US 3372911 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
March 8 B. B. HERBOLDSHEIMER 3,37
EVAPORATIVE COOLER FOR VEHICLE MOUNTING Filed Jan. 16, 1967 0 4 INVENTOR Benn/2e 51 flerbo/als/le/hwr United States Patent Ofiice 3,372,911 Patented Mar. 12, 1968 3,372,911 EVAPORATIVE COOLER FOR VEHICLE MOUNTING Bennie B. Herboldsheimer, Potter, Nebr. 69156 Filed Jan. 16, 1967, Ser. No. 609,451 8 Claims. (Cl. 261--24) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A ring-like trickle pad supported within a housing with the suction of a blower applied to the inside wall of the pad. The housing and pad are constructed to guide outside air into the outer face of the pad around the circumference thereof. Water is delivered to the upper edge of the trickle pad to flow therethrough by gravity, the water being supplied to the upper edge by a distributor from a central point.
Background of the invention The desirability of air conditioning tractor cabs and operators cabs carried by other self-propelled vehicles, such as combines and the like, is well recognized. For many areas, particularly those having dry climates, evaporative cooling by means of drawing the air through a gravity fed water trickle pad provides the most econom1cal approach. However, many problems are also encountered in obtaining efficient evaporative cooling, the principal one being the problem posed by the pitching and rolling of the vehicle asit advances over uneven terrain. Since gravity flow is relied upon to move the water through the pad it is difficult to obtain even distribution of the water in the trickle pad with the principal consequence that the efliciency and output of the cooler is low.
Summary of the invenlion The present invention has several objectives, among which are: 1) the provision of an evaoprative cooler adapted primarily for mounting on the roof of a cab or vehicle and having an arrangement for distributing the water through the trickle pad at substantially all points along its length during changes in attitude of the vehicle to be expected during normal operation; (2) the provision of a cooler in which water movement through the trickle pad in various directions is permitted during the changes in attitude; (3) the provision of means for conserving the excess water which has not been taken up by the air and flows from the pad so that the excess can be recirculated; (4) the provision of means for controlling and guiding the air flow so as to produce optimum water-air contact throughout the full span of the trickle pad; (5) the provision of an arrangement through which removal of dust and other particles from the air is enhanced by the way in which the air is contacted with the water; and (6) the provision of a compact and efficient arrangement of housing, trickle pad and air and water handling means lending itself particularly to ease of manufacture and low cost to purchasers.
Other objects and advantages of the invention, together with the features of novelty appurtenant thereto will appear during the course of the following description.
Detailed description In the accompanying drawing, which forms a part of the specification and is to be read in conjunction therewith, and in which like reference numerals indicate like parts in the various views:
FIG. 1 is a top plan view of an evaporative cooler constructed according to a preferred form of the invention, the top cover, inside combined water distributor member and blower closure being in part broken away to expose the interior structure, other parts being broken away and shown in section;
FIG. 2 is a sectional view taken generally along line 2-2 of FIG. 1 in the direction of the arrows, part of the blower housing being broken away to expose the inside rotor;
FIG. 3 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view, taken along line 3-3 of FIG. 1 in the direction of the arrows; and
FIG. 4 is a greatly enlarged top plan view of the water feed member located at the top center of the water distributor member, the feed member being shown disassociated from the other parts of the unit.
Referring to the drawing, and referring initially to FIG. 2, the unit is designed for mounting on the roof of a vehicle cab such as indicated at reference numeral 10. The main body of the unit comprises an annular housing 11 which may be visualized as much like a conventional ring mold. This housing has the outer wall 12, the inner wall 13 and the bottom wall 14. As can best be seen in FIG. 2, the inner wall is of substantially lesser height than the outer wall. Preferably, the housing 11 is cast as an unitary body and incorporates in the casting the bearing block 15 as well as quadrilaterally spaced attaching brackets 16 which project outwardly from the base of the housing and are apertured to receive mounting bolts for securing the unit in place on the top of the cab.
As will be evident, the outside, bottom and inside walls of the housing cooperate to form an annular trough. Seated in this trough and substantially centrally thereof around the base member is a ring-like trickle pad 17 which, so far as its composition is concerned, may be substantially the same as those presently in use. This comprises a central filling material of porous character which is contained between foraminous screen-like members 18 and 19. In order to space the trickle pad a distance from the inner housing wall 13, vertical risers or spacers 20 are located at spaced points around the casing adjacent the inside wall. Preferably, these are also cast integral with the housing. The spacers extend upwardly the full height of the trickle pad 17 and for a slight distance thereabove.
Supported on the upper ends of the spacers 20, which are inclined to conform With the shape of the supported member, is a conical closure and water distributor member 21. The diameter of member 21 is such that its outer edge preferably lies adjacent the outer rim of the upper edge of the trickle pad 17 around the periphery of the unit. The member 21 is releasably secured in position by latching members of the nature indicated at 22 in FIG. 2, these comprising an inside catch member 23 riveted or otherwise fastened to the inside of the outside casing wall 12 and a releasable latch member 24 which is engageable with and disengageable from member 23. Preferably, there are four such latches spaced quadrilaterally around the unit.
Secured centrally to the top surface of the cone mem ber 21 is the water distributor member 25 which, in the preferred form of the invention, comprises a substantially conical base having formed on its upper surface a plurality of ribs or vanes. Referring to FIG. 4, it will be noted that there are substantially diametric vanes 26 which extend inwardly to and merge with vertical ribs or vanes 27 and equiangularly spaced partial ribs or vanes 28 which terminate short of the upstanding vanes 27. The vanes 26 serve to subdivide the upper surface of mto four equal segments and the vanes 28 in turn subdivide those segments.
Sleeved downwardly over the upstanding vanes 27 on member 25 is the end of a hose H. This hose enters the casing through an appropriate fitting as at 29 and is connected with a source of water under pressure (not shown).
This source may be any conventional water pump, but since its details play on part in the present invention it has not been shown.
The unit is covered as a whole by means of the frustoconical cover member 30 which has a downturned outer rim which fits over the upper end edge of the housing and may be removably secured thereto by any appropriate means such as hooks and eyes or the like. The center portion of the top cover 30 is aperturcd to provide a central opening 31.
Spaced around the bottom wall of the housing at equispaced intervals, preferably quadrilaterally, are located four drain openings 32 (see FIG. 3) which have fittings connected thereto over which are adapted to be sleeved drain hoses 33. The drain hoses 33 are collectively connected with a reservoir (not shown) which supplies the pump earlier described. It will be noted that the drain openings 32 are located adjacent the outer wall of the unit.
Located centrally within the trickle pad ring and beneath the water distributor enclosure 21 is a conventional centrifugal blower 34 having the rotor 35. The discharge of the blower is indicated at 36, this feeding to the interior of the cab. It will be understood that the intake or suction area of the blower is on the sides thereof, as is conventional. The rotor is mounted on the shaft 37, which in turn is supported by bearings 38, the lower half of each bearing being preferably formed as a part of the main casting and conventional top bearing block being secured thereto in the usual manner. The shaft 37 is connected with the output shaft of a motor 39 which is preferably, but not necessarily, a hydraulic motor, the preference for the hydraulic motor being that hydraulic systems are generally available on equipment where this unit is most likely to be used.
The housing is provided with the shaft bearing block which is internally bored at 41 with an oversize bore which reduces to a reduced counterbore 42 at the inner end. The enlarged counterbore is provided to accumulate any oil that may leak from the motor 39 and to guide it into an oil discharge passageway 42 formed in the block which has coupled therewith a drain hose 43 which can lead to any appropriate collection means for excess oil. This arrangement inhibits against the introduction of oil into the air flow system of the unit. The block 15 is provided with an aperture 44 therethrough adjacent the bottom of the casing which provides communication between the annular trough portions on opposite sides of the block.
In operation, water is introduced at a relatively high flow rate to the unit through the hose H and as it is discharged over the member is subdivided and delivered substantially uniformly in four broadly oriented directions, which may be compared with the main compass points of the compass. The water flows downwardly on the upper surface of the distributor and closure member 21 and is delivered to the upper edge of the ring-like trickle pad adjacent the rim thereof. From this discharge point, the water courses downwardly through the trickle pad under the influence of gravity.
It will be understood that in starting the unit, the motor 39 is also started, thus setting the blower 34 in operation. As suction is developed at the intake sides of the blower, this applies a negative pressure to the inside of the pad, thus drawing the air from the space between the outside wall of the pad and the inside wall of the housing and naturally as air is evacuated from this area it is replaced by air flowing inwardly through opening 31 and downwardly across the upper surface of member 21. The member 21, of course, prevents air from being drawn into the interior of the ring other than through the ring itself. The restricted air inflow opening 31 assures of achieving relatively high velocity of air flow which assists in its uniform distribution around the interior of the unit and of sub t ntially equal vol metri i 4 flow through the pad at all points around the circumference of the pad. The bringing of air into initial contact with the water on the closure 21 assists greatly in cleaning dust from the air.
As the vehicle is moving through the field it, of course, assumes different attitudes resulting from the pitch and roll of the vehicle. However, by providing the elevated inclined water distribution surface 21 coupled with the distributor member 25, flow of water downwardly upon the surfaces 21 which is substantially uniform at all points therearound is virtually assured, except in the most extreme of attitudes. This distribution is assisted by the forces exerted by the air drawn in through opening 31. By discharging the water into the pad at the rim of the upper edge thereof, the air is permitted to influence the Water by moving it back inwardly so that relatively complete impregnation of the pad with water is obtained.
The pad is washed of collected dust particles by the water flowing therethrough.
Excess water, i.e. that water which is not evaporated, is collected in the trough and will drain therefrom through the drain openings 32. By virtue of the transverse water passageway 44 through the main bearing block 15, the damming effect which ordinarily would be provided by this portion of the unit is avoided and Water is free to circulate in the trough in any direction according to the attitude of the vehicle.
From the foregoing, it will be seen that this invention is one well adapted to attain all of the ends and objects hereinabove set forth together with other advantages which are obvious and which are inherent to the structure.
It will be understood that certain features and subcombinations are of utility and may be employed without reference to other features and subcombinations. This is contemplated by and is within the scope of the claims.
As many people embodiments may be made of the invention without departing from the scope thereof, it is to be understood that all matter herein set forth or shown in the accompanying drawing is to be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.
Having thus described my invention, I claim:
1. In an evaporative cooling unit for mounting on a vehicle cab roof, the combination of a porous trickle pad in the form of an annular ring arranged with its central axis substantially upright and having an upper edge and a lower edge,
a casing having a bottom wall supporting the lower edge of said trickle pad and an upright outer ringlike wall spaced from the outermost surface of said trickle pad to define an annular space between the inner face of said wall and the outer face of said p a top cover for said ring having a center portion elevated above the level of the upper edge of the ring and downwardly inclined surfaces leading toward a cover edge, said cover edge adjoining the top edge of said ring,
means for flowing water onto said center portion of said cover for flow along said downwardly inclined surfaces and off the edge thereof into and through said pad, and
air blower means having a discharge side for comunication with the interior of the cab and a suction side communicating with the interior of said ring and operable to draw air into said annular space and laterally through said pad toward the inside of the ring whereby to contact the air with the water in said trickle pad.
2. The combination as in claim 1,
said ring of circular configuration and said cover being conical.
3. The combination as in claim 1,
said casing having an inner upstanding ring-like wall proceeding upwardly from said bottom wall and of lesser height than said ring and disposed interiorly of the inner surface of said trickle pad ring.
4. The combination as in claim 1,
said last mentioned means including a flow distributor at said center portion for dividing and guiding the flow substantially uniformly away from said center portion toward the outer edge of said cover.
5. The combination as in claim 1,
said means for flowing water onto said center portion including a plurality of vanes radiating outwardly from the center of said cover and spaced therearound, and
hose means positioned to deliver a stream of water downwardly toward the upper ends of said vanes.
6. The combination as in claim 5, including coupling means insertible into said hose means, said coupling means located at said top center of said cover and having riibs which subdivide the flow through the hose into streams which then move independently toward and between the vanes.
7, The combination as in claim 1,
said bottom wall of said casing provided with a central aperture, and
said blower means disposed in said aperture.
8. The combination as in claim 7,
said blower means comprising a centrifugal blower,
motor means mounted on the exterior of said casing and having a drive shaft connected with said blower, and
bearing carried by said casing and supporting said shaft on opposite sides of the blower.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,278,836 9/1918 Bibbee 261-106 1,979,630 11/1934 Lea 261106X 2,319,565 5/1943 Stratton 261-97 X 2,557,276 6/1951 Gerow 26197 X 2,600,926 6/1952 Rudd 26197 X 3,180,244 4/1965 Mescher 261-97 X RONALD R. WEAVER, Primary Examiner.