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Traveling-wave device with mass flux suppression

United States Patent

6,032,464
March 7, 2000
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Los Alamos National Laboratory - Visit the Technology Transfer Division Website
A traveling-wave device is provided with the conventional moving pistons eliminated. Acoustic energy circulates in a direction through a fluid within a torus. A side branch may be connected to the torus for transferring acoustic energy into or out of the torus. A regenerator is located in the torus with a first heat exchanger located on a first side of the regenerator downstream of the regenerator relative to the direction of the circulating acoustic energy; and a second heat exchanger located on an upstream side of the regenerator. The improvement is a mass flux suppressor located in the torus to minimize time-averaged mass flux of the fluid. In one embodiment, the device further includes a thermal buffer column in the torus to thermally isolate the heat exchanger that is at the operating temperature of the device.
Swift; Gregory W. (Santa Fe, NM), Backhaus; Scott N. (Los Alamos, NM), Gardner; David L. (White Rock, NM)
Regents of the University of California (Los Alamos, NM)
09/ 234,236
January 20, 1999
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERAL RIGHTS This invention was made with government support under Contract No. W-7405-ENG-36 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The government has certain rights in the invention.