Computer tomography (CT) for 3D reconstruction entails a huge number of coplanar fan‐beam projections for each of a large number of 2D slice images, and excessive radiation intensities and dosages. For some applications its rate of throughput is also inadequate. A technique for overcoming these limitations is outlined.Design methodology/approach – A novel method to reconstruct 3D surface models of objects is presented, using, typically, ten, 2D projective images. These images are generated by relative motion between this set of objects and a set of ten fanbeam X‐ray sources and sensors, with their viewing axes suitably distributed in 2D angular space.Findings – The method entails a radiation dosage several orders of magnitude lower than CT, and requires far less computational power. Experimental results are given to illustrate the capability of the techniquePractical implications – The substantially lower cost of the method and, more particularly, its dramatically lower irradiation make it relevant to many applications precluded by current techniquesOriginality/value – The method can be used in many applications such as aircraft hold‐luggage screening, 3D industrial modelling and measurement, and it should also have important applications to medical diagnosis and surgery.
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