Title:
Pump, cooling apparatus, electrical appliance and personal computer combined with the pump
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A pump according to the present invention includes a casing including a pump chamber through which a fluid flows, an impeller rotatably mounted inside the pump chamber, a suction port mounted on the casing for suctioning the fluid into the pump chamber by the rotation of the impeller; and a discharge port mounted on the casing for discharging the fluid out of the pump chamber by the rotation of the impeller, and the suction port and the discharge port are oriented so as to extend in different directions.



Inventors:
Seko, Katsuya (Yokohama, JP)
Ito, Kenichi (Zama, JP)
Hasegawa, Yukihisa (Yokohama, JP)
Okada, Kyouichi (Yokohama, JP)
Nakayama, Tadahiro (Yokohama, JP)
Application Number:
11/093017
Publication Date:
10/13/2005
Filing Date:
03/30/2005
Assignee:
KABUSHIKI KAISHA TOSHIBA (Tokyo, JP)
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
417/423.1, 417/423.7
International Classes:
F04D29/44; F04B17/00; F04B17/03; F04B35/00; F04B35/04; F04D5/00; F25D9/00; G06F1/20; H01L23/473; H05K7/20; (IPC1-7): F04B17/00; F04B35/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
HAMO, PATRICK
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, LLP (McLean, VA, US)
Claims:
1. A pump comprising: a casing including therein a pump chamber through which a fluid flows; an impeller rotatably mounted inside the pump chamber; a suction port provided on the casing for suctioning the fluid into the pump chamber by the rotation of the impeller; and a discharge port provided on the casing for discharging the fluid out of the pump chamber by the rotation of the impeller; wherein the suction port and the discharge port are oriented so as to extend in different directions.

2. The pump according to claim 1, comprising a plurality of suction ports and a plurality of discharge ports.

3. A cooling apparatus that circulates a fluid for cooling an object to be cooled, comprising: a pump including a casing including therein a pump chamber; an impeller rotatably mounted inside the pump chamber; a suction port provided on the casing for suctioning the fluid into the pump chamber by the rotation of the impeller; and a discharge port provided on the casing for discharging the fluid out of the pump chamber by the rotation of the impeller; wherein the suction port and the discharge port are oriented so as to extend in different directions; a heat-receiving section placed in contact with the object to be cooled for removing the heat from the object to be cooled by the fluid flowing therein; and a heat-dissipating section including a fluid pipe having the end portions connected to the suction port and the discharge port and in which the fluid that has removed the heat from the object to be cooled flows.

4. The cooling apparatus according to claim 3, wherein the heat-receiving section is integrally provided with the pump.

5. The cooling apparatus according to claim 3, comprising a plurality of suction ports and a plurality of discharge ports.

6. The cooling apparatus according to claim 5, comprising a plurality of heat-dissipating sections.

7. The cooling apparatus according to claim 5, comprising a plurality of heat-receiving sections.

8. The cooling apparatus according to claim 6, comprising a plurality of heat-receiving sections.

9. The cooling apparatus according to claim 3, wherein a connecting portion between the pump and the heat-dissipating section includes an obtusely bent portion.

10. The cooling apparatus according to claim 3, wherein the heat-receiving section is located between the pump and the heat-dissipating section; and a connecting portion between the pump and the heat-receiving section includes an obtusely bent portion.

11. An electrical appliance, comprising: a heat-generating component; a pump for removing heat from the heat-generating component by fluid flowing therein including a casing including therein a pump chamber; an impeller rotatably mounted inside the pump chamber; a suction port provided on the casing for suctioning the fluid into the pump chamber by the rotation of the impeller; and a discharge port provided on the casing for discharging the fluid out of the pump chamber by the rotation of the impeller; wherein the suction port and the discharge port are oriented so as to extend in different directions; and a heat-dissipating section including a fluid pipe having the end portions connected to the suction port and the discharge port and in which the fluid that has removed the heat from the heat-generating component flows.

12. A personal computer, comprising: a CPU; a pump for removing heat from the heat-generating component by fluid flowing therein including a casing including therein a pump chamber; an impeller rotatably mounted inside the pump chamber; a suction port provided on the casing for suctioning the fluid into the pump chamber by the rotation of the impeller; and a discharge port provided on the casing for discharging the fluid out of the pump chamber by the rotation of the impeller; wherein the suction port and the discharge port are oriented so as to extend in different directions; and a heat-dissipating section including a fluid pipe having the end portions connected to the suction port and the discharge port and in which the fluid that has removed the heat from the CPU flows.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to a pump for cooling a heat-generating component in an electrical appliance or a personal computer, and more particularly to a pump with an improved structure of a suction port and a discharge port.

2. Description of the Related Art

A fluid pump as disclosed, for example, in Japanese Published Unexamined Patent Application No. 2001-123978 and Japanese Published Unexamined Patent Application No. 2001-132677 is currently available. Such a fluid pump is provided with a casing including therein apump chamber, a suction port and a discharge port located in the casing, and a disc-shaped impeller rotatably mounted inside the pump chamber and having pump grooves along a periphery thereof for carrying a liquid inside the pump chamber. In this fluid pump, when the impeller is rotated the pump grooves act to suction the liquid through the suction port into the pump chamber, and also to discharge the liquid inside the pump chamber through the discharge port.

FIG. 11 and FIG. 12 depict an example of an adoption of the fluid pump for a cooling apparatus for cooling a heat-generating component of an electrical appliance. As shown in FIG. 11 and FIG. 12, the cooling apparatus includes a pump 1 and a heat-dissipating section 5. The pump 1 includes a casing 2 having a suction port 3 and a discharge port 4. The suction port 3 and the discharge port 4 are located close to each other and oriented to the same direction. The casing 2 includes therein a pump chamber (not shown), in which an impeller (not shown) having pump grooves is rotatably mounted. Of the outer surface of the casing 2, a face 2a opposing the pump grooves of the impeller serves as a heat-receiving section, with which a heat-generating component such as an electrical part is to be placed in close contact.

The heat-dissipating section 5 includes a case 8 constituted of a case body 6 and a case cover 7, a heat dissipator 9 placed in an upper portion inside the case body 6, and a fan 10 placed in a lower portion inside the case body 6.

At a region of the case body 6 and the case cover 7 opposing the fan 10, air intakes 11 and 12 are respectively provided. Also, the case body 6 is provided with an air outlet 13 on an upper surface thereof.

The heat dissipator 9 includes a U-shaped pipe 14 and a multitude of fins 15 through which the pipe 14 is penetrating. An inlet 16 and an outlet 17 of the pipe 14 are respectively connected to the discharge port 4 and the suction port 3 of the pump 1, via connection pipes 18 and 19. Inside the pipe 14 and the pump chamber, a cooling fluid, for example, a liquid, is filled. The fan 10 is rotated by a built-in motor (not shown).

Under such a structure, when the impeller is rotated by the motor which is not shown, the liquid inside the pipe 14 is suctioned through the connection pipe 19 into the pump chamber via the suction port 3 as indicated by the arrow A, and the liquid inside the pump chamber is discharged from the discharge port 4. The liquid discharged from the discharge port 4 flows through the connection pipe 18 and the pipe 14, and then passes through the connection pipe 19 to be again suctioned into the pump chamber via the suction port 3. The liquid thus circulating through the pump 1 and the pipe 14 removes the heat generated by the heat-generating component via the face 2a when passing through the pump chamber, and releases the heat through the fins 15 when passing through the heat-dissipating section 5. In the heat-dissipating section 5, when the fan 10 is rotated the air outside the case 8 flows into the case 8 through the air intakes 11 and 12, and passes through among the fins 15 to be discharged through the air outlet 13, as indicated by the arrow B. As a result, the heat dissipator 9 is cooled, by which the liquid flowing through the pipe 14 is cooled. Accordingly, the heat-generating component is continuously cooled by the liquid circulating through the pump 1 and the pipe 14.

However, the cooling apparatus thus constructed has the following drawback. In order to connect the suction port 3 and the discharge port 4 of the pump 1 to the outlet 17 and the inlet 16 of the pipe 14 respectively, two points of the pipe 14 close to the outlet 17 and the inlet 16 have to be bent in an acute angle. Such a structure increases the pressure loss inside the pipe 14 and hence reduces a flow amount and speed of the fluid, thereby resulting in lowering the cooling performance.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Therefore, an object of the present invention is to provide a pump that can efficiently cool an object to be cooled.

The present invention provides a pump comprising a casing including therein a pump chamber through which a fluid flows, an impeller rotatably mounted inside the pump chamber, a suction port provided on the casing for suctioning the fluid into the pump chamber by the rotation of the impeller, and a discharge port provided on the casing for discharging the fluid out of the pump chamber by the rotation of the impeller, wherein the suction port and the discharge port are oriented so as to extend in different directions.

Upon combining with the pump a heat-receiving section placed in contact with the object to be cooled for removing the heat from the object to be cooled by the fluid flowing therein, and a heat-dissipating section including a fluid pipe having the end portions connected to the suction port and the discharge port and in which the fluid that has removed the heat from the object to be cooled flows, a cooling apparatus can be achieved.

With such a configuration, since the suction port and the discharge port are extended in different directions, the end portions of the fluid pipe no longer have to be bent in an acute angle for connection with the suction port and the discharge port. Consequently, a pressure loss at the connection point can be minimized.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will become clear upon reviewing the following description of the embodiment with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is an exploded perspective view showing a pump viewed from a casing body side according to a first embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is an exploded perspective view showing the pump viewed from a casing cover side;

FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view showing the pump;

FIG. 4 is an exploded perspective view showing a cooling apparatus;

FIG. 5 is a plan view showing the cooling apparatus with the case cover removed;

FIG. 6 is a schematic block diagram of a cooling apparatus according to a second embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 7 is a similar view to FIG. 6, according to a third embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 8 is a similar view to FIG. 6, according to a fourth embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 9 is a similar view to FIG. 6, according to a fifth embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 10 is a schematic perspective view showing a personal computer according to a sixth embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 11 is similar view to FIG. 4, showing a conventional cooling apparatus; and

FIG. 12 is similar view to FIG. 5.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Referring to the accompanying drawings, some embodiments of the present invention will be described hereunder. FIG. 1 through FIG. 5 depict a first embodiment of the present invention, among which FIGS. 1 to 3 illustrate a fluid pump according to this embodiment, while FIGS. 4 and 5 show a configuration of a cooling apparatus with which the fluid pump is employed. As shown in FIGS. 1 to 3, the fluid pump 21 includes a casing 22 constituted of a rectangular plate-shaped casing body 23 and a casing cover 24.

The casing body 23 includes a pump chamber 25 having a circular recessed portion, and a suction port 26 and a discharge port 27 communicating with the pump chamber 25. Both the suction port 26 and the discharge port 27 are projecting outward from a same sidewall of the casing body 23, but in different directions. More specifically, the suction port 26 is oriented in a diagonally upward direction, while the discharge port 27 is oriented in a diagonally downward direction in FIG. 1. The face of the casing body 23 opposite to the face where the pump chamber 25 is provided is a heat-receiving face 23a. Accordingly, the casing body 23 is made of a material having a high thermal conductivity, such as a metal.

The pump chamber 25 includes a protrusion 28 separating the suction port 26 from the discharge port 27. The protrusion 28 is located over a region from a central portion of the pump chamber 25 to a portion on the inner circumferential surface of the pump chamber 25 between the suction port 26 and the discharge port 27. The suction port 26 and the discharge port 27 are disposed as close as possible to each other, in order to secure a sufficient circumferential length on the inner circumferential surface of the pump chamber 25, except the protrusion 28.

Inside the pump chamber 25, an impeller 29 is rotatably mounted. The impeller 29 includes an axle 32 projecting on both sides in an axial direction at the center thereof. For engagement therewith, the casing body 23 and the casing cover 24 respectively include bearings 33 and 39, which support the axle 32.

Of the surfaces of the impeller 29 oriented in the axial direction, the surface opposing the casing body 23 is provided with a multitude of radially extending ribs 31, while the surface opposing the casing cover 24 is provided with a circular recessed portion 34. A portion between adjacent ribs 31 serves as a pump groove 30.

To an inner circumferential surface of the recessed portion 34, a ring-shaped permanent magnet 36 integrally including a magnetic ring 35 is attached. The permanent magnet 36 is magnetized such that an N pole and an S pole alternately appear.

Meanwhile, the face of the casing cover 24 reverse to the face opposing the casing body 23 is provided with a circular recessed portion 37, while the face thereof opposing the casing body 23 is provided with a ring-shaped recessed portion 38. Also, the casing cover 24 is provided with a protrusion 24a on an outer circumferential surface of the recessed portion 38, to be fitted with the pump chamber 25 when the casing body 23 and the casing cover 24 are combined. The recessed portions 37 and 38 are disposed so as to axially overlap, with the recessed portion 38 being located at an outer position. The bearing 39 is located at the central portion of the recessed portion 37.

The recessed portion 37 accommodates a stator 40. The stator 40 includes a stator core 41 having a plurality of teeth 41a and stator coils 42 wound around the teeth 41a. The stator core 41 is fixed so as to oppose an inner circumferential surface of the recessed portion 37.

An outer circumferential surface of the teeth 41a of the stator 40 is radially opposing an inner circumferential surface of the permanent magnet 36 via the circumferential wall 37a of the recessed portion 37. In this embodiment, the impeller 29, the magnetic ring 35 and the permanent magnet 36 constitute the rotor 43, and such a rotor 43 and stator 40 constitute a motor 44.

Here, the casing body 23 and the casing cover 24 are combined with a plurality of screws 45. Also, the recessed portion 37 of the casing cover 24 is covered with a bottom plate (not shown) upon accommodating the stator 40.

FIG. 4 and FIG. 5 depict an example of a cooling apparatus combined with the pump 21 thus constructed. As shown in FIG. 4 and FIG. 5, the cooling apparatus 51 includes the pump 21 and a heat-dissipating section 52. The heat-dissipating section 52 includes a case 55 constituted of a case body 53 and a case cover 54, a heat dissipator 56 installed in an upper portion inside the case 55, and a fan 57 installed in a lower portion inside the case 55. The fan 57 includes therein a built-in fan motor (not shown).

The case body 53 and the case cover 54 are respectively provided with air inlets 58 and 59 on the face opposing the fan 57. Also, the case cover 54 is provided with an air outlet 60 on the upper face thereof. The heat dissipator 56 includes a U-shaped pipe 61 (corresponding to the fluid pipe) penetrating through a multitude of fins 62.

The pipe 61 has a length corresponding to an entire width of the case body 53, with the farthest possible separation in a vertical direction of FIG. 5, so as to achieve the highest attainable heat-dissipating effect. Accordingly, the inlet 63 and the outlet 64 of the pipe 61 are spaced in a vertical direction, and bent so as to be connected to the suction port 26 and the discharge port 27 of the pump 21.

Here, the suction port 26 of the pump 21 is upwardly inclined, while the discharge port 27 is downwardly inclined in the orientation of FIG. 5. Accordingly, merely bending the inlet 63 and the outlet 64 of the pipe 61 in an obtuse angle allows aligning the orientation of the outlet 64 and the suction port 26, as well as the inlet 63 and the discharge port 27.

The inlet 63 and the discharge port 27, and the outlet 64 and the suction port 26 are respectively connected via connection pipes 65 and 66. Inside the pipe 61 and the pump chamber 25, a cooling fluid, for instance a liquid, is sealed in.

The cooling apparatus 51 thus constructed is used with the heat-receiving face 23a of the pump 21 placed in close contact with a heat-generating component such as an electrical part, which is the object to be cooled. Under such a state, when a current is supplied through the stator coil 42 of the motor 44, the impeller 29 (rotor 43) rotates. This activates the pumping function of the pump grooves 30 on the impeller 29, to thereby suction the liquid inside the pipe 61 through the connection pipe 66 into the pump chamber 25 via the suction port 26, and to discharge the liquid inside the pump chamber 25 into the pipe 61 through the discharge port 27 and the connection pipe 65, as indicated by the arrow C. In this way the liquid circulates between the pipe 61 and the pump chamber 25, and during this process the heat generated by the heat-generating component is removed by the liquid flowing through the pump chamber 25 via the heat-receiving section 23a.

Meanwhile in the heat-dissipating section 52, when the fan 57 is rotated by the fan motor, the ambient air around the case 55 is suctioned into the case 55 through the air inlets 58 and 59, as indicated by the arrow D in FIG. 5. The air suctioned into the case 55 passes through among the fins 62 and is discharged through the air outlet 60. Accordingly, the liquid that has removed the heat from the heat-generating component and hence has been warmed up releases the heat while passing through the pipe 61 via the fins 62 thus to be cooled again, and returns to the pump chamber 25 through the suction port 26. This is how the heat-generating component is cooled.

It is to be noted that the pump 21 can control the rotating speed of the motor 44, so as to adjust the flow rate. Therefore, the cooling performance of the cooling apparatus 51 with respect to the heat-generating component can be adjusted by controlling the flow rate of the pump 21.

The foregoing configuration provides the following advantages.

In the pump 21, the suction port 26 and the discharge port 27 are oriented in different directions. This allows securing a sufficient spacing between the inlet 63 and the outlet 64 of the pipe 61, which is the counterpart of the pump 21, by merely bending the pipe in an obtuse angle. Accordingly, a pressure loss inside the pipe 61 can be reduced, and hence a drop of the flow amount and speed of the liquid flowing through the pipe 61 can be prevented. Consequently, the cooling performance of the cooling apparatus 51 can be upgraded.

Also, the cooling apparatus 51 of the foregoing configuration includes the pump 21, which integrally includes a heat-receiving section. This allows reducing the dimensions of the cooling apparatus 51.

Meanwhile, although both of the suction port 26 and the discharge port 27 of the pump 21 are inclined with respect to the outer face of the pump 21 according to the first embodiment, either of the suction port 26 or the discharge port 27 may be oriented perpendicularly to the outer face of the pump, leaving the other inclined with respect thereto, as in the following second to the sixth embodiments. Hereunder, the second to the sixth embodiments will be specifically described.

FIG. 6 illustrates the second embodiment of the present invention. In the second embodiment, the suction port 26 of the pump 21 is projecting in a diagonally downward direction in FIG. 6 from the outer face of the pump 21, while the discharge port 27 is perpendicularly projecting from the outer face of the pump 21.

The pump 21 of the foregoing configuration, the heat-dissipating section 52 and a heat-receiving section 72 constitute a cooling apparatus 71. The heat-receiving section 72 is connected to the discharge port 27 of the pump 21 and the inlet 63 of the heat-dissipating section 52, via connection pipes 73 and 74, respectively. The cooling apparatus 71, in which a fluid discharged by the pump 21 flows through the heat-receiving section 72, is used with such heat-receiving section 72 placed in close contact with a heat-generating component, so as to cool the heat-generating component.

Since the suction port 26 is projecting diagonally downward in FIG. 6 from the outer face of the pump 21, the connection pipe 65 connecting the suction port 26 and the outlet 64 of the heat-dissipating section 52 has a portion that is bent in an obtuse angle. Accordingly, in this configuration also, the connecting portion between the pump 21 and the heat-receiving section 72, as well as the heat-dissipating section 52, does not have to be bent in an acute angle.

According to a third embodiment shown in FIG. 7, a cooling apparatus 81 includes the pump 21 having a pair of each of the suction ports 26 and the discharge ports 27, and a pair of heat-dissipating sections 52 respectively connected to the suction ports 26 and the discharge ports 27. The pump 21 of this embodiment integrally includes a heat-receiving section.

In this embodiment, either of the suction port 26 or the discharge port 27 out of a pair disposed side by side from a same outer face of the pump 21 is perpendicularly oriented with respect to the outer face of the pump 21, while the other is inclined with respect thereto.

According to a fourth embodiment of the present invention shown in FIG. 8, a cooling apparatus 91 includes the pump 21 having a pair each of the suction ports 26 and the discharge ports 27, and a pair of heat-dissipating sections 52 respectively connected to the suction port 26 and the discharge port 27, and a pair of heat-receiving sections 72 connected between the respective discharge ports 27 and the heat-dissipating sections 52. In this embodiment too, either of the suction port 26 or the discharge port 27 out of a pair disposed side by side from a same outer face of the pump 21 is perpendicularly oriented with respect to the outer face of the pump 21, while the other is inclined with respect thereto.

According to a fifth embodiment of the present invention shown in FIG. 9, the suction port 26 and the discharge port 27 are respectively provided on adjacent faces among the outer faces of the pump 21. The suction port 26 and the discharge port 27 are respectively provided perpendicularly to the outer face of the casing 22, and resultantly the suction port 26 and the discharge port 27 are oriented in different directions. Then, the pump 21 thus constructed and the heat-dissipating section 52 constitute a cooling apparatus 101.

In this configuration neither does the pipe of the heat-dissipating section 52, which is the counterpart of the pump 21, have to be bent in an acute angle.

FIG. 10 depicts a sixth embodiment, in which the present invention is applied to a laptop personal computer, which is an example of an electrical appliance. The personal computer 111 includes a main body 112 provided with a keyboard (not shown), and a cover 113 provided with an LCD (not shown) and pivotally attached to the main body 112 so as to open and close the computer. The main body 112 includes therein a central processing unit (CPU) 114 which is a heat-generating component, and the casing body 23 (heat-receiving section 23a) of the pump 21 is placed on and in close contact with the CPU 114.

On the part of the cover 113, a heat-dissipating section 116 is disposed behind the LCD. The heat-dissipating section 116 includes a pipe (not shown) in which a cooling liquid is sealed in, and is provided with an inlet 117 and an outlet 119 on the respective end portions thereof.

The inlet 117 and the discharge port 27 of the pump 21 are connected via a connection pipe 118, while the outlet 119 and the suction port 26 of the pump 21 are connected via a connection pipe 120. In this embodiment, the pump 21, the heat-dissipating section 116, and the connection pipes 118 and 120 constitute a cooling apparatus 115.

Under such a configuration, when the pump 21 is activated, the liquid sealed in inside the pipe in the heat-dissipating section 116 is suctioned through the connection pipe 120 into the pump chamber 25 via the suction port 26 of the pump 21, while the liquid inside the pump chamber 25 is discharged through the connection pipe 118 to the heat-dissipating section 116. Thereby, the liquid circulates between the pump chamber 25 and the heat-dissipating section 116, during which the heat generated by the CPU 114 is removed by the liquid via the casing body 23 (heat-receiving section 23a) of the pump 21. Also, the liquid is cooled in the heat-dissipating section 116 when passing through the pipe. This is how the CPU 114 (heat-generating component) is cooled.

According to the sixth embodiment, since the suction port 26 and the discharge port 27 of the pump 21 are oriented in different directions, there is no need to bend in an acute angle the connection pipes 118 and 120 respectively connecting the inlet 117 and the outlet 119 of the heat-dissipating section 116 and the suction port 26 and the discharge port 27. In addition, the connection pipes 118 and 120 can be made as short as possible.

Although one of the faces of the casing body 23 is utilized as the heat-receiving section in the foregoing embodiments, the heat-receiving section may be provided separately from the casing body 23. Also, the orientation of the suction port 26 and the discharge port 27 of the pump 21 may be appropriately modified according to the layout of the connection pipes 118 and 120 inside the main body 112 of the personal computer 111.

It is to be understood that the present invention is not limited to the foregoing embodiments shown in the accompanying drawings, but various modifications may be made. To cite a few examples, a temperature detecting means may be provided to detect the temperature of the heat-generating component or the fluid, so as to change the rotation speed of the motor 44 according to detecting results of the temperature detecting means, thus to adjust the flow rate of the pump 21. Such an arrangement further improves the cooling efficiency for the heat-generating component.

The heat-generating component may be placed in close contact with the heat-receiving section of the pump, via an additional material having a high thermal conductivity.

The orientation of the suction port and the discharge port of the pump may be appropriately modified according to a counterpart to be connected thereto.

The foregoing description and drawings are merely illustrative of the principles of the present invention and are not to be construed in a limiting sense. Various changes and modifications will become apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art. All such changes and modifications are seen to fall within the scope of the invention as defined by the appended claims.