Title:
Recurring natural water cooling device
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A recurring natural water cooling device is provided. The recurring natural water cooling device includes a flow channel through which a natural water flow from a natural water source is circulated, a thermal exchanging device through which a thermal fluid flows and being placed in the flow channel so as to transfer a heat of the thermal fluid to the natural water flow, a power device speeding up the circulated natural water, and a plurality of diversion devices communicatively connecting the natural water source and the flow channel.



Inventors:
Liao, Hung-jiun (Taipei, TW)
Kuo, Chih-ping (Taipei, TW)
Chen, Cheng Yi (Taipei, TW)
Application Number:
11/526468
Publication Date:
04/12/2007
Filing Date:
09/25/2006
Assignee:
National Taiwan University of Science and Technology (Taipei, TW)
Primary Class:
International Classes:
F24J3/08
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
WALBERG, TERESA J
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Volpe Koenig (PHILADELPHIA, PA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A recurring natural water cooling device, comprising: a flow channel through which a natural water flow from a natural water source is circulated; a thermal exchanging device through which a thermal fluid flows and being placed in the flow channel so as to transfer a heat of the thermal fluid to the natural water flow; a power device speeding up the circulated natural water; and a plurality of diversion devices communicatively connecting the natural water source and the flow channel.

2. The recurring natural water cooling device as claimed in claim 1, wherein the circulated natural water flows back to the natural water source.

3. The recurring natural water cooling device as claimed in claim 1, wherein the natural water source is one of a surface water source and a groundwater source.

4. The recurring natural water cooling device as claimed in claim 1, wherein each of the plurality of diversion devices is one of a diversion device formed artificially and a diversion device formed naturally.

5. The recurring natural water cooling device as claimed in claim 1, wherein the power device is placed in the flow channel.

6. The recurring natural water cooling device as claimed in claim 1, wherein the power device is placed in the plurality of diversion devices.

7. The recurring natural water cooling device as claimed in claim 1, wherein the flow channel is one of a flow channel formed artificially and a flow channel formed naturally.

8. The recurring natural water cooling device as claimed in claim 1, wherein the power device is a pump.

9. The recurring natural water cooling device as claimed in claim 1, wherein the thermal exchanging device comprises: a coolant being the natural water; and a heat transferring device through which the thermal fluid flows and surrounded by the coolant so as to transfer the heat of the thermal fluid to the coolant.

10. The recurring natural water cooling device as claimed in claim 9, wherein the heat transferring device is a wound metal tube.

11. A recurring natural water cooling device, comprising: a flow channel through which a natural water from a natural water source is circulated; a heat transferring device through which a thermal fluid flows and being placed in the flow channel so as to transfer a heat of the thermal fluid to the natural water; and a plurality of diversion devices communicatively connected between the natural water source and the flow channel.

12. The recurring natural water cooling device as claimed in claim 11, wherein the circulated natural water flow flows back to the natural water source.

13. The recurring natural water cooling device as claimed in claim 11, wherein the natural water source is one of a surface water source and a groundwater source.

14. The recurring natural water cooling device as claimed in claim 11, wherein each of the plurality of diversion devices is one of a diversion device formed artificially and a diversion device formed naturally.

15. The recurring natural water cooling device as claimed in claim 11, wherein the thermal exchanging device comprises: a coolant being the natural water; and a heat transferring device through which the thermal fluid flows, and surrounded by the coolant so as to transfer the heat of the thermal fluid to the coolant.

16. The recurring natural water cooling device as claimed in claim 15, wherein the heat transferring device is a wound metal tube.

17. A cooling system, comprising: a natural water source providing a natural water; a thermal exchanging device transferring a heat from a thermal fluid to the natural water; and a connecting device connected between the natural water source and the thermal exchanging device.

18. The cooling system as claimed in claim 17, wherein the natural water flows back to the natural water source after having the heat from the thermal fluid.

19. The cooling system as claimed in claim 17, wherein the natural water source is one of a surface water source and a groundwater source.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a cooling device. More particularly, the present invention relates to a recurring cooling device making use of natural water.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

With development of the current industry, thermal exchangers have been widely employed in the oil-refining industry, petrifaction industry, hi-tech electronic industry and the like, as the devices for heat removing.

Since the thermal exchanger is generally used in miscellaneous environments where the conditions of capacity, pressure, temperature and the like are different from one another, the thermal exchanger has to be formed in various shapes, structures and categorizations. The shell-tube thermal exchanger can be one of the most widely used thermal exchangers. Such shell-tube thermal exchanger can be seen from FIG. 1. As shown, a cool liquid serves as a coolant 14 and flows into an enclosed trough body 11 having the thermal exchanger formed therein, the thermal exchanger being formed by winding a lot of slender metal tubes 12 and the thermal exchanger being surrounded by the coolant. The enclosed trough body 11 is termed as “casing”, while the metal tube is termed as “tube body”.

The shell-tube thermal exchanger is operated according to the process described below. At first, a thermal fluid 16 to be cooled is poured into the thermal exchanger composed of the metal tubes 12. Then, the heat of the thermal fluid 16 is transferred to the coolant 14 whose temperature is relatively lower than that of the thermal fluid 16. As such, a thermal exchange occurs between the thermal fluid 16 and the coolant 14. In the course of thermal exchanging, the thermal fluid 16 is lowered in temperature and becomes another thermal fluid 17, while the coolant 14 is elevated in temperature and becomes another coolant 15. As such, the cooling function is achieved.

The metal tubes 12 are typically extended and fixed by welding to a tube plate 13 to form a tube group. Next, the tube group is inserted into the casing 11 to from the thermal exchanger. In the thermal exchanger, the metal tubes 12 are disposed horizontally in general. However, the metal tubes 12 may also be disposed vertically in the case that the area occupied by the metal tube is limited or the thermal exchanger is used for the purpose of distillation.

The thermal exchanger may be categorized into several types according to the connection between the tube plate and the casing, such as a fixed tube plate based thermal exchanger, a floated head based thermal exchanger and a U-shape tube based thermal exchanger. However, no matter which type of the thermal exchanger is used, there exist the following issues. Firstly, Since the casing is sealed up and thus deposited articles therein are hard to be removed, a highly polluted or erosive fluid is not suitable to serve as the coolant. Secondly, there is a temperature difference between the two fluids, at the casing side and the metal tube side, which is greater than 100° C. In addition, an excessively large difference of thermal expansion coefficient is presented between the material of the casing and that of the metal tube. Accordingly, a significant expansion difference occurs between the casing and the metal tube and causes a non-uniform expansion in the thermal exchanger, leading to failure of the thermal exchanger. This is also true for the case where the temperature is low owing to the significant difference of thermal expansion coefficient. Thirdly, for the thermal exchanger, the more complicate the structure thereof is, the higher the cost therefor will be. Fourthly, the larger the pressure in the thermal exchanger is or the higher the requirement of the thermal exchange is, the thicker the metal tube will be and the larger the volume of the thermal exchanger will be, leading to a larger occupation area of the thermal exchanger. Fifthly, the thermal exchanger generates waste heat in operation into the ambient environment, adversely increasing the greenhouse effect and polluting the environment. Sixthly, the thermal exchanger generates unpleasant noises in operation. Seventhly, fluorine and chlorine carbides generally serve as the coolant, forming a menace to the ozone layer surrounding the earth. Eighthly, a huge amount of power energy is consumed during the temperature reduction process, causing a power waste for the heat exchanger.

Take the air-conditioning apparatus for example, the waste heat vented therefrom will be dispersed in the air, which causes a power thermal saturation of the air nearby not long after the operation of the air-conditioning apparatus, and thus the waste heat is accumulated and needs a long time to be removed. Consequently, the air temperature is elevated and the operating efficiency of the heat exchanger is lowered.

From the above description, it is known that how to develop a recurring natural water cooling device has become a major problem to be solved. In order to overcome the drawbacks in the prior art, a recurring natural water cooling device is provided. The particular design in the present invention not only solves the problems described above, but also is easy to be implemented. Thus, the invention has the utility for the industry.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

In accordance with an aspect of the present invention, a recurring natural water cooling device is provided. The recurring natural water cooling device comprises a flow channel through which a natural water flow from a natural water source is circulated, a thermal exchanging device through which a thermal fluid flows and being placed in the flow channel so as to transfer a heat of the thermal fluid to the natural water flow, a power device speeding up the circulated natural water flow, and a plurality of diversion devices communicatively connecting the natural water source and the flow channel.

In an embodiment, the circulated natural water flow flows back to the natural water source.

In an embodiment, the natural water source is one of a surface water source and a groundwater source.

In an embodiment, each of the plurality of diversion devices is one of a diversion device formed artificially and a diversion device formed naturally.

In an embodiment, the power device is placed in the flow channel.

In an embodiment, the power device is placed in the plurality of diversion devices.

In an embodiment, the flow channel is one of a flow channel formed artificially and a flow channel formed naturally.

In an embodiment, the power device is a pump.

In an embodiment, the thermal exchanging device comprises a heat transferring device through which the thermal fluid flows and surrounded by a coolant so as to transfer the heat of the thermal fluid to the coolant, wherein the coolant is the natural water flow.

In an embodiment, the heat transferring device is a wound metal tube.

In accordance with another aspect of the present invention, a recurring natural water cooling device is provided. The recurring natural water cooling device comprises a flow channel through which a natural water flow from a natural water source is circulated, a thermal transferring device through which a thermal fluid flows and being placed in the flow channel so as to transfer a heat of the thermal fluid to the natural water flow, and a plurality of diversion devices communicatively connected between the natural water source and the flow channel.

In an embodiment, the circulated natural water flows back to the natural water source.

In an embodiment, the natural water source is one of a surface water source and a groundwater source.

In an embodiment, each of the plurality of diversion devices is one of a diversion device formed artificially and a diversion device formed naturally.

In an embodiment, the thermal exchanging device comprises a heat transferring device through which the thermal fluid flows, and surrounded by a coolant so as to transfer the heat of the thermal fluid to the coolant, wherein the coolant is the natural water flow.

In an embodiment, the heat transferring device is a wound metal tube.

In accordance with yet another embodiment, a cooling system is disclosed, which comprises a natural water source providing a natural water flow, a thermal exchanging device transferring a heat from a thermal fluid to the natural water, and a connecting device connected between the natural water source and the heat transferring device.

In an embodiment, the natural water flow flows back to the natural water source after having received the heat from the thermal fluid.

In an embodiment, the natural water source is one of a surface water source and a groundwater source.

Other objects, advantages and efficacy of the present invention will be described in detail below taken from the preferred embodiments with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a schematic diagram of a conventional shell-tube heat exchanger;

FIG. 2 is a schematic diagram illustrating the operating process of a recurring natural water cooling device according to a first embodiment of the present invention; and

FIG. 3 is a schematic diagram illustrating the operating process of the recurring natural water cooling device according to a second embodiment of the present invention; and

FIG. 4 is a schematic diagram of a heat transferring device in the recurring natural water cooling device according to the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

The present invention will now be described more specifically with reference to the following embodiments. It is to be noted that the following descriptions of preferred embodiments of this invention are presented herein for purposes of illustration and description only; it is not intended to be exhaustive or to be limited to the precise form disclosed.

In this invention, a natural water is used and the groundwater is taken as an example of the natural water for illustration. The ground water can be maintained around twenty degrees on average for long and is thus an excellent coolant. In general, the groundwater source may be selected from the confined aquifer zone, non-confined aquifer zone, perching groundwater zone, interflow groundwater zone, etc. Among them, the groundwater obtained from the confined aquifer zone is used for illustration herein. Certainly, the groundwater from the other groundwater sources can also be used. This embodiment is provided merely for illustration and should not be considered in a limiting sense. Referring to FIG. 2, a schematic diagram for illustrating how the recurring natural water cooling device operates according to a first embodiment of the present invention is depicted therein. As shown in. FIG. 2, a first thermal fluid 28 flows from the air-conditioning tool 27 and a second thermal fluid 29 is obtained after the first thermal fluid 28 is processed in the thermal exchanging device. In this embodiment, the recurring natural water cooling device comprises a first diversion device 21, a flow channel 22, a power device 23, a thermal transferring device 24, a second diversion device 25, a third diversion device 26 and an air-conditioning tool 27. The air-conditioning tool 27 drains out a first thermal fluid 28. After being processed by the thermal exchanging device 24, the first thermal fluid 28 is converted into a second thermal fluid 29. A first groundwater flow 210 serves as a coolant for the thermal exchanging deice 24. A second groundwater flow 211 is used to receive the heat of the first thermal fluid 28. In this embodiment, a confined aquifer zone 212 is used as the natural water source. The first, second and third diversion devices 21, 25, 26 form a plurality of diversion devices for the recurring natural water device.

In forming the recurring natural water cooling device, the first diversion device 21 is first formed. In this embodiment, the first diversion device 21 is a well, a tube for water guiding, or any device which can achieve the purpose of water guiding. The first diversion device 21 has to be connected to the confined aquifer zone 212 so that the flow channel 22 is connected with the confined aquifer zone 212 and the first groundwater flow 210 can be provided to the flow channel 22. However, the first diversion device 21 may be implemented in many forms other than the above-mentioned one.

Then, the flow channel 22 is formed, in which a room sufficient for disposition of the heat transferring device 24 and the power device 23 and for the first groundwater flow 210 to flow therein has to be provided. The flow channel 22 may be a deep well, a shallow well, a casing pipe and any other devices which can achieve the same purpose. Further, the flow channel 22 may be one formed artificially or naturally. In addition, the flow channel 22 may be formed above the ground, as contrast to the above embodiment where the flow channel 22 is formed under the ground. However, the flow channel 22 may be implemented in many forms other than the above-mentioned one.

Subsequently, the second and third diversion devices 25, 26 are formed. The second diversion device 25 is a tube for water guiding and used to connect the power device 23 with the third diversion device 26. The second diversion device 25 may be a metal tube, a concrete tube or any other devices which can be used for water guiding, as long as the same purpose can be achieved. In addition, the second diversion device 25 may be one formed artificially or naturally.

The third diversion device 26 is a recharge well of the groundwater, which can be one formed artificially or naturally according to actual needs. The third diversion device 26 is connected to the second diversion device 25 and the confined aquifer zone 212 so as to direct the second groundwater flow 211 to flow back to the confined aquifer zone 212. In this manner, the purpose of environment protection may be achieved since the groundwater obtained from the underground can flow back to the underground after being utilized for the cooling task.

In the recurring natural water cooling device, the thermal exchanging device 24 and the power device 23 are placed in the flow channel 22. In this embodiment, the power device 23 is a pump. The power device 23 accelerates the first groundwater flow 210 in the flow channel 22 to flow through and surround the thermal exchanging device 24. Then, the first groundwater flow 210 is guided to the power device 23 and then the second diversion device 25. Each of the second and third diversion devices 25, 26 can be presented in any form and located under or above the ground. The second and third diversion devices 25, 26 can be implemented in a manner other than those described above, as long as the above-mentioned function can be achieved.

In operation, the first thermal fluid 28 drained from the air-conditioning tool 27 is a waste heat containing fluid in any form, which is then directed to the thermal exchanging device 24. The coolant for the thermal exchanging device 24 is the first groundwater flow 210. Since the first groundwater flow 210 has a temperature lower than that of the first thermal fluid 28, the heat of the first thermal fluid 28 is transmitted through the thermal exchanging device 24 to the first groundwater flow 210, which is then drained from the thermal exchanging device 24 as the second thermal fluid 29, the second thermal fluid 29 having a temperature lower than that of the first thermal fluid 28. Then, the second thermal fluid 29 flows back to the air-conditioning tool 27 for subsequent use in the cooling task.

In addition, the first groundwater flow 210 from the confined aquifer zone 212 will, under acceleration of the power device 23, form a slow water flowing into the flow channel 22 with the guidance of the first diversion device 21. When flowing through the thermal exchanging device 24, the first groundwater flow 210 becomes a coolant therefor. Since the first groundwater flow 210 has a temperature lower than that of the first thermal fluid 28, the first groundwater flow 210 receives the heat of the first thermal fluid 28 through the thermal exchanging device 24. As such, the purpose of removing the heat of the first thermal fluid 28 is achieved. After passing the thermal exchanging device 24, the first groundwater flow 211 is converted into the second groundwater flow 212. Since the heat of the second groundwater flow 212 is received by the first thermal fluid 28, the temperature of the second groundwater flow 212 is higher than that of the first groundwater flow 211. Next, the second groundwater flow 212 continues to flow into the power device 23 and then the third diversion device 26. Finally, the second ground water 212 is guided by the third diversion device 26 to the confined aquifer zone 212.

In this manner, since the first groundwater flow 210 from the natural water source flows back to the confined aquifer zone 212 in the form of the second groundwater flow 211 and the coolant is also the natural water flow, the natural water cooling device is used with benefit of the continuous natural water source.

Referring to FIG. 3, a schematic diagram for illustrating how the recurring natural water cooling device operates according to a second embodiment of the present invention is depicted therein. In this embodiment, the recurring natural water cooling device comprises a first diversion device 31, a flow channel 32, a power device 33, a thermal exchanging device 34, a second diversion device 35, a third diversion device 36 and an air-conditioning tool 37. The air-conditioning tool 37 drains out a first thermal fluid 38. After being processed by the thermal exchanging device 34, the first thermal fluid 38 is converted into a second thermal fluid 39. A first groundwater flow 310 serves as a coolant for the thermal exchanging device 34. A second groundwater flow 311 is used to receive the heat of the first thermal fluid 38. In this embodiment, a confined aquifer zone 312 is used as the natural water source. The first, second and third diversion devices 31, 35, 36 form a plurality of diversion devices for the recurring natural water cooling device. The characteristic of FIG. 3 lies in that the flow channel 32 and the thermal exchanging device 34 are formed on the ground.

In forming the recurring natural water cooling device, the first diversion device 31 is first formed. In this embodiment, the first diversion device 31 is a well or any device which can achieve the purpose of water guiding. The first diversion device 31 has to be connected to the confined aquifer zone 312 so that the flow channel 32 is connected with the confined aquifer zone 312 and the first groundwater flow 310 can be provided to the flow channel 32. In addition, the first diversion device 31 is used for accommodating the power device 33 and for the first groundwater flow 310 to flow therein. However, the first diversion device 31 may be implemented in many forms other than the above-mentioned one.

Then, the flow channel 32 is formed, in which a room sufficient for disposition of the thermal exchanging device 34 and for the first groundwater flow 210 to flow therein has to be provided. The flow channel 32 may be one formed artificially on the ground. However, the flow channel 32 may be implemented in many forms other than the above-mentioned one.

Subsequently, the second diversion device 35 is formed. The second diversion device 35 is a tube for water guiding and used to connect the power device 33 with the flow channel 32 and the flow channel 32 with the third diversion device 36, respectively. The second diversion device 35 may be a metal tube, a concrete tube or any other devices which can be used for water guiding, as long as the same purpose can be achieved. In addition, the second diversion device 35 may be one formed artificially or naturally. The second diversion device 35 is used to guide the first groundwater flow 310 drained out from the power device 33 to the flow channel 32 and the second groundwater flow 311 drained out from the flow channel 32 to the third diversion device 36.

The third diversion device 36 is a recharge well of the groundwater, which can be one formed artificially or naturally according to actual needs. The third diversion device 36 is connected to the second diversion device 35 and the confined aquifer zone 312 so as to direct the second groundwater flow 311 to flow back to the confined aquifer zone 312. In this manner, the purpose of environment protection may be achieved since the groundwater obtained from the underground can flow back to the underground after being utilized for the cooling task. In fact, the second and third diversion devices 35, 36 may be implemented in many forms other than the above-mentioned one.

In the recurring natural water cooling device, the thermal exchanging device 34 is placed in the flow channel 32 and the power device 33 is placed in the first diversion device 31. In this embodiment, the power device 33 is a pump. The power device 33 accelerates the first groundwater flow 310 in the diversion device 31 to flow through the flow channel 32 and surround the thermal exchanging device 34. Then, the first groundwater flow 310 is guided to the second diversion device 35. Since the flow channel 32 is a water container above the ground, the power device 33 may be placed above or below the ground and differently arranged according to the form of the flow channel 32. However, the power device 33 may have other embodiments other than the above-mentioned one.

In operation, the first thermal fluid 38 drained from the air-conditioning tool 37 is a waste heat containing fluid in any form, which is then directed to the thermal exchanging device 34. The coolant for the thermal exchanging device 34 is the first groundwater flow 310. Since the first groundwater flow 310 has a temperature lower than that of the first thermal fluid 38, the heat of the first thermal fluid 38 is transmitted through the thermal exchanging device 34 to the first groundwater flow 310, which is then drained from the thermal exchanging device 34 as the second thermal fluid 39, the second thermal fluid 39 having a temperature lower than that of the first thermal fluid 38. Next, the second thermal fluid 39 flows back to the air-conditioning tool 37 for subsequent use in the cooling task.

In addition, the first groundwater flow 310 from the confined aquifer zone 312 will, under acceleration of the power device 33, form a slow water flowing to the flow channel 32 with the guidance of the first and second diversion devices 31, 35. When flowing through the thermal exchanging device 34, the first groundwater flow 310 becomes a coolant therefor. Since the first groundwater flow 310 has a temperature lower than that of the first thermal fluid 38, the first groundwater flow 310 receives the heat of the first thermal fluid 38 through the thermal exchanging device 34. As such, the purpose of removing the heat of the first thermal fluid 28 is achieved. After passing the thermal exchanging device 34, the first groundwater flow 311 is converted into the second groundwater flow 312. Since the heat of the second groundwater flow 312 is received by the first thermal fluid 38, the temperature of the second groundwater flow 312 is higher than that of the first groundwater flow 311. Next, the second groundwater flow 312 continues to flow into the second diversion device 35 and then the third diversion device 36. Finally, the second ground water 312 is guided by the third diversion device 36 to the confined aquifer zone 312.

In this manner, since the first groundwater flow 310 from the natural water source flows back to the confined aquifer zone 312 in the form of the second groundwater flow 311 and the coolant is also the natural water, the natural water cooling device is used with benefit of the continuous natural water source.

The above embodiments may be achieved by directly replacing the casing of the conventional thermal exchanger with the flow channel and using the natural water as the coolant. As such, a simple form of the recurring natural water cooling device is obtained. Such thermal exchanger has the advantages of environment protection, energy saving, sustainable use, high efficiency, easy purge, convenient maintenance, and enhancing the efficiency which is originally lowered by the impurities choked in the thermal exchanger.

Referring to FIG. 4, the thermal exchanging device of the present invention is schematically depicted therein. The thermal exchanging device comprises a thermal conductive tube 41 and a tube plate 42. The thermal conduction tube 41 serves as a heat transferring device. The first natural water 45 serves as a coolant. A first natural water 45 is referred to the first groundwater flow 210 in the first embodiment and the first groundwater flow 310 in the second embodiment. A second natural water 46 is referred to the second groundwater 211 in the first embodiment and the second groundwater 311 in the second embodiment.

The thermal conduction tube 41 is a wound metal tube for the first thermal fluid 43 to flow therein. The thermal conduction tube 41 is supported by the tube plate 42 and totally surrounded by the coolant, i.e. the first natural water 45. Since the metal of the thermal conduction tube 41 has an excellent thermal conduction characteristic, the heat of the first thermal fluid 43 flown through the thermal conduction tube 41 is received by the first natural water 45. Thus, the temperature of the first thermal fluid 43 is reduced gradually and converted into the second thermal fluid 44 having a temperature higher than that of the first thermal fluid 43. Then, the second thermal fluid 44 flows back to the air-conditioning tool as mentioned above. In fact, the thermal exchanging device may have many other forms other than the above-mentioned one.

It is demonstrated in experiments that the thermal exchanging efficiency and the noise issue of the recurring natural water cooling device of the present invention are significantly improved as compared to those in the prior art, on the condition that the thermal exchanging devices in the two cases are selected the same in area. In conclusion, the recurring natural water cooling device of the present invention can achieve the water cooling function with reduced energy consumption, pollution, noises and waste heat.

While the invention has been described in terms of what is presently considered to be the most practical and preferred embodiments, it is to be understood that the invention needs not be limited to the disclosed embodiments. Therefore, it is intended to cover various modifications and similar arrangements included within the spirit and scope of the appended claims, which are to be accorded with the broadest interpretation so as to encompass all such modifications and similar structures.





 
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