Son et lumière
A good way to start to appreciate what acoustic microscopy can do for you is to look at examples which show unique contrast from the elastic structure of the sample. In glass matrix composites such as borosilicate with silicon carbide fibres, there is contrast between the fibre and the matrix, and also from cracks in the matrix and at the interface between fibre and matrix. A phase of crystobalite is visible where the matrix has devitrified. Samples of granordiorite rock containing plagioclase, biotite, and quartz can be seen, together with boundaries of misorientation which occurred to accommodate strain during the geological processes of deformation of the rock. The composite and rock samples show fringes arising from the Rayleigh waves which are a recurrent motif in acoustic microscopy of stiff materials. Hydroxyapatite, the principal crystalline mineral constituent of bone, can be seen in living cells, with the distinctive contrast arising from the elastic properties and structure of the sample.
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