US 3784092 A
A centrifugal separator for separating say, oil from water, for example, in a cooling water system for a machine, has a separating chamber divided into two regions by a transverse plate which serves to collect the lighter fluid on one side and to allow the heavier fluid to flow to the other side around its edge. There may be a separate fluid for spinning the chamber and one of the fluids may also leave the chamber tangentially to help spin it. There may be a conical surface enabling the lighter fluid to run downwardly and inwardly to its outlet to assist separation.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Gibson Jan. 8, 1974 CENTRIFUGAL SEPARATOR 2,200,202 /1940 Harvey 233/ R I Inventor Roland Richard Gibson, London, 2352??? 111333 3372121311: ....::3 iii/i2; England 2,755,992 7/1956 Tait et al 233/23 R Assigneer Tpe Glacier Metal p y FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 'f Alpert, wembley 24,179 12/1914 Great Britain... 1 233/27 Mlddlesex, Englalld 731,312 6/1955 Great Britain 233/23 R  Filed: Apr. 26, 1972 Primary Examiner-George H. Krizmanich  Appl. N0.: 247,796 Att0rney- Pierce, Schefiler & Parker,
 Foreign Application Priority Data  ABSTRACT Apr. 27, 1971 Great Britain 11,569/71 A centrifugal separator for separating say, oil from Sept. 2, 1971 Great Britain 40,904/71 water, for example, in a cooling water system for a machine, has a separating chamber divided into two  US. Cl. 233/20 R, 233/23 R, 233/47 R, regions by a transverse plate which serves to collect 233/27 the lighter fluid on one side and to allow the heavier  Int. Cl B04b 11/06 fluid to flow to the other side around its edge. There  Field of Search 233/ 19 R, 20 R, 20 A, may be a separate fluid for spinning the chamber and 233/23 R, 27, 28, 47 R, 46 one of the fluids may also leave the chamber tangentially to help spin it. There may be a conical surface  References Cited enabling the lighter fluid to run downwardly and in- UNITED STATES PATENTS wardly to its outlet to assist separation. 2,104,162 1/1938 Macklind 233/20 R 5 Claims, 3 Drawing Figures 9 22 g 7r-23 Y "Y is V 36 24 35 e 12 27 3 34 t 3 G g i i113 7 32 PATENTED 8 4 SHEET 1 [IF 2 PAIENTED 81974 3,784,092
SHEET 2 [1F 2 F/G.Z.
CENTRIFUGAL SEPARATOR This invention relates to a centrifugal separator of lighter and heavier fluids, for example, for separating oil from water in a cooling system for an internal combustion engine.
According to the invention a centrifugal separator comprises a hollow rotor having a separation chamber with a collector plate extending transversely in relation to the axis of rotation for collection of one of the fluids, and outlets for the respective fluids respectively adjacent the inner and outer edges of the plate. This collector plate arrangement helps achieve efficient separation. Preferably a radially inner or radially outer surface of the separation chamber wall is generally conical so that the chamber wall diverges towards the collector plate and one of the liquids can run down that surface with a radial component of movement assisting separation.
The separator may have a movable valve member having a valve passage which is in communication with the areas on either side of the collector plate in two different positions of the valve member; the valve member is conveniently biassed towards one position but can move against the bias into the other position in response to a change in the pressure of the incoming fluid to be separated. Preferably the outlet for one of the separated fluids from the separation chamber extends generally tangentially to assist rotation of the rotor.
The invention may be carried into practice in various ways and two embodiments will now be described by way of example with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 is a sectional elevation of one fluid separator embodying the invention;
FIG. 2 is a detail showing how the separator of FIG. 1 can be modified in accordance with a second embodiment of the invention; and
FIG. 3 is a diagram showing either separator in use on the cooling water system of an oil lubricated internal combustion engine.
In the centrifugl separator of FIG. 1 a stationary housing includes a rotor assembly 11 arranged to be rotated about a generally vertical axis defined by a fixed spindle 12 by pressure fluid which leaves a drive chamber 13 through tangentially directed nozzles 14. The drive fluid is led to the chamber 13 by way ofa radial passage 15 in the spindle 12, an axial passage 18 in the spindle and inlet passages 16 in a base 17 on to which the housing 10 is removably mounted.
A mixture of lighter and heavier fluids to be separated enters through an opening 19 at the upper end of the spindle 12 and extends through the axial passage 21 in the spindle and a generally radial passage 22 in the rotor assembly into a reception chamber 23 spearated from the main separating chamber 24 of the rotor assembly by a disc 25 having apertures 26 for passage of fluid from the reception chamber 23 to the separating chamber 24.
At the lower end of the separating chamber 24 is a collector plate 27 fast with a sleeve 28 which rotates on the spindle 12 and forms the inner wall of the rotor assembly.
The collector plate 27 extends outwardly transversely of the rotor axis towards the outer wall 29 of the rotor assembly defining with the outer wall a gap 31 through which the heavier fluid can pass downwardly into the region 32 below the collector plate 27. There is an outlet for the lighter fluid indicated at 33 through which the lighter fluid can move radially inwardly through the sleeve 28 and then through a passage 34 in the spindle before flowing downwardly axially to an outlet passage 35 in the base 17. The sleeve 28 carries a conical member 36 so that the inner wall of the separating chamber 24 diverges downwardly and this assists in effecting separation between the lighter and heavier fluids, as the lighter fluid runs down this surface with an inward component.
The outer wall 29 of the separating chamber is formed with two internal annular troughs 37 and 38 for collection of solid particles, one of which is half way along the separating chamber 24 and the other of which is at the bottom of the heavier fluid region 32.
From the heavier fluid region 32 the separated heavier fluid can flow axially downwards through a passage 39 into a lower chamber 41 into which the driving fluids is discharged from the nozzles 14 and from which the separated heavier fluid and the drive fluid,which will in general be the same, can be withdrawn through a passage 42 in the lower part of the base 17.
In an alternative arrangement the heavier fluid instead of leaving the region 32 through the axial passage 39 can leave through one or more tangentially directed openings 43 in the side wall of the region 32 to assist in rotating the assembly 11. In this case also the separated heavier fluid having left the tangential openings 43 mixes with the rest of the driving fluid in the lower chamber 41. If the tangential passages 43 are used, then an inwardly extending annular shelf 44 may be disposed between the lower surface of the collector plate 27 and the openings 43 to provide some protection against blocking of the openings 43 by solid particles which will be collected 'in the lower trough 38.
In the second embodiment of fluid separator the construction is generally the same as FIG. 1 but the arrangement for collecting the heavier and lighter fluids from the chambers 24 and 38 respectively is modified in the manner shown in the detail of FIG. 2. As with the embodiment of FIG. 1 the lighter fluid collects above the collector plate 27 and the heavier fluid collects below it. In this case however, there are two radial inwardly directed passages 46 and 47 in the lower part of the conical member 36 one leading from each of the chambers 24 and 38 and they cooperate with a vertically slidable valve sleeve 48 having a radial inwardly directed passage 49 for leading either the lighter fluid or the heavier fluid into the outlet 33 in the sleeve 28 for subsequent delivery at 35 depending on whether the valve sleeve 48 is in an upper position in which the passage 49 is aligned with the passage 46 or in a lower position shown in FIG. 2 in which the passage 49 is aligned with the passage 47.
The sleeve 48 is biased downwards by a spring 51 to be normally in the lower position shown in FIG. 2, so that it is the heavier fluid that is normally supplied at 35. If however the pressure of the fluid increases then the net upward thrust on the sleeve due to the differential areas in a chamber 52 below the sleeve 48 is sufficient to more the sleeve upwards against the spring 51 until the passage 49 registers with the passage 46 and in that situation it is the lighter fluid that is delivered at 35.
This enables the two separated fluids to be delivered alternately at 35 by control of the pressure of the incoming fluid to be separated, for example by means described below with reference to FIG. 3, and by a suitable change-over valve in the connection from the outlet 35, whichever fluid is being delivered can be supplied to an appropriate collector. The passages 39 and 43 are in consequence not used with this embodiment.
FIG. 3 shows either of the separators of FIGS. 1 and 2 in use in the cooling water system of an internal combustion engine, in which lubricating oil can become mixed with cooling water and is desired to be separated for reuse of both fluids.
The internal combustion engine 61 draws this cooling water from a water tank 62 and delivers water which has been used for cooling and may contain some oil and some solid particles to a delivery tank 63. The oil being the lighter fluid tends to collect on the top of the delivery tank 63 as shown at 64, and a venturi ejector 65 is used to draw fluid from the top level by means of a float 66 and a flexible pipe 67 for supply to the inlet passage 21 of the separator. Driving fluid for the separator is drawn by a pump 68 from the water tank 62 to the driving water inlet 16 in the separator and also through the venturi ejector 65 to drive it.
Separated oil is lead from the outlet 35 to an oil tank 69 and separated water passes from the passage 42 back into the delivery tank 63, if it is the FIG. 1 embodiment that is being used. If it is the FIG. 2 embodiment that is being used, then the single outlet 35 is alternately switched to the oil tank 69 and the delivery tank 63.
The level in the water tank 62 is maintained by a connection 71 between the bottoms of the two tanks 62 and 63 so that the water tank is always replenished with water from the bottom of the delivery tank which will tend to be free from oil.
When using the FIG. 2 embodiment the pressure within the separator can be increased to change over the valve sleeve 48 by closing a valve 72 in a by-pass passage 73 normally by passing the main fluid path through the separator. As soon as the valve is closed, the pressure in the separator increases so that it is water rather than oil that is delivered from the outlet 35, and when oil is to be again delivered the by-pass passage is opened to drop the internal pressure again and this operation of the valve 72 can be linked with the change-over connection from the outlet 35 to the respective tanks 69 and 63.
What I claim as my invention and desire to secure by Letters Patent is:
1. A centrifugal separator of lighter and heavier fluids comprising a hollow rotor defining a separation chamber, a collector plate in the chamber having inner and outer edges extending transversely in relation to the axis of rotation for collection of one of the fluids, a central post in the chamber which converges downwardly and inwardly to the inner edge of the collector plate, and outlets for the respective fluids respectively adjacent the inner and outer edges of the plate.
2. A separator as claimed in claim I in which the outlet for one of the separated fluids from the separation chamber extends generally tangentially to assist rotation of the rotor.
3. A separator as claimed in claim 2 including a baffle protecting the tangential outlet from solid particles.
4. A separator as claimed in claim I in which there are areas on either side of the plate respectively for the separated fluids, including a movable valve member, and a valve passage in the member which is in communication with one or other of the said areas in two different positions of the valve member.
5. A separator as claimed in claim 4 in which the valve member is biased towards one position but can move against the bias into the other position in response to a change in the pressure of the incoming fluid to be separated.