Authors: W. Q. Yang and Lihui Peng.
Source: This paper was published in Measurement Science Technology.
Abstract: Electrical capacitance tomography (ECT) is used to image cross-sections of industrial processes containing dielectric material. This technique has been under development for more than a decade. The task of image reconstruction for ECT is to determine the permittivity distribution and hence material distribution over the cross-section from capacitance measurements. There are three principal difficulties with image reconstruction for ECT: (1) the relationship between the permittivity distribution and capacitance is non-linear and the electric field is distorted by the material present, the so-called ‘soft-field’ effect; (2) the number of independent measurements is limited, leading to an under-determined problem and (3) the inverse problem is ill posed and ill conditioned, making the solution sensitive to measurement errors and noise. Regularization methods are needed to treat this ill-posedness. This paper reviews existing image reconstruction algorithms for ECT, including linear back-projection, singular value decomposition, Tikhonov regularization, Newton–Raphson, iterative Tikhonov, the steepest descent method, Landweber iteration, the conjugate gradient method, algebraic reconstruction techniques, simultaneous iterative reconstruction techniques and model-based reconstruction. Some of these algorithms are examined by simulation and experiment for typical permittivity distributions. Future developments in image reconstruction for ECT are discussed.