|Publication number||USRE43332 E1|
|Application number||US 11/115,382|
|Publication date||May 1, 2012|
|Filing date||Apr 21, 2000|
|Priority date||Apr 23, 1999|
|Also published as||CN1359357A, CN101397156A, DE60001230D1, DE60001230T2, EP1173387A1, EP1173387B1, US6555011, WO2000064818A1|
|Publication number||11115382, 115382, PCT/2000/235, PCT/IL/0/000235, PCT/IL/0/00235, PCT/IL/2000/000235, PCT/IL/2000/00235, PCT/IL0/000235, PCT/IL0/00235, PCT/IL0000235, PCT/IL000235, PCT/IL2000/000235, PCT/IL2000/00235, PCT/IL2000000235, PCT/IL200000235, US RE43332 E1, US RE43332E1, US-E1-RE43332, USRE43332 E1, USRE43332E1|
|Inventors||Zamir Tribelsky, Michael Ende|
|Original Assignee||Atlantium Technologies Ltd.|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (45), Non-Patent Citations (1), Referenced by (5), Classifications (55), Legal Events (2)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
The present invention relates to a method for simultaneously disinfecting and purifying liquids and gasses. More specifically, the present invention relates to a method for disinfecting and purifying liquids and gasses by passing the liquids and/or gasses through a reactor of a compounded concentrator geometry, in particular, a compounded parabolic concentrator geometry, and simultaneously concentrating a plurality of launched and/or delivered, and/or diversified energies in motion into a specific predetermined inner space of the reactor to form a high energy density zone. The energies include acoustic and/or ultrasonic transient cavitation and electromagnetic energy from a variety of ranges of the electromagnetic spectrum (e.g., ultra-violet, visible, infra-red, microwave etc.).
The inner surface of the reactor is preferably covered by a thin layer of photo-catalyst such as titanium oxide and the inner surface is optionally grooved, or sub-wavelength synthesized to have a predetermined holographic grooving pattern to facilitate wavelength dependent reflection and/or refraction and/or diffraction or any combination thereof.
The present invention further relates to a concentrator for use in the above method (hereinafter called hydrodynamic Compounded Parabolic Concentrator, or HDCPC) and to arrays of such concentrators interconnected either serially or in parallel or in a combination thereof.
Global need for efficient water disinfecting technologies is indisputable. Disinfecting technologies favor UV technology over the use of disinfecting chemicals, due to strict requirements for disinfectants and disinfecting by-products. UV light produced by conventional lamps is the principle means for generating UV energy with its non-residual effects creating no harmful compounding volumes (e.g. in comparison with chlorinating processes). These lamps are arranged in banks of lamps, often immersed in channels (or reactors) each hosting a large number of the lamps. The lamps, (such as mercury arc and vapor lamps, require expensive periodical replacement and maintenance. Current limitation imposed by the use of conventional lamp based reactors stem from their inability to combat colloidal deposits and/or hard water deposits efficiently. Further more, the use of protecting sleeves (e.g. quartz sleeves that are known for their ability to transmit deep UV of 200 nm to 320 nm) to ensure adequate protection for the lamps increases the cost further, often requiring allocation of additional resources as well as making it hard for designers, producers and/or end users to take advantage of an optical or acoustic concentrator orientation for reactors. The present invention is not so limited, and can be used for a wide variety of disinfecting, neutralizing, dissolving and deodorizing applications where liquids or gasses are to be treated.
The aim of the present invention is to provide a highly efficient method for disinfecting and purifying liquids and gasses by passing liquids and/or gasses through a compounded concentrator and simultaneously concentrating diversified electromagnetic and acoustic, ultrasonic (transient cavitation) energies into a high energy density and concentration zone where disinfecting or inactivation of DNA and RNA replication sequences (e.g. in noxious microorganisms) together with dissolving and neutralizing and deodorizing (e.g. organic and non organic compounds) of pollutants and polluted media take place.
An optically primitive form of non-imaging light concentrator, the light cone, has been used for many years [(Holter et al. (1962)]. During the years, the simple cone type optical concentrator has been evolved into complex structures that are more efficient, e.g. Compound Parabolic Concentrator (hereinafter called CPC), as disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 5,727,108, or a Compounded Ellipsoidal Concentrator (hereinafter called CEC). Optical concentrators, such as CPC, have already demonstrated highly efficient harnessing and concentrating of solar energy collection, concentration, conversion and are well documented in fiber coupling applications.
Acoustic concentrators have been used for generations musical instruments such as the horn, flute, organ, and trumpet as well as other instruments. Acoustic geometrical concentration in buildings, temples, churches and other architectural structures has also been observed.
Cone shape interfaces for concentrating flows of liquids and gasses through particular conduit or chamber cross sections exist in many hydraulic and/or pneumatic system configurations.
The above mentioned optical and acoustic geometrical concentrators are used for separate purposes, i.e., for light concentration in optical concentrators and acoustic concentration and/or amplification in acoustic concentrators, but have not been used for both purposes simultaneously to treat liquids or gasses flowing through the concentrators. Furthermore, the above mentioned concentrators have never been used as hydrodynamic flow concentrators. More specifically, never before has a compounded concentrator been used at the same time to enhance liquid and gas flows and to concentrate electromagnetic and acoustic energies. The electromagnetic energy can be in any range of the electromagnetic spectrum, e.g. microwave, infrared, visible, ultraviolet etc., and the acoustic energy can be of any suitable frequency.
Surprisingly, it was found in the present invention, that using a compound concentrator as a concentrator or reactor in which both electromagnetic and acoustic energies interact while passing at the same time liquids and gasses through the reactor (having a single concentrator, and/or multi stage concentrator arrays) shaped reactor, enables disinfecting, and/or deodorizing and/or purification of the gasses and liquids with very high throughput efficiencies.
In the context of the present invention, “absorption” is the process by which substances in gaseous, liquid or solid form dissolve or mix with other substances (ASCE, 1985).
In the context of the present invention, “adsorption” is the adherence of gas molecules, ions, or molecules in a solution to the surface of solids (ASCEW, 1985).
In the context of the present invention, “adsorption iso-therm” is a graphical representation of the relationship between the bulk activity of adsorbate and the amount adsorbed at a constant temperature (after Stumm and Morgan, 1981).
In the context of the present invention, “advection” is the process whereby solutes are transported by the bulk mass of flowing fluid (Freeze and Cherry, 1979).
In the context of the present invention, “air-space-ratio” is the ratio of (a) the volume of water that can be drained from saturated soil or rock under the action of gravity to (b) the total volume of voids (ASTM, 1980).
In the context of the present invention, “anisotropy” is the condition of having different properties in different directions (AGI, 1980).
In the context of the present invention, “anisotropic mass” is a mass having different properties in different directions at any given point (ASTM, 1980).
In the context of the present invention, “aquiclude” is a hydrogeologic unit which, although porous and capable of storing water, does not transmit water at rates sufficient to furnish an appreciable supply for a well or spring (after WMO, 1974).
In the context of the present invention, “aquifer” means a formation, a group of formations, or part of a formation that contains sufficient saturated permeable material to yield significant quantities of water to wells and springs (after Lohman et al., 1972) or a geologic formation, group of formations, or part of a formation capable of yielding a significant amount of ground water to wells or springs. Any saturated zone created by uranium or thorium recovery operations would not be considered an aquifer, unless the zone is or potentially is a) hydraulically interconnected to a natural aquifer, b) capable of discharge to surface water, or c) reasonably accessible because of migration beyond the vertical projection of the boundary of the land transferred for long-term government ownership and care (10 CFR Part 40 Appendix A).
In the context of the present invention, “aquifer system” is a body of permeable and poorly permeable material that functions regionally as a water-yielding unit; the body comprises two or more permeable beds separated at least locally by confining beds that impede ground water movement but do not greatly affect the regional hydraulic continuity of the system and includes both saturated and unsaturated parts of permeable material (after ASCE, 1985).
In the context of the present invention, “aquifer test” is a test to determine hydraulic properties of the aquifer involving the withdrawal of measured quantities of water from addition of water to a well and the measurement of resulting changes in head in the aquifer both during and after the period of discharge or additions (ASCE, 1985).
In the context of the present invention, “quifuge” means a hydrogeologic unit which has no interconnected openings and, hence, cannot store or transmit water (after WMO, 1974). A rock that contains no interconnected openings or interstices and neither stores nor transmits water (ASCE, 1985).
In the context of the present invention, “baseline monitoring” means the establishment and operation of a designed surveillance system for continuous or periodic measurements and recording of existing and changing conditions that will be compared with future observations (after NRC, 1982).
In the context of the present invention, “breakthrough curve” is a plot of relative concentration verses times, where relative concentration is defined as C/Co where C is the concentration at a point in the ground water flow domain, and Co is the source concentration.
In the context of the present invention, “UV radiation” is optical radiation of from about 200 nm-400 nm (e.g. are used to inactivate noxious microorganisms).
In the context of the present invention, “visible radiation” is optical illumination of from 400 nm to 700 nm.
In the context of the present invention, “PDMS” means polydimethilsiloxan which is used in elements of devices for use in the method of the present invention (e.g. to form elastic conduit and chambers).
In the context of the present invention, “resolved” means synchronized to an accurate clock or time track (such as synchronizing laser, ultrasound probe, air flow, water flow, timed spectroscopy, oxygen mixing & melting time, radicals production and sustain time, pressure levels, peak power, pulse repetition rate, intensity, wavelength).
The present invention provides a method for disinfecting and purifying liquids and gasses comprising; a) passing the liquids or gasses through a reactor, or a combination of reactors, having a truncated compounded concentrator geometry; and b) simultaneously delivering and concentrating diversified electromagnetic and acoustic energies into a specific predetermined inner space of the compounded concentrator reactor, to form a high energy density zone in the reactor or reactors over a predetermined period of time.
The reactor according to the present invention is preferably a compounded parabolic concentrator or a compounded ellipsoidal concentrator.
According to the present invention, the inner surface of the reactor is coated with a thin layer of photocatalyst such as TiO2.
The electromagnetic energy delivered and concentrated into and inside the reactor can be of any range of the electromagnetic spectrum, such as ultra-violet, visible, infrared, microwave etc., or any combination thereof.
The acoustic energy is of any suitable frequency.
The radiation source or sources delivering the electromagnetic radiation can be enclosed within the reactor or can be external to the reactor or both. The radiation source/s can be a laser, e.g. either a continuous wave laser or a pulsed laser.
In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, the radiation unit having a high intensity source of light is a flash lamp having a high repetition rate of from about 1 Hz to about 50 kHz, and a high peak power of from about 1 mJ to about 50 J.
The present invention further provides a method wherein the liquids and gasses are passed through an array of at least two compounded parabolic reactors connected serially or in parallel or in a combination thereof.
The present invention further provides a device for use in the method wherein the device is a hollow truncated compounded concentrator having a wider inlet and a narrow outlet to allow gasses and liquids to flow through and the concentrator has a specific predetermined optical concentrating geometry capable of concentrating light to form a high density energy zone therein. The concentrator's inner shape can be a compound parabolic or ellipsoidal concentrator geometry or any other compounded concentrator geometry.
The inner surface of the device can be coated with photocatalyst, such as TiO2 (titanium oxide dioxide). The inner surface can be coated by plasma spattering coating the photocatalyst at a thickness of from about 0.8 micron to about 1000 micron and can be applied on a substrate layer of SiO2 of a thickness of from 0.8 micron to about 1500 micron, thus forming a predetermined refractive index.
The refractive index of the coated material can be lower than the refractive index of the liquids or gasses which flow in the reactor.
The coated layers can have a plurality of grooves that are arranged in parallel or in a grid configuration, wherein the distance between two successive grooves is less than the wavelength of light incident upon the grooves.
It is within the scope of the present invention the reactor is a part of a reverse osmosis system or a filtration system.
The present invention provides a novel methodology wherein a plurality of energies interact in space and time to produce a high energy density zone, which is especially beneficial for disinfecting, dissolving and neutralizing pollutants in liquids and gasses (such as water & air). Furthermore, the method of the present invention facilitates continuous interaction of diversity of energies to form a high energy density zone.
Such a zone is particularly useful for:
The present invention is illustrated by way of example, and not by limitation, in the figures of the accompanying drawings, wherein elements having the same reference numeral designations represent like elements throughout and wherein:
The present invention provides a novel and unobvious method for (a) harnessing diversity of energies into a modular compounded concentrator geometry, (b) compounding and (c) catalytically and/or interactively impacting (d) a predetermined amount of diversified energies produced simultaneously within the geometry through which liquids or gasses containing pollutants or noxious species flow, so that the pollutants become more innocuous as a result of (e) time resolved synchronized impact diversity of wavefronts for the purpose of forming a maximized energy density of all wavefronts in a (predetermined) space or zone which zone is useful for disinfecting, dissolving and/or neutralizing or inactivating the pollutants in the liquids or gasses over a predetermined period of time. Furthermore, the Failure Modes Evaluation and Criticality Assessment (FME/CA) surpass. Limitations imposed by conventional systems using TiO2 optical catalyst where catalyst triggering relies heavily on the source of light (e.g. light must be present if catalyst triggering is to occur) are overcome. The present invention utilizes harnessing and concentrating of both laser light (190 nm to about 315 nm) and Ultrasound Transient Cavitation (21-180 Khz kHz) which produces sonoluminecense in the region of from 212 nm to about 511 nm. Thus, in the present invention the optical catalyst is triggered in more than one way., increasing substantially the safety margins of devices used in the method of the present invention. The present invention provides a novel methodology for concentrating different energies into a specific predetermined inner space, in or through which liquids and/or gasses flow that has an uniform high energy density zone for the purpose of inactivation of DNA and RNA replication sequences in noxious microorganisms and/or dissolving and neutralizing organic, non-organic and Disinfectant By-Products (DBPs). Furthermore, the present invention composedly harnesses a compounded plurality of energy wavefronts together (e.g. simultaneously) in a single (e.g. HDCPC) reactor for the purpose of disinfecting by creating a uniform dimensionally distributed high energy density zone within a conduit or chamber (e.g. a reactor).
The present invention further provides a method and device for disinfecting, catalytically dissolving or neutralizing biological, organic and non organic pollutants and polluted media by interactively resolving the interoperability of optical peak power, acoustic transient cavitation and laser triggering of a subsurfaced optical catalyst.
The present invention presents a novel methodology wherein devices for use in the above method can be integrate into an existing pressure vessel (filtration systems) or can be added before or after or be integral to the systems operating in the molecular and/or particulate filtration levels or any combination thereof. Furthermore, the present invention provides benefits, increasing the safety margins of existing filtration and purification systems (e.g. such as reverse osmosis, super filtration, membrane systems and larger particulate filtration systems).
According to a preferred embodiment of the method of the present invention, a plurality of CPCs that are arranged serially to increase efficiencies and/or in parallel to increase throughput efficiencies form HDCPC arrays in which each HDCPC represents a concentration stage (e.g. 1st stage, 2nd stage, 3rd stage and so forth). Thus, enhanced multi-stage concentrator arrays, in which a water inlet leads to the input of the 1st stage and a water outlet leads to the last concentration stage, or a parallel arrangement driven by at least one remotely connected laser or a dedicated laser source for each module are provided.
According to a preferred embodiment of the present invention, a plurality of HDCPCs that are arranged to form a plane, or a flat screen of CPCs wherein most of their wider inputs face upwards or downwards or positioned at a predetermined angle or any combination thereof are provided.
According to a novel environment friendly embodiment of the present invention, a central light source (such as a solid state diode pumped pulse laser) provides sufficient light energy for at least one concentration stage comprising a Hydro-dynamic-Compound-Parabolic Concentrator. Furthermore, in an environment friendly preferred embodiment of the present invention, the inner walls of the HDCPC are Holographically grooved using an E beam or a laser beam for creating a sub-wavelength surface having an adequate refractive index for steering and/or manipulating rays of light (e.g. laser pulses), and the manipulation forms a high energy density zone, especially beneficial for disinfecting, dissolving and/or neutralizing noxious species.
According to a novel environment friendly embodiment of the present invention, a serial arrangement of CPCs is used to create a multi-stage concentrator having a sufficient length for irradiation at each concentration stage, and a sequentialoperation mode to maximize the interaction therein of photo-catalysts and laser radiation (e.g. production of free radicals and limiting and/or neutralizing the radicals). A further novel environment friendly embodiment of the present invention provides a parallel arrangement of series of CPCs instead of/or in combination with the above serial arrangements, or any combination thereof.
A beneficial embodiment of the present invention provides at least one CPC having a metallic body with an inner surface plasma spattered and/or coated with a layer of SiO2, wherein the SiO2 substrate layer is coated witj with TiO2 or a photo-catalyst. Furthermore, according to a novel aspect of the present invention, the coated material has a predetermined refractive index for enhancing reflection and/or triggering of photo-catalyst (e.g. in the HDCPC reactor).
In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, there is provided a concentrator reactor wherein liquids or gasses passing through the reactor are disinfected in a high energy density zone formed therein. Furthermore, the present invention provides the ability to dissolve and/or neutralize pollutants and/or noxious microorganisms.
In a useful environment friendly embodiment of the present invention, parts of the CPCs are coated to reflect wavelengths of from about 190 nm to about 399 nm and other parts or portion are coated to absorb wavelengths of from about 199 nm to about 400 nm, ensuring the formation of a high energy density zone in predetermined portions of the HDCPC's inner surface which has been coated with photo-catalyst.
In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, each CPC is attached or connected or integral to at least one additional CPC, and groups of CPCs are interconnected dimensionally or in a frame, or any combination thereof.
In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, the inner surface of at least one CPC is curved or twisted or grooved to increase its contact surface with the liquids or gasses which flow therein. Furthermore, such grooving or curving is done on the final layer in a multi-layer coating formed by plasma sputtering, or vapor deposition or surfacing, or any combination thereof.
The method of the present invention can be used in a wide range of diversified and environmentally beneficial (e.g. disinfecting, and/or dissolving and/or neutralizing) applications that require each element of the method of the present invention to operate separately or in unison and/or synchronously with additional elements selected from (1) monochromatic pulsed laser (or filtered lamp) optical energy, (2) ultrasound transient cavitations, (3) microwaves, (4) air bubbles for oxygen input (e.g. to 1st stage) in waste water and/or liquids or gasses, (5) sonoluminecence sonoluminescence, (6) ozone produced in situ for mild residual neutralization and/or oxidation effects, (7) polychromatic Continuos Continuous Wave (CW) (e.g. UV optical energy), (8) enriched air bubbles (e.g. added radicals by placing photocatalyst earlier in the chain taking advantage of the superior transmission of air and its 21% available free oxygen), or any combination thereof.
In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, a CPC can be of a size of from about several centimeters (e.g. to have flow through capacity of several liters per minutes or seconds) to about several hundred meters (to accommodate a large volume of standing or temporarily stored liquids or gases). Such large CPCs can be beneficial for environmental applications wherein air is bubbled into the bottom center of a pool or pond and light is delivered to the pond/pool via individual waveguides and/or integrated arms or from a separated concentrator and/or concentrator arrays.
In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, modules containing each at least one HDCPC are connected in serial and/or parallel to form platforms or stations of modules. Such stations and platforms are especially beneficial, providing additional exposure time for the liquids and gases therein (e.g. to UV light and/or ultrasound or more than 26 KHz), production of free radicals and sufficient time for the radicals to work efficiently, additional spaces for ultrasound waves to clean, additional irradiation points or inputs for ensuring that the innocuous outputs contain no radicals (e.g. by irradiating UV at the outlet stage of the system).
In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, a photocatalyst insert is used. The insert provides a convenient means which can easily be cleaned (e.g. by back-flashing). Furthermore, by using a photocatalyst insert, the manufacturing and production costs of devices for use in the method of the present invention are substantially reduced. By using photocatalyst inserts, producers and/or end users can scale up or down their systems (e.g. reactors) without the need to use expensive coating procedures. End users as well as producers can simply scale up their system hardware and select appropriate photo-catalyst inserts to suit their specific sized.
Thus, the use of photo-catalyst inserts will increase the quality and the reaction rate of the photocatalyst.
In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, at least one HDCPC contains a turbine therein and the turbine is coated with or made of photo-catalysts. Rotation of the turbine within the reactor enhances the reaction rate of the photocatalyst therein (e.g. in the reactor).
In a novel environment friendly embodiment of the present invention, a single module of HDCPCs contains a plurality of individually connected smaller modules. Furthermore, the individual modules (and/or reactors) may include the following types: photo-catalyst type, wave guide type, pulse exposure type, continuous wave (CW) type, Quasi CW type, suspension type, oxygen melting and/or mixing type, heating type, cooling type, temperature and/or flow exchange type, visible illumination type, IR irradiation type, UVA, UVB, UVC irradiation types, polychromatic type, monochromatic types, flash lamp types, diode types, laser types, aerobic and/or non-aerobic types, integral filtration types.
The following are aspects and applications of the present invention:
The present invention will be further described and illustrated by the following figures:
The plate on the right shows a total reduction of the E-Coli wild type, which clearly reaffirms the high efficiency of the non-chemical, non residual methodology of the present invention. This experiment was performed, using an Antlantium Nd; YAG at 226 nm, using a pulse width of sub-microsecond time domain (ns) prompting 2nd order interactions.
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|U.S. Classification||210/748.01, 210/255, 422/187, 210/253, 210/748.03, 210/748.04, 210/748.02, 210/748.13, 210/748.14, 210/748.1, 422/186.3, 204/158.2, 204/666, 422/20, 210/748.11, 422/22, 204/554, 210/222, 422/186, 210/695|
|International Classification||B01J19/12, C02F1/34, B01D53/86, A61L2/10, A61L2/232, A61L2/08, B01D61/08, C02F1/48, A61L2/12, B01J35/02, A61L2/02, A61L9/18, B01J37/02, B01J19/10, A61L9/20, A61L9/00, C02F1/32, C02F1/30, B01J21/06, C02F9/00, C02F1/72, C02F1/44|
|Cooperative Classification||C02F1/30, C02F1/441, C02F1/725, C02F1/302, C02F1/32, C02F9/00, A61L2/232, C02F2201/3227, A61L2/08, Y02W10/37|
|European Classification||C02F9/00, A61L2/232, A61L2/08|
|Sep 12, 2006||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: ATLANTIUM TECHNOLOGIES LTD., ISRAEL
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:ATLANTIUM LASERS LTD.;REEL/FRAME:018230/0197
Effective date: 20060801
|Sep 29, 2014||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 12