An instrument for three dimensional x-ray microscopy

David A. Reimann, Sean M. Hames, and Michael J. Flynn

The Ohio Academy of Science 103rd Annual Meeting, Toledo, Ohio, 22-24 April. The Ohio Journal of Science, 94(2):36, April 1994.

The description of an instrument for three dimensional (3D) x-ray microscopy is presented. Conventional x-ray microscopy is a powerful instrument for evaluating microscopic detail of optically opaque structures, and was quite popular before electron microscopy (EM) became available. While EM has an advantage in two dimensional imaging, the use of x-rays have advantages in penetrating thicker specimens and in the ability to give absolute density measures. Using methods extended from those in clinical x-ray tomography scanners, a 3D array of data is created with resolution (full width half maximum) down to 25 microns in each direction for a 3 mm specimen. We are currently refining this instrument to resolve 5 micron detail in three dimensions for a 1.25 mm specimen. The 3D nature of this data is important for accurate stereologic measures of anisotropic structures and for visualization of complex features found in biologic specimens. The ability to analyze internal structures of wet, intact specimens is an important aspect of this instrument. The current biomedical applications involve the imaging of bone specimens for subsequent stereologic evaluation. Applications outside of biology include nondestructive testing of industrial parts and materials science, especially of ceramic and plastic materials.

Copyright © 1994, David A. Reimann. All rights reserved.