In its report, Sedimentation & Centrifugation World Markets, McIlvaine suggests that clarifiers and thickeners will generate the most revenues, while the second largest equipment category is the disc centrifuge, followed by the decanter centrifuge, the miscellaneous centrifuge segment (including basket and pusher centrifuges) and the dissolved air flotation (DAF) system. Hydrocyclones cover just 13% of the market.
McIlvaine suggests that growing markets for centrifuges include the oil and gas industry, as well as ethanol. Tar sands are a big and active market, and a number of multibillion dollar projects are underway in western Canada. Disc centrifuges are used to process the bitumen froth and separate the water and sand from the product.
Currently, Alfa Laval is the leader in both the decanter and disc centrifuge category, followed by GEA Westfalia which is second in both categories. Because of the high speed and demanding manufacturing requirements, there is less Asian competition in centrifuges than in the other devices, McIlvaine says, and the centrifuge market is dominated by US, European and Japanese manufacturers.