X-ray on Wheels – 125 years since the discovery of X-rays

X-ray on tour!

2020 marks the 125th anniversary of the discovery of X-rays. In addition, the person that discovered them, Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen, would have celebrated his 175th birthday in 2020, the Year of the X-ray. In honor of these milestones, Fraunhofer EZRT is sending out its »X-ray on Wheels« on a tour of Germany. The goal is to promote knowledge and understanding of the huge importance of this discovery and to make this available to museums in particular.

Digitalization of European cultural heritage is both a daunting challenge and an unprecedented opportunity to uncover forgotten, unrecognized and previously inaccessible sources of knowledge. By virtue of a mobile X-ray computed tomography machine, we can render the invisible visible and contribute to the virtual capture and recording of historically significant objects in collections and museums.

The »X-ray on Wheels« is a full-featured mobile X-ray laboratory on four wheels. Working with a maximum voltage of 90 kV, the »CTportable160.90« X-ray system is capable of scanning objects that are relatively easy to irradiate with a height of up to 200 mm and a diameter of up to 70 mm in three dimensions at a resolution in the micrometer range.

For the investigation of larger objects, the world’s largest machine park of its kind is available at the Fraunhofer Development Center X-ray Technology in Fürth.

X-ray on Wheels – FAQ

How large is the X-ray on Wheels?

The X-ray on Wheels is the size of a typical Mercedes Sprinter with a long wheelbase.

  • Length: 5910 mm
  • Width: 1993 mm
  • Height: 2425 mm

How large is the portable X-ray system?

Our portable CT scanner is mounted on a special table. The dimensions of the system including the transport table are:

  • Length: 1560 mm
  • Width: 810 mm
  • Height: 1600 mm

What on-site conditions are required to operate the system?

Facility entrances should allow universal access and be large enough to accommodate system dimensions.

What voltage does the X-ray system require?

On-site we require only a standard plug socket (Schuko).

How large can the object be? What material can the object be made of? Object properties?

We offer a variety of measuring methods depending on the object and task in hand. Note: the smaller the object to be measured, the higher the achievable resolution. Maximum object dimensions:

  • Length: 80 mm
  • Width: 80 mm
  • Height: 180 mm

Organic materials such as wood are particularly suitable, as are low-density materials such as plastic or ceramics. Using the portable system to examine metallic objects is possible only in certain cases.

How is the data made available?

Depending on the amount of post-processing required, the data can be transferred to an external storage medium there and then or downloaded at a later date using a link provided.

How much memory does the data require?

Maximum 100 GB per scan.