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Title:
INTELLIGENT GRAPHITE DEVICE
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/179886
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A graphite material device (1), wherein the graphite material device is provided, internally and/or externally, with at least one conductive pattern (2) and/or at least one sensor (2) and wherein the graphite material device is used as any one of a carbon brush, a brake disc, a bushing and a bearing.

Inventors:
BJÖRKLUND, Erik (Box 115, Vadstena, 592 22, SE)
Application Number:
EP2019/056527
Publication Date:
September 26, 2019
Filing Date:
March 15, 2019
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
AB DYNAMOBORSTFABRIKEN (Box 115, Vadstena, 592 22, SE)
International Classes:
F16D65/00; F16D65/12; H01R39/58
Domestic Patent References:
WO1999004460A11999-01-28
WO2012112931A22012-08-23
WO2016189134A12016-12-01
Foreign References:
US20110104518A12011-05-05
US7877216B22011-01-25
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
AWA SWEDEN AB (Junkersgatan 1, Linköping, 582 35, SE)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1. A graphite material device (1 ),

c h a r a c t e r i z e d in that

the graphite material device is provided, internally and/or externally, with at least one conductive pattern (2) and/or at least one sensor (2).

2. The graphite material device (1 ) as claimed in claim 1 , wherein said at least one conductive pattern (2) and/or at least one sensor (2) is provided onto or integrated into at least a portion of a surface of said device.

3. The graphite material device as claimed in claim 2, wherein said at least one conductive pattern and/or at least one sensor is integrated into said device by etching into or printing onto at least a portion of said surface.

4. The graphite material device (1 ) as claimed in claim 2, wherein said at least one conductive pattern (2) and/or at least one sensor (2) is attached to at least a portion of said surface.

5. The graphite material device (1 ) as claimed in claim 1 , wherein said at least one conductive pattern (2) and/or at least one sensor (2) is provided on the inside of the device.

6. The graphite material device as claimed in any one of the preceding claims, wherein said at least one conductive pattern (2) is a circuit board.

7. The graphite material device as claimed in any one of the preceding claims, wherein said sensor (2) is any one of a temperature sensor, a strain gauge and a high resistance cable, an accelerometer or a combination thereof.

8. The graphite material device (1 ) as claimed in any one of the preceding claims, wherein said conductive pattern (2) and/or sensor (2) is arranged to transmit signals to a signal receiving and/or signal processing unit (5).

9. The graphite material device as claimed in claim 8, wherein said unit is arranged remotely from or integrated with the device.

10. The graphite material device as claimed in claim 8, wherein the signals are transmitted wirelessly or through wires.

1 1. The graphite material device as claimed in claim 10, wherein the wireless transmission is through Bluetooth®.

12. The graphite material device as claimed in any one of the preceding claims, wherein the graphite material is any one of a natural graphite, an electro graphite and a metal graphite.

13. The graphite material device as claimed in claim 12, wherein the graphite material is a sintered metal graphite.

14. The graphite material device as claimed in any one of the preceding claims, wherein the graphite device is any one of a carbon brush, a brake disk, a bushing and a bearing.

15. The graphite material device as claimed in any one of the preceding claims, wherein the device is a consumption or wearing part.

16. A system (10) comprising the graphite material device (1 ) as claimed in any one of claims 1 to 15, and a signal receiving and/or processing unit (5).

17. The system as claimed in claim 16, wherein said signal receiving and/or processing unit (5) is any one of a computer box, an application interface, and a cloud based unit.

18. A method for monitoring the graphite material device as claimed in any one of claims 1 to 15, wherein the method comprises the following steps: providing a graphite material device (1 ) with a conductive pattern (2) and/or at least one sensor (2);

placing said graphite material device (1 ) in an application where it is used;

using said graphite material device (1 ) in said application; and receiving signals from said conductive pattern (2) and/or sensors by a signal receiving and/or processing unit (5), whereby said signals are used to monitor said graphite material device.

19. Use of a graphite material device (1 ) as claimed in any one of claims 1 to as any one of a carbon brush, a brake disc, a bushing and a bearing.

Description:
INTELLIGENT GRAPHITE DEVICE

Technical field

The present document relates to intelligent graphite devices.

More particularly, the present disclosure relates to graphite devices provided with a conductive pattern and/or sensors, and uses thereof.

Background

Devices comprising graphite are used in many different technologies. Usually these devices are used as consumption or wearing parts, such as for instance carbon brushes in electrical applications, brake disks in vehicles and as bushings and bearings.

In some applications there is a need to be able to monitor, e.g. the wear of the graphite devices and other parameters that affect the quality and utilization ratio of these devices.

In US7877216B2 a brake system, such as brake disk is described having a sensor-wear material embedded within the friction material of the brake.

There is a need to be able to provide devices such as brake discs, but also other consumption and wearing parts, with monitoring possibilities to improve and monitor the security, duration and life length of these devices.

Summary

It is an object of the present disclosure, to provide an improved graphite device, which eliminates or alleviates at least some of the

disadvantages of the prior art graphite devices.

The object is wholly or partially achieved by a graphite device and a method according to the appended independent claims. Embodiments are set forth in the appended dependent claims, and in the following description and drawings.

According to a first aspect, there is provided a graphite material device, wherein the graphite material device is provided, internally and/or externally, with at least one conductive pattern and/or at least one sensor.

By providing the graphite device directly with a conductive pattern and/or a sensor an easy and reliable monitoring of the characteristics of the graphite material device may be achieved. The characteristics that may be monitored are for instance wear, temperature, vibrations, shear, friction and electrical losses etc. The characteristics may either be measured directly by signals provided by the conductive pattern or sensors, or be calculated based on these signals. This may provide for a more digital way of monitoring devices such as carbon brushes and brake discs, by providing a real-time status of these devices, instead of just indicating when they are for instance worn out. It ensures a safer operation of different types of electrical machines and vehicles, and simplifies service of the machines and vehicles

incorporating these devices. Signals may for instance be sent to a service function well before e.g. a carbon brush is worn out, thus minimizing the risk that an electrical machine comes to an unwanted stand still or is damaged through uneven wear of the carbon brush. It may also be used in vehicles, where signals could be sent directly to the service facility. In turn this could provide enormous economic gains, with reduced need of keeping these spare parts in storage, and in a more efficient way of providing service and reparation operations.

The at least one conductive pattern and/or at least one sensor may be provided onto or integrated into at least a portion of a surface of said device and the at least one conductive pattern and/or at least one sensor may be integrated into said device by etching into or printing onto at least a portion of said surface.

By integrating the conducting pattern or sensor into the device, there is provided a robust device, which does not contain any removable parts that might impair the functioning of the device. Further, the integration of the conduction pattern or sensor could easily be made a part of the production process, which allows for an efficient and economical way of manufacturing the device.

Alternatively, the least one conductive pattern and/or at least one sensor may be attached to at least a portion of said surface.

By attached to is meant that the conductive pattern or sensor is applied to the device, for instance using adhesives or heat melting or other means of attachment. The conductive pattern may for instance have been printed or etched into a polymer plate, or other material, which is attached to a surface or a side of the device. Further sensors, such as high resistance wires, may be attached to the device for instance by using adhesives or other type of secure attachments.

The at least one conductive pattern and/or at least one sensor may according to yet an alternative be provided on an inside of the device. This means that the conductive pattern or the sensor may have been provided through a bore hole in the device, or that the device is manufactured in at least two portions and when joined the conductive pattern or sensor is arranged on an inwardly facing surface of the device.

The at least one conductive pattern may be a circuit board.

The said sensor or sensors may be any one of a temperature sensor, a strain gauge and a high resistance cable, an accelerometer or a combination thereof.

The sensor provided onto the device may be a sensor that provides an instant measurement value, or a signal which is calculated or computed into a measurement value.

The said conductive pattern and/or sensor may be arranged to transmit signals to a signal receiving and/or signal processing unit.

By signal receiving and/or signal processing unit is meant any device which is capable of receiving the signals for the conducting pattern and sensor. The unit may also be able to process the signal, for instance compute or calculate different measurement values from the signal. The measurement values may then be presented or visualized in different formats suitable for the application.

The unit may be arranged remotely from or integrated with the device.

The signals may be transmitted wirelessly or through wires. The wireless transmission may be through Bluetooth®. The wireless transmission may also be of any other type conceivable to the skilled person.

The graphite material may be any one of a natural graphite, an electro graphite and a metal graphite.

The graphite material may be a sintered metal graphite.

The graphite device may be any one of a carbon brush, a brake disk, a bushing and a bearing.

The device may be a consumption or wearing part.

According to a second aspect there is provided a system comprising the graphite material device according to the first aspect and a signal receiving and/or processing unit. The signal receiving and/or processing unit may be any one of a computer box, an application interface, and a cloud based unit, or any other unit suitable for receiving and/or processing signals. According to a third aspect there is provided a method for monitoring the graphite material device according to the first aspect, wherein the method comprises the following steps:

providing a graphite material device with a conductive pattern and/or at least one sensor;

placing said graphite material device in an application where it is used; using said graphite material device in said application; and

receiving signals from said conductive pattern and/or sensors by a signal receiving and/or processing unit, whereby said signals are used to monitor said graphite material device.

According to a fourth aspect there is provided the use of a graphite material device according to the first aspect as any one of a carbon brush, a brake disc, a bushing and a bearing.

Brief Description of the Drawings

Embodiments of the present solution will now be described, by way of example, with reference to the accompanying schematic drawing.

Fig. 1 is a schematic view of one embodiment of a device and a system according to the invention.

Description of Embodiments

Fig. 1 illustrate a system 10 comprising a graphite material device 1 , provided with a conductive pattern 2, a signal receiving and/or processing unit 5 and a display device 3.

In one embodiment the graphite material device may be a consumption or wearing part.

In one alternative the graphite material device may be any one of a carbon brush, a brake disk, a bushing and a bearing.

The graphite material of the graphite material device may be any one of a natural graphite, an electro graphite and a metal graphite.

According to one embodiment the graphite material is a sintered metal graphite.

The graphite material device is provided with at least one conductive pattern 2, and/or at least one sensor 2. As illustrated in Fig. 1 the graphite material device 1 may be a carbon brush, provided with a conductive pattern 2. In Fig. 1 this is illustrated as a circuit board.

The conductive pattern 2 may thus be a circuit board which is provided onto the surface of the device 1 , or arranged within the device 1. The conductive pattern 1 may be applied to or provided on the device 1 in different ways. One alternative is to print the conductive pattern onto the surface.

Another alternative is to use etching techniques to provide the surface of the device with the conductive pattern. Etching or printing techniques are well- known to the skilled person and can easily be introduced into a manufacturing method of the device, without losing efficiency or incurring any substantial additional costs.

The conductive pattern 2 may also be provided onto the device as a separate device, where the conductive pattern for instance is attached by utilizing different types of adhesives, such as for instance glue, hot melting etc. that are suitable for the use of the graphite material device.

The conductive may also be provided on an inside of the device, for instance by having a hole drilled in the device or by attaching two portions of the device to each other and containing the sensor on the inside. The conductive pattern may for instance be printed onto or etched into one portion of the device and then contained within the device once the portions have been attached to each other.

The graphite material device may also be provided with at least one sensor 2, the sensor or sensors may be provided in addition to the conductive pattern. Alternatively, the device 1 is only provided with at least one sensor 2. The sensor or sensors 2 may be arranged to detect different physical properties of the device itself and the ambient surroundings. The sensor or sensors may for instance be arranged to detect temperature, vibration, electrical losses, acceleration, wear etc. The senor or sensors may therefore be sized and adapted to fit onto the device.

The sensor or sensors 2 may be provided onto or into the surface of the device, or at least onto a portion of the surface. The sensor may for instance be printed onto the device, or attached to the device by using etching techniques. The sensor may alternatively be attached to the device by using adhesive techniques, such as glue or hot melting techniques etc.

depending on the type of sensor and the type of device on/in which it is used. The sensor may also be provided on an inside of the device, for instance by having a hole drilled in the device or by attaching two portions of the device to each other and containing the sensor on the inside. The sensor or sensors may for instance be printed onto or etched into one portion of the device and then contained within the device once the portions have been attached to each other.

As examples the sensor or sensors may be any one of a temperature sensor, a strain gauge and a high resistance cable, an accelerometer or a combination thereof.

When the device 1 is in use, for instance as a brake disc in a vehicle or as a carbon brush arranged to engage a slip ring in an electrical machine (these uses are not shown in the drawings) the conductive pattern and/or sensors will provide at least one signal receiving and/or processing unit 5 with at least one signal.

The signals from the conductive pattern and/or the sensor(s) may be transmitted through wires (not shown) or wirelessly 4, as illustrated in Fig. 1. The wireless transmission may be achieved through Bluetooth®.

The signal or signals may be processed by the signal receiving and/or processing unit 5, or by any other unit (not disclosed) and then transmitted 6 to a display device 3. In Fig. 1 the display device 3 is illustrated as a hand held device, e.g. a smart phone, but the display device may be any type of device capable of displaying a result of the signals sent from the conductive pattern and/or the sensors. The display device may for instance be a lamp, lighting up as a response to a signal sent from the conductive pattern and/or sensor. According to one embodiment the signal receiving/processing unit and the display device may be an integrated device.

In one alternative the signal receiving and/or processing unit may be two physically separate devices. In one alternative the signal receiving and/or processing unit may be an or one integrated device.

The signal receiving and processing may also take place in a cloud based application.

The signal receiving and/or processing unit may be arranged in proximity to, or even attached to device 1 , or be placed remotely.

As an example the signal receiving and/or processing unit 5 may be any one of a computer box, an application interface, and a cloud based unit.

The signal receiving and/or processing device 5 may be arranged to receive signals from the conductive pattern(s) and/or sensor(s) and transform, convert or compute a result based on these signals. The result may then be visualized or presented in different ways. As illustrated in Fig. 1 the signals may be sent to an application in a smart phone, displaying the temperature, the location of the device (e.g. by using a geo-location sensor such as a GPS attached to the device), and electrical losses and wear rate etc.

In another alternative the signals are converted and displayed in the communication system of a vehicle such as a car, for instance indicating the temperature of the brake discs, or the wear status of the brake discs.

This may provide for a digital way of monitoring devices such as carbon brushes and brake discs, by providing a real-time status of these devices, instead of just indicating when they are for instance worn out.