For the Ancient Greek pottery, see Phiale.
A vial (also known as a phial or flacon) is a small glass or plastic vessel or bottle, often used to store medication as liquids, powders or capsules. They can also be used as scientific sample vessels; for instance, in autosampler devices in analytical chromatography. Vial-like glass containers date back to classical antiquity; modern vials are often made of plastics such as polypropylene.
There are several different types of commonly used closure systems, including screw vials (closed with a screw cap or dropper/pipette), lip vials (closed with a cork or plastic stopper) and crimp vials (closed with a rubber stopper and a metal cap). Plastic vials can have other closure systems, such as flip-tops or snap caps. A vial can be tubular, or have a bottle-like shape with a neck. The volume defined by the neck is known as the headspace. The bottom of a vial is usually flat, unlike test tubes, which have usually a rounded bottom. The small bottle-shaped vials typically used in laboratories are also known as bijou or McCartney's bottles. The bijou bottle tends to be smaller, often with a volume of around 10 milliliters.
- Seven bowls, also referred to as "seven vials", a series of plagues mentioned in the Biblical Book of Revelation
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- Hans-Jürgen Bässler and Frank Lehmann (2013). Containment Technology: Progress in the Pharmaceutical and Food Processing Industry. Springer (Berlin). ISBN 978-3642392917.