Login| Sign Up| Help| Contact|

Patent Searching and Data


Title:
DEVICE FOR TRANSPORTING VESSEL BY WAVE POWER
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2017/198899
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
The invention relates to a device (1) for transporting a vessel (20) by wave power, the device (1) being installed into the vessel (20) to be transported. The device includes a driving force axis (3), which is bearing mounted to the vessel to rotate back and forth around a turning axis (A). To the driving force axis (3) is connected, on the one hand, a pendulum weight (5), which causes the back-and-forth rotation of the force axis (3) as the vessel (20) rocks under the influence of the waves and, on the other hand, an elongated driving arm (7, 7'), which is moved by the driving force axis (3) as it rotates back and forth around the turning axis (A). At the end of the driving arm (7, 71) is an elastic or turning fin (8), which is to be oriented rearwards in relation to the direction of travel (D) of the vessel (20) and which provides the propulsion force transporting the vessel (20).

Inventors:
PAAKKINEN, Heikki (Kurjenkellontie 5 B, Espoo, 02270, FI)
Application Number:
FI2017/050364
Publication Date:
November 23, 2017
Filing Date:
May 11, 2017
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
PAAKKINEN, Heikki (Kurjenkellontie 5 B, Espoo, 02270, FI)
International Classes:
B63H19/02; F03B13/14; F03G3/06; F03G3/08; F03G7/08
Foreign References:
US6561856B12003-05-13
SU1105389A11984-07-30
JPS58133997A1983-08-09
GB293925A1928-07-19
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
LEITZINGER OY (Tammasaarenkatu 1, Helsinki, 00180, FI)
Download PDF:
Claims:
Claims

1. A device (1) for transporting a vessel (20) by wave power, the device (1) being installed into the vessel (20) to be transported and the device including a driving force axis (3), which is bearing mounted to the vessel to rotate back and forth around a turning axis (A), characterized in that to the driving force axis (3) is connected, on the one hand, a pendulum weight (5), which causes the back-and- forth rotation of the driving force axis (3) as the vessel (20) rocks under the influence of the waves, and, on the other hand, an elongated driving arm (7, 7 , which is moved by the driving force axis (3) as it rotates back and forth around the turning axis (A), and that at the end of the driving arm (7, 71) is an elastic or turning fin (8), which is to be oriented rearwards in relation to the direction of travel (D) of the vessel (20) and which provides the propulsion force transporting the vessel (20). 2. A device according to claim 1, characterized in that, when the vessel (20) is in calm water, the driving force axis (3) is at a 0 - 80 degree angle in relation to the horizontal plane.

3. A device according to claim 2, characterized in that the angle of inclination a of the driving force axis (3) is adjustable.

4. A device according to claim 2 or 3, characterized in that the direction of the inclination of the driving force axis (3) is adjustable in relation to the direction of travel (D) of the vessel (20).

5. A device according to any one of the preceding claims 1 - 4, characterized in that the driving arm (7, 71) includes an extension portion (70, which is as an extension to the driving force axis (3), and that between the extension portion (7') and the driving force axis (3) is an angle of at least 95 degrees.

6. A device according to any one of the preceding claims 1 - 5, characterized in that, in the resting state, the pendulum weight (5) and the driving arm (7, 71) are in a vertical plane travelling through a midline of the vessel (20) in the direction of travel and as the device (1) functions, the extension portion (7') included in the driving axis (7, 7') turns on both sides of said vertical plane.

7. A device according to any one of the preceding claims 5 - 6, characterized in that the length of the extension portion (7 of the driving arm (7, 71) is more than 10% the length of the vessel and the turning angle βΐ is up to 1 - 40 degrees.

8. A device according to any one of the preceding claims 1 - 7, characterized in that the mass of the pendulum weight (5) is 5 - 15% the mass of the vessel (20).

9. A device (1) for transporting a vessel (20) by wave power, the device (1) being installed into the vessel (20) to be transported and the device (1) including a driving force axis (3), which is bearing mounted to the vessel (20) to rotate back and forth around a turning axis (A), characterized in that to the driving force axis (3) is connected, on the one hand, a gyro pendulum (30), which causes the back-and- forth rotation of the driving force axis (3) as the vessel (20) rocks under the influ- ence of the waves, and, on the other hand, an elongated driving arm (7, 7 , which is moved by the driving force axis (3) as it rotates back and forth around the turning axis (A), and that at the end of the driving arm (7, 71) is an elastic or turning fin (8), which is to be oriented rearwards in relation to the direction of travel (D) of the vessel (20) and which provides the propulsion force transporting the vessel (20).

10. A device according to claim 9, characterized in that the spinning axis (S) of the gyro pendulum (30) is perpendicular in relation to the driving force axis (4).

11. A device according to claim 9 or 10, characterized in that, when the device (1) is in the resting state, the driving force axis (3) is vertical and the spinning axis (S) of the gyroscope is horizontal.

12. A device according to any one of the preceding claims 9 - 11, characterized in that the direction of the spinning axis (S) of the gyro pendulum (30) can be turned.

13. A device according to the preceding claim 11, characterized in that the driving force axis (3) has a switch (4a), the driving force axis (3) parts of which on different sides are to be switched into different rotation angle positions, wherein the driving arm (7, 71) and the fin (8) are oriented in relation to the direction of travel (D) pri- marily rearwards regardless of the direction of the spinning axis (S) of the gyro pendulum (30).

14. A device according to any one of claims 9 - 13, characterized in that the gyro pendulum (30) is bearing mounted to a sealed casing, inside which is a vacuum.

15. A device according to any one of the preceding claims 1 - 14, characterized in that the portion (7) of the driving arm (7, 7') and the force axis (3) are arranged coaxially in connection with each other, wherein they rotate along with the pendu- lum weight (5) or the gyro pendulum (30) around a common turning axis (A).

16. A device according to any one of the preceding claims 1 - 15, characterized in that the settings and/or adjustments of the device (1) are to be defined by means of a control unit.

17. A device according to claim 16, characterized in that the control unit is provided with software, with which the settings and/or adjustments of the device (1) can be determined at least on the basis of motion detecting means attached to the vessel and/or location data.

Description:
Device for transporting vessel by wave power

The present invention relates to a device for transporting a vessel by wave power, the device being installed into the vessel to be transported and the device including a driving force axis, which is bearing mounted to the vessel to rotate back and forth around a turning axis.

Currently, there is a need to develop for vessels, such as for ships and boats, devices based on renewable energy sources for transporting the vessel. Prior known is, of course, wind power, wherein harnessing of the energy in the wind by sails is known. A newer form of energy production is solar energy, which is collected with panels and is currently used even for transporting a boat or ship.

The use of wave power has, to some extent, also been developed in the propulsion technology of vessels. In this respect, as one example can be mentioned a vessel named the "Suntory Mermaid 2", in which, as a force propelling it forward, is used solely wave energy, always as desired. Herein, wave energy is harnessed for transporting the vessel by two parallel so-called fins, which are arranged to turn in relation to the longitudinal direction of the vessel around transverse axes as moved by the force directed on it by the wave movement of the water and, on the other hand, by the spring force formed against the wave movement of the water. The movement of the fins is thus an up-and-down movement. Using this arrangement, an average speed is attained for the vessel, which can be approximately 3 km/h. This arrangement is placed in the rear part of the vessel and its structures are primarily located below the surface of the water. The structures remaining below the water, which move against each other are numerous and therefore also susceptible to damage. Furthermore, the up-down moving fin structure is not efficient from the viewpoint of forming propulsion. In addition to this, the structure cannot, at least cannot easily, be changed such that they take the prevailing conditions into consid- eration. The respective arrangement also does not function well in a beam sea.

The object of the present invention is to obviate or substantially decrease the above said disadvantages. The object of the invention is to provide an easily-changeable structure, which allows taking into consideration changes in the conditions, such as for example, the height of the waves and wavelength. The above said object of the invention is achieved according to the invention such that to the driving force axis is connected, on the one hand, a pendulum weight, which causes the back-and-forth rotation of the driving force axis as the vessel rocks under the influence of the waves and, on the other hand, an elongated driving arm, which is moved by the driving force axis as it rotates back and forth around the turning axis, and at the end of the driving arm is an elastic or against spring power turning fin, which is to be oriented rearwards in relation to the direction of travel of the vessel and which provides the propulsion force transporting the vessel. The above said object of the invention is further achieved according to the invention such that to the driving force axis is connected, on the one hand, a gyro pendulum, which causes the back-and-forth rotation of the driving force axis as the vessel rocks under the influence of the waves and, on the other hand, an elongated driving arm, which is moved by the driving force axis as it rotates back and forth around the turning axis, and at the end of the driving arm is an elastic or against spring power turning fin, which is to be oriented rearwards in relation to the direction of travel of the vessel and which provides the propulsion force transporting the vessel.

The dependent claims present preferred embodiments of the present invention.

In the following, the invention is described in more detail by referring to the accompanying drawings, in which:

Fig. la shows an axonometric view of a vessel, which is provided with a de- vice according to one preferred embodiment of the invention, the position of which in relation to the vessel is shown as the wave action strikes perpendicularly crosswise in relation to the direction of travel of the vessel, Fig. lb shows the vessel shown in Fig. lb from above,

Fig. 2 shows a diagrammatic cross-section of the vessel and device taken along the section line II - II of Fig. lb, Fig. 3a shows the device shown in Figs, la and lb from the side, and Fig. 3b shows a device according to Fig. 3a as an axonometric view.

Fig. 4 shows a diagrammatic cross-section of a vessel and device according to another embodiment of the invention.

Figs, la and lb thus show, marked with reference numeral 20, a vessel, which is provided with a device 1 according to one preferred embodiment of the invention for transporting a vessel by wave power. The vessel 20 in itself is shown here as a small yacht only by way of an example and its size and form can vary from what is shown in accordance with its intended use. The device 1 includes a casing 2 or frame, which is installed onto the inside (of the sides) of the vessel 20, preferably onto its bottom. The device 1 in itself is illustrated in such a station in relation to the vessel 20, in which the wave action strikes perpendicularly crosswise in relation to the direction of travel D of the vessel 20. This direction of the wave action is marked in Fig. lb by an arrow marked with reference numeral Wal.

The device 1 includes an elongated driving force axis 3 arranged in connection with the casing 2. By means of the bearings 2a and 2b arranged to the lower part and the upper part of the casing 2, the driving force axis 3 is arranged to be rotated around the turning axis A (double arrow Rl) travelling through the longitudinal axis of the driving force axis 3. The driving force axis 3 includes or in connection with it is arranged a pendulum weight 5 arranged to be turned along with it. Hence, the pendulum weight 5 rotates around the turning axis A back and forth as the waves of the water W rock the vessel 20 correspondingly back and forth. In order to assure the back-and-forth rotation of the pendulum weight 5, it is preferred that the angle of the driving force axis 3, as well as the angle a of the turning axis A in relation to the horizontal plane (in other words, the surface of the calm water) is 0 - 80 degrees. In this case, the pendulum weight 5 (and its centre of gravity) assuredly moves back and forth on both sides of the so-called resting position (where there is no wave action having an effect on the pendulum weight) or middle position, and it does not rotate, as would not be preferred, the entire way around the turning axis A. To the driving force axis 3 or in connection with it is arranged an elongated driving arm 7, 7'. The portion 7 of the driving arm 7, 7' and the tubular portion 4 of the driving force axis 3 are arranged coaxially in connection with each other, wherein they rotate along with the pendulum weight 5 around a common inclined turning axis A. In this case, the tubular portion 4 of the force axis 3 is around the portion 7. At the upper end of the force axis 3 are flange-like locking plates 6 and 9, which are correspondingly connected to the tubular portion 4 and the portion 7. The rotational movement between these is to be locked in relation to each other, for example, with a mechanical lock element 10, which locks the locking plates 6 and 9 and therefore also the tubular portion 4 and the portion 7 to each other. Such a structure allows that the relative turning angle of the driving arm 7, 7' and the tubular portion 4 and thus consequently also the pendulum weight 5 can be changed (in the figures they are on the same line D in the direction of propagation). This is described below in more detail.

As the extension of the portion 7 of the driving arm is an extension portion 7' extending outside the vessel 20, preferably below the surface of the water, at the end of which is a fin 8 or equivalent element cooperating with the water. The fin 8 can be an elastic unit made of flexible material or a plate-like unit arranged to be turned as an extension of the extension portion 7'. The plate-like unit can act against the spring force. Preferably, the extension portion 7' is, by means of a part bent between the driving arm portion 7 and the extension portion 7', oriented in the so- called resting position substantially in the opposite direction in relation to the direction of travel D of the vessel 20. The angle of inclination βΐ of the extension portion 7' in the resting position in relation to the horizontal plane (the plane parallel with the surface of the water) can, however, be 1 - 20 degrees. Hence, the fin 8 is located in the longitudinal direction of the vessel 20 closer to its rear part than to its front part. Although the fin 8 preferably extends in the longitudinal direction of the vessel by a distance over the rear part of the vessel 20, the length of the extension portion 7' can be adjusted in the longitudinal direction of the vessel 20 in order to bring the fin 8 into the desired plane in relation to the vessel 20. The size (surface area) and shape of the fin 8 can also be selected to suit the size of the vessel 20.

The casing 2 of the device 1 is pivotally attached to the hull of the vessel 20. For this purpose, in connection with the cylindrical outer surface of the lower part of the casing 2 are arranged turning elements 2c, such as the bearing mounting between the hull of the vessel 20 and the lower part of the casing 2. Due to the bearing mounting, the casing 2 turns around the turning axis (not shown) formed by the turning elements 2c. In the resting state, the turning axis is preferably vertical or substantially vertical and it differs from the above said angle of the driving force axis 3. As the casing 2 is turned, being taken through the casing 2 and attached to the casing as supported by the bearings 2a and 2b, the driving force axis 3 (and the pendulum weight 5) as well as the driving arm 7, 7' also turn away from the line parallel with the direction of travel D, for example, to be parallel with the direction of the line E shown in Fig. lb by a dashed line. For this purpose, in connection with the bearing 2a is, for example, a ball joint 2a' forming the turning point in relation to which the driving force axis 3 is able to rotate/turn along with the casing 2. When the casing 2 and thus consequently also the driving force axis 3 (and pendulum weight 5) as well as the driving arm 7, 7' are thus turned, the relative turning angle of the driving arm 7, 7' and the tubular portion 4 (as well as the pendulum weight 5) can be changed such that, in the resting position, the extension portion 7' is turned parallel with the direction of travel D and the centre of gravity of the pendulum weight 5 is on the line E (in the resting position) shown in Fig. lb. This above said structure and measures allow that the station of the pendulum weight 5 can be adjusted to be preferable in relation to the angle of incidence of the wave Wal. For example, when performing the above said measures, as a result of which the centre of gravity of the pendulum weight 5 is on the line E, the optimal direction of incidence of the wave is marked by the arrow Wa2 marked in Fig. lb by a dashed line. In other words, the direction of incidence of the wave, in this case, is, in relation to the line E, most preferably the perpendicularly crosswise direction, but the direction of propagation D of the vessel remains unchanged or at least substantially unchanged.

The preferred structure of the invention presented above provides that the exten- sion portion 7 of the driving arm 7, 7' moves along with the back-and-forth rotating movement of the driving arm 3 back and forth on both sides of the resting position parallel with the direction of travel D. The extreme positions of the extension portion 7' are marked in Figs, lb and 3b by extension portions 7' shown by dashed lines. The extension portion 7' thus turns around an inclined turning axis A travelling through the above said turning point of the ball joint 2a' such that its turning angle βΐ is 1 - 40 degrees. For best performance, however, it is preferable that the turning angle βΐ is rather small, being, for example, 1 - 20 degrees. The orientation of the extension portion 7' and the fin 8 can also be used to guide the vessel 20. Alternatively, a separate rudder can also be used to guide the vessel 20.

The angle of the driving force axis 3, i.e. also the angle of inclination a of the turning axis A in relation to the horizontal plane (in other words, the surface of calm water) can be changed. For this purpose, into the casing 2 is arranged a slot 2d, in which the driving arm 3 and the bearing 2b can turn in relation to the turning point formed by the ball joint 2a'. This provides that the natural frequency of the pendulum weight 5 turning along with the driving force axis 3 can be adapted to be suitable to the spectrum of the prevailing wave action. In addition to or instead of this, the natural frequency of the pendulum weight can be adjusted or changed using, for example, springs (not shown). The springs are arranged in connection with the pendulum weight 5 such that they dampen or increase the extreme positions of the pendulum weight 5 in given wave action and then adapt the natural frequency of the pendulum weight 5 to be more suitable to the prevailing wave action. The angle of inclination β2 of the driving arm 7, 7' can also be adjusted or kept unchanged regardless of the adjustment of the angle a, for example, by means of turning means arranged between the portions of the driving arm 7, 7'. Hence, the angle between the driving force axis 3 and the extension portion 7' of the driving arm 7, 7' is greater than 95 degrees.

In connection with the driving force axis 3 can be connected a generator, which is shown by way of example in Fig. 2 by reference numeral 21. Using the generator 21, it is possible to either directly supply the electricity required by the electrical system of the vessel 20, or to feed the electricity required by the electrical devices used in the vessel 20 into the battery 22 of the electric system of the vessel 20 for later use.

Fig. 4 shows diagrammatically another embodiment of the invention, in which, instead of a pendulum weight 5, a gyro pendulum 30 is arranged to rotate around the axis A of the driving force axis 3. The structure of the driving force axis 3 in Fig. 4 is in essence equivalent to the driving axis of the first embodiment. To the driving axis 3, bearing mounted to the vessel 20 and being in the resting state vertical or substantially vertical, is centrally (above) attached a gyro pendulum 30 that spins by means of an (electric) motor 31 around a horizontal axis S, for example, in the direction of the arrow R2. The horizontal axis S of the gyro pendulum 30 is oriented via the bearing mounting 2a (most preferably as closely as possible) towards the direction of propagation of the wave or towards the direction of the rocking. In Fig. 4, the direction of the horizontal axis S is in relation to the plane of the figure the perpendicular direction and the direction of the wave is the direction shown by the arrow Wal in Fig. lb. The gyro pendulum 30 can be placed, for ex- ample, into the casing, which is a vacuum. This decreases the forces affecting the spinning of the gyro pendulum 30.

As a wave rocks the vessel 20, this rocking motion attempts to incline the horizontal axis S and further the gyro pendulum 30 spinning around the horizontal axis S. The spinning gyro pendulum 30 gives rise to a reversing, rotating gyroscopic force in relation to the vertical axis. As it spins, the gyro pendulum 30 resists or attempts to resist the inclination of the horizontal axis S, as a result of which resistance onto the driving force axis 3 with its driving arms 7, 7' is directed the turning moment of the turning axis A rotating around it (i.e. 90 degrees in relation to the turning direction provided by the waves Wal on the horizontal axis S). As the inclination of the horizontal axis S changes to be opposite, the gyroscopic force and moment are also opposite. This is utilized to turn the driving force axis 3 back and forth around the turning axis A and, further, to swing back and forth the fin 8 that is (under) as an extension of the driving arm 7, 7'.

As the vessel 20 is driven in different directions in relation to the wave, the axis S of the gyro pendulum 30 is preferably oriented always parallel with the direction of propagation of the wave or the direction of the strongest rocking. The fin 8 is oriented to face rearwards in relation to the direction of travel D, as in an embodiment according to Figs, la - 3b. For this purpose, the driving force axis 3 has a switch 4a, the axis 4 parts (for example, the driving arm 7, 7') of which on different sides are to be switched into different rotation angle positions, wherein the driving arm 7, 7' and the fin 8 are oriented in relation to the direction of travel D primarily rearwards regardless of the direction of the spinning axis S of the gyro pendulum 30, which is thus dependant on the direction of propagation of the wave. Shown dia- grammatically in Fig. 4 is only one structural alternative to this feature. The equivalent function can be implemented structurally in various ways.

The gyro pendulum 30 may also have a generator function in the manner presented above and, by the power generated from this, the gyro pendulum 30 can be kept in a spinning movement. Alternatively, the gyro pendulum 30 can be spun by power obtained from a battery (see Fig. 2, reference numeral 22) or from a separate solar panel not shown here. This is possible, because the power required to spin the gyro pendulum 30 is relatively low and the power produced by the gyro pendulum 30 is adequate for this function.

The advantages of the gyro pendulum are small size and mass. Furthermore, the centre of gravity of the device does not change along with adjustments. During function, there is no slowness of mass, rather it reacts immediately in the correct direction to even slight movement. The mechanical structure is quite simple. It is, of course, possible to mechanically connect the driving force axis comprising the gyro pendulum 30 and the driving force axis comprising the pendulum weight 5 in a manner, in which they both move the portion 7 of the driving arm 7, 7' and the fin 8 or the like at its end.

The rotational speed of the gyro pendulum can be used to adjust the "stiffness" of the system in relation to movement. A changing height and period of the wave do not necessarily require other adjustment. In order to facilitate all the device adjustments and/settings presented above, a control unit provided with software can be used. The software can be used to provide settings as starting values, for example, the values given to an accelerometer attached to the vessel 20, which can be connected, for example, to location data. In place of or in addition to the accelerometer, other means of observing the move- ment of the vessel can also be used. On the basis of these, the software calculates or defines the optimal settings and/or adjustments of the device 1 to produce the greatest speed of travel, for example, for a given trip route. As the trip route is travelled, the optimal settings can be calculated for desired intervals or as needed.