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Mikro-tomografi med Röntgen faskontrast

Start- och slutdatum
Beviljat belopp
2 500 000 kr
Förvaltande organisation
Lund University
Bioteknik, medicinsk teknik och teknik för livsvetenskaperna


In the last years, several groups have demonstrated improved contrast in soft-tissue x-ray imaging by use of phase-contrast imaging (PCI) techniques. The aim of this proposal is in-house method development of phase contrast methods and application of state-of-the-art x-ray imaging methods (using in-house x-ray source) for improved x-ray microscopy applicable to e.g. materials science and basic biomedical research. X-ray phase-contrast micro tomography is a relatively young technique that may be referred to as virtual histology. This will provide slices through the virtual object in any arbitrary plane, and have the possibility of volumetric data analysis. This will give useful information for research in various fields of the natural sciences. In the framework of this proposal, a custom build micro-focus x-ray tube will be modified in hardware and software to optimize image quality and minimize acquisition time for x-ray micro-CT. In parallel with the method development, we will test the method on a selection of applications in bone research. This will help to steer the product development into direct use, and it will directly benefit the bone research in question.

Populärvetenskaplig beskrivning

X-ray micro computed tomography (micro-CT) is a relatively young technique. Similar to the CT scans routinely performed at hospitals; micro-CT is a method to see interior structures inside a subject without cutting it open. With micro-CT, it is possible to make a three-dimensional image of the subject and virtually cut it in a computer. Further, quantitative data can be extracted from the volume for scientific studies. Conventional micro-CT machines are somewhat limited in the contrast mechanism because they rely on x-ray attenuation in the subject. Some subjects, such as e.g. soft tissue samples, are very homogeneous and do not give good images. Phase-contrast micro-CT is a new method, where the optical properties of x-rays are utilized. In the same way light changes direction in a prism, x-rays change direction a tiny bit when they penetrate an object. The principle behind phase-contrast micro-CT is to measure the tiny angular changes and use that to make better images. In order to measure the minute angular changes of the x-rays, highly advanced equipment must be used: The x-ray tube must have a very well defined source point, and the sample manipulation and image acquisition must all be coupled to a computer in order to extract the phase-contrast image. The company Excillum AB has developed an advanced x-ray source, which can be well utilized in phase-contrast imaging. In this project we will develop the x-ray source to be optimized for phase-contrast imaging and implement this new source into a complete system for phase-contrast micro-CT.