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Title:
CAPACITOR FOR APPLICATION IN HIGH PRESSURE ENVIRONMENTS
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2009/086844
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
The invention refers to a capacitor (1) for application in high pressure environments comprising at least two electrodes (2.1, 2.2) and at least one electrically insulating film (5) forming a dielectric between the electrodes (2.1, 2.2), each electrode (2.1, 2.2) comprising at least one metallic foil (3.1, 3.2) or at least one metallic layer on the electrically insulating film (5), wherein the capacitor (1) is unencapsulated and designed to allow a surrounding liquid to fill cavities of the capacitor (1). Furthermore the invention refers to an electric device comprising at least one such capacitor (1) in a device housing, whereby the device housing is filled with an electrically insulating liquid.

Inventors:
BO, Ove (Granheimv. 5, 7549 Tanem, NO)
SNILSBERG, Gunnar (Peder Morsets v. 28, 7072 Heimdal, NO)
Application Number:
EP2008/000047
Publication Date:
July 16, 2009
Filing Date:
January 07, 2008
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
SIEMENS AKTIENGESELLSCHAFT (Wittelsbacherplatz 2, München, 80333, DE)
BO, Ove (Granheimv. 5, 7549 Tanem, NO)
SNILSBERG, Gunnar (Peder Morsets v. 28, 7072 Heimdal, NO)
International Classes:
H01G4/224; H01G2/10
Foreign References:
FR2221898A11974-10-11
US4453197A1984-06-05
JPS58207614A1983-12-03
GB267568A1927-09-22
JPS60223110A1985-11-07
JP2002151348A2002-05-24
GB416751A1934-09-20
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
SIEMENS AKTIENGESELLSCHAFT (Postfach 22 16 34, München, 80506, DE)
Download PDF:
Claims:
Patent claims

1. Capacitor (1) for application in high pressure environments comprising at least two electrodes (2.1, 2.2) and at least one electrically insulating film (5) forming a dielectric between the electrodes (2.1, 2.2), each electrode (2.1, 2.2) comprising at least one metallic foil (3.1, 3.2) or at least one metallic layer on the electrically insulating film (5) , wherein the capacitor (1) is unencapsulated and designed to allow a surrounding liquid to fill cavities of the capacitor (1) .

2. Capacitor (1) according to claim 1, characterized in that the electrically insulating film (5) is a plastic film.

3. Capacitor (1) according to claim 2, characterized in that the plastic film is a polypropylene film.

4. Capacitor (1) according to claim 1, characterized in that the electrically insulating film (5) is a paper film.

5. Capacitor (1) according to one of the claims 1 to 4 , characterized in that the electrodes (2.1, 2.2) and the dielectric (5) form a block-shaped stack.

6. Capacitor (1) according to one of the claims 1 to 5, characterized in that the electrodes (2.1, 2.2) and the dielectric (5) are wound up to form a coil.

7. Capacitor (1) according to one of the claims 1 to 6, characterized in that the electrodes (2.1, 2.2) and the dielectric (5) are glued together.

8. Capacitor (1) according to one of the claims 1 to 7, characterized in that the electrodes (2.1, 2.2) and the dielectric (5) are mechanically held together by a clamp (6) .

9. Capacitor (1) according to one of the claims 1 to 8 , characterized in that a respective terminal (4.1, 4.2) is welded to each electrode (2.1, 2.2) .

10. Electric device comprising at least one capacitor (1) according to one of the claims 1 to 9 in a device housing, whereby the device housing is filled with an electrically insulating liquid.

11. Electric device according to claim 10, characterized in that the capacitor (1) is fixated by its terminals (4.1, 4.2) .

12. Electric device according to one of the claims 10 or 11, characterized in that the capacitor (1) is fixated by a clamp

(6) .

13. Electric device according to one of the claims 10 to 12, characterized in that the liquid is an oil.

14. Electric device according to one of the claims 10 to 13, characterized in that the device housing exhibits a double wall.

15. Application of an electric device according to one of the claims 10 to 14 in a deep sea environment.

Description:

Description

CAPACITOR FOR APPLICATION IN HIGH PRESSURE ENVIRONMENTS

The invention refers to a capacitor for application in high pressure environments comprising at least two electrodes and at least one electrically insulating film forming a dielectric between the electrodes, each electrode comprising at least one metallic foil or at least one metallic layer on the electrically insulating film.

Oil production and communication applications in subsea environments require electric devices able to withstand high pressure. However, electronic components, such as capacitors, particularly conventional electrolytic capacitors or MP capacitors are not applicable under high pressure conditions. Such capacitors exhibit electrodes stacked and rolled up in a casing partially filled with an electrolytic fluid, which would collapse under high pressure.

Electric devices containing such electronic components are often designed with a pressure proof housing in order to keep the interior of the housing at atmospheric pressure (1 atm) . Due to the high pressure in deep sea environments (e.g.

300 bar at 3000 m depth) this housing needs to be adequately massive thus causing high costs.

Further drawbacks are the high effort for sealing the housing and the feedthroughs for electrical connections to the outside.

In other known approaches the housing of such electric devices is filled with an electrically insulating fluid. Although this allows a lightweight design of the device housing, the risk of damage to the capacitors persists because they are exposed to the ambient pressure transmitted by fluid in the device housing. Casting capacitors in a resin

yields the risk of enclosing gas or air filled bubbles within the resin or in the capacitor itself which may cause problems when exposed to high pressure.

It is therefore an object of the invention to provide a capacitor for application in high pressure environments and an electric device containing at least one such capacitor.

The object is achieved by a capacitor according to claim 1 and an electric device according to claim 10.

Advantageous embodiments are the object of the dependent claims .

A capacitor for application in high pressure environments according to the invention comprises at least two electrodes and at least one electrically insulating film forming a dielectric between the electrodes. Each electrode comprises at least one metallic foil or at least one metallic layer on the electrically insulating film. The capacitor is unencapsulated, i.e. it has no casing of its own. The capacitor is designed to allow a surrounding liquid to fill cavities of the capacitor. Filling the cavities without remaining residual air or gas keeps the capacitor from collapsing under high pressure since the liquid is virtually incompressible as opposed to the air or gas.

The capacitor according to the invention is particularly disposed in an electric device exhibiting a device housing filled with an electrically insulating liquid. The ambient pressure outside the device housing is forwarded to the liquid.

The electric device may comprise more than one capacitor according to the invention and/or other electronic components . The device housing may be designed as a light weight canister because it does not have to withstand mechanical stress due to high pressure. Lightweight means

thinner walls of the device housing thus reducing costs and providing better cooling to parts inside the device housing.

The liquid may serve as a coolant for semiconductors and other parts inside the electric device.

As the pressure inside and outside the device casing is essentially the same under all conditions, the risk of leakages of seawater into the device in deep sea environments is tremendously reduced.

The electrically insulating film may be a plastic film, in particular a polypropylene film.

In an alternative embodiment the electrically insulating film may be for instance a paper film.

The electrodes and the dielectric may form a block- shaped stack, wherein metallic foils or layers of one electrode are alternately stacked with those of the other electrode, respectively separated by a dielectric.

In one embodiment the electrodes and the dielectric may be wound up to form a coil keeping them together this way.

Alternatively or additionally the electrodes and the dielectric may be glued together.

In order to hold the electrodes and the dielectric together mechanically a clamp may be arranged alternatively or additionally.

A respective terminal for electrically connecting the capacitor may be welded to each electrode .

The capacitor may be fixated by the terminals or by a clamp, wherein the same clamp may serve for fixating and holding the capacitor together.

The electrically insulating liquid may be an oil.

In a preferred embodiment the device housing exhibits a double wall . A double housing yields an improved protection of the electric device from water leakages .

In a particularly preferred embodiment of the invention the electric device, e.g. a power converter, is applied in a deep sea environment, e.g. in oil production or communication installations. Compared to conventional devices having a rather heavy device casing keeping the interior at atmospheric pressure in order to keep the capacitors from crushing, the electric device according to the invention exhibits a lightweight device casing.

The efforts for sealing the interior in order to keep sea water outside can be kept relatively low because of the non- existing difference between the ambient pressure and the interior pressure. At the same time a risk for damaging the electronic components, particularly the capacitors under high pressure inside the device is virtually zero.

The invention will now be described in more detail with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:

Figure 1 is a lateral view of a capacitor for high pressure applications, and

Figure 2 is a top view of the capacitor from figure 1.

Figure 1 shows a lateral view of a capacitor 1 for high pressure applications; Figure 2 shows the capacitor 1 in a top view. The capacitor 1 comprises two electrodes 2.1, 2.2, each one consisting of metallic foils 3.1, 3.2 respectively interconnected by a terminal 4.1, 4.2. Adjacent metallic foils 3.1, 3.2 of the two electrodes 2.1, 2.2 are separated by a respective electrically insulating film 5 serving as a

dielectric. The capacitor 1 is unencapsulated, i.e. it has no casing of its own.

The block- shaped stack of metallic foils 3.1, 3.2 and electrically insulating films 5 is mechanically held together by a clamp 6, consisting of plates 6.1, bolts 6.2 and nuts 6.3.

The capacitor 1 may be arranged in an electric device (not shown) exhibiting a device housing filled with an electrically insulating liquid. The ambient pressure outside the device housing is forwarded to the liquid. Since the capacitor 1 is unencapsulated the liquid may freely enter cavities between the metallic foils 3.1, 3.2 and the electrically insulating films 5, so the capacitor 1 may not crush due to high ambient pressure, e.g. when used in deep sea applications.

The electric device may comprise more than one capacitor 1 and/or other electronic components. The device housing may be designed as a light weight canister. The liquid may serve as a coolant for semiconductors and other parts inside the electric device.

Instead of the metallic foils 3.1, 3.2 the electrodes may comprise respective metallic layers on the electrically insulating films 5.

The electrically insulating film 5 may be a plastic film, in particular a polypropylene film. Other materials, such as polycarbonate, polystyrene, polyester or polysulfone may be applied as well.

Alternatively the electrically insulating film 5 may be a paper film.

The electrodes 2.1, 2.2 at least their metallic foils 3.1, 3.2 or layers and the electrically insulating film 5 may form

a block- shaped stack as in figures 1 and 2, wherein the metallic foils 3.1 or layers of one electrode 2.1 are alternately stacked with the metallic foils 3.2 or layers of the other electrode 2.2, respectively separated by one electrically insulating film 5.

Alternatively the metallic foils 3.1, 3.2 or layers and the electrically insulating film 5 may be wound up to form a coil keeping them together this way, so the clamp 6 would not be needed.

Alternatively or additionally the metallic foils 3.1, 3.2 or layers and the electrically insulating film 5 may be glued together, also making the clamp 6 redundant.

The clamp 6 may be constructed in a different way, e.g. as a wire bracket .

The terminals 4.1, 4.2 for electrically connecting the capacitor 1 may be welded to each electrode 2.1, 2.2.

The capacitor 1 may be fixated inside the device housing by the terminals 4.1, 4.2, e.g. by bore holes 7 provided therein. Alternatively or in addition the capacitor 1 may be fixated by the clamp 6.

The electrically insulating liquid may be an oil.

The device housing may exhibit a double wall.