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1. (WO2009137710) APPAREIL POUR AMÉLIORER LE RENDEMENT ÉNERGÉTIQUE ET POUR RÉDUIRE LES ÉMISSIONS DANS DES MOTEURS À COMBUSTION DE COMBUSTIBLE FOSSILE
Note: Texte fondé sur des processus automatiques de reconnaissance optique de caractères. Seule la version PDF a une valeur juridique

APPARATUS FOR IMPROVING FUEL EFFICIENCY AND REDUCING EMISSIONS IN FOSSIL-FUEL BURNING ENGINES

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[1] Internal combustion engines powered by fossil fuels are highly prevalent in vehicles worldwide. As less-developed countries begin to industrialize, fossil-fuel powered vehicles will become all the more prevalent before newer technologies can impact the market. While by no means efficient, the internal combustion engine powered by fossil fuels remains the easiest and cheapest alternative for generating energy to power a vehicle.

[2] In a typical vehicle, the fuel and engine system typically includes a gas tank for storing fuel prior to burning the fuel. Without getting into further details of the fuel system here, various devices may be implemented along the fuel line to improve fuel efficiency and to reduce emissions when the fuel is consumed. Such devices include common fuel filters, catalytic converters, electronic fuel injection systems, and the like.

[3] A large emphasis has been placed on the manufacturing of more efficient and cleaner burning fossil-fuel engines worldwide over the past several years. New technologies have included multiple electro injection systems, closed-loop computer-controlled systems, turbo-pressure boost systems and other similar technologies. Each of these systems has taken the manufacture of the automobile engine to a new level, but none of these particular systems have helped in any significant reductions of emissions to the environment.

[4] Expanding globalization of the automobile industry worldwide underscores the need for greater progress in the areas of international harmonization of automotive technical standards and certification systems for higher fuel quality. Improvements may include reduced exhaust emissions as well as higher fuel efficiency. In today's automotive industry, relatively few vehicles meet the mileage rating of "excellent" (i.e., over 40 miles per gallon (MPG)). For example, of all the 2006 cars rated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), only 1 % achieved an "excellent" rating while 40% received a "poor" rating (i.e., under 20 MPG). MPG or find a simple measure of manufacturers' response to the need for more fuel-efficient cars which many transnational oversight committees will use to track the overall industry performance on an annual basis. Clearly, a need exists for more fuel-efficient vehicles and vehicles with reduced emissions.

[5] Furthermore, in less developed countries, fuel that is used in most vehicles is dirty and contains a high level of particulates which results in even lower fuel efficiency and higher levels of emissions. Improving fuel efficiency and reducing emissions has been sought after since the invention of the internal combustion engine. As a result, many solutions have been introduced over the years.

[6] One such solution has been to use a vortex generator. A vortex generator, which is usually installed on the upstream side of the mass airflow sensor, uses stationary veins or spinning blades to make inlet air between an air cleaner in an intake manifold become excited like a mini-tornado. This vortex mixes fuel more thoroughly with air, which means the fuel will burn more completely in a combustion chamber. A problem with this solution, however, is the long length of intake tract designed to maximize a smooth airflow. Turbulence, coupled with the restricted airflow caused by the vortex generator can only reduce the amount of air that may enter into the manifold. As a result of less air, the engine is less powerful which is an unacceptable trade-off in many situations.

[7] Another efficiency and emissions solution has been to use an electronic engine ionizer fuel saver, which are sometimes referred to as capacitor blocks. These rubber blocks clip onto the spark plug wires near the plugs and are intended to carry a charge from a cylinder plug wire to the electrodes of the other plugs. The charge then, theoretically, causes a partial breakdown of larger hydrocarbon molecules of the fuel in all of the non-firing cylinders which then results in increased combustion efficiency. However, empirical results show that very little efficiency is achieved.

[8] Yet another solution is to use vapor injectors. These devices take breakdown typical fuel into "fuel vapor" before the fuel reaches the engine and then meter the fuel vapor back to the engine through a pressurized control valve (PCV) vacuum line. In theory, the complete atomization of the fuel to its vapor phase should be achieved resulting in a more efficient burning. Fuel injected directly into the intake runners through a fuel injector is supposedly less available for combustion because at least some of the fuel droplets are still liquid and liquid doesn't burn as readily. The distribution of fuel through the vacuum tap may not necessarily meter the vaporized fuel equally to all cylinders. Those closer to the connection may receive more fuel than those farther away causing the closer cylinders to run rich. Even in a best case scenario of equal distribution, the fuel injection management computer monitors the amount of oxygen in the exhaust and chokes the engine back to a proper fuel and air mixture ratio. As a result any amount of vaporized fuel the device allows in would simply be subtracted from the amount the computer system normally dispenses anyway.

[9] Finally, another solution proposes using an external magnet clamp-on system that creates a magnetic field around a fuel line to which the device is clamped. However, these external devices have not shown any appreciable improvement in efficiency or emissions.

[10] As with any industry using internal combustion engines, there exists a need for higher fuel efficiency and reduced emissions when burning fossil fuels.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[11] The foregoing aspects and many of the attendant advantages of this invention will become more readily appreciated as the same become better understood by reference to the following detailed description, when taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein:

[12] FIG. 1 is a diagram of a fuel system for a fossil-fuel powered internal-combustion engine according to an embodiment of an invention disclosed herein;

[13] FIG. 2 is a cutaway plan view of a first apparatus for improving fuel efficiency and reducing emissions in a fuel system according to an embodiment of an invention disclosed herein;

[14] FIG. 3 is a cutaway plan view of a second apparatus for improving fuel efficiency and reducing emissions in a fuel system according to an embodiment of an invention disclosed herein; and

[15] FIG. 4 is a cutaway plan view of a third apparatus for improving fuel efficiency and reducing emissions in a fuel system according to an embodiment of an invention disclosed herein.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[16] The following discussion is presented to enable a person skilled in the art to make and use the subject matter disclosed herein. The general principles described herein may be applied to embodiments and applications other than those detailed above without departing from the spirit and scope of the subject matter disclosed herein. This disclosure is not intended to be limited to the embodiments shown, but is to be accorded the widest scope consistent with the principles and features disclosed or suggested herein.

[17] By way of overview, an embodiment of the invention disclosed herein is described in the following paragraphs. As such, one embodiment comprises an apparatus, which is referred to as a nano-jet filter throughout this disclosure, for realizing improved fuel efficiency and reduced fuel emissions in an internal combustion engine when used in conjunction with a nano-jet. The apparatus includes a fuel inflow interface operable to couple with a fuel line for the intake of fuel. The apparatus further includes a fuel channeling chamber coupled to the fuel inflow interface, wherein the fuel channeling chamber is operable to direct the flow of fuel through the apparatus. Within this chamber, the apparatus includes a set of aligned magnetic members such that the flow of fuel passes through a magnetic field created by the set of aligned magnetic members. Finally, the apparatus includes a fuel outflow interface operable to couple to the fuel line to facilitate the flow of fuel from the channeling chamber back to the fuel line. This apparatus will be referred to as the nano-jet filter throughout the remainder of this disclosure.

[18] The purpose of using a hyper magnetic field is to help facilitate changing conventional fuel into "nano" fuel. That is, conventional fuel consists of fuel molecule clusters as typically as large as 300 nanometers in diameter. However, when conventional fuel is passed through a nano-jet system, the fuel molecule clusters are typically reduced to less than 3 nanometers in diameter. A system having a nano-jet saver is designed to reduce the fuel consumption by allowing for a more complete burning, which results from a more complete mixture between fuel molecules and oxygen in the engine. Fuel molecule are decomposed to smaller fuel particles (whose diameter is typically less than 3 nanometer) by applying a magnetic field to larger fuel molecule clusters and traversing a hyper magnet gradient when the fuel flows through a nano-jet saver fuel chamber. The system is further improved with a nano-jet filter installed prior to nano-jet saver which absorbs ferric granules that may be present in conventional fuel . Thus, the nano-jet filter purifies the fuel before entering the nano-jet saver, so as to improve the performance of the overall nano-jet system. Having fuel molecules with a smaller diameter, both better fuel efficiency and reduced emissions are achieved as the fuel burns more completely and more cleanly. With any fossil-fuel powered internal-combustion engine, an operator can expect to see a reduction in emissions to the environment, fuel savings, and better performance. Furthermore, the nano-jet system requires no external power source and, as such, consumes no additional energy during operation. The following figures better illustrate embodiments of a nano-jet filter and nano-jet saver.

[19] FIG. 1 is a diagram of a typical fuel system 100 for a fossil-fuel powered internal combustion engine according to an embodiment of an invention disclosed herein. The system 100 is not intended to be an exhaustive diagram of all aspects of a fuel system in for an engine, but rather to provide a context in which the subject matter disclosed herein may be embodied within a fuel system 100. The basic components of the fuel system are typically electronically coupled to an engine control unit (ECU) 160 which is simply a computer or other control device for controlling the fuel system 100.

[20] The fuel system 100 includes a fuel tank 110 suitable for holding an appropriate amount of fuel. Typically, a fuel pump 115 is disposed near the fuel tank 110 such that the fuel comp may draw fuel from the fuel tank and dispense it through the fuel line 150 culminating at the engine 135. Various styles and kinds of fuel pumps 115 may be realized here, but further detail will not be discussed.

[21] The fuel system 100 may typically also include a fuel filter 120. The fuel filter 120 may be disposed along the fuel line 150, either in the engine compartment or underneath the vehicle by the fuel tank 120. The fuel filter 120 traps large foreign particles in the fuel and prevents these large particulates from getting into the engine. As is known, with the force of the fast up-and-down motion of the pistons, if any large particles manage to get in the fuel, this could cause some serious damage to the engine 135. A clean fuel filter 120 is important to the performance of a vehicle's engine, however, small particulates still manage to get through and, while these small particulates do not cause as much engine damage, efficiency and emissions are still comprised.

[22] The fuel system 100 may also typically include a fuel injection device 130. Until the early 1980's many vehicles used carburetors to achieve better fuel efficiency. With the advent of fuel injection systems, carburetors have virtually disappeared from the market. At first, carburetors were replaced with throttle body fuel injection systems (also known as single point or central fuel injection systems) that incorporated electrically controlled fuel-injector valves into the throttle body. These were almost a bolt-in replacement for the carburetor, so the manufacturers did not have to make any drastic changes to their engine designs.

[23] Gradually, as new engines were designed, throttle body fuel injection was replaced by multi-port fuel injection (also known as port, multi-point or sequential fuel injection). These systems have a fuel injector for each cylinder, usually located so that they spray right at the intake valve. These systems provide more accurate fuel metering and quicker response.

[24] When the injector is energized, an electromagnet moves a plunger that opens the valve, allowing the pressurized fuel to squirt out through a tiny nozzle. The nozzle is designed to atomize the fuel. That is, the injector strives to make as fine a mist as possible so that it can burn cleaner and more efficiently. The amount of fuel supplied to the engine is determined by the amount of time the fuel injector stays open. This is called the pulse width, and it is controlled by the ECU 160. The injectors are mounted in an intake manifold so that they spray fuel directly at the intake valves. A pipe called the fuel rail supplies pressurized fuel to all of the injectors. In order to provide the correct amount of fuel for every operating condition, the ECU 160 has to monitor a huge number of input sensors. Without going into further detail, such sensors include a mass airflow sensor, one or more oxygen sensors, a throttle position sensor, a coolant temperature sensor, a voltage sensor, and an engine speed sensor.

[25] Disposed between the fuel filter 120 and the fuel injection device 130 are a nano-jet saver 128 and a nano-jet filter 125. Together a nano-jet filter 125 and a nano-jet saver 128 are sometimes called a nano-jet set or a nano-jet system.

These devices function together to improve fuel efficiency and reduce emissions in an internal combustion engine.

[26] A nano-jet saver 128 is a molecular breakdown device that may be used to facilitate the changing of the size of fuel molecule clusters. As described above, a nano-jet saver 128 is capable of changing the size of these molecular clusters from an average of 300 nanometers in diameter to 3 nanometers in diameter. The nano-jet filter 125 is intended to prevent ferric granule and other impurities from entering into the nano-jet saver 128. A set of aligned magnets inside the nano-jet filter 125 provides a means to protect the nano-jet saver 128 from medium-size to large-size particulates and thus prolong its working life to a large extent. The operation of the nano-jet saver 128 is discussed in more detail below with respect to FIGs. 3 and 4 while the nano-jet filter is discussed in more detail with respect to FIG. 2.

[27] FIG. 2 is a cutaway plan view of a nano-jet filter 200 (i.e., the nano-jet filter 125 of FIG. 1) for improving the operation of the fuel system 100 according to an embodiment of an invention disclosed herein. In this embodiment, the apparatus 200, (i.e., the nano-jet filter 200 which can be likened to the nano-jet filter 125 of FIG. 1) is shown with a single set of aligned magnetic members 217. The nano-jet filter 200 includes a fuel inflow interface 210 operable to couple with a fuel line (not shown in FIG. 2) for the intake of fuel. Fuel, (represented by small arrows in these figures) may be directed by the fuel inflow interface 210 toward a fuel channeling chamber 235 along the path 211. The fuel channeling chamber 235 is enclosed by a chamber body 236. The chamber body 236 typically comprises a composite metal or plastic suitable for handling high-pressure fuel lines. The fuel inflow interface 210 may be seated in the chamber body 236 using a gasket 215.

[28] Further, the chamber body 236 holds the aligned magnetic members 217 by providing a junction point with a gasket 231 for seating an assembly 230 with the aligned magnetic members 217 disposed thereon. In this embodiment, two magnetic members 217 are shown; one depicted on the bottom side of the nano-jet filter 200 and one depicted on the top side of the nano-jet filter 200. The alignment of these magnetic members 217 creates a channel by which fuel flowing through the nano-jet filter 200 passes through a hyper magnetic field created by the alignment of the north and south poles of the magnetic members 217. Having the magnetic members 217 disposed within the fuel channeling chamber 235 allows the fuel to come into direct contact with the magnetic members 217.

[29] Because the aligned magnetic members 217 are disposed on an assembly 230, the entire assembly 230 (which includes the magnetic members 217) may be removed from the fuel channeling chamber 235 via its access point. This allows for the cleaning of the magnetic members 217 as well as allowing for the changing of the magnetic members 217 to provide different configurations of alignments {e.g., more fuel paths, stronger magnets, etc.) without having to replace the entire nano-jet filter 200. The access point may typically be a threaded junction point such that the assembly 230 may be rotatably secured to the chamber body 236.

[30] After the fuel passes through the hyper magnetic field, it continues along the path 221 to a fuel outflow interface 220 that is coupled back to the fuel line (again, not shown in FIG. 2). The fuel outflow interface 220 may be seated in the chamber body 236 using a gasket 240.

[31] In this embodiment, the fuel channeling chamber 236 allows for a single path for fuel to flow from the fuel inflow interface 210 to the fuel outflow interface 220. Other embodiments (described below) provide a plurality of paths for fuel to flow from the fuel inflow interface 210 to the fuel outflow interface 220. Furthermore, this embodiment shows the fuel inflow interface 210 and the fuel outflow interface 220 are arranged to direct fuel flow into the fuel channeling chamber 235 and fuel flow out of the fuel channeling chamber 235 in a parallel direction.

Using such a nano-jet filter 200 in conjunction with a nano-jet saver (300 and/or 400 described below) provides a means for ferric granules that may be present in dirty fuel to be removed before entering into a nano-jet saver. By removing larger particulates, the operating life of the nano-jet saver may be greatly improved. Thus, using a system that includes both a nano-jet filter 200 and a nano-jet saver 3001400 improves fuel efficiency and reduces emissions, particularly when the fuel being used is of a lower quality and/or grade.

[33] FIG. 3 is a cutaway plan view of a second apparatus 300 for helping to improve fuel efficiency and to reduce emissions in a fuel system 100 according to an embodiment of an invention disclosed herein. In this embodiment, the apparatus 300, (i.e., the nano-jet saver 300 which can be likened to nano-jet saver 128 of FIG. 1 ) is shown with a two separate sets of aligned magnetic members 340 and 341.

[34] The nano-jet saver 300 includes a fuel inflow interface 310 operable to couple with a fuel line (not shown in FIG. 3) for the intake of fuel. Typically the nano-jet saver 300 follows a nano-jet filter 200 in a fuel flow line. Fuel, (again represented by small arrows in these figures) may be directed by the fuel inflow interface 310 toward a fuel channeling chamber 335 along the path 311. The fuel channeling chamber 335 is enclosed by a chamber body 336. The fuel inflow interface 310 may be seated in the chamber body 336 using a gasket 312.

[35] Further, in this embodiment, the chamber body 336 holds two sets of aligned magnetic members 340 and 341 by providing two assembly junction points with gasket for seating assemblies 330 and 331 with the aligned magnetic members 340 and 341 disposed thereon. In this embodiment, to magnetic members 340 and 341 are shown as sets of three magnets; one depicted on the bottom side of the nano-jet saver 300, one depicted centered in the nano-jet saver 300, and one depicted on the top side of the nano-jet saver 300. As before, the alignment of these magnetic members 340 and 341 creates channels by which fuel flowing through the nano-jet saver 300 passes through a hyper magnetic field created by the alignment of the north and south poles of the magnetic members 340 and 341. Having the magnetic members 340 and 341 disposed within the fuel channeling chamber 335 allows the fuel to come into direct contact with the magnetic members 340 and 341. Furthermore, having multiple assemblies 330 and 331 with multiple magnetic members 340 and 341 disposed thereon, several channels for fuel flow are created, thereby increasing the total effectiveness of the breakdown of the fuel.

[36] As before, because the aligned magnetic members 340 or 341 are disposed on a single respective assembly 330 or 331, each individual assembly 330 or 331 (which includes the respective magnetic members 340 or 341) may be removed from the fuel channeling chamber 335 via its respective access point. Again, this allows for the cleaning of the magnetic members 340 and 341 as well as allowing for the changing of the magnetic members 340 and 341 to provide different configurations of alignments {e.g., more fuel paths, stronger magnets, etc.) without having to replace the entire nano-jet saver 300. The access point may typically be a threaded junction point such that the assembly 330 or 331 may be rotatably secured to the chamber body 336.

[37] After the fuel passes through one or more magnetic fields it continues along the path 321 to a fuel outflow interface 320 that is coupled back to the fuel line (again, not shown in FIG. 3). The fuel outflow interface 320 may be seated in the chamber body 336 using a gasket 322.

[38] The nano-jet saver 300 may further include one or more flush plugs 351 and 352 secured in a flush plug seating such that when the flush plug is removed, the fuel channeling chamber 335 may be exposed for flushing.

[39] FIG. 4 is a cutaway plan view of a third apparatus 400 for improving fuel assisting with efficiency and reducing emissions in a fuel system 100 according to an embodiment of an invention disclosed herein. In this embodiment, another version of a nano-jet saver 400 is shown with a single set of aligned magnetic members 421 but with the fuel inflow interface 410 and the fuel outflow interface 460 at a perpendicular angle to each other.

[40] The nano-jet saver 400 includes a fuel inflow interface 410 operable to couple with a fuel line for the intake of fuel. Fuel may be directed by the fuel inflow interface 410 toward a fuel channeling chamber 432 along the path 420.

The fuel channeling chamber 432 is enclosed by a chamber body 450. The fuel inflow interface 410 may be seated in the chamber body 450 using a gasket 431.

[41] Similar to the previous embodiment, the chamber body 432 holds a set of aligned magnetic members 421 at an assembly junction points with gasket for seating an assembly 430 with the aligned magnetic members 421 disposed thereon. In this embodiment, one set of aligned magnetic members 421 are shown as a set of three magnets; one depicted on the bottom side of the nano-jet saver 400, one depicted centered in the nano-jet saver 400, and one depicted on the top side of the nano-jet saver 400.

[42] As before, the alignment of these magnetic members 421 creates channels by which fuel flowing through the nano-jet saver 400 passes through a hyper magnetic field created by the alignment of the north and south poles of the magnetic members 421. Having the magnetic members 421 disposed within the fuel channeling chamber 432 allows the fuel to come into direct contact with the magnetic members 421. Furthermore, having three magnetic members aligned in this manner creates two distinct paths for fuel flow through the fuel channeling chamber 435 as depicted by the small arrows in FIG. 4. Again, this increases the total effectiveness of the magnetic fields.

[43] As before, because the aligned magnetic members 421 are disposed on a single assembly 433, the entire assembly 433 (which includes the respective magnetic members 421) may be removed from the fuel channeling chamber 432 via its access point for configuration change or cleaning. The nano-jet saver 400 may further include a flush plug 430 secured in a flush plug seating such that when the flush plug is removed, the fuel channeling chamber 432 may be exposed for flushing.

[44] After the fuel passes through one or more hyper magnetic fields, it continues along the path 435 to a fuel outflow interface 460 that is coupled back to the fuel line. The fuel outflow interface 460 may be seated in the chamber body 450 using a gasket 440. Additional configurations of aligned magnetic members and fuel channeling paths are further contemplated, but not discussed herein for brevity.

[45] While the subject matter discussed herein is susceptible to various modifications and alternative constructions, certain illustrated embodiments thereof are shown in the drawings and have been described above in detail. Furthermore, those skilled in the art will understand that various aspects described in less than all of the embodiments may, nevertheless, be present in any embodiment. It should be understood, however, that there is no intention to limit the invention to the specific forms disclosed, but on the contrary, the intention is to cover all modifications, alternative constructions, and equivalents falling within the spirit and scope of the invention.