Converting very high power 600hz to 60hz

Discussion in 'The Projects Forum' started by jgb, Dec 26, 2009.

  1. jgb

    jgb Thread Starter New Member

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    I am developing a patent for a very high power (several hundred Kilowatts) electric generator whose output will be nominally 600hz, although that is widely but controllably variable. The voltage output has yet to be determined. I need to define a common method to reduce the frequency to a stable 60hz to potentially connect directly to the grid.

    It is the method of creating the primary power that is the subject of the patent (which, obviously, I cannot divulge), and NOT its conversion to 60hz at some defined voltage. I only need to describe in general terms how that conversion is achieved, not describe it in detail as part of the patent.

    If there is an COTS device available, so much the better, but I do NOT want a motor/generator solution.

    Anybody got an idea or solution???

    jgb
  2. Papabravo

    Papabravo AAC Fanatic!

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    I hope you are not paying good money for the development of this patent. It is my belief that you are wasting your time and money since this is so close to the common 400 Hz. power generation on aircraft technology which is more than half a century old. The prior art will just devastate you.

    As far as I know there are no other practical methods of electronically changing the frequency of an AC power source. Would the lack of such a method put a damper on your prospects?

    It's not ideal but I would convert the 600 Hz. power to DC and use the DC to run a synchronous inverter at 60 Hz. There will be substantial losses in this process. I believe that 60% efficiency might be achievable.

    I'd also like to point out that even if you had the patent I could duplicate what you are doing because you have to disclose what you are doing to get the patent. Then I can infringe on your patent, undercut your prices, dare you to sue, and bankrupt you before you could prevail in court. So good luck.
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2009
  3. AlexR

    AlexR Well-Known Member

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    The obvious solution would seem to be to do it the same way as they do for HVDC power transmission. Use a solid state synchronous converter (thyristors, lots of very big ones) to first convert your 600Hz to DC then a second one to transform the DC to 60Hz.
  4. THE_RB

    THE_RB AAC Fanatic!

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    Then it is irrelevant to the patent itself and you could just put "convert to 60Hz using conventional motor-generator technology".

    You've already contradicted yourself in a very simple forum question, I'm not sure how good a job you will be able to do on the patent application.

    You do know American patents are not worth toilet paper these days? You can google for just about any simple concept and find 5 or 6 different people with a US Patent for the same thing!
  5. Papabravo

    Papabravo AAC Fanatic!

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    This was essentially my point. If the OP and his associates actually had something they would be starting a company and forget the patent system altogether. The fact that they are considering it proves that they have nothing of any importance. Stuff developed under a shroud of secrecy is often worthless when subjected to peer review which they would have know if their heads were outside their cloaks (of secrecy). Reminds me of the "cone of silence"
  6. jgb

    jgb Thread Starter New Member

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    Alex, thanks.
    This is the only useful reply of the bunch.

    As for running at 400hz, that can be done as easily as 600hz as well, and I can use aircraft technology as a basis. Except for the power levels my generator creates (many kilowatts).

    Regarding the other replies.......

    As for patent protection, I am not concerned you may "copy" what I have done and just change it a bit to infringe my patent, nor has my method been even tried before based on knowledgeable insiders opinions. Aside from that, patents can be and usually are, written in an all encompassing way to mitigate against near copycats. Just ask Microsoft and I4I.

    Like I said, I am not patenting the power conversion, just the method of generation, and since you have absolutely zero idea of how I am generating that power; comments about my wasting my time is specious at best. I suspect you have never filed a patent application, especially through a good patent lawyer, otherwise you would know that the details of the idea are NOT divulged to anybody outside the patent office and your lawyer, until the patent is granted. All you can learn is that "a patent application" was filed by my lawyer, with no details, not even my name.

    Also, once I file and receive a patent in 2 or more jurisdictions (US and Canada in my case) I can apply for an international patent, so even the Chinese can't copy it (legally anyway).

    Anyway, I thank you all for taking the time to reply. I think I have my answer, so unless any of you wish to further debate what I said, I consider this thread closed.

    jgb
  7. Papabravo

    Papabravo AAC Fanatic!

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    Would it surprise you to learn that an aircraft system produces many kilowatts as well.

    I made essentially the same suggestions as RB - great minds think alike

    I currently have two patents which is two more than you have.

    Based on your approach I'm questioning your credibility. I don't think you have any and I'd caution other forum members to approach you and your associates with great care. Our purpose on this forum has absolutely nothing to do with furthering your economic interests. I suggest you go find a forum on which you will receive a more sympathetic reception. Maybe one of the overunity groups which attract scam artists and other charlatans.

    Lastly if you're so all fired smart what are you bothering us for. Take some of the money you're wasting on legal eagles and hire somebody to help you instead of trying to do it on the cheap. I invite you to take a hike.
  8. SgtWookie

    SgtWookie Expert

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    C'mon folks, play nice.

    The question was about a means to convert the 600-some-odd output to match the 60Hz grid, not about the patenting process, or how much it might cost to defend the patent.

    Using banks of SCRs as syncronous rectifiers to get DC sounds good to me - along with the synchronous inverter. I think you'll be able to get much better than 60% efficiency with that, but you really don't need to go into many specifics about that, since you're dealing with the AC generation. Including 50Hz would probably be a good idea, since many areas of the world use 50Hz as the frequency of their power grid.

    If you've figured out a more efficient way to generate electricity, more power to ya. ;)

    Good luck with your patent process - and actually getting your idea to market. It won't be easy.
  9. BillB3857

    BillB3857 Senior Member

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    What kind of field supply does the generator have? If DC, change it to variable AC. We once had a 100HP 60Hz to 120Hz converter that was nothing more than a pair of large 3 phase motors coupled together. One was a standard induction motor to drive the rig and the other end, the generator section, instead of the standard rotor, had a wound 3 phase rotor. By running the phasing direction of the stator opposite the direction of rotation, 120Hz was pulled off of slip rings of the rotor. It would seem reasonable that using a phase locked loop to control field frequency, almost any frequency could be produced. In other words, modify the generation, not the result.
  10. jgb

    jgb Thread Starter New Member

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    If I were you, Thank God I'm not, I would not rank my mind in the same class as RB, even after rereading his reply. I could not find a calculator with enough zeros right of the decimal point to quantify your greatness.

    As far as aircraft systems generating kilowatts, yes they do, at 400hz and at high voltages as well to keep the weight of copper conductors and motors down. Most of the planes circuits operate at 400hz. Very little is converted to 50/60hz 110VAC.

    And you also have zero idea how many patents I have. With your disdain for the patent process I am very surprised you have even one. Unless you got burned on them by either getting a cheap novice lawyer who couldn't devise bullet proof claims, or you did it to yourself by filing without a lawyer.

    I write the technical description with drawings well enough that my 30 year experienced patents (only) lawyer fully understands it, and then he writes the claims. Works like a charm.

    jgb
  11. jgb

    jgb Thread Starter New Member

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    SgtWookie; Yours is the second useful reply. Thanks.

    The problem of converting 400 or 600hz to 60hz seems harder than I thought it would be. Since my design can generate at almost any frequency with minor modifications, I decided to optimize it to directly produce 60hz. I will lose a few percent in generator efficiency at the lower frequency, but that is way more than compensated by not having to down convert the frequency. I will also have a 50hz optimized design, again, thanks for that suggestion.

    jgb
  12. jgb

    jgb Thread Starter New Member

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    Can't really answer you in any detail, but suffice it to say, the generators primary output is just about any frequency AC in as many phases as you want. The generator design is extraordinarily flexible in that regard, with only minor design modifications from the baseline. Output power is a matter of scale. I wish I could say more. It's conceptual simplicity will mind-boggle you. However developing the prototype will be no cakewalk, nor will it be cheap, with no hard assurance it will produce the power levels desired.

    jgb
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2009
  13. SgtWookie

    SgtWookie Expert

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    I know that it's possible to build inverters on a small scale that exceed 90% efficiency by a fair margin, but I'm not so sure about an inverter on the scale you're talking about.

    Keep in mind that the power grid in the States is three phase. In residential areas, they'll just connect a step-down transformer to one of the HV phases (somewhere around 11kv-22kv on the primary side) and neutral to get 240VAC on the secondary side.

    I have no idea what kind of power these transformers are rated for.

    However, I suspect that your generator would need to be connected to the grid at a substation. I just don't have enough information.
  14. Papabravo

    Papabravo AAC Fanatic!

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    My estimate was based on AC/DC conversion at 80% efficiency followed by DC/AC conversion at 80%. Multiplied together that gives 64% which I rounded down to 60%. That a talented designer might do better than that is quite possible, but the real point is as the OP may have already observed there will be losses in the conversion process that make the prospect less attractive.

    The process of obtaining a patent has never been an issue of this debate. The only question is why you would want to get a patent given the downsides of disclosure, time and expense, and the cost and uncertainty of defending one. There are many noobs that come to this forum with wide eyed enthusiasm about striking it rich by getting a single patent. This is quite different from a corporate entity which has a portfolio of interelated patents both purchased and developed internally. From the initial post it was impossible to tell which kind of individual we were dealing with.

    In any case this is an open forum. Why should we help further your corporate economic interest in light of the fact that you are unable to disclose the nature of your system. Because your system is dealing with potentially lethal power levels it is also an open question as to weather the advice we give you may or may not expose any or all of us to future litigation should you or one of your associate be killed in the process of acting on our advice.

    The moderators have been very clear and very consistent on this subject. This thread needs to close IMHO
  15. beenthere

    beenthere Retired Moderator

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    Actually, given the secrecy of the whole process, how could anyone reading through this thread manage to build such a generator and cause harm thereby?

    Our concern is often not the OP's continued state of health and well-being, but that some person of lesser knowledge or with harmful intent using information to cause harm or damage. Drawing the line is not always easy to do.

    When I see something like
    I somehow expect to find a lot more sizzle than steak.

    I could be quite wrong - all the years developing alternators for the power grid might be time wasted. As soon as the transformer comes along to handle all those frequencies it might prove useful. And who knows? - 23 phases might be fun to play with if we can fit the extra conductors onto the distribution pylons.

    The topic is a bit strange, as the device is to be patented, and so must be not disclosed in any significant way. I am in the throes of a patent process with USDA, and have frankly grown more than weary of the mess. My devices have such a limited market that the protection seems overkill - it's not going to be worth anyone's time to make a knock-off.

    My investigations into the wonderful world of S. Meyer and his imaginative ways of electrolyzing water have shown that literally anything can be patented, working or not, believable or not. That kind of detracts from the respect for the process I had years ago. Or from my ability to accept something radically new at face value.
  16. AlexR

    AlexR Well-Known Member

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    So where did you get the 20% conversion losses from? Crystal ball, ouija board, wild guess?
    HVDC power transmission systems get overall energy transfer efficiencies of 90% to 95% without too much trouble.
    Then why did you bring it up rather than just answering the OP's question?
    The OP asked a technical question and has the right to expect a technical answer rather than some diatribe on patent law.
    What makes you think the OP is a corporation rather than just a back-yard inventor? In any case what difference does it make? He asked a technical question and deserves a civil and relevant answer rather than some sort of rant about the evils of the patent system.
  17. Papabravo

    Papabravo AAC Fanatic!

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    C'mon AlexR, we all use rules of thumb, based on experience, at the beginning of the design process to make estimates. Improving on the initial estimate may or may not be cost effective. I'll readily concede that with additional expense and clever design that you might be able to hit 90-95%. HVDC power transmission is another subject. The OP asked for an electronic method to go from AC at one frequency to AC at another frequency. There are at leat two statments in this thread that AC/DC/AC is the way to go. As anyone who has worked with an SMPS can attest it is quite easy to make mistakes that release copious amounts of magic smoke, or saturate the core, or otherwise fail to understand the workings of the magnetic circuit. Maybe the OP would like to sponsor a contest for the best conversion circuit that matches his specifications. So I'd guess that with two stages that are 95% efficient you could transform 480VAC @ 10 Amps and 600 Hz AC to 480VAC @ 9.025 Amps and 60 Hz Ac. Would you care to post your best shot?

    As for the comments on the patent system; it is a technical answer to a technical question. It is critically important to the person who believes the myths which abound on the nature of the system and its benefits. These myths are as insidious as any of the Stanley Meyer free energy HHO claptrap. As one with experience in the system I offer my views in the open forum. If you or the OP wish to take personal offense at my views, there really is nothing I can do about it. My impressions of what is going on are derived entirely from the written posts, and I do not believe that any of my views on the patent system should be construed as a personal affront to any individual. If only a single reader of this thread decides to investigaste the patent system further and avoids making a series of costly mistakes then I will derive a certain satisfaction from that. If you already know what you are doing and why with respect to the patent system then my views are indeed irrelevant, but certainly not offensive. If any members feel my views lack sufficient credibility then checkout Don Lancaster's article and tell us what you think. Are his views objectionable and personally insulting? I think not.

    http://www.tinaja.com/glib/casagpat.pdf
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2009
  18. blueroomelectronics

    blueroomelectronics Senior Member

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    Patents are near impossible to enforce and are almost worthless to an individual.
    It's simply the right to sue.

    PS OP can you show us a link to any of your patents?
  19. THE_RB

    THE_RB AAC Fanatic!

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    Jgb- I would like to apologise for sounding harsh and sparking the off-topic (semi-off-topic?) debate about patents.

    When I asked if you knew patents were worthless it was under the assumption you were a "starry eyed patent noob" so I replied with a personal opinion of patents that was exaggerated for emphasis. Sorry about that.

    I would like to justify my comment about your "contradiction". You said quite clearly that you "do NOT want a motor generator solution" and then shortly after you said; "I only need to describe in general terms how that conversion is achieved, not describe it in detail as part of the patent."

    I took that contradiction to indicate that you had no idea as to what you need or don't need to describe, hence my rude comment that you might not do any good on the patent application (seeing that it is a legal description).

    I apologise for my rudeness and my assumption that you knew nothing about patents.

    As for the point I clumsily tried to make; if the method of converting your generator output 600Hz to 60Hz does "not need to be described in detail" and it is not relevant to the concept of the generator itself, why all the questions and fuss? Just draw a box and label it as a conventional AC-AC converter or motor generator set etc.

    You said; "However developing the prototype will be no cakewalk, nor will it be cheap, with no hard assurance it will produce the power levels desired."

    That sounds like a warning sign to me. If the concept works, spend a couple week's wages and build a LITTLE one that will sit on a table and prove that it works... I think that would be a much better use of time and money and provide you with better funding then just chasing a patent with a promise "sure it will work, we just need to build a really big expensive one".
  20. JDT

    JDT Well-Known Member

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    To convert an AC supply of high frequency to a lower frequency you can use a Cycloconverter. Old technology, I have a 1972 book on SCR's that describes one. See:-

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cycloconverter

    The other way to do it (as I think someone mentioned earlier) is to convert to DC using a polyphase rectifier, then convert back to AC using an inverter. More steps - less efficiency.
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