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Publication numberUS3668840 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 13, 1972
Filing dateMar 6, 1970
Priority dateMar 6, 1970
Publication numberUS 3668840 A, US 3668840A, US-A-3668840, US3668840 A, US3668840A
InventorsPierick Richard L
Original AssigneePierick Richard L
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Air cleaner
US 3668840 A
Abstract
An air cleaner utilizing a series of elongate, inverted U-shaped air foils is disclosed herein. An oil retaining tray is disposed adjacent the air inlet of an enclosure which also has an air outlet. The air foils are disposed in the air inlet above the tray with the legs of the air foils extending downwardly to proximate the top of the tray. A fan is utilized to force air through the air inlet, over the legs of the air foils and then up through the inside of the air foils. Air and particles of dirt entrained in the air are accelerated along the legs of the air foils. The dirt particles attain sufficient inertia to plunge into the oil in the tray where those particles are retained while the clean air passes into the inside of the air foils.
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United States Patent Pierick 51 June 13, 1972 AIR CLEANER [22] Filed: March 6, 1970 [2l] Appl.No.: 17,096

[52] US. Cl ..55/239, 55/246, 55/256,

55/342, 55/436, 55/472, 55/484 [5 l] Int. Cl ..B01d 47/02 [58] Field of Search ..55/220, 239-241 55/244, 246, 250, 233-234, 253, 436, 482-484, 255-256, 249, 247; 261/119 A, 119 R, 23 R [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,943,297 1/1934 Cook.... ..261/119X FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 673,320 3/1939 Germany ..261/119 901,715 7/1962 Great Britain ..55/244 471,295 9/1937 Great Britain ..261/119 Primary Examiner-Dennis E. Talbert, Jr. Assistant Examiner-Vincent Gifford Attorney-Henderson & Strom ABSTRACT An air cleaner utilizing a series of elongate, inverted U-shaped air foils is disclosed herein. An oil retaining tray is disposed adjacent the air inlet of an enclosure which also has an air outlet. The air foils are disposed in the air inlet above the tray with the legs of the air foils extending downwardly to proximate the top of the tray. A fan is utilized to force air through the air inlet, over the legs of the air foils and then up through the inside of the air foils. Air and particles of dirt entrained in the air are accelerated along the legs of the air foils. The dirt particles attain sufficient inertia to plunge into the oil in the tray where those particles are retained while the clean air passes into the inside of the air foils.

6 Claims, 4 Drawing Figures PATENTEnJuu 1 3 m2 INVENTOR. P/m/AED z. HEB/CA AIR CLEANER BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to an air cleaner of novel construction which utilizes a series of elongate, inverted Ushaped air foils and an oil bath in cleaning air.

Several types of air cleaning devices are now being utilized. Ordinary furnace filters are inexpensive and remove the larger particles entrained in the air. The particles, however, clog the filter and cause a relatively large pressure drop across the filter. Electrostatic filters are much more efficient and, correspondingly, much more expensive. A real need exists for a filter which does not clog, which is efficient, and inexpensive. Additionally, the pressure drop across the filter should be small especially if the filter is utilized in a heating or air conditioning system or the like.

Attempts have been made to create this type of filter which are documented in Clawson, US Pat. No. 716,380; Rowen, US. Pat. No. 283,025; Brunck, US. Pat. No. 825,297; and Fett, U.S. Pat. No. 2,527,004. However, none of these devices meet all of the requirements set out above.

The air cleaner of this invention is designed to minimize the pressure drop across the air cleaner. It will not clog and it is inexpensive and efficient.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to an air cleaner comprising an enclosure having an air inlet and an air outlet and means for forcing air through the enclosure. Means adapted to retain liquids is disposed adjacent the air inlet. A series of elongate, inverted -U-shaped air foils are aligned above the liquid retaining means and disposed in the air inlet. The air foils have a closed inlet end and an open discharge end with the legs of the air foils extending downwardly to proximate the top of the liquid retaining means. The legs of the air foils are substantially aligned with the general direction of air flow through the air inlet. A lateral member is affixed to the discharge ends of the air foils to substantially seal the air inlet except for the open discharge ends of the air foils.

The primary object of this invention is to provide an efficient, inexpensive air cleaner or filter.

Another object is to provide an air cleaner across which there is a relatively low pressure drop.

Yet another object is to provide an air cleaner which will not clog yet will remove particles as small as pollen from the air.

Still another object is to provide a series of air foils disposed substantially parallelly of the direction of air flow through the air inlet of the enclosure.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the air cleaner of this invention having a portion of the enclosure cut away.

FIG. 2 is an enlarged and exploded view of a series of air foils and the liquid retaining means.

FIG. 3 is an enlarged cross-sectional view of the air cleaner taken along line 3-3 of FIG. 1.

FIG. 4 is an enlarged front view of three air foils disposed over the liquid retaining means.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring now to the drawings, the air cleaner of this invention is indicated generally at 11 in FIGS. 1 and 3. The air cleaner 11 comprises an enclosure 12 having an air inlet 13 and an air outlet 14 and means 16 for forcing air through the enclosure 12. Liquid retaining means 17 are disposed adjacent the air inlet 13 and series of air foils 18 are disposed above each of the liquid retaining means 17. A lateral member 19 is affixed to each series of air foils l8 proximate the discharge ends 21 thereof and substantially seals the air inlet 13 except for the open discharge ends 21 of the air foils 18.

More specifically, an enclosure 12 is utilized in this air cleaner 11 having an air inlet 13 and an air outlet 14. The configuration and size of the enclosure 12 is not critical. The enclosure 12 can be, for example, a conduit or duct (not shown) in a furnace system or in an automobile.

In the embodiment shown (FIGS. 1 and 3), the enclosure 12 is of box-like configuration with one end 22 open (the air inlet 13) and an aperture 23 formed in one side 24 (the air outlet 14). Arms 26 extend into the open end 22 from the sides 24 and 27 for supporting the liquid retaining means 17. An inner partition 28 can be formed in the enclosure 12 to direct the air flow into a centrifugal fan 29 or the like which is utilized as the means 16 for forcing air through the enclosure 12. The aperture 23 is located on the side of the partition 28 opposite the open end 22.

The means 16 for forcing air through the enclosure 12 can be disposed in the enclosure 12 as shown in FIGS. 1 and 3 or external means (not shown) can be utilized. For example if the air cleaner 1] is installed in a heating or a cooling system, the furnace blower can be utilized as the means 16 for forcing air through the enclosure 12. In the embodiment shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, a fan 29 having a motor 31 is utilized as the means 16 for forcing air through the enclosure 12.

At least one means 17 adapted to retain liquids therein is disposed adjacent the air inlet 13. More specifically, the liquid retaining means 17 is generally a tray 32 or trays 32 which can be supported by the bottom 33 of the enclosure 12 or by the arms 26 extending into the air inlet 13. The trays 32 (FIGS. 2 and 3) are generally quite shallow and extend from one side 24 of the enclosure 12 to the other side 27. Partitions 34 are formed laterally ad longitudinally in the trays 32 and extend upwardly to approximately the desired liquid level. These partitions 34 minimize spillage of the liquid 36 contained therein when removing the trays 32 or when moving the air cleaner 1 l.

Preferably, the trays 32 are removable from the enclosure 12. By utilizing removable trays 32, the air inlet 13 can be of any size or configuration. Air inlet area can be maximized and pressure drop through this air cleaner 11 can be minimized. Additionally, the trays 32 can be readily cleaned and the liquid 36 contained therein can be replenished.

Any non-evaporating liquid can be utilized in this air cleaner 11 as the liquid 36. Oil is preferred as it is readily available, inexpensive, and non-evaporating. When dirt or other foreign particles contact the oil surface 37, they cannot then leave that surface 37.

At least one series of air foils 18 is disposed in the air inlet 13 and aligned above the liquid retaining means 17. Each of the air foils 18 has an elongate, inverted U-shaped configuration and a closed inlet end 38 and an open discharge end 21. The legs 39 of the air foils extend downwardly to proximate the top 40 of the liquid retaining means 17 and are substantially aligned with the direction of air flow through the air inlet As more specifically shown in FIGS. 3 and 4, each of the air foils 18 is of inverted U-shaped configuration and slants upwardly from the inlet end 38 to the discharge end 21. The inlet end 38 is closed and the discharge end 21 is open. The air flow is indicated by the streamlines 41 in FIGS. 3 and 4. As in dicated therein, the air flow through this air cleaner 1 1 is laminar thereby minimizing the pressure drop through this device 1 1. Air flows through the air inlet 13, over the top 42 of the air foils 18 and down along the legs 39 of the air foils 18. The air passes under the legs 39 and over the surface 37 of the liquid 36 and then into the inside of the air foil 18 and out of the discharge end 21.

In a preferred embodiment, the legs 39 extend downwardly into the liquid retaining means 17 or trays 32 and outwardly (FIG. 4). By extending the legs 39 outwardly, the velocity of the air can be increased as it flows down the legs 39. As the air velocity is increased, the inertia of foreign particles in the air flow is increased with concomitantly better cleaning of the air. Because of this outward extension of the legs 39, particles as small as pollen can be removed from the air passing through this air cleaner 1 1.

The liquid level can also be adjusted. If the liquid level is raised, the air will be cleaned more thoroughly and a larger pressure drop will become apparent. When the liquid level is dropped, the pressure drop will be smaller but cleaning may suffer. As can be seen from FIG. 4, air passing under the legs 39 is wiped against the liquid 36 thereby attaining additional cleaning. Air flow under the legs 39 causes some cupping of the surface 37 of the liquid 36 as shown in FIG. 4.

The air foils 18 (FIGS. 3 and 4) are substantially parallelly aligned with each other and the legs 39 of the air foils 18 are substantially parallelly aligned with the general direction of air flow through the air inlet 13. This specific design maintains laminar flow and reduces pressure drop over the air foils 18. The air foils 18 can also be arranged in a circular configuration. In this configuration, the legs 39 of the air foils are substantially aligned with the general direction of air flow through the air inlet 13.

Another significant advantage of this air cleaner 11 is that the pressure drop across the air foils 18 is always constant regardless of whether the liquid 36 is clean or dirty. This is in marked contrast to inexpensive air cleaners such as the ordinary furnace filters.

The air foils 18 are preferably arranged in a series over each of the trays 32. The air foils 18 are secured together in a series by a lateral member 19. Each of the series is preferably demountably disposed on one of the trays 32 and extends from one side 24 of the enclosure 12 to the other side 27. The series of air foils 18 are preferably removable from the enclosure 12 and the trays 32 to facilitate cleaning thereof.

At least one lateral member 19 (FIGS. 1-4) is affixed to each of the series of air foils l8 proximate the discharge ends 21 of the air foils 18. This member 19 can be formed of any suitable material and extends from one side 24 of the enclosure 12 to the other side 27. Lateral member 19 substantially seals the air inlet 13 of the enclosure 12 except for the open discharge ends 21 of the air foils 18 thereby forcing the air to pass downwardly along the legs 39 and then under the legs 39 and into the inside of the air foils 18.

A second lateral member 43 (FIGS. l-3) can be affixed proximate the inlet ends 38 of the air foils 18. This second member 43 extends from one side 24 of the enclosure 12 to the other side 27 and extends upwardly to the tops 42 of the air foils 18 at the inlet ends 38. The inlet ends 38 of the air foils 18 are effectively sealed by this second member 43 and laminar flow is insured through the air cleaner 11.

The air cleaner 11 of this invention as shown in FIGS. 1-4 can be operated by, first, removing the trays 32 and filling them with oil or other suitable liquid. A series of air foils 18 are engaged with each tray 32 and the trays 32 and air foils 18 are replaced in the air cleaner 11. The fan 29 is turned on which forces air through the air inlet 13 and over the air foils 18. Dirt and other foreign particles are deposited and retained in the oil.

The air cleaner 11 of this invention can be adjusted to efficiently remove room dust, pollen, and other common foreign particles. Pressure drop can be controlled by regulating the depth of the oil in the trays 32.

Although a preferred embodiment has been described herein, it is understood that various modifications of this invention fall within the appended claims.

I claim:

1. An air cleaner comprising:

an enclosure having an air inlet and an air outlet formed therein;

means for forcing air into said enclosure through said air inlet and out of said enclosure through said air outlet;

a plurality of liquid retaining means each comprising a removable tray disposed adjacent said air inlet;

a plurality of series of air foils disposed in said air inlet each series of air foils aligned above and demountably disposed in one of said liquid retaining means, each of said air foils having an upper portion slanting upwardly from said inlet end to said discharge end and an elongate, inverted U- shaped configuration, and having a closed inlet end and an open discharge end and legs extending downwardly to proximate the top of said respective liquid retaining means, said legs being substantially aligned with the general direction of air flow through said air inlet; and

a lateral member afiixed to each of said air foils proximate the discharge ends, said member sealing the air inlet of said enclosure except for said open discharge ends of said air foils.

2. The air cleaner of claim 1 wherein said legs extend downwardly into said means for retaining liquids and are substantially parallelly aligned with the general direction of air flow through said air inlet.

3. The air cleaner of claim 1 wherein said legs extend downwardly and outwardly.

4. The air cleaner of claim 1 wherein each of said trays has partitions formed therein extending upwardly to proximate the desired liquid level thereby minimizing spills of the liquid.

5. The air cleaner of claim 1 wherein said means for forcing air through said enclosure is a fan.

6. The air cleaner of claim 1 wherein a second lateral member is affixed to each series of said air foils proximate the inlet ends and extending upwardly to proximate the top of said air foils.

Patent Citations
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US773784 *Aug 6, 1903Nov 1, 1904Firm Of Franz BrunckProcess of extracting ammonia from distillation-gases.
US1720179 *May 1, 1925Jul 9, 1929Hooton GordonAir cleaner
US1869344 *Dec 23, 1929Jul 26, 1932Schonbein William FCombination air cleaner and humidifier
US1943297 *Nov 8, 1929Jan 16, 1934Cook George CCinder or dust collector
US2777536 *Jun 10, 1953Jan 15, 1957Nelson Muffler CorpWater-quench spark arrestor muffler
US2988166 *Oct 30, 1958Jun 13, 1961Massey Ferguson IncAir cleaner
US3474598 *Feb 27, 1968Oct 28, 1969Henry P C KeulsAir purifier and humidifier
US3494108 *Mar 14, 1968Feb 10, 1970Edward L MoragneAir cleaner
DE673320C *Oct 14, 1936Mar 21, 1939Hansa Gas Generatoren G M B HAuf Fahrzeugen angeordneter Reiniger fuer Generatorgase
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4172865 *Jul 7, 1977Oct 30, 1979Ernest SteierAir filtration device
US4252547 *Feb 15, 1979Feb 24, 1981Johnson Kenneth OGas cleaning unit
US7585344 *Feb 9, 2006Sep 8, 2009Oreck Holdings, LlcAir cleaner airflow shaper
US7811348Aug 7, 2009Oct 12, 2010Oreck Holdings, LlcAir cleaner airflow shaper
US20070180801 *Feb 9, 2006Aug 9, 2007Oreck Holdings, LlcAir cleaner airflow shaper
US20100015907 *Jan 21, 2010Oreck Holdings, LlcAir cleaner airflow shaper
Classifications
U.S. Classification96/331, 55/484, 55/436, 55/472, 55/342
International ClassificationF24F3/16, B01D47/02
Cooperative ClassificationB01D47/02, F24F3/16
European ClassificationB01D47/02, F24F3/16