Hydrocyclones, commonly referred to as cyclones, have been extensively utilized in the classification of particles in comminution circuits. The practical range of classification for cyclones is 15 microns to 400 microns. Cyclones are used in secondary equipment of mud separating circuits as well as mud cleaner or desander.
In solids Control, hydrocyclone be used in mud cleaner, desander and desilter. It’s a high effective device for separate solids from drilling mud.
Hydrocyclones first came into use in the last century and became standard equipment for mud and water separation in most offshore fields by the early 1990s.
As the advanced, mud cleaner became a viable solution to improve separation and to better accommodate tight platform space and platform movement. Because the hydrocyclone of mud cleaner operates as a pressure vessel, operated liquid-full, platform movement was no longer a concern. Also, the use of liners greatly reduced the footprint of the treatment equipment. It was improved further with the introduction of liners in a vessel instead of in a manifold.
Hydrocyclones are capable of separating solids that are smaller than those removed by shale shakers, but are generally not as effective as decanter centrifuges, which remove even smaller solids in drilling fluid.
The tangential inlet and circular hydrocyclone body induce a swirling motion that results in a centripetal force. The centripetal force, which is many times greater than gravity, causes separation of oil and water based on their differing densities. Solids move to the core and flow in a reverse direction through the reject orifice. The forward underflow is primarily water.
As the swirl velocity increases, the hydrocyclone generates higher centripetal forces and the efficiency of the unit increases. Because gravity has a negligible effect on the centripetal forces, the equipment does not need to be installed vertically.
The solids and mud separation performance depends on cyclone geometry, pressure difference ratio (PDR), flow rate, cyclone internal cleanliness, water temperature, viscosity, and the density differences between solids and water.