|Title of Invention||
"FILTER FOR A FLUID SYSTEM."
|Abstract||A filter for a fluid system includes a housing having an interior cavity. A filter media is disposed in the housing and defines a central opening. A center tube is arranged within the central opening and includes a plurality of helical fins extending radially outwardly from a central portion of the center tube. The helical fins terminate in an outer portion that is adjacent to the filter media. The center tube provides the desired structural integrity while permitting fluid to flow through the center tube. The present invention center tube is produced by a plastic extrusion process.|
|Full Text|| This invention relates to a filter for use in fluid systems, and more particularly,
the invention relates to a center tube commonly used in filters.
Filters are typically constructed from a housing of one or more components secured to one another. A filter media, which is typically a pleated type filter media, is disposed within the interior cavity of the housing. The filter media is typically cylindrical in shape with the exterior of the filter media defining an input side through which dirty fluid enters. The interior of the filter media defines an outlet side that receives the clean fluid.
A center tube is typically arranged centrally within the filter relative to the filter media to hold the shape of the filter media and provide strength to the filter. The center tube is typically constructed from metal. Center tubes of different diameters and lengths are produced for various sized filters. As a result, a high inventory of center tubes is required for the different filters. Furthermore, numerous individual dies, rollers and sealing equipment are required for producing each of the center tubes for the various filters.
Therefore, what is needed is a center tube that permits the flow of fluid therethrough while being able to accommodate different diameters and lengths needed for the various filters.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION AND ADVANTAGES
A filter for a fluid system includes a housing having an interior cavity. A filter media is disposed in the housing and defines a central opening. A center tube is arranged within the central opening and includes a plurality of helical fins extending radially outwardly from a central portion of the center tube. The helical fins terminate in an outer portion that is adjacent to the filter media. The center tube provides the desired structural integrity while permitting fluid to flow through the center tube.
The present invention center tube is produced by a plastic extrusion process. Specifically, a plastic extruding machine is provided that has a plate which defines a desired shape. In one embodiment, the desired shape may be of a star-shape to provide the center tube having the helical fins mentioned above. The plate is rotated and plastic extruded through the plate to produce the helical twist. A center tube is provided with a helical outer circumferential surface that is adapted to be disposed within the filter media. Alternatively, a helical coil may be produced from a plate having a shape of an inclined arcuate portion.
Accordingly, the above provides a center tube that permits the flow of oil therethrough while being able to accommodate different diameters and lengths needed for the various filters.
Accordingly, there is provided a filter for a fluid system comprising:
a housing having an interior cavity;
a filter media disposed in said cavity defining a central opening; and
a center tube disposed in said central opening, said center tube having a plurality of helical fins extending radially outwardly from a central portion with said helical fins terminating in an outer portion adjacent to said filter media.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE ACCOMPANYING DRAWINGS
Other advantages of the present invention can be understood by reference to the following detailed description when considered in connection 'with the accompanying drawings wherein:
Figure 1 is a partial cross-sectional perspective view of the present invention filter;
Figure 2 is a cross-sectional view of the present invention applied to a filter cartridge.
Figure 3 is a cross-sectional view of the filter shown in Figure 1 taken along lines 3-3;
Figure 4 is a perspective view of one embo'diment of the present invention ' center tube;
Figure 5A is a cross-section of an alternative center tube; Figure 5B is a cross-section of yet another present invention center tube; Figure 5C is a cross-section of yet another embodiment of the present invention center tube;
Figure 6 is a schematic view of a manufacturing process used to produce the present invention center tube;
Figure 7 is a perspective view of a die assembly used to produce the center tube shown in Figure 5A;
Figure 8 is an end view of a profile plate;
Figure 9 is a cross-sectional view of the profile plate shown in Figure 8;
Figure 10 is a perspective view of another die assembly; and
Figure 11 is a schematic view of another manufacturing process used to produce a helical coil center tube.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT
A filter 10, is shown in Figure 1 and as 110 in Figure 2, is typically used for filtering fluid such as in a lubrication system for an engine. The filter 10 includes a can or housing 12 that may be constructed from one or more components secured to one another. For example, a nut plate 14 may be secured to an outer cylindrical wall portion with a seam 18. An O-ring 16 is placed on the nut plate 14 to seal between the filter 10 and a mounting adaptor (not shown).
The filter 10 includes an interior cavity 20 with a filter media 24 disposed within the cavity 20 to filter debris from the fluid so that clean fluid may be returned to the engine, such as for lubrication of engine components. The filter media 24 may be of a generally cylindrical shape and is typically pleated to form inner edges 25 that define a central opening 27. The filter media 24 is typically retained between end caps, which are not shown for clarity. The filter media 24 has an inlet side 26 that receives dirty fluid and an outlet side 28 where clean fluid exits the filter media 24. The nut plate 14 may include perforations 22 to permit dirty fluid to enter the filter 10. Nut plate 14 may also include a threaded aperture 34 that is used to secure the filter 10 to the mounting adaptor. The clean fluid exits the central opening 27 through the threaded aperture 34 and into the mounting adaptor. It should be understood that the fluid flow may be reversed from that described above.
Figure 2 depicts a cartridge type filter 110 typically located within a suitable fixed housing (not shown). The filter media 24 is retained between spaced apart end discs 32 (only one of which is shown), such that the outer perimeter of the filter media 24 is left exposed. A bypass valve may be arranged within the filter 110 in any
suitable manner as is well known in the art to permit oil to travel from the inlet side 26 to the outlet side 28 when the filter media 24 has been clogged. It should be understood that the filter arrangement 10 shown in Figure 1 may also include a bypass valve as desired. Moreover, it is to be understood that the present invention center tube, discussed below, may be used in any suitable filter configuration.
A center tube 35 is disposed within the central opening 27 to provide structural integrity to the filter 10 and 110 and permit fluid to pass through the center tube 35 to the mounting adaptor. The center tube 35 is arranged proximate to the filter media 24 to provide support to its inner edges 25 to maintain the shape of the filter media 24. Referring to Figures 3 and 4, a center tube 35 includes a central portion 36 that may be any desirable shape. Helical fins 38 extend radially outwardly from the central portion 36 and terminate in an outer portion 40 that is arranged proximate to the inner edges 25. While the center tube 35 that is depicted in Figures 4-5C is of a star-shape, it is to be understood that any suitable shape center tube 35 may be used. The center tube 35 may be designed as shown in Figure 5A to include tabs 42 at the outer extremity of the helical fins extending slightly circumferentially in opposite directions therefrom to provide a larger surface by which the inner edges 25 are supported. Although eight helical fins 38 are shown in Figures 4 and 5A, it is to be understood that any number of fins may be used. For example, Figure 5B depicts four helical fins 38. Additionally, an annular wall 44 may be arranged between the helical fins 38, as shown in Figure 5C, to provide additional structural rigidity to the center tube 35.
Preferably, the center tube 35 of the present invention is constructed from a plastic. The center tube 35 may be produced by a manufacturing process 46 schematically depicted in Figure 6. An extrusion machine 48 extrudes plastic through a die assembly 50. The die assembly 50 includes a member 52 to which an end plate 55 is secured by fasteners 57, as best shown in Figure 7. A profile plate 54 having a desired shape 53 is disposed between the member 52 and the end plate 55. The shape 53 defines the cross-section of the center tube 35. Referring to Figures 7-9 motor 56 and gear assembly 58 drive the profile plate 54 via a shaft 59 to rotate the plate 54 to produce the desired helical twist of the fins 38 of the center tube 35. More specifically, the profile plate 54 may include a ring gear 60 defined by an outer circumference of the
profile plate 54. A beveled gear 62 supported on the shaft 59 rotationally couples the motor 56 to the plate 54 to drive the profile plate 54.
In another manufacturing process 46 depicted in Figures 10 and 11, plastic is extruded through the extrusion machine 54. The die assembly 50 includes an end plate 55 secured to the member 52 by fasteners 57. A profile plate 54 having a desired shape 64 is arranged between the member 52 and the end 55. The shape 64 may be an inclined arcuate portion such that when the profile plate 54 is rotated, a helical coil is produced similar to a helical spring, which is depicted by helical coil 68 in Figure 11. A cooling fixture 66 may be used in conjunction with the extrusion machine 48 to lower the temperature of the hot extruded coil to retain the desired shape until it is sufficiently cured. The plastic extruded center tubes may be cut to the desired length. Furthermore, the profile plates 54 may be changed to produce a center tube 35 of different diameters. In this manner, the numerous specialized machines for the filters used in the prior art metal center tubes is no longer required.
The invention has been described in an illustrative manner, and it is to be understood that the terminology that has been used is intended to be in the nature of words of description rather than of limitation. Obviously, many modifications and variations of the present invention are possible in light of the above teachings. It is, therefore, to be understood that within the scope of the appended claims the invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically described.
1. A filter (10) for a fluid system comprising:
a housing (12) having an interior cavity (20);
a filter media (24) disposed in said cavity defining a central opening; and
a center tube (35) disposed in said central opening, said center tube having a plurality of helical fins extending radially outwardly from a central portion (36) with said helical fins (38) terminating in an outer portion (40) adjacent to said filter media.
2. The filter as claimed in claim 1, wherein said filler media is pleated
forming inner edges (25) proximate to said outer portions.
3. The filter as claimed in claim 1, wherein said filter media has inlet
and outlet sides with said center tube disposed on said outlet side (28).
4. The filter as claimed in claim 1, wherein said center tube has a
5. The filter as claimed in claim 1, wherein said center tube has at
least four fins.
6. The filter as claimed in claim 1, wherein said center tube has an
annular wall (44) arranged about said center portion with said fins
extending radially outwardly from said annular wall.
7. The filter as claimed in claim 1, wherein the outer portion of said
center tube is defined by tabs extending circumferentially from ends of
8. The filter as claimed in any of the preceding claim, wherein said
center tube is plastic.
9. A filter for a fluid system substantially as hereinbefore described with reference to the accompanying drawings and description.
|Indian Patent Application Number||294/DEL/2004|
|PG Journal Number||38/2008|
|Date of Filing||27-Feb-2004|
|Name of Patentee||ARVINMERITOR TECHNOLOGY, LLC|
|Applicant Address||2135 WEST MAPLE, TROY, MICHIGAN 48084, U.S.A.|
|PCT International Classification Number||B29D 7/02|
|PCT International Application Number||N/A|
|PCT International Filing date|