Efficient Hydrocyclone for Liquid-Liquid Separation


Executive Summary


Due to environmental concerns, discharge of water from oil and gas industries is required to maintain oil levels between 10 – 30 ppm. Complying with these standards leads to significant expenses for the industry. A new hydrocyclone design developed at MSU makes it possible to exceed these requirements while being much more cost-effective and space-saving than currently used hydrocyclones. The new MSU design is able to separate particles as small as 2 microns compared to conventional hydrocyclones at 10-15 microns.  It utilizes high efficiencies allowing for a smaller sized separation unit, and tolerates wide ranges of pressures and velocities.


Description of Technology


Hydrocyclones are one of the most common methods for liquid-liquid separations in oil drilling industries. They work by pumping the oil-water mixture into a chamber which the liquid spins around and separates due to differences in densities. This new technology developed at MSU utilizes unique geometries to produce high swirl intensities and a long reverse flow core to achieve high separation, up to 2 microns which will be able to decrease the cost of secondary post processing if necessary.


Key Benefits

  • Separation Efficiency: The efficiency of this hydrocyclone is higher than that of conventional hydrocyclones.
  • Wide Operation Range: Can accommodate a wide range of inlet pressures and velocities.
  • Reduced Footprint: Increased efficiencies in hyperbolic chambers allows for a shorter overall cyclone, decreasing the size of the hydrocyclone.
  • Small Particle Separation: This hydrocyclone is able to separate particles as small as 2 microns.



  • Effluent Water Treatment: Oil and Gas Industry 
  • Liquid-Liquid Separations


Patent Status: 


Under review


Licensing rights available: 


Full licensing rights available 


Inventors: Dr. Andre Benard, Dr. Volodymyr Tarabara, and Abdul Motin (PI).


Tech ID: TEC2015-0008


Patent Information:


For Information, Contact:

Bradley Shaw
Technology Manager
Michigan State University