A high speed, high precision, high repeatability serial sectioning method
for 3-D reconstruction of microstructure specimens is disclosed. The
invention employs high-precision motorized metallographic polishing,
viewing and computer controlled digital imaging of microstructure
sections of a pre-selected pattern for 3-D microstructure reconstruction.
The microstructure specimens are transferred throughout by a robotic
manipulator arm, which provides greater precision and speed, and
serial-sectioning process control software provides control. The 3-D
reconstruction of the invention can be analyzed in real time and can be
accomplished in a matter of hours.