PRIME, D.C. ... et al, 2011. Analysis of powder caking in multi-component powders using atomic force microscopy to examine particle properties. Chemical Engineering and Technology, 34 (1), pp.98-102.
Atomic force microscopy has been used to study the surface properties of model spray dried powders. Phase imaging, nanoindentation and force modulation microscopy have differentiated between the different surface material properties of the particles, revealing a regular dispersion of soft, oil rich areas distributed across the particles' surface. Humidity and temperature cycling effects on the caking behaviour of the particles have also been investigated, with significant morphology changes and onset of caking found to occur within relatively short periods of time.