(19)
(11)EP 3 054 226 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
17.01.2018 Bulletin 2018/03

(21)Application number: 14847370.5

(22)Date of filing:  26.08.2014
(51)Int. Cl.: 
F24F 1/46  (2011.01)
F24F 6/06  (2006.01)
F24F 3/147  (2006.01)
F24F 3/14  (2006.01)
(86)International application number:
PCT/JP2014/072259
(87)International publication number:
WO 2015/045708 (02.04.2015 Gazette  2015/13)

(54)

AIR-CONDITIONER OUTDOOR UNIT

KLIMAANLAGEN-AUSSENEINHEIT

UNITÉ EXTÉRIEURE DE CLIMATISEUR


(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR

(30)Priority: 30.09.2013 JP 2013204187

(43)Date of publication of application:
10.08.2016 Bulletin 2016/32

(73)Proprietor: Daikin Industries, Ltd.
Osaka-shi, Osaka 530-8323 (JP)

(72)Inventors:
  • MATSUMOTO, Sachiko
    Kita-ku Osaka-shi Osaka 530-8323 (JP)
  • KURAMORI, Tetsutomo
    Kita-ku Osaka-shi Osaka 530-8323 (JP)
  • FUJITA, Hiroki
    Kita-ku Osaka-shi Osaka 530-8323 (JP)
  • MORIMOTO, Kouji
    Kita-ku Osaka-shi Osaka 530-8323 (JP)

(74)Representative: Hoffmann Eitle 
Patent- und Rechtsanwälte PartmbB Arabellastraße 30
81925 München
81925 München (DE)


(56)References cited: : 
JP-A- 2010 261 711
JP-A- 2010 261 711
  
      
    Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


    Description

    TECHNICAL FIELD



    [0001] The present invention relates to an air-conditioning outdoor unit comprising a humidifying unit.

    BACKGROUND ART



    [0002] In conventional practice, there have been air-conditioning outdoor units in which above an outdoor unit housing a compressor, an outdoor heat exchanger, an outdoor fan, and other components, a humidifying unit separate from the outdoor unit is installed for humidifying the room interior. In this type of air-conditioning outdoor unit, the height dimension of the air-conditioning outdoor unit is increased by installing the humidifying unit above the outdoor unit, therefore causing a problem in that the product size of the air-conditioning outdoor unit increases.

    [0003] One example of a countermeasure to this problem is, e.g., with the air-conditioning outdoor unit disclosed in Patent Literature 1, Japanese Laid-open Patent Application No. 2012-251692, an air-conditioning outdoor unit is achieved in which a humidifying function is provided and the product size is reduced by moving the components of the humidifying unit to the upper part of the outdoor unit to house these components within the outdoor unit and minimize the height dimension of the air-conditioning outdoor unit.
    Further, in Patent Literatur 2 JP 2010 261 711 A, there is described an air conditioner. The air conditioner includes an outdoor unit casing, an outdoor air conditioning unit, an indoor unit, a humidifying unit, and humidification air piping. The outdoor air conditioning unit includes an outdoor heat exchanger and an outdoor fan. In the indoor unit includes an indoor heat exchanger housed in an outdoor unit casing. The humidifying unit includes a humidification rotor sucking in outdoor air, a rotor driving motor rotativly driving the humidification rotor, a heater assembly heating one part of th e humidification rotor, and a humidification fan mixing moisture separated from the the humidification rotor with the outdoor unit and conveying it to an indoor unit casing sight. Humidified air produces by the humidifying unit is supplied from the humidifying unit to an indoor air conditioning unit sight by the humidification air piping.

    SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION


    <Technical Problem>



    [0004] The interior of the air-conditioning outdoor unit is commonly divided into a machinery chamber in which the compressor and other components are disposed, and an air-blower chamber in which the outdoor heat exchanger, the outdoor fan, and other components are disposed. In the air-conditioning outdoor unit disclosed in Patent Literature 1, a rotor, which is one component of the humidifying unit and which adsorbs moisture from outdoor air and releases the adsorbed moisture, is disposed along a horizontal plane. Furthermore, the entire rotor is positioned in the air-blower chamber and disposed in front of the outdoor heat exchanger. When the rotor is disposed in this manner, part of the outdoor heat exchanger is sometimes closed off by the humidifying unit. Because outdoor air then does not readily pass through the section in the outdoor heat exchanger that is closed off by the humidifying unit, there is a risk that the performance of the outdoor heat exchanger will decrease.

    [0005] An object of the present invention is to provide an air-conditioning outdoor unit in which the decrease in the performance of the outdoor heat exchanger can be prevented.

    <Solution to Problem>



    [0006] An air-conditioning outdoor unit according to a first aspect of the present invention according to claim 1 comprises a casing, a compressor, an outdoor heat exchanger, an outdoor fan, and a humidifying unit. The interior of the casing is divided into an air-blower chamber and a machinery chamber aligned laterally. The compressor is disposed in the machinery chamber. The outdoor heat exchanger is disposed in the air-blower chamber. The outdoor fan is disposed in the air-blower chamber. The outdoor fan passes outdoor air through the outdoor heat exchanger. The humidifying unit has a tabular rotor. The tabular rotor includes a moisture-adsorption area and a moisture-releasing area. The moisture-adsorption area adsorbs moisture in the outdoor air. The moisture-releasing area releases the moisture adsorbed in the moisture-adsorption area when heat is applied. The tabular rotor is set up in front of the outdoor heat exchanger along a vertical plane. The tabular rotor is disposed so that the moisture-adsorption area is positioned in the air-blower chamber and the moisture-releasing area is positioned in the machinery chamber. The entirety of a rotor-driving motor for rotatably driving the tabular rotor is disposed in the machinery chamber. Also, the tabular rotor is disposed so that an upper end thereof is in a position either near an upper end of the outdoor heat exchanger or lower than the upper end of the outdoor heat exchanger.

    [0007] In the air-conditioning outdoor unit according to the first aspect of the present invention, the tabular rotor is set up along a vertical plane, the moisture-adsorption area is positioned in the air-blower chamber, and the moisture-releasing area is positioned in the machinery chamber. Therefore, in comparison with the rotor being disposed along a horizontal plane, the distance between the outdoor heat exchanger and the rotor can be increased, and the decrease in performance of the outdoor heat exchanger that would follow with outdoor air not readily flowing to the outdoor heat exchanger can be prevented.

    [0008] In cases such as when the rotor-driving motor for rotatably driving the tabular rotor is spread between both the air-blower chamber and the machinery chamber, the section of the rotor-driving motor that is positioned in the air-blower chamber is exposed to the outdoor air flow generated by the driving of the outdoor fan, and the section that is positioned in the machinery chamber is exposed to waste heat generated by the driving of the compressor and other components. The section of the rotor-driving motor that is positioned in the air-blower chamber is then cooled while the section positioned in the compressor chamber is heated, abnormalities therefore readily occur in the rotor-driving motor, and as a result, it is difficult to ensure durability in the rotor-driving motor.

    [0009] In the present invention, the entirety of the rotor-driving motor is disposed in the machinery chamber. Therefore, abnormalities in the rotor-driving motor caused by part of the tabular rotor being cooled by the driving of the air-blowing fan can be prevented. It is thereby possible to ensure durability in the rotor-driving motor.

    [0010] The phrase "the rotor is set up along a vertical plane" used here includes any interpretation from the tabular rotor not being inclined whatsoever relative to a vertical plane, to the tabular rotor being disposed at an incline of about ±15° relative to a vertical plane.

    [0011] An air-conditioning outdoor unit according to a second aspect of the present invention is the air-conditioning outdoor unit according to the first aspect, comprising an electrical component box. The electrical component box houses an electrical component for controlling devices including the compressor and the outdoor fan. The electrical component box is disposed so as to at least partially overlap the tabular rotor in a front view of the air-conditioning outdoor unit. In the air-conditioning outdoor unit, at least part of the electrical component box is disposed so as to overlap the tabular rotor in a front view. Therefore, the dimension of the casing in the lateral direction can be made smaller than if, e.g., the tabular rotor and the electrical component box were to be aligned laterally so as not to overlap in a front view.

    [0012] The air-conditioning outdoor unit can thereby be made smaller.

    [0013] An air-conditioning outdoor unit according to a third aspect of the present invention is the air-conditioning outdoor unit of the second aspect, wherein the electrical component box is set up along a vertical plane. The electrical component box and the tabular rotor are disposed so as to be aligned forward to backward. In this air-conditioning outdoor unit, because the rotor and the electrical component box are both set up along a vertical plane and the electrical component box and the tabular rotor are disposed so as to be aligned forward to backward, the width dimension of the casing in the forward-backward direction can be made smaller than if, e.g., the electrical component box was to be set up so that the longitudinal direction thereof extends along a horizontal plane.

    [0014] The air-conditioning outdoor unit can thereby be made thinner.

    [0015] The phrase "the electrical component box is set up along a vertical plane" used here includes any interpretation from the electrical component box not being inclined whatsoever relative to a vertical plane, to the electrical component box being disposed at an incline of about ±15° relative to a vertical plane.

    [0016] An air-conditioning outdoor unit according to a fourth aspect of the present invention is the air-conditioning outdoor unit of the second or third aspect, wherein the machinery chamber is formed so that the lateral width of the machinery chamber increases toward the front. The electrical component box is disposed in the front of the machinery chamber interior. In this air-conditioning outdoor unit, because the electrical component box is disposed in the front of the machinery chamber interior in which the lateral directional width is greater than in the rear of the machinery chamber interior, the lateral directional dimension of the electrical component box can be greater than if the electrical component box were to be disposed in the rear of the machinery chamber interior.

    [0017] The degree of freedom in the design of the electrical component box can thereby be improved.

    [0018] An air-conditioning outdoor unit according to a fifth aspect of the present invention is the air-conditioning outdoor unit of any of the first through fourth aspects, wherein the humidifying unit has a heater. The heater is for heating the moisture-releasing area. The heater is disposed in the machinery chamber. In this air-conditioning outdoor unit, because the heater and the rotor-driving motor are disposed in the machinery chamber, the work of routing wires can be simplified. Ease of assembly and maintenance can thereby be improved.

    [0019] An air-conditioning outdoor unit according to a sixth aspect of the present invention is the air-conditioning outdoor unit of any of the first through fifth aspects, wherein a gap is present between the outdoor heat exchanger and the rotor. Therefore, in this air-conditioning outdoor unit, the rotor can be ensured not to come into contact with the outdoor heat exchanger, and damage to the tabular rotor can be prevented.

    <Advantageous Effects of Invention>



    [0020] In the air-conditioning outdoor unit according to the first aspect of the present invention, decreases in the performance of the outdoor heat exchanger can be prevented.

    [0021] Also, the product can be kept from becoming too large.

    [0022] In the air-conditioning outdoor unit according to the second aspect of the present invention, the air-conditioning outdoor unit can be made smaller.

    [0023] In the air-conditioning outdoor unit according to the third aspect of the present invention, the air-conditioning outdoor unit can be made thinner.

    [0024] In the air-conditioning outdoor unit according to the fourth aspect of the present invention, the degree of freedom in the design of the electrical component box can be improved.

    [0025] In the air-conditioning outdoor unit according to the fifth aspect of the present invention, ease of assembly and maintenance can be improved.

    [0026] In the air-conditioning outdoor unit according to the sixth aspect of the present invention, damage to the rotor can be prevented.

    BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS



    [0027] 

    FIG. 1 is a schematic refrigerant circuit diagram of an air conditioning apparatus comprising an air-conditioning outdoor unit according to an embodiment of the present invention.

    FIG. 2 is a front view of an air-conditioning outdoor unit according to an embodiment of the present invention.

    FIG. 3 is a perspective view of an air-conditioning outdoor unit according to an embodiment of the present invention.

    FIG. 4 is a plan view of an air-conditioning outdoor unit according to an embodiment of the present invention.

    FIG. 5 is an exploded view of a humidifying unit.

    FIG. 6 is a drawing for illustrating the air flow in the humidifying rotor.

    FIG. 7 is a drawing for illustrating the moisture-releasing area, moisture-adsorption area, and reheating area of the humidifying rotor.

    FIG. 8 is a drawing for illustrating the arrangement of the humidifying unit and the electrical component box in an air-conditioning outdoor unit according to Modification A.

    FIG. 9 is a perspective view of a guide provided to an air-conditioning outdoor unit according to Modification C.

    FIG. 10 is a perspective view of a humidifying unit provided to the air-conditioning outdoor unit according to Modification C.

    FIG. 11 is a plan view of the air-conditioning outdoor unit according to Modification C.


    DESCRIPTION OF EMBODIMENTS



    [0028] An embodiment of the present invention is described below with reference to the drawings. Embodiments of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 according to the present invention are not limited to the embodiment described below, and can be altered within a range that does not deviate from the scope of the invention.

    (1) Overall configuration



    [0029] An air conditioning apparatus 10 comprising the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 according to an embodiment of the present invention is provided with an air-conditioning indoor unit 20 in addition to the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 as shown in FIG. 1, and is configured with the air-conditioning indoor unit 20 and the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 connected by a communication tube 12. This air conditioning apparatus 10 has a plurality of operation modes including an air-cooling operation, an air-warming operation, a dehumidifying operation, a humidifying operation, a ventilation operation, and others, and these operation modes can be combined as appropriate.

    [0030] During the air-cooling operation and the air-warming operation, indoor air is cooled and/or warmed, heat exchange is performed by the air-conditioning indoor unit 20 and the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 respectively, and heat moves through the communication tube 12 between the air-conditioning indoor unit 20 and the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30. To enable such heat exchange and heat movement to take place, the air conditioning apparatus 10 has a refrigerant circuit such as the one shown in FIG. 1. Connected to the refrigerant circuit are, primarily, a compressor 31, a four-way switching valve 32, an outdoor heat exchanger 33, an electric valve 34, and an indoor heat exchanger 21. The indoor heat exchanger 21 is provided to the air-conditioning indoor unit 20, and the compressor 31, the four-way switching valve 32, the outdoor heat exchanger 33, and the electric valve 34 are provided to the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30. Within the communication tube 12 are a liquid refrigerant tube 14 and a gas refrigerant tube 16 substantially connecting the air-conditioning indoor unit 20 and the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30.

    [0031] During the humidifying operation and the ventilation operation, outdoor air is supplied into the room, and air therefore moves from the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 to the air-conditioning indoor unit 20 via an air supply duct 18 within the communication tube 12. During the humidifying operation in particular, highly humid air containing a large amount of moisture is supplied from the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 to the air-conditioning indoor unit 20, and moisture is therefore actively taken from the outdoor air in the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30. Therefore, the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 comprises a humidifying unit 60 having the function of taking moisture from outdoor air.

    (1-1) Action of refrigerant circuit



    [0032] The action of the refrigerant circuit is no different from some conventional refrigerant circuits, but the action of the refrigerant circuit shown in FIG. 1 is described in a simple manner.

    [0033] During air-cooling, the four-way switching valve 32 is connected in the solid-line state shown in FIG. 1, and refrigerant compressed and discharged by the compressor 31 is sent to the outdoor heat exchanger 33 via the four-way switching valve 32. Refrigerant that has lost heat through heat exchange with outdoor air in the outdoor heat exchanger 33 is sent to the electric valve 34. Refrigerant in a high-pressure liquid state is changed to a low-pressure state by the electric valve 34. The refrigerant expanded by the electric valve 34 passes through a liquid shut-off valve 37 and the liquid refrigerant tube 14 via a filter 35, and enters the indoor heat exchanger 21. Refrigerant that has gained heat and risen in temperature through heat exchange with indoor air in the indoor heat exchanger 21 is sent through the gas refrigerant tube 16 and a gas shut-off valve 38 to the four-way switching valve 32. Because the four-way switching valve 32 is connecting the gas shut-off valve 38 and an accumulator 36, refrigerant sent from the indoor heat exchanger 21 through the gas refrigerant tube 16 is sent to the compressor 31 via the accumulator 36 and drawn into the compressor 31.

    [0034] During air-warming, the four-way switching valve 32 is connected in the dashed-line state shown in FIG. 1, and refrigerant compressed and discharged by the compressor 31 is sent to the indoor heat exchanger 21. The refrigerant moves through a path opposite that of air-cooling, and after exiting the outdoor heat exchanger 33, the refrigerant returns to the compressor 31. In other words, during air-warming, refrigerant circulates sequentially through the compressor 31, the four-way switching valve 32, the gas refrigerant tube 16, the indoor heat exchanger 21, the liquid refrigerant tube 14, the electric valve 34, the outdoor heat exchanger 33, the four-way switching valve 32, the accumulator 36, and the compressor 31.

    (2) Detailed configuration


    (2-1) Configuration of air-conditioning indoor unit 20



    [0035] In addition to the indoor heat exchanger 21, the air-conditioning indoor unit 20 is also provided with an indoor fan 22 driven by a motor, the fan being provided on the downstream side of the indoor heat exchanger 21, as shown in FIG. 1. For example, a crossflow fan is employed as the indoor fan 22. When the indoor fan 22 is driven, indoor air drawn in through an intake port 23 in the upper part of the air-conditioning indoor unit 20 is passed through the indoor heat exchanger 21 and blown out through a blow-out port 24 in the lower part of the air-conditioning indoor unit 20.

    [0036] In the air-conditioning indoor unit 20, an air supply port 25 of the air supply duct 18 is provided in a space on the upstream side of the indoor heat exchanger 21. The air supply duct 18 is connected to the humidifying unit 60, and air sent from the humidifying unit 60 is supplied through the air supply port 25 to the space on the upstream side of the indoor heat exchanger 21. When the air sent from the humidifying unit 60 is highly humid, the indoor fan 22 is driven while this air is being supplied through the air supply port 25, whereby the humidity of conditioned air blown out from the blow-out port 24 of the air-conditioning indoor unit 20 can be increased. At this time, the indoor heat exchanger 21 is simultaneously used as a condenser, whereby the air-conditioning indoor unit 20 can be made to perform the humidifying operation and the air-warming operation simultaneously.

    (2-2) Configuration of air-conditioning outdoor unit 30


    (2-2-1) Summary of configuration of air-conditioning outdoor unit 30



    [0037] The air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 comprises a casing 40. The interior of the casing 40 is divided by a partitioning plate 43 into an air-blower chamber S1 and a machinery chamber S2, as shown in FIG. 1. In the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30, the air-blower chamber S1 and machinery chamber S2 are shielded by the partitioning plate 43 so that the airflow does not flow into the machinery chamber S2 from the air-blower chamber S1.

    [0038] In addition to the above-described devices constituting the refrigerant circuit and the humidifying unit 60, the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 also has an outdoor fan 39 placed in front of the outdoor heat exchanger 33. The outdoor fan 39 and the outdoor heat exchanger 33 are disposed in the air-blower chamber S1 as shown in FIG. 1, and the compressor 31, the four-way switching valve 32, the electric valve 34, and the accumulator 36 are disposed in the machinery chamber S2.

    (2-2-2) Casing 40



    [0039] FIG. 2 is a front view of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30, showing a state in which an electrical component box 50, a grill, and part of a front plate 46 have been taken off of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30. FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30, showing the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 with the main body 51 of the electrical component box 50, the grill, and a top plate 48 taken off, and the part of the front plate 46 taken off in FIG. 2 is shown as an imaginary surface. FIG. 4 is a plan view of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30, showing a state in which the top plate 48 of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 has been taken off. The arrow in FIG. 4 indicates the flow of air through a moisture-adsorption area 63a of a humidifying rotor 63.

    [0040] The casing 40 of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 comprises a front plate 46, a left-side plate 45, a right-side plate 47, a top plate 48, and a bottom plate 49, as shown in FIGS. 2, 3, and 4.

    [0041] A circular blow-out port 44 is formed in the front plate 46, and a ring-shaped bell mouth 46a is attached to the periphery of the blow-out port 44, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3. The front-surface side of the blow-out port 44 is covered by a grill (not shown), and is configured so that a propeller 39b of the outdoor fan 39, described hereinafter, does not come into contact with objects outside of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30. The grill is attached to the front plate 46 of the casing 40.

    [0042] The left-side plate 45 is molded into a lattice shape as shown in FIG. 3, and is able to guide outdoor air into the outdoor heat exchanger 33 from the left side. The right-side plate 47 constitutes the entire right-side surface and some of the rear surface extending to the right-side surface from the right edge of a second portion 33b of the outdoor heat exchanger 33, described hereinafter.

    [0043] A protective metal mesh covering the second portion 33b of the outdoor heat exchanger 33 is attached to the rear side of the air-blower chamber S1. Though omitted from the drawings, the protective metal mesh has openings formed for guiding outdoor air into the second portion 33b of the outdoor heat exchanger 33.

    [0044] In the present embodiment, an intake port 72 that serves as an inlet of a moisture-releasing pathway, described hereinafter, is formed in the right-side plate 47.

    [0045] The partitioning plate 43 extends forward from the right edge of the outdoor heat exchanger 33 as shown in FIG. 4, and extends upward from the bottom plate 49. Therefore, the interior of the casing 40 can be regarded as being divided into the air-blower chamber S 1 and the machinery chamber S2, which are laterally aligned on either side of the partitioning plate 43. The partitioning plate 43 is placed at an incline relative to the forward-backward direction so that the lateral width of the machinery chamber S2 increases toward the front (FIG. 4). In the present embodiment, the partitioning plate 43 is curved. Also the rear part of the partitioning plate 43 extends from the bottom plate 49 to the top plate 48. Formed in the front and middle part of the partitioning plate 43 is an opening 43a cut out from the upper edge downward (see FIGS. 3 and 4). Part of the humidifying unit 60 and part of the electrical component box 50, described hereinafter, are disposed in the opening 43a. The electrical component box 50 has a main body 51 and a heat sink 52. The main body 51 may be made of, e.g., aluminum or another metal, or an elastic resin. The resin material could be, e.g., high impact polystyrene (HIPS), acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), or the like. The main body 51 is a box-shaped member that opens forward, and is disposed so that the opening is positioned in the front as seen in the front view of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30. Specifically, the main body 51 is considered to be disposed in the front of the interior of the machinery chamber S2. Also installed in the main body 51 is a control substrate (not shown) holding a collection of electronic components for driving the various devices provided to the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30. The control substrate is disposed so that the surface where the electronic components and the like are disposed faces the opening of the main body 51. The front plate 46 is disposed so as to close the opening of the main body 51. Therefore, removing the front plate 46 exposes the control substrate, and maintenance is easily performed within the main body 51. Also the main body 51 is set up along a vertical plane. The phrase "the main body 51 is set up along a vertical plane" used here includes any interpretation from the main body 51 not being inclined whatsoever relative to a vertical plane, to the main body 51 being disposed at an incline of about ±15° relative to a vertical plane. The main body 51 of the present embodiment, however, is not inclined whatsoever relative to a vertical plane. Therefore, the main body 51 has an upright placement in which the width direction (thickness direction) extends forward and backward so as to save space in the forward-backward direction. The heat sink 52 is composed of fins for releasing to the exterior the heat generated by the electrical components housed in the main body 51, and is disposed so as to protrude into the air-blower chamber S1 through the opening 43a. In the present embodiment, the entire heat sink 52 is disposed on the side of the air-blower chamber S1, but part of the heat sink 52 may be disposed on the side of the machinery chamber S2. The front edge part of the partitioning plate 43 is attached against the front plate 46.

    (2-2-3) Outdoor heat exchanger 33



    [0046] The outdoor heat exchanger 33 is L-shaped in a top view as seen in FIGS. 3 and 4, and has a first portion 33a facing the left-side plate 45 of the casing 40, and the second portion 33b facing the protective metal mesh constituting the back surface of the casing 40.

    [0047] The outdoor heat exchanger 33 has a height that reaches from the bottom plate 49 to the top plate 48. The outdoor heat exchanger 33 has numerous fins extending lengthwise in the height direction, and heat transfer tubes attached horizontally through the fins. The heat transfer tubes are disposed in numerous rows in the height direction by turning back multiple times at both ends of the outdoor heat exchanger 33.

    (2-2-4) Outdoor fan 39



    [0048] The outdoor fan 39 is a fan for blowing outdoor air at the front-surface side (the forward side) of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 after the outdoor air has been drawn in through the outdoor heat exchanger 33 from the back-surface side (the rearward side) of the outdoor heat exchanger 33, and in the present embodiment, the outdoor fan is a propeller fan. The outdoor fan 39 has a fan motor 39a and a propeller 39b driven by the fan motor 39a. The propeller 39b is disposed so as to be partially within the space enclosed by the bell mouth 46a. The fan motor 39a is attached to the back-surface side of the propeller 39b, and the rotating shaft of the propeller 39b and the drive shaft of the fan motor 39a are coupled. Furthermore, the fan motor 39a is supported by a fan motor stand (not shown). The fan motor stand is attached to a secure plate (not shown) secured to the bottom plate 49 and an upper end 33t of the outdoor heat exchanger 33.

    (2-2-5) Humidifying unit 60



    [0049] FIG. 5 is an exploded view of the humidifying unit 60. The humidifying unit 60 has a moisture-adsorption pathway and a moisture-releasing pathway, and is set up so that the moisture-adsorption pathway is positioned in the air-blower chamber S1 of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 and the moisture-releasing pathway is positioned in the machinery chamber S2 of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30.

    [0050] In the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30, the upper end of the humidifying unit 60 is positioned so as to be near the upper end (peak) 33t of the outdoor heat exchanger 33 or lower than the upper end 33t of the outdoor heat exchanger 33. In the present embodiment, the upper end of the humidifying unit 60 is the upper end of a frame 70, and the height of the upper end of the frame 70 coincides with the height of the upper end 33t of the outdoor heat exchanger 33.

    [0051] The humidifying unit 60 comprises primarily the humidifying rotor 63, a heater 71, and a turbofan 75. One part of the humidifying rotor 63 is disposed in the moisture-adsorption pathway, and the other part of the humidifying rotor 63, the heater 71, and the turbofan 75 are disposed in the moisture-releasing pathway. The humidifying rotor 63, the heater 71, and the turbofan 75 are secured to the frame 70. More specifically, the heater 71 and the humidifying rotor 63 are secured to a support plate 73, and the support plate 73 is attached to the back-surface side of the frame 70 (see FIG. 5). The turbofan 75 is attached to the front-surface side of the frame 70, which is the side opposite the surface to which the support plate 73 is attached (see FIG. 5).

    (2-2-5-1) Humidifying rotor 63



    [0052] The humidifying rotor 63 is a single tabular piece of moisture-adsorption/moisture-releasing material. The shape of the humidifying rotor 63 may be any sort of shape as long as it is tabular. In the present embodiment, the humidifying rotor 63 is of a discoidal shape. The single tabular piece of moisture-adsorption/moisture-releasing material referred to here includes not only a simple tabular moisture-adsorption/moisture-releasing material constituting the humidifying rotor 63, but also a combination of multiple moisture-adsorption/moisture-releasing materials of similar or different shapes constituting a single tabular humidifying rotor 63. The humidifying rotor 63 is a zeolite rotor having a honeycomb structure formed by burning zeolite or the like. The humidifying rotor 63 is attached so as to rotate with the center of the disc as the rotational axis, and is rotatably driven by the motive power of a rotor-driving motor 65 transmitted to a gear 64 provided to the periphery of the humidifying rotor 63. The rotor-driving motor 65 is disposed entirely within the machinery chamber S2. Furthermore, in the present embodiment, the rotor-driving motor 65 is disposed farther diametrically outward than the outer periphery of the humidifying rotor 63 so as not to overlap the humidifying rotor 63 in a front view.

    [0053] The zeolite or other adsorbent forming the humidifying rotor 63 has the property of allowing moisture to be adsorbed from the air at, e.g., room temperature, and releasing moisture due to being brought to a temperature higher than room temperature by the air heated to a high temperature by the heater 71 or the like. Specifically, the area of the humidifying rotor 63 that is not exposed to high-temperature air is the moisture-adsorption area 63a onto which moisture is adsorbed from the outdoor air, and the area that is exposed to high-temperature air is a moisture-releasing area 63b which releases the adsorbed moisture.

    [0054] The humidifying rotor 63 is disposed so that the rotational axis extends in the forward-backward direction. Specifically, the humidifying rotor 63 is set up along a vertical plane. The phrase "the humidifying rotor 63 is set up along a vertical plane" used here includes any interpretation from the humidifying rotor 63 not being inclined whatsoever relative to a vertical plane, to the humidifying rotor 63 being disposed at an incline of about ±15° relative to a vertical plane. The humidifying rotor 63 of the present embodiment, however, is not inclined whatsoever relative to a vertical plane. Therefore, the humidifying rotor 63 has an upright placement in which the width direction (thickness direction) extends forward and backward so as to save space in the forward-backward direction.

    [0055] Furthermore, the humidifying rotor 63 is disposed in the opening 43a of the partitioning plate 43 so that the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63 is positioned in the air-blower chamber S1 of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 and the moisture-releasing area 63b of the humidifying rotor 63 is positioned in the machinery chamber S2 of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30, as shown in FIG. 1. The moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63 of the present embodiment is disposed between the outdoor heat exchanger 33 and the outdoor fan 39 of the air-blower chamber S1, and is also disposed in front of the second portion 33b of the outdoor heat exchanger 33 with a gap therebetween so as to face the second portion 33b of the outdoor heat exchanger 33. Therefore, the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63 falls within the air-blowing pathway passing through the outdoor heat exchanger 33, and this section is the moisture-adsorption pathway. Specifically, the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63 is disposed within the moisture-adsorption pathway. The moisture-releasing area 63b of the humidifying rotor 63 is disposed within the moisture-releasing pathway.

    [0056] An upper end 63t of the humidifying rotor 63 of the present embodiment is positioned lower than the upper end 33t of the outdoor heat exchanger 33. As long as the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 does not have too large of a product size, the relationship of height positions between the humidifying rotor 63 and the outdoor heat exchanger 33 is not limited as such. For example, the height position of the upper end 63t of the humidifying rotor 63 is preferably near the upper end 33t of the outdoor heat exchanger 33. Specifically, the height of the upper end 63t of the humidifying rotor 63 may coincide with the height of the upper end 33t of the outdoor heat exchanger 33, or it may be in a slightly higher position than the upper end 33t of the outdoor heat exchanger 33 (e.g., a position about 10% higher than the height of the outdoor heat exchanger 33).

    [0057] The humidifying rotor 63 is set up so as to, in a front view, at least partially overlap the electrical component box 50 set up along a vertical plane (see FIG. 3). In the present embodiment, the vertical plane of the electrical component box 50 and the vertical plane of the moisture-releasing area 63b and reheating area 63c of the humidifying rotor 63 are positioned facing each other in a front view. The humidifying rotor 63 and the electrical component box 50 are disposed so as to be aligned forward to backward as shown in FIG. 4.

    (2-2-5-2) Heater 71



    [0058] The heater 71 is provided next to the moisture-releasing area 63b of the humidifying rotor 63. The heater 71 has a structure in which an electric heating wire (not shown) is provided within a tubular casing, and outdoor air drawn in through the intake port 72 and sent to the humidifying rotor 63 is heated by the electric heating wire. In the humidifying rotor 63, when heated air passes through the openings in the honeycomb structure of the humidifying rotor 63, air drawn into the turbofan 75 is humidified by the release of moisture from the humidifying rotor 63.

    [0059] The heater 71 is attached to a heater support member 74 as shown in FIG. 5. The heater support member 74 has a semicircular base part 74a and an outer wall part 74b projecting from the peripheral edge of the base part 74a, and the side of the heater support member (the side facing the humidifying rotor 63) is left open. The heater 71 is then attached to the base part 74a so as to be covered by the heater support member 74. The heater support member 74 constitutes part of the moisture-releasing pathway. The casing of the heater 71 and the heater support member 74, needing to be heat resistant, are formed by sheet metal. The heater 71 is installed in the machinery chamber S2 of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30, and is disposed opposite of the electrical component box 50 across the humidifying rotor 63.

    [0060] In the present embodiment, the vertical plane of the electrical component box 50 and the vertical plane of the heater support member 74 overlap in a front view by approximately fifty percent. However, depending on the shapes and placements of the electrical component box 50 and the heater support member 74, eighty percent or more of the vertical plane of the heater support member 74 may overlap the vertical plane of the electrical component box 50 in a front view.

    (2-2-5-3) Turbofan 75



    [0061] The turbofan 75 creates an air flow directed from the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 toward the air-conditioning indoor unit 20. The turbofan 75 is disposed so as to face the heater 71 across the humidifying rotor 63. The electrical component box 50 is disposed opposite of the heater 71 across the turbofan 75 and humidifying rotor 63. Furthermore, the turbofan 75 is installed in the machinery chamber S2 as shown in FIGS. 2 and 4.

    [0062] The turbofan 75 has a fan motor 75a, an impeller 75b driven by the fan motor 75a, and a fan casing 75c for housing the impeller 75b, and air drawn in from the direction of the rotational axis of the impeller 75b is blown radially outward. In the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30, the rotational axis of the impeller 75b is disposed so as to extend in the forward-backward direction. Therefore, the turbofan 75 has an upright placement which saves space in the forward-backward direction. An intake part 76 of the turbofan 75 opens rearward. A discharge part 77 of the turbofan 75 opens downward. A humidifying duct 78 is connected to the discharge part 77, and the air supply duct 18 is attached to the humidifying duct 78. Therefore, air drawn in through the intake part 76 of the turbofan 75 is guided to the air supply duct 18 via the humidifying duct 78, and passes through the air supply duct 18 to be blown out from the blow-out port 24 of the air-conditioning indoor unit 20.

    (3) Air flow during humidifying operation



    [0063] FIG. 6 is a drawing for illustrating the air flow in the humidifying rotor 63. FIG. 7 is a drawing for illustrating the moisture-releasing area 63b, moisture-adsorption area 63a, and reheating area 63c of the humidifying rotor 63. FIG. 7 shows the moisture-releasing area 63b, the moisture-adsorption area 63a, and the reheating area 63c when the humidifying rotor 63 is viewed from the front. The flow of air during the humidifying operation is described below. In the air conditioning apparatus 10 the humidifying operation is performed in combination with the air-warming operation. Therefore, the compressor 31 and the outdoor fan 39 are driven during the humidifying operation. Also during the humidifying operation, the humidifying rotor 63 is caused to rotate at a predetermined rotational speed by the motive power of the rotor-driving motor 65, and the heater 71 and turbofan 75 are driven. Because the humidifying rotor 63 rotates, the moisture adsorbed onto the humidifying rotor 63 by the moisture adsorption in the moisture-adsorption area 63a is carried to the moisture-releasing area 63b along with the rotation of the humidifying rotor 63, and moisture that had been adsorbed then desorbs due to the moisture releasing in the moisture-releasing area 63b, whereby the air surrounding the moisture-releasing area 63b is humidified. The humidifying rotor 63 of the present embodiment rotates counterclockwise as seen from the front, and the section functioning as the moisture-adsorption area 63a rotates and upon reaching a position of facing the heater support member 74, this section then functions as the moisture-releasing area 63b.

    [0064] During the humidifying operation, because the outdoor fan 39 is driven, an air flow is generated whereby outdoor air drawn in through the outdoor heat exchanger 33 from the back-surface side of the outdoor heat exchanger 33 is blown out to the front-surface side of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30. Because the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63 is positioned in the air-blower chamber S1 so as to face the second portion 33b of the outdoor heat exchanger 33, primarily outdoor air that has passed through the second portion 33b of the outdoor heat exchanger 33 then passes through the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63 from the rear to the front. Air that has passed through the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63 is blown out from the blow-out port 44 via the bell mouth 46a.

    [0065] Also during the humidifying operation, because the turbofan 75 is driven, an air flow is created from the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 to the air-conditioning indoor unit 20, i.e., an air flow whereby outdoor air drawn in through the intake port 72 is blown out to the air supply duct 18 via the humidifying rotor 63 and the heater 71. More specifically, outdoor air drawn in through the intake port 72 first flows into the front of the humidifying rotor 63, and moves through the humidifying rotor 63 from the front to the rear to reach the heater 71. The outdoor air that has reached the heater 71 then passes through the casing of the heater 71. The outdoor air is heated by the heater 71 at this time. The air that has passed through the casing of the heater 71 proceeds to the moisture-releasing area 63b of the humidifying rotor 63 and passes through the moisture-releasing area 63b of the humidifying rotor 63 from the rear to the front. At this time, the moisture-releasing area 63b of the humidifying rotor 63 releases moisture due to being exposed to the air raised in temperature by the heater 71. Having left the moisture-releasing area 63b of the humidifying rotor 63, the air is then drawn into the turbofan 75 via an opening 70a formed in the frame 70, and the air is blown out to the air supply duct 18 via the humidifying duct 78. The air thus humidified by the humidifying rotor 63 is guided to the air-conditioning indoor unit 20 via the air supply duct 18.

    [0066] In this humidifying unit 60, the section of the humidifying rotor 63 that is positioned in the air-blower chamber S1 is the moisture-adsorption area 63a as shown in FIGS. 6 and 7. In the humidifying rotor 63 positioned in the machinery chamber S2, the section positioned downstream in the air flow from the heater 71 is the moisture-releasing area 63b, and the other section is the reheating area 63c. The reheating area 63c is the section where outdoor air drawn in through the intake port 72 first passes through the humidifying rotor 63. Because the humidifying rotor 63 of the present embodiment rotates counterclockwise in a front view, the function of the humidifying rotor 63 is switched sequentially to the moisture-adsorption area 63a, the moisture-releasing area 63b, and the reheating area 63c. The reheating area 63c is high in temperature due to being the section that had just previously been the moisture-releasing area 63b. Therefore, outdoor air drawn in through the intake port 72 is heated by the heat of the reheating area 63c due to passing through the reheating area 63c. The reheating area 63c is cooled by the passage of outdoor air and afterwards becomes the moisture-adsorption area 63a due to the rotation of the humidifying rotor 63.

    (4) Characteristics


    (4-1)



    [0067] In a conventional air-conditioning outdoor unit, the humidifying rotor is set up along a horizontal plane, and the entire humidifying rotor is positioned in an air-blower chamber, whereby part of the outdoor heat exchanger is closed off by the humidifying unit, outdoor air does not readily pass through the section of the outdoor heat exchanger that is closed off by the humidifying unit, and the performance of the outdoor heat exchanger sometimes decreases.

    [0068] In view of this, in the present embodiment, the humidifying rotor 63 is set up along a vertical plane. The moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63 is positioned in the air-blower chamber S1 of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30, and the moisture-releasing area 63b of the humidifying rotor 63 is positioned in the machinery chamber S2 of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30. Therefore, in comparison with the humidifying rotor 63 being disposed along a horizontal plane, the distance between the outdoor heat exchanger 33 and the humidifying rotor 63 can be increased, and air flow to the outdoor heat exchanger 33 is unlikely to be blocked.

    [0069] The decrease in performance of the outdoor heat exchanger 33 that would follow with outdoor air not readily flowing to the outdoor heat exchanger 33 can thereby be prevented.

    [0070] In the present embodiment, because the humidifying rotor 63 is set up along a vertical plane, the depth of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30, i.e., the dimension in the forward-backward direction can be shortened and product size can therefore be reduced more than if the humidifying rotor 63 were to be set up along a horizontal plane.

    (4-2)



    [0071] The upper end 63t of the humidifying rotor 63 of the present embodiment is positioned lower than the upper end 33t of the outdoor heat exchanger 33. Therefore, the height dimension of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 can be kept lower than when the humidifying rotor 63 is disposed in a higher position than the upper end 33t of the outdoor heat exchanger 33. The product can be kept from increasing in size without reducing the capability of the outdoor heat exchanger 33.

    [0072] Due to the upper end 63t of the humidifying rotor 63 being in a lower position than the top plate 48, it is easier for outdoor air to effectively flow to the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63.

    (4-3)



    [0073] In the present embodiment, the heater 71, the rotor-driving motor 65, and the main body 51 of the electrical component box 50 are disposed in the machinery chamber S2 of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30. Due to these electrical components being thus disposed together in the machinery chamber S2, wire routing and other wiring work is simplified. It is thereby easier to assemble and maintain (service) the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30.

    [0074] In the present embodiment, because the moisture-releasing area 63b of the humidifying rotor 63 is positioned in the machinery chamber S2 of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30, the waste heat of the compressor 31 and/or electronic components can be utilized to heat the outdoor air drawn in through the intake port 72.

    (4-4)



    [0075] In the present embodiment, a gap is present between the humidifying rotor 63 and the outdoor heat exchanger 33. Therefore, the humidifying rotor 63 can be prevented from coming into contact with the outdoor heat exchanger 33. Damage to the humidifying rotor 63 can thereby be prevented. It is particularly preferable from the standpoint of preventing damage to configure rotating members not to come into contact with the outdoor heat exchanger 33, as is done with the humidifying rotor 63 of the present embodiment.

    (4-5)



    [0076] In the present embodiment, the heater 71 is disposed opposite of the electrical component box 50 across the humidifying rotor 63. Thus, the heater 71 of the humidifying unit 60 and the electrical component box 50 can be separated as far as possible by disposing the heater 71 opposite of the electrical component box 50 across the humidifying rotor 63 in the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30. Therefore, heat from the heater 71 does not readily reach the electrical component box 50 directly, and the risk that the electronic components and control substrate in the main body 51 of the electrical component box 50 will be degraded by heat can be reduced. Heat from the heater 71 can be impeded from reaching the electrical component box 50, and the risk that the release of heat from the heat sink 52 will be hindered can be reduced, by separating the heater 71 of the humidifying unit 60 and the electrical component box 50 as far as possible.

    [0077] Because heat from the heater 71 does not readily reach the electrical component box 50, there is a higher degree of freedom in the members constituting the electrical component box 50. Specifically, when, e.g., the electrical component box 50 is formed from a resin or another material, the material must be selected with heat resistance taken into account, but because heat from the heater 71 does not readily reach the electrical component box 50, there is a higher degree of freedom in selecting the material.

    [0078] Furthermore, using the humidifying rotor 63 as a reference, when the heater 71 and the electrical component box 50 are disposed on the same side, space must be ensured to keep the electrical component box 50 away from the heater 71, but because the electrical component box 50 can be separated from the heater 71 by disposing the heater 71 opposite of the electrical component box 50 across the humidifying rotor 63, there is no need to ensure separate space for separating the electrical component box 50 and the heater 71, and the space in the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 can be effectively utilized.

    [0079] In the present embodiment, the vertical plane of the electrical component box 50 and the vertical plane of the heater support member 74 overlap in a front view by approximately fifty percent. Depending on the shapes and placements of the electrical component box 50 and the heater support member 74, eighty percent or more of the vertical plane of the heater support member 74 may overlap the vertical plane of the electrical component box 50 in a front view. Even when the heater 71 and the electrical component box 50 are superposed in a large area, heat from the heater 71 can be impeded from reaching the electrical component box 50 because the heater 71 and the electrical component box 50 are disposed so as to be superposed from opposite sides of the humidifying rotor 63.

    (4-6)



    [0080] In the present embodiment, the turbofan 75 is disposed so as to face the heater 71 across the humidifying rotor 63, and the electrical component box 50 is disposed opposite of the heater 71 across the turbofan 75 and the humidifying rotor 63. Due to the electrical component box 50 thus being disposed opposite of the heater 71 across the turbofan 75 and the humidifying rotor 63, the heater 71 and the electrical component box 50 can be further separated by a distance equal to the turbofan 75. Heat from the heater 71 reaching the electrical component box 50 can thereby be further suppressed.

    (4-7)



    [0081] In the present embodiment, the rotor-driving motor 65 is disposed in the machinery chamber S2. Therefore, the rotor-driving motor 65 is not cooled by the driving of the outdoor fan 39, and abnormalities in the rotor-driving motor 65 that such cooling would cause can be prevented. Durability of the rotor-driving motor 65 can thereby be ensured.

    [0082] When the rotor-driving motor is disposed in the air-blower chamber and is also disposed between the humidifying rotor and the outdoor fan, outdoor air does not flow to the humidifying rotor due to ventilation resistance from the rotor-driving motor, and there is a risk that the moisture-adsorbing performance of the humidifying rotor will decrease.

    [0083] In the present embodiment, the rotor-driving motor 65 is disposed farther diametrically outward than the outer periphery of the humidifying rotor 63 so that the rotor-driving motor 65 and the humidifying rotor 63 do not overlap in a front view. It is therefore possible to prevent decreases in the moisture-adsorbing performance of the humidifying rotor 63 that would be caused by ventilation resistance from the rotor-driving motor 65.

    (4-8)



    [0084] In the present embodiment, at least part of the electrical component box 50 is set up so as to overlap the humidifying rotor 63 in a front view. Therefore, the lateral directional dimension of the casing 40 can be smaller than if the humidifying rotor 63 and the electrical component box 50 were to be aligned laterally so as to not overlap in a front view.

    [0085] The air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 can thereby be made smaller.

    (4-9)



    [0086] In the present embodiment, the humidifying rotor 63 and the electrical component box 50 are both set up along a vertical plane. The humidifying rotor 63 and the electrical component box 50 are also disposed so as to be aligned front to back. Therefore, the width dimension of the casing 40 in the forward-backward direction can be smaller than if, e.g., the electrical component box 50 were to be set up so that the longitudinal direction extends along a horizontal plane, i.e., if the electrical component box 50 were to be laid on its side. The air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 can thereby be made thinner.

    (4-10)



    [0087] In the present embodiment, the machinery chamber S2 is formed so that the lateral width increases toward the front. The electrical component box 50 is disposed in the front of the machinery chamber S2 interior. Therefore, the lateral directional dimension of the electrical component box 50 can be greater than if the electrical component box 50 were to be disposed in the rear of the machinery chamber S2 interior. The degree of freedom in the design of the electrical component box 50 can thereby be improved.

    (5) Modifications


    (5-1) Modification A



    [0088] In the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 of the above embodiment, the humidifying unit 60 and the electrical component box 50 are disposed in order from the rear toward the front. However, if the humidifying rotor 63 is disposed so as to extend across the partitioning plate 43, the positional relationship between the humidifying unit 60 and the electrical component box 50 is not limited thereto, and the electrical component box 50 and the humidifying unit 60 may, e.g., be disposed in order from the rear toward the front as shown in FIG. 8.

    (5-2) Modification B



    [0089] In the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 of the above embodiment, outdoor air reaches the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63 immediately after passing through the outdoor heat exchanger 33, due to the outdoor fan 39 being driven. However, the moisture-adsorption pathway through the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63 is not limited thereto. For example, part of the grill may have a closed surface, and some of the air flow generated by the outdoor fan 39 may run into this closed surface and then reach the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63.

    (5-3) Modification C



    [0090] FIG. 9 is a perspective view of a guide 69. FIG. 10 is a perspective view of the humidifying unit 60 with the guide 69 attached. FIG. 11 is a plan view of the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 comprising the humidifying unit 60 with the guide 69 attached, showing the air-conditioning outdoor unit 30 with the top plate 48 removed. The arrow in FIG. 11 indicates the flow of air through the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63.

    [0091] In addition to the above embodiment, the humidifying unit 60 may be provided with a guide 69 constituting part of the moisture-adsorption pathway. For example, the guide 69 is preferably provided so as to extend from the outer peripheral edge of the humidifying rotor 63 or the vicinity thereof toward the outdoor heat exchanger 33. From the standpoint of making it easier for outdoor air that has passed through the outdoor heat exchanger 33 to reach the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63, it is preferable for the guide 69 to extend from the outer peripheral edge of the humidifying rotor 63 to the vicinity of the outdoor heat exchanger 33, and even more preferable for the distal end of the guide 69 to abut the outdoor heat exchanger 33. Furthermore, the space between the outdoor heat exchanger 33 and the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63 may be enclosed by the partitioning plate 43, the guide 69, and the top plate 48.

    [0092] The shape of the guide 69 is not particularly limited as long as the guide extends from the outer peripheral edge of the humidifying rotor 63 or the vicinity thereof toward the outdoor heat exchanger 33. With the end of the guide 69 on the side near the outdoor heat exchanger 33 being the inlet-side end and the end on the side near the humidifying rotor 63 being the outlet-side end, the shape of the inlet-side end in particular is preferably designed on the basis of the capability of the outdoor heat exchanger 33 and the moisture-absorbing capability of the humidifying rotor 63.

    [0093] Thus, due to the presence of the guide 69 extending toward the outdoor heat exchanger 33 from the outer peripheral edge of the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63, it can be made easier for outdoor air that has passed through the outdoor heat exchanger 33 to reach the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63 and pass through the moisture-adsorption area 63a. As a result, situations of outdoor air not passing through the moisture-adsorption area 63a of the humidifying rotor 63 due to ventilation resistance can be avoided. The risk of decreased moisture adsorption in the humidifying rotor 63 can thereby be reduced.

    INDUSTRIAL APPLICABILITY



    [0094] The present invention makes it possible to prevent decreases in the performance of an outdoor heat exchanger, and the invention is effective for application in an air-conditioning outdoor unit comprising a humidifying unit.

    REFERENCE SIGNS LIST



    [0095] 
    30
    Air-conditioning outdoor unit
    31
    Compressor
    33
    Outdoor heat exchanger
    33t
    Upper end of outdoor heat exchanger
    39
    Outdoor fan
    40
    Casing
    60
    Humidifying unit
    63
    Humidifying rotor (rotor)
    63a
    Moisture-adsorption area
    63b
    Moisture-releasing area
    63t
    Upper end of humidifying rotor
    65
    Rotor-driving motor
    71
    Heater

    CITATION LIST


    PATENT LITERATURE



    [0096] [Patent Literature 1] Japanese Laid-open Patent Application No. 2012-251692


    Claims

    1. An air-conditioning outdoor unit (30), comprising:

    a casing (40) of which the interior is divided into an air-blower chamber (S1) and a machinery chamber (S2); a compressor (31);

    an outdoor heat exchanger (33) disposed in the air-blower chamber (S1);

    an outdoor fan (39) disposed in the air-blower chamber (S1) and used to pass outdoor air through the outdoor heat exchanger (33); and

    a humidifying unit (60) having a tabular rotor (63) that includes a moisture-adsorption area (63a) for adsorbing moisture in the outdoor air and a moisture-releasing area (63b) for releasing the moisture adsorbed in the moisture-adsorption area (63a) when heat is applied, the tabular rotor (63) being set up in front of the outdoor heat exchanger (33) along a vertical plane;

    the tabular rotor (63) being disposed so that the moisture-adsorption area (63a) is positioned in the air-blower chamber (S1) and the moisture-releasing area (63b) is positioned in the machinery chamber (S2);

    the entirety of a tabular rotor-driving motor (65) for rotatably driving the tabular rotor (63) being disposed in the machinery chamber (S2);

    characterized in that
    the compressor (31) is disposed in the machinery chamber (S2);
    the air-blower chamber (S1) and machinery chamber (S2) are aligned laterally; and
    the tabular rotor (63) is disposed so that an upper end (63t) thereof is in a position either near an upper end (33t) of the outdoor heat exchanger (33) or lower than the upper end of the outdoor heat exchanger (33).
     
    2. The air-conditioning outdoor unit according to claim 1, comprising:

    an electrical component box (50) for housing an electrical component for controlling devices including the compressor (31) and the outdoor fan (35);

    the electrical component box being disposed so as to at least partially overlap the tabular rotor (63) in a front view.


     
    3. The air-conditioning outdoor unit according to claim 2, wherein

    the electrical component box is set up along a vertical plane; and

    the electrical component box and the tabular rotor (63) are disposed so as to be aligned forward to backward.


     
    4. The air-conditioning outdoor unit according to claim 2 or 3, wherein

    the machinery chamber (S2) is formed so that the lateral width of the machinery chamber (S2) increases toward the front; and

    the electrical component box is disposed in the front of the machinery chamber interior.


     
    5. The air-conditioning outdoor unit according to any of claims 1 to 4, wherein

    the humidifying unit has a heater (71) for heating the moisture-releasing area (63b); and

    the heater is disposed in the machinery chamber.


     
    6. The air-conditioning outdoor unit according to any of claims 1 to 5, wherein

    a gap is present between the outdoor heat exchanger (33) and the tabular rotor(63).


     


    Ansprüche

    1. Klimaanlage-Außeneinheit (30), umfassend:

    ein Gehäuse (40), dessen Inneres in eine Luftgebläsekammer (S1) und eine Maschinenkammer (S2) geteilt ist;

    einen Kompressor (31);

    einen Außen-Wärmetauscher (33), der in der Luftgebläsekammer (S1) angeordnet ist;

    ein Außengebläse (39), das in der Luftgebläsekammer (S1) angeordnet ist und verwendet wird, um Außenluft durch den Außen-Wärmetauscher (33) zu leiten; und

    eine Befeuchtungseinheit (60) mit einem tafelförmigen Rotor (63), der einen Feuchtigkeits-Adsorptionsbereich (63a) zum Adsorbieren von Feuchtigkeit in der Außenluft und einen Feuchtigkeits-Abgabebereich (63b) zum Abgeben der im Feuchtigkeits-Adsorptionsbereich (63a) adsorbierten Feuchtigkeit, wenn Wärme angewendet wird, beinhaltet, wobei der tafelförmige Rotor (63) vor dem Außen-Wärmetauscher (33) entlang einer vertikalen Ebene aufgebaut ist;

    wobei der tafelförmige Rotor (63) so angeordnet ist, dass der Feuchtigkeits-Adsorptionsbereich (63a) in der Luftgebläsekammer (S1) positioniert ist und der Feuchtigkeits-Abgabebereich (63b) in der Maschinenkammer (S2) positioniert ist;

    wobei die Gesamtheit eines Tafelförmiger-Rotor-Antriebsmotors (65) zum rotierenden Antreiben des tafelförmigen Rotors (63) in der Maschinenkammer (S2) angeordnet ist;

    dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass

    der Kompressor (31) in der Maschinenkammer (S2) angeordnet ist;

    die Luftgebläsekammer (S1) und die Maschinenkammer (S2) lateral ausgerichtet sind; und

    der tafelförmige Rotor (63) so angeordnet ist, dass ein oberes Ende (63t) davon an einer Position ist, die entweder nahe oberen Ende (33t) des Außen-Wärmetauschers (33) oder niedriger als das obere Ende des Außen-Wärmetauschers (33) ist.


     
    2. Klimaanlage-Außeneinheit nach Anspruch 1, umfassend:

    einen Elektrische-Komponente-Kasten (50) zum Aufnehmen einer elektrischen Komponente zum Steuern von Einrichtungen, die den Kompressor (31) und das Außengebläse (35) beinhalten;

    wobei der Elektrische-Komponente-Kasten so angeordnet ist, dass er zumindest teilweise den tafelförmigen Rotor (63) in einer Frontalansicht überlappt.


     
    3. Klimaanlage-Außeneinheit nach Anspruch 2, wobei
    der Elektrische-Komponente-Kasten entlang einer vertikalen Ebene aufgebaut ist; und
    der Elektrische-Komponente-Kasten und der tafelförmige Rotor (63) so angeordnet sind, dass sie von vorne nach hinten ausgerichtet sind.
     
    4. Klimaanlage-Außeneinheit nach Anspruch 2 oder 3, wobei
    die Maschinenkammer (S2) so ausgebildet ist, dass die laterale Breite der Maschinenkammer (S2) in Richtung der Front zunimmt; und
    der Elektrische-Komponente-Kasten in der Front des Maschinenkammer-Inneren angeordnet ist.
     
    5. Klimaanlage-Außeneinheit nach einem der Ansprüche 1 bis 4, wobei
    die Befeuchtungseinheit eine Heizeinrichtung (71) zum Erwärmen des Feuchtigkeits-Abgabebereichs (63b) aufweist; und
    die Heizeinrichtung in der Maschinenkammer angeordnet ist.
     
    6. Klimaanlage-Außeneinheit nach einem der Ansprüche 1 bis 5, wobei
    ein Spalt zwischen dem Außen-Wärmetauscher (33) und dem tafelförmigen Rotor (63) vorhanden ist.
     


    Revendications

    1. Unité extérieure de climatisation (30), comprenant :

    un carter (40) dont l'intérieur est divisé en une chambre de soufflante d'air (S1) et en une chambre de machinerie (S2);

    un compresseur (31) ;

    un échangeur de chaleur extérieur (33) disposé dans la chambre de soufflante d'air (S1);

    un ventilateur extérieur (39) disposé dans la chambre de soufflante d'air (S1) et utilisé pour faire passer de l'air extérieur à travers l'échangeur extérieur de chaleur (33) ; et

    une unité d'humidification (60) ayant un rotor tabulaire (63) qui inclut une zone d'adsorption d'humidité (63a) pour adsorber l'humidité de l'air extérieur et une zone de libération d'humidité (63b) pour libérer l'humidité adsorbée dans la zone d'adsorption d'humidité (63a) quand de la chaleur est appliquée, le rotor tabulaire (63) étant installé devant l'échangeur de chaleur extérieur (33) le long d'un plan vertical ;

    le rotor tabulaire (63) étant disposé de sorte que la zone d'adsorption d'humidité (63a) est positionnée dans la chambre de soufflante d'air (S1) et la zone de libération d'humidité (63b) est positionnée dans la chambre de machinerie (S2);

    la totalité d'un moteur d'entraînement de rotor tabulaire (65) pour entraîner en rotation le rotor tabulaire (63) étant disposée dans la chambre de machinerie (S2);

    caractérisé en ce que

    le compresseur (31) est disposé dans la chambre de machinerie (S2);

    la chambre de soufflante d'air (S1) et la chambre de machinerie (S2) sont alignées latéralement ; et

    le rotor tabulaire (63) est disposé de sorte qu'une extrémité supérieure (63t) de ce dernier est dans une position soit proche d'une extrémité supérieure (33t) de l'échangeur de chaleur extérieur (33) soit plus basse que l'extrémité supérieure de l'échangeur de chaleur extérieur (33).


     
    2. Unité extérieure de climatisation selon la revendication 1, comprenant :

    une boîte de composant électrique (50) pour loger un composant électrique pour commander des dispositifs incluant le compresseur (31) et le ventilateur extérieur (35) ;

    la boîte de composant électrique étant disposée de façon à chevaucher au moins partiellement le rotor tabulaire (63) dans une vue de face.


     
    3. Unité extérieure de climatisation selon la revendication 2, dans laquelle
    la boîte de composant électrique est installée le long d'un plan vertical ; et
    la boîte de composant électrique et le rotor tabulaire (63) sont disposés de façon à être alignés d'avant en arrière.
     
    4. Unité extérieure de climatisation selon la revendication 2 ou 3, dans laquelle
    la chambre de machinerie (S2) est formée de sorte que la largeur latérale de la chambre de machinerie (S2) augmente vers l'avant ; et
    la boîte de composant électrique est disposée devant l'intérieur de chambre de machinerie.
     
    5. Unité extérieure de climatisation selon l'une quelconque des revendications 1 à 4, dans laquelle
    l'unité d'humidification a un dispositif de chauffage (71) pour chauffer la zone de libération d'humidité (63b) ; et
    le dispositif de chauffage est disposé dans la chambre de machinerie.
     
    6. Unité extérieure de climatisation selon l'une quelconque des revendications 1 à 5, dans laquelle
    un espacement est présent entre l'échangeur de chaleur extérieur (33) et le rotor tabulaire (63).
     




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    REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



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    Patent documents cited in the description