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Multiphase Desander – Valve and Accumulator Size and Selection (B-FSM093)

This article will cover primary valve and accumulator size and selection for a multiphase desander from a process point of view. The mechanical design of valves will be covered in a future article.

Isolation (DBB) Valve Size

  • The main operating valve lies between the desander and accumulator. At high pressure operation is it usually a double block and bleed configuration (DBB)
  • Valve must be gate valve, with slab type preferred
  • Valve flow path diameter must not be smaller than cyclone insert apex diameter (i.e. 10” insert has 3” apex, so valve flow path should be at least 75 mm)
  • Flow path diameter may not be indicative from valve nominal size. Check valve drawing to ensure full port valve and diameter is sufficient.

Accumulator (ACC) Sizing

  • Typically 2:1 or 3:1 aspect ratio (height:diameter)
  • Total volume for reasonable collection time (8-12 hours at least)
  • Recommended solids fill height ~75%
  • The quantity of solids reporting to ACC equals inlet concentration to WHD multiplied by separation efficiency
  • Volume of solids must be corrected for particle packing efficiency (0.62 average) – 100 liters of particulate solids packs at 161 liters effective volume

Multiphase desander application and operation will be covered in the next article.


  1. Rawlins, C.H. 2017. “Separating Solids First – Design and Operation of the Multiphase Desander”, paper 185658-MS presented at the SPE Western Regional Meeting, Bakersfield, CA, 23-27 April.
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