Sunday, August 2, 2009

Using Fibonacci to Make Better Fans

Most fluid-handling devices on the market (fans, mixers, pumps, turbines, propellers) face significant efficiency limitations associated with drag, inefficient energy usage, excessive noise and frictional wear of components.

By contrast, nature has developed an optimal flow pattern that is ubiquitous in the natural systems. The logarithmic spiral (also known as the Fibonacci Spiral or Sequence) is common in natural systems. This pattern is found in seashells, storm weather patterns, and even in the pores of our skin.

The photo above is Pax Scientific's Lily Impeller (image from Pax's website). Classic propellers used by today’s freightliners do little to cut down on drag, causing cavitation (air bubbles) that reduces efficiency to around 50 percent. By contrast, Harman’s impeller channels water in the spiraling pattern in which it naturally travels.


Anonymous said...

your article makes no sense, what does an impeller that can move water in a sewage treatment plant have to do with freight-liners?

Leigh Stringer (aka Greenette) said...

Sorry, I was mixing apples an oranges. Watch the video... hopefully that helps.

Anonymous said...

Leigh was clearly referring to freight ship propellers...which made sense to me ;)


Anonymous said...

even freight liners are moving through a liquid gas. their shape causes drag......

Mark in Maryland said...

Freightliners moving through a liquid gas?? It must be really COLD where you live! (I think you probably meant a fluid gas.)

What I want to know is;
1) What are the actual efficiency figures on this thing vs standard impellers/propellers, based on testing?
2) Why is it that in 2011, apparently 15 years after this invention was first developed, most of the references to it online have to do with the Museum of Modern Art, rather than industrial supply stores?
3) If a 6" impeller can move 4 million (or whatever) gallons of wastewater a day with "the energy it takes to run a normal lightbulb" -ostensibly 100 watts- what is the change in elevation of this water? I think it must be going downhill.

Mark in Maryland

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