2010 ISC Overview

The International School of Crystallization, (ISC2010) has was held in Granada (Spain) during May 24-28th, 2010 under the auspices of the International Union of Crystallography through the Commission of Crystal Growth.

ISC covered five days of lectures and practical demonstrations in the field of crystallisation of foods, drugs and agrochemicals. The first day of the School dealt with the fundamentals of crystallisation from solution encompassing a review of phase diagrams, speciation, supersaturation and basic concepts on crystallizing solutions, nucleation theories, crystal growth kinetics and mechanisms, crystal morphology and optical microscopy for crystal growth. The second day of the School focused on both classical and novel crystallisation techniques such as crystallisation in solution versus gel growth, the growth of nanocrystals from solutions, in situ crystallization approaches, high-pressure crystallisation, crystallisation of polyscale materials through hydrothermal routes and crystallisation from melts. The third day was entirely devoted to polymorphism, including a review of the basic concepts of polymorphism and phase transition and topics such as hydrates, solvates and cocrystals and patent considerations, crystallization of lipids in colloidal dispersion systems and the development of robust pharmaceutical crystallization processes.

The fourth day was dedicated to a ‘Demonstration Fair’, at which 16 experts offered short (20-40 minutes) practical sessions periodically at scheduled times. Participants were able to choose what sessions they wanted to attend and in the order they wished, so that they selected their own learning programme a la carte. The Demonstrations’ Fair proved to be an excellent teaching tool as it provided students with plenty of opportunities to interact on a personal basis with the teachers and to watch closely how to perform crystallisation experiments.

The final day featured some special and hot topics such as the formation of minerals from nanoparticles to crystals, bioinspired crystallisation of calcium carbonate, polymorph screening, industrial crystallisation and biomineralisation of calcium carbonate. The School was closed with the presentation of prizes offered by the International Union of Crystallography and La Factoria.

Main topics

  • Solution properties.
  • Nucleation: classical and non-classical approaches.
  • Crystal growth kinetics and mechanisms.
  • Crystallization routes.
  • Crystallization techniques.
  • Crystal morphology.
  • Mineral textures.
  • Polymorphism.
  • Hydrates, solvates and co-crystals.
  • Crystallization screening.
  • Crystallization and legal aspects.
  • Special and hot topics on crystallization.
  • Calcium carbonate precipitation.
  • Hydrothermal growth.
  • High pressure crystallization.
  • Pharmaceutical crystallization processes.



A total of 109 participants from 18 different countries attended ISC2010. A large part of the attendees were students (67 students, 61 %) coming from 15 different countries and speakers (18 speakers, 13 %) coming from 11 different countries; being the rest composed of academics, industrial representatives and exhibitors.

A considerable effort was made to provide financial support to as many of them as possible. On the whole, 33 students applied for a grant and 20 were awarded, 61 % application rate. Remarkably, 44% of all students who were coming from outside Spain received some sort of funding.

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