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X–ray micro–CT scanner

The x-ray micro-CT scanner is used to look at the internal structure of foods and packaging. It is highly versatile and has many applications, as this video clip demonstrates.

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The x-ray micro-CT scanner can give tremendous insight into the internal structure of foods and packaging, as well as troubleshoot problems and defects - without damaging the material being studied.

X-rays are passed through the sample and recorded with an internal camera.

Several hundred images, taken as the sample is rotated, are used to reconstruct a 3D image. The detail revealed in small samples, such as this oat grain illustrates the potential for raw material characterisation and identification.

Packaging, such as this bottle cap, can be scanned to check for leaks and overall structure. Here, cross-sections of any part of the cap can be viewed without the need to cut it. This can highlight defects or weaknesses and provide a range of measurements to check against specifications.

Manufactured products such as snacks can be imaged to help product developers achieve particular structures and textures. Components with differing density can be separately identified. Here, the position of salt seasoning in a snack product can be clearly seen. This illustrates the potential for exploring the relationship between product structure and quality in fine detail.

Similarly, in the final example, the sizes of bubbles in a piece of aerated chocolate can be measured. These images show measurements for two dimensional cross-sections. Here, the different bubble sizes are displayed as different colours in the three dimensional structure.