Zero Moving Parts 120mm Fan Project

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Aris
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Zero Moving Parts 120mm Fan Project

Post by Aris » Wed Aug 16, 2006 9:32 am

I guess what first gave me the idea was when i was watching a commercial for the "Ionic Breeze" on television. I thought to myself "wow, they are moving air with no fans and no moving parts, i wonder if i could make somthin like that work for PC Case Fans"

So i started googling and found out that they utilize an effect called the "Biefeld-Brown Effect". I guess this effect has been known and around for quite some time. Initial testing was done with it back in the 60's, with a working prototype "Fan" with no moving parts, though it was the size of a large window. From that point i guess people got a little crazy. They starting thinking things like "we could make antigraivity aircraft and futuristic ufo like planes with this thing", all the while i thought to myself "why not just use it as a quiet fan?". Scientists do always like to make simple things more complicated. So i guess this is why this type of technology hasnt been heavily invested in since then because people saw the words "UFO" and "antigravity" and wrote it off as science fiction.

The Biefeld-Brown Effect is taking a very high positive voltage, hooking it up to a large/flat metal object, then taking a thin wire and putting it above it with the negative lead connected to it, and because of somthin to do with electron movement and bombardment it makes air move from the large metal plate to the thin wire, producing airflow. The closer the wire is to the metal plate, the higher the airflow. Though if you get too close together they will arc and cancel out the effect. Also the higher the voltage the higher the airflow. From the pictures ive seen using around 20k volts, they put them within an inch of each other.

My idea would be to take a 120x38mm fan, and gutting it. Put up some chicken wire on one side and hooking it up to ground (my negative). Then on the other side make a sort of "venecian blind" type thing with aluminum plates that are about 1/16" of an inch thick, and hooking them up to a positive 20k volts. This should create an airflow through it with no moving parts. The fan housing should give me insolation from the rest of the case, though i would test this before i actually put it inside a metal computer case. The power usage is actually quite small, about the same as your standard case fan. In the neighborhood of .5 amps.

I found a DC/DC Converter that would take a standard 12v input and output 20k volts at 4watts. The converter is listed here:
http://www.ultravolt.com/10a-25aser.htm

the specific part number i would want is listed on page 4, which is:
20A12-P4-C

Effeciency isnt that awsome, around 65%, but considering were talking about less than an amp and a maximum of 4watts, the heat produced should be negligable. The size of the converter is acceptable, at 145x38x25mm, or about 5.7x1.5x1 inches.

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So, other than the fact that i would be working with a 20,000 voltage, is their anything else you can think of that may be problematic?

What do you think of the concept?

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Post by Anvar » Wed Aug 16, 2006 9:55 am

So, other than the fact that i would be working with a 20,000 voltage, is their anything else you can think of that may be problematic?
ROFL. Sorry, but I just love that statement. You're a born optimist. It sounds like someone saying that other than working with a million degrees centigrade, do you see any other problems with nuclear fusion.

*ahem*

The concept is sweet though, if one could find a way to turn down the voltage requirements it would be a ver good way to do a fanless pc. Why not ask someone at Sharper Image how they do it? They don't work with 20K volts.
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Aris
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Post by Aris » Wed Aug 16, 2006 10:03 am

Anvar wrote:They don't work with 20K volts.
How do you know what voltage they do or do not work with?


Also, voltages arnt what kill a person, its ampers. I didnt make the statement of high voltages being a possible problem because it could kill someone, rather that it could kill a piece of electronics inside the PC.

Aris
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Post by Aris » Wed Aug 16, 2006 10:22 am

i may actually do it a bit different. instead of a high positive voltage, i may put a high negative voltage on the wire mesh, and leave the metal plates grounded.

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

specifically, check out the paragraph about the effect of negative and positive ions on the human body. it seems negative ions created by extreme negative voltages make people "feel" better, and positive ions created by extreme positive voltages make people "feel" worse.

dunno how much credit this effect is, but if i'm gunna do it, i may as well shoot for the best overall outcome i can get.

The difference to me is negligable, as it wouldnt cost any more to do it either way. I just need a high potention difference.

Aris
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Post by Aris » Wed Aug 16, 2006 10:35 am

I just thought of somthing else.

What if i used the external case enclosure as the grounded portion of the fan? like make some long cuts, and bend the metal so that i get the "venecian blinds" effect, and then put the negative voltage on a wire mesh mounted inside a 120mm fan next to it. It would decrease the size needed for the fan width, and also give more shielding around the high voltage mesh by being able to put the mesh in the center of the fan housing.

Though you'd only be able to do it with intake fans, cause you'd have to put the fan on the outside of the case to make it work as an exhaust fan.

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Post by jaganath » Wed Aug 16, 2006 1:08 pm

Aris, bear in mind that a high negative voltage corona will create ozone (which is harmful to the lungs) and will also make a "sizzling" noise, so it will not be totally silent. IMHO an ionic breeze setup will use more energy than an axial fan and produce less airflow for very little gain in quietness, but it's an interesting experiment ( as long as you don't kill yourself! :lol: ).

It sounds like someone saying that other than working with a million degrees centigrade, do you see any other problems with nuclear fusion.
Off-topic, but the real problem with fusion is not the heat of the plasma but containing it sufficiently well to produce net energy (one physicist once compared fusion containment to trying to lift jello using rubber bands ie very difficult).

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Post by Bluefront » Wed Aug 16, 2006 3:23 pm

I've got one of those hi voltage converters you speak about. It powered an electronic furnace filter. It sounded like a bug zapper in operation....really annoying. The directions mentioned a fire hazard if not cleaned regularly. I stopped using it almost immediately.....saved the parts though. :lol:

FWIW...The output from this little hi-voltage converter of mine is an RG56 cable....a coax cable like a rf cable to an old tv. The hi voltage makes this necessary to avoid shocks (I guess).
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Post by frostedflakes » Wed Aug 16, 2006 4:22 pm

It's a very interesting technology IMHO. May not be practical for a silent PC, but there's no way to know until someone tries it (AFAIK, nobody has). Please keep us updated if you end up doing this. :)

Just watch out for the ozone. I'd tend to think such a small and low-power device wouldn't generate much, but better safe than sorry. Maybe keep a few windows open while you're testing the device to make sure the house is well ventilated.

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Post by Aris » Wed Aug 16, 2006 4:27 pm

yeah it says it would generate low levels of ozone at the coronos which if too high could be bad. they stated "too high" as "if you can smell it, its too high". But it also would produce negative ion's which is supposed to make you feel better.

I would think that in somthing this small it would be negligable.

as far as the sizzling sound, i belive what you are hearing is the sound of electricity arcing from one side to the other, this would cancel the effect of the air movement. I would have them placed far enough apart that this effect would not hapen. I've heard an ionic breeze plugged in, they dont make any noise, except the small amount of noise from air hittings the vents as it moves through it, but this is a noise i doubt you will ever be able to eliminate.

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Post by frostedflakes » Wed Aug 16, 2006 4:33 pm

What kind of system are you planning to try it on? Any idea on how much airflow it would generate? Maybe a few CFM???

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Post by McBanjo » Wed Aug 16, 2006 4:49 pm

*post to keep this thread watched*

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Post by darthan » Wed Aug 16, 2006 4:52 pm

Ummm, negative ions won't do anything for you. And if you google around I'm sure you could also find people who think positive ions are good for you. The best case scenario is that they do nothing. The worst case is that they do exactly what science would say they do which is react with the air to create ozone and such. That is still unlikely to do anything to you. Of course, if it does get into you, reactive oxygen species like ozone act as oxidizing agents. You've heard things called anti-oxidants being advertised as good for you right? They actually are, and that's science, not "people" on the internet. Well, one guess as to what they do...

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Post by peteamer » Wed Aug 16, 2006 11:24 pm

Kyocera Mita's mid range photocopiers, i.e. 30-40-50 copies per minute, produce: "Ozone: 0.86 mg/h (RAL UZ 114)"

This is a world-wide machine and is designed to meet all legislation. You cannot smell the ozone it produces nor any photocopy machine sold in the last 10-15 years (Provided the ozone filters are replaced as per shedule).

Ozone is not 'good' for you, in sufficient quantities it provokes 'aging' specifically of the skin...

It also smells like cat pee, so I see little want for it :wink:


Link of intrigue:
http://jlnlabs.imars.com/lfpt/index.html

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Post by disphenoidal » Fri Aug 18, 2006 11:37 am

The buzzing noise and the RG56 cable bluefront mentioned may be because a high-frequency switching transformer is used to generate the high voltage. Might not be the kind of thing you'd want in a computer, for EMI reasons.

That aside, I'm guessing this works as follows: Air has some slight positive charge, which repels it from the positive plate and attracts it to the negative wire. It moves towards the wire, but because the wire is thin, most of it doesn't strike the wire and just keeps going, creating airflow. I think that this means you wouldn't have to supply any current, since there's no path for charge to travel between the plates.

Seems like a lot of the links on google are either for people selling air ionizers or talking health benefits. I've heard that the ozone generated by these can kill airborne bacteria, but I question the positive/negative ion heath effects.
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Post by Anvar » Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:53 am

Aris wrote:
Anvar wrote:They don't work with 20K volts.
How do you know what voltage they do or do not work with?


Also, voltages arnt what kill a person, its ampers. I didnt make the statement of high voltages being a possible problem because it could kill someone, rather that it could kill a piece of electronics inside the PC.
Well, I doubt the Sharper Image Ion Breeze pulls 20K volts out of a US 110-120 volt outlet.
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Post by Bobfantastic » Tue Aug 22, 2006 2:05 am

Nope, it'll pull 110-120VAC from the wall, and put it through a transformer to provide the 20KV potential needed. Same thing happens in reverse from overhead powerlines to the local substation, and again from there to your home. Basically, high voltage means low current for a given amount of power, and the two can be easily converted.
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Post by Trip » Wed Aug 30, 2006 11:07 pm

We've had a thread like this before. I'll see if I can find it.

Oh, I posted about the ionic breeze :P

Dunno if anything said in that thread will help, but it refers some to this topic.

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Post by notareal » Tue Sep 05, 2006 11:54 pm


jaganath
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Post by jaganath » Wed Sep 06, 2006 12:56 am


That is very, very interesting. I think that's what this Swedish company were developing; I can't think of any other air-moving technology that would fit their description:

http://www.ase.se/
We can direct warm air away from other heat sensitive areas, we can integrate our technology into very small applications where there is limited space (such as flat screen TV's or Notebook Computers), or even use it to cool large objects that would otherwise require many fans to do the same job (large industrial radiators).

The technology has no moving parts, is extremely durable, costs less than a normal fan, has very low energy consumption and best of all, it is completely silent.

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Post by NyteOwl » Wed Sep 06, 2006 11:03 am

One comment on ozone beyond the obvious of keeping it within limits. Ozone reacts corrosively with many synthetic rubberlike plastics that are used in many electronic products including optical drives. I'd be cautious about the level of ozone you have floating around your systems if it's on a regular basis.
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Post by McBanjo » Wed Sep 20, 2006 2:31 am


Aris
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Post by Aris » Wed Sep 20, 2006 3:23 am

McBanjo wrote:It seems to be done here:

http://inventgeek.com/Projects/IonCooler/Overview.aspx
yeah i saw that, thats awsome. though i think he misplaced a decimal point on the CFM at the end, i'm pretty sure he ment it to be 32.5.

one thing that concerned me was the fact he had to ground his heatsink to keep it from building up a charge. never thought about that.

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Post by ryboto » Wed Sep 20, 2006 10:57 am

I may attempt something similar to that. In one of the undergraduate lab experiments for an air pollution control experiment students use an electrostatoc precipitator, and it's home-made. If I can find a cheap ionic air purifier, I may just attempt it..

they sell some cheap, small ionizers at walmart, probably fit better in my case, considering I don't have the luxury of ripping out my entire drive bay. I'll see if they have a demo on the floor, I didn't think the blades alone would create a wind current.
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