Osaka Gas has patented a humidity control element with flat plate members forming flow paths for heat exchange. The element includes a metal organic framework MIL-101 (Cr) for dehumidification, with a relatively long switching time between dehumidification and regeneration operations. GlobalData’s report on Osaka Gas gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s company profile on Osaka Gas, Reformer integrated fuel cells was a key innovation area identified from patents. Osaka Gas's grant share as of February 2024 was 39%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.

Humidity control element with long switching time for dehumidification

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Credit: Osaka Gas Co Ltd

The granted patent (Publication Number: US11872522B2) discloses a humidity control element comprising a stack of flat plate members that create separate flow paths for different fluids, allowing for heat exchange between them. The flat plate members are made of various materials, including resin, paper, glass, metal, ceramic, or composite materials. A dehumidifying flow path is formed using a mixed liquid containing a metal organic framework MIL-101 (Cr) as a hygroscopic material, an acrylic polymer material as a binder, and a urethane-based polymer material as a thickener. The proportions of these materials are specified to achieve optimal performance.

Furthermore, the patent describes the determination of the element height and flow path depth in the humidity control element to optimize the dehumidification amount during operation. The element height is set to ensure the dehumidification amount falls within a specific range, while the flow path depth is adjusted to achieve the desired dehumidification performance. Additionally, the configuration of the first and second flow paths allows for dehumidification and temperature adjustment, with the flow direction of the second path being opposite or orthogonal to the first. A method for using the humidity control element involves a switching operation between dehumidification and regeneration cycles, with the switching time optimized to maintain the dehumidification amount within a specified range.

In summary, the patented humidity control element offers a novel design for efficient humidity control by utilizing specific materials and configurations to enhance dehumidification performance. The method outlined in the patent ensures optimal operation by adjusting element height, flow path depth, and switching time to maintain the desired dehumidification levels. This innovation has the potential to improve humidity control systems in various applications, offering a more effective and reliable solution for managing moisture levels.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.