US 3680317 A
A gas generator for engines in which a fuel is combusted to provide an effluent fed to a cylindrical chamber wherein it is caused to flow in a spiral path creating a vacuum along its longitudinal axis sucking air through the cylinder and expelling it out an oppositely spaced opening. A portion of the expelled air being recycled into the combusted fuel.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Kotoc  REACTION MOTOR INCLUDING AIR FLOW INDUCING MEANS  Inventor: Stefan Kotoc, Prague, Czechoslo- Ytekia 1  Assignee: Ustav pro vyzkum motorovych vozidel, Prague, Czechoslovakia  Filed: Nov. 10, 1969  Appl. No.: 875,186
 Foreign Application Priority Data Nov. 14, 1968 Czechoslovakia ..7755/68  U.S. Cl. ..60/269, 60/3914, 60/3952, 417/159  Int. Cl..., ..F02k 1/20  Field of Search ..60/269, 39.52, 39.14, 270; 417/159  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS [4 1 Aug. 1, 1972 2,935,840 5/1960 Schoppe ..60/269 FOREIGN PATENTS 0R APPLICATIONS 1,007,027 2/1952 France ..417/159 1,029,994 6/1953 France ..60/39.52
130,959 2/1951 Sweden ..60/269 Primary Examiner-Carlton R. Croyle Assistant Examiner-Warren Olsen Attorney-Richard Low and Murray Schaffer  ABSTRACT A gas generator for engines in which a fuel is combusted to provide an effluent fed to a cylindrical chamber wherein it is caused to flow in a spiral path creating a vacuum along its longitudinal axis sucking air through the cylinder and expelling it out an oppositely spaced opening. A portion of the expelled air being recycled into the combusted fuel.
8 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures PATENTEEAUB"! m2 sum 2 or 3 .317
v e/dn Wm INVENTOR ATTORNEY PATENIEHAWI 1972 3,680,131 7 sum 3 or 3 INVENTOR ATTORNEY REACTION MOTOR INCLUDING AIR FLOW INDUCING MEANS BACKGROUND OF INVENTION The present invention relates to a method and apparatus for generating a gaseous working medium and in particular to gas operated engines or the like.
J et engines, turbo props and similar devices employ a flowing gas under predetermined conditions of temperature, pressure and velocity to provide the needed propulsive power. Other devices such as heat exchangers employ similarly flowing gas as their heat source. In each such device the gas engine or generator is an essential element.
Conventional gas generators employ an open system with an external supply of energy continuously exhausted in direct proportion to the heat produced. The working medium of gas is independent of the fuel combustion system and is merely heated by the combustion system and both expended.
In general in order to, therefore, make efficient use of the heat source and of the fuel, the working media is compressed by mechanical means. To reach high levels of efficiencies large compressor units, multistage'compressor units and other devices are employed to create a superheated gas. Consequently in jet engines, turbo prop engines and similar devices the largest, most costly, and troublesome element is the compressor or superheater.
It is an object of the present invention to provide a gas generator having improved qualities and characteristics over those known from the prior art.
It is another object of the present invention to provide a gas generator for use with jet engines and the like which obviates the need for compression of gas and the use of large costly compressor devices.
It is another object of the present invention to provide a gas generator which is an integral part of the working media system and which provides heat to and derives heat from that system in a repetitive regenerative cycle.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a gas generator in which gases of high temperatures are produced and which may be employed directly as the power media for engines.
A specific object of the present invention is to provide engines using flowing gaseous media of simple construction and of simple operation.
Still another specific object is to provide a light weight engine of few moving parts but of high efficiency and output.
These objects as well as others and numerous advantages will be seen in the following disclosure.
SUMMARY OF INVENTION According to the present invention there is provided a method of continuously and automatically operating a gas generator comprising the steps of continuously feeding fuel to a combustion chamber wherein is produced a gaseous media of predetermined pressure and temperature. Mixing the gaseous media with an oxygen bearing atmosphere to increase the temperature and pressure of said atmosphere, and returning a portion of the mixture to the combustion chamber and exhausting the remainder of the mixture to a work producing device.
Further according to the present invention a gas generator is provided having a cylindrical mixing chamber open at both ends, a combustion chamber for combusting a fuel into an effluent gas and means for passing the effluent gas to the mixing chamber in a helical flow path to form a vacuum along the axis of the cylinder. The vacuum sucks air into the cylinder which is then heated and expelled through the end of the cylinder.
. As an important feature of the present invention, means are provided for recirculating a portion of the sucked and expelled air into the combustion chamber to provide for continuous cycling and regeneration.
The apparatus also includes baffle means, venturi devices and flow control means for regulating gas flow and mixture.
The apparatus according to the invention starts its operation by ignition means. During further operation it does not need further ignitionmeans,'the regenerative cycle being sufficient to provide spontaneous combustion.
These features and others are fully disclosed in the following detailed description wherein reference is made to the accompanying drawings.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS In the following disclosure reference is made to the accompanying drawings in which FIG. 1 is a sectional view of an aircraft jet engine employing the principles of the present invention,
FIG. 2a is a sectional view of a portion of the engine shown in FIG. 1 taken along line A-'A,
, FIG. lb is a sectional view of another portion of the engine shown in FIG. 1 taken along line 8-5,
aircraft in which the conventional compressor is eliminated and embodying the principles of the present invention,
FIG. 3 is a modified form of the turbo prop engine shown in FIG. 2 in which a radial turbine is employed.
It is to be understood that the drawings are in schematic form and show only those features which are necessary for a full explanation of the present invention. Conventional features and constructions such as fuel supply conduits, valves, control means etc., are omitted from the present drawings to provide an unencumbered disclosure and to permit the present invention to be briefly and concisely set forth. These elements are conventional in nature and are well known to those skilled in this art.
Both the method and the apparatus of the present invention will be discussed simultaneously for the sake of brevity.
DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION Turning now to a detailed discussion of the present invention reference is made to the first embodiment shown in FIG. 1 wherein the jet engine comprises an outer shell 1 and an inner shell 2 each of a generally cylindrical nature and concentrically spaced about an axis x-x, so as to provide between them an annulus 3 and within the inner shell 2 a cylindrical hollow interior 4 serving as a gas heat exchanger or gas mixing chamber.
Located within the annulus 3 is a gas generator or combustion chamber 5 having an annular inlet 6 and an annular outlet 7 at its opposed axial ends. The combustion chamber 5 is provided with a fuel injector 8 or other equivalent firing device and means for supplying a suitable fuel in either gaseous or liquid phase (not shown) for combustion into a gaseous effluent of elevated temperature and pressure. Mounted at the outlet 7 is an annular conduit header 9 which is arranged concentrically about and spaced from a generally cylindrical air inlet scoop 10. Between the header 9 and scoop 10 is provided an annular axial opening shown by arrow 1 1 circumferentially about the front part of the mixing chamber 4.
The header 9 comprises a circularly arranged ring of blades 12 (FIG. la) which are spaced from each other within the axial opening 11. The blades 12 are curved in a predetermined direction to force the effluent gas emanating from the combustion chamber 5 to flow into and through the space 11 into the mixing chamber 4 in a helical path commencing as a spiral.
Surrounding the annular header 9 and the space 1 l is a ring shaped housing 13 which is secured to the air scoop l0 and the housing shell 1 so as to form an enclosed annular chamber 14. Mounted within the annular chamber 14 are one or more conventional rockets 15 the nozzles of which are tangentially directed toward the circumferential wall of the mixing chamber 14. A second enclosed housing 16 overlies the rockets l5 and acts as a storage chamber for the propellant therefor.
At the outlet end of the mixing chamber 4the-cylin-v drical shell 2 is extended into curved cowling 17 having a generally cylindrical cross section. Within the cowling 17 and spaced therefrom is mounted a dipsoidical member 18 which is by-passed by flowing gases and which provides a generally axial annulus 19 forming a directional exhaust nozzle of conventional design. The member 18 which is by-passed by flowing gases is mounted to the cowling 17 by a plurality of plates 20 which are arranged in radial extending planes passing through the central axis x--x of the engine. In this manner the plates 20 serve to convert the gases moving helically through the mixing chamber 4 into effluent gases propelled through the nozzle 19 in a uniform and unidirectionally oriented manner to afford great thrust and power to the jet engine. At the discharge end of the mixing chamber 4, inlet 6 and concentric with the elliptical member 18 is'a second conduit header 21. The discharge header 21 while similar to the intake header 9 is provided with oppositely directed baffles 22 as seen in FIG. lb. In this manner gases flowing through the mixing chamber 4 can be diverted into the inlet 6 and thus into the combustion chamber 5. The baffle blades 22 of the header 21 are arranged in spaced relationship about a circular ring so that an axial exit 24 is formed between them and throughwhich axial exit the portion of gases in the chamber 4 can exhaust into the nozzle 19 as shown by the arrow P.
It is noted at this point that the combustion chamber 5 is not provided with any independent ignition means. As explained hereinafter such means are not essential to the operation of the jet engine embodying the principles of this invention.
The jet engine according to FIG. 1 is operated as fol-- lows: To place the engine into a starting cycle, one or more of the rockets 15 are ignited by means of an ignition system conventional in this art. Such rockets may have solid or liquid propellant fuels stored normally in housing 16, which when combusted give off a burst of gas of extremely high heat and kinetic energy. These gases are directed tangentially toward the circumferential wall of the annular chamber 14 flowing circularly, through it with respect to the axis x-x. The rocket gas meets with the header 9 and is resisted from entering the mixing chamber 4 by the blades 12 until such time as sufficient pressure is built up in the annular chamber 14 to force the gas through the axial opening 11. Because the rocket gases are directed tangentially against the wall of chamber 14 they pass through the curved blades 12 in a helical flow pattern which is continued through the mixing chamber 4.
Since the header 9 acts to constrict the flow of gases through the axial space 11, a venturi like effect is created resulting in a decrease of pressure and increase of volume as soon as these gases enter into the enlarged area of the cylindrical mixing chamber 4. This expansion of the gases tends to increase the helical or whirling motion and thereof to increase the rotary or tangential component as depicted by the arrow G.
In the interior of the mixing chamber 4 a complicated phenomenon of flow and exchange of energy takes place. The hot rocket gases move along the circumference or periphery of the chamber 4 and are maintained in this orientation partly because of the influence of the curved blades 12 and partly by its own centrifugal force. As a result there is created along the central axis x-x of the engine a substantially large vacuum which causes air to be sucked into the mixing chamber 4 as depicted by arrow 0. The entering air which is considerably lower in temperature and pressure comes into contact with the combustive rocket gases and is gradually brought into helical motion together with these gases G although it maintains a substantial axial component toward the exhaust nozzle 19. Because of the centrifugal force acting successively on circulating particles of air 0 the mixing of the air with the combustive rocket gases G effects an almost instantaneous and efficient transfer of heat from the rocket gases to' the particles within the air.
The energy generation in mixing chamber 4 has at least a double effect. First the axial vacuum sucks in a quantity of air at high velocity producing at the forward end of the engine a forward thrust. The exhaust of this incoming air, in normal fashion, out of the nozzle 19 produces a strong reaction. Together the normal jet propulsive motion is produced.
On reaching the discharge header 2] the outer concentric portion arrow C of the mixture of combustive gases G and air 0 enters into the inlet opening 6 while the central portion moving in its substantially axial component moves through the spaces between the baffles 20 exhausting its heat and kinetic energy through the nozzle 19 in a stream of gas P.
The portion of the exhausted gas C which enters into the combustion chamber 5 is by this time somewhat cooled as a result of its passage through the chamber 4 and its mixture with the sucked air 0, but it is still sufficiently high in both temperature and pressure so that it can spontaneously and automatically combust the gaseous or liquid fuel fed through the fuel injector 8. Should this not be the case however suitable ignition means may be employed as an emergency measure.
This ignition of the fuel in the combustion chamber 5 converts both the fuel and the air particles into a gas having high thermal and kinetic energy. The combusted gas then flows outwardly (arrow H) through the outlet 7 of the combustion chamber 5 and through the header 9. The blades 12 which are curved to direct the gas tangentially against the walls of the mixing chamber 4 maintain the helical flow of hot gases through that chamber. In this manner the combusted fuel effluent H from chamber 5 gradually replaces the hot combustion gases G of the starting rockets 15. Stepwise the gases [-1 eventually wholly replace the gases G and so long as fuel is thereafter fed to the combustion chamber 5 the cycle of sucking air and mixing it with hot gases H will follow in a continuous manner.
The discharge header 21 also acts as a gas flow inhibiting device converting part of the kinetic energy of the gases G or H into an increased pressure, and is supplied via the constricted inlet opening 6 into the combustion chamber thus promoting the continued cycling and balance of operation of combustion.
That part of the combustive gases G or H and air 0 in the chamber 4 which move along in the axial direction and which pass through the header 21 flows into the nozzle 19 where the plates 20 convert the remaining helical component into a uniform axially directed flow of gas P.
Turning to FIG. 2 the principles of the present invention are shown as embodied in a turbo prop engine. Briefly this device is similarly constructed to the engine shown in FIG. 1 with the exception that the elipsoidical member 18 is replaced with an axial turbine generally depicted by numeral 23. The turbine 23 is arranged along the central axis xx of the engine and has mounted in conventional manner at its forward end an air screw or propeller 24. Suitable gearing is contained in a housing 25 so that the turbine rotates the propeller in conventional manner. The gear housing 25 extends through the air scoop which in this embodiment is slightly flared and distorted to take into account the size of the housing 25.
The turbine 23 comprises a conventional turbine mechanism the details of which need not be elaborated upon herein except for the fact that it comprises a rotating body 26 at the periphery of which extend radially outward a plurality of paddle members 27. Alternating with the paddle members 27 are stationary blades 28 fixed to the interior surface of the outer shell 1. This arrangement is conventional and provides for the rotation of the turbine body 26 as a result of the flow of gases P through the nozzle portion 19.
With this arrangement the engine of FIG. 2 operates in a similar manner to that shown with respect to the engine depicted in FIG. 1. The initial starting cycle and the repetitive combustion and exhaust cycles are exactly the same. In the device shown in this FIG. 2 that part of the exhausting gas G or H which is axially directed through the exhaust nozzle 19 passes through the rotary and fixed paddles 27 and 28 respectively, turning the turbine body 26 and consequently the propeller 24. The gases P then exit through the nozzle 19 where any residual kinetic energy is employed in a jet propulsive manner similar to the method employed with regard to the embodiment shown in FIG. 1.
An engine arranged in the manner of FIG. 2 makes effective use of the frontal air entering the' air scoop 10 as driven by the propeller 24 as well as the residual pressure gases P exiting through the nozzle 19. The construction of the device in accordance with the present principles enhances this high pressure intake and low pressure output by creating the vacuum within the interior chamber 4 which increase the velocity and pressure differentials at the opposite ands of the engme.
To assist the helical flow of gases within the chamber 4 additional paddles 29 may be affixed to the turbines forward portion so that upon rotation of the turbine, the paddles 29 impart an additional centrifugal component to the gas. The forward paddles 30 supporting the housing 25 in the air scoop 10 helps to add to the inlet air the circumferential component of the rotary movement of the air stream 0.
Turning now to FIG. 3 an engine similar to that shown previously in FIG. 2 is employed with a radially rotating turbine generally depicted by the numeral 30. The radial turbine 30 comprises in conventional manner a housing 31 in which is mounted a rotor 32 having a plurality of blades 33 rotatable about an axle 34. The turbine is placed with its axle 34 lying along the central axis x-x of the engine. The turbine housing 31 is provided with an annular inlet 35 communicating with the header 21 at the discharge side of the mixing chamber 4 and an outlet 36 generally surrounding the blades 33 and exiting along the axial center of the chamber 4.
The device shown in FIG. 3 makes use generally of the rotary or tangential component of the flowing gases G or H in the chamber 4 and minimizes use of the axial component created by the air 0. An exhaust outlet 37 which comprises a curved conduit extending through the central portion the inlet scoop 10 is provided so that the scoop 10 is restricted to permit air 0 to enter therein in a ring and move outwardly against the circumferential walls of the chamber 4 rather than to enter axially or centrally as in the devices of FIGS. 1 or 2. Because of the vacuum created along the central axis x--x of the mixing chamber this arrangement beneficially causes the exhaust gas P to be sucked out from the exit 36 of the radial turbine passes across the mixing chamber 4 in a contra-direction to the helically moving gases themselves and thence out of the exhaust conduit 37. This counter flow of combustive gases with respect to exhaust gases produces a rather high kinetic flow within the device and produces rather strong power in the radial turbine 30. Beside that the apparatus according FIG. 3 offers a strong possibility of direct heat exchange (no separating walls are provided) between hot exiting gases P and cold sucked air 0.
In all other respects the device as shown in FIG. 3 operates in a manner similar to that of FIGS. 1 and 2 which operation need not be repeated here. It will of course be appreciated that the device as shown in FIG. 3 may be employed for other uses other than to power an aircraft since the axle 34 may be suitably geared or hooked to any form of apparatus requiring motive power.
In each of the three embodiments it will be appreciated that the chemical energy or effluent of the combusted fuel, is in the presence of an oxygen containing atmosphere preferably air, converted in the mixing chamber 4 into a gas via the header 9 and has increased pressure, heat and kinetic energy. This effluent is directed into the mixing chamber in a spiral or helical direction having a large component of tangential movement so that there is created along the central axis xx of the chamber a vacuum into which the oxygen bearing atmosphere is sucked. A portion of the atmosphere and spirally moving combusted gases continually mix to produce both a working fluid having both the tangential (c) and axial (P) component each of which may be employed for a peculiar use. The axial component P may be employed as for example in a jet nozzle to produce jet propulsive power, in a turbine generator to produce the power to run the turbine or as the medium in a heat exchanger while the tangential component C is used in the closed system cycle or loop to continue the spontaneous combustion of the fuel repetitively and continuously into a high pressure heat and kinetic effluent. Except for an initial starting cycle requiring an outside ignition system and production of an initial amount of combustive gases the present device is virtually continuous so long as sufficient fuel is provided to the combustion chamber.
It will thus be observed that the present invention excludes the need of compression of gases by means of moving mechanical parts and therefore reduces by a considerably large factor both the complexity and weight of jet or similar engines. In the first embodiment shown namely the use of the present invention with a jet engine there are no moving parts. In the embodiments shown in FIGS. 2 and 3 the only moving parts are the turbine and propeller power systems. The engine itself contains no moving parts such as multistage compressors driven by corresponding turbines except stan dard suppliments for supply of full, electric generation, etc.
As a result of the present invention numerous advantages are obtained. Engines may be made virtually vibration free, uniformly balanced and in perfect resonance with the fuselage of the airplane. For example, generally, the front dimension of air turbine engines usually must provide elaborate mountings for rotors, propellers and the like by increasing dimensions and supplying gratings. In contrast, the engine of this invention eliminates these mountings and the rotation of the gas may be accelerated. Radial dimensions are also reduced and the use of difusers to brake the outflow gases permits elimination of vibration and good balance. A further advantage can be seen in the fact that the present invention produces engines which have a much longer service life requiring very little maintenance. Lubrication and cooling systems are eliminated and reliability increased.
The engines shown are easily started since there is no need to overcome any inertial forces in rotors, compressors or other devices normally found in conventional engines. The engines may be brought to or made to reach maximum output or maximal power almost instantaneously, that is, just immediately after the stabilization of the temperature of the walls which are usually thin shell structures.
Since numerous changes and modifications have been discussed within this disclosure it will be understood that the disclosure is illustrative only of the principles of the present invention, and to those skilled in this art numerous other advantages and modifications will be obvious.
What is claimed:
1. A gas engine comprising a cylindrical mixing chamber having a longitudinal axis, an intake opening at one end adapted for the introduction of an oxygen bearing atmosphere and an exhaust opening at the other end for the expulsion thereof, said exhaust opening comprising an annular duct communicating with said mixing chamber about the cross sectional periphery thereof, an annular combustion chamber surrounding said mixing chamber, means for delivering fuel thereto for combustion and an outlet for gaseous effluent therein produced, a first annular header connecting said combustion chamber outlet to said mixing chamber adjacent said intake opening, means for directing the flow of gaseous effluent through said first header and into said mixing chamber in a substantially helical path relative to said axis, said effluent creating at least a partial vacuum along said axis to thereby draw the oxygen bearing atmosphere therein to be heated and expanded by mixture with said effluent and a second annular header interposed between said mixing chamber and said exhaust opening and communicating with the inlet to said combustion chamber, means fixed within said second annular header for dividing the helical flow of effluent from said mixing chamber into a first portion expelled outwardly through of said exhaust opening and a second portion returned to said combustion chamber, said means converting said second effluent portion to flow axially through said combustion chamber.
2. The engine according to claim 1 including means located at the exterior of the exhaust opening for connecting the expelled mixture to work.
3. The engine according to claim 1 wherein said inlet and outlet to said combustion chamber includes venturi means for restricting flow of gaseous effluent and mixture therethrough thereby increasing the pressure and temperature of the effluent and mixture, causing the fuel to be spontaneously combusted.
4. The engine according to claim 5 wherein said means within said first and second headers comprise baffles for respectively directing flow of the gaseous effluent into the mixing chamber in a helical path and the mixture of the effluent and the oxygen bearing atmosphere located at the periphery of said helical flow axially into said combustion chamber.
5. The engine according to claim 1 including means for supplying an initial burst of gases to the mixing chamber independent of said gaseous effluent.
6. The engine according to claim 5 including at least one rocket arranged to deliver its exhaust tangentially to the cylindrical mixing chamber.
7. The engine according to claim 6 wherein said rockets are located exteriorly of said mixing chamber within an enclosed housing surrounding the inlet header.
8. The engine according to claim 2 including a discharge nozzle for the jet propulsion of the expelled mixture.