Neutron Tomography

Neutron tomography (or neutron computed tomography, NCT) similar to medical CT and MRI scanning, creates a three-dimensional image by reconstructing a series of radiographs to visualize the inner structure of industrial, biological, geological, engineering and other samples of interest. NCT creates a three dimensional image of a sample by reconstructing a series of radiographs as the sample is rotated through 180 Computed tomography allows the visualization of the inner structure of the sample, with their ability to penetrate metal casings or other sample environments, neutrons can for example, expose an O-ring used in sealing joints revealing flaws in the inner material caused by their fabrication process.

Three-dimensional reconstruction of a kinked O-ring.

Neutron tomography at MNRC has been used to study bacterial colonies in sandstone samples form the negev desert to investigate life in extreme environments. Some of the results are shown below; more information about this project can be found here.

Negev Desert sample (Sample courtesy of Sasha Tsapin)

Reconstructed sample
Photograph Neutron film radiograph Reconstructed sample


Reconstructed sample: Isosurfaces (Click here to see video)