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Sugar Rush

This sample of inositol, a sugar alcohol, crystallized quickly, creating these cracks and colors. Viewed at 100× magnification under a polarized light microscope, allows observation of the different thicknesses of the crystal based on the colors. If the crystal had cooled more slowly, it wouldn’t have as many cracks, wouldn’t have circular air bubbles trapped inside, and wouldn’t have so many colored areas because the thickness would be more constant throughout. The gray-brown areas on top and bottom aren’t as bright because they are not thick enough to interfere with the polarized light.

66 Replies to “Sugar Rush”

  1. Very nice image Topher!!

    I am impressed by the colours generated with the polarised light.
    And also impressed by the brown areas when inositol sample is thinner!!
    Sharp change in colours. Like the surface of a crystal.

    My sympathy towards inositols, as they regulate the activity of TRP cation channels on cells.
    I worked with TRP channels. 😉

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