Due to the recent development of transmission X-ray tubes with very small focal spot sizes, laboratory-based CT imaging with sub-micron resolutions is nowadays possible. We recently developed a novel X-ray nanoCT setup featuring a prototype nanofocus X-ray source and a single-photon counting detector. The system is based on mere geometrical magnification and can reach resolutions of 200 nm. To demonstrate the potential of the nanoCT system for biomedical applications we show high resolution nanoCT data of a small piece of human tooth comprising coronal dentin. The reconstructed CT data clearly visualize the dentin tubules within the tooth piece.
The power and brightness of electron-impact micro-focus X-ray sources have long been limited by thermal damage in the
anode. Here we describe a novel X-ray microfocus source based on a new anode concept, the liquid-metal-jet anode
(MetalJet). The regenerative nature of this anode allows for significantly higher e-beam power density than on conventional
anodes, resulting in this source generating significantly higher brightness than other X-ray tubes in the microfocus regime
(~5-50 μm). We describe the fundamental properties of the technology and will review the current status specifically in
terms of spot size, stability, lifetime, flux, acceleration voltage and brightness.
The NanoXCT project aims at developing a laboratory nano-CT system for non-destructive testing applications in the
micro- and nano-technology sector. The system concept omits the use of X-ray optics, to be able to provide up to 1 mm
FOV (at 285 nm voxel size) and down to 50 nm voxel size (at 0.175 mm FOV) while preserving the flexibility of stateof-
the-art micro-CT systems. Within the project a suitable X-ray source, detector and manipulation system are being
developed. To cover the demand for elemental analysis, the project will additionally include X-ray spectroscopic
techniques. These will be reported elsewhere while this paper is focused on the imaging part of the project. We introduce
the system concept including design goals and constraints, and the individual components. We present the current state
of the prototype development including first results.
We report on our progress towards the experimental realization of a liquid-metal-jet-anode x-ray source with high brightness. We have previously shown that this electron-impact source has potential for very high x-ray brightness by combining small-spot high-flux operation of the electron beam with high-speed operation of the regenerative liquid-metal-jet anode. In the present paper we review the system and describe theoretical calculations for improving the 50 kV, 600 W electron-beam focussing to ~30 μm spot size. With such a system the power density on the liquid-metal-jet would be ~400 kW/mm<sup>2</sup>, i.e., more than an order of magnitude higher than the power density on a state-of-the-art rotating anode.
We have demonstrated a new electron-impact hard-x-ray source based on a liquid-metal-jet anode in a proof-of-principle experiment. Initial calculations show that this new anode concept potentially allows a >100x increase in source brightness compared to today's compact hard-x-ray sources. In this paper we report on the scale up of the system to medium electron-beam power resulting in a brightness comparable to current state-of-the-art sources. The upgraded system combines a ~20-μm diameter liquid-tin jet operating at ~60 m/s with a 50 kV, 600 W electron beam focused to ~150 μm FWHM. We describe the properties of the current system, experimental results, as well as a brief discussion of key issues for future high-power scaling.