Exploration drilling

In the mining industry, reusing water and minimizing waste is essential to cut cost and impact on the environment. Alfa Laval’s effective decanter centrifuge technology gives exploration drilling the high capacity it needs at a size that makes it one of the best choices for this application. Highly abrasive resistant and continuous operation bring continuous separation with minimal downtime and maintenance needs.

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Compact, robust equipment for continuous operation and high separation efficiency

  • Remote surveillance and data allowing one technician to work with multiple units
  • Pre-engineered solution reduces delivery times and makes maintenance and parts replacement more effective
  • Smaller size allows for easy transport and lower energy requirements
  • High quality separation allows for reuse of water and ease of solids disposal, savings costs and helping to meet regulatory needs

In exploration drilling, solids build up in the slurry fluids over time. Disposing of these solids comes with a cost, both in terms of transport and water use. Alfa Laval's decanter centrifuges makes it possible to clean and reuse the slurry which minimizes the waste as well as lowers water consumption.

Our wide range of machine sizes means that you can easily find the perfect fit for your exploration project, no matter how remote.  Our reliable, long-lasting decanter centrifuges are robustly designed to effectivize exploration drilling jobs through a separation process down to particle level. The result is water that can be reused or easily disposed of and solids that can either be left or transported, treated, and disposed of at lower costs. Our remote capacity means that expert help can be obtained easily and that one person can look after multiple machines, reducing labour costs.

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Drilling fluid recovery reduces cost and waste

With the minerals drilling market growing, the economics of drilling and recycling of drilling fluids are becoming more important. The right choice of centrifuge inside your solids control system enables the recovery and recycling of drilling fluids, and hence, is a vital decision to reducing cost and waste. Alfa Laval has extensive experience supporting customers with on-site treatment and recovery solutions that enable improved management of your waste and water streams. Our highly efficient separation and water management solutions can help you reduce, reuse and recycle waste in all new ways.

How it works - decanter

The rotating assembly is supported on a compact welded box beam frame with main bearings at both ends. The in-line main motor is flange- or foot mounted onto the unit with adjustable brackets for belt tension adjustment. The bowl is driven at the conical end by an electric motor with a V-belt transmission. The bowl, conveyor, casing, inlet tube, outlets and other parts in contact with the process media are made of AISI 316 or duplex stainless steel with tungsten carbide inserts in the areas most susceptible to wear.

Separation takes place in a horizontal cylindrical bowl equipped with a screw conveyor. The feed enters the bowl through a stationary inlet tube and is accelerated smoothly by an inlet rotor. Centrifugal forces cause sedimentation of the solids on the wall of the bowl. The conveyor rotates in the same direction as the bowl, but at a different speed, thus moving the solids towards the conical end of the bowl. The design enables the decanter to scroll out high loads of solids without blockages caused by high levels of dryness. Only the very driest fraction of the sludge cake leaves the bowl through the solids discharge openings into the casing.


The decanter centrifuge can be adjusted to suit specific requirements by varying the bowl speed, the conveying speed, the pond depth and the feed rate

The LYNX drilling decanter

Alfa Laval LYNX centrifugal decanter systems are made for muck handling. They efficiently remove solid particles from water and oil-based slurries resulting in better penetration rates, shorter drill times, less wear on key components as well as longer sludge service life. It also reduces chemical usage as well as drill waste, which contributes to lower disposal and waste water treatment costs.



Normally installed in a bypass system, our LYNX centrifugal decanters operate continuously without interrupting drilling operations. The range can handle muck flow rates from 5 m3/hour up to 100 m3/hour. The variable bowl speed ensures the right G force required for the most efficient separation while the conveying speed can be adjusted for optimal balance between liquid clarity and solids dryness. The adjustable pond depth also contributes to the best balance between clarity and dryness.

Product information LYNX

Safety and sustainability in mining – From exploration to tailings dewatering

​​​​​​​Alfa Laval’s solid bowl centrifuges are suitable for mining duties, from exploration to mine tailings dewatering. They enable water reuse while allowing dry disposal of tailings solids. They offer significant lifecycle cost savings and make tailings management a safer and sustainable way of working compared to tailings ponds.

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