Page 6: Serving customer needs within each market
The imaging industry now has two main product markets: analogue and digital. Each product has strengths and weaknesses, the importance of which varies according to customer needs and requirements.
There remains a need for both analogue and digital imaging, depending upon the requirements of client groups. For example, during construction, gas and oil pipelines need their joints X-rayed with periodical follow-up checks so that cracks and defects can be detected. This is a job for tried and tested analogue systems.
On the other hand, digital technologies have helped to transform the work of hospital radiologists. For example, a software package developed by Agfa called MUSICA (Multiscale Image Contrast Amplification) enables radiologists to manipulate X-ray images in various ways. Edges can be sharpened up to reveal key details, and images can be rotated to offer alternative perspectives. Users can zoom in on details, and select and sort images in a search for recurring patterns. Images can be shared across a number of hospital workstations and can also be transmitted for immediate expert analysis elsewhere.