This work presents a computational fluid dynamics (CFD) calculation to investigate the flow field and the heat transfer characteristics in a tangential inlet cyclone which is mainly used for the separation of the dens phase of a two phase flow. Governing equations for the steady turbulent 3D flow were solved numerically under certain boundary conditions covering an inlet velocity range of 3 to 30 m/s. Finite volume based Fluent software was used and the RNG k-epsilon turbulence model was adopted for the modeling highly swirling turbulent flow. Good agreement was found between computed pressure drop and experimental data available in the literature. The structure of the vortices and variation of local heat transfer were studied under the effects of inlet velocity. (c) 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.