Sample identification system combining X-ray imaging and diffraction, based upon the use of a pixelated, energy resolving sensor

Lead Research Organisation: University College London
Department Name: Medical Physics and Biomedical Eng

Abstract

Illicit drugs are a major problem for society and it is estimated to cost the UK £15.4 billion per year. One of the problems faced by police forces and UKBA officers is the ability to test objects or containers found on individuals or groups of individuals at the scene of a suspected crime or at points of entry to the UK (airports, ports, etc). This project is to develop a compact sample analyser that could provide detailed analysis of sufficient quality to be used as evidence in court without opening the packaging. The system is based upon a novel approach to a well know analytical procedure - X-ray diffraction. X-ray diffraction is usually carried out in one of two ways. These are called angular dispersive or energy dispersive and they each have advantages and disadvantages. This project uses a new X-ray sensor developed by the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in a mode that allows the two X-ray diffraction approaches to be combined into one. This uses the best of both approaches and gives high quality sample analysis in a matter of seconds without any moving parts.
 
Description We have built a compact sample analyser based on Pixellated X-ray diffraction. The performance is enhanced compared to other systems we have built and it is currently being used in two new areas. Firstly the analysis of counterfiet drugs and secondly in developing an in-theatre system for positive margin detection in breast cancer treatment.
Exploitation Route The output could form a demonstrator for commercial involvement.
Sectors Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Chemicals,Healthcare,Manufacturing, including Industrial Biotechology,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections,Pharmaceuticals and Medical Biotechnology,Security and Diplomacy,Transport

 
Description This project is now completed and the instrument has been built and evaluated. The technique has been applied to two areas apart from the original intention of drug/explosive detection. It has been used in breast cancer research as a rapid histology tool and has also been used as a system for detecting fake or sub-standard drugs.
First Year Of Impact 2015
Sector Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Healthcare,Pharmaceuticals and Medical Biotechnology,Security and Diplomacy,Transport
Impact Types Societal,Economic

 
Description DSTL tender
Amount £250,000 (GBP)
Organisation Defence Science & Technology Laboratory (DSTL) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2014 
End 03/2016
 
Description IPS
Amount £450,000 (GBP)
Organisation Science and Technologies Facilities Council (STFC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 06/2015 
End 05/2018
 
Description Pilot Study
Amount £25,000 (GBP)
Organisation Breast Cancer Now 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United Kingdom
Start 07/2015 
End 09/2016
 
Description STFC Impact Acceleration Award
Amount £5,000 (GBP)
Organisation Science and Technologies Facilities Council (STFC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2014 
End 12/2014
 
Title PixD 
Description A technique to enhance X-ray diffraction measurements. Based around an energy resolving pixellated detector the technique enables both energy and angular resolved data to be collected at the same time. When expressed in momentum transfer space the data collection time is much reduced. 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Year Produced 2014 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact X-ray diffraction signatures can now be recorded in time frames that enable almost real-time analysis of samples. This means the technique coulkd be used in security sacanning procedures or in the identification of counterfeit dtugs or other time limited applications. 
 
Title pixellated diffraction 
Description development of using pixellated sensors for rapid diffraction m,easurements 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Provided To Others? No  
Impact Increased speed of data collection new approach to diffraction interpretation using 'images' of diffraction patterns 
 
Description Axi-tek 
Organisation Axi-Tek
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution There have been multiple discussions and meetings to look for commercial interest in the technology
Collaborator Contribution There have been multiple discussions and meetings to look for commercial interest in the technology
Impact none yet
Start Year 2012
 
Description Dundee 
Organisation Wellcome Trust
Department Wellcome Trust Centre for Gene Regulation and Expression
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution We have provide facilities to the University of Dundee
Collaborator Contribution They have provided clinical material and advice
Impact current paper under preparation
Start Year 2010
 
Description Remote diffraction system 
Organisation Defence Science & Technology Laboratory (DSTL)
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution We have developed techniques for X-ray diffraction measurements
Collaborator Contribution DSTL have supplied equipment to UCL and advice on context of the research.
Impact Confidential reports
Start Year 2013
 
Description working with Rapiscan 
Organisation Qinetiq
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution We advise on aspects of radiation science
Collaborator Contribution They give us advice on commercial aspects of our activities. They also provide equipment.
Impact They will be involved in some of the future publications
Start Year 2013
 
Description working with Rapiscan 
Organisation Rapiscan Systems
Country United States 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution We advise on aspects of radiation science
Collaborator Contribution They give us advice on commercial aspects of our activities. They also provide equipment.
Impact They will be involved in some of the future publications
Start Year 2013
 
Title MiniPixD 
Description Protype system combining transmission X-ray imaging and X-ray diffraction for through barrier material identification. 
Type Of Technology New/Improved Technique/Technology 
Year Produced 2015 
Impact Impacts on the identification of sub-standard/fake medicines. impact on X-ray histology of breast cancer potential impact on mail screening 
 
Description BIOMEP conference 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Keynote presentation
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description IRC Showcase 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Opportunity to display work to interested parties (government and industry representatives and potential investors). Questions and discussion took place and postive feedback received.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description IRC showcase 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Gave talk and presented a poster at a security trade exhibition
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description PaCCS 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Two five mintues pitches were given to the audience. Discusasion and questions followed.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015