The development of centrifugal separators used for oilfield multi-phase separation is introduced. The structural types and functional principles of the separators, which include static, adjustable, rotary and dynamic hydrocyclones, spiral separator, gas-liquid cylindrical cyclone, and spiral tube separator, etc., are described. The main characteristics, advantages, disadvantages, separating effect of the separators are analyzed respectively. The application condition of each type is introduced as well. The research state-of-the-art of the separators and some of their applications are also described. The right way for selecting an efficient separator is based on the actual operating condition in order to obtain satisfactory treating result. This paper would be beneficial for the selection, design, and application of different separators in oilfields, especially for offshore applications.

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