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Patent Searching and Data


Title:
BLADE DEVICE TO PRODUCE ENERGY
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2008/025802
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A device equipped with blades suitable for the production of energy by exploitating the motion of a fluid. The blade comprises two parallel surfaces (21) connected to each other by a surface (22) and one or more rigid wings (23) disposed diagonally.

Inventors:
GONZI, Mario (Piazza Madonna Del Sasso 2, Ponticino, I-52020, IT)
GONZI, Fabrizio (Via Fabbrica 20, Laterina, I-52020, IT)
Application Number:
EP2007/059001
Publication Date:
March 06, 2008
Filing Date:
August 29, 2007
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
STEMPA DI MARIO GONZI (Piazza Madonna del Sasso 2, Ponticino, I-52020, IT)
GONZI, Mario (Piazza Madonna Del Sasso 2, Ponticino, I-52020, IT)
GONZI, Fabrizio (Via Fabbrica 20, Laterina, I-52020, IT)
International Classes:
F03D5/02
Foreign References:
US4630995A
US20040164562A1
US3882320A
US3927330A
FR2461830A1
JPH03976A
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
GERVASI, Gemma et al. (Corso di Porta Vittoria 9, Milan, I-20122, IT)
Download PDF:
Claims:

CLAIMS

1 . Device consisting of at least two free-rotating axes (1 1 ) arranged in parallel to each other, on each of which one, two or more sprockets for roller-chains (12) are keyed, the wheel of one axis being connected to the corresponding wheel on the other axis by a closed roller-chain (13) pulling a plurality of carriages (14) evenly spaced from each other, pivoted to the chain itself and equipped with blades (20) characterised in that said blades (20) comprise two parallel surfaces (21 ) connected each other by: a rigid surface (22), possibly bent, placed essential in the middle of the two surfaces (21 ) and perpendicular to them; and

- one or more couple of rigid wings (23) disposed diagonally in respect of the two longer sides of the surfaces (21 ) and in such a way that their converging extremity fall inside, or outside, the surface (22) without touching it.

2. Device according to Claim 1 in which said wings (23) are fixed to the surfaces (21 ) by pins (25) allowing their rotation and their blocking in a wanted position.

3. Device according to claim 1 in which said carriages (14) comprise a plane (15) and two edges (16) parallel to each other, arranged inside the plane (15) and perpendicular to it, having an appropriate distance between them to allow the housing in the aforesaid space between them the chains (13) with the carriage (14) surmounting them. 4. Device according to claim 3 in which said carriages (14) are connected to the chains (13) by means of pins (17) that mesh directly with two rollers of the roller-chain (13) and with appropriate engagement points (23) firmly integral with the carriage (14) on the edges (16) or in the space between them.

5. Device according to claim 4 in which at the ends of the two edges (16) there is a roller or other equivalent element, capable to rotate free, (18) arranged on the side of the edge

(16) opposite to the one facing the chain (13), said roller being housed inside a guide (19) arranged parallel to the chain (13) and capable to prevent the pitching of the carriage (14) during its motion together with the chain (13)

6. Device according to claims 1 - 5 in which said blades (20) are anchored to the carriage, evenly spaced in transverse and longitudinal direction.

7. Device according to claims 1 - 6 including a protective shell (28) to protect the blades which slide in the section not engaged with the moving fluid.

8. Device according to claim 9 in which the aforesaid protective shell (28) is connected by means of an appropriate duct able to insufflate air at a pressure that is sufficient to maintain the part inside the shell free from water.

9. Device according to claims 1 - 8 device equipped with a channel (29) into which the blades (20) slide under the action of the fluid

10. Device according to Claims 9 wherein the opposed extremity of said channel (29) are shaped in the form of a funnel (30). 1 1 . Device according to Claims 9 and 10 wherein said channel (29) is fixed), directly or through appropriate fixing means, to the supporting means (19') of the guides (19) or to the fixed or mobile frame of the device.

12. Device according to claims 9 and 10 wherein said channel (29) is equipped with independent supporting means which allow its setting or removal. 13. Process to exploit the energy produced by a moving fluid in which a device according to claims 1 - 12 is used.

14. Process according to claim 13 in which said fluid in motion is an undersea current.

15. Process according to claims 13 and 14 in which said energy is used to produce electrical, mechanical and hydraulic energy. 16. Process according to claims 14 and 15 in which said energy is stored in appropriate means of accumulation.

17. Blade (20) for devices moved by moving fluids comprising two parallel surfaces (21 ) connected each other by:

- a surface (22), possibly bent, placed essential in the middle of the two surfaces (21 ) and perpendicular to them;

- and one or more couple of rigid wings (23) disposed diagonally in respect of the two longer sides of the surfaces (21 ) and in such a way that their converging extremity fall inside, or outside, the surface (22) without touching it. 18. Blade according to Claim 13 in which said wings (23) are fixed to the surfaces (21 ) by pins (25) which allow their rotation and their blocking in a wanted position. 19. Blade according to claims 13 and 14 wherein the surface (21 ) is joined to the plane (15) of a carriage (14) directly or through one or more extended structure (27).

Description:

BLADE DEVICE TO PRODUCE ENERGY Field of the invention

This invention deals with equipment for the conversion and production of energy. State of the art The use of liquid or gas fluids in motion to produce energy has been known since ancient times, for example water mills or wind mills.

Renewed interest in the exploitation of these energy sources has recently been awakened due to the problems that have arisen from the use of oil and its by-products, and numerous studies have been devoted to the perfection of equipment able to use to the best advantage the energy produced by the motion of fluids.

Many systems to produce electricity have been realised that use renewable energy sources of different types: wind, underwater currents, sea tides, capturing the wave motion by means of single-direction chutes, etc. However, all the systems obtained present different types of problems: configuration and structural complexity with the related costs involved, surveillance and maintenance; the enormous size of the infrastructures and high environmental impact, and a low ratio between kWh/year produced and total area of the stretch of water used, and as a consequence involves high cost/kWh produced. Furthermore, the above-mentioned systems have to be studied and structured ad hoc, in relation to the destination site; this represents a serious handicap, since every system is an individual case, with no possibility to cut down the costs that becomes possible when a system can be reproduced almost the same as the previous one.

In the applications for patent GB 2 104 974 and FR 689 184 equipment is described similar to that described and claimed herein; however equipment like that described in the above-mentioned documents would be totally inefficient for an effective industrial use. In fact the device described in GB 2 104 974 consists of a series of mobile blades directly connected to the chain that acts as the entrainment component, whereas in FR 2 689 184 a device is described that includes reclining blades arranged on a belt (in natural rubber). It is obvious that blades and gearing of the type described do not permit an efficient collection of the energy transmitted by the fluids and that their efficiency is much lower then what is desired.

In US 3,882,320 it is described an apparatus in which technical features are present that improve the energy production; some of such features are present also in the present apparatus but in spit of them the apparatus is still industrially inefficient because the

blades are of traditional type and they do not allow the exploitation of the fluid push in order to achieve the required efficiency.

In the light of the above, it is obvious that there is interest in the development of a device that is easily adaptable to the most varied situations by means of a simple variation in the construction scale and that is able to exploit in a highly profitable manner even the minimum motion in the flow of a fluid.

Brief description of the drawings

Figure 1 (a) shows a front view of the device as per the invention;

Fig. 1 (b) shows a view of a particular of Fig. 1 (b); Figure 2 shows a side view of the device as per Figure 1 ;

Figure 3 shows a view from above of a particular reciprocal arrangement of the blades;

Figure 4 shows the detail of the chain connection to the blade-carrier carriage;

Figure 5 (a, b) show the particular structure of the blades according to the present invention. Detailed description of the invention

The device, according to the invention, allows to solve the above-mentioned problems and essentially consists of at least two parallel axes, on each of which are keyed, in equal number for each axis, one, two or more sprockets for roller-chains; the sprockets keyed on an axis being connected to the respective wheels on the other axes by a closed loop roller-chain, said chain being surmounted by a series of carriages, spaced at a constant pitch, pivoted to the chain and fitted with guide rolls that move in guide slots arranged parallel to the endless chains in order to guarantee dynamic stability along the entire route.

On the exterior of the carriages, as described above, many blades are anchored, configured so as to maximise the overall output of the track formed by the carriages and capable to engage with the fluid in motion along the entire lower horizontal section of the track.

The variation of the flow energy in the wave motion, or in the fluid in transit, does not alter the functioning of the device, therefore making it possible to collect a high quantity of energy, related to the specific volume engaged, from any fluid in motion: waves, currents, rapids, waterfalls, etc.

According to a particular embodiment of the invention, as illustrated in figures 1 and 2, device 10, according to the invention, comprises two axes 1 1 , free to rotate and arranged parallel to each other, on each of which are keyed two sprockets for roller-chains 12, the wheel of one axis being connected to the corresponding wheel on the other axis by a

closed chain 13; accordingly, in this case, there will be two parallel chains 13, each of them on a pair of sprockets 12 thus forming a dynamic connection between the two axes. On the external part of the loop formed by the above-mentioned chains 13 and arranged perpendicular to the two chains, there are a series of carriages 14 evenly spaced from each other and forming with the chains a sort of track.

These carriages, see figure 4, comprise a plane 15 and two edges 16, parallel to each other, arranged inside the plane 15 and perpendicular to it, with a distance between that allow to house in this interposed space the two chains 13 and the carriage 14 that surmounts them. The carriages 14 are connected to the chains 13, by means of pins 17 that engage themselves directly with the rollers of the roller-chain 13 and with appropriate engagement points 24 integrally connected with the carriage 14 directly on the edges 16 or in the space between them. At the two opposite ends of the edges 16 there are rollers, or other equivalent elements that can rotate freely, 18 arranged on the side of the edge 16 opposite to that facing the chain 13 and housed inside a guide 19 that is parallel to the chain 13, in order to prevent pitching of the carriage during its motion together with the chain 13. The guide 19 is, obviously connected to a rigid support guard 19'. On the plane 15 of each carriage 14 one or more blades 20 are anchored, the shape, size and orientation of the blades 20 is such to obtain maximum efficiency in the conversion of the moving fluid kinetic energy it is to act upon.

In particular, as it is shown in figure 5 (a, b) said blades 20 comprise two parallel surfaces 21 connected by a rigid surface (hereinafter called tile) 22, that can be also bent, disposed essentially at the centre of surfaces 21 and perpendicular to them and to the flowing direction of the fluid acting on the blades.

Said surfaces 21 are also connected each other by one or more couples of rigid wings 23 disposed diagonally in respect of the two longer sides of the surfaces 21 in such a way that their convergent extremities fall inside or outside the surface of the tile 22 without toughing it. If preferred, see figure 5 b, the wings 23 can be joined to the surfaces 21 by pins 25 which allow the rotation of the wings and their blocking in the wanted position; in this case the wings can be made converge on the tile 22 or externally to it according to various positions. The blades 20 are anchored to the plane 15 of the carriages 14 by one of the two surfaces 21 in such a way that the tile is placed vertically in respect of the plane 15 and its surface

22 is perpendicular to the fluid motion direction and the wings 23 help in collecting and directing the fluid.

As it can be seen in figure 3, thanks to their form as described, the blades according to the invention allow the fluid to pass through the free spaces 26 comprised between the surfaces 21 , the tile 22 and the wings 23 and therefore the liquid after having acted on a blade can act also on the other blades disposed in sequence; in other words the blades in sequence do not get in each other's way and allow the maximal exploitation of the moving fluid in which they are partially or totally immersed.

If preferred the surface 21 instead of being directly fixed to the plane 15 can be connected to it through one or more extended structure 27; this makes it possible to keep the mechanical moving parts, such as the chain 13, the guides 19 of the rollers 18 and the actual rollers 18 at a distance from the waves.

When each carriage carries more than one blade, these are anchored to the carriage with a given distance between them in both transverse and longitudinal direction so as to optimise the overall efficiency, especially in cases where it is wished (or it is necessary) to exploit the motion of the fluid in both directions (as, for example, in the case of the wavy motion near the bank).

If preferred the device can be fitted with a protective shell 28 that prevents the wind and any billowing of the water caused by rough waters to interfere with the blades when they are sliding passively i.e. when they move without being engaged within the moving fluid.

At least one of the axes 1 1 will be connected, for example by means of a mechanical joint, to the shaft of the device to be put into motion, for example a dynamo to produce electrical energy, or a system to store the energy produced by the motion of the fluid.

Obviously the entire device as described above shall rest on a fixed or mobile supporting frame (such as a floating body) arranged so as to permit the most efficient draft of the blades in the fluid; this frame can, for example, be fixed to the guides 19 that are, on both sides, the most external part of the device.

According to a particular embodiment of the invention, as shown in Fig. 1 a and 1 b the device can be equipped with a channel 29, essentially U-shaped and disposed so to be immersed in the fluid, into which the blades 20 can slide under the action of the fluid; the opposed extremity of the channel 29 are preferably shaped in a funnel form 30 in order to help driving the flowing fluid into the channel 29 and increase its speed and pulling force.

The channel 29 can be fixed, directly or through appropriate fixing means, to the supporting means 19' of the guides 19 or to the fixed or mobile frame described here

above; moreover, if preferred, the channel 29 can have independent supporting means which allow its setting or removal when and if desired.

The device according to the invention can also be used completely submerged in order, for example, to exploit under water currents. In this case the protective shell 28 will be connected by an appropriate duct to a compressor able to insufflate air at a pressure that is sufficient to maintain the part inside the shell free from the water; this being the space in which the blades are not engaged with the fluid; in this way, adjusting the pressure of the air to the pressure exerted by the water so as to prevent the entry into the aforementioned space, it will be possible to reach considerable depths so as to exploit underwater currents that are sufficiently strong to move the blades.

The advantages of the invention are many and make it possible to realise a machine that is versatile and extremely simple, to absorb the kinetic energies of the fluids, moved with any variation of motion. This is a universal machine, that can be constructed in sizes ranging from very small, medium, large or very large, always obtaining the maximum global hydro-mechanical output of the specific machine; moreover, it is obvious that several machines of the type described can be used in series along the course of the fluid in question and can be connected to several or only one point of energy accumulation or power stations for the relevant exploitation.

The device according to the invention, can also operate with very thin fluids or presenting whatever gradient in respect to their moving direction (even vertical or free-falling). Furthermore the collection of the local flow can be optimised, in the zone where the energy is picked up, in relation to the direction and velocity of the flow. These machines can be installed, if necessary or if wished, in series, also in underground rivers with any fluid typology, even in the case of water to be used for drinking purposes.