The Vortex Tube Separator
The Vortex Tube Separator was developed by the MAINOVA AG, BEB, Ruhrgas AG and FILTAN GmbH over the last years. The VTS is conditioning natural gas by removing water and hydrocarbons in one single process.
The Vortex Tube Separator for gas dehydration was installed by the Thyssengas GmbH worldwide for the first time in the year 2000 and is in operation since March 2001.

R + I diagram of a Vortex Tube Separator dehydration unit.
Technical Datas
Working pressure max/ min.: 210 / 36 barg
Gasflow max / min.: 20.000 / 140.000 Nm³/h
Dewpoint: -10°C at 36 barg
The natural gas is stored in underground caverns to cover the peak load services. The stored natural has components such as water, hydrocarbons and lubrications. The natural gas from the cavern enters at first the inlet separator to remove slugs of water and small mechanical parts. After passing the inlet separator the gas will be heated up in the preheater to appr. 45°C. The warm natural gas enters the Vortex Tube Separator to remove water and hydrocarbon contents and depressurizes the gas down to the sales gas pipeline pressure. Ahead of the VTS glycol is inhibited to avoid formation of hydrates. The cold gas and warm gas streams are recombined after a cold separator, where the water and hydrocarbons are collected. The liquids are discharged to the glycol regeneration unit. The temperature of the dry sales gas will be increased in the after heater from appr. -10°C up to appr. 5°C
Advantages of the Vortex Tube Separator
A "turn down ratio" of 15%. The gas throughput is variable from 20.000 to 140.000 Nm³/h.
A short start up phase. (no preheating of the regeneration is required)
A very small glycol circulation rate (appr. 15% of the adsorber tower technique)
Significant smaller emissions due to the small glycol circulation rate.
Advantages during operation of the Vortex Tube Separator
Smaller capital costs.
Smaller operation costs..
The Vortex Tube Separator has no rotating parts, therefore no maintenance is required.
Detailed description of the Vortex Tube Separator process on a separate page.




























Process description (short version)