Analysing Spinodal Decomposition using Image Morphology with Thinning, Edge Detection and Graph Methods

Ken A. Hawick


Morphological thinning, spinodal decomposition, digital image processing, graph topology


Edge detection and morphological thinning techniques can be applied to images of cross-sections of metallic alloys and other materials systems to analyse and characterise the spatial structures. This is particularly useful if it can be applied to a time-sequence of images to characterise the temporal aging of phase separating mixtures. We simulate alloy mixtures using the Cahn-Hilliard partial differential equation and use feature recognition techniques to transform the spatially growing domains into spatial networks which can be analysed as graphs using component labelling and size histogramming. We show that growth of large-scale spinodally decomposing structures in the Cahn-Hilliard system corresponds to a reduction in the number of boundary loops but a growth in the length of such loops.

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