Morphological segmentation of FIB-SEM data of highly porous media

  • Prill T
  • Schladitz K
  • Jeulin D
 et al. 
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Nanoporous materials play an important role in modern batteries as well as fuel cells. The materials microstructure needs to be analyzed as it determines the electrochemical properties. However, the microstructure is too fine to be resolved by microcomputed tomography. The method of choice to analyze the microstructure is focused ion beam nanotomography (FIB-SEM). However, the reconstruction of the porous 3D microstructure from FIB-SEM image data in general has been an unsolved problem so far. In this paper, we present a new method using morphological operations. First, features are extracted from the data. Subsequently, these features are combined to an initial segmentation, that is then refined by a constrained watershed transformation. We evaluate our method with synthetic data, generated by a simulation of the FIB-SEM imaging process. We compare the ground truth in the simulated data to the segmentation result. The new method is found to produce a much smaller error than existing techniques.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Focused ion beam
  • Mathematical morphology
  • Porous microstructures
  • Scanning electron microscopy
  • Segmentation
  • Three-dimensional imaging

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