WO2006071002A1 - X-ray computed tomography apparatus to acquire the tomography and three-dimension surface image - Google Patents

X-ray computed tomography apparatus to acquire the tomography and three-dimension surface image Download PDF

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Publication number
WO2006071002A1
WO2006071002A1 PCT/KR2005/003967 KR2005003967W WO2006071002A1 WO 2006071002 A1 WO2006071002 A1 WO 2006071002A1 KR 2005003967 W KR2005003967 W KR 2005003967W WO 2006071002 A1 WO2006071002 A1 WO 2006071002A1
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WIPO (PCT)
Prior art keywords
ray
computed tomography
image
tomography apparatus
object
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PCT/KR2005/003967
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French (fr)
Inventor
Seung-Oh Jin
Young Huh
Jong-Uk Kim
Uk Kang
Soo-Jin Bae
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Korea Electrotechnology Research Institute
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Priority to KR1020040116446A priority Critical patent/KR100702148B1/en
Priority to KR10-2004-0116446 priority
Application filed by Korea Electrotechnology Research Institute filed Critical Korea Electrotechnology Research Institute
Publication of WO2006071002A1 publication Critical patent/WO2006071002A1/en

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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61BDIAGNOSIS; SURGERY; IDENTIFICATION
    • A61B6/00Apparatus for radiation diagnosis, e.g. combined with radiation therapy equipment
    • A61B6/14Applications or adaptations for dentistry
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61BDIAGNOSIS; SURGERY; IDENTIFICATION
    • A61B5/00Detecting, measuring or recording for diagnostic purposes; Identification of persons
    • A61B5/0033Features or image-related aspects of imaging apparatus classified in A61B5/00, e.g. for MRI, optical tomography or impedance tomography apparatus; arrangements of imaging apparatus in a room
    • A61B5/0035Features or image-related aspects of imaging apparatus classified in A61B5/00, e.g. for MRI, optical tomography or impedance tomography apparatus; arrangements of imaging apparatus in a room adapted for acquisition of images from more than one imaging mode, e.g. combining MRI and optical tomography
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61BDIAGNOSIS; SURGERY; IDENTIFICATION
    • A61B5/00Detecting, measuring or recording for diagnostic purposes; Identification of persons
    • A61B5/0059Detecting, measuring or recording for diagnostic purposes; Identification of persons using light, e.g. diagnosis by transillumination, diascopy, fluorescence
    • A61B5/0062Arrangements for scanning
    • A61B5/0064Body surface scanning
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61BDIAGNOSIS; SURGERY; IDENTIFICATION
    • A61B5/00Detecting, measuring or recording for diagnostic purposes; Identification of persons
    • A61B5/103Detecting, measuring or recording devices for testing the shape, pattern, colour, size or movement of the body or parts thereof, for diagnostic purposes
    • A61B5/107Measuring physical dimensions, e.g. size of the entire body or parts thereof
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61BDIAGNOSIS; SURGERY; IDENTIFICATION
    • A61B6/00Apparatus for radiation diagnosis, e.g. combined with radiation therapy equipment
    • A61B6/02Devices for diagnosis sequentially in different planes; Stereoscopic radiation diagnosis
    • A61B6/03Computerised tomographs
    • A61B6/032Transmission computed tomography [CT]
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61BDIAGNOSIS; SURGERY; IDENTIFICATION
    • A61B6/00Apparatus for radiation diagnosis, e.g. combined with radiation therapy equipment
    • A61B6/46Apparatus for radiation diagnosis, e.g. combined with radiation therapy equipment with special arrangements for interfacing with the operator or the patient
    • A61B6/461Displaying means of special interest
    • A61B6/466Displaying means of special interest adapted to display 3D data
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61BDIAGNOSIS; SURGERY; IDENTIFICATION
    • A61B6/00Apparatus for radiation diagnosis, e.g. combined with radiation therapy equipment
    • A61B6/52Devices using data or image processing specially adapted for radiation diagnosis
    • A61B6/5211Devices using data or image processing specially adapted for radiation diagnosis involving processing of medical diagnostic data
    • A61B6/5229Devices using data or image processing specially adapted for radiation diagnosis involving processing of medical diagnostic data combining image data of a patient, e.g. combining a functional image with an anatomical image
    • A61B6/5235Devices using data or image processing specially adapted for radiation diagnosis involving processing of medical diagnostic data combining image data of a patient, e.g. combining a functional image with an anatomical image combining images from the same or different radiation imaging techniques, e.g. PET and CT
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61BDIAGNOSIS; SURGERY; IDENTIFICATION
    • A61B6/00Apparatus for radiation diagnosis, e.g. combined with radiation therapy equipment
    • A61B6/44Constructional features of the device for radiation diagnosis
    • A61B6/4405Constructional features of the device for radiation diagnosis the device being mobile or portable, e.g. mounted on a trolley or handheld
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61BDIAGNOSIS; SURGERY; IDENTIFICATION
    • A61B6/00Apparatus for radiation diagnosis, e.g. combined with radiation therapy equipment
    • A61B6/44Constructional features of the device for radiation diagnosis
    • A61B6/4429Constructional features of the device for radiation diagnosis related to the mounting of source units and detector units
    • A61B6/4435Constructional features of the device for radiation diagnosis related to the mounting of source units and detector units the source unit and the detector unit being coupled by a rigid structure
    • A61B6/4441Constructional features of the device for radiation diagnosis related to the mounting of source units and detector units the source unit and the detector unit being coupled by a rigid structure the rigid structure being a C-arm or U-arm

Abstract

The present invention relates to an X-ray computed tomography apparatus for acquiring image information from detected data by scanning an object with X-rays, and more particularly, to an X-ray computed tomography apparatus for acquiring a computed tomographic image and a solid surface image capable of providing visual images to a user by acquiring tomographic in¬ formation of an object and surface color information of the object to form tomographic images and three-dimensional images of the object.

Description

Description

X-RAY COMPUTED TOMOGRAPHY APPARATUS TO ACQUIRE THE TOMOGRAPHY AND THREE-DIMENSION

SURFACE IMAGE

Technical Field

[1] The present invention relates to an X-ray computed tomography apparatus for acquiring image information from detected data by scanning an object with X-rays, and more particularly, to an X-ray computed tomography apparatus for acquiring a computed tomographic image and a solid surface image capable of providing visual images to a user by acquiring tomographic information of an object and surface color information of the object to form tomographic images and three-dimensional surface images of the object. Background Art

[2] Generally, an X-ray computed tomography apparatus includes an X-ray tube for projecting X-rays to an object, a detector for detecting X-rays transmitted through the object, a rotation mechanism in which the X-ray tube and the detector are installed, and a computer for reforming data obtained from the detector into image information.

[3] The conventional X-ray computed tomography apparatus constructed as described above captures tomography of the object by rotating the rotation mechanism around the object. Tomographic capturing of the object is carried out at every minute angle, and projection data of the X-rays obtained by capturing every angle are reformed by mathematical computation such as interative method, back-projection, filtered back- projection, and the like.

[4] There are a variety of mechanical structures of the X-ray computed tomography apparatus and the mechanical structures will be described as follows in brief.

[5] As a first one, the most conventional mechanical structure of the X-ray computed tomography apparatus includes a circular rotation body having an X-ray tube, an X-ray detector, a collimator, and a data collector and rotating about an object placed in an inner space of the rotation body to obtain transmission information of the object and to obtain image information from the transmission information reformed by a computer.

[6] As a second one, a C-arm type X-ray computed tomography apparatus is an opened type X-ray diagnosis apparatus in which an X-ray tube is coupled with an end of a C- arm type mechanism and an X-ray detector is coupled with the opposite end to enable interventional radiology.

[7] As a third one, a dental computed tomography (CT) apparatus for specially diagnosing only local parts such as patient's head, throat, jaw, and teeth used in the fields of dentistry and maxillofaxial surgery. In the dental computed tomography, X- ray tubes are positioned at the right and left sides of an object and the dental computed tomography rotates in parallel to ground to obtain the transmission information.

[8] As a fourth one, there is an object-rotation type X-ray computed tomography apparatus. In this apparatus, instead of rotating the X-ray tube and the X-ray detector, an object is placed on a rotation body and rotated so that the identical effect as that when the X-ray tube and the X-ray detector rotate can be achieved. This object-rotation type X-ray computed tomography apparatus is usually applied to a case where it is possible to rotate the object for a non-destructive test.

[9] Among the X-ray computed tomography apparatuses as described above, the most conventionally used first one will be described in detail.

[10] Fig. 1 is a block diagram illustrating a conventional X-ray computed tomography apparatus

[11] As shown in Fig. 1, the conventional X-ray computed tomography apparatus includes a scan gantry 2, a capturing table 4, and an operation console 6. The scan gantry 2 has an X-ray tube 20. X-rays emitted from the X-ray tube 20 are changed into fan-shaped X-ray beams, that is, fan-shaped light beams, by a collimator 22 and are projected to an X-ray detector 24.

[12] The X-ray detector 24 includes plural detector devices as an array in the direction of the expanding X-rays arranged on same lines. The structure of the X-ray detector 24 will be described in detail later. The X-ray tube 20, the collimator 22, and the X-ray detector 24 constitute an X-ray radiator-and-detector as described later.

[13] The X-ray detector 24 is coupled with a data collector 26. The data collector 26 collects signals detected by respective detecting devices of the X-ray detector 24 in the form of digital data. The radiation of the X-rays from the X-ray tube 20 is controlled by an X-ray controller 28. Connection between the X-ray tube 20 and the X-ray controller 28 is omitted from the drawing. The collimator 22 is controlled by a collimator controller 30. Connection between the collimator 22 and the collimator controller 30 is omitted from the drawing.

[14] The components of the X-ray tube 20 to the collimator controller 30 are installed to a rotation part 34 of the scan gantry 2. Rotation of the rotation part 34 is controller by a rotation controller 36. Connection between the rotation part 34 and the rotation controller 36 is omitted from the drawing.

[15] The capturing table 4 is constructed to move an object (not shown) in and out of an

X-ray radiation space of the scan gantry 2. The relation between the object and the X- ray radiation space will be described later.

[16] The operation console 6 includes a data processor 60. The data processor 60, for example, is a computer. The data processor 60 is connected to a control interface 62. The control interface 62 is connected to the scan gantry 2 and the capturing table 4. The data processor 60 controls the scan gantry 2 and the capturing table 4 through the control interface 62.

[17] The data collector 62, the X-ray controller 28, the collimator controller 30, and the rotation controller 36 of the scan gantry 2 are controlled by the control interface 62. The respective relations between these components and the control interface 62 are omitted from the drawing.

[18] Moreover, the data collector 60 is connected to a data collecting buffer 64. The data collecting buffer 64 is connected to the data collector 26 of the scan gantry 2. Data collected by the data collector 26 are inputted into the data processor 60 via the data collecting buffer 64.

[19] The data processor 60 performs image reformation using transmitted X-ray data for plural views collected by the data collecting buffer 64. The image reformation, for example, is carried out using filtered back-projection algorithm.

[20] Moreover, the data processor 60 is connected to a storage 66. The storage 66 stores some types of data and programs. Processing of some types of data related to the capturing is carried out by the data processor 60 for executing program stored in the storage 66.

[21] The data processor 60 is further connected to a display 68 and a manipulation device 70. The display 68 displays the reformed images and other information outputted from the data processor 60. The manipulation device 70 is manipulated by a user and transmits some types of commands and information to the data processor 60. The user can manipulate the X-ray computed tomography apparatus using the display 68 and the manipulation device 70 in an interactive manner.

[22] As described above, the X-ray detector used in the conventional X-ray computed tomography apparatuses are divided into a single row X-ray detector, a multiple row X-ray detector, and a flat type X-ray detector in view of outer appearance.

[23] The single row X-ray detector acquires X-ray transmission information in the form of a fan-shaped beam, and the multiple row X-ray detector acquires X-ray transmission information in the formed of a narrow angled cone-shaped beam.

[24] The flat type X-ray detector acquires X-ray transmission information in the form of a wide angled cone-shaped beam, and there are various types such as a flat type X-ray detector in which an image intensifier is connected to a charge coupled device (CCD), a flat type X-ray detector using either of a CCD or a CMOS sensor, a flat type X-ray detector using an a-Se to directly detect the X-ray transmission information, and a flat type X-ray detector in which a scintillator is connected to a photodiode to indirectly detect the X-ray transmission information.

[25] In order for the various X-ray detectors to acquire X-ray transmission information necessary to reform the computed tomographic image, the X-ray detectors must rotate about the object by 360 degrees or more than a predetermined angle and acquire the X- ray transmission information at every minute angle.

[26] In the single row X-ray detector, since the width of the single row X-ray detector is below a few mm even for one rotation, only a single tomographic image can be obtained. In order to complement the above shortage, there is now used a spiral scanning X-ray computed tomography apparatus in which an object using the single row X-ray detector advances in the Z-axis direction at a constant speed and the X-ray tube and the X-ray detector rotate sequentially to acquire the transmission information.

[27] Moreover, as a result of development of the X-ray detector, recently there is used a new technology in which the multiple row X-ray detector such as a four row X-ray detector, a eight row X-ray detector, or a sixteen row X-ray detector is installed to acquire transmission information through a wide region in a short time. As such, in the case of reforming a tomographic image using a set of transmission information obtained in the spiral scanning method, the interative method, the back-projection, and the filtered back-projection can be used, and the back-projection is most widely used.

[28] As such, in order to reform the tomographic image in the spiral scanning method, data arrangement and interpolation are used to obtain the transmission information corresponding to a unit position where acquired data will be reformed before applying an image reformation algorithm.

[29] Moreover, recently the flat type X-ray detector having a detection area wider than that of the multiple row X-ray detector is used so that the transmission information of the object can be obtained more rapidly. In a case of using the flat type X-ray detector, the spiral scanning method can be applied to reform images, but it is more effective to use a Feldkamp algorithm directly using cone-shaped beam transmission information.

[30] Since the X-ray computed tomography apparatuses as described above obtain only

X-ray attenuation information for material constituting the object to reform the images, actual color information of the surface of the object and detail image information cannot be represented.

[31] Moreover, since the surface color information of the object and the detail image information cannot be obtained, a visual diagnosis image cannot be provided to a user. In other words, the conventional X-ray computed tomography apparatuses cannot provide an effective diagnosis image when an internal injury and a visible injury of human body are analyzed simultaneously or when surface information and inner information of an object are diagnosed and analyzed simultaneously. Disclosure of Invention Technical Problem [32] Therefore, the present invention has been made in view of the above problems, and it is an object of the present invention to provide an X-ray computed tomography apparatus, for obtaining a computed tomographic image and a solid surface image, in which a camera capable of capturing color information for the surface of an object is installed in a rotation body of the X-ray computed tomography apparatus and surface image information of the object obtained by the camera is reformed so that a computed tomography and three-dimensional image of the object are simultaneously formed to provide a visual diagnosis image to a user. Technical Solution

[33] In accordance with one aspect of the present invention, the above and other objects of the present invention can be accomplished by the provision of an X-ray computed tomography apparatus capable of simultaneously obtaining a tomographic image and a solid surface image, including an X-ray tube for radiating X-rays to an object according to the control of an X-ray controller, a collimator for adjusting a collimation of the X-rays radiated from the X-ray tube according to the control of a collimation controller, an X-ray detector for detecting X-rays radiated through the adjusted collimator and transmitted through the object, a data collector for converting and transmitting a voltage signal generated according to the quantity of the X-rays detected by the X-ray detector into a digital signal, an image camera installed to face the object to obtain a surface color information of the object, an image obtaining and controlling unit for controlling the image camera, storing and transmitting the obtained surface color information, and a rotation body, in which the above components are installed, rotated by the control of a rotation controller.

[34] Preferably, a focus and an angle of the image camera are adjusted by the control of the image obtaining and controlling unit.

[35] The image camera includes a charge coupled device or a complementary metal oxide semiconductor field effect transistor.

[36] Preferably, the image camera is installed at a predetermined position of the rotation body such as a position where the X-rays radiated from the X-ray tube are not projected.

[37] The center of the image camera is aligned with the rotation center of the rotation body.

[38] When the X-ray computed tomography apparatus is a C-arm diagnosis apparatus, the image camera is installed at the right and left sides of the C-arm diagnosis apparatus or at a predetermined position of a C-arm.

[39] When the X-ray computed tomography apparatus is a dental computed tomography apparatus, the image camera is installed at the right and left sides of an X-ray tube of the dental computed tomography apparatus or at a predetermined position of a C-arm. Advantageous Effects

[40] According to the X-ray computed tomography apparatus capable of obtaining a computed tomographic image and a solid surface image according to the preferred embodiment of the present invention, surface color information of an object can be obtained simultaneously so that sectional information of the object and the color information are simultaneously applied to constitute the computed tomographic image and a three-dimensional image of the object, resulting in providing a visible diagnosis image to a user. Moreover, since the surface color information of the object can be obtained simultaneously, the surface color information, that the conventional X-ray computed tomography apparatuses cannot obtain, can be precisely represented, when the surface information and the sectional information of the object are needed simultaneously, whereby in a case of simultaneously analyzing the correlation between the surface information and the internal information of the object, an effective diagnosis image can be provided. Moreover, since the X-ray computed tomography apparatus according to the present invention can obtain the surface color information and the X- ray transmission information of the object and can provide the computed tomographic image and the color solid image simultaneously, the X-ray computed tomography apparatus can be effectively applied to the fields of diagnosing the correlation between the exterior and the interior such as dentistry and plastic surgery.D

Brief Description of the Drawings

[41] The above and other objects, features and other advantages of the present invention will be more clearly understood from the following detailed description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which: [42] Fig. 1 is a block diagram illustrating a conventional X-ray computed tomography apparatus; [43] Fig. 2 is a system block diagram illustrating an X-ray computed tomography apparatus capable of simultaneously obtaining a tomographic image and a solid surface image according to the preferred embodiment of the present invention; [44] Fig. 3 is a view illustrating examples of states of a rotation body as a component of the X-ray computed tomography apparatus according to the preferred embodiment of the present invention rotated and positioned at various angles; [45] Fig. 4 is a view illustrating examples of various X-ray detectors employed in the X- ray computed tomography apparatus according to the preferred embodiment of the present invention; [46] Fig. 5 is a view illustrating an example of a C-arm diagnosis apparatus to which an image camera is installed as an example of an X-ray computed tomography apparatus; [47] Fig. 6 is a view illustrating an example of a dental computed tomography apparatus to which an image camera is installed as an example of an X-ray computed tomography apparatus; and

[48] Fig. 7 is a view illustrating an example of an object-rotation type computed tomography apparatus to which an image camera is installed as an example of an X-ray computed tomography apparatus.

Best Mode for Carrying Out the Invention

[49] Hereinafter, an X-ray computed tomography apparatus constructed as described above that is capable of simultaneously obtaining a tomographic image and a solid surface image according to preferred embodiments of the present invention and its operation will be described in detail.

[50] Fig. 2 is a system block diagram illustrating an X-ray computed tomography apparatus 200 capable of simultaneously obtaining a tomographic image and a solid surface image according to the preferred embodiment of the present invention.

[51] As shown in Fig. 2, the X-ray computed tomography apparatus 200 according to the preferred embodiment of the present invention includes an X-ray tube 210 for radiating X-rays by the control of an X-ray controller 215, a collimator 220 for adjusting collimation according to the control of a collimating controller 225, an X-ray detector for detecting X-rays transmitted through an object 213, a data collector 245 for collecting the detected X-rays, an image camera 30 for obtaining a surface image of the object 213, an image obtaining and controlling unit 235 for processing the obtained surface image, and a rotation body 250 in which all the above components are installed and which is rotated according to the control of a rotation controller 255.

[52] Moreover, the X-ray computed tomography apparatus further includes a data collecting buffer 260 for temporally storing the tomographic images collected by the data collector 245, a data processor 270 for reforming the tomographic image information and the surface image information transmitted from the data collecting buffer 260 and the image obtaining and controlling unit 235 into three-dimensional images, a display 280 for displaying the three-dimensional images, a control interface 283 for serving as an interface when the data processor 270 controls the rotation body 250 and the components (the X-ray tube 210, the collimator 220, the image camera 230, and etc.) installed in the rotation body 250, and a manipulation device 281 having manipulation buttons for a user.

[53] The X-ray controller 215, the X-ray tube 210, the collimating controller 225, the collimator 220, the image camera 230, the image obtaining and controlling unit 235, the X-ray detector 240, and the data collector 245 are installed in the rotation body 250 and are rotated by the control of the rotation controller 255. In other words, the rotation body 250 in which the components are installed rotates about the object 213 so that the X-ray transmission information (tomographic image information) and the surface image information of the object 213 can be obtained at every minute angle.

[54] The X-ray tube 210 generates X-rays according to the control of the X-ray controller 215 and projects the X-rays to the object 213. The X-rays are projected through the collimator 220 for adjusting the collimation according to the control of the collimation controller 225, penetrate the object 123 and propagate to the X-ray detector 240.

[55] The collimator 220 transmits the X-rays by properly adjusting the collimation according to type of the X-ray detector 240. The X-rays detected by the X-ray detector 240 are collected by the data collector 245.

[56] The data collector 245 converts a series of voltage signals generated according to the amount of the X-rays detected by the X-ray detector 240 into digital signals and transmits the same to the data collecting buffer 260. Then, the data collecting buffer 260 transmits the digital signals of the tomographic image inputted to the data collecting buffer 260 to the data processor 270 in turn.

[57] Meanwhile, the image camera 230 installed in the rotation body 250 acquires and transmits surface color information of the object 213 to the image obtaining and controlling unit 235. Then, the image obtaining and controlling unit 234 temporally stores the surface color information acquired by the image camera 230 and transmits the surface color information to the data processor 270 in turn.

[58] The image camera 230, in order to precisely capture the surface color information of the object 213, adjusts its focus and angle according to the control of the image obtaining and controlling unit 235. In other words, when the size and position of the object 213 are changed, the image camera 230 adjusts the focus and angle to precisely capture the surface color information of the object 213 according to the image obtaining and controlling unit 235.

[59] Preferably, an image sensor employed in the image camera 230 is selected from a charge coupled devices (CCD) and a complementary metal oxide semiconductor field transistor (CMOS).

[60] Moreover, the image camera 230 is installed at a predetermined position of the rotation body 250, as shown in Fig. 2, such that the X-rays emitted from the X-ray tube 210 are not projected thereto. In order to precisely capture the surface color information of the object 213, a lens of the image camera 230 is preferably installed to be aligned with the rotation center of the rotation body 250.

[61] The transmission information (tomography information) and the surface color information of the object 213 transmitted to the data processor 270 can be converted into a predetermined set of the tomographic images by an image reformation algorithm and three-dimensional surface images reformed by applying a three-dimensional image processing technology.

[62] The X-ray transmission information on the object 213 detected by the X-ray detector 240 at various angles are used in reforming the inner tomographic image or shape of the object 213. The surface color information of the object 213 acquired by the image camera 230 simultaneously with acquiring the X-ray transmission information on the object 213 are used to reform the surface color information of the object 213.

[63] Thus, the surface of the three-dimensional image reformed by the data processor

270 can be mapped with actual color information, and moreover eyebrow, hair, and makeup of human, a sentence, and a picture, which are difficult to express in the X-ray tomographic image can be expressed in actual colors.

[64] Fig. 3 is a view illustrating examples of states of the rotation body 250 as a component of the X-ray computed tomography apparatus according to the preferred embodiment of the present invention rotated and positioned at various angles of the rotation body 250.

[65] As shown in Fig. 3, the rotation body 250 rotates to every predetermined angle about the object 213. Although Fig. 3 shows the rotation body 250 rotates to positions at 30 degree increments about the object 213, the rotation body 250 actually rotates to every minute angle about the object 213.

[66] When the rotation body 250 rotates to every minute angle about the object 213, the transmission information of the object 213 is obtained by the X-ray tube 210 and the X-ray detector 240, respectively installed in the rotation body 250, and simultaneously the surface color information of the object 213 is also obtained by the image camera 230.

[67] Meanwhile, the quantity and the type of the X-ray transmission information obtained when the rotation body 250 rotates about the object 213 change according to the type of the X-ray detector 240 installed therein.

[68] When the rotation body 250 rotates 360 degrees (1 revolution) about the object 213 and the X-ray transmission information and the image information are acquired every one degree, the quantity and the type of the data detected by the type of the X-ray detector 240 are as follows.

[69] Since the single row X-ray detector 240 as shown in Fig. 4a has the number of detection cells N, the number of the detection cells N*360 detected data are collected, and since in a case of the multiple row X-ray detector 240 as shown in Fig. 4b there are four rows of an array having the number of cells N, 4*N*360 detected data are collected. Moreover, in a case of the flat type X-ray detector 240 as shown in Fig. 4c, since the array is flat having M*N detection cells, M*N*360 detected data are collected.

[70] Thus, in the single row X-ray detector 240 and the multiple row X-ray detector 240, in order to obtain the tomographic image on the volume of the object 213, there is carried out the spiral type scanning method that the object 213 moves in the direction perpendicular to the rotation plane of the rotation body 250 and the rotation body 250 rotates to obtain the x-ray transmission information. However, in the flat type X-ray detector 240, when the flat type X-ray detector 240 is large enough to contain the volume of the object 213, the X-ray transmission information on the object 213 can be sufficiently obtained only by one revolution.

[71] After collecting the X-ray transmission information on the object 213 according to the type of the X-ray detector 240, the single row X-ray detector 240 and the multiple row X-ray detector 240 can obtain a desired tomographic image of the object 213 through the image reformation algorithm such as the filtered back-projection, and the flat type X-ray detector 240 can obtain the desired tomographic image through the image reformation algorithm such as the Feldkamp algorithm.

[72] By applying the three-dimensional processing technology to a predetermined number of the reformed tomographic image sets obtained by the above methods, the reformed three-dimensional surface images can be obtained. The three-dimensional surface images obtained by the above process can express the same color information as the actual surface color of the object 213 by using the image information at various angles obtained by the image camera 230 during the process of obtaining the X-ray transmission information. Moreover, the image information of the object 213 obtained at various angles can be reformed into the three-dimensional image by applying a stereo image processing technology or a surface reformation algorithm.

[73] The X-ray computed tomography apparatus 200 capable of obtaining the tomographic images and the solid surface images as described above can be applied to the C-arm diagnosis apparatus, the dental computed tomography apparatus used in dentistry, and the object 213 rotating computed tomography apparatus as it is.

[74] Fig. 5 is a view illustrating an example of a C-arm diagnosis apparatus as an example of the X-ray computed tomography apparatus 200 to which the image camera 230 is installed.

[75] As shown in Fig. 5, the C-arm diagnosis apparatus includes an X-ray tube 210 for radiating X-rays to the object 213, an X-ray detector 240 for detecting X-rays transmitted through the object 213, an image camera 230 for capturing the surface color information of the object 213, a C-shaped arm 250 for serving as the rotation body 250, a rotation controller (not shown) for rotating the C-shaped arm 250, and the rest device 290 (including an X-ray controller, an image obtaining and controlling, and etc.). [76] In the C-arm diagnosis apparatus, the image camera 230 is preferably installed at a predetermined position where the image camera 230 is not exposed to the X-rays radiated from the X-ray tube 210. Thus, the image camera 230 is installed at the right or left side of the X-ray tube 210 or at a predetermined position of the C-shaped arm 250 to protect the image camera 230 from being irradiated by the X-rays.

[77] Moreover, the image camera 230 is preferably installed to be directed at the center of a circle formed by the X-ray tube 210 and the X-ray detector 240. By installing the image camera 230 to the C-arm diagnosis apparatus, the tomographic images and the surface color information of the object 213 can be obtained simultaneously.

[78] Fig. 6 is a view illustrating an example of the X-ray computed tomography apparatus, to which an image camera is installed, for use only in dentistry as an example of an X-ray computed tomography apparatus 200.

[79] As shown in Fig. 6, the dental X-ray computed tomography apparatus includes an

X-ray tube 210 for radiating X-rays to the object 213, an X-ray detector 240 for detecting the X-rays transmitted through the object 213, an image camera 230 for capturing the surface color information of the object 213, a C-shaped arm 250 for serving as the rotation body 250, a rotation controller (not shown) for rotating the C- shaped arm 250, and the rest device 290 (including an X-ray controller, an image obtaining and controlling unit, and etc.).

[80] The image camera 230 of the dental X-ray computed tomography apparatus is preferably installed at a predetermined position where the image camera 230 is not exposed to the X-rays radiated from the X-ray tube 210. Thus, the image camera 230 is installed at the right or left side of the X-ray tube 210 or at a predetermined position of the C-shaped arm 250 to protect the image camera 230 from being irradiated by the X- rays.

[81] Moreover, the image camera 230 is preferably installed to be directed at the center of a circle formed by the X-ray tube 210 and the X-ray detector 240. By installing the image camera 230 to the dental X-ray computed tomography apparatus, the tomographic images and the surface color information of the object 213 can be obtained simultaneously.

[82] Fig. 7 is a view illustrating an example of an object-rotation type computed tomography apparatus to which the image camera 230 is installed as an example of an X-ray computed tomography apparatus 200.

[83] As shown in Fig. 7, the object 213-rotation type X-ray computed tomography apparatus includes an X-ray tube 210 for radiating X-rays to the object 213, an X-ray detector 240 (a flat type X-ray detector 240) for detecting the X-rays transmitted through the object 213, an image camera 230 for capturing the surface color information of the object 213, a rotation plate 250 for serving as the rotation body 250, a rotation controller (not shown) for rotating the rotation plate 250, and the rest device 290 (including an X-ray controller, an image obtaining and controlling unit, and etc.).

[84] The image camera 230 of the object 213-rotating type X-ray computed tomography apparatus is preferably installed at a predetermined position where the image camera 230 is not exposed to the X-rays radiated from the X-ray tube 210. Thus, the image camera 230 is installed at a lateral side of the X-ray tube 210 or at a predetermined position where the X-rays are not projected.

[85] Moreover, the image camera 230 is preferably installed such that the center of a lens of the image camera is aligned with the rotation center of the rotation plate. By installing the image camera 230 to the dental X-ray computed tomography apparatus as described above, the tomographic images and the surface color information of the object 213 can be obtained simultaneously. Industrial Applicability

[86] As described above, the X-ray computed tomography apparatus of the present invention can be applied to the fields of a medical imaging system such as dentistry, plastic surgery (diagnosis for face malformation), a virtual surgery simulation and a diagnosis simulation before and after surgery in oral and maxillofacial surgery, as well as nondestructive testing such as a simultaneous inspection of the inner and exterior of components of machinery and vehicles, a reverse-engineering, and a simultaneous inspection of the inner and exterior of an object.

[87]

Claims

Claims
[1] An X-ray computed tomography apparatus capable of simultaneously obtaining a tomographic image and a solid surface image, comprising: an X-ray tube for radiating X-rays to an object according to the control of an X- ray controller; a collimator for adjusting a collimation of the X-rays radiated from the X-ray tube according to the control of a collimation controller; an X-ray detector for detecting X-rays radiated through the adjusted collimator and transmitted through the object; a data collector for converting and transmitting a voltage signal generated according to the quantity of the X-rays detected by the X-ray detector into a digital signal; an image camera installed to face the object to obtain a surface color information of the object; an image obtaining and controlling unit for controlling the image camera, storing and transmitting the obtained surface color information; and a rotation body, in which the above components are installed, rotated by the control of a rotation controller. [2] The X-ray computed tomography apparatus as set forth in claim 1, wherein a focus and an angle of the image camera are adjusted by the control of the image obtaining and controlling unit. [3] The X-ray computed tomography apparatus as set forth in claim 2, wherein the image camera comprises a charge coupled device or a complementary metal oxide semiconductor field effect transistor. [4] The X-ray computed tomography apparatus as set forth in claim 3, wherein the image camera is installed at a predetermined position of the rotation body such as a position where the X-rays radiated from the X-ray tube are not projected. [5] The X-ray computed tomography apparatus as set forth in claim 4, wherein the center of the image camera is aligned with the rotation center of the rotation body. [6] The X-ray computed tomography apparatus as set forth in claim 1, wherein when the X-ray computed tomography apparatus is a C-arm diagnosis apparatus, the image camera is installed at the right and left sides of the C-arm diagnosis apparatus or at a predetermined position of a C-arm. [7] The X-ray computed tomography apparatus as set forth in claim 1, wherein when the X-ray computed tomography apparatus is a dental computed tomography apparatus, the image camera is installed at the right and left sides of an X-ray tube of the dental computed tomography apparatus or at a predetermined position of a C-arm.
PCT/KR2005/003967 2004-12-30 2005-11-23 X-ray computed tomography apparatus to acquire the tomography and three-dimension surface image WO2006071002A1 (en)

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