Patents by Inventor Cristian Pantea

Cristian Pantea has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Publication number: 20210096109
    Abstract: Described are an apparatus, computer program product, and associated methods for shaped waveform acoustic interrogation of substances and materials to determine one or more properties of the materials or substances. In some embodiments, a shaped waveform is formed by summing two or more different waveforms and an acoustic wave is generated according to the shaped waveform. The acoustic wave is transmitted by one or more transmitting transducers through the substance or material and received by one or more receiving transducers. The shaped waveform acoustic wave can have a duration or a period that is less than about 20 ?s and can comprise predetermined frequency content. Characteristics of the shaped waveform acoustic wave, as received at the receiving transducer(s), including characteristics such as amplitude, frequency, time of flight, etc., can be associated with said one or more properties of the substance or material to provide for real-time monitoring of these properties.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 28, 2020
    Publication date: April 1, 2021
    Inventors: Dipen N. SINHA, Cristian PANTEA
  • Patent number: 10908131
    Abstract: Apparatus and methods for the measurement of gas volume fraction of produced oil are described. A first method measures the response of a pipe containing the produced oil excited by a source of vibration in the form of an acoustic frequency chirp containing a linearly varying range of frequencies in the tens of kilohertz range encompassing at least one resonant mode of the pipe. As the gas volume fraction increases, the location of the peak maximum of the measured frequency spectrum responsive to the excitation increases in frequency, and the height of the peak maximum increases, thereby permitting a linear calibration curve to be obtained. A second method measures the response of a pipe containing the produced oil to excitation by a continuous source of vibration having a chosen frequency above those which excite flexural vibrations in the pipe and simultaneously excite acoustic waves in the fluid contained in the pipe, known as the coincidence frequency.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 4, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 2, 2021
    Assignee: TRIAD NATIONAL SECURITY, LLC
    Inventors: Dipen N. Sinha, Anirban Chaudhuri, Cristian Pantea
  • Patent number: 10887682
    Abstract: Acoustic signal sources include acoustic resonators that include acoustic nonlinear materials. Acoustic signals at higher frequencies are mixed in the nonlinear materials to produce a lower frequency acoustic signal. Resonance provides increased efficiency in producing acoustic signals at difference frequencies corresponding to resonance frequencies. Higher frequency acoustic signals used in nonlinear mixing are preferably at frequencies corresponding to resonance frequencies as well.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 2018
    Date of Patent: January 5, 2021
    Assignee: Triad National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Cristian Pantea, Dipen N. Sinha
  • Patent number: 10794865
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for the separation of an oil-water mixture into its components are described. An acoustic radiation force moves oil droplets to the nodes of an acoustic standing wave generated in a vertical column containing the oil-water mixture. Once the droplets are sufficiently close together, attractive forces become dominant and the droplets may coalesce to form larger droplets, which have greater buoyancy, and separation of the mixture into a layer of oil and a layer of water occurs, not possible by simple gravitational separation. Acoustically-driven oil-water separation may be used for water-cut measurements in oil production wells, since separation of the oil from the water permits accurate sound speed measurements to be made for both the oil and the water, thereby allowing frequent in situ calibrations of the apparatus to determine whether sound speed measurements on the mixture are accurate in the event that one or both of the mixture constituents is changing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 1, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 6, 2020
    Assignee: Triad National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Dipen N. Sinha, Cristian Pantea
  • Patent number: 10605640
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for real-time visualization of particulate matter suspended in a static or flowing fluid and fluid flow patterns in a pipe, tube, conduit, or other container, are described. Ultrasonic scanning and detection of scattered sound from the particles in the fluid create a real-time image of the particles, or of flow patterns in the liquid. A mechanical wobbler directs a piezoelectric transducer over a chosen angle in an oscillatory manner. The transducer is operated in a pulse-echo mode wherein the same transducer detects the return signal from the target region through which particles are passing and/or a flow is present. The pulse-echo measurements are made rapidly and continuously during a single sweep of the transducer over the chosen angle. Received signals are processed in the ultrasound scanner electronics module and displayed as an image in real-time.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 6, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2020
    Assignee: Triad National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Dipen N. Sinha, Curtis F. Osterhoudt, Cristian Pantea
  • Patent number: 10502648
    Abstract: A pressure sensor and a method of measuring pressure with the pressure sensor, based on measuring the effect of pressure loads on the acoustic resonance mode frequencies of a spherical core (e.g., a hollow sphere). The pressure sensor includes a transmitter configured to transmit vibrational signals to a sphere, and a receiver on the opposite side of the spherical core that is configured to receive vibrational signals from the spherical core. According to the method of measuring pressure with this sensor, the spherical core exhibits a pressure-dependent resonance response that can be monitored utilizing a frequency response technique. Peak shifts observed under an unknown pressure load can be compared to a calibration of the spherical core under a series of known pressure loads to thereby determine the unknown pressure. The pressure sensor and method may be operated in real-time at very high temperatures and pressure, and may be used in borehole applications and in aggressive media.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2017
    Date of Patent: December 10, 2019
    Assignee: Triad National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Cristian Pantea, Dipen Sinha, Blake Sturtevant
  • Publication number: 20190242851
    Abstract: Methods for noninvasive determination of acoustical properties of flowing in pipes having a large ratio (>10) of pipe diameter to wall thickness, and in highly attenuating fluids are described. When vibrations are excited on the outer surface of the wall of a pipe, the resulting vibrations propagate directly through the wall In a normal direction and through the pipe wall as guided waves, appearing on the opposite side of the pipe. This dual path propagation through pipes, where guided waves take the circumferential path in the wall of the pipe and may interfere with the time of-flight measurement obtained from the direct path through the fluid, is at least In part resolved by subtracting the signal from the guided wave from the combined signal, thereby permitting improved observation of the direct path propagation through the fluid.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 20, 2017
    Publication date: August 8, 2019
    Inventors: Dipen N. Sinha, Cristian Pantea, Blake T. Sturtevant, Anirban Chaudhuri
  • Patent number: 10352907
    Abstract: A compact, rugged and portable measurement cell design for the determination of sound speed in fluids at temperatures up to 250° C. and pressures up to 3,000 psi is described. Swept Frequency Acoustic Interferometry measurement for liquid sound speed determinations in liquids up to 250° C. is of both fundamental interest, as in the case of basic equations of state, and applied interest, such as for characterizing geothermal or petroleum down hole environments. Representative sound speeds for water, as a function of temperature and pressure, are in agreement with an internationally accepted standard for the sound speed of water.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 26, 2014
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2019
    Assignee: Los Alamos National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Blake T. Sturtevant, Cristian Pantea, Dipen N. Sinha
  • Patent number: 10331025
    Abstract: The present invention is a method and an apparatus that can image objects immersed in optically opaque fluids using ultrasound in a confined space and in a harsh environment. If the fluid is not highly attenuating at frequencies above 1 MHz, where commercial ultrasound scanners are available, such scanners can be adapted for imaging in these fluids. In the case of highly attenuating fluids, such as drilling mud, then a low frequency collimated sound source is used.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 24, 2013
    Date of Patent: June 25, 2019
    Assignee: Los Alamos National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Dipen N. Sinha, Curtis F. Osterhoudt, Cristian Pantea
  • Patent number: 10309932
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for noninvasively monitoring steam quality and flow and in pipes or conduits bearing flowing steam, are described. By measuring the acoustic vibrations generated in steam-carrying conduits by the flowing steam either by direct contact with the pipe or remotely thereto, converting the measured acoustic vibrations into a frequency spectrum characteristic of the natural resonance vibrations of the pipe, and monitoring the amplitude and/or the frequency of one or more chosen resonance frequencies, changes in the steam quality in the pipe are determined. The steam flow rate and the steam quality are inversely related, and changes in the steam flow rate are calculated from changes in the steam quality once suitable calibration curves are obtained.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 15, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 4, 2019
    Assignee: Los Alamos National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Dipen N. Sinha, Cristian Pantea
  • Patent number: 10088590
    Abstract: Methods for real-time, continuous measurements of the composition and other properties of individual phases of petroleum, water and gas mixtures during the oil production process, without requiring test separators, test lines, with associated valving and instrumentation, are described. Embodiments of the present invention direct ultrasonic sound transmission through a flowing multiphase fluid in three frequency ranges: low frequencies, gas bubble resonance frequencies, and high frequencies, wherein certain sound propagation measurements, including sound speed, sound attenuation and sound scattering, are made in one or more of the three separate frequency regions, from which the multiphase composition and other properties are extracted without having to separate the multiphase fluid or the gas from the flowing stream.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 4, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 2, 2018
    Assignee: Los Alamos National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Dipen N. Sinha, Anirban Chaudhuri, Cristian Pantea
  • Publication number: 20180120269
    Abstract: Apparatus and methods for the measurement of gas volume fraction of produced oil are described. A first method measures the response of a pipe containing the produced oil excited by a source of vibration in the form of an acoustic frequency chirp containing a linearly varying range of frequencies in the tens of kilohertz range encompassing at least one resonant mode of the pipe. As the gas volume fraction increases, the location of the peak maximum of the measured frequency spectrum responsive to the excitation increases in frequency, and the height of the peak maximum increases, thereby permitting a linear calibration curve to be obtained. A second method measures the response of a pipe containing the produced oil to excitation by a continuous source of vibration having a chosen frequency above those which excite flexural vibrations in the pipe and simultaneously excite acoustic waves in the fluid contained in the pipe, known as the coincidence frequency.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 4, 2016
    Publication date: May 3, 2018
    Applicant: Los Alamos National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Dipen N. Sinha, Anirban Chaudhuri, Cristian Pantea
  • Publication number: 20180088083
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for the separation of an oil-water mixture into its components are described. An acoustic radiation force moves oil droplets to the nodes of an acoustic standing wave generated in a vertical column containing the oil-water mixture. Once the droplets are sufficiently close together, attractive forces become dominant and the droplets may coalesce to form larger droplets, which have greater buoyancy, and separation of the mixture into a layer of oil and a layer of water occurs, not possible by simple gravitational separation. Acoustically-driven oil-water separation may be used for water-cut measurements in oil production wells, since separation of the oil from the water permits accurate sound speed measurements to be made for both the oil and the water, thereby allowing frequent in situ calibrations of the apparatus to determine whether sound speed measurements on the mixture are accurate in the event that one or both of the mixture constituents is changing.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 1, 2016
    Publication date: March 29, 2018
    Applicant: Los Alamos National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Dipen N. Sinha, Cristian Pantea
  • Patent number: 9843400
    Abstract: A passive, linear arrangement of a sonic crystal-based apparatus and method including a 1D sonic crystal, a nonlinear medium, and an acoustic low-pass filter, for permitting unidirectional broadband ultrasound propagation as a collimated beam for underwater, air or other fluid communication, are described. The signal to be transmitted is first used to modulate a high-frequency ultrasonic carrier wave which is directed into the sonic crystal side of the apparatus. The apparatus processes the modulated signal, whereby the original low-frequency signal exits the apparatus as a collimated beam on the side of the apparatus opposite the sonic crystal. The sonic crystal provides a bandpass acoustic filter through which the modulated high-frequency ultrasonic signal passes, and the nonlinear medium demodulates the modulated signal and recovers the low-frequency sound beam. The low-pass filter removes remaining high-frequency components, and contributes to the unidirectional property of the apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 6, 2015
    Date of Patent: December 12, 2017
    Assignee: U.S. Department of Energy
    Inventors: Dipen N. Sinha, Cristian Pantea
  • Publication number: 20170108471
    Abstract: A compact, rugged and portable measurement cell design for the determination of sound speed in fluids at temperatures up to 250° C. and pressures up to 3,000 psi is described. Swept Frequency Acoustic Interferometry measurement for liquid sound speed determinations in liquids up to 250° C. is of both fundamental interest, as in the case of basic equations of state, and applied interest, such as for characterizing geothermal or petroleum down hole environments. Representative sound speeds for water, as a function of temperature and pressure, are in agreement with an internationally accepted standard for the sound speed of water.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 26, 2014
    Publication date: April 20, 2017
    Applicant: Los Alamos National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Blake T. Sturtevant, Cristian Pantea, Dipen N. Sinha
  • Publication number: 20160356744
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for noninvasively monitoring steam quality and flow and in pipes or conduits bearing flowing steam, are described. By measuring the acoustic vibrations generated in steam-carrying conduits by the flowing steam either by direct contact with the pipe or remotely thereto, converting the measured acoustic vibrations into a frequency spectrum characteristic of the natural resonance vibrations of the pipe, and monitoring the amplitude and/or the frequency of one or more chosen resonance frequencies, changes in the steam quality in the pipe are determined. The steam flow rate and the steam quality are inversely related, and changes in the steam flow rate are calculated from changes in the steam quality once suitable calibration curves are obtained.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 15, 2016
    Publication date: December 8, 2016
    Applicant: Los Alamos National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Dipen N. Sinha, Cristian Pantea
  • Patent number: 9442094
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for noninvasively monitoring steam quality and flow and in pipes or conduits bearing flowing steam, are described. By measuring the acoustic vibrations generated in steam-carrying conduits by the flowing steam either by direct contact with the pipe or remotely thereto, converting the measured acoustic vibrations into a frequency spectrum characteristic of the natural resonance vibrations of the pipe, and monitoring the amplitude and/or the frequency of one or more chosen resonance frequencies, changes in the steam quality in the pipe are determined. The steam flow rate and the steam quality are inversely related, and changes in the steam flow rate are calculated from changes in the steam quality once suitable calibration curves are obtained.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 7, 2012
    Date of Patent: September 13, 2016
    Assignee: Los Alamos National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Dipen N. Sinha, Cristian Pantea
  • Patent number: 9354346
    Abstract: An acoustic source for generating an acoustic beam includes a housing; a plurality of spaced apart piezo-electric layers disposed within the housing; and a non-linear medium filling between the plurality of layers. Each of the plurality of piezoelectric layers is configured to generate an acoustic wave. The non-linear medium and the plurality of piezo-electric material layers have a matching impedance so as to enhance a transmission of the acoustic wave generated by each of plurality of layers through the remaining plurality of layers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 31, 2016
    Assignees: LOS ALAMOS NATIONAL SECURITY, LLC, CHEVRON U.S.A. INC.
    Inventors: Cung Khac Vu, Dipen N. Sinha, Cristian Pantea
  • Publication number: 20160041286
    Abstract: Methods for real-time, continuous measurements of the composition and other properties of individual phases of petroleum, water and gas mixtures during the oil production process, without requiring test separators, test lines, with associated valving and instrumentation, are described. Embodiments of the present invention direct ultrasonic sound transmission through a flowing multiphase fluid in three frequency ranges: low frequencies, gas bubble resonance frequencies, and high frequencies, wherein certain sound propagation measurements, including sound speed, sound attenuation and sound scattering, are made in one or more of the three separate frequency regions, from which the multiphase composition and other properties are extracted without having to separate the multiphase fluid or the gas from the flowing stream.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 4, 2014
    Publication date: February 11, 2016
    Inventors: Dipen N. Sinha, Anirban Chaudhuri, Cristian Pantea
  • Publication number: 20160013871
    Abstract: A passive, linear arrangement of a sonic crystal-based apparatus and method including a 1D sonic crystal, a nonlinear medium, and an acoustic low-pass filter, for permitting unidirectional broadband ultrasound propagation as a collimated beam for underwater, air or other fluid communication, are described. The signal to be transmitted is first used to modulate a high-frequency ultrasonic carrier wave which is directed into the sonic crystal side of the apparatus. The apparatus processes the modulated signal, whereby the original low-frequency signal exits the apparatus as a collimated beam on the side of the apparatus opposite the sonic crystal. The sonic crystal provides a bandpass acoustic filter through which the modulated high-frequency ultrasonic signal passes, and the nonlinear medium demodulates the modulated signal and recovers the low-frequency sound beam. The low-pass filter removes remaining high-frequency components, and contributes to the unidirectional property of the apparatus.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 6, 2015
    Publication date: January 14, 2016
    Inventors: Dipen N. Sinha, Cristian Pantea