Directional Dark-Field X-ray Tomography

Project Details


Pilot project combining X-ray imaging and X-ray scattering to simultaneously resolve fine features in bulk media below the resolution limit of an imaging detector and determine their orientation.

Layperson's description

Porous materials and biological systems contain lots of small features.

Filters for cleaning the air and our water, comprised of fibrous meshes and porous networks are prone to clogging due to the capture of fine particulate matter (such as microplastics and particulates from combustion).

Our lungs are another type of air filtration system, albeit biological, prone to the ingress of particulate matter that have a direct contribution on health

X-ray tomography (3D X-ray imaging) allows materials to be scanned with high levels of accuracy without the need to cut them up. X-ray scattering (dark field X-ray) can resolve tiny particles that have been lodged inside materials.

Combining these techniques allows 1) the tiny particles to be located in 3D space within a material 2) the chemical composition of these tiny particles, such as microplastics 3) the orientation of tiny particles within a material which have an effect on the material (particularly biological).
Short titleXRD-CT
Effective start/end date4/09/23 → …


  • microplastic identifiaction
  • particulate matter identification
  • 3D non-destructive imaging
  • correlative multimodal microscopy
  • technique and technology development
  • high-impact X-ray microscopy