ECE Seminar Lecture Series

Quantitative X-Ray Phase Imaging and Image Perception

Mini Das, Professor of physics, electrical and biomedical engineering at the University of Houston

Wednesday, November 8, 2023
Noon–1 p.m.

Wegmans Hall 1400

High-energy X-ray photons offer unique possibilities in detection, sensing and imaging for a range of applications, including biomedical, materials, defense/security and astronomy. However, engineering novel imaging systems that operate with small X-ray wavelengths can be challenging. These challenges include difficulties in manipulating these photons to change path or focus and even devising novel area detectors that yield spectroscopic information. The field is undergoing a new revolution, fueled by X-ray optics, advanced detector technologies and computational methods.

These developments might benefit many areas but this talk focuses on biomedical imaging applications such as breast cancer screening and tomography. Emerging single-photon counting detectors offer significant benefits for quantitative multi-material classification. Phase imaging systems with these spectral detectors when combined the light transport models and computational imaging methods can also solve X-ray phase- retrieval problems in complex media. These innovations can also benefit new multi-modality imaging platforms such as in combination with ultrasound and NIR imaging.

I will show how these new signals, image texture and contrast features such as x-ray differential phase imagery also present rich opportunities in areas of image science and visual perception. Time permitting, I will discuss our work on near-infrared optical brain imaging as well as how studies of visual perception, machine learning and vision science could help these advancements in label-free imaging. 

Mini Das looking at cameraBio: Mini Das is a professor of physics, electrical and biomedical engineering at the University of Houston (UH). She is also an affiliate faculty at the Hewlett Packard Data Science Institute. Her research interests span areas of applied and optical physics, optical engineering, inverse problems, advanced detectors, biomedical imaging, image science and psychophysics. She is a recipient of the National Institute of Health (NIH) Career Development Award (2009), the Department of Defense CDMRP Breakthrough Award (2016), the National Science Foundation CAREER

Award (2017), UH Award for Excellence in Research and Scholarship (2018), the UH Advance Fellowship (2019). She is one of the fifty Science Dialog (SCIALOG) Fellows for advancing bioimaging since 2020 as chosen by the Research Corporation for Science Advancements and co-sponsored by the Chan-Zuckerberg Foundation. A Fellow of the International Society of Optics and Photonics (SPIE) since 2022, she is keen to develop educational and outreach activities to advance and promote interdisciplinary research. In addition, she is passionate about interdisciplinary research for societal benefits such as wide-spread accessibility to novel low-cost imaging systems.