How to maximise X-Ray in product development

X-ray Computed Tomography at the 3M BIC

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X-ray Computed Tomography (XCT) is a powerful tool for both product designers and engineers, enabling them to analyse the internal structures and quality of components of products.

XCT can provide valuable insights into the behaviour of materials, identify defects or weaknesses in components, and help optimise the manufacturing process.

Explore how to maximise the benefits of XCT for product design and development.


How does X-ray Computed Tomography work?

The first step to maximising the benefits of XCT is to understand how the technology works.

XCT uses X-rays to create detailed 3D images of the internal structure of components or products.


How to maximise X-Ray in product development

The process of XCT begins by taking a scan of the part/s which creates detailed 3D images that are used to identify defects, failure points, hidden geometrics, measure dimensions, and evaluate the quality of materials.

XCT images can be analysed using a variety of techniques, from simple visual inspection to advanced algorithms for image segmentation, analysis, and simulation.

Advanced analysis techniques, such as Finite Element Analysis (FEA) or Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) can also enable designers to gain a deeper understanding of the behaviour of materials under different conditions and improve the performance of their products.

Which sectors can X-ray Computed Tomography be used in?

X-Ray Computed Tomography (XCT) is commonly used in a wide range of sectors, such as additive manufacturing, aerospace, automotive, consumer products, military and defence, medical devices, engineered products, electronics, cooling chambers, forensics, plastic injection moulding, and research.

The technology is ideal for inspecting a wide range of materials, including ceramics, metals, alloys, plastics, and bone.

It can also be used for:

  • measurement, both internal and external
  • material and defect analysis
  • porosity analysis
  • composite fibre analysis
  • 2D and 3D radiography analytics & construction
  • preserving expensive parts


Key benefits of XCT include:

  • enhancement of product testing
  • speed of turnaround times
  • small one-off projects
  • batch inspections
  • controlled project costs


X-ray Computed Tomography (XCT) at the 3M BIC

X-ray Computed Tomography (XCT) can play a crucial part in product design and development by providing valuable insights into the internal structure and quality of components and products.

By understanding the technology, identifying the right parameters, and using advanced analysis techniques, designers can maximise the benefits of XCT and create more effective and efficient products.

Our Innovation and Technology team can guide you through our in-house XCT capabilities and how they can support your product development, so get in touch today for a free consultation.

More details about our in-house XCT facilities can be found here

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