Clay Drying on a Tema Fluid Bed Dryer: Clay is defined as a natural, earthy, fine-grained material, largely of a group of crystalline hydrous silicate minerals known as clay minerals. Clay minerals are composed mainly of silica, alumina, and water, but they may also contain appreciable quantities of iron, alkalies, and alkaline earths. Clay is formed by the mechanical and chemical breakdown of rock. Clays are categorized into six groups. The categories are kaolin, ball clay, fire clay, bentonite, fuller’s earth, and common clay and shale. Before drying the clay on a fluid bed dryer, the slurry is often filtered and dewatered by means of a filter press. Wet processing of the clay begins with blunging to produce a slurry, which then is fractionated into coarse and fine fractions using centrifuges, hydrocyclones, or hydroseparators.