Hydrocyclone desanders are used in sub-sea oil extraction for the process of separating sand from the oil. International Syalons manufacture silicon nitride based sialon ceramic hydrocyclones liners for these desanders.
Hydrocyclone desanders work as a result of pressure differences in the slurry which generates centrifugal forces which causes rotational motion of the fluid. This in turn causes the dense sand particles to separate from the less dense liquid. The rotational flow of the abrasive sand results in severe abrasion of the hydrocyclone. This can be alleviated by lining the hydrocylone with an abrasion resistant ceramic.
Silicon nitride and sialon advanced ceramics offer extreme wear resistance enabling them to perform well in this application. In addition, corrosion resistance is required which again is offered by our materials. The combination of high hardness, strength and toughness make both Syalon 101 and Syalon 050 candidate materials. Syalon 050 is the harder of the two, but Syalon 101 is tougher. Also, a feature of both materials is their excellent thermal stability and thermal shock resistance.