High Precision X-ray CT-scanning of Biological Samples

Date
2015-04-14
Authors
Valley, Olivia
Collison, Abigail
Cosentino, Nick
Collison, Nicholas
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Altmetrics
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Center for Nondestructive Evaluation
Abstract

Visualizing the micro-scale details of an item without disturbing its natural structure is always desirable because critical information is often lost during dissection or destructive analysis. High precision X-ray CT scans are used in engineering analyses to non-destructively view samples with volume elements as small as 10micro-meters, but this technique is problematic for non-rigid biological samples. Other problems arise from low x-ray contrast of tissue and the long scan times required. We will present results of micro-CT scans performed on biological samples as small as a bovine embryo and as large at a coyote skull. We will also discuss techniques to enhance the details captured in the x-ray images using contrast enhancers such as iodine (stains). We are working on post scan techniques to improve image quality, reduce scan times and to isolate items appearing in CT scans so they can be accurately recreated using a 3-D printer. Results and progress will be reported.

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