Project to improve efficiency of crystalline goods production

Loughborough University has been awarded more than £1.1m to improve manufacturing techniques for the pharmaceuticals industry.

The main aim of the CrySys project is to improve efficiency and quality in the production of crystalline goods, such as drugs, while simultaneously reducing wastage and energy costs.

The research is being led by Prof Zoltan Nagy from the Department of Chemical Engineering, with funding from the European Research Council.

According to the university, it will involve the development of an ‘intelligent’ Crystallisation Systems Engineering Tool, which can react and adapt to changing operating conditions to guarantee the sustainable production of consistent, high-quality crystalline solids.

Prof Nagy said: ‘The pharmaceutical industry operates in a fast-changing market and is under constant pressure to comply with more stringent product requirements, as well as the need to reduce energy demand and production costs.

‘To meet these needs, the industry requires crystallisation processes that are flexible, easy to scale up and energy and cost efficient. This is what I am aiming to create at Loughborough.

‘The production of more than 70 per cent of all solid products involves crystallisation, so this is an issue that affects many sectors. This research will not only provide a breakthrough in crystallisation science, but the results could revolutionise the methods in which crystallisation will be designed and controlled in the future.’