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Crystallization is recognized as a common unit operation used to isolate and purify product. However, the scientific fundamentals of crystallization are typically not as well-known as they are for other unit operations such as distillation or absorption. The crystallization step directly influences product attributes such as crystal size, shape, yield and purity and offers potential to improve both the quality of the final product and the efficiency of the process.
This white paper introduces the fundamentals of crystallization and presents guidelines for the design of a high quality crystallization process. Using case studies and references from industry and academia, key crystallization topics such as solubility, supersaturation and crystallization kinetics are explained. Examples of how to utilize solubility, supersaturation and crystallization kinetics to make informed decisions regarding effective crystallization process development are included. The role of technology in crystallization development, from effectively controlling crystallization process parameters to monitoring crystal size and supersaturation in situ, is also presented.