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The paper discusses possible applications of the percolation theory in analysis of the microstructure images of polycrystalline materials. Until now, practical use of this theory in metallographic studies has been an almost unprecedented practice. Observation of structures so intricate with the help of this tool is far from the current field of its application. Due to the complexity of the problem itself, modern computer programmes related with the image processing and analysis have been used. To enable practical implementation of the task previously established, an original software has been created. Based on cluster analysis, it is used for the determination of percolation phenomena in the examined materials. For comparative testing, two two-phase materials composed of phases of the same type (ADI matrix and duplex stainless steel) were chosen. Both materials have an austenitic - ferritic structure. The result of metallographic image analysis using a proprietary PERKOLACJA.EXE computer programme was the determination of the content of individual phases within the examined area and of the number of clusters formed by these phases. The outcome of the study is statistical information, which explains and helps in better understanding of the planar images and real spatial arrangement of the examined material structure. The results obtained are expected to assist future determination of the effect that the internal structure of two-phase materials may have on a relationship between the spatial structure and mechanical properties.
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