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A fast and non-destructive method for generating three-dimensional maps of the grain boundaries in undeformed polycrystals is presented. The method relies on tracking of micro-focused high-energy X-rays. It is verified by comparing an electron microscopy map of the orientations on the 2.5 × 2.5 mm surface of an aluminium polycrystal with tracking data produced at the 3DXRD microscope at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility. The average difference in grain boundary position between the two techniques is 26 µm, comparable with the spatial resolution of the 3DXRD microscope. As another extension of the tracking concept, algorithms for determining the stress state of the individual grains are derived. As a case study, 3DXRD results are presented for the tensile deformation of a copper specimen. The strain tensor for one embedded grain is determined as a function of load. The accuracy on the strain is Δ[epsilon] ≃ 10−4.

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