Quantitative Mineralogical Properties (Morphology-Chemistry-Structure) of Pharmaceutical Grade Kaolinites and Recommendations to Regulatory Agencies

DOĞAN M., Dogan A. U., Aburub A., Botha A., Wurster D. E.

MICROSCOPY AND MICROANALYSIS, vol.18, no.1, pp.143-151, 2012 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 18 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2012
  • Doi Number: 10.1017/s143192761101275x
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.143-151
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


The physical and chemical characteristics of kaolinite (kaolin) may be variable, and minor amounts of other clay minerals, nonclay minerals, and other impurities may affect the properties of kaolinites. Thus specific technical properties of pharmaceutical grade kaolinites become very important because these clays are used in medical applications, e.g., as pharmaceutical excipients, and will be consumed by humans. Seven pharmaceutical grade kaolinite specimens were used in this study: K1004, KA105, 2242-01, K2-500, Acros, Acros-mono, and KX0007-1. In addition, two kaolinites from the Clay Minerals Society Source Clays, KGa-1b and KGa-2, were used for comparison purposes. The Acros-mono and 2242-01 kaolinites contained minor amounts of illite, which was demonstrated both compositionally and structurally by using inductively coupled plasma spectroscopy and powder X-ray diffraction. The KX0007-1 kaolinite powder was found to be heavily contaminated with quartz, cristobalite, and alunite. Crystal structure computations also showed excess Si in its tetrahedral site, and the mineral no longer has the typical kaolinite crystal structure. These widely-used industrial standards should be quantitatively characterized morphologically, compositionally, and structurally. Results of the mineralogical characteristics should be clearly labeled on the pharmaceutical grade kaolinites and reported to the relevant regulatory agencies.