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Intercooler system

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Intercooler system


The present invention relates to an apparatus and a system that may be utilized to maximize and utilize greater air flow through an intercooler apparatus. The present invention utilizes unique coil configurations and designs to help promote better air flow through an intercooler apparatus. The present invention utilizes unique profiled passage separators to improve air flow through the passages of the intercooler. Additionally, the present invention utilizes profiled passage separators that improve and significantly cool temperatures of the air flow in much smaller packaging because of the unique passage separators and air flow design of the intercooler.

Browse recent K&n Engineering, Inc. patents - Riverside, CA, US
Inventors: John Concialdi, Steve Williams
USPTO Applicaton #: #20120291993 - Class: 16510411 (USPTO) - 11/22/12 - Class 165 
Heat Exchange > Intermediate Fluent Heat Exchange Material Receiving And Discharging Heat

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The Patent Description & Claims data below is from USPTO Patent Application 20120291993, Intercooler system.

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CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 61/487,645 filed May 18, 2011, which is incorporated in its entirety by reference into this application.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates generally to the field of vehicle performance parts. More specifically, the present invention relates to an apparatus and system to maximize airflow through a vehicle intercooler.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

On any given vehicle, there are thousands of functioning and necessary parts. These essential parts are usually interlinked with other parts of an overall system to make a vehicle run efficiently.

For many car enthusiasts, modifying a factory vehicle with upgraded aftermarket parts is rewarding and satisfying in a multiplicity of different ways. Many individuals decide to modify their vehicles for aesthetic purposes. However, many individuals modify or alter their vehicles to elicit better performance from their vehicle or to upgrade from more restrictive parts that come with their vehicle from the factory to less restrictive parts with better usability and/or performance.

There are some common aftermarket modifications that most vehicle enthusiasts, such as car owners, motorcycle owners, boats, and other gasoline/diesel powered vehicle owners choose to employ. A few of these common aftermarket modifications are replacement of a vehicle exhaust system and replacement of headers (tubes that run from the engine and direct unwanted heat and exhaust away from the engine). Additionally, many individuals will recalibrate a vehicle\'s computer which regulates engine speed and other functions, to elicit higher performance and tolerances. Another common type of vehicle modification is the replacement of the stock air filter with an aftermarket air filter. However, a problem with modifications is that they are limited in their ability to produce the desired increase in power and performance.

When an individual user decides on increasing power and performance, thereby increasing the performance of the vehicle outside of what the original manufacturer had anticipated when they produced the vehicle, it is necessary to modify the vehicle with parts that were not intended. For example, one of the more widely utilized forms of increasing performance on any vehicle is to utilize forced induction by either turbocharging the vehicle or supercharging the vehicle.

A turbocharger is a type of gas compressor used to increase the pressure of air entering the engine of a vehicle. The turbocharger is usually made of at least a turbine, and often times by multiple turbines that is driven by the engine\'s exhaust gases. In contrast, a supercharger is powered by mechanical drive. This allows a turbocharger to compound various cycles to achieve greater power or higher efficiency or both.

On the other hand, a supercharger is an air compressor that forces more air into the engine of a vehicle. The greater mass flow-rate provides more oxygen to support combustion than would be available in a non-supercharged engine. This supercharging capacity allows for more fuel to be burned by the engine and increases the power output of the engine. Power for the unit can come mechanically by a belt, gear, shaft, or chain connected to the engine\'s crankshaft.

However, one problem that exists with a forced induction system is heat. Turbo chargers utilize an engine\'s exhaust gases after the liquid gas has been heated and burned by the engine. Similarly, supercharges force more air into the engine of the vehicle and cause more fuel to be burned by the engine, thereby creating more exhaust gases, and in turn, more heat.

In an effort to solve this heating problem, manufacturers of forced induction systems have created a cooling system for these vehicles having forced induction systems (such as turbochargers and superchargers). Intercoolers have attempted to solve some of these heating problems.

An intercooler is an air-to-air or air-to-liquid heat exchange device utilized in combination with turbocharged or supercharged systems on vehicle engines to improve their volumetric efficiency by increasing intake air charge density through nearly constant pressure cooling, which removes the heat of compression that occurs in any gas when its pressure is raised or its unit mass per unit volume is increased. A decrease in intake air charge temperature sustains use of a more dense intake charge into the engine, as a result of supercharging. The lowering of the intake charge air temperature also eliminates the danger of pre-detonation of the fuel air charge prior to timed spark ignition, thus preserving the benefits of more fuel/air burn per engine cycle and increasing the output of the engine. Intercoolers increase the efficiency of the induction system by reducing induction air heat created by the turbocharger and promoting more thorough combustion. They also eliminate the need for using the wasteful method of lowering intake charge temperature by the injection of excess fuel into the cylinders\' air induction chambers, to cool the intake air charge, prior to its flowing into the cylinders. This wasteful practice nearly eliminated the gain in engine efficiency from supercharging, but was necessitated by the greater need to prevent the engine damage that pre-detonation engine knocking caused.

However, a problem with prior art intercoolers is that air flow and air to liquid flow must be maximized in order to maximize cooling and therefore, performance of a forced induction system. Thus, to maximize the benefits of utilizing air flow, a large intercooler must be utilized. However, prior art intercoolers have limitations on the amount of airflow and the efficiency of air flow through the intercooler because of their design.

A need therefore exists for an improved apparatus and system for producing an intercooler that may maximize and greatly increase flow through the intercooler. Additionally, a need therefore exists for an improved apparatus and design for an intercooler to maximize flow and increase performance of an entirety of a forced induction system.

SUMMARY

OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to an apparatus and a system that may be utilized to maximize and utilize greater air flow through an intercooler apparatus. The present invention utilizes unique coil configurations and designs to help promote better air flow through an intercooler apparatus. The present invention utilizes unique profiled passage separators to improve air flow through the passages of the intercooler. Additionally, the present invention utilizes profiled passage separators that improve and significantly cool temperatures of the air flow in much smaller packaging because of the unique passage separators and air flow design of the intercooler.

To this end, in an exemplary embodiment of the present invention, an apparatus for cooling air to the engine of a vehicle is provided.

To this end in an exemplary embodiment of the present invention, a heat exchange apparatus for improving fluid flow, the apparatus comprising: a hot fluid inlet end and a cooled fluid discharge end; an internal portion having a cooling fluid path contained within the internal portion of the heat exchange apparatus; a plurality of cooling fluid passageways in the cooling fluid path portion; and a plurality of profiled passageway separators.

In an exemplary embodiment, wherein the fluid path is utilized to cool a gaseous fluid.

In an exemplary embodiment, wherein the fluid path is utilized to cool a liquid fluid.

In an exemplary embodiment, wherein the plurality of profiled passageways are capped by a convex surface to funnel fluid more efficiently through the passageways.

In an exemplary embodiment, wherein the convex surface is connected to the passageway on the hot fluid inlet end of the heat exchange apparatus.

In an exemplary embodiment, wherein the convex surface is connected to the passageway on the cooled fluid discharge end of the heat exchange apparatus and the hot fluid inlet end of the heat exchange apparatus.

In an exemplary embodiment, wherein the apparatus applies basic fluid mechanics to the entry and exit of the cooling fluid passageways to improve air flow through the heat exchanger device.

In an exemplary embodiment, wherein the apparatus utilizes unique shaping of the passageways of the apparatus to greatly improve air flow through the apparatus.

In an exemplary embodiment, wherein the unique shaping comprises a wave-like coil configuration.

In an exemplary embodiment, wherein each cooling fluid passageway is separated from another cooling fluid passageway by a material.

In an exemplary embodiment, wherein the material is a metal.

In another exemplary embodiment, wherein the internal portion is adjacent to a plurality of end tanks.

In an exemplary embodiment, the apparatus can be uniquely small as compared with the prior art intercooler designs because current intercooler technology is based on size for an application, so the higher the heat rejection requirement the larger the intercooler. With the current state of art in intercoolers, most other heat exchanging devices do not pay attention to the fluid flow entering and exiting the core of the exchanger. The unique design of the present invention allows for greater fluid flow through the intercooler to more adequately cool without the need for a larger sized intercooler apparatus.

In an exemplary embodiment, the apparatus has a channel whereby fluid flow is channeled there through and cooling of the fluid flow is affected.

In an exemplary embodiment, the apparatus applies basic fluid mechanics to the entry and exit of the hot side passages of the heat exchangers to improve air flow through the heat exchangers and/or intercoolers.

In an exemplary embodiment, the apparatus utilizes unique shaping of the passageways of the intercooler to greatly improve air flow through the apparatus.

In an exemplary embodiment, the apparatus correctly and uniquely shapes the entry into and out of the passages of the intercooler apparatus to greatly increase air flow through the heat exchange apparatus.

In an exemplary embodiment, a heat exchange apparatus is provided whereby the same profiles can be applied to the hot side and cold side of the intercooler. The concept is to provide a shaped entry profile into each internal air passage by forming the bars of material that separate each passage.

In an exemplary embodiment, the heat exchange apparatus has a plurality of fluid flow passages that allow for cooling of the fluid flow there through.

In an exemplary embodiment, the heat exchange apparatus has a plurality of fluid flow passages that allow for cooling of the fluid flow there through and further wherein the passageway has at least a hot side portion and a cold side portion.

In an exemplary embodiment, the heat exchange apparatus has a plurality of fluid flow passages that allow for cooling of the fluid flow there through and further wherein the passageway has at least a hot side portion and a cold side portion whereby each passageway is separated from another passageway by a material, the material preferably being a metal and/or substantially rigid material.

In an exemplary embodiment, the heat exchange apparatus has a plurality of fluid flow passages that allow for cooling of the fluid flow there through and further wherein the passageway has at least a hot side portion and a cold side portion whereby each passageway is separated from another passageway by a material, the material preferably being a metal or substantially rigid material and further wherein the passageway material has a distal portion and a proximal portion each ending with a uniquely configured abutment.

In an exemplary embodiment, the heat exchange apparatus has plurality of profiled passage separators.

To this end, in an exemplary embodiment of the present invention, the heat exchange apparatus has plurality of profiled passage separators, the profiled passage separators connected to both a hot side portion and a cold side portion of the heat exchange apparatus. It should be understood that cold side profile passage separators may be eliminated yet still attain the desired effects of increasing fluid flow through the heat exchange apparatus and to cool fluid flow through the apparatus.

Various objects, features, aspects and advantages of the present invention will become more apparent from the following detailed description of preferred embodiments of the invention, along with the accompanying drawings in which like numerals represent like components.

Thus, specific embodiments and applications of a intercooler system have been disclosed. It should be apparent, however, to those skilled in the art that many more modifications besides those already described are possible without departing from the inventive concepts herein. The inventive subject matter, therefore, is not to be restricted except in the spirit of the appended claims. The terms “comprises” and “comprising” should be interpreted as referring to elements, components, or steps in a non-exclusive manner, indicating that the referenced elements, components, or steps may be present, or utilized, or combined with other elements, components, or steps that are not expressly referenced.

Additional features and advantages of the present invention are described herein, and will be apparent from the detailed description of the presently preferred embodiments and from the drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a side perspective view of the apparatus exterior in an exemplary embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a side perspective view of the apparatus interior in an exemplary embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 3 is a front cross-sectional view of the apparatus in an exemplary embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 4 is a close-up view of the heat exchange apparatus illustrating the profiled passage separators in an exemplary embodiment of the present invention; and

FIG. 5 is another close-up view of the heat exchange apparatus illustrating the profiled passage separators in an exemplary embodiment of the present invention.



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stats Patent Info
Application #
US 20120291993 A1
Publish Date
11/22/2012
Document #
13473765
File Date
05/17/2012
USPTO Class
16510411
Other USPTO Classes
International Class
28D15/00
Drawings
3



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