Fin Spacing On An Evaporative Atmospheric Water Condenser

An improvement in atmospheric evaporative water condenser is disclosed. The apparatus includes tubes through which a refrigerant would pass and a variety of generally rectangular or circular fins are in contact with the tubes which causes the fins to cool. This permits water in its vapor form which exists in atmospheric air to condense on the fins and the condensate is collected as potable water. The improvement includes a plurality of different width spacers which are toleranced to be placed over the tubes and secured in desired positions. The fins are placed between the spacers allowing different fin spacing configurations on the apparatus. The different fin configurations optimize airflow for different coil and fin sections and help prevent water flooding or frost buildup on the fins which impair efficiency. Also, the spacers allow the fins to be placed far enough apart that non-frozen condensate does not block the air flow through the space between the fins.

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Description

RELATED PATENT APPLICATIONS

This utility patent application claims priority from Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 61/788,718 filed on Mar. 15, 2013 titled “Fin Spacing on an Evaporative Atmospheric Water Condenser”, Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 61/789,372 filed on Mar. 15, 2013, titled “Refrigerant Flow Control For an Evaporative Atmospheric Water Condenser”, and Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 61/831,231 filed on Jun. 5, 2013 titled “Refrigerant Flow Control For an Evaporative Atmospheric Water Condenser” all of which are incorporated herein in their entirety.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Devices which extract water from the atmosphere employ a refrigerant which is pumped through a tortuous pipe with a plurality of fins affixed to the pipe. These fins will cool by action of the refrigerant and water would condense on the fin surface and be collected for use. The efficiency of such devices which remove water from the air is impaired when the water freezes on the fin surfaces. Additionally, the efficiency of such devices is also impaired when water which condensed on two adjacent fins blocks the air pathway between those two fins. Just as the water condensate could freeze or frost on a plurality of fin surfaces, so could non-frozen water condensate block the air pathway between a plurality of fin surfaces.

It is desirable to maintain an appropriate temperature on the fin surface to permit the water to condense out of the air on to the fin surface without freezing or blocking the inter-fin area with unfrozen water condensate.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Currently, evaporators are fabricated with a specified fins per inch characteristic such as 6 fins per inch, 8 fins per inch or 12 fins per inch etc. The current invention is directed to fin spacing where a certain section of the evaporator has (for example) 6 fins per inch and another section 12 fins per inch. In order to have different fin spacing in different portions of the evaporator, spacers are introduced on the evaporator coils that allows changing fin spacing (fins per inch or fins per centimeter). This has the effect of altering the overall heat transfer coefficient of the system. Additionally, it permits a continuous air flow between the fins.

The performance of any heat exchanger is a function of the coil design and the material and the geometry and spacing of fins. Fins are used to extend the surface available for heat transfer, and their aspect ratio, material, and attachment to coils affects their effectiveness. An important factor in the design of heat exchangers is the control of the temperature differential between the coil and the fin surface. The heat flow between the air and the fin surface is affected by the temperature at the coils and along the fins, as well as the pressure drop that is the function of the spacing between the fins.

One of the factors that needs to be considered specifically for water generating evaporator coils is the determination of optimum distance between fins. The fin spacing is a well understood science for cooling evaporator coils where some water condensation is expected and the flow of the water droplets and even water films are well managed.

Water generating coils however have to be optimized because drop wise condensation has a different heat transfer coefficient than film wise or falling film condensation. Too little water on the fins indicates that condensation has not yet been initiated. This can be caused by insufficient heat transfer, or insufficient heat transfer prior to air passing over a specific fin, or if the temperature of the fin surface is higher than the dew point temperature of the moist air. Too much water on the fin introduces an extra layer of heat resistance between the air and the fins and subsequently to the refrigerant. Water droplets on the fins may in some cases induce further condensation as moisture needs seed points of initiation for condensation, in the same way that rain is initiated. If the water film gets too thick and does not allow enough heat flow, the water layers nearest to the coils may freeze. Icing can introduce a greater resistance to heat flow and impede water generation.

The main purpose of fabricating fins that are especially designed for water makers is to assure that water generated between the fins does not impede airflow and therefore the performance of the heat exchanger. Current state of the art for water generating evaporator fins is to vary the fin profile, or use undulating fins, or fins with holes cut out to allow water to pass through. While each of these designs offers some minor improvements, they also have disadvantages. For example the fins with holes are clearly inferior in overall heat transfer conduction. Undulating fins may in fact slow down the airflow or create turbulent areas for condensation, but unless optimized, they can also increase airflow resistance which is detrimental.

Properly spaced fins that are optimized for each section of the evaporator are easy to analyze and thus optimize through simulations of computational fluid models. In the approach presented here, the use of fin spacers can also be applied to any fin design.

To provide the ideal flow regimes and fin surface temperatures at different sections of an evaporator coil, a novel method of fin fabrication is utilized. Although evaporator fins on coils are currently fabricated utilizing different techniques, they share a common modality which would ensure that the fins are tightly attached to the coils so that contact resistance is minimized.

Layers of fin material are consecutively lowered on a set of U-shaped coil columns. The fin layers have circular holes made through them conforming to the dimensions of the coil columns and include a dimple which is also defined as an integral-to-fin spacer around the perimeter of the holes. This dimple has a length and when the plurality of fins are placed over the coil columns, the fins abut each of the dimples which forms an identical space between adjacent fins throughout the apparatus. The thickness of the dimples are identical in each fin, thus the spacing is equal to the sum of the lengths of the 2 adjacent fin dimples, also defined as integral to fin spacers. That length is the distance or spacing between each adjacent fin element in some prior art devices. A spacer may be defined as a collar that is added between adjacent fins, or the integral-to-fin space (or dimple) that can be the result of a hole punch that forms the round holes or apertures through which the coils pass, or a combination of the non-integral collar and the integral-to-fin spacer.

The invention comprises spacers of different widths which are placed over the coil columns. Different width spacers may be used on different columns in the apparatus. The amount of space between a fin on a single coil column caused by the spacers being intermediate two fins would modulate the heat transfer characteristics in different sections of the coil. To create the variation in spacing between fins, spacers can also be introduced between fin sheets that can vary from section to section of the apparatus. Additionally, different width spacers may be placed on different coil columns. The coil columns are parallel to each other as are the fins. Many fin variations are possible. For instance, in the same apparatus, some fins may still be spaced by the dimple, while others fins may be spaced by a spacer of a first width, and still other fins be spaced by a spacer having a third width. The use of spacers permits fins to be staggered and inter-spaced in the space between the parallel coil columns. Spacers may be used between some of the fins on a first coil while different sized spacers may be used on fins on a second coil, or even a third coil. A large number of fin configurations therefore may be employed, allowing a great variation in the number of different atmospheric water condenser devices.

The invention will be better understood by the following drawing figures and their descriptions. The drawing figures shown herein are but a fraction of the possible combinations of fin configurations and spacers possible. The atmospheric water condenser devices with variants not shown are considered to be in the scope of the invention. Additionally, the instant invention will have application in devices which employ fins in such engineering applications such as heat transfer. Such applications are also considered within the scope of this application.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a view of a first embodiment of a three column coil evaporator of a water generating apparatus showing a first set of wider spacers placed on the rear refrigerant coil, and a second set of smaller width spacers placed on the center and front refrigerant coils, having two different configuration of fins placed on various refrigerant coils, and a first fin configuration which is adapted to be mounted on all three coils and a second fin configuration which is adapted to be mounted on the center refrigeration coil and the front refrigeration coil.

FIG. 2 a view of a second embodiment of a three column coil evaporator of a water generating apparatus showing a first set of wider spacers placed on the rear refrigerant coil, and a second set of smaller width spacers placed on the front refrigerant coil, having two different configuration of fins placed on various refrigerant coils, and a first fin configuration which is adapted to be mounted on all three coils and a second fin configuration which is adapted to be mounted on the center refrigeration coil and the front refrigeration coil.

FIG. 3 is a partial cutaway view of an embodiment of a three column coil evaporator of a water generating apparatus showing the tortuous path of the refrigerant pipes as they would pass through the different fin configurations, showing approximately twice as many fins on the front of the evaporator than the rear of the evaporator due to the different configuration of fins deployed adjacent different sized spacers used on the exterior of the refrigerant pipes intermediate the fins. The refrigerant pipes are not necessarily to size scale.

FIG. 4 is a view of a third embodiment of a three column coil evaporator of a water generating apparatus showing a first set of wider spacers placed on the rear refrigerant coil, and a second set of smaller width spacers placed on the center refrigerant coil, and a third set of the same sized smaller width spacers on the front refrigerant coil, and a first fin configuration which is adapted to be mounted on all three refrigeration coils and a second fin configuration which is adapted to be mounted on the center refrigeration coil and the front refrigeration coil.

FIG. 5 is a view of a fourth embodiment of a three column coil evaporator of a water generating apparatus showing a first set of wider spacers and a second set of double wide spacers placed on the rear refrigerant coil, and a second set of smaller width spacers placed on the center refrigerant coil, and a third set of smaller width spacers on the front refrigerant coil, and a first fin configuration which is adapted to be mounted on all three coils and a second fin configuration which is adapted to be mounted on the center refrigeration coil and the front refrigeration coil.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

Referring to FIG. 1, a view of a first embodiment of a three column coil evaporator for a water generating apparatus 10 is shown. There are three serpentine refrigerant coils in which the refrigerant enters on the right and flows downward to three refrigerant exits (best seen in FIG. 3). The rear refrigerant coil 50, the center refrigerant coil 60 and the front refrigerant coil 70 are shown from the bottom of FIG. 1. Initially, as the refrigerant enters the rear refrigerant coil 50, the center refrigerant coil 60 and the front refrigerant coil 70, it is in its coldest condition. Finally, as the refrigerant exits the rear refrigerant coil 50, the center refrigerant coil 60 and the front refrigerant coil 70, it is in its warmest condition. Conventional methods are employed to cool the refrigerant in these closed loop refrigerant coils.

Surrounding the rear refrigerant coil 50, the center refrigerant coil 60 and the front refrigerant coil 70 is a plurality of fins, individually numbered fin elements 1 through 12. Each one of these fins (1-12) is rectangular, and have apertures located along their entire length, to allow rear refrigerant coil 50, the center refrigerant coil 60 and the front refrigerant coil 70, each following their tortuous serpentine path to the refrigerant exit, to pass through each of the fins (1-12) many times as will be clearly seen in FIG. 3.

Fins 1-12 are just a portion of the number of fins that would be employed in the apparatus 10, and that will also be seen more clearly in FIG. 3.

Rear refrigerant coil 50 has three spacers shown placed along its length, spacer 72, spacer 74, and spacer 76. Spacer 72 is located at the furthest left position possible on the rear refrigerant coil 50. These are called the first spacers or collars (72,74, 76).

Front refrigerant coil 70 has three spacers shown placed along its length, spacer 78, spacer 80 and spacer 82. Spacer 78 is located at the furthest left position possible on the bottom refrigerant coil 70. These are called the second spacers or collars (78,80,82).

First spacers (72,74,76) are twice as wide as second spacers (78,80,82). Also, the number of spacers shown in the FIG. 1 are just a portion of the number required for apparatus 10. The fin spacer arrangement shown in FIG. 1 would extend all the way along the horizontal portions of the refrigerant coils (50 and 60). The fin arrangement would extend all the way along the refrigerant This will be more clearly shown in FIG. 3.

In FIG. 1 there are shown two groups of fins. The first group of fins are fins 1-12. The second group of fins are fins 13-24.

The first group of fins 1-12 are wide enough and have apertures along their entire length to allow them to be placed over all three refrigerant coils (50,60,70).

The second group of fins are wide enough and have apertures along their entire length to allow them to be placed over only the center refrigerant coil 60 and the front refrigerant coil 70. This includes fins 13-24.

The first group of fins extends the entire width of the horizontal portion of the three coils (50,60,70). The second group of fins extends the entire width of the horizontal portion of the central refrigerant coil 60 and the front refrigerant coil 70. The second group of fins stops at a location intermediate the center refrigerant coil 60 and the rear refrigerant coil 50. Fin groups 1 and 2 extend beyond rear refrigerant coil 50 and beyond front refrigerant coil 70.

With respect to the configuration of the first group of fins, fin 1 is immediately to right of spacer 72. Fin 4 is immediately to the left of spacer 74. Fin 5 is immediately to the right of spacer 74. Fin 8 is immediately to the left of spacer 76. Fin 9 is immediately to the right of spacer 76. All of these spacers (72, 74, and 76) are located on the rear refrigerant coil 50. Additionally, fin 4 is immediately to the left of spacer 80. Fin 8 is immediately to the left of spacer 82. Spacers (80,82) are located on the front refrigerant coil 70.

The width of the first spacers (72,74,76) are the same. This width is specific and may vary for various situations. In the embodiment of FIG. 1 the width of first spacers (72,74,76) is X inches. Additional spacers of this size will be placed according to the pattern shown in FIG. 1 employing fins from the first group of fins for the horizontal length of rear refrigerant coil 50.

The width of the second spacers (78,80,90) are the same. This width is specific and may vary for various situations. In the embodiment of FIG. 1, the width of the second spacers (78,80,90) is ½ X inches. Additional spacers of this size will be placed according to the pattern shown in FIG. 1 employing fins from the second group of fins for the horizontal length of front refrigerant coil 70.

Fin 1 abuts the right side of spacer 72. Fin 4 and fin 5 abut spacer 74. Fin 8 and fin 9 abut spacer 76. Fin 2 and fin 3 are X inches apart, fin 2 is X inches from spacer 72 and fin 1. Fin 3 is X inches from spacer 74 and fin 4. Fin 6 and fin 7 are X inches apart, fin 6 is X inches from spacer 74 and fin 5. Fin 7 is X inches from spacer 76. Fin 10 is X inches from spacer 76 and fin 9. Fin 11 is X inches from Fin 10. Fin 11 is X inches from fin 10. Immediately to the right of fin 12 would be another spacer identical to spacers (72,74, 76). Immediately to the right of the spacer located (but not shown) to the right of fin 12, would be another fin of the configuration of group 1 fins. This pattern repeats itself along the horizontal length of the rear refrigerant coil 50.

In FIG. 1, center refrigerant coil 60 has no spacer elements located thereon. However, all of the fins, 1-24 have apertures designed to fit over center refrigerant coil 60. This causes the fins which are from group 1 and group 2 to interdigitate in a fashion where there are twice the number of fins on the center refrigerant coil 60 and the front refrigerant coil 70 than there are on the rear refrigerant coil 50.

As noted, Fin groups 1 and 2 further extend downward below the bottom refrigerant coil 70. And as also noted the bottom refrigerant coil 70 has three spacers placed along its length, spacer 78, spacer 80 and spacer 82. Spacer 78 is located at the furthest left position possible on the bottom refrigerant coil 70.

Going from right to left on the bottom refrigerant coil 70, spacer 78 abuts fin 13. To the right of fin 13 is fin 1. To the right of fin 1 is fin 14. To the right of fin 14 is fin 2. To the right of fin 2 is fin 15. To the right of fin 15 is fin 3. To the right of fin 3 is fin 16. To the right of fin 16 is fin 4. Fin 4 abuts the left side of spacer 80. Fin 17 abuts the right side of spacer 80. To the right of fin 17 is fin 5. To the right of fin 5 is fin 18. To the right of fin 18 is fin 6. To the right of fin 6 is fin 19. To the right of fin 19 is fin 7. To the right of fin 7 is fin 20. To the right of fin 20 is fin 8. Fin 8 abuts the left side of spacer 82. Fin 21 abuts the right side of spacer 82. To the right of fin 21 is fin 9. To the right of fin 9 is fin 22. To the right of fin 22 is fin 10. To the right of fin 10 is fin 23. To the right of fin 23 is fin 11. To the right of fin 24 is fin 12. Immediately to the right of fin 24 would be another spacer identical to spacers (78, 80, 82). Immediately to the right of the spacer located (but not shown) to the right of fin 24, would be another fin of the configuration of group 2 fins. This pattern repeats itself along the horizontal length of the front refrigerant coil 70.

The rear refrigerant coil 50 has 12 fins equally spaced and parallel. The center refrigerant coil 60 and the front refrigerant coil 70 have 24 staggered or interdigitated fins. This configuration modulates the heat transfer characteristics in different sections of the coils.

Referring to FIG. 2, a view of a second embodiment of a three column coil evaporator for a water generating apparatus 10′ is shown. In this embodiment the top refrigerant coil 50′, the center refrigerant coil 60′ and the bottom refrigerant coil 70′ are shown. In this embodiment the top refrigerant coil 50′ has twelve spacers 80′ placed along its length. Additionally, the bottom refrigerant coil 70′ has twenty-four spacers 82′ placed along its length.

Except for the leftmost spacer 80′ on rear refrigerant coil 50′ each pair of spacers 80′ has a fin of the configuration of group 1 intermediately located. At the intersection of each spacer 80′ a fin element is located. Referring to the top refrigerant coil 50′, fins 1′-12′ are intermediate each of the spacers 80′ and each fin selected from the fins of the configuration of group 1. The three refrigerant coils (50′, 60′, 70′) have fins 1′-12′ mounted thereon, each spaced the width of one of the spacers 80′.

Similarly to the embodiment shown in FIG. 1, fins 13′-24′ are selected from the configuration of group 2 fins which only mount on the center refrigerant coil 60′ and the front refrigerant coil 70′. The front refrigerant coil 70′ has 24 spacers 82′ located almost side by side. Except for the leftmost spacer 82′ on rear refrigerant coil 50′ each pair of spacers 82′ has a fin of the configuration of group 2 intermediately located.

Intermediate each of the 24 spacers 82 a fin is located. Referring to the front refrigerant coil 70′, fins 13′, 1′, 14′, 2′, 15′, 3′, 16′, 4′, 17′, 5′, 18′, 6′, 19′, 7′, 20′, 8′, 21′, 9′, 22′, 10′, 23′, 11′, 24′ and 12′ are intermediate each of the spacers 82′.

The top refrigerant coil 50′ has 12 fins equally spaced and parallel. The center refrigerant coil 60′ and the bottom refrigerant coil 70′ have 24 staggered or interdigitated fins. This configuration modulates the heat transfer characteristics in different sections of the coils.

Referring now to FIGS. 3 a partial cutaway of the first embodiment of a three column coil evaporator of a water generating apparatus 100 showing the tortuous path of the refrigerant pipes 110 as they would pass through the different fin configurations 120 and 125, showing approximately twice as many fins on the front 130 of the evaporator than the rear 140 of the evaporator due to the different configuration of fins deployed adjacent different sized spacers used on the exterior of the refrigerant pipes integrated with the fins. The refrigerant pipes are not necessarily to shown to scale. Since it is not possible to see the spacers (72,74,76) or (78,80,82) of the first embodiment shown in FIG. 1 in FIG. 3, nor is it possible to see the spacers 80′ and 82′ of the second embodiment shown in FIG. 2, FIG. 3 may represent a view of both embodiments. Despite different spacer arrangements in the first two embodiments, the fin pattern and spacing created is the same.

Three refrigerant entry pipes 150 are shown at the top 140 of the water extracting portion of the apparatus 100. Three refrigerant exit pipes 160 are shown at the bottom 130 of the water extracting portion of the apparatus 100. The refrigerant would be at its coldest temperature when entering the water extracting portion of apparatus 100 at entry pipes 150, and would be at its warmest temperature when exiting the water extracting portion of apparatus 100 at exit pipes 160. The rear refrigerant coil 50, the center refrigerant coil 60 and the front refrigerant coil 70 are also shown.

Referring now to FIG. 4, a view of a third embodiment of a three column coil evaporator of a water generating apparatus 200 is shown. A first set of wider spacers 215 are placed on the rear refrigerant coil 210. A second set of smaller width spacers 222 are placed on the center refrigerant coil 220. A third set of the same smaller width spacers 232 are placed on the front refrigerant coil 230. The second set of smaller width spacers 222 are essentially the same width as the third set of smaller width spacers 232.

The rear refrigerant coil 210 shows twelve spacers 215. The spacers 215 are of equal width. These spacers 215 are not limited to twelve and would extend the length of the horizontal portion of the rear refrigerant coil 215.

The center refrigerant coil 220 shows twenty-four smaller spacers 222. The smaller spacers 222 are of equal width. These smaller spacers 222 are about ½ the width of the larger spacers 215.

The front refrigerant coil 230 includes twenty-four smaller spacers 232. The smaller spacers 222 are of equal width and are of the same width as the smaller spacers 222.

The same two configurations of group 1 fins and group 2 fins are employed in the embodiment of FIG. 4. The first configuration of fins are fins adapted to be slidingly placed into their positions on refrigerant coil 210, refrigerant coil 220 and refrigerant coil 230. Only twelve fins 218 are shown however they will extend the length of the horizontal portions of the three refrigerant coils (210, 220, 230). This first configuration which has only twelve fins 218 in FIG. 4 shows the twelve fins 218 extending beyond rear refrigerant coil 210 and beyond front refrigerant coil 230. These twelve fins 218 which are shown in FIG. 4 (and additional fins 218 not shown, but extending the length of the horizontal portions of the 3 refrigerant coils) are adapted to be slidingly mounted on all 3 refrigerant coils (210, 220, 230). The twelve fins 218 are parallel. The twelve fins 218 have spacers 215 on the rear refrigerant coil 210 between them. Additionally, the twelve fins 218 have spacers 222 on the center refrigerant coil 220 and spacers 232 on the front refrigerant coil 230 to the right and left of them. The twelve fins that have spacers 215 between them are equidistant from each other.

The second configuration of fins are fins adapted to be slidingly placed into their positions on center refrigerant coil 220 and front refrigerant coil 230. The front refrigerant coil 230 which has twelve fins 235. The twelve fins 235 are adapted to permit the twelve fins 235 to slidingly mount on both the center refrigerant coil 220 and the front refrigerant coil 232. The twelve fins 235 are parallel. The twelve fins 235 have spacers 222 and 232 between them. Thus the twelve fins that have spacers 222 and 232 are equidistant from each other.

The three column coil evaporator of a water generating apparatus 200 shown in FIG. 4 and the three column coil evaporator for a water generating apparatus 10′ shown in FIG. 2 are similar. The difference is that FIG. 4 shows a fin spacing arrangement which has fin spacers on all three refrigerant coils (210, 220, 230). It can easily be seen that many variations of spacers and fins can be adapted to be placed about a refrigerant coil to allow the modulation of the heat transfer characteristics in different sections of the coils.

Referring now specifically to FIG. 5 a view of a fourth embodiment of a three column coil evaporator of a water generating apparatus 400 with different fin spacing is shown.

A first set of spacers 410 are placed on the rear refrigerant coil 420. A second set of larger spacers 412 are also placed on the rear refrigerant coil 420. The first set of spacers 410 is followed by the second set of larger spacers 412, which in turn is followed by one of the first set of spacers 410 and so on. At the confluence of spacer 410 and spacer 412 is a rectangular fin selected from the configuration of group 1 fins which is adapted to slidingly positioned over the rear refrigerant coil 420, the center refrigerant coil 430 and the front refrigerant coil 440. A third set of smaller width spacers 432 are placed on the center refrigerant coil 430. A fourth set of the same sized smaller width spacers 442 are placed on the bottom refrigerant coil 230.

The top refrigerant coil 420 includes 7 spacers 410. The spacers 410 are of equal width. The rear refrigerant coil 420 also includes 6 spacers 412. Spacers 412 are about twice as wide as spacers 410. As in previous embodiments, this spacer arrangement would extend along the horizontal portion of the rear refrigeration coil 420.

The center refrigerant coil 430 includes 38 smaller spacers 432. The smaller spacers 432 are of equal width. The smaller spacers 432 are about ½ the size of spacers 410. As in previous embodiments, this spacer arrangement would extend along the horizontal portion of the center refrigeration coil 430.

The front refrigerant coil 440 includes 38 smaller spacers 442. The smaller spacers 432 are of equal width and also are of the same width as the smaller spacers 442. As in previous embodiments, this spacer arrangement would extend along the horizontal portion of the front refrigeration coil 440.

The rear refrigerant coil 420 which shows thirteen fins 414 that extend beyond the rear refrigerant coil 420 and extend beyond the front refrigerant coil 440. These thirteen fins 414 are chosen form the configuration of group 1 fins and are adapted to be positioned on all three refrigeration coils (420, 430, 440). The 13 thirteen fins 414 are parallel. The thirteen fins 414 have spacers 400 and then spacers 412 between them on the rear refrigerant coil 420. Additionally, the thirteen fins 414 have spacers 432 between them on the center refrigerant coil 430 and spacers 442 between them on the bottom refrigerant coil 440. Due to the fact that the spacers 410 and 412 are of different widths the thirteen fins are not equidistant from each other.

The front refrigerant coil 440 and the center refrigerant coil 430 shows twenty-five fins 445. The 25 fins 445 have apertures which permit the twenty-five fins 445 to pass through both the center refrigerant coil 430 and the bottom refrigerant coil 440. The twenty-five fins 445 are parallel. The twenty-five fins 445 have spacers 432 and 442 between them.

The three column coil evaporator of a water generating apparatus 400 shown in FIG. 5 and the three column coil evaporator for a water generating apparatus 200 shown in FIG. 4 is that the top refrigerant coil 420 has two different sized spacers which alternate as shown in FIG. 5. These two sized spacers 410 and 412 respectively makes the fin spacing on the rear refrigerant coil 420 not equidistant. Additionally, a greater number of fins 414 and 445 are shown in FIG. 5. As in previous embodiments, this spacer arrangement would extend along the horizontal portion of the rear refrigeration coil 420. The number of spacers and fins in all the embodiments, whether using group 1 configured fins or group 2 configured fins, and whether or not spacers are located on the center refrigerant coil, and despite the size of the spacers is not known. The length of the horizontal portion of the three of other number of serpentine refrigerant coils would determine the number of spacers and fins, and the length can be selected for many other patterns then those shown in this application.

FIGS. 1, 2, 4, and 5 gives an indication of the freedom possible in designing Evaporative Atmospheric Water Condenser by employing different sized spacers in different orientations. It can easily be seen that many variations of spacers and fins can be adapted to be placed about a refrigerant coil to allow the modulation of the heat transfer characteristics in different sections of the coils by using any of a variety of sized mechanical spacers intermediate fin structure. By use of these spacers, the water generating apparatus will be able to prevent frost, icing, or condensate buildup which could block the cold fin passageway that the warm moist air must pass. This allows for more water to be removed from the air and allows for higher efficiencies for the invention.

The embodiments discussed herein generally are shown to have three coils. In any of the embodiments, more than 3 coils could be employed. That would increase the number of refrigerant entrances and exits. Such devices may be run in series.

Such a fin spacer for an evaporative atmospheric water condenser may be usefully employed with a refrigerant flow control apparatus and method Provisional Patent Application 61/789,372 filed on Mar. 15, 2013, titled “Refrigerant Flow Control For an Evaporative Atmospheric Water Condenser” and Provisional Patent Application 61/831,231 filed on Jun. 15, 2013 titled “Refrigerant Flow Control For an Evaporative Atmospheric Water Condenser”.

Alternate methods where the refrigerant is mixed as it passes through the atmospheric water condenser have been contemplated and one possible configuration is shown in FIG. 1.

While the invention has been described in its preferred form or embodiment with some degree of particularity, it is understood that this description has been given only by way of example and that numerous changes in the details of construction, fabrication, and use, including the combination and arrangement of parts, may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.

Claims

1. A fin spacing element adapted for use with an atmospheric evaporative water condenser, where the atmospheric evaporative water condenser includes a horizontal series of serpentine cylindrical pipes in which a refrigerant flows there through, the horizontal series of serpentine pipes receiving a plurality of vertically disposed rectangular fins thereon,

said fin spacing element comprising;
collar with a central aperture,
said collar including a sidewall having a length with a leading section, a cylindrical central section, and a trailing section, said leading section flared in a frusto-conical configuration downwardly to said cylindrical central section and flared in a frusto-conical configuration upwardly to said trailing section,
a first plurality of fins which include fin apertures to permit mounting on said horizontal series of serpentine pipes in said parallel arrangement, said collar mounted intermediate each one of said first plurality of fins on said horizontal series of serpentine pipes, said collar spacing said each one of said plurality of fins by said length.

2. A fin spacing apparatus adapted for use with an atmospheric evaporative water condenser comprising;

a first cylindrical collar with a central aperture and a first width,
said first cylindrical collar including a sidewall with a leading section and a trailing section,
a second cylindrical collar having a central aperture and a second width,
said second cylindrical collar having a sidewall with a leading section and a trailing section,
a first serpentine pipe having a first refrigerant entrance and a first refrigerant exit, said first serpentine pipe having a plurality of first horizontal pipe elements intermediate said first refrigerant entrance and said first refrigerant exit, said first serpentine pipe having a top horizontal pipe element connected to said first refrigerant entrance, said first serpentine pipe having a bottom horizontal pipe element connected to said first refrigerant exit, said first horizontal pipe elements having a length,
a second serpentine pipe having a second refrigerant entrance and a second refrigerant exit, said second serpentine pipe having a plurality of second horizontal pipe elements intermediate said second refrigerant entrance and said second refrigerant exit, said second serpentine pipe having a top horizontal pipe element connected to said second refrigerant entrance, said second serpentine pipe having a bottom horizontal pipe element connected to said second refrigerant exit, said second horizontal pipe elements having a length,
a third serpentine pipe having a third refrigerant entrance and a third refrigerant exit, said third serpentine pipe having a plurality of third horizontal pipe elements intermediate said third refrigerant entrance and said third refrigerant exit, said third serpentine pipe having a top horizontal pipe element connected to said third refrigerant entrance, said third serpentine pipe having a bottom horizontal pipe element connected to said third refrigerant exit, said third horizontal pipe elements having a length,
a first plurality of fins adapted to be mounted over said plurality of first horizontal pipe elements, said plurality of second horizontal pipe elements, and said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements,
a second plurality of fins adapted to be mounted over said plurality of second horizontal pipe elements, and said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements,
where a first one of said first cylindrical collars is frictionally mounted on each of said plurality of first horizontal pipe elements, and a first one of said second cylindrical collars is mounted on each of said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements,
and where a first one of said second plurality of fins is mounted over said plurality of second horizontal pipe elements and said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements, said first one of said second plurality of fins is adjacent said first one of said second cylindrical collars,
a second one of said second cylindrical collars is mounted on each of said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements, placing said first one of said second plurality of fins intermediate said said first one of said second cylindrical collars and said second one of said second cylindrical collars,
and where a first one of said first plurality of fins is mounted over said plurality of first horizontal pipe elements, said plurality of second horizontal pipe elements and said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements, said first one of said first plurality of fins is adjacent said first one of said first cylindrical collars on each of said plurality of first horizontal pipe elements, and is further adjacent said second one of said plurality of second cylindrical collars located on each of said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements,
where a second one of said first cylindrical collars is frictionally mounted on each of said plurality of first horizontal pipe elements, and a third one of said second cylindrical collars is mounted on each of said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements,
and where a second one of said second plurality of fins is mounted over said plurality of second horizontal pipe elements and said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements, said first one of said second plurality of fins is adjacent said third one of said second cylindrical collars,
a fourth one of said second cylindrical collars is mounted on each of said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements, placing said second one of said second plurality of fins intermediate said first one of said second cylindrical collars and said second one of said second cylindrical collars,
and where a second one of said first plurality of fins is mounted over said plurality of first horizontal pipe elements, said plurality of second horizontal pipe elements and said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements, said second one of said first plurality of fins is adjacent said second one of said first cylindrical collars on each of said plurality of first horizontal pipe elements, and is further adjacent said fourth one of said plurality of second cylindrical collars located on each of said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements,
where further a next one of said first cylindrical collars is mounted on said plurality of first horizontal pipe elements in sequence described above,
a next one of said second cylindrical collars is mounted on said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements in the sequence described above,
and a next one of said first plurality of fins are mounted on said plurality of first horizontal pipe elements, said plurality of second horizontal pipe elements and said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements in the sequence described above,
and a next one of said second plurality of fins are mounted on said plurality of second horizontal pipe elements and said plurality of third horizontal pipe elements in the sequence described above,
whereby said first plurality of fins interdigitate with second plurality of fins along said length, and the arrangement of said first cylindrical collar and said second collars produces a distance between said fins on said first horizontal pipe twice that than on said second horizontal pipe and said first horizontal pipe.

3. A fin spacing apparatus adapted for use with an atmospheric evaporative water condenser as claimed in claim 2 wherein said second horizontal pipe element has mounted thereon a plurality of said second collar elements, where said second collar elements mounted on said second horizontal pipe have one of said second plurality of fins intermediate a first two of said second collar elements, and further have one of said first plurality of fins intermediate a next two of said second collar elements, said second plurality of fins and said first plurality of fins alternating between each next two of said second collar elements along the length of said second horizontal pipe elements.

Patent History

Publication number: 20140262188
Type: Application
Filed: Mar 17, 2014
Publication Date: Sep 18, 2014
Inventor: Ramana Venkato Rao Sistla (Hyderabad)
Application Number: 14/215,251

Classifications

Current U.S. Class: With Means Spacing Fins On Structure (165/182)
International Classification: F28F 1/12 (20060101);