We consider an application of the wavelet transform to image processing in x-ray imaging and three-dimensional (3-D) tomography aimed at industrial inspection. Our experimental setup works in two operational modes–digital radiography and 3-D cone-beam tomographic data acquisition. Although the x-ray images measured have a large dynamic range and good spatial resolution, their noise properties and contrast are often not optimal. To enhance the images, we suggest applying digital image processing by using wavelet-based algorithms and consider the wavelet-based multiscale edge representation in the framework of the Mallat and Zhong approach [IEEE Trans. Pattern Anal. Mach. Intell. 14, 710 (1992)]. A contrast-enhancement method by use of equalization of the multiscale edges is suggested. Several denoising algorithms based on modifying the modulus and the phase of the multiscale gradients and several contrast-enhancement techniques applying linear and nonlinear multiscale edge stretching are described and compared by use of experimental data. We propose the use of a filter bank of wavelet-based reconstruction filters for the filtered-backprojection reconstruction algorithm. Experimental results show a considerable increase in the performance of the whole x-ray imaging system for both radiographic and tomographic modes in the case of the application of the wavelet-based image-processing algorithms.
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