Clear customer benefits - the Xtra performance series is the heir to the HP series.

November 21, 2023 | David Campos

Xtra Performance encapsulates Comet X-ray's commitment to pioneering product development, blending years of expertise with cutting-edge advancements. The series has emerged as a game-changer, promising to redefine standards in digital X-ray imaging with its exceptional design and capabilities.

Beyond power - the Xtra Performance Series redefines effectiveness for digital X-ray imaging

In digital X-ray imaging, the assessment of X-ray tube and module efficacy has conventionally revolved around power ratings. This metric, quantified in watts (W), has been employed as a performance gauge, with higher power levels corresponding to improved image generation speed and quality. Nonetheless, this exclusive emphasis on power rating has led to the oversight of other pivotal facets and attributes inherent to the X-ray beam. With the Xtra Performance (XP) product series, we address the changed needs in digital X-rays in recent years beyond traditional "power" metrics. For 3D/CT imaging in laboratory settings, at-line procedures, or seamlessly inline integration, XP delivers more than just high power. Users benefit from extra uptime, a homogenous dose distribution, easy integration, and more.

The XP's advanced features

For the XP series, we have reviewed and turned all the knobs in X-ray tube technology that defines the power performance: the target angle, the target topology, and the focal spot design. In short, a second thermally separated focal spot allows you to switch when you realize the first filament or focal spot has broken down or if you experience a dose decay. This counters sudden stop of your production line. An optimized target angle also allows for an improved spatial resolution without sacrificing maximum power rating. And a revised focal spot design allowing for a homogenous resolution on a wide array of detectors.

”The new 225XP is a game changer for at- and in-line applications. Twice the lifetime achieved by two fully redundant clean box-shaped focal spots, with much better spatial resolution and field of view provided by the 15° target angle.

Arnaud Sottas, Xtra Perfomance Product Manager 

Key advantages for customers upgrading to the XP series

As already mentioned, uptime is a key benefit. It promises extended system uptime, especially enticing for at- and inline production applications. The built-in redundancy of the two focus spots is a central product feature that helps to avoid costly production stops.

No customers like to hear that an entire production line needs to stop. Unplanned production stops are a significant pain point for production lines and a central pain point for our customers using the HP 11 tubes. Operating a production line with a module, like the HP series, makes the production line vulnerable. Since we released the XP, it is fast becoming a perfect fit for near-production integrations.

A uniform focal spot design for efficient, orientation-independent resolution

X-ray application engineers want an "orientation independent resolution" for efficient and consistent imaging. The new focal spot designs in the XP tubes are "round" and "box-shaped," meaning the size in the x and y-axis is almost the same. By delivering square focal spots with XP, we move away from the inhomogeneous focal spots of traditional high-power tubes.

This is highly beneficial as it provides uniform resolution along the focal spot's x and y-axis. With consistent image resolution across the axes, inspectors have less need to worry about an object's specific placement or orientation to inspect a particular area of the object. This advantage becomes particularly pronounced during 3D CT applications. Objects are often X-rayed from multiple angles and rotated simultaneously in these applications. The result is fewer images per scan and faster imaging time.

HP vs. XP - the precision-engineered focal spots of the Xtra Performance series

Below to the left you see a HP/11 focal spot and to the right the two XP/15 focal spots . In the coming months, we will share insights about the Xtra Performance series and how it excels in different areas than its siblings, HP, UP, and MF.

High Power - HP/11, small focal spot
Xtra Performance -XP/15, focal spot A
Xtra Performance -XP/15, focal spot B

The impact and advantages of the 15° target-angle in XP tubes

The transition from the 11° target angle known from traditional high-power tubes to 15° in XP tubes is the result of our listening to and addressing customer feedback. The 15° target angle enables a palette of benefits: The larger beam and the homogeneous illumination of the field of view provide obvious customer benefits. First, with the introduction of a 15° target angle, we ensure increased resolution homogeneity across a larger detection field, resulting in enhanced spatial resolution.

The 15° target angle affords a larger beam. It offers the customer the choice to reduce the FOD without limiting the field of view as it typically happens with a traditional HP tube or to benefit from a larger field of view with an improved dose homogeneity. Furthermore, it eliminates the need for tilting the X-ray tubes in the integration process. With the increased target angle, OEMs will experience a noticeable ease in installing the X-ray tubes since the tubes can now be installed parallel to the object. This simplifies the alignment and mounting process since the need for tilting the X-ray tube has now been eliminated. As a result, users can look forward to a straightforward mounting method without jeopardizing the spatial resolution. This results in a minimized space requirement and a less cumbersome design process for the installation, making everything more user-friendly.

The 15° target enables a true 40° beam angle, resulting in a higher spatial resolution.

This ensures that the images captured from all angles remain more homogeneous in terms of resolution and clarity as the object turns. The user benefit is a more consistent image quality across every section of the 3D CT image, regardless of the angle or rotation of the object. This leads to a faster and more efficient detection of artifacts. In essence, you get a clearer and more reliable picture in all extremities of the 3D image of the turning object, making the inspection process smoother, more precise, and more reliable.

HP vs. XP - a comparative visualization of strengths and capabilities

The contrasting strengths and capabilities of the High Power (HP) series versus the Xtra Performance (XP) series are vividly illustrated in the two spider diagrams below. They showcase how the HP and XP series excel in different areas; Penetration and Uptime. 

Advances with enhanced energy levels and focal spot diversity

In response to the very positive customer feedback, we will further extend the XP product to a wider range of energy (kV) levels and provide a variety of focal spot sizes. This will allow our customers to choose from an unmatched selection of industrial X-ray tubes and benefit from a perfect product-to-application fit.

A marriage between the UP and XP series

Another path we are pursuing is the merger of the XP technology with the proprietary UP (Ultra Power) target topology - read more about the Ultra Performance series here. This combination will bring industrial mini-focus tubes even to a higher level. Thanks to the increased power ratings of up to 30% for any operation mode, from cycling to continuous, these tubes will enable users to reduce the inspection times even further and leverage the throughputs. Through a lens of continuous improvement and innovation, we aim to deliver solutions that surpass expectations, consistently aligning with our promise to serve our customers with innovation and integrity.

Discover their unique features and advantages in our upcoming posts and materials, where innovation meets efficiency in X-ray technology.

Feel free to contact us if you have questions about the X-tra performance series.

Best regards
Comet X-ray - product management.

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