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發電機燃氣渦輪機冷卻系統侵權 TAS Energy 控告其他同業

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科技產業資訊室 (iKnow) - KAI 發表於 2012年12月5日

2012 年 11 月 02 日, TAS 能源公司 (TAS ENERGY, INC.) 向美國南加州地方法院 (U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California) 提起專利侵權訴訟 ( 案號為 3:12-cv-02777-GPC-BGS) ,主張聖地牙哥電氣公司 (San Diego Gas & Electric Co) 、桑普拉能源公司 (Sempra Energy) 及帕洛瑪能源公司 ( Palomar Energy, LLC) 等三家公司侵害其專利權。

本案的原告 TAS 能源公司是一家註冊在美國德拉瓦州的公司,其成立於 1980 年,總部設在德州的休士頓市,創始人及目前的經理人為 Tom L. Pierson 。在訴狀中, TAS 能源公司稱其為在工業化溫度調節產業中的全球領導企業,其提供的工業化溫度調節產品,例如運用於發電機中 燃氣渦輪機 的冷卻系統,此外,還有 燃氣渦輪機 的氣冷設備。藉由溫度上的調節,可提高 燃氣渦輪機 的運作效率,進而提高發電機的發電效率。

而本案的被告聖地牙哥電氣公司 (San Diego Gas & Electric Co) 成立於 1881 年,總部設在美國加州的聖地牙哥市,為聖地牙哥市及其鄰近區域供給電力及瓦斯氣;桑普拉能源公司 (Sempra Energy) 是聖地牙哥電氣公司的母公司,註冊於美國加州,總部同樣設在美國加州聖地牙哥市;帕洛瑪能源公司 ( Palomar Energy, LLC) 是註冊於美國德拉瓦州的一間責任有限公司,其總部設在聖地牙哥電氣公司總部相同的住址。推測,這三間公司應該是屬於同一個事業集團。

原告所提出的三件專利 ,分別為:

•  2001 年 11 月 20 日核發之美國專利編號 US 6,318,065 專利,其名稱為System For ChillingInlet Air For Gas Turbines (燃氣渦輪機進氣冷卻系統)

•  2002 年 10 月 29 日核發之美國專利編號 US 6,470,686 專利,其名稱同樣為“ System For ChillingInlet Air For Gas Turbines (燃氣渦輪機進氣冷卻系統)

•  2004 年 8 月 3 日核發之美國專利編號 US 6,769,258 專利,其名稱為“ System For StagedChilling Of Inlet Air For Gas Turbines (燃氣渦輪機進氣階段性冷卻系統)

這三件專利的發明人及原始專利權人都是 TAS 能源公司的創始人 Tom L. Pierson 。而 TAS 能源公司在訴狀中稱,目前 Tom L. Pierson 已將這三件專利轉讓給 TAS 能源公司,因此 TAS 能源公司為這三篇專利的專利權人。

在訴狀中, TAS 能源公司主張被告 聖地牙哥電氣公司、桑普拉能源公司及帕洛瑪能源公司,在未取得 TAS 能源公司的授權情況下,製造、使用、販賣或要約販賣侵害專利之 燃氣渦輪機進氣冷卻系統相關 產品。 TAS 能源公司並主張被告的侵權行為是持續而故意的,且將造成不可彌補的傷害,因此請求 美國南加州地方法院中止被告的侵權行為並予以賠償。

以下為系爭專利的主要請求項解析

表一、 US 6,318,065 請求項解析

US 6,318,065 主要請求項

1. A method for chilling inlet air to a gas turbine power plant, comprising:

a. providing a system of circulating chilling water including a chilling system that includes at least a first chiller and a second chiller, the first and second chillers being arranged in series, wherein water can pass through the first and second chillers, the water passing through the first chiller being lowered to a first temperature, the water passing through the second chiller being lowered to a second temperature that is lower than the first temperature, thus providing a staged temperature drop;

b. providing an inlet air chiller for lowering the temperature of the inlet air being fed to a gas turbine compressor through heat transfer between the circulating chilling water and the inlet air;

c. providing a thermal water storage tank which is operably connected to the system of circulating chilling water, the thermal water storage tank containing chilling water having a bottom;

d. during a charge cycle, removing chilling water from the thermal water storage tank, passing at least a portion of the removed water through the chilling system without passing that portion of chilling water through the inlet air chiller to lower the temperature of water passing through the chilling system and then introducing at least a portion of that chilled water into the thermal water storage tank at a point proximate the bottom of the tank, wherein the average temperature of the chilling water in the thermal water storage tank is lowered; and

e. during a discharge cycle, chilling the inlet air by removing chilling water from the thermal water storage tank, from a point proximate the bottom of the tank and then passing at least a portion of that removed chilling water to the inlet air chiller to make heat transfer contact between that portion of chilling water and the inlet air, such that the temperature of the inlet air is lowered from a high temperature of from about 80.degree. F. to about 115.degree. F. to a low temperature of from about 45.degree. F. to about 55.degree. F.

1. 一種用於冷卻發電器燃氣渦輪機之進氣的方法,包括:

a. 提供一具有一冷卻系統的冷卻水循環系統,該冷卻系統包括至少一第一冷卻器及一第二冷卻器,該第一與第二冷卻器安排於一序列中,其中水可流經該第一與第二冷卻器,當水流經該第一冷卻器時係被降溫至一第一溫度,而水流經該第二冷卻器時係被降低至一低於該第一溫度的第二溫度,從而提供階段性的溫度下降;
b. 提供一進氣冷卻器,其用於通過介於該循環冷卻水與該進氣之間的熱傳輸,降低該送入至一燃氣渦輪機壓縮器之進氣溫度;
c. 提供一熱水儲存槽,其係可操作地連接於該冷卻水循環系統,該包含冷卻水之熱水儲存槽具有一底部;
d. 在一充電循環期間,從該熱水儲存槽移除冷卻水,令至少一部分的被移除的水通過該冷卻系統,而令此部分冷卻水通過該進氣冷卻器以降低流經該冷卻系統的水溫,且隨之在近接於槽底處將至少一部分被冷卻的水導入該熱水儲存槽,其中該熱水儲存槽內冷卻水的平均溫度係較低;及
e. 在一放電循環期間,藉從該熱水儲存槽移除冷卻水來冷卻該進氣,且隨之在令至少一部分被移除的冷卻水流通至該進氣冷卻器,以達成此部分冷卻水與該進氣之間的熱傳輸接觸,從而該進氣溫度從約 80 度 F 至約 115 度 F 的高溫降至約 45 度 F 至約 55 度 F 的較低溫度。

 

表二、 US 6,470,686 請求項解析

US 6,470,686 主要請求項

1. A method of chilling inlet air to a gas turbine power plant, comprising:

a. providing a gas turbine power plant that includes at least one gas turbine and at least one compressor, and having a gas turbine inlet which receives inlet air;

b. providing a system of circulating liquid chilling water including a chilling system that includes a first mechanical chiller and a second mechanical chiller, the first and second mechanical chillers being arranged in series;

c. passing at least a portion of the liquid chilling water through the first mechanical chiller and the second mechanical chiller, the liquid chilling water passing through the first mechanical chiller being lowered to a first temperature, and the liquid chilling water passing through the second mechanical chiller being lowered to a second temperature that is lower than the first temperature, thus providing a staged liquid chilling water temperature drop, wherein the staged liquid chilling water temperature drop is from about 20 F. to about 34 F.;

d. providing an inlet air chiller, comprising a cooling coil through which liquid chilling water passes, for lowering the temperature of inlet air being fed to the compressor through heat transfer between the liquid chilling water passing through the cooling coil and the inlet air, wherein the inlet air chiller provides a liquid chilling water temperature rise of from about 20 F. to about 34 F.; and

e. chilling the inlet air by directing the liquid chilling water to the inlet air chiller and passing the liquid chilling water through the cooling coil of the inlet air chiller to make heat transfer contact between the liquid chilling water and the inlet air.

1. 一種冷卻發電器燃氣渦輪機進氣的方法,包括:

a. 提供一發電器燃氣渦輪機包括至少一燃氣渦輪機及至少一壓縮器,以及具有一燃氣渦輪機入氣口可接收進氣;
b. 提供一液態冷卻水循環系統,其包括一冷卻系統,該冷卻系統包括一第一機械冷卻器及一第二機械冷卻器,該第一與第二機械冷卻器被安排於一序列中;
c. 令至少一部分的該液態冷卻水通過該第一機械冷卻器及該第二機械冷卻器,流經該第一機械冷卻器的液態冷卻水係被降低至一第一溫度,且流經該第二機械冷卻器的液態冷卻水係被降低至一低於該第一溫度的第二溫度,從而提供一階段性的液態冷卻水溫度下降,其中該階段性的液態冷卻水溫度係從約 20 度 F 降至約 34F;
d. 提供一進氣冷卻器,包括一冷卻圈體,液態冷卻水可通過該冷卻圈體,透過介於流經該冷卻圈體之液態冷卻水與該進氣之間的熱傳輸來降低進入該壓縮器之進氣的溫度,其中該進氣冷卻器提供溫度從約 20 度 F 升高至約 34 度 F 的液態冷卻水 .;及
e. 冷卻該進氣藉由導引該液態冷卻水至該進氣冷卻器並令該液態冷卻水通過該進氣冷卻器之冷卻圈體,以達成該液態冷卻水與該進氣之間的熱傳輸接觸。

 

表三、 US 6,769,258 請求項解析

US 6,769,258 主要請求項

1. A method of chilling inlet air for a gas turbine power plant, compromise:

(a) passing inlet air through an air chiller that includes an opening for receiving the inlet air and that is operable connected to a gas turbine power plant that includes at least one gas turbine, and at least one gas turbine inlet which receives the inlet air;

(b) passing liquid water through two or more sequentially positioned water chillers at a first flow rate to reduce the temperature of the liquid water, each water chiller including a conduit through which the liquid water is capable of passing;

(c) passing the liquid water having the first flow rate through the air chiller in an amount sufficient to lower the temperature of the inlet air;

(d) reducing the flow rate of the liquid water passing through the water chillers;

(e) passing the liquid water through the water chillers at a second flow rate to reduce the temperature of the liquid water, the second flow rate being lower than the flow rate; and

(f) passing the liquid water having the second flow rate through the air chiller in an amount sufficient to lower the temperature of the inlet air.

1. 一種用於冷卻發電器燃氣渦輪機進氣之方法,包括:

(a) 令進氣通過一空氣冷卻器,該空氣冷卻器包括用於接收該進氣之一開口且係可操作地連接於一發電器燃氣渦輪機,該發電器燃氣渦輪機包括至少一燃氣渦輪機,及至少一燃氣渦輪機入氣口其接收該進氣;
(b) 令液態水以一第一流率通過兩個以上依序設置的水冷卻器,以降低該液態水之溫度,每一水冷卻器包括一導管可供該液態水流通;
(c) 令具有該第一流率之足量液態水通過該空氣冷卻器以降低該進氣溫度;
(d) 降低流經該水冷卻器的液態水之流率;
(e) 令液態水以第二流率通過水冷卻器以降低該液態水之溫度,該第二流率係低於該流率;及
(f) 令具有該第二流率且足量的液態水通過該空氣冷卻器以降低該進氣溫度。

 

表四、專利訴訟案件基本資料: TAS Energy, Inc. v. San Diego Gas & Electric Co. et al

訴訟名稱 TAS Energy, Inc. v. San Diego Gas & Electric Co. et al
提告日期 2012 年 11 月 16 日
原告 TAS Energy, Inc.
被告 San Diego Gas & Electric Co. 、 Sempra Energy 及 Palomar Energy, LLC
案號 3:2012cv02777
訴訟法院 California Southern District Court
系爭專利 US6,630,939
訴狀下載

Source: 科技政策研究與資訊中心 — 科技產業資訊室整理,2012/12/6


 
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