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Title:
LIQUID TREATMENT APPARATUS COMPRISING AN AIR TRAP VESSEL
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2016/085386
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A liquid treatment apparatus (2), comprising a pumping device (3) configured to pump a liquid (4) to be treated into at least one treatment chamber (6) comprising treatment equipment (9) configured to perform UV-light treatment of the liquid (4) flowing through the at least one treatment chamber (6). The liquid treatment apparatus (2) comprises an air trap vessel (5) arranged upstream of said pumping device (3) and provided with an inlet connection (22) for receiving liquid (4) to be treated and a first outlet connection (24) for connection and liquid supply to said pumping device (3). The air trap vessel (5) is configured to prevent air bubbles from being sucked into the pumping device (3) and to be at least partly filled with a priming liquid (23) before the pumping device (3) is started and the liquid treatment is initiated, and that the first outlet connection (24) being arranged below surface level of the priming liquid.

Inventors:
FERNSTRÖM, Henrik (Veckovägen 63, Järfälla, S-177 62, SE)
BERGQVIST, Johan (Drabantvägen 57, Saltsjö-Boo, S-132 47, SE)
Application Number:
SE2015/051223
Publication Date:
June 02, 2016
Filing Date:
November 16, 2015
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
WALLENIUS WATER AB (Franzéngatan 3, Stockholm, S-112 51, SE)
International Classes:
C02F1/32; F04D9/00; C02F1/20
Domestic Patent References:
WO2012056249A12012-05-03
Foreign References:
AU606534B21991-02-07
US5625194A1997-04-29
US7425272B22008-09-16
US5124131A1992-06-23
US5626768A1997-05-06
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BRANN AB (P.O. Box 3690, Drottninggatan 27, Stockholm, S-102 26, SE)
Download PDF:
Claims:
Claims

1. A liquid treatment apparatus (2), comprising a pumping device (3) configured to pump a liquid (4) to be treated into at least one treatment chamber (6) comprising treatment equipment (9) configured to perform UV-light treatment of said liquid (4) flowing through the at least one treatment chamber (6),

c h a r a c t e r i z e d i n that the liquid treatment apparatus (2) comprises

an air trap vessel (5) arranged upstream said pumping device (3) and provided with an inlet connection (22) for receiving liquid (4) to be treated and a first outlet connection (24) for connection and liquid supply, directly or indirectly, to said pumping device (3), wherein said air trap vessel (5) is configured to be at least partly filled with a priming liquid (23) before the pumping device (3) is started to prevent air bubbles from being sucked into said pumping device (3), and that said first outlet connection (24) is arranged below a surface of said priming liquid (23) when the air trap vessel (5) is at least partly filled with said priming liquid (23).

2. The liquid treatment apparatus (2) according to claim 1, wherein said inlet connection (22) is arranged above a surface of said priming liquid (23) when the air trap vessel (5) is at least partly filled with said priming liquid (23). 3. The liquid treatment apparatus (2) according to claim 1 or 2, wherein said inlet connection (22) is arranged at an upper part of said vessel (5) and said first outlet connection (24) is arranged at a lower part of said vessel (5).

4. The liquid treatment apparatus (2) according to any of claims 1-3, wherein said air trap vessel (5) has a volume which is larger than a volume of tubing (26) between a tank (25) including the liquid (4) to be treated and the inlet connection (22).

5. The liquid treatment apparatus (2) according to any of claims 1-4, wherein said air trap vessel (5) is provided with a damping member (28) configured to damp and distribute the liquid (4) supplied via the inlet connection (22).

6. The liquid treatment apparatus (2) according to claim 5, wherein said damping member (28) is arranged below said inlet connection (22) and above said outlet connection (24).

7. The liquid treatment apparatus (2) according to any of claims 5-6, wherein said damping member (28) is an essentially horizontally arranged damping plate (28) attached in an upper part of the air trap vessel (5), and wherein said damping plate (28) is attached to the inner walls (11) of said air trap vessel (5) and facilitates for damping vertical forces of the liquid (4) in order to prevent air bubbles from being sucked out from the vessel (5) via the outlet connection.

8. The liquid treatment apparatus (2) according to any of claims 5-7, wherein said damping plate (28) is provided with at least one opening (30) through which the liquid (4) may pass the plate (28). 9. The liquid treatment apparatus (2) according to claim 8, wherein said at least one opening (30) is arranged along the periphery of the plate in close proximity to the inner wall (11) of the air trap vessel (5).

10. The liquid treatment apparatus (2) according to any of claims 1-9, wherein said air trap vessel (5) is a cylinder having a circular cross-section.

11. The liquid treatment apparatus (2) according to any of claims 1-10, wherein said at least one treatment chamber (6) is defined as a first elongated circumferential hollow cavity (13) between an inner wall (12) of a housing (14) and an outer wall (16) of a translucent sleeve (18) arranged to protect and include a lamp (20).

12. The liquid treatment apparatus according (2) to any of claims 1-11, wherein said apparatus further comprises a tube bracket assembly (32) which comprises two elongate tubes (34) arranged in parallel, an inlet tube (31) and an outlet tube (33), wherein the tube bracket assembly (32) is detachably attached to said apparatus (2), and configured, during use to be vertically mounted within the tank including the liquid to be treated and wherein the tubes (34) are configured to be connected to the inlet connection (22) and a second outlet connection (35) of said liquid treatment apparatus (2) via connection tubing (36).

13. The liquid treatment apparatus (2) according to any of claims 1-12, wherein said apparatus (2) has a modular configuration and comprises a mounting socket (38) on which said pumping device (3), vessel (5) and treatment chamber (6) are mounted.

14. The liquid treatment apparatus (2) according to any of claims 1-13, wherein said inlet connection (22) and a second outlet connection (35) are vertically arranged such that the connection openings (36) are directed upwards.

Description:
Liquid treatment apparatus comprising an air trap vessel Technical field

The present invention relates to a liquid treatment apparatus according to the preamble of the independent claim.

Background

There are many applications where UV light sources are used for treating liquids. The applicant of the present application, Wallenius Water AB in Sweden, has developed and is selling water treatment equipment having a water purifier comprising an elongated tubular treatment chamber with an inlet and an outlet. In the center of the treatment chamber a light generally tubular quartz glass is arranged and inside the quartz glass a UV source, such as a lamp capable of generating wavelengths in the UV region. Low pressure UV lamps offer great efficiency and find particular application e.g. in the disinfection of water. Examples of different types of low pressure lamps include e.g. ozone-free mercury low pressure lamps, mercury ozone-generating low pressure lamps, and U-shaped lamps which supply high power in a compact design.

The inner surface of the treatment chamber of the water treatment equipment may be covered with catalytic material, such as titanium dioxide, which catalysts promotes and increases the amount of treatment material. The treatment equipment also comprises a pumping device which pumps liquid from the tank into the treatment chambers.

One type of treatment reactor developed by the applicant comprises a treatment chamber having oppositely arranged in- and outlets, where the UV light sources are arranged in elongated quartz glass tubes. These tubes are arranged perpendicular to the flow of liquid to be treated through the treatment chamber.

Similar arrangements are also described by others within the field as exemplified by the following. US-5625194 relates to an apparatus for continuous cleaning of tubular lamp wells for UV- light producing lamps.

US-7425272 relates to a system for cleaning protective sleeves in UV decontamination systems. The disclosed system for cleaning the outer surface of a quartz sleeve is based on the recognition that providing a honing material with a predetermined abrasiveness through the annulus at high velocity works to remove aggregated particles from the outer surface. In US-7425272 the linear velocity of a slurry material passing through the annulus during a cleaning process is about 1 m/s, and in one particular example it is stated that the velocity is at least 0.5 m/s.

Also US-5124131 and US-5626768 relate to UV-radiation treatment systems and methods were a liquid is moved along a UV-radiation source. It is a known problem that air in the liquid which is pumped through the pumping device into the liquid treatment arrangement may badly influence the function of the pump.

Today this problem has been solved by different special arrangements, and by taking a number of different actions. For example, nozzles may be arranged at specific locations through which it is possible to withdraw air from the tubing, and from other parts of the system. In addition, the connection tubing must be arranged such that no air is trapped within the tubes.

However, there is still a need in the art for improved liquid treatment apparatuses for purifying liquids which do not suffer from problems associated with malfunctioning of the pump of the apparatus.

Summary of the invention

The above-mentioned object is achieved, or at least mitigated, by the present invention according to the independent claim. Preferred embodiments are set forth in the dependent claims. Hence, there is provided herein a liquid treatment apparatus, comprising a pumping device configured to pump a liquid to be treated into at least one treatment chamber comprising treatment equipment arranged to treat liquid flowing through the at least one treatment chamber, wherein the liquid treatment apparatus comprises an air trap vessel arranged upstream of said pumping device and provided with an inlet connection for receiving liquid to be treated and a first outlet connection for connection and liquid supply to said pumping device, directly or indirectly. The air trap vessel is configured to be at least partly filled with a priming liquid before the pumping device is started to prevent air bubbles from being sucked into the pumping device. The first outlet connection is arranged below a surface of the priming liquid when the air trap vessel is at least partly filled with the priming liquid.

Accordingly, an air trap vessel is arranged upstream to the pumping device and the liquid passes the air trap vessel before it is supplied to the pumping device. The air trap vessel is typically a cylinder having a circular cross-section. An inlet connection is arranged at the top and an outlet connection is arranged at the bottom of the air trap vessel. Before the liquid treatment is started by starting the pumping device to pump in liquid to be treated to the treatment chamber, the air trap vessel is filled with a priming liquid, e.g. water. Air, primarily in the connection tubing, is sucked into the air trap vessel when the pump is started and air is thereby trapped in the vessel and not sucked into the pump. Hence, the apparatus presented herein hence obviates problems encountered with previous arrangements where air bubbles have entered the pumping device causing interference with the treatment of the liquid. The air trap vessel is configured to prevent air bubbles from being sucked into said pumping device, e.g. by using a damping plate, such as a horizontally arranged plate attached in an upper part of the air trap vessel to damp and distribute the liquid supplied via the inlet connection. The damping plate is attached to the inner walls and facilitates for damping the vertical force of the liquid in order to prevent air bubbles from being sucked out from the vessel via the outlet connection. The liquid passes the plate e.g. at openings along the periphery of the plate in close proximity to the inner wall of the vessel. Air bubbles may also be prevented from being sucked into the pumping device by the inlet of the air trap vessel being arranged so that the liquid entering the air trap vessel is damped against an inner surface of the vessel.

The volume of the air trap vessel is related to the specific application, e.g. to the length of the tubing to the tank including the liquid to be treated. In one embodiment the volume is in the range of 13-20 litres, e.g. 15 litres.

The liquid treatment apparatus may be further improved by including the air trap vessel in a treatment apparatus as presented herein. The liquid treatment apparatus will be easier to install in that a user simply arranges the tubing such that liquid may be sucked from, and returned to the tank including the liquid to be treated, and then presses the start button. No specific notice needs to be taken whether there is air in the system that might compromise the pumping function. The treatment apparatus preferably comprises a mounting socket on which the pumping device, air trap vessel and treatment chamber are mounted. The liquid treatment apparatus may further comprise a tube bracket assembly which comprises two elongate tubes, an outlet and an inlet tube, preferably arranged in parallel and detachably attached to the apparatus.

Short description of the appended drawings

Figure 1 is a schematic illustration of a liquid treatment apparatus according to the present invention further illustrating how the liquid flows from the tank through the apparatus and back to the tank after the treatment.

Figure 2 is a schematic illustration of a liquid flow through a pumping device and treatment chamber/treatment equipment of the liquid treatment apparatus according to the present invention.

Figure 3 is a cross-sectional view of a treatment chamber according to an embodiment of the present invention,

Figure 4 is a front view of a liquid treatment apparatus according to an embodiment of the present invention.

Figure 5 is a perspective view of a liquid treatment apparatus of an embodiment according to the present invention. Figure 6a is a schematic illustration of a liquid treatment apparatus according to the present invention illustrating how the liquid flows from the tank through the apparatus and back to the tank after the treatment.

Figure 6b is a schematic illustration of comprising an air trap vessel according to one embodiment of the present invention.

Figures 7a-7g shows various views of an air trap vessel according to an embodiment of the present invention.

Figure 7a is a view from below of the air trap vessel.

Figures 7b and 7c are side views of the air trap vessel.

Figure 7d is a cross-sectional view along line C-C in figure 7c.

Figure 7e is a cross-sectional view along line A-A in figure 7a.

Figure 7f is a cross-sectional view along line B-B in figure 7g.

Figure 7g is a view from above of the air trap vessel.

Figure 8 is a perspective view of a treatment apparatus according to an embodiment of the invention illustrating the positioning of the tube bracket assembly on the treatment apparatus- Figures 9a and 9b show a tube bracket assembly comprising the elongate tubes according to one embodiment of the invention. Detailed description

The present invention will now be described with references to the appended figures.

Throughout the figures the same, or equivalent, items will have the same reference signs.

Generally, the present invention relates to a liquid treatment apparatus 2 intended for treating a liquid 4, e.g. cutting liquid, with UV-light. The apparatus will now be described with references to figures 1-5.

The apparatus is configured for light treatment of a liquid 4 flowing through at least one, preferably vertically arranged, treatment chamber 6 having an upper, or first, end 8 and a lower, or second, end 10. More specifically, the treatment equipment 9 is arranged to perform UV-light treatment of the liquid 4. The treatment chamber 6 is defined as a first elongated circumferential hollow cavity 13 between an inner wall 12 of a housing 14 and an outer wall 16 of a translucent sleeve 18 arranged to protect and include a lamp 20. Preferably, the lamp 20 is a UV-lamp of a fluorescent tube type. Preferably, the lamp 20 is also a low pressure lamp. The lamp has preferably an elongated shape in the form of a tube and having an essentially circular cross-section. The distance d between the inner wall 12 and the outer wall 16 is chosen, among other things, in dependence of different parameters of the liquid (e.g. the opacity) and is normally in the range of 2-10 mm. An exemplary length of the elongated treatment chamber is in the range of 150-200 cm.

The liquid treatment apparatus also comprises a pumping device 3 configured to pump the liquid to be treated from a tank 25 via a tube, e.g. a flexible tube, into the at least one treatment chamber 6. The pumping device 3 has an inlet connection 22 (see figures 4 and 5) through which the liquid 4 is sucked from a tank 25 with liquid 4 to be treated and further to the treatment chamber 6. The pumping device 3 can also be arranged downstream of the treatment chamber 6. The liquid 4 flows, at a flow rate velocity, through the treatment chamber(s) 6 where it is subjected to UV-radiation. The treated liquid 4 is then returned to the tank 25 via another tube. Preferably, the pumping device 3 is configured to flow said liquid 4 through the hollow cavity 13 at a velocity such that the velocity of the fluid 4 in relation to the outer surface of the sleeve 16 prevents fouling and/or scaling from aggregating on the outer surface of the sleeve 16. A recirculation assembly 42 is configured to recirculate the fluid through the hollow cavity 13.

Figure 4 is a front view, and figure 5 is a perspective view of a liquid treatment apparatus 2 according to one embodiment of the present invention. The apparatus includes a mounting socket 38 on which the pumping device 3, an optional air trap vessel 5 and treatment equipment 9 are mounted. The treatment equipment 9 including treatment chambers 6, e.g. two or four, is mounted within a protective enclosure. A control panel 29 is provided at the front side of the enclosure, and also a safety disconnector 27. Inlet and outlet connectors 22, 35 are arranged for connection to tubes to the tank with the liquid to be treated. Electrical connectors are provided for electrical supply of the UV-lamps. The apparatus is controlled by a control unit 7, e.g. a dedicated processing device or a computer, via control instructions applied via the control panel 29.

With references to figures 6-9 various embodiments of the present invention will now be described in detail, and specifically figure 7 illustrate various views of the air trap vessel and damping member according to one embodiment.

More specifically, and as schematically illustrated in figures 6a and 6b, there is in a first aspect of the invention provided a liquid treatment apparatus 2, comprising a pumping device 3 configured to pump a liquid 4 to be treated into at least one treatment chamber 6 comprising treatment equipment 9 arranged to treat liquid 4 flowing through the at least one treatment chamber 6. The liquid treatment apparatus 2 further comprises an air trap vessel 5 arranged upstream of the pumping device 3 and provided with an inlet connection 22 for receiving liquid 4 to be treated and a first outlet connection 24 for connection and liquid supply to said pumping device 3. The air trap vessel is further at least partly filled with a priming liquid 23 before the pumping device 3 is started in order to prevent air bubbles from being sucked into said pumping device 3, and thereby preventing any air bubbles from disturbing the function of the pump. The first outlet connection 24 is arranged below the surface of the priming liquid to ascertain that no air is sucked into the pump.

More specifically, the air trap vessel 5 is configured to damp forces of the liquid 4 thereby preventing air from entering into the pumping device 3. This is favourable in the manner that the entry of air bubbles into the pumping device will be avoided which may interfere with the treatment of the liquid.

In the schematic illustration in figure 6a the air trap vessel is arranged directly upstream the pumping device. It is naturally possible, within the scope of the claims, to arrange the treatment chamber(s) between the air trap vessel and the pumping device. Furthermore, it would also be possible to arrange the treatment chamber(s) upstream the air trap vessel and the pumping device. The important aspect is that the air trap vessel is arranged upstream the pumping device. As further shown in figure 6b, said first outlet connection 24 of the liquid treatment apparatus 2 is arranged below a surface of said priming liquid 23 when the air trap vessel 5 is at least partly filled with said priming liquid 23. More precisely, the opening within the vessel leading an outflow of the liquid to the first outlet connection 24 must be below the surface of the priming liquid 23.

Further, said inlet connection 22 of the liquid treatment apparatus 2 may be arranged above a surface of said priming liquid 23 when the air trap vessel 5 is at least partly filled with said priming liquid 23. The inlet connection 22 may be arranged at an upper part of said vessel 5 and the first outlet connection 24 may arranged at a lower part of the vessel 5 to facilitate flow of the liquid within and through the vessel 5. The important aspect is that no air is sucked into the pumping device, which is achieved by providing the outlet connection such that enough liquid is sucked in order to trap the air which is present upstream the air trap vessel.

With regard to requirements of the air trap vessel, it is preferably made from metal or plastic and is essentially air-tight.

In order to damp the forces, and thereby removing the air bubbles the incoming liquid flow may be directed against an inner wall of the vessel, or be directed against a damping plate or similar arranged within the vessel.

Naturally, the air trap vessel 5 has a volume which is larger than a volume of tubing 26 between a tank including the liquid 4 to be treated and the inlet connection 22.

Figure 7a-7g shows various views of an embodiment of an air trap vessel 5 according to the present invention. The air trap vessel 5 comprises a damping member 28 configured to damp and distribute the liquid 4 supplied via the inlet connection 22. As illustrated in figure 7f, the damping member 28 is arranged below the inlet connection 22 and above the outlet connection 24.

Figure 7d shows a cross-sectional view along line C-C in figure 7c, showing the damping member 28, wherein the damping member 28 is an essentially horizontally arranged damping plate 28.

In figure 7f, it is shown that the damping member 28 is arranged in an upper part of the air trap vessel 5, and attached to the inner walls 11 of the air trap vessel 5 facilitating for damping vertical forces of the liquid 4 in order to prevent air bubbles from being sucked out from the vessel 5 via the outlet connection 24 at the bottom of the vessel.

Figure 7d further shows that the damping plate 28 being provided with at least one opening 30 through which the liquid 4 may pass the plate 28. The liquid is then transported into and through the pumping device 3 and further into the treatment chamber 6. The at least one opening 30, in the illustrated embodiment three openings are provided, is preferably arranged along the periphery of the plate 28 in close proximity to the inner wall 11 of the air trap vessel 5. In the illustrated embodiment, the air trap vessel 5 is a cylinder having a circular cross-section.

Figure 8 shows a liquid treatment apparatus according to one embodiment of the invention, wherein the apparatus further comprises a tube bracket assembly 32. The tube bracket assembly 32 comprises two elongate tubes 34 arranged in parallel, an inlet tube 31 and an outlet tube 33, wherein the tube bracket assembly 32 is detachably attached to the apparatus 2. This is advantageous in that the tube bracket assembly is easily transported together with the apparatus, and is accessible when the apparatus should be installed. During use the tubes are vertically mounted within the tank including the liquid 4 to be treated. The tubes 34 are configured to be connected to the inlet connection 22 and a second outlet connection 35 of said liquid treatment apparatus 2 via flexible tubes (not shown).

Figure 9 shows the tube bracket assembly 32 in more detail, wherein the structure of the tubes 31, 33 and an attachment arrangement 37 is illustrated.

Accordingly, the tube bracket assembly 32 is preferably provided with an attachment arrangement 37 at one end. The attachment arrangement 37 is configured both to attach the tube bracket assembly 32 to the apparatus 2 during transportation, and also to facilitate easy mounting on an upper edge of a tank including liquid to be treated.

When mounted the connection pipes of the outlet tube 33 (for liquid flowing from the tank to the liquid treatment apparatus) and inlet tube 31 (for liquid flowing back to the tank) are above the liquid level. The lower end of the inlet tube 31 is provided with a horizontally directed outlet tube part 39 (see figure 9a). The outlet tube part 39 provides for an essentially horizontally directed liquid 4 flow of treated liquid 4 returning to the liquid apparatus. The inlet tube 33 is rotatable around a longitudinal axis A (essentially vertical) to achieve an optimal liquid flow within the tank e.g. directing returned liquid away from the opening of the outlet tube 31 and also with regard to mixing aspects. Thus, the rationale behind enabling rotation of the inlet tube 33 is to be able to direct the inlet flow in an optimal direction.

Figure 8 shows an embodiment of the invention wherein the apparatus 2 has a modular configuration or design and comprises a mounting socket 38 on which said pumping device 3, vessel 5 and treatment chamber 6 are mounted. The module arrangement makes the production cheaper in that different models of the product essentially are based upon the same components, with only minor differences, e.g. the number of treatment chambers. One over-all important aspect is the small foot-print. The foot-print, i.e. the floor area covered by the product, is a half standard pallet. The lower console has a height and a structure enabling for an operator to stand on the upper surface and easily reach the upper part of the product, e.g. when changing UV-lamp.

The inlet connection 22 and second outlet connection 35 of the liquid treatment apparatus 2 may be vertically arranged such that the connection openings 36 are directed upwards, which is clearly illustrated on figures 4 and 5.

The present invention is not limited to the above-described preferred embodiments.

Various alternatives, modifications and equivalents may be used. Therefore, the above embodiments should not be taken as limiting the scope of the invention, which is defined by the appending claims.