Cross Flow Interceptor (CFI)


Oily water separation technology has come a long way since it was first introduced to the oil and gas industry by Shell in the 1950’s. Initially utilised API separators were later replaced by Parallel Plate Interceptors (PPI).

Although the PPI separator offered an important improvement in separating oil from water, the efficiency was low. In the search of optimising oily water separation, Corrugated Plate Interceptors (CPI) was jointly developed by Shell’s engineer, Mr. Jan Cornelissen and Mr. Jacob Pielkenrood. This CPI till date is utilised in most industries.

In MEC’s quest to further improve this technology, we have formed a strategic partnership with Pielkenrood BV who is one of the founding fathers of the Corrugated Plate Interceptors (CPI).

How CFI Works

Specifically designed for the offshore industry where constraints of space are a concern, this unit utilizes a larger plate surface per m3 of separator basin volume and per m2 of separator basin area. As with the other types of plate packs, the CFI consists of inclined, parallel corrugated plates spaced closely together. Contrary to counter current separators (CPI) with the entry at the top or bottom, the CFI has an entry at the side. The water flows in a laminar stream between the plates in a horizontal direction.
The main advantage of the CFI is that heavy as well as light particles can be separated from the effluent simultaneously. For instance, oil is separated by floating upwards along the top of the corrugated plates to the surface of the separator tank. Heavier particles at the same time settle along the bottom of the corrugated plates and slide down the plates to be collected in a sludge cone and discharged through a blow-off valve.


Low Pressure Sources

Where water is collected from multiple, low pressure sources

Onshore Plants

Common in onshore centralized Water Treatment plants

Pressurized Vessel

Mostly supplied with a Pressurized Vessel, to contain and control all gas and liquid emissions


Handles oil/solids slugs & intermittent flows

Settles More

Settles larger oil droplets and coarse solids

Primary Treatment

Primary treatment stage of a Water Treatment train where multiple stages of treatment are required to ensure reliable and effective water treatment.