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Microcomponent assembly for efficient contacting of fluid

United States Patent

October 3, 2000
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory - Visit the Technology Commercialization Program Website
The present invention is a fundamental method and apparatus of a microcomponent assembly that overcomes the inherent limitations of state of the art chemical separations. The fundamental element enabling miniaturization is the porous contactor contained within a microcomponent assembly for mass transfer of a working compound from a first medium to a second medium. The porous contactor has a thickness, and a plurality of pores extending through the thickness. The pores are of a geometry cooperating with a boundary tension of one or the other or both of the media thereby preventing migration of one, other or both through the microporous contactor while permitting passage of the working compound. In the microcomponent assembly, the porous contactor is placed between a first laminate such that a first space or first microplenum is formed between the microporous contactor and the first laminate. Additionally, a cover sheet provides a second space or second plenum between the porous contactor and the cover sheet.
Drost; Monte K. (Richland, WA), Wegeng; Robert S. (Richland, WA), Friedrich; Michele (Prosser, WA), Hanna; William T. (Gahanna, OH), Call; Charles J. (Pasco, WA), Kurath; Dean E. (Richland, WA)
Battelle Memorial Institute (Richland, WA)
09/ 096,147
June 10, 1998
This invention was made with Government support under Contract DE-AC06 76RLO 1830 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in the invention.