New Search

Export article
Open Access

A Generic Polycarbonate Based Microfluidic Tool to Study Crystal Nucleation in Microdroplets

Daniel Selzer, Burkard Spiegel,
Journal of Crystallization Process and Technology , Volume 8, pp 1-17; doi:10.4236/jcpt.2018.81001

Abstract: Crystal nucleation is important to control the product properties in industrial crystallization processes. To investigate crystallization phenomena, methods which rely on microscopic volumes have gained relevance over the last decade. Microfluidic devices are suitable for carrying out crystallization experiments based on a large set of individual droplets in the nanoliter range. In this work, we propose a simple method to manufacture such devices from polycarbonate as an alternative to conventional chips made of poly (dimethylsiloxane). The microfluidic device consists of two main functional parts: A T-junction for droplet generation and a section for storage and observation of up to 400 individual droplets. Using these manufactured devices, it is easy to produce and store highly monodisperse droplets of substances that require either a hydrophilic or hydrophobic surface of the microchannel. Since crystal nucleation is a stochastic process which depends on the sample volume, a reproducible droplet volume is of great importance for crystallization experiments. The versatile applicability of the manufactured devices is demonstrated for substances which are used in different crystallization applications, for example, solution crystallization (aqueous potassium nitrate solution) and melt crystallization (ethylene glycol distearate). Finally, we demonstrate that the manufactured microfluidic devices in our experimental setup can be used to conduct crystal nucleation measurements. Based on these measurements we discuss our results with respect to state-of-the-art nucleation models.
Keywords: models / functional / crystallization / hydrophobic / microfluidic devices / droplets / Crystal Nucleation

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

Share this article

Click here to see the statistics on "Journal of Crystallization Process and Technology" .
References (1)
    Cited by 2 articles
      Back to Top Top