X-ray computed tomography (CT) uses absorption profiles from many different viewing directions to reconstruct the two-dimensional distribution of x-ray absorptivity within a slice of the sample. The tunability, high brightness and parallelism of synchrotron radiation are critical to high resolution (0.001mm), high contrast (1%) CT or microtomography. In situ study of samples multiple times during the course of an experiment is exciting to consider.
Continuous fiber SiC/Al composites were deformed under three-point bending, and the resulting damage and fiber arrangement were revealed with synchrotron microtomography. Several hundred slices of 0.012 mm thickness were recorded simultaneously using 25 key radiation and a phosphor screen/charge coupled device (CCD) detector. Reconstruction was with the filtered back projection method. Low density regions were observed in the matrix in regions of highest stress where cracking is expected.