7 June 2002 Diffusion-based thermal tomography
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Thermal imaging is one of the fastest growing areas of nondestructive testing. The basic idea is to apply heat to a material and study the way the temperature changes within the material to learn about its composition. The technique is rapid, relatively inexpensive and most importantly has a wide coverage area with a single experimental measurement. One of the main goals in thermal imaging has been to improve flaw definition through advanced image processing. Tomographic imaging is a very attractive way to achieve this goal. Although there have been some attempts to implement tomographic principles for thermal imaging, they have been only marginally successful. One possible reason for this is that conventional tomography algorithms rely upon wave propagation (either electromagnetic or acoustic) and are inherently unsuitable for thermal diffusion without suitable modifications. In this research program, a modified approach to thermal imaging is proposed which fully accounts for diffusion phenomena in a tomographic imaging algorithm. Here, instead of the large area source commonly used in conventional thermal imaging applications, a raster scanned point source is employed in order to provide the well defined source- receiver positions required for tomographic imaging. A thermal diffusion modified version of ART is used for image reconstruction. Examples of tomographic images are presented from synthetically generated data to illustrate the utility of the approach.
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Ronald A. Kline, Ronald A. Kline, William P. Winfree, William P. Winfree, } "Diffusion-based thermal tomography", Proc. SPIE 4703, Nondestructive Evaluation and Reliability of Micro- and Nanomaterial Systems, (7 June 2002); doi: 10.1117/12.469626; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.469626

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