Author Topic: Faxitron MX-20 x-ray system teardown  (Read 52446 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline calmissile

  • Contributor
  • Posts: 7
  • Country: us
Re: Faxitron MX-20 x-ray system teardown
« Reply #125 on: January 07, 2018, 03:45:11 am »
Mike,

I don't see an option for being able to send PM's.  Could you please email me at calmissile@gmail.com.  I am about to purchase an MX-20 and have a question.

Thanks

Doug
 

Online Fraser

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 10585
  • Country: gb
Re: Faxitron MX-20 x-ray system teardown
« Reply #126 on: January 07, 2018, 03:44:07 pm »
Doug,

What is your question ? Maybe I can help as I have worked with the MX20 for a while.

https://www.eevblog.com/forum/projects/the-x-ray-image-thread-by-aurora-various-electronics-via-x-ray-imaging/

If it relates to software....... there are options available depending upon the exact model of MX-20 and associated camera array.

Fraser
« Last Edit: January 07, 2018, 03:48:54 pm by Fraser »
Cogito, ergo sum
 

Offline mark88

  • Contributor
  • Posts: 8
  • Country: gb
Re: Faxitron MX-20 x-ray system teardown
« Reply #127 on: March 07, 2018, 10:26:53 am »
Hi Fraser,

I just bought a second hand TR15 from 2011 circa cheap at an online auction. Apparently I should be able to see wires of up to 36AWG (0.12mm diameter) but I am worried it won't be as good as the Faxitron-M20 in terms picture zoom/quality. According to this video, resolution doesn't seem so bad https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qq6YPxQRVDE. I hope it doesn't have the same watec camera as yours =). Do you think a camera upgrade would be possible? I am just thinking ahead aka. plan B. Comitronics doesn't seem to have any decent high resolution cameras.

Cheers,

Mark 
 

Online Fraser

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 10585
  • Country: gb
Re: Faxitron MX-20 x-ray system teardown
« Reply #128 on: March 07, 2018, 11:15:33 am »
I know the TR15 well from my working life as well as my hobby.

It must be understood that the Todd Research bag and post scanners are intended to discover unusual shapes and suspect wires inside packages. They were never intended for true high resolution X-Ray imaging. The resolution is much lower than the Faxitron MX-20 due to the technology used in the bag and mail scanners. On the up side, the TR15 has a large imaging plate and high X-Ray energy level.

To the technical stuff.....

The TR15 uses a conventional Toshiba X-Ray tube running at 75kVp. It is not a microfocus type tube so spot size is larger.

The imaging plate in the TR15 is a very thick piece of leaded glass with the scintillator sheet on the top surface. There is a layer of aluminium foil on top of the scintillator sheet. Both are easily damaged so are protected by a cover sheet. The scintillator sheet is nothing special and is the type commonly found in fluoroscopes because that is what the TR15 really is.

The image on the scintillator plate is captured using a high Sensitivity camera. The camera needs to be of high sensitivity and not just your average cctv module. Water produce such cameras, hence why such is used in the TR15. The composite video signal is passed to the embedded PC that contains a video capture card. You effectively have a sensitive CCTV camera and standard composite video in the image collection path. This limits the image resolution achievable.

IIRC, the embedded PC is running Win XP on an 4GB SSD module. The Todd Research software sets the capabilities of the particular model of X-Ray cabinet and features are activated via password protected options. The embedded PC is nothing special and the USB ports connect to the various control boards, keyboard and mouse.

The TR15 is an evolution of the standard Todd Research X-Ray fluorescence for which that company is well known. They have just added a sensitive CCTV camera and PC in place of the users eyes directly viewing the scintillator plate output.

My TR15 was dismantled by me and scrapped. It was just too large and heavy to keep. It had also been dropped on its front causing internal damage. I still have the Toshiba X-Ray tube, Embedded PC, Watec Camera and the interface board if spares are needed. The unit should serve you well for spotting hidden screws and the layout of PCB traces but do not expect too much from it. You can get optical magnification by moving the DUT closer to the X-Ray generator port but remember it is a cone of energy illuminating the imaging plate so DUT size is limited the higher you go in the cabinet.

Finally, BE CAREFUL ! The TR15 generates X-Ray using around 75kVp. It uses a lot of lead to contain that energy. Leaks can be dangerous if it is damaged.

Fraser
Cogito, ergo sum
 

Offline mark88

  • Contributor
  • Posts: 8
  • Country: gb
Re: Faxitron MX-20 x-ray system teardown
« Reply #129 on: March 11, 2018, 11:38:17 pm »
Hi Fraser,

I have done some tests and the TR15 is not as bad as I thought. It goes through a 14 layer board in a breeze. I think the XRAY generator is ok for PCB reverse engineering however the scintillator/CCTV combo is a PITA as the pictures are really low in quality. Even though the generator is not micro-focus, you should be still able to get a sem-decent picture on the range of 0.1mm resolution with the right kit. Even when the board was almost next to the XRAY generator the picture was zoomed and out of focus. I own a Faxitron M-20 from 2005 with an EZ240 NBT XRAY scanner (http://www.ntbxray.com/products/digital_x_ray_scanner_technical_data.html) which is not as good as the Hamamatsu (less sensitive) but it can take energies of up to 160kV. I think not even a WATEC 1/2.8" WAT-2200 (http://www.wateccamerashop.com/watec-products/hd-sdi-camera/watec-wat-2200) would generate a semi decent picture. I will install the EZ240 inside the TR15 and use it to take pictures bypassing the Todd’s scintillator. I will let you how it goes. 
 

Online Fraser

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 10585
  • Country: gb
Re: Faxitron MX-20 x-ray system teardown
« Reply #130 on: March 12, 2018, 12:06:58 am »
I know that EZ240 ...... the seller of such a unit asked me for advice on getting it running in the MX-20 he was selling. An interesting product that mechanically drives a linear X-Ray detector array across the imaging area of the X-Ray beam. A sort of X-Ray detector flat bed scanner idea.

Have you got the interface boards and PC for your EZ240 or maybe it is the unit I was asked to assess that only had the ribbon cables and scanner ?

I would be interested to hear how you get on with that scanner. I almost bought the EZ unit from my friend but common sense prevailed as I do not need it.

Fraser
Cogito, ergo sum
 

Online Fraser

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 10585
  • Country: gb
Re: Faxitron MX-20 x-ray system teardown
« Reply #131 on: March 12, 2018, 12:17:43 am »
On the topic of cameras etc.....

Any television or CCTV related camera will either be too insensitive or too low resolution for use in the TR15. A possible alternative is to remote control a Digital SLR or Bridge camera. Such needs to have a 'Bulb' capability with remote control. Older models are relatively cheap on eBay, especially Bridge cameras as there is not the issue of a separate and sometimes expensive lens. The scintilator should have reasonable resolution.

The built in camera is only composite video and around 470 TVL feeding into what is basically a CCTV composite video capture card. It is little wonder that the image produced is a little 'soft'. It us worth checking the focus on the Watec camera though. They can require minor adjustment to get the best possible focus.

The TR15 does offer the advantage of decent materials penetration as you have seen. 75kVp can produce a reasonably hard X-Ray energy beam.

Fraser
« Last Edit: March 12, 2018, 04:05:45 am by Fraser »
Cogito, ergo sum
 

Offline chris_leyson

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 1511
  • Country: wales
Re: Faxitron MX-20 x-ray system teardown
« Reply #132 on: March 12, 2018, 12:44:48 am »
Completely off topic but I was once asked if I wanted to invest is an x-ray source ? It got me wondering until I found out it was stables for an ex-racehourse  :palm:
 

Offline mark88

  • Contributor
  • Posts: 8
  • Country: gb
Re: Faxitron MX-20 x-ray system teardown
« Reply #133 on: March 12, 2018, 09:57:04 am »
Hi Fraser,

I own the whole set: Faxitron MX-20, EZ240 -> flatbed scanner, power supply, ribbon cables, PCI card and software. The PITA is the 35kV generated by the MX-20. Not powerful enough to analyse some serious latest gen multi-layer boards. With regards to the camera focus, I think your theory is correct; probably the camera focus is optimised for objects located at circa 1m away from the source. Adjusting the focus shall probably give out better results.
 
re:”EZ240 inside TR15” my only worry would be how to pass the ribbon cables out the main chamber. One ribbon cable is used for data transfer whilst the other for power which is connected to an external power source. The TR15 door is quite tight so I either risk damaging the cables or creating a leak which I honestly wouldn’t want. If you have any ideas let me know.

Even if this problem is solved, another one would be to adjust exposure time so that the scanner has time to scan the area. Current time is set to roughly 6 seconds. However, this can solved by installing a small application controlled via ethernet which would send serial commands directly to the XRAY board modifying exposure time. A quick look at your pics suggest communication protocol is serial over USB. But I might be wrong.
 
I literally got the TR15 last week. I only did a couple of tests with it. I am going to wait for a Todd engineer to come over and check it out first. Just making sure it doesn’t have any leaks and it’s safe to use.   
« Last Edit: March 12, 2018, 10:05:43 am by mark88 »
 

Online Fraser

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 10585
  • Country: gb
Re: Faxitron MX-20 x-ray system teardown
« Reply #134 on: March 12, 2018, 12:25:50 pm »
Regarding the inspection of the unit by Todd...... a most excellent and sensible idea 👍 When dealing with a second hand X-Ray machine, it pats to be careful and have it checked for leaks.

Regarding the camera focus...... the lens is usually 'locked off" with the focus point at the surface of the scintillator (not the bottom of the 1" thick lead glass plate). The distance of the DUT from the X-Ray generator does effect DUT optical magnification, but you do lose definition. This is basically a shadow projection system so best image quality will occur at the closest point to the scintillator plate. The MX-20 is capable of providing both optical magnification and excellent image definition thanks to its Microfocus tube and high resolution imaging plate (camera array) the array is only 120mm x 120mm though. Your TR15 is creating an image of a far greater area and this will understandably reduce the available detail. My MX-20 produces a 2048 x 2048 pixel image over a 120mm x 120mm plate. Your TR15 is producing a maximum 640 x 480 pixel image over an area many times that of the MX-20 camera.

It should also be understood that the Hamamatsu X-Ray camera in the MX-20 employs scintillator coated pixels. That is to say, each of the light sensitive pixels has its very own coating of scintillator material in contact with its face. This provides maximum image quality from the array. The older Bioptics X-Ray camera used a more conventional scintillator sheet that was coupled to the light sensitive pixels using a micro channel light pipe plate. This still produced a very high quality imaging array but the losses and pixel crosstalk issues in the system were greater.

The ribbons coming out of the scanner head are a challenge. The TR15 has a tight fitting access door for goor reason. As stated, there is a lot of lead used in the area around the inspection chamber and that includes the door. Modifications to any part of the chamber or door are inadvisable unless you know exactly what you are doing and can test the unit afterwards. Cables and connectors can be added to the chamber walls but they need to be well shilrged with lead sheet to prevent X-Ray energy egress. To illustrate that point. Even the steel screw heads within the inspection chamber are covered in lead shielding.

The lower section of the cabinet is not lead lined as the X-Ray energy is contained within the inspection chamber using the lead sheet and thick leaded glass. The makes the lower section of the cabinet a relatively safe area for well thought through modifications. Any modification to the TR15 will cause Todd Research concern however and invalidate the cabinets design licence.

Fraser
Cogito, ergo sum
 

Offline mark88

  • Contributor
  • Posts: 8
  • Country: gb
Re: Faxitron MX-20 x-ray system teardown
« Reply #135 on: March 12, 2018, 02:10:53 pm »
K so either the detector gets close to the XRAY source or the other way around =). This to avoid structural modifications which I would definitely not do. So I have two options here:

1) Buying a second hand micro-focus dental XRAY generator (65kV-75kV range) and remotely operate it whilst it’s inside the todd apparatus. Obviously the generator would stay really close to the detector. The TDR cage would absorb all XRAY energy.  This could be done with or without the EZ240.

2) Raise the EZ240 closer to the XRAY generator and have a mini-itx board just below with the PCI card installed. All cabling would be self-contained. A “small” battery would need to be used to keep power going to the mini-atx board and to the detector during the picture acquisition phase.

I will think about it.
« Last Edit: March 12, 2018, 02:17:54 pm by mark88 »
 

Offline holko

  • Contributor
  • Posts: 10
Re: Faxitron MX-20 x-ray system teardown
« Reply #136 on: December 22, 2018, 02:15:20 am »
Hi, apologies for hijacking this thread but I am still in the research stage so I'll try my luck here first.

So a few years ago I acquired a Faxitron MX 20 from a friend (I believe it is 2000-2003 vintage) and of course there was no computer ISA/PCI controller board supplied with it.

The main processing board consisting of primarily two CPLDs, some serial bus transceivers made by AMD ADCs and support circuits for two Kodak  KAF-1001 witch is epoxied to what I presume is a fibre optical splitter and scintillator.

Could anyone who have a similar system that match my description post a few pictures of the controller? A copy of the software would also help allot.

I'll post pictures of my system when I get home and finally have managed to dig it up from my basement.

Thanks a bunch!

Regards
Christian
 


Share me

Digg  Facebook  SlashDot  Delicious  Technorati  Twitter  Google  Yahoo
Smf