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Publication numberUS20050139348 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/023,517
Publication dateJun 30, 2005
Filing dateDec 29, 2004
Priority dateDec 30, 2003
Publication number023517, 11023517, US 2005/0139348 A1, US 2005/139348 A1, US 20050139348 A1, US 20050139348A1, US 2005139348 A1, US 2005139348A1, US-A1-20050139348, US-A1-2005139348, US2005/0139348A1, US2005/139348A1, US20050139348 A1, US20050139348A1, US2005139348 A1, US2005139348A1
InventorsWilliam Lu, Ying-Chi Chen, Te-Tsai Chuang, Ming-Shi Tsai
Original AssigneeDelta Electronics, Inc.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Hot swap fan
US 20050139348 A1
Abstract
A hot swap fan includes a fan and a holding member. The fan has an air inlet, an air outlet, and a sidewall connected between the air inlet and the air outlet. The holding member is bent to form a top portion and at least one side portion and affixed on the sidewall. The top portion is formed with at least one handle portion, and part of the side portion is formed as a movable flexible portion connecting to the handle portion. The flexible portion is formed with an engaging structure to engage a casing that accommodates the hot swap fan.
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Claims(30)
1. A hot swap fan adapted to be disposed in a casing, comprising:
a fan; and
a holding member secured onto a sidewall of the fan and having at least one handle portion and a flexible portion for detachably coupling the fan to the casing.
2. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 1, wherein the flexible portion is movable and formed with an engaging structure to engage the casing that accommodates the hot swap fan.
3. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 1, wherein the handle portion is leveled with the holding member.
4. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 1, wherein the handle portion and the flexible portion are formed by separately hollowing out the top portion and the side portion.
5. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 3, wherein the handle portion is a ring-pull.
6. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 1, wherein the material of the holding member is plastics or metals.
7. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 1, wherein the engaging structure is a hook.
8. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 1, further comprising a terminal base mounted on the sidewall of the fan.
9. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 8, wherein the terminal base and the fan are joined together through engaging, insert molding, fusing, ultrasonic welding, riveting, or screwing.
10. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 8, wherein the terminal base is in an L shape, a bar shape, an U shape, or a polygon shape having at least one opening.
11. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 8, wherein the material of the terminal base is transparent plastics, non-transparent plastics, colored plastics, rubber, or metal.
12. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 8, wherein the terminal base comprises at least one contact terminal, and the contact terminal is protruded from or hidden inside the terminal base.
13. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 1, wherein the holding member is formed with a mounting hole for housing a light emitting diode (LED) or a raised portion for foolproof.
14. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 1, further comprising a fan guard enclosing the fan.
15. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 1, further comprising:
a first connecting structure provided on the fan; and
a second connecting structure provided on the holding member;
wherein the first and the second connecting structures are coupled together to connect the holding member to the fan.
16. A hot swap fan, comprising:
a fan; and
a holding member secured onto the fan, at least one part of the holding member being formed as a movable portion, and the movable portion having a handle portion.
17. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 16, further comprising a flexible portion formed with a first engaging structure to engage a casing that accommodates the fan.
18. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 16, wherein the handle portion is leveled with the holding member.
19. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 16, wherein the movable portion is formed by hollowing out the holding member.
20. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 16, wherein the handle portion has a curved cross section.
21. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 16, further comprising a terminal base mounted on the sidewall of the fan.
22. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 16, further comprising a fan guard enclosing the fan.
23. A hot swap fan adapted to be disposed in a casing, comprising:
a fan for detachably coupling to the casing; and
at least one terminal base mounted on the sidewall of the fan for electrically connecting the fan to a power system.
24. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 23, further comprising a holding member secured onto another sidewall of the fan and having at least one handle portion and a flexible portion for detachably coupling the fan to the casing.
25. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 23, further comprising a holding member secured onto the fan, at least one part of the holding member being formed as a movable portion, and the movable portion having a handle portion and a flexible portion.
26. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 23, further comprising a fastening member whose one end is connected to one side of the casing and the other end to the hot swap fan or the other side of the casing.
27. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 23, wherein the terminal base and the fan are joined together through engaging, insert molding, fusing, ultrasonic welding, riveting, or screwing.
28. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 23, wherein the terminal base is in an L shape, a bar shape, an U shape, or a polygon shape having at least one opening.
29. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 23, wherein the material of the terminal base is transparent plastics, non-transparent plastics, colored plastics, rubber, or metal.
30. The hot swap fan as recited in claim 23, wherein the terminal base comprises at least one contact terminal, and the contact terminal is protruded from or hidden inside the terminal base.
Description
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

a. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to a hot swap fan.

b. Description of the Related Art

When electronic products operate, they produce considerable heat to raise environmental temperature. This tends to lower their stability and even to cause breakdowns. Hence, a heat dissipating device such as a fan is used to maintain a suitable range of environmental temperature at which the electronic products operate.

Nowadays, a hot swap fan, electrically connected to a system in a terminal-contact manner instead of welding, is developed, so that it can be detached or replaced from the system easily and quickly in case of malfunction without shutting down the system.

However, since the space for accommodating a fan in a system is always limited, the issue of how to design a fan feasible of hot swapping with simple mechanism and compact size becomes very important.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Therefore, an object of the invention is to provide a hot swap fan with simple mechanism, compact size, reduced manufacture cost, and improved working safety.

According to the invention, a hot swap fan includes a fan and a holding member. The fan has an air inlet, an air outlet, and a sidewall connected between the air inlet and the air outlet. The holding member is bent to form a top portion and at least one side portion and affixed on the sidewall. The top portion is formed with at least one handle portion, and part of the side portion is formed as a movable flexible portion connecting to the handle portion. The movable flexible portion is formed with an engaging structure to engage a casing that accommodates the hot swap fan.

Through the design of the invention, since the bent holding member is hollowed out to create a movable portion, namely the handle portion and the movable flexible portion connecting to the handle portion and formed with an engaging structure, the hot swap fan and the casing can be assembled and unassembled quickly through only one component, i.e. the holding member 14. Therefore, the design for a hot swap fan is simplified, and its manufacture cost is considerable reduced as a result.

Moreover, the handle portion may be designed to be leveled with the holding member, so that the space occupied by the hot swap fan can be further reduced.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is an exploded view of a hot swap fan according to an embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 2 is an exploded view of a hot swap fan according to another embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 3 is an exploded view of a hot swap fan according to another embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 4 is an exploded view of a hot swap fan according to another embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 5A is a perspective view of a hot swap fan with a fan guard.

FIG. 5B is a perspective view of a hot swap fan with a fan guard standing in an upside down state.

FIGS. 6A-6C are schematic views illustrating shape modifications of a terminal base.

FIG. 7 is a perspective view illustrating a fix method for the hot swap fan of the invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Referring to FIG. 1, a hot swap fan 10 includes a fan 12 and a holding member 14. The fan 12 has an air inlet 12 a, an air outlet 12 b, and a frame 16 with a plurality of fixing holes 16 a and a sidewall 12 c connected between the inlet 12 a and the outlet 12 b. The holding member 14 is bent to form a top portion 18 and two side portions 20 to fit the shape of the sidewall 12 c, each of the side portions 20 being made an angle with the top portion 18. A plurality of fixing holes 14 a whose position correspond to the fixing holes 16 a are formed on the corner of the holding member 14. The holding member 14 is affixed on the sidewall 12 c of the fan 12 by rivets 34 inserted in both the fixing holes 14 a and 16 a. Also, the rivets 34 may be replaced by screws.

According to the embodiment shown in FIG. 1, the holding member 14 is hollowed out so that the top portion 18 is formed with two ring-pulls 22 at its two sides, respectively, and that part of the side portion 20 is formed as a movable flexible portion 24 connecting to the ring-pull 22.

The flexible portion 24 is formed with an engaging structure on its surface, such as a hook 26. The hook 26 is used to engage a casing (not shown) that accommodates the hot swap fan 10. Since the ring-pull 22 and the flexible portion 24 are connected to each other, when one puts his fingers on the two ring-pulls 22 and pulls them towards the center of the top portion 18, the inwards movement of the ring-pulls allows the hook 26 on the flexible portion 24 to disengage from the casing. Following that the ring-pulls 22 are pressed against the center of the top portion 18 and lifted upwards, and the hot swap fan 10 is separated from the casing.

Through the design of the invention, since the bent holding member 14 is hollowed out to create a movable portion, namely the handle portion such as the ring-pull and the flexible portion on which an engaging structure is formed, the hot swap fan and the casing can be assembled and unassembled quickly through only one component, i.e. the holding member 14. Therefore, the design for a hot swap fan is simplified, and its manufacture cost is considerable reduced as a result. Moreover, according to this embodiment, the ring-pulls 22 are leveled with the holding member 14, so that the space occupied by the hot swap fan can be further reduced.

In addition, on the side portions 20 of the holding member 14 a raised portion 28 is provided for foolproof. The top portion 18 of the holding member 14 also provides a mounting hole 30 for housing a light-emitting diode (LED), used as an operation indication lamp of the fan 12. Further, a terminal base 32 having at least one contact terminal is mounted on the sidewall of the fan 12 opposite to the holding member 14. The terminal base 32 may be formed with a bump 32 a to engage with the fixing holes 16 a. Alternatively, the terminal base 32 and fan frame 16 may be joined together through engaging, insert molding, fusing, ultrasonic welding, riveting, or screwing. Take the insert molding as an example, the metal part of the terminal base 32 and the fan frame 16 may be positioned in a mold, and then the metal part is enclosed by plastic through injection molding to fix the terminal base 32 on the fan frame 16.

Referring to FIGS. 6A-6C, the terminal base 32 may be in an L shape 52, a bar shape 54, an U shape 56, or a polygon shape having at least one opening. The terminal base 32 may be integrally formed as a single piece, as in FIGS. 6B and 6C, or may be formed by a combination of at least two pieces 52 a and 52 b, as in FIG. 6A. The material of the terminal base 32 may be transparent plastics, non-transparent plastics, colored plastics, rubber, or metal.

The number and shape of the hook 26 formed on the flexible portion 24 are not limited, as long as the hook 26 can properly engage a casing. Referring to FIG. 2, if only one hook 26 is needed to provide sufficient engaging force, only one side portion of the holding member is needed; hence, only one ring pull 22 and flexible portion 24 are formed on the holding member 14. In that case, the LED mounting hole 30 may be set on the side of the holding member 14 without the ring pull 22.

Moreover, the method for combining the holding member 14 and the fan 12 is not limited. For example, the holding member 14 may be formed with bumps 14 b whose positions correspond to the fixing holes 16 a to securely affix the holding member 14 on the fan 12 without the use of rivets 34, as shown in FIG. 2.

Referring to FIG. 3, after the holding member 18 is hollowed out to create a movable portion, instead of the ring pull 22 shown in FIG. 1, one end of the movable portion is further bent to form a curved portion 36 used as the handle portion. When one's fingers grab the curved portion 36 and pull them towards the center of the top portion 18, the inwards movement of the curved portion 36 also allows the hook 26 on the flexible portion 38 to disengage from the casing.

That is, the design of the holding member 14 according to the invention may vary arbitrarily, as long as it is formed with at least one handle portion and flexible portion to cause a displacement of the engaging structure.

Typically, a fan guard is provided to enclose a fan for improving the working safety. Referring to FIG. 4, a hot swap fan 40 is closely enclosed by a fan guard 42, which includes two surfaces 44 and 46 having wide areas to cover the inlet and outlet of the fan 12 and a connecting surface 48 to connect the surface 44 to the surface 46. These surfaces together form a shape of a square horseshoe. The fan guard 42 has a plurality of fixing holes 42 a formed on the surfaces 44 and 46, and the fan guard 42 may be tightly affixed to the fan frame by riveting or screwing. The combining method for the fan guard 42 and the fan 12 is not limited; for instance, the surfaces 44 and 46 may be formed with inwardly bumps instead of the fixing holes 42 a to securely fit the fan 12 inside the fan guard 42.

Referring to FIG. 5A, since the fan guard 42 is designed to match the holding member 14, the fan guard 42 is incorporated in the hot swap fan almost without expanding its occupied space. Moreover, FIG. 5B shows the terminal base 32 having at least one contact terminal 32 b. The contact terminal 32 b may be protruded from or hidden inside the terminal base 32 according to the actual demand, or it may even provided on a system.

Further, referring to FIG. 7, the hot swap fan 40 may be received in a casing 62 having a fastening member 64 and fixed therein through the fastening member 64, without the need of additional fixing steps. The fastening member 64 may be a plate or an engaging structure whose one end is connected to one side of the casing 62 and the other end to the hot swap fan 40 or the other side of the casing 62.

Further, according to the invention, the materials for forming the fan guard 42 and the holding member 14 include, but are not limited to, metals or plastics.

While the invention has been recited by way of examples and in terms of the preferred embodiments, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited to the disclosed embodiments. To the contrary, it is intended to terminal base various modifications and similar arrangements as would be apparent to those skilled in the art. Therefore, the scope of the appended claims should be accorded the broadest interpretation so as to encompass all such modifications and similar arrangements.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7572100 *Jun 6, 2006Aug 11, 2009Ebm-Papst St. Georgen Gmbh & Co. KgEquipment fan
US20120014811 *Dec 17, 2010Jan 19, 2012Inventec CorporationFan apparatus
EP2402672A1 *Jun 30, 2010Jan 4, 2012Giga-Byte Technology Co., Ltd.Fan module and fan rail thereof
Classifications
U.S. Classification165/104.33
International ClassificationF04D29/60, H05K7/20, F28D15/00
Cooperative ClassificationF04D29/601, H05K7/20172
European ClassificationF04D29/60C, H05K7/20B10F
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Dec 29, 2004ASAssignment
Owner name: DELTA ELECTRONICS, INC., TAIWAN
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:LU, WILLIAM;CHEN, YING-CHI;CHUANG, TE-TSAI;AND OTHERS;REEL/FRAME:016139/0290
Effective date: 20040810