Development of a Freeze-Drying Stage for In-Situ µ-CT Measurements

Mathias Hilmer, Sebastian Gruber, Petra Foerst
2020 Processes  
This paper shows the development of a freeze-drying stage for in-situ μ-CT measurements. The stage can operate in a temperature range of −40 °C up to 70 °C, and a pressure range from atmospheric pressure to 7 Pa at the sample holder. To get the best visualization of the probe, it is fundamental that the materials around the sample holder are not absorbing most of the radiation. For this reason, we built an axial symmetrical stage built out of polyetheretherketon (PEEK). A test of the stage by
more » ... t of the stage by different freeze-drying experiments with maltodextrin and sucrose particles and solutions demonstrated its suitability to visualize the freeze-drying processes in-situ. It was possible to track the drying front during the process by radiographic and tomographic measurements, as well as to visually resolve the ice crystals and porous structure in tomographic measurements. Using different samples and process parameters, we showed that the freeze-drying stage is not only suitable for in-situ µ-CT measurements, but also allows us to use the stage for other imaging methods such as neutron imaging, and for any sample where a controlled environment is needed.
doi:10.3390/pr8070869 fatcat:d3e4pol6srddxe5fk4ugaio5rq