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Non-destructive testing


X-ray Talbot-Lau imaging provides additional information about the inner structure of materials which are not visible in conventional X-ray attenuation imaging.

Thus, we also apply X-ray phase-contrast and dark-field imaging in the field of non-destructive testing. In particular the dark-field image is generated by fibrous or porous structures on scales below the position resolution of the imaging system. This enables easier detection of fine cracks, air inclusions, porosity and similar structural defects.

Also, the non-destructive investigation of ancient relicts is an interesting topic. The analysis of archaeological findings has been done by our group.


V. Ludwig et al., 2018, Journal of Imaging, 4(4), 58. (


Furthermore, several investigations in the field of food control have been done. The detection of foreign bodies in food showed promising results. In figure 1 four gummy bears are shown prepared with different objects (wooden toothpick, metal needle, powder) to visualize the advantages of each obtained image. The metal needle is best visible in the attenuation image. Wood and powder are clearly visible in the dark-field image. The differential phase image is sensitive to edges and shows finer details of the gummy bear shape and structure.

Figure 1: From top to bottom: Photography of four gummy bears, attenuation image, differential phase-contrast image and dark-field image. The second, third and fourth gummy bears are prepared with a part of a wooden toothpick, a metal needle and micro-sized powder (from left to right).