiveness of the invention

The present invention introduce a renewable energy source that are plentiful, stable, easy to exploit technology that fully meets the clean energy needs of.

Water from the depth is rich in nutrients. On one hand, it can be exploited as a source of fertilizer for plants of surface water. These plants can supply a plentiful food source for marine animals, creating a diverse and rich development for marine species, establishing ocean ecological.

On the other hand, deep ocean water also has the effect of healing, cosmetics, aquaculture, etc., many economic sectors are interested in exploiting this water.

This clean electric energy source has a strong potential in replacing other energy sources. Produced fresh water can bring good life to many dry areas, it will thus contribute to protecting the environment. The ocean surface water temperature is reduced and stable; the environment is cleaner; the ecosystem is growing steadily, sustainably and balanced. All these contribute to preventing and limiting global warming. This apparatus can serve to produce fresh water and electricity in the ocean, and at the same time to regulate the climate and environment on the earth.