Having Specific Features For Water Current Patents (Class 415/906)
  • Patent number: 8961131
    Abstract: An arrangement for extracting energy from flowing liquid, such as tidal flows, oceanic currents and water flowing in rivers. The arrangement comprises a support device (12) and a turbine device (1) which is pivotally connected to the support device (12) about a substantially horizontal axis (18). The turbine device includes at least one helical turbine (2; 4), each having an axle connected to an energy converter (22; 24). The turbine device (1) has a proximate end and a distal end, the proximate end being pivotally connected to the support device (12), and the distal end being freely movable in a substantially vertical, circular path in the flowing liquid. This enables the turbine device, in use, to adjust to an operational angle with respect to a horizontal plane. The arrangement is characterized in that the distal end of the turbine device (1) is provided with at least one transverse bar (7), stabilizing the operational angle of the turbine device (1).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 4, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Flumill AS
    Inventors: Anthony Trayner, Sam Syvertsen, Jon Inge Brattekås, Jan Inge Eielsen
  • Patent number: 8763386
    Abstract: This invention captures hydrokinetic energy to do work such as produce electricity. The hydrokinetic flow exerts a torque on a turbine wheel. The wheel causes a set of tanks to rotate around a horizontal centerline. Working fluid drains from tanks near the top of the wheel to drive a conventional turbine before draining into lower tanks. Although a mechanical power transmission driven by the turbine wheel is simpler in concept, scale up to large slowly rotating wheels encounters increasingly difficult design problems: transmission of 1 kW at 1 rpm requires 6,959 ft-lb. In contrast, the conventional turbine of the fluid drive system provides mechanical power for use at a much higher speed than the turbine wheel. Therefore, very large engines can be built without a step-up transmission or components that must withstand extremely large torque loads. One unit can produce reliable 24/7 utility-scale base-load electrical power.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 6, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 1, 2014
    Inventor: Geoffrey Byron Greene
  • Patent number: 8764391
    Abstract: A hydrokinetic turbine system, including a plurality of hydrokinetic turbines is installed on a bed of a body of water. Each turbine has a shroud with a forward entrance portion and rear exit portion. The shroud includes a propeller disposed in a middle portion thereof. An inner surface of the shroud includes a plurality of rifling vanes formed therein to induce water entering the forward entrance portion to rotate in a vortex-like fashion. A plurality of pre-spin guard blades disposed adjacent the forward entrance portion also induce rotation of water and serve to provide a barrier preventing objects from passing into the forward entrance portion. A plurality of stabilizers extending from an exterior surface of the shroud that position the forward entrance portion in the direction of current flow.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 10, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 1, 2014
    Assignee: Osirius International
    Inventors: Timothy Smith, Eric Otte
  • Patent number: 8696301
    Abstract: Apparatus (10) for extracting energy from flowing water typically a tidal stream flow, the apparatus including a float assembly (41) having pair of spaced buoyant bodies (42) between which an elongated flow passage or tunnel (47) is located with an impeller assembly (61) in the flow passage (47) which can drive an electrical generator (76) on the float assembly (41). The bodies (42) include or define ballast tanks which can be filled or partially filled with water to submerge the flow passage or tunnel (47).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 2008
    Date of Patent: April 15, 2014
    Inventor: Neville Alan Smith
  • Patent number: 8616829
    Abstract: A turbine that allows for the conversion of the kinetic energy of waterway to mechanical power for use in an energy accepting apparatus is described. The turbine has complimentary components that improve the power efficiency of the turbine. The turbine may include a blade shroud and a plurality of blades that are connected to the blade shroud. On the external surface of the blade shroud, a drive mechanism and/or a brake mechanism may be disposed. An inlet nozzle and outlet diffuser may be used in combination with the turbine. The turbine may be useful in a number of settings, including, but not limited to, streams, rivers, dams, ocean currents, or tidal areas that have continuous or semi-continuous water flow rates and windy environments.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 2009
    Date of Patent: December 31, 2013
    Assignee: Concepts ETI, Inc.
    Inventors: Frederick E. Becker, Kerry N. Oliphant, Andrew R. Provo
  • Patent number: 8591168
    Abstract: A subsurface wave power generation system includes a seabed mounting plate adapted for securing to a seabed, a wing having generally opposed first and second wing surfaces extending between a first and second wing ends, the second wing end being pivotably mounted to the seabed mounting plate such that pivoting motion about a pivot axis generally parallel to the mounting plate is imparted to the wing by subsurface wave action acting on the first and second wing surfaces, and a drive arm pivotably connected to the wing to convert the pivoting motion into reciprocal motion. An electrical generator can be driven by the drive arm through a slip linkage. The slip linkage includes a first stage that converts the reciprocal motion of the drive arm into rotational motion and a second stage that selectively engages the a drive shaft of the generator drive to impart the rotational motion thereto.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 1, 2010
    Date of Patent: November 26, 2013
    Assignee: Clean and Green Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventor: Elbert Lee Marcum
  • Patent number: 8475113
    Abstract: A hydroelectric power device equipped with a casing member that has a channel that passes through from an opening on the water entry side towards an opening on the water discharge side, a rotor having a plurality of blades that are integrally fixed respective to the rotating shaft and are disposed inside the channel of the casing member, and a tapered portion, that is provided on the opening on the water entry side of the casing, and that is formed such that the cross-sectional area of the tapered portion is gradually decreased towards the downstream side.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 4, 2008
    Date of Patent: July 2, 2013
    Assignee: Seabell International Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Yuji Unno
  • Patent number: 8388301
    Abstract: A turbine system for the utilization of the energy of oceanic waves includes: a chamber that is provided with an opening at its lower end and at its upper end respectively; a duct that is open at both ends for guiding a stream of air, the lower end of the chamber being designated to be submerged in ocean water, and the opening of the upper end being connected with one of the ends of the duct; an energy unit that is mounted coaxial to such and surrounded by the duct; and a device for cleaning the rotor blades of deposits or for preventing the formation of deposits on the rotor blades.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 4, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 5, 2013
    Assignee: Voith Patent GmbH
    Inventors: William K. Tease, Janet Lees
  • Patent number: 8382425
    Abstract: The inventive technology, in certain embodiments, may be described as a hydraulic energy converter 1 that comprises: a frame assembly 2 that itself comprises a first frame portion 3 and a second frame portion 4 that is positionally adjustable relative to said first frame portion, said first frame portion affixable in stationary position relative to a water channel structure 5; an axle 6 connected with said second frame portion 4; a driveshaft 7 established substantially orthogonally to said axle 6; waterwheels 8 connected with said axle 6; a gearbox 9 connecting said driveshaft 7 with said axle 6 and established between said waterwheels 8; and at least one rotational energy converting device 10 connected with said driveshaft 7 and said second frame portion 4. A related aspect of the inventive technology—a wind energy converter—may include rotors instead of waterwheels (in addition to perhaps reflecting other differences).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 8, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 26, 2013
    Inventor: Ronald A. Griffin
  • Patent number: 8376699
    Abstract: The Vortex Hydro Turbine takes water through an inlet from the current in which it is submerged. The water inlet reduces the cross-sectional area for the water that flows into the vortex chamber and thus increases the velocity of the water into a specially designed cylindrical chamber. The top of the chamber is specifically left open allowing the water now traveling at an increased velocity to disperse toward outlet as it rotates around the chamber, and then reintegrate into the existing environmental regime. This expansion creates a low pressure area in the center of the vortex chamber that is applied to the back side of a turbine blade system either directly or through a connecting tube depending on configuration.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 11, 2009
    Date of Patent: February 19, 2013
    Inventor: Martin D Hallett
  • Patent number: 8371801
    Abstract: A system for installing and extracting a flowing water turbine below the surface of the water includes a flow inducer assembly for improving the conversation of the kinetic energy of a waterway to mechanical energy. The flow inducer assembly includes a nozzle that may be shaped as a cowling and a outlet diffuser. The system may be useful in a number of settings, including, but not limited to, streams, rivers, dams, ocean currents, or tidal areas that have continuous or semi-continuous water flow rates and windy environments.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 2009
    Date of Patent: February 12, 2013
    Assignee: Hydro Green Energy, LLC
    Inventors: Frederick E. Becker, Kerry N. Oliphant, Andrew R. Provo, Tsukasa Yoshinaka
  • Patent number: 8303241
    Abstract: A KHP system turbine for the production of energy in an underwater environment including a yaw stop arrangement for use in flowing steams where the flow direction of water therein is changeable, including bi-directional and multi-directional current flows, so that a rotatably mounted turbine remains in an optimal position within such changing flow conditions. The KHP turbine includes a rotational portion and one or two passive yaw stop assemblies that will control turbine yaw and keep the turbine oriented to capture energy from changeable underwater current flows.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 2007
    Date of Patent: November 6, 2012
    Assignee: Verdant Power, Inc.
    Inventors: Dean Corren, John Gray, Christopher Gray
  • Patent number: 8272831
    Abstract: A power generating apparatus suitable for use in extracting energy from the movement of water, in particular tidal movement, is disclosed. The apparatus includes an elongate, generally circular in cross section, buoyancy vessel (1), having depending from its underside on a mounting means, rotatable rotor blades (2). The rotor blades are connected to a power generating means whereby in use of the apparatus movement of water across the rotor blasé, drives them so as to generate power in the power generating means.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 12, 2005
    Date of Patent: September 25, 2012
    Assignee: Scotrenewables (Marine Power) Ltd.
    Inventor: Barry Johnston
  • Patent number: 8231327
    Abstract: A river high pressure energy conversion machine which has no moving parts, comprising a machine (or pump) having a pipe attached to a river bed, with a flexible pipe to an enlarged water inlet attached to the underside of a float, to assure entrance of water just below the river water surface. A discharge pipe from the machine rises above the river bank to a water-driven accessory, through a stop valve and a pressure regulating valve. The discharge pipe from the accessory discharges river water back to the river. Water stacks up inside the sloping machine pipe on the river bed, and creates higher water pressure at the machine pipe outlet for driving the accessory. This is a continuous process, generating electricity twenty-four hours every day, using only gravity as the pressurizing force on water to generate electricity, without using fossil, nuclear or artificial energy forces.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 2011
    Date of Patent: July 31, 2012
    Inventor: Albert Hamilton Davis, Sr.
  • Patent number: 8206113
    Abstract: The invention relates to a method and apparatus for gradually converting marine wave energy into electricity. The energy reserve provided by wind power holds enough energy for the needs of the entire mankind. The invention provides an efficient means of putting this energy reserve to practical use. Mounted on a rotating power shaft is a pair of form parts, the convex and concave shape, especially the round-pointed open V-shape of which reverses its orientation by 180 degrees, i.e. turns from convex to concave, whenever the power shaft makes a rotation of 180 degrees. The circular motion of water occurring in a wave drives such a turbine effectively while the wave dies out. The pair of convex and concave form parts extends helically around the power shaft, whereby water currents in all directions, which come to contact with the pair of form parts, produce a rotative moment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 2, 2006
    Date of Patent: June 26, 2012
    Inventors: Seppo Ryynänen, Mikko Ryynänen
  • Patent number: 8197180
    Abstract: The specification and drawings describe machines and methods that transform the kinetic energy of moving bodies of fluid into useful work. Specifically, embodiments of the invention may be used to generate electricity. In preferred embodiments a buoyant or semi-buoyant propeller assembly interfaces with a flowing body of water to capture power for electricity generation or any other work project.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 6, 2011
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2012
    Inventor: Dickie L. Lamp
  • Patent number: 8177480
    Abstract: The invention provides a system for producing electricity from the channel, river, ocean or tidal water currents and wind. Each system module contains a vertical axis fluid driven turbine positioned in a protecting housing. The turbine employs a plurality of rotating paddles with mutually perpendicularly oriented asymmetric blades that are non-rotatably fixed by their leading edges to the poles at both ends. The high efficiency of the turbine comes from creating maximum drug force by vertically oriented blades on the power generating side and practically zero frictional force produced by blades on the resting side of the turbine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 8, 2006
    Date of Patent: May 15, 2012
    Inventor: Edouard Petrounevitch
  • Patent number: 8177477
    Abstract: A dam-free hydro-power plant for generating electricity comprises a convergent-divergent water passage including a cylindrical neck containing a shutter, branch pipes connected with the neck, each branch pipe including a reverse valve capable of triggering, depending on the stream direction in the passage. A first and second branch pipes are located in front of the shutter, a third and fourth branch pipes are located behind thereof, a first and second buffers accumulating respectively higher-pressure liquid and lower-pressure liquid, the buffers are communicated through a cross-flow pipeline enclosing a turbine joined with an electro-generator. The first buffer is communicated with the neck via the first and the third branch pipe, whereas the second buffer is communicated with the neck via the second and the fourth branch pipe. The plant is highly efficient due to deploying hydro-impact, and particularly usable in places of tidal activities, in freezing rivers for all-year-round generating electricity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 2008
    Date of Patent: May 15, 2012
    Inventor: Victor Lyatkher
  • Patent number: 8152441
    Abstract: A reengineered undershot waterwheel adapted to capture unutilized hydrokinetic energy is provided. In an exemplary embodiment, the blades, partitions, and shafts of the waterwheel are composed of engineered plastics and composites for improved operation and longevity. In other embodiments, the waterwheel may be fixed, floating, partially or fully submerged, mounted vertically or horizontally, and will operate in deep and shallow flowing water sources.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 2, 2008
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2012
    Inventor: Ray Hofmann
  • Patent number: 8100650
    Abstract: Systems and methods use cyclical propellers with dynamic blade angle control to extract power from waves. A control system for such implementations can adapt pitching schedules for the blades of the cyclical propellers for efficient energy extraction and/or to control reactive forces. The cyclical propellers may be installed on the floor of a body of water or other liquid, on a submarine, or on a surface float, and blades may extend vertically or horizontally depending on the character of the waves. Several cyclical propellers can be combined into a single unit operated to minimize net reactive force or torque, to propel the unit horizontally or vertically, and/or to stabilize the unit. Such units can be installed with minimal or no moorings.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 24, 2012
    Assignee: Atargis Energy Corporation
    Inventor: Stefan Günther Siegel
  • Patent number: 8102068
    Abstract: A buoyant hydro turbine(31) for capturing and utilizing energy in the currents of flowing water. A driven component(33) produces electricity or other energy is coupled to and supported by a buoyant rotor(64), increasing efficiency and eliminating the need for an independent supporting structure. Tethered in flowing water, the current(71) rotates the rotors(32) and transfers rotatable energy to the central driven component(33) where electricity or other mechanical work is produced. A number of embodiments are adapted for optimizing and maintaining positioning in a stream of moving water. Additional embodiments optimizing the efficiency and effectiveness of the turbine in capturing and utilizing the current's kinetic energy as well as hydrostatic pressure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 3, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 24, 2012
    Inventor: Brent Lee Gutekunst
  • Patent number: 7845899
    Abstract: A wind turbine engine comprising rotor blades disposed within an outer casing and a half-spherical head located in front of the rotor blades and blocking the inner 50% of the radius of the rotor blades, the casing and head creating an acceleration chamber wherein incoming wind is speeded up and redirected around the head, and the accelerated wind then rotates the wind turbine rotor blades to generate power.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 17, 2004
    Date of Patent: December 7, 2010
    Assignee: Envision corporation
    Inventor: Bud T. J. Johnson
  • Patent number: 7832979
    Abstract: An apparatus for generating electric power from water currents comprises a housing having at least one pair of channel, at least one pair of turbine assemblies and at least one pair of generator assemblies. Each channel of the pair has an axial intake, an axial discharge opening and a side intake. Each side intake extends along a length of the channel and faces in an upstream direction to receive a side inflow of water and directs the side inflow up against an interior surface of the channel to create a vortical flow structure having a low pressure core. The vortical flow structures are produced downstream of the turbine assemblies to effect an increase in a pressure drop across each of the turbine assemblies. The apparatus also has partition extending between the channels near said axial intakes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 18, 2007
    Date of Patent: November 16, 2010
    Inventors: Metin Ilbay Yaras, Mohammad Golriz
  • Patent number: 7686583
    Abstract: Systems and methods use cyclical propellers with dynamic blade angle control to extract power from waves. A control system for such implementations can adapt pitching schedules for the blades of the cyclical propellers for efficient energy extraction and/or to control reactive forces. The cyclical propellers may be installed on the floor of a body of water or other liquid, on a submarine, or on a surface float, and blades may extend vertically or horizontally depending on the character of the waves. Several cyclical propellers can be combined into a single unit operated to minimize reactive forces and torques, to propel the unit horizontally or vertically, and/or to stabilize the unit. Such units can be installed with minimal or no moorings.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 2006
    Date of Patent: March 30, 2010
    Assignee: Siegel Aerodynamics, Inc.
    Inventor: Stefan Günther Siegel
  • Patent number: 7682126
    Abstract: A device is described for the conversion of energy from free flowing water into electric, hydraulic, or pneumatic power using a submersible system of turbine propellers mounted on horizontal shafts supported by chambers, each containing switchgear and/or generators and air or water ballast. The device is tethered to the seabed by a cable. Free of a rigid vertical support, the device can yaw so that water flow in any direction can be used for power generation, as in a tidal basin. In response to sensing the water velocity of the water channel, the device actively seeks a nominal water velocity, ascending or descending as necessary.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 9, 2006
    Date of Patent: March 23, 2010
    Inventor: David Joseph Parker
  • Patent number: 7670101
    Abstract: A portable hydro-generator, for the generation of power, including a tower (10) filled with a driving fluid, a semi-sealed curved tubular housing with a drive portion and a return portion primed with a fluid, the drive portion having a larger diameter than the return portion, an inlet to allow the fluid to enter the tubular housing, a plurality of paddles to harness the kinetic energy of the fluid entering the curved tubular housing, a linkage assembly to link the plurality of paddles, a drive chamber, a sprocket within the drive chamber to engage a portion of the paddles, and an output power generator attached to the sprocket. A paddle adapted to be used in the hydro-generator include a top surface, a bottom surface, seals to prevent water leakage through the paddles, a linkage bar to allow an attachment of the paddle to subsequent paddle, wherein the top surface of the paddle further includes studs to increase the effective surface area of the top of the paddle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 31, 2004
    Date of Patent: March 2, 2010
    Inventor: Richard Chin Pang Mui
  • Patent number: 7597532
    Abstract: A cantilevered power generation system and the support therefor comprising a clamping frame with first and second jaws that are relatively moveable and which permits the system to be mounted to a support located on or adjacent a shore line or water way so that power generation apparatus supported within the system can be positioned in the moving flow of water to generate power. The first and second jaws of the clamping frame support allows the power generation apparatus to be mounted adjacent a moving waterway and removed, as well as movable from one location to another and also allows the power generation apparatus to be raised thus permitting the repair and/or replacement of parts.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 8, 2006
    Date of Patent: October 6, 2009
    Assignee: Verdant Power, Inc.
    Inventors: John E. Gray, Dean R. Corren
  • Patent number: 7311496
    Abstract: Apparatus for generating electrical energy in a fluid environment, the apparatus including a wing member for disposition in the fluid and pivotally movable about an axis in response to flow of the fluid thereabout, connector rods each pivotally mounted at a first end thereof on the wing on opposite sides of the axis, a crank member attached to a second end of each of the connector rods and rotatable about a pivot axis by movement of the attached connector rod, a housing supporting the wing member, a gear system disposed in the housing, an axle interconnecting each of the crank members and the gear system, and an electrical generator disposed in the housing and driven by the gear system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 14, 2005
    Date of Patent: December 25, 2007
    Assignee: The United States of America represented by the Secretary of the Navy
    Inventor: Donald H Steinbrecher
  • Patent number: 7258523
    Abstract: A hydro electric turbine having a flexible, collapsible front shroud, the upstream open end of the front shroud being controlled by a draw line passing through purse rings, whereby the upstream end can be closed by drawing on the draw line, thereby stopping water flow through the turbine. Decreased drag allows the turbine to rise to the surface. Opening the upstream end so that water flows into the turbine increases drag to lower the turbine into the water and causes rotation of the turbine blades.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 25, 2004
    Date of Patent: August 21, 2007
    Assignee: OpenHydro Group Limited
    Inventor: Herbert L. Williams
  • Patent number: 7182573
    Abstract: A wind turbine, with: a rotatable frame; a plurality of airfoils mounted to the rotatable frame, wherein the airfoils extend parallel to an axis of rotation of the rotatable frame; a wind block positioned to restrict airflow over at least a portion of the rotatable frame; and at least one drive wheel in contact with the rotatable frame.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 24, 2004
    Date of Patent: February 27, 2007
    Inventor: Stanley Jonsson
  • Patent number: 7147428
    Abstract: A water driven turbine has a divergent cone coupled to the exit end of the housing in which diameter of the cone increases with increasing distance from the exit end of the housing. A diverter formed of rigid material surrounds the free end of the cone and defines an annular space therebetween through which a flow of water passes to accelerate the flow exiting the turbine housing. The diverter is shorter in the length than the divergent cone and longitudinally overlaps the divergent cone. The diverter also has straight walls which are sloped to extend in the longitudinal direction away from the exit end of the housing at an inward incline between the leading end and the trailing end thereof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 26, 2004
    Date of Patent: December 12, 2006
    Inventor: John S. Lamont
  • Patent number: 7044711
    Abstract: This device utilizes a helical baffle inside of generally cylindrical housing to convert potential energy of a fluid to kinetic and/or mechanical energy that can be captured for productive use. The housing's axis is positioned at an angle from horizontal and the fluid is entered into the high end of the device. The helical baffles convert the gravity-induced pressure of the water into a torque moment around the axis of the cylinder causing the helix to rotate. Mechanical energy is then extracted from this rotation and utilized in a productive manner, typically by driving an electrical generator. The implementation of this concept in hydroelectric applications provides substantial benefits over traditional turbine generation in efficiency and reducing environmental concerns.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 3, 2003
    Date of Patent: May 16, 2006
    Inventor: Floyed Jeffries Duncan, Jr.
  • Patent number: 6955049
    Abstract: A machine and system for power generation through movement of water having an array of power generating cells electrically interconnected, where the array is configured in an interchangeable modular fashion and the cells are positioned to receive kinetic energy from the movement of water to generate electricity through the movement of an electrical turbine within each cell. The individual turbines and cells may generate relatively small amounts of electricity and use polymer magnetics in the impellers and windings in the turbine to withstand ocean environments and are stacked on electrically conductive trays for ease of installation and replacement.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 21, 2004
    Date of Patent: October 18, 2005
    Inventor: Wayne F. Krouse
  • Patent number: 6877968
    Abstract: A low head water turbine comprising a runner having a cylindrical outer surface and a plurality of similar blades similarly pivotably secured along their inner sides to the outer surface of the runner so as to pivot in the direction of rotation of the runner between a closed position lying adjacent the outer surface of the runner and an open position at an angle thereto. A housing having end walls and a rounded side wall extending therebetween, completely encases the runner and its blades. The runner is eccentrically mounted to end walls of the housing for rotation about a horizontal axis so that the cylindrical outer surface is spaced closer to an upper portion of the housing side wall and farther from a lower portion. A water inlet opening is located in a lower, forward portion of the housing, below the axis of rotation of the runner. A water outlet opening is located in a lower, rearward portion of the housing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 27, 2002
    Date of Patent: April 12, 2005
    Assignee: The Salmon River Project Limited
    Inventors: Terrence Gordon Godsall, Donald Eric Innes, Matthew Christopher Innes
  • Patent number: 6835043
    Abstract: An installation comprising a turbine equipped with a wheel rotatable about an axis (X-X′), and a tank feeding the turbine. The feed tank having, projecting on a plane globally perpendicular to the axis (X-X′), an external spiral shape. The feed tank forms a helico-convergent duct centered on the axis (X-X′) and convergent towards the turbine. The duct is bordered by an outer partition, an inner partition and at least an intermediate partition contributing to the reinforcement of the tank.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 2002
    Date of Patent: December 28, 2004
    Assignee: Alstom Power N.V.
    Inventors: Daniel C Milan, Fabrice R Loiseau
  • Patent number: 6729840
    Abstract: A powerplant for use in high head applications (dams) which allows marine animals (fish, otters, turtles, etc.) to swim safely from one side of the dam to the other. The turbine blades which take energy from the water to produce electricity have a large hole through their center. They are arranged one behind the other in such a way that the velocity of the water is decreased as it passes through each blade. The large holes through the center of the turbine blades and the decreasing of the water flow, while increasing the amount of energy produced, will allow marine life to easily swim back and forth through the dam.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 6, 2002
    Date of Patent: May 4, 2004
    Inventor: Herbert L. Williams
  • Patent number: 6648589
    Abstract: The invention takes energy from the periphery of a hydro electric turbine blade to produce electricity by mechanically driving a plurality of generators without the use of a hydraulic system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 20, 2001
    Date of Patent: November 18, 2003
    Inventor: Herbert Lehman Williams
  • Patent number: 6527504
    Abstract: A plant for utilizing the energy in the waves which are present at a given time in a section of a water area, such as an ocean or a lake. The plant comprises a base located in this section and in the shape of a platform or raft and a wave converter placed on the base and serving for transforming the wave motion of the water into whirling motion. The plant furthermore comprises a number of adjacent wave catches each having at least one catch plate for catching at least part of the water of the waves and making this water flow down along the catch plate from a top front edge to a bottom rear edge on the plate, and a whirl pipe for each wave catch for, via a slot extending along the rear edge of the at least one catch plate, taking up the water flowing along the catch plate so that this water will describe a whirling motion in the whirl pipe. The plant can utilize the average energy in the waves better and with less construction costs than known so far.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 14, 2000
    Date of Patent: March 4, 2003
    Assignee: Waveplane International A/S
    Inventor: Erik Skaarup
  • Patent number: 6431821
    Abstract: A water driven impulse turbine has a barrel rotatably mounted upon an axle, with a plurality of runner blades extending tangentially from said barrel. Side plates secure the runner blades on opposite sides thereof. A breastplate is maintained in concentric juxtaposition with the wheel so defined. A penstock is interposed between a water source and the breastplate to pass water into the runner blades. The turbine may consist of a plurality of axially interconnected wheel sections of similar or dissimilar nature to optimize performance.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 26, 2001
    Date of Patent: August 13, 2002
    Assignee: Universal Electric Power Corp.
    Inventors: Bruce D. Feltenberger, Ronald S. Feltenberger
  • Patent number: 6406251
    Abstract: A bi-directional hydroturbine assembly for tidal deployment. A hydroturbine is carried by a cylindrical shroud. Rotation of the hydroturbine blades by tidal currents drives rotation of the shaft, thereby converting kinetic energy into electrical energy. Stabilizer fins extend radially outwardly from the shroud along substantially the entire length of the shroud. Each comer of each stabilizer fin carries a pivot point for connection of pivoting deflectors between adjacent pivot points of adjacent stabilizer fins at the same end of the shroud. Pivoting deflectors are positioned between pivot points about the periphery of each end of the shroud and are biased such that tidal current flow in a first direction urges pivoting deflectors at the first end of the shroud into a non-deflective position, while urging pivoting deflectors at the second end of the shroud into a deflective position, and vice versa for tidal current flow in the opposite direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 24, 2000
    Date of Patent: June 18, 2002
    Inventor: Philippe Vauthier
  • Patent number: 6217284
    Abstract: An oscillating fluid flow motor and a fluid flow power system that converts the energy in the flowing fluid to mechanical energy through a vane that automatically sweeps back and forth across the flow. In one embodiment of the oscillating fluid flow motor, the motor includes (1) a support structure, (2) an elongated swing arm pivotably and rotatably mounted to the support structure, (3) a vane having a concave face, (4) an elastic link operatively coupled in tension between the swing arm and a support, and (5) a direction control mechanism operatively coupled to the swing arm. The vane is connected to the swing arm so that, upon rotation of the swing arm about its longitudinal axis, the orientation of the concave face of the vane changes relative to the flow of a fluid confronting the face. The direction control mechanism is operative to selectively re-orient the face of the vane at each of two points that define the ends of the bidirectional stroke of the swing arm.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 1999
    Date of Patent: April 17, 2001
    Inventor: Brant E. Lawrence
  • Patent number: 6210113
    Abstract: A waterwheel turbine for application in hydropower plants is provided. This turbine exploits primarily the head of the watercourse for energy recovery. The cells of the waterwheel turbine are each provided with a pair of mechanically linked flaps for controlling the inflow of water as well as venting of air. Special control devices permit these installations to be operated at high efficiency.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 2000
    Date of Patent: April 3, 2001
    Inventor: Adolf Ihrenberger
  • Patent number: 6206630
    Abstract: A water driven impulse turbine has a barrel rotatably mounted upon an axle, with a plurality of runner blades extending tangentially from the barrel. Side plates secure the runner blades on opposite sides thereof. A breastplate is maintained in concentric juxtaposition with the wheel so defined. A penstock is interposed between a water source and the breastplate to pass water into the runner blades. The turbine may consist of a plurality of axially interconnected wheel sections of similar or dissimilar nature to optimize performance.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 24, 1998
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2001
    Assignee: Universal Electric Power Corp.
    Inventors: Bruce D. Feltenberger, Ronald S. Feltenberger
  • Patent number: 6168373
    Abstract: An environmentally non-intrusive multiple turbine unit for adjustable deployment in water. The turbines are captured in a shroud having an integrally formed augmentor ring and ballasting member to improve efficiency. The multiple turbine arrangement effectively counteracts the rotational counter-torque of individual turbines, thereby enabling stable deployment of the unit without requiring rigid stabilizing structures.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 7, 1999
    Date of Patent: January 2, 2001
    Inventor: Philippe Vauthier
  • Patent number: 6139255
    Abstract: A bidirectional hydroturbine assembly for tidal deployment. A hydroturbine is carried by a cylindrical shroud. Rotation of the hydroturbine blades by tidal currents drives rotation of the shaft, thereby converting kinetic energy into electrical energy. Stabilizer fins extend radially outwardly from the shroud along substantially the entire length of the shroud. Each corner of each stabilizer fin carries a pivot point for connection of pivoting deflectors between adjacent pivot points of adjacent stabilizer fins at the same end of the shroud. Pivoting deflectors are positioned between pivot points about the periphery of each end of the shroud and are biased such that tidal current flow in a first direction urges pivoting deflectors at the first end of the shroud into a non-deflective position, while urging pivoting deflectors at the second end of the shroud into a deflective position, and vice versa for tidal current flow in the opposite direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 26, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 31, 2000
    Inventor: Philippe Vauthier
  • Patent number: 6109863
    Abstract: A fully submersible apparatus for generating electricity from liquid flow as in an ocean or river current. A buoyant structure is fully submersible and has at least one pair of counter-rotating side-by-side motors with a plurality of angularly spaced radial vanes each having a plurality of rotatable subvanes such that current impinging upon the motor will impinge on a closed or solid vane to effect rotation of the motor and its shaft during a first phase of the rotational cycle and will impinge on open vanes for free passage therethrough on the return or second phase of rotation of the motor. Motors may also be provided with vanes in overlying and underlying relationship. An associated method is provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 29, 2000
    Inventor: Larry D. Milliken
  • Patent number: 6000907
    Abstract: A fluid-activatable vane is defined by a thin vane body having opposed narrow leading and trailing side edges and opposed substantially smooth large top and bottom surfaces. The body has a central longitudinal axis and is substantially symmetrical on opposed sides of the axis. An attachment shaft is aligned with the central axis at a near end edge of the vane to secure two diametrically opposed vanes through a coupling wherein the vane will tilt along a 90.degree. arc from a horizontal plane to a vertical plane when exposed to a fluid flow. The two vanes form a propeller and are fixed to a respective end of the attachment shaft in a respective plane and offset 90.degree. from one another. A fluid actuatable torquing curved outer end edge portion is formed integral with the vane body in an outer end edge portion thereof and on a respective side of a central longitudinal axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 24, 1998
    Date of Patent: December 14, 1999
    Inventor: Adrian Bic
  • Patent number: 5921745
    Abstract: A low speed water driven turbine having a housing to be erected vertically in a water course, a water intake and a water outlet, a drive shaft rotatably mounted along a central vertical axis of the housing, a shaft sleeve non-rotatably mounted in the housing and supporting and enclosing the shaft, a guide casing of generally bell-like shape and defining a lower edge, the casing being connected to the shaft sleeve within the housing and extending outwardly from the sleeve to define a reduced cross-sectional area within the housing in the region of the guide casing, a turbine blade mounting hub driveably mounted at the lower end of the shaft, a plurality of turbine blades mounted around the hub and extending outwardly therefrom the turbine blades being mounted at angles with respect to the vertical axis of the housing, and being located to receive water from the reduced cross-sectional portion of the casing, so that water passing down through the housing will flow onto and past the turbine blades and cause rota
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 29, 1997
    Date of Patent: July 13, 1999
    Assignee: Hydroenergy Corporation
    Inventors: George F. Round, Viljo K. Valavaara
  • Patent number: 5735665
    Abstract: A reaction hydraulic turbine used for converting the energy of a flowing stream into mechanical energy of a rotating shaft is disclosed. In the turbine, the blades have a specifically-designed configuration suitable for not only reducing the hydraulic resistance but also for concentrating the energy of the flowing stream onto the blades. The internal surface of each blade has a half-circular curved section, while the external surface has a streamline section, which is smoothly put into or come out of water thus being almost completely free from hydraulic resistance. At the lowermost portion of the turbine, the energy of the flowing stream is effectively concentrated onto the curved internal surface of each blade.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 18, 1996
    Date of Patent: April 7, 1998
    Inventor: Han Sol Kang
  • Patent number: 5443361
    Abstract: A plant for recovering energy from waves in motion comprises a wedge-shaped unit, anchored, and self-adjusting towards the waves. The floating reception unit (1) is placed in the water and has a ramp (3) for the waves and a guide device (4) guiding the water to a reception pipe (8) and into an energy converting engine (9). The guide device comprises a number of reception funnels (4), the cross sections of which are narrowed down in the direction towards the energy converting engine (9). The plant also comprises a number of air chambers (16) and side chambers (10) in which the reception pipes (8) end.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 28, 1994
    Date of Patent: August 22, 1995
    Inventor: Erik Skaarup