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Title:
SOLAR POWERED COLD STORAGE SYSTEM
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2021/001852
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
Disclosed herein is a solar powered cold storage system for providing refrigeration of a container (112) and its contents which comprises one or more solar panel (102) with photovoltaic modules, where the panel (102) comprises a thermal plate (302) directly attached to the back of the solar panel (102), wherein the plate (302) has a set of tubes (304) to carry a cold fluid from a pump located along with a main chilling device of the system to provide cooling effect to the container (112) and to maintain uniform temperature of the panels. The system further includes a control system (104) comprising battery (106) and capacitor (108) bank. The system does not require separate cooling device to maintain or lower the temperature of the panels (102) and this increases the overall efficiency and provides longevity of the photovoltaic panels (102) and the battery (106) thus reducing operational costs.

Inventors:
NUTULAPATI RAVIKUMAR (IN)
MADIRAJU SRINIVASA SHANKARA PRASAD (IN)
Application Number:
IN2020/050574
Publication Date:
January 07, 2021
Filing Date:
July 02, 2020
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
NUTULAPATI RAVIKUMAR (IN)
MADIRAJU SRINIVASA SHANKARA PRASAD (IN)
International Classes:
H01L31/052; F25B27/00; H02S40/42
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
PUTHRAN, Elizabeth (IN)
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Claims:
/ We Claim:

1. A solar powered cold storage system for refrigerating a container (112), comprising:

a plurality of solar panels (102) with photovoltaic modules to generate direct current, wherein each of the plurality of solar panels (102) comprises:

a. a thermal plate (302) directly attached to the base of the solar panel (102); b. a set of tubes (304) attached to the thermal plate (302); and c. a pump, for the plurality of solar panels (102), located along with a main chilling device of the system to pump refrigerant or cooling fluid through the set of tubes (304);

wherein a cooling system (110) cools the container (112) and the solar panels

(102).

2. The system as claimed in claim 1, wherein the solar panels (102) are installed either on top of the container (112) or any other suitable location on the container (112).

3. The system as claimed in claim 1, wherein the pump, pumps the refrigerant or cold fluid from a compressor located at the base station to the set of tubes (304) attached to the thermal plate (302).

4. The system as claimed in claim 1 , comprises

a control system (104) to control the power distribution to the cold storage system (110) and the maintenance of optimum temperature in the container (112) and the solar panels (102); and

inbuilt sensors that triggers alarms electronically upon increase in temperature inside the container (112).

5. The system as claimed in claim 4, wherein the control system (104) comprises a capacitor bank (108) and a battery bank (106).

6. The system as claimed in claim 5, wherein the capacitor bank (108) provides starting current to the system.

7. The system as claimed in claim 5, wherein the battery bank (106) provides operating current to the system.

Description:
SOLAR POWERED COLD STORAGE SYSTEM

FIELD OF THE INVENTION:

The present invention generally relates to solar-powered cold storage systems. More particularly, it relates to the cold storage system for providing a cooling mechanism to both solar panels and a cold storage container.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION:

Cold storage systems and containers are commonly used in many applications that require refrigeration or cooling a space, substance, or contents within it to lower and/or maintain its temperature below the ambient one. Typically, cold storage systems like refrigerators are used in cooling and storing perishable items like food, fruits, vegetables, beverages etc., at a cold temperature which in turn makes the perishable items to stay fresh for a longer period of time.

Conventionally, the cold storage systems are operated using non-renewable energy sources as it receives power from an electric grid. However, the grid is unreliable because, a sudden breakdown or failure in any part of the grid interrupts the supply of electricity which in turn deteriorate the stored items in the cold storage systems.

Prior art attempts to solve the aforementioned discomforts in the cold storage systems by providing a renewable energy such as solar energy. The solar panels that harvest solar energy have plurality of photovoltaic cells that converts the received sunlight into electric energy. Since the panels needs to be exposed to the sun for generating electricity, they become hot and thus operate less efficiently. Also, it has been found that the efficiency of the cold storage system is related to the temperature of the photovoltaic panels and suitable cooling mechanism needs to be implemented for increasing overall efficiency of the system. Few apparatus and systems for cooling solar panels in order to increase the efficiency of the cold storage system are provided here as prior art for the presently disclosed subject matter.

Chinese Patent Application Number 109217812 to Jiang Ruiqi et.al, entitled“Photovoltaic module cooling device, photovoltaic module and photovoltaic power generation system“relates to a cooling device for a photovoltaic module in which a cold source is connected to the back plate of the photovoltaic module for reducing the temperature of the photovoltaic component.

United States Patent Number 10050584 to Wilbert Yuque entitled“Cooling apparatus for solar panels” relates to a solar panel cooling apparatus and system where a shroud is used to couple the cooling system to the back side of the solar panel. The shroud includes a nozzle for spraying cooling fluid on the panel.

United States Patent Number 6453693 to Michael K. Ewert et.al, entitled“Solar powered refrigeration system” relates to a solar powered vapor compression refrigeration system where the capacitor is used to provide current during compressor start-up and an alternative power source such as battery is also implemented in the system.

However, the above-mentioned systems and apparatus do not disclose a common mechanism for cooling the photovoltaic modules / solar panels and for refrigeration which ensure higher efficiency of the system and longevity of the equipment / devices.

Hence, there is a need for a solar-powered cold storage system which provides self-cooling of solar panels by utilizing the cooling effect from the cold storage system and to increase the overall efficiency of the system and longevity of the equipment.

OBJECTS OF THE INVENTION:

The primary object of the present invention is to increase the overall efficiency of solar-powered cold storage system using specially adapted photovoltaic modules. Another object of the present invention is to maintain the temperature of photovoltaic panels by storing the generated energy in electric and electronic storage systems.

Still another object of the present invention is to extend the life of both the photovoltaic panels and the electronic storage systems and thereby to create minimal impact on the environment.

Yet another object of the present invention is to provide a cooling mechanism to both the cold storage container and the photovoltaic modules.

SUMMARY:

The present invention discloses a solar powered cold storage system for providing cooling mechanism / refrigeration to a container and for maintaining the temperature of specially adapted photovoltaic modules.

According to the present invention, the solar powered cold storage system for providing refrigeration of a container and its contents which comprises one or more solar panels with photovoltaic modules, where the panel comprises a thermal plate directly attached to the back of the solar panel, wherein the plate has a set of tubes to carry a cold fluid from a pump located along with a main chilling device of the system to provide cooling effect to the container and to maintain uniform temperature of the panels.

Further, the specially adapted / designed photovoltaic panels has a thermally insular pipe system that carries the require refrigerant in its coils. These coils carry pumped in refrigerant from the compressor system located at a base station.

In accordance with the present invention, the system further comprises an electric and electronic storage such as a battery and a capacitor storage banks respectively for providing current to the system. The refrigeration system needs high starting current which is drawn from the capacitor storage bank and the operating current is drawn from the battery bank thereby increasing the efficiency of the system.

In the present invention, the solar panels are installed either on top of the containerized cold storage or any other such suitable location to generate direct current when sunlight fall on them. The efficiency of this generation depends on the panel temperature in an inverse manner. The proposed system plans to lower the temperature using the extra power that is available after consumption by the main chilling device of the cold storage that it serves.

Thus, the cooling effect / mechanism provided to both the cold storage container and the solar panels through the control system and specially designed photovoltaic modules, maintains uniform temperature of the panels and thereby ensures higher efficiency of the system.

These objects, features and advantages of the invention will become more evident from the following detailed description when taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS:

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

FIG. 1 illustrates a block diagram of the solar powered cold storage system as an embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 2 illustrates the cold storage system equipped with solar panels and control system; and

FIG. 3A & 3B illustrates the rear view and side view of solar panel cooling mechanism respectively. DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION:

Disclosed herein is a solar powered cold storage system for providing refrigeration to a container and for maintaining the temperature of specially adapted photovoltaic modules.

According to the present invention, the solar powered cold storage system for providing refrigeration of a container and its contents which comprises one or more solar panels to generate direct current when sunlight falls on the panels with photovoltaic modules, where the panel comprises a thermal plate directly attached to the back of the solar panel, wherein the plate has a set of tubes to carry a cold fluid from a pump located along with a main chilling device of the system to provide cooling effect to the container and to maintain uniform temperature of the panels.

Further, the cold storage system is powered by self-cooling solar photovoltaic modules and comprises an electric and electronic storage such as a battery and a capacitor storage banks are used respectively for providing current to the system.

Referring to FIG. 1, the block diagram of the disclosed system is shown where the cooling effect / mechanism / system provided to both the cold storage container (112) and the solar panels (102) through the control system (104). The specially designed mechanism maintains uniform temperature of the photovoltaic modules (102) and thereby ensures higher efficiency of the system.

In the present invention, the solar panels are (102) installed either on top of the containerized cold storage (112) or any other such suitable location to generate direct current when sunlight fall on them as shown in FIG. 2. Typically, the solar panel (102) contains a laminate that is framed using aluminium extrude. The laminate consists of layers of glass, solar cells that are stringed together, polymerized Ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) and a back sheet. The system comprises a specially adapted photovoltaic module for providing power to run the refrigeration system (110). The control system (104) is the heart of the solar panel/ charging apparatus that intelligently connects to and draws power from the battery (106) and the capacitor (108) storage using a proprietary algorithm. The capacitor (108) is charged and discharged rapidly at infinite times. Further, since the refrigeration system (110) needs high current for its operation, this high starting current is drawn from the capacitor storage (108) and operating current from the battery bank (106).

Referring to FIG. 3A & 3B, it illustrates the side view and rear view of cooling mechanism of the solar panels (102). The cooling mechanism has a special apparatus that is designed in a way that it consists of a thermal plate (302) attached to the back of the solar panel (102). The system has a built in thermally insular pipe that carries the required refrigerant or cold fluid in the coils and the pump, pumps the refrigerant or cold fluid from the compressor located at the base station of a cold storage container / refrigeration unit. The refrigerant or cold fluid enters through a coolant inlet (306) and flows through the set of tubes (304) attached to the thermal plate (302) and exits through a coolant exit (308). Further, the thermal plate (302) of the cooling mechanism acts as a heat exchanger which transfers the heat from the solar panel (102).

When the sunlight falls on the solar panel (102), the sunlight is converted into an electrical energy and direct current is generated which is used for powering the refrigeration system (110).

In an embodiment of the present invention, the system has inbuilt sensors that triggers alarms electronically upon increase in inside temperature and gives an immediate notification as faults.

Further, in an embodiment, the cooling requirements are pre-programmed to maintain right / optimum temperature and to optimize the power consumption.

According to the present invention the temperature of the panel (102) is inversely related to the efficiency of the system. Further, the system lowers the temperature using the extra / remaining power that is available after consumption by the main chilling system of the cold storage that it serves thus eliminating the need for separate cooling device. The solar panel (102) generates electric current to run the main refrigeration system (110) as well as to cool the solar panel (102). In addition, it also charges the battery (106) and capacitor (108) for providing current to efficiently operate the system.

The cold storage system of the present invention has the following advantages including, but not limiting to:

• Enhances the overall efficiency of the system

• Provides Longevity of the panels and batteries

• Reduces the impact on environment

• Lowers the operational costs

• Reduces the underutilization of the panels

• Enhances the power generation

While the foregoing written description of the invention enables one of ordinary skill to make and use what is considered presently to be the best mode thereof those of ordinary skill will understand and appreciate the existence of variations, combinations, and equivalents of the specific embodiment, method, and examples herein. The invention should therefore not be limited by the above described embodiment, method, and examples, but by all embodiments and methods within the scope and spirit of the invention as claimed.