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Details for Patent: 5,547,094

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Details for Patent: 5,547,094

Title: Method for producing atomizing nozzle assemblies
Abstract:A nozzle assembly for use in atomizing and generating sprays from a fluid. The nozzle assembly includes two members joined together. In one of the two members are formed one or more nozzle outlets, one or more fluid inlets, and a plurality of channels that form filter passageways. The nozzle outlets discharge fluid jets that impinge on one another to thereby atomize the fluid. Alternatively, an impact element or a vortex-generating structure can be used in the nozzle outlet to atomize the fluid. Methods are also provided for producing the nozzle assembly by forming the inlets, outlets, and/or channels through electrical or chemical etching or other processes that selectively remove material from at least one face of a nozzle assembly member.
Inventor(s): Bartels; Frank (Waldbronn, DE), Bachtler; Wulf (Mainz, DE), Dunne; Stephen T. (Suffolk, GB), Eicher; Joachim (Karlsruhe, DE), Freund; Bernhard (Gau-Algesheim, DE), Hart; William B. (Suffolk, GB), Lessmoellmann; Christoph (Gernsbach, DE)
Assignee: DMW (Technology) Ltd. (GB) Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH (DE)
Filing Date:Jun 05, 1995
Application Number:08/462,680
Claims:1. A method of producing a plurality of nozzle assemblies, comprising:

forming a first member to have a first generally planar surface and a plurality of grooves formed within said first generally planar surface;

forming a second member to have a second generally planar surface;

joining said first member and said second member along said first generally planar surface and said second generally planar surface to form a composite structure; and

separating said composite structure into individual composite portions to form individual nozzle assemblies, wherein each of said nozzle assemblies comprises a nozzle intake, a nozzle outlet and a channel connecting said nozzle intake and said nozzle outlet in fluid flow communication formed from said plurality of grooves.

2. The method of claim 1, wherein said step of separating said composite structure comprises:

sawing said composite structure using a rotary saw.

3. The method of claim 1, wherein said step of separating said composite structure comprises:

slitting and breaking said composite structure.

4. The method of claim 1, wherein said step of forming a first member comprises:

selectively removing material from said first member to form said plurality of grooves.

5. The method of claim 4, wherein said step of selectively removing material comprises:

etching material from said first member.

6. The method of claim 1, wherein said step of forming said first member is carried out by combining an optical lithographic method and an ion-supplemented etching method.

7. The method of claim 1, wherein said step of forming said first member is carried out by combining an optical lithographic method and a wet-chemical etching method.

8. The method of claim 1, wherein said step of joining said first member and said second member is carried out through application of an electrostatic field.

9. The method of claim 1, wherein said step of joining said first member and said second member is carried out through an adhesion process.

10. The method of claim 1, wherein said step of joining said first member and said second member is carried out by welding.

11. The method of claim 1, wherein said step of forming said first member comprises:

etching a silicon wafer.

12. The method of claim 11, further comprising:

applying an oxide layer to said silicon wafer; and

applying a plastic layer over said oxide layer.

13. The method of claim 11, wherein said step of forming said second member is carried out using a glass plate.

14. A method for producing a nozzle assembly, comprising:

forming a first member to have a fluid inlet, a fluid outlet having a cross-sectional area of approximately 25 to 500 square micrometers, and a channel formed in a first face of said first member, said channel connecting said fluid inlet and said fluid outlet in fluid flow communication, wherein said fluid inlet, said fluid outlet, and said channel are formed by selectively removing material from said first face of said first member;

forming a second member having a second face; and

securing said second member to said first member so that said second face cooperates with said fluid inlet, said fluid outlet, and said channel in said first face to form fluid flow paths for the nozzle assembly.

15. The method of claim 14, wherein material is selectively removed from said first face using an etching process.

16. The method of claim 15, wherein said step of forming said first member further comprises:

forming a plurality of filter passageways by selectively removing material from said first face.

17. The method of claim 14, wherein said step of securing said second member to said first member is carried out using an adhesion process.

18. The method of claim 14, wherein said step of securing said second member to said first member is carried out by welding.

19. The method of claim 14, wherein said step of securing said second member to said first member is carried out by diffusion bonding.
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