In-situ crystallization of particles in spray drying has several advantages particularly for product quality modification in the pharmaceutical industry. This process was investigated in a counter current spray dryer using lactose as a model material by manipulation of the local humidity within the drying chamber. Sample collection and humidity injection at different location of the dryer were carried out to better understand the mechanism of particle formation and solidification which are essential components of in-situ crystallization. They revealed that particle formation can be delayed by local humidity elevation. Differential scanning calorimetry and XRD of the yields showed that humidity manipulation was capable to produce semi crystalline lactose of up to 90% crystallinity. The results confirmed that there is a critical period for crystallization such that extending this period would significantly increase the degree of crystallization. Comparison on different requirements of crystallization indicated that extending the time for nucleation and the growth at the critical period via humidity manipulation has the most significant effect on the in-situ crystallization process.
- Counter current spray drying