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Issue 7, 2020
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Visualising early-stage liquid phase organic crystal growth via liquid cell electron microscopy

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Abstract

Here, we show that the development of nuclei and subsequent growth of a molecular organic crystal system can be induced by electron beam irradiation by exploiting the radiation chemistry of the carrier solvent. The technique of Liquid Cell Electron Microscopy was used to probe the crystal growth of flufenamic acid; a current commercialised active pharmaceutical ingredient. This work demonstrates liquid phase electron microscopy analysis as an essential tool for assessing pharmaceutical crystal growth in their native environment while giving insight into polymorph identification of nano-crystals at their very inception. Possible mechanisms of crystal nucleation due to the electron beam with a focus on radiolysis are discussed along with the innovations this technique offers to the study of pharmaceutical crystals and other low contrast materials.

Graphical abstract: Visualising early-stage liquid phase organic crystal growth via liquid cell electron microscopy

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
20 Sep 2019
Accepted
06 Dec 2019
First published
11 Feb 2020

This article is Open Access

Nanoscale, 2020,12, 4636-4644
Article type
Paper

Visualising early-stage liquid phase organic crystal growth via liquid cell electron microscopy

J. Cookman, V. Hamilton, L. S. Price, S. R. Hall and U. Bangert, Nanoscale, 2020, 12, 4636
DOI: 10.1039/C9NR08126G

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