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Visualising complex morphology of fatigue cracks in voxel based 3D dataset

B. Müller, F. Pfrunder, L. Chiocca, N.D. Ruse and F. Beckmann
Materials Science and Technology
Vol. 22, No. 9, pp. 1038-1044, September 2006


Fatigue cracks are usually characterised by surface sensitive techniques after specimen failure. High resolution micro computed tomography (µCT) based on synchrotron radiation allows the non-destructive visualisation of crack morphology and evaluation of fatigue crack formation/propagation before specimen failure. The visualisation of the complex fracture morphology with characteristic features out of the acquired set of slices is, however, challenging. To obtain a reasonable estimate, two approaches are generally used: the determination of mass centre points in the hollow space and the minimum intensity search in parallel projections. The more sophisticated approach using the elastically deformable contour model, the physical analogy of a rubber band, termed snakes, gives rise to crack morphologies with much less artefacts. The approach was used in the present study for the characterisation of fatigue cracks in poly(methylmethacrylate) (PMMA) and a dental ceramic. The search for the appropriate snake parameters works much better for homogeneous materials, here PMMA, than for inhomogeneous materials, here a dental ceramic. For the ceramic, the regions where the snakes approach provided reasonable results were restricted. Combining µCT with sophisticated computer vision techniques enables the unique characterisation of cracks at the micrometre scale.

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  author = {B. M\"uller and F. Pfrunder and L. Chiocca and N.D. Ruse and F. Beckmann},
  title = {Visualising complex morphology of fatigue cracks in voxel based 3D dataset},
  journal = {Materials Science and Technology},
  year = {2006},
  month = {September},
  pages = {1038-1044},
  volume = {22},
  number = {9},
  keywords = {}