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A dictionary approach to the EBSD indexing problem

Yu-Hui Chen, Se Un Park., Dennis Wei, Gregory Newstadt, Mike Jackson, Jeffrey Simmons, Marc DeGraef, and Alfred Hero

Notes: The paper will appear in Microscopy and Microanalysis 2015 (pdf).


We propose a framework for indexing of grain and sub-grain structures in electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) images of polycrystalline materials. The framework is based on a previously introduced physics-based forward model by Callahan and De Graef (2013) relating measured patterns to grain orientations (Euler angle). The forward model is tuned to the microscope and the sample symmetry group. We discretize the domain of the forward model onto a dense grid of Euler angles and for each measured pattern we identify the most similar patterns in the dictionary. These patterns are used to identify boundaries, detect anomalies, and index crystal orientations. The statistical distribution of these closest matches is used in an unsupervised binary decision tree (DT) classifier to identify grain boundaries and anomalous regions. The DT classifies a pattern as an anomaly if it has an abnormally low similarity to any pattern in the dictionary. It classifies a pixel as being near a grain boundary if the highly ranked patterns in the dictionary differ significantly over the pixels 3 × 3 neighborhood. Indexing is accomplished by computing the mean orientation of the closest dictionary matches to each pattern. The mean orientation is estimated using a maximum likelihood approach that models the orientation distribution as a mixture of Von Mises-Fisher distributions over the quaternionic 3-sphere. The proposed dictionary matching approach permits segmentation, anomaly detection, and indexing to be performed in a unified manner with the additional benefit of uncertainty quantification. We demonstrate the proposed dictionary-based approach on a Ni-base IN100 alloy.


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