Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Science




Roberta Flemming

2nd Supervisor

David Holdsworth

Joint Supervisor


X-ray micro-computed tomography (μCT) is able to non-destructively provide high- resolution 3D images of the internal structures of dense materials such as meteorites. The widespread availability of instruments capable of biomedical micro-computed tomography means there is ample access to scanners for the investigation of geomaterials, but the scan data can be susceptible to artifacts such as beam hardening, a consequence of high X-ray attenuation in these dense materials.

A semi-empirical correction method for beam hardening and scatter that can be straightforwardly applied to available biomedical scanners is proposed and evaluated. This method uses aluminum as a single calibration material to significantly reduce or remove signal intensity errors (i.e. cupping) that occur as a result of beam hardening artifacts. X-ray transmission data are linearized using custom software. Results show that it is possible through careful analysis to determine an effective method of artifact correction for specified protocols using this implementation.

Following correction and validation, this technique is applied to imaging of meteorite samples. Four meteorites are examined using μCT in combination with this processing technique: Three ordinary chondrites (Grimsby, Gao-Guenie, and Ozona) and an olivine diogenite (NWA 5480). Information from μCT is compared to that of traditional methods of analysis of meteoritic samples, and the advantages and disadvantages are discussed.

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